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Vista Vs. Gutsy Gibbon 806

Posted by kdawson
from the difference-in-philosophy dept.
ricegf writes in with the account of one Rupert Goodwins writing in ZDNet UK. Goodwins has 7 computers running various versions of Windows and Linux, and explains why he chooses to do most of his work on the Gibbon. "So here's the funny thing. I've used Windows since 1.0. I've lived through the bad times of Windows/386 and ME, and the good times of NT 3.51 and 2K. I know XP if not backwards, then with a degree of familiarity that only middle-aged co-dependents can afford each other... Then how come I'm so much more at home with Ubuntu than Vista? It boils down to one abiding impression: Ubuntu goes out of its way to get out of your way... Vista goes out of its way to be Vista and enforce the Vista way."
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Vista Vs. Gutsy Gibbon

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  • Re:My take on it (Score:4, Informative)

    by lattyware (934246) <gareth@lattyware.co.uk> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:44PM (#21092645) Homepage Journal
    And with Gutsy, and it's 'never crash out to bash' ideology, and the x-settings manager that will start if x crashes, you now would not even need to be an intelligent user in this case with Gutsy to get it to work. It's a long-awaited idea, and one that'll be gladly received. It works well too, in 99% of situations. Of course there are some hardware setups that would not work even in this 'safe-mode' style of graphics setup - but they are very few and far between - and anyone using them will probably be able to solve it at a bash prompt, and this is a huge step forward. I've laughed at people for saying Windows is easier. Bull. Windows is more familiar, maybe. But Linux has now been made so much more easy than windows. Installing and using Vista for gaming after more than a year of Linux only use was hell.
  • Re:I agree (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:47PM (#21092687)
    Actually that button doesn't shut down the computer. That button powers off the computer (usually). Yes, there's a difference.
  • Aside (Score:5, Informative)

    by IthnkImParanoid (410494) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:55PM (#21092775)
    In my experience there's really no reason to run Norton antivirus, unless you enjoy giving your operating system the equivalent of 300 pound cell mate named Bubba. Between Avast!, AVG, Clamwin, Panda, and any other free antivirus software out there, there's got to be something to replace Norton.
  • by mmclure (26378) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:06PM (#21092943) Homepage
    At work, I got a shiny new machine. Since we need to certify some of our products with Windows Vista, we designated it the Vista certification machine. So far, so good.

    We use the MKS Toolkit software suite to simplify several tasks while developing on Windows. Everything seemed to work fine, until I had to use patch to apply a diff to some sources. As soon as I typed

            patch -p0 foo.diff

    at the command prompt I got a pop-up window from Vista asking permission to run the executable. If I answered "yes, go ahead" instead of running the program in the same command prompt window it popped it up in another command prompt which promptly disappeared. And, apparently, did absolutely nothing to the files that were supposed to be patched. Experimentation shows that even

            patch --help

    pops up the dialog and fails, so it isn't a permissions problem on the files to patch. So I say to myself, "Myself, we're a revision or two back on MKS Toolkit, and this is not the Vista-certified version - let's try another patch.exe." So I go get the GnuWin32 version of patch.exe. I put it first on the PATH, and try again. Another pop-up. I answer yes, and not only does patch run in a window that disappears, but it GPFs as well.

    At this point, I'm pissed. But suddenly the penny drops. I rename the MKS toolkit patch.exe to ptch.exe and type

          ptch --help

    which produces a nice help message. Trying on the original diff causes the required files to be patched correctly.

    Apparently the Windows Vista User Access Control considers patch.exe to be a forbidden executable name. I investigated further and the only way to disable this functionality appears to be to completely turn off UAC, which I did immediately.

    But there you have it - Windows Vista's vaunted security is about as logical and effective as banning water bottles in carry-on luggage.
     
  • by SirMeliot (864836) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:38PM (#21093295)

    That's a compatibility fudge to run old install programs that don't have a manifest saying whether they need admin privs or not.

    Try it with with setup.exe, update.exe or anything that sounds like it might be an installer. Vista assumes it's an installer and tries to run it as admin.

    For extra fun rename a text file to be setup.exe. Try to run it. Vista will give you a UAC prompt, then discover it's not a real executable and finally give you a cute little message box saying 'The application didn't install correctly'

  • Core Values (Score:3, Informative)

    by CodeBuster (516420) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:40PM (#21093327)
    Ubuntu goes out of its way to get out of your way... Vista goes out of its way to be Vista and enforce the Vista way.

    This really speaks to the core values and differences between the closed source and open source philosophies as outlined by Richard Stallman [wikipedia.org] (yes, Richard Stallman is different from most of the rest of us and some people just cannot get past the beard and the long hair, but he has some worthwhile things to say if you can get past the charisma issue, -4 reaction adjustment at least if we were playing D&D) among others. The closed source philosophy is really about their way of doings, the experience that they want you to have, and their control of every aspect of that experience whereas the open source philosophy is all about freedom to choose your own experience, the experience that you want to have, and your choice about every aspect of that experience. If you want to take the defaults that is alright OR if you think that something that is not available and should be then you can take the source code and make it happen...it is all good AND other people cannot subsequently take that away from you (the GPL requirement of sharing changes and additions).
  • Re:Another one (Score:2, Informative)

    by T-Bone-T (1048702) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:43PM (#21093349)
    Ubuntu won't play CSSed DVDs out of the box either.
  • Try Gutsy Gibbon (Score:5, Informative)

    by icsEater (1093717) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:53PM (#21093451)
    You may want to give Gutsy Gibbon a try. It has a new GUI-based screen configuration utility that handles dual screens. http://www.ubuntu.com/files/GutsyImages/Screen-and-Graphic-Preferences.jpg [ubuntu.com] This is a feature that I've been waiting for :-) Yes, mucking around with xorg.Conf isn't too hard, but this makes life easier for new comers.
  • Re:I agree (Score:3, Informative)

    by gfxguy (98788) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:03PM (#21093527)
    I agree; long ago when I switched from linux back to windows, it was because I wanted to actually do stuff (mostly play games, I suppose) and not do system administration. Times have changed a great deal, and when I do actual work-work (as opposed to my personal video editing and playing games), I always use Linux. I can't believe how far it's come along and I'm really impressed with it. I've been using Linux nearly exclusively for work and at home for about two years.

    But when I couldn't get something to work in the past, the Linux zealots would always blame me for not finding the right driver, the right dependencies, the right dependencies for the dependencies, etc., and compiling it myself. Sorry, that's not how I want to spend my time.

    On the other hand, I do believe Linux, Ubuntu is what I've been using for six months or so, is simply just as good as Windows XP. I do have a Vista upgrade, I just don't care to install it right now. But I've found that a lot of drivers actually worked out of the box with Ubuntu that didn't with XP. My video card works out of the box with Ubuntu, but requires manual installation of drivers for Windows. My network cards (both wireless on my laptop and built in ethernet) just worked on Linux. I'm not saying it's all happiness.. I often have problems with built in audio. Now, so does windows, but there's no drivers for Linux on that motherboard disc. And it's not like it's a huge deal for Windows, either - because after installing Windows, you just pop in the MB CD and you're off.

    Now, you might call a comparison with the just released Linux and XP unfair, since XP's been around for years. But I'm comparing it with XP with the latest service packs and all.

    The other great thing, for people that keep changing things around (like me), is that you can just go and download the latest Linux distributions. With XP, I have my XP cd, I have to install it, then spend hours downloading all the patches and upgrades. The difference is that if I install on more than one machine, I have to repeat the process for each XP machine. With Linux, I use the same disc over and over.

    This is the punishment legal purchasers of Windows get.

    So I agree with you to an extent... I use Windows for games and video editing (sorry, just not happy with what is available on Linux so far), but I have just as many problems with Windows as I do with Linux, and often the solution is actually easier in Linux.
  • Re:Ugh iPhoto (Score:5, Informative)

    by c_forq (924234) <forquerc+slash@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:15PM (#21093671)
    I believe this behavior is done for two reasons. One: so it can edit pictures non-destructively (as in none of your original data is destroyed, very important to those of us who might use the same picture multiple times and edit it differently for different occasions). Two: to avoid the issue of loss of data through compression. Almost any slashdotter can tell you of the ability of jpeg to destroy pictures after repeated compression.
  • Re:I agree (Score:3, Informative)

    by vux984 (928602) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:16PM (#21093681)
    Seriously - this kind of convenience is one of the major benefits of using Linux.

    They already know the media is worthless, and they know that anyone who wants one can get one trivially (which is why the vista upgrade won't accept a "CD in the drive" as proof), so restricting them is pointless. I think they know that, and that it won't be long before they go to digital distribution of the media.

    Of course being microsoft they'll shoot themselves in the foot, make the priviledge of downloading it a paid subscription service, and set it up so that you have to be logged into MSN messenger on a genuine advantage validated PC to do it...

    And -THAT- is the benefit of using linux. Its FREE! both as in liberty and as in beer.
  • Re:I agree (Score:4, Informative)

    by budgenator (254554) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:22PM (#21093765) Journal
    Jerry Pournelle was great, I always read his column first, and computer companies always sent him equipment and software to review because Jerry could break anything, and if your stuff could survive Chaos Manner, you were made. He's on the web at Chaos Manor Reviews [chaosmanorreviews.com] if your jonesing for a fix of Jerry.
  • Drivers (Score:3, Informative)

    by leoxx (992) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:26PM (#21093797) Homepage Journal
    What hardware in particular?

    I'd like to encourage anyone and everyone who has a piece of hardware not supported by Linux to report it to the LinuxDriverProject [linuxdriverproject.org].
  • by ILongForDarkness (1134931) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:34PM (#21093885)
    Linux favors rapid releases, why not the developer version is available and has feature x, why can't I have it now (actually you can ;)). This is easy to do in free software, your not asking much of the end user (especially in Ubuntu), click the update button wait 20 minutes done.

    MS has a different philosophy, and so has to go in larger steps. They need to market their software, they need to convince users to shell out money for it, they need to convince oems to pre-install it, and negotiate the pricing structure. All this leads to larger more substantial releases. Completely reworked GUI's, privilege schemes, filesystems etc. I'm sorry going from KDE 3.5.7 to 3.5.8 doesn't strike me as a major upgrade. Similarly with the kernel changes. I upgraded my Kubuntu from 7.4 to 7.10 and didn't notice a difference.

    Now I didn't spend time reading up of a bunch of forums for some of the more obscure features, I honestly don't care if I can turn my multiple desktops into a spinning Rubix cube, I only use the one desktop anyways, I can't stand having more than 4 things open at once, and can't be bothered to remember which desktop I opened what in.

    Anyways, MS has to make major changes to convince people to upgrade, or at least make people think they got their moneys worth. Unfortunately, major changes screw over the end users that have spend 5 years learning keyboard shortcuts, or what have you. Stability issues will crop up and might take a year or so to get worked out.

  • Re:I agree (Score:3, Informative)

    by Kalriath (849904) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:41PM (#21093949)
    He's definitely lying, too, because if a program that runs at boot needs UAC to elevate it, Windows doesn't start it and you get a single balloon from Windows Defender in the taskbar telling you that Windows didn't start some of your startup programs because they require elevation. I know, because I had Windows do that to me when I set Proxomitron to start at startup (I think they've adopted the Unixy policy of requiring "root" level access to use well-known ports).
  • by nursegirl (914509) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:46PM (#21093999) Journal
    Hey - It's Ubuntu 7.10, not 7.1 for a reason. "7" indicates the year of release, and 10 indicates the month. Ubuntu 7.1 would be whichever Feisty Alpha they released in January.

  • Re:I agree (Score:2, Informative)

    by Das Modell (969371) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:30PM (#21094329)

    It's not "slow."

    It's painfully and unbearably slow.

    It doesn't pop up permission dialogs every five seconds.

    No, it pops up permission dialogs every four seconds. There's almost nothing you can do without UAE prompting you twice about it.
  • Re:Ugh iPhoto (Score:4, Informative)

    by Entropius (188861) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:38PM (#21094375)
    This is what Picasa does, btw.
  • Re:Ugh iPhoto (Score:2, Informative)

    by modecx (130548) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:48PM (#21094459)
    Yeah, but the simple enough idea of smart layers feature hasn't appeared until CS3. I mean, for a program that has been under development as long as photoshop, no less a program intended for professionals, I would think this would have been around for a little while longer. The idea of a virtual layer that applies a series of filters to the parent layer, in a specific order, seems simple enough--and of course it would save gobs of memory on huge images, but would probably require lots more processor, depending on the usage.

    Same thing for "save selection", and adjustment layers that would be better served without a layer mask. Is it really necessary to create a full color channel the same size of the full image, so that you can load a selection area? Sure, you can take your selection and save it as a vector path, and that works fine and dandy sometimes. Doesn't work well with flowing hair in my experience, unless you get the just right feather radius. I mean, a MacPro with 16GB of memory looks pretty attractive for the things I want to do sometimes, and yet it might not be enough for doing big images right, and in an easily modifiable way. The next step is to do the mac and keep a swap drive on some kind of beefy fibre channel array, or super computer/datacenter/cluster-worthy NAS.
  • Re:Another one (Score:1, Informative)

    by Sparr0 (451780) <sparr0@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @10:24PM (#21094751) Homepage Journal
    Liar. Ubuntu won't decrypt CSS out of the box. It plays DVDs just fine.
  • by soporific16 (1166495) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @01:48AM (#21096171)
    ... it is the final straw! I have read soooo many tales of a better computer experience with a linux OS that i've finally started on the path to having kubuntu installed with my new resolve to spend a definite amount of time using it. Yes, it was this story. Be proud! I was going to wait until my rage against Windows was incandescent, but why wait till then? I will still probably use Windows XP for years to come but no way am i going near Vista. So i better get my hands wet with linux, hey. It will also be better for my karma if i switch to linux and open source programs. I haven't purchased a piece of software for over 10 years now and no matter how much of a communist you are, you still get the feelings of guilt of not letting a simple legal fiction (ie proprietory software) get in the way of using all the wonderful programs that can be got from emule. These feeling come every now and then. About twice a year. If that!
  • Re:That's because: (Score:4, Informative)

    by Technician (215283) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @02:39AM (#21096459)
    More generally, poor programmers try to make programs so simple that only simple things are possible.

    In the Windows world, I often found programs nutered so they can sell the premium edition. It is so prevelant it has a name... Crippleware and Demoware
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demoware [wikipedia.org]

    Pick up any recent HP computer and you will find many installed examples of this broken stuff littered all over it. When I first wanted to try Ubuntu, I downloaded the ISO on my wife's XP dell because it had the CD writer. Guess what, the CD writer program had ISO burning disabled, but they were kind enough to include a software package to offer to download the upgrade, no waiting for about $50. Grr. I never bothered to spend the $50 for a copy of Ubuntu. A search of friendlier software quickly turned up a real CD ISO burner.

    Once Ubuntu was up and running, I found the simple task of burning a CD was simple, elegant, without bloat, and worked.

    poor programmers try to make programs so simple that only simple things are possible
    I find poor programmers try to make programs to extract the most cash possible.
    1 Pay to be the default installation
    2 Have reduced functionality of an essentual feature such as printing or burning
    3 Have built in links to the upgrade fee processing site.

    What they missed is The Internet and Google. Crippleware is deadware.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crippleware [wikipedia.org]
  • by Technician (215283) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @02:52AM (#21096519)
    I'd rather have a small violation of a non-legit codec then to have this ginormous company that was convicted of illegal monopolistic predatory practices telling me what I can and can't do with my computer.

    Download the ISO. Burn it to a CD. Boot the CD and wait for it to eject. Remove the CD and load a DVD. Enjoy. When done, eject the DVD and select "Exit". This entire operation leaves no trace or record on your hard drive.

    http://geexbox.org/en/downloads.html [geexbox.org]

    With Vista taking forever to boot up, the CD boot is faster. If all I want to do is watch a movie, the CD boot is the best choice. The codec and player are not compliant with the DVD consortium which is a good thing. Put in the DVD and watch the movie instead of the FBI warning and "Don't steal this film".
  • Re:I agree (Score:3, Informative)

    by r3m0t (626466) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @07:39AM (#21097775)
    OK, I'm going to configure this power button:

    Right-click on the button, Properties. Nope, that gives me the properties of the whole start bar and menu. Browse through, but it isn't there.

    OK, I'm going to press the windows key and type "power". Nope, I need to search for "power" *inside* the Control Panel.

    OK, windows key -> "control" -> search for "power". Aha! "Change what your power button does". FINALLY!

    That's what my experience was. I'm not at a Vista computer right now (using a public XP computer, and using Ubuntu at home) so I can't reproduce it exactly. There may be some UAC in there.
  • by u-235-sentinel (594077) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @11:21AM (#21100313) Homepage Journal
    Today you use KUbuntu. You feel like a black sheep. Tomorrow you suddenly find that some other your friend uses . Then one more friend. Then one more. Then you just stop counting.

    Recently I attended SANS 2007 in Las Vegas and was VERY surprised to see how many people were running Ubunbu Linux on their laptops. Nearly half the students had switched in the last couple years from Windows. And we have Vista to thank for that. All the stories then the reality pushed people to say they've had enough.

    It was a really cool experience (Oh and the class was awesome!)

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