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Posts tagged as “mandrake”

When Linux Was Perfect Enough

The other day my colleague, friend and sometimes partner-in-crime, Ken Starks, published an article here on FOSS Force on one of his favorite gripes: things that don’t work right in Linux. This time he was complaining about a font issue in Mint when using KDE. This is nothing new from Ken. In the past he’s written other articles about broken aspects of various Linux distros that never seem to get fixed. It’s his contention that these “small” bugs, which remain unfixed release after release after release, are largely responsible for desktop Linux’s failure to take hold with the general public.

He might be right.

For Christmas I bought my roommate a new second generation Nexus 7 tablet running Android, an OS built around the Linux kernel. It “just worked,” out of the box, with no tweaking necessary. During the last seven months she’s used it for hours daily. As far as I know, she’s found no glitches that require fixing. I’m reasonably certain I’d know if she did, since the main reason I gave her the Nexus to begin with was because I had tired of trying to keep her Windows laptop running to her satisfaction. She has no trouble telling me when her computer goes kaput, and she always wants it fixed right now. Facebook waits for no one, you know.

I point this out because Linux has all but taken over the tablet and phone end of the computing spectrum. Apple makes plenty of money with the iPhone and iPad, but that’s due to their high prices. In market share, they lag far behind Android devices. And Microsoft has proven that Windows isn’t the unbeatable giant it was once thought to be. Even with massive money spent on television ads and conspicuous product placement in nearly every scripted drama on CBS, mobile devices running Windows remain a mere asterisk when looking at market share.

And Your First Linux Distro Was…

Back on June 23, when we asked you to name the first Linux distro you ever used, we pretty much knew that the choice “Other” would take the day.

That’s because we wanted to be completely neutral, so the ten choices we offered besides “Other” were just the top ten distros from the Distrowatch “Page Hit Ranking,” which meant that those who started their Linux life with something other than Debian or SUSE in the pre-Ubuntu era were not represented.

Some Prominent Open Source Forks

Penguinistas used to worry about the dreaded fork, especially of Linux. “What if Linux forks and becomes like Unix?” was a question often being posed in the open source media. Linus Torvalds would do his best to put those fears to rest, explaining that under the GPL forks are usually to be welcomed.

He was of the opinion that if a fork improves a product and is liked by the users, those changes will almost certainly be rolled back into the originating application. If not, and the fork is indeed a marked improvement on the original, then the fork becomes the standard bearer at the expense of the original application.

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

Happy Belated Birthday, Mageia

I absolutely have to stop for a moment to wish a big happy birthday to the folks at Mageia.

A year ago, when I wrote about a group of Mandriva former employees and contributors who’d decided to create a fork called Mageia, I had no idea whatsoever whether the project would survive to actually release a product. Well, a year has come and gone and Mageia not only released Mageia 1 in June, it’s now a distro with a year’s worth of organization under it’s belt. That may not sound like a lot, but to my mind it’s quite an accomplishment.

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

Mandriva to be Forked Into New Distro: Mageia

We reported on Friday that Mandriva’s financial situation continues to worsen and that nearly all paid staff have been laid-off. Soon after publishing that report, we received news from Paris, where Mandriva is headquartered, that a group of the distro’s former employees and contributors have decided to fork the project into a new distro that will be called Mageia.

According to an announcement posted on the new distro’s web site, the decision to create a new distro from the Mandriva code base stemmed primarily from the current situation at the financially beleaguered company:

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

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