Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 26th Aug 2009 22:23 UTC
GNU, GPL, Open Source When Windows Vista was launched, the Free Software Foundation started its BadVista campaign, which was aimed at informing users about what the FSF considered user-restrictive features in Vista. Luckily for the FSF, Vista didn't really need a bad-mouthing campaign to fail. Now that Windows 7 is receiving a lot of positive press, the FSF dusted off the BadVista drum, and gave it a fresh coat of paint.
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RE: Meh.
by dragSidious on Wed 26th Aug 2009 23:28 UTC in reply to "Meh."
Member since:

There is no reason why you could of not just kept using the same Ubuntu install for those 2 years or so.

I think a lot of this idea of Windows having stable driver interfaces and not being as fiddly as Linux is because until Vista came along Microsoft has been using the same operating system since 2000 when it released Windows 2000. (Windows XP was more cosmetic then anything else)

With Ubuntu they release a new OS every 6-8 months or so and people feel compelled to upgrade because its free and there is always something new to play around with. But there is certainly no reason why you have to keep doing that.

When Microsoft released Windows Vista people rejected it right off the bat because the hardware incompatibilities, broken drivers, and broken application that people ran into with that OS compared to XP. Now that it has some time to mature and people have spent millions fixing everything its a pretty decent OS (a lot better then XP anyways). Now Windows 7 is mostly a cosmetic and marketing change for Vista and people are looking forward to it.

The moral of the story is that if you keep upgrading your OS all the time then expect to screw around with that OS a hell of a lot more. It does not matter if it's Windows or Linux.

Edited 2009-08-26 23:30 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Meh.
by darknexus on Wed 26th Aug 2009 23:55 in reply to "RE: Meh."
darknexus Member since:

Going slightly OT, but the reason most people feel compelled to upgrade to the latest Ubuntu every 6 months is because that's the only way they can officially get the latest versions of software unless the Ubuntu team is kind enough to backport it which they do not always do. It's one of the problems with the way many package-managed operating systems work, especially those on a short release cycle like Ubuntu although Debian is even more severely affected given its extremely long release cycles. Systems like Arch and Gentoo, which are rolling releases, don't have this problem but with them you are on a constant upgrade path and that has drawbacks of its own. There's a middle ground somewhere, but one hasn't been found that would satisfy everyone. My middle ground would have the core os components (Kernel, Xorg, DE of choice and its assorted apps) remain on the cycle as they currently are but external software such as Firefox and Openoffice should be on a rolling release cycle within each os version. This would, naturally, take a considerable amount of resources to do, so it's not likely to happen. I think, however, if this middle ground is not found it will continue to be one more weight holding down desktop Linux. Windows and Mac users need not update their entire os just to use the latest Firefox, or Openoffice, or insert app of choice here, and neither should Linux users. This needs to be fixed.
Ok, done with my slightly OT thoughts now.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[3]: Meh.
by bhtooefr on Thu 27th Aug 2009 13:51 in reply to "RE[2]: Meh."
bhtooefr Member since:

Ubuntu does have a third solution to that - the LTS versions.

Although, I don't think LTS gets application upgrades, just security updates, but you could use a variation on that theme to reduce resources used updating older OSes, by only updating a specific older OS. Pick an LTS version if you like your kernel and GUI to remain the same, but your apps to upgrade, or pick a normal version if you don't mind an OS upgrade cycle.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Meh.
by OddFox on Thu 27th Aug 2009 00:09 in reply to "RE: Meh."
OddFox Member since:

But honestly, how many people do you know who are the type to give Linux a try would enjoy using old software? Sure it works, but when you see release announcements talking about all these cool new features that are simply unavailable on your aging installation you are going to start feeling like you're missing out on things, because you are.

The upgrade path for Microsoft operating systems is getting better. There's far less fiddling around with the system on a fresh install of Windows 7, thanks in large part to Microsoft's efforts to provide vendor drivers directly through Windows Update in a more reliable fashion than they've done before. The defaults are much more sane and things just tend to work.

I've been using Linux for a long time as a hobby, since about Mandrake 8.1 or 8.2. Things are definitely getting a lot easier with upgrading your distribution, especially if you use something like Gentoo or Arch which is that whole rolling release type thing. I would posit that the biggest problems with new setups of Linux distros would be things like the graphics server, and providing reliable graphics drivers. For example, my GeForce 9600 GT absolutely does not play nice at all with any of the NVidia drivers provided by Ubuntu and most other distros (They all seem to provide the 180 series, when the 185 series has been out for a long time and the 190 series is almost out the door). The system hard locks, and whether I am able to SSH in to fix the problem or not is not something I care about anymore. For me, anytime I install Linux on my box these days I have to make sure that I find some way to install newer drivers not provided in the official repositories. I must be a very fringe case because it happens without fail using those drivers.

Honestly, it's the biggest thing keeping me from switching to Linux entirely right now, even though I love Windows 7 as far as Windows goes. I'd like to see Xorg development try to incorporate a lot of the improvements Microsoft has implemented in their own graphics services. If the driver craps out, restart it, don't take the whole system down (Or X, either way I'm out any of the things I was viewing/working on at the time of the error). If a program (Read: games mostly played thru Wine) craps out, don't ruin my resolution and drop me to a garbled 800x600 version of my screen which helpfully lets me pan around, so I can open up a terminal and use xrandr to get it back to where it should be. If I want to upgrade my graphics driver, allow me to do it in-place so I don't have to either restart my X server or restart the system entirely. Basically everything Thom was talking about in that article about what Linux and Xorg could learn from the 7 graphics stack I agreed with 100%.

And can people please stop saying that Windows 7 is "mostly a cosmetic" and/or "marketing change for Vista"? People who say these things are completely ignoring the vast amount of under-the-hood changes and additions to the system. Windows 7 isn't just a new Control Panel and some trippy default themes, there are real and important changes that make things run a lot better, not the least of which being the changes to DWM that allow it to use far less memory than it was under Vista. If you can tell me that a list as comprehensive as this one: proves that Windows 7 is a minor cosmetic and marketing change, then I have to ask what world you are living on? Even if these changes don't specifically apply to you and your usage, they are there for people to take advantage of.

This is OSNews, and I would figure OS enthusiasts would be able to analyze and appreciate new things brought to the table.

P.S. -- For a lot of desktop users, sticking with an old Linux distribution is less than desirable, especially if you aren't the kind who enjoys manually installing and maintaining things like your video drivers. Sure you could keep using your old driver with your old kernel, but as a result you end up missing out on new features (Like VDPAU) and performance/bug fixes unless your distributor or someone else goes out of their way for you to backport these.

Edited 2009-08-27 00:10 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Meh.
by Wrawrat on Thu 27th Aug 2009 01:01 in reply to "RE[2]: Meh."
Wrawrat Member since:

That's a bit off-topic, but...

But honestly, how many people do you know who are the type to give Linux a try would enjoy using old software?

Depends on your needs. I've got the latest Ubuntu on my personal computers, but we've got the 8.04 LTS at work. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles, but it's a stable target, perfect for large deployments. Upgrading dozens of computers every six months is just out of question.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Meh.
by bigozs on Thu 27th Aug 2009 11:16 in reply to "RE[2]: Meh."
bigozs Member since:

Funny you should mention the 9600GT which is running just fine on Jaunty with the nvidia blob drivers.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Meh.
by UltraZelda64 on Thu 27th Aug 2009 00:16 in reply to "RE: Meh."
UltraZelda64 Member since:

There is no reason why you could of not just kept using the same Ubuntu install for those 2 years or so.

What about aging software? Ubuntu doesn't always keep up to date with all the latest versions of software. I was stuck using the outdated 0.9.2 version of Stellarium when 0.10.2, until a new version of Ubuntu came out. Sure, some things really *should* be fully tested as a complete system and mostly unchanged throughout a distro release to prevent breaking (kernel,, the desktop environment, and other major pieces of software). But then there are programs that make little sense to use an older version of (ie. Stellarium, Audacious, etc.).

Even worse, not too long ago Pidgin stopped being able to connect to the Yahoo! Messenger service. After a week of being unable to connect, and no updated packages in Ubuntu's repository, I decided to find out why. Apparently, Yahoo! changed their servers in such a way that broke compatibility with older version of client software. Because Ubuntu apparently only accepts security fixes, I guess they can't even be bothered to fix BROKEN software that even ships with their damn distro. I had to go to Pidgin's site and find the instructions/URL for using Pidgin's Ubuntu repositories.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Meh.
by adinas on Thu 27th Aug 2009 13:09 in reply to "RE: Meh."
adinas Member since:

I actually agree on this. It seem like every linux distro is always using the first version of some new sub system which has all kinds of problems because it is the first release (new sound system, new printing system, kde 3 to kde 4...). No matter which distro/version you look at, there is always something which is a work in progress. If they could just stop making new things for a couple of years and make all the current stuff stable and supported on all hardware, maybe I could finally install it without always having "something that will work in the next version"

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Meh.
by Lennie on Thu 27th Aug 2009 22:43 in reply to "RE: Meh."
Lennie Member since:

That's what LTS is for

Reply Parent Score: 2