Linux sucks...and isn't getting any better any time soon

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cgrey8
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Linux sucks...and isn't getting any better any time soon

Post by cgrey8 » Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:42 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVHcdgrqbHE
As a firmware developer that has been developing more and more in Linux (and less in RTOS environments), I found the title of this video interesting particularly since it was a presentation at a Linux convention (hence why it's 50 minutes). So I watched it just to see what it was.

The guy made a lot of really good points that I couldn't disagree with on the surface, although I have to believe there's a reason for a lot of the duplication of effort he mentions (i.e. the different package managers). Although some of the things he mentioned, when you break it down, are just whining that Linux got popular. It's like when my wife gets upset when she finds some really obscure band that she loves, then they start getting popular, and soon everybody knows who they are. And being an early fan, she feels like the rest are "fake" fans, or something. I don't quite get that, but I recognize this as a thing people can feel. Well, this guy reminds me of that. He's been with Linux for quite a few years, and he's just upset that it's gotten popular, gotten adoption by big players that can monetize it, and are actively cutting off some of the early roots in the process.

I also realize that I am among the group of people this guy doesn't like. My day job as a firmware developer is to develop products that use the Linux kernel as their OS. Linux was specifically chosen because of it's wide acceptance, open Internet support, and most important, it's price tag. Linux, on the products I help develop, is locked down from the factory, so production devices cannot be logged into by the casual user. Nothing is exposed that remotely indicates that it's Linux, although for legal reasons, the use of Linux and the other open sourced applications used are made available upon request. And from the end-user's perspective, they aren't using the products as a Linux device. The devices have far more in common with IoT devices than Linux servers. Moving forward, the next generation firmware is going to be Java code running on top of Linux (similar to Android and Chrome OS) further removing the relevance of Linux from the product. But from this guy's standpoint, I, along with every other developer at a company that does this with Linux, are part of Linux's problem. And to further annoy him, I use Ubuntu as my desktop development OS as do most of the other developers that I work with. And just to add insult to injury, all of the code I write and run on Linux is proprietary and protected as Intellectual Property...thus not open source and doesn't have to be since it doesn't link against the kernel or any other GPL-licensed application.

So are there other Linux users/developers/gurus out there that have an opinion? As a fellow Linux developer (that is, a developer that writes applications for Linux, not a developer of the Linux kernel), I'm curious of other Linux user's take.
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tvrfan
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Re: Linux sucks...and isn't getting any better any time soon

Post by tvrfan » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:39 pm

I haven't watched the video yet, but some immediate comments....

As you know I have used UNIX and proprietary OSes in the past, and only a little under the Windoze series.
I did hardly any commercial development on Windoze,as I was normally in the 'server' end of things, but I did play quite a bit with Borland C and C++ for my own stuff.

I declare this first as it probably makes me biased.

My desktop is also Ubuntu (but Xubuntu as I prefer the simpler desktop).
I like that it's FREE, and that it doesn't keep phoning home with 'undefined' data.

Because of the OS setup of UNIX and Linux, it's ALWAYS going to be inherently more secure than windows.
It doesn't have a registry which is shared by everybody for a start.
It rigidly enforces file and user permissions EVERYWHERE. (Yes there are ways to get admin permission, but it's deliberately VERY HARD from outside the OS, making web based attacks a lot harder)

and while its desktop penetration is very poor (like about 3%), its server penetration is over 60%, so a LOT of providers regard it as the best choice.
That can't be just a coincidence. SO it does NOT SUCK .....
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Re: Linux sucks...and isn't getting any better any time soon

Post by tvrfan » Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:45 pm

After watching the video............

Fascinating, and probably all true.

I had already read about the fear that corporates (M$ especially) were covertly planning their standard methods for takeover, and it already did look scary.
This video explains a bit more (but not a shock to me).

Also for me, I tried out GNOME and KDE (for non-techies, these are alternate desktops - different ways of displaying your stuff.) and found them way over the top for me, so I went with XFCE, which I quite like (again for non-techies this is like the difference between Windows 95 and Windows 10. They both work, but lots of the snazzy and expensive and slow effects don't exist in Win95).

So actually, I was already well into the same space as the guy in the video.

I've never built a Linux kernel, perhaps I'll try it one day (and leave most of the extra crap out...)

I even ran WinXP in Classic mode at work (a while ago), because I didn't need the extra snazzy bits. The tech support guys thought it was funny, until I reminded them about how much FASTER it was.....


Long term though, this is the way business works, Stuff gets corporatized and turned into a revenue source. At least the GPL defines that most of the source code is freely available, but how long that lasts will be the test.... I suspect it will indeed be the death of a thousand cuts, as slowly but surely more proprietary 'closed' products/apps will invade the 'free' space.
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Re: Linux sucks...and isn't getting any better any time soon

Post by motorhead1991 » Wed Dec 12, 2018 7:02 pm

Partially unrelated, but building a kernel is actually quite reasonable. It does take some hardware on occasion, but modifying the kernel allows you to create your own support for troublesome hardware and untested filesystems.

IME, Windows is stuck until a publisher gets on top of things...
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