Linked by David Adams on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 16:05 UTC, submitted by sjvn
Linux As we mentioned in a previous article, Red Hat advocate Greg DeKoenigsberg claimed that due to the much larger amount of code it's contributed, Red Hat is a better open source citizen than Canonical, adding, "Canonical is a marketing organization masquerading as an engineering organization." A Computerworld blog retorts that that's no insult; and that marketing Linux could be just as important to the cause as contributing code. Updated
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Ubuntu
by vivainio on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 17:13 UTC
vivainio
Member since:
2008-12-26

I think it's a bit bogus to emphasize the marketing aspect of Ubuntu.

What Ubuntu does is - it's making a distro that friggin works and looks nice. Try any other distro, and you'll quickly see how polished Ubuntu is in comparison. For many distros, it almost feels like they didn't even try it before shipping.

Yes, I include Debian in those broken distros. Ubuntu doesn't attempt to say "you know, this distro is mostly for experienced users" as an excuse. If Ubuntu is broken, it's considered broken by powers that be, instead of saying "yeah, you just need to do some fixup to config files here and there".

Ubuntu is really a breath of fresh air in the Linux world. It has really raised the standards and what you can expect to work without manual fiddling.

Edited 2010-08-03 17:24 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Ubuntu
by jbauer on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 17:35 in reply to "Ubuntu"
jbauer Member since:
2005-07-06


Ubuntu is really a breath of fresh air in the Linux world. It has really raised the standards and what you can expect to work without manual fiddling.


Boy, were those standards low.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by vivainio on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 17:41 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26


Boy, were those standards low.


Yeah, they were. Fedora made an exception occasionally (I still have fond memories of FC1), but Ubuntu raises the bar constantly.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by sbenitezb on Wed 4th Aug 2010 13:28 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
sbenitezb Member since:
2005-07-22

I tried the last version and found it boring not pleasant. Looks like Windows 98 in steroids.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Ubuntu
by Zifre on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 19:10 in reply to "Ubuntu"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

What Ubuntu does is - it's making a distro that friggin works and looks nice. Try any other distro, and you'll quickly see how polished Ubuntu is in comparison. For many distros, it almost feels like they didn't even try it before shipping.

I agree. This is probably why Ubuntu is so popular. I recently installed Arch Linux because I wanted a rolling release distro and I wanted good KDE packaging. I was surprised at how hard it was. I knew Arch Linux was supposed to be for power users, but it almost felt like it was out to get me. Thankfully it's all done now, and it's just as friendly as Ubuntu now.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Ubuntu - they need better hardware support
by jabbotts on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 19:18 in reply to "Ubuntu"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I find Mandriva just as polished and new-user-y but with better hardware support. Canonical just doesn't include the same amount of required hardware support do to the focus on open source with closed source firmware and such being opt-in.

When it does come up in conversation, the usual reason for someone reverting back to Windows is "it won't support my wireless" or similar; something that could easily be fixed by including the closed source hardware support by default. I think *buntu gets far more attention than it deserves for it's place in the meritocracy. It's more popularity than substance. There are more user friendly distributions which have been at it longer but without the marketing push to prop them up. In my own new user days, it was Mandriva's GUI draketools that finally got me over the hump long before Canonical was a twinkle in Mr Shuttleworth's eyes.

I also take issue with default setting choices and claiming a production distribution based on testing/unstable parent branches.

At the same time, I'm very happy that Canonical is showing that marketing is important. They also contribute a crapload of patches back to Debian because they do focus on the testing and unstable branches. Those are fantastic benefits which they deserve credit for.

True though, I wouldn't claim Debian is a new user distro; especially with the way I build it out from a minimal install and custom package selection.

Edited 2010-08-03 19:21 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE: Ubuntu
by nt_jerkface on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 19:41 in reply to "Ubuntu"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26


Ubuntu is really a breath of fresh air in the Linux world. It has really raised the standards and what you can expect to work without manual fiddling.


I'm not convinced of this. I randomly test distros and I didn't find Ubuntu to be better than openSuse at detecting hardware and Ubuntu has a poor track record when it comes to updates.

I don't think any distro is leagues ahead when it comes to being user friendly. My opinion is that they all need to bake for 3-4 more years. Linux is fine for servers and cell phones but the desktop is a work in progress.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by vivainio on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 20:31 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26


I'm not convinced of this. I randomly test distros and I didn't find Ubuntu to be better than openSuse at detecting hardware and Ubuntu has a poor track record when it comes to updates.


Distros do a ton of stuff apart from hardware detection. My experiments with opensuse 11.3 indicate that it's quality is just not as good as Ubuntu 10.04.

Case in point: I was unable to get browser-originated sound (youtube) from my usb headset. I don't want to debug it, because in Ubuntu I don't have to. I guess I'll delete the opensuse partition and try Fedora. THEY should be able to configure PA ;-).

(My work machine is still happily running Ubuntu 10.04)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Ubuntu
by Anonymous Penguin on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 20:16 in reply to "Ubuntu"
Anonymous Penguin Member since:
2005-07-06

Try any other distro, and you'll quickly see how polished Ubuntu is in comparison. For many distros, it almost feels like they didn't even try it before shipping.


Really? I have just installed Mandriva 2010.1 Powerpack and I found it a lot more polished (and complete) than Ubuntu. Hardware detection and configuration were simply amazing (I put it on a notebook).
Same goes for PCLinuxOS. And openSUSE isn't bad either.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE: Ubuntu
by Lunitik on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 20:21 in reply to "Ubuntu"
Lunitik Member since:
2005-08-07

Ask yourself why you think Ubuntu works, then look at who has contributed to the parts that you believe made the experience better.

Canonical is a packager of Linux, they develop some things around maintenance that are nice - like janitor and software-center. They also develop a decent development platform in Launchpad, but very little of the software you think is improving things is written by Red Hat.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by vivainio on Tue 3rd Aug 2010 20:26 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26

They also develop a decent development platform in Launchpad, but very little of the software you think is improving things is written by Red Hat.


I think what makes the difference is that Ubuntu is just tested better. No matter who does all the development, if a component is broken when it's time to push out the release, your distro doesn't benefit from it.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Ubuntu
by fredb1974 on Wed 4th Aug 2010 06:29 in reply to "Ubuntu"
fredb1974 Member since:
2006-01-31

I think it's a bit bogus to emphasize the marketing aspect of Ubuntu.

What Ubuntu does is - it's making a distro that friggin works and looks nice. Try any other distro, and you'll quickly see how polished Ubuntu is in comparison. For many distros, it almost feels like they didn't even try it before shipping.


Polished or blindly copied on other OS ? ;)

I have to disagree. Just look at Fedora 13... It is as well polished as Ubuntu.

Yes, I include Debian in those broken distros. Ubuntu doesn't attempt to say "you know, this distro is mostly for experienced users" as an excuse. If Ubuntu is broken, it's considered broken by powers that be, instead of saying "yeah, you just need to do some fixup to config files here and there".


Debian is lighter than ubuntu... And simpler - for a intermediate linux user - to use.

Ubuntu is really a breath of fresh air in the Linux world. It has really raised the standards and what you can expect to work without manual fiddling.


Really ? Is that a good news ? I don't think so. Don't you need a driving license to drive a car ?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by r_a_trip on Wed 4th Aug 2010 10:24 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

Ubuntu is really a breath of fresh air in the Linux world. It has really raised the standards and what you can expect to work without manual fiddling.

Really ? Is that a good news ? I don't think so. Don't you need a driving license to drive a car ?

Sorry to butt in, but yeah, that is a good thing. No OS should ship with broken configuration in place. An OS should work as advertised. It shouldn't be a minefield of bugs and configuration niggles which an end user is compelled to solve before being able to use his machine.

Regardless of what Canonical contributes upstream, the Ubuntu project delivers an OS that has sane configuration by default. I won't claim that it is bug free or doesn't have it's occasional niggles, but overall, Ubuntu just lets you use your machine without making you jump through needlessly complicated hoops. Best of all, they do it without dumbing down Linux. All the raw power of the system is still available at the tips of your fingers, if you choose to dive in.

On top of that, it makes adding the naughty, proprietary bits and bobs (which everybody but RMS adds) relatively painless, it has the advantage of the depth and breadth of the available Debian packages and it has enough critical mass to get software projects to release their newest releases as .deb files and Ubuntu fosters a vast, easily accessible and friendly user community which is invaluable as a resource of information.

While all the other distro's have one element or another of what Ubuntu has, none of them have the picture as complete as Ubuntu.

Side note: I think elitists should only be allowed to use computers when they have produced their own silicon wafers, wrote their own ISA, etched their own circuitery and programmed their own OS from scratch.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by macinnisrr on Fri 6th Aug 2010 04:32 in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
macinnisrr Member since:
2009-11-12

Wouldn't it be nicer if we had cars that one could drive with no prior knowledge and no need for a license? If we had such cars which could drive themselves, would you suggest that it was a negative when compared to the ones we have today. Keep in mind that at one time you used to have to turn a crank on your engine to get your car to run, make sure the choke was pulled out before starting, push it in afterwards, and there was no such thing as an automatic transmission. Are we worse off now because driving has become easier?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu
by crhylove on Wed 4th Aug 2010 16:38 in reply to "Ubuntu"
crhylove Member since:
2010-04-10

Ubuntu is about HALF as polished as Mint. Of course Mint is an Ubuntu remix, but still. Cannonical has made many, many puzzling and dumb choices with Ubuntu over the years.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Ubuntu
by da_Chicken on Thu 5th Aug 2010 22:56 in reply to "Ubuntu"
da_Chicken Member since:
2006-01-01

What Ubuntu does is - it's making a distro that friggin works and looks nice.

What Ubuntu doesn't do is - it's not sending many of its changes to upstream projects. Instead, Ubuntu contributes its changes to Canonical's hosting website, Launchpad. Then, all the upstream projects are free to create accounts at Canonical's Launchpad and use Canonical's version control system, so they could benefit from all the "cool Ubuntu innovations" that are hosted there. And then, if a large number of FOSS projects become dependent on Canonical's services and tools, Shuttleworth might become a very powerful man in the FOSS world.

It's a clever strategy, but it doesn't work as long as most of the upstream projects refuse to become Canonical's clients. In stead, Shuttleworth is seen as a bad guy because he keeps Ubuntu's contributions stored at Canonical's hosting services instead of sending them upstream. And this negative public image makes Shuttleworth less influential in the FOSS world. So it's really no wonder that Shuttleworth gets very upset when people keep pointing out that Ubuntu contributes too little code to its upstream projects.

So Shuttleworth must just hope that his evil scheme of world domination pans out and that FOSS projects are stupid enough to allow Canonical to become the new centralized upstream for Ubuntu's upstream projects - not by producing lots and lots of code but, instead, by controlling the tools of production.

If Ubuntu is broken, it's considered broken by powers that be, instead of saying "yeah, you just need to do some fixup to config files here and there".

When Ubuntu is broken and users are complaining, your overlord at Canonical says: "Ubuntu is not a democracy. We won't fix it."

http://www.osnews.com/story/23039/Kicking_in_Open_Doors_Open_Source...

Reply Parent Score: 2