Ubuntu, which direction are you heading?

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by Mrkvonic, Dec 28, 2009.

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  1. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,

    Just before the year turns, time to rant a little. Have fun reading an article focusing on the daring yet controversial business decision driving the future of Ubuntu Linux.

    http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/ubuntu-direction.html


    Feel free to flame/agree/argue ...

    Cheers,
    Mrk
     
  2. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    Of course I agree with you wholeheartedly. See my gripe re.K3b earlier today.
    Let's just hope that the other mainstream distro developers don't get the idea to follow the Ubuntu 'early adopters' of this stuff.
     
  3. lodore

    lodore Registered Member

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    I Would be interested in what distro you will use if ubuntu carries on the path that it seems to be headed?
    If ubuntu carries on the way it does people will try it and it will crash after updates and people will think sure its free but it crashes more than windows why would I want to use this piece of crap and will go back to windows.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2009
  4. Martijn2

    Martijn2 Registered Member

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    Nice article Mrk! Ubuntu is becoming more and more the face of linux, sure hope they get their act together and concentrate on quality (=stability) :) You can't attract new users by chasing away the old ones
     
  5. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    lodore, I am already using openSUSE heavily (and have for the past 4 years).

    Ubuntu is a decent distro, but at the end of the day, what makes the difference is stability and productivity for me. I don't mind innovation and changes, but they need to be gradual and never at the expense of stability or functionality.

    If ever Ubuntu becomes so toyed it's just a visual gimmick like the recent Windows releases, for example, then I will have to seek an alternative. Not something that happens in a day, but it could.

    Linux wise, SUSE and RedHat (CentOS) make the most sense from the productivity point of view, which is why I do the "serious" stuff on them.

    If the push comes to shove, I might need to reevaluate my desktop needs, but at the moment, if I had to stop using Ubuntu, which is definitely not the case, openSUSE would make a good replacement. Not sure if other distros are tailored for long-term productivity support I look for.

    I don't have any flashy answers. We'll see ... There always is some compromise and reasonable people go for what suits them best. I believe that at any give point in time, there will be enough choice for whoever needs the right mix of this and that.

    Mrk
     
  6. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    The visual effects can be disabled easily enough in Windows, and Win 7 is certainly more stable than Vista, so I don't see the problem in Linux as long as these effects are also optional. For sure stability and usability is important but new users will never be attracted to Linux unless it's capable of displaying some eye candy, even if it is useless. It's what the masses want. That's why people are forking out big $$$ for designer phones, sunglasses, and iPods. They want the functionality but also the glitz so they can show off their wares, and generally feel better about themselves because they own the latest greatest.
     
  7. Trespasser

    Trespasser Registered Member

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    I agree wholeheartedly. The average user (not necessarily in Linux) goes for the glitz...the eye-candy...having the latest and greatest whatever. And to be honest...so do I...but only if my hardware can supports it (;)), which most of the time it doesn't (particularly with reference to video cards).

    Ubuntu is trying to be cutting edge and hip in an attempt to attract new users which I can't blame them for. They're the best thing that's ever happened to Linux. They've drawn a lot of people into the Linux fold over the last few years which is good IMO. Linux is no longer an obscure, also ran OS. Linux is starting to be more mainstream and a viable alternative to Windows which again IMO is good. I will always love Ubuntu for that.

    Later...
     
  8. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    Mark Shuttleworth a few times has stated that their UI look and feel target is Mac not Windows.

    Support lifecycles - length is one thing, but if its inferior it does not help.
    I sometimes feel Ubuntu struggles to get the balance of bleeding edge VS stability correct - power saving (laptop mode) is broken worse than before; but then again there are issues in XP that wont be fixed (DHCPv6) and issues in Vista that are intentionally broken (that worked in the betas - Aero on my Laptop).

    Release lifecycles - High frequency upgrades IMHO should be quicker/easier than less frequent ones or the total effort in supporting becomes limiting.
    I do like the choice Ubuntu gives between regular and LTS, I use a mix of both.
    IMHO as a target a 6 monthly upgrade should be twice as quick and require half the effort of a 12 monthly upgrade.

    Cheers, Nick.
     
  9. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    If the only complaint is that ubuntu looks too much like Windoze, then who cares? Every year, there are people who complain about the theme of Ubuntu and other distros -- you can't please everyone. If you don't like the default look, simply change it. And, by the way, Mark Shuttleworth has said recently that his goal for UI design is to catch up with Mac OSX. He is aiming for making Ubuntu on par with OSX (not Windows, as he feels it is already better than Windows).

    Also Mrkvonic said this:

    How about no software licenses at all? That should be the ultimate goal. There should be no software patents, no closed-source software, and no software licenses. Sure, it might only be a pipe dream, but we shouldn't use Linux as a way of getting M$ and Apple to lower the prices. If that's the goal, then, well, that's pretty sad.
     
  10. wilbertnl

    wilbertnl Registered Member

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    The pictures look great and make us drool.
    But I don't have a computer to look at all day long, I like to use it. So, turn off the visual features.

    Anyway, what would happen if Ubuntu users move to OpenSUSE or Mandriva?
    Linux users do have impact with the choice they make.
    That's our advantage over Microsoft or Apple.
     
  11. Judge Dee

    Judge Dee Guest

    Well, I guess there's a minority -so far- agreeing with Mrkvonic. I know I agree.
    edit:My reasons for agreeing are maybe different than Mrk's, though.
    I guess I don't care if only 10 people or as many as 1 million people use any particular OS. I'm totally enjoying Linux, and I've put it on two friend's computers, but why worry how many people use it? I don't understand (truly).
    As much as I love open source, I really don't care that there are corporations selling software. It's like when freeware programs all of a sudden become shareware. It never bothered me under Windows. It's the software owner's choice, and I had the freedom if I wanted to go somewhere else.
    (Hey, I went to Linux :) .
    I just like choice and stability, not uniformity.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 28, 2009
  12. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    I have no problem is the visual effects are optional, no problem at all ... But what if they are not. What if we are presented with a choice that has no alternative. GIMP, Synaptic, PulseAudio that breaks, USC, too much to swallow.

    However, if I have my ability to run software as expected - fast, stable and bugless and minimal candy in production environment, then ok, RGBA fire away and everything else. Hell, I use classic theme on Windows, ever, on production machines.

    But if I'm forced to use something, then the whole meaning of freedom is lost.

    As to software licenses, I don't want everything to be free or open-source. It does not bother me. I just want more of everything, so there's competition and that's always good.

    Mrk
     
  13. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    As long as we have options aka freedom of choice I suppose it's OK.
    But there's still the 6 monthly rush to contend with, with new beta type stuff often breaking applications and often causing confusion.
    For instance, will we be presented with btrfs file system in the next (U)buntu "Lucid" release ? I am not sure but the new kernels support it and there are rumours/indications (Ubuntu forums) that btrfs will be ready for Lucid. I don't know what this means in terms of improved usability - we have only just had ext4 .. o_O

    http://btrfs.wiki.kernel.org/index.php/Main_Page
     
  14. phaedrus

    phaedrus Registered Member

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    I`ve used Ubuntu in various flavours since Dapper and I pretty much agree with what`s been said. I do like my eye candy though, and am a big Compiz and Emerald theme fan. Its part of the Linux appeal for me.
    I am not happy that they they decided to pull Synaptic (and Gdebi?) and Gimp from the default install. Hopefully it will just be a simple matter of adding them post install. No biggie in that case.
    It concerns me where Canonical are taking Ubuntu, but I haven`t lost the faith yet. I am hoping Lucid will turn out to be a good release and allay these concerns.
     
  15. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    ONLY concern for is the stability and user-friendliness. If they have that it,s all OK for me.

    BTW I guess the more Ubuntu wil become mainstream and popular among ordinary users, the more it wil be disliked by geeks/ advanced users. This is the destiny IMOHO. The demand and liking of these two species are different.:)
     
  16. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    GIMP is not being included due to size constraints. As distros become larger and larger, some things have to be trimmed in order for it to fit on a single CD. And GIMP will be available in the repos as always, so it's not a big deal.

    I agree about Pulseaudio -- I hate it and always have. Even on 9.10, I kept getting underruns in my log files where pulseaudio crashed and sputtered and shut down constantly. It's a buggy POS. It was so bad on Fedora 11, that I couldn't even run it at all -- Pulseaudio kept crashing the kernel as soon as I booted the livecd. Totally unacceptable. So, I have switched completely to OSSv4 and have had zero problems. It is so much better than Pulse.
     
  17. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    Well, btrfs is going to be awesome, as it offers so much more than ext3/4 (or any other file systems for Linux) can. Btrfs is essentially a ZFS clone (I assume you know what ZFS is). It allows for things like snapshots, RAID built into the file system, checksums of all data and metadata, the ability to add hard disks while the machine is running, etc..

    I welcome its addition, but it should not be made default unless it is stable, and the developers say it is still not stable as of right now. Therefore, I doubt it will be the default in Lucid.
     
  18. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

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    Thank you. Had a look at ZFS as I have not come across this term before. Now at least I have some crude rudimentary understanding of what is possible. :)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZFS
    If not the default in Lucid, btrfs may make it as an option...who knows.
     
  19. Martijn2

    Martijn2 Registered Member

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    I sure hope they will improve it's performance... http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=ext4_btrfs_nilfs2&num=2
     
  20. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    I've seen those benchmarks. You have to remember, it's still in development, and IIRC, there have been some improvements in the speed in recent months. Right now features are more of an issue than speed -- that will come later in the development cycle.
     
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