Why Linux (Still) Sucks (And What We Can Do To Fix It)


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frbubba

Easy fixes to make linux the best os in the market..

2. Add/Remove programs. I am pretty decent when it comes to installing software on linux, but my mother isnt, and she shouldnt have to be a computer geek so that she can install her favorite game from the internet on her pc (nor is grandma or dad).

This is exactly what killed my interest in Linux as a day to day operating system. Just getting a program to install and set up for use is way to complicated. There are so many features about it I like but until this aspect of it changes, I don't plan on using it.

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08993

Instead of being on the defensive, let me explain why I use Linux.

WALL OF TEXT!

I started with Windows 95, where tweaking, optimising and programs like Cacheman or it's direct registry settings were almost compulsory if you wanted to get the most from your 16Mb EDO ram. As Windows has progressed, this part of the computing experience, and a part that I actually enjoy, has steadily diminished. Lets not forget that in the late 90's tweaking was huge, even Neowin roots were laid to cover XP news and specialised on tweaks and UI modding. To me, as Windows locked down, Linux was a natural progression, an OS I can tweak every aspect of.

Tweakers now have resorted to filling their desktop with as much crap as possible, three clocks, two calendars, standalone docks alongside the one built into Windows 7. That's not for me!

On Windows I used to use the classic interface, but since Vista it's and ugly, hackish affair that is impractical to use. Aero is terribly inefficient, look at the wasted space on window toolbars for example, and the more you explore the more you see just how much compromise has been taken in order to hide as much from the user as possible, by trying to hide complexity it has resulted in a more complex OS. When you install an app in Windows where does it go? Program Files? Program Files(x86)?Users\ %username%\Appdata\[Local\LocalLow\Roaming]? ProgramData? Root? Who knows?

All applications for Arch are either packaged by Arch, or built by the user with the Arch Build System (ABS) or the Arch User Repository (AUR) to ensure that everything goes exactly where it should, I really do know where everything is on my system at any given time, might not mean much to most users but it does to me.

Lets talk about the actual architecture now. Windows x64 is probably only at best 25% 64 bit on an average system by the time apps are installed. Windows is still years away from true 64 bit computing. My Arch setup is a pure 64 bit system, my machine doesn't know what to do with 32 bit code, no 32 bit libs are installed. I browse in pure 64 bit, 64 bit Flash, Java and Chromium, and I can play anything thrown at me in regards to media formats with VDPAU acceleration. My system also makes use of both cores as much as possible, I've recompiled any apps that are capable of multi-threading but don't do by default (there are quite a few) and my average desktop session used 400 MB RAM.

Anyhows, all of this results in a lightening fast system. I don't run a big DE such as Gnome, I selectively choose what apps to use such as Openbox, Leafpad, Sakura, Sonata, Thunar and all of these applications work together flawlessly because that's what Linux does, it has specific apps that do one thing and does them well, and each app calls onto each other to implement libs that they may use to offer extra functionality without duplicating it. Imagine that on Windows, app developers would be suing each other en masse for patent infringement, what were we saying about compromise again? People complain about Linux libs but look at the alternative, total segregation of apps that results in many apps overlapping functionality, increased code base, more lines of code to maintain and debug, more space needed, more to go wrong! Well you get the idea.

Need I go into increased security and reliability and lower resource needs? That's pretty much accepted by now I think. System administration is a doddle, I've set scripts up so I type in one word and my system updates, clean ups, defrags and backs up my package database, I basically tell it to do exactly what I want in plain English and it does it, not sure how that could be any easier without a telepathic link, oh, and it's rolling release, I never have to re-install.

Also, the Arch community rocks and has a very dry sense of humour, the Arch IRC channels, especially #archlinux has >700 people on it at all times. Sure, it could be considered elitist, a common insult if you ask a silly question in #archlinux is ?!ubuntu? but then you go off and research and you find the answer on your own, and that's how you learn, having commands barked at you helps nobody. There's even a rule of thumb on the forums that if you ask for help with homework, you won't get any :)

Arch is everything I want it to be, and Linux is a screaming success. It's a community driven, free OS in many flavours that shares ideas and has produced an OS that does what all of the others do much more efficiently. Sure, it's not a commercial success but why would that concern me?

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Behemoth

I started with Windows 95, where tweaking, optimising and programs like Cacheman or it's direct registry settings were almost compulsory if you wanted to get the most from your 16Mb EDO ram. As Windows has progressed, this part of the computing experience, and a part that I actually enjoy, has steadily diminished. Lets not forget that in the late 90's tweaking was huge, even Neowin roots were laid to cover XP news and specialised on tweaks and UI modding. To me, as Windows locked down, Linux was a natural progression, an OS I can tweak every aspect of.

Tweakers now have resorted to filling their desktop with as much crap as possible, three clocks, two calendars, standalone docks alongside the one built into Windows 7. That's not for me!

Anyhows, all of this results in a lightening fast system. I don't run a big DE such as Gnome, I selectively choose what apps to use such as Openbox, Leafpad, Sakura, Sonata, Thunar and all of these applications work together flawlessly because that's what Linux does, it has specific apps that do one thing and does them well, and each app calls onto each other to implement libs that they may use to offer extra functionality without duplicating it. Imagine that on Windows, app developers would be suing each other en masse for patent infringement, what were we saying about compromise again? People complain about Linux libs but look at the alternative, total segregation of apps that results in many apps overlapping functionality, increased code base, more lines of code to maintain and debug, more space needed, more to go wrong! Well you get the idea.

Need I go into increased security and reliability and lower resource needs? That's pretty much accepted by now I think. System administration is a doddle, I've set scripts up so I type in one word and my system updates, clean ups, defrags and backs up my package database, I basically tell it to do exactly what I want in plain English and it does it, not sure how that could be any easier without a telepathic link, oh, and it's rolling release, I never have to re-install.

I migrated to GNU/Linux for many of the same reasons. I was a huge Windows customizer back when XP was king, from reshacking system files and replacing all the icons, to editing the program menus system-wide. I made the jump to GNU/Linux after getting bored with the same Windows setup everyday, and enjoyed having *complete* control over my system, and customizing it however I want.

The laptop I'm on now chugged along using 1.5G of RAM under Vista, even doing the most menial tasks. With my current setup with the Awesome WM, I rarely break the 400M mark myself.

I agree with almost everything you said 08993 (minus the Arch parts, since I haven't installed in on the laptop yet). (Y) Nice post.

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Syanide

Yeah, awesome post. I don't think I was ever that extreme with customizing XP, and I don't know if I'll ever reach the level of recompiling packages (!ubuntu), but the freedoms (lame pun) Linux offers you with customization is pretty much untouched by anything else (even though I'm totaly lazying out with my latest Ubuntu setup).

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Panacik

It would be "mine" field. And no it is not.

Ubuntu install. Open Firefox. Go to any site that uses flash. Hulu, perhaps.

The top of your firefox browser puts up a yellowish (if I recall correctly) alert bar at the top saying this site uses a flash plugin you do not have.

Click it.

Installed.

Done.

Have you really used Ubuntu? Or are you pulling our collective legs?

yeah, I'm actually not telling the truth at all. Never even knew what Linux was until I read this thread :rolleyes:

does it make you feel big to correct where I put mind field instead of mine field? Does it make you feel better about the person you are in the real world? I'm so sorry I spelt it wrong... Perhaps I should blame apple for their iPhone keyboard mixed with my lack of giving a **** when I type.

Quit honestly I'm wondering what the **** you are on about? I have Ubuntu in front of me live boot and when I go to a flash website it asks to install flash, has 3 stages of questions on the Adobe website and then fails to install each time. I know from experience however it would install in I installed the live system to the machine, but it would still expect me to select a Linux installer and package type to install flash... Why you don't know or believe me on this, I don't know. You can say I'm not telling the truth all you like, but I know what I ****ing well see in front of me right now pal.

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SintaX

You people who are complaining about linux are the very people who should NOT be using it, or attempting to use it. Since when was linux supposed to be easy ? Since when was it made for moms and grandmas and kids? And, since when was it's main goal to replace windows/osx ?

I'll agree linux is messy. There are way too many distros out there that every scrub/newb wants to try to make their own!

It seems like the issue more often than not is someone wanting to be some uber haxxor or hearing about how cool you are if you use linux or try to hack with it, and people dont like to read man pages and figure things out on their own like a real 'hacker' would. So they go to the forums and ask about stupid questions that they would have known if only they read the man pages.

It's an endless cycle.

The linux crowd sucks anyways because of all of this. I've been much happier with BSD over the years since it just works.

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bogas04

If it gets perfect installers (just like .exes in Windows) , User Friendly interface (one should be able to customize it without any code easily) and Windows like GUI (1 taskbar , 1 start button , etc) then it is but natural that Windows users (91%) would give it a shot. Also the distro should have guides for a Windows/Mac user to get used to with it and installing themes, games , softwares on it. Games like NFS , COD MW2 , Just Cause and many other can run on Ubuntu etc, but need Wine and time , which should be explained by distro makers. If they do all this , they might get into mainstream lineup, if not , they all will remain 1% of whole world population.

BTW Ubuntu , Fedora , Mandivra , OpenSUSE etc should come together , and make one , proper , useful , innovative OS which would be most user friendly one

You people who are complaining about linux are the very people who should NOT be using it, or attempting to use it. Since when was linux supposed to be easy ? Since when was it made for moms and grandmas and kids? And, since when was it's main goal to replace windows/osx ?

This is the reason for its negligible market share. If distro makers aim to replace win/osx , then and only then they can come to mainstream. Otherwise soon , there would be more distros than total users. :)

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fix-this!

linux in a whole doesn't suck...for example, android is perfect. i cannot comment on every linux distro either but i can say that all ubuntu's, mandriva and linux mint still suck hard IMO. windows 7 just got it right and it's perfect, linux needs to learn from that. and my god lets get rid of the old, ugly xp style themes that comes with it. i even tried mac4lin and while better than default still looked bad. :sleep:

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ichi

If it gets perfect installers (just like .exes in Windows)

We could argue the pros and cons of different install methods, but exes per se are definitely not perfect.

Just the fact that exe files can show a wide range of different install interfaces with different install procedures and (what's worse) different or just no uninstallation methods, that alone keeps them far away from any sort of perfection (an that's without even getting into the PITA that is auditing them, compared with other solutions).

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JustGeorge

yeah, I'm actually not telling the truth at all. Never even knew what Linux was until I read this thread :rolleyes:

does it make you feel big to correct where I put mind field instead of mine field? Does it make you feel better about the person you are in the real world? I'm so sorry I spelt it wrong... Perhaps I should blame apple for their iPhone keyboard mixed with my lack of giving a **** when I type.

Quit honestly I'm wondering what the **** you are on about? I have Ubuntu in front of me live boot and when I go to a flash website it asks to install flash, has 3 stages of questions on the Adobe website and then fails to install each time. I know from experience however it would install in I installed the live system to the machine, but it would still expect me to select a Linux installer and package type to install flash... Why you don't know or believe me on this, I don't know. You can say I'm not telling the truth all you like, but I know what I ****ing well see in front of me right now pal.

This is on Lucid, but can you install flash from here? I hate the Linux way of installing/uninstalling programs and the way stuff other than just the OS gets crammed into a distro with a passion, but anyway...

post-34036-12727410129748.png

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.Neo

Looks like none of them are *buntu. Open your browser, and go to any site with flash, you have a bar in the top of your browser telling you that you need the flash plug-in, and you can click that same bar and it installs. Just "as it would within Windows". ;)

So far that hasn't worked for me once...

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Southern Patriot

yeah, I'm actually not telling the truth at all. Never even knew what Linux was until I read this thread :rolleyes:

does it make you feel big to correct where I put mind field instead of mine field? Does it make you feel better about the person you are in the real world? I'm so sorry I spelt it wrong... Perhaps I should blame apple for their iPhone keyboard mixed with my lack of giving a **** when I type.

Quit honestly I'm wondering what the **** you are on about? I have Ubuntu in front of me live boot and when I go to a flash website it asks to install flash, has 3 stages of questions on the Adobe website and then fails to install each time. I know from experience however it would install in I installed the live system to the machine, but it would still expect me to select a Linux installer and package type to install flash... Why you don't know or believe me on this, I don't know. You can say I'm not telling the truth all you like, but I know what I ****ing well see in front of me right now pal.

You need to lose the attitude. Mark is possibly the most knowledgable person on this site when it comes to Linux, and I tend to believe what he says far more than your arrogant ranting.

If it gets perfect installers (just like .exes in Windows)

When you said exe installers in Windows were perfect, I stopped reading your post because it is clear that you are never going to consider anything other than the Windows way of doing things as "right". There are much better ways of installing software, such as the drag and drop method favored on OS X, but you would probably be confused by that too because it is TOO DIFFERENT from what you are used to.

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tablet_user

Linux is now hugely popular, it doesn't need fixed, all the gamers with PS3s love it :rofl:

ha ya. linux runs smooth on the ps3 now.

This is on Lucid, but can you install flash from here? I hate the Linux way of installing/uninstalling programs and the way stuff other than just the OS gets crammed into a distro with a passion, but anyway...

then use a real distro. I avoid those bloated distros for that reason. Plus linux is the OS, the bloated stuff on distros like Ubuntu and Fedora is the DE (Desktop Environment) such as KDE or GNOME and all the stuff they bundle on top of it instead of just giving you the OS and the basic DE.

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Deihmos

Linux distros all look ugly imo. Ubuntu 10.04 still looks like something from 10 years back. I mean look at Windows 7 and Mac OS

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Motoko.

Linux distros all look ugly imo. Ubuntu 10.04 still looks like something from 10 years back. I mean look at Windows 7 and Mac OS

This is my opinion of course but I think Aero and Aqua look like UIs for kids.

Ubuntu has some of that too but customization is more accessible

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HawkMan

The laptop I'm on now chugged along using 1.5G of RAM under Vista, even doing the most menial tasks. With my current setup with the Awesome WM, I rarely break the 400M mark myself.

If Vista used 1.5GB of ram, I'm going to guess it's a 2GB system

That means that your uber optimized awesomeness linux system currently IS NOT using 1.6GB of ram. to put it another way, you're wasting almost 3/4ths of your ram.

Way to go.

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ichi

If Vista used 1.5GB of ram, I'm going to guess it's a 2GB system

That means that your uber optimized awesomeness linux system currently IS NOT using 1.6GB of ram. to put it another way, you're wasting almost 3/4ths of your ram.

Way to go.

I'd guess it would be 400MB used by actual running programs, as there's just no way that a 2GB system would show a total of 400MB usage (at least not after running for a while).

Right now I've 895MB used out of 3GB (chrome being the biggest offender, btw), yet there're only 75MB free. Everything else is cached or buffered.

Then again I'd also guess Vista's memory usage would be to a certain extent also due to buffers and cache :unsure:

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markjensen

yeah, I'm actually not telling the truth at all. Never even knew what Linux was until I read this thread :rolleyes:

does it make you feel big to correct where I put mind field instead of mine field? Does it make you feel better about the person you are in the real world? I'm so sorry I spelt it wrong... Perhaps I should blame apple for their iPhone keyboard mixed with my lack of giving a **** when I type.

Quit honestly I'm wondering what the **** you are on about? I have Ubuntu in front of me live boot and when I go to a flash website it asks to install flash, has 3 stages of questions on the Adobe website and then fails to install each time. I know from experience however it would install in I installed the live system to the machine, but it would still expect me to select a Linux installer and package type to install flash... Why you don't know or believe me on this, I don't know. You can say I'm not telling the truth all you like, but I know what I ****ing well see in front of me right now pal.

Wow. Relax.

Anyhow, just for you, I set up a virtualbox install of Ubuntu 9.10 (it's the only version I had as a CD/ISO, since I upgraded online to 10.04 via the package manager). But, here is proof of the simple steps for getting the flash plugin.

post-36818-12727446370972.pngBrowsing to a site that uses flash - my kids play this. The plugin bar appears automatically with an install button. Just like in Windows.

post-36818-12727446495491.pngOnce I click the button, the options are presented. Note that Adobe's own flash is defaulted.

post-36818-12727446688441.pngI clicked "Next", so it confirms if I want to install this?

post-36818-12727448037404.pngWatch the bar zip across for a few seconds...

post-36818-12727448287687.pngYay! Successful!

post-36818-12727448500339.png"Finish"

post-36818-12727448671958.pngHere is the flash game working without needing to restart Firefox, or go through any of that crap you claimed.

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n_K

If Vista used 1.5GB of ram, I'm going to guess it's a 2GB system

That means that your uber optimized awesomeness linux system currently IS NOT using 1.6GB of ram. to put it another way, you're wasting almost 3/4ths of your ram.

Way to go.

What an incredibly daft thing to say.

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HawkMan

What an incredibly daft thing to say.

You don't really undesratdnd how memory management works and what using memory means do you ?

what's the point of having 2, 4,8 or more Gigs of ram if you're not going to use it ? Windows does use it, but if something else needs it, like photoshop, it will release it, in fact it doesn't even need to release it so you don't even lose that nanosecond. It simply tags the memory as usable, and whatever program needs the memory will overwrite it.

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08993

You don't really undesratdnd how memory management works and what using memory means do you ?

what's the point of having 2, 4,8 or more Gigs of ram if you're not going to use it ? Windows does use it, but if something else needs it, like photoshop, it will release it, in fact it doesn't even need to release it so you don't even lose that nanosecond. It simply tags the memory as usable, and whatever program needs the memory will overwrite it.

$ free -m
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          7995       2399       5595          0        132       1773
-/+ buffers/cache:        493       7502
Swap:         9538          0       9538

Linux does the same thing, but you can see what is in use and what is cached. When I say my DT is using 493 MB, that's what it's actually using however 1.8 gig is cached and 2.4 Gb is "used" in total. Most Linux programs like Conky will quite rightly report the 493 figure.

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HawkMan

$ free -m
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          7995       2399       5595          0        132       1773
-/+ buffers/cache:        493       7502
Swap:         9538          0       9538

Linux does the same thing, but you can see what is in use and what is cached. When I say my DT is using 493 MB, that's what it's actually using however 1.8 gig is cached and 2.4 Gb is "used" in total. Most Linux programs like Conky will quite rightly report the 493 figure.

Then maybe he should use the correct figure for both OS'

and not claim the memory in use+cache for windows and compare that to memory in use-cache for linux then.

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Panacik

Wow. Relax.

Anyhow, just for you, I set up a virtualbox install of Ubuntu 9.10 (it's the only version I had as a CD/ISO, since I upgraded online to 10.04 via the package manager). But, here is proof of the simple steps for getting the flash plugin.

post-36818-12727446370972.pngBrowsing to a site that uses flash - my kids play this. The plugin bar appears automatically with an install button. Just like in Windows.

post-36818-12727446495491.pngOnce I click the button, the options are presented. Note that Adobe's own flash is defaulted.

post-36818-12727446688441.pngI clicked "Next", so it confirms if I want to install this?

post-36818-12727448037404.pngWatch the bar zip across for a few seconds...

post-36818-12727448287687.pngYay! Successful!

post-36818-12727448500339.png"Finish"

post-36818-12727448671958.pngHere is the flash game working without needing to restart Firefox, or go through any of that crap you claimed.

funny. On two machines I perform that install only for it to fail with some random code.

I then go to Adobes website as I have no alternative.

I appologise for nothing as I have never seen it work straight away like you have managed AND I know what I am doing (I am fine with command lines in Linux too).

For those telling me to "loose the attitude"... No :). I have someone telling me I'm lying to them when I'm damn well not.

When I get a chance (I'm in bed posting from a phone right now), I'll post you screen shots to prove my results are just as real as Marks (who, although I have an attitude with, I actually respect as a Linux user, as I have seen his posts before.) I just have an attitude with life at the moment, in particular with people telling me I'm lying when I'm not.

To the rest of you banging on about people not using linux because it is for those who are not technical and windows suckz etc, I simply suggest you actually read and watch the op. The people talking about it, IMO seem to be pretty much Linux nerds who live eat and drink Linux, they are just stating true solid facts.

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markjensen

funny. On two machines I perform that install only for it to fail with some random code.

I would like to see that error. When you first got it, did you google it to see what might be the cause?

EDIT: Out of curiosity, are you using only 64-bit Linux? Flash is a 32-bit plugin, and there might be some issues with the automatic install in that case. I don't know because I have only 4GB of RAM, and elect 32-bits for general compatibility of things like this. Plus, no real benefit to memory addressing and such right now. If I upgrade RAM, I probably will switch at that time.

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ObiWanToby

@ markjensen

You use Virtualbox much? Any idea how to get the Microphone to work in it? Windows Host, Ubuntu Guest. Vmware Player supported the Mic, but not 3D acceleration. So I swithced to Virtualbox, but it appears the Mic doesn't work.

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