Curiosity question to Linux users from a Linux user

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by dan_maran, May 11, 2010.

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  1. dan_maran

    dan_maran Registered Member

    With the release of Ubuntu 10.04 I was in a way excited to see the next iteration to the self proclaimed flagship for Linux. I have to say I am not as impressed as I should be. This release, while seemingly a giant step in the right direction, doesn't appeal to me as a long time Linux user. In this release I feel that they(Ubuntu) are making the rules that are set to follow if you use their distribution and if you don't like it, well too bad. Now sure, we can switch and not use Ubuntu and I am fine with that. I have grown to love Arch Linux again, after the tight "Cloud" and Social networking integration in this release of Ubuntu drove me bonkers. Not to mention the constant libnotify popups and the ridiculous notification area restrictions/inabilities.

    My question(s) is how do you feel about the latest Ubuntu?

    Does it suite your needs?

    Do you use the new features?

    Did they remove anything that you used before?


    //**Please refrain from simple "It's great"**//
  2. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    Some stuff I don't use:

    Gwibber Social Client and associated stuff.
    Ubuntu One.
    Rhythmbox - the music store plugins.
    I needed to install Gimp (removed) and XSane (because Simple Scan does not have brightness, contrast etc. etc. adjustables)
    Of course the window buttons positioning - changed theme and installed emerald.
    Changed notify osd position.
    Interface tab missing from Appearance Preferences - so no context menu icons. Changed in gconf editor.
    Plenty of additional progs. were installed by me to get everything to my satisfaction. I am now pleased.
    Oh yes what are IBus Preferences ?
  3. I for one was pleasantly surprised by the lack of bugs. Usually Ubuntu (and really, almost any other "desktop" distro) is terrible with the bugs.
  4. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

    I think its a step in right direction, Ubuntu is not for old time hardcore users but if you want desktop Linux to survive, Ubuntu is the way or else there would be no hope period. Best part about Ubuntu and any Linux disto is that you can customize it like no other and make it your way, in that aspect, Ubuntu is not lacking by any standards.
  5. Eice

    Eice Registered Member

    It's the manager for multi-language input. SCIM got replaced by it since Jaunty or Karmic, I think.

    My Lucid thoughts...


    - Improved theme. The sashimi-colored scrollbars look like crap, and overall the theme doesn't look as good as Mint's Shiki-wise or openSUSE's Sonar, but it's an improvement from the previous default themes.

    - Improved PPA handling in the Ubuntu Software Center.

    - Fast boot/shutdown. This is the first version of Ubuntu that beats Win7 at startup time on my machine, by 4-5 seconds. Granted, I have more autostart programs in Win7 than Lucid, but it's still an improvement from Karmic. Lucid absolutely smokes Win7 at shutdown time, no contest.


    - The new messaging menu. The concept is neat, but I want Pidgin and Thunderbird/Gmail, NOT Empathy and Evolution.

    - Icons in the system tray don't seem to give popup tooltips anymore, except for the network icon. In the case of the Transmission and volume icons, this is pretty irritating.

    A week ago I'd have griped about the lack of GIMP, but then I discovered Pixlr(.com), and it works pretty well as a stand-in.

    Those are about the only Lucid-specific things I don't like. The rest of the not-that-good things are pretty much old problems and shortcomings that Canonical didn't bother fixing. Default package selection is still not up my alley. Still the same repos maintenance policy that will leave software to languish and become out-of-date in a few months, making you manually check which programs you have to update and hunt everywhere for PPAs. Still that scary message warning you that you might be downloading ILLEGAL codecs when you try to play your mp3s. Still the same boring menu instead of a smarter, Vista-esque one (the ones that Mint, openSUSE GNOME and KDE give you). Still the same lawlful support for printers/scanners where usually the best you can hope for is to get your device working via hand-modified .deb and/or .ppd files.

    Pretty much the same old Ubuntu, actually. It'll continue to gain new users, of course, but personally, I doubt it's going to win over any re-converts who gave Jaunty/Karmic a spin and didn't like it.
  6. dan_maran

    dan_maran Registered Member

    Thanks for the input, just making sure it wasn't me who was utterly disappointed. I have to say I expected more, the awful purple and dark default theme, the messaging being combined is a little over the top(curious to see how long it lasts), wasted screen real estate with with 2 panels, empathy IS worthless, for a home desktop user Evolution is not the solution. Oh and for Windows converts No icons on the desktop, they freak out!

    I am hoping the latest Mint release can fix most of these issues for those users.
    By the way I stopped recommending Ubuntu as of 8.10/9.04, switched to recommending Mint. Positive reviews and the OMG it's so ugly comments are gone.
  7. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

    Evolution is a viable alternative now and works quite well infact. As for Empathy, it has long way to go in terms of features but it works well as a basic chat client, even video works fine on Gtalk. As for theme of Ubuntu vis a vis MINT, its personal, I can't stand the green in MINT and the fact that its nothing but Ubuntu with few tweaks here or there. I do recommend MINT to Windows switchers who are less inclined to instaling codecs etc. but for others who have the willingness to learn, I wholeheartedly recommend Ubuntu. Strange but most Windows users I have converted here find the no icon desktop refreshing from the usual clutter.
  8. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

    I like the new Ubuntu a lot, and this is coming from a guy who used to build his OS from Gentoo stage3 tarballs. I just like the ease of use and not having to spend two days just getting the machine running. I also happen to like Ubuntu One.

    And why do people complain about GIMP being omitted from the livecd? All you have to do once you get Ubuntu installed is:

    sudo aptitude install gimp
    Suddenly you have GIMP again.

    And as for Evolution, I think it's a good e-mail client generally, but it has one fatal flaw for me -- it can only use SHA-1 for the GPG hash. SHA-1 is weak and I always use SHA-512. Even if you set it to use SHA-512 in your gpg.conf, it won't. It always default to SHA-1. This is a known bug that has been around for years and still not been fixed yet.

    Kmail is my favorite e-mail client, but since I am using Gnome now, I am using Thunderbird and find it very capable as well. And setting up GPG with Enigmail is easy.
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  9. Eice

    Eice Registered Member

    Really? Even though the WinXP/Vista/Win7 default desktop comes with only a recycle bin?

    Forgot to add: hated the decision to display 1GB as 1000MB. The Ubuntu liveusb lost a lot of value to me as a hard disk partitioning tool following that change.

    Gwibber is a weak Facebook client, and even more so with the desktopcouch bug that causes 100% CPU spikes when refreshing for updates.

    Because it's a big fat download.
  10. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

    Well, I'll be publishing my review on Friday, but so far:


    - Theme is ok.
    - Stability and laptop suspend & sleep support.
    - Speed.


    - Boot times - more or less the same as previous versions, some surprising results, with excellent improvement on old hardware and small loses on new hardware.
    - USC does not make me tingle, I prefer Synaptic.


    No GIMP.
    Left buttons, although it's a simple geek fix.

    Now, below stuff does not mean this is bad per se, this means I see no merit or value, but this is true for any release that was, is and will be:

    - Social networking integration - I have no friends, no facebook, no twitter, no micro and macro blogging thingies, I don't wanna chat, mail, or talk to anyone.
    - Nouveau, not the sharpest tool in the drawer and can make a bad impression on first 1-2 boots, including live session. I don't buy proper hardware to be running 2D drivers.

    Overall, I think ... well, Friday.

  11. dan_maran

    dan_maran Registered Member

    Yes, I am amazed also. And telling them how to get the icons there, they panic.

    If I could get any version of the latest *buntu to run on this box(Dell optiplex), I would test the latest Kubuntu. I think the Plasma desktop is more of a future forward looking environment, that just needs a bit more polish.
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  12. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

    Apart from LTS, Ubuntu comes every six months with new version and also updated versions of most of the software in the repos. As for finding PPA, its as hard an effort as to finding appropriate programs for Windows.
  13. Eice

    Eice Registered Member

    Personally, I'm still waiting for Lucid support for a bunch of my PPAs. Hopefully they'll be out in time for Mint 9.

    Is it safe to use Karmic PPAs with Lucid, by any chance?
  14. Longboard

    Longboard Registered Member

    A view from the pond:
    nice thread...nice comments..interesting to see the convergence of views..
    LOL...say it aint so...
    ( youre not alone...:shifty: )
    I know it's a 'marketing' tool; the social networking integration, frankly I dont see the need for the social-netvomit tools to be present at all..offer a package in the repos for those who want; short cut install on the desktop.
    Dont get the button shift... more Mac-esque ?? ...ppfftt.
    Thunderbird and Pidgin = :thumb:
    I'm not so sure about including Gimp as a given: no dispute it's a great tool..getting a bit biggish on the CD ??
    Everyone want a detailed photo/image-edit/create tool ..possibly not.

    Beyond the usual tweaking...working well as an option here.

    PS: just a thought: how about an install routine with some "opt-in" options ??
  15. I have to say, the more I use 10.04 the more I'm impressed with it.

    The good:

    - Once properly set up, it is very fast - boots faster than WinXP and performs much better under load. (Though it should be noted that XP performs terribly when heavy I/O is going on in the background, so that's is nothing new.)

    - Stability is great right off the bat; nothing has crashed on me yet, which is a bit shocking given my past experience with desktop-oriented distros.

    - Chromium is available in the repos!

    The bad:

    - The firewall UFW is for some reason not activated by default, even though there are open ports.

    - sudo still has the dumb 5-minute nopasswd timeout, which makes social engineering exploits against novices easy. I disable this obviously, but novices would not know about the danger involved in it.

    - The default theme is not exactly pretty; IMHO it's overcomplicated and has too many aliased curves. Could be worse, but could definitely be better.

    The ugly:

    - Firefox is still the default browser, and it is still incredibly slow and bloated; on GMail for instance it hangs a lot and hogs up lots of CPU power. Epiphany integrates well with Gnome and has never really had these issues, but for some reason it's not installed.

    (And yes I know people are more familiar with Firefox, but Epiphany is hardly unintuitive; and if you have a problem understanding the concept of using a different browser, you're probably not going to be using a different OS.)

    That said I can't really blame the Ubuntu devs for this, because Firefox is the most popular browser on Linux and it's not their fault that it happens to suck on said OS.

    All in all I'd say it's a very good release despite its flaws.
  16. dan_maran

    dan_maran Registered Member

    Well, I must say I finally got a version of Ubuntu 10.04 to isntall on the terrible Dell Optiplex 740. I thought it was the sata_nv module screwing up somehow but apparently with this chipset you have to set the mem=1g to get it to boot. I have no idea where this kernel regression came from but that was the fix.

    The good - it booted.....

    the bad - it won't boot anymore; after first sudo aptitude full-upgrade somewhere along the line the grub routine or files are all mashed up. Grub.cfg only lists the memory tests now....
    I'm in the process of trying to restore the grub from the livecd and it doesn't seem to take no matter what avenue I choose. Looks like a re-install for time reasons, as I have already tried to rebuild grub on the /boot partition using two different methods as stated in the ubuntu wiki.

    Fun times had by all....
  17. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

    If you're on dial-up maybe. For me, it takes 10-15 seconds to download.
  18. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

    Which ports?

    I think people misunderstand how that works. The timeout is limited to the shell session you have open -- it does not effect anything outside of that one terminal session. If you open a new terminal session, you still must enter the password. If you open Synaptic, you still have to enter your password. The sudo timeout does not mean your box is being run as root for 5 minutes.

    Most Linux distros give a real root account. However you never hear anyone complain about how opening a root shell makes one's box susceptible. In fact, root shells do not timeout by default! Yet we see no security issues from this for the reasons I gave above.

    I agree Firefox is a bit slow, but it also has tons of add-ons and plugins that Epiphany simply does not have. Most people cannot live without their add-ons which makes Epiphany (and Konqueror on KDE) a non-starter.

    Personally I use Chromium and find it much better because A) it's the fastest browser out there right now (on any OS) and B) it has all the major extensions that Firefox has.
  19. The ones used by CUPS. Last I checked CUPS left ports open with the default configuration on Ubuntu.

    IIRC (I could be wrong) it still opens you up to stuff like this:

    - Have a website that asks users to install a plugin
    - Let the user invoke sudo to install the plugin, then go back to the site
    - A malicious script on the site invokes sudo itself to run a payload as root. Bam, box is rooted.

    Again I could be wrong about this, but that was my impression.

    Yeah, but when you have a root shell open it doesn't allow apps outside the shell to gain root without a password.

    True. Also I'm finding the sluggishness depends rather heavily on CPU and GPU power - my computer at work has a nVidia graphics card and a Pentium 4 CPU, and Firefox (on Slackware Linux) is pretty quick on it. So it could be more an issue on netbooks and other computers with weak CPUs/GPUs.

    I use Chromium too... No extensions though.
  20. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    Complicated stuff (for me).. check this from the ubuntu forums .. any comments would be appreciated - as you know the uninitiated like me are always riddled with fear of the unknown. :) :p

  21. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

    No. CUPS is not open to the Internet at large. It only listens locally. You can tell by looking at netstat and looking at the "local address" heading. If you see it means it is listening to the Internet. If you see, it means it is listening locally. CUPS is listening locally.

    Yeah but the problem here is not sudo but the user giving his sudo password to a random website. That would be a problem even if sudo was not being used at all.

    And why must the user leave the site and come back? Why not just put a trojan in the plugin to start with?

    Exactly and neither does a shell open with sudo. It's the same with Synaptic or software center. Just because they remain open for 5 minutes doesn't mean that all applications on the machine suddenly have sudo access for 5 minutes.

    I tried Chromium in 9.10 and it kept crashing for some reason. Now that Lucid is out and I did a fresh install, no more crashes. I use the Chromium nightly builds (via a PPA) and they run without a hitch. The speed difference between it and Firefox is night and day. Not to mention that Chromium has a built in sandbox which FF does not have. I also lock it down further with an AppArmor profile, so it is "double" sandboxed in a sense. :)
  22. Hmm, I don't see cups even listed... Only as using a socket.
  23. Trespasser

    Trespasser Registered Member

    Thanks for the warning, Mrk! I'll have my wife shoot me with a tranquilizer dart before I read it. ;).

    Mrk probably rejected all his then friends when they switched to Ubuntu.


  24. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

    I have already instructed my wife to lock me up in the room, all strapped to the chair.:D
  25. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    How large are these daily(nightly ?) builds. My bandwidth is rather limited. I assume the chromium-browser in the Lucid repo will not update the browser daily but only when a security related issue arises ? Does daily really mean daily ? Thanks in advance.
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