Linked by Eugenia Loli on Wed 18th Sep 2002 02:30 UTC
Oracle and SUN These days, the big players in the Linux "purely-desktop market" are Lycoris, Lindows, ELX and the much awaited Xandros Desktop 1.0. OSNews got their hands to the latest version of Xandros (beta3b) and we are giving it a whirl. Read more for information and screenshots.
Order by: Score:
Hrmm...
by Stug on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:02 UTC

I understand that Linux distros are all about choice and all, but is this really the way to win new users? It looks so much like Windows that perhaps newbies will adjust to this and then stick to distros like this. By making linux look so much like Windows, it seems to me that it looses some of its identity. I read a post from someone who said that an OS's GUI is its most recognizable characteristic, and I have to agree. MacOS wins customs without doing this. I understand the need to get people to make the jump, but I think the user friendliness may be better if it's more unique.

Remember
by Adam Scheinberg on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:07 UTC

Remember, these distros compete with Windows - not with other Linux distros. This is a huge distinction.

Questions
by Texstar on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:08 UTC

Does anyone know if Xandros will offer a downloadable version of their release like Mandrake, Redhat and Lycoris?

Mixed emotions...
by BradC on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:14 UTC

i don't know what to think of this?

i never used corel linux (installer never worked on the laptop i had at the time) so i don't know how much they changed...but i had pretty big hopes for xandros.

a lot of the stuff looks pretty good, the icons and artwork are pretty terrible...almost makes mandrake look GREAT in that field.

I HATE when distro's like this totally change kde to the point where it is unrecognizeable...it's stupid and there is no point...face it! you are not running windows you are running Linux...I can imagine kde loses a LOT of functionality when they do this which is also another downside. KDE by itself, especially in 3.x is awesome and can get by on it's own without being totally wrecked like this.

maybe this is one reasons it feels so slow? i mean i am running mandrake 9 rc2 right now and it is one of the fastest desktops i have used (in linux anyway)

they should help kde by helping to add functionality, features, useabilty, squashing bugs, etc...not doing something like this that is totally unproductive.
(but they won't...didn't corel and the kde community have beef because corel didn't give back any of it's changes to KDE?)

if they want to make a distinction between themselves and other distro's do it with your wizards, config tools, hardware support, installation, updating features, etc.
this is much more productive.

This isn't what I expected...
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:14 UTC

This looks pretty similar Win98's gui, which it's not bad idea. But, I got one question.. Why can't Xandros thinks of something difference? Such as create its own GUI (try to get better) and etc.. Look at WinXP, it made pretty HUGE change on the interface and a lot of people still upgrade to WinXP without really get confuse.

Just doesn't look polished
by Jason on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:14 UTC

I must say that from the screenshots it just doesn't look polished at all. The icons look bad, and worse than old Mandrake icons. The screen dialog just looked out of proportion. Of course, for the new folks out there I'm sure this is a viable distro and one that would be very welcoming towards windows converts.

RE: Mixed emotions...
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:17 UTC

>i mean i am running mandrake 9 rc2 right now and it is one of the fastest desktops i have used (in linux anyway)

Mandrake 9 is compiled with GCC 3.2. Xandros uses gcc 2.95.x which generates slower code. Also, the slowness seems to be specific to my machine/driver. Other testers did not have the problem, Xandros told me.

> I HATE when distro's like this totally change kde to the point where it is unrecognizeable...

I like it. ;)

>a lot of the stuff looks pretty good, the icons and artwork are pretty terrible...almost makes mandrake look GREAT in that field.

hehe, I will have to agree there! ;)

Re:RE:Mixed emotions...
by BradC on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:24 UTC

> i like it.

yes but what you like, for example the showing of your
mounted drives and such are easily done (and probably better) without totally wrecking KDE.

there just isn't a point to trashing kde to make it look like windows, add functionality is one thing...totally changing it is another

on top of that they introduce an unnecessary learning curve for people who want to then explore other linux distro's

I'll stay away from it
by Heru on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:26 UTC

I won't use it.
I personally do not like making KDE or Gnome look like Windows(Lycoris seems to be my exception on that). Sure I don't mind a windows theme and functionality, that way I can change the theme to what I want. I'm all fine and good with networking with windows and having wizards and easy config tools, though.

I might try it if I am able to do one thing. Will I be able to install Gnome?

I noticed they aren't following the LSB's recomendations for file system organization fully, the /disks folder shows that.

And the icons, ug. Oh well icons can be changed.

I'll stick with Mandrake until something I like better comes along.

I think they should release thier new varient of KDE to the public domain though, some people will use it; wait, don't they have to under KDE's license?

Re:RE:Mixed emotions...
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:30 UTC

>yes but what you like, for example the showing of your
mounted drives and such are easily done (and probably better) without totally wrecking KDE.

Not really. If someone wanted to completely change the look, feel and even functionality of KDE and only use modified libs and apps that would still be just fine with me! They are allowed, so they do it.

> there just isn't a point to trashing kde to make it look like windows, add functionality is one thing...totally changing it is another

No one is trashing anything. Xandros is invensting money on this. They are allowed to do this by the license, and they are using the KDE code to match their targets and the kind of customers they want to reach.
I think you are getting sentimental on bits and bytes and fail to see that it is all about business for companies like Xandros, or Lycoris or Red Hat.


> on top of that they introduce an unnecessary learning curve for people who want to then explore other linux distro's

This is a no issue and not Xandros responsibility. They are a company and they want people to only try their products anyway. That is what every company wants. They are not aiming to the usual Linux hacker, but for windows users.

Xandros
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:32 UTC

"However, my biggest gripe so far (the Xandros engineers still investigate to try and find the cause) is the incredible slow UI experience I get (even after re-installing the OS). I click on the window manager to move away a window, and the window will actually move after 1 second, as if it was glued to the desktop."

I am a beta tester for Xandros and I have not experienced the "slow UI experience" you describe. I have seen a few apps behave sluggishly but overall I have been very satisfied with the speed of the OS.

"In fact, the "Terminal" application is also kind of hidden under the System submenu, and not as easy to reach as in other distros. "

It is no more hidden than the "command prompt" in WinXP.

"This is a Linux distribution to watch out for, and it would straight compete with both Lycoris and Lindows."

I basically agree with you there. Lindows was based on Xandros. Lycoris is a nice effort but does not have the advantage of the Debian apt-get style of update which is a major improvement over the RPM approach. I am running Xandros beta2 as my main desktop and it has been solid and flexible. I have been able to do so much more with this "beta" than I ever was able to do in all of the other so called production releases. My testing has found a few flaws but they pale in comparison to the ones I have experienced in several well known established distributions. NVidia works out of the box with no screwing around downloading and installing drivers and reconfiguring XF86 files. I have even installed with a VooDoo, shut the system down, plugged in an NVidia Gforce and rebooted right into the 3d driver for NVidia with Xandros. No other distribution currently can do that. As well I have tested with a WinModem,the bane of Linux. Guess what, it works. Xandros may have a few rough edges but so far its the best Linux distribution I have used.

Huh...
by Brad on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:37 UTC

>yes but what you like, for example the showing of your
>mounted drives and such are easily done (and probably >better) without totally wrecking KDE.

>>Not really. If someone wanted to completely change the >>look, feel and even functionality of KDE and only use >>modified libs and apps that would still be just fine >>with me! They are allowed, so they do it.

what does that have to do with what i said, all i said is that you can add most of this functionality to kde with out extremely changing the way it looks.

RE: Xandros
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:37 UTC

> I am a beta tester for Xandros and I have not experienced the "slow UI experience" you describe

It seems to be particular or Voodoo5 and SMP machines..

> It is no more hidden than the "command prompt" in WinXP

Yes, but this is mostly like Win98 and more importantly, this is a Linux, it "needs" the terminal a bit more than Windows.

The review looks fine so far. I am also running Mandrake 9.0RC2 which is fine. I installed Corel WPO2000 on it and it seems to mostly work. I am really more interested in getting WPO2002. Will it happen?

To elaborate, I need to open MSO2K documents over 40 pages with features unsupported in OO. I have a copy of WPO2K that I have had difficulties running ;) . I needed to reload an os on a laptop I had sitting here (Acer 342T P3-500/192) and thought I'd try the new Mandrake for kicks. Mandrake picked up all the hardware (OK, the included X did it) properly where the previous round of distributions did not. Grabbed a new install script from corel. Installed WPO2K no problem. Usually it works well, but with some large documents, 1/2 of the time it yacks on the conversion. (If I try to open the same document again conversion works and WPO does not go down)

Since OO is not yet mature enough to handle the task at hand, I would like to use WPO. (Or need to...) a newer version should better understand the moving MS office doc standard.... So I would like to try it.


Ah well, progress is good.

Re:Xandros
by Brad on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:42 UTC

>Yes, but this is mostly like Win98 and more importantly, >this is a Linux, it "needs" the terminal a bit more than >Windows.

yes, but a good distro will be one where the end user dosn't HAVE to use the terminal

but for me i love the terminal it's a very powerful thing once you learn how to use it

re: re: Xandros
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:51 UTC

"Yes, but this is mostly like Win98 and more importantly, this is a Linux, it "needs" the terminal a bit more than Windows."

I had no trouble finding it. Go to the "start" (see what years of windows does) "applications" "system". You'll find one for the user there and one for the root user in "Administrator Tools". Both are quite easy to find.
Hitting ctrl+alt+f1 works likes any Linux distro and takes you directly to a command line login. What else were you refering to when you said "terminal"?

re: re: Xandros
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:54 UTC

>I had no trouble finding it. Go to the "start"

I know where is it. ;)
What I saying is to become a bit more apparent.

>What else were you refering to when you said "terminal"?

Nothing else.

re: re: Xandros
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 03:58 UTC

"What I saying is to become a bit more apparent."

You could always do what I did, drag it out and drop it on the taskbar. Pretty easy to see there.

re: re: Xandros
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:01 UTC

> You could always do what I did, drag it out and drop it on the taskbar. Pretty easy to see there

Argh, you do not understand me... I am not talking about myself. I know what and how to do it. I am talking about the... "Defaults" of a UI. These are what matters! Defaults people! ;)

Comments from a Windows user
by Darius on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:01 UTC

"This is a desktop OS, meant to be used by both Windows individual users and Windows-based corporations."

Well, since I fit into the first category and since it seems that most people who have commented so far are mainly Linux users, I'll throw in my two cents.

Taking a look at the screenshots, it looks like ... well, it looks like ... Windows. It's amazing to me that with all of the 'Windows sucks' mentality of the Linux crowd, I see God's gift to OS's looking more and more like Windows every day.

So, they gussy it up and make it look like an ugly, bastardized version of Windows (probably taking a lot of the cutomization out of it at the same time), and then throw the same lame-ass applications on top of it. Why am I not impressed? Note to the coporate scum .. there was nothing wrong with KDE to begin with - leave it alone. Duh!

Also, I think it's funny that many of you are so surprised about how similar to Windows that Linux is becoming. I've said it before and I'll say it again - you will NEVER, EVER see Linux dominating the desktop without it basically being a clone of Windows, complete with a dumbed-down interface (think AOL), security holes, and spyware. If you want Linux to remain open and free, keep it to yourselves, AWAY from the masses and away from the commercial bastards who will eventually ruin it if one day the masses do happen to come.

From a Windows user's point of view, want to know how to attract my attention? Build some applications that blow away what I am currently using, because I really don't give two shits about the OS ... I *am* using Windows afterall ;)

Linux on the desktop
by Joe user on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:03 UTC

Call me when I can walk down to compusa and buy photoshop and quicken and any of the other 1000 retail titles they have on display.

I've been using linux since 1997 and I did the linux desktop route for 2 years straight. No cheating either ALL I used was linux. Being that I am not a programmer or web developer, that was quite an accomplishment. Since that time every few months I check in on the linux desktop, but you know what? The same problems I had years ago happen now. Terrible fonts. No Big OEM or ISV support and general a lack of polish. Even with something like Lycoris which on the outside looks nice, just beneath the skin lies a huge headache for the average user. I sit here and watch the UI get focused on, and yet the glaring reality of it is the real problem is the big companies necessary for a "linux desktop" to become pervasive have passed on linux as a desktop. I'm talking about companies like Adobe, Intuit, and yes even Microsoft. I still use linux for server use, but since windows 2000 came out the idea of using linux as a desktop has just become unappealing. Now there are plenty of people who are willing to put up with Linux's massive shortcomings as a desktop, but I am no longer one of them.

re:Just doesn't look polished
by bill on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:10 UTC

>I must say that from the screenshots it just doesn't look polished at all. The icons look bad, and worse than old Mandrake icons. The screen dialog just looked out of proportion


Of course, a distro's worth is all about how it looks, who cares if it actually functions. We all know that pretty icons make for a great OS right? lol ;)

re:Just dosen't look polished
by BradC on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:12 UTC

>Of course, a distro's worth is all about how it looks, who >cares if it actually functions. We all know that pretty >icons make for a great OS right? lol ;)

you would be surprised...espcially in the consumer desktop market

Re: Just doesn't look polished
by Darius on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:12 UTC

"Of course, a distro's worth is all about how it looks, who cares if it actually functions. We all know that pretty icons make for a great OS right? lol ;) "

Of course pretty icons does not make a functional OS, but a good looking interface DOES matter to a lot of people who have to stare at it all day. Hell, the default GTK skin is enough to make me want to avoid it like the plague ;)

PS - IMHO, it doesn't look THAT bad ... for a Linux distro anyway ;) Hell, I kind of dig the file manager.

Excuse me, but...
by Ilya on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:14 UTC

From what appears on the screenshots, the UI design seems to have been influenced heavily by both Mandrake and Win98, and they have not made a good cross (no surprize). The UI looks neither intuitive, nor consistent enough. There are relatively few applications, and their versions are not the most recent stable ones available. Then please correct me if I am wrong, but aren't *all* features mentioned in the review standard in the most popular Linux distros (RH Null, Mandrake 9.0, SuSE)? I wonder if the engineers actually have added new features, or they simply repackaged another distro? And why exactly is this desktop expected to attract Windows users?

re: re: Xandros
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:24 UTC

"Argh, you do not understand me... I am not talking about myself. I know what and how to do it. I am talking about the... "Defaults" of a UI. These are what matters! Defaults people! ;) "

I was razzing you, I think you are being a bit nitpicky since its no harder to find the terminal than any version of Windows. I do get your point though.

Re: Darius
by Miles Robinson on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:27 UTC

Why on Earth would you concern yourself with linux corporations aiming for the Windows user crowd if you think that Linux is God's gift to OS's? I mean really, the user interface of Windows is what most people are used to, and it's not really *all* that bad. Sure it's real plain but most people I know just want a plain and straight-forward UI.

Oh yes, now I realize why... because you're one of the many zealots (I don't like the term but honestly you're making it stick on you) who think that companies being for-profit and at the same time support open source development are going to bring about the downfall of it.

Sorry buddy, in case you havn't realized, the GPL prevents companies from monopolizing Linux. The GPL ensures that everybody everywhere will always have access to the Linux kernel (And, of course, all other GPL software). There's absolutely no, and let me repeat for you, NO way that a company is going to destroy open source/linux.

I'm going to ignore your referencing to the applications as lame-ass. After all, if you're going to be such an ass as to rip on the applications, when they're open source mind you, and just repeatedly complain about it's downfalls without providing feedback or even maybe assistance, you don't deserve the applications. You don't deserve the OS. You don't deserve anything more than the closed-source applications, seeing as how you're obviously not attracted to the biggest point of open source, BEING ABLE TO EDIT THE STUFF MANUALLY!

Jeezus.

BTW
by Miles Robinson on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:28 UTC

I run Slackware 8.1, while anyone's stating their OS. WinME is on the first harddisk for the family and gaming.

UI Sucks
by fairfax on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:30 UTC

Icons are disgusting looking and it looks so much like bad ripoff of Windows that I would never use it even If I was a newbie. I switched to Linux to get away from windows.

Judging by the screenshots...
by Cesar Cardoso on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:31 UTC

...looks like Xandros needs to do some more work.

Yes, they made some important changes to KDE - it doesn't look like all other KDE-based distros.

But I'm afraid that after (null) so simple icons like Xandros are shipping won't cut it to the potential customers.

Don't forget it uses apt-get
by jago25_98 on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:37 UTC

Corel was debian-based so this has apt-get.

This essentially gives new users a good start on a distros more important points - packaging.
Hopefully Xanrdos will make full advantage of their packaging situation.

I see this as important. It's very possible for a one-click install for all the software in one single place. This would impress the Windows user who is used to a myiad of downloads, signed drivers amd generally scared to install to much because this screws it in the end. The interface and stability probably aren't so in your face as the ability to add and remove things so safely and EASILY.


I'm a gentoo user so I like manual but Xandros looks good. I will recommend to non-linux users methinks.

I hope they can get some originality in there too of course. Perhaps they will by introducing the Newbie to Debian, albeit without the GNU.

A question to the moderators: why was a deliberately offensive post # 27 from Miles Robinson added? Don't the posting terms referenced at the bottom of this page apply to all?

Thanks.

Re: Reader
by Miles Robinson on Wed 18th Sep 2002 04:40 UTC

"deliberately offensive"?

Well I guess I can't get the *least* bit emotional about it, and others can.

The infomation bit in the KDE control centre for example.

All they have to do is give the commands needed to get the same info from the commandline, perhaps in the titlebar - educate the user, let them know what's going on if they ask it.

Like a lot of people I worry that these automagic tools do the job so that the user doesn't relise what is actually going on.

For this reason I'm pleased I switch to Debian from Mandrake because it tells me what it is doing to /etc. The same with gentoo which is even more manual.

If something goes wrong I at least know I did rather than the computer!

Re: Miles Robinson
by Kobold on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:03 UTC

I don't fully agree with what Darius was saying but, just because the apps are open source is not an excuse to be substandard. While there are a large amount of great apps available, for every great one there are two crappy ones. Linux is trying to play ball with windows but they can't currently because many apps are not better than windows.

Most people and businesses do not have a political opinion on os choice, they just want to get work done as cheaply and quickly as possible. In this case windows wins even if it does charge an arm and a leg. Time is money and the better (read more usable in most cases) apps on windows allow people to get tasks done faster and thus save money. When linux offers a truely faster, better, more usable way to do things for most users, then they can start to compete.

Re: Miles
by Darius on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:10 UTC

"Sorry buddy, in case you havn't realized, the GPL prevents companies from monopolizing Linux. The GPL ensures that everybody everywhere will always have access to the Linux kernel (And, of course, all other GPL software)."

I never said they're going to steal the kernel or the OS. They will just hack it enough so that they can start building layers on top of the infrastructure, adding their own hooks into it. Think about this .. Windows (as I understand it) is completely closed source, but how much of the commercial crap and spyware on the Windows platform do you think that Microsoft is actually responsible for? Hell, think about the things the commercial bastards could do to Windows if they actually had the source code to it and understood the inner workings.

"There's absolutely no, and let me repeat for you, NO way that a company is going to destroy open source/linux. "

You're right ... open source/Linux will always exist. But in the event that Linux finally catches on, you'll have a senario just like you have now ... 97% of people using AOL Linux (basically the kernel, X, and commercial crap added on top of it), and the other 2-3% will be using the 'uncorrupted' open source/free versions that are out there.

Why does my senario sound so far-fetched? If Linux were to start dominating the desktop, where do you think the commercial crowd developing Windows spyware and swiss cheese are going to go - program for the Mac? lol

Samba ACL
by Taras on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:11 UTC

There is a big permissions button in the share config, Eugenia, why coulnt u click it & show the pic, now I'm left wondering whether they went all the way and copied NT's crazy ACL stuff. Aka, having lists of users that can access the share..afaik thats a really cool feature, that I want in linux(samba acl, cos i like samba ;) )

Otherwise, it looks much better than lycoris, looks like they didnt just copy the look of windows, but replicated a lot of the functionality. Thats good. I am tired of the look-a-like distros that dont have what it takes.

re: apt
by arougthopher on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:28 UTC

The installer/upgrader is straight out of Corel Linux. The UI to it has not changed one bit, except for maybe an icon or two. I still have my Corel linux disks lying around somewhere. I personally liked the Corel installer, though it has been a couple years since I used it. One thing, it is definitly better than KPackage, both UI wise, and package type wise.

The screen shots do not look that much different than Corel v2. (i think Xandros is based on Corel v3). My gut tells me most of the changes were to the underlying core technologies (X, kernel, libs, etc.), which would be why they have not upgraded the KDE version, yet, and, why it has taken SO long for them to produce anything.

I think this will be great distro, though, too bad it is taking them so long. RH is now focussing on the desktop again and making deals with IBM/HP. I hope Xandros will be able to hold their head up against RH and MS.

re: KDE
by arougthopher on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:34 UTC

Question to all complaining about the changes to KDE:

Do you modify your desktop to your liking, or do you leave it exactly the way the KDE package maintainers have the default set to?

All Xandros has done is modify the desktop to make it familiar to their target audience. KDE is NOT MS, so their license does not restrict 3rd parties from modifying the desktop.

That's one of the benefits/downsides to OSS. You guys can't have your kake and eat it to? :-)

Mandrake 9.0 is (almost) ready
by rehdon on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:45 UTC

"These days, the big players in the Linux "purely-desktop market" are Lycoris, Lindows, ELX and the much awaited Xandros Desktop 1.0"

You're leaving out the best desktop distro so far: Mandrake Linux. ML 9.0 looks even better than usual (if you remember the old icons/wallpapers, you know what I mean ;)

RE: Mandrake 9.0 is (almost) ready
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:51 UTC

>> ... the Linux "purely-desktop market...

>You're leaving out the best desktop distro so far: Mandrake Linux.

No I am not. Read the news, Mandrake is preparing to release a version for 1U rack x86 servers. They also have versions for Itanium, which is definately desktop-oriented. Mandrake always tried to do everything, from desktop to servers...

Oh, the hostility...
by Dave Owen on Wed 18th Sep 2002 05:59 UTC

Is it me, or are the passionate discussions starting to sound like slashdot discussions? Sigh.

That (undoubtedly flame-inducing) comment aside, I want to respond to this comment, posted earlier:

"You're right ... open source/Linux will always exist. But in the event that Linux finally catches on, you'll have a senario just like you have now ... 97% of people using AOL Linux (basically the kernel, X, and commercial crap added on top of it), and the other 2-3% will be using the 'uncorrupted' open source/free versions that are out there."

I read this a few times, and I can't see anything wrong with it. If 97% of people are using a crap version of Linux that makes them happy (but would make most of us miserable), but that's what it takes to get the big applications ported over to Linux, so be it -- because then, of the 3% remaining, people like me (who could use Linux exclusively, except for 2 or 3 work-related applications that are too media-intensive to run under vmware) could be done with Windows altogether.

Just my two cents! ;)

Is Windows cloning good?
by rajan r on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:06 UTC

Stug, Microsoft had changed Windows user interface drastically many times. Does this damper adoption of Windows? No. For example, Windows 3.1 and Windows 95 - they both *look* and *act* differently, and changes are minimal. Did Windows 3.1 users shy away from Windows 95 because of its UI? (Many did turn down Win95 because of its performance, but not because of its UI). Windows 3.1 users can very well jump to System 7.5/8 ot OS/2...

My point? Making a copy of another UI wouldn't help them, *especially* if the copy isn't a direct replica of Windows. People are willing to learn something new *IF* they get something from it. Now Linux is getting a lot of market share in the desktop market, no thanks to what Eugenia calls the major 3 distros, because of a few advantages, mainly security and price.

The only people these companies can atract is basic consumers (like you ma, pa, grandma, grandpa...). These people are not interested in Linux. It gives nothing extra to them. Why move to something else? Ask yourself that :-). Plus these people are normally confused with Windows UI (first hand experience), copying it won't help them.

The only groups of people that are willing to move to Linux is the corporate market. Sadly, only Red Hat sees that. Caldera once saw that, but lost a lot of focus.

So in other words, my point is that people WON'T move to Linux even if you can't tell the two apart. There isn't any compeling reason. Look at Apple's Switch ads, these people moved to Mac OS because of a *COMPELING REASON* (whom most of it is null and void by now). They didn't move because it looks like Windows. Yeah, its market share is dropping, but to no fault of its OS, but its pricing.

And what's even more worse than a pure replica of Windows? An half baked one! When people get out and buy a Lycoris box from CompUSA, they would saw... "Hey, this looks familar!"...... then they meet with a lot of infamilarities, and then pass it off and confusing. If the person doesn't find it familar in the first place, he is more willing to learn and explore.

I'm done with this rant :-)

PS: I never actually tried Xandros (like I can anyway). I'm making judgements from reviews and screenshots. However, I have tried both Lindows and Lycoris and ELX. (And if you are wondering, ELX who claims it is as good as Windows, lost to last place).

Evil grin
by DCMonkey on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:30 UTC

You know what I'd like to see? I'd like to see a Linux distro clone the Windows UI (pick a version. I'm partial to w2k myself) down to the pixel (excepting icons probably). They'd probably get sued, though MS doesn't seem to be as lawsuit happy about looknfeel as Apple is.

Another one I'd like to see? A non-power user oriented distro based on a more traditional WM UI where everything is presented as a program including the file manager. No desktop icons. Could have screen edge panels. Basically a simple interface for running programs and managing data files created by those programs. That is still what a computer does after all.

You know what I'd like to stop seeing? People who seem to think that because one distro thinks they can build a market around a Windows UI lookalike that all Linuxdom will be homogenized and Jackbooted Xandros Thugs will storm into their basements and tear their precious Debian/Mandrake/Gentoo/Builtfromrawtarball distros from their trembling fingers.

It is just another option guys. It is about choice isn't it? If no one wants something like Xandros, they'll go out of business. The world will still spin, the sun will still rise, and 100% pure KDE will still compile from your pristine sources.

PS: I think the Xandros task bar is rather ugly. Too lumpy.

A nice review Eugenia
by Iconoclast on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:38 UTC

I just thought I'd say, before I go to bed, that this is one of the better and one of the most thorough reviews I have seen at OSNews. You're okay Eugenia.

I am interested in Xandros for some of my family members. One question that I do have about it that perhaps someone here can answer for me is, if I only have Xandros installed on my system, does it still show a C: drive or is that only if you have a Windows partition on the machine? I hope it's the latter.

Do we really need this ?
by freddy on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:42 UTC

This is just going to get so damn confusing for newbies to Linux.

The sheer amount of choice they are going to be faced with, will surely force most of them back to the familiar world of microsoft windows.

Do we really need yet another 'Linux for the desktop' distro ?
Does Linux really need to be broken down into these areas, when current Distros like Redhat and Mandrake already offer the option to easily install a Workstation/Server or Development system from the same installation CD's ?

This is redundant work - there's nothing new here at all.

Xandros
by Stan on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:47 UTC

The last thing I would do building a distro would be using windows graphics. There's nothing wrong with resembling a Windows look.. But does it have to be a straight copy?

....
by rajan r on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:49 UTC

Texstar: Does anyone know if Xandros will offer a downloadable version of their release like Mandrake, Redhat and Lycoris?

If they are like Corel, they probably would. But if they are like Corel, it would be barebones without bundled apps (except some ultilities).

BradC: maybe this is one reasons it feels so slow? i mean i am running mandrake 9 rc2 right now and it is one of the fastest desktops i have used (in linux anyway)

Notice Eugenia said other distros are not as inresponsive as Xandros :-)

Besides, I have tried RC1 (not RC2), and I can agree with you that it is fast (when compared with early betas and 8.2). However, am I the only one that find KDE faster, ironically, on RH Null than on Mandrake RC1?

Heru: I noticed they aren't following the LSB's recomendations for file system organization fully, the /disks folder shows that.

From a beta tester I know on IRC, it is only like that on XFM, and not in the terminal.

Anonymous: It is no more hidden than the "command prompt" in WinXP.

Start>More Programs>Accessories>Command Prompt. 4 mouse clicks. How much is it under Xandros?

Anonymous: The review looks fine so far. I am also running Mandrake 9.0RC2 which is fine. I installed Corel WPO2000 on it and it seems to mostly work. I am really more interested in getting WPO2002. Will it happen?

Corel says it would consider it when Corel is on solid financial grounds. They are still recovering from the blows of jumping to the hype of Linux and Java. But I think this would only be the case of Linux turns out to be a profitable market (which currently it isn't).

Joe user: The same problems I had years ago happen now. Terrible fonts. [...]

Maybe you should check out Red Hat Beta 3 (Null), and see the anti alias fonts. if you have a LCD display, choose Sub-pixel and drool....

Besides, isn't it amazing that without major OEM support and ISV spport, accroading to IDC, it surpases Mac in market share?

Miles Robinson: I mean really, the user interface of Windows is what most people are used to, and it's not really *all* that bad. Sure it's real plain but most people I know just want a plain and straight-forward UI.

Right.... why choose to clone Windows UI when there are more better "plain and straight-forward UIs" to copy? I don't know why other people oppose cloning of Windows UI, but for me, it is two reason

1) Microsoft is migrating slowly from Windows' UI. This also proves the flaws of the basic design of the UI. While, yeah, Windows is more easier to use than basic KDE nor GNOME, but it is more productive fixing the faults of the default UIs, than cloning another UI.
2) It makes the company and Linux in general look less professional and more like ripoffs... Do people look up on companies blatantly copying other companies' product in other industries like the automotive industry, the fashion industry etc.? NO!

Dave Owen: [...]but that's what it takes to get the big applications ported over to Linux, so be it -- because then, of the 3% remaining, people like me (who could use Linux exclusively, except for 2 or 3 work-related applications that are too media-intensive to run under vmware) could be done with Windows altogether.

What makes you think that these major apps would work flawlessly on unpoluted Windows? :-)

Just an observation....

But for me, I have no idea what would happen to Linux if the masses catch on to it. Would it be like the Internet? From unpoluted to a big gigantic annoying advertising frenzy that intrude into your personal life... Or would it be like washing machines and fridge, whom still does its work the same whether as a mass commodity now or a niche product in the early year.

I'm betting on the prior. But I haven't put much thought into it. ;) Besides, if Linux catches on, we can't really stop it.... now can we?

RE: A nice review Eugenia
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 06:59 UTC

thanks ;)

> if I only have Xandros installed on my system, does it still show a C: drive or is that only if you have a Windows partition on the machine?

Only if you have a Windows partition. ;)

missing the point
by ~Seedy~ on Wed 18th Sep 2002 07:06 UTC

Linux should'nt seek to clone Windows, it should do BETTER than them.

Follow the Microsoft tradition - Embrace and Extend.

I fel that KDE gets better and better, from the 1.x I first used on Mandrake 7.2 through to 3.0 currently in just 2 years is a fantastic achievement... but it is very much following down a traditional route.. Unfortunately desktop OS's have just so much in common. The Kicker might not be a Taskbar but people buttonhole it as such for convenience.

What I would like to see - and I speak as a user not, alas, a programmer, is an interface with a common menu bar of which all menus for any app use a standard structure ( Say, have the usual menus - file, edit, view, help and a set of extras....) all corresponding to an extra row of buttons on the keyboard.

Beneath this have the mouse-pressable buttons, extras, and the application main window.

But then.. its just an idea. From a PC user who really doesnt like mice, and has gripes with X11s keyboard-shortcut-inconsistency

Windows-Icons-Mouse works.. and in Windows its probably at its highest evolution. Maybe that means its time to try something else. By combining keyboard buttons directly to system functions a great deal of mousework could be avoided.. and yes I know about the shortcuts.. but pressing Alt-F isnt the same as having a FILE button to drop a menu down.

I disagree, i beg to differ
by Anonymous on Wed 18th Sep 2002 07:22 UTC

I think for Linux to topple windows, it must take into account the investment in training and familiarity in the current windows infrastructure. the training costs are large.

one way to lower the transaction costs of a platform switch, would be to make a Linux GUI function as identical to windows, 98 or XP, as possible, down to the last details.

So much so that troubleshooting for someone who can do so with windows should be able to do so with "winux".

it would also have some irony, in that m$ copied apple, so linux is now copying m$.

linux can overtake windows if

(a) explicit costs are lower, marginal and TCO
(a2) implicit costs are lower, costs in transition, retraining, deployment etc. which can be realized as:
(b) if the GUI is identical with windows
(c) comparable office apps are file-format compatible with MS OFFICE format.
(d)

File manager
by stew on Wed 18th Sep 2002 08:36 UTC

Are you sure they're using Konqueror? One of the main features of Corel Linux was that they had their own file manager which was better than the KDE (those were the days...) file manager. From what I heard, Xandros was planning to use that one.

OK, now - how long do we have to wait until a distribution ships with decent fonts, that are maybe even antialiased out of the box?

I loved corel linux when it first came out.
by glitch on Wed 18th Sep 2002 09:25 UTC

Debian is a great Distro, but the comments i hear from everyone reflect what i found out using it.
The look needed help and more than anything debian just didnt have new enough packages for alot of what i wanted to play with back then.

Since then i have messed with suse, debian, progeny, redhat, slackware, caldera, mandrake and a few others i cant think off of the top of my head.

Mandrake has by far the best distro IMHO, very polished, lots of GUI config tools for those new to the CLI. Every new release blows me away, playing with 9.0rc2 right now.
Still, I did like corel but with almost 3 years of downtime they are going to have one hell of a game of catch-up to play to even come close to competing with what is already turning out to be a crowded marketplace.

I wish them the best but they lost me along time ago, and i couldnt be any happier, my vote for best desktop linux is mandrake, hands down!

Ohhh give me a break will you? Stop bashing Xandros!
by Alex on Wed 18th Sep 2002 09:37 UTC

Xandrows is doing an EXCELLENT job in making their OS look like Windows 98! This is the KEY to bring Windows users (including me) closer to Linux. I don't want to use anything that looks and feels differently. I want something that looks and feels like Windows and seems like Xandros is doing just great! So yeah, I hate Windows but I still I want to use something that looks and feels like Windows. It doesn't have to work/operate the same as long as it looks and feels like Windows.

Re: Ohhh give me a break will you? Stop bashing Xandros!
by Alex on Wed 18th Sep 2002 09:42 UTC

People are used to use Windows and only Windows GUI could make them switch to Linux with some exceptions (in regards to the GUI).

What exceptions? Make the distro look and feel differently but make it as friendly as Windows....

Hello???
by Marvin on Wed 18th Sep 2002 09:49 UTC

I see a lot of comments here saying "What's new about this?
Nothing!" or completely focusing on the Windows-like skin.
Apparently many people here never tried to understand what
it's like for a linux newbie to have installed linux only
to find out
- they don't know how to share their files with other
computers ("Oh, that's really simple! Install "Samba", and
then put all your shares in /etc/samba/smb.conf - just read
the docs in /usr/doc/samba/..." - "What? Why can't I just
point and click, like in Windows? Linux sucks!")
- they don't know how to access shares from other computers ("Again, install samba, then open a terminal, become root with "su" and do "mount -t smb ..." - "What? Linux really sucks!")
- they don't know why many settings don't show up in the "control center" (e.g. network configuration "Well, I think they have some graphical utility for that, hmmm, where is it? Well, you can always do it in the terminal, just edit /etc/... fuck, where does your distro put the network settings?" - "*sarcastic laughter*")
- they don't know why some settings in the control center are grey and cannot be modified ("You have to become root for that. just do su, and then... hmmmm, how do I launch the control center from the command line? Well, just log out and then log in as root and then..." - "Sounds to me that XP's idea of giving administrator privileges to all users really was a good idea!")
- they don't know how to change their screen resolution ("you can use xf86config for that or xf86cfg or, if you want it user-friendly, just install blahXdiblah and do it with that, or do it with the tool that comes with your distro, if only I could find it..." - "Fuck off, I'm wiping that partition now and installing XP. Anyway, thank you, you made me realize why I should stick with Windows!")

Now, I look at the screen shots and get the impression that
Xandros is getting all of this right, whereas most other
distros only get some of it right. But for an average user
to be able to use their computer without expert help, you
have to get it all right.
For example, I very much like that message on one screenshot
"Changes in this module require Administrator access. Click the 'Administrator' button to gain access".
It's a small thing, but it's these small things that make a
huge difference for people who (unlike me and possibly you)
don't *want* to learn any more about their OS than absolutely necessary.

ReL Hello???
by Alex on Wed 18th Sep 2002 10:02 UTC

Well said Marvin! I fully agree with you!

Although I am not a Linux newbie but still my primary OS is Windows. I do use Linux a lot but for fun. It is not my primary OS. Why? because it sucks! That's why! Xandros, Elx, Lycoris and Lindows are gonna change all this especially Xandros and Lindows!

Re: ReL Hello???
by Marvin on Wed 18th Sep 2002 10:36 UTC

Well, I didn't want to say Linux sucks, it certainly doesn't for me, personally, I love it to bits (esp. since I switched to gentoo ;) ). But right now I would only recommend it to people who love to tinker with their OS. I've been waiting for years for a distro that I could give to my "non-nerd" friends (most of them want to get away from M$, mostly because of their monopolistic our-users-will-have-to-swallow-it-whether-they-like-it-or-not behaviour). Corel and Caldera already were pretty close, but then both disappeared (at least from the retail market)....
I am often astonished how many Linux zealots completely fail to see the needs of "non-nerd" users. They try to stuff linux down people's throats because it's the politically correct OS - and the users are either amused or disgusted by that kind of behaviour - with good reason, if you ask me.

Office doc compatibility
by ian on Wed 18th Sep 2002 10:54 UTC

I have a question for the thread here:

Is it enough to make an OS that is as "clueless-friendly" as Windows is,

OR:

Does it have to read Microsoft Office documents as well?

I think this is the biggest hurdle for Linux to overcome, and it's not a technical question at all. Why exactly did we all buy computers again?

And... Why not pay Microsoft for creating the Office suite? There are some great programs in there. If everyone's PowerPoint presentations disappered tomorrow the Dow would drop a thousand points next week.

Is a metamorphosis of "what Linux is" possible? Bringing it from the personal hobbyist level to the corporate machine?

What will Linux be in ten years, when ten years ago Microsoft was putting together Windows 3.1 or something?

Games..... um.... yeah. Where?
by Samson on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:00 UTC

Right. Always amuses me to no end to see people go on and on about how Linux does this, Linux does that. The one thing Linux DOESN'T seem to do is games. Oh sure, they have plenty of nice little stupid things like Breakout and Pac-Man clones. But if I wanted those I'd go dig my Atari 2600 out of the storage room. Then you have the Quake stuff. Weee. 95% of the gamers I know and talk to on a regular basis would rather be playing Morrowind or Neverwinter Nights, Warcraft, etc. WineX you say? Hahaha. No thanks. Does the term "subscription based gaming" mean anything? I thought so. So here we all sit, cursing Microsoft's very existence. Yet it's become quite clear to me and my gaming buddies that Linux will never take off until they can capture a large enough slice of the gaming market. Celebrating your precious Open Office stuff will only get you so far. It's not the corporate types that keep Windows around. They're just along for the ride and M$ knows it.

There's another reason Linux won't get far enough to matter, at least at this point in time. Utter lack of hardware support for anything newer than 2 years. There's only one distro that's ever been able to recognize everything in my system without needing to download and compile drivers to make it work - Redhat. I've tried Mandrake, Lycoris, Debian, Slackware, Icepack, Libranet, and a whole slew of others in recent months. Of those, Mandrake got the farthest. I made it to the partitioning screens. Wasn't able to write the new data though. Redhat 7.0 works on my system, and it's considered old at this point. Been messing with Null, and it just looks damn sharp and had zero trouble with my system. I eagerly await the finalization of Redhat 8, even though it won't play games for squat.

I've also been keeping an eye on Xandros. I could honestly care less if it looks like a 98 clone or not. If it works, it works. I'll be more concerned about how it handles my hardware than what the UI looks like. Although.... Gnome 2.0 under Null makes the Xandros KDE look pathetic. ;)

Re: Hello???
by K. Chernenko on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:02 UTC

Well, Marvin, you have a darn of a good point there. Even with all the hype about that `LSB' thing, I'm still forced to flip through completely different and incompatible systems on every distro I meet. And I'm not only talking about the desktop : I'm a system administrator and it annoys the hell out of me to be forced to go to /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-<interfacename> on RH/Mdk while I need to edit /etc/network/interfaces on Debian, remember if I need to use chkconfig or update-rc.d to add a service, and so on (the full list is incredibly long). We've no more a Linux system but a boatload of different systems. Some will argue that this is really good, but frankly, it simply prevents cooperation between the users, by fragmenting them in communities (the Mandrake community, the Slackware, Debian, SuSE ones, etc.). That's bad. That's F***ING BAD ! And I'm not the only one to think that way : take D.J. Bernstein, for example. He was so pissed every system has its own system for starting and configuring daemons that he crafted a special, non-free license for QMail and DJBDNS just to avoid that. In other words, this method of doing things without a bit of standardization has simply claimed good programs out of the free software world (although you can still use them). Please, people, can we stop the madness, now ? ! ?

...
by rajan r on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:04 UTC

~Seedy~: I fel that KDE gets better and better, from the 1.x I first used on Mandrake 7.2 through to 3.0 currently in just 2 years is a fantastic achievement... but it is very much following down a traditional route..

Didn't feel like nitpicking but 7.1 came with KDE 1.2.x, while 7.2 came with KDE 2.0 (and that's the reason why I skiped 7.2 and went for 8.0).

Anonymous: I think for Linux to topple windows, it must take into account the investment in training and familiarity in the current windows infrastructure. the training costs are large.

Training cost is already large without the Windows look-a-like. It would even higher with half-baked clones like Xandros, Lycoris etc. Why? Staff would treat them like Windows, and it is impossible to copy Windows' UI to the last detail except it is the same as Windows technically.

Besides, a complete change of UI with Windows 95 and NT 4 compared to Windows 3.1.1 and NT 3.5 didn't stop people from adopting the new UIs, instead of dragging their feet.

Anonymous: it would also have some irony, in that m$ copied apple, so linux is now copying m$.

Except that Microsoft only copied Apple copyrighted (and correct me if I'm wrong, patented) metaphors like the file manager and the menu bar. Windows was never and would never be a direct clone of Mac OS.

stew: Are you sure they're using Konqueror? One of the main features of Corel Linux was that they had their own file manager which was better than the KDE (those were the days...) file manager. From what I heard, Xandros was planning to use that one.

They aren't using Konqueror. They are using Xandros File Manager. Besides, Corel File Manage was based on KFM, and the only reason why the changes made by it wasn't drafted into the main KFM branch was because a) They were preparing to rewrite it, b) the amount of NDAs Corel used to protect the source code.

Correct me if I'm wrong though.

Alex: People are used to use Windows and only Windows GUI could make them switch to Linux with some exceptions (in regards to the GUI).

The only people I know are comfortable and used with Windows UI is power users. people that won't switch without the apps being ported, regardless of what kind of UI Linux used.

I think you are part of a small niche. People who like Windows UI, not power users, and want to switch to Linux.

Marvin: Apparently many people here never tried to understand what
it's like for a linux newbie to have installed linux only
to find out


All the examples you gace can be accomplished WITHOUT cloning Windows' UI, and all the example you gave IS ALREADY DONE by other distributions. Wow.

So I think there where all the bitching comes from. Plus, if they have a public beta (how could they get hurt by that?), I doubt there would be as much Xandros bashing as now.

Re; rajan r
by Alex on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:28 UTC

Ohh my old "Rival r"

"The only people I know are comfortable and used with Windows UI is power users. people that won't switch without the apps being ported, regardless of what kind of UI Linux used."

I agree with you 50-50

"I think you are part of a small niche. People who like Windows UI, "not power users", and want to switch to Linux."

Come again? You are calling me Windows newbie? Mate in case you didn't know, I am a software developer. I develop software for Windows with MS's MFC and Borland C++ Builder. I have also developed software for KDE but never published it.




Re: Games..... um.... yeah. Where?
by rajan r on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:29 UTC

I don't mind WineX licensing (are you that stingey to part with $5 a month?). But I do mind the performance. I find games much more faster on Windows than on WineX. Why? WineX interprets Direct32 into OpenGL, not communicate directly to the hardware, like the real Direct3D does.

Alex :-)
by rajan r on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:41 UTC

Come again? You are calling me Windows newbie? Mate in case you didn't know, I am a software developer. I develop software for Windows with MS's MFC and Borland C++ Builder. I have also developed software for KDE but never published it.

Never said you were a Windows newbiew. Read that again.

Stingy? Maybe.
by Samson on Wed 18th Sep 2002 11:46 UTC

"(are you that stingey to part with $5 a month?)"

Each and every month, for eternity, just to have the ability to MAYBE play some of my Windows games I've already paid for? You bet. I'm opposed to any form of "subscription" computing on principle. It's bad enough games cost $50 each. Why should I have to keep forking over money on a continuous basis to play them? I avoid the online scene for the same reasons. It's also one of the driving forces behind why I'd like to toss Windows on a flaming dungheap somewhere - the whole .NET thing will bite us all in the ass someday. Maybe I should just save my pennies and buy a Mac ;)

Ms Office compatibility is key.
by Heru on Wed 18th Sep 2002 12:13 UTC

Each and every month, for eternity, just to have the ability to MAYBE play some of my Windows games

I only pay when a new version is out, and that isn't too often. One thing Transgaming is helping to slowly happen is to have Linux ports of Windows games, UT 2003 is one example, and WineX supports that effort. And unlike MS's .NET plan, WineX is still mostly open source, and won't be a pay software for ever, and unlike .Net you can keep the versions you have even after you stop paying.

But regardless, the majority of computer users do not use thier computer to play games. Also most Windows users I know wouldn't mind parting with the Windows UI, what really gets them is MS Office compatibility. Star Office, Open Office and Hancom Office are all excellent products, but the MS Office compatibility is between 70% and 80%, so there are 20-30% of documents that don't look right. Until we can replace .doc as the de-facto standard we need to improve support for it. Some people have begun using Crossover Office to run MS Office directly on Linux, but thats not much of a solution.

Any Support for Other Languages?
by the_randymon on Wed 18th Sep 2002 12:42 UTC

Thanks for the review, Eugenia. Would you mind commenting on Xandros' support for other languages? KDE allows you to configure, of course, but I'm wondering if Xandros stripped that out. I notice all the screenshots are in English.

This is the distro I'm most interested in buying for my mother-in-law. The windows-like environment will be good for her because she recognizes it, and I see Xandros has put a lot of effort into useability. None of that is good to me if I can't configure all the apps to run in Spanish though. And even if KDE programs can do it, can Mozilla?

Thanks for your comments.

RW

Alternatives to cloning Windows..
by Chris on Wed 18th Sep 2002 12:56 UTC

Anonymous: it would also have some irony, in that m$ copied apple, so linux is now copying m$.

Except that Microsoft only copied Apple copyrighted (and correct me if I'm wrong, patented) metaphors like the file manager and the menu bar. Windows was never and would never be a direct clone of Mac OS.


Windows took much more from NeXTStep, in terms of the idea for the Taskbar, and the general look and feel(gray, and beveled). Perhaps if Linux wants to get into the desktop market it should be looking to GNUStep, and Window Maker, rather than creating a bastardized copy of the bastardization of that interface which gains all of the bad(the Windows GUI, under any layer of candy coating is a painful experience), while gaining none of the good(access to applications written for Windows).

Re: Any Support for Other Languages?
by K. Chernenko on Wed 18th Sep 2002 13:01 UTC

What's the problem ? You just need to do like with any other Debian distribution :

1. su - && apt-get install locales-es
2. logout
3. echo -en "export LANG='es_ES'nexport LC_ALL='es_ES'n" >> ~/.bashrc
4. . ~/.bashrc # to avoid logging out and back in.

And you're all set. For mozilla, I don't know about the spanish locales, but I remember there is a mozilla-locales-fr package, so there should be a spanish one, too. After apt-getting it, you just need to go in Mozilla's preferences dialog to change your language. No big deal (that's to say, if you're already a Linux geek. I suppose it would be deemed inacceptable for a novice user but too many distros -- hello, Lycoris ! -- assume that the USA are the only country in the whole world)...

Lindows???
by xeta prime on Wed 18th Sep 2002 13:06 UTC

I get the reviewers comment about competing with ELX and Lycoris...ELX in my opinion except for some bugs in pre-gold, was I believe even more user friendly than lycoris. I loved the "send to floppy" and "format" in the menu...who else has that? And Lycoris's new look I believe went a bit cheesey in 4.6 and their "paradise-like" wallpaper was out of focus...ooh I'm sorry I don't mean to grip since what I really want to ask is where do they get off throwing "LINDOWS" in there!!! What? because of the publicity or that it made it to Walmart??? Lindows??? Lindows failed in it's first mission to run windows programs like no other distro, then took another approach with "click-N-run"...anyway Through my distro-journey I discovered "Vector Soho" it rocks! It is geeky to install but darn stable and comes with stuff that works! When ELX releases their final I will look forward to test-driving it. And I do want to explore "xandros" I think I was more excited months and months back when I first heard about it. It does look very much like the "Corel" version which is a little disappointing with such beautious distros as Connectiva out there...but LINDOWS, new kid going nowhere fast.

Re: Any Support for Other Languages?
by the_randymon on Wed 18th Sep 2002 13:19 UTC

Thanks. But something tells me that will work fine for key KDE apps like Kmail, Kedit, Kword, etc. but not for all of the KDE stuff Xandros tweaked, the wizards, setup menus, and other Xandros-specific dialogue boxes.
RW


----
What's the problem ? You just need to do like with any other Debian distribution :

1. su - && apt-get install locales-es
2. logout
3. echo -en "export LANG='es_ES'nexport LC_ALL='es_ES'n" >> ~/.bashrc
4. . ~/.bashrc # to avoid logging out and back in.

Why Not?
by biblefreak on Wed 18th Sep 2002 13:32 UTC

If the idea is to get windoze users to recognize that there is a better way to run your puter, who cares? It is built on the Linux Kernel 9 which last time I checked is windoze free), and if people are willing to drop their trashcan operating systems for a dumbed down version of Linux, I think that is great. I like Red Hat personally, but Lycoris Desktop L/X has probably the easiest interface I have ever seen on a Linux Distro. Why not? I say come on over Windoze users, lets play a little xBill and stop sending hjim all of our hard earned money!!

Windows 98 look
by Mark on Wed 18th Sep 2002 14:05 UTC

Why would a windows user switch to this when they can have XP, which looks a lot snappier. This

This looks too much like windows, and an old version at that. even down to the grey-blue colour scheme.

One would hope that it is not too hard to change the look.

what a buncha crap
by Tsunami on Wed 18th Sep 2002 14:37 UTC

this thing not only looks ugly, but it looks like winblows, and something that has annoyed me is this lust to be like bill.
wtf? I understand oses wanting windows compatibility, but why make them JUST LIKE windows? it's stupid
having a complete windows look and feel is annoying, becuase most people wanna go with something different, and you dont wanna a lot of winkiddies screaming "l00k at m3!!11 i am teh l33t hax0r!1!!"
leave windows to the kiddies.. leave linux to the pros. (translation: windows for the dumbasses who have ruined the internet with ASL!!! and shit, Linux for us true computer techies)
that's my opinion.
of course you do want to attract new peeps to linux.. but dont give them windows...give them linux.

re Tsunami
by bert on Wed 18th Sep 2002 15:07 UTC

i'm pro windows user, work in IT dept, look after 1100 desktops

number of desktops with NT4 - 1100
number of desktops with linux - big fat zero

Another Windows GUI copycat
by Rudy on Wed 18th Sep 2002 15:43 UTC

All these new attempts to bring Linux to the desktop are more of the same. Just another attempt to copy Windows GUI. Some more sucessfull some less. Just tweaking of KDE and GNOME, only to be more windows look-alike.

It is a pitty how much enormous amount of developers work is thrown in that direction. Yes, Windows interface is THE BEST user interface at the moment, but if Linux GUI developers keep trying to mimic it, they will always be behind.

For Linux to succeed on the desktop, it needs to offer something completely different. A new concept. A real innovation. Something that will be better that MS GUI and that will be a compelling reason for users to switch to Linux. Until then, this is all a waste of valuable time, for the developers and for Linux lovers, who anticipate every new Linux distro with hope.

voodoo5
by 3dfx on Wed 18th Sep 2002 15:58 UTC

You need to run your Xserver in 24 bpp Eugenia...

rajan
by appleforever on Wed 18th Sep 2002 15:58 UTC

You said: So in other words, my point is that people WON'T move to Linux even if you can't tell the two apart. There isn't any compeling reason. Look at Apple's Switch ads, these people moved to Mac OS because of a *COMPELING REASON* (whom most of it is null and void by now). They didn't move because it looks like Windows. Yeah, its market share is dropping, but to no fault of its OS, but its pricing.

The compelling reason to use a mac still exists - it's called one company making the hardware, OS and increasingly, much of the core software that provides the basic functionality people want.

Maybe IBM can get XP running on their PCs. But what if someone wants to do some basic video editing like with iMovie. It's off to the world of inferior, problem ridden 3d party solutions.

To rudy
by appleforever on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:05 UTC

The best user interface is OS X with the iApps. Linux should copy that. A big part of the GUI in OS X (and the iApps) is the advanced graphics architecture in OS X that blows away what's in windows.

But Linux should also copy windows. For the corporate market. People are right that's where this gets off the ground.

Samson: about games
by Archiesteel on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:11 UTC

You don't seem to have understood the nature of Transgaming's "subscription": you don't have to pay each month, you can cancel your subscription at any time and you'll still be able to use the binaries you've downloaded up to that point. The games that worked will still work, and some new games that come out may work as well.

The one thing that you won't be able to do is vote to influence the development decisions of the company! This is itself is a great idea, which makes it one of the few companies whose priorities are in part set by its actual customers.

Now, if you don't like "subscriptions", then I guess you'll be dropping Windows soon - since that's the business model that MS seems the most keen in adopting. You will no longer buy software, you will subscribe to it...and it will not keep working if you don't renew your subscription!

Oh, and by the way, Neverwinter Nights is coming out on Linux - current ETA is November, and development is actually going pretty well...

Garbage!
by Manuel Guy on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:22 UTC

More Linux Windows-wannabe garbage.

It's too bad that the Linux zealots out there can't open source themselves some aesthetic sense.

UI
by Jay on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:32 UTC

The point has been brought up that these distros are becoming a clone of Windows. I think that is a very good point. I have to admit, I have no idea if there is a solution to that. They want to try to make things familiar to the newbie and that is the most obvious way. Yet, it does beg the question of why do this - why not just use Windows (except if your goal is to overthrow Windows, of course:-). That brings me to ELX...

ELX hardly gets talked about, but I run it and the poster above is right, I think, it could be the easiest to use yet. ELX has a cool thing for newbies where they group applications by category in the taskbar or panel and, when you click, for example, the browsers icon, all the browsers appear in a window and you then click on the one you want to use. And it is the same for other groupings of applications.

So, sometimes I think that, if KDE, for example, gets to the point of having a pretty polished look, there is not a real need to try and clone Windows when you have actual "new" ways of ease of use like this feature in ELX. I like Lycoris very much for newbies, but I am also looking forward to the final version of ELX. At least they came up with an idea for ease of use that just isn't a copy of some Windows feature.

Sun
by Jay on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:36 UTC

There's news from Reuters that Sun is going to make inexpensive Linux workstations - their second big step into Linux. The link to the full story was a dead link though. Rats.

The biggest blocker to wide scale Linux acceptance is that people need to relearn an interface to become productive. Based on the number of things people use a computer for, relearning a new interface is a _monumental_ task. So this is why most people are held hostage by the Windows upgrade path. They can't "afford" the time to become productive again.
This is the first Liux distro I have seen that deliberately minimizes the relearning requirement. If this means the interface is less powerful, I'm ok with that. I have confidence that I could use this interface, and learn as I go. I'm certain that after a year I would be comfortable with the Linux feel to try a more powerful "genuine" linux interface.
So I would conclude that Xandro is _exactly_ what Linux needs to do to apply competition to the MS monopoly.

-WinXP Hostage

Re: language support?
by wc20052 on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:49 UTC

> What's the problem ? You just need to do like with any
> other Debian distribution :

> 1. su - && apt-get install locales-es
> 2. logout
> 3. echo -en "export LANG='es_ES'nexport LC_ALL='es_ES'n" >> ~/.bashrc
> 4. . ~/.bashrc # to avoid logging out and back in.

No offense.. but this is a prime example of what (to me) is wrong with linux. Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty decent at configuring things.. but come on people.

If you need to change language support.. the answer should have been "go to the control center, select language, and choose "Spanish" (which downloads if not available perhaps). Click ok.

I'd just love to try telling my mother how to change language support over the phone if the only way is by typing in the above. "ok, type s-u-space-ampersand-ampersand.. that's right, two of them. space-a-p-t-space..." Yeah.. she'll be able to do that again on her own next time.

The shell is a wonderful thing, but you can't expect the average user to migrate to linux if they have to type anything at all in manually. People who are less computer literate want to be able to click and select _Everything_. Let the power user do it from the command line if he wants, but don't make that a requirement.

Unification is key
by Torrey on Wed 18th Sep 2002 16:50 UTC

What linux needs more than a pretty interface is unification of application installation. Something like /programs in your home folder is needed. Also some programs add them selvs to your kick menu (or what ever it's called) yet most don't. Why not give the user the choice? If you could download a file and double click and within 2 clicks have an installed app, THEN linux will be viable on the desktop.

I have been using the Red Hat (NULL) beta for a month now, and have LOVED IT! It's interface is awesome and IMO almost ready for the desktop user..

still we need a simple way to install apps.

Sure I can do ./config make su make install
but my mom can't and won't want to learn it.

RE: Unification is key
by nony on Wed 18th Sep 2002 17:14 UTC

Well, didn't you check? In redhat null you can just doubleclick (actually, i've set it up for singleclick) on a rpm package. It then asks you for the rootpassword (except if you have 'the key' in the panel), and it installs (and it will get any dependencies from the redhat cdroms).

RE: voodoo5
by Eugenia on Wed 18th Sep 2002 17:22 UTC

>You need to run your Xserver in 24 bpp Eugenia...

No I don't. 3Dfx runs better on 16 bit. I tried on 24 bit as well, it was even slower.

ELX
by DCMonkey on Wed 18th Sep 2002 17:31 UTC

ELX has a cool thing for newbies where they group applications by category in the taskbar or panel and, when you click, for example, the browsers icon, all the browsers appear in a window and you then click on the one you want to use. And it is the same for other groupings of applications.

Uhh, that was in BeOS and then Windows XP beta (maybe even release) before KDE and GNOME added the feature to their desktops (guess where they got the idea). ELX is based on KDE. In fact, other than a WM theme and some desktop icons, it looks like stock KDE to me. Hardly original.

RE: Unification is key
by Torrey on Wed 18th Sep 2002 18:35 UTC

Yeah sure in red hat NULL it does this, but what about in Debian?? You have .deb .rpm then you have source code tar balls and yet when I install things they still don't ask to put things in my launcher menu now do they?

Re-Read what I said. UNIFICATION and standardization is the key.

But still user friendly
by Jay on Wed 18th Sep 2002 18:50 UTC

It is not totally original, but still user friendly. My point was that perhaps these distros do not have to be Windows clones to be user friendly, that there are other UI concepts that can achieve that goal.

A Unix-less Linux
by Warren Downs on Wed 18th Sep 2002 19:25 UTC

I don't know how far Xandros goes in this direction, but I believe there is a place for Unix-less Linux distributions. What I mean by this is, getting rid of the legacy or server-centric Unix ways of doing things, and designing for a single-user desktop.

These kinds of changes wouldn't require major modifications to the Linux kernel. Rather, these changes would involve things much like those that MacOS X does to BSD unix. The average user shouldn't need to know about the various /bin, /usr/bin, /lib, /usr/lib, /var, /opt, /tmp, /usr/share/*, /etc and relations. Instead, the directory tree should be simplified (NOT NECESSARILY according to the LSB).

In order to maintain binary compatibility, a system library and/or kernel shim could redirect applications that try to read/write /etc, or load /bin/sh, etc., to the actual location of the applications. Applications would be bundled much like MacOS X, with shared libraries included and automatically managed by the OS installation process which would occur automatically when the package was dropped into place by the user.

I envision a complete redesign of the internals of the system, getting rid of the SysV init system scripts and replacing them with one of the alternatives which have automatic dependency management for daemons.

I would like to see compatibility for Win32 be standard, perhaps using a merge of WineX and CodeWeaver's WINE improvements. This wouldn't be "free", but a commercial merge of both proprietary sets of enhancements, to provide something which can run both Office and DirectX games well. Alternately, one could use a database of applications and a system which would choose which one to use at runtime (preferably with a common directory tree, to avoid user confusion).

DOS compatibility (using DosEMU) should be merged in, so users can seamlessly run Win32, DOS, and Linux binaries without blinking.

Of course, I'm dreaming, as I doubt anyone will produce such a system. For one thing, too many people have religious preferences which won't let them consider compromise, and this would certainly involve a lot of compromises. But, it would be a nice technical solution to the age-old compatibility problem.

RE: Eugenia
by Iconoclast on Wed 18th Sep 2002 23:31 UTC

thanks ;)

> if I only have Xandros installed on my system, does it still show a C: drive or is that only if you have a Windows partition on the machine?

Only if you have a Windows partition. ;)


You're welcome. Thank you for the information.

Why copy, Windows?... an all the other marketing "shit" technology. I know that the 97% of the market use Windows but, I think that they still can attract new users, doing cool --and original-- things on the desktop.

The good thing about Unix, is that it always has an open space for experimentation and research (almost in the science camp).

Why, kill the creativity? To sell more?
I prefer a "first class" original Linux desktop, in place of a "poor" copy of Windows.

I think, there is a lot of things to do, to enhance the usability of the desktop.Some simple things (Eugenia: Did you write that good article about KDE 3 usability?), and other that goes beyond of the classic "static" WIMP enviroment.

For example Xerox Parc introduced this concept (WIMP) more than 20years ago, with other things like Smalltalk.
Why anyone has taken the concept of "object enviroment" presented by Smalltalk a step further...to the whole OS.

Imagine an OS which is an object enviroment, no need for files, files are the "serialized" version of an object. No "programs" like we use it right now, programs are object instances, and beacuse they are objects instances you can extend this objects... you can drag n' drop objects and share it "live" with other people.....
I'm not crazy, we already are using some very small things like this (ActiveX, DCOP, Bonobo), that are not very well integrated, and creates an ugly user experience.

I mean something like www.squeak.org but easy enought to the newbie, and integrated with the OS.

Diego.-

PD: Sorry for my english... I speak spanish, "KDict" help me here a lot :-)

VERY INTERESTING DISCUSSION
by Alvin Murphy on Thu 19th Sep 2002 02:19 UTC

I found my way here from slashdot. I am a newbie and I tried a lot of distros and found that Corel was in many ways the best. I may be a little prejudiced because I was starting in a small home lan where the printer was on a windows box; so I really appreciated that Corel installed samba automatically, found my windows boxes and printer immediately and let me access shares directly from the file manager. Way cool!! I probably would have stayed with Corel if I could have found some way to make sound work. By now I have Mandrake 9 on one machine and REd Hat 7.3 on a laptop, all working smoothly and probably do not need all the simplicity of Corel/Xandros, but I have often commented in Mandrake and Red Hat discussions that somebody somewhere should have been studying the ease of installation of Corel and the cool file manager. Thanks

RE: VERY INTERESTING DISCUSSION
by Eugenia on Thu 19th Sep 2002 02:23 UTC

Welcome Alvin, stay with us. OSNews reports on ALL operating systems, many times a day, I am sure you will find this site interesting. ;)

Re: Unification
by Alex on Thu 19th Sep 2002 02:26 UTC

"Sure I can do ./config make su make install
but my mom can't and won't want to learn it."

Checking.....blah blah OK
Checking whether blah is installed?? ... blah blah OK

...leaving....

Error 1 blah blah blah
Error 2 bloh bleh bluh blah

Rrright ;)

LOL

Windowsish
by Steve on Thu 19th Sep 2002 08:09 UTC

Ok yes there are some distros out there making their distro look more like Windows but that is a great thing. That will greatly help to encourage corporate America to make the jump to Linux. One of the biggest concerns about choosing an OS for the office is how user friendly is it what is the learning curve of the OS and apps. By taking advantage of how people are already trained is only good common sense. Lets be realistic. I applaud all the distros that seek to make Linux user friendly.

...
by rajan r on Thu 19th Sep 2002 09:57 UTC

Rudy: Windows interface is THE BEST user interface at the moment, but if Linux GUI developers keep trying to mimic it, they will always be behind.

Windows UI ISN'T the BEST, never was, probably never will. If you ask me what is the best modern UI, I would say OS X. The best UI of all times, NeXT (with the responsiveness of beOS would be ncie).

But the rest of your point: I agree.

appleforever: The compelling reason to use a mac still exists - it's called one company making the hardware, OS and increasingly, much of the core software that provides the basic functionality people want.

Guess what? Most corporate people DON'T care about that. Most consumers DON'T care about that. All of the Switch ads I have seen (not all of it), never once gave a reason to switch because of Apple making the hardware, software and some niche middleware.

Maybe IBM can get XP running on their PCs. But what if someone wants to do some basic video editing like with iMovie. It's off to the world of inferior, problem ridden 3d party solutions.

Okay, I'm SO VERY SURE if there is an Apple store in you place, there would be an Sony one too. GO INTO IT. COMPARE THE DIFFERENCE. And now you see why ALL ARTICLES PRAISING iAPPS NEVER COMPARE WITH THOSE OF SONY.

Just come out from you fucking bubble. Yeah, most PCs SOLD doesn't come with anything like iApps, but there is an reason for it. MOST PEOPLE DON'T CARE ABOUT IT!.

appleforever: The best user interface is OS X with the iApps. Linux should copy that.

If they were to copy any UI, I would say NeXTstep's, not some badly made merge of NeXT and Platinum UIs that haven't got time to mature. As I said above, OS X's UI is better than any other modern (ie: current) OS, but certainly not the best in the history of computing).

Besides, the people who do clone Mac OS X would face the wrath of Apple's legal division.

Jay: ELX hardly gets talked about, but I run it and the poster above is right, I think, it could be the easiest to use yet.

Well, I have tried Lycoris and ELX on the same machine, and Lindow at a store selling computers. I don't really agree with you. It may closely resemble Windows 9x, but I notice it uses a lot of jargon Windows users won't understand.

Jay: ELX has a cool thing for newbies where they group applications by category in the taskbar or panel and, when you click, for example, the browsers icon, all the browsers appear in a window and you then click on the one you want to use.

This feature is found in KDE 3.x, Windows XP, BeOS, Mac OS X, NeXTstep etc. Hardly innovative...

WinXP Hostage: Based on the number of things people use a computer for, relearning a new interface is a _monumental_ task. So this is why most people are held hostage by the Windows upgrade path.

Not really. Since Windows 3.1, my father never used anything but Windows. After installing Red Hat Null, I manage to get him to use it without any help. But why isn't he using it anymore? Two reason
- His workplace isn't using it
- OpenOffice.org doesn't have something like Access (yes, there is an front end to some SQL....). Plus, he uses some features in Excel (can't remember the names), whom he tried looking for in the in OOo but couldn't find it, and couldn't find any altenative in the documentation.

My dad pretty much proves that you don't have to clone Windows' UI to make it big on the corporate market: providing the corporate market with features they *want* would. Many companies moved from Windows 3.1/NT 3.5 to Windows 95/ NT4 because it contains features they want, even though the UI is completly different.

Besides, Red Hat (nor Sun) is targeting the mass white collar employees, only a small niche in the corporate market and grow from there.

Another example I can give is David Coursey. He manage to use and fall in love with OS X without any troubles of relearning everything. Why? Because OS X UI is better designed as Windows XP (appleforever is loving this... hehe). You just need a UI that is BETTER. More LOGICAL. Less JARGON. Better on screen DOCUMENTATION like tooltips that are well writen. Dummies(tm)-like manual. Stuff like that.

Torrey: Yeah sure in red hat NULL it does this, but what about in Debian?? You have .deb .rpm then you have source code tar balls and yet when I install things they still don't ask to put things in my launcher menu now do they?

When i installed Opera, it appeared in my menu. Your point just turned moot. It all depends on the RPM/DEB. Most RPMs made specify to RedHat and compatible, and automatically make menu entries for it. Yeah, there are RPMs that don't add menu entries, just like there are some apps for Windows that don't add menu entries.

Besides, whether Debian has a graphical front end of APT-GET should be their problem. Debian, BTW, targets more technical users, after all.

Warren Downs: What I mean by this is, getting rid of the legacy or server-centric Unix ways of doing things, and designing for a single-user desktop.

Adopting a single-user desktop while the two major players (Windows XP and Mac OS X) adopts it is counter-productive. Most people don't have their own computer to their self, they share it with their family/ roommate/ etc.

Warren Downs: Instead, the directory tree should be simplified (NOT NECESSARILY according to the LSB).

To hide them, you don't need to change them. Open Terminal.app in OS X, and you can very well find the folders (most of it at least) you specify. It is just Finder that blocks it.

Warren Downs: I would like to see compatibility for Win32 be standard, perhaps using a merge of WineX and CodeWeaver's WINE improvements.

A merge between two competiting arch rival companies isn't in the books my friend. Besides, even if it was possible to clone Win32 on Linux, it would cause a lot of legal problems - Win32 is tied to many patents.

Besides people should move to Linux so they can be more productive. Not to run Windows apps and kill that "evil monopoly".

Warren Downs: DOS compatibility (using DosEMU) should be merged in, so users can seamlessly run Win32, DOS, and Linux binaries without blinking.

DOS compatiblity is installed by default by many distributions. (Besides, how many mainstream DOS apps are there?).

Well, I think writing a Linux emulation thingy for Windows is a faster way to accomplish that, hehehe.

rajan you are OK
by appleforever on Thu 19th Sep 2002 11:24 UTC

Just wrong on a few things. So am I, I am sure.

I don't think Apple should be able to sue people for copying things (ideas, concepts), just code or really specific implementations of things. As much as I hate to say this, I would like MS to copy everything great about the mac. Including the iApps.

If it weren't for MS, I'd still be paying 5K for a mac.

I'm really not that much in a bubble. I use win 2K at work every day and XP at home (mostly for games, experimentation and music creation (OS X is extremely promising here, but stuff is just starting to show up and let's be honest, the mac could use some more CPU horsepower for this application).

I tried Linux and am still interested in that. I bought Suse for a thinkpad I bought on ebay for $150. Problem was the 233 processor powers 98Se with no problem, but Linux seems to have poorer performance with GUIs.

Of course corporations with IT depts don't care much about hardware/software integration. They have the resources to solve the problems that come up. Plus they eliminate a lot of problems by locking down desktops so you can't install things and so on.

The switcher adds properly focus on the bottom line -- the mac works better, e.g., with digicams and video -- rather than on the technical reason for that (one company rather than 4 providing the functionality).

Apple does identify hardware/software integration as the explanation as the reason why the mac works well, which is the number one reason listed on their Switch website for switching.

Most people don't care about it? Well, I would say most people (losts of whome are pretty ignorant about computers, lets be honest) haven't thought about it.

I am going to Micro center to look at those Sony apps this weekend if I get a chance.

But I really think MS needs to do iApps. There's a lot of value in built in apps everyone can comment on, subject to bug checks, etc. On the mac, all the energy of the platform are focused on making the iApps great. MS needs to replicate the same thing.

I know, you say that's an antitrust problem. But MS already has moviemaker and the my picture folder. So they should be able to include things that are not a joke. Plus, it would go a long way if it were easy to select what app you wanted to open things. The mac has some of this - there's a tab in the control panels for picking the app you want to open when you put in a picture Cd, for example.

Try Lindows
by Ken Schrock on Thu 19th Sep 2002 14:13 UTC

It has all the advantages stated, is very polished, and has Click-N-Run which makes software installs just about effortless. WalMart sells computers with it pre-installed. I talked our church into buying one. I talked a friend into buying one. In both places the users were "average" users (or below) and knew little or nothing about Linux. All the users in both places love it. Nobody misses Windows.

It is a superb blend of sit down and use it immediatly user friendliness and hack on it all you want geekness. I have Anjuta and Glade and DevHelp installed, the church is using Open Office and GnuCash, and the family likes Neko the Cat and uses a Win app to get desktop backgrounds. Run Netscape 7.0 for Linux or Internet Explorer for Windows. FTP the Mac or connect to the Win box shares or NFS into other Linux boxes. Hack on the init.d scripts if you want.

It does auto update but lets you know and gives you options (they have made three small improvements in Click-N-Run in the last 10 days), keeps a list of all the apps you've installed (so you can remove or update them later), installs Star Office and Open Office without a hassle (why would you do that? Why not : ), and you can install MS Office 2000 if you wish.

I am way impressed.

I WANT TO WORK WITH THIS GUY
by Anonymous on Thu 19th Sep 2002 14:26 UTC

"i'm pro windows user, work in IT dept, look after 1100 desktops"
"number of desktops with NT4 - 1100"
"number of desktops with linux - big fat zero"

number of people in this guys IT dept. with a clue - hint, smaller than one

What I want
by Bill Blakely on Thu 19th Sep 2002 18:43 UTC

Everything seems to have been covered in the prievious 103 messages. I'll just add my $.02
I bought my first computer about 11 yrs ago. In order to get Win3.0 working, you had to do a lot of work in DOS. For a computer newbie, what a nightmare!
I expected some of the same when I bought Corel Linux 1.5 yrs ago. I managed to partition the HD with just a little help. The install went amazingly well. Only problems were; it didn't recognize half the hardware (all of which was on the compatibility list), the sound didn't work, neither did the modem, and while WP Office 2000 installed, the font manager didn't.
I soon discovered that I was facing and ENORMOUS learning curve just to get going. And as soon as Corel cashed my check, the withdrew from the Linux project.
I gave up.

What I want:
>easy installation
>enough point and click to get me going
>applications that work

I hate to give up WordPerfect, QuattroPro, PhotoPaint, and Paradox, but I'll switch to Star Office if I have to (if Star creates and opens files in Win formats, so I won't be alone out here!)

If I can point and click my way into Linux, I can learn more command line stuff as I need to as I go along.

Too much to ask?

Bill

We will wait...
by Chris on Fri 20th Sep 2002 12:56 UTC

I think many Linux users also are looking for a simple nice looking and fast desktop. But it has to be useful, nice looking fonts etc. I will wait until I see which one apeals most to me and is most functioning desktop, but I will also continue to use a distro like Suse, where I have everything.