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Geezy

What's your Linux story? Here's mine.

35 posts in this topic

Windows 2000 was unstable, especially compared to Linux at the time.  Let me clarify that statement:

 

As a driver developer for a very large hardware company, Windows NT/2000 had a terrible driver model.  While WDM was an improvement over the VxD model employed by Windows NT, everything still ran at kernel ring 0.  This means the drivers had complete access to everything in the OS, and could very easily kernel panic the entire OS.  The concept of data execution prevention did not exist at the kernel level yet, and bugs in drivers were diagnosed by analyzing crash dumps from the blue screen that would inevitably occur.  We dealt with a lot of customer complaints from people claiming our product caused their computer to crash.  Very occasionally it was a legitimate bug in our software, but in the vast majority of cases it was poorly written drivers for some other peripheral attached to their system (printer drivers, for whatever reason, caused us the greatest number of headaches).

 

Linux, by comparison, was a dream to develop for.  Modularization and loader versioning in the kernel allowed us to develop drivers independent of any specific kernel version.  If we had a bug in the driver, it was only our driver that crashed, not the entire OS.

 

Windows did eventually catch up to Linux with the release of Windows Driver Foundation and user-space drivers that could be run outside of ring 0.  But it took Microsoft nearly a decade to get there (technically, they did have UMDF, a user-mode driver framework, in the XP days but it was largely undocumented and seemingly written specifically to support DRM schemes in their media drivers).

 

I realize I'm approaching this from a perspective not many people share, but to claim Windows 2000 was stable is a narrow view.  A lot of things could and often did go wrong that would cause the system to kernel panic, unless the computer was set up with a specific configuration and not messed with.  At that time, I had a Solaris server running that was used for source control and regulatory builds.  I can't remember ever seeing it crash or restart unexpectedly.

 

---------------------------------------------------------------

Sorry for the tangent there.  I read the wall of text, and could certainly relate to some of those experiences.  I run Ubuntu on all of the computers in my house now.  There are Windows PCs available for my kids to use for gaming, and I want to make sure they know how to use Windows for computing tasks.  Aside from gaming, however, most of the Linux AND Windows PCs in the house get ignored by everyone but me.  It's interesting; the kids use their smart phones for almost everything, and my wife uses her tablet more than any other device.  She's an artist and uses the Samsung Note 10" tablet for work and play.  The kids play more games on their phones and tablets than they do on PCs or consoles.

 

There is a definite shift in the computing experience for most casual users today.  Desktops are being replaced by phones and tablets for all but the content creators.  Seeing how much my wife's Note can do, though, has given me a view to the future.  I honestly believe that in the not-too-distant future, even content creators will be using tablet-ish devices for everything.  Intense tasks like video editing can be done more efficiently by server clusters, so I could see small but powerful "cloud" servers in peoples' homes that take on those sorts of tasks (uploading raw video files to cloud servers on the Internet would take an eternity, but I could see "local cloud" boxes as a stop-gap until network speeds increase).  The server does the heavy-lifting, while the user interface runs almost entirely on a portable device.

 

When (if?) that day arrives, Windows will become largely irrelevant.  So will Linux, and BSD, and OS X, and any other "desktop" OS.  Android, iOS, maybe WinRT or some variant - these will be the operating systems of the future, while the desktops we've worked with for decades will change into headless workstations that are slaves to the portable form factor overlords.   :rofl:

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Hello,

1: So you base that "Linux is still hopeless really" because you tried ONE distro?

2: Why use SUSE?

3: I seriously doubt that basic functions do not work out of the box. Please state what basic function didnt work out of the box for you and we can try to help you.

 

As a consumer, absolutely I'm basing it on that.  I'll give Ubuntu a go tomorrow and see how that goes.  Unless you can suggest a different distro that doesn't involve me mucking around, finding drivers for components that requre me to use my PC.

Honestly.  The biggest gripe wasn't the lack of drivers for absolutely everything, but the fact that something as SIMPLE as print to PDF is next to impossible.  Even with the thousands of tutorials online, all which say different things, nothing worked.

What I want to achieve isn't as simple as I will want it to be, but bottom line is, I need the PC to be running, and printing.

Basically, for work, we login via RDP, which is easy enough under SUSE.  But then we use a DOS program.

I need that DOS program to print in Linux, when it is told to.  Which will be the struggle.  When using the RDP on Windows, it send it to a program on the local machine called Automate Spooler, which is apparently the only way to make the DOS program print locally.  The EXE loads up in WINE, but hell, there maybe an even better way to make it work.

But yeah, OTT with my Linux hate.  I was quite frustrated earlier in the day.

As for picking SUSE, I filled out some generator online, answered a few questions, and it said SUSE was the best for what I wanted.

Also, I'm using KDE.  I'm not sure if it makes a difference, but I honestly don't care what environment I install and use.  The PC will have limited use, but printing from RDP is an absolute necessity.

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The most likely choice for the generator picking sue is it was a mainly KDE based Distro

 

But you can use any distro you want and if you really want KDE then you can just install it :)

 

I have 3 or 4 on mine just so i can play about with them

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Another thing was I had this ATi PCI TV Wonder whose specific version drivers needed to be installed at a specific point before something would be overwritten and I'd be stuck with 320x240 max capture size instead of 640x480. In Linux all of my hardware just worked without having to install any drivers.

For a kid I spent a lot of money on my hardware and it was disappointing to have to spend so long over the course of Win2k SP1 through to SP3 and into the life of XP (still sticking with 2k) stuck in forums and vendor tech support trying to sort these things out. I just decided it was a waste of my life and moved on and have been happy since.

Anyway I hope you are happy with whatever software/hardware you use and that it does what you want without hassle, that's the important thing right?

 

You got this ATI PCI TV Wonder card to work in linux for you? This was the hands-down reason I went MCE/360 extenders over mythTV or any linux-backend capture. my ATI capture cards ( 2x dedicated PCI, 1x AGP GPU/capture card and 2x USB) just didn't work. not detected, wrongly detected, wouldn't capture audio, couldn't tune any channels, can't compress from raw capture.. Days wasted trying to find 'the way'. To this day the USB ones don't work on any distro I try (including OSX, haha) At that time i spent $400 on a display model vista desktop machine with MCE and it worked brilliantly, compared to over $600 to replace the ATIs with new compatible hauppauge cards. TBH, the ONLY windows machine that always just worked. I think the scheduled reboots every 24 hrs helped quite a bit.

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Installed SUSE today.  Linux is still hopeless really.

If it doesn't work out of the box for basic function, then it will never take off beyond computer geeks.

 

 

Note:  I don't use geeks in a derogatory manner in this post.

geeks? Really? If you are into linux, and develop for it, i'd rather call myself an 'enthusiast'. I think the word 'nerd' and 'geek' is definitely meant as a derogatory term to imply not fitting into mainstream culture. It's sad to be called a 'geek' because you like linux. But so be it.

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As a consumer, absolutely I'm basing it on that.  I'll give Ubuntu a go tomorrow and see how that goes.  Unless you can suggest a different distro that doesn't involve me mucking around, finding drivers for components that requre me to use my PC.

Honestly.  The biggest gripe wasn't the lack of drivers for absolutely everything, but the fact that something as SIMPLE as print to PDF is next to impossible.  Even with the thousands of tutorials online, all which say different things, nothing worked.

What I want to achieve isn't as simple as I will want it to be, but bottom line is, I need the PC to be running, and printing.

Basically, for work, we login via RDP, which is easy enough under SUSE.  But then we use a DOS program.

I need that DOS program to print in Linux, when it is told to.  Which will be the struggle.  When using the RDP on Windows, it send it to a program on the local machine called Automate Spooler, which is apparently the only way to make the DOS program print locally.  The EXE loads up in WINE, but hell, there maybe an even better way to make it work.

But yeah, OTT with my Linux hate.  I was quite frustrated earlier in the day.

As for picking SUSE, I filled out some generator online, answered a few questions, and it said SUSE was the best for what I wanted.

Also, I'm using KDE.  I'm not sure if it makes a difference, but I honestly don't care what environment I install and use.  The PC will have limited use, but printing from RDP is an absolute necessity.

I strongly recommend that you install Elementary OS (and do some things after the installation ;) )and see how you feel about Linux after that. :) Printing in PDF is extremely simple, I just installed a virtual PDF printer (cups-pdf I think) and that's it. Also, I never liked KDE, it's too much eye-candy for me and too slow.

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geeks? Really? If you are into linux, and develop for it, i'd rather call myself an 'enthusiast'. I think the word 'nerd' and 'geek' is definitely meant as a derogatory term to imply not fitting into mainstream culture. It's sad to be called a 'geek' because you like linux. But so be it.

 

I'm not going to use the word enthusiast to describe a group of users.  IMO, it sounds stupid.

If you find it offensive that when comparing regular computer users to users with enough knowledge to get a Linux operating system onto their PC somehow offensive, I'm sorry.  I'm not being offensive, to suggest I am is ridiculous.

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Somebody deleted my message here and it was nowhere near offensive or breaking the rules. That's it, this site is finally over for me at least for posting. I still won't forget names whose behaviour here is ridiculous.

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Hello,

Windows 2000 was unstable, especially compared to Linux at the time. Let me clarify that statement:

As a driver developer for a very large hardware company

One thing is to develop for and another thing is to work with. Users dont care about the driver model.

Plus, at that time, Windows 2000 was the first "transition" between professional and home being merged. Drivers were going to be terrible.

As a consumer, absolutely I'm basing it on that. I'll give Ubuntu a go tomorrow and see how that goes. Unless you can suggest a different distro that doesn't involve me mucking around, finding drivers for components that requre me to use my PC.

Anyone trying out Linux, should try Ubuntu first. The ammount of community support is just almost as endless as Windows.

Honestly. The biggest gripe wasn't the lack of drivers for absolutely everything, but the fact that something as SIMPLE as print to PDF is next to impossible. Even with the thousands of tutorials online, all which say different things, nothing worked.

I doubt you will have this problem in Ubuntu.

As for picking SUSE, I filled out some generator online, answered a few questions, and it said SUSE was the best for what I wanted.

Yes, its the best for what you need once you get a hang of Linux. Ubuntu and CentOS are pretty much for new users.

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Somebody deleted my message here and it was nowhere near offensive or breaking the rules. That's it, this site is finally over for me at least for posting. I still won't forget names whose behaviour here is ridiculous.

 

The mods do make mistakes, you know. That was not intentional.

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