Ressources documentaires pour Mandriva Linux et les Logiciels Libres

Reply to the FUD about Linux ready for Desktop

[EN]How sad it is to see when people in the OpenSource community are doing so much FUD and people are jumping as the Panurge’s sheeps. What ? I’m talking about Distrowatch which sems to compete for the FUD of the year. I can’t believe that someone is doing something like this 🙁 This make me have doubts about some of the distrowatch journalism ethical/moral code. So here are my clarifications :

  1. I’M NOT A MANDRIVA EMPLOYEE. I’m working as Sysadmin in a company doing fiscal business. ALL ( yes I said ALL ) computers ( servers and workstation ) are under Linux and more precisely Mandriva. Even the laptops are under Linux. I’m just a contributor.
  2. This was my PERSONAL OPINION on my PERSONAL BLOG, and so this doesn’t reflect Mandriva opinion. On top of that the blog was edited under the general Linux topic and not the Mandriva topic.
  3. In this famous blog entry I never mention Mandriva
  4. I NEVER SAID that I will not use Mandriva or Linux as my desktop OS. Indeed I’m only using Linux at work but also at home. My girlfriend is using my computer under Linux. Linux ( and especially Mandriva ) is my main/only desktop OS and it will stay like for a long time. I don’t even have dual boot as some « hipocritical » peoples may do.
  5. At the end of my blog I said the following :
    So Linux is not ready for mass consumer desktop PC. However people with enough knowledges can use Linux on desktop.

    This sentence is very important ! You, me, us can use Linux as our main desktop OS because we have sufficient knowledges to use it correctly and know what to do and not to do. However for Joe Bar/DUPONT/Luce & Henry, this is a different story.
  6. My main worry was about drivers, and this is a key point. Please read this sentence :
    Of course if you have the latest distro version with the latest software ( kernel, xorg, … ), you may have support support even for your latest hardware. But maybe in 1 year you will have to upgrade to a new version of the distro because you decide to upgrade your hardware.
    The semi-monolithic ( all-in-one ) approach in Linux/BSD is interesting because all drivers are already integrated and as they are in a common place, they may have better review. However this system lacks of flexibility. Unfortunately in the (mass-consumer) desktop environment people need flexibility because you have no control over what kind of hardware they will try to use … i(n the future)

    What does this mean ? If you’re buying your hardware carefully and using a recent distro, everything is fine. Now 3 years later, with the same distro version, buy a new hardware. If your distro have the driver, you’re fine, if not … you may be in trouble. Want to upgrade kernel/worg to support your hardware ? you may have to upgrade udev or others stuff because of API/ABI change.
    ME, I can do it, that why I’m using Linux as my main/only desktop OS but FOR ME/for my personal use. However most people can’t cope with kernel upgrade, API change, package/programs backports, and even system upgrade, etc …

I’m using Linux since 8 years. I always use Linux as my main OS. The few times I used Windows on my main computer it was for gaming party with my friend in my engineer school. But when Unreal tournament was running under Linux, I was using Linux to play whereas others where under Windows. I tried Red Hat, Suse, Debian, Knoppix and I’m confident in my knowledges about Linux. I know also Windows because as a sysadmin I learn how to use. I know both OS strenghts and weakness. I’m not a fanatic and i always try to see things with the maximum of objectivity.
It’s because I know Linux strenghts that I’m using Linux. But it’s also because I know Linux weakness that I’m contributing to Linux to make it be better and improve it.
So what can I say ?
Linux ready for mass-consumer Desktop ? of course not !
Windows ready for mass-consumer Desktop ? of course not ! Please see all the issues we have with Windows ( security issues, virus, instability, … )
Linux ready for the Desktop in some circumstances and for some people ? of course it is ! And in this case it’s a great OS desktop especially when using Mandriva.


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