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


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MorganX

Among other things, the fact that notepad is an obscurely named text editor and not always named the same.

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Growled

The last time I checked, Facebooks over 900 million users are not running Linux.

You might should look again. This article is a couple of years old but I haven't read of anything changing......

Facebook connects its 500 million users using an array of open source software to enable social networking as well as data intelligence. Facebook's open source Web serving infrastructure has a lot more than just the traditional LAMP (Linux/Apache/MySQL/PHP) stack behind it.

http://www.developer.com/open/article.php/3894566/Inside-Facebooks-Open-Source-Infrastructure.htm

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ViperAFK

Among other things, the fact that notepad is an obscurely named text editor and not always named the same.

Just searching for "text editor" in the ubuntu dash or gnome-shell overlay will bring you right to the appropriate application.

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MorganX

Just searching for "text editor" in the ubuntu dash or gnome-shell overlay will bring you right to the appropriate application.

The point I was trying to make is that Linux Desktop has never had mass consumer/general user appeal. It was clearly and still is IMO, designed for technical people. Some of the other things is the lack of polished apps. Open Office makes me laugh. For what it is its great, but a mass market desktop, it never had a chance and apparently was never really designed to be. Needs a sole entity controlling it and designing it for that purpose if that's truly what the goal of Linux is.

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simplezz

Sorry, I like Windows and Linux equally, though, for different reasons and uses. Linux is indeed a complete mess.

  • You have different package managers.
  • Different type of distros
  • More distros based on those distros.
  • Different kernels
  • Different release cycles
  • Different licences
  • Different desktop environments with different versions

The problem is that there is too many of everything and no consistency.

The things you see as a "complete mess" are the very things I enjoy about GNU/Linux - namely, choice and the freedom to tailor the user experience to my exact needs. I don't like being herded into a one size fits all modus operandi, and I know many people who feel the same way. If you don't like it you're welcome to be spoon fed your OS by the likes of Microsoft and Apple. Just don't go around complaining about the very things that set GNU/Linux and FOSS apart from the proprietary lockin of Windows as if it's some kind of deficiency.

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simplezz

The point I was trying to make is that Linux Desktop has never had mass consumer/general user appeal. It was clearly and still is IMO, designed for technical people.

I completely disagree. GNU/Linux distros range from easy to use (on the same level as Windows and OS X) to the very technical, and many in between. Whether someone's a novice or software hacker, there's a distro that fufils their needs.

Some of the other things is the lack of polished apps. Open Office makes me laugh. For what it is its great, but a mass market desktop, it never had a chance and apparently was never really designed to be. Needs a sole entity controlling it and designing it for that purpose if that's truly what the goal of Linux is.

No one uses OpenOffice in the FOSS world these days and haven't for quite some time. We use LibreOffice. It does everything I need. The OpenDocument format is used so widely now that Microsoft Office has effectively been rendered obsolete.

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simplezz

The last time I checked, Facebooks over 900 million users are not running Linux.

Clearly Linux users are very smart then :whistle:

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Mr. Dee

Clearly Linux users are very smart then :whistle:

How's that sound card installation going for you? Its been 6 months already, have you heard any beeps yet?

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javagreen

How's that sound card installation going for you? Its been 6 months already, have you heard any beeps yet?

How's 2002 treating you? Have you heard about 2012 yet?

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Mr. Dee
How's 2002 treating you? Have you heard about 2012 yet?

I can't help it if Linux is still stuck in 2002 on the desktop.

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javagreen

I can't help it if Linux is still stuck in 2002 on the desktop.

You just need to pull your head outta your ass. That's the only thing that's stuck.

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White Man

How's that sound card installation going for you? Its been 6 months already, have you heard any beeps yet?

This is a very good point. Thank you for highlighting this Linux issue.

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Haggis

Facebooks over 900 million users are not running Linux.

You must be very close to the Zuck to get this kinda info?

If Linux is so crap and windows obviously is so much better why is Facebook run on linux?

There would be more people using linux if people were not so scared of change

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HawkMan

You must be very close to the Zuck to get this kinda info?

If Linux is so crap and windows obviously is so much better why is Facebook run on linux?

There would be more people using linux if people were not so scared of change

Because web servers are not desktops.

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ichi

Alan Cox, Linus Torvalds and Ingo Molnar (among others) have jumped on Icaza:

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Mr. Dee

Linux users, always the bitter, irrelevant, dirty mouth less than 1% marketshare.

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ichi

Linux users, always the bitter, irrelevant, dirty mouth less than 1% marketshare.

Hmm what?

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.Neo

Because web servers are not desktops.

People always have a hard time understanding: server ≠ desktop ≠ mobile platform

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simplezz

How's that sound card installation going for you? Its been 6 months already, have you heard any beeps yet?

My sound card (Audigy 2 ZS) has always worked out of the box in GNU/Linux, unfortunately, the same can't be said for Windows.

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ShMaunder

Theres more fud in this thread than a standard Apple keynote.

Gnome shell and OSx are alike? What?

Sound issues? To be fair, there are still a couple from the user perspective but I've also had a couple on Windows as well. Though I've never had to deal with sound drivers in desktop Linux whereas the same can't be said for Windows.

Linux users, always the bitter, irrelevant, dirty mouth less than 1% marketshare.

Please expand on everything you said, with sources that's made you come to this conclusion - I'm generally interested.

With the attention & money being thrown at the Linux desktop from the likes of Red Hat, Novell, Canonical, Valve, Intel etc. etc. - I can confidentially say that the Linux desktop is far from dead and certainly won't be for a long time.

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Growled

There would be more people using linux if people were not so scared of change

It's not that people are scared of Linux. Most people have never even heard of it. And it mainly comes down to apps. People have bought a ton of Windows stuff over the years. They don't understand why it doesn't work with Linux. I suspect a lot of consumers are going to have the same problems with WindowsRT.

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ViperAFK

Yeah, I do think apps is the real problem. If linux had feature parity alternative for apps like photoshop, ms office etc (or support from the apps themselves).. it really wouldn't be too hard to get people to switch.

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SharpGreen

Miguel de Icaza is Microsoft's go to boy and has lost all credibility in the FOSS world. He spends his time trying to convince GNU/Linux and FOSS users of the benefits of his dotNET implementation, of which there are none - it's not fully compatible with Microsoft's, nor does it contain the things most C# developers use, namely Windows Forms. Ballmer called GNU/Linux a cancer, and I retort that dotNET, with its precarious licence and Microsoft controlled standard is a cancer which has thus far been thwarted by FOSS. Miguel can continue to push it as long as he likes, but no one's biting. We have many FOSS languages and development platforms, we don't want a proprietary Microsoft controlled one thanks.

Regarding the question: "What killed the Linux desktop" - I say nothing because it's not dead, it's alive and kicking and doing extremely well. The level of desktop environment choice available to GNU/Linux users is unheard of in OS X and Windows circles.

What's so cancerous about something that is an open standard like C# is? Plus what is incredibly wrong about having another language to use? Folks didn't complain when Python, another open language, was created, or Ruby...so why complain about C#?

If you ask me the one thing that's killing Linux are these idiot FOSS purists who claim that anyone who likes making money with the code they write, is an evil baby killer who eats puppies for breakfast.

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ArialBlue

Installed Ubuntu latest number. I have to say, defending that user interface is like calling your diarrhea an artistic masterpiece that the whole world should see.

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javagreen

Installed Ubuntu latest number. I have to say, defending that user interface is like calling your diarrhea an artistic masterpiece that the whole world should see.

You can change it, you know. You aren't forced to use Unity.

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