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Year of Linux 2009?


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#1 RandomUser

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 09:16 PM

In response to the article here:

http://www.itwire.com/content/view/22386/1103

In my opinion (and we all have them), There are two reason that linux may fail to permiate the mainstream market en masse. The first being a lacque of useability taking into account Kernel Versions 2.6.27 and earlier which seem arcane compared to the improvements coming in 2.6.28 which I'll reference throughout this post. The other problem I foresee is a lack of centralized user support which, if implemented, would greatly improve adoption of linux. The is based on people being "Used To" windows.

2.6.28 will have support for GEM and Ext4 Stable, two things that will greatly improve useability. The GEM which is offered up by Intel will improve upon driver models, and at this stage favor Intel rightly so as they developed it. Ext4 as a stable file system which should enhance perfromance and provide many new features. These things aren't always obvious to the end user, but the best useability are the problems that never happen.

Synaptic is almost surpassing Windows XP and Vista's Add remove programs due to their configurability when looking for the correct packages per your distribution. I've found it helpful to change the repositories to grab the best software available.

Sound is still a bit lacking in Jack detection and volume control but as I've seen in Dreamlinux 3.5, sound is more likely to work out of the box on recent distro's which is a welcome enhancement. My HDA audio device used to be the bane of my existance to install. Those days appear to be dying.

Installation of current distributions seems to be a breeze with installers that are straight forward, asking you to decide the file system, Hard disk space to use, and no hard to decipher commands in most cases. In contrast to this, there still seems to be a lacque of vendor support for Drivers in Linux. These include Network drivers (mainly wireless), Capture cards, and other controller cards. Come to think of it, this too is becoming less of an issue as my companies provide information about their hardware.

Further, with a lacque of centralized support, it's hard for the average user to justify the move to linux. Most people can readily find answers to their windows questions even for out of scope support on websites like bleepingcomputer.com But at least bleeping computer is open to help it's users with linux support. That says a lot for what the user community is all about.

Finally, I think what could truly improve widespread adoption is better manufacturer support (provide drivers), centralized help, improved configuration applets, and GAME and multimedia for goodness sake.

These can all be accomplished easily in our current economic state, by imploring companies to provide Linux support as opposed to boycotting their hardware. I'm not asking that anyone boycott their electronics as wonderful as it all is, but this is food for thought.


I apologize for re-using the article's title, but wasn't sure what to call this. It's more or less my personal thought regarding adoption of linux. I encourage you to Visit Linux.com, freshmeat.org, and linux.org to gain a better understanding of where linux is headed. I'm excited about the direction of Open Source more so now than ever before.

Please post your thoughts

Edited by RandomUser, 30 December 2008 - 09:37 PM.


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#2 Andrew

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 02:01 PM

Synaptic is almost surpassing Windows XP and Vista's Add remove programs due to their configurability when looking for the correct packages per your distribution. I've found it helpful to change the repositories to grab the best software available.

APT, YUM, RPM and others so surpass the anemic functionality of Windows' Add/Remove Programs function that it's laughable. There is, in my opinion, no comparison.

Further, with a lacque of centralized support, it's hard for the average user to justify the move to linux. Most people can readily find answers to their windows questions even for out of scope support on websites like bleepingcomputer.com But at least bleeping computer is open to help it's users with linux support. That says a lot for what the user community is all about.

Bleepingcomputer.com is, sadly but by necessity of the market, a Windows-centric help center. However, to say that Linux lacks adequate support structures is simply wrong. There are numerous free and paid support services available. Most (if not all ) major distributions have user help forums where users can post questions and receive help for free (like ubuntuforums, Debian User Forums, Fedora Forum, and Knoppix Forum to name a few.

Edited by Amazing Andrew, 31 December 2008 - 02:02 PM.


#3 BlackSpyder

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 07:36 PM

Didn't we go through this last year?? (for some reason this thread gives me Deja-vu)

08 was a great year for Linux. Multiple commercial user level boxes with linux preloads were available (eePC, Ubuntu Dell, etc) Far better than in years past. 09 will be another year of growth but i look for the "Buntu Boom" to be on the waning side as Vista and Win7 start getting their acts together.

But as we all know the "Buntu Boom" could have never been possible with out the massive failure of Vista. Thank You Mr Gates.

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#4 RandomUser

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 08:29 PM

Amazing Andrew:

Bleepingcomputer.com is, sadly but by necessity of the market, a Windows-centric help center. However, to say that Linux lacks adequate support structures is simply wrong. There are numerous free and paid support services available. Most (if not all ) major distributions have user help forums where users can post questions and receive help for free (like ubuntuforums, Debian User Forums, Fedora Forum, and Knoppix Forum to name a few.


I like that. This is the response I was looking for. Between people that simply know how their computers work, there is adequate support for most distribution specific questions.

But think of the following support question for Windows and then for Linux.

My DVD Drive isn't recognized, what should I do to fix this?

In windows, it might simply involve stopping by the device manager to install the correct driver from Windows or the manufacturer's site. Or maybe the Upper and lower filters keys in the reg is blocking the device.

In Linux, you may have the user paste the output of Dmesg or LSPCI on pastebin, or have the user make sure the device is mounted correctly.

Most users would prefer an easier fix, due to lack of understanding or patience to correct the problem in Linux.

When troubleshooting sound in linux, users are often directed to ALSA's web site, as they should be. But this isn't the kind of experience that the average person desires. I think people in general could learn a lot from being more interactive in understanding Linux the way the culture has with Windows. But alas, users either know how to use a computer, or they don't.

I've referenced the websites in my post as a way to encourage users to research, communicate, and understand the linux world. Maybe the Fact that E-Live, Dreamlinux, and PCBSD are quickly becoming top competitors for the Windows replacement are driving my inspirations. Ubuntu is is Good Distribution. The others are Great distributions.

My reasoning for this statement? I believe the Dreamlinux, Elive, and PCBSD are cutting edge, whereas Ubuntu is popularized by it's support community. If other distributions had the line of First hand support to the capacity that Ubuntu had, I think we'd begin seeing major switches.

It also wouldn't hurt for more up front information about MythTV, Blender, Inkscape, GIMP and many other media applications to collaborate their awareness efforts. This is where Freshmeat.org and Linux.com are helpful and should be used not only as reference, but awareness sites.

Finally, with the lack of gaming titles, I find it hard to believe that major overnight switches to linux will happen. Most of the older people I know that like to use their computer know a gamer or computer professional who was able to educate them a bit. I think that part of swaying the masses is telling about all of the positives that linux has to offer.

Just my thoughts, and I very much want to see linux Jump to the heights of Windows and beyond. It's hard for the average user to get excited. Hell I plan to demo Linux boxes at the local Fair with current Kernel versions, Office, Thunderbird, inkscape, Blender, VLC, LIRC, MythTV, and Compiz Fusion running. And maybe even a Couple popular MP3 Players sharing music.

A few nice additions might be smoothed edges around windows, true type fonts and some better looking front ends for some of the hottest applications.

#5 yano

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 02:43 PM

It may or may not be the year of Linux. However, one thing that is currently helping the Linux market that Microsoft has yet to "pounce" on is the Netbook category.




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