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Vista Vs. Gutsy Gibbon 806

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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  • I agree (Score:5, Interesting)

    by LinuxGeek ( 6139 ) * <> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:29PM (#21092467)
    My laptop came with Vista and installed Ubuntu right after purchase. I use Ubuntu much more than my legally purchased windows copy, probably about 10:1 in favor of linux because vista pops up dialog boxes for way too much stuff. For instance, every boot creates about 10 dialog boxes that need to be confirmed. My cpu monitoring app, norton antivirus, etc... all have to be given permission to run, it really pisses me off. I haven't found a way to give permanent permission to those apps without turning UAE off, which strips out some very necessary protection. FU Microsoft.
  • My take on it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by BlueParrot ( 965239 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:34PM (#21092525)
    Some time ago I accidentally fried my motherboard, so, time to get a new computer. My dad's job was throwing out an "old" machine. The new machine was a bit worse than my original one. It didn't have DDR2 memory, it used a Radeon 9200 rather than my nVidia card, the CPU was an old Pentium 4 rather than my faster AMD chip, and the integrated soundcard I had never heard of.

    Anyway, I connect my HD which had Ubuntu Edgy installed on it, boot up. X complains about the video card so I change "nvidia" to "ati" in xorg.conf, type: startx, and 2 minutes latter I am reading my mail in thunderbird.

    But you know, I'm sure Vista would perfectly well manage me changing ALL hardware except the HD, running on a P4 with 384MB SDRAM, and be up and running without even a reboot. Oh, and does Aero support virtual desktops yet?

    Seriously, given the price and system requirements, Vista is a joke.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:36PM (#21092557)
    I did a complete reformat of my system for Gutsy. Installed from the CD, and ended up with the black screen of death on restart.

    Of course, I was able to get out of it. That's not really the point. The point is I had to do a bunch of command line hackery just to see the login screen for the first time.
  • A few years time... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:39PM (#21092585)
    You do realize that in a few years, you'll have to be running Vista to use the tools of our generation? So why put off til tomorrow...

    In a few years time, even Photoshop will be on the web.

    Most of the rest of us will be running Macs or Linux boxes, unless you're a store that needs cash registers. Or webbing in via a PS3 or 360 (or successors thereof).

    Windows computers are the mainframes of the consumer computing space. They'll be around for a long time but it'll not be because people want to use them.
  • by XahXhaX ( 730306 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:51PM (#21092741) least Vista _boots_ after installation. I have had nothing but trouble from attempting to run Ubuntu--from difficulty getting the Nvidia drivers for my 6800 working to GRUB mysteriously being screwed up between sessions, to not my system not even booting if I do something as radical as try to boot my system with an external hard drive plugged in. Add all the problems with it not mounting things like said external drive or the secondary internal drive as anything but read-only, and a ton of other issues, and so far I've probably spent more time trying to get the damn thing working than actually using it. When I did the recent upgrade to 7.10, it didn't even boot after installation. It wiped my XP entry out of menu.lst and botched the rest of the file. No backup file or anything of the sort. If Microsoft released an OS that didn't even boot directly after installation they would never hear the end of it. I used Vista for several months and had plenty of troubles with it, like Explorer forgetting over half the directory settings it was supposed to retain or never getting it to detect my XP desktop over my home network (Ubuntu on the other hand just plain doesn't work with files over a network, try playing music or videos shared from another computer, so while it technically works who cares?) But at least Vista generally _worked_, Ubuntu must be synonymous with 'broken'.
  • by rustalot42684 ( 1055008 ) <> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:54PM (#21092767)
    That's odd. My experience was actually quite the opposite: When doing an reinstall of OEM Vista, I had to spend 2 hours poring through howtos, manuals, etc, getting drivers and trying to get everything to work, but installing off the Kubuntu 7.10 alpha 5 worked flawlessly. I'm not going to flame you, because if that was your experience, that was your experience. But it's quite different than what happened to me.

    Note: this was an OEM disc, supplied by Dell itself, so I would have to wonder why it wouldn't work..
  • by Doug52392 ( 1094585 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @06:56PM (#21092791)
    I just bought a new Gateway computer a few months ago, and immediately installed Linux on it (Fedora 7 Linux). I almost always use Linux now. Why? Because I get tired of all those UAC crap. Every single time I turn the computer on to Vista, it reminds me of how I have Premium and why I should give m$ more money to get Ultimate. I have to scan EVERY file I download through a virus-scanner. I always need to download somting extra to do something not included in Vista, and can never find freeware software because of all the proprietary garbage on the Internet for WIndows. I installed Wolfstine: Enemy Territory on Vista, and got so pissed at it. First I needed to run as admin, then a DLL kept failing, had to download a patch. Then I needed to allow the game to get through on the network. Then when I finally get to play, the graphics are so messed up, and it crashes with c0000005 access violation errors (like every other game I try to play in Windows). Thank God there is a Linux version! Just downloaded it, ran the .run file, and I was playing with NO ERRORS. I have a full web server hooked up, to do the things I can do in Linux would have cost me about $3,000 in software to do on Windows.
  • by N7DR ( 536428 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:09PM (#21092969) Homepage
    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.

    Yep. I have been telling people for years that Linux is where the future is. Mostly they've politely ignored me, but I have long felt that the main point has been made: each of those people has heard someone say good things about Linux. That sort of thing sticks.

    Today I walked into a meeting room for an organisation with which I've worked off and on for years, many of whose employees have heard me praise Linux on various occasions. On the blackboard from the previous meeting was a list of bash commands. I asked someone what the meeting has been about. He broke into a grin and said, "You'll love this; we've decided to move to Linux instead of Vista". Obviously, they didn't just do this because of me. I was doubtless just one of many bricks in the wall. But the wall got build, though it took several years. I have a great deal of confidence that that story is going to be repeated so many times over the next decade that we'll eventually get bored of hearing how someone else has made the switch; it'll be an everyday occurrence. Even though it doesn't look like it, I believe Linux has already reached critical mass: the chain reaction has just started, and it's only going to get faster.

  • by bendodge ( 998616 ) <bendodge AT bsgprogrammers DOT com> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:12PM (#21093025) Homepage Journal

    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 is very, very true. I'm using Kubuntu right now, and I don't "feel" like I'm "using" an OS. I mean, it just seems like I'm using a computer to run programs. On Vista, (which I thankfully only have to use when fixing some PCs) I am constantly reminded that I am running Vista.
  • Re:I agree (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Miltazar ( 1100457 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:13PM (#21093031) Homepage
    This is definitely not a popular opinion around here but here goes. I've used Vista, along with every other Windows OS ever to haunt our doorstep. I've also used many Linux distro's including Ubuntu Gutsy, Debian(personal preference of the Linux variety), Gentoo, Fedora, Redhat, CentOS, etc. I've been using Vista both at work and at home for about half a year now, and I have absolutely no problem with it.

    Despite all the talk of new user friendliness with Ubuntu Gutsy I've yet to see it. My MXL USB Mic doesn't just work when I plug it in. I have to fiddle around with settings for a while. At work, I can't just easily interface with our Active Directory(yes its MS, but its what we use). Sure I've gotten all that working, but it took me a lot of searching and tweaking. Vista may have driver problems, but I've never encountered any major ones. With Linux however, every install is a new driver issue. When it comes down to it, Vista just works. Yes, I can get Linux working with everything, but I don't want to have to spend all that time on an OS when I can just use windows.

    Also as a gamer I'm also unable to permanently switch to Linux. Wine works for some, but its just not good enough. I love Linux, but for now it just isn't ready to be my permanent OS. Despite all this trouble with Vista I hear about, I've yet to experience any of it. It runs perfectly on my machine.

    When Linux has a dominant share of the market place, and games are put out strictly for Linux, then I'll switch.
    Until then, Microsoft will still be king.
  • by doyoulikeworms ( 1094003 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:15PM (#21093053)
    Dual Screen.

    Yeah, yeah... I know there are dual screen solutions for Linux, but none of them work correctly! Either my cursor will become garbled up, or the system will simply crash on reboot. Just an all around pain. Automatic, simple multiple display support would do wonders for Linux, IMHO.
  • Re:I agree (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:29PM (#21093191)
    You are totally making that up about things like Symantec AV needing to be given rights to run. Probably your (completely uneeded) CPU monitoring app might need this because it is written incorrectly - but the AV that came with your notebook sure as hell doesn't. If you have 10 dialog boxes to OK admin actions at every boot/logon then you have YOURSELF loaded up a bunch of CrapWare. I guarantee you the notebook manufacturer didn't ship it that way.
      Here, we have three notebooks running Vista (purchased with Vista) and one older machine wiped and loaded with Vista and they only give those prompts for things you would expect like App Installs, running regedit, etc. My wife and kids almost NEVER see a UAC prompt. I see them several times a day, because I hack around on the system. But 2 or 4 a day is not "10 at every boot".
      Quit making this stuff up, or learn to use the OS and don't load crap programs.
  • Re:Aside (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mstahl ( 701501 ) <marrrrrk AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:37PM (#21093287) Homepage Journal

    Agreed. I used to have a job cleaning viruses and spyware and such off of students' laptops at a university campus, which gave me a lot of insight into what not to buy and which AV programs not to trust. There were soooooooooooo many students, faculty, and staff who had entrusted their box entirely to Norton, and it was just an epic fail every single time—even when it was fully up-to-date. The whole of the entire computer security industry would be in Defcon 4 about some virus that'd been out for a week and Norton would still be on its smoke break. Weak.

    Between Avast!, AVG, Clamwin, Panda, and any other free antivirus software out there, there's got to be something to replace Norton.

    "Avast!"? Sounds awesome, if a touch nautical.... What struck me the most when I was working at Resnet was how many free programs there were that were extremely effective (especially if used together), almost always catching files that Norton missed entirely. Side note: it's really scary that a lot of these antivirus programs were web-based, and somehow Windows is perfectly okay having web applications that are capable of deleting files, analyzing the content of local files, accessing the registry.... Really scary. Way to go on that security model thing, Microsoft!

  • Re:I agree (Score:3, Interesting)

    by vux984 ( 928602 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:40PM (#21093331)
    I installed XP on a machine for my sister 3 weeks ago and it took 4 hours worth of downloading drivers and updates just to get to the stage where I could start installing apps.

    Were you using a disc from circa 2002? A lot has changed since then. XP has had a lot added and fixed since then. If you are using an up to date slipstreamed XP SP2 disc, the patch process doesn't take unduly long.

    (c.f. Ubuntu less than 1 hour for a fully loaded OS+apps)

    Were you using a disc from circa 2002? I dare ya, grab a Ubuntu Breezy Badger disc as your starting point, install it, and then patch it up to Gutsy. See how long that takes you. I bet it would be faster, to boot from the Breezy live CD, and use it to download Gutsy in its entirety, and then install from that.

    so I'm pretty sure XP is of no value to me from the 'enjoying using the computer' viewpoint unless I need to run some Windows-only software.

    Because you need to install your system from scratch on a regular basis? Might I recommend some basic backup and restore software?

    Don't get me wrong, I'm a big advocate of Ubuntu too. I've even got my Mom using it. But these anecdotal comparisons are stacked. And for every "I installed Ubuntu in an hour while XP took 4 hours" anecdote there are a dozen, "my Ubuntu Live CD won't even boot". (I had that very problem with my 8800GTS.) And I spent HOURS with the wifi on my Mom's laptop before it would finally connect using WPA. (c.f. XP SP2, which worked out of the box and was connected to the wifi within 2 minutes.)

    Both OSes have strengths and weaknesses. My Mom is on Ubuntu quite frankly, because the WinME she had was worse than death, and really, both XP and Ubuntu were good upgrade options. Ubuntu won out based on price more than anything. She was already using Firefox / OpenOffice / Gaim so for her the differences were pretty nominal.
  • Re:Another one (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gbulmash ( 688770 ) * <> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @07:45PM (#21093369) Homepage Journal
    Vista won't play DVD's (decode MPEG2) out of the box. Actually, two versions of Vista (Home Premium and Ultimate) bundle DVD decoders.

    But Ubuntu wont play DVDs out of the box either. The task was to see how quickly and easily Ubuntu and XP could each be made DVD capable.
  • by mad_clown ( 207335 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:05PM (#21093549)
    Gutsy Gibbon isn't "there" yet as far as being a perfectly consumer-friendly desktop system. It's fairly close -- I'm using it right now, in fact -- but it still has a ways to go. Yes, Compiz is nice. It also has a habit of causing MPlayer to go haywire. Things always seem kind of sluggish. Sure, my machine is a bit old, but even XP wasn't quite as sluggish. It's not unbearable though. Close. But not there yet.

    Ipod? Works pretty well. Basic copying of files works nicely (albeit with a few GTKpod kinks here and there). Mounting and un-mounting usually work automatically without any extra prodding after plugging it in. Usually. Smart playlists are dodgy in GTKpod. Giving Amarok a try, so we'll see. But still... Not. Quite. There. Yet.

    Program installation? Well, Synaptic/apt-get are great. You got the right repositories in there, and you know what you're looking for -- works like a charm. Can't see my mom learning how to add repositories and public key signatures. Close. But not quite there yet.

    On the other hand, it's leaps and bounds ahead of where Linux-on-the-desktop used to be the last time I went down that path (SuSe 7.something? Mandrake something-dot-something?? Few years ago, anyways...). So progress is definitely being made. It all depends on your personal threshold.

    For me, Ubuntu has proven to be quite - QUITE - sufficient. I'll probably be sticking with it for everything except ArcGIS. For all the "moms" of the world, though... I just don't think it's quite there yet. Give it a few more years and it might just make it.

    Then we just need a good way of marketing it...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @08:18PM (#21093715)
    God I wish people like you were around for every install of Linux I've tried on my machine. Ubuntu came close to getting things working out of the box, but *no* distro of Linux has ever worked immediately for me. Every install of Windows has worked. I *DREAM* of installing Linux and freeing myself of the shackles of Microsoft subservience, but every time I try Linux doesn't work for me and if I hear RTFM n00b one more time, I'm gonna start shooting every bastard with a beard that I see.
  • by LionMage ( 318500 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:07PM (#21094161) Homepage
    I picked up an HP laptop recently (one of the "Verve special edition" laptops), and it came preinstalled with Vista. Unlike some other craptastic laptops I've tried out (and in particular, one Acer laptop I tried out and returned after a week due to unsupported wireless in Linux and bad keyboard), this thing actually ran Vista almost decently. Still too long of a wait to boot -- XP boot times seem far faster to me -- but it was usable.

    Problem is, the laptop didn't come with any sort of optical media for Vista. HP puts a partition on the hard drive that is there to allow the user to recover and restore, and they provide software in Vista to burn 2 restore DVDs "just in case." I burned the restore discs and hoped for the best... But as it turns out, Vista's flavor of NTFS doesn't resize properly in GParted (either refuses to resize, or resizes and then becomes unbootable without volume repair). Without genuine Vista discs, I was unable to do any repairs after an abortive attempt to resize the Vista partition, soooo...

    I turned the laptop over to the tender mercies of the Ubuntu 7.10 installer off of the Gutsy DVD. Amazingly, sound and networking worked with nary a hiccup, suspend and resume work the way they should, and even the media keys across the top of the keyboard do what you'd expect them to. About the only thing I'm missing support for right now is the SD card reader. (Chipset seems to be unsupported, will have to research.) There's a built-in webcam and stereo microphones in the lid, and I'm going to experiment with them to see if I can get them to work, but it's not a major priority for me.

    I would have preferred to keep Vista around -- not because I really like Vista (as I work with XP daily at the office, and Vista really doesn't work the way I think Windows "ought" to), but because theoretically there might be some games or the random app that might not work right / be available under Linux. But this morning, as I started throwing more and more packages on the laptop, I started to realize that maybe this is a blessing in disguise. By Vista not wanting to share and play nicely, I've been forced to decide between Vista and Ubuntu. It wasn't even much of a choice.

    Still, it would've been nice to keep Vista around in a small partition, just as a security blanket. But if I can get WoW working under Wine (and reports say that it should actually run pretty well, providing my graphics adapter can keep up), it'd be tough to say just what I'd really need Vista for.
  • Re:Ugh iPhoto (Score:4, Interesting)

    by JoeCommodore ( 567479 ) <> on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:26PM (#21094277) Homepage
    When you have 20+ systems to backup it gets to be a big problem. Like I said, if there was some way for iPhoto to clean up the photo cache when you don't want all those revisions it would be a welcome improvement, but iPhoto does not seem to have such capability.
  • Re:Another one (Score:2, Interesting)

    by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @09:29PM (#21094311) Homepage
    As a long time Mandriva user (since 1999) I never really saw the draw of Ubuntu. For me, Ubuntu never offered anything that Mandriva didn't offer, and always seemed to be lacking in quite a few areas.
  • by dbIII ( 701233 ) on Tuesday October 23, 2007 @10:55PM (#21095029)

    How much space is used in all directories with names starting with "f"?


    Select those directories, right click one of them and select Properties

    You have to find the things first, select them and individually choose to display the details - that's the very time consuming thing to do with a GUI if they are spread all over the disk or you have a non-trivial number of answers to the query. When you have a string of tasks dependant on other tasks there are better ways and you can do it on the command line in windows with the right tools too. The *nix example would also have to find the files first and pipe them to "du -s" so would look a bit more complex - but sometimes you save a lot of time by writing instead of pointing at pictures.

    The other example forgot about the word AND which makes it a bit harder to do the normal GUI search as would other operators but I think google desktop handles it better than the default - bad example since I'm making the point of dependant tasks. Doing one task and then another can be time consuming in a GUI instead of a command line.

    Piping one command to the next gives more more flexability than you can easily put in a GUI - that is my point. The idea (expressed by others but things here are leaning that way) that an environment has "failed" as soon as the user ends up on the command line is something I disagree with. The thing is useful.

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

    by Max Littlemore ( 1001285 ) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @01:23AM (#21096009)

    As a long time Mandriva user (since 1999) I never really saw the draw of Ubuntu.

    Back in '99 I didn't use Mandriva, but I did use Mandrake. Tried a few versions, but after 10 I decided to check Debian out.

    Debian was a little trickier to set up, but maintaining the system and installing packages was so much simpler. None of the sadistic insanity of rpm.

    Unfortunately I found myself wanting to run bleeding edge stuff on Debian and that really sucked, so after hearing a bit about this "Ubuntu" thing, I switched. I haven't lokoed back.

    Don't know where Mandriva is up to now, but I do know that Ubuntu has the best of the ease of use school (like Mandriva) with the best of sane package management (Debian) and that has me sold. That and the fact that Mandriva is a stupid, stupid name.

    By the by, if you really want to pay money for commercial codecs and extra software badness, XandrOS is really worth a look.

  • Re:That's because: (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jane Q. Public ( 1010737 ) on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @01:25AM (#21096017)
    I'll tell you what I have contributed to open-source projects so far: very little. Why? Because, as a developer, I first have to make enough money to contribute that money to open-source projects, or enough money to have the time to contribute my time to them. In both cases, the problem is that I have only just begun to break even using my open-source tools, and so I have neither the time nor money to contribute much... yet.

    I fully intend to contribute more to open-source, when I am in a position from which I can do so. Until then, about the best I can do is say, "Keep going! You are doing a Good Thing!"
  • Re:I agree (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 24, 2007 @03:38AM (#21096739)

    "And this is Microsoft's fault, or of the companies who create applications that think they have the go of the entire box?"

    Programs like, erm, Microsoft's own Visual Studio 2005 (with the Vista patches) which has to run as administrator? Which means drag and drop doesn't work with the file explorer unless that too is run as administrator. Which means other apps need to run as administrator if you want to interop with those, which negates the whole point of non-privileged accounts in the first place.

The Macintosh is Xerox technology at its best.