Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 15th Jul 2009 21:38 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes It's time for another "OSNews asks" item. This time, I want to focus on something that I've been wanting to talk about with you all before, but never found the time for. The question is simple: which feature(s) from other operating systems would you like to see in your own main operating system?
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Comment by izomiac
by izomiac on Thu 16th Jul 2009 05:59 UTC
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I'm more of an OS migrant than one that has a "main" OS. I used to be 90% BeOS, now I'm split between Windows 7 and Gentoo (with XFCE). Once I figure out how to get Haiku running on my new laptop I'll probably be using the three about the same. That said, here are my gripes.

Windows 7
* Most applications seem to assume the user is an idiot
* Too much bloat
* Too many things happening in the background
* Gives up on errors far too easily or not at all
* Strange errors of indeterminable origin (I assume due to the complexity)
* Doesn't play well with its peers

Gentoo with XFCE
* Stuff rarely works 100% correctly without tweaking/troubleshooting
* Too little consistency across different applications
* Bloat
* Unexpectedly large space requirements for stuff (e.g. needing 2 GB to compile a 3 MB firmware image)
* Most applications don't mind the small details
* Package management (in general) - the feature I want is always a point release away, or not compiled in (hence Gentoo... although firefox 3.5 is still hard masked so it's not immune). Then there's usually a "now what?" after installing something as I try to figure out how to run it.
* Too much reliance on the command line... Yes, it's powerful and great and all, but IMHO that's no excuse for not spending much effort on the GUI.
* Having to type filenames when autocomplete can't help. Example: \\\\SambaServer\\Share\\\[Group\]\ File\ Title \(codec\)\ \[A0B1C2D3\].mkv (This is even more "fun" when you need to escape stuff multiple times since the filenames are passed along.)
* Making a typo in a config file and spending hours debugging (most recent: using parenthesis instead of brackets).
* Compile time options and libraries rather than system-wide codecs need to die.
* The kernel isn't really software nor hardware agnostic.

* It's rather dated nowadays
* Hardware support (especially no touchpad scrolling!)
* Software support
* A command line that's just different enough from Linux to throw me off at times

All OSes
* Inability to cope with strange events (BeOS is the best in this regard, but still not quite there). If I bothered defining "strange" then I'd be getting into specifics rather than speaking of a general, reoccuring issue.
* The ability to kill a process instantly and under any circumstances. Linux might be OK for this, I haven't had too much trouble with it so far.
* The ability to not run stuff I don't need nor want.
* Modal dialogs and things that prevent me from doing other stuff at the same time
* Focus stealing, especially when I'm typing.
* Small lags in the second[s] range (opening a window, an application, or doing stuff when some resource is saturated).
* Desktop icons that don't have graphical glitches. It's quite minor and purely cosmetic, but I've seriously seen this problem in every OS.
* Feature creep or needless division of tools. Neither end of the spectrum is desirable.
* Not quite user-centric enough in that developers have a bit too much power. (E.g. installing where they want to, accessing the internet, behaving differently than other applications, etc.)
* Overloading the home directory with hidden folders/files.

Edited 2009-07-16 06:01 UTC

Reply Score: 2