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gee
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Originally Posted by Xayd View Post
yes, it's because there's a large development community giving corporate interests something for free. if you think their use of it has anything to do with anything, besides the fact that it's free, you're delusional. none of which has anything to do with what the distros release being a viable desktop OS.
First and foremost, I wasn't talking about Linux desktops, I was answering a "what is linux good for, exactly?" by saying that it's great in the embedded design space.

Linux isn't necessarily "free". In embedded space, Linux generally requires a fair bit of customization work, bootloaders to be written or modified, etc. for the hardware platform you're using and the application. So there's a sunk cost associated with this, and buying a paid-for OS can actually be cheaper.

What makes linux really valuable is:

- It's open source. Which means that if it's broke, you can fix it yourself. Our guys have sent several patches now to kernel.org which have fixed issues with drivers and whatnot. Also, if you make hardware changes to a board (changing oscillator frequencies, peripheral memory mapping, etc) you can just run through the source code, change #defines and recompile. You can't do that with closed-source OSes.

- It's a *nix. Programmers don't need to learn proprietary library calls, etc. to accomplish things like threading, networking, filesystem access, etc. It also means that a great deal of development can be done on a standard PC, then cross-compiled for the ARM/whatever target when it's done. This means software can be written before the hardware's ready, and only integration/testing work needs to be done at that point.

And yes, BSD would accomplish the same thing. I'd actually prefer to work with BSD in the embedded space because if we're doing a contract design, some companies don't like having to do "weird" things like putting GPL disclosures in their product literature.
Old 05-20-2010, 07:50 AM gee is offline  
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Xayd
 
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Originally Posted by gee View Post
First and foremost, I wasn't talking about Linux desktops, I was answering a "what is linux good for, exactly?" by saying that it's great in the embedded design space.

Linux isn't necessarily "free". In embedded space, Linux generally requires a fair bit of customization work, bootloaders to be written or modified, etc. for the hardware platform you're using and the application. So there's a sunk cost associated with this, and buying a paid-for OS can actually be cheaper.

What makes linux really valuable is:

- It's open source. Which means that if it's broke, you can fix it yourself. Our guys have sent several patches now to kernel.org which have fixed issues with drivers and whatnot. Also, if you make hardware changes to a board (changing oscillator frequencies, peripheral memory mapping, etc) you can just run through the source code, change #defines and recompile. You can't do that with closed-source OSes.

- It's a *nix. Programmers don't need to learn proprietary library calls, etc. to accomplish things like threading, networking, filesystem access, etc. It also means that a great deal of development can be done on a standard PC, then cross-compiled for the ARM/whatever target when it's done. This means software can be written before the hardware's ready, and only integration/testing work needs to be done at that point.

And yes, BSD would accomplish the same thing. I'd actually prefer to work with BSD in the embedded space because if we're doing a contract design, some companies don't like having to do "weird" things like putting GPL disclosures in their product literature.

that question was in the context of someone defending it not being a good desktop OS by defending it as a server. my point was that there are even better free options for a server.

responding to that with "well if it's not that great as a desktop and there are better free options for a server, it's great because people who sell computer-like devices can use it for free so it's popular with them" is not a particularly good selling point.
Old 05-20-2010, 11:29 AM Xayd is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xayd View Post
yes, it's because there's a large development community giving corporate interests something for free. if you think their use of it has anything to do with anything, besides the fact that it's free, you're delusional. none of which has anything to do with what the distros release being a viable desktop OS.

Do you have difficulty reading? I work for one of these "corporations" we're talking about as an embedded software developer. We use Linux because it has the best hardware support and a vast collection of useful and stable software. We could use a closed-source OS like VxWorks or IP-OS, but hardware and software support is lacking.

Once again, BSD has a large amount of developers contributing code that we could use for free and we wouldn't even need to redistribute the code. That's a much better situation as far as a company is concerned. But once again, hardware and software support is lacking.


Also, you're pretty wrong about your assumption that none of this means anything to desktop distros. Embedded linux development has brought forth considerable amounts of improvements to networking functionality, memory management, and other kernel functions. Patches from embedded linux developers eventually make their way to your desktop, improving performance with your Wi-Fi card, for example.
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Old 05-20-2010, 12:24 PM :ninja: is offline  
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Originally Posted by Xayd View Post
that question was in the context of someone defending it not being a good desktop OS by defending it as a server. my point was that there are even better free options for a server.

responding to that with "well if it's not that great as a desktop and there are better free options for a server, it's great because people who sell computer-like devices can use it for free so it's popular with them" is not a particularly good selling point.

I'm curious... what specifically prevents linux-based distributions from being a "good desktop OS" ? I've used linux-based distributions on all of my computers for the past five years, and have had nothing but excellent performance and ease of use.
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Old 05-20-2010, 12:34 PM :ninja: is offline  
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Xayd
 
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I'm curious... what specifically prevents linux-based distributions from being a "good desktop OS" ? I've used linux-based distributions on all of my computers for the past five years, and have had nothing but excellent performance and ease of use.

because you are reliant on a distro to maintain an OS you're using, a distro that earns little or no money and can easily disappear in bankruptcy, just like mandrake disappeared. because any relatively new hardware even from major vendors probably doesn't work for a couple of years. and then when it does, there's another newer stronger faster better replacement hardware gadget that also doesn't work for another couple of years.

the reason they don't work is because in source form, as stated above, the components of any linux OS installation don't work either. the distros are polishing the turds and putting them together. LOTS of distros, so vendors have no motivation to provide software for linux, why should they put money into development for even the most popular 4 to 6 linux distros that represent 1.5% of their potential customer base? and then have the 1.5% be ungrateful for it because of the license for the driver/software.

ungrateful to the point that they suggest pointing their port repositories to non US/EU servers to download illegal versions is 'ok' if it means they can keep up their 'everything must be free' speech.

which is why machines that ship with linux for desktop use will never exist in any widespread form in the US and EU. if i'm a computer manufacturer why would i risk lawsuit for 1.5% of the population? the only reason the distros aren't shut down by courts en-masse is they don't represent enough money to make it worth while.

here's the thing. you can't convert the world. not even 20% of end user software will ever be free and open source. if you exclude vendors who refuse to provide open source, they simply take their ball and go home. and you wind up with 1.5% of the population using a particular OS, and hardware vendors with no motivation to provide drivers for 1.5% of users, and the slippery slope continues its downward trajectory, all the while everyone on said slippery slope trying to convince the rest that their world is flat and everyone else is sliding downhill.

as stated in one of the comments in the last link, the ever popular response to "why doesn't this work better?" is 'fine you go code something better'.

so how about you hold yourselves to that. in the example of video mentioned above, if your way is so much better, uninstall mplayer, uninstall xine, uninstall libmpeg2, uninstall libavcodec, uninstall x264, uninstall xvid, and go make yourselves something better. you're basically preaching free cookies with one hand while the other is firmly planted in someone else's cookie jar.

go pitch linux as a desktop to a desktop manufacturer and explain to them how it'll be a viable desktop OS for the general public but it can't play DVDs, can't play MP3s, can't play VC-1 hell, can't even play mpeg-1 porn clips. and your solution to them is to just point the user's update/port scripts to a russian ftp. let me know what they say...

Last edited by Xayd; 05-21-2010 at 02:05 PM..
Old 05-21-2010, 01:46 PM Xayd is offline  
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#35  

matt01
 
i'm not a sysadmin or anything like that, but i gave up on ubuntu (supposedly a very user-friendly, fairly idiot-proof distro), when it just decided one day that it wouldn't recognize my microphone jack on my computer. i didn't install anything new, and it was working fine before then. had several friends who are good with that stuff try and help me, but they didn't have any luck either.

but unfortunately, since windows is so fucking expensive, it looks like i might be going back to ubuntu in the future.
Old 06-30-2010, 02:13 PM matt01 is offline  
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möbiustrip
 
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They've finally got one-click, dual-boot, zero-config, 100% childproof right with Ubuntu 10.04. Try it.
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Old 07-05-2010, 08:43 PM möbiustrip is offline  
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#37  

Cannonbear
 
ive only used linux on my ps3. it took a shit load of time to get it running right, and even longer to get the emulators working. When it worked it ran pretty good, but for some reason one day when i booted to linux nothing worked. I couldn't go online, i couldn't do anything. i tried looking for a fix but nothing really helped so i just wiped the harddrive and got rid of the other install option.

Meh. Im sure some people love Linux, it just wasnt for me.
Old 07-14-2010, 10:28 PM Cannonbear is offline  
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Xayd
 
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Originally Posted by Cannonbear View Post
ive only used linux on my ps3. it took a shit load of time to get it running right, and even longer to get the emulators working. When it worked it ran pretty good, but for some reason one day when i booted to linux nothing worked. I couldn't go online, i couldn't do anything. i tried looking for a fix but nothing really helped so i just wiped the harddrive and got rid of the other install option.

Meh. Im sure some people love Linux, it just wasnt for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by matt01 View Post
i'm not a sysadmin or anything like that, but i gave up on ubuntu (supposedly a very user-friendly, fairly idiot-proof distro), when it just decided one day that it wouldn't recognize my microphone jack on my computer. i didn't install anything new, and it was working fine before then. had several friends who are good with that stuff try and help me, but they didn't have any luck either.

but unfortunately, since windows is so fucking expensive, it looks like i might be going back to ubuntu in the future.

both of the above, i would wager, because the filesystems used for linux are shit. and replacing ext3 (because it is shit) in the linux way means a half dozen other projects coming out with a half dozen other filesystems that have as many issues as ext3, because they're all hacked up bits of abandoned code from SG, IBM, etc that those vendors gave up on a decade ago. they had issues then which made maintaining them untenable.

here, data corruption reported in a bug for 2 years, and tests showing how to reproduce data corruption were reported a year before that.

but ubuntu never told you that ext3 was unstable and should not be used, did they?

because despite it being broken, and despite a user demonstrating that a power failure caused data corruption on ext3 volumes roughly 50% of the time, it's the best option they had.
Old 07-20-2010, 05:39 PM Xayd is offline  
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Woldaff
 
I came here hoping there was a new distro named Christfuck
Old 08-26-2010, 07:56 AM Woldaff is offline  
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