Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 12th Jan 2007 23:16 UTC
Linux "While the eyes of the IT world have spent years squinting to see Microsoft's slowly unfolding vistas, the companies and individuals that drive open source have been steadily building a case for broader adoption of Linux-based operating systems. Two of the best all-around Linux distributions to emerge from this process are OpenSUSE 10.2 and Ubuntu 6.10, both of which bundle together the best of what open source has to offer into operating systems that merit consideration for desktop and server workloads."
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Distro's Ready for destkop
by kap1 on Fri 12th Jan 2007 23:41 UTC
kap1
Member since:
2006-05-12

i'd say these distro's are ready for desktop users only thing lacking now is good AAA games. Although there are a few odd AAA games available its still not enough.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Distro's Ready for destkop
by wurb on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:06 UTC in reply to "Distro's Ready for destkop"
wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

Being ready for the Desktop and being ready for gaming are two different things, in my oppinion.

Those two distros are as far as I can see already 'ready'.
They just need to iron out a few annoying quirks and tell users already during the setup what they have to do in order to make proprietary media formats work.
And make a greater effort to have working network interfaces after install. It's always a pain to get my winmodem to work after a fresh install, for example. And don't get me started about that cursed wireless dongle! And a newbie who can't access the net in order to get help is a lost user.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Distro's Ready for destkop
by leech on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Distro's Ready for destkop"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

Oddly enough, just about any Linux distribution has better networking support out of the box than XP does. Not sure about Vista. Sadly though, the 'winmodem' issue doesn't lie solely a problem in the distribution's hands. If the manufacturers would release something that actually allowed open source programmers to create drivers, there wouldn't be much of a problem.

Wireless is in the same boat, though that's why I stick with Intel wireless cards, they're all very well supported in Linux. My laptop has one and it works flawlessly.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Distro's Ready for destkop
by fsckit on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Distro's Ready for destkop"
fsckit Member since:
2006-09-24

Seriously, while I do feel your pain, hardware modems are $15 tops and would be a very wise investment if you plan to use Linux with dialup for any length of time.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Distro's Ready for destkop
by wurb on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:56 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Distro's Ready for destkop"
wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

Right. I just feel that that would make my Laptop less mobile if I had to carry an additional device with me.

And you can't simply run into a shop here to buy one, since most only stock software modems (at ridiculous high prices, btw, I doubt I'd get a HW modem as cheap as you say without mailordering it somewhere)

And I know how to get the driver working, even if it is usually a pain to do. I only say that it is a giant annoyance for someone not to familiar with Linux.

Reply Score: 1

AlexandreAM Member since:
2006-02-06

I don't suffer from this problem anymore, but, unfortunately to many other users, here in Brazil the last time I checked a hard modem was costing about five times more than its software counterpart. But it was like two years ago... don't know how things are these days.

they were also very hard to find, btw.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Distro's Ready for destkop
by ubit on Sat 13th Jan 2007 02:00 UTC in reply to "Distro's Ready for destkop"
ubit Member since:
2006-09-08

I agree, but I don't think Linux will ever be a gaming platform, esp. with the issues of the closed binaries from ATI and NVIDIA. But other than that, Microsoft has cornered the market with DirectX/Xbox/XNA. I think consoles are the only way forward from now on. Besides, isn't the only computer game most people play these days "The Sims"?

Well whatever...some people think the war for the desktop is over anyways (Microsoft won), so it doesn't really matter.

Edited 2007-01-13 02:02

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: Distro's Ready for destkop
by raver31 on Sat 13th Jan 2007 12:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Distro's Ready for destkop"
raver31 Member since:
2005-07-06

You have not got a clue.
Nvidia and ATI drivers are closed source on Windows too. It is not that they are crap on linux, it is a philosophy thing.

Microsoft have not cornered the market on consoles, the PS2 vastly outsold both the xbox and the xbox360. It will continue to do so.

Games under directx are ugly looking and slow compared to the same game with opengl.

Try Enemy Territory under Windows, then under Linux and you will see what I mean.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Distro's Ready for destkop
by IvoLimmen on Sat 13th Jan 2007 11:12 UTC in reply to "Distro's Ready for destkop"
IvoLimmen Member since:
2005-07-06

This week I decided the following because of the lack of games under Linux:

1) When I buy a new computer I will only run Linux (Ubuntu) on it. (No more dual boots for me)

2) When I want to play games again: I'll buy a Wii or PS3.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Distro's Ready for destkop
by wurb on Sat 13th Jan 2007 11:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Distro's Ready for destkop"
wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

I used to play regularly before switching to Linux. Now I play less since Linux itself offers enough toys, like the shell, configuration files and emacs. ;)

However I can get my favorite games to work with wine, and since new games don't run on my PC anyway I don't miss anything.

The powergamer who can actually run the newest games longer than ten months after PC purchase due to constant hardware upgrades isn't an average desktopuser either, and wine (or rather cedega) is catching up with the older titles.

Reply Score: 2

yeah
by SK8T on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:08 UTC
SK8T
Member since:
2006-06-01

yeah,

I think Linux will get more and more equivalent to windows; but imo some important multimedia features are missing!
For example a good video cutting program - but DRM is also an topic. Many peoples got an iPod today, and iTunes is a great piece of software. (I know, nobody like DRM. So on the one hand it's a good thing, on the user, bad for the iPod user).

The usability is great, mabye even better than windows. But I think an easy installer is missing, like the .app system on macs or setup.exe. (A normal user doesn't know why he has to fix depencies).

But in conclusion I think, OpenSource software is as good as commercial software

Reply Score: 2

RE: yeah
by raynevandunem on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:57 UTC in reply to "yeah"
raynevandunem Member since:
2006-11-24

"But I think an easy installer is missing, like the .app system on macs or setup.exe. (A normal user doesn't know why he has to fix depencies)."

Installers are rare on Linux distributions, which reflect on their very nature: most Unix-like distributions intend to offer the entire enchilada in one fell swoop, placing user-oriented application installation on the backburner.

What you're probably looking for are archive-compression formats. That's the route most taken by both Mac OS X (.dmg, which contains .app), Windows (dunno if .exe can be considered an archive format), even AmigaOS (.lha).

The package management system, IMO, works best for higher-end enterprise desktop systems (.msi comes to mind). The archive/compression format is used most by commercial software distributors (Adobe, for example), and is used most on lower-end home desktops.

.tar.gz is probably the closest that you'll get to a Linux equivalent of .exe or .dmg.

Relevant Wikipedia articles:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_archive_formats#Archiving_and_...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Software_package
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Package_management_system
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.dmg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LHA_%28file_format%29
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executable

Edited 2007-01-13 01:00

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: yeah
by Rugmonster on Sat 13th Jan 2007 02:59 UTC in reply to "RE: yeah"
Rugmonster Member since:
2005-11-18

Slackware has .tgz which is an archive-compression format.

I have to say that Ubuntu has Synaptic, which makes installing software much easier than any Windows setup. You click that app you want and click install. Dependencies are handled. Once it is downloaded and installed, you start the app. You're good to go.

Where users may run into hard times is if there isn't an app in an apt repository.

While I haven't used it lately, OpenSUSE has similar functionality through YaST I believe.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: yeah
by raynevandunem on Sat 13th Jan 2007 03:37 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: yeah"
raynevandunem Member since:
2006-11-24

"Slackware has .tgz which is an archive-compression format."

I know that. It's also a tarball, just like tar.gz, .tar.Z, .tar.bz2, .tbz2, .tar.lzma, and .tlz. (breathes)

"I have to say that Ubuntu has Synaptic, which makes installing software much easier than any Windows setup. You click that app you want and click install. Dependencies are handled. Once it is downloaded and installed, you start the app. You're good to go.

Where users may run into hard times is if there isn't an app in an apt repository."

And that is EXACTLY my point.

Windows, Mac OS, and AmigaOS don't have repositories, only recommended downloads to add to the system for extra desired functionality. Meanwhile, the applications which aren't included for either system are usually offered by freeware, shareware, and fully-commercial application developers on the web.

Furthermore, those applications provided by the aforementioned developers are the first and foremost applications to be sought after following the purchase (and installation) of that operating system.

In what format do they provide those applications? Archive-compression formats, 90% of the time, with the occasional .msi or .pkg only if the application is THAT big or important (like Google Earth).

They even do the same with Linux distributions, might I mention?

If you're on Ubuntu, and you go to Mozilla.com for a Firefox download because you can't find the most recent version in the repositories, the thing that is handed out to you when you click "Download Firefox for Linux x86" is firefox.tar.gz.

What the hell do you do with that, you wonder. No idea? Can't install a tarball? Well damn, son, you should've known that you can't download and install the latest version of Firefox in Ubuntu from Mozilla's website! You have to wait until someone else makes it available in the repositories!

Oh, and there's no guarantee that it'll be available *anytime soon*, btw.

(Personal experience: my two weeks on Ubuntu, circa Hoary and Firefox 1.5. Same case, much later, with Breezy and Firefox 1.5.)

That is the case with every latest "Linux/Unix" version of any popular application, even the ones on frickin' Sourceforge!

Every last one of them: tar.gz.

Maybe its easy to install software on a Linux distribution as a user, but only if you are willing to work under such (IMO, debilitating) constraints.

What I ask of Ubuntu or OpenSuSE or any other desktop Linux distro?

Just that they allow for easy installation of tarballs with graphical front-ends. That's it.

I just want to try out http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/kuartetdesktop/kuartet-0.4.0.1.t... on Ubuntu without looking through any repos to see if its "stable" or any nonsense like that.

That's some unnecessary grief for someone who wants to actually like the operating system that he's using.

Edited 2007-01-13 03:41

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: yeah
by archiesteel on Sat 13th Jan 2007 05:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: yeah"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Well damn, son, you should've known that you can't download and install the latest version of Firefox in Ubuntu from Mozilla's website! You have to wait until someone else makes it available in the repositories!

Which takes what...two days? Three maybe?

Seriously, I'm getting a bit tired of this argument. The Ubuntu repositories are *huge*. It's hard to find an app that isn't available. So what if the bleeding-edge versions are not available yet?

BTW nothing prevents ISVs to offer standalone installers. Google does that for its software (Picasa, Google Earth), so does Codeweavers and OpenOffice.

Why is it that every time an article comes out about how there might be some good Linux alternatives to Windows, the naysayers all pop up to nitpick away. If Linux isn't good enough for you, just don't use it, and let those who are curious about it try it for themselves...

Reply Score: 5

RE[5]: yeah
by raynevandunem on Sat 13th Jan 2007 06:21 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: yeah"
raynevandunem Member since:
2006-11-24

"Which takes what...two days? Three maybe?"

I'm sorry, did you read what I just said? I said that both Hoary and Breezy had this problem. To be more specific, Ubuntu was still stuck with Firefox 1.0 (released almost a year prior to Breezy's release) when I last tried it on Breezy back in October 2005.

"Seriously, I'm getting a bit tired of this argument. The Ubuntu repositories are *huge*. It's hard to find an app that isn't available. So what if the bleeding-edge versions are not available yet?"

Pfff...Firefox 1.5 a "bleeding edge" app? After it was released by Mozilla?

"BTW nothing prevents ISVs to offer standalone installers. Google does that for its software (Picasa, Google Earth), so does Codeweavers and OpenOffice."

Yeah, and yet, they are generally frowned upon by Linux proponents as being more complicated than Linux installs, with a bunch of clicks compared to Linux's nifty click-once-and-install approach.

Even if Google offers Linux versions, they still come in .bin, which, like .tar.gz, doesn't have a GUI installer (as it says on Picasa's "Thanks" page).

"Why is it that every time an article comes out about how there might be some good Linux alternatives to Windows, the naysayers all pop up to nitpick away. If Linux isn't good enough for you, just don't use it, and let those who are curious about it try it for themselves..."

Because Linux distros, Linux vendors and Linux proponents simply vaunt Linux to that status of visibility.

They proclaim often that Linux is ready for the desktop, and the rest of us ask "Oh yeah? How ready?"

Specifics: 1) can we do the same thing on Linux that we already do on Windows with less pain (spyware and all that jazz) and more gain (applications, productivity, maybe games)?

2) Are there less hurdles to cross in that migration than when we last tried it?

3) Is it that bad on our current system that we need to make that move?

4) Is there something good to see and use on Linux that we can't get on our current system?

5) If we move to a Linux system, and we don't like the current setup, can we change it, how much so, and how much is needed to do so?

Slowly but surely, those questions are being answered to our satisfaction.

1) GoboLinux?

2) MySLAX Creator. Only one of its kind, AFAIK.

3) Only if you're using a sickly, debilitated box with Windows 98 (and no sound) on it.

4) Beryl.

5) Again, Beryl. That's Linux's first "killer app", IMO.

But none of that is either my point or my contention, as you've made it out to be in your own premature rush to conclusions.

My contention and main gripe, as detailed in my last two comments, is the shoddy state of installation of non-packaged applications (tarballs and bins) on most Desktop Linux distributions.

Edited 2007-01-13 06:26

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: yeah
by archiesteel on Sat 13th Jan 2007 08:14 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: yeah"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

I'm sorry, did you read what I just said? I said that both Hoary and Breezy had this problem. To be more specific, Ubuntu was still stuck with Firefox 1.0 (released almost a year prior to Breezy's release) when I last tried it on Breezy back in October 2005.

This article is about Edgy. Firefox 2.0.0.1 was available just a few days after it was posted on the Firefox website.

I'm interested in what the situation is now, not how it was in October 2005.

Yeah, and yet, they are generally frowned upon by Linux proponents as being more complicated than Linux installs, with a bunch of clicks compared to Linux's nifty click-once-and-install approach.

I've never heard a Linux proponent frown on standalone installers, not even back in the day of Loki games. I myself have nothing against them for commercial applications.

I'm sure some people might have complained, as Linux users are a vast, diverse bunch, but I don't think they represent a majority, or even a sizeable minority. Of course if an app is both available as a package and a standalone, the first method might be better (if only because it makes updating a lot simpler).

Even if Google offers Linux versions, they still come in .bin, which, like .tar.gz, doesn't have a GUI installer (as it says on Picasa's "Thanks" page).

True, however there are precise instructions on how to install it with the terminal. That said, they have Ubuntu packages right there on the download page.

However, that's besides the point. There are standalone GUI installers available. If ISVs choose not to use them, that is *their* choice, and any criticism should be adressed to *them*.

Because Linux distros, Linux vendors and Linux proponents simply vaunt Linux to that status of visibility.

And they are right. When someone says "Linux is ready for the desktop", it doesn't mean "it's ready for all desktops." You seem to want for Linux to be perfect before it should even be considered for adoption, placing the bar much too high. I'm more of the opinion that those whose computing needs are met by Linux should try it to see if they like it.

Linux will never take over the desktop overnight; rather, it will continue to slowly gain adoption as it becomes ready for an increasing number of desktop, which in turn will increase software and hardware support for it, making it ready for more desktops, and so on.

That's why I feel the naysayers ought to stay away from some hypothetical bar Linux needs to surpass in order to be "universally ready"...it is never as clear-cut as this. Linux has been ready for the desktop for years, and as time progresses that means an increasing proportion of desktops.

They proclaim often that Linux is ready for the desktop, and the rest of us ask "Oh yeah? How ready?"

No. You don't ask "how ready." You simply state "no, not ready." Asking "how ready" would acknowledge that readiness is not a binary condition. What I read from the naysayers, however, is that they consider that Linux can either be totally ready or not ready at all.

Again, that has very little to do with market share. Would you consider OSX "not ready" for the desktop?

As far as the .tar.gz point is concerned, my position still remains the same: using Ubuntu Edgy, you can basically get any app in the repositories OR using standalone installers OR download .debs. If you're looking for something so obscure or impopular that it is only available as a .tar.gz, then chances are you already know how to install from tarballs. All things considered, however, that will only represent a very small fraction of users...

Have you tried Edgy, BTW? It is quite an improvement from Dapper, which itself was a big improvement on Breezy. If Feisty keeps its promises, it will be a serious contender for an even larger proportion of desktops.

Reply Score: 5

RE[6]: yeah
by archiesteel on Sat 13th Jan 2007 17:44 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: yeah"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

By the way, using bold type to emphasize your point (especially for an entire paragraph) is bad form. If you want to put emphasis, I suggest you use italics, and only on the words you want to stress. Other it's a little bit like SHOUTING. :-)

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: yeah
by rhyder on Sat 13th Jan 2007 13:35 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: yeah"
rhyder Member since:
2005-09-28

I don't think that it's at all unreasonable to follow the version numbers sometimes on an application. Somestimes, it can be frustrating to have to wait months to access a new feature on a app version that everyone else is feels to be stable.

This means that you have to install some things from source. And with Linux, that's when dependency hell can start.

I would really like this version of Linux that some other people seem to have. The one that never messes up somewhere within the make - ./configure - make install cycle.

Edited 2007-01-13 13:38

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: yeah
by r_a_trip on Sat 13th Jan 2007 16:42 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: yeah"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

I would really like this version of Linux that some other people seem to have. The one that never messes up somewhere within the make - ./configure - make install cycle.

That is the version used by "veteran" GNU/Linux users. Those users who have used GNU/Linux for as many years as you switchers have used Windows.

Such long years using GNU/Linux tends to give you the arsenal of knowledge that you need to fix dependency problems if you can't wait any longer before you get stable-app-version-+1 on your system.

That is the problem many switchers have. Just because you became a poweruser on Windows over the course of 5+ years, doesn't mean you are a poweruser on GNU/Linux in two afternoons.

Reply Score: 5

RE[7]: yeah
by archiesteel on Sat 13th Jan 2007 17:42 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: yeah"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Exactly. The idea that one must always run the latest version is typical of the Windows world. In the Linux world, because versions are often available *before* they are stable or finished, it's often preferable to take the opposite approach and actually wait until the stable version is available.

Note that ordinary users, people who just want things to work, do not have a problem with that. As you say, it's the power users, often addicted to the bleeding edge, who complain about this. Well, if they want to be "power users" on Linux, then they better learn how to "./configure; make; make install" (and not "make; ./configure; make install" as the other poster erroneously indicated). It's not exactly rocket science...

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: yeah
by rhyder on Sat 13th Jan 2007 18:50 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: yeah"
rhyder Member since:
2005-09-28

What the hell? I'm a veteran of RISCOS, 8 bits, DOS, OS/2, Mac, Amiga and yes, some Windows too. I'd hardly say that I have problems with Linux as I'm only used to Windows. BTW, my first set of Linux install disks say Winter '96 on them and I've been using Linux on and off ever since.

Thanks for the laugh though. It is nice to hear a Linux fanboy admit that you need an 'arsenal of knowledge' to fix dependency problems if you want to install from the source :-)

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: yeah
by melkor on Sun 14th Jan 2007 00:26 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: yeah"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Hear, hear.

Dave

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: yeah
by DrillSgt on Sat 13th Jan 2007 06:12 UTC in reply to "RE: yeah"
DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

"The package management system, IMO, works best for higher-end enterprise desktop systems (.msi comes to mind). The archive/compression format is used most by commercial software distributors (Adobe, for example), and is used most on lower-end home desktops.

.tar.gz is probably the closest that you'll get to a Linux equivalent of .exe or .dmg."


Actually try RPM. Double click, it installs with the package manager solving all dependencies. That is more the equivalent of an exe or an msi anyway.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: yeah
by rhyder on Sat 13th Jan 2007 13:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: yeah"
rhyder Member since:
2005-09-28

This requires that someone else has made the package in the first place. Less popular apps can lag way behind.

You also assume that RPM is going to work perfectly every time. It doesn't.

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: yeah
by DrillSgt on Sat 13th Jan 2007 19:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: yeah"
DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

"This requires that someone else has made the package in the first place. Less popular apps can lag way behind.

You also assume that RPM is going to work perfectly every time. It doesn't."


True enough, good points.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: yeah
by siride on Sat 13th Jan 2007 21:30 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: yeah"
siride Member since:
2006-01-02

It's the same problem on Windows. If someone didn't bother to make an installer, then you have to make it manually or do without. At least on Linux you have another option with ./configure, make and make install.

Fact is, if you don't make an installer or an RPM, people can't install your software easily. There's nothing magical about Windows that makes this problem go away. Perhaps Linux software makers don't try as hard, but that's not a fault of Linux, it's a fault of the software developers for *certain* pieces of software.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: yeah
by raynevandunem on Sun 14th Jan 2007 01:29 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: yeah"
raynevandunem Member since:
2006-11-24

I agree on all your points.

I've rarely encountered an app on Windows that [strike]I didn't like[/strike] didn't have a graphical installer, but there are a few, such as Chatzilla (the standalone version) on XULRunner, currently in pre-alpha.

Can't say that much about Mac OS X having this problem. Just about everything that is done on Mac OS X is GUI-centric, and the Terminal is there only if you have some Unix experience that is necessary for something that can't be done in the GUI.

And you're definitely right about that last part. The majority of Linux software devs simply toss out their application's source code in tarball form, similar to how you toss out bones for dogs to fight over.

They don't even bother to include installers, updaters or anything like that. They simply assume that it'll get to the user sooner or later, depending upon how long it takes for a distro's maintainers to make a package and declare it stable enough to be deployed.

I dunno, that just feels backward, unless you're a user who does simple stuff on the computer, and not much else.

Reply Score: 1

RE: yeah
by John Nilsson on Sun 14th Jan 2007 11:59 UTC in reply to "yeah"
John Nilsson Member since:
2005-07-06

But in conclusion I think, OpenSource software is as good as commercial software

“Commercial” is not the opposite of Free-Libre / Open Source Software (FLOSS)
http://www.dwheeler.com/essays/commercial-floss.html

Reply Score: 5

multimedia features
by Orgen on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:18 UTC
Orgen
Member since:
2005-07-11

"... a good video cutting program..."

Avidemux is good enough? (http://avidemux.sourceforge.net)

Reply Score: 2

RE: multimedia features
by SK8T on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:43 UTC in reply to "multimedia features"
SK8T Member since:
2006-06-01

"Avidemux is a free video editor designed for simple cutting" -- I think simple cutting is not enough, I meant a strong cutting programm that offers extented cutting options, too.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: multimedia features
by acobar on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:01 UTC in reply to "RE: multimedia features"
acobar Member since:
2005-11-15

Did you try Cinelerra from "http://heroinewarrior.com/"? Perhaps, this is more like what you are looking for.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: multimedia features
by SomeGuy on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:05 UTC in reply to "RE: multimedia features"
SomeGuy Member since:
2006-03-20

You probably want kdenlive (http://kdenlive.sourceforge.net/index.php). Pitivi, while not there yet, is also the sort of thing you seem to be interested in.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: multimedia features
by SK8T on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:06 UTC in reply to "RE: multimedia features"
SK8T Member since:
2006-06-01

yes I tried both, they don't work very well for me

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: multimedia features
by archiesteel on Sat 13th Jan 2007 04:58 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: multimedia features"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Do you mean they weren't working well (i.e. crashes), or that you weren't able to do what you wanted with them? Were they too much (i.e. overkill) or not featureful enough?

What would be the equivalent app on Windows?

By the way, to avoid confusion you should call them *editing* apps instead of cutting...

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: multimedia features
by chemical_scum on Sat 13th Jan 2007 01:38 UTC in reply to "multimedia features"
chemical_scum Member since:
2005-11-02

"Avidemux is a free video editor designed for simple cutting" -- I think simple cutting is not enough, I meant a strong cutting programm that offers extented cutting options, too.

How about:

Cinelerra
http://heroinewarrior.com/cinelerra.php3

or
LiVES
http://lives.sourceforge.net/

for this then ?

Reply Score: 2

bad article
by Angel Blue01 on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:21 UTC
Angel Blue01
Member since:
2006-11-01

The article doesn't say how these distros are better than Vista, just that they are better than XP.

Reply Score: 5

So...
by edogawaconan on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:31 UTC
edogawaconan
Member since:
2006-10-10

what does the article actually want to say?

Reply Score: 2

RE: So...
by RGCook on Sat 13th Jan 2007 02:14 UTC in reply to "So..."
RGCook Member since:
2005-07-12

I kind of took away this feeling that the article is saying..."If you are considering Vista, it is worth your time to stop and consider a Linux alternative. Switching from XP to Vista might be more painful and less attractive than making a clean break now to Linux."

That's what I am thinking it says, although that might be what I am thinking as I read it too!

Reply Score: 5

managing tool
by collinm on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:33 UTC
collinm
Member since:
2005-07-15

suse have great tool to manage the system: with yast, we can setup the sound car, video card, network card, printer, scanner, tv card

manage many service, user, groups...

it's an all in one setup manager...

last time i tried ubuntu 6x... it does not have this kind of tool

Reply Score: 5

RE: managing tool
by raver31 on Sat 13th Jan 2007 12:43 UTC in reply to "managing tool"
raver31 Member since:
2005-07-06

I dont like Yast. It is open source and therefore any distro maker can include it.

The only people who seem to actually like it are the ones who use Suse. In fact, not all Suse users like Yast.

I recently switched this machine back from 10.2 to Ubuntu 6.10. Mainly because I switched sound cards in the machine and Yast was not able to work with the replacement... it was a C-media card which replaced the C-media on-board card.

It also cannot work with Compro DVB-T200 cards as Yast thinks it is an analogue card, even if the dvb module is loaded.

If Yast is so good... why has my Ubuntu not got it ?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: managing tool
by collinm on Sat 13th Jan 2007 20:08 UTC in reply to "RE: managing tool"
collinm Member since:
2005-07-15

because ubuntu is not good

Reply Score: 0

Sorry guys, but Linux isn't ready...
by melkor on Sat 13th Jan 2007 00:39 UTC
melkor
Member since:
2006-12-16

I hate to say it, but I firmly do not believe that Linux is ready for the desktop yet. In terms of average usage, Linux is ready. When things go wrong though? I bet your average user will be totally lost. Couple that to the lack of support for Linux and it's a turn off for the average user. Let's be realistic here - I know Linux has tonnes of support in the way of man/info pages, forums, wikis etc etc, but your average person is going to want to be able to ring someone to fix it, or take it to the local computer store on the corner and have it fixed. That type of infrastructure simply does not exist for Linux - yet. It'll happen, but it's going to take more time I feel.

There is still a plethora of choice on the Linux platform, and that is both good and bad. Too much choice tends to confuse and frustrate the average user from my experiences at least.

Then there's the topic of games, legally being able to play mp3s, DVDs, DRM'd music etc. Then there's the issue of a lack of proprietary 3rd party software vendors porting to Linux. I guarantee that if Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, AutoCAD and Quicken all ran natively on Linux, we'd see a pretty quick uptake of Linux on the desktop.

Just my honest 2.2c worth. Don't get me wrong, Linux has potential, but in my honest opinion, it needs to fix a variety of issues first before it'll happen. The community seems totally against making these changes for a variety of reasons, and that is why I think Linux has reached its 'critical mass' and nothing much more will come of it. I'm seeing more people move to OS X than to Linux, and that is because OS X has acknowledged the issues that I've raised previously and solved them to a satisfactory manner to the average user. For those that have missed my previous comments, I'll restate my thoughts:

1. Too many desktop environments, it leads to confusion and weakens things. Imagine if we had everyone just working on one desktop environment (ie. KDE), rather than a splintered effort...code would be tested more thoroughly, released even more often, and new features and ideas would presesnt themselves more often. It would also help with standardisation, which is great for the masses.

2. Same as point 1 but with applications. Far too many duplicate applications.

3. Same as point 1, but for package management. Linux should really only be using one package management system and it should be graphical and auto resolve dependencies without ANY help from the user. It must be totally reliable and not bork the system.

4. Stability in the API MUST occur. With the lib files changing all the time, what runs on Suse 10.2 won't probably run on Redhat 8. Try the same with an application designed for OS X or Windows, you'll find that said application will pretty much always run on either 10.4 or 10.2, or Windows XP or Windows 98SE.

5. The community has to be prepared to help foot the cost for major software applications to be ported to Linux, up-front as well I might add. Porting generally costs a lot of money, no 3rd party software vendor in their right mind is going to pay a lot of money to port when no one will buy the finished product because the price is 'too high' (they have to recuperate their porting costs somehow, that's only fair).

6. Many Linux applications are still flakey, poorly designed etc and lack polish and professionalism. Sure, I know a lot of these applications are done by guys who don't get paid, and do it as a side job...but...

That's my thoughts.

Dave

Reply Score: 5

wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

Give that same user a problem with windows and he'll usually be equally lost and call his personal geek for help.

About Desktop environments: I don't think the user would care so much about the choice, he would simply use the one his distro favorizes. I mean, how many people actually use one of those fancy alternative shells for windows? If he gets into it a bit more he'll try another, but he absolutely does not have to care for choice.
A packaging system like Apt makes this even ridiculously easy.
And the same point goes for applications. Don't tell me there would not be way to much duplicate apps for windows. Even more, and far more crappy ones.

Point 4: No. WinXP apps usually don't run very well on Win98. And on Linux you can usually be sure that your Distro recompiles everything. If someone still runs Redhat 8 that person should probably consider an update by now. And most serious Distributions have most things in their own repositories anyway.

5. The lack of specialised apps is of course a drawback. It improves a bit, but slowly. However, the average desktop user you spoke about probably won't need those. Maybe if Wine evolves further and gets integrated more tighter in the Desktop so click and run actually works for most things it would help.

6. So are hellofalot Windows Apps. There's enough quality stuff for Linux and usually at a cheaper price.

Edited 2007-01-13 00:55

Reply Score: 5

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Wurb - to some extent you are right in regards to your first paragraph, but only to some extent. From my experience, a lot of even average, basic users can do some basic system maintenance in Windows. Put those same users in Linux and I think a lot of them would be intimated and lost. There are more 'personal Windows geeks' available than 'Linux personal geeks'. That means more support for Microsoft Windows.

You are also partially correct on the desktop environment thoughts, although I was also taking into consideration the pooling of resources on one desktop environment to further improve it, than the splitting of resources and duplication of effort. I'm also sure that there's duplication of applications for Windows - the main difference between Linux and Windows is that on Linux they're free (so you're probably going to be more inclined to try them), but with Windows they're going to cost you some money to try (and hence you'll be less inclined to try them).

apt is good, don't get me wrong, I'm an ex Debian user. I consider it the best package management system bar none. Yes, synaptic is a nice pretty front end for apt, but imho it looks ugly, and doesn't solve the real issues at hand - dependencies etc. Seen the output from Synaptic during an upgrade/update? It's messy and scary. My experiences with Synaptic is that it seems to *uck up more than using apt from the command line as well. I don't know if it's just the GUI fools people into not reading the output or not, but it's a trend I've noticed. I've seen it so many times, "I used Synaptic to update my system and now it won't [replace with whatever the problem is for that user]".

As to point 4, yes, they usually won't run that well on Windows 98, but at least they'll run. Most cases with Linux from my fair amount of experience is that you'll end up in dependency land and have to probably remove/downgrade half your system. That's not pretty.

Point 5 - this hasn't improved at all. Anyone thinking that it has is deluding themselves. Wine is a ugly hack, nothing more and nothing less. Photoshop CS2 has been out for near 2 years now and it still doesn't run on WINE. CS1 even longer, same problem. I'd be still using Windows if Photoshop CS2 ran under WINE.

Point 6 - yeah, you are correct in this comment. Still, the quality of code on a 'pay for application' is generally higher than free code from my experience. Money is a great motivator to get it right, cos if you don't, you won't make any money.

Dave

Reply Score: 4

wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

You wrote: "Put those same users in Linux and I think a lot of them would be intimated and lost. There are more 'personal Windows geeks' available than 'Linux personal geeks'. That means more support for Microsoft Windows."

Now put those same users at a box without an OS where they have to install a newly bought copy of windows and I bet they wouldn't know where to get all those drivers or why their screen only displays sixteen colors.
If they'd get a Linux box that's already set up, like a newly bought Win PC, it would be not harder for them to work with it. Yes, I know, there'd need to be vendors to do that. Maybe next year. ;)

My mother for example is perfectly happy with Zenwalk which I set up for her. Agreed, she's not a power user, but I don't think we talk about those here.
And I didn't give her the root password. That's another point, you don't break things so easily in Linux.
Maybe that's better with Vista, haven't tried that yet.

Next point: Pooling resources. I'd be against that, both KDE and Gnome make nice progress, both in their own direction. Others really don't matter right now and probably won't in the near future (XFCE maybe for not-state-of-the-art machines).

Your point about Synaptic: Yes well, maybe, but equally you had lots off people complaining about SP2 for WinXP for example. Upgrading always bears potential risks.
And at least in Ubuntu upgrades inside one release usually don't go wrong, at least I haven't heard of such a thing yet.

4: Yes, I had that situations as well, luckily I do that for fun. I can't see why your average user would try such folly! Even recompiling the software would probably be easier for him than engaging in that madness!

5. You are right there, I have to admitt.

6. I can't argue about that. But I rather have a tool like Grip and another like GnomeBaker instead of installing a bloated atrocity such as the NeroSuite is on my PC. I made the experience with friends where I helped with their computers that they usually enjoy the more lightweight (and free!) solutions more than lame bloatware with thousands of features.

In my oppinion is Linux ready for the (Homeuser-)Desktop (disregarding a few annoyances, but which OS hasn't got those?), it just waits for people to take it.

Reply Score: 2

oomingmak Member since:
2006-09-22

"My mother for example is perfectly happy with Zenwalk which I set up for her."

I have lost count of the amount of times I have seen females cited as examples of ease of use of Linux. ("My Wife / Mum / Sister / Girlfriend / Aunt uses <insert distro>"). The implication appears to be that if a mere dumb woman can use it then it must be easy to use. Such comments are really getting to be a Linux user's cliché and I think that it says more about the various commenter's attitudes towards women than anything about the ease of use of Linux as a desktop system.


"Agreed, she's not a power user, but I don't think we talk about those here".

And here is the second comment that I see all the time. Firstly the system had to be set up by the experienced Linux poster because it would be impossible for user to do it for themselves (which undermines the argument of 'ease of use' and being 'ready for the Desktop'). There is more to correctly "setting up" a Linux system than just installing it and getting it on to your hard disk. Secondly there seems to be an incessant focussing on the novice user at the expense of everyone else.

Windows users are not all fumbling idiots who have no idea what the Registry is or how to organise their own data or use NTFS permissions. In fact I would go so far as to say that novice users are a tiny minority of Windows users as a whole.

You are only ever a novice for about a month or so, but after that most users will settle into various levels of "intermediate" usage for the rest of their computing lives. By assessing readiness for the desktop purely in terms of applications and suitability for novice use (while not looking at the deficiencies of the operating system itself) is, in my opinion, to miss the main reason why people will not switch from Windows to Linux.

Speaking as a relatively experienced Windows only user (who has recently dabbled a little with Linux), I can tell you that it's gonna take a whole lot more than a port of Photoshop and some DVD players to make me want to use Linux.

My experience has been that novice computer users take the advice of their more experienced friends and family. Personal recommendation carries far more weight than any advertising or product feature list.

I have seen the way the Firefox has spread among inexperienced Window users, and this happened not because novice users had been reading Secunia or were wowed by the latest FF feature list on some Mozilla Wiki, it came because their best friend said "IE is rubbish and dangerous, use this instead ..." and then showed them how to install it.

Experienced Windows users have far more to lose by switching to Linux. They have acquired many Windows specific skills which become redundant on Linux and it's hard to give those up and go back to not knowing how to administer your own system. Linux does not appear to me to be doing anything to help ease this difficult transition. Without experienced Windows users feeling able to make the shift themselves, they will never recommend such a shift to anyone else.

Ignore the needs of the intermediate level user at your peril.

Reply Score: 2

wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

You wrote: "I have lost count of the amount of times I have seen females cited as examples of ease of use of Linux. ("My Wife / Mum / Sister / Girlfriend / Aunt uses <insert distro>"). The implication appears to be that if a mere dumb woman can use it then it must be easy to use. Such comments are really getting to be a Linux user's cliché and I think that it says more about the various commenter's attitudes towards women than anything about the ease of use of Linux as a desktop system."

Please don't try to interprete how I think about my mother or women in general. We all know that people who don't know or care about computers aren't necesarily dumb, there's no need to argue about that.
Those comments get as much a cliche as if you'd say "Windows is so easy, everybody can learn to use it fast". But maybe both are true, ever thought of that?

Fact is that she simply had no choice. Getting my old computer and the OS I put on it for her. Like when you buy a new one with preinstalled windows with all drivers already loaded.

"And here is the second comment that I see all the time. Firstly the system had to be set up by the experienced Linux poster because it would be impossible for user to do it for themselves (which undermines the argument of 'ease of use' and being 'ready for the Desktop'). There is more to correctly "setting up" a Linux system than just installing it and getting it on to your hard disk. Secondly there seems to be an incessant focussing on the novice user at the expense of everyone else."
The "novice user" was usually mostly used to tell people how simple and easy windows is. As long as MS hasn't copyrighted that scheme I claim the right to use it as well.
And no, she couldn't have set it up herself. I asked her what she wanted to do, she got what she needs and it works. Turn to a windows vendor and tell him what you want and you get -- Windows. Great!
And by the way, she has to work with windows for years already in her job. Does never more than opening office , the file manager, browser and email. I guess with those apps she's intermediate to advanced meanwhile. But the OS itself? No way!


And the intermediate user CAN get Linux to work, in case it's a distribution like for example Suse or Ubuntu. You might have noticed that those get easier to install and setup with every release, and I'm sure they'll continue to do so.
But in order to get it set the way you want it, you have to, well, set it up. That may be some work and it may be a bit difficult or just different from what you are used to. At least you saved some money, consider that your pay for the lost weekend! ;)

Only thing I see here is the fact that you might run into problems with Hardware support if you are unlucky. There's no use to deny that, and people considering a switch should first ask if their hardware is supported.

And if you are happy with Windows, don't switch in the name of all that's good! Noone forces you, just don't react so annoyed if people who like it and for whom it works perfectly (who nowadays aren't only geeks anymore) try to convince you.

Reply Score: 4

oomingmak Member since:
2006-09-22

1. I don't buy computers with Pre-installed Windows. I build my own and then choose my OS (currently Win2k).

2. I'm not happy with Windows (that's why I was looking at alternatives like Linux).

3. It may take a weekend to configure Linux, but it sure as hell takes more than that to learn what you need to know in order to do this correctly. It took me 4 hours of searching the web before I finally found a post that spelled out the fact that I needed to apt-get build-essential before I could compile a program (and all I was trying to do was install a utility that would let me change the look of that hideous Start button kicker thing in KDE). Having never compiled a single line of code in my life, this process was neither discoverable nor intuitive to me. But once I had the info on what I needeed to do and why, it was a piece of cake (even though I was just cutting and pasting the compile commands without understanding what they meant). This process could have easily been made significanly less frustrating.

4. I am not "reacting annoyed" but simply commenting on my experience.

5. "And the intermediate user CAN get Linux to work, in case it's a distribution like for example Suse or Ubuntu. You might have noticed that those get easier to install and setup with every release"

I'm not just talking about installation, I'm talking about administration. Installs like Ubuntu (apart from the infuriating Grub / MBR issue) have reached a standard where they probably exceed the quality and simplicity of Windows installs (don't know about Vista, as I have not used that).

While you may think users should be satisfied using a stock install with nothing else done to it, (no drivers, no tweaks or customisation etc.) it's not what I would find acceptable. I am currently able to administer my Windows system and tailor it to my needs, and I'd like to be able to do the same on any Linux box that I might set up. I know this will take time to learn, but it's still an area that I feel is somewhat neglected in terms of usability. It seems to be assumed that because someone has a bit of computer experience that they don't need ease of use. You see the same thing in many poorly documented and arcane Windows IDEs. The assumption is that because you are a developer you should be able to figure out all of the quirks of the system for yourself.

To say that an intermediate user CAN "get Linux to work" is technically accurate, but ultimately misses the point that I was making. If people are to switch (and my impression is that this is something the Linux community wants) then addressing the needs of more than just novices would help facilitate that end.

Edited 2007-01-13 15:17

Reply Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Quote: "Now put those same users at a box without an OS where they have to install a newly bought copy of windows and I bet they wouldn't know where to get all those drivers or why their screen only displays sixteen colors.
If they'd get a Linux box that's already set up, like a newly bought Win PC, it would be not harder for them to work with it. Yes, I know, there'd need to be vendors to do that. Maybe next year. ;) "

I agree. So much so that when I did a comprehensive review of Libranet 3, I pointed out these issues with the Windows installation. You also forget that most people buy a PC with a preinstallation image CD of Windows. That removes having to configure Windows, find drivers, install drivers etc. Insert CD, click yes, watch pretty screen and click Finish and reboot system. It doesn't get much easier than that.

Quote: "And I didn't give her the root password. That's another point, you don't break things so easily in Linux.
Maybe that's better with Vista, haven't tried that yet."

Of course this is the case. It has been no secret for a long while that Linux is both more secure and more reliable than Microsoft Windows. You'll hear no disagreement from me on that point.

Quote: "Next point: Pooling resources. I'd be against that"

And this is the problem. Is it better to have developers split their resources developing kde, gnome, ice, enlightenment, xfce, fluxbox, blackbox, etc etc, or everyone simply working on the one desktop environment, bring a variety to the desktop experience, more ideas, quick development and more efficient testing and bug fixing. I do realise that having seperate desktop environments has advantages as well, don't get me wrong. But- in order for Linux to move forward I believe it does need to amalmagate things.

As to Synaptic, Windows Update is much easier.

As to point 4, it might be folly, but it does happen. I had a guy over at Libranet (Leon) who was a devout WordPerfect user. He wouldn't update from 2.8.1 because it'd break his installation of WordPerfect, and he wasn't prepared to pay for a newer version of WordPerfect that didn't offer any real advantages over the version that he was using. Even just pinning and updating his 2.8.1 installation was causing issues with his WordPerfect installation. You just don't see that type of thing happening with Windows...hell, I installed the original Diablo the other day (designed for Windows 95/98 and Direct X 2 from memory) and it runs PERFECTLY fine on Windows XP, even without compatibility mode!!!

6. Nero is a pile of shit. I hate it. Don't ask me how it became so popular, it's UI has all the friendliness of a dead turd.

I'm not just looking at the actual software, I'm trying to look at the bigger picture. I personally believe that for Linux to go from 2% userbase to 25% userbase things like my suggestions will HAVE to happen.

Dave

Reply Score: 3

Finalzone Member since:
2005-07-06

Let's dispell this quote.

Then there's the topic of games, legally being able to play mp3s, DVDs, DRM'd music etc. Then there's the issue of a lack of proprietary 3rd party software vendors porting to Linux. I guarantee that if Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, AutoCAD and Quicken all ran natively on Linux, we'd see a pretty quick uptake of Linux on the desktop.

DVD display is not supported by Windows XP nor Microsoft Vista, you need a third party software to enable that. Mac OS X support it out of box but you pay the price to depend on a single vendor.

As for games, I have to differ from the point of view because there are plenty blunded games on Linux platform (also in BSD world) depending on the distribution than Microsoft Windows XP and Vista. Only mainstream versions are not provided on Linux platform other than ID Software and Epic Gaming although that might change with Sony Playstation 3 (the company provided the support inside Linux kernel to facilitate the development). Let's face it, consumers will rather have a gaming system like Playstation 3, Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii.

Adoboe Photoshop: this is a professional application not really intended for average consumers unless they are willing to shell more than $700.00US. The Gimp will be enough for them.

AutoCAD is not even product for average consumer.

Quicken: GNUCash 2.0 is a good alternative as it can import files from Microsoft Cash and Quicken.

Basically, the listed application from the quote have to be brought separately because they are not part of Microsoft Windows XP CD. Based on that logic, Microsoft Windows is not ready for the desktop.

Edited 2007-01-13 02:01

Reply Score: 5

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

You can 'dispell' the quote all you like, tell me, why is Linux lingering at 2% usage still if it's that much better and 'ready for the desktop'? Please enlighten me. If Linux users don't want to realise where the problems are, or are insistent that there are no problems and that it is 'ready', then you'll never get any market penetration. Come back in five or ten years and see if I'm right.

Of course, DVD isn't supported out of the box on Windows, the truth is though I can go and buy PowerDVD or WinDVD and legally be able to play my DVDs on my PC. Imagine if the US legal system started cracking down on OSS software allowing people to illegaly circumvent the DMCA and DRM on the US mainland, it'd get very ugly. Other countries aren't going to complain too loudly because the US has them by the balls when it comes to trade agreements. Of course, DVDs are supported out of the box by OS X, but that's cos Apple does actually 'dig' the user experience. Sure, you pay a bit for it, sure you pay the AHT (Apple Hardware Tax), but you do get something that works, and works well, and more importantly works out of the box. Please note that I absolutely abhor the DMCA and DRM and that I personally feel that OSS DVD software comes under 'fair use'.

As to games, you're kidding yourself. ID software ports its games to Linux, and good on them. That's very few games. There are thousands of games released under the Microsoft Windows platform every year, probably even more. I'd say less than 5 of them are ported to Linux. Sure, you can try and use WINE, or Cedega (note I said 'try'), good luck. I'm not saying that WINE or Cedega aren't good projects, I'm simply saying that it's *always* better to port the game to run natively on the platform than to rely on some form of emulation.

Photoshop vs Gimp - I completely disagree. The GIMP lacks features has a very poor UI, is very rough around the edges and generally doesn't do as good a job as Photoshop. For the average 'idiot photographer', the GIMP might be enough, but then, so is probably MS Paint. I'm a photographer, I'm not a pro, but I'm a advanced amateur (new to digital photography/manipulation though). The VAST majority of my peers, both pros, advanced amateurs and newbies all either use Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. It does the job very well. I've used the GIMP extensively in the past btw, so don't try and pull the wool over my eyes and tell me that I have no idea of what I'm talking about.

Yes, AutoCAD isn't for the average user, but it's a memory/system intensive application. Linux handles system resources much better than Windows, so ergo it would be logical to assume that AutoCAD would run much better on Linux (if ported).

GNUCcash isn't bad (I'm not entirely au fait with it, but have used it a tiny bit), but it isn't Quicken. It's not perfect with handling quicken files etc, and nor will it ever be. Like WINE, it's an ugly hack to try and get things working on the Linux platform. We come back to the same old argument that a native port is *always* going to be better.

Your last paragraph is solid FUD and made me have a good laugh.

Dave

Reply Score: 3

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

why is Linux lingering at 2% usage still if it's that much better and 'ready for the desktop'? Please enlighten me.

Why is OS X at a similar market share? Would you argue that it's not ready for the desktop? That's a very poor argument.

Market penetration has very little to do with quality - there are tons of examples that support this (Beta vs. VHS comes to mind). It's not that Linux is read for *all* desktops, but it's clearly ready for *many* desktop, especially when pre-installed and configured (like Windows and OSX are).

Imagine if the US legal system started cracking down on OSS software allowing people to illegaly circumvent the DMCA and DRM on the US mainland, it'd get very ugly.

That would probably signal the death knoll of the DMCA, as users would be able to challenge it using the "fair use" argument, which is part of copyright law.

I'm sorry, but that's just FUD on your part.

As to games, you're kidding yourself.

The PC game market pales in comparison to the console game market, so this argument is shaky at best. I work in the game industry, and developers are deserting the PC market. Serious gamers now play on the Xbox360 or Wii (or even the PS2...and maybe the PS3 in the months to come).

Also, for gamers, there is always the possibility of dual-booting. This has the advantage of making sure you don't waste too much time in WoW when you should be writing that paper... :-)

(That said, WoW works really well under WINE...)

The GIMP lacks features has a very poor UI, is very rough around the edges and generally doesn't do as good a job as Photoshop.

It lacks *some* features, mostly for CMYK and Pantone colors. These are for print, though. For electronic format (or printing photos), the GIMP is very adequate. As for the UI, it's not poor, it's different. The fact that you learned Photoshop first is what makes you feel the UI is poor. I know, I learned Photoshop first too and it took me a while to get used to the GIMP. I still use both daily (Photoshop at work, the GIMP at home), and honestly there is very little you can't do with GIMP that you can with PS. Also, CS2 has become very bloated and the UI changes from previous versions are not necessarily improvements, in my view.

That said, you can also try Pixel. It's pretty good. But the fact of the matter is that for a vast majority of users GIMP is an excellent alternative to PS.

As for AutoCAD, it would be nice if it was ported to Linux, but that's hardly a yardstick to determine if Linux is ready for the desktop!

WINE may feel like an ugly hack to you, but Quicken runs flawlessly under it (with Crossover Linux). I've used it for years, and honestly I can't tell the difference with running it under Windows.

Maybe Linux is not ready for your desktop. It's certainly not ready for all desktops. It is, however, ready for a *lot* of desktops.

Reply Score: 5

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

OS X has always been hampered by the AHT (Apple Hardware Tax). If Apple gave up hardware, ported OS X to the i386 market, charged US $400 for it (to make up for the lost sales from hardware sales), they'd still kickass over Microsoft Windows. True, a lot of Linux users are ex software pirates, and they don't like to pay for anyone elses hard work, that's why Linux is so popular. How many people actually pay for a distro? In the past I've paid (and supported OSS) Suse, Redhat, Libranet. If Apple dropped the price of OS X and ported it to the i386, they'd totally wipe the floor I personally believe.

As to the DMCA, I don't believe the US government would waste time on tracking down those illegally using DeCss on the US mainland/territories, there's simply not enough money to be made in the process.

Games - desite consoles being so popular, and PC games dwindling, there's still a shitload of games released for the PC. And, a very few percentage of those are ported to Linux. I personally don't believe I should have to pay for a PC and a gaming console in order to play a game. The PC should be able to do it. Anything else is the corporate interest milking it for the most amount of money. Nothing more and nothing less.

As to Photoshop/GIMP, you're wrong, I actually learned how to use the GIMP first. I've heard others recommend Pixel as well, the thing is, I'm not going to *waste* the money that I've spent on Photoshop CS2. I'm quite curious as to why WINE is not able to run Photoshop CS2 yet (or CS1 for that matter), it's almost like the developers have been afraid to get it running under WINE. And since Photoshop is immensely popular, I'm even more surprised that little or no effort has been made (even under CrossOver office). If I didn't know any better, I'd say that both projects had been warned by Adobe not to tinker with Photoshop.

Autocad was an example. Nothing more and nothing less. It was an example of a CAD program that is regarded as the best in its area, and I've seen Linux users bitching about the fact that it hasn't been ported and that there's bugger all that's decent as a Linux alternative. I've never used AutoCAD, it doesn't interest me, but there are people out there that would love to see it ported...quicken may run under WINE, and it may run fast, and flawless, that wasn't my argument. My argument was that it should be ported to run natively in Linux. Nothing more and nothing less.

As to Linux being ready for my desktop, I've been using Linux on and off since 97, and had used it as my sole desktop from mid 2002 to the end of January 2006. I think I have some idea about the Linux desktop ;-)

It really all comes down to how you define desktop. If you mean a nice pretty desktop, with nice icons and basic email/internet access, sure, it does OK. But watch for it when things break (and they do, and will). Watch your average newbie, "I'm not interested how a PC works" person try and fix it - or just wipe it and reinstall Windows.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

testerus Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm quite curious as to why WINE is not able to run Photoshop CS2 yet (or CS1 for that matter)
Copy Protection that is tied to the windows kernel.

Reply Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Ahhh. That would explain it all yes. Thank you!

Dave

Reply Score: 0

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

True, a lot of Linux users are ex software pirates, and they don't like to pay for anyone elses hard work, that's why Linux is so popular.

I'm sorry, but that's a completely gratuitious accusation. I'd say the proportion of software pirates is much higher among Windows users than Linux users.

I myself have paid for at least two Linux distros, and I've shelled money for Linux software before (Crossover, Cedega, the Linuxant driverloader module). I've also donated money to a handful of software projects.

You might be right about the Apple "hardware tax", but I don't think that's the whole story. The fact is that many people a) don't know about Linux, or b) believe the vast amount of FUD being thrown around about the OS. Sure, there are people who cannot use it because certain applications they need are not available (and there are no good alternatives), but all in all I still think many people could use Linux to do what they need to do with a computer.

quicken may run under WINE, and it may run fast, and flawless, that wasn't my argument. My argument was that it should be ported to run natively in Linux. Nothing more and nothing less.

I agree, of course. The problem is that it will *not* be ported until more people use Linux. So by actively discouraging users from trying out Linux, you are actually making such ports less likely.

It really all comes down to how you define desktop. If you mean a nice pretty desktop, with nice icons and basic email/internet access, sure, it does OK. But watch for it when things break (and they do, and will).

Things won't break if users do not try to install unsupported software. I have two Linux PCs, one destkop and one laptop. The desktop is my "experimental" PC, where I muck around with the system, install unstable software, etc. It occasionally breaks, though never in such a way as to render the system unusable.

My laptop, on the other hand, has been rock solid ever since I installed Dapper on it. I have yet to see a *single* thing break. Again, I think you're confusing "average" users, who just want their PC to work, with "geek" users, who like to tinker with their system. Things won't break for the first group, because they won't muck around where they shouldn't. The second group might indeed break their system, but that's exactly the kind of users who will want to learn how to fix a broken system.

As for games, obviously we disagree. The few "must have" games on PC have either been ported to Linux, or run well under WINE. Again, for hard-core gamers the best solution is to dual-boot, or more likely to play games on consoles, which is where the majority of game development occurs anyway.

Reply Score: 5

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Archiesteel - I've paid for my fair share of Linux distros as well, probably a fair bit more than the average Linux user. In my days of hanging out on the Libranet forums, many people bitterly complained about having to pay for Libranet 3, and that they'd "switch to Ubuntu as it was free". I feel sorry for Tal [Danzig], because the timing for the release of Libranet 3 was bad - the release of Ubuntu has hurt a lot of other distributions, most of them quite good and offering things that Ubuntu doesn't. Libranet lost a fair amount of users from what I saw, many of them switching to Ubuntu, or back to Vanilla Debian.

I've also seen my fair share of people using Linux who brag about 'never having paid for a copy of Windows'. The low cost of Linux is what appeals (initially) to a lot of new users. You cannot deny that. Fewer are those that are concerned with reliability or stability, or those that choose Linux as an opposition to Microsoft's monopolistic and anticompetitive behaviour in the operating system market. From what I'm seeing, very few users are using Linux for political reasons now. The GPL means nothing to these people, the reasons for the GPL being in place mean nothing for these people. They just want a free (as in cost) system that they can use. These sorts of people don't have any morals about using pirate software from my experience. You may care to disagree, but my experience tells me that I'm right.

As to people not knowing about Linux, surprisingly, a lot of people have heard of it. I'm finding more and more people are familiar with the name, and I work in the support industry. I'm finding more and more certain types of computer users (intermediate to advanced) are moving to, or trying Linux. Those that haven't, are expressing an interest, but they feel that it probably will be too hard for them to learn. The basics of Linux, etc aren't that hard, but system administration can be much more complex (true, Windows system administration can be potentially more complex as well). As an overall whole, Windows is easier to run, and keep running.

I disagree with your thoughts on WINE - many application vendors won't port if they think WINE can do the job. "Hey, why port and waste money when the current Windows version runs under WINE". What they might not realise, or choose to realise is that said version might run, but there might be usability bugs, missing functions, etc etc that make it a pain in the ass to use via WINE. The software vendor knows their application, the code, it makes perfect sense for a native port from a code point of view.

I've seen Debian GNU/Linux break, and then had to fiddle to fix it. True, I was fiddling in the first place when I really probably shouldn't have been, so I was sort of my own worst enemy ;-)

I do agree with the user/tinkerer comments, see my comments in the paragraph above ;-)

On games I really do disagree. Let's see...

Diablo, an oldie but a favourite - installs, plays on single player, multiplayer is a joke. Single player saves do *NOT* save when you exit the game.

StarCraft - it worked in some versions of WINE, then wouldn't work in others. Haven't tried it for a while...

Ultimate Doom - forget it. Doesn't install, doesn't run...

Aliens VS Predator (1 & 2) - forget it...

Daggerfall - forget it...

Sure, they're not the latest and greatest in games, but they do NOT run, or do NOT run well...at their respective release times, they were BIG games...

Sure, I play some of the latest releases as well, Morrowind, Diablo II, Oblivion, Doom 3, etc, and from what I've seen, they all run pretty well under Cedega (not always WINE). Having to have a dual boot system is a pain in the ass.

I refuse to have a Windows install for Photoshop CS2 and then boot back into Linux for my regular usage, and that is why I made the hard decision to move back to Windows. I personally detest Microsoft, I personally think Windows is a pile of shit (I've had more problems in 9 months of Windows usage than 4 years of straight Linux usage), but alas, I want Photoshop CS2, I use it...and Linux doesn't support it.

Dave

Reply Score: 2

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Archiesteel - I've paid for my fair share of Linux distros as well, probably a fair bit more than the average Linux user. In my days of hanging out on the Libranet forums, many people bitterly complained about having to pay for Libranet 3, and that they'd "switch to Ubuntu as it was free".

Well, of course people will prefer a free product to one that costs money! It's quite a leap to say that this means that most Linux users used to pirate Windows...

Look, most people never realize they get Windows. Most people think they get it for free when they buy a new PC (they don't really - the OEMs pass the cost of the license to them). It's human nature to want to spend less money.

The only people who can conceivable complain about that are FOSS developers, but since they choose to freely distribute their software, I guess that settles that debate.

So...because people all over the world like to save money Linux users are ex-pirates and cheapskates?

I've also seen my fair share of people using Linux who brag about 'never having paid for a copy of Windows'. The low cost of Linux is what appeals (initially) to a lot of new users. You cannot deny that. Fewer are those that are concerned with reliability or stability, or those that choose Linux as an opposition to Microsoft's monopolistic and anticompetitive behaviour in the operating system market.

People don't choose to switch for a single reason. People switch when - to them - the pros outweighs the cons. The low cost of Linux is as much a factor as the others you name.

Bragging about not paying for a Windows license is much more seen as "sticking it to the man" (or in this case, the quasi-monopoly) than anything else.

They just want a free (as in cost) system that they can use. These sorts of people don't have any morals about using pirate software from my experience. You may care to disagree, but my experience tells me that I'm right.

I do disagree. Perhaps this is what *your* personal experience tells you, but that is too small a sample to determine what the general trend is. (Really, how many people are you talking about here? How many Linux users do you know who were software pirates? Don't say "all of them" - I want an approximate number.)

In my personal experiences, all those who pirate software run Windows. They have only run Windows, and nothing else. None of the Linux users I know pirate software. I do not presume that those who switched to Linux pirated more than those who still use Windows, and unless you can come up with some scientific data, I'm going to have to call BS on your half-baked argument that Linux users are more likely to have been pirates when they used Windows that other Windows users.

I disagree with your thoughts on WINE - many application vendors won't port if they think WINE can do the job. "Hey, why port and waste money when the current Windows version runs under WINE".

Companies don't want to spend too much time on applications that will not sell enough to cover the development cost. So waiting for PS to be ported (for example), is futile. If more people use Linux (because they can run PS under WINE, for example), then the user base will become increasingly more attractive to make native ports - or, more likely, to use a cross-platform toolkit for the next version of the program (such as QT, which Adobe has already used for it's photo album program).

In other words, it's better to have an app with WINE than not at all.

I refuse to have a Windows install for Photoshop CS2 and then boot back into Linux for my regular usage, and that is why I made the hard decision to move back to Windows.

I respect your choice, actually. But don't despair...with your next PC, you'll be able to use KVM to run fast virtual machines with rootless windows, so it'll be even easier to use Windows apps from a Linux PC. In many ways, virtualization is changing the equation.

Reply Score: 4

shotsman Member since:
2005-07-22

Regarding Photohop and Gaming as problems holding back the Adoption of Linux.

I wish detractors would stop quoting the price for the FULL PRO verson.
Most people (by this I mean even serious amateurs) can get by with the functionality in Elements. This costs far far less (around £80.00 here in the UK)
Photoshop has for a long time, run under WINE. I run it this way myself and several of my Linux converts do the same. The cost of apps like Wine is small beer to people if it means tht they can cut the umbilical to Microsoft.

I have tried GIMP many times and sorry guys, I can't get used to it. I teach Photoshop to Photographers and I just can't get used to its quirks but this is probably the way my brain works.

Just don't get me stated on Games. None of the people I have converted to Linux find this a problem. None want anything other than Spider or Patience. WOW and other stuff is strictly a minority requirement amongst the majority of PC users (but not to OSNEWS or /. users though)

There are (as other correspondents have notes) more important things halting the Adpotion of Linux.
My list is
1) Performance of OSS Graphics Drivers
2) Wireless, Wireless and the refusal of Broadcomm to even recognise that Linux exists
3) WinModems ( This is a diminishing issue as more people get ADSL)
4) USB ADSL Modems. All the people I have move to Linux get rid of theirs and put in an Ethernet Modem but DSL service providers continue to ship these pieces of crap.
5) NTFS read/write access. This is coming but watch the MS Patenet fud to confuse them.

Last but not least

6) There are just too many packages that do the same thing or almost the same thing in Linux. Ideally, I would like to see a version of something like UBUNTU that had only the most popular versions of for example, an email client say Thunderbird as it looks and behaves a lot like Outlook on Windows.

Distros like Linspire make attempts here to put everything a newbie needs into one pretty attractive package including OOTB Mp3 players etc. More like this please.
Disclaimer,
I use SLES, RHEL and Fedora as my distros of choice but I am a professional Websphere Developer so my requirements are different from a Windows Convert.

Reply Score: 5

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

I actually agree with most of your points (the six numbered ones anyway).

As far as PS, of course I think it would be better if there was a native version...I wouldn't rule that out, as Adobe knows that with each version Gimp becomes a little bit better. They might want to release PS for Linux in order to slow down Gimp development...

For those who have a hard time adjusting to the GIMP UI (I know I did at the start), there's also Gimpshop, which rearranges the menus and renames some of them in order to mimic those of Photoshop. On Windows, they even add a "workspace" window.

That said, I can understand that people prefer to use PS if they have become used to it. Pixel is also often touted as a good alternative, though I have not tried it myself.

Reply Score: 3

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Quote: "Photoshop has for a long time, run under WINE. I run it this way myself and several of my Linux converts do the same. The cost of apps like Wine is small beer to people if it means tht they can cut the umbilical to Microsoft."

Go check WINEs app dbase. Elements 4 and 5 do NOT work under WINE. Nor does CS1 or CS2. Photoshop 7 does, and does work well I believe. Go and check CrossOver office's apps dbase, same story. WINE is useless for anyone running any recent release of Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. I'm not saying that WINE is bad, far from it, so don't misconstrue my post guys.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

Clinton Member since:
2005-07-05

You have it all wrong Dave, Linux is completely ready for the desktop. It is a great desktop system. The only "flaw" with it is that it isn't Windows.

Honestly, that is it. If Linux looked, acted, smelled, and tasted like Windows, people would flock to it and everybody would exclaim that Linux was finally ready for the desktop (of course it wouldn't be worth flocking to at that point, but that is another issue all together).

Linux is a great desktop OS. It takes some getting used to, and some things you have to do differently. However, different does not equate to bad, or "not ready". It simply equates to different.

Reply Score: 2

Dark_Knight Member since:
2005-07-10

Melkor (Dave's) points:

1. To many desktop environments: I for one believe a consumer you have the option to choose what desktop their OS uses. After all each desktop used by Linux distributions caters to different people for different markets. For example Gnome is known as being a standard for the business desktop. Where as KDE is more in line with Windows Vista by offering an entertaining while functional desktop. The positive aspect is that all Linux desktops are free to consumers but with Windows third party software used to change the look of Windows desktop is not always free.

2. To many duplicate applications: This is not really a bad point but is a concern not only for the Linux community but also Windows community. After all both have their share of third party software that tends to copy other software. Care to take a guess at how many third party CD/DVD burner software there is available to Windows users? While having flexibility to choose from one developer over another can be good, it can also lead to an over saturated market.

3. Standard package management: I actually agree with this 100%. There really needs to be a serious focus on providing one type of file extension for binary packages installed on Linux distributions, no matter if the user uses a RPM based distribution or Debian based one. A true standard binary extension would make it more attractive not only for consumers interested in spending money on Linux software but also for developers of Linux software such as game design, drivers for webcams, etc.

4. API stability: I don't see this being an issue, at least not right now. I haven't had any issue installing software on OpenSUSE/SLED such as Autodesk Maya which is usually compiled on RHEL or Fedora Linux. Also with each release I've noticed greater stability and speed. This is not the same as with Windows where it took Microsoft several years and millions of dollars to release Windows Vista which is more of a resource hog than Windows XP. Windows Vista is also more costly for consumers over previous releases which is unlike Linux distributions such as SLED or Mandriva Linux that stay competitive with a changing global market.

5. Community footing the bill: The Linux community is a global network mostly made up of talented individuals or even companies volunteering their time and manpower to contribute on furthering open source projects. As for commercial software there didn't seem to be an issue with companies like Alias, Autodesk, Softimage, etc porting their software to Linux with out requesting financial support from the Linux community. The reason being is that they see a market where they can make a profit by giving solutions to Linux customers. It's unfortunate not all people see there is financial gain in investing in Linux.

6. Flaky applications: There is a lot of crap software on the net no matter what OS you choose to use. With Linux that is more of an issue due to it being open source and easier for new programmers to create software applications with out requiring a large cash reserve.

Reply Score: 3

Dark_Knight Member since:
2005-07-10

Melkor (Dave's) points:

1. To many desktop environments: I for one believe a consumer should have the option to choose what desktop their OS uses. After all each desktop used by Linux distributions caters to different people for different markets. For example Gnome is known as being a standard for the business desktop. Where as KDE is more in line with Windows Vista by offering an entertaining while functional desktop. The positive aspect is that all Linux desktops are free to consumers but with Windows third party software used to change the look of Windows desktop is not always free.

2. To many duplicate applications: This is not really a bad point but is a concern not only for the Linux community but also Windows community. After all both have their share of third party software that tends to copy other software. Care to take a guess at how many third party CD/DVD burner software there is available to Windows users? While having flexibility to choose from one developer over another can be good, it can also lead to an over saturated market.

3. Standard package management: I actually agree with this 100%. There really needs to be a serious focus on providing one type of file extension for binary packages installed on Linux distributions, no matter if the user uses a RPM based distribution or Debian based one. A true standard binary extension would make it more attractive not only for consumers interested in spending money on Linux software but also for developers of Linux software such as game design, drivers for webcams, etc.

4. API stability: I don't see this being an issue, at least not right now. I haven't had any issue installing software on OpenSUSE/SLED such as Autodesk Maya which is usually compiled on RHEL or Fedora Linux. Also with each release I've noticed greater stability and speed. This is not the same as with Windows where it took Microsoft several years and millions of dollars to release Windows Vista which is more of a resource hog than Windows XP. Windows Vista is also more costly for consumers over previous releases which is unlike Linux distributions such as SLED or Mandriva Linux that stay competitive with a changing global market.

5. Community footing the bill: The Linux community is a global network mostly made up of talented individuals or even companies volunteering their time and manpower to contribute on furthering open source projects. As for commercial software there didn't seem to be an issue with companies like Alias, Autodesk, Softimage, etc porting their software to Linux with out requesting financial support from the Linux community. The reason being is that they see a market where they can make a profit by giving solutions to Linux customers. It's unfortunate not all people see there is financial gain in investing in Linux.

6. Flaky applications: There is a lot of crap software on the net no matter what OS you choose to use. With Linux that is more of an issue due to it being open source and easier for new programmers to create software applications with out requiring a large cash reserve.

Reply Score: 1

anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

Then there's the topic of games, legally being able to play mp3s, DVDs, DRM'd music etc.

Missing legal media playback is basically a misunderstanding.
Usually people come up with this when looking at free (as in no cost) distribution (e.g. Ubuntu, OpenSUSE), which obviously won't have things available where the distributor has to pay royalties for.

Legal MP3, WMA/WMV, DVD playback has always been available on distributions which think this kind of functionality is a core feature for their respective target audience, e.g. Linspire.

If I remember correctly the non-gratis version of Novells desktop linux comes with legal codecs for the Helix engine, provided by Real.com

If a specific Linux distribution does not offer those options it might be a philosphical decision (e.g. Debian) or just a lack of customer demand (or availability of semi-legal workarounds)

Reply Score: 2

walterbyrd Member since:
2005-12-31

For the most part, I agree with you. It's all about drivers and apps. Windows has them, Linux doesn't.

Maybe it's a small thing, but I have to disagree with this point:

>>2. Same as point 1 but with applications. Far too many duplicate applications. <<

Same thing is true for windows. For example, there are more spreadsheets and wordprocessors for windows than there are for Linux. Of course, on windows, there is only one *standard* set of office apps, but other apps do exist.

Reply Score: 1

kenneith Member since:
2007-01-01

Very good points Dave.

Stop diversifying more Distros, more duplicate apps. Try to find a common *DE modelling for linux (including lib, dir path, common apps, app installation regardless with RPM/TGZ/DEB...)
If saying linux is ready for desktop, i am afraid of a panic for newbies who just few times using computer. For instance, when we finished installing a Linux distro, try to listen to a mp3, well it requires you to keep going on to install mp3 encoding on Net :-(, Newbies start walking thru' a jungle of soft on net, in yum, or sysnaptic to see what is mp3 encoding and where is it!

Reply Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

I'm not sure why you got modded down kenneith, so I used my discretion to mod you back, since you hadn't really broken any osnews.com rules to justify someone modding you down (pet hate of mine - people disagree with you so they mod you down).

You are absolutely correct with your mp3 analogy btw.

Guys, I'm not saying Linux is bad, don't get me wrong. I'm saying that I feel/think that it has important issues that must be resolved before it will make real inroads to the market. I'm not saying that choice is bad, it is good. The problem is that the average computer user doesn't give a rats ass about chioce, they simply want to have one solution, and one that works well, not be inundanted with a multitude of solutions that just ends up confusing them and aggravating them.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

when linux will be widespread
by unclefester on Sat 13th Jan 2007 06:23 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

Linux will be widely used in the home when it is widely used in the workplace. The original de facto standard was DOS. no GUI, no sound, no hi-res graphics, monochrome 80x25 text etc.To print a file in DOS required the user to write a print file.

DOS won out because it was used in corporate environments. This was despite cheaper and far better systems such as Amiga being available.

When FLOSS is widely used in the workplace it will also be used at home.

Reply Score: 2

Not another one these
by ssa2204 on Sat 13th Jan 2007 08:56 UTC
ssa2204
Member since:
2006-04-22

God I am so freakin tired of these idiotic articles claiming how Linux is finally ready to take on Windows. Ummm, kind of been hearing that now for too many years. Ever heard of the boy who cried wolf?

Sure Linux can be used as a desktop OS, but anyone who thinks it can overtake OSX or Windows is fooling themselves. You see the problem here is too many computer geeks being essentially clueless as to what the rest of the world likes or wants. Just because YOU think Linux is great does not mean others will.

Problem is too many people here are just too anti-Microsoft to see the clear picture. There is not a chance in hell that something like Suse 10.2 is going to be adapted by non-geeks. In fact, what people do NOT realise is that pushing something like the current distros which are NOT ready for prime-time can only lead to disaster.

Take away all the hype and the fact remains that Windows does work, and it works well for the mainstream. More importantly Windows is a perfect fit for businesses who have the real purchasing power.

Personally I wish this desktop Linux push would just go the way of the Dodo so that resources could be put to where Linux's real strength lies, in its server role. Nothing will change 2 years from now, nor do I doubt 4 years from now either. I am quite sure we will have 4 years from now another tireless re-tread of an article claiming how Linux is "finally" ready for the desktop.

As a disclaimer I might point out that I use Suse 10.1 at the moment, and am satisfied with it. But by no means am I so politically charged into one camp as to be blinded not to see that Linux is just not for everyone.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Not another one these
by superstoned on Sat 13th Jan 2007 12:54 UTC in reply to "Not another one these"
superstoned Member since:
2005-07-07

point is that the adoption of linux has nothing to do with how 'ready' the desktop is for it's users. By most accounts, Suse 10.2, (K)ubuntu 6.10 and most other modern linux'es are far more mature than XP, yet the users feel lost in them. they have been using XP for 3 to 5 years, and are not used to changes. they have to re-learn many things, and aren't willing to. and they lose some familiar apps, even tough in many cases the linux apps are covering most if not all of their needs.

last, they suffer from Microsoft's hard work to prevent anybody from using another OS. like non-working websites (activeX or a broken javascript implementation in IE and more), non-working games (directX is, after all, build to prevent porting of games to other OS'es), and of course the MS Office fileformats. and hardwarevendors who aren't allowed to give users the option of having linux (or BeOS, remember?) preinstalled. if microsoft was a bit more confident in their own software, they would probable dare to use standard file formats and comply with standards - and using linux would be much easier. but the world just isn't like that.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Not another one these
by melkor on Sun 14th Jan 2007 00:21 UTC in reply to "RE: Not another one these"
melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Good points superstoned. Excellent points. Deserves a mod point bonus ;)

Dave

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Not another one these
by superstoned on Sun 14th Jan 2007 01:07 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not another one these"
superstoned Member since:
2005-07-07

thanx. well, it doesn't get better than +5, so i'm happy with that ;)

and it's simply right... which is (despite the +5) a sad thing. it means less competition, which leads to higher prices and lower quality. every FOSS user, therefore, contributes to a better software industry by just using Free Software. you don't have to contribute - as long as you use it, usage statistics go up and the world will come to realize the way microsoft and others are doing business is a bad way for all earth citizens (not the least those in the third world!).

so spread the word. help people, support them if they have troubles with linux and tell them to use linux if they have problems with windows. after all, it's us, consumers, who gave microsoft this power. it's us who can take it away. and everybody counts.

Reply Score: 5

Linux is not ready for the desktop
by TaterSalad on Sat 13th Jan 2007 14:57 UTC
TaterSalad
Member since:
2005-07-06

There are 3 major obstacles preventing linux from being ready on the desktop.

1. Applications - Good quality applications are lacking on linux. I bet you are frothing at the mouth saying OpenOffice and Firefox are ready! Yes they are, but what about the business office who uses more than a web browser and office suite which is most businesses. There are a lot of 3rd party applications involved which I have not seen an equivalent for in linux. A good helpdesk system, financial analysis, stock analysis, medical record keeping, hotel management. Probably a handful of others as well.

2. Finding the applications - It's great that linux makes it easy to install apps with apt-get or yum but the problem is finding them. Most people will not want to do "apt-cache search games" and scroll through a text list with limited info. Yes you can bring up whatever repository app is on your distro but who wants to search through all of that and try to decipher such little information. What is needed is a site like download.com for linux applications - which I think they had at one point then got rid of it. It would make the users able to read a full description of the application plus have some screen shots.

3. File Hierarchy - Linux needs to standardize on one way of doing things and one place to install applications. I thought the LSB was supposed to help in this but several distros still wander off. If you are running distro X your apps go into Y, if you run distro S then your apps go into T. One common place for files people so that apps can be installed distribution independently.

Reply Score: 2

netpython Member since:
2005-07-06

2. Finding the applications - It's great that linux makes it easy to install apps with apt-get or yum but the problem is finding them. Most people will not want to do "apt-cache search games" and scroll through a text list with limited info.

So a windows user has a central repository or allways buys software from a store and never has to search for applications?

3. File Hierarchy - Linux needs to standardize on one way of doing things and one place to install applications. I thought the LSB was supposed to help in this but several distros still wander off.

why is it you have to defragment windows all the time if it has such a great file hirarchy?


Any non braindead windows user could use linux right away and feel at home in a short period of time.

Is linux ready for the desktop?
Yes if you can find the right distro.Other than that most OS´s suck more or less.I just found gentoo to be the one with most consistency.

What ever OS runs your hardware efficient and makes you do the things you are familiar with.Your mileage may vary.

Reply Score: 2

TaterSalad Member since:
2005-07-06

So a windows user has a central repository or allways buys software from a store and never has to search for applications?

No one is saying they don't have to search for an app but its a lot easier to go to a website and search for the app you want and see its features and functions and screenshots than with a text based terminal. Most have a top 5 rated apps making it even easier to find.

why is it you have to defragment windows all the time if it has such a great file hirarchy?

Defrag has nothing to do with file hierarchy. Its nice of you to put words in my mouth though. But with windows you know where the apps are going to be placed, in C:Program Files. Data will go into the user's profile. Documents get saved in My Documents. With linux if an app is installed where is it installed? where are its config files? Too many places.

Reply Score: 2

anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

No one is saying they don't have to search for an app but its a lot easier to go to a website and search for the app you want and see its features and functions and screenshots than with a text based terminal

Well, I guess that only the expert users who really want to use the text based tools are using them, all others will just use package managers with GUI or even simpler tools like "Add/Remove programs"

But with windows you know where the apps are going to be placed, in C:Program Files

Actually no. Might be true for system with English localisation, but on any non-English windows they end up in several locations (incompetence of the installer of course, nevertheless happening).

But it hardly matters on either system, because nobody needs to know where files are placed in the filesystem, since users access them through more convenient "views", e.g. application start menu, "Documents" folder, etc

Edited 2007-01-13 20:45

Reply Score: 2

wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

If you don't want to use a text base terminal, noone forces you to. Haven't you heard about graphical desktop environments for Linux? Graphical webbrowsers? Go to google and enter "calculator +linux eventually your favorite desktop/toolkit and you have exactly that.


About the filehierarchy: Yes, it's not really beautiful and the times when it made sense to put every executable in /usr/bin are probably over since the systems became so big but the point is that you usually don't need to know it. And if you do, it doesn't take you long to find out that config files are usually in /etc or ~/., documentation in /usr/share and so on.

However, those directories are really very cluttered, would be nice if someday that would change generally and not only for experiments like GoboLinux or the ROX Desktop...

Reply Score: 1

DeadFishMan Member since:
2006-01-09

But with windows you know where the apps are going to be placed, in C:Program Files. Data will go into the user's profile. Documents get saved in My Documents. With linux if an app is installed where is it installed? where are its config files? Too many places.

This is starting to get tiresome, but I'll bite it:

System applications go to /usr/bin while system applications intended to be used by the root user (Administrator on Windows speak) go to /usr/sbin. This is where applications installed by the package manager go. Applications installed by the user himself may end on both directories (folders on Windows speak) but it usually is supposed to be on /usr/local/bin. Some odd applications sometimes go to /opt, but this is unusual.

System-wide configuration files can be found on /etc and usually are very well documented so if you need to change system-wide settings for an application, you have to look in there first. Personal settings or preferences are stored on the user's folder ($HOME) which is the Unix equivalent of the folders that can be found on C:Documents and Settings on Windows and are usually named after the application with just a dot appended on its name. Some applications do have an entire folder to store its settings following the same naming convention.

I don't think that I have to remind you that Linux-based OSes enforce the user to store files on their home directories.

As some other poster pointed out, it doesn't matter where the package manager put the executable files as long as they are on $PATH but if you're so concerned to find them, you can use "which" (Eg: which opera) to get their respective paths.

Also, unlike Windows installers, all package managers available on Linux offer powerful querying utilities to the point that you can list the content of a given package. If you cannot find an application inside C:Program Files on Windows, good luck trying to find it!

This scheme not only is simple to remember but is very useful as it is very simple to perform backups of users' data, settings and applications settings for everything just by saving the content of / home and /etc whereas on Windows applications are allowed to write EVERYWHERE (even though there are recommended folders for that) therefore creating such a mess that sometimes the hassle to make a backup is just not worth one's time.

But the Windows experienced users on this website cannot think outside their comfort zone or even realize that something CAN be better than what they have on Windows and feel the need to belittle something just because it is different of what they know and keep trying to enforce their flawed point of view on users that are perfectly happy with the current state of their favorite tools.

If you're not willing to learn something new to properly use a different OS, why bother trying it out at all? It's obvious that it won't reach your standards no matter what you do, so why bother?

Unfortunately, Linux seems to be poisoned to attract more of this kind of users with all that 3D eye candy stuff and since they tend to be more vocal about their wishes, developers may end forgetting the kind of user that does like Linux because of its strenghts and start catering to the former group. It's really a shame.

Reply Score: 4

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

A good helpdesk system, financial analysis, stock analysis, medical record keeping, hotel management. Probably a handful of others as well.

Uh? None of these prevent Linux from being "ready for the desktop". That's utter BS. Theses are all very specialized apps, used for very specific tasks.

BTW, Guest Tracker Hotel Management 5.2 *is* available for Linux (don't know about their latest version though). For EMR, you have TidyDoc, Synapse (beta, but still very powerful and quite stable) and SpringCharts.

Finding the applications - It's great that linux makes it easy to install apps with apt-get or yum but the problem is finding them.

You haven't seen the new "Add/Remove Programs" app on Ubuntu, haven't you? It presents apps by category, giving a description of each (with colorful icons).

You can also go to www.kde-apps.org and browse for apps there, then install it with Synaptic/Adept.

Apart from that, I have to say like the other poster who responded to you: finding apps is no easier in Windows.

If you are running distro X your apps go into Y, if you run distro S then your apps go into T.

Uh, nearly all distros place executables in /usr/bin.

The "different distros do things differently" argument is basically a non-issue, because people almost never use more than one distro at a time. Not only that, but it is not very important (and in fact, quite irrelevant) for a user to know where an app is. Seriously, why does it matter to you, a user, where the app is situated?

Reply Score: 4

TaterSalad Member since:
2005-07-06

Uh? None of these prevent Linux from being "ready for the desktop". That's utter BS. Theses are all very specialized apps, used for very specific tasks.

Uh which is what most businesses use and was my whole point. Linux doesn't have enough specialized apps and very few use just an office suite and web browser.

You haven't seen the new "Add/Remove Programs" app on Ubuntu, haven't you? It presents apps by category, giving a description of each (with colorful icons).

You can also go to www.kde-apps.org and browse for apps there, then install it with Synaptic/Adept.

Apart from that, I have to say like the other poster who responded to you: finding apps is no easier in Windows


You are kidding me right? Add/Remove programs gives a very short description, sometimes not enough to even get the idea of what the app is supposed to do. Sorry but apps are a lot easier to find in windows. Go to download.com and see how they are categorized, top 5, link to the developer's site, screen shots. If you don't like donwload.com there are a whole bunch more.

Uh, nearly all distros place executables in /usr/bin.

The "different distros do things differently" argument is basically a non-issue, because people almost never use more than one distro at a time. Not only that, but it is not very important (and in fact, quite irrelevant) for a user to know where an app is. Seriously, why does it matter to you, a user, where the app is situated?


We aren't talking executables, but even that varies from /bin /usr/bin /usr/local/bin /sbin /usr/sbin... and it is a huge issue. Lets say you need to upgrade an application but you want to have a clean upgrade. How are you going to find out where all the files are? Or if you need to tweak some files, it helps to know where the config files are. There is no doubt it is still an issue.

Reply Score: 2

wurb Member since:
2007-01-12

We aren't talking executables, but even that varies from /bin /usr/bin /usr/local/bin /sbin /usr/sbin... and it is a huge issue. Lets say you need to upgrade an application but you want to have a clean upgrade. How are you going to find out where all the files are? Or if you need to tweak some files, it helps to know where the config files are. There is no doubt it is still an issue.
My god, and I sometimes felt ashamed about fud uttered by Linux freaks about windows...

Are you really so clueless? Every packagemanager that's worth something (and I'm not talking about Yast here, unfortunately) gives you a simple menuentry that shows you exactly where the files are stored.

Want an example? From aptitude:

/.
/usr
/usr/bin
/usr/bin/acpi
/usr/share
/usr/share/man
/usr/share/man/man1
/usr/share/man/man1/acpi.1.gz
/usr/share/doc
/usr/share/doc/acpi
/usr/share/doc/acpi/README
/usr/share/doc/acpi/AUTHORS
/usr/share/doc/acpi/copyright
/usr/share/doc/acpi/changelog.gz
/usr/share/doc/acpi/changelog.Debian.gz

Try to get such a clear answer to a question from the windows OS!
*edit: Or what about all that rubbish that stays in the windows registry, long after the app is uninstalled?

Edited 2007-01-13 20:52

Reply Score: 3

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Uh which is what most businesses use and was my whole point.

While many businesses use specialized apps, many don't. Again, you seem to be saying that if Linux isn't ready for *all* desktops, then it's ready for none. That's the same old FUD we've been hearing for years.

Linux doesn't have enough specialized apps and very few use just an office suite and web browser.

There are plenty of specialized apps for Linux. The OP listed a few that were allegedly missing, and it took me less than five minutes to actually find some for Linux.

You are kidding me right? Add/Remove programs gives a very short description, sometimes not enough to even get the idea of what the app is supposed to do.

How much description do you need to figure out what an app is for? You're grasping at straws here. As I suspected, your bias against Linux is such that no matter how much things improve, it will never be enough for you. Do us a favor: keep using Windows and stop wasting your time trying to discourage others from trying Linux.

Go to download.com and see how they are categorized

Go to www.kde-apps.com. 'nuff said.

We aren't talking executables, but even that varies from /bin /usr/bin /usr/local/bin /sbin /usr/sbin... and it is a huge issue.

No, it is not. That's pure FUD. You don't need to know where an app is, and if you really want to find out, you type "whereis [name of application]". It's as simple as that.

Lets say you need to upgrade an application but you want to have a clean upgrade. How are you going to find out where all the files are?

You don't need to know where the files are. You just upgrade the package, and it will do it for you. As others have said, though, package managers do tell you which files are installed, and where. But again, there's no reason why a user would ever need to know.

Or if you need to tweak some files, it helps to know where the config files are.

In /etc.

There is no doubt it is still an issue.

No, it isn't. It's pure and utter FUD.

Reply Score: 5

Problems
by Xaero_Vincent on Sat 13th Jan 2007 17:57 UTC
Xaero_Vincent
Member since:
2006-08-18

"Give that same user a problem with windows and he'll usually be equally lost and call his personal geek for help."

Heh, I laughed at how true that is. My mother and father call me at least once a week about problems they're experiencing with their Windows computers.

I don't think a Linux system is any more difficult to repair than a Windows system. With distributions like openSUSE and Mandriva, the process is even simular. Fixing Windows is often more time consuming though, especially if the problem is related to spyware or viruses.

Edited 2007-01-13 18:02

Reply Score: 2

walterbyrd
Member since:
2005-12-31

Then why even consider SuSE?

Ubuntu is committed to being completely free.

Ubuntu does not have some free version which is designed to get you to buy the real proprietary version.

Ubuntu is not working against the intent of the GPL and making inexplicable secretive deals with msft.

Ubuntu is not hated by the FSF and by Samba developers, and by much of the Linux development community.

Ubuntu is not being specifically excluded by GPLv3.

Ubuntu has a nice, helpful, friendly community; instead of being control by greedy execs at novell.

If SuSE offers some specific technical advantange, then I can understand using SuSE. I still think it's the wrong thing to do, but it's at least understandable.

Reply Score: 1

Man so much FUD
by blitze on Sat 13th Jan 2007 22:35 UTC
blitze
Member since:
2006-09-15

Both systems have their share of problems.

Why do I prefer Linux Desktop?

1. Once I have it up and running customised the way I like, it stays that way with no need for me to f-about with system utilities. I get to use the computer instead of maintain it.

2. I fully support the premise behind OSS software and its contribution to the greater good for computing and the flow on effects towards human development. In a world where greed tries to control everything, there is a nice ray of light that counters that. It might only be in computing but I hope that one day we will become enlightened enough to see FOSS principles in other aspects of human interaction instead of everyone trying to f- each other over.

This is the way it used to be and recent IP ownership has shown itself to be very counter to societal development. Where would we be without the freedom of information exchange that was the Rennaisance? Still heralding how great the styrup and wheel-barrow are.

MS has done some good elements for computing but its greed has hampered software development for two decades. Time to move on.

Reply Score: 2

Sorry guys
by nedvis on Sat 13th Jan 2007 23:18 UTC
nedvis
Member since:
2006-01-02

Do you really think inability to play mp3 will force Linux newbies to ditch their fresh install? I don't think they would!
BTW "Newbies start walking thru' a jungle of soft on net, in yum, or synaptic to see what is mp3 encoding and where is it!" is oversimplified statement.
I would say all modern distros have mp3 codec either installed by default or somewhere within their respective repositories so that's not an issue.
ANd if you're really for software/code openness there is and ogg media format as an mp3 counterpart.

Reply Score: 1

It is ready, but...
by trenchsol on Sat 13th Jan 2007 23:20 UTC
trenchsol
Member since:
2006-12-07

I believe that Linux was ready for desktop long time ago. The problem is what to do after installation.

Corporate users would probably say that MS office is still better then StarOffice/OpenOffice.

Home users (consumers) would like to play all kinds of multimedia and all kind of video games. They would not buy, no, they would not even listen about DRM is evil, or proprietary is evil. If they don't find what they want on Linux, they will go elswhere. In fact, they are already doing that. And yes, they will require their winmodems to work (conexant and others), too.

DG

Edited 2007-01-13 23:23

Reply Score: 2

So Ubuntu and Novell split meager scraps?
by Lambda on Sun 14th Jan 2007 00:14 UTC
Lambda
Member since:
2006-07-28

Hah, I'm sure the last remaining hopeful of making money on LoTD (Novell) is happy to split whatever meager scraps there are with Ubuntu, who is happy to mail you a CD. </sarcasm>

Oh well, if things had been managed differently then there would actually be some money to be made and Microsoft wouldn't own 95% of the desktop still.

We can call the LoTD experiment officially over when Apple starts licensing their OS to OEMs.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Sorry guys, but Linux isn't ready.
by lz1kwk on Sun 14th Jan 2007 10:46 UTC
lz1kwk
Member since:
2005-11-12

Beware: .... Microsoft pays guys to use and write good stuff about Vista. It is not beyond them to pay people to travel the blogs and spread FUD like oomingmak who need no provocation troll on Linux friendly blogs.

Linux is ready for my desktop. I use Linux for every need I have unless a customer demands an application that is only available on Windows. My kids use Linux for fun and school work. A cousin of mine who had never used computers before she came to live with me now uses Linux for all her needs (games, office, email) and does not even know there is another kind of Desktop. Who's desktop are you talking about?

Reply Score: 2

Wine=ugly hack
by Darkelve on Mon 15th Jan 2007 10:44 UTC
Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

Well, one could say that Windows is kind of an ugly hack as well.

Reply Score: 2