Home > GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Thoughts, Windows > Why Linux sucks as a Desktop OS?

Why Linux sucks as a Desktop OS?

Okay, the topic should be “Why Linux sucks for Windows users?”, but it mentions what I’m going to write, a bit better. This is not a Linux bashing post. It is just a real world experience. We have a background of 10 years of Linux experience on several distros, starting with Slackware 3.x.

For the past 10 months, I’m showing Beryl and all of those excellent effects to my customers, and installing Linux on request. I’m pushing Linux usage, but the results are really bad.

Here’s what happened:

  • After installation, customers left our shop happily.
  • No tech support requests for some time.
  • After some time, people started to call us, saying “The effects are lost, and I don’t know how to turn those on”. We welcomed our guests to Linux console, where they must clear /tmp/*, X, Gnome and Beryl related settings under /home/user. Believe me, this is really hard to describe, to a Windows user.
  • We got requests about random lockups. The cause is not known, and logs show nothing either. We were unable to solve those random freezes.
  • Some customers started to complain about slow network connectivity, we tried everything including router change, but unable to solve the problem. (Check the Google for Slow Network Connection, especially slow DNS resolution).
  • Almost all of my customers returned back, requesting deletion of Linux partition to recover space for Windows.

Now, here’s the experience list:

  • Most of the Windows users don’t care security.
  • Most of the Windows users don’t care virusses or trojans.
  • Most of the Windows users don’t want to use commands.
  • Most of the Windows users want a stable system.
  • Most of the Windows users want to have “SOLVABLE PROBLEMS”.
  • Most of the Windows users want to play games.
  • Most of the Windows users are NOT idiots, they just want to make things easily.
  • If you recommend Linux as a stable Desktop OS, you will lose customers. We did.
  • If you recommend Linux as an operating system for everyday desktop use, you will find yourself in the hell of unsolvable problems.
  • We compared our experience with Windows to Linux, and the result is: Windows has superior exception management for debugging purposes. At most of the situations, you get an error message saying (nearly) what’s wrong.

After all of these, our company decided to use Linux on only servers. We will not support Linux on desktop PC’s for a long time, until it is mature enough to be usable.

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  1. kevin
    July 30, 2007 at 11:09 pm | #1

    You should recommend a distribution that provides support, then the customers(or you) can just call up the distribution’s support number for help.

  2. Excessive
    July 31, 2007 at 4:56 pm | #2

    Our tech support was free for desktop Linux systems. Most of the distributions have forum based support, which mostly doesn’t give instant solutions. Saying “Hold on, I’m searching for a solution, we’ll return you as soon as possible” to a customer is not possible.

    Commercial support is available with Ubuntu, but it has really high prices.

  3. thanks
    August 2, 2007 at 6:48 pm | #3


  4. Chris
    August 6, 2007 at 3:04 pm | #4

    Most of the Windows users don’t care security.

    You don’t care english. You learn speak english!

    • Marvs
      September 16, 2011 at 7:29 am | #5

      Im sorry but that was a really stupid comment Chris…

      • Abinadi
        November 3, 2011 at 11:07 am | #6

        And commenting on a YEARS old comment isn’t stupid?

  5. Excessive
    August 6, 2007 at 7:28 pm | #7

    English is not my native language. Correct me if I am wrong, but as far as I know, that sentence is perfectly legal.

  6. renier
    August 12, 2007 at 3:56 pm | #8

    Using Beryl is still in Beta. Therefore not very stable yet. Best to install to customers is technology that is stable and mature. Linux is different from Windows and another mindset is required to use Linux. When recommending Linux to customers, first screen the customer to see if the customer will be able to handle Linux.
    Yes, Linux desktop development still need to be improved against Windows, but when new users use Linux install what they will be able to handle.
    Know your customers.

  7. Excessive
    August 12, 2007 at 10:10 pm | #9

    Linux development is really going well. But the problem is, the exception management system is not integrated well with other components of the operating system, especially user space – ring 3. While working on console, everything is crystal clear. I don’t have a problem with console, but Windows people aren’t used to give commands to the system, except developers.

    For servers, Linux is the best way to go. I don’t expect a huge increase in the Linux desktop usage unless exception management is handled better by various system components.

  8. Jae
    August 26, 2007 at 3:00 pm | #10

    Just a little correction (I think)… and some additions…

    It’s not Linux that is sucks. Linux is actually the kernel, which is very stable and quite powerful if compared with Windows kernel. It’s the Linux distros and all of the packanges that use Linux kernel that suck… especially for system services. They are the main reason why Linux (the kernel) can’t be used as a stable and high performance desktop OS or even a multimedia OS.

    If somehow Linux platform can be a good desktop and multimedia OS, that would be something like Mac OS X, since Mac OS X kernel is quite similar to Linux. IMO, it will take more than 10 years for Linux platform to be like Mac OS X… or even more… or even if that is possible.

    The most full featured (and the only), well done Linux distro as a desktop OS is SuSe. But sadly, there are very little Linux applications that deals with multimedia. I’m not talking about media players, there are already too many players out there. I was talking about serious multimedia authoring applications for professionals. And this one sucks big time.

    The main reason of Linux instability is because the lack of standard in Linux platform. Those so many Linux distros are mostly incompatible with each other. And the worst is, they keep getting more and more. This is just like Soviet Union. Too many divisions that tear apart their own country, then… no more Soviet Union. This can also happen in Linux platform. It will not get significantly better if there is no unification between the Linux distros. Just imagine that most of the big open source players like OpenSuSe, Fedora, Mandriva, Ubuntu, and so on… unite to be (that is to be, not to make another) one single giant Linux distro. I can only dream that it will happen.

    OK. I think I’ve said enough.
    BTW, great story and good points.

    • headuhdfgklu
      December 31, 2009 at 8:05 pm | #11

      You don’t know a lot about linux. Do you? Linux has actually become pretty stable now, especially debian and centOS.

      Black Dwarf :
      As an owner of machines running Windows, Mac, Solaris, and FreeBSD, and as a previous user of Linux, I say this:
      Linux sucks because it doesn’t do anything that another OS can’t do better.
      If I think my computer is an appliance that I don’t need to think about, I want a Mac.
      If I think my computer is for getting things done, I want Windows.
      If I think my computer is for helping other computers, I want BSD or Solaris.
      If I think my computer is a toy, a sort of puzzle I need to solve, a tinkering project for idle hours, I want Linux.
      I have enough puzzles in my life between work and finances and dealing with people around me. I don’t need Linux for that.
      Linux is number 2 at a lot of things. Application availability, driver availability, stability, security, usability…
      It has a lot of features. In practice this means it does a lot of things that you don’t care about. Who can compete in variety of filesystems? Yet, who uses more than two or three different filesystems on a single box? Unfortunately it often does not have all the features that any particular role for a computer will need. You could say all these features make Linux a great kernel/OS, but when you need a computer to fulfill one specific role, you’re probably not going to choose Linux unless you’re not even looking at other options.
      Microsoft knows its target demographics. So does Apple. So does Sun. So do BSD developers and advocates. Even the Haiku team know exactly what they’re trying to do.
      Linux’s failure is that it tries to be everything to everyone, but satisfies few, most of those few still have major problems with it (but don’t happen to be showstoppers), and the few who don’t have problems with it and are satisfied by it could go with almost any OS and be satisfied or even happier if they devoted an equal amount of time to learning the system.
      The failure of Linux is that it doesn’t know who it is. Its users and developers have no perspective on where Linux is in the world.
      I even say the extent of Linux’s success is the extent that it’s been able to get mindshare and enthusiasm that other free OSes haven’t. Any other advantages it has are derivatives of that, and not from any kind of technical superiority for any particular purpose.
      If Linux had a motto it’d be “Anything you can do I can do almost, I can do anything almost like you.”

      Yeah at the beginning a linux OS is like a toy, but it eventually ends up being a super robot that will do anything you command it to. BTW linux haters, go (I can’t control myself, I am weak and I always swear when I am angry) yourself, you (I can’t control myself, I am weak and I always swear when I am angry)ing losers.

    • test
      September 12, 2010 at 4:51 pm | #12

      euhm…about the multimedia authoring applications…every big film has been made on linux…
      look up:
      Flame and smoke from autodesk
      The Blender Foundation

  9. Excessive
    August 27, 2007 at 3:20 pm | #13


    Thank you for your reply. I agree that high Linux distribution count – without quality – damages Linux’s reputation. In this article, I mainly mentioned Ubuntu, because it is widely used and well supported by a commercial company. If the situation is bad in “one of the best desktop Linux distros”, consider the rest (Fedora etc).

    There were efforts to create an universal packaging system which will work on most of the Linux distros, but the outcome was not what we expect. Distro managers and creators didn’t help the effort.

    One of the reasons Windows gained widespread usage was application availability across versions. I can still use a Windows 3.1 application under XP (well, most of them). What if I try to ship a dynamically linked ELF executable to another system where the required libraries don’t exist?

    People are complaining about DLL hell under Windows, but I suppose the only choice for interoperability is having seperate versions of compiled libraries for fast execution.

    Linux applications will evolve, I’m sure of it. But we need more time, and I don’t have any idea how much time we need.

  10. Yuhong Bao
    September 12, 2007 at 6:22 am | #14

    “What if I try to ship a dynamically linked ELF executable to another system where the required libraries don’t exist? ”
    That is what the Linux packaging systems is for. But sometimes you just have to compile from source. Source compatiblity is better however. Try compling a old version of an Linux program to see why.

  11. Excessive
    September 12, 2007 at 7:33 am | #15


    Thanks for stopping by. Commercial companies wouldn’t always want to share their code. Not all packages come with source, especially commercial packages. This leads to a library problem, and portability problems. But for Windows, the problem seems minor. Application compatibility is really an issue under Linux. Install Slackware for example, and try to compile some open source projects.

    You’ll see what I mean.

    This is the main point which prevents widespread adoption of Linux.

  12. WannabeLinuxFan
    September 28, 2007 at 10:21 am | #16

    I recently got all excited about Ubuntu’s music studio software distro. Wow, Cubase for Linux I thought. Gotta try this.

    Where this didn’t work out was that I have several external USB based audio/midi interfaces. It seems Linux’s USB support for “timing” is missing, hence no drivers. (I don’t know any more details, but from what I read, that seems to be the reason for lack of USB MIDI interface support) So; unless you are using a Soundblaster or compatible card, you are up the creek without a paddle.

    Very disappointing for me.

    I, too, started with Linux slackware where you had to manually define the hard drive. Things have moved by great strides, but there’s still a way to go for ordinary users.

  13. October 11, 2007 at 3:52 pm | #17

    I’ve been using Linux as my sole operating system since 2001 on 11 computers and have come to the following conclusion: most of the people who say Linux sucks are the same folks who are either too stupid or too lazy to actually learn how the operating system works. And please keep in mind that operating a paper airplane is much different that operating a real airplane due to the power/benefit/security difference inherent in each of those.

    I don’t use Windows because it’s closed source and a virus/trojan/worm/malware magnet. A closed source operating system could be grabbing every key stroke you make (online banking, social security number, date of birth, mother’s maiden name, etc) and sending it all home to be added to a huge database. The problem is you’d never know it because you don’t really know what the system is doing behind your back.

    Windows operating systems are plagued with viruses/worms/trojans/spyware/malware and things like that don’t exist for Linux. Read this article to find out why those bad things likely wouldn’t exist for Linux even if Linux were the most widely used OS: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2003/10/06/linux_vs_windows_viruses/

    I can do things with Linux that Windows simply can’t do because Linux is more secure/stable than Windows is.

    Please take a few moments to read my Linux page instead of blindly posting myths/misunderstandings/lies/garbage when it comes to Linux: http://ardchoille42.googlepages.com/linux.html

  14. Excessive
    October 14, 2007 at 1:38 pm | #18

    Dear friend,

    My post’s title is “Why Linux sucks as a Desktop OS?”, but you seem to got it all wrong.

    I’m working with several distros since 10 years. I’ve started using Linux when I met Slackware 3.5. I DO know how the system works, amazing possibilities which Linux offer, and good sides of Linux. But I also know the weakness of Linux distros for an end user. If you actually had a look to my post, you should have seen that I was not bashing Linux altogether. I was trying to push Linux usage across my customers, but the problems prevented it.

    I really hope to see more “polite” posts here, like the ones above, before your post.

  15. Hahn
    October 18, 2007 at 4:37 am | #19

    most of the people who say Linux sucks are the same folks who are either too stupid or too lazy to actually learn how the operating system works

    I don’t care how my toaster was manufactured and I really don’t care how the electrical components in the toaster work… I just want it to make toast for me. Similarly, typical users won’t necessarily want to learn about how the operating system works: they just want it to work (e.g. run applications, play games and so on).

    I gave up trying to use Linux as a desktop PC. The biggest problem was with device driver support: often the support would be non-existant or partial at best. Even if there was device driver support, I’d have to scour Usenet and the Web to get information on how to make things work. It’s not that I can’t figure these things out, it’s just that I have better things to do.

    Granted, there are users who enjoy figuring these things out and are curious about the inner workings of the OS… but would that fit the profile of a typical mainstream user? Remember, in order for Linux to succeed as a Desktop OS, it has to take into consideration the typical mainstream user.

    Even so, I do miss Linux. Well, to be specific, the shell and all the command line utilities. It’s not all lost though: I have VI, Perl, MySQL and Apache installed on my Vista box. ;-)

  16. john
    November 1, 2007 at 8:33 pm | #20

    As is often discussed around our offices the problem is almost always the operator – or user if you prefer.

    What is happening is simply growing pains in technology and the application of that technology. Some programmers write code from the perspective of the programmer, that is, from a logical perspective. Far too many programmers write code for an ideal enviornment – largely because of time-to-market. Then there are those coders that write code that only they can operate, understand, execute, maintain, what have you (ok, I admit I’ve been accused of this, but it was only because I was the only one that knew what I was doing.)

    I find it sometimes frustrating to hear an individual intone “that’s not how to start that program” simply because they have a micro computer at home or use one at work (maybe even the only one they’ve ever used) and access to all their applications are through icons on their desktop. Well, not everyone wants or needs a shortcut via icon to navigate their way around the system.

    Micro computing or personal computing simply is moving into a realm outside of the “technical” arena as is alluded to in the post by Hahn. Non-technical users of this technology is simply not interested in how “cool” something is from the technical perspective. I know that seems like a slap in the face to programmers and designers particularly when one considers the methodologies applied in the approach to designing and developing the applications.

    I’ll bet the engineers that develops tires for our cars and those that develops the braking systems with that anti-locking feature get just as irritated when folks give advice about braking based on tire tread/walls/construction and brake systems from 30-40 years ago. While the admonitions are not harmful – the long braking distances not being required to stop vehicle equipped with the new technologies in tires and braking systems – it is nonetheless a bit like listening to scratched record; irritating.

    Personally, I like Linux for webserving. Some years ago IBM removed the network components from the mainframe and placed that feature into a front-end processor (that was my area for about 16 years of my career). What do we think will be removed from our desktops and instead placed into our routers or concentrators, or edge devices – firewalls are already there.

    I’m a Windows XP user and I still think Windows 2000 is a more stable desktop platform.

  17. Excessive
    November 2, 2007 at 8:46 am | #21

    I do agree with you on all aspects.

    Unix (and Linux) is designed to be a server operating system from the start. The problem with this approach is, no matter what you do with Linux, you’ll have a server operating system. The system itself is based on administrative commands, and a user MUST use these commands in case of a system fail.

    Windows is better compared to Linux on desktop, because it is designed to be an end-user product from scratch. You can still give commands on command console.

    I don’t remember when I last used “for” command on DOS prompt under Windows.

  18. Bigguy
    November 3, 2007 at 11:51 pm | #22

    I totally agree with your article.
    You have to take a look at the majority of the people in the real world that are using computers. I remember going to High School when the commodore PET was considered a modern computer. As computers became easier to use they became more accessible to the masses. You can’t be calling people stupid because they don’t know and don’t want to know the inner workings of their computers. I drive a car and I want my car to go from point ‘A’ to point ‘B’, I could care less about how my Electronic Fuel injection works because if it breaks I’ll get a mechanic to fix it! I love to tinker with Linux and I don’t think Linux is bad at all. I also don’t agree with some of the business practices M$ uses in the industry and at times they can act like a bully. However, all this fear mongering that I hear about Windows being a “virus magnet” it mute to me because I haven’t had a problem with a virus, Trojan or anything for years! I have had cases however where I broke my Linux system because of installing some piece of software that didn’t jive with my distro all that well, even after following the instructions.
    Yes, I have to pay for Windows, but for the small amount of $$$ that the OS costs me vs. the “hours” that I have used up trying to configure my Linux distro the money was well worth it.
    My opinion is the same for MAC, I’d love to own one to be honest! OSX is built on Unix, but has the support of a major company so that people buying a MAC have an equal, or arguably, better experience than with Windows.

    My 2 Cents

  19. john
    November 19, 2007 at 5:30 pm | #23

    This article is very true.

    I am using Linux since 2004 but I know the areas where Linux as a whole just sucks.

    Opensuse sucks too btw, but at least they provide the click-click solutions.

    I think distributions should disappear completely and Linus should engineer a whole OS that includes package solution too.

    Personally I use a Gobolinux like install scheme and if distributions would want to make life easier for users, they would adopt this too and throw away the crappy FHS.

  20. RealWorldUsability
    November 25, 2007 at 8:24 pm | #24

    Some people in the linux community forget that the majority of people on this planet aren’t IT students/employees.


    I feel slightly annoyed by die hard linux users saying that people are stupid and lazy because they don’t wan’t to know/learn the details of an OS just to be able to use it.

    Or can anyone of you explain how exactly a television, mobilephone, microwave, hairdryer works? I think not and it’s not necessary to understand these things, they just need to work.

    I agree that the huge amount of different distributions (distrowatch.com) is rather problematic, linux needs to be more standarised.

  21. Jim
    December 11, 2007 at 6:45 am | #25

    From what I’ve seen, Linux absolutely BLOWS as a desktop OS. Device driver support is either non-existent or else you’ve gotta waste hours (if not days) scouring the web for solutions. Random lockups, shitty video drivers and even worse sound and multimedia support … not to mention mysteriously slow name resolution – on the exact same circuits that WIndoze boxes run great on – these are just a few of the annoyances that 98% of users do NOT want to waste their time and money on.

    People just want a desktop PC to WORK, out of the box. If your car stalled at red lights and acted erratically for no apparent reason, would you recommend that model to all your friends? Would you tell people that they’re obviously just too stupid to figure out what’s wrong with their fuel injection system? Or would you tell people that Edsels suck?

    And before some smart-ass tries to say that I’m an idiot who’s too lazy or stupid to figure out Linux, let me say this: I have an engineering degree, 15 years IT of experience and I support 300 Linux, Netware and WIndows servers in a large data center. As a server OS, it certainly has its niche (Apache, etc) and does its job well in that regard. But as a desktop OS, it just plain SUCKS. Anyone who tells you otherwise ain’t living in corporate reality.

    People who claim that Linux is a superior DESKTOP OS remind me of those Harley-Davidson clowns. You know the type – they swear up and down that their overweight, overpriced, shitty handling, no braking, oil-leaking, vibrating, under-powered pieces of CRAP are somehow ‘superior’ to the machines that win world championships and Grands Prix – with absolutely NO empirical evidence to back up their claims. Kinda like the Linux Desktop crowd … all hot air and no performance.

  22. Diaz028
    December 20, 2007 at 5:27 pm | #26

    Linux Dists are not for average customers. Linux is for people who want to learn Linux. Most users I have pushed to Linux, have a relative knowledge on IT and are willing to play around with Linux.

    Pushing Linux should never be done to avg customers, unless it is installed on a “Tryout” partition. Customers then have the choice to try Linux on their own time. Another reason to install Linux, is for people who do not want to spend the $$ on windows, but want a basic computer to play music and do internet banking.

    Overall it is hard to compare windows to Linux since they both have their positives and negatives. It really comes down to a personal preference. I would completely get rid of my windows desktop OS if I could play all my games on Linux.


  23. December 25, 2007 at 8:22 pm | #27

    Linux sucks as a desktop OS. There is nothing that a desktop user can do on Linux that cannot be done on Windows/Mac OS X, etc. Linux offers nothing new. Ultimately, with Linux on your machine, you are working twice as hard to get things going & do pretty much the same things that can be done on other OSs with minimal effort.

    As far as I am concerned, Linux on the desktop is a failure. And the fact that it has been available free of cost for more than a decade & that it still has 3 % marketshare is proof enough for me.

    Superior technology means nothing if it’s advantages do not reach the masses in a resonable amount of time. Linux has been around for more than a decade & it’s advantages cannot be seen on the desktop. Just being suppossedly technically superior doesn’t mean didly squat.

  24. Chris
    February 13, 2008 at 11:02 pm | #28

    Good article. I totally agree.
    We have mostly Windows desktops and work and a few linux servers.
    Its been years since we’ve had any real problems with Windows viruses or security issues. If you have a decent firewall and antivrus software then only tiny amounts of time are spent configuring windows. Linux servers on the other hand takes hours to do updates and configuration.
    Linux isn’t really free when you have to pay someone for the hours of configuration and troubleshooting required!

  25. Kokoro
    March 2, 2008 at 9:10 pm | #29

    I live in a country where software copyright laws are a big joke. If you need any particular software you don’t go to a retail store because they don’t exist, what you do (if you’re too lazy to use p2p) is grab the paper and call one of the many folks advertised there that offer CDs filled with anything you need for $1.28 a piece. Even government offices use pirated software.
    In a country where Windows is as free (of charge) as Linux, what do you think people use?
    Windows, of course.

  26. March 21, 2008 at 4:15 pm | #30

    I tried ubuntu today, I did not know that the esc key got me to the guts, found out on forums [foof] My keyboard is usb, I can write my password but it won’t work at all in the word processor. The symbols on the keyboard don’t print the same and sometimes not at all in the command line?
    Nobody seems to really know what they are doing and the ones that do have such poor language skills that it takes them a page to explain something that should take two sentences.

    I’m sure it works great and I’m sure it is worthwhile but until they get their act together I’m gone.

    They need a real good succinct manual.

  27. April 6, 2008 at 5:59 pm | #31

    Great discussion guys, nice to find a non bashing discussion on both sides. Personally I am a Linux user Ubuntu, and for the past 2+ years I have been very pleased. But I am probably considered a geek, and willing to find solutions to problems. In my experience I have had only a few problems mostly with video drivers and some USB, My wife who uses ubuntu also and is def. not a geek has been a user for the same amount of time (initially she had a duel boot) and has never had a problem and would not go back to windows. I’ve read through these posts and given thought to these responses. After reflection and realizing I am a geek, I would still recommend Ubuntu for most users… the exception being gamers.

  28. Lars
    May 8, 2008 at 5:46 pm | #32

    Well .. not much to be said.
    Perfect article.
    I do Network Security Services based on Linux Servers or Web Services.
    Actually i tried a Linux Distribution on my new Laptop (Ubuntu Hardy).
    At least .. it was a desaster.
    Back to Windows … back to happyness.
    With a good firewall and a goot anti-virus software you are perfectly set up :)

  29. Rick
    May 13, 2008 at 4:15 am | #33

    With a good firewall and a goot anti-virus software you are perfectly set up

    You forgot to add “…which don’t exist.” There’s no good firewall/antivirus. Until new virus definitions appear there are already many new viruses created. Many people suffer before patches and vir. definitions are made. The problem is in the core of Windows system – once infected, malware gets TOTAL control of the system, unlike it is in Linux.

    And the last thing, many users (like good 50% of them) do only the following things: browse/buy from internet, check email, type documents, print documents.
    It is VERY easy to set stable Linux system for such users for their needs. Also I don’t agree with “Most of the Windows users don’t care security. Most of the Windows users don’t care virusses or trojans.” statements. They really DO care, especially when it comes to online shopping. Most basic users, such as described above, for which I set up Linux systems are totally happy with their PCs. I set their systems for automatic updates too.

  30. Brian
    May 17, 2008 at 10:25 pm | #34

    I don’t know much about Linux but I have been around computers, one way or another, since about 1975. I have used MVS, VMS, Unix (3 versions all with X Windows System), several 8 bit “OS”-s, DOS and Windows 3.1 to Vista, and a few others that I have forgotten.

    I like windows. I really like windows. I am a scientist, not a computer scientist, and I just need the darn OS to work in the same kind of way I need the airline’s airplanes to work when I fly (quite often). I just want it to work.

    Over the years, I have known many “computer bigots” who were always against everything that was winning. At first it was the other 8/16 bit computers (Commodore, Atari, Radio Shack, etc.) and not “Wintel”. Then it was UNIX (RISC boxes, such as Sun, DEC and SGI) and not “Wintel”. Now it is LINUX and not Windows.

    I am a technical person and I love solving problems. But I am not that interested in OS problems. When I buy a new computer I figure that the Windows already installed might cost $100 and it always works great. I have never called a Microsoft support office in all my life, not once. Recently, a friend of mine (a smart man but also not a computer scientisit) gave up on an attempt to install Linux after 3 months of struggling.

    To me a computer is a useful machine that is most useful when it works seamlessly, just like an airplane. I don’t want computers or airplanes that crash.

  31. Excessive
    May 18, 2008 at 9:42 am | #35

    Dear Brian,

    Thank you for your comment. But you have to use right tool for the right thing. Linux is a server operating system, and if you want to use it on your desktop, you should be ready for some problems. Windows is designed to be a desktop operating system, and it still lacks specifications of servers compared to Solaris and Linux.

    That’s not the computers or airplanes crash, the thing which crashes is the user’s decision to use the wrong tool for the right job.

  32. raffaele
    May 24, 2008 at 6:32 pm | #36

    I used Linux for some years, and after that I choose to come back to Windows again.
    It’s not true that Linux is more secure. A lot of bugs were discovered in the past time, and they could be used by virus and malware like Windows. If no one make virus foe Linux is only because it’s market share is very low, not because it’s impossible.
    Remember that actual spyware and malware doesn’t need to be root in order to make their work, because normal user’s right are sufficient to open and write personal files, open sockets and so on.
    Last month a root exploit on Linux kernel was discovered, and a very bad bug was found in Debian/Ubuntu ssh key generator for example.
    If things like these happen to Windows a lot of virus writer try to make new virus that uses these exploit, but if this happen on Linux nobody care about because Linux is used by very few people.
    I’m using Windows 2000 since 8 years. No Linux distro have a support long like this. Only RedHat enterprise has 7 years, but Windows 2000 is still useful, instead a RedHat Enterprise of 7 years ago is not usable because it’s too old and a lot o components aren’t supported anymore today.
    If Windows is used well it’s stable and fast. If a lot of people have problems with Window it’s only because they are incompetent. But if all these people instead of Windows use Linux they have the same problems, and probably more and more.
    There is a lot of other things, but I stop here. I want only say that if I use Windows is not because I’m ignorant: I know very well Linux, but to me it’s not able to replace Windows.

  33. Excessive
    June 7, 2008 at 7:21 pm | #37

    Hi Raffaele,

    Your comparison with security is somehow wrong. For a Linux virus or trojan to spread across the system, it must exploit or hack the kernel, or some other application which has root access. This is a bit hard by nature, because not every Linux system use the latest kernel. Even versions of user space applications differ across distributions. It is not standardized, and this is somehow helping Linux be more secure.

    Windows is, on the other hand, is not entirely usable by “standard” users. Windows needs admin permissions to install or remove software. Under Linux, a user can compile and run, install or remove any software under his/her home directory. Sure these can be done with Windows too, but it is a bit hard to implement.

    Linux users can try anything in their home directory, without affecting system. I can even try a formatter virus to see if it works, under a user account. But under Windows, even with new UAC, the software you chose to run are running under administrative rights, and if this is a badware, you have no chance but to watch it infect your system.

    Also, Windows is standardized, and every virus or trojan, which target a specific version of Windows (e.g. XP) will work under every XP version flawlessly. Because of Windows’s security model, every XP user is working with Administrator privileges, and this makes Windows less secure than Linux.

    There are much to be said, but I think it is enough. Just look at some major companies, like Google. They depend their critical work on Linux, and somehow not hacked as much as Windows desktops or servers.

    Best regards,

  34. dave parker
    June 22, 2008 at 11:53 pm | #38

    WINDOWS SUCKS. It really really does. And i finally decided to replace the windows XP operating system on my 4 years old desktop (P4@2.4GHz,1MB,D865GBF,533MHzFSB,512MB DDR). I’d like to take this opportunity to reveal my experiences.
    It’s a sunday, no work, no friends around, just the perfect day to WASTE a lot of time re-inventing the wheel, and i’m fast to act on the opportunity after deferring my intentions for quite some time now. Let’s get started..
    Installation done(of-course i had to take the pain of resolving a million dependancies), and here he is, in all his glory, greeting me for the first time “welcome to openSUSE10.3″. Now this is the part where it asks you to select the graphics drivers and resolutions, i select the older intel driver at 1024 x 786//60Hz, and it asks me to reboot(just as in windows). Rebooting.. Oh no, where on earth did i go wrong? The screen that comes up doesn’t fill the display, it’s like i have the PC running on my cell fone’s screen! Okay, let’s try to fix this, being new to linux I’m not very confidant about monkeying around with the command line interpreator, but thankfully i spotted ‘yast’. Okay, wonderful, they do have a button to configure my video driver, even better, the tool detected my intel graphics hardware and the make n model of my monitor too!! WOW, GOOD JOB. The resolution’s set to exactly what i chose, 1024 x 786 at 60Hz, everything’s perfect but for the actual display.. No, I won’t give up this easy. Desperate, i started toying around with the settings, if the perfect setting didn’t work, maybe an imperfect would.. A couple of misfires and then.. BINGO, THERE IT IS,it works if i select generic vesa instead of LG 500G (my monitors model no, printed on it’s back and auto-detected by the OS). Dumb, but then-it’s a sunday and i have nothing else to do !!
    Now, we’re almost done aren’t we? I just need to create a new non-administrator account (“non-root” if that’s what you people like to call it).Done, next? Hook up to the internet. I use my nokia N95 as a wireless modem, and in windows i load the nokia PC suite, select my country, select my network operator, and click “connect”.
    In linux, this is what I had to had to go thru:

    # hcitool scan
    #sdptool browse and see which channel is assigned to the service “Dial Up networking”

    #rfcomm bind 0

    #chdir /etc, vi wvdial.conf

    (step 5):
    Modem = /dev/rfcomm0
    Baud = 230400
    SetVolume = 0
    DialCommand = ATDT
    FlowControl = Hardware(CRTSCTS)
    Modem = /dev/ttyACM0
    Baud = 230400
    SetVolume = 0
    DialCommand = ATDT
    FlowControl = Hardware(CRTSCTS)
    [Dialer GPRS]
    Username =
    Password =
    Phone = *99***1#
    Mode = 1
    Inherits = Modem0
    [Dialer DATA]
    Username =
    Password =
    Phone = *99***1#
    Mode = 1
    Inherits = Modem1
    [Dialer Defaults]
    Modem = /dev/rfcomm0
    Baud = 230400
    Init1 = ATZ
    Init2 = ATQ0 V1 E1 S0=0 &C1 &D2 +FCLASS=0
    Init3 = AT+CGDCONT=1,”IP”,”airtelgprs.com”
    ISDN = 0
    Modem Type = Analog Modem
    Area Code =
    Phone = *99***1#
    Username =
    Password =
    Ask Password = 0
    Dial Command = ATDT
    Stupid Mode = 1
    Compuserve = 0
    Force Address =
    Idle Seconds = 3600
    DialMessage1 =
    DialMessage2 =
    ISDN = 0
    Auto DNS = 1

    step 6:
    when dialing via Bluetooth, #sudo wvdial GPRS

    and when dialing over the USB cable, #sudo wvdial DATA


    WOW, there’s firefox, and here comes google, sure that was easy, linux is getting easier by the day, and the all powerful command prompt is much better than the windows GUI, and it’s a SUNDAY, no work-lotsa time to play.
    Okay, so I finally kissed bill goodbye. Feels great, I think i’m much cooler than freddie, he’s still on windows! How about takin takin a shower n grabbin a mug of coffee before i start using the system? sounds good? well, that’s what i did.. Freshened up from the shower-coffee combo, i pressed on the power button full of zeal. “welcome to openSUSE 10.3″, Feels great ! :)
    Here’s the part where i type in my username n password, oh no, another issue? This time, the system returned me back to the login screen. After a couple more of futile attemps and useless restarts, i tried the failsafe mode. Ok, here i have the $ prompt (shell, console, whateva).. ray of hope.. # startx and.. no, xserver crashed with 3 pages full of error reports and hexadecimal numbers (Linux sure is stable you see, they have kept the (arguably unstable, as in my case) “x” out of it, end result? when x crashes, you still have the unix prompt, something like “safe mode with command prompt”, or more appropriately, something like the XP recovery console prompt,present in windows too, but then of course, the linux prompt is stronger, you can search for files with a special sequence of charactors in the 8th para n ftp them accross, all from the prompt, while windows allows “fixmbr”, “fixboot”, “chkdsk” and such recovery commands, but hey-that’s what i need now!!).
    Okay, but I won’t give up, being new to linux, every little advancement appeared to motivate me, until i gave up and deleted the limited account and created a new acount from root. The new account worked fine, i restarted the system about 2-3 times just to make sure. Great, I finally have a working linux system. Installing limewire and yahoo messenger was a piece of cake, although the yahoo messenger available for linux is a joke compared to the yahoo messenger for windows in terms of features, appearence, and almost everything you could possibly think of.. It’s late, i need to go out to bob’s place, he’s organized a re-unite party.
    3 hours of pure fun with old friends and i’m back home. Linux time again.. Hit the power button, “welcome to openSUSE 10.3, enter limited account password, and..” nothing.. X server crashed again.. Logged in as root (x worked fine from root), looked up the log files, nothing significant, almost nothing in human readable form in there. Checked HDD free space, 46GB free on /, no home directory. Everything appears perfect. Disabled 3d support and retried, no go- the same error persists.. Downloaded and tried a few othe drivers, nothing worked until monday, the next day-when i suddenly found a magic cure to all my ailments. Still wondering what? Well, i re-installed windows XP pro. Shortcut to success.. :)
    No hard feelings, I’m not a linux hater, it’s just too difficult for a fool like me..

  35. dave parker
    June 23, 2008 at 5:07 pm | #39

    correction, make that “no home partition”

  36. pooh
    July 15, 2008 at 5:47 pm | #40

    Suddenly the PC starts rebooting out of the blue. No warning, no Safe Mode menu option, nothing. Hardware overheating for sure. But all the temperatures seem to be in an acceptable range. Perhaps something wrong with XP? I make a clean reinstall, all the drivers, the anti-virus and the firewall, the rest of the software. Same reboots, no warning, no explanation.

    At this moment I install Mandrake One (less than 30 minutes including the creation and customization of three regular accounts) and to my surprise, no more crashes. Same hardware, a different desktop OS. No hard feelings, but XP is just too difficult for me.

    I do not think this kind of experience justifies saying that XP is no good on the desktop. It is very likely that there is something wrong with the drivers, maybe some hardware device is on the verge of failing. But most of the things above are related to the fact that Linux is not like Windows.

    Actually there is not even one Linux, but a collection of distributions sharing approximatively the same source code. Well, partly for hardware reasons and partly to avoid messing too much with configuration, I use two separate distributions for my PCs. They are different, but both have basically the same desktop, the same firewall (different interfaces), both have CUPS for sharing the printer, both can use ssh and freeNX (I’d love to be able to use them on Windows machines as well) and I can use them without being a technical person.

    Yes, I was sold a laptop under the false pretence it could run Linux, but you know what (except for the winmodem and for the limited, VESA functionality of the video card), it actually did with the right, mainstream distribution. Shortly afterwards I even stumbled across the right information on the Internet and downloaded and configured the manufacturer’s video drivers.

    So, I suspect that OS suckability depends objectively on the availability of the needed software and subjectively on how one likes to administer the system. Because all PCs need system administration. You either do it pre-emptively or reactively, by first configuring and then automating or by first automating and then reconfiguring/reinstalling.

  37. dave parker
    July 19, 2008 at 5:39 am | #41

    bottom line– Linux wastes time. If you’ve got lotsa time n like to call urself a geek cause u can write kid-codes in a scripy-type language, then linux is definitely ur cup of tea. ;-)

  38. dave parker
    July 19, 2008 at 6:14 am | #42

    And by “kid-codes in a script-type language” i mean the .conf files and kind. The one i had to type in to get my internet up, would be a classic example. If you’re the type that takes pleasure in typing those three pages of pseudo-codes & likes to call himself a genius cause he could type that in-you’d love it… And if you like to get all ur drivers installed from the vendor CDs, and like to keep simple things like connecting and installing a three-click process, better stick to windows, it doesn’t crash, and it’s pretty easy to recover ur data in case it does. Quality doesn’t come cheap. OpenSource is like communism, sounds good, but impractical and harmful at times. Opening up the source for public modification is the soul cause behind the innumerable compatibility issues faced by the inumerable versions of the linux operating system distributions out there in the wild (not the kernel, i don’t care much about a super stable kernel if the distro apps and x server crash on it). This is further complicated by lack of vendor hardware driver support which falls back upon OpenSource, linux won’t respect the vendor’s rights to it’s intellectual property-it’s open, and to be truly open the vendors must give out their innovations to the rest of the world. And if someone’s havin a hard time with sonething as simple and supported as XP, may the Almighty save him from linux..:-)

  39. dave parker
    July 19, 2008 at 6:30 am | #43

    A PC CAN’T SUDDENLY START REBOOTING AND SHOW THE SAME SYMPTOMS EVEN AFTER A CLEAN OSRI WITHOUT A HARDWARE FAILURE. Either the problem was always there (ie, some XP native driver being incompatible to some hardware compoent in ur system), or you were installing an incompatible software right after the fresh installation. And third possibility-you just hate windows and made up that story. :-)

  40. Steel
    August 3, 2008 at 1:57 am | #44

    Hello . Remember , the best OS is the one that fit your needs.

    I use Windows Xp (I think Vista REALLY SUCKS) for everyday computing, (web surfing, messenger, office , games, etc) and NOD32 Antivirus .
    System quite stable and free from virus since 6 months ago .

    Also I have another old PC with Debian installed. It runs pretty good for being a celeron 300 mhz and 128 mb ram . It was almost impossible to run Xp smoothly (like debian do) on that old crap .
    Windows 98 or ME won’t never hurt me again on it :D

    Different hardware , different needs, different OS, same usability.

  41. HCalitz
    August 30, 2008 at 4:21 pm | #45

    Interesting to see the different viewpoints and preferences. I’m using Linux exclusively for about 6 years now. Suffered through Redhat 6 on my own, didn’t even know what Linux was for, and tried repeatedly to run it as an app under Windows. Really clueless. Then figured out the concept of the existance of another operating system. Eventually my view of using a computer only to type something, make a presentation and do some emial/web surfing changed.

    Linux allowed me to be much more productive, producing videos, backup data and webpages on a daily basis through scripts, writing manuals, manipulating photos, making sound effects, so much more! Recently I changed to Debian (Etch) and what a pleasure everything became. Even less worries.

    I am maintaining Windows and Linux machines in our organisation. It takes me about 5 minutes to hook a new Linux machine to our network. Can not say that Windows allows me to let go that easy. The Linux machines just works. The Windows machines require a bit more patience — my experience.

    To observe my kids’ preferences were very interesting. My youngest kids, ranging between 4 and 13, prefer the Debian machines for privacy and ease of work. OpenOffice and Scribus is the favourite wordprocessing apps for them. My oldest (16) prefers Windows “until American’s Army can run just as good on Linux”. This was an eye opener to me, as none of my kids are presured to use a specific computer and have free access (and usernames) to both Linux and Windows machines.

  42. xenon155
    September 10, 2008 at 9:14 am | #46

    There is little doubt that Linux is a failure on the desktop. This is seen by how the consumers as a whole have completely rejected Linux and it now enjoys 0.83% market share. Let put things in perspective :

    XP has around ~70% and Vista has ~18% market share – 3x as much as OSX. (PPC & Intel combined) The next closest competitor is Windows 2000 (1.9%) and then Linux at 0.83%. Windows 2000 is about 10 years old now and people have stopped buying it for quite a while. Just to underline what I’m trying to say, NT4 has 0.72% market share and the IPhone has 0.30%.

    The common excuse from the FOSS camp for the dismal failure is.

    1. Microsoft is forcing vendors to ship with Vista. The truth is this hasnt been true for about a decade or so. Due to the antitrust rulings MS is forbidden to have lock-in deals with OEMs or even ship **ANYTHING** of value with windows. You get tons free software installed by default with any popular Linux distro. Also keep in mind that linux has a higher market share in servers (~25-30%) where Microsoft also operates. One would think if MS wanted to stop linux from shipping, it could easily have. Now IIS is poised to overtake linux/apache soon in the webserver market. Dont believe me, do your own research.

    2. No Major OEM support. This is false again. Dell, IBM, HP, Asus etc have for quite a while now offered Linux desktops / laptops. Lenovo has recently decided to stop offering desktop linux citing lack of interest.

    Now, keep in mind that a TON of money (almost 1 billion) has been pumped into Linux by IBM, Novell, Redhat, etc. This is not a small amount.

    Also keep in mind that a lot of linux users are strongly anti-microsoft and are famous in spreading FUD or half-truths and in some cases flat out lies about MS products. Compared to the number of microsoft users, only about 5% even visit forums.

    Linux has enjoyed fairly positive press but MS in recent times has been criticized a heck of a lot. Whether that is valid or not is not important now.

    When you know all these facts, the logical conclusion is that users have rejected the linux OS. The reason – Linux sucks. :)

  43. rotundilox
    September 11, 2008 at 2:44 pm | #47

    Good article and I must, unfortunately, concur with your assessment: Linux is great for servers but not for the average user.

    Awhile back I made a “best effort” at using Mandrake 8.1 as a desktop OS. After much frustration, screaming, banging my head, pounding the floor, raising arms to the sky screeching “What the H is this junk?” among other exclamations, I had to remove Mandrake. I liked the look, it was neat and different but it was unstable. Some things worked, some didn’t. Some things that did work stopped working for no reason at all. After about 3 reinstalls thinking “Maybe I left something out” I gave up and put Windas back on.

    Recently I installed Fedora 9. Very good. Many earlier problems have been ironed out. More drivers are available. Linux has made a lot of progress. Fedora on the desktop is, in my estimation, about 85% of what Windows already is. Mandrake was maybe 40%. Linux still has some laps to run to catch up. There really really REALLY needs to be a central repository for drivers. It’s a mixed bag out there picking a distro hoping it can make all your hardware work. Ubuntu seems to be leading the way in making a driver cornucopia hence its popularity.

    However, it took me 4 installs to get Fedora working right. The average user would have quit after the first or second try.

    The first install failed with “file not found”.
    2nd install went ok but the sound dropped and nothing I tried could fix it so I reinstalled.
    That 3rd attempt failed with “file not found” again.
    The 4th install turned out to be a charm and it is, so far, working fine.

    I have no explanation as to why Linux works this time. Maybe the magic Linux fairy that oversees installs happened to be around and gave me a blessing. I’m still holding my breath hoping it will be stable.

    Since I know a bit about computers I can figure a lot of stuff out. Most computer users do not want to try and figure things out, no more than I want to figure out why my fuel-injection system isn’t working optimally. I am not going to dig under the hood trying to figure out a fuel-injection system, trace fuel lines, and so forth, so I should not expect the average computer user to dig through cryptic file names and adminstrator settings wondering why something isn’t working right. Most people just want to turn the key in the car and start driving just as most people want to press the “on” button and start computing. For now, from what I see, it’s Windows that works (and Apple too I assume) from the start but not Linux.

  44. Kennyp
    September 13, 2008 at 3:43 am | #48

    This is a great discussion. I can only speak from my personal experience. I have a MAC book Pro and I love it. I will never own another Windoze PC again. I run Windows through Vmware fusion for this simple reason. There are apps I need for my job that are only written for Windows, that’s it. If you ask anyone who has a computer science background they will tell you this (assuming they also know a bit about OS devel or the underlying code) Linux/Unix uses the underlying resources better. Also, if Linux had half the budget Microsoft has it would be 4 times as good ;-}. Why is it when I shutdown my MAC it shuts down in 5 seconds but a freshly installed windows XP machine takes 30 seconds. All things being equal, if all drivers/software were available for all operating sytems and we had a competition to let the best OS win, who do you guys think would win out?

  45. Libertaer
    September 13, 2008 at 3:44 pm | #49

    Great post and really good discussion here. I’m optimistic about Linux, and I believe it’s currently undergoing a transition from being a tinkerer’s system to being a mainstream user’s system. I see it happening, but realize that at present it’s still a source of frustration for non-technically inclined/interested people. I believe that criticism, such as what I read above, is helpful to the Linux application development community and will persuade it to become more focused on what end-users want. As for me, I’ve been using openSuSE for a couple of years, and I’m most impressed with my current installation, 11.x (with KDE 3.x).

    I really like being able to install applications directly from repositories with a few clicks, and to easily uninstall apps without leaving traces in a ‘registry’–because there is no registry! In this regard, I’ve had many problems with Windows over the years, and I’m glad to have finally made a complete switch to Linux. As a software developer (though not involved in any Linux projects, specifically), I can test drive new productivity tools and then dump them without hassle or causing bloat. Reinstalling is also hassle-free due to not having a registry.

    In Windows, I often had to fish through the registry to remove entries that prevented reinstalls. For example, recently, I tried to install Norton anti-virus on my dad’s XP box. Something went wrong and I had to reattempt the installation. But the reinstallation didn’t work, because first I had to download a Norton removal tool to clean the registry! WTF!! With Linux, I don’t deal with that kind of crap; fortunately, dad let me install Linux on his machine after he saw what a mess it was to install the anti-virus software. Unfortunately, though, Linux has its own kind of crap.

    For a newbie, trying to figure out which video application to use is somewhat of a puzzle since there are several choices which aren’t always clearly defined. After months of experimenting, I discovered that I like Xine-based Kaffeine best. I use it for almost everything now. It really works great for me. Unfortunately, it doesn’t run Flash files; for that I need Adobe’s Flash Player, which is a PIA because it only comes in 32-bit; my systems and browsers are all x86_64, so I need a wrapper to make things work. It’s just a few clicks from the repository–no big hassle to install–but occasionally it crashes when attempting to view a Flash video. It doesn’t happen often, but only occasionally. So why can’t Adobe just produce a x86_64-bit version for Linux? Who knows… That’s the type of minor frustration that’s prevalent in the Linux world.

    Insofar as using Linux as a desktop in a work setting, I’ve become the de facto system administrator for about 6 machines in my company. I even run an Oracle database server machine for my own development work. I don’t spend much time tinkering other than to upgrade or occasionally install new software. I’m by no means an expert, but I actually find Linux fun and easy to administrate…but perhaps it’s not easy for a casual user. For that reason, I’ll say that it is necessary to have at least one capable person on-site. It’s not a hard job, but that person needs to be there if a question arises–e.g. when a user asks, “Why isn’t the Thesaurus installed in my OO.o? Writer application” For a casual user that’s a source of frustration, but for me it’s a few clicks and it’s done.

    Anyway, I don’t want to sound too much like a Linux fanatic. I’ll just say that it works great for me. But I appreciate all the LOUD criticisms that are directed toward it. It’s the only way the Linux world will respond to mainstream users.


  46. rotundilox
    September 15, 2008 at 3:59 pm | #50

    if all drivers/software were available for all operating sytems and we had a competition to let the best OS win, who do you guys think would win out?

    Kennyp, I think it’s not so much as the OS that would win but which distro can run the best and most applications since that is what most people use a desktop computer for. The “du” and “ls” and “grep” commands on Ubuntu are the same as in OpenSuse as in the other distros and even the BSDs. Cron and all that work pretty much the same.

    Personally, I think it would come down to a battle between KDE and Gnome because the Linux OS tends to be transparent (as it should be!). That is the beauty of Linux: the OS is outta your way. It works with you, not against. As Libertaer mentioned, the Windows registry can be really annoying, such as manually digging through the registry to remove junk because the uninstaller didn’t do it and you can’t reinstall until you do.

    Both KDE and Gnome are good but KDE (in my opinion) could use a little streamlining. I think each distro personalizing KDE or Gnome is the right way to go but having a new user choose between the two is confusing. Which is better? Neither, really; it’s a matter of whether you like the word Gnome and a little black footprint and Nautilus or you like nearly every application called K-something. After using both I had to go with Gnome. I hate the name (a bearded midgit?) but the menus are better organized than KDE, at least it is in Fedora. Sure, I can customize menus the way I like but I don’t want to spend any time messing with menu organization correcting logic mistakes. I have better things to do with my computing time.

    As you mentioned you use Vmware to run Windows apps. The reason you had to resort to that is because the majority of professionally designed software is written for Windows. Businesses rely on professional apps like MS Powerpoint and AutoCAD, and many people do their taxes using TaxCut or use PhotoShop to edit photos and such. Most of this software is click-install and you’re done if it isn’t already bundled with the OS. The great strength of Windows is uniformity. If the software says “For Windows” there is a 99.5% chance it will work on your Windows PC.

    Not quite so in Linux. If it is an .rpm it might not work with your version of Linux, and if you have a different kernel version than which the software was compiled with then you are almost guaranteed to have problems. Most distros seem to be doing a good job keeping everything in sync and updated so it isn’t much of a problem.

    The average user isn’t going to want to go to the trouble to load up an app to run another app. They average user wants the OS to do all that stuff. If the software was designed to run on a particular OS then might as well use that OS since that is its optimum environment. People take the path of least resistance. Windows is the path of least resistance.

    In Linux, most of the software costs nothing, just a free download from somewhere. The impression is that most of it was designed by hobbyists in their spare time. There are a few gems like OpenOffice which, from what I can tell, is as good as or even better than MS Office. Gimp & Amarok are pretty good too.

    Note to Linux developers: do not include untested, unfinished software (mostly it is games) in your final release. To an ordinary, non-technical user, a crappy program makes the whole distro seem bad. It makes one think “If they can’t get a simple game to work properly, what else is junk in this OS? All of it? No wonder it’s free…

    In reality, most people and businesses who plan to do serious desktop computing aren’t going to put their trust in free software. Many people want to buy their software in a store because If it costs something then it must have value. If it is free and costs nothing then it can’t be of much value, “You get what you pay for.” There are no expectations of quality. That is the thinking of most people. There is also the comfort factor that if it doesn’t work you can call a HelpDesk or return it for a refund.

    So, until we see Linux apps for sale in stores, where people can touch and read the flashy, commercially arty designed packaging, Linux on the desktop will always remain some sort of stepchild OS people whisper and wonder about like a black-sheep cousin in the family.

    From what I’ve read, a fair number of people have tried Linux, mentioned all the problems they’ve had –”I tried it once. Didn’t work. Dropped it” then went back to Windows. The Apple users I know tend to be incredibly loyal so they do not switch and they do not seriously consider another OS. They have found their Holy Grail.

    Where was I? Oh yeah, OS winner. I don’t know. I already think Linux is a winner. It works for me for what I want to do but Windows has its place too. I guess Ford pick-ups fill their niches and the Prius its niches. Linux fills its niche and Windows fills its too. I want both (and Apple too) in the world just to avoid OS monopoly tyranny.

  47. Caleb
    October 8, 2008 at 5:47 am | #51

    Let me begin by saying that I was once a windows user, not happy about it, but I used it. It’s what I was raised using so I was just used to using it. Never liked it. The error messages, the freezing, it all got on my nerves. However, this is computer behavior. You just try to deal with it and get on with life. A friend I work with told me I should try Linux OS, specifically Ubuntu. I said what the hell and thought it wouldn’t hurt to dual boot with windows so that I could have both. Well, the dual boot was not a success and I ended up with Ubuntu only. Didn’t like this at all. I wasn’t used to it, it wasn’t doing what I wanted it to do. I hated it, but I worked with it in hopes that things might work out for the better. Well, believe it or not, they did. Ubuntu has an excellent support forum, regardless of what anyone tells you. I took my problems to the forum and all of my problems were addressed and solved. I love my computer. I would never put windows back on and jeopardize my system that way. It’s too unstable. Everything I hated about computers wasn’t much of a problem anymore. Linux doesn’t require near the system resources, Viruses, adware, spyware and all those “goodies” are barely a threat. Best of all, it’s free. I thank Linux for helping me to appreciate the computer.

  48. alex2112
    October 29, 2008 at 5:59 am | #52

    Great post here.

    IMO Linux isn’t the way to go for desktop computing. The average user doesn’t want to get in the process of learning cryptic commands, editing configuration files, etc in the year of 2008! Add to this limited driver support for not so common hardware. For instance neither Ubuntu nor Debian managed to detect my professional audio interface. Tried to configure it by myself. No luck. I prefer doing music rather than coding.

    Instead Linux fits perfect in the server market which is great.

    I am windows user (of course) and here my audio interface works perfect, my wm smartphone syncs great with outlook, and my windows system will not complain because i switched my graphics card because the previous one failed!

  49. Stefy
    January 2, 2009 at 12:58 am | #53

    My opinion is: every os sucks. Every os has own mode to operate, to install apps, etc. Hey, guys, you don’t have to look the philosophy behind the os. You just wanna do your jobs on the COMPUTER. Ho cares what os is installed. I use windows on desktop because its esy to operate. I have a homesever that runs linux(ubuntuserver). I don’t care about the philosophy i care about my machines. On windows i use pirated softare to, of course, for my personal use. If i have to use it to make money i buy it, or i looked for the free alternatives. I like when my things working. I don’t care how. At home, for me. If i will use computers for work, i don’t know. I will look for the easy way. Scuse for my english, i am romanian.

  50. sorteal
    January 20, 2009 at 10:03 am | #54

    A lot of the complaints I’ve read here have to do with driver issues. The problem of drivers is not Linux but the companies that do not provide drivers for Linux. I’ve used Linux since 2000 and find it vastly superior to Windows in terms of speed and usability. Currently I run Linux Mint and the only driver I have to install is graphics card drivers and that consists of two mouse clicks after automated prompts. My Linux install has been painless and riddled with far less bugs than I ran into with Vista.

  51. Samus Aran
    January 20, 2009 at 10:09 am | #55

    “One of the reasons Windows gained widespread usage was application availability across versions. I can still use a Windows 3.1 application under XP (well, most of them). What if I try to ship a dynamically linked ELF executable to another system where the required libraries don’t exist?”

    This shows your lack of experience. You would *never* distribute a dynamically linked program to a different system than the one where it was compiled — that is stupid and foolish. Statically linked executables, or in the case where that violates a license, have a lib sub-directory for that program alone with the needed libraries. It is not difficult to do at all.

  52. Slackware Jennie
    January 20, 2009 at 10:36 am | #56

    Where do I start? Oh, yes, I’ll just go ahead and do the usual thing that I do. First, let’s punch a few holes in your arguments against Linux like we did in the #linux room earlier today.

    1) Beryl is no longer used, it’s now Compiz Fusion and this is 2008. I know, I know, this post was made in 2007 but no big deal. Compiz is much more stable now. But, that aside, what use is it really?! To show off? Good god. “Oh look, Vista has translucent window borders! How could we live without this?!” ; except now it’s “ZOMG wobbly windows!” But Linus Torvalds said it best in the 2.6.29rc1 changelog: “No compiz! Whatever shall we do without those wobbly windows?!” Vobs and bubbles, that’s all it is. It’s great for showing off, and certainly Windows doesn’t have anything like that.

    2) Also if you were seriously a Slackware user than you know darn well your Linux Lingo won’t translate well to a Windows user. Windows users are desensitized and indoctrinated. You will *not* convert a hardc0re Windows user. Those with some sense left in their skulls will realize that they’re being dominated and controlled by a veritable monopoly. If they were serious about giving Linux a try it’s no longer the case thanks to you *forcing* it onto them. You do not *force* a Windows user. You persuade them to give it a shot, and encourage them. I do support for several people in my area. *All* of their machines run Ubuntu 8.04LTS. I do regular Kernel upgrades on their systems and get paid for it. Have they had any complaints? No. They know that *if* they have complaints they can come to me. I will fix any issues they have. How often am I called? Once every few months for *minor* issues. “This program isn’t running.” Well, they didn’t have wine installed. “My Digital Camera isn’t working.” Simple solution, remove the MMC card and shove it into the slot on the front of the computer. Simple. Many of their systems haven’t been rebooted in months. ONLY when I do a kernel upgrade is their machine ever rebooted.

    3) “We compared our experience with Windows to Linux, and the result is: Windows has superior exception management for debugging purposes. At most of the situations, you get an error message saying (nearly) what’s wrong.” <— complete Bullshit. Linux has far better error handling and far better error reporting! *Any* problems you get in Linux (Come on, you should know this Mr. Slackware 3.x) are documented. You don’t get mysterious errors. That’s what dmesg, lspci, lsof, and compiling programs with debugging symbols is all about. Sure, you don’t compile a program with debug symbols unless you’re testing but much of the time if you try running a program from console and it crashes, guess what? You get an error report! Now, you compile the program with debug symbols and run it again. Guess what? You get more verbose output when something goes wrong. I’ve solved a few issues with Pidgin installs and other programs that would mysteriously segfault. The reasons? *Most* of the time it was dependency issues. A simple library install solved many of them. Sometimes it was in the code, and that’s the beauty of Free/Open Source Software! If *you* can’t fix the problem, you have millions of people who can. Windows users are divided, controlled and dominated. You can’t always fix the problem by contacting another Windows user. You can if you’re a Linux user, however. You can go to #linux on Freenode, or #slackware on Freenode, linuxquestions.org, or your distribution’s forum to find the answers. You *always* get some kind of answer. Rarely are issues unresolved. Sure, sometimes it takes a while, but you know what? If you’re not afraid of learning and choose not to remain under the thrall of a corporation you’ll fscking learn something.

    Anyone who values their freedoms and privacy will not use an OS that spies upon and desensitizes its user base. Regular reboots, mysterious errors, programs whose function is to refuse to function is *not* the way a computer user should be treated. If your OS does these things to you, then you don’t control your computer. You do not *own* your computer. It doesn’t *belong* to you anymore, it belongs to a corporation whose licensing has essentially taken control of you.

    After all, it is your choice.

  53. Slackware Jennie
    January 20, 2009 at 10:36 am | #57

    I meant 2009. Tiny laptop keyboard. Yay.

  54. Ian
    January 20, 2009 at 10:53 am | #58

    The OP is somewhat correct, but seems to miss a large part of how a system should be set up in the first place.

    One of the first design considerations should be, what hardware do I have, and what am I going to put on it. If you want a decent, stable Linux desktop, supported hardware should be used, and a distro thats supported on that setup. This is why someone buying a PC now with Linux pre-installed will have a whole different experience to someone who tries to put a random distro on a random set of hardware.

    Yet this is what we do with current PCs and Windows. Its akin to saying build your own PC, and then saying it doesn’t work quite right, when most Windows users have a machine with Windows pre-installed (so even if they reinstall they know it should work again).

    So if you need to support a setup, ideally you should be recommending a system that is tested to work with a particular distro, and that one on it. Those more technically minded, can get away with playing with whatever setup they want.

    This is actually how Ubuntu works better than most (I’m not saying its better, but for new users). It starts with the same base setup and packages, so at least one thing is constant. This is similar to windows. Then at least any error that occurrs can be reproduced from the same base set.

    I have now 3 main systems, running Fedora, Ubuntu, Suse (and eeexubuntu for netbook). All of them stable and all using 3d effects and similar (just using that as an example that often can be unstable). The main key here is though I have chosen the best distro for the hardware and stuck with it. Do this, and its hard to go wrong, and I have to say, work wise, my productivity is far higher in Linux than ever in Windows.

    I would also say, typically if you stay within the packages of the distro you should see less problems as well. I spend more time fixing my son in laws XP Desktop because he has installed X,Y,Z that have never been tested with other software, comes from an unknown source, and offers little protection, whereas I have never had to amend anything he has done on any of my Linux PC/Laptops.

  55. Excessive
    January 20, 2009 at 11:37 am | #59

    Hello Samus,

    Thank you for stopping by. But the times are changed, and if an operating system needs to thrive, it has to provide library compatibility. Do you think Microsoft engineers are stupid to add A’s, W’s, and Ex’s to API functions? This is made to maintain application compatibility.

    Under Windows, this approach creates a DLL hell, I accept that. But it also ensures any application will run smoothly under any Windows version.

    Unless Linux manages this approach, it will never get the market it deserves.


  56. Excessive
    January 20, 2009 at 11:54 am | #60

    Hello Slackware Jennie, and welcome to my blog!

    Do you remember Koules? I think it came preinstalled with Slackware 3.x, and I still miss those times. I remember that I was trying to setup my sound card with isapnp tools to make it work. Everything was hard those days.

    Anyway, here is my thoughts on the points you made:

    1. Personally, I do not care whether it is Beryl or Compiz Fusion, it is all yada yada for me. But if you want your customers to use a different system, you should provide something unique, different. Something attractive, which will push them to Linux.

    2. I completely agree the second point. However, Windows provides an “install and forget” approach, and this suits our customers. In our country, support is not cheap, and people mostly want to solve their own problems.

    3. What about kernel level error trapping? Do you also get a warning from XWindow subsystem? No. Just a regular beep, and the world goes dark. What I meant in my post was, unless you are always working with console, user space applications are mostly unable to receive a notification in case of a fatal error. Of course, you can recommend using SysRq shortcuts in case of a system failure to shutdown system normally, but it is hard by nature for a Windows user.

    Accept it, Linux is a server operating system by design, and you can not solve every problem with GUI tools. You have to learn to use it.

    You are a fanboy, aren’t you? :)

  57. Excessive
    January 20, 2009 at 12:05 pm | #61

    Hello Ian, and thank you for posting your thoughts.

    I agree that, without considering hardware requirements, choosing a software is not logical. But in the world of Windows, almost every hardware is supported by manufacturers in the first place. So, deployment is not a real issue with Windows.

    What happens if a user wants to try Windows? He will mostly find stable drivers for his/her even most unique hardware, and will use its every feature.

    What happens if a user wants to try Linux? Chances are, he/she will find a driver, but installing it will require a small knowledge, and most of the Windows users don’t have this information. Also, if he/she is lucky he/she will be able to use ALL features of the hardware.

    Just to use Linux, saying “We should change these parts in order to run Linux” to a customer is pointless. They don’t have a problem with Windows. They know their hardware works perfectly. You can’t explain this to a customer, whose knowledge is not near any IT specialist. They will think you are trying to scam them :)

    In my post, I have indicated that I pushed usage of Ubuntu. I don’t know the status of Ubuntu, as I’m not installing it for a long time now.

    The point is, you don’t have to learn anything with Windows. The people already knows how to use it. No commands, no background info, no config files.. And people tend to choose what they used to.

    I love Linux, and will love it forever. I’m using Arch Linux btw. But Linux is not ready for desktop users, and probably will not be ready, ever.

    Thank you for your post. I really appreciate it.

  58. Slackware Jennie
    January 20, 2009 at 1:04 pm | #62

    I notice you conveniently sidestepped most of my points. Congratulations.

    “But if you want your customers to use a different system, you should provide something unique, different. Something attractive, which will push them to Linux.” <– what is it with you and *forcing* people to do things? This is the Microsoft way, so I shouldn’t be surprised. Rather than let them come to you, you would rather shove things into their faces, down their throats, or into any orifice available. Can we say ‘rape’?

    That isn’t how you do things in the Linux community. You don’t force users to do things. If they don’t want to learn, fine. But to be quiet honest, who wants idiots who will place their 42" UXWGA HD monitor into an all-in-one Printer to take a screenshot joining the Linux community anyway?

    If you’re afraid to learn new things, Linux isn’t for you. But, obviously, you’ve been assimilated into the Redmond machine. Pity. I suppose the Linux community is doomed with people like you spreading FUD. You have the greatest argument: "I’ve used Linux. I know what it’s like. It’s not for you! FEAR the command line! FEAR doing things and learning new things!"

    People will remain willfully ignorant. That’s what Microsoft and Apple want. Be happy with what you got because that’s what they want. They want you to willfully surrender your control and your freedom to do what you want with your machine.

  59. Excessive
    January 20, 2009 at 2:20 pm | #63

    Dear Jennie,

    I really know what you meant, by heart. But I wasn’t forcing anybody for anything. Making something unique, beautiful, attractive to gain user base does not mean force. This is not Microsoft way. The Microsoft way is to make people believe that Windows is the best operating system for everything in this world, while embedding spies to every operating system. But for an end user, having an anti-virus software is adequate for feeling secure. To explain Linux’s benefits, you must first explain the security to the Windows people.

    You are right. People should learn to use their computers. But because of vendor lock-in, and huge marketing campaigns, this will never happen.

    Saying “You are just a bunch of idiots, you are unable to use a computer, you know nothing about programming” does not help anybody. Lots of Linux fanboys are following this approach.

    I am just realistic. People will continue to use Windows, because they know how to use it. People mostly tend avoid change, and an operating system is a major change.

    If I want people to fear Linux, I would write a Linux bashing post at the first place, and the conversation couldn’t reach this point.

    Look at the conversation quality since I created this blog post. No one is bashing anybody. Nobody is swearing to each other. I indicated several times that I love Linux, and using it since almost 12 years. My post is not positive or negative. Of course, a newcomer to Linux will be afraid to start. But it is not a “Linux is bad, stay away” post either.

    Linux is not problematic more than Windows. In fact, a fellow who knows how to use a Linux system will get HUGE impact on performance, security and stability over Windows.

    But the learning curve seems the most important step in this shift.

    Thank you very much for writing a second response.

  60. DopeJoe
    January 26, 2009 at 5:16 am | #64


    Wow. Your posts exemplify the spirit of lintards everywhere, and it’s no wonder that desktop linux usage is still well below 1%.

    Afraid to learn new things? WTF? Why the hell would i go back to driving an Edsel when my new Accord runs perfectly?

    Linux. Is. For. Servers.

  61. John Doe
    February 1, 2009 at 12:07 am | #65

    As a former support specialist, I feel that although Linux has come a long way, for many users, windows will continue to be the better OS for most average users.
    Users do not care so much about the OS, they really care about the quality and depth of third party applications and hardware support, and ease of use installing and using them.

    -No matter what distro with compiz enabled on, DVD video tearing is still an issue in Linux
    -Random hard lockups still occur when desktop effects are turned on (any distro)
    -Some distros take a long time to get the latest applications into their repository (gimp 2.6/openoffice 3/thunderbird) and you either have to compile yourself, or try an unsupported .deb file, and hope it doesn’t break or change other components in the OS. In windows, download click install, done.
    -installing apps via synaptic is just not sexy. People like to go to an application’s web site and just download, click, install. In linux, if there is no yum, .deb or .rpm file, you are forced to follow lengthy commandline or instructions and pray you don’t miss something or screw something up.
    -the linux file structure and commandline is not familiar to many users of windows. Most windows programs go to c:\program files (as it should be), in linux it can be opt or bin or is it/and is it the profile opt or bin? Because of the many distros, there is no standardization among all distros, some use debian base, some fedora, slackware. This forces app developers to make custom builds of their apss per specific distro and version. It’s easier to build a single installation files that will work in windows 95/982000/NT/Xp/Vista.
    -in windows, the OS is better separated from the applications. And what I mean is, when you do windowsupdates, it’s easier to tell what updates you need. In Linux, if there is a new .glib file, do I need it? What exactly does it do and will it break my OS or my apps?
    -freeware apps also exist in windows and many are better quality like hddvdfabdecrypter, daemon tools, klite codec pack, right click menu extensions (send to menu), pdfxchange lets you add text into pdf files and resave, photofiltre free, paint.net (gimp is just too unintuitive for many users)many freeware streaming video to psp and ipod all in one conversions apps like Atubecatcher. And of course games, directx titles are so advanced now and fun, and trying to get them to run in linux requires experience and compromises. (no antialiasing/subpar sound/lower res and fps, graphic issues and glitches. Also many people like to edit DV video and create dvd menu. OSX and Vista have basic DVD movie creator, and in linux it’s not generally installed by default. Also you can not play HD-DVD or Bluray in linux yet (meaning pop disc in and press play) without requiring ripping or workaround around drm.

    Also some problems solved regrading an application may not work in a different or other distro. You are forced to sift thru forums for specific app for a specific version of a specific distro for a specific window manager (kde/gnome/xfce).

    the application naming used in linux is confusing, gimp/gxine/gstreamer/kthis/kthat/xthis/gtkthis/gimp/xine kplayer. Please use better sounding words like thunderbird, firefox, evolution,abiword.

    That said, linux is a viable option if you can accept it’s limitations. It is a much better OS for servers and speciality like NAS or firewall/router though.

    There is more to an OS than just security, there is ease of use, ease of installing apps without modifying sources list or adding dependencies (just click to install). Making sure all the components work together smoothly and when you cut data in one app, it properly pastes into another app. Making sure the line between OS and apps is separated, so accidentally installing a component won’t accidentally break the OS,

    If you are an experienced user, than Linux is a great playground to use and test with. But if you are an average Joe, you want an OS that just works with things that are intuitive and no commandline.

  62. deficateonyourwindows
    February 28, 2009 at 8:10 am | #66

    New to linux installed ubuntu and fell in love with it easy to use and down right runs 100% smoother than windows i’ve run windows 95 98 2k 2kpro xp and vista and all of them suck although i did favor windows 2k profesional over all others ran very well with no hick ups but needed a change just got tired of being plagued by viruses adware malware couldn’t even read an email without worrying not to mention always had some sort of bug to work out linux in my own experience is my simpler than windows.

    now there is just a few things i have a problem with printer support and dial up support is very lacking if they would figure out a way to resolve these issues it would be awesome i am having a problem with getting a hardware modem to install with ubuntu 8.10 i got an actiontec pm560lki wich is a full hardware modem i tried so many different things to get this to install i’ve beaten a dent in my forehead i have a newer motherboard and it doesn’t have a serial port on it anywhere not even onboard
    com to serial which is now an even bigger problem since i can’t use a serial modem like everyone tells me to about drives me nuts then they try and tell me maybe i have a winmodem i don not have a winmodem/softmodem i know the difference between a controllerbased and non-controllerbased modem also i get why don’t you just get broadband well here it is i am not in an area where broadband is accessable meaning i have not option for broadband in my area there isn’t any cable in my area live near amish community only option i have is a pci or usb modem if anyone could give me some advice i would love to hear it

  63. dave parker
    February 28, 2009 at 11:49 pm | #67


  64. March 12, 2009 at 10:41 pm | #68

    “deficateonyourwindows” you said Linux runs smoother? As in what sucking like shit? There is no way in hell that Linux desktop is better than Windows Xp/Vista or OSC. Linux is the bastard desktop that lintards keep trying to peddle. It’s like garbage you sell at bazaars, but noone wants them.

    using Linux can be categorized in any of these terms:

    It’s just around the corner(TM)
    Linux Really Started Taking Off just 18 Months Ago (TM)

    Linux runs smoother my @ss funny man funny.

  65. me
    March 28, 2009 at 7:42 am | #69

    Linux sucks.
    I am using linux right now. I keep using linux. something is wrong with me i prefer an os that almost works.

    my father used to collect old cars that almost worked. he spent countless hours working on them. He fervently believed that steam cars were going to come back.

    by comparison, my linux habit is much cheaper than my fathers car fixing habit. tho no less time consuming.

  66. MercinovA
    June 26, 2009 at 8:10 pm | #70

    LINUX is…always has been…and (hopefully) will always be…an OpenSource Project based on the IDEA of Building a Better, Alternative, Free OS…

    MS Windows and any of its future derivatives will ALWAYS be thought of and marketed as MainStream…

    Apple/Mac/OSX will always be the “Snob’s Comp”…

    …and none of the twain shall meet…


    LINUX = Sending the KILL Signal to MS since 1991…[done] = Rebel

    MSWindows = Sending “The ONLY OS The World Will Ever Need” = Imperial

    Apple/Mac/OSX = Sending “Your Status Quo To Our Bank Account” = Capital

    Pick a Lane & Happy Computing!! : )

  67. Anon
    June 27, 2009 at 9:07 pm | #71

    I have been using Ubuntu/Linux for 2.5 years and everything works except one thing:
    Video without tearing

    I have tried with four different computers with four different configurations and four different versions of Ubuntu, with or without Compiz, with or without proprietary drivers.

    I solved my problem by buying a Mac. Now my video and imaging software runs beautifully without video tearing (I also have video editing software now whereas Linux has nothing for video that actually works). My Ubuntu box still makes a great software development system.

  68. Sjef De Klerk
    September 20, 2009 at 8:53 am | #72

    This morning I decided to checkout Linux, Redhat server 5. I wanted to install an IDE similar to Visual Studio and I had read that I should try CodeBlocks. After having installed Redhat, I spent almost 3 hours figuring out how to do so ! Damn ! On WIndows, it’s 1 click on the Visual studio exe, on Redhat it’s a nightmare …

    Anyway, managed to get Codeblocks going. Then, I wanted to install a mediaplayer. I tried installing VLC. I’ve literally spent 4 hours trying to find out how to do so but I haven’t succeeded yet. Almost gone crazy, decided to let it go and install ‘mkplayer’, which worked pretty much right away.

    During this first day I noticed how buggy the video Linux video drivers are, even after installing the right Nvidia drivers. Just move a window around and look at the edges, they move buggy like hell. There is no Linux driver for my soundcard (EMU 0202) so I have no sound.

    I noticed random ‘slowness’ when I want to install a new program. Also, I had to reboot once since I could not click on the system menu bar anymore: nothing happened when I clicked on either ‘applications’, ‘places’ or ‘system’. After a hard reset and reboot it worked again.

    Then, all those different clones drive me crazy ! You finally find the file you want just fo find out it’s a .DEB file which you can’t use in Redhat. And then the packaging ! Drives me crazy as hell. You compile something, packages are missing ! and ‘Yum’ sucks hard as well …You need to add this rep, that rep and then all of a sudden yum doesnt work at all anymore and you need to delete reps again but then it doesn’t recognize the package anymore and you need to start all over again.

    And then, after a reboot, Yum said that some other Yum process was interfering and that that process needed to be shut down. However, in the system monitor there was no such a process with that PID (and I hadnt started Yum after the last reboot). Then, manually killing the process via the terminal worked.

    So, in short, buggy, slow, instable and very difficult to work with … I really really don’t get why people like Linux :( Seriously. Well, not giving up yet but this sure doesnt look good for starters …

  69. Noobie
    September 23, 2009 at 1:39 pm | #73

    Since absolutely nobody here seems to be interested in fixing the issues mentioned, here’s a start:

    beryl issues: same as windows, eye candy is experimental and not recommended in combination with things like games
    random freezes: run memtest86 (almost always hardware issue)
    slow dns: disable ipv6 (trying to look up for ipv6 names on non-ipv6 host is practically guaranteed to fail, horribly)

  70. _ezaK
    October 19, 2009 at 11:10 am | #74

    After years of tech support nightmares for users on Windows XP machines, when we started thinking about upgrading Vista (yay, more nightmares !), our company went instead to a full-linux solution for the desktop computers.

    It’s been a great success overall (we’re using ubuntu). You only need to train users so that they don’t try to install windows programs on their linux box (the most common tech issue we had since then), and it’s all right.

    In a business environment, linux on the desktop is a reality and it doesn’t “suck” — or at least it sucks much less than Windows. Low support cost and greater durability are two key issues that were solved admirably.

  71. Peter
    November 2, 2009 at 6:18 am | #75

    Yes it sucks. Hardware does not work, it generates a lot of heat (much more than Windows anyway)… command line garbage, cryptic configurations, unreadable copy and paste script spaguetti… it all feels like a high school science project:

    It looks perfect at distance. Try to use and adapt to your needs and it just falls over itself, requiring another science project just to keep it standing still.

    It’s ridiculous and unimpressive at most.

    And yes, I know how to configure phc all the way back and forth, undervolting, everything. But my time is money since I actually have a job and losing hours without any goal is not my kind of fun.

  72. AAA
    November 4, 2009 at 12:55 am | #76

    I’ve tried many different distros and versions of Linux over the last few months but I still can’t get it to display the refresh rate I have in Windows. I’ve looked all over the net for solutions but nothing seems to work. Eventually I just say “screw it”. XP may not be perfect, but at least it works alright most of the time.

  73. Black Dwarf
    November 7, 2009 at 12:48 pm | #77

    As an owner of machines running Windows, Mac, Solaris, and FreeBSD, and as a previous user of Linux, I say this:

    Linux sucks because it doesn’t do anything that another OS can’t do better.

    If I think my computer is an appliance that I don’t need to think about, I want a Mac.
    If I think my computer is for getting things done, I want Windows.
    If I think my computer is for helping other computers, I want BSD or Solaris.
    If I think my computer is a toy, a sort of puzzle I need to solve, a tinkering project for idle hours, I want Linux.

    I have enough puzzles in my life between work and finances and dealing with people around me. I don’t need Linux for that.

    Linux is number 2 at a lot of things. Application availability, driver availability, stability, security, usability…

    It has a lot of features. In practice this means it does a lot of things that you don’t care about. Who can compete in variety of filesystems? Yet, who uses more than two or three different filesystems on a single box? Unfortunately it often does not have all the features that any particular role for a computer will need. You could say all these features make Linux a great kernel/OS, but when you need a computer to fulfill one specific role, you’re probably not going to choose Linux unless you’re not even looking at other options.

    Microsoft knows its target demographics. So does Apple. So does Sun. So do BSD developers and advocates. Even the Haiku team know exactly what they’re trying to do.

    Linux’s failure is that it tries to be everything to everyone, but satisfies few, most of those few still have major problems with it (but don’t happen to be showstoppers), and the few who don’t have problems with it and are satisfied by it could go with almost any OS and be satisfied or even happier if they devoted an equal amount of time to learning the system.

    The failure of Linux is that it doesn’t know who it is. Its users and developers have no perspective on where Linux is in the world.

    I even say the extent of Linux’s success is the extent that it’s been able to get mindshare and enthusiasm that other free OSes haven’t. Any other advantages it has are derivatives of that, and not from any kind of technical superiority for any particular purpose.

    If Linux had a motto it’d be “Anything you can do I can do almost, I can do anything almost like you.”

    • abhi
      September 10, 2010 at 3:53 pm | #78

      “Linux’s failure is that it tries to be everything to everyone, but satisfies few”

      very true.
      very good discussions here…
      and there are many problems in linux, stability of linux is terrible, i have tried many distributions. sometimes they crash such that only hard reset is the option.
      by the way linux also starts my monitor with the highest refresh rate, in such refresh rate monitor screen looks sluggish and fonts become unreadable. there are many problems to write but just because not have enough time now…

      “If Linux had a motto it’d be “Anything you can do I can do almost, I can do anything almost like you.””

      yeah also true……..
      sorry for poor english.

  74. teenoie
    November 15, 2009 at 5:22 am | #79

    Trojan Remover 6.8.1 Trojan has the ability to eliminate and exterminate a fix registry key with. Very good program.

  75. Psy
    December 19, 2009 at 4:23 pm | #80

    kevin :
    You should recommend a distribution that provides support, then the customers(or you) can just call up the distribution’s support number for help.

    Wow, you must have no idea how to run a business and keep customers. Pawning your customers off to a 3rd party is a sure fire way to make your customers pissed. I agree Linux is not for end users and almost all end users just want to surf the web, listen to music, share family photos, email, play games and watch movies. All of this can wind up being very difficult on a Linux machine. Until it’s a double click away and you don’t have to recompile the system just to use a device, Linux should stay on servers and with the geeks!

  76. Alek
    February 28, 2010 at 1:11 am | #81

    The only problem I had so far in my Ubuntu 9.04 box is that I can’t have my webcam and microphone working. Also, my fingerprint reader does not work either, which bothers me less, but indeed it is still a hassle.

    As a software developer I know the difficulty for open-source developers to create hardware drivers for the gigantic variety of designs and assemblies, compatible to most or every architecture. In fact, and for example, webcams today are what dial-up modems were some years ago — a terrible source of low-compliant designs, workarounds and lack of documentation for developers to build on. What is surprising is that, despite the fact that, yes, I can have these pieces of hardware working on my Windows XP installation, installing drivers on Windows is also no easy task, and relying on third-party support for driver updates is at least very inconvenient (specially when my Realtek audio system keeps giving me BSODs for no apparent reason).

    A complete installation for Windows XP in my box will take no less than 6 hours, to get every piece of software I need, install every single security update, every driver and so on. The same process on Ubuntu will take at most 2 hours (depending mainly on your network speed for receiving updates; Microsoft Update seems to give me a very low download speed in the same circumstances), and you can actually use your system while it is updating/installing.

    Another drawback for Ubuntu, and I can say, for every Linux distribution I have ever used (a lot of them), is that I couldn’t run a graphical interface as smooth as Windows’. GNOME runs laggy; for example, changing a tab on Firefox gives me sensible redrawing latency, while on Windows it changes almost immediately. KDE is no win either, and I really don’t believe I have misconfigured anything or missed installation of any driver.

    That being said, Linux, overall, is a great system, but it still has its caveats — and these are not only cosmetics. Windows beats Linux in many, many ways: it runs smoother, is an order of magnitude simpler to use, has a great degree of advantage when it comes to drivers, and so on. But that’s about all of it. In every other aspect, Linux seems to be much more mature: software installation and update, system security, connectivity, et cetera. The deal is: if you don’t care about a lot of useless bulk in the innards of your system registry, system folders and every other crap Microsoft insists to poop on your machine, Windows is exactly at the right degree of usability for you. In Linux, if anything goes really wrong with your configuration once you get the installation working, the worst it can happen is that you will need to reset your /home by deleting all configuration files.

    There is no perfect OS as far as I’m concerned, and I am really not concerned with anything less than getting my job done straight. Linux tends to give me best performance here, but Windows is also nice, both being different and advantageous against each other in some aspects. My point is, it is simply ridiculous to state that “there are some things that are impossible to do on Windows”; anyone who talks this way doesn’t have a slight clue of what Windows really is: it is not a toy operating system. In contrast, Linux bashers that bash on bash (pun intended), for example, are as well too close-minded to understand that Linux’s goal is not to be simply a “better version of Windows”. It is a different OS, with different needs, for different people — not necessarily the minority –, and by it’s open-source nature, has its set of limitations.

    Comparing cars to computers is blatantly ridiculous (and even there we have a set of sensible differences between car brands!). Appealing to the “people just want to get their system working out-of-the-box” psittacism is just commonplace reasoning, a cliché’d argumentation. People really should define their needs _before_ they choose an OS, as much as they define their needs before, well, buying a car, if the comparison still stands.

  77. stoiccola
    March 7, 2010 at 7:30 am | #82

    The article lives on.

    Linux is great for browsing pr0n.

    Live cd.

  78. Lester
    March 15, 2010 at 9:48 pm | #83

    Ubuntu can be dodgy sometimes – I agree. In fact – on my old PC it f***ed up many a time. So ship with something like Mint or SuSE. They’re both stable and easy-to-use. But it’s only a problem because users don’t know how to use GNOME, KDE or XFCE(etc.) interfaces, and they think using bash is just for nerds.

  79. what
    April 2, 2010 at 6:15 pm | #84

    well, i am lazy, and there are no problem with windows which troubles my work. So, therefore, windows.

    Who said windows user dosn’t care security? there’s tons of precaution a user can take against virus/intrusions/trojans. as well as tons of ways to circumvent the lameness of windows.

    encryption.. sandboxie.. virtual machine.. full scale backup.. …

    Just using an obscure OS wont constitute enough protection if a user seriously does care about security.

    windows crashes, so does linux.

  80. Anom
    May 18, 2010 at 9:14 pm | #85

    An O.S. should just work. You should’nt have to make it work. IT should just work. Windows 7 > Any desktop linux. Deal with it.

  81. moonspell@gmail.com
    June 11, 2010 at 12:47 pm | #86

    I love Linux as a server and also as a desktop. I also believe in using the best tool available for a given task, and for this reason I have two workstations (a Windows and Linux), and a Linux server. I’m a professional Photoshop user since the late 90′s and to me, The Gimp just doesn’t cut it. It’s not that anything is wrong with it, I’ve even donated money to the project’s development but when you’re working on commercial projects with multiple artists on a very tight schedule and they all primarily use one version, you better stick to it to avoid compatibility issues (which I’ve faced in Gimp when handling certain PSD files created with Photoshop). But with that said, I still use The Gimp from time to time on personal projects.

    Another area where Linux has little to no support (though not its fault) is Blu-ray playback. In order to play a Blu-ray movie, you need to first crack it, and for that it needs around 30 to 40 GB of free space on your drive, and not to mention the extra time you’re gonna spend just to watch a movie. But none of these hiccups are gonna make me stop using Linux altogether, though. I need a lot of tasks automated on my Desktop and servers, and while they can all be done on Windows too, I find it easier on Linux.

    I play only one game or two every year and I’ve found the performance on Wine and Cedega to be poor (low framerate, slow rendering, poor smoke/reflections, etc.) so I play them on Windows. I can see why this is a showstopper for most people.

    If you’re not happy with an opensource software that you use a lot, maybe you should contribute. Either by finding bugs, testing new versions, submitting patches, or donate money to the project so they can hire people do all this.

    This article is right in many ways. I too wouldn’t recommend Linux to anyone because people either 1) are stupid 2) don’t care 3) don’t have time 4) like to be spoon-fed. Recommending an OS unfamiliar to them is asking for trouble. You’ll have to spend all your time troubleshooting for them ’cause you’re the one who recommended it in the first place.

    Sorry about my English. I’m not a native english speaker.

  82. June 16, 2010 at 9:27 am | #87

    You are so nice to share these with us.

  83. Jason
    August 4, 2010 at 6:18 am | #88

    While it is difficult to program an effective virus/trojan that will effect Linux across multiple distros and kernel versions, it is not impossible. I am a Linux user, and about 2 years ago one of my friends was being arrogent (like many Linux users) and stated that it was impossible to program a virus that effects Linux. Well, I took it as a challenge, and I made a “virus” for Linux to demonstrate it to him. Here is how it worked:

    The virus was not only a virus, it was also fully functional screen recording software (as some Linux users like filming tutorials for YT). Well, most of the time, when filming a tutorial for Linux to upload to YouTube, the person filming has to perform an action that requires administrative privilages. The program detects when the terminal is opened. When the user types either:

    $ sudo su


    $ su
    [root password]

    it loggs the password. The next time the computer is idle for more than 5 minutes (to make sure the user is not sitting there watching the screen) the program automatically brings up the terminal and (depending on command used for admin rights earlier) issues either $ sudo su or $ su. It then proceeds to issue the commands to remove/disable the users cd/dvd drive, remove important system files (if possible) and run a fsck on ALL mounted partitions, in an effort to do significant partition damage. I was able to demonstrate to him that this “virus” worked under three different distros (Fedora, Ubuntu and OpenSuSe). He has not said that Linux Viruses are impossible sense. And as both those commands are still used, I would not be surprised if this virus would still work.

  84. Jacob
    September 14, 2010 at 11:17 pm | #89

    I have been running Ubuntu 9.04 on my work computer (my old home computer), and it’s pretty impressive. In fact, I don’t know when the last time I booted into Windows was. Program installation, which was once a nightmare with dependencies and configuration files and all, is now easier than Windows with a central installation facility built right into the OS. I agree that open-source programs are generally not as polished as their proprietary counterparts, but if you’re not a professional, they’ll generally suffice. Other than the occasional video tearing (which from reading here, seems to be a universal problem), Ubuntu 9.04 with custom graphics effects (including those that are actually useful: the desktop cube, etc.) runs fine, and this is a 2.0 GHz P4 with 512 MB RAM and an 8 year old 64 MB video card that I am using. In addition, it starts up faster and is more secure than Windows (you don’t need an antivirus).

    Plus, Linux has come a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG way since I started using it in 1998. For example, it automatically detected everything in my computer. My sound card, which has stopped working in Windows for some reason, now magically works again in Linux. It detected my printer / scanner combination right off the bat, and scanning, which was a PITA with the bloated OEM software in Windows, is now almost effortless in Linux. At least for some legacy uses, desktop Linux is certainly indicated.

  85. David
    September 16, 2010 at 12:47 am | #90

    To put it mildly, Linux sucks.

    Now seriously. Hardware support is horrible, notebooks run hotter all the time, unless you dive into pages of technical commands hoping that all the script spaghetti runs fine. God forbid if a weird error happens. And believe me, it does happen.

    Application availability and quality improved a lot. Now it’s the opposite: unless you have specific needs, you won’t miss anything. That is, the majority of people will be fine.

    At the same time, the basics are really showing its age. Don’t get me started on X. It was designed for the 80s, designed around 80s hardware and methodology. You can’t restore it. Its feature-creep weight won’t allow anyone to modernize it.

    I guess that’s where most of the problems come from. It’s no wonder that toolkits like QT are bypassing X routines in many ways. It just became obsolete.

    OS X is where it is now. Only Google can bring a good graphic underlying engine to us. By then the toolkit guys can build a comm layer and we shall abandon this last piece of old crap that holds Linux desktop back.

  86. David
    September 16, 2010 at 12:47 am | #91

    Sorry, when I say Linux, I mean Linux as Desktop, which is the subject here. ;-)

  87. classified
    September 21, 2010 at 12:24 pm | #92

    what do u except from a confused penguin?

  88. LT
    September 27, 2010 at 10:21 pm | #93

    Ive been using Linux for over 15 years, and you are right, as a desktop OS it sucks bigtime, Windows 7 is superior. But Linux has gotten to the point now where if you compile a program on one Linux version and run it on another, it will actually lock up the kernel, and you will have to do a hard reset to get the system restarted. That is totally unacceptable as a desktop OS, Vista wouldn’t event do that. As a compute server platform in a heterogeneous environment, Linux is a good stable system, but very soon, small windows clusters with multiple GPU cards will render huge Linux clusters obsolete, and it’s the gaming market that is driving this revolution, and the gamers aren’t overclocking and liquid cooling Linux boxes, they are using Windows. I hate Linux now, it’s bloated, overly complicated and has too many branches to keep up with the state of the art hardware, but what do you expect, it’s free.

    • Jim Non
      October 1, 2010 at 11:02 pm | #94

      Windows 7 is superior? As a Linux fan all the way, Windows 7 is superb, way better than Vista, and quite better than XP. Nonetheless, can you point out to the facts of where Windows 7 is superior to Linux? I can name you a few, as to where Linux (Ubuntu) is superior to Windows 7.

      Why Linux is better in most areas over Windows (7)
      1) SSH – Linux just a few configurations and ready to run ssh, on windows you have to install ssh clients to run ssh (and then depending on which you download, good luck on configuring them to work). Why is SSH necessary for the home? Well today people have several PCs in their home, mom, dad, kids. Imagine if they wanted to share files with each other? Options: e-mail, transfer it using hardware media, or simply SSH it between the systems (of course this negates if the user(s) have a home server setup).

      2) DNS, NIS, LDAP, home server setup is amazing; especially if you have multiple PCs in your home. Guess what? For Windows OS you have to purchase the premium packages; because, basic will not have all of the networking tools available. And if you purchase the basic version, you cannot simply pay an extra fee to have those features added; you have to purchase an entire new Windows OS media. Alongside, setting up a print server through Linux is a snap; no additional tools or software purchases are required.

      3) Command Line – I am biased here; because, I work in the software field. But, is it ever easier to perform the same function through command line instead of GUI interface. Not only is it faster through command line; but, more informative. Plus there are lots of functions you can perform through command line that GUI interfaces cannot. And I know Windows has CMD; but, with *NIX the terminal (xterm) is part of the OS CORE.

      4) And of course Free of charge. Yeah, sure you are not getting top of the line software (i.e. Photoshop, Nero, etc..); but, you still come pretty darn close! Besides have you seen the recent Ubuntu (10.4) release? I say another year or two; Ubuntu will top Apple OSX as far as curb appeal.

      • LT
        October 27, 2010 at 8:41 pm | #95

        Like I said if someone attempts to run the wrong executable on a Linux OS it will lock up the kernel and the OS will freeze, thats reason number 1.

        #2 No MP3 support out of the box, without hacking your way through the proper download of the appopriate kernel modules.

        #3 No Registry to simplify software maintenance and support, on Linux you must use environment variables to emulate similar configuration information.

        #4 I have written parallel algorithms to run distributed on both Linux and Windows, I didn’t find that I needed DNS, LDAP or NIS in order to design and implement a Windows clustered solution. The SOAP class in .NET4 worked just fine, if not better than utilizing MPI/Linux. Mind you I have not attempted to use Mono on Linux.

        #5 And last but not least, Microsoft Visual Studio does not run on Linux, I am in software development and I have been writing software to run on Linux for years, and if you want to become wealthy, write software that runs on Windows.

  89. Khan
    December 26, 2010 at 10:14 am | #96

    Though I am a geek who keeps on experimenting with OSes and softwares and I am a software engineer, I really feel that computer is not intended towards the programmers and IT geeks. They are just support people. It is for a common man who wants to type in a document, check email, browse web, make video calls and play games etc. Windows gives the common man the liberty to do this all with one-click which is a pleasure, as compared to reading a whole manual on linux before doing the same one-click stuff.
    I have broken three L=ubuntu installations with just clicking and downloading on web! So I feel that it really does not matter if I have to run an antivirus program with Win 7 as long as I know that it will be running smoothly tomorrow morning too. I want a peace of mind with my computer and want to concentrate on the problems it solves for me as compared to the OS it is running on. Win 7 gives me all that.

  90. Syrup
    January 16, 2011 at 11:22 pm | #97

    After installing and trying out several linux distros none satisfy me enough to keep it. Many linux users say it’s faster than windows but that is complete bullshit! I’m running win XP and compared to mint 6 it’s much faster. I have also tried xubuntu 10.04 and it’s not at all faster than win XP.

    Sure win XP is quite old now, I’ll give you that but it still looks better than all linux distros I’ve tried. It also supports more apps “obviously”

    Why on earth are there so many distros? Can’t they just dump everything except ubuntu? I get a headache from trying to troubleshoot when installing software.

    Anyway at the end of the day. I just want it to be easy.
    If I want to drive a car thats it. I don’t want to learn how to replace the damn engine or change oil filter.

    Is Linux secure? hell yes it is.
    Is it better then windows? no.
    Is it better then mac os x? no.
    Is it fast? no.
    Is it easy to learn? no.

  91. Cecil Westervelt
    February 23, 2011 at 10:27 pm | #98

    Linux, however much it has improved is not a desktop OS. It’s fabled security, half based in its lack of standardization is actually something that detracts terribly from its usability. The open sores nature of Linux makes it a less than stable development platform. AS a gaming platform, the underlying nature of the beast would have to change. X-Server is just not going to cut it.
    Linux is only fast if recompiled on a machine it was intended for.
    It is secure to the point of being a hassle. I should never have to convince an OS to let me get files off of a local CDROM.
    For the same investment in time a windows user can solve nearly any problem it has and spend weeks on work or games, whereas in that same amount of tie a Linux user has just gotten the OS working with a 60hz refresh rate and 2 channel sound. I know very well how to use Linux, but it is a rare day I pick it from grub.
    Too many distros indeed, but it must be that way. PCLinuxos is actually trying to grind toward an easy OS for the masses. Ubuntu is trying to drive the technology behind its clunky and useless distro. All of the others, would do well for themselves and Linux to join up to PCLinux or Ubuntu.

  92. fognog
    April 27, 2011 at 12:52 pm | #99

    you people are fucking stupid

  93. jonathan
    April 29, 2011 at 3:55 pm | #100

    All i see is a bunch of linux groupies bashing a guy for trying to use linux, nice going linux world!

    you people lack some grasp of reality, windows populatity it’s not pure marketing , it has a lot of flaws, but unfortunatelly it works better for the average joe – ubuntu is nice but is no silver bullet…

    what you people don’t see is that most of the world are not composed by your friends, most of the world are not techies, most people don’t know what a file extension is and don’t wanna know, i’ve worked with some linux projects in the past, most of them were barelly workable, here are a few problems

    Open their friends docx and fail
    Open a DOC and the contect came up screwd
    Open a website, that is clearly designed based on internet explorer
    Had to recompile a kernel for my hardware to work
    My ntfs external HD wont automatically be reconigzed
    My games don’t run
    My Photoshop wont run (Gimp needs much work to get there)
    Half of my OS is in english (for foreigners)

    I can deal with most of this problems, because i know how to, i’m a techie, but the school kids, the kindergarden techer, the person who just came from his job to use the internet don’t care about this problems they just want the shitty computer to work… and i’m sorry people they are most of the world population.

  94. Allan Jones
    May 5, 2011 at 12:21 pm | #101

    I’m a “Linux advocate”. I’m a Windows user. I use windows as a “sub-weapon” and linux as my “primary gun”. What I’m saying is, I use Linux (Puppy, Ubuntu, Back|Track, Kanotix) for development (java), education, downloading torrents, et cetera. I use Windows for development (C#), some games, music production, media editing. … Yes, It’s hard to switch from one OS to another time to time but… that’s life. xD

  95. PossesedByTux
    June 19, 2011 at 4:28 am | #102

    “Most of the Windows users are NOT idiots, they just want to make things easily.”

    Yes, they ARE. If you’re intelligent person, you doing things as hard as possible (e.g. instead of using rpms, debs, etc. you compile all your software from sources and even there you NEVER use ./configure && make && make install, you compile every single file using gcc, then manually copy them to proper location). If you’re idiot, you’re probably also “master of clicking”. Some facts

    - X is for weaklings. The real men do EVERYTHING using console. I even write this comment from lynx (changed user-agent to chrome, because some sites refused to work with lynx). Framebuffer too.
    - By using Linux, you care about penguins, because for every single Linux copy in usage, one penguin is saved. You don’t want to kill penguins by broken glass from your crashed Windows, do you?
    - Only idiots don’t care about security and viruses. Because only idiots want their documents to be deleted.
    - Beryl/XGL/Compiz is unnecessary waste of RAM. But even it isn’t as big memory hog like Shitareo is.

  96. Daniel Thorsson
    June 24, 2011 at 4:23 am | #103

    Why does LINUX suck?

    - You have to depend on poorly designed “Wine” to run your fav games and apps
    - There’s always a BUT on LINUX, such as:
    - You wanna connect to the Internet through wireless? YES, you CAN, BUT… you need to have your computer connected to the net somewhere else so we can install NDISWRAPPER, in order to install WINDOWS based “copied” drivers, cause we’re too incompetent to create drivers of our own.
    - They do not have a reliable P2P client program (uTorrent, Soulseek, etc… fail to run on poorly designed “adaptations”)
    - They do not guarantee that ALL websites accept LINUX based systems
    - They have to build “Frankenstein” software in order to make drivers run in LINUX
    - They do not play MP3s right away: you need to install “permissions”… how gay is that?
    - There are a MILLION different versions of LINUX and you get lost trying to decide which one best serves you
    - “Terminal” command lines are weird and you have to be granted “ROOT” permissions to do everything… Which reminds me:
    - Yeah, there are a zillion viruses for Windows… As a WINDOWS user,I haven’t had a single virus or intrusion problem in my computer for over 10 years. It’s incredible what an INTELLIGENT computer user can do, isn’t it?
    - And MUCH more! I’ve given LINUX too many chances throughout the years in order to try out something new… if you’ve come here because you’re in doubt as I was some time ago, please OH PLEASE stick to WINDOWS! I mean, “yeah, everyone’s been talking about that UBUNTU stuff and I’d like to give it a try… PLEASE DO NOT DO THAT!!!! Stick to WINDOWS and get rid of a migrane even before you get it!!!

  97. Charles Greenwill
    June 26, 2011 at 9:08 am | #104

    I give linux a try every other year or so just because its interesting to tinker with. I have to spend way too much time on setting up my system the way I want it. I recently tried Ubuntu 11.04 and Linux Mint 11 because I heard of their popularity and ease of use (I don’t have anymore time to do things like Arch Linux). My first big problem is that the driver for my graphics card was shit. My desktop was slowed to a crawl compared to Windows 7. Second, the the sleep/hibernate function did not work and when I fixed it, the system was too slow to even use after waking up. I was hoping that Linux would run faster than Windows on my older machine, but that proved opposite (My machine isn’t even that old–3.0GHz AMD dual core/3Gb DDR2/ATI Radeon POS). Bottom line, Linux has a lot of potential for being able to do what you want for free (legally) but the consequences of installing even the most exoteric apps can be worse than deleting random entries in the registry of Windows ME. I have many interests and have always been able to do what I want with Windows without any worry of viruses and with great performance (thanks to Windows 7), and I think some people just have trouble because of ignorance or from visiting too many porn sites. I will continue to monitor linux’s progress though, as it has a great “spirit”. Linux can be a powerful tool to the right people and more power to them, but for most of us, Windows will always be the most versatile for those who want a computer that just works and for developers and tinkerers as well.

  98. zax
    October 27, 2011 at 12:00 am | #105

    its apparent u went for some random Ubuntu variation or Debian maybe, within 20 seconds of skimming i was done… (sry) u didnt go with a GOOD release for win-users, the so called “puppy” Linux resembles the 2000 and me look but achieve function as well as win 7, and linux mint is the best Linux for people new to it, it helps u get used to the Linux’s setup and basics without much trouble it also has very advanced yet simple customization of look, if you search for (“Firefox 4″ “linux mint”) in Google, a page will tell you how to (in effect add Ubuntu programs to mint with ease) wine is simple in theory and basic in use but requires a little tweaking to use .dll’s needed for some (larger) programs. it isn’t rocket science :P hou dont have to run everything thru wine, there are alternatives a few programs, u can set up your computer to “dual boot” giving u the option of os at start-up. ubuntu fails HARD..

    “Daniel Thorsson” i apologize but u seem quite a noob,
    1-You do not need “root ” privelages for the terminal linux mint, you in effect do to have effect in windows (admin)
    2-You can play mp3s by setting your mouse over the file and waiting “previews” in adition to the 3 media players it comes STANDARD with in high quality and clarity, well as high as the files
    3-And LM has automated driver installation for usb wireless cards the built in ones is in the main menu as “proprietary” and only takes 12 seconds to install
    4-you can easily obtain frost-wire the credible version of lime-wire, u know the one that’s still around as well as bit torrent and vuze
    5- linux doesnt get many viruses and if u use Firefox, protection, and discretion you will be fine
    6-ALL WEBSITES WINDOWS CAN RUN LINUX CAN SMOOTHER with its built in (firefox) ill add l8r

    • Daniel Thorsson
      October 27, 2011 at 3:13 am | #106

      Hey Zax,
      Apologies accepted. I’m not new to the computer world. I can, whenever I want, install whatever OS there is in the market. I’ve managed to pull off complicated installation processes designed by the million Linux versions out there without a glitch. (YEAH, I AM aware of how easy Linux installation has become, which is awesome). I’m 31 years old, and at least 16 of those have been dedicated to computer use. I can also assemble and disassemble a computer or a laptop in a matter of minutes, as I’ve done a thousand times before for me, friends, family, strangers, etc just for the HECK of it. I’m not a computer fanatic, though. I’m simply an enthusiast. And as such, I want to understand how stuff works. I’m a very curious person in this technological era.That being said, everything I said before a looong time ago is my personal opinion, which is also shared by LINUX USERS THEMSELVES. Are you going to deny that? I’ve given Linux such a credit that I’ve registered to numerous technical blogs, official Linux distros websites, etc… and I’ve got, say 50% of my questions answered. People in such blogs are indeed helpful, but it’s too much energy wasted for very little outcome. Linux MINT DID solve the problem of not being able to play MP3s without having to download extra codecs or pieces of software, but you’re wrong in your sixth point. Linux DOES NOT work with SOME websites. If it did, you wouldn’t have to install third party software such as WINE, for instance… (WINE… funny word: do you have to be drunk to think it’s cool?) and wireless card is still a problem. I do not blame Linux for what it is. In fact, no one is to blame. I do not see Linux as a direct and EFFECTIVE Windows competitor because PCs were MADE for Windows as MACs were made for.. hmmm… MACs? The only reason why Linux is still “word of mouth”, at least here in Brazil, is because of competition. I mean, in order to sell computers with competitive prices, companies install Linux because it’s FREE and Windows still cost a lot of money here. Also, performance is a HUGE problem for Linux if compared to Windows. Probably because games were not designed to run under Linux environment? And do not get me started on security. The number of virus or computer intrusions is equal to the number of porn sites you visit every day. (Just kidding, but you get the idea, don’t you?) I haven’t had a single virus problem for ages because I’m a sensible Windows user. Finally, about my last post: I was probably mad because I really, REALLY wanted to give Linux a last try and, having failed to do so, I was brought here by googling stuff as “Linux sucks” or something. Well, Linux does not completely suck, maybe a little. It’s just not a match for Windows. Maybe Linux should design Linux computers and call them LCs instead of PCs? I don’t know. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: PCs were made for WINDOWS. Now, does Linux have a lot of potential? There’s no doubt there. But it has had potential for many years and nothing OUTSTANDING happened. Well, Ubuntu was a close call, I’ll give you that. But, does it have enough power to outsell Windows? Most definitely not.

  99. November 25, 2011 at 2:27 pm | #107

    Awesome sharing by you and this is true i will must come here again big hand thanks for sharing):

  100. Nunya
    February 5, 2012 at 1:30 am | #108

    I switched from XP Pro to PCLOS almost 3 years ago. Very few problems ever.

    Yes, Windows has it’s place in the scheme of things. NO, Linux is not an afterthought.

    I push linux as much as I can. It is immune to ALL windows problems.
    It installs almost automatically and driver support is great.

    You will have problems with some sites as those sites aren’t up to current internet standards and are made for Windows only. Usually it’s banking sites.

    WIndows game – well they are just that WINDOWS games.
    Microsoft won’t allow Linux or any open source to use much of the needed components to make the games run. Copycrap stuff.

    Please be aware that Linux will fade away soon from the user’s perspective. This is because the home PC is going to die soon. Everyone will have terminals via wifi internet connected to a mainframe somewhere. And who knows what OS that will be.

    Ubuntu is probably the most bloated linux.. But it has nearly all the goodies that windows users might want.

    I know many windows users that eventually have to deal with malware. That is when I inform then about Linux. I give them a disk to play with. I tell them that the live CD keeps the badware away.

    It works too,

  101. chris
    March 23, 2012 at 1:33 am | #109

    I tried Ubuntu. I never had a OS freeze that much since Windows 95. I also tried 4 different linux distro, all of them wernt usable because of lack of drivers. I tried debian, slacko puppy, cent OS, and it’s the same problem for all of them it seems, very unstable and doesnt support key hardware. Plus the people who use the OS as a desktop are arrogant and borderline insane so geting help is imposible. If i ever do need to switch from Windows I might as well get a crapintosh. I would if Apples shitty hardware wasnt so expensive.

  102. March 31, 2012 at 12:14 am | #110

    I have given Linux the chance for decades now, but the oven is out. I have even stopped distrohopping and focused on a specific distribution to learn the workings of Linux. But no matter which distro you choose, all of them suffer from constantly breaking things of their own. It’s frustrating, because it ALWAYS happens! As a matter of fact it is always about essential things and not minor issues – and that’s what makes it most annoying!

    Example of how Linux works:
    Linux doesn’t detect the network adapter anymore. You bugreport it and 6 months later in the next version it works again. However in this version the 2nd hard disk of your system isn’t recognised anymore, which worked previously. 6 months later this new bug is fixed but your network adapter doesn’t work anymore because it was removed from the kernel. 6 months later, after you’ve bought a new adapter and check the new version you suddenly find out that Synaptic is broken and you cannot download or install software anymore. 6 months later this bug is fixed, but a bug in the new version causes a continuous 100% CPU-load, leading to overheating of the system… 6 months later…
    - Well, you get the point. No wonder Linux does not reach a huge audience.

  103. September 19, 2012 at 7:36 pm | #111

    I’ve given the top 5 or distro’s an honest try now for over 10 years. Every time I load it, regardless of the flavor, it has always, without fail, ended in frustration and disappointment. Now, while I’m no PC genius, I can hold my own and have a pretty impressive network here at home. Build all my own stuff, 3-box DD-WRT network, 2 Dell servers…you get the idea. Today, I loaded Linux Mint 13. I’ve been messing with this distro for 2 full days. It’s the seemingly simple things. Screen goes black. App’s open on the wrong monitor (multi-monitor system). Lots of issues with my ATI cards. et al…et al… Alas, there are many recommendations, few fixes. After a while, you just say EFF IT and go back to M$ where things pretty much work out of the box. Linux is winning over no one. In fact, with all the issues they’re running new users off. Sorry man…I really, really would like to use Linux as my daily driver. It’s just that I can’t get it started.

  1. July 26, 2009 at 11:59 am | #1

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