Home > Linux > Linus Torvalds: We’re After the Desktop Linus Torvalds: We’re After the Desktop Eugenia Loli 2003-01-28 Linux 74 Comments “One of the things that’s probably going to start happening this year – or start happening in a much bigger way – is Linux on the desktop. I use Linux for the desktop, I never use it for big server stuff.” Torvalds on AustraliaIT. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 74 Comments 2003-01-28 2:19 am Full transcript of the interview on http://australianit.news.com.au/articles/0,7204,5897985%5E15302… 2003-01-28 2:30 am About time too. Maybe all the OSS fanboys and developers out there might start thinking more about the end users experience a bit more instead of using the insulting “luser” term or going down the dreary elitist route, whenever desktop useability is at issue. 2003-01-28 2:48 am Yeah, whateva. You don’t (and haven’t) seen that attitude from the large projects aimed at the desktop for Linux like GNOME, KDE, etc. You may get that rudeness from individual small projects, but that is no different from the Windows of Mac world. Go back to slashdot with your false generalizations. 2003-01-28 3:01 am Please see the comments attached to the story JZW’s rant/issues with multimedia players. 2003-01-28 3:06 am There is a great difference between Linux being *on* the desktop, and *for* the desktop… 2003-01-28 3:14 am NEWS FLASH!!! Steve Jobs uses Mac OS X for his desktop work … and Bill Gates prefers Windows XP, or Longhorn! Stay tuned for further declarations from the “Well, Duh!” News Bureau. Sheesh…. 2003-01-28 3:14 am I’d really like to see Linux fail… I mean it has no use… Windows is much, much better for workstations and desktops even servers, and Windows .NET Server will take away any advantages even big iron Unix such as FreeBSD has. Look, Unix had its place, but the miserable attempts to put it on the desktop show its age. Let Windows take over, its only natural, I know you open sores types are jealous of the Microsoft programmers who write better software than you while making money. I recently tried out Linux 8.0 — its a joke. After squinting as hard as I could — the fonts really are terrible — I made out the “Home Directory” label on the desktop. I double-clicked it, and after a wait of 30 seconds with no user feedback, it opened not one but two windows showing an empty directory. What a joke… I want one window to open instantly, not two opening in half a minute. 2003-01-28 3:17 am I don’t see any comments on the article, I see recent comments, but nothing there is about linux. Could you privide a link please? 2003-01-28 3:19 am that was the BIGGEST troll I’ve EVER seen… UNIX will never lose it’s place And there is no Linux 8.0, sorry, you must be thinking of Red Hat. Linux isn’t an OS, the distributions are. yeah, you would of got that behavior if you had a 320×120 monitor with a 486 with 8 MBs of ram. 2003-01-28 3:29 am Anybody know what distro Linus uses? Or does he simply roll his own ? Anyway, I think it’s kind of funny that he thinks that now that it has ‘decent’ (and I use the term loosely) office apps, suddenly it’s viable. 2003-01-28 3:35 am Look, Unix had its place, but the miserable attempts to put it on the desktop show its age. Here’s how my <a href=”Linux” rel=”nofollow”>http://pages.sbcglobal.net/ohwhat/screenshot.png”>Linux 8.0 desktop looks. I think it compares rather favorably to any operating system, including Windows. 2003-01-28 3:36 am Anony:I recently tried out Linux 8.0 — its a joke. 🙂 Kinda like your post, eh? If anyone didn’t smell *that* as being a tongue-in-cheek post, with all of the obvious errors in it, then I think we all need to rethink our sense of humour… 2003-01-28 3:37 am http://pages.sbcglobal.net/ohwhat/screenshot.png Sorry about that Red 2003-01-28 3:39 am In an interview I read recently, Linus said he used Suse and Red Hat, one at work and one at home, I don’t remember which is which. I was surprised, I figured he rolled his own as well, or at least used Debian. I guess even Linux wants something that “just works”. Red 2003-01-28 3:50 am To be successful on the desktop, KDE and GNOME need your help. Check these link’s for whatever flavor your boat. <a href=”http://www.affero.com/ca/kde“>KDE or <a href=”http://www.affer.com/ca/gnome>Gnome 2003-01-28 4:05 am You don’t (and haven’t) seen that attitude from the large projects aimed at the desktop for Linux like GNOME, KDE, etc. You may get that rudeness from individual small projects, but that is no different from the Windows of Mac world. Go back to slashdot with your false generalizations. A little civility would do wonders for your charm and make for more sober and considered discourse. What is important is that key “opinion formers” take steps to promote a more positive consideration of desktop useability within development teams and in the wider consituency. Unless the priority of desktop useability is raised it will always be sub-par to everyones detriment. Like “security” is Microsoft’s mantra, “useability” should be the mantra for Linux at system and application levels. 2003-01-28 4:09 am That is an awesome desktop! Where did you get the Wallpaper and Icons? 2003-01-28 4:21 am That’s not what you said in the first place. You suggested an extreme rudeness, and hate of the users. All I typed was that the large desktop movements in Linux don’t have these properties. 2003-01-28 4:39 am Looking at the priority given to desktop and application interface useability, I don’t think enough development efforts out there are putting the user first. I also dislike the large and significant crowd of OSS zealots (particularly the Slashdot crowd) who do take an elitist attitude. Saying all of the OSS community had this attitude was a mistake. But, the opinion formers must take a clearer lead in this area. Producing systems and applications that meet this challenge will be the only comment worth listening to. 2003-01-28 5:00 am “I never use it for big server stuff” does this mean he uses Windows .net server? 2003-01-28 5:03 am Thanks I got the background from art.gnome.org, specifically here: http://art.gnome.org/show_background.php?backgroundID=92&category=o… And I also got the icons from art.gnome.org, I suggest downloading all of their icon sets. 2003-01-28 5:22 am no…he never uses it PERSONALY as a server…..and at work they are probably running solaris on the server. 2003-01-28 5:39 am I must try to contain myself, but wow that was a good healthy laugh. Linux on the desktop? Is this was passes for news nowadays? It’s not going to happen folks. It’s a whimsical fantasy world that Linux zealots dream of where everyone uses some distro to power their desktop for everyday work. Back in reality, people don’t care. Sure the PC enthusiast might, but will the average user flock to Linux? Of course not. There’s no standardization at all. Linux is as badly splintered now as Unix became, and it’s not going to come back together. And in response to that goof a few posts up.. are you brain dead? Linux is very much the OS you speak of. Linux in and of itself it what allows the computer to function, not the kludgy inconsistent and unresponsive GUI that runs on top of it in distro X. Sheesh. 2003-01-28 5:58 am Thanks for you’re commentary and prediction mr. Anonymous. Its almost as useless as the idiots that come in here and yell, “Macs suck because they do!”. 2003-01-28 6:06 am That does not mean that he doesn’t also use or like gnome. He said not me, tho I agree. 2003-01-28 6:14 am And in response to that goof a few posts up.. are you brain dead? Linux is very much the OS you speak of. Linux in and of itself it what allows the computer to function, not the kludgy inconsistent and unresponsive GUI that runs on top of it in distro X. Sheesh. Again, a little civility wouldn’t go amiss. From an end-users (and many developers) point of view, Linux is the complete package. Additionally, there are useability concerns at all levels, from OS to GUI, for developer and user. Linus Torvalds must accept responsibility for his statement. This includes an acknowledgement that success is dependant on the desktop experience being acceptable to the end user. As it stands neither the desktop nor the applications that run on it are sufficiently functional or as easy to use as they must be to encourage wider take up. Saying that this is the year of Linux on the desktop doesn’t make it so. 2003-01-28 6:55 am Linux is the kernel. GNU/Linux, Redhat, SuSE, Gentoo, etc. are OS’es…. I know it might sound like symantics, but “Linux” is really only the kernel, and a kernel by itself is hardly useful. 2003-01-28 7:15 am Linux is the kernel. GNU/Linux, Redhat, SuSE, Gentoo, etc. are OS’es…. I know it might sound like symantics, but “Linux” is really only the kernel, and a kernel by itself is hardly useful. Yup, I appreciate that. But, tell that to Linus Torvalds, the journalists at Australian IT, and everybody else who bangs a keyboard. Being picky “Linux” only refers to one particular branch of one particular kernal. Fork it and it isn’t “Linux” anymore. 2003-01-28 7:28 am While we all know Steve Jobs uses OS X (prior to that, NeXT) via interviews, however what we don’t know is what Bill Gates uses. He may as well be using a Mac, or a Amiga or something of that sort. 2003-01-28 7:33 am I must try to contain myself, but wow that was a good healthy laugh. Linux on the server? Is this was passes for news nowadays? It’s not going to happen folks. It’s a whimsical fantasy world that Linux zealots dream of where everyone uses some distro to power their server for everyday work. Back in reality, people don’t care. Sure the enthusiastic sysadmin might, but will the average MSCE grad flock to Linux? Of course not. There’s no standardization at all. Linux is as badly splintered now as Unix became, and it’s not going to come back together. And in response to that goof a few posts up.. are you brain dead? Linux is very much the OS you speak of. Linux in and of itself it what allows the computer to function, not the kludgy inconsistent and unresponsive server apps that runs on top of it in distro Y. Sheesh. That post up there may have been very true half a decade ago.. 2003-01-28 7:48 am @affero >To be successful on the desktop, KDE and GNOME need your >help. I just can’t stand either of them, reminds me too much of Windows. Enlightenment is the way to go, and E without gnome or kde at the same time.(E17 will rock) 2003-01-28 8:20 am I agree totally about KDE and GNOME! No originality! That is one of the great freedoms with Linux though, the main stream can mindlessly copy OSX-XP and all the other bloatware but you and I can choose to use whatever alternative that may be light, fast, innovative, retro or what ever each one wants! I also agree that E17 will rock, I’ve been evaluating the Evas graphics library and think that Rasterman is doing some truly great work. For a truly responsive desktop that is very easy to use, supper efficient to work in and looks good I think its hard to beat ROX-Filer. 2003-01-28 8:53 am Well it looks nice, except fonts. You really can use that for more than a minute?? My eyes hurt after just looking on that screenshot.. everything blurred. 2003-01-28 9:03 am The LCD optimizations may be turned on, these look very poor in a CRT. AA fonts look best if you run at a really high resolution otherwise the blurryness stands out too muck. 2003-01-28 10:51 am Linux was written on a 386 processor (a desktop computer), servers those days were mostly mainframes. So, why wouldn’t Linux be a desktop OS? 2003-01-28 11:26 am @anon, UNIX is what is under the hood of MAC OSX and it rather good, unix is far stable and reliable than anything MS can churn out Linus uses SuSE for Home and RedHat for work. 2003-01-28 11:50 am Nice Desktop Red but I prefer KDE Here is mine http://dogmilk.homelinux.com/pics/slack-desk-29-12-2002.png 2003-01-28 12:15 pm Yeah KDE is much better, especially with 3.1 just out Here’s mine: http://www.kde-look.org/content/show.php?content=4053 2003-01-28 12:53 pm http://www.geocities.com/andrew7005/ 2003-01-28 1:12 pm Its feel is very much that of RiscOS’s filemanager. Or something. Its in the docs. But ill be danmed if it isnt one of the most usable filemanagers ive ever seen. ecore is good, but e16 had seriesly annoying problems, with its bloated context menus, way to many preference windows, and other gooky things that made useing it a chore.. Anyway, i dont have high hopes for e17’s wm, but with ecore something else can be built. 2003-01-28 1:13 pm http://www.fewt.com/desktop/ (/me braces for the OSNEWS effect) 2003-01-28 2:09 pm “Looking at the priority given to desktop and application interface useability, I don’t think enough development efforts out there are putting the user first.” It’s just that there is no one doing the work (well not quite, but very few). Face it, there are very few UI gurus out there. Even less who want to spend their little time on KDE, GNOME, or such things. It doesn’t change anything if KDE or whatever priotizise UI design, when no good UI designer is at hand. Also the number of usability studies is shocking small. And the common developer with his computer science degree is sadly rather bad at HCI design. Regarding Bill Gates’ OS: My sources in Redmond are telling me that the current PC in his main office is a two processor Dell machine running some internal Windows build. Cheers. 2003-01-28 2:24 pm I’m not using linux: not for server, nor for anything else… I hope I WON’T HAVE TO use it. Leo. 2003-01-28 3:00 pm Anon…I dont believe that you believe that. I think that the linux unfamiliarity has left you frustrated and as result you want everything to be like windows. How can someone, in their right mind, say they want Linux to fail? Here we go again: When you go shop for a car…do you want to have two choices, a ford or a chevy with only three or four models to choose from. What happens if Ford sells you a lemon and you swear you will never buy another? Then you only have one choice. Linux is about choice, is choice good for the competition? I think that you need to decide that for yourself. 2003-01-28 4:36 pm Just got the box… Had an installed system in 30 min… =] This is really a gr8 distro…. 2003-01-28 5:05 pm I don’t want anything to be like Windows: I just want NOTHING to be like linux… I want Amiga’s Shell, I want Amiga’MUI automaticaly resize feature, I want Mac’s look and feel, Amiga’s responsiveness, something as powerfull as DirectX, Assigns, Morphos boot time, Amiga-like memory/ressources requirements… in a nutshell: I want everything but Linux. Some people are afraid of Windows taking over the world… …I’m afraid of Linux expanding. Linux is not a choice for me… There is no choice. Only in the early 90s we really had the choice: .MS-DOS (was commercially supported) .MacOS ( ” ) .AtariTOS ( ” ) .Unix ( ” ) .BeOS ( ” ) .AmigaOS ( ” ) … Now: what do we have ? Regards, Leo. 2003-01-28 5:20 pm Windows XP RedHat Linux Lycoris OS LindowsOS SUSE Xandros AmigaOS MacOS Unix OpenDOS FreeDOS Hmm, choices. 😉 2003-01-28 5:22 pm The fonts being blurry on my screen are a result of compressing the image in the gimp. I run 1600x12xx resolution and I figured many would not be able to view it at the regular resolution. And Kudos to Richard, Grant, and Aitvo! 2003-01-28 5:40 pm Agreement, basically. The comunity has to agree on what fonts to use, standard widget, standard window manager, etc. It’s ridiculous having to install a whole set of widgets just to run one app, and another two or three for another two or three apps. It’s ridiculous that Gnome and KDE don’t agree on a common method to make any app run on any desktop. The same goes for sound support, it’s a joke in linux. Standarization! we need standarization, without it we are doomed! 2003-01-28 5:42 pm Agreement, basically. The comunity has to agree on what fonts to use, standard widget, standard window manager, etc. It’s ridiculous having to install a whole set of widgets just to run one app, and another two or three for another two or three apps. It’s ridiculous that Gnome and KDE don’t agree on a common method to make any app run on any desktop. The same goes for sound support, it’s a joke in linux. Standarization! we need standarization, without it we are doomed! Suppose that Adobe is going to port Photoshop to linux… should it release it for Debian? Gentoo? RedHat?, which desktop?? KDE? Gnome? WM? Enlightment? Shall they make their on set of widgets and gadgets? Come on people is just a matter of common sense! Standarization! 2003-01-28 5:44 pm Agreement, basically. The comunity has to agree on what fonts to use, standard widget, standard window manager, etc. It’s ridiculous having to install a whole set of widgets just to run one app, and another two or three for another two or three apps. It’s ridiculous that Gnome and KDE don’t agree on a common method to make any app run on any desktop. The same goes for sound support, it’s a joke in linux. Standarization! we need standarization, without it we are doomed! Suppose that Adobe is going to port Photoshop to linux… should they release it for Debian? Gentoo? RedHat?, which desktop?? KDE? Gnome? WM? Enlightment? Shall they make their own set of widgets and gadgets? Come on people is just a matter of common sense! Standarization! There should be something standard. apps should work through any desktop and through any distribution. I’m not saying that specific characteristics on current distributions should dissapear, I’m saying that the linux folks should agree in some sort of common ways to make things work for everyone. 2003-01-28 5:50 pm Something went definitely wrong… Sorry. 2003-01-28 6:20 pm check this out: http://www.freedesktop.org/standards/ 2003-01-28 6:22 pm But I think Linus words were “a bit manipulated”. Linus is known for statements like “I don’t care what’s going on in user space” and “I don’t give a damn about desktop” etc. He cares about kernel and that’s it. And the statement “We’re after the Desktop” goes well against his own words “I don’t have a message” . The interviewer is making message by herself and presenting it as Linus’s opinion. Whatever, media is media , they can’t live without flashy stuff. 2003-01-28 6:29 pm “I’d really like to see Linux fail… I mean it has no use… Windows is much, much better for workstations and desktops even servers, and Windows .NET Server will take away any advantages even big iron Unix such as FreeBSD has.” I would really like to see both Linux and FreeBSD succeed on desktops. But those who try to claim it is already ready for the average desktop are kidding themselves. KDE and GNOME both have a ways to go yet, as to many X applications in general (ugly aliased fonts, no support for anti-aliased ones, etc.) The other hing that needs to happen is that the currernt Linux community as a whole (and the FreeBSD one to a lesser extent) needs to seriously change their attitude towards the typical end user. Instead of whining and insulting the end user’s intelligence when they complain that something is too difficult to do in Linux, or not understandable, they need to say “Ok. What can we do make this easier for these end users?” I personally know people for example, who have been permanently turned off to Linux because of a visit to #linux on Undernet. Want to see a good example of how new Linux users are treated? Look at the following page from #linux’s web page: http://www.kyra.ath.cx/~meow/clue.txt Maybe the Linux insiders find it funny. But somehow I doubt the Linux newbie who was just kick-banned for some incredibly lame reason finds it very humorous. 2003-01-28 6:35 pm I should say that that page is not hosted directly on the Linux IRC web site. But the Linux IRC site links to it and calls it the “Clueless Newbie” faq. This document is a textbook example of why end users find Linux so frustrating and get turned off to it so quickly. 2003-01-28 6:47 pm Standardization has both positives and negatives. The benefits of standardization are obvious (interoperability, ease of distribution, less retraining…). The problem with standardization is that it removes competition and hence some of the drive for improvements. I think the current competition between KDE and Gnome is healthy and is driving improvements in both desktops. However, parts could be standardized. One area that is SCREAMING for standardization is application distribution (more than just package management). So far, the only project really addressing this is autopackage. This would help trememdously in dealing with different distributions. Once an app is distributable across multiple distributions, the question of which desktop/GUI toolkit arises. Would Adobe (or some other 3rd party) use KDE/Qt, Gnome/GTK, or direct X11. The good news here is that you don’t have to run the KDE desktop to run KDE/Qt apps (you just need the libraries). The same is true for Gnome. The bad news is that they won’t run as well on the non-native desktop. This is a problem that needs to be addressed. I think KDE and Gnome would both benefit if things like cut&paste and themeing were better unified. Media toolkits (GStreamer, Xine, MPlayer) could eventually become standardized, but in my opinion they are all currently too immature. It is funny that you mention sound. Isn’t sound being standardized to ALSA in the upcoming 2.6 Linux kernel. Currently, Linux is not ready for the desktop. There are simply too many pieces missing. This isn’t surprising since up until last year, there really wasn’t a push for Linux on the desktop. RedHat and Debian didn’t give the desktop much thought until about a year ago. Now that the desktop is getting more attention, I think the missing pieces will eventually get filled in and a usable desktop will emerge. 2003-01-28 6:48 pm Yeah, I went to a FreeBSD IRC room on DalNET once back in 1995 or 1996. After that experience I learned never go to IRC and ask a SERIOUS question! <G> I know *I* will never make that mistake again haha! Anyone that gets turned off by a room in IRC really isn’t that interested anyway and are using it as an excuse. 2003-01-28 6:50 pm I meant: what commercially supported OS with decent apps have we got ? Considering that Linux,Unix,Bsd,Lycoris,… share the same apps, same gui,… and considering that DOS clones are almost not anymore supported: what have we got ? I’m sorry but I only see: 1. Unix 2. Win 3. MacOS (And MacOSX uses unix-like kernel) I’m using Win because I have chosen the “less worst”: not because I wanted it… That’s not what I call “choices”… Regards, Leo. 2003-01-28 7:11 pm *sigh* I must agree with Leo on this point. I do wish that their where more then three real choices. I do see real weeknesses of Linux a s a desktop OS, I would love to run something more BeOS/Amiga like but they are dead platforms. Well maybe someday OBOS or AtheOS will become a relivent alteranitive. For now I choose Linux. It has a resonable set of apps, acceptable hardware support and gives me the freedom to make things “Work The Way I Want It To”(TM) 2003-01-28 7:26 pm Why is a platform dead because there aren’t software boxes on walmart shelves made for them? They aren’t. Amiga is about to release OS 4.0, and there are thousands of QUALITY applications for Linux. It’s not dead simply because it’s not a commercial contender. It’s dead when NO ONE uses it which definately is NOT the case for any of the OS’s you’ve listed. 2003-01-28 7:52 pm Ok, at work, I use RH8 with WindowMaker. I see other guys using debian with blackbox, and RH 7.2 with KDE or Gnome, or something like that. Hell, one guy behind me has afterstep, and another guy has his own laptop (why it is here, i don’t know) running OSX 10.2. Each fits who we are. I guess. Each does well enough for our needs, and like it. Yeah, windows is relagated to vmware. It has its place. The problems with computers are not from dumbing them down enough for the end user, they are from a lack of education. My gf’s parents don’t know how to cut and paste a file, link, anything, in windows. My gf just learned about drag and drop, and module loading keeps hanging my damn box at work (stupid sound drivers). Why am I more advanced? Simply because I have educated myself, and taken the time to learn. Because it is my job, and at times a hobby. If we are going to live in an age of computers, shouldn’t we be educated on how to use them? We talk of Linux not being ready, or joke about Windows being ready, or OSX and what not, but the reality is most people can’t double click. Or do too often. Computer interface rules are a joke. I can’t get a woman in her 50s to copy a link, and yet Windows is somehow ready for her desktop? How is this? It is left to people to either hire out, or else struggle (or usually) even give up and not do what they wanted to do. If linus and his cronies can come up with a dumb person’s interface that can help them do it all, then go for it. But it doesn’t solve the long term problem of people, for whatever reason, not learning to use the tools they have purchased. 2003-01-28 8:01 pm It is about time for linux to step on stage, with all the bugs in windows & the Pulideum thing coming in the next windows, they changed the name, but I don’t remember it. Everyday adverage users need another chioce besides a mac. 2003-01-28 8:10 pm I’m not using linux: not for server, nor for anything else… I hope I WON’T HAVE TO use it. Leo. It might happent to you I’ve just heard from our IT people at work – they are a Windows shop – That Corporate HQ is insisting that that the new Oracle back end to a LIMS will have to be run on Linux. They wanted to run it on Windoze – great eh ! 2003-01-28 9:04 pm >Why is a platform dead because there aren’t software boxes >on walmart shelves made for them? >They aren’t. Amiga is about to release OS 4.0, and there are >thousands of QUALITY applications for Linux. It’s not dead >simply because it’s not a commercial contender. It’s dead >when NO ONE uses it which definately is NOT the case for any >of the OS’s you’ve listed. I said “COMMERCIALY” dead: Amiga is commercially dead, just like DOS… Even if some people are still using it. As for OS4… Seeing the amount of time and work Morphos team has spent on Morphos, I think OS4.0 won’t be released tomorrow (and especially not in march as supposed). I never said linux was dead: only that I was ready to use every other OS before having to use this dinosaur… Regards, Leo. 2003-01-28 9:29 pm “The problems with computers are not from dumbing them down enough for the end user, they are from a lack of education.” If I hear this argument one more time I am going to puke. I’ve given the following speach so many times I practically have it memorized word for word. Computers need to be made easier to use. Lack of education is a BS excuse. A doctor wants an easy to use tool that helps him get his job done faster. He doesn’t want to have spend a great deal of time just learning how to use the tool that helps him do his job. If he has to do that, the computer becomes counterproductive because it took so long to learn how to use it he could have done it faster some other way. Personally, I know I would rather that my doctor spent his time reading New England Journal of Medicine rather than searching the net for information on missing or outdated libraries because he couldn’t get his latest RPM to install correctly. Most people use a computer as a work tool. If the tool can be made easier it should be made easier. “Lack of education” is a lame excuse. Can you do brain surgery? Why not? Lack of education I guess. 2003-01-28 9:59 pm The benefits of standardization are obvious (interoperability, ease of distribution, less retraining…). The problem with standardization is that it removes competition and hence some of the drive for improvements. Excessive competition leads to fragmentation and higher costs for developers and users alike. Lack of standardisation can and is holding progress back. The sooner the Linux world adopts an OpenGL ARB style standards body the better. The “Linux ARB” could also serve as a coordinator and financial backer for funding work that might have to be paid for such as producing HCI guidelines. States raise taxes to pay for public works such as roads, so the excuse it couldn’t work don’t wash. Most people use a computer as a work tool. If the tool can be made easier it should be made easier. “Lack of education” is a lame excuse. Exactly. Moreover, it shows ignorance on the part of Linux developers more than it does Linux users and potential users. I’m a “tech” person and after nearly twenty years of wrestling with this crap don’t want to waste my life any more. Time should be spent doing useful stuff not configuring some obscure part of an OS just to get basic functionality working. 2003-01-28 11:49 pm I just did a search for smb on my Linux box. It’s been gronking away at the HD for ten minutes, and the interface has become unusable. They might want to look at a little OS called BeOS for design tips. 2003-01-29 12:06 am Tue Jan 28 19:03:28 EST 2003 [aitvo@lattitude aitvo]$ locate smbclient /usr/bin/smbclient /usr/share/man/man1/smbclient.1.gz [aitvo@lattitude aitvo]$ date Tue Jan 28 19:03:34 EST 2003 2003-01-29 12:09 am What did you do? Cat the raw device and use grep? 2003-01-29 12:23 am No but I don’t pretend to do it either try using driving as a metaphor it works better. Millions of people pretend they can drive but can they really? Of course they can, they may not do it well and may kill thousands in the process but they get by. They drive a myriad of vehicles for many different purpose. Much like people use computers for many purposes. Cars have standard controls. Why can’t computers have them? BTW this applies to 100% of operating systems. 2003-01-29 12:25 am LOL! [grant@EV7 grant]$ su Password: [root@EV7 grant]# cat /dev/hda > grep ‘Document.txt’ “My HD is busy, and the interface is slow, still haven’t found my document. Linux sux0rs!” 2003-01-29 12:49 am Cars have also been made a lot easier to drive over the years so that drivers can focus more on getting from point A to point B without having to learn the internals of how the car works. Examples: Automatic transmissions made driving easier for many people. How many people tinker with their timing belt settings anymore? That used to be fairly common. If something can be made easier, it should be made easier. Driving has been made easier throughout the years. So have computers. To say “it’s lack of education that is the problem” is not valid. People specialize. A doctor is specialized in medicine. Not in computers. He wants to concentrate on medicine and sees the computer as a tool to help him practice medicine more efficiently. He doesn’t want to have to concentrate on the internals of the computer. He wants to plug his data in and get useful results back. He doesn’t want to have to worry about what happens in between. That’s where Windows and MacOS still do a far better job than Linux. They isolate the user from having to worry about what’s under the hood (to continue the car analogy). Linux, despite all the advanced that have been made thanks to KDE and GNOME, still requires a fair amount of knowledge about what is under the hood. 2003-01-29 2:32 am I must agree with the driving analogy. Every car and truck I drive has different switches and levers for things like the headlights and windshield wipers. But essential things like the steering wheel and breaks always work the same. This applies to computer UIs too. The basic widgets and operations in Windows/Mack/GNOME/KDE/BeOS/Amiga/etc are 95% the same. There are some minor things like whining about mounting disks in real UNIX style systems but that’s about as big as fiddling around for the windshield wiper lever the first time you drive a car.