Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 13th Apr 2006 22:57 UTC, submitted by Mark
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu "I like Ubuntu. I just do. There's a simplicity about it that appeals. Every successive release adds an additional layer of abstraction between the user and the 'plumbing'. While some might pass this off as soft-hearted pandering to a demographic that was never meant to use Linux in the first place, 'Debian for the Lazy', there is a gentle delight in taking a smooth, working OS and working your way down into its innards."
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YaST issues
by Moochman on Fri 14th Apr 2006 18:54 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Pandering"
Moochman
Member since:
2005-07-06

I've never experienced problems with YaST's wizards (probably because I rarely hand-edit config files), but if they have a tendency to undo hand-made changes, this is a bug to be fixed, not necessarily a problem with the wizard approach.

That being said, I do find the wizards in YaST to be too unintuitive at times. Wizards are by definition supposed to be linear, and yet in YaST one is still faced with heierarchies of settings, just all displayed in one window instead of separate ones as in Windows.

For instance, setting up package selection during installation requires the user to leave the overall summary screen, make the changes, and then return to the summary screen before continuing. Why can't there just be an "advanced setup" option that incorporates these advanced settings in a linear manner?

Similar YaST issues can be found in other areas, too: the network devices and printer configurations especially come to mind as confusing tools to work with since they don't stick to a purely linear approach. While the interface is mostly a linear wizard, it also incoporates the equivalent of a heierarchy of dialog boxes, but all dislayed in the same window, which results in the end-user being confused about where he is in the process and why he's revisiting previous steps.

All this being said, YaST is a big step in the right direction in terms of giving hardware configuration a GUI. But it needs work to make all of its settings visible, either through a better, linear wizard approach, or by abandoning the wizard approach for a windowed heierarchy approach. I'm in favor of the latter: the web-like "one-page-fits-all" solution is notoriously poor for managing complex tasks with branchy natures, like system configuration.

...Perhaps if other distros took more of an interest in YaST, we could get it fixed faster! ;)

(...then again, maybe there would just be infighting and stagnation; you never know.)

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