| DistroWatch Weekly
|DistroWatch Weekly, Issue 433, 28 November 2011
Welcome to this year's 48th issue of DistroWatch Weekly! DistroWatch's page hit ranking statistics were at the centre of controversy during the past week as a number of high-profile journalists cited this resource as a proof of Ubuntu's "rapid decline". From the other side of the coin, many Ubuntu fans reacted angrily at such "baseless accusations", slamming both the mainstream tech media and DistroWatch for distorting the reality. As always, the truth is somewhere in between - while Ubuntu likely remains the most popular desktop Linux distribution, there is little doubt that the arrival of the Unity desktop has driven certain users to Linux Mint and elsewhere. The topic of Ubuntu versus Linux Mint dominates our news section, including a reaction from Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth. Elsewhere in the publication, Jesse Smith takes a look at the recently-released openSUSE 12.1, the latest version of one of the oldest and most popular Linux distribution available on the market. Also in this issue - a link to an interview with Debian Project Leader Stefano Zacchiroli, an update on the "Secure Boot for Windows" controversy, and the usual regular columns. Happy reading!
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|Feature Story (by Jesse Smith)
Boot up, little SUSE (openSUSE 12.1)|
The openSUSE distribution is one that I feel gets overlooked too often. While the releases coming from the project are typically technologically sound they rarely attract the same attention as Fedora or Ubuntu. Personally, I think the developers' attempts to balance the distribution may be to blame for its lack of attention. Debian GNU/Linux and Red Hat have long, boring release cycles which gain attention from the tried-and-true crowd. Ubuntu and Fedora have rapid releases, appealing to the cutting edge crowd. The openSUSE distribution falls in the middle. Its centre-of-the road approach may be just the thing for someone who is looking for a distribution that keeps up with trends, yet who wishes to shy away from instability. It's a careful mixture.
Reading through the release notes for openSUSE 12.1 I got the impression this version would be more of the same: a distribution which avoids extremes. The 12.1 release comes with a variety of desktop environments, including GNOME 3 and KDE 4, LXDE, Xfce and KDE 3. This release also features the systemd init system, which replaces SysVInit. For developers, openSUSE includes the Go language (from Google) and the LLVM compiler alongside GCC. Our download options include one full-sized DVD with a large collection of software, a GNOME live CD, a KDE live CD and a network installation disc. Each option comes in 32-bit and 64-bit builds and can be accessed via direct download or through BitTorrent. We are not limited in our choices and I decided to experiment with the KDE edition.
Once we burn the KDE live CD and boot from it we are presented with a boot menu. This menu allows us to try the live desktop environment, install openSUSE or check the media for errors. Launching the installer brings up a graphical interface and we're asked to pick our preferred language and keyboard layout. We're also shown the distribution's license agreement. The following screen gets us to pick our time zone from a map of the world and gives us the option of changing the system clock. Next up is the partitioning section and a manual could be written entirely on the partitioning screens. Options vary from the very simple (taking the suggested layout), to the slightly more advanced (inputting required parameters and accepting a suggested layout) to the more advanced (manual partitioning). Less experienced users will probably be fine taking the defaults and simply clicking "Next", but more advanced users can set up Btrfs, experiment with LVM layouts, enable encryption and resize, create and move partitions. I find it interesting that one of the options we can choose is to have the installer automatically set up Btrfs partitions so we can make use of "snapshot" features.
Moving along, once the disk is divided we're asked to create a user account and set the root password. The user screen allows us to enable auto-login and we're given the option of authenticating against network resources, such as LDAP. The last screen shows us the steps the installer will perform and asks for our confirmation. It's possible to select pending actions on this screen and edit them, which is quite handy. I found that during my installations the boot loader was not set to be installed to the Master Boot Record (MBR) by default; changing this is a simple click.
Once the installer is done copying files to the drive we reboot and a first-run wizard launches. It automatically configures the system and, with no input from us, the wizard finishes its tasks, turning us over to a graphical login screen. Signing into our account we're presented with a welcome screen which gives directions on finding documentation, links to the help forums and information on using KDE. Closing the welcome screen turns us over to the KDE 4.7 desktop. The wallpaper is typical SUSE green. On the desktop we find a widget containing icons for bringing up system information, launching Firefox, opening LibreOffice, bringing up the welcome screen again and opening a browser to visit the project's website. Some minor desktop effects are enabled, but, for the most part, the interface stays out of the way and doesn't present many distractions.
openSUSE 12.1 - exploring the application menu
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Much of my first hour with openSUSE was taken up by what I began to think of as the "download dance". One of the first things I did was open Firefox and LibreOffice. Both launched, but LibreOffice informed me it needed Java to perform properly and offered to grab the required software. I consented and went about my work while the system downloaded the recommended packages. A few minutes later I tried to open an audio file and was told I was missing the MP3 codec. The system offered to grab the codec, then detected that Java was still being downloaded and I was given the option of waiting or cancelling the Java download. I took this as mixed news because while it meant I was given the choice, it also meant the system wasn't able to queue downloads. At any rate, I waited until Java finished installing, then grabbed the MP3 codec. I restarted Amarok as suggested and found that I was able to play music.
So far, so good. But then I tried opening a video file and was once again informed I'd have to download codecs. Only this time the required codec wasn't in the default repositories, I'd have to add a new one. Now, when I opted to do this, the package manager opened and I was offered a web page where I could click-to-add the required repository. But, while I was doing this, the page hadn't been updated to support openSUSE 12.1 yet and I had to perform the addition manually. This required about eight screens of clicking - selecting repositories, confirming signing keys, confirming a license, waiting for the download, refreshing the package list, closing the package manager and going back to the media player, installing the codecs and restarting the media player. It is, in my opinion, not a smooth or intuitive process. When the documentation web page is updated this will be much easier, but the day after 12.1 was released, this was quite a long, manual process.
I think the above "dance" and the installer demonstrate either openSUSE's greatest strength or its greatest weakness, depending on one's point of view. The distribution gives the user control over virtually every decision. Or, from the other side of the coin, it bothers the user with every choice to be made. Whether it is partitioning, adding repositories, managing software or anything else, there are a lot of options and we sometimes get into nitty-gritty details. For power users this will probably be a welcome feature; however, it's also likely to scare off novice users.
Software package management
The above describes package management on-the-fly, installing items as they are required. Fortunately regular package management is a much smoother, less painful experience. The distribution comes with two software managers which can be launched from the application menu directly or through the YaST control panel. With the traditional YaST module we're presented with a very flexible interface. We can search for packages by name, category, logical RPM package groups or language. Items can be sorted by any of their fields and we can review actions before we commit to them. There are several tabs and options for managing software, but the primary controls should be familiar to users of other powerful package managers, like Synaptic. One aspect of openSUSE's software management I found odd (and a little inconvenient) is that after a set of actions is performed, the application closes. This means that one should think carefully about everything they wish to do up front.
Once the download/install/remove/update process has begun we're stuck waiting it out before we can re-launch the application and perform another task. In short, openSUSE provides a very powerful, but unusual package handler compared to other Linux distributions. The second package manager, called Apper, looks a bit more like the Mint software manager or the Muon Software Centre found in other distributions. Apper displays a fairly simple interface where we can navigate by clicking on software categories. Clicking a category icon brings up a list of software in that category, which we can install or remove an application by checking a box next to its name. Apper, while much more simple and user-friendly than the traditional YaST component, does have some drawbacks. I found navigating categories with Apper to be quite slow and some packages would be displayed multiple times, padding out the results.
openSUSE 12.1 - browsing software packages
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Two things I found I enjoyed about package management on openSUSE were that, for one, when running from the command line, if a program wasn't found I could run a command which would locate the appropriate package for me and provide steps for installing it. Other distros, like Fedora and Ubuntu do this too, but since openSUSE only hunts down commands when we want it to, it means that making typos results in less time wasted as the system is searching through packages. Another thing I appreciated is when we install new software, whether through YaST or on the command line, a new entry for that application is created in the application menu under the category "Recently Installed", making it easy to find newly acquired software.
Perhaps the most useful aspect of openSUSE is the YaST configuration utility. For power and flexibility I don't think I've used a better administrative tool on any operating system. Virtually every aspect of the distribution can be tweaked using YaST. Everything from software packages to user accounts, to the firewall, backups, hardware and network shares -- it can all be handled form this central location. Each component of YaST features similar layouts, making for a consistent experience. It may not be as beginner-friendly as the Mandriva/Mageia control panel, but each module has plenty of options and is well laid out. At times YaST can be a bit sluggish, but the power provided seems to be more than an adequate trade. During my trial I encountered no problems with YaST and it's a tool I'd very much like to see adopted by other distributions.
openSUSE 12.1 - changing system and desktop settings
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Software applications and hardware compatibility
The application menu is quite full, especially when we consider that all of the included software fits on one CD. We're given the Firefox and Konqueror web browsers. KMail is included, along with KTorrent, the Choqok micro-blogger and an IRC client. LibreOffice is available, as are a document viewer, image viewer and the GIMP. The K3b disc burner is in the menu and we also find a CD player, the Amarok music player and the Kaffeine multimedia player. Out of the box openSUSE does not include popular codecs for these players, but as I mentioned above, the project includes repositories with these extras. A small collection of games is provided and we're given remote desktop tools, a system monitor and the Smolt hardware profiler. To cover security needs, such as encryption, we have KGpg and Kleopatra. The usual collection of small tools, including file browsers, text editors, a calculator and archive manager are installed for us. The distribution comes with a good collection of accessibility tools, including a virtual keyboard, screen magnifier, automatic mouse-click tool and special character selector. On the default install we aren't given Flash or Java and I didn't find any developer tools. In the background we find version 3.1 of the Linux kernel.
I found that openSUSE would run on my laptop (dual-core 2 GHz CPU, 3 GB of RAM, Intel video card) without any problems. Screen resolution was set to maximum, audio volume was placed at a reasonable level and my Intel wireless card worked without any issues. My touchpad wouldn't register taps as clicks and I didn't find the system settings module to enable the feature in the default install. (Synaptiks needs to be installed to enable the touchpad options.) On my desktop machine (2.5 GHz CPU, 2 GB of RAM, NVIDIA video card) openSUSE worked smoothly without any issues. The display and audio worked out of the box. In general performance was good, at least with KDE's indexing and desktop effects turned off. Boot times were good, perhaps a little better than I experienced in the 11.x series, but I don't have any firm numbers to back that up, just a sense that this release feels quicker.
While there is a lot to recommend openSUSE -- it has a lot of software on the CD, good documentation, beautifully powerful system administration tools, flexible installer and up to date packages -- this release didn't feel as polished as the 11.x series. Part of that is the on-the-fly package management, but I also found, on a couple of occasions, that the software updater would fail to successfully complete downloads. And I found that with desktop indexing disabled I'd get a long series of error messages appearing on the desktop. Technically this is a known KDE issue rather than a specific openSUSE bug, but I had hoped the distribution's developers would have patched it. As I mentioned before, openSUSE's tendency to give the operator every option available will probably make or break this release for potential users. People will either see it as putting them in the driver seat or as placing speed bumps in their way. Those issues aside, this is a pretty good release. The live CD provides a lot of useful software, I've found KDE 4.7 to be responsive and openSUSE's move to systemd appears to have gone smoothly. The distro isn't as beginner-friendly as Ubuntu or Mandriva, but I think it's more powerful and, by default, more flexible. There is a trade off. It's not perfect, but worth test driving for the administrator tools if nothing else.
|Miscellaneous News (by Ladislav Bodnar)
Linux Mint versus Ubuntu in tech media, interview with DPL Stefano Zacchiroli
What do you think was the biggest Linux-related event of the month which is about to come to an end? The release of Fedora 16? That of openSUSE 12.1? Or the endless arguments about the merits of Unity and GNOME 3 on desktop computers? The answer is, of course, debatable, but perhaps the correct one is entry of Linux Mint into the big league of highly popular Linux distributions. And it wasn't just the arrival of version 12 over the weekend that caused it; it was equally the attention this once little-known project received in major IT media during the past week. If you don't believe it, just glance through some of the articles published by Golem (German), Lenta (Russian), ComputerBase (German), Pingdom, The Inquirer, Chip (German), The Register, Clubic (French), Tom's Hardware (Italian), Tweakers (Dutch), PCWorld, ZDNet.de (German), ZDNet UK, ZDNet.fr (French), PuntoInformatico (Italian), PC Impact (French), ITProPortal, Numerama (French), Mynavi (Japanese), Tech2 and many many others. Granted, most of the above articles focused on the presumed "decline of Ubuntu" rather than the rise of Linux Mint. But since all of them quoted our page hit ranking statistics in their reports, the number of people visiting the Linux Mint page soared dramatically even before the release on Saturday of the project's latest stable version. Chances are that the some of the readers of these publications have become Mint converts.
Linux Mint 12 - GNOME 3 with a more traditional look and feel
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* * * * *
So what do Ubuntu developers, fans and users think about this sudden surge of a popular competitor, making waves in mainstream tech media? In "Lies, damned lies and statistics", Larry Cafiero argues that Mint's success has its merits, even though he doesn't like the methodology used in these media reports: "My sense is that the numbers for Linux Mint reflect a rising interest that is translating into new users and new community members. After all, Linux Mint has done a huge service to FOSS by developing the Mint GNOME Shell Extensions (MGSE) and MATE, and for that reason perhaps people are joining the ranks of the Minted. Couple that with the recent edict of Unity uber alles handed down by Ubuntu SABDFL Mark Shuttleworth, and you have the recipe for a rise in Linux Mint at the expense of Ubuntu." In the meantime, Randall Ross's Today's Math Lesson: Perception = Reality seems to blame Ubuntu's Contributor and LoCo-Team communities for not doing enough to counter the "perception", while asking in "We Ignore At Our Peril" whether "the meme is spreading". Finally, how does Mark Shuttleworth view Mint's replacing Ubuntu as DistroWatch's top Linux distro? Here is his answer: "Kudos to Mint for the jump in ratings, I'm glad Ubuntu has great derivatives, and I'm confident Unity will remain the #1 desktop environment for years to come."
* * * * *
Debian developer Raphaël Hertzog has been conducting some excellent interviews recently. The latest one, appearing on his personal blog last week, is with the current Debian Project Leader (DPL) Stefano Zacchiroli. In his second year as DPL what are "Stephano's biggest achievements": "Dialogue with derivatives. When I became DPL about 1.5 years ago the situation on that front was pretty dire. In the specific case of Ubuntu, by far the most successful and customized of all Debian derivatives, I remember being scared of raising the topic of collaboration with them on mailing lists. More generally, we had no specific initiatives to foster technical collaboration with and among derivatives. A huge potential of (forwarded) contributions to Debian was being wasted. Today things look much better, as I've documented in recent talks at DebConf 11 and UDS-P. The amount of forwarded patches we receive from downstream is at its maximum and many people who apply to become Debian Developers come from derivatives. Conflict situations still exist, for good reasons that we still have to either fix or figure out entirely. But I'm positive we're on the right track."
|Opinion (by Jesse Smith)
Secure boot for Linux?
Back in October we talked about the new secure boot technology coming to personal computers and what it might mean for users of open-source operating systems. Over the past month the discussion has been gaining attention, not only from Linux users, but also from users of proprietary systems. People in the free and open-source software community have been concerned about being locked out of their machines and the Free Software Foundation has been collecting signatures from people who want hardware manufactures to protect their freedoms. To date over 20,000 people have signed the FSF's statement.
Yet there are two sides to every story and for each person concerned they may be locked out of their preferred operating system there is another who wants to embrace secure boot technology. Some of these users are in the proprietary camp and would be in the best position to benefit from the proposed secure boot implementation. And there are also people in the open-source community who feel that their preference for freedom should not exclude them from making use of secure boot features. Last week the Linux Foundation released a paper (PDF) by James Bottomley and Jonathan Corbet, both members of the Linux Foundation Technical Advisory Board. Which suggests that everyone can have their cake and eat it too.
Their paper, which is thankfully brief and to the point for a technical document, puts forward suggestions on how secure boot can be implemented so it:
No doubt there are some details to work out, but their overall proposal looks reasonable and, if hardware manufactures implement their ideas, users of any operating system could benefit. I recommend both reading the paper and, if you haven't already, signing the FSF statement on secure booting. Sometimes, in the name of software freedom, it's important to stand up and be counted. I believe this is one of those times.
- Conforms to the technical specification
- Is flexible, allowing users to run their preferred operating system and boot from removable media
- Provides protection for users under the default settings
|Released Last Week
Leszek Lesner has announced the release of ZevenOS 4.0, an Ubuntu-based distribution featuring the Xfce desktop with a BeOS-like theme: "The ZevenOS team is proud to announce the release of ZevenOS 4.0. This version is based on Ubuntu 11.10 and has a bunch of new features and changes. The base system was updated to Linux kernel 3.0 which brings a bunch of new drivers as well as an improved implementation of the ext4 file system. Also the experimental Btrfs file system is now supported. Besides that ZevenOS 4.0 also has a lot of new stuff in the desktop area. The underlying Xfce desktop was updated to version 4.8 which adds network support for FTP, Samba, SSH, NFS to the Thunar file manager. Also new is a rewritten thumb-nailing system for the file manager which is faster and more efficient. Video editing has been made easier with OpenShot 1.4." See the release announcement for a complete list of new features and a video preview.
ZevenOS 4.0 - a new version of the Ubuntu-based distribution with a BeOS-like Xfce theme
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Parted Magic 2011_11_24
Patrick Verner has released a new stable build of Parted Magic, version 2011_11_24: "Parted Magic 2011_11_24. There are some major changes that might cause some issues with the multi-boot CD crowd. For a long time the pmagic-.sqfs and Initramfs would not be found on completely supported computers. Reason 1 - this was caused by Windows based zip programs failing to convert the file names properly. Reason 2 - I wasn't using the mkisofs -J option when making the official ISO images. Reason 3 - Somebody would remaster the ISO image and not use the mkisofs -l option. Major bug - there was a dummy file mistakenly left in /usr/local/bin that caused the secure erase command to fail, it has been removed. Updated programs - lilosetup 0.2.9.1, TestDisk 6.13, Linux kernel 3.1.2." Visit the project's home page to read the full release announcement.
Matt Housh has announced the release of CRUX 2.7.1, an updated version of the project's lightweight and fast distribution designed for more advanced Linux users: "The CRUX team has released an interim release, version 2.7.1. 'Interim' means that this release is meant to facilitate upgrades or new installs by saving time that would be taken up by updating quite a few out-of-date packages. This also means that current users of CRUX 2.7 with updated packages do not need to upgrade or reinstall. Release notes: CRUX 2.7.1 includes glibc 2.12.2, GCC 4.5.3 and binutils 2.20.1; Linux kernel 184.108.40.206; packages - CRUX 2.7.1 includes the usual bunch of ports updates, but without any incompatible changes." Read the release announcement and release notes for additional details.
Linux Mint 12
The much-awaited Linux Mint 12, code name "Lisa", has been released: "The team is proud to announce the release of Linux Mint 12 'Lisa'. Linux Mint 12 comes with a brand new desktop, built with GNOME 3 and MGSE (Mint GNOME Shell Extensions), a desktop layer on top of GNOME 3 that makes it possible for you to use GNOME 3 in a traditional way. You can disable all components within MGSE to get a pure GNOME 3 experience, or you can enable all of them to get a GNOME 3 desktop that is similar to what you've been using before. Of course you can also pick and only enable the components you like to design your own desktop. The main features in MGSE are: the bottom panel, the application menu, the window list, a task-centric desktop (i.e. you switch between windows, not applications), visible system tray icons. MGSE also includes additional extensions such as a media player indicator, and multiple enhancements to GNOME 3." Read the release announcement and visit the what's new page for further information.
CrunchBang Linux 10 R20111125
Philip Newborough has announced the release of an updated build of CrunchBang Linux 10, code name "Statler", a lightweight Debian-based distribution featuring the Openbox window manager: "New Statler images have been made available. These new images contain some significant changes since the last release. The main thing to have been removed/retired is the Xfce edition. I love Xfce and I thought about this long and hard, but I really want to concentrate on making CrunchBang give the best possible out-of-the-box Openbox experience possible. Besides, there are plenty of brilliant Xfce-based distributions available, and if you know what you are doing, installing Xfce under Debian is really not too difficult. GDM is the other big loser, being replaced by SLiM. Plymouth, the graphical boot loader, has also gone from the default install." See the release announcement and release notes for more information.
* * * * *
Development, unannounced and minor bug-fix releases
|Upcoming Releases and Announcements
Summary of expected upcoming releases
New distributions added to database
* * * * *
New distributions added to waiting list
- OccupyOS. OccupyOS is a specialised Linux distribution designed to provide a secure environment activists can use to edit and publish documents, browse the web (manage website, Twitter or Facebook pages), and securely communicate both on the ground and with the outside world. It was designed with security and usability in mind. Based on Gentoo Linux.
* * * * *
DistroWatch database summary
* * * * *
This concludes this week's issue of DistroWatch Weekly. The next instalment will be published on Monday, 5 December 2011.
Jesse Smith and Ladislav Bodnar
|Linux Foundation Training
|Reader Comments • Jump to last comment
1 • re: mint (by Alex on 2011-11-28 09:44:47 GMT from Australia) |
I've never really understood the huge appeal of Mint. Sure, it looks good, but it just seems so clunky and bloated now that it has MATE + GNOME3. For me, I'll be sticking with the debian stable master race.
But hey, whatever or whoever can bring more people to GNU/Linux, the more power to them.
2 • Linux Mint 12 (by Rajesh Ganesan on 2011-11-28 10:16:22 GMT from India)
I am another recent convert from Ubuntu to Mint. Mint is a worthy offspring (?) of a great father! Mint has done which Ubuntu should have ... Now, they can proudly say, Mint is Ubuntu done right!
Users are given option. Enable MGSE you get mint, disable it, you get normal shell! Great Idea! Kudos to them!
Only problem I could find is the font settings of Mint theme. It's really very small. They could have made it little larger!
3 • RE: Boot up, little SUSE (openSUSE 12.1) (by FuguRitual on 2011-11-28 10:49:13 GMT from Belize)
I read somewhere that the DVD version of Suse was the most popular media that ppl downloaded despite the size. If that is so, some of Jesse's issues regarding software not being immediately available are not experienced by the majority of Suse downloaders.
Also, although Suse is known for its first class KDE implementation, I have only used Gnome and LXDE. So I am curious if anyone knows what the approximate desktop usage breakdown might be? i.e., what percentage of Suse users install KDE, Gnome, etc.
Minor quibbles: Suse's release cycle is only 2 months longer than Ubuntu's (8 vs 6). I also use Ubuntu and that six month "rapid release" cycle (which ironically was originally implement to be in sync with Gnome) has been getting the blame for a lot of instability issues.
And as far as easy of use, I'm not religious but, I pray that Suse never offers me something as "user friendly" as Unity.
4 • Mark's claim (by django on 2011-11-28 10:56:49 GMT from Netherlands)
"and I'm confident Unity will remain the #1 desktop environment for years to come."
What is Mark been smoking lately? Although he didn't provide numbers to back up his claim, and I do the same because I don't have any, I do think his claim is weak.
After all the rumour about Unity does not give me the impression that this desktop has been positively received by a majority of the Ubuntu desktop users, but maybe Mark has the numbers which proves him right.
Otherwise this is a basesless claim which can be classified as wishfull thinking.
5 • openSUSE (by Jack McLeod on 2011-11-28 10:58:51 GMT from Netherlands)
The Open SUSE review is nice, but how about installing KDE 3 as a desk top as a test, as it is one of the main differents to the all the major distributions, with it still offering KDE 3 among the majors, and perhaps commeting about it as if SUSE is returning to its roots, as SUSE was mostly a KDE distribution in the past, while Redhat/Fedora/RHEL and Ubunte is still mostly a Gnome distributeion, as can be seen by how much polish distributions put on a particular deskstop environment, as both Redhat/Fedora/RHEL and Ubunte seems to put more effort on te Gnome part, while the other desktop seems to me more like an after thought.
6 • activists (by forlin on 2011-11-28 11:02:36 GMT from Portugal)
As we knew, Linux show again that there's always a distro for each particular kind of users and/or different purposes.
7 • Linux Mint 12 with Gnome 3 classic looks good (by hobbitland on 2011-11-28 11:19:44 GMT from United Kingdom)
Hi, I tried Linux Mint 12 with Gnome 3 classic in VirtualBox and it looks much better than Ubuntu 11.10 with Gnome 3 classic. The fonts look wrong in Ubuntu. I think will may well use Linux Mint 13 (based on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS) when it comes out. Seems Linux Mint 12 requires less work to customize into a userable desktop than Ubuntu 11.10.
Ubuntu is Debian with more polished. Mint is Ubuntu with sensible defaults. I will now recommend Linux Mint 12 for non-techy people now.
8 • @6 OccupyOS (by disi on 2011-11-28 11:21:17 GMT from Germany)
I like the feature "secure hard drive wiping tool" :) A kind of emergency button on the desktop, in case someone knocks on the door...
9 • OpenSuse - KDE/Openbox - Google's Go Language (by Bob on 2011-11-28 11:31:18 GMT from Austria)
1) In addition to KDE and Gnome OpenSuse also offers to boot into IceWM and - if installed - XFCE, LXDE, Openbox, etc. For all of you who think that KDE's 200 MB extra main memory consumption as compared to LXDE are not worth the extra gimmicks, there is another choice: The Openbox/KDE boot option would steer away from some of the KDE bloat while preserving many of the KDE features. Just wanted to mention this for people who wish to explore alternatives to the current "blessings" of KDE and Gnome.
2) Google's Go Language is readily available in OpenSuse 12.1 to be tested. For those who don't know it yet: This programming language (http://golang.org/) seems to be the best recent approach to give us an alternative to the C++ octopus or the slow-starting Java. Previously I've had a look at Vala but Go feels a lot more modern and elegant to me. There is some hope that it eventually might really take off because even a gcc integration seems to be planned.
10 • Mint, Ubuntu, Debian (by Ron on 2011-11-28 12:05:50 GMT from United States)
Ubuntu and Mint are based on Debian. Look how great Debian is, (Yes, I am a Debian user,) to have two powerful children like Ubuntu and Mint. Now you two get along or go to your rooms. Of course Debian has more children then that.
Debian is by far the greatest of them all ;-) lol
11 • +1 for Linux Mint 12 (by Vic on 2011-11-28 12:08:29 GMT from Canada)
After testing the latest release from Linux Mint I just wanted to share how pleased I am with their latest offering. No being a complete huge fan of of gnome 3 yet, and really disliking unity, I find Mint has added some nice usable twists to the gnome 3 package. They are really making steps in the right direction. After testing live for half a day I am seriously considering finding a home for this on one of my machines to continue using. Looking forward to a review Jesse, hope you have this one in your sights!
12 • KDE distros- debian based. (by Morgan on 2011-11-28 12:12:44 GMT from United Kingdom)
Why is there no good debian based KDE4 distro's ?
Opensuse, Fedora and Mandriva all have more up to date and usable versions of KDE4 (kubuntu has always seemed inferior for some reason)
For me the best distro for KDE is Arch - it just seems to work better and faster than all others I have used.
Even in Debian sid the version of KDE4 is kde 4.6.x - this is missing some 12000 fixes that made it into 4.7.x ...
13 • OccupyOS (by Sam on 2011-11-28 12:18:17 GMT from United States)
"...It was designed with security and usability in mind. Based on Gentoo Linux."
So usable by just about 1%... err... just about nobody. ::sigh:: Why would I have expected another Ubuntu derivative from the Occupy folks...
14 • @3&5 openSuSE (by Sam on 2011-11-28 12:22:21 GMT from United States)
1. Although openSuSE's supposed to be KDE-centric, I've found on a crap-level Lenovo g560 the KDE version (downloaded Friday) repeatedly crashed, had install issues like the one mentioned in this issue of DWW, and had problems adding and installing from the :GEO repository. No such problems late Friday afternoon with the Gnome 3 version. (Maybe that was just a badly burned CD?)
2. Although the release number is 12.1, in truth, this is 12.0. As any long-time SuSE user can tell you, the x.0 releases are buggy and it is best to wait for the second release (in this case, 12.2).
15 • Re 10: Bigggest problem with Debian is installer (by hobbitland on 2011-11-28 12:38:17 GMT from United Kingdom)
Hi, biggest problem with Debian is their installer.
They need to make a Live DVD that can install without internet connection. Currently, Debian 6.0.3 breaks when installing GRUB2. Installing GRUB2 and LILO breaks without internet access.
Ubuntu is Debian child but Mint is Debian's grandchild. If Mint can make a proper live DVD installer for Debian 6 that would be great.
I will only consider installing from a Live CD/DVD/USB.
16 • OccupyOS (by musty on 2011-11-28 12:49:53 GMT from France)
What is the target audience of this distro , knowing that there is already one :
- tails (formerly incognito or privacy)?
" https://tails.boum.org/index.en.html "
ps: great issue this week again, and i am still happy with Fedora 16.
17 • 12 debian based KDE4 distro's, CrunchBang (by sumbu on 2011-11-28 13:01:19 GMT from Malaysia)
Any ftp/http mirror for CrunchBang Linux 10 R20111125 ?
@ 12 Debian based KDE4 distro's
Liquid Lemur, ZevenOS Neptune, Epidemic using Debian Testing branch.or Mepis with Debian Stable.
18 • @12 (by Ron on 2011-11-28 13:39:33 GMT from United States)
While I am not a fan of KDE anymore.
There is Kubuntu.... Oh wait, you said good distro (I AM KIDDING Kubuntu users.)
Debian works fine with KDE4 as well. Debian is not hard at all to install and get things set up.
19 • Debian (by m1k on 2011-11-28 13:48:35 GMT from Italy)
Kanotix is even easier...
20 • Semplice (by Dave Postles on 2011-11-28 14:24:15 GMT from United Kingdom)
Love Semplice, but it really needs work on the installer to appeal to non-experts for a quick install.
21 • OpenSuse 12.1 (by Sly on 2011-11-28 15:16:20 GMT from United States)
Although I've downIoaded Suse 12.1, haven't tried it yet as I am still happy with the 11.3 version. 11.3 has proven to be very stable and I've customized it to where it's just right for me, so it may be a while longer before I switch. Having said that, I am eager to see what changes were made with KDE so I will install it on a spare older computer before I make a leap. Nice review Jessie!!.
22 • Congrats to mint but... (by mz on 2011-11-28 15:54:22 GMT from United States)
Congratulations to the mint team, now if only version 12 worked on my hardware. I can't seem to get it to work well in live mode on either of my machines. I guess live Gnome 3 has always flickered and had issues on my main machine, but the panels don't even show up on my other machine and x won't load in comparability mode. I see lots of great ideas from the mint team, too bad I can't try 12 out.
23 • Re 15: Debian Live images (by Tap on 2011-11-28 16:14:17 GMT from Finland)
"They need to make a Live DVD that can install without internet connection."
You can find Debian live install images with different desktop options here:
I have installed Debian with i386 and amd64 6.0.3 gnome "hybrid" images and it worked well for me without internet connection. You can write the iso images to a USB stick with dd or cat:
# dd if=debian.iso of=/dev/sdX bs=8M
# cat debian.iso > /dev/sdX
where /dev/sdX is the device where the USB stick was mapped.
24 • OpenSUSE without KDE (by David McCann on 2011-11-28 16:44:47 GMT from United Kingdom)
If you get the DVD version, you have a choice of customising the installation, and that includes opting for Gnome, Xfce, or LXDE. I tried the Xfce version and it's clear that OpenSUSE is very much a KDE distro. For videos, the default player, if you don't have KDE, is Totem: completely broken. Parole couldn't find the flv codec, but finally Gnome-Mplayer worked. I find it disturbing when a program doesn't work at all: a "developer" has compiled it and not bothered to test it. I wanted to search for a file, and there was no Catfish. As far as I could see, there is no file searcher in the repository other than the one for KDE. I installed KDE (it's very easy to select the DVD as a repository) and all was well.
25 • openSUSE (by gumb on 2011-11-28 17:32:20 GMT from France)
@14: Re: point 2 - This is pure misinformation that continues to be spread regarding openSUSE's release numbering. The x.0 releases have NEVER signified major releases, just as the x.1 ~ x.4 releases have never signified updates or mere point releases in comparison. Unfortunately, the 'new' (read 'old') version numbering doesn't really clear up this issue. I personally voted for and wish they had gone with a year-based system like Ubuntu and many other distros, if only to avoid people repeatedly making these assumptions.
@24: I have openSUSE with xfce running on an old desktop, and one of the first things I would recommend is to install VLC as the default media player from the Packman repo. The other options are all lightweight or not up to the job, or bring in too many other dependencies from GNOME or KDE. VLC fits in fine with the DE and I suspect would be default across all desktop variants if it weren't for the legal issues regarding codecs, hence why it isn't in the standard repo. It will clear up almost all your non-playing audio and video issues in one swoop. I also have it as default on my main KDE machine. I used to prefer Kaffeine in its KDE3 days but haven't found the 1.x version so appealing.
26 • openSUSE - 1-click to get codecs (by Eric Yeoh on 2011-11-28 17:42:36 GMT from Malaysia)
For those among us who seem to think that installing codecs for multimedia playback under openSUSE is hard, navigate to http://opensuse-community.org/Restricted_formats and click on the relevant links to install codecs. Real easy no? Due to the ridiculous obsessions with patents and such, we need extra steps to get stuff done. Just to make sure nobody gets sued.
27 • SUSE (by Jesse on 2011-11-28 18:03:42 GMT from Canada)
>> "I read somewhere that the DVD version of Suse was the most popular media that ppl downloaded despite the size. If that is so, some of Jesse's issues regarding software not being immediately available are not experienced by the majority of Suse downloaders."
That's possible, though I believe codecs are not included on the DVD either do to license restrictions. The issues surrounding getting codecs will probably affect people installing from the DVD. See the openSUSE page on codecs here: http://software.opensuse.org/codecs
I do plan to review Mint 12 in the near future. At the moment I have Puppy and Vector on my list too, not sure which order they'll appear in yet.
28 • SuSE (by Barry on 2011-11-28 18:09:47 GMT from United States)
@Jesse - I installed 12.1 from the DVD and I have not yet had to install any additional codecs to play any media (mp3, avi, etc.)...at least so far. I'm also using GNOME as well, if that makes a difference.
29 • page hit ranking statistics (by denflen on 2011-11-28 18:13:04 GMT from United States)
Please excuse me if this has already been pointed out elsewhere but......if all the 'buntus are tallied as one, then "*buntu" is still by far the most popular distro (for page hits). I personally went from Kubuntu to Ubuntu when Kde4 arrived. Then I dabbled in Xubuntu. I have one desktop with Mythbuntu installed. When Unity arrived I spent one day exploring it then switched to lxde and liked it. Upon the arrival of *buntu 11.04, I opted for Lubuntu. I think the big uproar about "most popular distro" is totally wacky. The uproar is more fairly about Desktop Environments. Just saying......
30 • codecs for multimedia playback (by blue on 2011-11-28 18:17:43 GMT from United States)
has Any creator of a linux distribution Ever been sued or hassled for Including all codecs for multimedia playback? If a distribution does not come with them installed out-of-the-box, there is usually a way to install them. Does this extra step somehow make the distro developer Immune from suit? And Who would sue? Just wondering...
31 • SUSE and patents (by fernbap on 2011-11-28 18:21:28 GMT from Portugal)
For as much as patent laws are ridiculous, they are basically a USA business. And if the americans think they can expect any improvement, you can be sure that the corporations will do nothing to change the system, as they all feed from it, including NOVEL.
However, there is no excuse for any distribution not to include a simple step for installing patented and copyrighted products. That is all we are asking.
Fedora goes as far as pretending that restricted codecs don't exist, so that the user will have to research on his own in order to find them.
Something as simple as one checkbox in the installer "include patented and copyrighted software". You can give that to the user, together with how much user agreements that are needed.
Or a simple help file that would be displayed after install with links for doing it.
I think the reason why some distros don't do it is because they are not interested in doing so.
There is a point where unjust laws are to be treated as such, and replaced. There are ways for doing it, but don't expect the corporations to do it for you.
32 • @27 Multimedia Codecs (by cba on 2011-11-28 18:30:52 GMT from Germany)
All you have to do is to use the Yast package management, click on software repositories, then click on "Add", then choose "Community Repositories" and then choose what you need, i.e. the Packman repo in most cases and a "special" repo that could be added in order to watch film dvds.
Another way ist to add the VideoLAN repo (with vlc packages which might conflict with the "same" vlc Packages of the Packman repo):
"Normal" mp3 support via the "legal" GStreamer-Fluendo-mp3 Plugin is available via the openSUSE non-oss repo as well as non-free software like Adobe Reader and Adobe Flashplayer:
If you might have problems with more complex burning projects, e.g. the burning of Double Layer DVDs, then you could use the fully-functional cdrtools as a substitute for cdrkit as backend e.g. for K3b:
It is up to the users, choose what you want.
33 • @29 (by mz on 2011-11-28 18:55:10 GMT from United States)
Page hit rankings from distrowatch aren't a comprehensive user survey to begin with, and depending on the data span you look at they can be highly variable. Over the past seven days mint beats all 4 of the top *buntus by over 2 to 1, but of course the release of mint 12 and other factors like sheer volatility make that fact meaningless. The fact that mint is beating Ubuntu proper on the basis of hits per day over the past year is a very telling trend however. Mint has a lot of momentum behind it at the moment and may well surpass Ubuntu proper in use base eventually, or perhaps not. At very least it proves the Linux community can change its mind and break the institutional momentum of Canonical/Ubuntu at any time, so distros must respect their user base far more than say MS if they have a goal of maintaining and expanding their user base. Beating all the *buntus by 3000 hits per day over the past week may not meaning much in light of the new release, it's a question of how many people will stay. Mint seems to be doing a much better job of giving users what they want for right now, and if they keep it up 2012 may be the year of the Mint desktop for Linux users as a whole, but everyone will still get what they want because there are choices in open source.
34 • 12 • KDE distros- debian based (by Darkman on 2011-11-28 19:08:40 GMT from United States)
I think Mepis is quite good.
35 • @33 (by denflen on 2011-11-28 19:42:02 GMT from United States)
You are correct. My mistake was looking at the last 6 months. Even 3 months ago *buntu combined was getting more page hits than Mint. Then the bottom fell out. I still feel that the trend toward Mint is more of a negative response for Unity and Gnome3. Mint is a child of Ubuntu, (and Debian) as Ubuntu is a child of Debian. All three have multiple Desktop Environments. I do like the fact that Mint has found a way to extend the shelf life of Gnome2. Apparently it gives the users what they want. On the other hand Canonical should listen to their user base a little more. Not many care to have Unity crammed down their throats.
36 • The Rat (by William on 2011-11-28 20:04:01 GMT from United States)
If Ubuntu downplays their loss of market share, they are making a mistake. Unity, and for that matter, Gnome, have formerly-happy Linux Heads twirling like a scene from The Exorcist.
My motivations for using Linux include dependability and, oddly enough, simplicity. Covering the the outer workings of distros with an array of pot-holder-looking icons is not simplicity, nor are the new maze of commands to get things done.
The simple solution is the light-weight XFCE desktop, which is at a stage of development that allows ease of adjustment, and a multitude of customizations.
The only problem I have with XFCE is the rat! Suse's lizard is bad enough, abandoning the time-honored penguin, in favor of a bug-eyed bug-eating toad cousin. But a RAT? How am I ever going to get my daughters, granddaughters, and great-granddaughters to leave a bug- and worm-infested world of Microsoft, for the stability and virus-free world of Linux, if the distros I use are infested with screen after screen of rats and lizards?
Having installed XFCE, I've had no problems. None. Except chasing and exterminating visual vermin. My plea to XFCE: Please Get Rid Of The Damn Rat!
37 • Mint 12 (by Eric on 2011-11-28 20:29:09 GMT from United States)
Overall, I'm not a fan of Mint 12. Granted, with Unity, Gnome-shell and KDE (which has been buggy for me), I'm not sure what I'm a fan of at the moment.
While I commend Mint for trying to ease the problems with gnome3 for their users, I just kind of get this disjointed feeling when I use the system the way they've configured it. And honestly, if I turn them off, I would rather just keep using ubuntu w/gnome-shell or Unity.
I don't know anything, but I sure hope that unity continues improving. I think it's where I want to be, but to this point I just don't know for sure. That's one thing that the change from gnome2 has done for me to be sure. I used to know where I wanted to be.
38 • Shuttleworth has become a delusional old fool (by Joe Linux on 2011-11-28 21:36:06 GMT from United States)
Linux Mint is the number one Linux distribution based on Ubuntu. It is more popular than Ubuntu, because the Mint Gnome Shell Extensions add up to a better desktop then Unity. Unity is one of the worst user interfaces ever devised.
39 • #36 - The Rat (by Andy Prough on 2011-11-28 22:36:10 GMT from United States)
I always thought it was a cute little mouse??
Better than somebody's old apple with a bite taken out of it, in my opinion. Or a window. How boring can you get? A window or a half-eaten apple. Sheeesh.
40 • Got to agree with Joe (#38) on this one (by Shawn on 2011-11-28 22:52:54 GMT from United States)
"Kudos to Mint for the jump in ratings, I'm glad Ubuntu has great derivatives, and I'm confident Unity will remain the #1 desktop environment for years to come."
I'm not so confident Unity will remain the #1 desktop for years to come based on experience and viewing the experiences and complaints of hundreds of others. I do like Ubuntu, been using it since it's inception in 2004. I'm not liking the direction it's going though and I'm glad Mint is there to pick up the pieces of the falling Ubuntu users. I'd since moved on to LMDE and Debian while still hanging around Slackware, Arch, Fedora and messing with Sabayon here and there. openSUSE is good in its own right, but on my older hardware it's kind of bloated.
I think the transition Mint put into place is the main reason why so many Ubuntu users are jumping ship. Ubuntu was a Gnome-only distribution and there was no smooth transition from Gnome 2 to Unity and that's where Mint saw the opportunity to capitalize. I never was a KDE fanboy, but it is much better than Unity is in my own opinion and experience. I'm also thankful for LXDE.
41 • How to measure popularity (by vw72 on 2011-11-28 23:37:20 GMT from United States)
Many people are stating that Linux Mint is more popular than Ubuntu (or any other distro). However, if one steps back to evaluate the situation, Mint is anything but. Sure, it tops the page rank hits, but does that make it more popular?
Real popularity is based on the installed base and Mint is no where near Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian or Suse. When Ubuntu first came on the scene, they too were deemed most popular, but it took several years for their installed base to pass the leaders.
If one wants to base popularity on the page hit rankings, fine, but all that really shows is how often people click on the distro's info page. A better measure would be actual installed base, but that is hard to measure. Other measures would be number of downloads or number of active forum members.
Linux Mint definitely has jumped in terms of page hits, however, only time will tell, if those page hits translate into enough users to be claimed the most popular distribution.
42 • Unity as the most popular desktop (by vw72 on 2011-11-28 23:41:01 GMT from United States)
According to the omgubuntu site, Unity is the most popular desktop, followed by Gnome Shell. Now, it is not a statistical sample, so it is hard to extrapolate, but at least from those responding, that is the result.
It could be that Unity has been accepted by users, as Shuttleworth suggests, however, the vocal minority is all that is heard from giving a different impression.
As with which distro is most popular, however, only time will tell if Unity turns out to be the most popular desktop.
43 • Why Unity and GNOME 3 failed (by Nate on 2011-11-28 23:49:13 GMT from United States)
Here's why those turds failed:
1. application centrism. This concept is worthless and has no place on a system which is designed for multi-tasking,
2. loss of functionality for space. The developers decided that the only way to save screen space was to eliminate features or make them less available. This is true less than half the time. Usually, there is a way to rearrange things so one can save space without sacrificing functionality. I can say that as an architect/ interior designer.
3. Failure to include choices which people like. Do I need to explain this?
4. Missing required features. Desktop environments are for machines which are statistically bound to be shut down frequently, so that should be easy. There are other examples.
5. Poorly thought-out optimization. I fully support wanting to include support for more hardware. That is one of the core tenants of Linux. However, one must always thing about how the loss of features to include more platforms affects the users of platforms already implemented.
6. Supporting touch screens is good, killing features in their name is bad. Maybe we should keep the whole task-centric concept for touch screen devices in addition to mainline machines. I want to have convenient multitasking on tablets and I don't think I'm alone.
That is why those desktops failed. I want to remind everyone however, that the developers were trying to make a better environment. Can we really complain about that? Sure they failed, but maybe future environments can be better because of them. Perhaps we can make an environment that is decent that carries over the good support for touch devices. All success is partially derived from failure. We know why they failed. Let's succeed in the future.
44 • Reply to @43 (by Finalzone on 2011-11-29 00:50:09 GMT from Canada)
With that expertise, how about you designing your ideal desktop environment from scratch then show it to the public?
I have not used Unity but I can reply in the case of Gnome 3.
> 1. application centrism. This concept is worthless and has no place on a system which is designed for multi-tasking,
Multitasking is still present.
> 2. loss of functionality for space. The developers decided that the only way to save screen space was to eliminate features or make them less available. This is true less than half the time. Usually, there is a way to rearrange things so one can save space without sacrificing functionality. I can say that as an architect/ interior designer.
> 3. Failure to include choices which people like. Do I need to explain this?
> 4. Missing required features. Desktop environments are for machines which are statistically bound to be shut down frequently, so that should be easy. There are other examples.
List of missing required features?
> 5. Poorly thought-out optimization. I fully support wanting to include support for more hardware. That is one of the core tenants of Linux. However, one must always thing about how the loss of features to include more platforms affects the users of platforms already implemented.
Gnome Shell is now supported on all possible hardware including the XO laptop and older. Tested on Fedora Rawhide which will soon become Fedora 17.
45 • SUSE, Debian (by rob on 2011-11-29 00:54:00 GMT from United States)
openSUSE is a solid distro-- excellent KDE experience, professional documentation, powerful CLI package manager (zypper), and a powerful administrative utility (YaST2).
However, I am unable to recommend openSUSE for various reasons. It shares many of Fedora's faults, such as small repositories and extreme difficulty in obtaining restricted software such as flash and certain codecs (even Debian has a non-free repository!) But above all, SUSE is controlled by a corporation that all but owned by M$. It's a shame that one of the oldest and most respected Linux distro's is under M$'s thumb.
As for the Ubuntu and Mint drama, Mint is nice and their take on GNOME 3 looks like a big improvement over the original, but I'm curious as to why everyone is diving into the giant cesspool of Debian derivatives and missing the source: Debian itself.
I've been running squeeze for a long time now. Sure, the software is stale, but I get everything I need through backports, and I've never run into a bug. Ever.
46 • Linux Mint 12 (by Mark on 2011-11-29 00:55:42 GMT from United States)
Would love to run Mint 12 on my AMD A6-3400 ASUS with hybrid graphics. Unfortunately, as with ALL Linux 3.xx based distros I have tried so far, except Fedora, I have been unable to load the Live desktop.
Ahh well. I will stick with Pardus 11.2, which works well for my needs.
47 • Some info on openSUE Repositories (for Multimedia codecs and much more) (by SuseUser on 2011-11-29 01:36:21 GMT from Australia)
Documentation> Package management
1. Official repositories
These are official repositories, supported by openSUSE.
2. Semi official repositories
These are repositories available which are not officially supported by openSUSE, but they contain useful packages which you should feel free to use at your own risk.
For openSUSE 12.1, contrib is deprecated.
Contrib is the universal openSUSE repository for third-party packages.
b. KDE repositories.
c. GNOME repositories.
*** See also
###Additional package repositories
Contents [Info from page accessed via the link below]
1 Popular external repositories [these repos, especillay "PACKMAN" will satisfy most multimedia needs of openSUSE users and all it requires is just reading the documentation and making a few minor setting changes via Yast or Zypper]
1.1 Packman ****
1.2 VLC VideoLan client
1.3 ATI video drivers
1.4 NVIDIA drivers
Version: 12.1Essentials and Multimedia
zypper ar -f -n packman-essentials http://packman.inode.at/suse/openSUSE_12.1/Essentials packman-essentials
zypper ar -f -n packman-multimedia http://packman.inode.at/suse/openSUSE_12.1/Multimedia packman-multimedia
Version: 12.1All of Packman
zypper ar -f -n packman http://packman.inode.at/suse/openSUSE_12.1 packman
Add package repositories
Vendor change update
INDEX of Repositories (varied and comprehensive list):
Search and install software packages from the openSUSE Build Service:
48 • @30 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-29 01:42:08 GMT from Canada)
To my knowledge, no, but that's because no distro with any kind of solid financial backing has ever done it. Note that the encumbered codec downloads for all established distributions *come from third parties*, not the distributors themselves. PLF is not part of Mandriva, RPM Fusion is not part of Fedora, and so on.
If the first-party distributor actually provided encumbered codecs - whether at download time or later - they would be opening themselves up to legal issues. The third parties that provide these things are usually based in patent-unfriendly jurisdictions and have about zero financial backing and hence would not be worth the effort of suing. The first parties in these cases are usually careful not to be associated with or to present any appearance at all of being associated with the third parties; this is why you won't find any links to RPM Fusion on the Fedora site, for instance.
49 • @31 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-29 01:44:03 GMT from Canada)
"However, there is no excuse for any distribution not to include a simple step for installing patented and copyrighted products. That is all we are asking."
Er...yes there is. There is the excuse that _it would be illegal_ and they'd get their rear ends sued off for doing it. You can't offer patented stuff to people on the honor system and not expect to get sued.
50 • Mint (by Rich on 2011-11-29 01:54:16 GMT from Canada)
It's good to see Mint is trying to make Gnome3 usable. I use Mint as of now, but I tried Mint12 in live mode yesterday. MGSE really makes Gnome usable again. No more clicking all over the place just to get to program I want.
But saying that, It is still a hard to configure, but I'm that will improve in time.
51 • As at @32 rightly points out..... (by SuseUser on 2011-11-29 02:06:52 GMT from Australia)
...it could not be much easier to have Multimedia codecs and required software and applications installed in openSUSE!!!
>>>32 • @27 Multimedia Codecs (by cba on 2011-11-28 18:30:52 GMT from Germany)
All you have to do is to use the Yast package management, click on software repositories, then click on "Add", then choose "Community Repositories" and then choose what you need, i.e. the Packman repo in most cases and a "special" repo that could be added in order to watch film dvds.<<<
libdvdcss repository is only initially required to obtain the libdvdcss codecs and then it can be disabled.
Description in Yast
Summary: Repository with libdvdcss
Description: Encrypted DVD support
13.2 Manual Codec Installation
You can install the packages manually instead if you prefer.
First add the repositories with YaST Software Repositories:
libdvdcss repository (skip if you don't need DVD playback)
****tip #If the concepts of package manager and repositories are foreign to you, revisit the chapters Installing Software and Software Repositories.
52 • @44 (by mz on 2011-11-29 02:54:13 GMT from United States)
> 4. Missing required features. Desktop environments are for machines which are statistically bound to be shut down frequently, so that should be easy. There are other examples.
List of missing required features?
It has been mentioned by more than a few people, and implied by the commenter, that there is no way to actually shutdown a default Gnome 3 desktop through the GUI. This was an amazingly poor design choice on the part of Gnome developers, and by that I mean it is an epic fail in the eyes of many. It is the kind of thing that discredits the entire project and the hard work of those who contributed to the new version. At this point I'm starting to just feel sorry for the developers who tried to reinvent the wheel and it seems failed spectacularly. I do think Gnome 3 looks very promising as a touch screen interface, but it looks really bad as a PC interface.
53 • openSUSE (by Josh on 2011-11-29 03:30:02 GMT from United States)
openSUSE is *not* in any way owned by Microsoft people - and even if it was - so what? Want to annoy me? Use terms like M$ and Winblose. really. I mean, grow up folks. Use the best tool for the job. Use what you like, and don't use what you don't like.
Oh, and just so you'll know, Linus Torvalds just switched from Fedora to openSUSE from what I hear (he even has a few bug reports listed in Bugzilla). Dirk Hohndel is using openSUSE as well. As well as Greg K-H, another respected kernel dev (and LONGTIME SuSE user).
54 • Gnome 3, shell and older nvidia or ati video (by RollMeAway on 2011-11-29 03:44:08 GMT from United States)
Tried Mint 12 over the weekend, on an older computer that uses nvidia-173 video.
Total waste of time. Can login to shell, but only the wallpaper shows.
ctrl/alt/F1 is only escape.
Only got this far by manually purging unity-greeter, and installing lightdm-gtk-greeter.
Black screen lockup until then.
A little web searching shows multiple forums full of problems with gnome3 and
older nvidia cards. Many claim their ati cards won't work as well.
Wish I had known before wasting my time.
Mint does not list this in their "Known issues" section for 12.
55 • @49 (by fernbap on 2011-11-29 03:45:40 GMT from Portugal)
"There is the excuse that _it would be illegal_ and they'd get their rear ends sued off for doing it"
Really? How can a link to the adobe page be illegal?
Adobe offers flash for free, all it demands is that the users download it from its page. Not hard to do....
How can a tutorial about including non-free software and how to do it be illegal?
You really think that the only possible legal action is ignoring the existance of non-free software? Act as if it didn't exist?
56 • re #17 crunchbang by plain old download (by gnomic on 2011-11-29 03:53:02 GMT from New Zealand)
There are links in the forums if you hunt around ;-> As these are likely provided by nice people out of the kindness of their hearts, perhaps not to be put up here in case they get 'distrowatched'.
57 • back to # 33 (by forlin on 2011-11-29 04:37:10 GMT from Portugal)
There is no reason to keep doing thing today (and for years to come) in the same 10 / 15 years old fashion and regarding that, I understand any and all reasons that led to the evolution to Unity and Gnome 3, in a singe year. Right or wrong? Time will tell.
I'm very much agree with Mark Shuttleworth view about current Mint rise: "Kudos to Mint".
Ubuntu brought to Linux a legion of new users coming from other O/S's that may feel today more comfortable at Mint.
Lets expect/wish Unity+Gnome3+Mint will keep attracting new users to Linux.
58 • Re: #53 openSUSE (by Andy Prough on 2011-11-29 04:58:09 GMT from United States)
You could also mention Miguel de Icaza - the founder of Gnome, who worked on SUSE for Novell (happily, it seems) for many years.
And the fact that Novell was the company who defeated SCO's allegedly Microsoft-funded attempt to destroy Linux.
And the fact that Novell/Attachmate is in court right now, as we speak, pressing its anti-trust claims against Microsoft and Bill Gates in the WordPerfect case.
Pretty strange behavior for a group that is "owned" by Microsoft!! Never let anyone tell you that there is more FUD from outside the Linux community than there is from the inside!
Certified Fraud Examiner
Specialist in Conflicts of Interest
Kyle, Texas, USA
59 • Reply to #52 comment (by Finalzone on 2011-11-29 05:58:46 GMT from Canada)
"It has been mentioned by more than a few people, and implied by the commenter, that there is no way to actually shutdown a default Gnome 3 desktop through the GUI."
There is by holding Left+Alt button that switch "Suspend" to "Power Off...". That instruction is documented through the cheatsheet. The original post seems to never actually tried Gnome 3 which was developed for years.
60 • Zeitgeist package and Gnome 3 (by RollMeAway on 2011-11-29 06:01:30 GMT from United States)
Zeitgeist is the main engine and logic behind GNOME Activity Journal which is currently seen to become one of the main means of viewing and managing activities in GNOME version 3.0
Zeitgeist is a service which logs the user's activities and events (files
opened, websites visited, conversations held with other people, etc.) and
makes the relevant information available to other applications.
AND THE WORLD!
Does anyone have something good to say about zeitgeist and the sneaks
that install it on YOUR computer?
61 • Why Not Debian? (by Peter Besenbruch on 2011-11-29 06:42:34 GMT from United States)
"As for the Ubuntu and Mint drama, Mint is nice and their take on GNOME 3 looks like a big improvement over the original, but I'm curious as to why everyone is diving into the giant cesspool of Debian derivatives and missing the source: Debian itself."
I have hesitated using any non-LTS version of Ubuntu/Mint. Given the directions these distributions are heading, I have been focusing more on Debian. On a recent netbook purchase, I really liked LXDE when I installed it. I especially liked the ability to hide the task bar when combined with the window manager's (Openbox) "undecorate" feature.
LXDE is somewhat buggy, though, and that's a problem. Eventually, it will refuse to suspend, or hibernate. The task bar will spontaneously disappear. Gwenview (a KDE program) will refuse to run, things like that. XFCE is far more stable. The task bar keeps coming back; Gwenview is happy, and I can suspend and hibernate to my heart's content.
Yes, XFCE is nice, but it lacks the "undecorate" feature. You can run programs full screen, but you cannot access the task bar while they do that. Rather than take a mature approach, and put up with a little annoyance as the price for stability, I decided to have my cake and eat it, too. The Openbox Web site has the instructions:
So far, everything is stable. If you want a netbook interface, XFCE with Openbox as a window manager is a great way to go.
62 • @ #60 (by Finalzone on 2011-11-29 06:54:08 GMT from Canada)
Zeitgeist concept is nothing new. The Sugar interface (originately from OLPC XO laptop) has similar model called Journal. You can allow/disallow files to the network.
63 • Ubuntu, Unity and Gnome3 (by Koroshiya Itchy on 2011-11-29 11:11:42 GMT from Belgium)
My guess is that what Canonical is doing is profiting from Ubuntu's popularity to showcase a new desktop environment which is not intended for conventional desktop computers but for touchscreen devices. They believe that Linux can really gain a significant share on that particular market. So, even if Unity is an unsuitable DE for most desktop users, Canonical is using it for regular Ubuntu as a way to promote it and make people familiar with it. It is just a marketing strategy.
64 • Codecs (by Jesse on 2011-11-29 11:48:51 GMT from Canada)
>> "To my knowledge, no, but that's because no distro with any kind of solid financial backing has ever done it. Note that the encumbered codec downloads for all established distributions *come from third parties*, not the distributors themselves. PLF is not part of Mandriva, RPM Fusion is not part of Fedora, and so on. If the first-party distributor actually provided encumbered codecs - whether at download time or later - they would be opening themselves up to legal issues."
I would guess you haven't used Ubuntu recently? It has solid financial backing and offers to download restricted codecs at install time. Mandriva's One distribution included extra codecs out of the box. If memory serves, PC-BSD comes with a full range of codecs, Flash, etc and they're backed by iXsystems.
65 • @59 (by Brnadon Sniadajewski on 2011-11-29 12:56:01 GMT from United States)
True, but it's still a flaw. What is wrong with at least having bothoptions available in the menu without having to install a shell extension. As the above post said, DE's used on desktop PC should have an easy(er) way t obe able to shut down the machine when done.
66 • # 63 (by forlin on 2011-11-29 13:50:26 GMT from Portugal)
That sounds like the usual conspiracy theories regarding Ubuntu.
Didn't you guys yet understand that your rants have lost credibility since too long ago?
Why don't you make a life writing scientific fiction or something the like, like police romances ?
67 • Power Off (by Alan UK on 2011-11-29 13:59:23 GMT from United Kingdom)
Sabayon 7 Gnome. Top right corner- "logout". This returns you to the login screen.
Top right corner- "suspend", "restart", "power off".
I don't know if this is the same with all Gnome distros. I've only just installed Sabayon
on my Acer Aspire netbook and it's the first time I've stuck with Gnome 3 longer than
68 • @41 How to measure popularity (by disi on 2011-11-29 14:04:21 GMT from Germany)
Here is a different list of installed operating systems:
It checks the actual OS and not what desktop environment is used etc.
516 - Debian
219 - Ubuntu
195 - Android
131 - FreeBSD
129 - RedHat
126 - Gentoo
Of course it depends if they remove the OS-Version in Linux Mint/Kubuntu and other distributions that are based on others.
69 • Occupy Linux (by Andy on 2011-11-29 15:07:34 GMT from United States)
Thanks a lot, occupy folks. I was wondering when GNU/Linux would start becoming politicized...
70 • @59 (by mv on 2011-11-29 15:46:40 GMT from United States)
If you've used your new desktop for more than a couple of hours and you can't intuit a way to fully shut it down without digging through forums/user guides etc. then it is a failure as a GUI. I said they need a way to shut down through the Graphical User Interface by default and I mean it. No one should have to use the keyboard to shutdown their PC, it's just stupid to make them do so by default. I can only imagine what the computer illiterate would do with such an interface and how hard they would toss their keyboards across the room. I'd certainly never let my mom near any computer with default Gnome 3 on it, so it's a complete and udder failure from the average user perspective if only for the shutdown defaults or lack there of. I used to think of Gnome as a DE that anyone could use, but that notion was killed. Now we have a very boutique DE for a few PCs and a decent looking tablet interface, but it breaks the Gnome 2 paradigm of being a decent desktop for general use.
71 • Re: 13 (by Rev Lou M on 2011-11-29 16:08:06 GMT from United States)
I sincerely hope that they adhere tenaciously to the FOSS litany! Wouldn't want them using anything proprietary and thus supporting "the MAN"....
72 • @ #70 (by Finalzone on 2011-11-29 18:18:08 GMT from Canada)
"If you've used your new desktop for more than a couple of hours and you can't intuit a way to fully shut it down without digging through forums/user guides etc. then it is a failure as a GUI. I said they need a way to shut down through the Graphical User Interface by default and I mean it."
Obvious problem is the inability to read some manual before usage. How hard to hold a power button for a few second with is now standard for majority of modern devices? Suspend button was set to default based on usage of that functionality on modern devices. You can always change default setting.
"No one should have to use the keyboard to shutdown their PC, it's just stupid to make them do so by default."
Why not? Keyboard input proved to be faster than mouse click. How hard is to mix them?
" I can only imagine what the computer illiterate would do with such an interface and how hard they would toss their keyboards across the room. I'd certainly never let my mom near any computer with default Gnome 3 on it, so it's a complete and udder failure from the average user perspective if only for the shutdown defaults or lack there of."
Then you are at fault for not taking the time to demonstrate the usage of any desktop environment to computer illiterates. Your comment highlighted your own dislike to Gnome 3 which does not mean your Mom will share the same preference.
73 • @72 (by mz on 2011-11-29 19:00:54 GMT from United States)
I don't really want go go in circles about this but software power-down has also been standard on PCs for quite some time and there is no good reason to design a system that is less useable and more convoluted than desktops are currently. I think it's a bad design and more than a few people agree with me. You asked for an example of what was wrong and I spelled out for what was hinted at by the poster you were asking. I tell you it's needlessly more complex and harder to deal with than it used to be, and you tell my all I need is to do more hand holding and go through more steps than other DEs so it's really just fine if you put the extra effort in. There was really no reason to to design it to be more complex to begin with and doing so was a very bad idea, that's my opinion and I'm sticking to it.
My mom has here share of PC problems but she has done just fine on KDE with virtually no help from me, so why not keep a relatively intuitive system if you are targeting most users.
74 • Shutdown and stuff. (by Eddie on 2011-11-29 20:00:31 GMT from United States)
I hate to say it but it really isn't a good design. Granted that it's no biggie to learn how to do it the Gnome 3 way but that doesn't make it good. Even Unity has a GUI two click (or three if you don't want to wait) way to shutdown. That's very strange to set it up like that. Sounds like it's headed for the mobile market. :)
75 • @55 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-29 21:26:50 GMT from Canada)
Um, re-read the quotation in my post again. The person to whom I'm replying was not talking about 'non-free' packages, but about 'patented and copyrighted' packages. There is a huge difference there.
People tend to conflate the question of 'non-FOSS but legally redistributable' packages and 'unredistributable for patent or copyright reasons' packages, but they are completely separate issues.
76 • @75 @55 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-29 21:31:17 GMT from Canada)
Oh, that was you. =) But again, you said 'patented and copyrighted software'. That's something different from Flash.
Fedora by policy does not ship any non-F/OSS software. Legally, yes, we could choose to ship non-free but redistributable software such as Flash in a separate repo; we don't, for the reason that Fedora is committed to software freedom, and we follow the FSF in believing that supporting / promoting non-free software tends to harm the cause of free software. That's a policy choice.
As far as patent-encumbered media codecs go, though, those are simply not legally redistributable. Fedora doesn't provide them _for a different reason_ we don't provide Flash or the NVIDIA binary driver: not because they're against our 'F/OSS only' policy, but because if we provided patent-encumbered codecs in an official repository we would be liable to legal action. It's really that simple. There's no element of choice involved, no element of ideology / policy in the case of this decision: it's a simple question of legal liability.
77 • @64 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-29 21:37:17 GMT from Canada)
I haven't run Ubuntu for a while, no. I'd have to look at that mechanism before I could comment on it - it depends exactly _what_ it will install, and whether it offers different things based on where your system appears to be located, and where all the servers are, and probably a few other things. (Canonical being based on the Isle of Man can only help them when it comes to patent issues, too).
Mandriva One did not ever ship with any patent encumbered stuff. You're falling into the trap of confusing 'non-free copyright license but legally redistributable' stuff with 'free copyright license but patent-or-DMCA-encumbered' stuff. The two are, as I wrote above, separate questions. At least while I was at MDV, One included non-free-but-redistributable stuff, but not anything Mandriva considered patent or DMCA encumbered. MDV has a 'non-free' repo for stuff that is not F/OSS but is legally redistributable, and One would include things from this repo. It didn't include AAC or H264 codecs or anything like that. It had Flash, and NVIDIA and ATI proprietary drivers.
MDV has always shipped MP3 decoding in all its versions, though other distributors tend to consider it patent-encumbered; AFAIK the only basis MDV has for doing this is that Fraunhofer hasn't sued them yet, and they're hoping it stays that way. =) They consider MP3 *encoding* to be encumbered, and don't ship or package it in official repositories.
78 • Mandriva (by Jesse on 2011-11-29 22:41:20 GMT from Canada)
>> "Mandriva One did not ever ship with any patent encumbered stuff. You're falling into the trap of confusing 'non-free copyright license but legally redistributable' stuff with 'free copyright license but patent-or-DMCA-encumbered' stuff. MDV has always shipped MP3 decoding in all its versions, though other distributors tend to consider it patent-encumbered; "
No, I'm aware of the difference. As you yourself pointed out in your own post, most distributions would consider mp3 decoding encumbered, but Mandriva shipped it anyway. As does Ubuntu, as does PC-BSD. You can't have it both ways, either mp3 is encumbered and Mandriva, Ubuntu etc are violating the patent, or it's not encumbered and distributions like Fedora and openSUSE are being overly paranoid. You can't expect people to believe mp3 is emcumbered, except for Mandriva.
79 • Debian 6 (by Paul on 2011-11-29 22:45:12 GMT from Canada)
I switched back in December / January can't remember which month when Squeeze was frozen from Ubuntu 10.04. I also switched from Gnome to KDE4 and I love KDE4 now.
For new programs I use Stable Backports as well. No issues what-so-ever.
80 • @76 (by fernbap on 2011-11-29 23:43:39 GMT from Portugal)
"That's a policy choice."
I rest my case.
Burrying your head in the sand will acomplish nothing, and that is what Fedora and Opensuse are doing.
81 • @78 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-30 00:02:55 GMT from Canada)
Well, I can have it both ways, really. =)
There's always a degree of interpretation when it comes to legal issues: almost nothing is black and white. The easiest thing to go is precedent, but there really isn't any precedent here - like I said, no distro's ever actually been sued on the basis of the inclusion of patented multimedia codecs, to my knowledge.
So what you do, if you're a responsible distributor, is you go to your legal team and ask them for an assessment. And usually, lawyers being an extremely conservative bunch, what they tell you is 'be safe. don't ship anything that you're reasonably sure is covered by a patent that's actively enforced, and don't do anything that looks like contributory infringement, either'.
However - they can't tell you "if you ship this you will definitely be sued and you will definitely lose". Whether you get sued is entirely up to the owner of the relevant patent, and whether you win or lose is up to a court and possibly a jury. All a lawyer can do is evaluate the risk and tell you what they think is a prudent course.
So in the specific case of MP3 decoding: it definitely _is_ covered by patents. Those patents are owned by entities that are known to be in the business of asserting their patents: there certainly have been lawsuits filed over MP3 encoding in particular.
However, the owners of the patents in question have not yet seen fit to sue Mandriva. And if they did, you can't say with any certainty who would win (though my bet would be on the patent owners).
Why not sue Mandriva? Who can say? they're not making their reasoning public. At a bet, they expect it would lead to a lot of negative publicity, and they don't think the amount of money they could win (and actually *receive* - the two are not necessarily the same thing, especially when it comes to a company like MDV, which has, to a reasonable approximation, no money) would be worth a) the publicity issues and b) the legal costs. There's also the issue of MDV's being based in France. (Or Russia or Brazil...)
Since that's the kind of calculus involved, it doesn't follow that because MDV has gotten away with it so far, anyone else should be safe too. What if RH did it? Well, for a start, RH is based in the U.S. For a second, it has a lot more users, a lot more revenue, and a giant cash pile which looks all sorts of tempting to anyone who's in a suing kind of mood. For a third, RH looks somewhat more like a major grown-up operation and less like a plucky underdog, for PR purposes; you could paint a Fraunhofer / RH fight as a fairly even one, which is harder with a Fraunhofer / MDV fight. So the publicity implications might not be so bad.
So - it's entirely possible that while MDV has not, in point of fact, yet been sued for shipping MP3 decoding, a bigger and richer company which did so *would* get sued. When it comes to patents, which are remember an issue of civil law not one of criminal law, there's a lot of murky grey areas and discretion involved. You don't sue everyone you think may possibly be breaking your patents, necessarily. It's a cost/benefit calculation, always. And different companies on the 'defensive' end might make different judgements about whether they should ship certain things, based on their interpretation of the code, the patents, the likelihood of actually being sued, the likelihood of winning if they were, the cost of winning or losing, the benefit of shipping the code...
I'm probably guilty of simplifying the issue in the first place, admittedly. But it remains true that the concerns about shipping patent-encumbered code are *legal* concerns, not philosophical ones. It remains true that there are very real legal (and hence) financial risks in shipping code that is (or may be claimed to be) patent encumbered, this is not simply a question of over-idealistic policy. And it remains true that you have to remember the distinction between the 'policy/idealist' question of 'do we ship code that's not F/OSS but is redistributable', and the question of 'do we ship code that may be patent encumbered', which is not at all a question of idealism but one of legal risk assessment.
82 • @80 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-30 00:11:47 GMT from Canada)
Well, um, no, it clearly does achieve something. To give just one concrete example, if Fedora and Red Hat had a less strong commitment to free software and thought it was just fine to ship the proprietary NVIDIA driver and encourage everyone to use it, they would not have invested in the development of the nouveau driver to the extent they have: RH would not be paying a developer to work on nouveau full time, and Fedora would not (probably) have been the first distro to switch to the nouveau driver by default for NVIDIA cards.
The driver would likely be much less developed than it now is, and hence we would not have such a decent free driver for NVIDIA cards.
So, a policy of promoting F/OSS software exclusively certainly has practical benefits. Does it have practical drawbacks too? Sure. Are you obliged to agree with it? Of course not. You can always add proprietary software to a F/OSS-supporting distro, or use a different distro. But it seems excessive to simply declare that your point of view is definitely correct, and a stricter embrace of F/OSS principles is equivalent to "Burrying your head in the sand will acomplish nothing".
83 • Ubuntu & Codecs (by Bruce on 2011-11-30 00:57:11 GMT from United States)
I am using Ubuntu (10.04) and the install CD only includes software from the main and restricted repositories, which do not contain encumbered software. According to Ubuntu's website, software that may have legal restrictions is only available over the internet. They have mp3 codecs available through their Fluendo partner, which also provides licensed mp3 codecs free of charge for linux. Perhaps when they offer to include mp3 support at installation they are pulling it from there; I don't know. Here in the USA there are many restrictions that don't exist (or aren't enforced) in other parts of the world, and Adam is right is saying that those things have to be considered when providing software. Even Mint has a separate CD for the USA and Japan without patent encumbered software. One must also consider the end user. Home use may not be a target for patent owners, but business use may provide a more tempting target for litigation.
84 • @82 (by fernbap on 2011-11-30 01:39:42 GMT from Portugal)
You know, i have an ATI card. Because i need to use a couple of windows programs under wine (they work perfectly), i have been dependent on fglrx so that they are not desperately slow.
Hiding your head in the sand is releasing gnome 3 without even testing if there was no issue with fglrx.
Only after distros started including gnome 3, the users found a problem with the fglrx driver under gnome 3. ATI was allerted, and fixed it in 48 hours, but we are still waiting for the release of the new version, which is currently being tested.
So, because some people hide their heads in the sand, i have a useless gnome 3 desktop with the slowest driver that ever ran on my computer (gallium), only because the gnome 3 developers didn't even check one of the 2 most used graphics drivers.
Needless to say, those couple of programs are crippled and unusable.
I know, "That's a policy choice."
85 • @84 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-30 02:23:52 GMT from Canada)
I don't claim to speak on behalf of the GNOME developers. I don't know if they have any kind of policy on non-free drivers.
86 • @83 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-11-30 02:25:20 GMT from Canada)
Indeed, the Fluendo codec for MP3 decoding falls broadly under the heading of 'non-F/OSS but legally redistributable', so if Ubuntu offers you *that* - rather than one of the MP3 decoding libraries which is under an F/OSS license but has no kind of coverage for the MP3 decoding patents - then there's no legal problem.
87 • power buttom (by JR on 2011-11-30 03:17:29 GMT from Brazil)
you can not be so naive at this point to not see that that is the truth, to be conspiracy theory it could not be so obvious as it is! it would necessarily be unacceptable to most of us!
"Obvious problem is the inability to read some manual before usage. How hard to hold a power button for a few second with is now standard for majority of modern devices? Suspend button was set to default based on usage of that functionality on modern devices. You can always change default setting."
OK, now I have to read a manual to shutdown my computer? that's crazy! Are you not following the discussions lately? You are almost the only one here that really thinks that's the right direction to desktops as well!
I know that there are many people working hard on gnome3 and I have nothing against them but... many people still want gnome2 back, that's very sad for gnome3 as a project...
congrats to Nate (@43) e Koroshiya Itchy (@63) you have said much of what we (users of gnome2) would like to say about gnome3 and Unity!
you said interesting things as well ... "Gnome 3 looks very promising as a touch screen interface, but it looks really bad as a PC interface."
I totally agree!
88 • 87 power button (by mandog on 2011-11-30 12:33:06 GMT from Peru)
which planet are you on Gnome2 is like using win98 Gnome shell is the future you can shut down the time honoured way its not very hard to do there is a extention for that. you can also use gnome dock the buttons glow when you minimise programs ala mac.you can have the three buttons back as well, you can clutter your desktop with icons if you wish its just not default in gnome shell or you can use gnome3 without the shell which is almost the same as gnome2 in its functions. if you use gnome shell for a extended time you don't know how it functions All mint has done is add some off these functions back as standard and is now being hailed as the way to go. the situation is made worse by so called reviewers 1 giving biased opinions and not testing for a extended time. if you want to test Gnome3 and its potential install Arch Linux with Gnome 3 then download the gnome extensions with pacman then add more from the AUR repro then come back and sing praise for Gnome shell
89 • @88 (by Brandon Sniadajewski on 2011-11-30 12:51:39 GMT from United States)
But why do we need an extension just to be able to shut down easily from the GS desktop whereas in the other better known DEs (KDE4, TDE, G2, XFCE) we can do that without having to install an "extension" to more easily provide that functionality. I, and many others here, still think that not having that option by default is bad design. Also, having users go RTFM just to find out how to such a simple task is stupid, I think.
90 • @89 and others (by Vic on 2011-11-30 13:37:39 GMT from Canada)
Silly or not it's the way they designed the shutdown by default. It's not hard to shutdown once you know how. For those that want a traditional method there is the extension, just like there is fall back for those that don't like shell. They aren't going to replace Gnome2, but they are an attempt to ease the transition to Gnome3. If it's that much of a put off there is KDE, Xfce, LXDE, Trinity, Mate, and plenty of window manager configurations available, plus some I'm sure I missed. For whatever reason they chose to deviate from a traditional menu option for shutting down, and for plenty of listed reasons on the Gnome project's site they made a clean break from the gnome2 code base to create the next generation of Gnome.
The point I'm getting to is that for better or worse Gnome3 _is not_ Gnome2, probably won't ever be exactly like Gnome2, and is trying to introduce many things which the devs felt just weren't possible in Gnome2 as that project stood. If you aren't happy with how Gnome3 was designed, looks works, behaves, etc... no amount of whining and crying _here_ is going to have much, if any, influence on the direction the projects devs are taking. I get it, some people really aren't happy with certain aspects of the project, others the project as a whole. What I suggest then to all you individuals is be constructive by:
i) filing a bug report with the projects bug tracking system
ii) participate in the discussion forums _of the project_ and let the actual devs know how you feel
iii) fork your own version of Gnome if you may be capable and willing
iv) demonstrate your dislike by using another project and promoting it on it's merits
I'm sure there are other options available that I missed. I don't think posting it here repeatedly should be one of them. The repeated weekly complaining (rants on why Gnome3 sucks, also Unity for that matter) on this sites comments section is tiresome and IMHO takes away from the excellent job the site maintainers and contributors do to enrich our community. I understand that many people are upset. I was (still am for now) a happy Gnome2 user, and though I'm glad to see projects like Mint giving Gnome3 hope for Gnome2 refugees, I think there are much more constructive venues for you to vent then filling the comments section with it here.
91 • @86: MP3 patents (by cba on 2011-11-30 16:18:38 GMT from Germany)
The MP3 decoding patents will expire around 2015 in the USA, so even Fedora might have mp3 support via libmad one day.
You are right that many distros do not offer such patent-encumbered multimedia codecs in their repositiories. openSUSE is no exception, e.g. Packman is no official openSUSE repsitory.
However, Debian or Slackware provide most multimedia codes in their main repos. Only a few codecs (e.g. libdvdcss2) are missing. Ubuntu does the same, almost every multimedia codec can be found in its universe and multiverse repos which are activated by default and always shown e.g. in synaptic.
92 • Think before you post (by afonic on 2011-11-30 16:34:25 GMT from Greece)
I'd like to comment on some stuff I've read above on Gnome 3:
-- It failed
No it didn't fail. Thousands of users use it every day, it is actively developed and supported by respected companies.
-- OMG it doesn't have a taskbar I can't multitask
Actually exactly the oposite. The overview + workspaces idea works extremely well for users having multiple DIFFERENT applications for multiple DIFFERENT tasks. That IS what multitasking is, not having 10 Firefox and 5 Nautilus windows.
-- It is suited for touch devices.
Not at all. I have a touch enabled laptop and it doesn't work very well as it needs keyboard interaction all the time and precise mouse movement.
-- It doesn't have many configuration options
I totally agree with that. But just give it time. Gnome 2 was around for many years until all that options became available. Rome wasn't build in a day.
--Overview mode is slower than a taskbar
Expose for Mac OS was one of the best features and users still like it and use it. Overview is about the same thing. When you get used to it, a taskbar seems like a waste of time, trust me.
I think most people that really liked their Gnome 2 desktop, have the right to be disappointed with Gnome 3 as it completely changed the user experience. However most people dislike change, they want to stick with something they are familiar with (not just in DE, generally in life). I believe that most of the posts about Gnome 3 are from people that used it only for a few hours.
Still, Gnome 2 is essentially Windows 95 with Workspaces. User interface will eventually evolve (as Windows 8 is doing and OSX has already done) to something better and I rather have Linux at the first row, rather than a few years behind and copying features.
93 • Gnome 3 and Unity again (by ix on 2011-11-30 19:07:42 GMT from Romania)
I have the feeling that Gnome 3 and Unity are trying to tell us how to interact with our PCs, but I'd rather decide for myself.
94 • @92 (by mz on 2011-11-30 19:34:24 GMT from United States)
I said it looked promising as a touch screen interface, and it appears to me to be far more designed in that style than in a desktop style. I think they tried to blend the desktop and the touch screen in a way that fails to work well for average users. I'll admit I probably need more with it to really judge it, but as #89 and others have pointed out having to RTFM to shutdown the default desktop is really stupid and really hurts the project in they eyes of many, and to me makes the whole project look like an ill conceived failure. It seems to me as though they designed that part of it via a check box that said 'make if physically possible to do a software power down' with out considering the results. I know part of the point was to be cutting edge, but they really seem to have thrown away the baby with the bath water in making Gnome 3.
95 • @93 (by Vic on 2011-11-30 19:43:25 GMT from United States)
That's just not what they are doing at all. Neither Gnome 3 or Unity try to tell you how to do anything. You are free to continue doing things however you are used too. Projects like Trinity and Mate offer vintage DE experiences. Xfce and LXDE still remain fairly consistent. Gnome 3 and Unity are just simply new and different takes on how a DE can be implemented and executed. And they are still very much works in progress, which despite some rough edges, are progressing nicely. Each project is there for you if you choose, but the choice is still very much yours. That's the beauty of using Linux and other FOSS OSs, the options available. Personally I'm still content using Gnome 2 on one PC and LXDE on the other older laptop I use. But I also very much enjoy trying the new offerings and when I feel I'm ready maybe adopting one. Not that the choice is forced on me.
96 • 87, 88, others, manuals and power buttons (by Rev Lou M on 2011-12-01 01:56:39 GMT from United States)
Extensions, preferences, futures and the good old "R-T-*-M".
Millions of people every day turn millions of windows machines on and off and, on dire threat, couldn't give you the vaguest idea where their "*-M" is. They CAN tell you, though, that it is more likely than not STILL IN it's plastic wrapper.
This isn't about the "future". Our great-grandkids will have a shot at seeing the day when Windows 3279SP469 gets toppled by Mint, but we won't.
Do what I do. Tap the switch on the surge protector with your toe.
97 • @88 @95 (by JR on 2011-12-01 03:27:39 GMT from Brazil)
"if you want to test Gnome3 and its potential install Arch Linux with Gnome 3 THEN download the gnome extensions with pacman THEN add more from the AUR repro THEN come back and sing praise for Gnome shell"
sounds like: "read a manual before you use your desktop environment"
"You are free to continue doing things however you are used too"
but ... if your choice was to continue using gnome2? evolving ... yes, but the way it was ... can you do this with MATE? or you will be forced to change the desktop environment you use?
98 • @97 choice and options (by Vic on 2011-12-01 04:51:16 GMT from United States)
Then continue to use Gnome 2. You have the option to continue using it on one of the many distributions that still offer it. Unfortunately for Gnome 2 fans the Gnome devs chose to leave the old code behind, a clean break. Their choice. So yes if your distribution of choice has moved on to Gnome 3, and eventually they all are going to have to move on, then one option has been limited. But that hasn't happened yet. So make a choice from what options are there, and if that isn't enough, by all means pick up where Gnome 2 was left. That is what Mate is trying to do. And I have faith that by the time Gnome 2 is no longer an option at all that they may have improved enough to be a suitable replacement option.
Bottom line is all the belly aching in the comments isn't going to bring the gnome devs back to working on Gnome 2. Believe me if it were possible I'd be just as happy too. Gnome 2 was my first choice, but since it is becoming no longer an option I've chosen to move on to something that is.
99 • Vector Linux (by RollMeAway on 2011-12-01 06:06:22 GMT from United States)
If you haven't tried slackware based Vector linux in a while (or ever), here is a detailed set of screenshots of the install.
See Distrowatch Home page for more info and links.
if xfce is not your cup of tea, note e17-svn:63356 is available from their repos.
100 • Gnome 3 is salvageable (by mz on 2011-12-01 07:47:16 GMT from United States)
After finding a piece of hardware that Mint 12 works well on I must admit it is rather nifty with the sane defaults given by the Mint team. It doesn't seem too heavy for somewhat older hardware, and the stuff you get in the hot corner is good, I just wish vanilla Gnome 3 had defaults that weren't so nutty. If the Gnome team wanted to create the backbones of a decent DE that could be setup properly by distro makers then they actually succeed, I just don't get why that packaged it the way they did. If they intended for their DE to be shipped as in default mode for all types of users then there was at least one big glaring fault that shouldn't have been made.
101 • Mintu (by zykoda on 2011-12-01 14:48:19 GMT from United Kingdom)
Now is the winter of our discontent Made glorious summer by this sun of Clem; And all the clouds that lour'd upon our house In the deep bosom of the ocean buried. Draw what analogies you will.
102 • @93 (by Adam Williamson on 2011-12-01 17:43:22 GMT from Canada)
That's just an absurd statement. Of course GNOME 3 and Unity tell you how to interact with your PC. So did GNOME 2. So does KDE. So does LXDE. *Every* GUI 'tells you how to interact with your PC'. That's what they're _for_.
If you want to decide for yourself, break out emacs. But I don't think you really do. What you _mean_ is 'I like the way GNOME 2 designed for me to interact with my computer and I don't like the way GNOME 3 and Unity designed'. Which is a perfectly valid point of view. But what you said is just silly.
103 • Gnome 3 (by Jesse on 2011-12-01 17:46:05 GMT from Canada)
What strikes me as odd about Gnome 3 is that whenever someone points out the unintuitive commands (like holding ALT to shutdown) or the time it takes to switch tasks with the mouse, someone in the Gnome community always comes up with the same two answers: Read the manual and use the keyboard.
Two of the big advantages of a GUI are supposed to be that they are discoverable, reducing the need for a manual and they they do not require memorizing key combinations. If I wanted to use an interface which requires learning key combinations and reading manual pages, I'd use the command line.
As Vlc pointed out, people who don't like Gnome don't have to use it, so it's not really worth getting worked up over. More distributions currently support Gnome 2 than Gnome 3 and, with the arrival of MATE, I hope it stays that way.
104 • A sane voice (by Eddie on 2011-12-01 18:40:28 GMT from United States)
@103, Gnome 2 should stay around for some time yet. Look how long Windows 98 stayed around.
As far as key commands or combos goes, there have always been key commands so don't go acting like it's something new. Anyone who installs Gnome 3 should know what to expect. Let's be realistic here. People who install an os should be able to find out how to do simple things, like installing extensions.
Vic has a lot of good points in his comments and it would be wise if we all listened to them. Also Jesse is correct in saying that none of this is worth getting worked up over and if we do then we are the ones with the problems.
105 • Its not about choice (by fernbap on 2011-12-01 19:22:48 GMT from Portugal)
What i find funny is people saying that gnome 3 is the future and gnome 2 is the past.
Everyone makes mistakes. A modern mistake doesnt make it good just beause it is modern.
The future is what we make of it. Learning from mistakes, hopefully
106 • Linux Mint - Ubuntu (by Rick Beltz on 2011-12-01 20:04:01 GMT from United States)
Good to see Mint rising in the ratings at the expense of Ubuntu, which I'm still using on my IBM Thinkpad (Maverick 10.10) but not on my Dell desktop. I tried Mint 11 on the Dell but it kept blowing up and had a serious problem with Pulseaudio. So I reformatted and installed Debian 6.0.3 which is running well. Ubuntu once had a good product but they have lost their focus and are now losing users big time. After Maverick 10.10 hits the end of support next April I may well install Debian 6.0.3 on my Thinkpad as well. Long live Linux!
107 • gnome/mint (by mz on 2011-12-01 20:06:16 GMT from United States)
I think my real issue isn't the fact that Gnome 3 makes extensive use of keyboard commands and destroys the kind of discoverability Jesse mentioned, but the fact that it's such a radical shift from what I thought of Gnome as. There are definitely places where this kind of thing will be popular but it moves away from user friendly and limits it's audience, at least for the default shell. I can see how it is usable but it seems to be a pain to do so the Gnome 3 way, especially through the GUI and on a laptop. Gnome 3 is also heavy enough to really slow down a computer that meets minimum Mint 12 specs when you open the software manager. Synaptic works well though.
108 • old but unsupported? (by jack on 2011-12-01 21:19:05 GMT from Canada)
Back in Sept.2007 Ladislav published an article about the difference between the "big boys" and the "hobby boys".
He listed the top 25 distros (at that time) and showed which issued security updates and which issued security mailing lists.
About 10 issued both and 4 more issued one or the other
(at that time Mint issued neither)
Old but unsupported seems perhaps irresponsible?
109 • Gnome (by Jesse on 2011-12-01 21:37:52 GMT from Canada)
>> "As far as key commands or combos goes, there have always been key commands so don't go acting like it's something new."
No, key combos themselves are not new. All desktops have keyboard short-cuts. What is new is Gnome 3 is the only desktop environment I'm aware of which makes learning key combinations mandatory. With other desktops it's assumed most users will interact with the graphical interface with graphical tools (ie the mouse pointer or touch). Gnome 3 is virtually unusable without keyboard short-cuts and requires the keyboard to shutdown from within the environment. That's unusually bad design.
110 • @ 23 Debian live (by ken on 2011-12-01 22:00:36 GMT from Congo, The Democratic Republic of the)
thanks for the link. Downloading debian lxde torrent because I am not sure gnome will run on 256 RAM. Bodhi is doing some good job but has some rare behaviours, it will just not accept French as the system 'LANG' default, and I need the system in French.
111 • Gnome 3 (by Patrick on 2011-12-01 23:03:43 GMT from United States)
Granted, having to hold Alt to see the power down option is dumb. But we're talking about a detail here in a default implementation. Two out of the three Gnome 3 distro implementations I've tried up to now have had the power down option available by default. Seriously, it is a storm in a glass of water. Ditto for the minimize and maximize buttons. I admit I have enabled them, to make my transition a little smoother, until I get used to the Gnome 3 workflow.
It's just funny to me that the whole Gnome 3 effort is being judged by minor details like that. Personally, I love the new way to switch tasks. It is much faster for me to whip my cursor in the corner and click the window I want than to have to find the right window button on the old Gnome task bar. Sure, there's more movement, but recognition is faster, because I can click on the "real item" instead of an abstract representation that has just an icon and text, and selection is faster because I can hit a big target instead of a tiny one. I am also faster at finding my apps to run by whipping my cursor in the corner and hitting a couple of keys, instead of navigating the menus.
I am enjoying Gnome 3 quite a lot. Can it be improved? Sure. Could Gnome 2 be improved? Definitely. Was the way Gnome 2 worked "right" and is the way Gnome 3 works "wrong"? Absolutely not. In my book, "the way we've always done it" is a poor reason to never innovate. In my experience, Gnome 3 is keeping its promise of making my computing experience simpler and smoother.
112 • gnome 3 (last comment) (by JR on 2011-12-01 23:28:55 GMT from Brazil)
1. I agree with Jesse in comments 103 and 109, I think it is way too weird and too far from what the majority of users would like the "gnome desktop environment" be in the future. that's how I feel.
2. Vic and Eddie: I like being able to express myself here and I think my comments were useful in some way, you have no obligation to agree, just need to let me speak my mind, and I just needed to say that the change in gnome was too big and ended up in a strange way that displeased many people.
3. Patrick: gnome 3 is not wrong, just not what I wish it were, it is not gnome to me, can run smoothly in the future, but should had its name changed because it is totally new, totally different and not a logical continuation. (in my personal opinion of course)
I'm sorry if it was a matter that had already been widely discussed before here, but it is too important to leave quietly.
113 • Gnome 3 power off (by jaglu on 2011-12-02 00:39:55 GMT from Denmark)
By default some distros have a shutdown button (like openSUSE 12.1) and some don't (like Fedora 16).
114 • Mint 3, good but... (by Jeffersonian on 2011-12-02 01:09:30 GMT from United States)
Mint 3 ?
I used Mint 10, since its release and loved its simplicity of install & use, its stability.
Mint 11 was no good: I gave up.
Mint 12: hard to install... properly, but install of drivers (Nvidia, Broadcom) is very simple.
The installer still seems buggy, and I really dislike GRUB2, whicch does a poor job!
When installed, Mint 12 seems fast & stable... but I had to install it four times to get it right.
The bad: no GUI for groups & users etc...
Fedora, Suze provided decent GUI for system management including Users/Groups years ago, so this is really missing, koz CLI is not always simple to use.
I wanted the latest kernel, but I still prefer the clean users interface of Mint 10 !
Some like it simple...
115 • Mint (by Jesse on 2011-12-02 01:32:45 GMT from Canada)
>> "Mint 12: hard to install... properly, but install of drivers (Nvidia, Broadcom) is very simple.
The installer still seems buggy, and I really dislike GRUB2, whicch does a poor job!
When installed, Mint 12 seems fast & stable... but I had to install it four times to get it right.
The bad: no GUI for groups & users etc...
Fedora, Suze provided decent GUI for system management including Users/Groups years ago, so this is really missing, koz CLI is not always simple to use."
I find it odd you'd have trouble installing Mint. I've done dozens of installs of it, on various hardware, and they've all gone smoothly, typically with the defaults. I'm curious as to what problems you encountered. The only part of the installer where the user really needs to make any choices is with partitioning and that's usually safe if the defaults are taken.
Mint has a GUI for managing user accounts, it's been there for years. Go to System Settings and click User Accounts. If you need additional options not presented in the GUI running "adduser" will walk you through all the steps one at a time so you don't need to use command-line-fu.
116 • Mint 12 (by jack on 2011-12-02 02:01:11 GMT from Canada)
dvd stopped at ;loop 0"
cd live loaded but fonts were stretched horizontally almost unreadable
117 • Gnome 3 corner for task switching (by Ralph on 2011-12-02 02:18:53 GMT from Canada)
@ 111 -- I would just like to point out that "whipping" your cursor into the upper left corner to switch tasks in Gnome 3 is hardly anything new -- it was a standard feature of Gnome 2 under Compiz and remains a standard feature in KDE4 under Kwin, when desktop effects are enabled.
118 • ubuntu (by forlin on 2011-12-02 03:22:56 GMT from Portugal)
It would look better that instead of all "those" xxBuntu, new releases were announced as gnome, unity, kde, lxde ... editions.
119 • re #116 Mint 12 problems (by gnomic on 2011-12-02 03:46:05 GMT from New Zealand)
dvd stopped at ;loop 0"
Sounds like some problem with optical drive and/or disc - you did check the download was good of course? And possibly even used the option I think is present at boot to verify the disc?
Maybe nothing to do with Mint 12 as such.
'cd live loaded but fonts were stretched horizontally almost unreadable'
Sounds like the desirable resolution for the screen has not been selected - this happens from time to to time with just about every distro I've encountered - naturally you tried to select the best resolution possible - or started in 'compatibility' mode to see whether it gave a better result?
Have booted Mint 12 dvd 32-bit on 3 machines so far, 2 with ATI video from circa 2005 and one with i915, no problems to date. In live mode it's no speed demon on my gear, but that's what I usually find with Ubuntu and its kin.
120 • re: 98 • @97 choice and options (by Ron on 2011-12-02 05:25:09 GMT from United States)
"Believe me if it were possible I'd be just as happy too. Gnome 2 was my first choice, but since it is becoming no longer an option I've chosen to move on to something that is."
But Vic, is this not a case of the tail wagging the dog?
121 • @ 111 (by Burt on 2011-12-02 12:38:47 GMT from United Kingdom)
Couldn't have put it better myself sir.
I went back and used fluxbox last night and the fisrt thing I did was instinctively move my mouse to the top left corner! It just felt so natural to do it. In fact I felt a little lost without it.
122 • need jobs equivalent (by Nate on 2011-12-02 16:57:06 GMT from United States)
It should have been obvious that the lack of good window management would be a major problem. This feature set stems from users' need to know what programs are in use and manage as such. Developers knew users needed a list-all-tasks feature even in the 70s, and they included the jobs command as a result. However in Gnome3 and Unity, this was forgotten.
123 • @121, 111 (by subg on 2011-12-02 18:57:12 GMT from United States)
I find the same thing when I switch from my paldo/gnome3 box to my main puias/gnome2 box. Both are great implementations but I find I quite miss the shell and desktop effects. Eventually puias will move to gnome 3 when Red Hat does and I'll be fine with that.
124 • @120 If that's how you want to see it... (by Vic on 2011-12-02 19:44:55 GMT from Canada)
I suppose it could be looked at that way. My point with that line in more general terms is that I'm not a dev, just a user. As such my options are generally limited to what is in active development. As a user I'm limited in how I affect what is or isn't being worked on, and which directions those who make those decisions choose to pursue. Sure I can voice my opinion, and I can have a small effect by choosing to adopted (or not) a projects work. But in the end my choices are always going to be limited to what offerings are on the table. I just accept that fact.
125 • @111 etc. (by mz on 2011-12-02 20:19:42 GMT from United States)
In my limited time I've found it to be much clumsier than KDE with similar desktop effects enabled. I suppose my main issue is the selection of apps vs open windows and the inability to easily see what's in different work spaces. Granted part of my issues are related to trackpad problems on the laptop I'm using it on, which is inherently clumsier than a mouse. I still however think they need some kind of icons on the windows in the work spaces over on the left of the screen, wasn't that a feature in Gnome 2? Also they should really have two hot corners so that one could get to apps and one could get to windows with out all the clicking around on those two buttons, although the meta/windows key does help make it feel like less of a pain to get to the launchers. Maybe Gnome 3 will fell better if I plug in a mouse to the laptop and use it at a desk somewhere, but I just don't think it works all that well by default. Knowing the right keys really helps and makes it more usable, but I still don't think it's particularly good.
126 • @112 Not against self expression or discussion (by Vic on 2011-12-02 20:33:56 GMT from Canada)
JR I'm not against healthy discussions, and this comment section provides one of many great venues on the Internet to facilitate that function. It is a great place to express opinions, views, feelings, ideas, knowledge etc. and to interact with and discuss with people of common interest. In this case FOSS, Linux and all other projects surrounding them. I in no way intended to tell anyone to stop discussing these tops here. It was more my poorly worded plea to those whose comments read as a rant week in and week out, bringing up the same points as dozens of others before them, without adding anything constructive to the conversation here. Everyone is entitled to an opinion and the right to voice it. I was only suggesting that those people who are unhappy start to use that voice to effect a positive change by offering suggestions on how to do so.
Myself, I still haven't formed a final opinion on the new DEs. Mostly because I haven't given them a complete chance yet. I do like that there are new ideas being tried. Though the traditional desktop paradigm worked, there is always room for improvements. Discussing those changes and how they affect us for better or worse is great, I encourage that. Dismissing a project as a whole based on the dislike of one (or more) poorly implemented feature(s) of what's still an evolving work, and coming here to vent... that is all I was attempting to discourage.
127 • Mate (by Vic on 2011-12-02 21:05:55 GMT from Canada)
I've been briefly testing Mint 12's implement of Mate and I'm pleased with how much it feels like Gnome did on Mint 11. I've only had it running about 15min now so I haven't had a chance to experience and bugginess I've read others mentioning. Just curious what others experiences with this fork of Gnome have been like?
128 • Mate (by fernbap on 2011-12-02 22:30:29 GMT from Portugal)
I took a look at MATE as soon as Mint 12 RC came out. A few annoying bugs, true, but since then most of them disappeared. I think what the MATE team needed was feedback from the users, which is what makes FOSS great.
Still a few issues, the main being no GUI to add a user to a group, which is odd since Gnome 2 had it. The other is the themes made for gnome 2 being incompatible.
I am sure, though, that those issues are being addressed.
After being very favorably impressed by what Mint did to Gnome 3, and after testdriving both, i'm currently using MATE, which is much more stable now than when Mint 12 RC came out.
129 • addons for gnome (by Nate on 2011-12-03 04:08:44 GMT from United States)
It's stupid that gnome3 doesn't include a good shutdown feature which is convenient. Many of you are right that there is an program which fixes this. The problem is that addon shouldn't have to exist. The functionality it adds should have been in the vanilla version. There are other cases of this sort of thing throughout GNOME3 and disunity.
130 • Mint installs (by imnotrich on 2011-12-03 05:53:54 GMT from Mexico)
I've never been able to successfully install Mint on a variety of different hardware (all fairly current) from Mint 12 to 11 to 10 to 9. I'm sure everybody's mileage will differ but frankly I've found Mint's hardware support to be a bit of a sick joke. One shouldn't have to run a distro in virtualbox to take it for a test drive. Distros are generally intended to be installed on a computer.
131 • @102 (by ix on 2011-12-03 06:11:18 GMT from Romania)
Most DE's and WM's are very configurable, the extreme being openbox, which does not tell you anything. Gnome 3 and Unity are not configurable enough, this is why I said they are telling us how to interact with our PC's.
The user should modify the DE or WM to suit him, not the other way around.
132 • # 131 (by forlin on 2011-12-03 08:40:56 GMT from Portugal)
# 131, that's it!
Even XP users used to be able to emulate a Mac.
Gnome 3's 1 year old. Give it some time. Developers will soon create all needed applications to suit most Gnome 3 users.
133 • Gnome 3 (by John on 2011-12-03 19:54:26 GMT from United States)
@ 111 I agree totally. I do wish for better customization such as weather, clock, size of icons when applications is clicked, and easy access for theme changing. I would also like an easier way to change the activities word to lets say the Debian swirl other than editing the panel.js file. Which by the way I crash gnome 3.2 every time I try to change the activities to a Debian logo and have to start back up in fail safe. Even with all these issues I do like gnome 3 it just needs a little more work. The best way to get stuff tested is to get it to the masses for testing. It will get better if not they are not listening.
134 • @133 (by fernbap on 2011-12-03 20:13:56 GMT from Portugal)
"gnome 3 it just needs a little more work"
Sure, but hat orries me is not the amount of work Gnome 3 needs, but wether the gnome 3 developers are going in the right direction.
IMHO, they are not. That's why then need to hear from people's discontent. After all, that is what we collectively are, a feedback mechanism for the developers to know at which point they are standing.
135 • OccupyOS (by Fernando Prates on 2011-12-03 21:55:09 GMT from Brazil)
Distros like OccupyOS and Privatix are not a social panacea. There are serious implications in chosing anyone of them, no matter how useful and safe they can be on the hands of honest and responsible persons like me. (And I presume you are like me, of course.)
Let's remember some comments about the newcomer OccupyOS.
"I like the feature "secure hard drive wiping tool" :) A kind of emergency button on the desktop, in case someone knocks on the door..."
Those f***ing Al Qaeda terrorists making plans to kill innocent people, and also thousands of nasty pedophiles suddenly visited by the police, would love such a useful feature!
"What is the target audience of this distro , knowing that there is already one :
- tails (formerly incognito or privacy)?"
Please note that Privatix, installable into a USB stick (which I use for LEGAL activities in order to preserve personal data in encrypted form when I travel for business), is even better than Incognito. BTW, I don't understand why something as extraordinary as Privatix still didn't get a review on DistroWatch...
"Thanks a lot, occupy folks. I was wondering when GNU/Linux would start becoming politicized..."
Linux itself is a steadily growing revolution since the very beginning (year 1991). What could be more politized than "World domination, and beyond."? (Oh, yes, I know: Linus Torvalds was joking when he said it. But it's true, anyway. :)
136 • re #130 unable to install Mint (by gnomic on 2011-12-04 02:19:41 GMT from New Zealand)
Repeated failure to install Mint? That seems rather odd. Can you install Ubuntu? Not much information provided, what exactly happens? The install doesn't complete? It apparently completes but the system doesn't boot? Does Mint run as live CD or DVD on these recalcitrant systems? Are these installs as the only OS, or alongside others? I don't recall any undue problems with hardware and Mint. I think there was a phase when Intel video was problematic but that would be true of most distros.
137 • @36 Re:Rat (by Bob on 2011-12-04 16:16:01 GMT from Canada)
LOL, it's a mouse. IIRC, it signifies that you can do all configuration of XFCE from the settings manager solely with the mouse, which I believe is true.
138 • @137 (by mz on 2011-12-04 23:00:58 GMT from United States)
Ha! Well if that isn't a stark contrast with the philosophy of Gnome 3 I don't know what is!
Number of Comments: 138
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|• Issue 797 (2019-01-14): Reborn OS 2018.11.28, TinyPaw-Linux 1.3, dealing with processes which make the desktop unresponsive, Debian testing Secure Boot support|
|• Issue 796 (2019-01-07): FreeBSD 12.0, Peppermint releases ISO update, picking the best distro of 2018, roundtable interview with Debian, Fedora and elementary developers|
|• Issue 795 (2018-12-24): Running a Pinebook, interview with Bedrock founder, Alpine being ported to RISC-V, Librem 5 dev-kits shipped|
|• Issue 794 (2018-12-17): Void 20181111, avoiding software bloat, improvements to HAMMER2, getting application overview in GNOME Shell|
|• Issue 793 (2018-12-10): openSUSE Tumbleweed, finding non-free packages, Debian migrates to usrmerge, Hyperbola gets FSF approval|
|• Issue 792 (2018-1203): GhostBSD 18.10, when to use swap space, DragonFly BSD's wireless support, Fedora planning to pause development schedule|
|• Issue 791 (2018-11-26): Haiku R1 Beta1, default passwords on live media, Slax and Kodachi update their media, dual booting DragonFly BSD on EFI|
|• Issue 790 (2018-11-19): NetBSD 8.0, Bash tips and short-cuts, Fedora's networking benchmarked with FreeBSD, Ubuntu 18.04 to get ten years of support|
|• Issue 789 (2018-11-12): Fedora 29 Workstation and Silverblue, Haiku recovering from server outage, Fedora turns 15, Debian publishes updated media|
|• Issue 788 (2018-11-05): Clu Linux Live 6.0, examining RAM consumpion, finding support for older CPUs, more Steam support for running Windows games on Linux, update from Solus team|
|• Issue 787 (2018-10-29): Lubuntu 18.10, limiting application access to specific users, Haiku hardware compatibility list, IBM purchasing Red Hat|
|• Issue 786 (2018-10-22): elementary OS 5.0, why init keeps running, DragonFly BSD enables virtual machine memory resizing, KDE neon plans to drop older base|
|• Issue 785 (2018-10-15): Reborn OS 2018.09, Nitrux 1.0.15, swapping hard drives between computers, feren OS tries KDE spin, power savings coming to Linux|
|• Issue 784 (2018-10-08): Hamara 2.1, improving manual pages, UBports gets VoIP app, Fedora testing power saving feature|
|• Full list of all issues|
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Ark Linux was a Linux distribution designed especially for desktop use, primarily for people without prior Linux experience. Its main goal was ease of use, and the inclusion of many tools end users will need. Ark Linux was fully Open Source and Free Software, meaning, basically, you can freely redistribute it in both modified and unmodified form.