Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 14th Sep 2010 22:42 UTC
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu If there's one consistent piece of criticism that gets lobbed in Canonical's and Mark Shuttleworth's direction, it's that they do not contribute enough code - or anything else for that matter - to the Free software world. Mark Shuttleworth has apparently had enough, and has written a very, very lengthy blog post detailing how he feels about this criticism.
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duh
by poundsmack on Tue 14th Sep 2010 23:20 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

even though i don't use this distro I know so many new users to linux who heard about or, or got started, using Ubuntu. We have enough Linux coders and not enough presence to end end users. Ubuntu has done a great job of making an attractive offering for windows switchers and new computer users alike. and for that, i think them.

Edited 2010-09-14 23:25 UTC

Reply Score: 10

RE: duh
by kragil on Wed 15th Sep 2010 14:26 UTC in reply to "duh"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

I think them too.

Kernel devs view on thinks:
http://mjg59.livejournal.com/127355.html

Reply Score: 4

RE: duh
by Fettarme H-Milch on Wed 15th Sep 2010 14:48 UTC in reply to "duh"
Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

We have enough Linux coders

Do you mean Linux as kernel or the ecosystem?
If you mean ecosystem: Hahahahahahaha!

If anything, X.org and Mesa are terribly understaffed.
Look at the recent problems with KWin 4.5: Those aren't bugs in KWin. Those are driver bugs.
Nothing more recent than OpenGL 2.0 is supported by FOSS drivers and even that support is buggy.
KDE aims to become a player in the mobile space which means that KWin will be ported to OpenGL ES 2.0. Sadly OpenGL 1.x and ES 2.0 are pretty much incompatible.
Missing support for GL ES 2.0 and buggy support for GL 2.0-only may result in KDE producing two back-ends for KWin that share next to no code. If Xorg/Mesa supported OpenGL 3.x, 4.x, and ES 2.0 no duplicated KWin development was required.

Nouveau also could need much help, especially in power management and support for composite window managers.

Voluntary developers can only do so much and GPU developers don't want to spend more resources on Xorg/Mesa.
Xorg/Mesa needs full-time developers of commercial distributors. Red Hat contributes a lot, so do Sun/Oracle and Apple (yes, Apple!). Novell does less but still contributes. Mandriva does a bit.
Canonical, sadly, nothing.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: duh
by poundsmack on Wed 15th Sep 2010 15:52 UTC in reply to "RE: duh"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

I meant Kernel, as in the Linux kernel. Not software built on top of it or for it. I should have clarified because you bring up a very valid point, to which i agree.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: duh
by Zifre on Thu 16th Sep 2010 00:09 UTC in reply to "RE: duh"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

If anything, X.org and Mesa are terribly understaffed.

X.org, definitely. But I think Mesa is actually doing pretty well. Progress is happening fast, and it is one of the most active FOSS projects. (Linux and Mozilla are the only projects I know of that might be more active.)

Missing support for GL ES 2.0 and buggy support for GL 2.0-only may result in KDE producing two back-ends for KWin that share next to no code. If Xorg/Mesa supported OpenGL 3.x, 4.x, and ES 2.0 no duplicated KWin development was required.

First of all, Mesa does support GL ES 2.0 (it is used by Wayland). I'm not sure how complete or correct it is. Second, although different graphics APIs might not be compatible, that hardly means that they would share little code. 90% of what works in GL ES 2.0 will also work in GL 2, 3, and 4. GL 3 and 4 would only be used for optional eye-candy or performance enhancing features. The core rendering stuff would be basically the same. Lastly, the renderer is a very small part of a window manager. Drawing rectangles onto the screen is not terribly complicated. The hard part is window management.

Nouveau also could need much help, especially in power management and support for composite window managers.

I agree there. If Canonical could pay a few developers to work on Nouveau, progress would be much faster (and it is already very impressive). It would probably be the most useful thing that they could do with their money.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: duh
by Fettarme H-Milch on Thu 16th Sep 2010 13:25 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: duh"
Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

X.org, definitely. But I think Mesa is actually doing pretty well.

If it was so well, where is OpenGL 3.x support? I'm not even beginning to ask for 4.0.

Btw: While both are technically separate projects, they pretty much go hand in hand for 3D-accelerated GPU drivers.
Xorg's GPU drivers can't support higher versions of OpenGL than Mesa offers. And Mesa is f*cked when drivers incorrectly claim to properly support feature X of OpenGL 2.x.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: duh
by Zifre on Thu 16th Sep 2010 22:46 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: duh"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

If it was so well, where is OpenGL 3.x support? I'm not even beginning to ask for 4.0.

First of all, why do you need 3.0? Of course it's nice to have, but certain things are more important. Here is Mesa's progress toward 3.0: http://cgit.freedesktop.org/mesa/mesa/plain/docs/GL3.txt. A large portion is already done. And not all of those features are terribly useful. I might rather see them work on performance or Gallium then specific OpenGL features. And almost nothing uses 3.0 right now anyway, so it doesn't matter much.

Xorg's GPU drivers can't support higher versions of OpenGL than Mesa offers.

That doesn't make sense. X.org drivers implement things like EXA and other 2D stuff. They do not rely on Mesa at all. Mesa does all the 3D, and it has almost no dependencies on X (as demonstrated by Wayland).

Of course both projects would be better off with more developers, but I think Mesa is doing better than X.org right now.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: duh
by Fettarme H-Milch on Thu 16th Sep 2010 23:46 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: duh"
Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

why do you need 3.0?

Easier portability across platforms.


Of course it's nice to have, but certain things are more important.

Sure there are. Solving world hunger is more important. Abolishing patents on life-saving medicine is more important to help the 3rd world against the epidemics they suffer.


Here is Mesa's progress toward 3.0

Great!

X.org drivers implement things like EXA and other 2D stuff. They do not rely on Mesa at all. Mesa does all the 3D

I don't want to go into the specifics which project does what exactly.
FOSS GPU drivers for 3D acceleration rely on both projects which is exactly the reason I mentioned both as one phrase ("Xorg/Mesa").

If Canonical wants to pride itself as contributing member of the FOSS comunity, Canonical's work could IMO most be needed in Xorg/Mesa.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: duh
by lemur2 on Thu 16th Sep 2010 02:14 UTC in reply to "RE: duh"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Look at the recent problems with KWin 4.5: Those aren't bugs in KWin. Those are driver bugs.
Nothing more recent than OpenGL 2.0 is supported by FOSS drivers and even that support is buggy.


Well it should be pointed out that for the ATI FOSS drivers the programming specifications have only been available for just over a year now. ATI FOSS drivers are entirely new code (AMD/ATI did NOT release their driver code as FOSS, only the programming specifications).

OpenGL support in FOSS drivers (at least, for the ATI FOSS drivers) is buggy because it is so new. It will improve in very short order as the driver gains a bit of maturity.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: duh
by Fettarme H-Milch on Thu 16th Sep 2010 13:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: duh"
Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

Well it should be pointed out that for the ATI FOSS drivers the programming specifications have only been available for just over a year now. ATI FOSS drivers are entirely new code (AMD/ATI did NOT rel
ease their driver code as FOSS, only the programming specifications).

OpenGL support in FOSS drivers (at least, for the ATI FOSS drivers) is buggy because it is so new. It will improve in very short order as the driver gains a bit of maturity.

And how does code get marture? By having people to work on it.
Novell worked a while on radeonhd but ever since AMD chose to support the normal radeon driver, Novell stopped to work on radeonhd.
To make matters worse, financial trouble of Novell meant that the radeonhd developer was fired.
That leaves the situation in the following way: AMD works on the driver but only with the barest minimum of resources and only after AMD's slow "Legal Team" gives its OK to work on certain driver features.
Distributors could stept in and at least help stabilizing existing features but Novell currently can't (so they say), Red Hat puts its resources to Nouveau (where they are even more needed), and Canonical simply does nothing.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: duh
by fanboi_fanboi on Thu 16th Sep 2010 21:53 UTC in reply to "RE: duh"
fanboi_fanboi Member since:
2010-04-21

So wait ... you mean, these entities are understaffed because ... coders don't like to work for free?

Perish the thought. Who would've thought.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: duh
by Fettarme H-Milch on Fri 17th Sep 2010 00:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: duh"
Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

There are commercial entities called distributors that make money of Free Software projects.
If for whatever reason a FOSS project is broken and the distributor relies on that, it's the distributor's obligation towards its customers to fix what's broken.

Across the whole Linux stack, Xorg/Mesa is the piece that currently needs the most work.
If the whole FOSS world was made up of volunteer hobby programmers, it would be perfectly OK if FOSS was moving at a slower pace than it actually moves right now. However the world is as it is and commercial distributors exist. As long as they are freeloading, they are behaving against what the FOSS projects as well as the paying customers could expect.

Edited 2010-09-17 00:04 UTC

Reply Score: 3

You obviously don't get open source
by felipec on Tue 14th Sep 2010 23:42 UTC
felipec
Member since:
2007-09-25

The single most important thing about open source is collaboration; if you don't have you are playing a different game.

Canonical brings nothing to the linux ecosystem, and doesn't collaborate. All the "benefits" mentioned in this article are for Ubuntu, not Linux.

Imagine a company like Microsoft, taking linux components, making their own distribution, not contributing anything, and then claiming their additions to the linux ecosystem are superior. I would call that stealing, and that's what Canonical is doing.

Canonical is taking advantage of the good will of thousands of developers an companies who do contribute, and then, in a PR spin, claiming that they are helping by spreading the SW.

Sure, it's a good thing, just like it's a good thing that Tivo distributes open source software. But don't claim you are a member of the community; you are not, you need to collaborate to claim that.

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

What good is your precious code if you've got no one putting it in the hands of users? Does it really matter that the one putting your code out there is not the one contributing the most code?

Reply Score: 7

mtzmtulivu Member since:
2006-11-14

What good is your precious code if you've got no one putting it in the hands of users? Does it really matter that the one putting your code out there is not the one contributing the most code?


In some projects, Canonical does not simply push the code from developers to end users, they take the code, modify it and then put it somewhere on the net to satisfy licensing terms and then push their modifications to end users and tell upstream "here are our modifications, come and get them if you want", how is this "collaboration"?

This creates a problem in the long term because features Canonical will push to end users are not the same as those found in upstream and in other distributions and users who will first start using Canonical distributions will make simple assumptions that the way of the *buntu* is the way of linux and this will intime fragment the ecosystem ..its kind of hard to understand why he doesnt understand this

Reply Score: 9

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

this will in time fragment the ecosystem


Wait, even more?

Reply Score: 4

Tuishimi Member since:
2005-07-06

Ha! Exactly.

Reply Score: 1

Tuishimi Member since:
2005-07-06

This creates a problem in the long term because features Canonical will push to end users are not the same as those found in upstream and in other distributions and users who will first start using Canonical distributions will make simple assumptions that the way of the *buntu* is the way of linux and this will intime fragment the ecosystem ..its kind of hard to understand why he doesnt understand this


That's a load of hoo hoo. There are MANY differences between distros. I think what Ubuntu does (and does well) to contribute is to market linux and to make it more user friendly (or at least APPEAR that way). And that's what linux needs to become a ubiquitous desktop (along with reliable drivers and software to replace what users have become used to via MS).

And even by your own post, it sounds like you don't really WANT ubuntu's changes upstream. :/

Reply Score: 3

mtzmtulivu Member since:
2006-11-14



That's a load of hoo hoo. There are MANY differences between distros. I think what Ubuntu does (and does well) to contribute is to market linux and to make it more user friendly (or at least APPEAR that way). And that's what linux needs to become a ubiquitous desktop (along with reliable drivers and software to replace what users have become used to via MS).


Critic's main point is that their "contribution" is non existent in upstream projects. Ubuntu is a big player with a lot of buzz around it but with a very small presence in upstream. Why dont they work with upstream in their effort to make linux more user friendly?

They make linux more user friendly by creating their own little corner and add their own little features in their little corner and then push them to end users and they call this "contribution". This is not the kind of contribution people are talking about about. Again, Why dont they work with upstream in their effort to make linux more user friendly?

Reply Score: 6

marafaka Member since:
2006-01-03

Exactly as I predicted couple years ago, mob goes with the latest fad. This is probably a reward for calling it Linus^Hx which it never was.

Reply Score: 2

pgeorgi Member since:
2010-02-18

Critic's main point is that their "contribution" is non existent in upstream projects.

I can relate to that a bit.
See, I've managed packaging for OpenSolaris, and built many patches to cleanly support that operating system.
At first, I tried to get them integrated, but at some point, I just didn't bother anymore.

The effort to keep my patches up to date with upstream changes was _much_ less than figuring out the various cultures and protocols that stood in the way between me providing a patch for many projects and it finally ending up in the upstream source.

I also had to endure the usual snobist treatment that some linux based devs show against supporting "genetic" unix systems ("why should we fix problems on that weird platform? Just use Linux!"), but given how Ubuntu was treated when it was new, they might have had similar problems as well - the bullies just had bad luck in that Ubuntu was successful.

tl;dr: It's easier to endure complaints like yours than the hostility with which patches are rejected in some projects.

Reply Score: 8

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

This creates a problem in the long term because features Canonical will push to end users are not the same as those found in upstream and in other distributions and users who will first start using Canonical distributions will make simple assumptions that the way of the *buntu* is the way of linux and this will intime fragment the ecosystem ..its kind of hard to understand why he doesnt understand this

mtzmtulivu is right. Everybody who snickers and winks at the "fragmentation"bit, doesn't get it. There is a difference between having different flavors of the same core infrastructure and having two equally named, but drastically divergent pieces of core infrastructure.

In the good old days it used to be that the core infrastructure was provided by the upstream projects and the distributors added their own small customizations on top of that. If a fundamental change in infrastructure was needed, the distributors, developers and the upstream projects got together to discus the best way forward. The end result was a consistent piece of technology used among several distributions.

In the current situation we have Canonical dreaming up new core infrastructure and adding that locally to upstream code and pushing it out on one their websites and telling the world "If you want it, come and get it" and thinking that is contributing and collaborating. In essence Canonical is forking upstream projects, changing them to suit their vision and then offering to upstream to abandon their own versions and adopt what Canonical dreamed up.

It's no wonder Canonical is being blasted over it. It took the "ecosystem" several years to come up with working structures to make sure that every contributor in the chain could collaborate with the other contributors in the chain and have the contributions flow to the place where they make the most sense and have the most reach. Reach in this case is not only how many end users get the code, but also how many distributors can depend on and benefit from the changes made in the upstream projects.

In this case we have the Canonical fork and then the rest of the community. The rest doesn't have any benefit from what Canonical does, because to get benefit from what Canonical does, the rest would basically have to become Ubuntu remixes. There is no communication, discussion and collaboration over the features Canonical is coding. Just dumping them as is, does not constitute a meaningful contribution. The best code originates from cross polination of ideas between diverse groups dependent on a project.

Why do we want to give Canonical a free pass for this behavior, while Novell was blasted for the way they developed XGL and Apple was bashed over the Webkit code dumps?

Reply Score: 7

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Sure, it's good to spread the code, nobody is saying that Canonical is doing a bad thing.

They are not part of the community, they don't contribute, they don't collaborate.

All the things they do are for self-interest.

Reply Score: 2

Tuishimi Member since:
2005-07-06

Oh come off it. How many more people know about linux and have tried it thanks to Ubuntu. Once they know from whence Ubuntu came, they start to read, research and learn.

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Oh come off it. How many more people know about linux and have tried it thanks to Ubuntu. Once they know from whence Ubuntu came, they start to read, research and learn.


So? That just means Canonical sells their product, not that they collaborate.

Reply Score: 1

axel Member since:
2006-02-04

How many more people know about linux and have tried it thanks to Ubuntu.


I don't know How many more people DO know? Anecdotally I certainly didn't notice any uptick in conversion.

Reply Score: 1

Tuishimi Member since:
2005-07-06

Yeah, that was anecdotal, and I knew it would garner a response like yours. But, anecdotally, I have seen more excitement online when Ubuntu first arrived on scene, AND it topped the linux distro list for a long time, if it still isn't. That isn't anecdotal.

Reply Score: 2

DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

Sure, it's good to spread the code, nobody is saying that Canonical is doing a bad thing.

They are not part of the community, they don't contribute, they don't collaborate.

All the things they do are for self-interest.


I have been using Linux, for various purposes, since 1996. I have submitted plenty of bug reports, and all of them closed with "Won't Fix" by the developers. Since I don't contribute code, what you are saying is I am not a member of the Linux community. It wouldn;t surprise me if you are a developer that loves to just close known bugs with "Won't fix", failing to add that they are just too damn lazy to do so.

My point is that Linux developers are the ones generally doing things for "self-interest". There really is no "community" as you put it. Believe it or not, I use Linux every day, I just know better than to attempt to "contribute", as history has shown not to bother. I currently use Mandriva, so go ahead and slam me for that while you are at it saying it is not "Linux" and such.

Reply Score: 8

draethus Member since:
2006-08-02


I have been using Linux, for various purposes, since 1996. I have submitted plenty of bug reports, and all of them closed with "Won't Fix" by the developers. Since I don't contribute code, what you are saying is I am not a member of the Linux community. It wouldn;t surprise me if you are a developer that loves to just close known bugs with "Won't fix", failing to add that they are just too damn lazy to do so.

My point is that Linux developers are the ones generally doing things for "self-interest". There really is no "community" as you put it. Believe it or not, I use Linux every day, I just know better than to attempt to "contribute", as history has shown not to bother. I currently use Mandriva, so go ahead and slam me for that while you are at it saying it is not "Linux" and such.


I have the completely opposite experience: I've worked on several open-source projects over the years, and developers always try to fix problems caused by their previous patches. In addition developers tend to fix bugs reported by users in areas they are familiar with.

Just this morning, someone wrote the second patch for a GTK bug I reported and explained the problem on in detail. This patch fixes the bug. They probably got interested because I proposed a patch of my own and posted to the development mailing list which lots of people read, but still: I haven't ever found developers to be entirely self-serving and the community is real for me.

Show me to these bugs you reported that were closed "won't fix" and I'll see if I can fix them for you.

Reply Score: 5

phreck Member since:
2009-08-13

Browse several projects and look at their changelogs, and you'll recognize that usually, serious bug-reports are not wontfixed.

Of course it is not nice that you made such experience, but statistics state another thing.

Q: Are you sure that *all* were wontfixed, or were some simply duplicates or no-bugs? Also, how many have you submitted?

Reply Score: 2

ndrw Member since:
2009-06-30

It all obviously depends on the project, I've never had any problem with e.g. xfce guys. They were willing to accept patches for things that, in their opinion, were not needed. Popular demand was enough to reshuffle their priorities.

OTOH, there are projects where user requests are outright rejected regardless of number of people asking for them. Important from usability point of view bugs are not fixed for years while most activity of developers is focused on rewriting existing layers and destabilizing perfectly functional code. These are not necessarily obscure projects, you'll find that at least several parts of your default desktop that fall into this category.

The solution is simple - avoid them or fork them. There is no point in talking to these guys as their vision is often entirely different from user expectations.

Here comes Ubuntu - whereas others simply put all these incompatible bits and pieces together, Ubuntu listens to user needs and tries to ship a single product that fits more mainstream vision of a desktop. There is no magic in it, just basic project management.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

I have been using Linux, for various purposes, since 1996. I have submitted plenty of bug reports, and all of them closed with "Won't Fix" by the developers. Since I don't contribute code, what you are saying is I am not a member of the Linux community. It wouldn;t surprise me if you are a developer that loves to just close known bugs with "Won't fix", failing to add that they are just too damn lazy to do so.


You are contributing with what you can; giving feedback, so you are a member of the community. Maybe your feedback doesn't materialize in changes to other end-users, but at least you are trying.

Canonical isn't even trying, and they do have something more than bug reports to contribute; code. They have resources, they just don't want to share them.

And BTW, I am a developer, and most likely I've only closed 1% of my bugs as won't fix.

My point is that Linux developers are the ones generally doing things for "self-interest". There really is no "community" as you put it. Believe it or not, I use Linux every day, I just know better than to attempt to "contribute", as history has shown not to bother. I currently use Mandriva, so go ahead and slam me for that while you are at it saying it is not "Linux" and such.


Everyone does things for "self-interest", even people that give money to charities do it because it makes them feel good. The point here is that an evil Canonical would be doing exactly the same thing, unlike an evil RedHat, which would be doing, well, what Canonical is doing.

I have no problem with people using Canonical products; if it works for you, great. Just don't claim that Canonical is collaboration, because that's not true.

Reply Score: 1

Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

Canonical isn't even trying


Really? Do they pay their designers and programmers for doing nothing? Do they have a not small staff which sits around and does nothing all day?

They have resources, they just don't want to share them.


Which is why they made a proprietary closed source solution nobody can learn anything from... right?

There is a lot more than the code those upstream projects provide. Even the glue that binds them together and exposes them to users without making them insane is highly valuable but, together with emphasis on UI design (and other areas that non computer enthusiasts focus on/feel are important), is often labelled as trivial "easy" work and this attitude is not helping the OSS world.

Edited 2010-09-15 11:59 UTC

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"Canonical isn't even trying


Really? Do they pay their designers and programmers for doing nothing? Do they have a not small staff which sits around and does nothing all day?
"
They pay them to work in Ubuntu, and Ubuntu alone.

"They have resources, they just don't want to share them.


Which is why they made a proprietary closed source solution nobody can learn anything from... right?

There is a lot more than the code those upstream projects provide. Even the glue that binds them together and exposes them to users without making them insane is highly valuable but, together with emphasis on UI design (and other areas that non computer enthusiasts focus on/feel are important), is often labelled as trivial "easy" work and this attitude is not helping the OSS world.
"
I am not saying what they do is useless; I'm saying they do it for Ubuntu, and couldn't care less whether other distributions finds their work usable or not, nor whether their patches make it upstream or not. That's what the statistics show.

Reply Score: 1

collinm Member since:
2005-07-15

i submitted a lot of bug report for kde and suse, majority was closed and the others don't exist in the new release...

Reply Score: 2

phreck Member since:
2009-08-13

So yeah, when the bugs don't exist anymore, why shouldn't they be closed?

Reply Score: 1

collinm Member since:
2005-07-15

does i say if the bug don't exist anymore it need to be fixed?

please take time to read...

Reply Score: 2

kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

What good is your precious code if you've got no one putting it in the hands of users? Does it really matter that the one putting your code out there is not the one contributing the most code?


The problem that many Linux advocates have is the fact that Ubuntu is being praised for only doing the last easy 10% of the work. Where are they actually removing the HAL dependency? where are they actually investing into OpenOffice.org to fix the laundry list of bugs that are over 4 years old in some cases, where are they when it comes to moving GNOME forward by moving the individual projects away from deprecated components? where are their contributions to Xorg that improve reliability, power management, and so on? Where are they improving hardware compatibility? finishing software that seem to be stuck in a perpetual 0.1 state on Linux?

The problem that many Linux advocates have is the show pony attitude of Ubuntu coming into bundling up a whole heap of stuff and then taking no time out to actually show appreciation to those individual projects that actually make their distribution possible - without those projects they would have no distribution.

Reply Score: 10

pgeorgi Member since:
2010-02-18

The problem that many Linux advocates have is the fact that Ubuntu is being praised for only doing the last easy 10% of the work.

The "last easy 10%" of getting the damn thing in the hands of the user?

Given how many distros tried and failed when it came to the "average end-user", I wouldn't say that this is "easy" or "10%". And that's exactly the cultural problem between Linux and "Linux on the desktop".

The main problem for the "show me the code" people is that the integration work this requires isn't as portable across distros as the latest GTK backend rewrite.

Reply Score: 4

Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

Ubuntu is being praised for only doing the last easy 10% of the work.


One reason why OpenOffice.org, Eclipse, and GIMP (and Blender) are relatively back in the stone age UI wise compared to their proprietary equivalents... What make the others special is that last 10% which is assumed to be the "easy" 10% of the work and not paid enough attention to.

I am not saying that technology wise those projects I listed do not do enough... they are great and I have been using them for years (OpenOffice and Eclipse especially).

Edited 2010-09-15 09:39 UTC

Reply Score: 4

hussam Member since:
2006-08-17

The single most important thing about open source is collaboration; if you don't have you are playing a different game.

Canonical brings nothing to the linux ecosystem, and doesn't collaborate. All the "benefits" mentioned in this article are for Ubuntu, not Linux.

Imagine a company like Microsoft, taking linux components, making their own distribution, not contributing anything, and then claiming their additions to the linux ecosystem are superior. I would call that stealing, and that's what Canonical is doing.

Canonical is taking advantage of the good will of thousands of developers an companies who do contribute, and then, in a PR spin, claiming that they are helping by spreading the SW.

Sure, it's a good thing, just like it's a good thing that Tivo distributes open source software. But don't claim you are a member of the community; you are not, you need to collaborate to claim that.


definitely agreed. and this is where mark is being confused. he argues that ubuntu contributes to people's lifes. Ok sure it does. but this isn't what critics are talking about. Ubuntu has long been criticized for not contributing patches to upstream or not doing it enough. Whatever their contribution to upstream code it, it needs to be a LOT more.

Reply Score: 6

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Why? Because Redhat does? Ubuntu is not Fedora. Ubuntu doesn't shy away from what makes them Ubuntu. They care about the user experience and packaging, they make no qualms about that. Anyone complaining about Ubuntu not contributing code upstream has to ask themselves, does it matter? Does the fact that Ubuntu contributes or not upstream affect Linux either way? The fact that Ubuntu is the highest profile distro means nothing, its the highest profile exactly for the reasons that Mark mentioned, that was their goal. Their goal was to get people to use Linux without having to be an Ubergeek, to make the community friendly enough that someone new could just jump in. They succeeded. Now all the distros who's focus turned from users to the enterprise or got more niche after each release, or thought the user as secondary to the Linux experience are jealous because they feel all of their hardwork is not being credited to them or that they are doing all of the work. Guess what, its gpl bitches. Stop whining. There is no golden rule saying I have to contribute anything back, the code is there, its open, do what you like as long as you don;t close the code. Ubuntu certainly does.

Reply Score: 9

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Anyone complaining about Ubuntu not contributing code upstream has to ask themselves, does it matter?


If you don't contribute, you are not member of the community. Ubuntu is a leecher. Period.

Reply Score: 0

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Ubuntu doesn't care about being about a member of the community. They care instead of providing a good, easy to use distro. They do that very well.

As others have said, GPL doesn't say anything about contributing back. As long as the modified code is released, then they have no further obligations. It's no different than me doing my little pet distro and releasing it.

Reply Score: 5

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Ubuntu doesn't care about being about a member of the community. They care instead of providing a good, easy to use distro. They do that very well.

Of course, and there's nothing wrong with that.

But that's not what they are saying, read Mark Shuttleworth's blog post; he compares Ubuntu to GNOME, X, linux kenrel, etc. He wants to confuse people into thinking that Canonical is part of the community. That's is a lie, nothing more than a PR stunt.

He should said what you just said, but he doesn't.

As others have said, GPL doesn't say anything about contributing back. As long as the modified code is released, then they have no further obligations. It's no different than me doing my little pet distro and releasing it.

Exactly, they meet the legal obligations... that's why nobody is suggesting they should go to jail. We are just saying that they don't collaborate, that's it. You seem to agree.

Reply Score: 1

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

But that's not what they are saying, read Mark Shuttleworth's blog post; he compares Ubuntu to GNOME, X, linux kenrel, etc. He wants to confuse people into thinking that Canonical is part of the community. That's is a lie, nothing more than a PR stunt.

Pfft. You're talking about lying and then you throw claims like that out? Talk about hypocrisy!

Face it, Canonical does a whole LOT of stuff that no one else does and as such, they DO collaborate and take part in the whole Linux community. Code is definitely not the only thing one can contribute and definitely not the most important part either.

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Pfft. You're talking about lying and then you throw claims like that out? Talk about hypocrisy!

I didn't make the claim, dragossh was the one that said "Ubuntu doesn't care about being about a member of the community", I just said that that's not what Mark said in his post.

There is clearly a mismatch, here, except that the people that have criticized Canonical have provided strong evidence; undeniable data. From the total amount of contributions, Canonical is about 0.01% of the total.

Face it, Canonical does a whole LOT of stuff that no one else does and as such, they DO collaborate and take part in the whole Linux community. Code is definitely not the only thing one can contribute and definitely not the most important part either.

Doing stuff != collaborating. Collaborating requires code contributions, everything else is specific to Ubuntu; ads, forums, papercuts, blog posts, UI design, art-work, etc. All those benefit only Ubuntu.

Reply Score: 1

Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

"Anyone complaining about Ubuntu not contributing code upstream has to ask themselves, does it matter?


If you don't contribute, you are not member of the community. Ubuntu is a leecher. Period.
"

[Sarcasm = on]

Upstream, and all the random developers of all the different pieces that are making "stuff" without a common interface, or common look and feel, or common packaging, or simple/standardised configuration interfaces, etc; should hire some developers and artists to add polish to the "sum of the parts", and hire a marketing department to get their work noticed by end-users.

Upstream and all the random developers don't contribute much to the work of adding polish and marketing. They're simply leeching off the work Ubuntu do to make Linux more popular.

[Sarcasm = off]

- Brendan

Reply Score: 9

hussam Member since:
2006-08-17

Why? Because Redhat does? Ubuntu is not Fedora. Ubuntu doesn't shy away from what makes them Ubuntu. They care about the user experience and packaging, they make no qualms about that. Anyone complaining about Ubuntu not contributing code upstream has to ask themselves, does it matter? Does the fact that Ubuntu contributes or not upstream affect Linux either way? The fact that Ubuntu is the highest profile distro means nothing, its the highest profile exactly for the reasons that Mark mentioned, that was their goal. Their goal was to get people to use Linux without having to be an Ubergeek, to make the community friendly enough that someone new could just jump in. They succeeded. Now all the distros who's focus turned from users to the enterprise or got more niche after each release, or thought the user as secondary to the Linux experience are jealous because they feel all of their hardwork is not being credited to them or that they are doing all of the work. Guess what, its gpl bitches. Stop whining. There is no golden rule saying I have to contribute anything back, the code is there, its open, do what you like as long as you don;t close the code. Ubuntu certainly does.


First of all, there's nothing wrong with asking credit for your work. There has been at least one instance of ubuntu fixing a bug and not sending their patch upstream in 2008 or 2009. I don't really remember the package but I remember stealing one of their patches for a bug that wasn't fixed upstream in git head. What this means is that they have the "talent" to fix bugs but they don't always submit to upstream. It simply shows bad attitude.
Still the good things about ubuntu over weigh this shortcoming so the distribution still does ok.

KDE has a lot of paid developers. Anyone ever considered how sweet if would be if canonical paid developers to contribute to upstream?

Edited 2010-09-15 08:32 UTC

Reply Score: 4

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Anyone ever considered how sweet if would be if canonical paid developers to contribute to upstream?


Yes, because as we all know, money grows on trees. Let's just hire a few more developers to satisfy the whiners because they are too narrow-minded to think outside of "lines of c0de omg haxx0rz!".

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

" Anyone ever considered how sweet if would be if canonical paid developers to contribute to upstream?


Yes, because as we all know, money grows on trees. Let's just hire a few more developers to satisfy the whiners because they are too narrow-minded to think outside of "lines of c0de omg haxx0rz!".
"

Of course not! That would be unselfish, like the nansy-pansies at RedHat, instead, let's be evil and care only about our products.

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Canonical is not evil. What's evil is the walled garden practices of Apple and the likes. Want people to be free of them? Then promote FOSS, be it Ubuntu, Fedora or your pet project.

Also, last I heard, RedHat controlled most of GNOME's direction. How's that for not being, as you put it, evil? They control the DE that is used in most distributions!

Edited 2010-09-15 12:35 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

What's evil is the walled garden practices of Apple and the likes.

Yeah! Apple is totally evil by developing tons of FOSS technologies that serves as actual technological foundation instead of surface-scratching and also works accross multiple platforms:
CUPS, WebKit, libdispatch, LLVM+Clang, Darwin Streaming Server, Darwin Address & Calender Server,...

In fact the FreeBSD community highly welcomes Apple's work on Clang to use it as default compiler in an upcoming FreeBSD release (FreeBSD 9 looks likely).
Apple's improvements in GCC's PowerPC support also benefits Linux a lot.

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Canonical is not evil. What's evil is the walled garden practices of Apple and the likes. Want people to be free of them? Then promote FOSS, be it Ubuntu, Fedora or your pet project.

Also, last I heard, RedHat controlled most of GNOME's direction. How's that for not being, as you put it, evil? They control the DE that is used in most distributions!

As Fettarme H-Milch said; as closed as most of Apple is, and even through don't claim to be part of the linux community, they still contribute more than Canonical.

Reply Score: 1

FooBarWidget Member since:
2005-11-11

Wow. Years ago, when RedHat was a popular desktop distro, people said the same thing about RedHat being evil and $SOMETHING_NOT_REDHAT being the true hero instead. Either RedHat changed or marking the most popular desktop distro as evil is a stupid fad that comes back in a different form every few years.

Reply Score: 2

AdamW Member since:
2005-07-06

"Anyone complaining about Ubuntu not contributing code upstream has to ask themselves, does it matter? Does the fact that Ubuntu contributes or not upstream affect Linux either way?"

Absolutely. Yes, it does. How can it be otherwise? Canonical is by far the company with the largest engineering resources in the 'free desktop operating system' sector. In the overall free software sector, it's probably only behind Red Hat and Novell (depending on how you treat big companies with small OSS departments). How can it *not* be significant how much work this very important engineering workforce does on the free desktop ecosystem? Wouldn't our graphics drivers, network drivers, sound drivers, and desktop applications be better if Canonical were devoting a part of its engineering resources to developing them?

Reply Score: 4

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"Wouldn't our graphics drivers, network drivers, sound drivers, and desktop applications be better if Canonical were devoting a part of its engineering resources to developing them?


Yes, because that strategy has worked out SO WELL for the desktop efforts of Mandriva, Red Hat, and SUSE.
"
It does. I'm using an open ATI driver without any problems developed with a lot of funding from RedHat.

If the driver wasn't working I would be screwed the moment ATI stopped supporting my card on the closed driver.

Reply Score: 2

ballmerlikesgoogle Member since:
2009-10-23

Just out of curiosity, how many other Linux distributions or companies that might sponsor them over on Distrowatch actually collaborate?

As a Linux user, I don't write code either or contribute to the Linux kernel (or any other open source product). Does that in a sense make me as bad as Canonical? (God I certainly hope the "collaboration police" don't come looking for me this evening, I might have to switch back to Windows to throw them off....)

Your free to collaborate, and the beauty of it all is that if you don't want to, you don't have too. I really don't consider it a big deal. As long as Canonical does not violate the GPL or any other open source license, they are free to do what they want in regards to Ubuntu.

Reply Score: 5

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Sure, they don't have to collaborate. By why should anyone applaud Canonical for meeting their legal obligations regarding the GPL? They have to.

RedHat, SUSE, Mandriva, they all contribute back to the community; they go beyond their bare minimal legal obligations, and their selfish interest for their own distribution, and push the changes upstream, and the rest of the community benefits; that is to be applauded.

Canonical is spreading Linux, and making money in the process, which is entirely selfish, and that's fine, but all we are saying is "you are not part of the community", of course that's "bad PR" so they don't want to accept that, which is denying their nature.

Reply Score: 3

ebasconp Member since:
2006-05-09

Why? Because Ubuntu made Linux visible and usable for a lot of people and end users.

That's a lot of contribution.

Reply Score: 5

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Why? Because Ubuntu made Linux visible and usable for a lot of people and end users.

That's a lot of contribution.


"contribution" to what? The end-users perhaps (which is called distribution), not the linux community.

As an example I put PackageKit, developed by Fedora in a distribution-agnostic way. Then comes Archlinux, who provides a module for their package management system. That is collaboration of two members of the linux community in a common technology.

Ubuntu doesn't do anything like that.

So, how would an Evil Canonical behave? Isn't gathering end-users pretty much what any company tries to do? So how is Canonical not being a self-interested, non-collaborative leecher?

Reply Score: 2

ebasconp Member since:
2006-05-09

Man, I do not know if Ubuntu contributes and collaborates with the Linux or GNOME community through source code, but they contribute to make the whole Linux software stack available to end users. Such kind of contribution is not technical at all, but I do not see it as less important:
If you are a great developer and you do not have a channel to reach to your final user, the pristine code you write will just be useful for one person: you... If you write your code and you have also a team that compiles it, distributes it, sells it and makes it popular... don't you think such team is collaborating and contributing indirectly to your work? I do think so.

Edited 2010-09-15 02:30 UTC

Reply Score: 3

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

...they contribute to make the whole Linux software stack available to end users.

Or just their own standalone fork of it?

If you write your code and you have also a team that compiles it, distributes it, sells it and makes it popular...

Except Canonical is increasingly altering that code to suit their own needs, without giving useful feedback to the upstream developer and the original code doesn't end up anywhere. Just Canonical's fork spreads.

It's all within the letter of the GPL. It doesn't follow any other conventions though. Changes should be made upstream, so that the improvements flow to ALL downstream recipients. Just plonking your own visions on a publically accessible server and then saying you contribute is disingenious.

What Canonical does is reminiscent of the old UNIX vendors. Just futz in your own code base and don't pay attention to compatibility with your competition. The different versions of UNIX, fundamentally incompatible with each other, did that platform in. Until the advent of Canonical's version of contributing, Linux and the associated projects were consistent and source compatible over the different distros. Now we have the traditional "Linux" projects and the increasingly incompatible Canonical versions of it (with their Indicator framework, Windicator framework, Unity interface, Upstart, etc.) How long before an application written on Ubuntu doesn't work on any non-buntu distribution?

That's the problem and that draws the criticism. Not their end user marketing and care for their user base, which is outstanding.

Reply Score: 5

DeadFishMan Member since:
2006-01-09

What Canonical does is reminiscent of the old UNIX vendors. Just futz in your own code base and don't pay attention to compatibility with your competition. The different versions of UNIX, fundamentally incompatible with each other, did that platform in. Until the advent of Canonical's version of contributing, Linux and the associated projects were consistent and source compatible over the different distros. Now we have the traditional "Linux" projects and the increasingly incompatible Canonical versions of it (with their Indicator framework, Windicator framework, Unity interface, Upstart, etc.) How long before an application written on Ubuntu doesn't work on any non-buntu distribution?

That's the problem and that draws the criticism. Not their end user marketing and care for their user base, which is outstanding.


What he said! (The emphasis was mine on what I think is the most thoughtful observation so far that nobody seems to be willing to address.)

While I have little to no problem with the fact that Ubuntu gives a higher visibility to Linux outside of technical realms which obviously benefits the Linux platform and nobody is denying that, it baffles me that many *seasoned* FOSS users here cannot see outside of their shitty brown desktop and realize that Canonical is not exactly a good team player. They do not give enough back to the codebase that they tap into to develop their own product!

Imagine if everybody else took a page from the Ubuntu conduct and said "Screw this! I'm taking the ball home with me!" and all of a sudden Ubuntu can no longer take advantage of Debian's enhancements because it is too damn hard to figure out what is going on in the code and it would have to employ additional resources and duplicate a lot of efforts just to get parity or everybody gets stuck with the current NetworkManager and/or KVM because RedHat is no longer opening the god damn code and keeping the enhancements to themselves or some such silliness...

But fine... If all that you want is the bling, stupid-proof user experience that keeps getting more and more unstable with each iteration - and this is coming from a proud Sid user! - that has to be reinstalled every six months because it will not survive an upgrade then I guess that it is easy to overlook such glaring faults.

Meanwhile the rest of us will keep rooting for those companies, communities and individual developers that actually contribute to the overall Linux platform.

Edited 2010-09-15 16:58 UTC

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Man, I do not know if Ubuntu contributes and collaborates with the Linux or GNOME community through source code, but they contribute to make the whole Linux software stack available to end users. Such kind of contribution is not technical at all, but I do not see it as less important:
If you are a great developer and you do not have a channel to reach to your final user, the pristine code you write will just be useful for one person: you... If you write your code and you have also a team that compiles it, distributes it, sells it and makes it popular... don't you think such team is collaborating and contributing indirectly to your work? I do think so.

That's like saying that BP contributes to Louisiana by making their oil help millions of people. They don't care about the people in Louisiana, they are in it for the money; it cannot be called a contribution.

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

That's like saying that BP contributes to Louisiana by making their oil help millions of people.


First paedophilia and now the BP oil spill? Wtf?

Get out more. You have issues.

Reply Score: 1

Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

The end-users perhaps (which is called distribution), not the linux community.


Making such a clear distinction between the "Community" and "end-users" worries me...

It is a worrying sign of the mentality which is holding some OSS projects back as far as the "ready for the desktop" kind of realm is concerned... where UI design, usability, sane defaults, and a generally "it just works" feeling rule or should rule.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"The end-users perhaps (which is called distribution), not the linux community.


Making such a clear distinction between the "Community" and "end-users" worries me...
"

The operative words are not user vs community, but linux vs ubuntu.

Reply Score: 1

kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Why? Because Ubuntu made Linux visible and usable for a lot of people and end users.

That's a lot of contribution.


Contribution to make Linux more usable? show me 6 contributions that have made Linux more usable. I can't think of a single thing that comes to mind right now of something that is home grown by them that actually helps when it comes to usability.

Reply Score: 3

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Off the top of my head. One CD distro. They weren't first but definitely the best at the time. And no I don't need examples of some hacked Fedora image that wasn't half a DVD's worth of crap. Ubuntu's installer was better and still is, imo, than any other distro. Pop in the cd, see if it works, install. Fast boot times and shutdown times, and no I don't need to see a hacked version of Damn Small Linux with a hacked kernel that can boot faster, yeah good luck getting a new user to use that.

I've been using Linux since Debian Potato, When Red Hat basically dropped the desktop user market and decided to make the guinea pig bate Fedora. I moved to that after going through Mandrake, and Suse. The first time I popped in Ubuntu, it was like a breath of fresh air, one cd, 10 minute install and very little crap installed that I don't need. Debian's apt-get (best package manager imo) and a huge repo. NOTHING, other than maybe debian after being hacked and prodded to oblivion, even came close and still doesn't. The amount of repos, launchpad packages, and sites just dedicated to Ubuntu is staggering compared to anything else.

Finally the biggest usability feature that Ubuntu had compared to other distros. The community. They wouldn't berate you for asking a newb question, you can almost always find answers to almost any Linux issue in their forums. DO a google search and the first queries usually point you to their forums with an answer. Compare that to the other communities at the time. You couldn't even go to the debian forum without someone jumping down your throat if you asked a simple question. Fedora was almost the same with all the Redhat gurus except everyone knew that all the users were there as test subjects. "Get RHEL" they would say, if you don't want to deal with simple installer issues. Suse support was almost dismal as they expected users to rely on the admittedly great documentation at the time, or since you most likely had bought it retail you could contact someone for support. Mandrake was probably the most friendly but the distro was always cutting edge, beautiful, but a hacky, buggy piece of shit. Its like they didn't even test the thing before release. Trust me what Ubuntu has done for quality control alone in distroland is a HUGE contribution, imo.

Oh and before Ubuntu most distros that had any modicum of polish wanted to charge you for something you would most likely replace in 6 months with a newer version and they weren't even that polished or worth the cash, imo. Now I like to pay for things but not what passed for "desktop" linux not that long ago.

Edited 2010-09-15 04:13 UTC

Reply Score: 8

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

One CD, Wubi, Ubiquity, sane defaults, themes that don't look like out of Windows 95, Papercuts. I'm sure I could give out even more examples.

Reply Score: 3

Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

Why? Because Ubuntu made Linux visible and usable for a lot of people and end users.

That's a lot of contribution.

First fact:
Pretty much all usability work in GNOME ("the Linux GUI") was done by Sun.

Second fact:
Canonical does not make "Linux" visible. In fact they try very hard to avoid using that term at all on ubuntu.com.

Reply Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Canonical does not make "Linux" visible. In fact they try very hard to avoid using that term at all on ubuntu.com.


Right, because Apple talks about XNU on apple.com/macosx all the time, and the Windows 7 page is riddled with references to the NT kernel.

Funny how people hammer on and on about how Linux is not an operating system, yet when Ubuntu adheres to that meme, it's suddenly an evil plot to destroy Linux.

Reply Score: 3

Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

because Apple talks about XNU on apple.com/macosx all the time, and the Windows 7 page is riddled with references to the NT kernel.

Funny how people hammer on and on about how Linux is not an operating system, yet when Ubuntu adheres to that meme, it's suddenly an evil plot to destroy Linux.

You are funny in your attempt to change the topic. The argument was "Canonical makes Linux visible". All I did was to counter that argument that Canonical in fact tries hard to hide where the software, that Canonical distributes, comes from. That's the opposite of what the claim was, Canonical would do.

Canonical goes so far and prints on http://www.ubuntu.com/server
Ubuntu Server mixes effortlessly with Ubuntu, Windows or Mac OS environments.

See? Canonical tries to avoid the term "Linux" so hard, they won't even write that "Ubuntu Server mixes effortlessly with Windows, Mac OS, or Ubuntu and other Linux environments."

Is it forbidden to hide the word "Linux"? No. But when some company works hard to eliminate that word from any public medium, it's simply wrong to attest that company that it does much for the visibility of Linux.

Reply Score: 5

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

See? Canonical tries to avoid the term "Linux" so hard, they won't even write that "Ubuntu Server mixes effortlessly with Windows, Mac OS, or Ubuntu and other Linux environments."

It's pretty obvious Canonical can't promise that Ubuntu Server will work with all other Linux distros whereas on Windows and OSX there is always the standard package. The only thing they can promise as to Linux distros is that it'll work fine with Ubuntu.

Reply Score: 2

collinm Member since:
2005-07-15

like mandriva, opensuse, xandros, linspire...

you remember corel linux?
it existed a lot of years before ubuntu and was very user friendly...

Reply Score: 2

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Go figure! A company being in business to make money! How selfish of them!

Reply Score: 2

phreck Member since:
2009-08-13

That *is* selfish.

But what is not selfish in this world. I am e.g. selfish for going to work to earn some money, and in my hobby-time I am developing free software for my selfish desire getting high on code and having users.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Go figure! A company being in business to make money! How selfish of them!


Hmm, so how does RedHat manages to contribute? They are a company after all, are they not?

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

From support costs. You are aware RedHat doesn't magically make money appear, right?

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

From support costs. You are aware RedHat doesn't magically make money appear, right?

"support costs"? What does that even mean? RedHat is a company, just like any other company their primary goal is to make money, and they do, and they reserve part of that money to support the linux community, and contribute.

What prevents Canonical from doing the same?

Reply Score: 2

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

http://www.redhat.com/services/ Enjoy!

It's not anything that prevents them, it's just that Canonical decided to focus on one thing: the desktop. Blaming them for this is like blaming Samsung for taking Android and putting a skin on top of it.

Reply Score: 1

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

How can they not be part of the community when they ARE the community? People are going to have to get over the fact that Canonical doesn't want to spend money developing the latest shitty version of X and instead rather spend their money on making that latest shitty version look as nice as possible. Is there something wrong with that? I don't know. They are right, however, that Ubuntu's popularity (notoriety?) has a very active dev community. They just don't happen to care very much about anything but Ubuntu. Which is cool. What people don't say is that Ubuntu's community is probably a huge contributor to bug reports and have had a major hand in many projects, including compiz. The most vocal and more prevalent users were Ubuntu users. I don't know about you but just looking at where Fedora was in the early part of the decade and where it is now, I'd be very surprised if Ubuntu didn't have a hand in that, if not via code at least via its community influence. Not that Fedora still isn't a buggy bloated piece of shit, but so is Ubuntu sometimes.

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

How can they not be part of the community when they ARE the community? People are going to have to get over the fact that Canonical doesn't want to spend money developing the latest shitty version of X and instead rather spend their money on making that latest shitty version look as nice as possible. Is there something wrong with that? I don't know. They are right, however, that Ubuntu's popularity (notoriety?) has a very active dev community. They just don't happen to care very much about anything but Ubuntu. Which is cool. What people don't say is that Ubuntu's community is probably a huge contributor to bug reports and have had a major hand in many projects, including compiz. The most vocal and more prevalent users were Ubuntu users. I don't know about you but just looking at where Fedora was in the early part of the decade and where it is now, I'd be very surprised if Ubuntu didn't have a hand in that, if not via code at least via its community influence. Not that Fedora still isn't a buggy bloated piece of shit, but so is Ubuntu sometimes.


Ubuntu community != linux community. They don't contribute to the linux community.

Reply Score: 0

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

This has been mentioned a few times so I gotta speak up; it's all selfish interest. With individuals, I can see a percentage being purely altruistic but the majority have an invested self interest. But a corporation? Novell, Mandriva, Red Hat; they don't do a single thing that is not about self interests. They are legally obligated to value the share holder above all else. The only reason the contribute so much code back is because they believe it will lead to greater profit. These are profit focused entities not well sponsored non-profit orgs. If they thought there was less profit in collaborating, they wouldn't do it.

It's worked so far. It's fantastic that such big organizations believe there is value in that collaboration. Mandriva was my distro of choice until Debian recently. They really deserve credit for being the first to focus on new users; it's still a better distro backed by a lesser marketing department than Canonical's. I'm just suggesting that we remember that these suggested altruistic corporations are legally obligated amoral entities that wouldn't lean left and pass gas if it didn't lead toward profit.

For the record, I do have grief for Canonical but it's with the distro assembly. In the greater market, Canonical has been highly successful at bringing more attention to the FOSS world.

Reply Score: 2

Almafeta Member since:
2007-02-22

Imagine a company like Microsoft, taking linux components, making their own distribution, not contributing anything, and then claiming their additions to the linux ecosystem are superior.


You mean Apple?

Canonical brings nothing to the linux ecosystem, and doesn't collaborate.


Quality-of-life projects like Papercut notwithstanding.

In the lifespan of a software project, only 2% of the hours put into a project are the "interesting" and "new" stuff; the remainder consists of bug reports and fixes, quality of life changes, and addressing other such issues that only appear in rare circumstances or over long periods of times. Don't despise Canonical for devoting their efforts to the back 98% because they're rarely around for the first 2%.

Edited 2010-09-15 00:38 UTC

Reply Score: 5

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"Imagine a company like Microsoft, taking linux components, making their own distribution, not contributing anything, and then claiming their additions to the linux ecosystem are superior.


You mean Apple?
"

Yes, Apple is a good example of a lecher company.

"Canonical brings nothing to the linux ecosystem, and doesn't collaborate.


Quality-of-life projects like Papercut notwithstanding.
"

First, that's not Canonical, that's Ubuntu, and the contributions are for Ubuntu, not pushed upstream, if they are, Canonical has nothing to do with it.

Reply Score: 1

TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

Canonical/ubuntu pushes more upstream than you realize, only they typically do so by going through Debian first since they derive from Debian.

Point being: you may not necessarily see them inter-acting directly with a lot of projects, but that's by design. They contribute primarily to the extremely slow moving Debian distribution, which then may or may not take those contributions back to the original project.

Honestly, it'd be nice if more distributions did that with their parent distributions - OpenSUSE, Mandriva, etc. could all contribute back to Fedora/Red Hat; and so forth. Slackware would actually end up getting a lot more help that way too - there are a lot of distros based on Slackware.

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Canonical/ubuntu pushes more upstream than you realize, only they typically do so by going through Debian first since they derive from Debian.


You are mistaken. People from canonical have a @canonical.com address, and their patches never appear in any significant position in any data gathered by anybody. This means that their very rarely make it upstream.

Maybe the Ubuntu community does contribute, but this is not what the complaint is about; Canonical.

Point being: you may not necessarily see them inter-acting directly with a lot of projects, but that's by design. They contribute primarily to the extremely slow moving Debian distribution, which then may or may not take those contributions back to the original project.


It's not what I see, it's the statistics that people have gathered and that show Canonical way below many companies. In fact, I recall a single colleague contributing more patches to GNOME than the whole Canonical.

Honestly, it'd be nice if more distributions did that with their parent distributions - OpenSUSE, Mandriva, etc. could all contribute back to Fedora/Red Hat; and so forth. Slackware would actually end up getting a lot more help that way too - there are a lot of distros based on Slackware.


You are obviously not familiar with the Linux ecosystem. OpenSUSE, Mandriva and Fedora are all independent of each other, the all send their patches directly to upstream, that's how they collaborate.

Ubuntu can do the same thing, and they they would get the patches back through debian (since debian uses upstream). But again, this is not about Ubuntu, it's about Canonical.

Reply Score: 2

TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

"Point being: you may not necessarily see them inter-acting directly with a lot of projects, but that's by design. They contribute primarily to the extremely slow moving Debian distribution, which then may or may not take those contributions back to the original project.

It's not what I see, it's the statistics that people have gathered and that show Canonical way below many companies. In fact, I recall a single colleague contributing more patches to GNOME than the whole Canonical.
"

All those statistics track contributions to source projects - e.g. contributions to the Linux Kernel. They don't track contributions between distributors - e.g. Canonical contributing back to Debian. Check your sources.

"Honestly, it'd be nice if more distributions did that with their parent distributions - OpenSUSE, Mandriva, etc. could all contribute back to Fedora/Red Hat; and so forth. Slackware would actually end up getting a lot more help that way too - there are a lot of distros based on Slackware.

You are obviously not familiar with the Linux ecosystem. OpenSUSE, Mandriva and Fedora are all independent of each other, the all send their patches directly to upstream, that's how they collaborate.
"

I am actually very familiar with the Linux ecosystem, and the various Linux communities, and yes - I am aware they are separate. What I was lamenting was that it would be nice if they did more with each other. OpenSuSE and Mandriva are both based on Red Hat Linux at some point in the past; neither have since kept in sync. Some distributions have a massive number of derived distributions (e.g. Slackware) but have little support in themselves; such a structure would help those big yet under supported distributions.

It's not a matter of not knowing how those distributions operate, but lamenting what could be if it was done a little differently. That is all.

Of course, then those distributions would get lost per what they contribute per LOC since the various statistics would end up no longer tracking them.

Ubuntu can do the same thing, and they they would get the patches back through debian (since debian uses upstream). But again, this is not about Ubuntu, it's about Canonical.


For all intents and purposes, Canonical and uBuntu are pretty ubiquitous. It's like saying that a discussion about Fedora or RHEL is not a discussion about Red Hat when they are pretty much one-in-the-same.

Reply Score: 4

n.l.o Member since:
2009-09-14

OpenSuSE and Mandriva are both based on Red Hat Linux at some point in the past;


You've made the same mistake twice now, SuSE v1.0 was based on Slackware, NOT Redhat.

You are correct about Mandrake though.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"[q]Point being: you may not necessarily see them inter-acting directly with a lot of projects, but that's by design. They contribute primarily to the extremely slow moving Debian distribution, which then may or may not take those contributions back to the original project.

It's not what I see, it's the statistics that people have gathered and that show Canonical way below many companies. In fact, I recall a single colleague contributing more patches to GNOME than the whole Canonical.
"

All those statistics track contributions to source projects - e.g. contributions to the Linux Kernel. They don't track contributions between distributors - e.g. Canonical contributing back to Debian. Check your sources. [/q]

Bullshit, you don't know what you are talking about.

A patch from john@canonical.com lands in Ubuntu, then would be pushed to debian, then it would be applied upstream, and then it would show in the statistics for Canonical; debian doesn't change author of the patch. That's how modern DVCS works.

If you don't see patches from Canonical in upstream, it's because there are no patches from Canonical in upstream.

"[q]Honestly, it'd be nice if more distributions did that with their parent distributions - OpenSUSE, Mandriva, etc. could all contribute back to Fedora/Red Hat; and so forth. Slackware would actually end up getting a lot more help that way too - there are a lot of distros based on Slackware.

You are obviously not familiar with the Linux ecosystem. OpenSUSE, Mandriva and Fedora are all independent of each other, the all send their patches directly to upstream, that's how they collaborate.
"

I am actually very familiar with the Linux ecosystem, and the various Linux communities, and yes - I am aware they are separate. What I was lamenting was that it would be nice if they did more with each other. OpenSuSE and Mandriva are both based on Red Hat Linux at some point in the past; neither have since kept in sync. [/q]

That's not true; they have always been independent, check your sources.

And still, you don't understand how things work; the do collaborate, as I said, through upstream. In fact, distributions don't have to be related at all to collaborate, like Archlinux collaborating with Fedora in building PackageKit.

Some distributions have a massive number of derived distributions (e.g. Slackware) but have little support in themselves; such a structure would help those big yet under supported distributions.

It's not a matter of not knowing how those distributions operate, but lamenting what could be if it was done a little differently. That is all.


The only improvement that everyone agrees should be done, is that distribution should push more patches to upstream.

Of course, then those distributions would get lost per what they contribute per LOC since the various statistics would end up no longer tracking them.


Not if people use their @ubuntu.org, or @fedora.org addresses, in case they did it for a distribution, but most of the patches for distributions come from random people, like @gmail.com.

However, @canonical.com wouldn't get lost by any means.

"Ubuntu can do the same thing, and they they would get the patches back through debian (since debian uses upstream). But again, this is not about Ubuntu, it's about Canonical.


For all intents and purposes, Canonical and uBuntu are pretty ubiquitous. It's like saying that a discussion about Fedora or RHEL is not a discussion about Red Hat when they are pretty much one-in-the-same.
"

They are most definitely not. RedHat contributors are a subset of Fedora contributors.

Reply Score: 1

AndyM103 Member since:
2008-03-18

Surely a consideration should also be how many developers Canonical, through the medium of Ubuntu, have brought into the F/OSS community. Even withstanding that Canonical as a company do not contribute to the community in an amount considered significant by some, they have contributed in terms of testers and developers.

Obviously my assumption is that people who migrate directly to Ubuntu (the distribution governed by Canonical) and then become developers, develop for the community and not just for Ubuntu as a distribution.

Many of the arguments against Canonical's involvement ignore the secondary effects of starting what is, arguably, the most popular and visible GNU/Linux distribution.

Reply Score: 1

Rahux Member since:
2009-01-13

I personally know 8 people who got started with Linux by trying Ubuntu a few years ago. Three of those people became developers. Only one still uses Ubuntu. But if it wasn't for Ubuntu, none of those would have happened.

It might be indirect, but Cannonical has done a huge amount for Linux. The idea that they're stealing potential users from 'traditional' distributions just doesn't translate to reality.

Even in my small example, none of those who started with Ubuntu stayed exclusively with Ubuntu. As soon as you jump to Ubuntu you quickly realise how diverse the Linux ecosystem is. It's also widely marketed and understood as a 'beginners' OS so everyone who wants to go further and experiment with other distros because there's a sense that a lot exciting stuff happens elsewhere. Ubuntu is like a gateway drug to Linux and it does that very well.

Reply Score: 5

kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Yes, Apple is a good example of a lecher company.


How is Apple a leecher company given the number of open source projects they have employees working on. LLVM, Webkit, Launchd, libdispatch and so on. Please, tell, me where is Apple 'leeching' or is this just a hissy fit from a person who wants a Mac but is unable to buy one?

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"Yes, Apple is a good example of a lecher company.


How is Apple a leecher company given the number of open source projects they have employees working on. LLVM, Webkit, Launchd, libdispatch and so on. Please, tell, me where is Apple 'leeching' or is this just a hissy fit from a person who wants a Mac but is unable to buy one?
"

Ok, I was thinking on FreeBSD, but you are right, on other projects they do contribute.

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I've heard that many of the Ubuntu developers are also Debian developers. I'm actually asking for correction or confirmation for this one. If there is such a high rate of cross polination between parent and child distros.. isn't that "up stream"?

Reply Score: 2

Fettarme H-Milch Member since:
2010-02-16

"Imagine a company like Microsoft, taking linux components, making their own distribution, not contributing anything, and then claiming their additions to the linux ecosystem are superior.


You mean Apple?
"


Yeah! Damn you, Apple, for leeching off WebKit, CUPS, LLVM/Clang, libdispatch, Darwin Streaming Server, etc. without giving ANYTHING back!
Oh wait, those are all products which are mostly developes by Apple..

Reply Score: 2

SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

Canonical make Linux more accessible to a wider audience and try to make some things that have haunted Linux for years, much easier. Here's a few examples:

Installation of hardware drivers like the NVIDIA graphics driver. It's so easy to install, you just activate it, simple. New users want 3D accelerated drivers, especially Windows users and they don't want to add repositories, find which packages to install, which is guess work to them.

Simple installation. Now Linux isn't exactly hard to install but the Ubuntu installer doesn't give hardly any of that verbose crap new users want to see. It's easy to install and says what it can do during the install.

Media. Prompt people to install codecs easy and Flash. In fact, that happens in Rhythmbox for mp3 playback. they also provide cloud storage and a music store for main stream music which new users want.

Software Centre. It may need some work but it's a ton better than some of the package managers out there.

Most Linux distros just don't care about the above things and that's why they will never meet the needs of the average computer buyer. If you like Linux like me and can use any distro, fine but don't expect the mass of people to do it, because it's not going to happen, they need something like Ubuntu.

Canonical could do more in fixing the lower stack of Linux that's for sure(graphics drivers), but it's not like Canonical close source their software or hide it behind closed doors(Novell did at one point with Compiz).

Reply Score: 6

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Canonical make Linux more accessible to a wider audience and try to make some things that have haunted Linux for years, much easier.


Imagine Canonical was evil and selfish. What would be their objective? They would want their product to be successful (as is the only way to survive), so they need users, and the way to do that is with a good user experience.

Nobody is denying that they have done good things for Ubuntu. The observation is that its only for Ubuntu, which means Canonical is not a member of the linux community, and that's fine, but they shouldn't be pulling PR stunts trying to make believe like they are.

Installation of hardware drivers like the NVIDIA graphics driver. It's so easy to install, you just activate it, simple. New users want 3D accelerated drivers, especially Windows users and they don't want to add repositories, find which packages to install, which is guess work to them.


That is fine, but Fedora goes for the home run; a public, completely open source driver that has no license issues and can be used by all the distributions.

Simple installation. Now Linux isn't exactly hard to install but the Ubuntu installer doesn't give hardly any of that verbose crap new users want to see. It's easy to install and says what it can do during the install.


Same with many other distributions which you have obviously not tried; e.g Fedora, OpenSUSE.

Media. Prompt people to install codecs easy and Flash. In fact, that happens in Rhythmbox for mp3 playback. they also provide cloud storage and a music store for main stream music which new users want.


This wasn't developed by Canonical, and in fact it was deployed first on Fedora IIRC.

Software Centre. It may need some work but it's a ton better than some of the package managers out there.


Clearly you haven't tried PackageKit, which was developed by Fedora, for all distributions and all package managers, and eventually Ubuntu would also use it.

Most Linux distros just don't care about the above things and that's why they will never meet the needs of the average computer buyer. If you like Linux like me and can use any distro, fine but don't expect the mass of people to do it, because it's not going to happen, they need something like Ubuntu.


They do care, but doing things right takes more time.

There will be eventually a company that has the right talent to create good UIs and is a good member of the open source community. At that point Ubuntu would disappear into oblivion just like it came.

Canonical could do more in fixing the lower stack of Linux that's for sure(graphics drivers), but it's not like Canonical close source their software or hide it behind closed doors(Novell did at one point with Compiz).


Canonical doesn't need to fix anything, they just need to make their code distribution agnostic, and perhaps push things in a truly open source way. See how Fedora made PackageKit available to everyone for example. But they simply don't care.

And you are mistaken, Novell closed Xgl, compiz is something totally different.

Reply Score: 3

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Imagine Canonical was evil and selfish. What would be their objective? They would want their product to be successful (as is the only way to survive), so they need users, and the way to do that is with a good user experience.

A company is by definition selfish.

That is fine, but Fedora goes for the home run; a public, completely open source driver that has no license issues and can be used by all the distributions.

Which, last I heard, is still worse than the binary blob and at least on my card doesn't offer 3D acceleration.

Same with many other distributions which you have obviously not tried; e.g Fedora, OpenSUSE.

Yes, because things like LVM make so much sense to the home user!

Clearly you haven't tried PackageKit, which was developed by Fedora, for all distributions and all package managers, and eventually Ubuntu would also use it.

Yet Software Center is the easiest front-end. People like big buttons and fluffy clouds.

Canonical doesn't need to fix anything, they just need to make their code distribution agnostic, and perhaps push things in a truly open source way. See how Fedora made PackageKit available to everyone for example. But they simply don't care.

Why doesn't pacman work in Ubuntu? There, I suppose Arch is a selfish and evil distribution!

Reply Score: 1

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

Which, last I heard, is still worse than the binary blob and at least on my card doesn't offer 3D acceleration.

Shortsighted, short term and selfish. I want a driver that works now, doesn't have rough edges, long term viability be damned.

Yes, Ubuntu does deliver the short term solution. What the Fedora project is aiming at is complete independence from the whims of NVidia. Long term we don't want to be dependent on when NVidia deigns to update their driver for the new X-server. We don't want to be dependent on NVidia to support new technology like KMS. Long term we don't want to depend on NVidia for support for our older videocards. Using Nouveau as the default solves that problem long term.

End users can support this by being patient and looking long term. Yes, now it's rough, but when we get through the rough patch, we have good and lasting support. It used to be that that was what it meant being a Linux user and part of the community. We were all along for the ride to ever better software, even if it gets hairy here and there.

The current "I want it all and I want it now!" sense of entitlement won't lead to a sustainable Freedom Software platform. Short term inclusion of closed bits and bobs doesn't solve the long term problem of being free of these shackling dependencies.

Reply Score: 3

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Shortsighted, short term and selfish. I want a driver that works now, doesn't have rough edges, long term viability be damned.

No. He praised the open-source driver which is YET to be as good as the binary blob. In fact, I understand very well the necessity and the usefulness of having an open-source nVIDIA driver. I mentioned "on my card" because someone would otherwise come with the Universal It WorksForMe Argument.

Not that you'd understand, but most users ARE shortsighted, short term and selfish. Yes, I'm able to put up with even broken drivers if needed, but the average guy will think Linux sucks and move back to Windows cause his drivers work!

End users can support this by being patient and looking long term.

"I want the one with better gee-bees." Yes, that's gonna work so well for them.

The current "I want it all and I want it now!" sense of entitlement won't lead to a sustainable Freedom Software platform. Short term inclusion of closed bits and bobs doesn't solve the long term problem of being free of these shackling dependencies.

It doesn't, but it offers a USABLE desktop. That's what people don't get and that's why even now I have to jump through hoops to install basic playback support in Fedora. Ubuntu? It's one click away. As they say, it just works.

Edited 2010-09-15 12:06 UTC

Reply Score: 2

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

I totally get what you are saying, but being a Linux user is something different than being a mere entitled consumer of whatever the vendor stuffed down your throat. It takes an active decision to become a Linux user, you don't inadvertently stumble over a retail Linux computer and get it home without knowing what you bought.

The only point I would like people to realize for themselves is that the privileges that Linux gives you as an end user should come with the realization that those privileges are a result of the "obligations" that using the platform brings. To be able to sustain the freedom in the platform, it is necessary to look beyond small and short term inconveniences from time to time and see if the rough new technology can be accelerated.

Everybody dumped on Ubuntu for the premature inclusion of PulseAudio, but in the end, it accelerated the stabilization of the sound daemon for the betterment of everybodies experience. Same with Nouveau. Fedora is to be applauded for it. (Even if I find their general no-closed-bits policy a bit too strict).

I'm not against making it easy to add the closed bits and bobs in a humanly feasible way (Yay Medibuntu), but it should not be the whole focus. We also need long term open code and even more important, real collaboration on fundamental infrastructure that the whole community depends upon. Including the end users supporting the developers, when they temporarily break things to make stuff fundamentally better.

Reply Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

"being a Linux user is something different than being a mere entitled consumer of whatever the vendor stuffed down your throat"

Choosing to be an active member of a FOSS community may include social obligation but being an end user has none. Most people don't care about how the software was developed just so long as they press the power button and blinky lights turn on. This elitist arrogant attitude that it has to be something different is a problem not a benefit that attacks new users. "oh, you didn't suffer like I did back in the day with Slackware" yeah.. well.. when I started, you had to boot a floppy and prey your ftp connection didn't fail mid way through a critical package.. while walking up hill too and from the computer shed.. in dead of winter.. with a turnip on our belt and wolves on our heals.. - who give's a shit. This isn't a religious trial; one must be this pias to compute here. That's IBM priesthood bullshit not hackerdom. So what if new users don't have to go the rough early distro days? Just be glad they have any interest in using the platform; maybe they grow into contributing good little Cathlinux's and maybe they never develop beyond being simple users. Either way, most users can at least help convincing hardware and game vendors to pay more attention.


"you don't inadvertently stumble over a retail Linux computer and get it home without knowing what you bought"

Netbooks.

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"Imagine Canonical was evil and selfish. What would be their objective? They would want their product to be successful (as is the only way to survive), so they need users, and the way to do that is with a good user experience.

A company is by definition selfish.
"
But a company that collaborates (RedHat) is less selfish than a company that doesn't (Canonical). The point here is that RedHat could be more evil by not collaborating, Canonical doesn't really have any steps up in evilness.

"That is fine, but Fedora goes for the home run; a public, completely open source driver that has no license issues and can be used by all the distributions.

Which, last I heard, is still worse than the binary blob and at least on my card doesn't offer 3D acceleration.
"
That's NVIDIA's fault, not RedHat's. Fedora is trying to help their users in a collaborative/free way, while giving the users the option to use NVIDIA by using a 3rd party repository. Ubuntu is hardly helping the situation at all. IOW Fedora is part of the solution, Ubuntu is not.

At some point the open driver would work just fine, in part thanks to Fedora, and then Ubuntu will jump the bandwagon claiming that they are giving their users the best experience... but in reality they hardly did anything.

"Same with many other distributions which you have obviously not tried; e.g Fedora, OpenSUSE.

Yes, because things like LVM make so much sense to the home user!
"
So do partitions. The user don't have to ever see them. Just say "automatic" and Fedora will pick a sensible default that would not affect your experience at all if you don't know what a partition or a volume is.

"Clearly you haven't tried PackageKit, which was developed by Fedora, for all distributions and all package managers, and eventually Ubuntu would also use it.

Yet Software Center is the easiest front-end. People like big buttons and fluffy clouds.
"
Ubuntu is going to move to PackageKit, that's a fact you can see in their notes. If they don't like the UI they can change it, or they can make "Software Center" use PackageKit's backed. You see, it was designed to fit the needs of everyone.

Ubuntu could repay the favor by improving PackageKit's UI; i.e. contributing, but I guess that would be too much to ask.

"Canonical doesn't need to fix anything, they just need to make their code distribution agnostic, and perhaps push things in a truly open source way. See how Fedora made PackageKit available to everyone for example. But they simply don't care.

Why doesn't pacman work in Ubuntu? There, I suppose Arch is a selfish and evil distribution!
"
You are punching yourself; pacman does work in Ubuntu, just like in any other distribution, I've used it in Fedora; it doesn't conflict with the system's package manager. But you chose a very bad example anyway, because by definition the package management system is the single most important thing that defines a distribution; you wouldn't want to change that unless you are creating your own distro.

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

But a company that collaborates (RedHat) is less selfish than a company that doesn't (Canonical). The point here is that RedHat could be more evil by not collaborating, Canonical doesn't really have any steps up in evilness.

"Evil is generally accepted to be defined as the intention of causing harm or destruction while threatening or deliberately violating morality."

Did Canonical burn your computer or something? Killed your cat?

That's NVIDIA's fault, not RedHat's. Fedora is trying to help their users in a collaborative/free way, while giving the users the option to use NVIDIA by using a 3rd party repository. Ubuntu is hardly helping the situation at all. IOW Fedora is part of the solution, Ubuntu is not.

What I'm saying is, Ubuntu is providing a driver that WORKS. Users don't care about experimental, half-working drivers, trust me.

At some point the open driver would work just fine, in part thanks to Fedora, and then Ubuntu will jump the bandwagon claiming that they are giving their users the best experience... but in reality they hardly did anything.

They will be giving their users the best experience. How's that not true?

It's like saying Windows doesn't give people the best experience because Microsoft didn't work on the nVIDIA/ATI drivers.

So do partitions. The user don't have to ever see them. Just say "automatic" and Fedora will pick a sensible default that would not affect your experience at all if you don't know what a partition or a volume is.

I am tempted to try this, but I don't have a 2nd hard drive to spare. I'm farily confident Fedora's installer is a bit more cryptic than Ubuntu's.

Ubuntu is going to move to PackageKit, that's a fact you can see in their notes. If they don't like the UI they can change it, or they can make "Software Center" use PackageKit's backed. You see, it was designed to fit the needs of everyone.

Good. That means they are using the most sensible solution and not jumping on the ITLLWORKLATER projects that pop up every year or so.

Ubuntu could repay the favor by improving PackageKit's UI; i.e. contributing, but I guess that would be too much to ask.

Why aren't you trying to improve the frontends? Oh, wait, it's easier to call out Canonical.

Again, it's GPL. They can take it, modify it, and even sell it. All without being required to contribute back.

You are punching yourself; pacman does work in Ubuntu, just like in any other distribution, I've used it in Fedora; it doesn't conflict with the system's package manager.

Oh, it doesn't? Hey, let's use my distro's package manager to remo-- darn it.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"But a company that collaborates (RedHat) is less selfish than a company that doesn't (Canonical). The point here is that RedHat could be more evil by not collaborating, Canonical doesn't really have any steps up in evilness.

"Evil is generally accepted to be defined as the intention of causing harm or destruction while threatening or deliberately violating morality."

Did Canonical burn your computer or something? Killed your cat?
"
That's one definition, but if you want to stick to it, then fine, let's use the original qualifier; how can Canonical step up in their selfishness? There aren't any more steps. They are pretty much as selfish as distributions go.

"That's NVIDIA's fault, not RedHat's. Fedora is trying to help their users in a collaborative/free way, while giving the users the option to use NVIDIA by using a 3rd party repository. Ubuntu is hardly helping the situation at all. IOW Fedora is part of the solution, Ubuntu is not.

What I'm saying is, Ubuntu is providing a driver that WORKS. Users don't care about experimental, half-working drivers, trust me.
"
Yes, but that doesn't benefit the linux community only users from Ubuntu, and that doesn't require Canonical to lift a finger! You see they are not doing anything! Just including one package by default.

And of course, what happens when NVIDIA decides to stop supporting certain cards, what are those users to do? How is Ubuntu addressing that problem that will happen eventually. They aren't doing anything at all, they rely utterly and completely on the linux community to solve that problem.

"At some point the open driver would work just fine, in part thanks to Fedora, and then Ubuntu will jump the bandwagon claiming that they are giving their users the best experience... but in reality they hardly did anything.

They will be giving their users the best experience. How's that not true?

It's like saying Windows doesn't give people the best experience because Microsoft didn't work on the nVIDIA/ATI drivers.
"
It would be strictly true, but deceiving. The true linux community did it; Fedora, Debian, Archlinux... not Ubuntu. Ubuntu only takes, never gives. A leecher.

"So do partitions. The user don't have to ever see them. Just say "automatic" and Fedora will pick a sensible default that would not affect your experience at all if you don't know what a partition or a volume is.

I am tempted to try this, but I don't have a 2nd hard drive to spare. I'm farily confident Fedora's installer is a bit more cryptic than Ubuntu's.
"
Based on what? Did you dream it? How about you try to form your opinions on facts?

"Ubuntu is going to move to PackageKit, that's a fact you can see in their notes. If they don't like the UI they can change it, or they can make "Software Center" use PackageKit's backed. You see, it was designed to fit the needs of everyone.

Good. That means they are using the most sensible solution and not jumping on the ITLLWORKLATER projects that pop up every year or so.
"
When Fedora introduced it in a release it worked perfectly fine, otherwise they wouldn't have included it. Fedora is fertile ground for innovation and stays stable. Of course you wouldn't know that because Ubuntu tells you that if they are not doing it, it must be wrong, and you believe it.

"Ubuntu could repay the favor by improving PackageKit's UI; i.e. contributing, but I guess that would be too much to ask.

Why aren't you trying to improve the frontends? Oh, wait, it's easier to call out Canonical.
"
Are you insane? Nobody is relying on Canonical, that's precisely the point; Canonical doesn't contribute.

The fontend is improving without the help from Canonical. Nobody is relying on Fedora, nor Archlinux, nor Debian. This is the commons; everyone contributes and we all benefit.

Again, it's GPL. They can take it, modify it, and even sell it. All without being required to contribute back.

Why are you repeating the same? Yes, they can decide to not collaborate, and they are doing so, we are merely pointing the fact that they are doing it.

"You are punching yourself; pacman does work in Ubuntu, just like in any other distribution, I've used it in Fedora; it doesn't conflict with the system's package manager.

Oh, it doesn't? Hey, let's use my distro's package manager to remo-- darn it.
"
What are you even talking about? The point is that they contribute.

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

That's one definition, but if you want to stick to it, then fine, let's use the original qualifier; how can Canonical step up in their selfishness? There aren't any more steps. They are pretty much as selfish as distributions go.

That's another thing ;) Selfish, yes. That I can agree with.

And of course, what happens when NVIDIA decides to stop supporting certain cards, what are those users to do? How is Ubuntu addressing that problem that will happen eventually. They aren't doing anything at all, they rely utterly and completely on the linux community to solve that problem.

What happens when NVIDIA decides to stop supporting certain cards, what are those users to do? How is Microsfot addressing that problem that will happen eventually? They aren't doing anything at all, they rely utterly and completely on the NVIDIA developers to solve tha -- oops, I guess NVIDIA won't solve that problem, you need to buy a new graphics card.

It would be strictly true, but deceiving. The true linux community did it; Fedora, Debian, Archlinux... not Ubuntu. Ubuntu only takes, never gives. A leecher.

You are free to get their modified code and compile it. So is any other distribution.

Based on what? Did you dream it? How about you try to form your opinions on facts?

No, but I used to use Fedora. And its installer was more complicated for a NORMAL USER than Ubuntu's one.

When Fedora introduced it in a release it worked perfectly fine, otherwise they wouldn't have included it. Fedora is fertile ground for innovation and stays stable. Of course you wouldn't know that because Ubuntu tells you that if they are not doing it, it must be wrong, and you believe it.

PackageKit? Oh yes, did I say PackageKit was shit? Quite the opposite, actually.

As for Nouveau, which is an example of ITLLWORKLATER... I still remember the joy of having to force Fedora to use the VESA driver, remove nouveau, add a repo and install the binary blob. I'm sure a normal user that is scared by even seeing the prompt will just go back to Windows!

Are you insane? Nobody is relying on Canonical, that's precisely the point; Canonical doesn't contribute.

No, but you seem to have a problem understanding English. And you still didn't respond to my question, instead preferring to attack me.

Why are you repeating the same? Yes, they can decide to not collaborate, and they are doing so, we are merely pointing the fact that they are doing it.

Because you keep implying that Canonical is somehow doing a wrong thing by not collaborating. No, they're just making a nice package for normal users. Or maybe they're sick of the elitist attitude many Linux "community members" show.

What are you even talking about? The point is that they contribute.

But pacman doesn't work nicely (as in -- not leaving the system confused) on other distros than Arch.

Reply Score: 1

SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

I didn't say Ubuntu made the codec install easy, I said it's easy in their distro. Other distros just don't have this setup right or they don't have the repos to support the codecs that are being asked for.

As for Packagekit, yeah it's pretty decent(Note that I didn't mention it as one of the bad package managers) but as pointed out on planet GNOME, the update systems' descriptions of it's updates are very ambiguous.

Edited 2010-09-15 13:28 UTC

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

I didn't say Ubuntu made the codec install easy, I said it's easy in their distro. Other distros just don't have this setup right or they don't have the repos to support the codecs that are being asked for.

Have you tried or are you just guessing? It works just fine here.

Reply Score: 1

SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

Providing you have the repos to support the codec installer, it will works but my point is, distros like Fedora, openSUSE and most others don't, so there for it's not seamless.

Edited 2010-09-15 22:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Providing you have the repos to support the codec installer, it will works but my point is, distros like Fedora, openSUSE and most others don't, so there for it's not seamless.

No, the codec installer is there, what isn't there is the codecs, which are not free. All you need to get the repos is click one link.

Canonical will get sued eventually for distributing these codecs without paying royalties.

This is a problem that will stay there until we start using royalty free codecs like VP8, or the copyright of other codecs expire.

Reply Score: 1

dacresni Member since:
2009-08-26

Um WHAT? thats a crude analagy. Its not like they didn't open source their code contributions. Im sure the first thing they've contributed in the 'Big Code Drop' method has to be the multitouch. Is it well documented? Is it integratable in other distros? Otherwise, (https://launchpad.net/lazr ) the parts of launchpad and their contrizutions to gnome.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Um WHAT? thats a crude analagy. Its not like they didn't open source their code contributions. Im sure the first thing they've contributed in the 'Big Code Drop' method has to be the multitouch. Is it well documented? Is it integratable in other distros? Otherwise, (https://launchpad.net/lazr ) the parts of launchpad and their contrizutions to gnome.


Microsoft also has open source code, that doesn't mean they collaborate.

Linux already has multi-touch; it's called MPX. Ubuntu is yet again not collaborating and going in an entirely different direction.

Reply Score: 0

jptros Member since:
2005-08-26

Ubuntu is yet again not collaborating and going in an entirely different direction.


READ:

It's free to do what you want with it as long as you do what we want with it.

Reply Score: 4

bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

jptros trolled...

Ubuntu is yet again not collaborating and going in an entirely different direction.

READ:

It's free to do what you want with it as long as you do what we want with it.


No, it's "Don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining."

If you want to claim to be a part of the open source community, then contribute. If you're a part of the family, then take out the garbage, wash the dishes, mow the grass once in a while. Guests are always welcome, but don't be surprised if you're not received as warmly as family is.

--bornagainpenguin

Reply Score: 0

dayalsoap Member since:
2010-05-19

They ARE a part of the open source community. They release their source code.

Being part of the community is NOT defined as pushing EVERYTHING upstream.

Show me where being part of the community is defined as pushing everything upstream.

Reply Score: 5

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

They ARE a part of the open source community. They release their source code.

Being part of the community is NOT defined as pushing EVERYTHING upstream.

Show me where being part of the community is defined as pushing everything upstream.

How can you be part of a community without contributing? And again, we are not talking about Ubuntu, but Canonical. And the statistics show they contribute almost nothing.

Reply Score: 1

Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

If you want to claim to be a part of the open source community, then contribute. If you're a part of the family, then take out the garbage, wash the dishes, mow the grass once in a while. Guests are always welcome, but don't be surprised if you're not received as warmly as family is.

--bornagainpenguin


This is the kind of attitude that keeps a lot of users away from OSS projects and in the open arms of MS and Apple. Sometimes, it seems that such users are not really welcomed by everyone so losing them to proprietary software is not a big loss.

Non code contributing/hacking users are seen as annoying leechers and their problems are a nuisance.

Luckily, not all OSS projects share this way of thinking.

Edited 2010-09-15 09:38 UTC

Reply Score: 3

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Non code contributing/hacking users are seen as annoying leechers and their problems are a nuisance.

Indeed, it's a really annoying attitude some people harbor. Not everyone can contribute code and not everyone can contribute _good_ code. But everyone can contribute atleast something, be it one-on-one help every now and then on IRC channels, writing guides, tutorials or manuals, maintain a community portal and so on. Those are all still very important things and the Linux world would not be where it is if everyone just did code but not the other stuff. And Ubuntu DOES contribute community portals, guides, tutorials and all those things.

Besides, even if someone wasn't contributing anything IMHO they'd still have the right to choose and use F/OSS software. After all, isn't the whole point of it all to provide software for everyone regardless of what they do, where they do, how they do, or who they are?

Reply Score: 4

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Non code contributing/hacking users are seen as annoying leechers and their problems are a nuisance.

Users are most definitely not leechers, because many of them are giving back what they can. It's the company that is taking from the linux community to build their own product without giving back.

Indeed, it's a really annoying attitude some people harbor. Not everyone can contribute code and not everyone can contribute _good_ code. But everyone can contribute atleast something, be it one-on-one help every now and then on IRC channels, writing guides, tutorials or manuals, maintain a community portal and so on. Those are all still very important things and the Linux world would not be where it is if everyone just did code but not the other stuff. And Ubuntu DOES contribute community portals, guides, tutorials and all those things.

You are confusing things. Whatever support is given in Ubuntu forums, or Ubuntu IRC channel, is geared towards Ubuntu, and benefits the Ubuntu community.

Contributions on distribution-agnostic topics is a contribution to the linux community, but that's contribution != collaboration. Collaboration requires shared development.

Some Ubuntu people might collaborate, and others contribute, but not CANONICAL. Get it?

Besides, even if someone wasn't contributing anything IMHO they'd still have the right to choose and use F/OSS software. After all, isn't the whole point of it all to provide software for everyone regardless of what they do, where they do, how they do, or who they are?

Nobody is complaining about Ubuntu users. Nobody is complaining about the Ubuntu distribution it itself. The complaint is about CANONICAL. Do you get it? The company.

The company has the resources, the company has the expertise, the company is the one that is deciding to keep their development confined to their product.

Repeat after me: CANONICAL.

Reply Score: 1

benir0 Member since:
2006-07-26

No, you obviously don't get it.

Software under the GPL is specifically offered free for any use, and Canonical has built an OS with said "Free" or GPLed software. This is exactly the point. Anyone can step in and use free software to give to kids to oh, I don't know, build a business? If Canonical isn't providing anything of value, then how can they possibly make money?

They do provide value to the community internally in the ways he mentions and to the world at large by working to put an OS backed by "Free" ideals in the hands of people all over the world.

Blame Canonical?

Whether you use Arch, Gentoo, Ubuntu or whatever...

Thank them.

Reply Score: 1

bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

benir0 riposted...

If Canonical isn't providing anything of value, then how can they possibly make money?


Who says they are?

--bornagainpenguin

Reply Score: 5

benir0 Member since:
2006-07-26

I meant that if they are making money it would be for providing some value above and beyond simply redistributing OSS code.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

No, you obviously don't get it.

Software under the GPL is specifically offered free for any use, and Canonical has built an OS with said "Free" or GPLed software. This is exactly the point. Anyone can step in and use free software to give to kids to oh, I don't know, build a business? If Canonical isn't providing anything of value, then how can they possibly make money?


That's like a priest arguing that he is not a pedophile because he pays taxes... dude, the fact that you meet your legal obligations doesn't mean you are any less evil. Canonical can provide value to their users and not contribute to the linux community at the same time, and that's what they are doing.

They do provide value to the community internally in the ways he mentions and to the world at large by working to put an OS backed by "Free" ideals in the hands of people all over the world.


Right, they promote the "free" ideals by distributing proprietary software like NVIDIA drivers. Even if they did that, that's not contributing, that's just fulfilling their own self-interest with PR. At best it can be considered a side-effect, not a contribution.

Whether you use Arch, Gentoo, Ubuntu or whatever.


Ask any Archlinux user; Canonical building up their Ubuntu brand doesn't help them in any way.

Reply Score: 0

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

That's like a priest arguing that he is not a pedophile because he pays taxes...


I'm sorry, but you're a troll. Equating Canonical's efforts to paedophilia? Wtf? Seriously?

If I were Mark I'd told your precious "community" to fcuk off and I'd buy an island.

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

"That's like a priest arguing that he is not a pedophile because he pays taxes...


I'm sorry, but you're a troll. Equating Canonical's efforts to paedophilia? Wtf? Seriously?

If I were Mark I'd told your precious "community" to fcuk off and I'd buy an island.
"
You are comparing them, I am making a point that A != B, C != D. You are the one taking word out of context and saying A = C. You are the one trolling. Fix your logic.

Reply Score: 1

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

So when you start out a sentence with "That's like" that is not a comparison? Oh and your analogies are shit.

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

His logic is fine.

An apple is like a banana. They're both fruits.
Canonical is like a priest who sins but pays taxes. They are both evil.

Reply Score: 1

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

Yes but its still a comparison. You are comparing Canonical to a priest who doesn't pay taxes. That was my argument. Stick to the car analogies that seems to be the accepted form here. Leave pedophiles, priests and hookers out of the conversation. Oh and Nazis.

Reply Score: 3

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

His logic is fine.

An apple is like a banana. They're both fruits.
Canonical is like a priest who sins but pays taxes. They are both evil.


Can't you follow logic?

A=Everyone must pay taxes
B=Priest pays taxes
C=Priest hasn't abused children

A=1, B=1

C remains indeterminable; IOW A and B are irrelevant

A=GPL doesn't enforce contributions
B=Canonical follows the GPL
C=Canonical doesn't contribute

A=1, B=1

C remains indeterminable; IOW A and B are irrelevant

Is that clear, or do you need a diagram?

Reply Score: 0

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

Get back to me when you learn what a comparison is.

Reply Score: 1

n.l.o Member since:
2009-09-14

Canonical can provide value to their users and not contribute to the linux community at the same time


You seriously believe that Ubuntu users are not part of "the linux community"?

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

You seriously believe that Ubuntu users are not part of "the linux community"?


Didn't you get the memo? Only people who contribute code are members of the community.

Users, documentation writers, translators, icon/etc. artists, bug reporters, usability researchers, marketing departments, and so on, are all leeches.

Edited 2010-09-15 11:40 UTC

Reply Score: 2

n.l.o Member since:
2009-09-14

"You seriously believe that Ubuntu users are not part of "the linux community"?


Didn't you get the memo? Only people who contribute code are members of the community.

Users, documentation writers, translators, icon/etc. artists, bug reporters, usability researchers, marketing departments, and so on, are all leeches.
"

Silly me, I must tell the artists, testers, technical authors, researchers, analysts and the marketing department at work that they contribute nothing of value to our company products and eco-system.

Though I think i'll follow this nutter's example and say it via electronic means as I value my knee-caps!

Reply Score: 2

apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

I think he was being sarcastic.

Reply Score: 2

n.l.o Member since:
2009-09-14

Of course he was and so was I.

I'm British, I find it a major struggle not to be sarcastic. ;)

Reply Score: 1

felipec Member since:
2007-09-25

Silly me, I must tell the artists, testers, technical authors, researchers, analysts and the marketing department at work that they contribute nothing of value to our company products and eco-system.

Sigh they contribute to Ubuntu, not to linux.

Reply Score: 2

another_sam Member since:
2009-08-19

What do you think about the deployment of open source on the desktop achieved by Canonical?

For instance, there is a strong correlation between the number of users and the number of bugs found. And Launchpad allows that bug reports go upstream. I think this quite enables collaboration. I don't know if "enabling collaboration" is the same as "collaboration" for you, but for me is essential and just for that I give thanks to Canonical.

And what about freedom and privacy? What is the point of using free software if your government and the companies you make business with run proprietary stacks?

Do you only chat and send e-mails with friends and family that use Linux and BSD? I don't have that luck. That's why I would like them to use a free software stack; and that's again why Canonical's task is so important: providing a free software stack for them, and the employees of my government, and non-computer engineers the services of which I need to do my daily life.

If you don't want to call Canonical part of "the community", don't do it. But then, at least acknowledge that the efforts of "the community" significantly benefit from the efforts of Canonical in changing the reality.

Edited 2010-09-15 09:48 UTC

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Doesn't Canonical submit most of the code it does produce back up to the Debian parent distro?

Reply Score: 2

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Obviously don't get

You say that like it's a bad thing.

The single most important thing about open source is collaboration;

Which means jack **** to Joe Sixpack user who isn't a coder, and so long as that attitude prevails Linux will continue to be a buggy geek tinkertoy on the desktop.

JHVH forbid someone take it and try to package it in a manner a normal person might actually try and use.

But again, the only people who care about "open source" or not are back room *nix server geeks who felt left behind by the REAL computer revolution, career educators and lecturers, and college age/younger losers dumb enough to buy into the naive pipe dream rhetoric while still having life paid for by mommy and daddy.

To the average person -- aka someone who doesn't write code, doesn't want to write code, and is even willing to pay other people to do it so they can actually get some WORD DONE -- the entire "free as in freedom" snake oil means NOTHING -- at least unlike some other distro's Ubuntu is willing to acknowledge it.

Though it's fun watching the free***'s kvetch once they encounter the truth of REAL freedom. When you have ACTUAL freedom you often have to put up with other people doing things you don't like.

Such as taking your freely given product and doing whatever the hell they want with it -- hence the LIE of the FSF which puts restrictions on 'freely given' in the name of Freedom. Uhm...

Edited 2010-09-16 13:26 UTC

Reply Score: 0

Comment by ssokolow
by ssokolow on Tue 14th Sep 2010 23:57 UTC
ssokolow
Member since:
2010-01-21

My only problem with Ubuntu is that they often do idiotic things which destabilize the distro and impair their ability to say "Look, we're ready for general use" like jumping on PulseAudio before it was mature or releasing a client-side WinDeco hack with horrible architecture.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by ssokolow
by UltraZelda64 on Wed 15th Sep 2010 00:38 UTC in reply to "Comment by ssokolow"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

And removing the Gimp without having a suitable replacement.

And no, before anyone asks, F-Spot is not a suitable replacement. In fact, I wouldn't recommend *anyone* use a program that requires "importing" all the users relevant files (by creating copies of all their photos) before allowing the user to use it. Not to mention, it is simply worthless for any image modification whatsoever.

In KDE, there are at least a few potential Gimp replacement candidates; GNOME doesn't have any worthy alternatives that I know of yet. Yet, Ubuntu already kicked it to the curb.

Reply Score: 5

I would agree...
by VistaUser on Wed 15th Sep 2010 00:10 UTC
VistaUser
Member since:
2008-03-08

I would agree with him if Ubuntu had expanded marketshare and expanded mindshare.

Instead what it seems to have done is take marketshare away from traditional linux distributions, but not really created all that much new marketshare in and of itself by winning over converts from other operating systems.

Sure, some have moved over, but if Ubuntu was not around most still would have moved over, but to a different distro.

This however is not to knock Ubuntu. It did the right things at the right moments, having stability when others may have lacked it.

I sometimes tinker with Fedora and would probably not consider Ubuntu, but there were a few early releases where Ubuntu was doing a good job and the impression of how things are seem to have stuck since then to some degree.

That is not the fault of Canonical though.

Reply Score: 4

More of the endless political conflict
by jbauer on Wed 15th Sep 2010 00:35 UTC
jbauer
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'd think the major criticism they'd get sent down their way would be their declared intention of going mainstream with a system that still hasn't figured out the basics of a consumer platform and couldn't be farther away from being ready.

It's striking to see how Linuxland is too lost in their timeless internal struggles to care about working software.

Reply Score: 2

PR and "not invented here"
by ARUmar on Wed 15th Sep 2010 01:25 UTC
ARUmar
Member since:
2009-10-08

its true that canonical and Ubuntu have raised the profile of GNU/Linux farther than any other desktop oriented distro thus far.However, and this isnt a case of "NIH" , to get there they have had to sacrifice a lot of what the open source community considers an integral part of the communities unwritten laws and have had a tendancy to lean towards a more Redmondy way of doing things.That said the community is made up of those that choose to participate in it and with a constantly evolving and shifting membership base it nay be canonicals view that gains dominant.
Nevertheless the one criticism that has not been addressed by Mr Shuttleworth is , his contribution or perceived lack thereof to that selfsame community that sustains him.
to quote aristotle "He who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god"

Reply Score: 1

This again!
by tweakedenigma on Wed 15th Sep 2010 01:29 UTC
tweakedenigma
Member since:
2006-12-27

This is right up there with the people that complain about the Novell/MS agreement, Mono, or insert thing they hate about the FOSS ecosystem.

At the end of the day no group does enough so lets hate them all. In fact lets close down all FOSS projects seeing as no one can meet the communities high standards.

Google Sucks because they used H.264
Oracle Sued Google How dare they.
Novell Made a Deal with MS
Canonical doesn't do Enough.
RedHat Abandoned the Desktop and Make some Windows only software.
IBM sued over Patents.
KDE started as closed source, is unstable, and to complex.
Gnome treats users Like morons.

Do I really need to go on? At least for me if they don't break the terms of the License, then they have done enough.

Edited 2010-09-15 01:30 UTC

Reply Score: 11

RE: This again!
by lemur2 on Wed 15th Sep 2010 03:51 UTC in reply to "This again!"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

At the end of the day no group does enough so lets hate them all. In fact lets close down all FOSS projects seeing as no one can meet the communities high standards.

Google Sucks because they used H.264
Oracle Sued Google How dare they.
Novell Made a Deal with MS
Canonical doesn't do Enough.
RedHat Abandoned the Desktop and Make some Windows only software.
IBM sued over Patents.
KDE started as closed source, is unstable, and to complex.
Gnome treats users Like morons.

Do I really need to go on?


Gee, one would almost start to wonder if there wasn't some kind of astroturf smear campaign going on here.

I wounder if there might be some influential party somewhere who was interested in encouraging its own supporters to go on Internet forums, pretend to be ordinary users, and moan incessantly about FOSS for any reason at all that they could dream up. It doesn't have to make any sense, it just has to drive a wedge, and introduce a negative meme. Divide and conquer stuff.

Hmmm.

Perhaps that is why we hear this kind of stuff over and over, ad nauseum, even though it is absolute drivel.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: This again!
by saynte on Wed 15th Sep 2010 10:33 UTC in reply to "RE: This again!"
saynte Member since:
2007-12-10

Remember, however, that the recent initial spark for the 'Canonical doesn't do enough' argument came from within the FOSS community, not from without.

This is the case with many of the perceived FOSS 'problems', they are often criticisms leveled by those from within. In the end you just have to examine each point on its own and decide if it is drivel or not: ignore all of the 'moaning' and you'll miss something valuable to be sure.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: This again!
by dragossh on Wed 15th Sep 2010 12:13 UTC in reply to "RE: This again!"
dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

I bet Microsoft is paying people to do this...

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: This again!
by dvhh on Thu 16th Sep 2010 02:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: This again!"
dvhh Member since:
2006-03-20

No, my bet is on SCO ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: This again!
by nt_jerkface on Wed 15th Sep 2010 18:56 UTC in reply to "RE: This again!"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26


Perhaps that is why we hear this kind of stuff over and over, ad nauseum, even though it is absolute drivel.


The problem with that theory is that outside of FOSS nerds will still argue over the most trivial subjects like which Star Trek was best or what constitutes an RPG.

It happens in the .net realm as well, just google "wpf vs winforms" to see a good example.

Reply Score: 3

RE: This again!
by r_a_trip on Wed 15th Sep 2010 11:47 UTC in reply to "This again!"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

So we should stop healthy discourse and sharing of thoughts because it is seen by some as hate? One of the beautiful things that accompany the FOSS communities, is that every thing is open, even the bickering. At any given time you are in the clear where the gravity of an issue lies.

What good would it do to object to anything but not make that objection clear? People are free to object and act accordingly. With FOSS you get it upfront and out in the open.

As an aside: If everybody kept their mouth shut, what comments would you post on OSNews?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: This again!
by tweakedenigma on Wed 15th Sep 2010 14:08 UTC in reply to "RE: This again!"
tweakedenigma Member since:
2006-12-27

I'm not saying people shouldn't say anything or shouldn't complain, (anyone that knows me will tell you I complain all the time). However, this attitude of these people don't do enough, these people aren't open enough, etc. Is a waste of effort. Does Canonical contribute as much code as Redhat or Novell, no, but look at the difference in size.

I have also seem many mention the Community well, I have been around for a while and I remember the Linux community before Ubuntu, seemed to be filled with lots of RTFM comments, if nothing else Ubuntu has provided a place where new users can get help without being treated like morons And if that is the only thing they ever did for the community it would be enough for me.

Reply Score: 4

I am glad Ubuntu exists
by JPisini on Wed 15th Sep 2010 01:32 UTC
JPisini
Member since:
2006-01-24

Every user Ubuntu brings to Linux is another user that commercial companies can market to, build drivers for, etc. Instead of fighting among ourselves why don't we all work towards making Linux better. I personally don't care if someone uses Ubuntu, Slackware, Debian, or any of hundreds of other distros I care that they are using a system that works the way they do and that they enjoy doing it.
I want to say thanks to Mark and every other person that made or helped make Ubuntu what it is.

Reply Score: 2

always detractors
by dayalsoap on Wed 15th Sep 2010 02:41 UTC
dayalsoap
Member since:
2010-05-19

For every great artifact, there are always detractors.

They don't have to contribute the way you want them to. It sounds like half of you whiners don't even use Ubuntu. So then, what's the problem?

Reply Score: 2

RE: always detractors
by r_a_trip on Wed 15th Sep 2010 12:05 UTC in reply to "always detractors"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

So then, what's the problem?

The problem? Canonical is on its way to break source compatibility with what the world has come to know as a Linux Distribution. With all the "inhouse" changes Canonical pushes through, without making sure (or at least trying to) that these also exist in the upstream projects, they are creating a new system that isn't a Linux distribution anymore. (If they keep up with the deviations from upstream).

The beauty of the Linux distribution system was that you didn't have to put all your eggs in one vendor specific basket. When the "Ubuntu distribution" materializes as the defacto system, we are all beholden to (the viability of) Canonical as the sole company behind that system.

That is why upstream is trying to pull Canonical back in the Linux mainstream. The community doesn't benefit from a much smaller Canonical specific new system. All the progress and benefits of what defines Linux today would be lost.

Reply Score: 4

Curiosity question
by ShadesFox on Wed 15th Sep 2010 03:00 UTC
ShadesFox
Member since:
2006-10-01

People seem to get Ubuntu a hard time, saying that they leech off the hard work of Debian/Linux community in general. Assume for a moment that this is completely true, that Ubuntu contributes 0 back to the community. What is lost?

I'm curious, because it seems to me that nothing is lost.

Edited 2010-09-15 03:01 UTC

Reply Score: 1

That's it, I'm mad
by fretinator on Wed 15th Sep 2010 05:12 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

I have not contributed one line of code to Linux or the BSD's. Not a single line.

Here's what I have done:

1. Paid for Linux and BSD when I use it. I bought Mandriva. I buy OpenBSD CD's. I even bought an Ubuntu CD from Best Buy, which I gave to a co-worker.

2. I report bugs, with good comments on how to reproduce them (Eugenia gave me some encouragement once to do this, and I did).

3. I have written papers at schools about Free Software. A couple weeks ago I gave a presentation on how my school could benefit from Free Software.

4. I answer questions new users have without making them feel foolish for asking.

5. I don't put down Windows and Mac users - that attitude does great harm to the cause of Free Software.

I'm not patting myself on the back.The point is that there are a lot of ways to contribute, and lines of code is only one of them. It makes me sick when people put down the contributions of others. Look for the good in others.

Reply Score: 9

I hope Ubuntu doesn't change its model
by ndrw on Wed 15th Sep 2010 05:51 UTC
ndrw
Member since:
2009-06-30

The results speak for themselves. They managed to streamline the user experience more than any other Linux distributor. In big part it was their development model that made them better than competitors and won them users.

Think about it. They are not developing yet another filesystem, codec, file import filter or any other loosely coupled code that can be easily integrated in the upstream. They want to change the user experience, which means changing the way programs behaves, integrates with the OS and other programs, and look.

Upstreams are not really interested in this kind of improvements. They are not only low on their priority lists but often are undesired, especially if some defaults have to be changed or some pragmatic but not clear-cut decisions made. Upstreams can be pretty hostile to users or developers pushing their own vision of the project. Just read Gnome bugzilla or mailing lists to see what I mean [1].

Ubuntu developers could spend a lot of time pushing their fixes upstream, but they would never achieved a 100% acceptance rate, crippling their own development or managing a local branch anyway. Patches that would get through would be considered "low value" by upstreams (just because of their different priorities) so such activity would't bring Ubuntu much fame anyway. The only reason to do it is to decrease burden of maintaining their own branches. But, since they already do it, it must be easier and cheaper for them than fighting with upstreams.

Finally, opensource is not only about collaboration but also, and primarily, about fair competition. It is perfectly moral and advisable to setup your own repository and compete with the original upstream for users and developers. If you win - everyone wins. The users have better product, the developers have more fun.

[1] This one is my personal favorite. Small detail but shows the upstream attitude:
https://bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=89315

Reply Score: 5

jbauer Member since:
2005-07-06

The results speak for themselves. They managed to streamline the user experience more than any other Linux distributor. In big part it was their development model that made them better than competitors and won them users.


What results? After six years, nobody's using Linux.

Reply Score: 1

ndrw Member since:
2009-06-30

There are more people using Linux desktop now than 6 years ago. Fact.

Percentage-wise market penetration didn't change much but that simply due to the fact our competitors are doing better job than before.

Ask yourself how would Linux desktop market look like without Ubuntu. You will probably come up with something like this:
- paid distributions, focusing on server and enterprise markets
- free but constantly changing development versions of these distributions
- Debian - free but perpetually under resourced project
- minor players like Mandriva - doing the job but fragmenting the market to the limits.

And convince me there would be more Linux users in such scenario than there are now.

Reply Score: 1

jbauer Member since:
2005-07-06

There are more people using Linux desktop now than 6 years ago. Fact.


Maybe. Is that due to Ubuntu? How can you tell? It could be argued that people have been slowly but increasingly using desktop Linux since 1991, and Ubuntu has "only" existed for 6 years.


Percentage-wise market penetration didn't change much but that simply due to the fact our competitors are doing better job than before.


So in six years you can't tell the market has changed. Not what anyone in their right mind would call success for Ubuntu. And did people expect Windows-land to be stuck with XP forever? Switching to Linux is getting harder to justify, not easier. You see, Windows releases actually improve the platform, instead of recompiling stuff every 6 months so they can keep apps reasonably fresh.


Ask yourself how would Linux desktop market look like without Ubuntu. You will probably come up with something like this:
- paid distributions, focusing on server and enterprise markets
- free but constantly changing development versions of these distributions
- Debian - free but perpetually under resourced project
- minor players like Mandriva - doing the job but fragmenting the market to the limits.


People that are using Ubuntu now to push Linux previously promoted Mandriva as the "Linux for human beings". Now we have Ubuntu, which is little more than Debian on a 6-month cycle. Hardly a thrilling proposition for the overall market. Ubuntu brings nothing new to the table, apart from being completely free as in beer, as long as Shuttleworth doesn't mind draining his personal resources.

And convince me there would be more Linux users in such scenario than there are now.


I'd say there'd be about the same, as market penetration figures prove.

Edited 2010-09-17 10:41 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Has anyone asked Debian how they feel?
by tyrione on Wed 15th Sep 2010 07:39 UTC
tyrione
Member since:
2005-11-21

From what I read on Debian dev lists I don't read the fraction, if at all, of the whining about Ubuntu/Canonical contributions.

They run through Debian's SQA process so we all benefit on that end.

Debian continues to be rock solid and Debian Sid is a great Distro of Linux.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Wed 15th Sep 2010 07:48 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

There are two people with a clear vision of Linux in the chain. Linus, and Mark Shuttleworth.

Everything in between is bitching and in-fighting with no sense of direction.

Reply Score: 8

Be careful what you wish for
by Icaria on Wed 15th Sep 2010 10:01 UTC
Icaria
Member since:
2010-06-19

After some disastrous early experiences with SuSE, Ubuntu was what got me into *nix but I think it's still the case that 99% of the people Canonical bring into the *nix fold are people you really don't want that much. The Ubuntu community is probably the most disgusting in the broader *nix community: it's a stuffy, ultra-politically-correct (see Shuttleworth's grovelling apology over the, "explaining what we do to girls", joke) and generally juvenile social clique. You repeatedly hear about contributors being chastised because they dared to express opinions that someone deemed to be 'outside the Ubuntu code of conduct'. I knew of a couple of people who offered great technical support via the forums, who were rather bluntly sent the message that they were not wanted because they dared to upset the zen of the community. Meanwhile, entitled brats that demand that someone fix their problems and just generally terrible tech support contributors are given free reign. Ubuntu has become that particular branch of your extended family tree, whose members are all feral trash but hide it behind a fa├žade of propriety.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Be careful what you wish for
by Panajev on Wed 15th Sep 2010 10:11 UTC in reply to "Be careful what you wish for"
Panajev Member since:
2008-01-09

Meanwhile, entitled brats that demand that someone fix their problems and just generally terrible tech support contributors are given free reign.


... and MS and Apple warmly call them "customers".

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Be careful what you wish for
by Icaria on Wed 15th Sep 2010 10:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Be careful what you wish for"
Icaria Member since:
2010-06-19

MS and Apple at least get something for their troubles.

Reply Score: 3

jptros Member since:
2005-08-26

Then take your s**t and put it back in the toy box.

Reply Score: 0

Icaria Member since:
2010-06-19

Excuse me?

Reply Score: 1

dragossh Member since:
2008-12-16

He means that if you're not ready to support these darn ungrateful users, then take your software and put it where it belongs: amongst other toys. Because other people will come and happily support them, and then you'll bitch how these companies are evil because they're proprietary and work.

Reply Score: 1

Icaria Member since:
2010-06-19

I'm still unclear as to how those 'darn ungrateful users' translate to a better OS. Most of the code contributions for important *nix projects come from the enterprise sector, while the majority of the dregs in the extended Ubuntu community will only, at most, contribute to generally distrusted statistics.

Reply Score: 1

r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

... and MS and Apple warmly call them "customers".

The difference being that MS and Apple get handsomely payed to cater to that bunch and they don't listen too much to the incessant complaints.

Reply Score: 2

On the Horizon?
by segedunum on Wed 15th Sep 2010 15:22 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

Ubuntu gets asked about because Shuttleworth gave away free discs to get the ball rolling. Apart from that they're not even a small splash in a rockpool next to a large ocean.

Ubuntu simply hasn't advanced anything one iota, and the desktop software hasn't got better as a result of Ubuntu.

This 'marketing' and 'people know about Linux because of Ubuntu' gets dredged up every time to justify what Ubuntu has done, or hasn't done. The fact is that desktop Linux usage has not improved at all in the last six years.

Edited 2010-09-15 15:29 UTC

Reply Score: 5

JacobMunoz
Member since:
2006-03-17

Where do all these people get the idea that Canonical is obligated to do anything? I've been quite happy with Linux Mint 9 (an Ubuntu derivative, which Canonical receives nothing for), and I just don't get what all the complaining is about.

SO, the don't upstream as much as YOU would like. T.F.S. Get over it. Ubuntu is a DISTRIBUTION - not necessarily a development team. And even if they were only strictly coders whose sole purpose was to submit patches and updates - where (please, tell me) do people get the right to bash them for not performing (for FREE, mind you) up to some petty whining child's expectations..

Its all just so silly.. ..and the pathetic in-fighting doesn't help the reputation of ANY Linux distributions. Remember, we're trying to make a software platform - not a religion.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

I have only met 2 people in the last 4 years that run Linux on the desktop. Just about everyone who has asked me about Linux viewed it as something that has to do with servers and is somehow a threat to MSFT.

I honestly think Red Hat has done more to popularize Linux in the real world due to mainstream press over their market position.

Sure there have been a thousand digg/reddit articles on Ubuntu but I think they are mostly attracting the same crowd that existed before Ubuntu came along. The teenagers that discovered Ubuntu would have discovered whatever distro was most popular.

Ubuntu has a team of 300 employees and I honestly don't understand what they do all day. The areas where Ubuntu gets compliments like the installer and codec prompts should be handled by a single developer.

I'm not convinced that Ubuntu is anything more than Debian + codec prompts + a marketing budget. I also think that Linux Mint has more potential when it comes to mainstream appeal. Ubuntu has a weird color scheme and the name sounds like a hipster yoga studio.

Reply Score: 5

SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

It's about putting all of these things together right and quiet frankly, no distro has done it properly to the point where it is seamless.

Fedora is good if you purely like FOSS, but it's not going to get anywhere in the desktop market what so ever without providing a seamless way of integrating proprietary software. FOSS is not good enough to replace the NVIDIA binary, codecs or Flash and why Canonical has seamlessly integrated such things into their distro.

openSUSE again fail here but at least prove Flash via the updates, but again because they're purely FOSS, fail to provide any sort of out of the box proprietary install solution besides manually adding repositories.

Reply Score: 2

gfx1 Member since:
2006-01-20

Linux Mint is Ubuntu with a green theme and a background picture in the bootloader.

Reply Score: 1

Oh dear god
by ple_mono on Wed 15th Sep 2010 18:53 UTC
ple_mono
Member since:
2005-07-26

If it wasn't for ubuntu, i wouldn't have contributed to the linux eco system at all. But some of you are too narrow minded to even recognize that.

Some people code, some do graphics, some spread the word, some work on usability, some do experimenting, some do packaging of the product/service, some are planning, some communicate, some fix problems, some distribute and fix the infrastructure, some create standards - get the picture?

If a house needs to be built, everyone cant do the actual building, fools. If you're unhappy with that, find another job, and stop projecting your anger onto everyone else.

Reply Score: 3

winkleink
Member since:
2010-09-15

I find it intriguing that there is so much complaining about how much people contribute or which distribution is best (Slackware/Ubuntu/Fedora/...)

I thought that Open Source was based on the principle that you contribute what can use the code and if you adapt it make it available. (I might be a bit simplistic I my view)
Based on this Canonical are meeting the requirements for a good citizen.

All the arguing backwards and forwards reminds of of the Amiga vs Atari ST arguments. Each persons perspective is different and through their lenses others are seen to be wrong, or not as good.
My reading of it is that Canonical is not a company of developers looking to generate as much code as possible. It is more about taking what is there and making it usable by more people.

Let the coders do the coding and let the usability people do the usability work and stop the complaining.

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

You don't understand what an analogy means, go back to primary school. FTR Canonical is not like BP, and doesn't behave like a pedophile. I never said anything remotely related to that. What I said is apparently beyond your mental comprehension.


I think YOU don't know what an analogy is, kid. "It is like", you said, twice - first comparing it to paedophilia, then to BP's oil spill.

Those sorts of comparisons and analogies serve no other purpose than to troll. Highly distasteful.

Reply Score: 1

metalf8801
Member since:
2010-03-22

If Ubuntu is so bad then what distribution should noobs use? When I think of easy to use Linux distros other than Ubuntu and that aren't based on Ubuntu I think of PCLinuxOS or Linux Mint Debian Edition. However, I have no idea if they are any better when it comes to giving back to Linux community and since they are put together by a much smaller group of developers I'm not sure how I would even find out. Does anyone else know?

Reply Score: 1

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

If Ubuntu is so bad then what distribution should noobs use?


I install Kubuntu 10.04 (Lucid) for new users.

It is fast, stable, secure (in that no malware targets it) and very functional, it will easily meet all of the needs of over 90% of ordinary desktop users, perhaps more. It doesn't use ugly colours, and it is dead easy for people who are used to Windows to pick up.

Try to ignore the current sustained astroturfing smear campaigns against KDE and Canonical if you can (hopefully they can't keep it up forever). If you have some kind of beef with Canonical, then perhaps you could look at PCLinuxOS, MEPIS, Mandriva or openSUSE.

Reply Score: 3

Couldn't agree more
by anarchisttomato on Thu 16th Sep 2010 06:53 UTC
anarchisttomato
Member since:
2010-05-17

People who only value lines of code are what's wrong with our community, and it's that sort of thinking that is precisely why we spent so long on the fringe. Not everyone's a coder.

Reply Score: 2

mcharging for Ubuntu
by unclefester on Fri 17th Sep 2010 04:17 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

A local company here in Brisbane Australia http://ubuntu.penguintechservices.com/ is charging AU$220 (USD200) to install Ubuntu with 4 hours tuition included.

Reply Score: 2

This goes nowhere
by stipex on Fri 17th Sep 2010 10:34 UTC
stipex
Member since:
2009-07-30

"Divide et impera"

While you're fighting here, "evil" companies like Microsoft just do their work and make best software for an average Joe. GNU/Linux will never achieve more then 10% desktop market share, if FOSS community continue with this bad attitude.
(sorry for bad english)

cheers!

Reply Score: 1

Ease of use
by gfx1 on Sat 18th Sep 2010 07:00 UTC
gfx1
Member since:
2006-01-20

The advantage of Ubuntu is that it cooked up a distro that was usuable by an enduser without the hassle.
Previously Debian was always lacking recent kernels. Some distros required that you burned 6 cd's or didn't update easy from the internet (early suse)

Reply Score: 1