Updates on the status of Linux

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
azurekep
Posts: 1179
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:16 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by azurekep » Mon May 29, 2017 11:39 am

bertilak wrote:

I think that's typical of the Linux vs. Windows situation. Life with Linux is just more complicated. Another complication is when things change it often requires some maintenance to keep up. For example, my export/import to a spreadsheet was sensitive to a variety of things -- the format and structure of the data as it moves from place to place and the step-by-step procedures needed to effect each of the steps. Always a learning curve: Does it still fit on a page? Are page breaks in the same place? Are Images placed properly on the page? Are blanks, tabs and quote marks handled in subtly changed ways? If I have added records to QuickBooks do they break some unrecognized assumption I made? With MS Word, I can generally count on things looking the same when printed as the preview QuickBooks shows me.
Yep, if you have one or two complicated programs that you use extensively in Windows, that should dictate, or at least influence, the choice of OS, meaning staying in Windows in this case. There's no need for anyone to twist into a pretzel to get work done.

In Linux's favor, however, many programs that might be a problem are not generally used on a home computer. Tax preparation and financial programs would be an exception. I recommend Linux for home use since trying to synchronize with workplace software would be a fool's errand.

I generally pop in to recommend Linux when someone has an old computer and is going to throw it out. My Linux-lovin' heart screams in pain! That computer can be used productively! It can be a handy backup. It can forestall having to go to Best Buy to buy a new computer. It can be a profound revelation that an old computer can be brought back to life and used much in the way they use their newer computers --e.g.., web-centric use.

That's the simplest use case. You already have the hardware (an old computer) and you don't have to think of Linux compatibility when purchasing a new computer. A Linux distro will either work or not on your old computer. If it does work -- and in most cases it will if you use an appropriate distro -- that can pave the way for further exploration of Linux.

If one is looking to move from Windows completely and has a complicated set of applications and services they use, that's obviously a different situation. I would just join the others on this board that recommend trying Mint. That gives the likeliest chance of success. Particularly Mint Cinnamon if a user want all the bells and whistles and the fullest set of applications. The advantage Mint has is that, although it relies on existing technology -- the Linux kernel and Debian/Ubuntu based "stuff" -- it aims to be easy-to-use, polished, pretty, easy for Windows users to understand, and applications work right out of the box.

People may have varying opinions on Linux, but it's out there for anyone to use and free. It can be a primary or backup system. Choice is good. :)

rec7
Posts: 2369
Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2008 7:22 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by rec7 » Mon May 29, 2017 11:48 am

I like windows better but for the price you can't beat Linux. I have it on my old back up computer. Rather than throw a computer away. Linux can keep it alive for many years. Right now mine is good until 2021. I don't see why I could not use it another 10 years with no problems. A windows computer's life might be around 8 years of use. I am guessing you could use linux for 20 years on that same computer. So even though I like windows better I still think Linux is great for what I use it for.
Last edited by rec7 on Mon May 29, 2017 12:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Disclaimer: You might lose money doing anything I say. Although that was not my intent. | Favorite song: Sometimes He Whispers Jay Parrack

virgingorda
Posts: 258
Joined: Sat Jul 26, 2014 7:30 am
Location: New England

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by virgingorda » Mon May 29, 2017 11:55 am

I can share about my Linux installation experience since I just did it yesterday and today. My reason for installing Linux was because my 2008 Mac desktop became so sluggish it was unusable.

The installation was not without hiccups. First problem was making a USB installation drive. My Mac would not see the USB no matter what I did to try and format it. This took at least a hour and a half to solve. I finally solved it by using a different Mac to create the installation USB.

After Linux was successfully installed, I had file permission issues with things I copied from the Mac when it still was a Mac to a portable hard drive. Also had issues importing music for similar reasons. I solved the problems, but if I had not used Unix/Linux before and knew about chmod and chown, I might have been stuck for a while longer. I also needed codecs. There is a lot of info on problem solving online.

I still have not solved the problem of why music playback sounds horrible. The hardware is decent. I think I'm giving up on this for the time being since I don't often listen from that source.

I am overall thrilled that the computer is useable again! If you have an old Mac gathering dust, installing Linux is a good way to make it work again.

User avatar
oneleaf
Posts: 2343
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:48 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by oneleaf » Mon May 29, 2017 12:00 pm

azurekep wrote:
Nah, that's not true. That's what people say when they're too close to Linux on the technical side. ;) In fact, that's what I often complain about. Technical Linux users and sysadmins use the command line day in and day out. I'm not sure they've ever even tried a GUI-heavy system like Mint which is geared for the masses. If you have, your comments will have more validity. Here's your chance to tell us what Linux system you use. :)

Here's the use case for Linux:
  • You have an old computer. Should you throw it out or revive it with a new operating system? It's worth an experiment to see if the new OS works. You realize this revived-from-the-dead PC won't be a replacement for a full-fledged OS like Windows 10 and isn't meant to be compatible with your work computer with its proprietary software. But it will give you some of the basics for home use -- web, email, word-processing, etc.
  • You dislike Microsoft Windows and want something new. You realize you may have to give up some things like games, at least for the interim until Linux matures a little more. You're willing to give open-source a try and won't automatically make comparisons to commercial software until you've analyzed the total situation -- what you're gaining vs what you're giving up. There may have to be trade-offs made. Only you can decide if it's worth it.
  • You want greater security. You know Linux is not perfect in that respect, but it's better than Windows.
  • You've heard that Linux used to be a command-line system but has evolved to a full-fledged GUI system. You're willing to give it at shot AS LONG AS you don't have to deal with the command line. For most purposes, you will not need the command line. However, if you do run into problems, the command line is usually the easiest way to fix it and people on forums that help you may give you commands to use. It's just like in Windows... If you have a broadband connection problem, you will be instructed to use IPConfig, Netstat or something similar. Since there are a lot of old-time technical Linux users around (like maybe you? :) ), they will sometimes give a command line answer when a GUI answer will do. ;) That's something the new Linux user will have to deal with, but if they start with Mint, most likely, the problems encountered will be few and and front-ended. And Mint gurus are probably more willing than most Linux gurus to talk down to Mint users with questions since Mint is marketed towards a mass-market audience.
I've probably missed some, but this gives a general picture.
I actually use Linux Mint 18 (and have, in the past, used version 3 and 17), and mostly used Debian Xfce in other years. It's a great distro, but it still suffers from the same issues I talked about, which has more to do with compatibility than with user experience. And quite frankly, the user experience can be extremely frustrating. My current Skylake computer has been unable to shutdown on several occasions over the past year. I had to update the grub file the first time, and occasionally, after doing regular updates (using Mint Update, no less!), I still had to manually upgrade grub over the commandline to get my computer to shutdown properly. This is what life with Linux is like. I also had my printer stop working until I did a fix. Again, a very Linux-y experience!

I always kinda think those that are enthusiastic to recommend Linux to others might actually forget the occasional issues they have had! :)

I do think it is fun to revive an old PC with Linux and use it for simple web browsing. It is fun and a good learning experience, and a great use of old hardware. It's the use case you mention that I agree most with.

In the end of the day, the commandline is the reason I return to Linux. I love how many things I can do over ssh from another location. I love all the commandline tools, and when you get used to them, they are incredibly time-savers. So I disagree particularly with your last point, in that I think the commandline is the attraction. If you are using Linux, in spite of the commandline, and not because of it, I think you are setting yourself for a pretty poor experience.

dumbmoney
Posts: 2283
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 8:58 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by dumbmoney » Mon May 29, 2017 2:13 pm

It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux, but with Win10 I'm not sure. Microsoft is making major changes (that you can't refuse) far more frequently than in the past. Meanwhile you can stay on an Ubuntu release for 5 years if you want.
I am pleased to report that the invisible forces of destruction have been unmasked, marking a turning point chapter when the fraudulent and speculative winds are cast into the inferno of extinction.

User avatar
mrc
Posts: 1200
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2016 6:39 am

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by mrc » Mon May 29, 2017 4:10 pm

dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
If it’s not long term it’s small talk

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Mon May 29, 2017 4:27 pm

mrc wrote:
dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Yeah, I can't remember when that was either.

For nearly two decades I was a heavy user of both Linux and Windows. Windows reboots were common. "Blue Screen of Death" was a common phrase. Everyone knew exactly what that meant.

If Linux ever needed to be rebooted for other than a new kernel or a power outage I can't think of it now, although it must have happened occasionally. Well, the exceptions being kernels either I or my work colleagues built while developing purpose-built application stacks.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

Mudpuppy
Posts: 5889
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 2:26 am
Location: Sunny California

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Mudpuppy » Mon May 29, 2017 4:39 pm

mrc wrote:
dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Similar reaction here. Windows reboots on a whim, but the last time my Linux system rebooted was due to a power outage that lasted longer than my UPS battery. Windows is also quite hoggish in other ways. I was just cleaning up disk space on an older Win 8.1 Surface Pro 3 yesterday and over 40 GB of space on the 110 GB SSD was just the C:\Windows directory. That's an absurd amount of space being used by Windows, and that doesn't even include the programs installed under the two Program Files directories.

User avatar
Flymore
Posts: 225
Joined: Tue May 31, 2016 1:31 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Flymore » Mon May 29, 2017 7:18 pm

On the Microsoft/support website, there was a recommendation for a complete re-install of Windows from the installation media every 12 months for stability. Of course one had to purchase the installation media separately. :oops: Hahahahaha

The real opportunity for competition to MS Windows was in 1995, when Sun Microsystems released Solaris x86 for $1980 :shock: per licensed desktop while MS Windows 95 was just $95. If Sun had gone head to head with Microsoft and sold Solaris for $95 then Sun Micro may still be around today and there may be more competition to Microsoft.

azurekep
Posts: 1179
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:16 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by azurekep » Mon May 29, 2017 7:43 pm

oneleaf wrote:
I actually use Linux Mint 18 (and have, in the past, used version 3 and 17), and mostly used Debian Xfce in other years. It's a great distro, but it still suffers from the same issues I talked about, which has more to do with compatibility than with user experience. And quite frankly, the user experience can be extremely frustrating. My current Skylake computer has been unable to shutdown on several occasions over the past year. I had to update the grub file the first time, and occasionally, after doing regular updates (using Mint Update, no less!), I still had to manually upgrade grub over the commandline to get my computer to shutdown properly. This is what life with Linux is like. I also had my printer stop working until I did a fix. Again, a very Linux-y experience!

I always kinda think those that are enthusiastic to recommend Linux to others might actually forget the occasional issues they have had! :)
I can honestly say that the only "real" issue I've experienced was getting Linux onto my old machine. It took Bogleheads to figure out that my BIOS would only support booting from USB sticks 1 GB or smaller. My CD drive wasn't an option because it was busted.

I did have a couple of minor issues, but they were due to the minimal distro I was using (Lubuntu). When I tried other, larger distros, those issues magically disappeared.

Possibly the reason I don't experience the problems others have is that I don't use any big, major commercial applications or services. I was the same way on Windows. I'd uninstall every Microsoft program I could and install smaller programs that were free and less bloated. That has worked well for me, keeping things simple and fast, and as a byproduct, keeps problems to a minimum. I carried that philosophy from Windows to Linux.

That's also why, despite the fact that everyone recommends Mint Cinnamon, I'm always a little reluctant to recommend a "big" distro (i.e., Mint Cinnamon) over a smaller distro (i.e., Mint Xfce or Mint Mate). This, despite the fact that the bigger distro will likely better support the commercial applications and services the user will use. I just think the larger and more complex something is, the more problems there will be. But the smaller the distro, the more the user actually has to learn how to use it.
In the end of the day, the commandline is the reason I return to Linux. I love how many things I can do over ssh from another location. I love all the commandline tools, and when you get used to them, they are incredibly time-savers. So I disagree particularly with your last point, in that I think the commandline is the attraction. If you are using Linux, in spite of the commandline, and not because of it, I think you are setting yourself for a pretty poor experience.
Mentioning the command line is going to turn off a lot of potential users. That's why I avoid talking about it. I myself use it rarely but if I were to discuss it with a Windows user, I'd reveal a few tricks that make the command line more user friendly:
  • Aliases. Assign a meaningful word to a command and type that word instead of the gibberish command itself.
  • Launchers. Create GUI-based launchers out of command lines. Assign a pretty icon to the launcher and put the launcher on the desktop, under the application menu or on the panel. Easier to point and click then try to remember some arcane command.
  • History. Go to the terminal and type "history". That will show the last commands you used, so your memory isn't taxed next time you want to use that same command.
So I agree that the command line can be useful. It just isn't a requirement and playing it up would just turn away potential users, especially without the knowledge of the above tricks that make the user experience a bit friendlier.

lazydavid
Posts: 1822
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lazydavid » Tue May 30, 2017 9:50 am

lightheir wrote:I learned a lot of Linux initially to take advantage of the fabled "shell-level control" you have with Linux, meaning a power Linux user can accomplish complex file manipulation, often in batches, with a single elegant typed-out line command. You can do things like rename 1000 files with the appropriate suffix with one single line command, as opposed to doing it in Windows by clicking on them one-by-one to rename them (which would take forever!)
There's no reason to do that in Windows either, as such functionality has been available since the early DOS days. you just use ren (rename) instead of mv (move):

ren *.foo *.bar

Renames all files in the current directory with the extension .foo to the same file name with the extension .bar You can also specify an alternate source directory.

lazydavid
Posts: 1822
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lazydavid » Tue May 30, 2017 10:30 am

bertilak wrote:Personally I also think Win 10 is a darn good OS but I do keep a version of Cygwin installed because I like the bash shell and a few of the utilities. This makes automating processes more convenient. I use Windows task scheduling to kick off Cygwin bash scripts.
Cygwin became a lot less necessary with the recent updates to Windows 10 that include bash (Ubuntu-based). You can now do most of the common command-line tasks natively. If you require some of the more advanced utilities, there still may be a case for Cygwin. But it's no longer required in order to do anything in the *nix way on Windows.

lazydavid
Posts: 1822
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lazydavid » Tue May 30, 2017 10:45 am

bertilak wrote:
mrc wrote:
dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Yeah, I can't remember when that was either.
Reading the full sentence in context, it seems that the stability being referred to is that of the release cycle, not of the OS itself. And that part is true. Used to be new major version every 5 years or so, with a service pack every couple of years. The Win10 release cycle is 2-3 "updates" (really entirely new versions) every year.

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Tue May 30, 2017 10:54 am

lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:
mrc wrote:
dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Yeah, I can't remember when that was either.
Reading the full sentence in context, it seems that the stability being referred to is that of the release cycle, not of the OS itself. And that part is true. Used to be new major version every 5 years or so, with a service pack every couple of years. The Win10 release cycle is 2-3 "updates" (really entirely new versions) every year.
Well, that could make some sense although I don't see how to fit the statement "...you can stay on an Ubuntu release for 5 years if you want" into that reading.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

User avatar
tc101
Posts: 3009
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:18 pm
Location: Atlanta - Retired in 2004 at age 54

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by tc101 » Tue May 30, 2017 10:56 am

Am in a coworking space and right next to me is a guy who's running Linux on his laptop. Earlier today, he was having connectivity problems with the WiFi. He attributed them to Linux.
Lots of people have WiFi problems with linux. The quick and easy workaround is a usb wifi adapter, about $12-$15 on amazon. I don't remember the details because I set it up so long ago, but do a google or go to any linux forum and learn about it.

Here is the one I got:

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00 ... UTF8&psc=1

It solved all my problems for $11.99 plus tax from amazon..
. | The most important thing you should know about me is that I am not an expert.

lazydavid
Posts: 1822
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lazydavid » Tue May 30, 2017 11:05 am

bertilak wrote:
lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:
mrc wrote:
dumbmoney wrote:It used to be that Windows was more stable than Linux ...
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Yeah, I can't remember when that was either.
Reading the full sentence in context, it seems that the stability being referred to is that of the release cycle, not of the OS itself. And that part is true. Used to be new major version every 5 years or so, with a service pack every couple of years. The Win10 release cycle is 2-3 "updates" (really entirely new versions) every year.
Well, that could make some sense although I don't see how to fit the statement "...you can stay on an Ubuntu release for 5 years if you want" into that reading.
LTS versions of Ubuntu starting with 12.04 have five years of support. So there would be no need to upgrade for five years after installing a new LTS release.

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Tue May 30, 2017 11:19 am

lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:
lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:
mrc wrote:
:confused :confused :confused :confused
Yeah, I can't remember when that was either.
Reading the full sentence in context, it seems that the stability being referred to is that of the release cycle, not of the OS itself. And that part is true. Used to be new major version every 5 years or so, with a service pack every couple of years. The Win10 release cycle is 2-3 "updates" (really entirely new versions) every year.
Well, that could make some sense although I don't see how to fit the statement "...you can stay on an Ubuntu release for 5 years if you want" into that reading.
LTS versions of Ubuntu starting with 12.04 have five years of support. So there would be no need to upgrade for five years after installing a new LTS release.
Exactly. So how does that make Linux less stable than Windows? That was the claim supposedly justified by Linux's short upgrade cycle. We now have BOTH Linux and Windows pegged at the same 5 years. I think we are talking past each other! :sharebeer
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Tue May 30, 2017 11:35 am

tc101 wrote:
Am in a coworking space and right next to me is a guy who's running Linux on his laptop. Earlier today, he was having connectivity problems with the WiFi. He attributed them to Linux.
Lots of people have WiFi problems with linux. The quick and easy workaround is ...
That's one more reason I hesitate to recommend Linux to those who don't want to be their own systems integrator. Linux was (is?) notorious for not having decent driver support for any leading edge hardware. There is (almost) always a workaround somewhere, but it is not always easy to find and then implement.

I think I remember FireWire (or was it eSATA) for an external hard dive not working under Linux. I was stuck with the USB-2 interface.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Tue May 30, 2017 11:38 am

lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:Personally I also think Win 10 is a darn good OS but I do keep a version of Cygwin installed because I like the bash shell and a few of the utilities. This makes automating processes more convenient. I use Windows task scheduling to kick off Cygwin bash scripts.
Cygwin became a lot less necessary with the recent updates to Windows 10 that include bash (Ubuntu-based). You can now do most of the common command-line tasks natively. If you require some of the more advanced utilities, there still may be a case for Cygwin. But it's no longer required in order to do anything in the *nix way on Windows.
Activated and being played with!
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

Dottie57
Posts: 4501
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Dottie57 » Tue May 30, 2017 11:43 am

virgingorda wrote:I can share about my Linux installation experience since I just did it yesterday and today. My reason for installing Linux was because my 2008 Mac desktop became so sluggish it was unusable.

The installation was not without hiccups. First problem was making a USB installation drive. My Mac would not see the USB no matter what I did to try and format it. This took at least a hour and a half to solve. I finally solved it by using a different Mac to create the installation USB.

After Linux was successfully installed, I had file permission issues with things I copied from the Mac when it still was a Mac to a portable hard drive. Also had issues importing music for similar reasons. I solved the problems, but if I had not used Unix/Linux before and knew about chmod and chown, I might have been stuck for a while longer. I also needed codecs. There is a lot of info on problem solving online.

I still have not solved the problem of why music playback sounds horrible. The hardware is decent. I think I'm giving up on this for the time being since I don't often listen from that source.

I am overall thrilled that the computer is useable again! If you have an old Mac gathering dust, installing Linux is a good way to make it work again.

What are you using it for?

Mudpuppy
Posts: 5889
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 2:26 am
Location: Sunny California

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Mudpuppy » Tue May 30, 2017 1:11 pm

lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:Personally I also think Win 10 is a darn good OS but I do keep a version of Cygwin installed because I like the bash shell and a few of the utilities. This makes automating processes more convenient. I use Windows task scheduling to kick off Cygwin bash scripts.
Cygwin became a lot less necessary with the recent updates to Windows 10 that include bash (Ubuntu-based). You can now do most of the common command-line tasks natively. If you require some of the more advanced utilities, there still may be a case for Cygwin. But it's no longer required in order to do anything in the *nix way on Windows.
I have no intentions of moving to Windows 10, where telemetry and "calling home" is very hard to turn off. So I'll be sticking with Windows 8.1 and Cygwin for the moment. Note that my state agency has made the same decision at the enterprise level, again because of concerns about Windows 10 calling home and how difficult that is to turn off even with group policies. Luckily, that's a headache for another group (desktop support) so I don't have to deal with it on a daily basis at work.

lazydavid
Posts: 1822
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lazydavid » Tue May 30, 2017 1:17 pm

bertilak wrote:Exactly. So how does that make Linux less stable than Windows? That was the claim supposedly justified by Linux's short upgrade cycle. We now have BOTH Linux and Windows pegged at the same 5 years. I think we are talking past each other! :sharebeer
LOL, you may be right at that! Do remember, though, that the 5 years for LTS on the desktop side has only been with us for....five years, because it started with 12.04, released 61 months ago (April 2012). Before that it was 3 years, and before that it was the wild west. :mrgreen:

I think dumbmoney was talking about "back in the day", ie XP/7/Vista timeframe, when a major new version only came out every five years or so, and any given release was fully supported for a minimum of 10 years, without any forced upgrades. XP was actually supported for almost 13 years.

Getting back to the original point that I think dumbmoney was trying to make is that we've come full-circle. There was a time when you could install and run a fully-supported version of Windows for a decade, during which time you might have to install 8 or more Linux releases to remain on a supported branch. Now, Ubuntu has 5 years of support for LTS releases, while the initial release of Windows 10 (1507) is already out of support, as of 3 weeks ago--just 22 months after release. And subsequent versions go out of support even faster--just 60 days after the release of the next version. So, for example, version 1607--that came out in August 2016--will end support next Monday, June 5th. That's just 9 months.

User avatar
bertilak
Posts: 6093
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: East of the Pecos, West of the Mississippi

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by bertilak » Tue May 30, 2017 1:18 pm

Mudpuppy wrote:
lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:Personally I also think Win 10 is a darn good OS but I do keep a version of Cygwin installed because I like the bash shell and a few of the utilities. This makes automating processes more convenient. I use Windows task scheduling to kick off Cygwin bash scripts.
Cygwin became a lot less necessary with the recent updates to Windows 10 that include bash (Ubuntu-based). You can now do most of the common command-line tasks natively. If you require some of the more advanced utilities, there still may be a case for Cygwin. But it's no longer required in order to do anything in the *nix way on Windows.
I have no intentions of moving to Windows 10, where telemetry and "calling home" is very hard to turn off. So I'll be sticking with Windows 8.1 and Cygwin for the moment. Note that my state agency has made the same decision at the enterprise level, again because of concerns about Windows 10 calling home and how difficult that is to turn off even with group policies. Luckily, that's a headache for another group (desktop support) so I don't have to deal with it on a daily basis at work.
I thought all that could be turned off in some sort of enterprise edition, but that's just a vague recollection of something I read somewhere.
May neither drought nor rain nor blizzard disturb the joy juice in your gizzard. -- Squire Omar Barker, the Cowboy Poet

Jags4186
Posts: 2476
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Jags4186 » Tue May 30, 2017 1:37 pm

I think the reality is that Linux as a home computer operating system is good for two types of people:

1) IT pros who use it all day at work
2) Techies who want to give it a go

It's not practical otherwise IMO. Having tried using it in the past I found I spent most of the time trying to get things to work properly rather than doing anything I wanted to do. I see no use for Linux as a home computer operating system for the overwhelming majority of people.

The biggest issue is that if you're having trouble with something you can't just ask anyone "hey how do I do this?" You have to go on an online forum. And inevitably it turns into someone telling you to run XYZ command line prompt which means you'll always have to go back and look up the same answer again because it's impossible to remember. Oh, and what tends to not work the most with Linux? Wifi. So you'll need another device to get o line and find answer.

lightheir
Posts: 2299
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 11:43 pm

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by lightheir » Tue May 30, 2017 1:59 pm

I've commented on this thread before, but just another update of my opinion -

I recently installed yet another Ubuntu Linux on my aging laptop. I only planned to use it for light browsing, as per a Chromebook.

I will happily say that it works extremely well for this kind of internet use. Note that this includes Gdocs, Gmail, Gdrive, Amazon Drive, Netflix, and probably 95+% of the common web-tasks that are done on a chromebook.

I had no issues with drivers or hardware for the old laptop - Ubuntu installed, and everything worked right out of the box, including external monitor hookup which I tried.

I would recommend it to anyone who has an laptop that they would be ok in converting the chromebook-type webcentric use.

Mudpuppy
Posts: 5889
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 2:26 am
Location: Sunny California

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by Mudpuppy » Tue May 30, 2017 5:02 pm

bertilak wrote:
Mudpuppy wrote:
lazydavid wrote:
bertilak wrote:Personally I also think Win 10 is a darn good OS but I do keep a version of Cygwin installed because I like the bash shell and a few of the utilities. This makes automating processes more convenient. I use Windows task scheduling to kick off Cygwin bash scripts.
Cygwin became a lot less necessary with the recent updates to Windows 10 that include bash (Ubuntu-based). You can now do most of the common command-line tasks natively. If you require some of the more advanced utilities, there still may be a case for Cygwin. But it's no longer required in order to do anything in the *nix way on Windows.
I have no intentions of moving to Windows 10, where telemetry and "calling home" is very hard to turn off. So I'll be sticking with Windows 8.1 and Cygwin for the moment. Note that my state agency has made the same decision at the enterprise level, again because of concerns about Windows 10 calling home and how difficult that is to turn off even with group policies. Luckily, that's a headache for another group (desktop support) so I don't have to deal with it on a daily basis at work.
I thought all that could be turned off in some sort of enterprise edition, but that's just a vague recollection of something I read somewhere.
Not to the level that you would expect. See the following Slashdot discussion (and linked article within it) about the amount of data Windows 10 Enterprise can send back to Microsoft: https://yro.slashdot.org/story/17/05/27 ... s-too-much

And Microsoft doesn't say you can turn telemetry off with the Enterprise edition. You can just select to send less data. Here's the Slashdot discussion on that one, with a link to the PCWorld article detailing how telemetry restrictions work on Enterprise edition: https://yro.slashdot.org/story/16/12/05 ... s-security

Also, Microsoft has a deal to share telemetry data with security vendor FireEye. See this Slashdot discussion: https://tech.slashdot.org/story/16/11/2 ... rd-parties

virgingorda
Posts: 258
Joined: Sat Jul 26, 2014 7:30 am
Location: New England

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by virgingorda » Wed May 31, 2017 6:16 pm

Dottie57 wrote:
virgingorda wrote:I can share about my Linux installation experience since I just did it yesterday and today. My reason for installing Linux was because my 2008 Mac desktop became so sluggish it was unusable.

The installation was not without hiccups. First problem was making a USB installation drive. My Mac would not see the USB no matter what I did to try and format it. This took at least a hour and a half to solve. I finally solved it by using a different Mac to create the installation USB.

After Linux was successfully installed, I had file permission issues with things I copied from the Mac when it still was a Mac to a portable hard drive. Also had issues importing music for similar reasons. I solved the problems, but if I had not used Unix/Linux before and knew about chmod and chown, I might have been stuck for a while longer. I also needed codecs. There is a lot of info on problem solving online.

I still have not solved the problem of why music playback sounds horrible. The hardware is decent. I think I'm giving up on this for the time being since I don't often listen from that source.

I am overall thrilled that the computer is useable again! If you have an old Mac gathering dust, installing Linux is a good way to make it work again.
What are you using it for?
Sorry, as I mention uothread, I am mainly using it for web-based stuff via Chrome (or Firefox, which seems to use less RAM. ) I use Google Drive for many things these days (docs, sheets, slides) for both personal things and a course I teach. The old Mac had become unusable, but now has new life! I can actually do something without waiting 5-10 minutes for the computer to respond. I think it was spending most of its time using virtual memory, as the hard derive was always spinning. Now it's much speedier! I also backed up my documents on it and can open Word docs etc with LibreOffice if I need to.

User avatar
pondering
Posts: 1006
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:04 pm
Location: 412-977-3526, originally 718-273-2422

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by pondering » Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:25 am

I became a regular Linux user when I could no longer run mediawiki on Windows at work.

I use VirtualBox to host a bitnami stack with the OS and application preinstalled ( https://bitnami.com/stacks contains a listing of applications available for download )

This is my one click backup script I run from windows:
---------------------------------------------------------
REM Generate the backup

"C:\Program Files (x86)\PuTTY\plink.exe" -pw ?password? bitnami@ubuntu.robot-rx.com bash mw-backup.sh

REM set the name of the root backup folder with no trailing \

SET backupfolder=C:\apps\bitnami-vm\backups-cl

SET dirname="%backupfolder%\%date:~10,4%-%date:~4,2%-%date:~7,2%_%time:~0,2%-%time:~3,2%-%time:~6,2%"
echo %dirname%
md %dirname%
"c:\Program Files (x86)\PuTTY\pscp.exe" -pw ?password? bitnami@ubuntu.robot-rx.com:/home/bitnami/backups/* %dirname%
pause
exit
---------------------------------------------------------

This is the script that is run to do the backup on the virtual machine:

mw-backup.sh:

Code: Select all

#!/bin/bash
PWD=`cat /home/bitnami/backups/pwd.cfg`
#echo x$PWD x
DATETIME=`date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M-%S`
mkdir -p /home/bitnami/tmp/
mkdir -p /home/bitnami/tmp/backup1/
mkdir -p /home/bitnami/tmp/backup2/
mkdir -p /home/bitnami/tmp/backup3/
rm /home/bitnami/tmp/backup3/*
mv /home/bitnami/tmp/backup2/Robert-s-wiki-* /home/bitnami/tmp/backup3/
mv /home/bitnami/tmp/backup1/Robert-s-wiki-* /home/bitnami/tmp/backup2/
mv /home/bitnami/backups/Robert-s-wiki-* /home/bitnami/tmp/backup1/
#cp /home/bitnami/backups/Robert-s-wiki-* /home/bitnami/tmp/backup1/
#rm /home/bitnami/backups/Robert-s-wiki-*
mysqldump -u root -p$PWD bitnami_mediawiki > /home/bitnami/backups/Robert-s-wiki-$DATETIME.sql
cp /home/bitnami/apps/mediawiki/htdocs/resources/assets/wiki.png /home/bitnami/backups/wiki.png
cp /opt/bitnami/apps/mediawiki/htdocs/LocalSettings.php /home/bitnami/backups/LocalSettings.php
cp /home/bitnami/mw-backup.sh /home/bitnami/backups/mw-backup.sh
cp /opt/bitnami/mysql/my.cnf /home/bitnami/backups/my.cnf
echo files in the backups folder:
ls -l /home/bitnami/backups/
echo current backup:
ls -l /home/bitnami/backups/Robert-s-wiki-$DATETIME.sql
--Robert Sterbal | 412-977-3526 call/text

JerryStubak
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2017 7:53 am

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by JerryStubak » Tue Jun 06, 2017 7:57 am

autonomy wrote:May or may not be on topic:

Despite the developers touting it as the next best thing that will revolutionize everything, I've not met a single person that not only liked, but didn't hate Ubuntu's Unity interface. I'd go with Linux Mint these days if you don't need to use any specialized software (not sure anymore what's not available these days). I've learned that software development in Linux is hand-over-fist easier and faster than Windows.
Ubuntu still doesn't support dual displays out-of-the-box with my Dell dock.

Mint is the way to go. I've bee using it for a while now and love it. Faster and more stable than windows. Very easy for the average windows user to learn to use.

cheapedy
Posts: 38
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 2:44 am

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Post by cheapedy » Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:30 am

I've been a linux user for about 10 years. It all started when my sister was given a Pentium four from her work. They upgraded the systems and gave away all the old PCs. The hard drives were wiped, so I had to figure a way to put an OS on it. My research came upon something called linux, specifically the ubuntu versions. I was able to revive it and was amazed at how fast and user friendly it was. I now use a two computer setup. One is a windows 7 setup, controlled by speech recognition only (comfy padded reclining chair, adjustable monitor, mainly for browsing and youtube, using tablets was giving me neck strain). My second PC is an AMD from 2011 running the newest version of Lubuntu, set up as a standing desk. I use this one for online banking, online purchases and anything else requiring safe and secure browsing. I've tried many of the available distributions but keep coming back to Lubuntu.

Post Reply