Linux is dead... at least on the desktop

While Linux implementations in the datacenter may be on the rise, PC World says that Linux on the desktop has already died, perhaps as long ago as 2008.

Ironically, Linux has become easier to use over the years with the Ubuntu distribution leading the way in ease of installation and use. It is no longer required to know how to compile your own kernel (like I did back in the Slackware days!), nor is it necessary to configure audio/video drivers or your XFree86 setup. Everything is done for you – which should make things easier for your mom and dad to use.

Unfortunately, as the article points out, a lack of content is what has kept Linux as an afterthought on the desktop market. Most of this has to do with Digital Rights Management (DRM), the system that content providers use to limit how and when you can use their media. For example, playing regular DVDs out of the box requires extra work due to the “Content Scrambling System” or CSS for short. In order to play DVD video, you need to manually install an extra package because it’s not included in Linux distributions due to licensing and legal issues. While the installation is not difficult, most normal end users would simply throw up their hands and say that Linux is broken if they can’t play a movie on their newly installed system.

Another problem is the fragmentation of Linux distributions. While most people have probably heard of Red Hat and Ubuntu, there are dozens more that are more obscure – from Absolute to Zorin. While most have a standard base (Zorin, for example, is based on Ubuntu), making tools compatible across all of the distributions is very difficult. The article gives an example of Flash not working well in the past due to Linux fragmentation and poor drivers.

The article goes on to say that the only hope Linux has on the desktop is with the current shift towards cloud computing, where the choice of desktop operating system is unimportant. That said, Linux is still strong in the server, appliance, and mobile markets and all signs are that it will remain so due to the very flexibility that prevents it from being a mainstream operating system.

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I think the people over at Ubuntu have made great strides in standardizing Linux. A lot of software companies that produce for Linux, produce for Ubuntu (in other words they make .debs instead of just giving you a tarball to compile manually). It's why I choose Ubuntu. It's stable, has an application for everything under the sun, is easy to program for, and looks good to boot. I think if Desktop Linux has a future, it's in Ubuntu. Redhat has clearly carved out its own niche in the server and corporate world, but for the average desktop user, Ubuntu is forcing its way into the spotlight.

I Was a windows user but the last year I use Ubuntu Linux in my laptop and Suse Linux on my Desktop and I havent windows anymore on my disks. I have TV cart that work great I can view any DVD, protectet or not and I can listen any song.
I can rip to buckup my dvd and my cd easily like a windows user and I haven't pay a cent.
The last years Linux is the same good and easy with windows for home users and cost nothing.
I think that is the marketing and the idea that if you pay you got somthing good ,if you dont pay its not good. we have learn to pay for all and that is a marketing trick .

I don't post often but usually when I post its somethine to do with Marketing.
Here we are again, This is another case of marketing.
As a consumer, if I walked into a store and was able to pick out a ready built computer that met all my needs and I didn't need to tweak the OS to get a movie to play or audio or whatever it might be, than consumers would be more likely to buy. But with a lack of software and hardware marketed for the LINUX OS, consumers look for something more mainstream.
It is a matter of market share, if you look for something exotic, you can find it. If you want something that will do the job, then look at the closest walmart, or info-mursial.

So when is DROID coming to a computer near me? To a 50 year old lady that question makes complete sense. A phone that runs droid, needs a computer that runs droid. You would be surprised how often that question is actually asked.

Past weekend i finally switched from Windows Vista to Ubuntu 10.10. Finally Windows is gone.
At this moment all i need on my laptop HP 6550b is working. Ok I'm an system-administrator but for more humans Linux is a nice choice.

I have had no problems with drivers apart from my messing around with ATI; the community ATI driver that Ubuntu installs works fine for my needs and I was just messing around to see if the ATI CC one was better. Solitary wifi dongle problem was a copy and paste command into the terminals command line, my sole command line use in months of use. Most users would never have to touch terminal, I would think. Just boot from the live CD and try it out without installing, if in doubt.

On the other hand with Windows and Mac I have had to run windows/osx update for drivers and sometimes search for drivers on Google. Seriously, I don't have a favorite OS, just that Ubuntu has been my easiest ultra quick install and program finder, and it's free which doesn't go amiss. Sorry to hear Linux as a whole lost the war. If you don't have a vast advertising campaign and have a poor past reputation, what you gonna do though.

You know the same thing IBM said about Microsoft-- Back in the day when it was IBM DOS or nothing else and Microsoft Dos crashed all the time... Until it got a few versions below its belt as well as about 6 years.... Not to mention Microsoft said the same when the original Apple computers came out too...

Actually if linux would ever come to some degree of baseline standards-- instead of 10 programs that do the same thing (like sound) you know some form of compliance or at least limit the amount of them so that for example:

Program X tries to use Pulse audio to render sound while the computer is setup for ALSA then something else tries to use the OSS to render another sound then the sounds collide-...ten it crashes the sound server and you have to manually restart the service.
That would make it far easier for developers to make a program if there were fewer choices out there.

Then if that were the case if they had some compliant standards across distributions would make Oem's actually want to write good drivers for them.

it is good to acknowledge that linux is dead on desktop. it is even good for linux, so that linux can focus on what it is better at: servers. there is no point in fighting a war it cannot win.

Just out of curiosity (best place to ask for maximum attack pts.), has Ubuntu tackled the hardware accelerated video playback problem?

To reproduce,
1. Do not install video drivers
2. Note CPU intensive video playback.
3. Install GPU drivers
4. Note CPU intensive video playback.
Expected,
4. Note CPU idling during video playback.

Actually in fairness Ubuntu does boot quickly and gets the nod for that over Win 7, it's just that Windows 7 boots quicker than Vista so I overlook the the former! I like Windows 7 but find Ubuntu more configurable to look and work as I want it, without using paid for software like Windowsblinds. I think unless you have a very specific specialized need that will only run on Mac or Windows, Ubuntu is a great way of saving money on a new computer build and more secure on line without the constant anti virus gardening defragging etc etc that you have on on Windows.

Lol... posting this on Ubuntu...

A few years ago I had the urge that when I was on Ubuntu, I had to reboot to do a lot of stuff, but since I've installed 10.10 it's really clear to me: I spend days and days on it without rebooting in Windows, simply because it does stuff so good now where I used to need my Windows for: flash video is now super smooth (in no thanks to flash x64), I browse with Chrome, I download with Transmission/Limewire, watch movies with SMPlayer (you really should use this... it's great!).
And more and more of my programs are being supported on Linux. And I do lots of webdesign/webdevelopment, and I feel like I have more programs at my disposal than I have in Windows. Currently, I use Bluefish (instead of Dreamweaver on my Windows). Just waiting for the Linux version of Stylizer (which is in the works) and I'll be done. I'll just use Windows to game anymore... and that's only for 2 games

And on top of that... My ubuntu boots in 20 secs. My windows 7 boots fully in 2 mins.
My ubuntu shuts down in 4 secs. My windows 7 in 30 secs.
Talk about speed

The dream of Linux on the desktop may not be dead, but it is certainly in a state of suspended animation. The reason for this has nothing to do with Linux as a viable desktop OS. It is a good OS, with much going for it. I believe the main thing keeping people from switching to it is the lack of apps that they are used to using. People *want* MS Office, Adobe Creative Suite, Quicken, QuickTax, etc., and if they are told that this Ubuntu OS is as good as Windows or Mac OS X, they might get excited, until you tell them that the programs they use and love are unavailable to them if they switch. At that point, the honeymoon is over, and the user is looking for a divorce attorney, figuratively speaking. Don't even bother to tell a Photoshop guru that GIMP is good enough. The Photoshop guru will probably die laughing. Yes, Ubuntu might have some tax prep software available, but if it is US tax code only, or it is too clunky to use, then I am not interested. I want QuickTax, period. That is what I have used, and that is what all my data files are formatted for.

Too much of the software I use on a daily basis is Windows only. That was the marketing genius move Microsoft made. They got lots of devs to make lots of great software exclusively for their platform, until it became the defacto platform. To beat MS, Linux or Mac would need to do something equivalent, or at least convince the major Windows development companies to make their software available, at a cost even, for Linux. Mac is viable, in part, because software like Photoshop and MS Office are available for it. This is a big selling point. And by adding things like iLife, the Mac platform becomes even more attractive to the general home user.

So, Linux isn't dying, but rather just at this very stagnant point of 1% or so in it's life for home users? I think that's what everyone is saying. It's not going anywhere, but it's not going to be popular anytime soon either unless a major player steps in.

People will switch to Linux when they have a good reason. Until then it's gonna sit in last place for a while. Right now, it just has less than the competition. Why would average joe want a downgrade?

The PC World article starts with: "The dream of Linux as a major desktop OS is now pretty much dead", which might be arguably correct -- the key word being *Dream*... It does seem unlikely that it will overtake Windows in the foreseeable future, which once upon a time some people hoped, & I dare say, dreamed it would.

Of course Linux won't be allowed to die, in any of it's forms IMHO, because right now it's relatively cheap insurance against monopoly status, & that would likely be a huge legal headache, not to mention extremely expensive.

And Linux still has a chance beyond servers & such... Right now Linux is good enough on the desktop to almost be irrelevant to the average or casual user. They don't buy Windows just to have Windows -- & in fact the OS their hardware runs is to most casual users largely irrelevant... if they love/hate XP or Vista or win7 for example, it's largely because others do it & it's cool to do the same thing. Many of them don't or won't see any obvious reason to ask for Linux rather than win7 on their new PC/laptop -- both will let them do email, IM, get to youtube etc. As PCs/laptops/netbooks [or anything really that runs an OS] become more and more thought of as appliances, like a TV, microwave or washer/drier, brand name recognition & perceived importance of the OS tend to go away, as what's truly important is how well that appliance does what's expected. Cell phones are a great example -- I think most iPhone buyers buy the phone, & if asked about the OS will just give you a blank stare. Considering that, greatly increased Linux adoption is entirely possible, especially since manufacturers don't like tying their fortunes to another company [i.e. Microsoft], and worry about any potential for something they depend on being held hostage.

Nah. I strongly believe that the next version of Ubuntu is really really really gonna kill Windows. For real this time. Really!

I don't necessarily agree with the article here. Defining that an OS is essentially dead means no one is using it... at all. That's not the case here. Approximately 1% market share (see link below) is still a very large amount of people that are using it.

http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/linux-market-share

I hope Linux sticks around for a long, long time. Eventually people will catch on with distributions like Ubuntu making it easier to get in on the action. Having Open Office for free helps too: 0$ versus approximately $400 in OS+Office app purchases goes a long way.

dbam987 said,
I hope Linux sticks around for a long, long time. Eventually people will catch on with distributions like Ubuntu making it easier to get in on the action. Having Open Office for free helps too: 0$ versus approximately $400 in OS+Office app purchases goes a long way.

But you are forgetting two things,
- Smart Phones / iPads / etc
- Personal Computers
Both of these categories do not stand still.

And Ubuntu desktop system needs to be able to stand up to the latest operating systems and developments. If Ubuntu can do X, can my phone do X better? If Ubuntu can do Y, can my Windows / Mac OS do Y better? Ex: 3D BD Playback.
If the answer is NO to either on of those questions, how can Ubuntu or other popular Linux distributions gain popularity?!

OpenOffice.org is a joke.
If there are tables or formulas or shapes on the page, it cannot open .*x and .* MS Office files without screwing up the tables, formatting, etc.
If you do not believe me I can whip up a .docx with a simple checkboard table and a few summations here and there to prove this.

dbam987 said,
... Having Open Office for free helps too: 0$ versus approximately $400 in OS+Office app purchases goes a long way.

FWIW I don't think Ofc apps are as big an issue for the majority of home users, nor many students. MS had to drop the price of their Student/Home version, which is still frequently on Sale for $100 or less, & didn't make a version available on-line for free because they wanted to just be nice & generous.

From a more tech perspective there are big differences, pluses & minuses to Linux, Windows etc. But good or bad, that more tech-focused perspective isn't shared by the majority of users... that's shown whenever there's a format war, as the winner almost always wins because of something other than technical superiority. What Linux needs to become more popular, IMHO anyway, is something Linux folks traditionally frown on -- big corporate oversight & mgmt. -- because that would bring the big marketing resources they own & use. AFAIK there's nothing preventing them from using Linux to go beyond Android, or as an alternative, & maybe that's where/how any surge in desktop popularity would start?

Consider the source ... "PC" World ... who get a LOT of their advertising revenue from companies that sell PCs and hardware for PCs ... NOT from companies that promote or distribute Linux SW or compatible hardware.

I've used PCs since BEFORE MS Windows came out, and have been an avid fan of Ubuntu (and other distros) since the 7.04 days, as well as a key contributor to the Ubuntu Forums ... and "our" perspective (in the Ubuntu community) is that we don't care about the size of our community. It's historically been a community built by enthusiasts, for enthusiasts and while, in recent years, most of the major distros have made installation and configuration a "friendlier" experience, we understand that Linux distros are never going to take over the world, or anything close.

Why? Not because or marketing. Not because of driver support (although that IS a contributing factor). But simply because, by and large, folks don't buy Operating Systems, they buy PCs. For every person who purchases an OS, there are 10 to 100 other people that just want a PC -- one that does what they need it to do -- with little or no tweaking required.

There are always going to be people interested in experimentation and in experiencing something different -- and that is the heart and soul of the Linux distro community. NOT folks looking for a free Version of MS Windows, but folks looking for a free Alternative to MS Windows.

And, that's NEVER going to be a major portion of the desktop user community.

As a gamer, there is no advantage in running Linux. In fact, it's a step back.

Linux has very little game support and it's BUGGY!

Interesting especially since in the last year at work we get more and more calls with customers using Linux desktops

Maybe they didn't get the memo too

The desktop market is a slow process to change. However, I find other sources saying that Linux is rising steadily and fast.

And it's no easy task to calculate its market share. I quote networkworld.com:
"Most Linux users don't buy Linux pre-loaded, they download Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian, openSUSE, or another distro from a series of mirrors, BitTorrents, or share CDs".

In some aspects, Linux desktop is years (if not decades) ahead of Windows and OSX interface, for example, there is a plugins that you can manage the windows as a elastic surface, it is pretty neat imho.

Anyways, i am a windows boy (i use several windows-only software) so i don't use linux but i think that the average joe may try it, at least the live-cd.

Its a combination of things that will (eventually) boost Linux further into the desktop scene: 1) Marketing/Advertising of course, 2) Ease of use (most people think it's a very technical type of OS to use. 3) application support (ex: businesses that utilize desktops need to be able to run all of their apps effectively)

However, when trying to make these all work a the same time, this could take years and may not ever catch on at all.

este said,
Its a combination of things that will (eventually) boost Linux further into the desktop scene: 1) Marketing/Advertising of course, 2) Ease of use (most people think it's a very technical type of OS to use. 3) application support (ex: businesses that utilize desktops need to be able to run all of their apps effectively)

The problems:

However, when trying to make these all work a the same time, this could take years and may not ever catch on at all.

1) That requires cash to do, if linux is free, where will the money to pay for advertising come from? Donations?
2) Linux is getting better here, but it is still far from windows. Ease of use also include driver availability, if your peripherals do not work, you won't have ease of use. This means that hardware vendors must develop drivers, as relying on the community to write drivers for all hardware available won't be possible.
3) This is a major issue and revolves around the problem that the most used software in the business environment is MS Office. And this is definitely not going to be available for Linux never.

This is just a post full of Microsoft employees... or simply people looking for employment with MS... Truth be told... Ubuntu 10.04 LTS is simply what Windows 7 cannot be...
The latest install I made was 2 days ago... (and since then 10.10 is available). Related to this post, the user wanted to try and record some MP3 with Brasero Disk Burner. The application showed that it had missing plug-ins and, immediately, a pop-screen stated it would search for available for it. It installed all that was required and DONE.
Guys and Girls ... it does not get any simpler than that... Again, the user wanted to play a DVD and the required plug-ins were searched and installed, automatically...
In my experience, Windows 7 does not come with BluRay support. You have to install 3rd party apps. Windows 7 does not you why or how to do it... or does it…?
Get the facts... Linux is getting easier than ever by the minute and it still cost you nothing...
Windows is good.
Windows 7 is better, but don't get me wrong, Ubuntu Linux is not a bad (FREE) choice...

Solrac said,
This is just a post full of Microsoft employees... or simply people looking for employment with MS... Truth be told... Ubuntu 10.04 LTS is simply what Windows 7 cannot be...
The latest install I made was 2 days ago... (and since then 10.10 is available). Related to this post, the user wanted to try and record some MP3 with Brasero Disk Burner. The application showed that it had missing plug-ins and, immediately, a pop-screen stated it would search for available for it. It installed all that was required and DONE.
Guys and Girls ... it does not get any simpler than that... Again, the user wanted to play a DVD and the required plug-ins were searched and installed, automatically...
In my experience, Windows 7 does not come with BluRay support. You have to install 3rd party apps. Windows 7 does not you why or how to do it... or does it…?
Get the facts... Linux is getting easier than ever by the minute and it still cost you nothing...
Windows is good.
Windows 7 is better, but don't get me wrong, Ubuntu Linux is not a bad (FREE) choice...

+1

the key is to bundle it with a new top-of-the-line pc / consumer product.
tout the media capabilities (just suck it up and pay the license), gaming prowess, ability to read and write microsoft office documents, next-gen UX that make idiots look like geniuses....

BUT, don't call it linux or gnu, or any OS in particular. Let it be part of the products it gets installed on.

Lay people will call it "that new system", "some new computer thing", and so be it.

I'm working for a company and we have about 300 stations with Linux (Ubuntu and Redhat Desktop).
Far from death...don't fool your self.
We also have tons of Linux servers and almost none of Windows ( but I guess everybody knows already that Windows sucks big time on this part of the business).
I don;t want to prove nothing here, but our users don't complain about Linux...it's orking like a charm and that's it!
For an end-users who plays lots of games I'm sure that windows will fits better that's for sure.

ZuLuro said,
I'm working for a company and we have about 300 stations with Linux (Ubuntu and Redhat Desktop).
Far from death...don't fool your self.
We also have tons of Linux servers and almost none of Windows ( but I guess everybody knows already that Windows sucks big time on this part of the business).
I don;t want to prove nothing here, but our users don't complain about Linux...it's orking like a charm and that's it!
For an end-users who plays lots of games I'm sure that windows will fits better that's for sure.

I also work for a company with just under 500 employees and we all use either Windows or (more common it seems) Macs. Linux doesn't come into it.

Basically what I'm saying is that your own experience (and my own experience) doesn't and cannot be representative for everyone else. Just because your company uses Linux doesn't mean your experience is any more valid than mine where we don't use Linux. So drawing a conclusion like yours ("Far from death...don't fool your self") based on your own personal experience is silly.

testman said,

I also work for a company with just under 500 employees and we all use either Windows or (more common it seems) Macs. Linux doesn't come into it.

Basically what I'm saying is that your own experience (and my own experience) doesn't and cannot be representative for everyone else. Just because your company uses Linux doesn't mean your experience is any more valid than mine where we don't use Linux. So drawing a conclusion like yours ("Far from death...don't fool your self") based on your own personal experience is silly.

The single point was the death of Linux desktop. I really don't care if your company uses Windows, because the subject was Linux's death for desktops. As long there are tons of companies that uses Linux as primary OS then Linux is not death for desktops, at least for business. As I said above, for end user the problem is not the same...

Nowadays, operating systems are all pretty mature. What makes an operating system better than the other in terms of performace is better drivers. Better drivers can be made if the developing tools are better. What makes an OS more popular and widespread used is compatibility with applications and number of good applications made for it. To have quantity and quality of apps, you need better application developing tools. Finally, what makes an OS easy to support is documentation, great knowledge base, great training programs and integration into server systems and corporate environments. For all these reasons, Windows has won in the consumer market for better gaming performance and better apps and in the corporate with better support and manageability. It is easy to underestimate the value of developing tools and support, but these are the elements that will make or break a new OS.

wheres mark jensen? i haven't seen him in months?

seriously though... windows 7 is the BEST os i have ever used. kudos to microsoft for it. shame i do not see wp7 doing as well. i agree linux has been dead for awhile now, you can even tell on here in the linux section. funny thing is linux is very much alive on the mobile devices such as webos & android which are heavily based on it. i can only hope windows 8 will do as well.

The reality is, until you get a big company pushing it in a big way, it's never going to become mainstream. Will be interesting to see what Google do when they release Google ChromeOS, and how that affects the market in reference to Linux's adoption rate.

Antaris said,
The reality is, until you get a big company pushing it in a big way, it's never going to become mainstream. Will be interesting to see what Google do when they release Google ChromeOS, and how that affects the market in reference to Linux's adoption rate.

Probably not much, as ChromeOs, altough running linux behind is more of a Browser-OS than a full fledged OS in functionality available to the average user.

Even though it's based on Linux, I am sure the Google OS will have the same market share (or higher?) as all Linux distribution in sum. And maybe some of the users who will use it come not all from Windows or MacOS, some of them will come from Linux (Red Hat, Linux,...) too.
Why? Why I not use Linux 1)I want to click on "download and install". I want not download addional things or fiddle around in text files. 2) I want something better. If I would be not pleased with the Windows or MacOS GUI, I get lesser or the same GUI with Linux, but not better or new. I can understand why some distributions offer a similiar GUI, but that's the wrong way, in my opinion. 3) I want ONE GUI. Appart from the web browsers, most of the windows applications have the same design and handling. 4)I want use it without WINE.
(I must admit, Linux is not installed on my system, but I take a look at it each half year with a Live CD)

In the world today with this big financial crisis people will think twice about spending $250 in a desktop OS + Office + Antivirus. In my believe people in the future will not change because they want to but because they have to.

a few others touched on this, but their example of DVD DRM falls through - Windows can't play a DVD by itself, either. It requires you to purchase/install MPEG-2 and Dolby/DTS audio codecs first. These days most content is also on the web and all popular web applications work fine on Linux, Facebook, YouTube, Google, whatever it is. There's also Linux compatible music stores like Amazon, and plenty of native Linux applications that allow you to do all the same stuff that people do on Windows.

It's hard to say exactly what is the hold up for some people, it's a perfectly usable system if they tried it. Just a little different approach and layout is all, it's not all going to be the same.

nullie said,
a few others touched on this, but their example of DVD DRM falls through - Windows can't play a DVD by itself, either. It requires you to purchase/install MPEG-2 and Dolby/DTS audio codecs first. These days most content is also on the web and all popular web applications work fine on Linux, Facebook, YouTube, Google, whatever it is. There's also Linux compatible music stores like Amazon, and plenty of native Linux applications that allow you to do all the same stuff that people do on Windows.

It's hard to say exactly what is the hold up for some people, it's a perfectly usable system if they tried it. Just a little different approach and layout is all, it's not all going to be the same.

I DARE YOU to go to a store and find a laptop / desktop without pre-installed software for DVD playback.

Udedenkz said,

I DARE YOU to go to a store and find a laptop / desktop without pre-installed software for DVD playback.


You unwittingly just supported the post to which you had replied.

Windows, ON ITS OWN can not play DVDs. It requires the purchase/install of MPEG-2 and Dolby/DTS audio codecs first just as nullie said. When you buy a computer at the store, you are doing exactly that.

It's no wonder windows users find Linux hard to use, they can't even read.

kenboldt said,

You unwittingly just supported the post to which you had replied.

Windows, ON ITS OWN can not play DVDs. It requires the purchase/install of MPEG-2 and Dolby/DTS audio codecs first just as nullie said. When you buy a computer at the store, you are doing exactly that.

It's no wonder windows users find Linux hard to use, they can't even read.

That is a licencing issue or something like that. Just like the disability to animate .GIF files.

Are you implying that a pre-installed Ubuntu for example CAN play DRMed files? If so your point is valid. Otherwise, preinstalled Windows is de-factor winner.

Also do not mention Adobe Flash. It is like a vampire advertising to be stabbed through the heart as a valid method of killing him. Adobe Flash does NOT have hardware acceleration of Linux unlike on Windows and -somewhat- on Mac.

My teacher uses Linux on his computers. i was like.. Wut? i never used linux.. to much of a headache trying to make it work on unknown hardware

Linux = the OS/2 of the 2000's

DIY for lunatics, dead a long time ago, no drivers, no software, no games, no support, no nothing really!

Linux is about using how you want to. In the end there is no one set way, i think my next net-book will be Linux based, but that is as far ill take it, my windows machine is used for gaming, and most of my hardware is made for windows! Ubuntu has tred to make people turn and look, but people minds are too far set on windows/OSX ways... Would be nice if we could see some sort of boot camp for Linux uses, i know you can dual boot, but i mean some soft of boot camp clone, where i could setup a windows partition within Ubuntu and a simple click would reboot into windows when needed.

Linux desktop doesn't seem to be able to keep up with OSX or Windows. IMO the whole DRM thing has nothing to do with it (playing a DVD on linux requires what, installing ONE package?).

I've used linux on and off for the past 6 years, and I always come back to windows for one reason or the other.

I dont buy the "People are used to windows" BS either. Ubuntu and OSX also have windows.

The problem with linux desktop is that there doesnt seem to be a 'solid' foundation. The xorg server is updated way too often, gnome and the underlying GTK are outdated as hell, and there's also QT. There's no single system-wide way to control the fonts look and feel (because gtk 2, gtk 1, and qt will react differently to the same settings). There's always problem with sound servers too.

IMO it's not even about the drivers anymore.

Linux is mature enough, is a good os the problem is that 90% of the ppl is used to windows and ppl don't like changes, is like when you first use mac os, you feel post, is pretty powerful when you learn to use it, and if you think about is perfect for the average user that only go into social networks, I think that if you set an office with Ubuntu server and Ubuntu terminals is going to work more efficiently and a lot cheaper I only got windows to run adobe creative suit. I use Ubuntu 10.10 I even stream music and movies from my Linux PC to my xbox 360

Rock-Lee said,
Linux is mature enough, ..
Not as long as I can read bickering between developers inside changelogs in the package manager.

As a Windows user I don't agree with this. Linux haven't really started its rise as a desktop OS yet. Give it some more time. In 5 years time I think Linux will be mature enough for the mainstream market.

Linux on the desktop isn't dead, it's very much alive, but due to its own nature it will always stay small.

Linux is good for geeks and very specialized applications like servers, set top boxes, and devices, but it's greatest strength is also it's greatest weakness. Being an open platform allows for greater customization, but it comes at the cost of greater fragmentation.

I use ubuntu and backtrack. this article says alot, drivers and programs are the real issue with me not switching from windows. It is bloody brilliant I have found, with making tools such as Gparted and similar tools/rescue software. booting off a live CD is very helpful

It has hope to become mainstream when I do not need to install package X which requires packages A, B, C, of which C requires me to compile it by myself with compiler D that requires libraries E, F, G, just to install my program Z.

Sorry but Synaptic Package Manager isn't the be all end all..

JOHW said,
It has hope to become mainstream when I do not need to install package X which requires packages A, B, C, of which C requires me to compile it by myself with compiler D that requires libraries E, F, G, just to install my program Z.

Sorry but Synaptic Package Manager isn't the be all end all..

And many similarly basic day-to-day other complications.

JOHW said,
It has hope to become mainstream when I do not need to install package X which requires packages A, B, C, of which C requires me to compile it by myself with compiler D that requires libraries E, F, G, just to install my program Z.

Sorry but Synaptic Package Manager isn't the be all end all..

Perhaps you should find a time machine where you are so that you can leave the past and join us in the present.

I'm glad someone finally stated the obvious. I really enjoy Ubuntu, but the mainstream of people should stay far far away.

Unfortunately, I think it goes something like this:

If another operating system got to the point where it could do all that windows does, it would BE windows... so, why do that work twice...

For my part, I like to see it happen, if it would make a tighter, cleaner, lighter code base.
But, once all hands have stirred the pot for compatibility, its back to the first situation.

Control the situation by limiting what you are willing to do, and you have Apple.

I've liked a great many individual details about various Linux flavors I've tried over the years, but almost all of what I enjoyed has been dropped.

What I see looking back is that Linux was fun once, and that was its desktop niche, its one path to success. Pursuing the consumer space was the way forward, but I think that was tossed on the trash heap in a bid for corporate desk space - which is never going to happen.

The reasons why it won't happen don't have to be good reasons, they just have to be put forward by powerful people. The one chance we all had for a tight modern code base in a corporate setting was BEOS. How many remember it now?

I would like Linux to be fun once more. Each distro could be self-contained, but be sure to make it self-consistent. Perhaps even limit hardware choices right up front, but by all means make something that is creative and interesting - right out of the box.

There's likely no future in that plan, but unless Linux become appealing once more, it may well be over for any dreams of desktop space.

If MS Office was suddenly available for Linux, it would explode. The DRM stuff is a minor thing IMO (as there are work arounds and a lot of the workarounds are pretty easy for AT LEAST someone in IT to figure out when they setup the computer).

Shadrack said,
If MS Office was suddenly available for Linux, it would explode. The DRM stuff is a minor thing IMO (as there are work arounds and a lot of the workarounds are pretty easy for AT LEAST someone in IT to figure out when they setup the computer).

omg DRM... when was the last time DRM stood in the way of anything on windows. Sure MS tried hard to enforce certain DRM restrictions, but linux users make content available to us windows users in drm free containers.

Certainly, there are also no end of tools available to circumvent DRM on the very OS that was built with DRM in mind.

dotf said,

omg DRM... when was the last time DRM stood in the way of anything on windows. Sure MS tried hard to enforce certain DRM restrictions, but linux users make content available to us windows users in drm free containers.

Certainly, there are also no end of tools available to circumvent DRM on the very OS that was built with DRM in mind.

Paying for a computer and having to do something to watch a simple video simple doesn't fly with a rational person. How could it?

The only way that any of the comments that have been post and the article its self could make any sense at all would be if all computers were sold with no OS and consumers had to buy one off the shelf of the local Best Buy of Office Depot. If that were the case then all this talk of market share this, and and company support that might make sense. But that is not the case. Microsoft has made deals/contracts with OEMs to ship Windows on their computers, and because of that, more people will have access to Windows than Linux or OS-X.

If you wanted to sell software who would you sell it to? People that use Windows would be a good target as OEM PCs come with Windows. All those Dells, Gateways, Acers, and others add up to a lot of PCs running Windows. As a result, that is a large number of potential buyers for software products.

It all comes down to money. Microsoft makes money on contracts with OEMs. Software makers make money by selling software for the OS that is on all those OEM computers, which are sold every where.

It doesn't have anything to do with which OS is better and never has.

naquis said,
The only way that any of the comments that have been post and the article its self could make any sense at all would be if all computers were sold with no OS and consumers had to buy one off the shelf of the local Best Buy of Office Depot. If that were the case then all this talk of market share this, and and company support that might make sense. But that is not the case. Microsoft has made deals/contracts with OEMs to ship Windows on their computers, and because of that, more people will have access to Windows than Linux or OS-X.

If you wanted to sell software who would you sell it to? People that use Windows would be a good target as OEM PCs come with Windows. All those Dells, Gateways, Acers, and others add up to a lot of PCs running Windows. As a result, that is a large number of potential buyers for software products.

It all comes down to money. Microsoft makes money on contracts with OEMs. Software makers make money by selling software for the OS that is on all those OEM computers, which are sold every where.

It doesn't have anything to do with which OS is better and never has.

This ^

naquis said,
The only way that any of the comments that have been post and the article its self could make any sense at all would be if all computers were sold with no OS and consumers had to buy one off the shelf of the local Best Buy of Office Depot. If that were the case then all this talk of market share this, and and company support that might make sense. But that is not the case. Microsoft has made deals/contracts with OEMs to ship Windows on their computers, and because of that, more people will have access to Windows than Linux or OS-X.

If you wanted to sell software who would you sell it to? People that use Windows would be a good target as OEM PCs come with Windows. All those Dells, Gateways, Acers, and others add up to a lot of PCs running Windows. As a result, that is a large number of potential buyers for software products.

It all comes down to money. Microsoft makes money on contracts with OEMs. Software makers make money by selling software for the OS that is on all those OEM computers, which are sold every where.

It doesn't have anything to do with which OS is better and never has.

Apple does not sell OSX unbundled.

3x Problems:
1: Drivers.Linux cant handle many domestic devices properly with its own drivers.
2: Too many incompatible standards. you use rpm, i use deb, he likes to compile source himself.
windows have experienced "DLL HELL". the situation of Linux is worse than that.(Free is NOT Chaos)
3: No commercial software support. we need them, we are not living in a vacuum.

Here we go again. Attacking Linux on the desktop. Like everyone who uses Openoffice is just rushing out to buy Office 2010 as well. What a bunch of BS lies if you ask me!!. Ubuntu is being used as a desktop OS by millions of people. Many are dual booting, like me, but they are still using it. And will continue!.

jedimasterk said,
Here we go again. Attacking Linux on the desktop. Like everyone who uses Openoffice is just rushing out to buy Office 2010 as well. What a bunch of BS lies if you ask me!!. Ubuntu is being used as a desktop OS by millions of people. Many are dual booting, like me, but they are still using it. And will continue!.

Watch on YouTube "Desktop Linux Sucks, And What We Can Do About It " made by Linux die hards... don't be so blindfolded.

sbdb said,

Watch on YouTube "Desktop Linux Sucks, And What We Can Do About It " made by Linux die hards... don't be so blindfolded.

I watched this movie before. Linux needs more of the guys and gals in that video. They have a more mature and objective views of Linux issues, and they are not biased. They know problems when they see it, they don't deny it. Like Sound on Linux. They also are not zealots or fanatics pre-occupied with OS-envy and OS-hate (with Windows and iOS), but instead tackle the real problems on Linux.

rajputwarrior said,
you know what killed linux on the desktop? it's the fact the OS has always evolved around the command line, not the GUI ala windows/osx

So rajputwarrior, do tell us what is like to still be stuck in the 90's because you are clearly somehow writing your posts from the past.

Wow, I would rather use an old version of linux than deal with Windows at home any day.

I run linux on my Desktop and server machines and Mac OS X on my laptops, Windows = worst multitasking operating system ever! People use it because people the of the workplace and get use to it that it's made such a big success. I say well done to Microsoft for doing so well, but would love to see more innovation.

offroadaaron said,
I say well done to Microsoft for doing so well, but would love to see more innovation.

I see people say this all the time, but I don't know exactly what they're looking for. When you say you want to see innovation in your OS, what do you want to see that isn't there already?

I'm a UNIX guy (it's my day job), but I use Windows at work for the reason you state, and I also use it at home. It works well enough. I'm just curious what features aren't there that people want to see.

Fezmid said,

I see people say this all the time, but I don't know exactly what they're looking for. When you say you want to see innovation in your OS, what do you want to see that isn't there already?

I'm a UNIX guy (it's my day job), but I use Windows at work for the reason you state, and I also use it at home. It works well enough. I'm just curious what features aren't there that people want to see.

Something better for multitasking, linux has virtual desktops and so does mac os x leopard and also expose, I can't really stand MS way of multitasking but if it works for others then I guess it's just my personal opinion.

offroadaaron said,
Something better for multitasking, linux has virtual desktops and so does mac os x leopard and also expose, I can't really stand MS way of multitasking but if it works for others then I guess it's just my personal opinion.

You have no clue what multi-tasking is son, you think it's just a matter of multiple desktops. I have 21 programs running in my system bar, I count 40 processes in my task manager, I can render a 3D model and render an audio file while working in Photoshop and having Dreamweaver and Firefox open at the same time and everything still works smoothly. I work in the IT since the late eighties and I can tell that you have no clue what are talking about.

offroadaaron said,

Something better for multitasking, linux has virtual desktops and so does mac os x leopard and also expose, I can't really stand MS way of multitasking but if it works for others then I guess it's just my personal opinion.

So when you say multitasking you mean task management.

offroadaaron said,

Something better for multitasking, linux has virtual desktops and so does mac os x leopard and also expose, I can't really stand MS way of multitasking but if it works for others then I guess it's just my personal opinion.

I guess it is just your opinion. Multitasking is just that... Doing multiple tasks at once, which (of course) Windows, OS X and Linux let you do.

Virtualization does things such as running another operating system in another operating system.

Do you mean like instead of Microsoft just constantly adding on top of Windows, removing legacy stuff, but then offering it in virtualized environments for what they removed?

offroadaaron said,
Wow, I would rather use an old version of linux than deal with Windows at home any day.

I run linux on my Desktop and server machines and Mac OS X on my laptops, Windows = worst multitasking operating system ever! People use it because people the of the workplace and get use to it that it's made such a big success. I say well done to Microsoft for doing so well, but would love to see more innovation.

If you're having problems with Windows when multitasking then it is clear you're doing something wrong. Linux has the worst when it comes to multi-tasking especially when you consider that god forsaken piece of crap called Xorg to which everything depends upon. Windows 7 is the most smoothest when multi-tasking and shows the least amount of responsiveness drop when under a heavy load - same can be said for Mac OS X Snow Leopard.

wow... neowin already forget about shift linux... too bad it was discontinued... but some people kept it alive... and so will other people keep many linux distros... there are now more flavors of linux than ever before... so it's far from dead!

dpcdpc11 said,
there are now more flavors of linux than ever before... so it's far from dead!
I'd classify this as one of the (main) reasons Linux isn't successful on the desktop.

Linux on the desktop is far from DEAD ...

They said that about vinyl records too and look it's making a come back.
Linux will always be last until the end user learns more about the OS and
how it works.

GenBlood said,
Linux on the desktop is far from DEAD ...

They said that about vinyl records too and look it's making a come back.
Linux will always be last until the end user learns more about the OS and
how it works.

Don't hold your breath. The Apple mentality of "simplicity" and "Don't worry about it" is taking over unfortunately.

GenBlood said,
They said that about vinyl records too and look it's making a come back.

A very minor increase in sales is not a comeback silly boy. Watch on YouTube the video "Desktop Linux Sucks, And What We Can Do About It" made by die hard Linux users... at least they don't have their eyes closes like you.

Any sales is a plus these days ...
An " eyes closes like you" comment ...

Linux is just as good as Windows 7 or OS X .. It's just
most users are too lazy to use it and don't care how it
works. They just want to turn it "ON" and do their thing.
Most don't want to know how it works, and the rest thinks
it's a waist of time.

GenBlood said,
Linux on the desktop is far from DEAD ...

Agreed.

GenBlood said,
They said that about vinyl records too and look it's making a come back.

Well, I don't think vinyl records will make a comeback, eventough some artists decided to put out some special edition of their records.
And, to be sincere, Linux never was, so it won't make a comeback.

GenBlood said,
Linux will always be last until the end user learns more about the OS and
how it works.

That's the issue linux enthusiast don't get. People don't want to know how the OS works. They just want it to work with everything. Much like a car, people don't care how the fuel injection system works. They just want to get to places. Imagine going to a Toyota and the salesman tells you have to configurate the efi controller and calibrate the suspension before you start using all the features in the car. Would you buy the car, or go to someone that sells it ready or you?

If they wanted to actually appeal to average users they would do something about it, but that's not going to happen. Linux users (that whole 1% or so) would need to agree on a distribution or two and support them. It's going to stay 1% for quite some time until you give people an actual reason to use it. As a side note, most people could care less whether or not something is open-source.

~$30 for a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium (when it was on sale when it first came out) that has plenty of games and support or the free Ubuntu (or another distro) that can't play Blu-Rays and isn't necessarily easy to get working outside of very basic applications. I'll stick with Windows, although I can see the techie appreciation I suppose of using Linux.

I started using Linux when MS released Vista, since then it has become my operating system of choice. I learned much more about Windows by becoming familiar with Linux. Have used Linux distributions to repair a few Windows boxes as well, after the rest gave up. It is also the reason I have a good idea of what Windows 8 will look like. If Linux is dead on the desktop then long live Linux. Windows 7 is quite an improvement over Vista, and Vista has come far after two service packs. Used 7 as a Beta and a RC, and if and when I purchase a new operating system I will dual boot 7 with Linux again...

Bugballou said,
I learned much more about Windows by becoming familiar with Linux.

Don't fool yourself, the best way to learn how Windows works is by working with WINDOWS and most certainly not with Linux.

sbdb said,
Don't fool yourself, the best way to learn how Windows works is by working with WINDOWS and most certainly not with Linux.

I disagree. I believe the best way to learn how windows works is to learn how the alternatives work as well. Without a balanced perspective it's difficult to truly appreciate the architecture that is windows.

Moustacha said,
As someone said in the comments of the article, it's all due to marketing.
Yeah, right. You keep saying that to yourself.

You barely see ads for Windows... I am not saying they never appear, but they just aren't all that common.

Moustacha said,
As someone said in the comments of the article, it's all due to marketing.

Ya cause it is marketing's fault that grandma or joe smoo buying a Linux based PC can't get their new wireless adapter to work or get their bluetooth to work or get a freaking DVD let alone a BluRay disc to play...

Yep it is marketing's fault that they don't include a 50 page manual to get the config files needed to get things to work, and explain to them why it is better than some things will never work on Linux.

Marketing should also explain why the monolithic kernel will always be a slow dog, have massive issues with updates and dependancies and how this equates to the fact that technically games will never run as fast on Linux as they do on Windows.

If just marketing would explain all this to people 'right' then I'm sure they would run to the store to get the geeksquad to delete that horrible Windows where things work, so they that they can be brainwashed into true Linux love.

In reality, marketing could brainwash goofs into buying crap or buying into crap, Apple is a master of making even their crappiest products seem 'cool', but it is not marketing's fault of the design flaws of Linux.

Mr aldo said,
Yeah, right. You keep saying that to yourself.

You barely see ads for Windows... I am not saying they never appear, but they just aren't all that common.

So you watch reality TV only? Try watching any of the scripted television on the weekly lineup and you will see in-program ads... I cannot recall how many time's I've seen the default vista or windows 7 wallpaper on a computer screen.

Linux is great for customization and definitely has a place in the personal computing ecosystem.
Everyone needs something to suit their preference. My personal preference is for a handful of sub $1000 devices that just work together.

Between my xbox (soon to be Kinected), Home built desktop with 12TB of hard disk, hp touchsmart 300, hp touchsmart tm2, samsung omnia (soon to be replaced by Focus+32GB microSDHC) and the windows Live platform, I've got everything spoon fed to me. I like it when technology is made easy. It's totally a price I'm willing to pay.

Mr aldo said,
Yeah, right. You keep saying that to yourself.

You barely see ads for Windows... I am not saying they never appear, but they just aren't all that common.


Go into your local electronics store. Everything has Windows logos on it.
Your laptop, Windows logos everywhere.

That my son, is marketing.

thenetavenger said,

Ya cause it is marketing's fault that grandma or joe smoo buying a Linux based PC can't get their new wireless adapter to work or get their bluetooth to work or get a freaking DVD let alone a BluRay disc to play...

Yep it is marketing's fault that they don't include a 50 page manual to get the config files needed to get things to work, and explain to them why it is better than some things will never work on Linux.

Marketing should also explain why the monolithic kernel will always be a slow dog, have massive issues with updates and dependancies and how this equates to the fact that technically games will never run as fast on Linux as they do on Windows.

If just marketing would explain all this to people 'right' then I'm sure they would run to the store to get the geeksquad to delete that horrible Windows where things work, so they that they can be brainwashed into true Linux love.

In reality, marketing could brainwash goofs into buying crap or buying into crap, Apple is a master of making even their crappiest products seem 'cool', but it is not marketing's fault of the design flaws of Linux.

why don't you repeat the same old tired arguments that don't hold any water again so that you can make yourself think you know what you are talking about...

...oh wait...

thenetavenger said,

Ya cause it is marketing's fault that grandma or joe smoo buying a Linux based PC can't get their new wireless adapter to work or get their bluetooth to work or get a freaking DVD let alone a BluRay disc to play...

Yep it is marketing's fault that they don't include a 50 page manual to get the config files needed to get things to work, and explain to them why it is better than some things will never work on Linux.

Marketing should also explain why the monolithic kernel will always be a slow dog, have massive issues with updates and dependancies and how this equates to the fact that technically games will never run as fast on Linux as they do on Windows.

If just marketing would explain all this to people 'right' then I'm sure they would run to the store to get the geeksquad to delete that horrible Windows where things work, so they that they can be brainwashed into true Linux love.

In reality, marketing could brainwash goofs into buying crap or buying into crap, Apple is a master of making even their crappiest products seem 'cool', but it is not marketing's fault of the design flaws of Linux.

Obviously you have never tried Linux yourself, ever.

Mr aldo said,
Yeah, right. You keep saying that to yourself.

You barely see ads for Windows... I am not saying they never appear, but they just aren't all that common.


When was the last time you saw an ad for a Linux distribution?

Linux as a desktop OS isn't dead, it's merely sleeping. Think about it - many years ago, Linux showed real promise for being an insanely popular choice for the desktop market. Today, nothing has been made towards that promise, it's gone nowhere in terms of desktop adaption.

Does that look familiar? That's exactly what happened to Mac OS. In 1984, the Macintosh looked highly promising, with many expecting it to be the next big thing. Fast forward to the ninetys, and Mac OS8/9 desktops were rarely found outside of school. Even in the early 2000s, the first releases of OSX were, to an extent, flops. Fast forward to today, and OSX is now a huge player in the desktop market.

With cloud computing becoming increasingly popular, I believe that Linux is sitting right on the verge of it's success in the desktop. Like the article says - as cloud computing takes dominance, the choice of desktop OS becomes less important. If the user will get the same experience no matter what OS they're using, why would they spend $200 for a copy of Windows or $130 for a copy of Mac OS when they can get the exact same experience from Linux for free?

[quote=Joey H said,]"Fast forward to today, and OSX is now a huge player in the desktop market."quote]

4% market does not make it a huge player.

Ugh , sorry I did not get your message about Linux being dead on Desktop...
I run Linux distro on two of my desktop systems and I love it.

Euphoria said,
Ugh , sorry I did not get your message about Linux being dead on Desktop...
I run Linux distro on two of my desktop systems and I love it.

You're not getting it. Compared with Apple or Microsoft, all Linux distros combined still only make up barely 1% of the market.

Frylock86 said,

You're not getting it. Compared with Apple or Microsoft, all Linux distros combined still only make up barely 1% of the market.

1% is more people than most businesses have customers. That is more than enough for a self sufficient community.

Frylock86 said,

You're not getting it. Compared with Apple or Microsoft, all Linux distros combined still only make up barely 1% of the market.

I get it quite well.
Is not the lack of content that keeps Linux of expanding in the Dektop PC segment but the weak marketing and the lack of commercial backing that Microsoft and Apple enjoy.
Only a small number of people make the step of installing and using this OS as their desktop OS.
That doesn't mean that the OS is dead, it's far from it.

Euphoria said,

Is not the lack of content that keeps Linux of expanding in the Dektop PC segment but the weak marketing and the lack of commercial backing that Microsoft and Apple enjoy.

And for the general consumer this just leads to the question - what the heck is the point? Linux will never die, I'm sure there will also be techy types who love the idea of being able to work on their own operating system, but for the rest of the world there's no real need for it. It's not exactly even forcing Microsoft or Apple to innovate... it's just there, splashing around having it's own fun, and I think it'll be content there for quite a whilst.

~Johnny said,

And for the general consumer this just leads to the question - what the heck is the point? Linux will never die, I'm sure there will also be techy types who love the idea of being able to work on their own operating system, but for the rest of the world there's no real need for it. It's not exactly even forcing Microsoft or Apple to innovate... it's just there, splashing around having it's own fun, and I think it'll be content there for quite a whilst.

Indeed.

Linux can't compete with Windows and OS X until they all stop competing with each other.

Euphoria said,
Ugh , sorry I did not get your message about Linux being dead on Desktop...
I run Linux distro on two of my desktop systems and I love it.

I TOLD YOU GUYS!!! SEE??? IT'S STILL THE YEAR OF THE LINUX DESKTOP, THANKS TO THIS ONE GUY. /s

Well it gets easier to use every day and I only use my Win7 partition for iTunes syncing with my iPod, I haven't use a DVD movie in more than two years, and have no intentions on buying a Bluray player, I love movies I just hate physical media is so obsolete and troublesome, but we are far away from getting rid of all that, I just prefer to keep using a free, stable and highly customizable OS, but hell that's just my personal choice.

Meconio said,
Well it gets easier to use every day and I only use my Win7 partition for iTunes syncing with my iPod, I haven't use a DVD movie in more than two years, and have no intentions on buying a Bluray player, I love movies I just hate physical media is so obsolete and troublesome, but we are far away from getting rid of all that, I just prefer to keep using a free, stable and highly customizable OS, but hell that's just my personal choice.

Meconio said,
Well it gets easier to use every day and I only use my Win7 partition for iTunes syncing with my iPod, I haven't use a DVD movie in more than two years, and have no intentions on buying a Bluray player, I love movies I just hate physical media is so obsolete and troublesome, but we are far away from getting rid of all that, I just prefer to keep using a free, stable and highly customizable OS, but hell that's just my personal choice.

I was going to make my own post, but a reply here seems appropriate.

Who actually uses their computer to watch DVD's? I am being completely serious here. No one that I know of actually uses their computer to watch DVDs.

That said, it is a dead simple task to have DVD playback on a Linux computer. People like to mention that joe average doesn't want to have to take steps to get a DVD to play, they just want to play a DVD. So you are telling me that joe average comes home from the store with his shiny new computer, sets it up, and the very first thing he does is pop in a DVD? he doesn't customize it a little, maybe pick a wallpaper, maybe get rid of the plethora of crapware icons on the desktop? He doesn't put on anti-virus? no, the very first thing he does is put in his copy of Gone with the Wind and sits back with a bowl of popcorn. riiiiiight.

Linux was alive on the desktop? As far as I'm concerned, the point of why your average consumer should get Linux never existed. Windows comes pre-installed on absolutely any PC you buy, software is by-in-large made for it, and you have a quality guarentee that anything you get will work with it. Linux has been plagued with the tinge that to get certain things to work, you need to do things like recomplie your kernal, which most people would stare at your blankly and wonder what you're talking about.

It just never made sense.

clindhartsen said,
Linux was alive on the desktop? As far as I'm concerned, the point of why your average consumer should get Linux never existed. Windows comes pre-installed on absolutely any PC you buy, software is by-in-large made for it, and you have a quality guarentee that anything you get will work with it. Linux has been plagued with the tinge that to get certain things to work, you need to do things like recomplie your kernal, which most people would stare at your blankly and wonder what you're talking about.

It just never made sense.

Hence the fact no one adapted, if they tryed to market themselves earlier in the 80s with Apple and Microsoft they might have got somthing going, but W.E.

clindhartsen said,
Linux was alive on the desktop? As far as I'm concerned, the point of why your average consumer should get Linux never existed. Windows comes pre-installed on absolutely any PC you buy, software is by-in-large made for it, and you have a quality guarentee that anything you get will work with it. Linux has been plagued with the tinge that to get certain things to work, you need to do things like recomplie your kernal, which most people would stare at your blankly and wonder what you're talking about.

It just never made sense.

While I recompile my kernel often because I use Gentoo Linux, which requires users to compile their own kernels and their own kernel updates, Linux distributions in general are binary distributions, which do not require users to compile their own kernels anymore than Windows does. Binary Linux Distributions, like Debian, have plenty of users that have never compiled anything in their lives, much like Windows.

I suggest you use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months before you criticize an operating system kernel. If you do use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months, you should be able to criticize them without sounding as uneducated as you do now.

Shining Arcanine said,

While I recompile my kernel often because I use Gentoo Linux, which requires users to compile their own kernels and their own kernel updates, Linux distributions in general are binary distributions, which do not require users to compile their own kernels anymore than Windows does. Binary Linux Distributions, like Debian, have plenty of users that have never compiled anything in their lives, much like Windows.

I suggest you use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months before you criticize an operating system kernel. If you do use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months, you should be able to criticize them without sounding as uneducated as you do now.

The problem is less about binary or source code distributions. The biggest issue is when average joe buy xing ling web camera or any other cheap hardware and they try to install it in linux. If the drivers are available it usually isn't as easy as on Windows to install it.

And it doesn't stop at that, if you have software issues with Windows, you can call MS support, but with linux, well, you have to rely on searching tech forums, which is fine for tech enthusiasts and the IT community, but is not that trivial for the average consumer...

Linux is a great OS, but people have to stop this "let's dethrone the evil empire of Microsoft" attitude. That's not going to happen. As linux demise won't either.

Shining Arcanine said,

While I recompile my kernel often because I use Gentoo Linux, which requires users to compile their own kernels and their own kernel updates, Linux distributions in general are binary distributions, which do not require users to compile their own kernels anymore than Windows does. Binary Linux Distributions, like Debian, have plenty of users that have never compiled anything in their lives, much like Windows.

I suggest you use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months before you criticize an operating system kernel. If you do use different Linux distributions in place of Windows for several months, you should be able to criticize them without sounding as uneducated as you do now.

And Gentoo has one of the absolute *worst* installation experiences in all of computing. (I'm referring strictly to the initial installation.) It's even worse than the BSDs (Free/Open/Net) which is saying something, as none of the BSDs (with the exception of PC-BSD) is home to a user-friendly installation. Granted - Gentoo is one of the closest things to a custom-built OS there is - but what good is it when the install is as painful as tooth extraction? Surprisingly, one of the *best* installation experiences is from a Gentoo-derived distribution - Sabayon Linux (which I recommend as an alternative to native Kubuntu or openSuSE). Unlike stock Gentoo (which offers, but does not recommend, instalation via live media), Sabayon has a slick live-installation routine (with both text and graphical options), including access to the massive Gentoo portage tree (as well as Sabayon's own Entropy tree, which is upstream from portage, and contains a trainload of ebuilds that portage, including the ebuilds, still lacks). I think of Sabayon as a Gentoo for Kubuntu fans. (And it's not just because of the standard KDE that Sabayon includes.)

And Linux was no more designed to dethrone Microsoft than UNIX was. Linux Torvalds and Richard Stallman are no dummies - Stallman in particular should recall what Lucifer (in "Paradise Lost") said about replacing God. (I can almost certainly guarantee that the original AT&T Labs braintrust that developed SVR4 read it.) I like some Linux distributions, and I actually use them. However, they won't replace Windows as my primary operating system.

The success of Windows is closely tied with usability and now, since so many people have gotten used to Windows and for for such a long period of time I don't see anybody dethroning Microsoft any time soon. They would appeal to a lot of people if they made something very close to Windows UI. As a Windows user I feel lost on Linux and don't get how even the basic tasks are done on Linux. Unless they don't do this they would be lost on all 95% of computer owners who own a Windows.

It has been done. Install KDE on Linux and you will get a very Windows-like experience if you configure it correctly. It is rather Windows-like without any configuration at all, but there are some tweaks you can do to it to get things like a Quick Launch bar, double click opening of folders in the file manager, etcetera that make it feel rather similar to Windows.

Shining Arcanine said,
It has been done. Install KDE on Linux and you will get a very Windows-like experience if you configure it correctly. It is rather Windows-like without any configuration at all, but there are some tweaks you can do to it to get things like a Quick Launch bar, double click opening of folders in the file manager, etcetera that make it feel rather similar to Windows.

Way too much fuzz for the average John and Jane of any age, this is 2010...times have changed...society is more hectic and people have less time, they prefer more and more things that are simple, that work out of the box...the reason why iPad, Blueberry and iPhone became popular.... the last thing that 99% of all people want to do is tweaking something like Linux....sigh

sbdb said,

Way too much fuzz for the average John and Jane of any age, this is 2010...times have changed...society is more hectic and people have less time, they prefer more and more things that are simple, that work out of the box...the reason why iPad, Blueberry and iPhone became popular.... the last thing that 99% of all people want to do is tweaking something like Linux....sigh

But tweaking the kernel should be a BASIC THING for everyone, including the average Jane's and Joe's! So they should be able to do that and maybe edit some config files here and there. It's in the Linux forums, they just have to Google it. Then they can have the Windows 7 experience they want. It's so easy! /s

thenonhacker said,

But tweaking the kernel should be a BASIC THING for everyone, including the average Jane's and Joe's! So they should be able to do that and maybe edit some config files here and there. It's in the Linux forums, they just have to Google it. Then they can have the Windows 7 experience they want. It's so easy! /s

I'm embarraesd I don't even know the 'basics'. I don't even know what KDE is?

thenonhacker said,
But .... It's so easy!

The busy on the go businessman doesn't give to craps about how to tweak some device to his hearts content. He wants a $289 solution, or a $400 markup on hardware to accomplish the heavy lifting for him so he can make his pr0ns work in the hotel room at night.

He gets off on a completely different thing than you, my friend.

FMH said,
The success of Windows is closely tied with usability and now, since so many people have gotten used to Windows and for for such a long period of time I don't see anybody dethroning Microsoft any time soon. They would appeal to a lot of people if they made something very close to Windows UI. As a Windows user I feel lost on Linux and don't get how even the basic tasks are done on Linux. Unless they don't do this they would be lost on all 95% of computer owners who own a Windows.

Microsoft's success has nothing to do with the UI and usability - it has everything to do with the huge support by third party hardware and software vendors. People know when they purchase a Windows machine that any hardware or software they purchase will work with their computer without any problems. Until Linux can provide a complete turnkey solution by Microsoft it won't matter a single iota how good the UI is if there is a complete lack of third party hardware and software vendors providing out of the box support.

sbdb said,

Way too much fuzz for the average John and Jane of any age, this is 2010...times have changed...society is more hectic and people have less time, they prefer more and more things that are simple, that work out of the box...the reason why iPad, Blueberry and iPhone became popular.... the last thing that 99% of all people want to do is tweaking something like Linux....sigh

Definitely agree that it's too much work for alot of people to get used to now. I had an interest in Ubuntu back in the day but now that I don't have so much time to spend working with my computer at home I am satisfied using my Windows 7 box. It's stable, easy to use and gets the job done effectively. I'd assume thats the way most other people feel about Linux as well.

Shining Arcanine said,
It has been done. Install KDE on Linux and you will get a very Windows-like experience if you configure it correctly. It is rather Windows-like without any configuration at all, but there are some tweaks you can do to it to get things like a Quick Launch bar, double click opening of folders in the file manager, etcetera that make it feel rather similar to Windows.

What's KDE and why should I know?

Examinus said,

What's KDE and why should I know?

The K Desktop Experience.

It's basically like the windows explorer shell on top of the Linux kernel and underpinnings.

KDE.org

I kinda expected it to be dead for awhile now, windows and OSX are just so much more obsolite on the desktop and the only people that still use Linux are cheapos or nerds. Its great for servers though and cloud computing or Chromium might take that position too, or a cloud computer war lol

Xypro said,
I kinda expected it to be dead for awhile now, windows and OSX are just so much more obsolite on the desktop and the only people that still use Linux are cheapos or nerds. Its great for servers though and cloud computing or Chromium might take that position too, or a cloud computer war lol

Just wanted to clarify you likely mean "obsolete" in which you also meant Linux is obsolete compared to OS X / Windows, not the opposite.

thenonhacker said,
BUT IT'S THE YEAR OF THE LINUX DESKTOP EVERY YEAR!!!

THIS CAN'T BE TRUE!!! I DENY THIS. /s

ahahaha!

But yeah, linux is such an inferior experience. It just looks cool cause its difference, but once you really dig into it its really a hassle. Once you want to do anything that isnt general basic use you gotta go into terminal, and thats not what the average desktop user wants.

thenonhacker said,
BUT IT'S THE YEAR OF THE LINUX DESKTOP EVERY YEAR!!!
THIS CAN'T BE TRUE!!! I DENY THIS. /s

denial is a very real cause, but the other is the lack of organisation and direction, by definition linux will never have that

Neoauld said,

ahahaha!

But yeah, linux is such an inferior experience. It just looks cool cause its difference, but once you really dig into it its really a hassle. Once you want to do anything that isnt general basic use you gotta go into terminal, and thats not what the average desktop user wants.

^This. +1

Neoauld said,

ahahaha!

But yeah, linux is such an inferior experience. It just looks cool cause its difference, but once you really dig into it its really a hassle. Once you want to do anything that isnt general basic use you gotta go into terminal, and thats not what the average desktop user wants.

Oh, the ignorance....

Euphoria said,

Oh, the ignorance....


I don't know what you mean. The average user REALLY doesn't want to look like he's in 1993 everytime he wants to do some common tasks which Linux doesn't provide a GUI to.

Victor V. said,

I don't know what you mean. The average user REALLY doesn't want to look like he's in 1993 everytime he wants to do some common tasks which Linux doesn't provide a GUI to.

this makes me think you haven't actually used Linux since 1993, if ever.

Victor V. said,

I don't know what you mean. The average user REALLY doesn't want to look like he's in 1993 everytime he wants to do some common tasks which Linux doesn't provide a GUI to.

OS-wise, the terminal is really only used to execute install/build scripts. The modern user-friendly Linux distros should have enough GUI tools for most tasks.

Of course, some tasks still require you to manually edit text files when no GUI tool exists. That's a pain.