What Killed the Linux Desktop (by GNOME founder Miguel de Icaza)


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vhane

The thing that I found really interesting is that de Icaza was essentially making a case that desktop Linux is developer hostile. I thought that was pretty damn ironic. After all, Linux is the poster boy of Open Source.

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n_K

The thing about people saying 'you are doing it wrong' has 2 sides.

For example there's a project on github, and a lot of the issues reported with it are all covered in the manual that not many people seem to read, I used to post 'RTFM' in most of the issues but now there's so many of them that basically all say the same thing I just ignore them, and everyone else does too, so why are these people incapable of reading the documentation?

I'm not saying all problems that get the 'you are doing it wrong' line are examples of this, but at least a good 50% are.

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+warwagon

I totally agree!!! I've been saying this forever!!

We have to many damn Linux Distributions! Sure at the end of the day it gives the users TONS of choices to choose from, but there is no fracking standard. Some use X package manager while others use Y package manager. Then one users Y Desktop Manger while another uses X desktop manger.

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f0rk_b0mb

I totally agree!!! I've been saying this forever!!

We have to many damn Linux Distribution. Sure at the end of the day it gives the users TONS of choices to choose from, but there is no fracking standard. Some use X package manager while others use Y package manager.

Yup. Instead of having a million half-baked things, we should have 5 or 6 good solid programs.

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Routerbad

? Clearly you do not have a conceptual understanding for the richness of functionality and potential Linux holds. Using linux isn't painful, if you know what works and what doesn't, you should just get on fine. If you using linux to run a bunch of stuff in wine and then want to complain "ahh linux sucks, its all backwards" then fine. Just don't come here bashing something which you associate success with market share. Linux isn't a business model, its community isn't centred on pleasing customers, rather its loyal users and contributors. Had a bad experience? Suck it up, find out what went wrong and try to find a community fix or article on it. get on with life. Don't moan and cry about it calling linux users "only the masochists stuck with it."

Some of us have responsibilities beyond sitting at home, at our desks, away from our families, trying to figure out how to make something work. The last couple of times I tried linux distros I felt that most of what I wanted to get done worked without too much manual intervention, and I love CLI so I had no problem with doing it, but 99.99999% of potential users won't go through the hassle, and that's just what it is, even for 'power users'. I don't want to feel like I'm in a boxing match with my conputer to get something done. I just want to log in and work/play/browse, etc.

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threetonesun

The real thing that killed it is this: what program runs on Linux that is better than all other similar programs for OSX or Windows?

Personally, it's none. Many are ok, there are a few standouts (I run Inkscape in OSX), but there's nothing I would dedicate a boot drive or VM Linux for.

But, again, that's the exclusivity no one in Linux land wants. If, say, Steam only ran on Ubuntu, and there was a big push to make Ubuntu a desktop contender, a chunk of the Linux community still wouldn't support it.

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n_K

"The real thing that killed it is this: what program runs on Linux that is better than all other similar programs for OSX or Windows?"

For desktop users? Not much, open-gl is smoother, faster and less laggy than direct-3D.

For server users? Mostly everything is better on *nix.

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threetonesun

"The real thing that killed it is this: what program runs on Linux that is better than all other similar programs for OSX or Windows?"

For desktop users? Not much, open-gl is smoother, faster and less laggy than direct-3D.

For server users? Mostly everything is better on *nix.

Open gl runs everywhere, though. And, although I'm not super familiar with the server side, my impression was that Linux is good + cheap, not necessarily better.

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ichi

Yup. Instead of having a million half-baked things, we should have 5 or 6 good solid programs.

I don't think the theory about "focus all development resources on fewer alternatives" is actually realistic.

Gnome devs work on Gnome because that's what they want to do. If Gnome didn't exist they wouldn't magically become KDE devs.

Same for most other duplicate projects.

Also lots of those projects aren't even truly Linux specific, so devs don't even care about any kind of unification.

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Cocoliso

My problem with Linux desktop is lack of games and big software titles such as Adobe, Autodesk, etc. I repeat again it does not suit my needs for the work I do yet or the entrainment that I want. But others might have different needs so it's just my opinion.

But on the server side I take Linux without thinking twice.

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chrisj1968

Does it cost alot for manufacturers to create say.. games on windows? I was once told that alot of game developers create their games on linux based systems and create them for windows.

Funny how something that's free doesn't go over more well. I thought everyone liked FREE

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ArialBlue

Well I didn't know that Photoshop from 2001 still runs on W8.

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Duffydemon

For desktop users? Not much, open-gl is smoother, faster and less laggy than direct-3D.

Oh please, opengl is a headache, Specially if you are a developer than opengl is nightmare. Right now i am working at a gaming studio and i am tired of hearing developers complaining about it. Coming from a guy who use blender on ubuntu everyday.

comparable in performance - Yes

Superior - hell no!

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Joshie

"When faced with "this does not work", the community response was usually "you are doing it wrong"."

That is the biggest problem with Linux.

And when faced with "well what's the right way to do it?", the community response was usually "RTFM n00b".

And when faced with any kind of criticism whatsoever, the community response was universal butthurt and going to extreme lengths to justify any shortcoming, and spin it into something done on purpose, for a good reason, and if you understood that you'd already like it.

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simplezz

Oh please, opengl is a headache, Specially if you are a developer than opengl is nightmare. Right now i am working at a gaming studio and i am tired of hearing developers complaining about it. Coming from a guy who use blender on ubuntu everyday.

I'd take a clean C API over a Microsoft COM API any day of the week. I've programmed in both, and I'll never use COM/Direct3D ever again. Then there's the portability issue, which for me is critical.

comparable in performance - Yes

Superior - hell no!

If the Doom3/L4D2 benchmarks are anything to go by, then yes, GNU/Linux and OpenGL are superior in performance when a game is properly optimised like the Windows version.

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HawkMan

"The real thing that killed it is this: what program runs on Linux that is better than all other similar programs for OSX or Windows?"

For desktop users? Not much, open-gl is smoother, faster and less laggy than direct-3D.

For server users? Mostly everything is better on *nix.

Hehe, funny. So we know two things about you, you don't game or run any serious 3d editing software. You're also not a server admin, at best you might run a web server from your basement home.

And your concept of "best tool for the job" is if it isn't Linux I haven't tried it because it sucks.

Regarding the question: "What killed the Linux desktop" - I say nothing

That's as far as you where correct. The correct continuation to that is

Nothing killed desktop Linux. You can't kill something that never existed.

If the Doom3/L4D2 benchmarks are anything to go by, then yes, GNU/Linux and OpenGL are superior in performance when a game is properly optimised like the Windows version.

Call me when that supposed superior L4D2 linux openGL version is something we can actually run and see for ourselves. And not just as statement from a very full of himself Gabe with a self made axe to grind with MS

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n_K

Hehe, funny. So we know two things about you, you don't game or run any serious 3d editing software. You're also not a server admin, at best you might run a web server from your basement home.

And your concept of "best tool for the job" is if it isn't Linux I haven't tried it because it sucks.

Got brain damage or something?

Facebook, the BIGGEST and MOST POPULAR social network system runs on linux server (centOS and fedora mainly), using their own php compiler which they made, it doesn't work on windows at all and has a lot of bugs on freebsd and mac. So now you've already massively failed once, let's move to google, once again probably using a linux OS (google appliances are centOS), so the biggest social network site in the world followed by the biggest search engine in the world both use linux...

Oh and then there's twitter, which again, uses linux! Wow, you've failed 3 times in a row. Neowin also uses linux.

Let's look at some large-scale websites that use microsoft hosting... There's bing, pretty big but not the biggest. There's microsoft's sites, oh and ironically, skype servers are linux-based too. 4 fails? And remember, MS uses wordpress which is NOT asp.net or asp based, and is PHP. Going for 6 now...

Oh and there's faceparty, the laggy outdated website that stores all passwords in clear-text and emails them out to people... Yeah, wow, certainly looks like all the best servers and websites in the world... Oh that's right, use GNU/linux.

Serious 3D editing? Maya 3D and 3DSM both have linux programs for using as render farms, you know, pixar the company that's owned a lot by mac runs it's server farms on linux right? OH, SIX! YOU MADE IT!

And games I play run fine in linux using wine (D2, torchlight, terraria, RA2) or don't need wine at all (minecraft, openRA, commander zod, zsnes).

So, want to majorly fail again? Go on, post something else that's hilarious!

And your concept of "best tool for the job" is if it isn't Linux I haven't tried it because it sucks.

Now you must be stupid. I've got a server 03 VM and it's my main server that I do most things on, it's suited for it's job, performance wise apache on windows is slower than apache or nginx on linux though. Or maybe you want to go to say the nginx forums/documentation and double check that before posting more incorrect tosh?

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HawkMan

Om my god, one site runs a web server that's Linux. So obviously

NX is the best server for everything and you didn't at all fail to understand the point of my post... :rolleyes:

Sorry, come back when you grow up and know what you're talking about.

Did I say windows server where bst for web servers? No I didn't. Is Linux however always the best choice for a web server ? No.

By the way, while bragging about those sites, look up the performance increase curse had when they switched to windows based servers. Either way my point wasn't about web servers at all. But your response clearly show your maturity level and that my assessment was correct. So no I didn't fail you did. Face first.

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n_K

Web servers? I didn't realise facebook, google, twitter, etc are only web servers.

Oh wait, they aren't.

'So obviously NX is the best server for everything and you didn't at all fail to understand the point of my post... :rolleyes:'

'I've got a server 03 VM and it's my main server that I do most things on, it's suited for it's job'

Are you being stupid on purpose?

And my maturity level? Haha, right, ok good luck with life.

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simplezz

Om my god, one site runs a web server that's Linux. So obviously

NX is the best server for everything and you didn't at all fail to understand the point of my post... :rolleyes:

The whole internet runs on GNU/Linux and other *nix like OS's. What cave have you been living in for the past 20 years :omg:

Did I say windows server where bst for web servers? No I didn't. Is Linux however always the best choice for a web server ? No.

Every significant web site that I know of runs on *nix. Even some of Microsoft's own sites in the past have run Linux.

By the way, while bragging about those sites, look up the performance increase curse had when they switched to windows based servers. Either way my point wasn't about web servers at all. But your response clearly show your maturity level and that my assessment was correct. So no I didn't fail you did. Face first.

Windows servers have greater down time and are subject to virus and malware infections like their desktop brethren.

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n_K

Anyway this threads offtopic, talking about servers and not desktops.

My opinion of GNOME2 is it was brilliant in all respects, GNOME3 came out and the initial version was awful. I still refuse to use the gnome-shell and have it in forced fallback mode and removed gnome-shell, what annoys me is that without gnome-shell, you can't use gnome-tweak-tool. Plus they really dumbed down GNOME3 like the ability to change volume steps, WHY!? And then there was the fact the screensaver is just blank and originally couldn't be turned off by any other programs but since GNOME3.3 there's a fade to black when the screensaver starts now so if you move the mouse before it completely fades, it won't lock -> Brilliant feature! Plus applications like VLC, flash and zsnesx can now stop the screensaver from activating.

I still prefer GNOME2 over GNOME3.3, and unfortunately with the way GNOME4 seems to be going (touch screen only interface) I don't think I'll be sticking with it much longer.

The pain in the arse though is that applications use GTK or QT or other, and you've got the have large QT3/4 and or GTK2/3 libraries installed, so moving to other window managers isn't all that easy.

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Max Norris
Windows servers have greater down time and are subject to virus and malware infections like their desktop brethren.

I've been trying to avoid this whole inane ****ing contest, but had to comment on this one. We're not going to pretend that Linux based servers don't have malware or security issues again are we? Do we really need to go into which platform gets the most hacked servers? (It's not Windows...) And Linux servers aren't immune to malware either. How long was kernel.org down due to a rootkit again? Yes, there's a much larger base of Linux based servers versus Windows powering web sites. But please at least keep it honest, never mind completely having nothing to do with the topic at hand to begin with.. Linux on the desktop.

And remember, MS uses wordpress which is NOT asp.net or asp based, and is PHP. Going for 6 now...

Erm there's multiple Windows based servers that can run PHP. Including Apache.

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Growled

The Linux desktop is not dead by a long shot.

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