Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 16th Jan 2012 22:55 UTC
Google "The fragmentation of Android is very real and very problematic for end users, developers, mobile operators, device manufacturers, and Google. However fragmentation does not mean Android is going to 'die' or 'fail' as some seem to think. On the contrary I think we can count on Android playing a significant role in our world for a long, long time. I also am confident that Google has already lost control of Android and has zero chance of regaining control. This post explains why I'm so confident about this."
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RE[2]: Divided We Fall
by sbergman27 on Tue 17th Jan 2012 03:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Divided We Fall"
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

When you say Windows rules the desktop, do you mean Windows 8...

I'm sure you feel you've been very clever. But I mean "Windows". That family of desktop OSes which maintains enough coherency that both users and vendors consider it to be one OS, more or less. Even over multiple generations of that OS family.

I'm only allotted 8000 characters, or whatever, per post in this forum. So I'll just provide a link to the 317 Linux distros that Distrowatch maintains statistics on:

http://distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=popularity

Now, that could be construed as being a bit unfair of me since many of those distros are built upon the foundations of other of those distros. There are not *that* many core distro families. But there is more incompatibility between the current incarnations of those core distros than you see between contemporary versions of Windows.

What is much worse is that even if you pick one distro... 6 months down the road you are going to encounter incompatibilities that MS would consider unacceptable in their products, delivered by Linux vendors with the advice "You deal with it, users".[1]

This philosophy is disseminated from the kernel devs, who refuse to implement a stable driver interface, at the top. And is picked up and emulated by the intervening layers which lie between the ethereal levels of kernel development, and the grunt levels of Linux administration and home usership.

And in another 6 months, we'll get another round of that. And in another... well... you should be getting the picture.

Look. I dislike Windows as much as anyone. I don't allow it in my home. (Nor MacOS X, for other reasons.) But while I'll go so far as to point out the facts, I'm not going to stick my head into the sand to have a prolonged conversation with you. You'll need to come up for air and agree to have a civilised conversation in the open, with all the obvious facts gathered 'round us so closely that they can't be denied.

Hey, I'd like to deny them, too.

Anyway... no, I don't think you've discovered a flaw in my view. I think you've trotted out a meaningless cliche, popular among advocates of non-Windows OSes, that unfortunately, doesn't really bear close inspection.

-Steve

[1] Exceptions to this are the enterprise versions of Linux. RHEL/CentOS/Scientific Linux. I'm recommending these to people, increasingly. Some teeth-jarring is still involved. But only every 2 to 4 years. And you don't have to encounter any for 7 if you don't care to.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: Divided We Fall
by stabbyjones on Tue 17th Jan 2012 04:21 in reply to "RE[2]: Divided We Fall"
stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

Debian, your argument is invalid.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Divided We Fall
by sbergman27 on Tue 17th Jan 2012 04:51 in reply to "RE[3]: Divided We Fall"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Debian, your argument is invalid.

You'll need to specify what you mean. Debian is as bad as any of the Linux distros. A sometimes ~2 year, but very uncertain 2 - 4 year release cycle. Forced upgrade a year after... whenever it is they decide to release the next version. Teeth-jarring incompatibilities at that time. No option to go to 7 years on one release, as with RHEL/CentOS/SL.

OK. So maybe it's better than Fedora. But if you think Debian's existence somehow conflicts with my stated argument, I'd recommend a splash of cold water to you.

-Steve

Edited 2012-01-17 04:56 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Divided We Fall
by unclefester on Tue 17th Jan 2012 05:00 in reply to "RE[3]: Divided We Fall"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Distrowatch is a geek site and is not indicative of general Linux usage.

There are only four basic distros (Debian, Red Hat, Slackware and Gentoo). Every other distro is a fork or spin of these.

There are only two mainstream Linux distros Debian-based (Debian/Ubuntu/Mint) and Red Hat-based (Fedora/Suse etc) which realistically cover well over 95% (probably >99%) of desktop users.

There have been large educational and corporate rollouts involving tens of thousands of individual machines rollouts. AFAIK every one of these rollouts has used some type of Debian or Red Hat base.

To the non-technical end user the Linux experience on any mainstream distro is virtually identical. KDE and Gnome offer a user experience similar to any other modern desktop OS.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Divided We Fall
by r_a_trip on Tue 17th Jan 2012 10:15 in reply to "RE[2]: Divided We Fall"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

[ snip ] meaningless cliche, popular among advocates of non-Windows OSes, that unfortunately, doesn't really bear close inspection.

I don't think that cliche is as meaningless as you make it out to be. Win32 is the most stable API in existence, but MS has and does muck about with their driver model every few years. (That Windows XP was as long lived as it was, is just an abberation.) I've seen quite a few pieces of hardware "die" along the way (from Win 9x to Windows 7), just because the driver model in Windows had changed and the device vendor opted not to port the driver for economical reasons. While most programs (except for low level system tools) seem to survive quite nicely between versions, it isn't all milk and honey in the Windows camp either.

Doesn't exonerate Linux (distros) for sometimes seemingly needless churn. But your demands for 5 + years stability is a bit unrealistic. Not even MS has that in the cards for ordinairy mortals.

Consumer, Hardware, and Multimedia products

Microsoft will offer Mainstream Support for either a minimum of 5 years from the date of a product’s general availability, or for 2 years after the successor product (N+1) is released, whichever is longer. Extended Support is not offered for Consumer, Hardware, and Multimedia products.
http://support.microsoft.com/gp/lifepolicy

The devil here is the 2 years after the successor product (N+1) is released. MS is ramping up development speed again, after the Longhorn disaster. So you'll get 5 years at best and most likely 4 years at worst. This is for consumer versions of course. They do treat businesses better.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[4]: Divided We Fall
by dsmogor on Tue 17th Jan 2012 16:59 in reply to "RE[3]: Divided We Fall"
dsmogor Member since:
2005-09-01

I'd add this got even wore after 64bit switch. Linux is now arms and legs above Windows in support for 3-5 years old hw on 64bit systems.

Edited 2012-01-17 16:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Divided We Fall
by aldo on Tue 17th Jan 2012 12:31 in reply to "RE[2]: Divided We Fall"
aldo Member since:
2010-02-17

The point I'm trying - and obviously failing - to make is nothing to do with Linux on the desktop.

You're right to say that Windows rules the desktop. But just counting XP, Vista and 7 installs (that make up over 99% of all Windows installs) gives us, I reckon, more than 30 different versions of Windows.

Windows is far more fragmented than Android.

Reply Parent Score: 0