Linked by Tarmo Hyvšrinen on Thu 5th Feb 2004 20:41 UTC
Linspire Lindows.com offered LindowsOS Developer Edition free for one day, GoogleDay (Whatever that is, I don't know, google's birthday perhaps?) so I decided to test it. My favorite distribution this far has been (and still is) Slackware Linux, which has always, well, just worked. I've been using Linux for some years now, I use Solaris at work (I work as software designer). Trying out Lindows after Slackware was totally different world, and here's some of my toughts after trying out Lindows.
Order by: Score:
Tacky theme
by Jimbo on Thu 5th Feb 2004 20:58 UTC

http://img.osnews.com/img/5922/snapshot1.jpg

I personally hate KDE's tacky attempt to round off windows and buttons.

There are three windows open and they consume the entire task bar.

I hate XP's default theme, why poorly clone it?

My fav KDE theme is the .NET and light 3rd edition.

Clean, efficient, and out of my way.

RE: Tacky theme
by Eugenia on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:00 UTC

>I hate XP's default theme, why poorly clone it?

Keramik does not clone XP, not by a long shot.

>There are three windows open and they consume the entire task bar.

I believe that the taskbar's font should be smaller than the "application font" used throughout the OS. This way each task can reveal more text information about the open application.

modprobe
by another2 on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:05 UTC

yes, i think modprobe at startup is a dirty hack, what i think should be checked at startup is graphics card drivers, and then at bootup, while in the desktop, it should do a final check on other hardware as a daemon in the background. i was wondering what kernel lindows uses?

Fine and fair review
by Chernobog on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:05 UTC

As per subject

v lindows sucks
by eldergod on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:06 UTC
RE: tacky theme
by Matt on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:07 UTC

ive hated keramik with a passion since i first saw it. plastik is quite a bit nicer though, aparently lindows 5 will use kde 3.2 so it should look alot nicer

No luck...
by blixel on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:08 UTC

Lindows.com offered LindowsOS Developer Edition free for one day...

I got in on this so I could check out Lindows. But I never made it through the installation. It stops at 90% with an "Unknown error". Doesn't exactly give you much to go on.

I verified my ISO by checking the md5sum and I verified my CD by loopback mounting the ISO and running "diff" between the mounted ISO and the CD. So I'm pretty confident my copy is good.

To be honest ...
by Anonymous on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:19 UTC

... I get bored with Lindows 4.5 and Xandros 2.0 reviews. The only good would be if every reviewer would now go and review each a different other (lesser known) distribution too.

Bootup ...
by blixel on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:28 UTC

Bootup is slow, very slow. Never seen as slow boot up with any OS. Taking a closer look to see what happens in bootup, I was kind of shocked when I notified that Lindows tries to modprobe every module out there in bootup instead of saving the configuration and modprobing only stuff that is needed. Someone could call this "hardware detection", I call this a quick and dirty hack.

Man that sounds terrible. Couldn't that potentially hard lock your system by just trying to load every single module? And wouldn't it load a bunch of wasted modules that will never be used? As opposed to allowing the kernel load them when they are first needed, if ever.

RE: Bootup ...
by John Blink on Thu 5th Feb 2004 21:44 UTC

Oh so that is why my computer takes 3 minutes to boot.

lindows..
by Squarewav on Thu 5th Feb 2004 22:12 UTC

I managed to get lindows on google day as well, im somewhat impressed. first thing was that installed drivers for all my hardware including all my nvidia hardware ( network card, fx5600, ect.) dint know at first if it installed drivers for the fx5600 or not couse it dint show that nvidia splashscreen ,but a quick check with glxgears show its working (3000 fps). I was bored and just got paid so i decided to try out click-n-run after spending the 50$ ( they do offer a 5$ a month plan but it requires a 1 year commitment or they take it all out at once when you cancel) installing programms with CNR was for the most part nice as it installs icons and menu items, only problems I ran acros was it always leaves an icon on the desktop, do i realy want an icon for midnight commander on my desktop, also there is a few software in CNR that are labled as untested such as xawtv, and its got a dependacy problem with tv-fonts and installing one will automagicly uninstall the other without asking. Over all lindows is a nice os, I just wish they would change that stupid name

RE: lindows..
by ealm on Thu 5th Feb 2004 22:15 UTC

...only problems I ran acros was it always leaves an icon on the desktop...

You can turn it off in CNR settings

Quanta/CNR
by t on Thu 5th Feb 2004 22:26 UTC

Since Lindows is Debian-based, wouldn't it be possible to get e.g. Quanta via apt? And synaptic for example is a nice GUI-tool for installing packages via apt.

Painful bootup
by me on Thu 5th Feb 2004 22:27 UTC

The bootup is very slow and once booted the system is still very slow. They really need to update kde and the kernel.

RE: Painful bootup
by ealm on Thu 5th Feb 2004 22:38 UTC

Though the boot is slow I find LindowsOS pretty quick and responsive once up - especially considering it's kernel 2.4.

Release 5.0 will be a big step forward though, sporting technology like kernel 2.6.x, XFree86 4.4.x, Reiser4 and KDE 3.2. Also CNR will be re-written and there's some more goodies to be expected from what I've heard...

v When will we see????
by Anonymous on Thu 5th Feb 2004 23:12 UTC
Make some justice please
by Bud on Thu 5th Feb 2004 23:12 UTC

Lindows&XandrOS hold first page for a while now.There's no day given when we don't see such a review.How comes other distro doesn't get so much advert? I've seen that Mandrake gets sometime some attention but is really far from those two mentioned above.Even Windows news are much more interesting than those 2.Seriously

Lindows not very useful
by Jan on Thu 5th Feb 2004 23:19 UTC

OK, it was fine, we could test it for free, but it's all you can do with it. In fact all what Lindows offers for 59$ is an intentionally crippled KDE demo (try installing Mozilla plugins not using CNR). I can not imagine a normal user paying monthly fee for using free software. Even Windows is more acceptable under these conditions.

Compare Lindows and Knoppix. Both are Debian based, both provide easy installation, both will satisfy a complete computer newbie. But the amount of features in Knoppix is an order of magnitude higher, the cost is zero and you can download a new version every few weeks for free. I can not see a market niche for Lindows.

Lindows not very useful...
by Ron on Thu 5th Feb 2004 23:52 UTC

Jan,

The market niche is in the convenience. With CNR you can download the programs you want, they install easily, and you don't have the hassles associated with getting things to work.

Not all users want to fiddle with their systems. They want them to just work. For many it is worth $5 a month for that!

It is still linux underneath.

Different users, different needs and preferences. We are all different.

All the best,
Ron

v about those reviews
by Alain on Thu 5th Feb 2004 23:56 UTC
Same story here
by Nathan O. on Fri 6th Feb 2004 01:05 UTC

If I wrote a review of Lindows, it'd be pretty much exactly the same as this review. Slackware user, laptop, thought the modprobing was a cheap hack, etc. A few differences, though;

My wifi card worked out of the box. It would detect, but not connect to, the access point. I got the CNR trial membership, and even went so far as to buy the $15 "laptop tools" addon. This offer is a complete ripoff; all it offers is Sleep Mode. ACPI still doesn't work. I even downloaded the Laptop Edition (offered for free download to members, I think). This was the exact same thing as Devel. Ed., except the screen flickered til I modified the XF86Config, the Wifi card quit working at all, the Synaptic drivers for my mouse weren't installed (though the developer version includes them), and some packages were different.

I'm impressed by the hardware detection / configuration all working out of the box, and CNR is VERY cool (think Synaptic, except with a *much* nicer interface). But the rest just made me go back to slack.

On the bright side, I got a lot of hardware working perfectly under slack by looking at how Lindows had it configured :-)

Sent in a bug report
by Kraig on Fri 6th Feb 2004 01:23 UTC

Make sure you submit an bug report to the Lindows developers. This is real easy in Lindows. In CNR on the left at the bottom there is a category called support. In the module there is a program called diagnostics. Run this it will scan your hardware and then allow you to describe your problem. This will give them a chance to get the problem fixed on 5.0 which they are working on right now. Tom is there head engineer.

Geforce FX 5600
by PhantomAMD on Fri 6th Feb 2004 01:27 UTC

Someone mentioned that lindows automatically installed their fx5600.

The problem is the performace.

In lindows I get about ~1600 in glxgears from my fx5600, but in suse 9.0, its about ~3150!

Lindows
by Justin Sane on Fri 6th Feb 2004 02:04 UTC

I downloaded the Developer Edition. Install was nice, looks nice. First thing I did was go to /etc/apt/sources.list and uncommented the two lines in it. Did an apt-get update then an apt-get dist-upgrade. 415 packages updated, 71 newly installed and 39 removed. Got everything I needed from CNR without having to pay the fee. I see CNR useful for beginners and the power of Debian useful for the more advanced.

Begs the question
by -=StephenB=- on Fri 6th Feb 2004 02:46 UTC

At the risk of coming off like a troll, nearly every time I read a review of a "desktop" linux distro here, I wonder: if the amount of time, money, and effort that has been put into "Linux on the Desktop" had instead been put into BeOS, where might it be today? The cruelly ironic thing is that, if these articles and my own personal experience are to be believed, BeOS in 2000 was more "ready for the desktop" in many ways than Linux is in 2004.

Hardware detection by mod probing every module? If anything, that sounds like a kludgy attempt to do hardware detection the way BeOS does it. If I am not mistaken, BeOS dynamically detects hardware and loads appropriate drivers on every boot, but it does it fast enough to go from POST to desktop in 15 seconds or so (I'm sure everyone's heard the "I took a HDD with BeOS on it out of one computer, stuck it in another, and the OS booted with out so much as a complaint or 'New Hardware Found' wizard" anecdote). Someone once told me it does this by directly probing the PCI bus rather than going through the BIOS for hardware info, but whatever method BeOS uses the results are the same and it's puzzling why no other OS (with the possible exception of MacOS) does it the same way.

Maybe I've just been spoiled, but problems with - say - mounting partitions, installing software, adding items to a programs launching menu, etc, seem completely inexcusable in 2004. Hey, I like Linux/Unix (admittedly, I find the *nix CLI much more comfortable than any of the *nix GUIs I've used), and I freely admit that in many ways it is technologically superior to BeOS, has better software support, better hardware support, etc. But in my "old age", I've lost my patience/passion for tinkering and want my computer to "just work", and am willing to sacrifice a bit of functionality to that cause. I think John Siracusa over at Ars Technica hit the nail on the head in one of his articles on OS X when he said: "User satisfaction with software can probably best be quantified as 'lack of annoyances'" (paraphrased).

dist-upgrade
by Nathan O. on Fri 6th Feb 2004 02:56 UTC

I tried doing a dist-upgrade, and KDE started barking about kdeinit being screwed up.

-=StephenB=-
by Rayiner Hashem on Fri 6th Feb 2004 03:17 UTC

I guess we'll never know, because all those people who are working on the Linux desktop never got a chance to work on the BeOS one. The passing of BeOS is what convinced me that to be sucessful, an alternative OS must be community-supported and open source. Though I prefer OSS software, I have no problem with proprietory programs. However, there are some advantages to the OSS development model, and those advantages are very important for an alternative OS. Consider how long it has taken Linux to get this far. More than a decade, at last count. There is no way a newe commercial company selling a new proprietory competitor to Windows would have lasted long enough to start gaining marketshare like Linux is doing.

Make some justice please
by mythought on Fri 6th Feb 2004 03:26 UTC

"Lindows&XandrOS hold first page for a while now"

Not long from now (March, April?), and you'll get flooded by reviews where each distributor will claim to have developed a Win killer.

Rayiner
by -=StephenB=- on Fri 6th Feb 2004 03:57 UTC

I guess we'll never know, because all those people who are working on the Linux desktop never got a chance to work on the BeOS one. The passing of BeOS is what convinced me that to be sucessful, an alternative OS must be community-supported and open source.

No argument there - although, I think that's due as much (if not more) to the current conditions in the OS software market than the relative merits of closed/open development models.

@Rayiner Hashem
by Andrew D on Fri 6th Feb 2004 03:58 UTC

" The passing of BeOS is what convinced me that to be sucessful, an alternative OS must be community-supported and open source."

That says it all I think. I'd have loved BeOS to have taken off but the closed program meant that they could never grow enough or bring enough people in to keep the enthusiasm up to survive.

I only used BeOS a few times but enjoyed the experience and agree that in many ways BeOS in 2000 was closer to desktop ready than Linux is now. But Linux is - after a dry spell of a year or so imo - seemingly taking off in big ways. Possibly pushed by the reaction to SCO?

@StephenB
by Rayiner Hashem on Fri 6th Feb 2004 05:15 UTC

"I think that's due as much (if not more) to the current conditions in the OS software market than the relative merits of closed/open development models."

To clarify: Its really the relative merits of the open development model in the current OS software market. The current software market basically guarantees that an upstart OS will not make any money. Open projects do not need to worry about making money, which means that they can survive long enough to become competitive. A commercial company, unless they targetted a very specific niche, would burn through its cash long before they had enough sales to support themselves.

Random answers
by Tarmo Hyvšrinen on Fri 6th Feb 2004 07:46 UTC

Well, thanks for feedback (or, lack of it, guess not much complaining) for my _first_ review, ever ;)

Here's some answers to some random questions:

>i was wondering what kernel lindows uses?

2.4.23 is default in 4.5

>Couldn't that potentially hard lock your system by just trying to load every single module?

No, actually. Insmodding something could. Soundcards tho might get confused by this.

>Since Lindows is Debian-based, wouldn't it be possible to get e.g. Quanta via apt?

Yes, it would be possible. Did I forgot to mention that? Crap ;) But also problem comes that if Lindows is based on KDE 3.0 (as I think, since dropshadows are missing) I would get only Quanta 3.0 (which is sooo much behind Quanta 3.2). I use quanta 7,5h/day for my _work_ so that is really my personal "Killer" application.

>Hardware detection by mod probing every module? If anything, that sounds like a kludgy attempt to do hardware detection the way BeOS does it.

Well, Knoppix for example has "clean" way to do hardware detection. So it's possible with Linux too ;)

installs ok but then...
by yeah on Fri 6th Feb 2004 09:11 UTC

It had problems with my adsl modem, i look for help told i have to follow some instructions on a website to get the thing working, after many hours trying to get this peice of linux rubbish to work i give up.
It looks good, andthat is all. My windows and mac boxes work easier than this linux rubbish.
Also when asking questions on some of the mainstream linux websites i am ridculed and called 'noob' and told to go away and read manuals about how to use linux. Why should i have to read huge manuals about using linux? I never had to for windows or mac. I was interested in linux but after seeing what the community is like I will stay with the freindly folks at windows and mac land.
The truth is that many linux people do not wish for people who are new to coumputers etc to get into linux, its their little clique and they'll be damned if anyone will help you get in. This is also why they told me i was a fool for using a noob distro like lindows and anyone asking about it was shot down in flames.
Well fair enough stay in your sad little groups as i will not wish to enter into conversation with such a huge bunch of unhappy sad little people who fear that windows might just be getting better than their os.

Re: Begs the question
by mat on Fri 6th Feb 2004 10:15 UTC

If I am not mistaken, BeOS dynamically detects hardware and loads appropriate drivers on every boot, but it does it fast enough to go from POST to desktop in 15 seconds or so (I'm sure everyone's heard the "I took a HDD with BeOS on it out of one computer, stuck it in another, and the OS booted with out so much as a complaint or 'New Hardware Found' wizard"

In general BeOS does not try to load drivers for nonexistent hardware - but this is in part dictated by various system servers. For instance Media Server will check what kind of audio and video capture devices are present and then try to load the appropriate driver - if the exact match is not found then the next best driver is tried or the server disables its services. I suppose kernel provides info on what kind ow hardware there is - you can sure see in in the Devices Preferences app.

The same trick happens with the App server and input server.

All in all pretty neat - I tried BeOS on a newer AMD system and it detected my soundcard, graphics and video capture card perfectly - without saying anything of course, as there is no concept of "device detection dialogs".








re Installs ok but then...
by Mark on Fri 6th Feb 2004 10:16 UTC

Thanks for the comments, yeah! Personally I have never been 'ridiculed and called 'noob'', although I am one. People have usually been very patient with my stupid questions; perhaps my spelling and grammar was too good. And I have never read a 'huge manual', or been told to either. Goodness me, yeah, was it really worth posting here to tell us this? Mind you, it's not really worth posting this either. Oh well.

Some pluses and minuses
by tc on Fri 6th Feb 2004 11:09 UTC

When I tried to install Lindows 4.5, it became apparent very quickly that it doesn't like my SATA hard drive: it didn't recognize any medium it could install on. End of attempt. No biggie: the resident Lindows board member has explained often, how Lindows prefers average users with average computers with pre-installed Lindows. And I imagine it may take six more months before SATA becomes 'average'.

On my notebook however it did install. And it was the first distribution ever to recognize the built-in modem (thus far this notebook has experienced Windows 98 & 2000 including extensive driver hunts, and offerings from Red Hat[9], Mandrake [9.1], and Suse[9]). If it takes three minutes of booting to accomplish that (it felt more like one or two), then by all means, let it boot.

Despite all assurances to the opposite however, I had no chance to create additional users before my first login. Just the administrator (root). Maybe because I chose advanced install (no don't take over my entire drive!) The lack of a partitioner is irritating (even in Windows I always use two partitions, one for programs and one for documents).

The desktop experience to me was slick, the KDE menu not over-crowded, the audiovisual help system was interesting as a concept.

Drive detection was weird. On the internal disk, Windows partitions aren't found, but Linux partitions (well, one standard '/home' partition) are; my two USB Windows partitions are found.

As a Suse user, I felt the lack of something YaST-like; an extremely user-friendly yet powerful configuration tool could benefit this distribution.

But the modem support alone tells me that I'll leave this OS installed for a while.

@yeah
by Bud on Fri 6th Feb 2004 13:15 UTC

"Well fair enough stay in your sad little groups as i will not wish to enter into conversation with such a huge bunch of unhappy sad little people who fear that windows might just be getting better than their os."

Well,fair enough,you made my day. I will fire up XP and play something today.You know , we don't have a lot of games in linux...

Re: drive detection and geforce fx5600
by Anonymous on Fri 6th Feb 2004 14:56 UTC

just noted interesting experiences from users..
- in regards to fx5600: one user said he got 3000 fps in lindows while another said ~1600 fps (but ~3000 in suse) .. mobo chipset problems? for windows at least, i know that agp port driver can be buggy for some chipsets and sometimes, it's left out entirely (because it's not supported out of the box by os) so it defaults to pci mode.
.. though i don't *think* that would make a difference for something like glxgears.

- partition mounting: article mentions that windows is automatically mounted, but his linux (i assume slack) partitions aren't; while user comment above mentions that his windows partitions weren't, while some of his linux's were .. hmm .. strange..

i got the free 4.5 iso too, which is definitely cool.. maybe it was released too soon or maybe more testing needs to be done on non-standard, or non-expected configurations as well

a very honest and fair review good job.
by Linuxgeekintraining on Fri 6th Feb 2004 15:13 UTC

Most folks who review lindows usually wind up bashing it because it's so different from main stream linux distributions. I think you did a good job of reviewing it.

my experience with Lindows
by walterbyrd on Fri 6th Feb 2004 15:24 UTC

Since they were giving away lindows for free, so I thought I would give it a try. Good install - but not as good as Suse, lindows didn't find my win-modem, or my usb-scanner, lindows didn't mount other partitions. No options with the install, you get what you get. Frankly, I think of Lindows as more of a marketing gimmick than anything else. I mean, what do you get for $70 that you can't get for free (if you have broadband), or for a couple of dollars if you want a cd mailed to you? Mandrake, Fedora, and SuSe, are all very easy to install and use. Lindows does look more like windows than any other version I've used, but so what? Frankly I think windows, kde, gnome, and macos, look more similar than different. Oh yea, after you pay $70 for lindows, they want you to buy other stuff like anti-virus etc, lindows also wants to pay $50 a year for a clink-n-run feature that you don't need (just use apt-get). Nothing wrong with Lindows, I'm using it right now. But, like prostitutes and parking spaces, why pay when - with a little patience and persistance - you can get it for free? One thing newbies will like about lindows: you get one editor - not twelve, same with other apps. Again, for newbies, this will be much less confusing.

RE:installs ok but then...
by Mr Goon on Fri 6th Feb 2004 15:33 UTC

Iíve never managed to get my ADSL (crappy conexant winmodem) to work with any distribution either. I was ridiculed when I asked why I had to manually compile something to install potential drivers. Why I canít just double click some drivers and itís automated I do not know. Linux just doesnít seem to have been very well thought out from the outset but I suppose it was never originally conceived as being a user friendly desktop OS.

The command prompt in windows serves no purpose but backward compatibility with older programs, in Linux it seems to be an integral part of the system and GUIs are considered a wimpy luxury by many users. I know you can install lots of distributions without using the command prompt, but when it comes to doing something complicated, or unusual you have to start typing senseless commands into that evil black screen.

I keep lerking in Linux forums and reading reviews as they appear for new distros trying some out now and then, but Linux still seems years behind windows when it comes to ease of use, and itís many other benefits are irrelevant if you canít use the damn thing.

Re: "Compare Lindows and Knoppix"
by walterbyrd on Fri 6th Feb 2004 15:34 UTC

I was running knoppix 3.3 and replaced it with Lindows 4.5.

IMO: Knoppix is not the best desktop distro out there. Cut-and-paste is iffy, and multi-media is lacking.

Lindows did not load my other partitions, I don't think Lindows gave me any options when I installed - you get what you get.

Most importantly - by far - knoppix always booted up. The second time I booted Lindows, it hung during bootup. To be fair, I was having this problem with SuSe 9.0 also. I suspect that if I were not dual booting (XP/Linux), I would not have this problem at all. Still Knoppix worked with dual boot, Lindows did not.

you can also install software with apt-get (and synaptic)
by grandmofftarkin on Fri 6th Feb 2004 15:56 UTC

The subject says it all really. The CNR is therefore newbies and gives a little more intergration for all the packages (start menu entries, my documents set as default saving folder, etc.).

If you want to keep things nice and simple just pay $50. A reasonable price in my opinion.

If you are a more advanced user you can apt-get.

I think it is fair.

Interesting Responses
by RJay75 on Fri 6th Feb 2004 17:11 UTC

It's pretty interesting to see the response everyone has to this distro.

For me this distro has been pretty good and one of the most comfortable ones I've tried. I've been trying several for a while now and this one actually seem to just work. I installed it in VMWare and it detected, and setup all the hardware without intervention. I was able to use the GUI and CLI to make changes to things. I try CnR to install some software and it worked pretty well for the limited app I could install without registering. For me this was a plus to be able to go to a control panel that's actually logically laid out and I could really configure things from one place without having to go and alter config files as well. The Program menus are laid out nicely without all the duplication and mutltiple categories that I normally see in other distros. I was also still able to download and install apps by compiling them with no problem either. So I had the best of both. A working GUI and fine tune controling through the CLI.

The only annoyance I had was getting it to Log out of the GUI to just the CLI. There should be an option to do so but after a little searching of the Lindow forums I was able to figure out to to boot to the CLI and load the GUI when needed then log back out of it.

Now I just have to install it on actual hardware and hope it still works as well.

Yeah, good review
by Tudy on Fri 6th Feb 2004 18:50 UTC

I am happy to see a reviewer which is not biased because of his previous linux experiences. This guy has an open mind and he is objective. He has judged the distro by its usefulness, not by comparing it to some other distro. He should post more reviews here on OSNews, definitely. Maybe he's more honest than other reviewers in describing the test-related experience cause he's Finnish!;)

:::PROUD TO LIVE IN THE BIRTHLAND OF LINUX:::

Linux being free, holds development back.
by Al Hartman on Fri 6th Feb 2004 19:43 UTC

My opinion is that Lindows is doing a great thing.

By packaging a Linux distribution and making it accessible/palatable for the masses, it drives forward the development of Linux as a desktop OS.

Going the way it had been going, Linux was mostly a Geek/Server OS.

We know it's possible. Look at MacOS X, that went from a variant of BSD to a highly polished and usable desktop OS in two years.

The problem with Linux being free, is that people who contributed to development, worked on whatever they felt like. Adding "Geek Features" to the OS. Adding arcane utilities with command line switches.

All that is well and good for that segment of computer users. But, for Linux to be a desktop OS, it has to be easy to use. Easy to maintain. And easy for end-user support.

I don't think what Lindows charges is out of line. Considering what you get for the money, it's quite inexpensive.

All of you who say that Lindows is charging for something you can download free with a broadband line, are missing something major.

Most of you who can do that, have something that most people don't. Highly developed skills in Computing and Linux in particular.

To get where you are (I'm no dummy, having been in the business since 1979 and owning nearly every major brand of Micro at one time or another. And I found doing a Gentoo install WAY too hard and time consuming.), people would have to spend thousands on training courses.

Your skills didn't come free or easy. They are actually worth money. Which is why most all of you who can do this, are gainfully employed in the computer industry.

The people who would be target consumers of Lindows look at a computer like a toaster. They just want it to work. They no more want to tinker (or enjoy tinkering) with their computer, than they want to tinker with their toaster.

Lindows is not meant as an alternative to other Linux Distributions. But, as an alternative to Windows. And I think it succeeds quite well in that area.

It's fast, simple, full featured, and supports a lot of hardware out there.

And since Lindows contributes back most all of it's changes to the Open Source Community. Those people who are paying the $5.00 a month (I used to be one, before becoming a lifetime member), are contributing financially to the development of Open Source Software.

NVu (www.nvu.com) is an example of this.

Lindows is a Win-Win for everyone concerned (except Microsoft... LOL!).

This isn't religion. This is about people wanting to buy a cheap computer and get their work and play done.

Lindows contributes mightly to that space.

If you don't like it, don't use it. There are plenty of other alternatives out there for someone skillful enough to go get them.

I tried it on google day too
by nonamenobody on Fri 6th Feb 2004 22:02 UTC

I have to say there were many things that impressed me and many which didn't. The lack of an advance install frustrated me. Not least because mis-configured my monitor, I had to reboot it manually from GRUB and edit my XF86Config. The one thing that annoyed me most was the complete lack of regional configuration. I could only change my keyboard type using the tools provide by KDE. I also didn't like the fact the only howto I could find explaining how to change my keyboard type was entitled "How do I configure a foreign keyboard" (last time check my UK keyboard was in the UK and is 100% native).

I felt that as a Linux distro., LindowsOS left a lot to be desired. As an MS-Windows replacement however, it is promising.

I forgot to mention
by nonamenobody on Fri 6th Feb 2004 22:06 UTC

>> I felt that as a Linux distro., LindowsOS left a lot to be desired. As an MS-Windows replacement however, it is promising.

I forgot to mention, the great thing about Linux (IMHO), is that their is room for both.

My Lindows 4.5 experience
by Boulder Geek on Sat 7th Feb 2004 01:31 UTC

As so many others did, I snagged a copy after being alerted through Techbargains.com (love it). I burned it up, but never did anything with it until reading the review this morning.

I scrounged up an old Socket A mobo and Athlon 700, 512MB of SDRAM, an old Matrox Millennia 8MB AGP card, and a new 80GB Maxtor drive waiting for some project. Threw it into a case with a DVD drive and threw in a krufty Netgear PCI-->PCMCIA bridge card and wifi PCMCIA card. I'm writing this up on it now.

Synopsis: could be better, could be worse. I wouldn't _pay_ for it. Mandrake 9.2 is a lot better and more standard across the board. Could my Mom use it? Sure, I would bet it would be no more challenging than Win98 or OS X for her.

Not being a Debian guy, I didn't even think of apt-get. Thanks to the poster for alerting me to the apt-get sources file. The machine is now upgrading happily. Just like 'fink' on OS X.

It's ugly and Microsofty enough to not distress a Win2K or XP user. Breakout game works admirably on this wheezy 8MB vid card. WiFi is working great, much to my surprise. K-WiFi app crashes out, but the panel applet monitors throughput and signal fine.

I'd say it is an acceptable OS for those not accustomed to installing Linux and tweaking up their favorite distro. I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it for myself, but now having used it, I could see drop shipping a preconfigured new Lindows box to a relative or job site and knowing that the basics will be covered.

The lame lack of fdisk or any partitioning tool, claiming hte whole drive, was apalling. NEXTSTEP used to do that in 1990, but we only had 400MB disks then. After I finish playing with this evaluation, Mandrake 10B is going on. That might be a better comparison.

Thanks again for feedback;)
by Tarmo Hyvšrinen on Sat 7th Feb 2004 13:13 UTC

> He should post more reviews here on OSNews

Thanks for good feedback again ;) Yes, well, I planned writing a guide howto tweak slackware as Desktop Dream distro... maybe someone would be interested to read that? ;)

RE: Thanks again for feedback;)
by NLK on Sun 8th Feb 2004 03:41 UTC

Yes, well, I planned writing a guide howto tweak slackware as Desktop Dream distro... maybe someone would be interested to read that? ;)

Yes, I would love to see that. I'll be watching for it.

KDE for newbies? ArkLinux
by Michel on Sun 8th Feb 2004 15:24 UTC

ArkLinux.org seems to be a better choice for people wanting to migrate Windows users to KDE. Its 'Mission Control' mimics Windows' Control Center, and it uses apt for package management too, though the underlying package system is RPM, not DEB.

In any case, from your article it seems that Lindows does not use discover for hardware detection anyway. Ark uses kudzu from Red Hat (one of the main developer, Bero, worked there previously), which is probably more mature at this point; even Knoppix uses it.

PostScript
by Mike on Sun 8th Feb 2004 19:26 UTC

I lived with the Lindows installation for a day. Then I put Mandrake 10B on teh same host.

My conclusion: Mandrake is far better for support, speed, configurability and look&feel. And, did I mentioned far cheaper?

The Lindows experiemnt was interesting, but, God, what a dog! Once up and running it was OK, but the boot process was interminable. Also, It wouldn't come up in runlevel5, even though I had changed it in /etc/inittab. I'd let a nontechnical relative use it, but for anyone with a modicum of perspective it was awkwardly painful.