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Ignalum Linux - A Bridge to Windows? 365

linux slacker writes "Ignalum Linux 'is an intuitive graphical environment that works right out of the box and offers unrivaled compatibility with Microsoft Windows' or so says their website. The company is owned by four university students in Ontario, and one of their goals is to allow companies to incorporate Linux into their Windows environment, so users could still run Word, Excel and other popular Microsoft fare."
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Ignalum Linux - A Bridge to Windows?

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  • Another one (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jimicus ( 737525 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:21AM (#9081992)
    Does the world really need another Linux distribution? I know I'll be modded to hell for this, but why?

    "Better" windows compatability still isn't 100%. And J. R. Sixpack is gonna be as confused as hell when his system which he bought which is "compatible with Windows" won't run some random program he found on a shovelware CD.
  • uhm (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Quai ( 188898 ) * on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:22AM (#9081995)
    If I wanted windows, i would be running windows.

    Slackware is more my thingy :)

    Well, I guess this will provide them with more stable computers atleast.

    Ps, stop making Linux-Windows dists. and start making apps that they could use insted of windows-apps.

    And btw, my english sucks.
  • Re:Another one (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tehcyder ( 746570 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:24AM (#9082005) Journal
    If you look at their website, they claim to be able to run Direct X apps without modifying a single line of code. If this was true and more or less all Windows Direct X games could be run under Linux, this would be a radical breakthrough in terms of Linux for the Desktop/Average User.

  • good, but.... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by KrisCowboy ( 776288 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:24AM (#9082008) Journal
    Well, being able to run word and powerpoint sounds great..but 2.4.20 and KDE 3.1 with an old mozilla doesn't sound quite great. Looks like this distro's gonna need lot of upgrade
  • by bcmm ( 768152 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:25AM (#9082015)
    Wasn't Lindows going to provide near 100% compatiblity with windows?

    Haven't there been endless attempts at windows-compatible linux distros?
  • by RealityThreek ( 534082 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:25AM (#9082018)
    ... not that there's another Linux distribution, but there's yet another that tries to be Windows. Every day, I care less and less if Linux becomes a mainstream OS.

    You want 100% Windows compatability? Run Windows. :)
  • Deja vu (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Lurker McLurker ( 730170 ) <{moc.liamg} {ta} ... semanloocehtlla}> on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:27AM (#9082028)
    Didn't Lindows (as they were known then) try to do this then fail miserably? It's not as if this is the first distro to try running Microsoft applications. And what happens when the next version of Office, designed specifically not to work on wine, comes out?
  • Re:Or... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by WIAKywbfatw ( 307557 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:27AM (#9082029) Journal
    The day that companies start worrying about needing a stepping stone to help migrate users from Unix/Linux to Windows is a day most people here will look forward to. For one thing, it will mean that the usability and ease-of-use of Unix/Linux will have surpased that of Windows.
  • Re:screenshots (Score:2, Insightful)

    by RealityThreek ( 534082 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:29AM (#9082038)
    What kind of message does this send out ... "Yeah, it's ok to log in as root all the time" ?
    Well, actually. Yes. Most people run Windows at home as a member of the Administrators group. That's precisely what they'll want to do here too. And even more than that, they'll want their password saved. (Or even, have no password) Convenience trumps security in the eyes of an average user.
  • Winning the battle (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pubjames ( 468013 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:33AM (#9082051)

    In many companies, a much easier battle is to get the company to move, say, for Microsoft Outlook to Thunderbird, or IE to Mozilla. Also of course MS Office to OpenOffice. I think this is a much better battle to try to fight than trying to get the whole desktop moved to Linux. Once the company has moved the desktop applications over to open source ones, then it is time to move to Linux.

    Trying to get companies to move to Linux by moving MS Office to Linux is nuts.

  • by CdBee ( 742846 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:37AM (#9082065)
    I've been a prat.. that isn't KDE. I'm going outside to shoot myself now.
  • grr. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SinaSa ( 709393 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:38AM (#9082068) Homepage
    It's projects like this that really piss me off.

    Sure, the goal of the project is very admirable. More compatibility, no matter where (as long as it isn't breaking things) is a good thing.

    But why didn't these uni students spend their time helping the projects that are already there. Now, we have an extra project, using existing tools (presumably hacked to be better), and now the existing tools have to find out what hacks were used to make their improvement.

    These guys have put themselves an unwanted middleman in the compatibility/innovation process, and it annoys the hell out of me.
  • Re:grr. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheClarkey ( 546286 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:57AM (#9082133)
    If you'd read the website you would have seen that the goal of the project is to allow the University to showcase the talents of its students and staff.

    What many people forget is that there are a whole lot of people coming out with degrees in comp sci and se, you have to make yourself stand out from the pack. This is a great way for them to do it.

    I doubt this initiative is about trying to make any money from linux, its about making students more employable after they graduate.
  • Support? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ObviousGuy ( 578567 ) <ObviousGuy@hotmail.com> on Friday May 07, 2004 @05:58AM (#9082137) Homepage Journal
    The company is 4 guys who cobbled together a distro out of existing parts.

    They can't even keep their webserver up. What would make anyone think that this support for this new splinter distro will be sustained for any period of time?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:00AM (#9082142)
    Ooops, that is crossover is aviable for Suse DESKTOP versions.

    The Business version, not included by default with the home version (Suse 9.1), I am pretty sure.

    See here:
    http://www.suse.com/us/business/products/sl d/index .html

  • by Albanach ( 527650 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:10AM (#9082169) Homepage
    In many companies, a much easier battle is to get the company to move, say, for Microsoft Outlook to Thunderbird

    FOr small companies that use Outlook only as an email client perhaps. Thunderbird is no substitute for Outlook when you start talking about company wide contacts sharing, resource scheduling, shared calendars, meeting invites, voting buttons and all the other things organisations are used to using on a day to day basis.

    You might argue that an email client isn't the place for such features but no-one's going to drop their client that offers them in favour of Thunderbird when no other app is available to offer the missing feature set.

    Like it or loath it, until there's a real Outlook replacement linux lacks the groupware companies are used to and desktop adoption will be restricted.

  • http 404/403 error (Score:5, Insightful)

    by themusicgod1 ( 241799 ) <themusicgod1@Nospam.zworg.com> on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:20AM (#9082202) Homepage Journal
    In the meanwhile, I wonder how "Free" this distro is. Is it merely a hack-together-proof-of-concept or hack-together-lets-do-some-cool-stuff or is it more of a serious-linux-distro-that-we-can-distribute-under- the-terms-of-the-GPL-or-LGPL?

    I've been wanting to use windows for awhile, but despite shitty software the main reasons are all legal -- I don't want to give microsoft any money, or agree to anything that I havn't read and agree with(namelessly any shrinkwrap EULA). the GPL I have read many times and agree not only with it as a 'oh...kay...fine whatever.' but as honestly agreeing with it in spirit.
    If it's not Free that's fine with me, I still like to see progress in the direction of windows...but...I'll be particularily interested if it is, in fact I'll likely devote a computer or two to it in the future ;)
  • by MegaT ( 672432 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:27AM (#9082223)
    I'm not sure this makes an appropriate stepping stone. What comes under the umbrella of 'Popular Microsoft Fare' which isn't already provided by OO.org in an almost identical fashion to the Microsoft applications?
  • by ciupman ( 413849 ) <luis.pintoNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:39AM (#9082255) Homepage
    Why not make it compatible with all the linux distros around? Like same /etc structure (conf files and init), package compatibility (rpm, apt, tgz, deb, etc), etc, etc. Linux doesn't need windows compatibility, linux needs uniformization, stable libraries, stable and well documented API, a good programming IDE, and less application bloat. Linux needs to draw the attencion of the windows developers, for them to start developing good NATIVE apps for it. Please stop throwing at them the EMACS editor, i might like it .. but a MS Visual Studio user will just laugh at it.

    And to be on topic again, the minute i saw "fedora based" i though to myself ... naaa! If you guys had based your distro in LFS i would be more sympathetic with your "noble" cause!
  • Re:Another one (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FooBarWidget ( 556006 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:41AM (#9082266)
    Because not everybody has the same needs. Isn't that obvious? What if none of the I-don't-know-how-many distros fits your needs, and then one day, someone comes up with a distro that does *exactly* what you want (not not what other people want)? How would you feel if Slashdotters massively scream "OMG WHY DO WE NEED ANOTHER DISTRO?!", mentally destroy the developers who made that distro, and thus destroying the one distro that exactly fits your needs?

    Denying people to make their own distro is denying them essential human rights!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:42AM (#9082268)
    I've been wanting to use windows for awhile, but despite shitty software the main reasons are all legal -- I don't want to give microsoft any money, or agree to anything that I havn't read and agree with(namelessly any shrinkwrap EULA).

    Why don't you want to give Microsoft money? If Windows is useful enough that you can say you want to use it, then surely the people who wrote this useful software deserve to be compensated? And if Windows isn't useful enough to be worth paying for, why do you want to use it?

    As for the EULA, you don't have to agree to it without reading it. You aren't considered to have agreed to it until you click "I agree" at the bottom of this big window with the EULA text in it. If you're worried that the store won't take it back if you disagree, you can find Microsoft's EULAs online easily enough.

    If what you're saying is "I want to use Windows, but not Microsoft Windows", then that's fine (and perfectly in line with Slashdot groupthink), but please say that, instead of babbling about non-existant shrinkwrap EULAs.
  • by pubjames ( 468013 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @06:44AM (#9082273)
    You might argue that an email client isn't the place for such features but no-one's going to drop their client that offers them in favour of Thunderbird when no other app is available to offer the missing feature set.

    Yes, I would argue that a web browser is a much better interface for all those things. So try to persuade your company to do that stuff in the web browser, convert to mozilla, then you'll be able to drop outlook.

    Taking your attitude means that your organisation will never move to Linux on the desktop. Ever.
  • J. R. Sixpack? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by John Starks ( 763249 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @07:06AM (#9082328)
    Who is this J. R. Sixpack you keep talking about so condescendingly? You really do need to be more specific when you talk about a class of users.

    It sounds like you're talking about the 18-35 year old male that doesn't know anything about computers. Now, tell me, what software does such a person install from "shovelware CDs?" Let's be honest. Such a user checks email, browses the web, watches video clips, listens to music, and talks on instant messenger. That's it. No one installs extra little apps these days. Shareware is dead. Anybody that looks around for little programs to solve tasks knows enough about computers to not be called "J. R. Sixpack."

    I'm not sure why you're so against an additional distribution, anyway. It's not like another distribution hurts "the cause" or whatever you people like to harp on about. These guys have absolutely no responsbility to further "the cause" by writing software instead of coming out with another distribution. They can do as they please.

    I just don't see the point of your post. You tell us that the distribution is not necessary, improvements in Windows compatability is pointless because non-Linux users are stupid, and you assume that somehow these guys are diverting resources away from the IMPORTANT aspects of "the cause."

    I'll probably get modded flamebait for this post, but I think the parent is just trolling.
  • Re:Or... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kahei ( 466208 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @07:52AM (#9082483) Homepage

    You do realize there has been a thriving market in tools to help with migration from Unix to Windows for many years, right?

  • Re:Another one (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NodeZero ( 49835 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @07:53AM (#9082487)
    I agree. Not everyone has the same needs in a computing environment. I don't see why people are like "OMG another linux distro.. jeez", that's like saying.. "OMG another SUV" or "OMG another car" People love having choices. So cars are a lot like linux distros in a way, lots of different models/makes and have a lot of the same "packages". Would you like a cd player? 6 speakers? sunroof? moonroof?

    Why get crazy when someone introduces more choice? I think this world would be pretty dull with only one fast food chain and only one type of car available. I would rather have 300 OS choices, instead of conforming to only one choice.
  • Re:OS/2 (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Daneurysm ( 732825 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @08:08AM (#9082534)
    I recall all of my Windows apps running perfectly, if not better...though I had no dedicated DOS/Win install to directly compare it to.

    What I believe did Os/2 in (aside from IBM's hamfisted marketing department)--and this is the same scenario--is that if it runs Windows apps too there is no incentive to develope native apps, 'cuz developing Windows apps means developing for Linux (then Os/2) and Windows at the same time with no added overhead to the development cycle, save for perhaps bug testing.

    Though, I think Linux is in a vastly different circumstance here. I do actually think it will encourage migration--though slight. This will (very slowly) attract developers.

    Remember, Linux has no bottem line to answer to. Though, perhaps the Linux community could learn a couple tips from IBM's marketing department.

    Wheres the OpenMarketing initiative?

    They need that...that and a OpenInterface consortium. Get the coders away from the interface.
  • Re:Unfortunately (Score:3, Insightful)

    by apoc.famine ( 621563 ) <apoc.famine@gmail . c om> on Friday May 07, 2004 @09:06AM (#9082926) Journal
    The average user will be happy su'ing to root just as soon as someone makes a button on the desktop that reads "make me god". A button which requires a password to make it happen, and after 10 min of inactivity, releases root. Honestly, all joe user really needs is translation into his language.

    "You may not install this software unless you are god."
    joe user: "Humm, this button says it will make me god...needs password....WOW fancy colors!! I must be god!!"
  • The Linux Future (Score:2, Insightful)

    by winchester ( 265873 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @09:13AM (#9083000)
    First of all, this "feature" already exists, it is running on my XP machine right now and it is called Cygwin. Honestly, a good command line is all I really need, since all the other OSS tools I use are available for Windows (Firefox, Thunderbird, Putty, OpenOffice, Latex etc). So I really do not need more linux/Windows integration, I could do with a Linux machine on my desk, but corporate rules will not allow me one... but I digres.

    What I really want to point at is innovative power in Linux. There does not seem to be any. Sure, Linux has made great progress since the days of 1.0 (i've been running it that long) but still, Linux is a Unix replacement that is not good enough for the big iron (which I administer daily) and for the desktop there are cleaner Unix systems (the BSD's) and nicer working ones (Mac OS X).

    A couple days ago I saw an announcement from HP, where they showed off their "PC of the Future", a device that integrated everything. Phone, email, web, video, music, you name it, it had it. And what was driving this thing? The horribly bloated, slow Windows XP, which, for all the development that has gone into Windows, still functions in the same way as Windows 2.0 did. Where's the innovative new operating system interaction? Why do I still have to live with start buttons and desktops?

    This is in my opinion where Linux could shine. Create a new, fast GUI. Think of a whole new paradigm for using the computer. Why do we need a desktop, a start button, folders or directories, hard disks... I don't need to know about all that, I just want to use my computer.

    Microsoft is busy recreating Windows in the form of Longhorn. Undoubtedly Longhorn will be a (large) step beyond Windows XP. But the age-old paradigm of the desktop will still be there. The much-maligned start button will still be there. And all the other things that make Windows Windows will still be there. An missed opertunity, in my opinion. Just as much as Linux misses the opertunity to be truly innovative. Gates is right in that respect, the open source community is quite good at immitation, but not so good at innovation. Innovation is what is needed, not creating a cross-over between Unix and Windows.
  • Re:uhm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by IANAAC ( 692242 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @09:26AM (#9083132)
    I really don't get it. Why is it better to write an application that works on linux than to try and make a platform that can utilize both linux and windoze apps?

    Anytime you need to duplicate or emulate libraries from one OS to another you're going to take a performance hit. Also mentioned in another response o this post, Windows is closed. Which means you have to rely on reverse-engineering. Almost never as good as built from the ground up.

  • Re:uhm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by khendron ( 225184 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @09:40AM (#9083283) Homepage
    I really don't get it. Why is it better to write an application that works on linux than to try and make a platform that can utilize both linux and windoze apps?

    Windows compatibility is a double edged sword.

    IMHO, Windows compatibility is one of the things that killed OS/2 (not the only thing, but a big factor). There were very few applications written natively for OS/2 because OS/2 was able to run most Windows application. If you continue down this road, you can never win. Consumers look at the OSs side by side and think "This OS says it will run *most* of the application I want to run, but this will (Windows) will run them all. I might as well get Windows."
  • by elwinc ( 663074 ) on Friday May 07, 2004 @10:42AM (#9084132)
    You get your choice on that. There are 2 win4lin choices that affect worm & trojan compatability. One is the choice to have it use its own IP address rather than sharing address and borrowing some ports from the host Linux environment. If you select sharing the Linux address, you lose a few features, but you are less vulnerable. Choice two is where you read your mail. If you choose to read mail with Windows/Outlook, heaven help you! On the other hand, if you read mail in Unix, and never configure any Windows mail client, the email vulnerability is gone. Which ever choice you make, you'll still have to worry about Excel and Word macro viruses. There is still no excuse for not running windows update regularly.

    Another interesting point about win4lin: it uses the underlying linux filesystem. In linux, you can copy a file into or out of the windows directory. This means you can simply tar gzip up your whole windows installation and save different versions of it. I have a basic installation saved on a CD rom, and a few more versions on the hard drive in .tgz files. If I get a virus in Windows, I can go to linux, copy out my documents and spreadsheets, rm -fR the whole infected windows file tree, and untar a clean version. Elapsed time: 5-10 minutes. Then I'd better get the clean version patched before I get re-infected, and save it as my new checkpointed version.

Karl's version of Parkinson's Law: Work expands to exceed the time alloted it.