Make Linux easier for the general population! Please.
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View Poll Results: Do you want a Linux with an Interview Style Install and Setup?
I'm a newbie/novice and Yes, I love that idea. thats just what Linux needs.
I'm an occassional user, I don't care either way.
I'm an experience/hardcore user and I don't need it to be any easier. I am happy with it the way it is.
I 100% agree I started in CPM and then MSDOS which wasen't bad, then I jumped Windows 3.11 I never used it, I tried with Windows 95 gave it up to unstable, then I started with Linux, and in those days there was no GUI, so yes I find redhat much easier than Windows, I of cause have the same problems when I try to work my way round in windows, as those who was used to windows and now try linux, and now with redhat ws it is much more user frendly than windows, well to me that is. I say to people if you want an OS whish works and works then use Linux, but if you want an OS whish is not that stable use windows.
We just finished a project in China where we designed a system for KARAOKE ( Chinese and Hong Kongers are crazy with KARAOKE ) with 260 Rooms hence 260 workstations, and two servers only for backup, now we had to make some modifications to the redhat OS, but that is no problem as it is open source, but now if using windows then you are limited, the old system was using windows NT4 and I must admit not that bad, and I was told crashes only once or twice, but it was maga slow selecting songs, you could wait up to 5 min for you song to start, and think you pay US$ 20.00 Pr Hour for the room, also with windows NT it could only handle 14 of the same songs at the same time, remember 260 rooms, now with the Linux system all songs will start within 20 seconds, and you can paly the same song in 120 rooms at the same time, well I know you will say that is server business yes it is, but still professional server or workstations alike Linux is still number one, and in the webserver field Linux/Unix has 86% of the world market why you ask your self ?
AMOSF and qwijibow have valied points and I totally agree.
The world got brain washed with Uncel Gates Windows, sadly.
I hear that W2K is not that bad, so I did try it and yes it is not that bad, but still far behind redhat.
XP I hear used enormus amount of resources.
Can anybody tell me what all those DLL's windows loads in to RAM is for ?
I look in to this and totally confused, I bet that Microsoft don't know them self what all the DLL's are really doing ? What a Fu.. Up
ust imagien if you had to do something inthe jungle, with linux everything is so easy to manage.
Why always " why this and why that " Linux is NOT A COPY of windoze, and in fact for me it is far easier to install than windoze, I never have any problems with drivers, I install Redhat and within 20 Min it is all ready to use, now I tried in the office to install XP, and what a problem I had with drivers. Then after a week it crashed and I need to re-install, about two hours or more before everything is back, and after I lost all my short cuts, and the desktop, so now you have to totally re-configure everything, for me Windows is to difficult to handle.
After a week XP crashed and you needed to reinstall...what did you do? No offence and I don't mean to imply it never happens, anyone who has any experience with Windows knows it's possible but after only a week it's more often than not user error.
Typical installation of each is about the same to me. Both XP and any recent version of Linux is incredibly easy. Both detect every piece of hardware except one. Wireless card. I spent yesterday trying to get Linux on the net, I finally figured out how to do it. Very carefully drill holes and run wire from the basement to the computer room two floors up. It was easier than trying to get the wireless to work. Now, I'm not really blaming Linux on this, if the hardware manufacturers would release Linux drivers this wouldn't be much of an issue but after 3 days of looking at configuration files, spending more hours than I care to count reading and searching for answers that could have been put to better use, iwconfig, modprobing, trying to update ndiswrapper and getting a dozen error messages, trying the new drivers, and countless other commands with absolutely nothing to show for it, I can understand why people get frustrated with Linux. All it takes is that one piece of hardware to turn Linux into a nightmare.
Software installation can also be a huge turn-off for many new Linux users. Trying to install an rpm and then spend the next hour tracking down dependencies and please don't tell me this isn't an issue any longer because I did it yesterday, the files I needed were not on my disks. How about trying to install from source and waiting for it to compile (which can take a while depending on the app) only to get a dozen error messages and then spend hours trying to find out what they mean, what you did wrong, and how to fix it.
Linux is a learning experience, hell, even most longtime Linux users will tell you they are still learning. But you can't blame people when they get frustrated with it because most come from Windows where they don't have to spend hours reading, searching just trying to get their printer to work or to get this software installed. This is where I and many other users get irritated, that's hours I could have spent doing something else. My hope is that it pays off when everything does work. Now I have to solve this annoying keyboard issue and find out why mplayer only works as long as I move the mouse and why my system is slow and likes to hang.
But the minute anyone says something even remotely negative about your precious Linux, they're ridiculed and told 'go back to Windows and uncle Gates'. It's amazing that people still imply that Linux isn't perfect, the audacity.
Location: Florida in a town not on the weather map
Distribution: back to Fedora
Anything is as hard as one makes it. I was a windows user up until a year ago. When my husband first installed Linux on my computer, I was so lost and I had no idea what to do. I bought some books and joined this forum, and slowly learned. Luckily for me, after I got the hang of things on Slack, I loved it and I still do. There are still a ton of things I dont know how to do, but Im learning. And the beauty of Linux is that if someone installs a distro and they dont like it, they can get another one. With Windows, if you install it and you dont like it, all you can do is either downgrade to another edition. Whats the fun in that? All your doing is still double clicking....your not learning anything new. If Linux was easier then I wouldnt use it. I like a challenge and the fact that I have "built" my computer the way I want it, is a nice feeling.
It is unacceptable that when you have a DVD rom go bad that it crashes the system as it does in Win crappy XP when your not using it. All XP would do is randomly crash all the time. I was recording a tv show when in the middle it crashed I was not doing any but the recording. I had to reboot to finish the recording. After the recording I rebooted back into Linux and although the DVD rom wont work the system is very usable and never crashed (It's been running a week now without reboot) like it does in Win crappy XP. M$ really need to improve their hardware error handling because it sucks BIG time and it has since WIN95.
Windows 95 was not a OS it was a virus, what is the purpose of a virus,well to slow the system down ( windows 95 & 98 does that very nice ) to use max resources ( windows 95 & 98 does that to ) to crash the system frequent ( windows does that to ) to loose your drivers and files ( windows does that to ) so windows is a virus after all.
Windows XP also looses drivers, and also have many serious driver issues like " Sorry this driver is not autorized by M$ and can not be installed " how many drivers went wrong from W2k to XP ? you had to buy different software from some CD burners and drivers for printers when you upgraded from W2K to XP so don't tell me that windows XP is better, also not long ago I was asked by a friend with a XP machine ( poor guy ) to help him as he wanted to install in PCI Modem card he had the driver disk for XP, but it would not work, then after long time fiddling round we found out that you had to update the wrong driver as XP installed the modem as a big yellow ! so don't say it is so easy, in fact in most cases redhat ws would newer ask for drivers, when you do a install, I have never seen redhat asking, everything is installed and ready in less than 20 min and without any reboot, and if you install staroffice in your home directory, you could re-install redhat and re-format the USR and / partitions, and after 20 min everything woudl be back as before that is desktop all shour cuts and your office, and of cause all you data would be intact. Now stop this we all know windows is no where near Linux.
I like what you are saying " libranikki " most people can get to use Linux very fast, but some are still blinded by Uncel gates, and will perhaps never get there, like I say to my friend if you can not get used to Linux then stay with XP ( poor fellow ).
I know some of you are using your computer for games, and there I have absolutly no experience, we are using it for business, and there windows are NO MATCH for Linux
TO: prophet621 XP crashes if you have a driver issue or hardware it is known fact .
In Linux you have the best log files so you can easy find out what the problems was, hardware or driver issue would not crash the system in Linux. Why do the internationale airports not use Windows most uses Linux or are dos based. Would you go up in a airplane if you where told " this new advanced aricraft is fully fitted with Windows XP to control the safty and navigation " I would not.
Here in China many Banks are using Windows for the ATM'S and I can guarantee you that most ATM'S here is off line crashed, and on the screen you can see either Windows NT4 or in some strange cases Windows 98 which of causes crashes every day, and now some of the bigger banks are changing to Linux why is that I might ask my self ?
The way i see it. Linux is an operating system programed by great programmers.
they are not driven by money. Only by the desire to make a great system.
when a linux programmer makes a mistake, they take it personally and need to fix it quickly, as to not let there fellow programmers down.
on the other hand, windows is a product intended to make money. this is what drives it.
this is not neccecerily a biad thing, however... all buisnesses work on maximising rpofit....
IF the inceace in profit due to an improvement will be smaller than the cost of implimenting the improvement, then the improvment will not be implemented.
which is why each new release of MS's operating system look nicer, with more eye candy.
however... Virii and worms are still on the rampage.... the file system still needs to be de-fragmented every few months......
Ms must spend millions on designing a pretty blue GUI...because it attracts people who know very little about compters...
but why is no time spent on fixing the file system.
why does the windows OS still need to be re-booted for software / driver install's.
I will always trust The Guys who make Operating systems because they want to program, and they want to make a great OS, more than i will trust a company that makes on operating system because they want to make money.
believe me when i say there is nothign wrong with this.... but surely a guy who programs because he loves to program, will program better than a guy who programs because it is his job.
If you would actually read my posts you would understand why the "it's difficult because it's different agrument" doesn't apply in many cases. Ones that I specifically point out. It's a observable fact that it is easier for most people with the ability to see, to learn a well set up graphical environment than it is to learn commands (especially if the commands are crypticaly related to english words and even worse if you don't speak english). I can see that now after seeing some of the thick headed responses on this thread that it's people like the ones that make these emotional, non-objective comments that is really holding back Linux from being suitable for more reasonable people. I haven't made the argument that Windows is easier than Linux but somehow people - conciously or not - turn it around because thats what they want to argue about. I'm stating that Linux could be much easier than it is and that such simplification would be good in my oppinion and doesn't have to limit the choice that Linux users have. Thats it!
Honestly its a sad thing but to me the communities behind other OSes such BeOS, SkyOS, Syllable, and even Windows seem to be much more reasonable when it comes to deciding on a way of doing things based on practicality. Note that I'm talking about the people and not the OS. I should repeat this for ephasis that LINUX HAS SOME ASPECTS WHICH ARE BEYOND OTHER OSES. However this doesn't mean that one should not be alowed to complain about the things seem to be falling behind or isufficient for particular users. It seems to me that maybe because many of the technically oriented people who get involved with Linux have come to love it's superior features and have attached themselves to everything Linux is. When desktop environments were being developed I bet some of the community was against them and still is to some degree. However a lot of the community probably couldn't do without having at least one of the more advanced graphical desktop environments.
Yes I agree that this argument has gone too long an the reason is clearly that even after I've made decent points to support my oppinions, these points are ignored or distored to rehash the same old Windows v.s Linux arguments. I on the other side along with a few other posters have made comments containing hour humble honest oppinions and have also responded in a way that supports valid opposing arguments. If it is beyond your capability or demeanor to discuss such a topic in a productive way then don't bother to comment as it is helping noone.
My applogies for not mentioning that many have opposed my points in a reasonable fashion and that they have been constructive. It it wasn't for these I would not be able to understand the topic nearly as well. My point is not to divide exierienced users from newbies on this topic but to instead discuss aspects of OS task avialability, usability, and simplification while focusing on the current state of Linux and it's surrounding distributions.
Hi Kainhart, sorry for being such pain to you, basicly Linux is still for more experienced users, and that is that. I also somethimes complain about Linux, will Linux have totally left out the Chinese Input system, well it is there, but poor and does not even get near to that of Windows2000 or XP , and as China soon would be the biggest computer market in the World I also feel there could be room for some improvements in that direction.
Do we need to make it more easy or do we need to educate people in how to handle it ?
I have recently read a (not exactly recent) interview with Bill Gates by (i think) pc world. Reading through, I felt very silly suddenly, about my zealotry about the linux OS, and realized that it's just an operating system.
Gates has done a great job at what he was trying to do: make the computer accessible to the everyday user. Considering that literally _every_ home in the entire country has at least one computer with Windows on it, that says a lot about Gates. He accomplished his goal. And really, there is little difference between linux and windows, internally (besides quality, of course) ... the end user just doesn't have the same control over windows that he has over linux.
That's also why I think linux is so touchy: windows hides all those little internal things from the user so that the ms programmers can configure things so that they work well. In linux, of course, the user has access to _everything_, and things break easily, and often. But it just depends on whether you're willing to spend the time tweaking and recompiling and configuring to get your box tuned just right.
So I don't think that it is linux's place to be 'easier for the general population'. that's not what it's meant for. If you really have a grudge against ms, buy a mac. otherwise, stick with linux, and prepare to get your hands greasy.
I think a little bit of both are good (educating and simplifying). I think simplification is good up to the point where it starts misleading people in order to make it easier to understand. The "My Computer" concept is so confusing that my father who has been using a computer for about 7 years now still forgets how everything is organized. This is where the linux file hierarcy is superior in my oppinion by mounting drives as files/folders and having a root for the system. However the short directory names and the complex structure is a bit over complicated. Keep in mind that I understand some of the reasons behind why things are the way they are but that doesn't stop me from wanting to looking into the future and for hoping how things may become.
Simplified ways should relfect the acceptable but more complex methods for performing a given task. This should give a graceful transition into more powerful features for tasks that are already being performed by a new user.
You can educate a user how to double click or move a cursor around the screen, what program/application/executable is, what files and folders are and how things are organized, and other somewhat simple yet somewhat universal computing concepts. Now in order to even teach these such basics its best to have simplistic visual tools, the ones provided by Gnome and OSX come to mind.
Its important to understand that many computer users use their computer once or twice a day and do nothing more than play a game, check their email, or brose the web. Most platforms have made this moderatly simplistic. With that being said, giving these same users an easy transition into the more powerful features of an operating system or usage of a computing platform they will eventually learn these more advanced features on their own as the need or realized interest arises. Slow transitions into advanced features are not facilitated by tools such as command lines. Actually overly simplified command line tools such as yum, apt-get, and such may even put blinders on some users as they can't think or explore outside of their repositories and the realities of the installation are not made. When I do an install via yum for example I don't see an option report that tells me what happened durning the install such as what files got placed where and what settings were changed it which configuration files. However at least with most Windows installs you see these files listed (admittedly too quickly) on the screen to slowly teach a user what is happening during the install progress. The windows method is probably far from ideal but at least I think there is a point in saying that forcing somebody to learn too much at once will turn most users down.
Now another apsect that is important in usage and in educating is orthogonality and regularity. And no I'm not talking about the kind that grandparents eat fiber loaded cereal for. Instead I'm reffering to the reaccuring functionality as a users explores and users a system. Does a drag and drop work on files when I see them in Nautalis? now does it work when I see the file on the web? If there are breaks in what a user may expect it is important to educated them and to explain it locally to where the unexpected action occurs. Not in some manual they have to seek out themselves.
Ok, well I have lots of points to make on this topic so if anybody is really interested in discussing their oppinions (opposing or not), I can start a new topic and we can relocate. I hope that at least somewhat explains my stance on educating v.s simplification.
Forgive me, for I am a Linux Noob using newly installed(2004-06-10) Suse 9.0 Pro (correct jargon?....hmm) and even though I have been M$ handicapped for years and consider myself to be a more refined hardware tech than software, I find Linux to be a refreshing change of pace from the standard rigid conformity of the "other" os out there.
(beating on dead horse in background)
I look forward to many more software "discoveries" in my future.
Originally posted by kainhart
Ok, well I have lots of points to make on this topic so if anybody is really interested in discussing their oppinions (opposing or not), I can start a new topic and we can relocate. I hope that at least somewhat explains my stance on educating v.s simplification.
No need to create another "Frankenstein's monster" thread as far
as I'm concerned ... But the thing is that (and I'm repeating myself)
can't possibly make a system that is inherently complex easier or
faster for all possible aspects.
Windows eXPeriment (Fisher-Price (tm) edition) has a truck-load of
wizards, and is supposedly helpful and friendly when it comes to
setting up things like networks. Last week I tried to integrate a
pre-configured XP notebook into our LAN so that the owner would
be able to check their web-based e-mail account. It took me the
better part of an hour! If you wish I can describe the process in
detail (as much detail as my poor old brain can recollect that is),
but it was a major pain in the neck. Had it been a slackware box
I would have been done in 2 minutes max, had it been a distro
I don't know you could probably add 10 minutes to that.
And no, it's not due to lack of experience with XP installations,
in my current position I'm forced to use/install/maintain XP boxes
en masse. I've installed (brought into our existing environment)
about 25 machines in the past 6 weeks.
Now you may think that I'm rabbiting on about something you
hadn't argued. But (in terms of a supposedly good example of
simplification and in-situ support) this valid, since the point I've
been trying to make in various posts (in this thread was well as
in others) is that the complexity of the matter makes a working,
coherent simplification impossible, and windows' (or Mandreck's,
for that matter) repeated failures are proving me right.
There is NO alternative to education, even though a lazy majority
won't like that. And to flog another dead-horse-example: if you
don't want to learn to drive, don't drive. Take a taxi.
Here is my take on the situation. When I built my PC, it was more expensive than I had expected because of a few mistakes. I didn't have the money to put into Windows, so I went to the store looking for a new solution. At CompUSA, they had Red Hat Linux 9. I bought it, and immediately began using it. Red Hat 9 is a great distro, I'm bummed they had to cancel it. Red Hat taught me a few things about Linux, If you learn these things, Linux is a LOT easier.
1. Plan on Linux from the start: A mistake led me to actualy use Linux instead of just considering it. When I began using it, I found out that a LOT of hardware was incompatible. I never got online with RH9 because my 3 wireless cards I had at the time weren't compatible. My video card wasn't compatible either. Because I could not get online, I couldn't fix this either, because I can't download Linux file formats from XP unless I am on an FTP server. Now, as I yell at my computer because no wireless solution works, I realize I should have planned for Linux from the start. If this was the way, i could have gotten through the install of Gentoo Linux. A lot of people who switch to linux from Windows probably find themselves in a situation where they have incompatible hardware. Hopefully, as time goes on, people will contribute more drivers, companies will become more comfortable with Linux and release their product specifications, and everyone will be happy.
2. Read the manual: This has been stated before, but it is important. On Windows, I could use most software packages without reading the manual. If you don't read the manual, or at least the README file, you will mess up a lot, and waste lots of time with no results. However, if you read the manual, you can usually get it right the first time and learn something new. if I would have done this more from the start, my introduction to Linux would have been a lot smoother.
3. Be prepared to get your hands dirty: This is the best thing about Linux in my opinion. Under WIndows, if you want software to do something, you can beg to a company to include your feature, or write it from scratch. On Linux, you can take an existing package and modify it to your needs. This is especially true with drivers, as many companies seem to be ignorant with Linux and refuse to support it. If you don't get your hands dirty, you won't be able to use Linux to its best power. The command line is one of the most powerful tools. under Windows, I always hated DOS because it was confusing and had no help. Once I started using Linux, I realized that the command lin e was nothing to be afraid of, and also hated DOS more. This has to be the best feature of Linux, but also the most hated, as newbies will often want to point and click.
I hope these three things help some newbie out there. If I applied these things from the start, I would be typing this message on Linux instead of Windows XP. My next exposure with Linux, besides Knoppix, will probably not be until I build my next system, which will be at least one year. If you plan from the start, Linux is easy. if you don't, and you rush right in with no idea what you are doing, Linux is very frustrating and you will probably give up unless you acknowledge your mistakes and plan to correct them.