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The 2008 Linux and Free Software Timeline

CmdrTaco posted more than 5 years ago | from the year-in-review dept.

Linux 133

diegocgteleline.es writes "Here is LWN's eleventh annual timeline of significant events in the Linux and free software world for the year. As always, 2008 proved to be an interesting year, with great progress in useful software that made our systems better. Of course, there were some of the usual conflicts — patent woes, project politics, and arguments over freedom — but overall, the pace of free software progress stayed on its upwardly increasing trend. 2008 was a year that saw the end of SCO — or not — the rise of Linux-based 'netbooks,' multiple excellent distribution releases, more phones and embedded devices based on Linux, as well as major releases of software we will be using for years (X.org, Python, KDE, ...)."

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2009 (5, Funny)

RMH101 (636144) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373133)

...is presumably the Year Of Linux On The Desktop?

Re:2009 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373199)

no, but it's the year of the shaved pussy!

Re:2009 (1)

ianare (1132971) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375415)

why, which years were not?

Re:2009 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26376345)

The year zero.

Re:2009 (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379011)

As Stewie Griffin once said, "apparently the razor wasn't invented until the late 80s"

Re:2009 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373229)

Why do *i* want a year of Linux on the Desktop again?

It does what i what it to do and it does it well. The last thing i want is Linux to be windows. Thats why i don't use windows.

Re:2009 (5, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373339)

The last thing i want is Linux to be windows. Thats why i don't use windows.

You don't use Windows to stop Linux from being windows?

Is Linux following you?

You did give him some food, didn't you? Told you not to feed the OSs.

Re:2009 (5, Insightful)

von_rick (944421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373759)

You don't use Windows to stop Linux from being windows?

If you were to go merely by looks, Windows 7 is now practically identical to KDE4 interface. In fact they are so frightfully similar, you'd get the impression that they have same GUI developers.

On the positive side, if they looked alike, people would have no problem transitioning to the *nix+KDE side

Re:2009 (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374721)

And in turn KDE 4 looks like a lot of themes that existed in one form or the other for KDE 3.5 at kde-look.org

Re:2009 (1)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 5 years ago | (#26378419)

Yeah, but the difference is Microsoft rakes in billions yearly from Windows and they pay their UI designers good money to come up with what in all honesty is quite reminiscent of KDE4.

On the other hand, it makes sense for the KDE devs to rely on the community for some of their ideas. As a matter of fact, if they didn't, I would think something was wrong.

With all the money Microsoft invests into their OS releases, I expect to walk up to a laptop in Best Buy (the only experience I get with Windows these days) and be utterly blown away by sublimely awesome interface zen. Instead, I'm left with a supremely underwhelmed feeling and asking myself, "Is this really the best they could come up with?"

Re:2009 (-1, Troll)

michrech (468134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374747)

Except, of course, for all the printers that wouldn't work, web cameras, and who knows what other hardware. Also, all the software people currently have/own also will not work (and a good majority of it does not have a linux equivalent). Games, of course, being the best software example.

When I can play DDO in a native linux client, I'll possibly switch. When I can play DDO, AOE3 (plus the two expansions), Rise of Legends, Universe at War, and a few others natively in Linux, I most certainly will switch.

If you were to go merely by looks, Windows 7 is now practically identical to KDE4 interface. In fact they are so frightfully similar, you'd get the impression that they have same GUI developers.

On the positive side, if they looked alike, people would have no problem transitioning to the *nix+KDE side

Re:2009 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374887)

Lol, you're an hypocritical idiot, aren't you? I, for one rejoice when people have to invent "Linux" problems while blindingly obviously ignoring the shortcomings of Windows in order to defend their favourite monopolist. ;D

(No, I'm not going to argue the so called points, they aren't new, and have been debunked millions of times already.)

Re:2009 (1)

michrech (468134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379521)

I'd normally not respond to an AC, but in this case...

I'm fairly certain that a stack of stuff I have sitting in my spare bedroom (including a TV tuner and a few mainboards with built in hardware of various bits) would like to disagree with you.

Yes, hardware support has gotten *far* better for linux. I was quite correct in stating, specifically, web cams and printers for hardware. Most "host based" printers are, quite simply, not going to work in linux. Period. These printers are the cheap HP DJ3000 series (as one example) -- you know, the printers that cost less than the ink cartridges they (under)use.

The only reason you stated you weren't going to argue the "so called points" in my argument, instead belittling them, is because you simply didn't have anything to add (if you did, you certainly would not have posted as AC, now would you?).

Re:2009 (3, Insightful)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374939)

Why do you care about a native client so much?

Having a native client doesn't make it better, in fact it'd probably be worse because it would be a crappy port of the windows version.

If this mythical port existed then running the windows client via WINE would most likely be better because WINE is very strictly tested where as a developer doing a crappy port wouldn't take as much care. The Linux client would also most likely lag behind the windows version.

Re:2009 (1)

michrech (468134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379455)

There isn't any reason that software couldn't be written to standards that are already cross-platform (in this case, dealing specifically with games) to minimize any porting needed. I very much don't believe I deserved the Troll mod I received as software compatibility is very much a real issue, especially for business (I have to deal with such all the time in my job).

I care about a native client "so much" because, very often, emulation just doesn't work as well as running native code. Go ahead, try to dispute that. Yes, "calc" probably runs very well under WINE. I'm sure there are many pieces of software that run quite well under WINE. The majority of games (especially anything DX10, I'd bet) DON'T, or don't very well. Yes, there is a "hack" for DX10 for XP, but there is no telling how well it'd work in XP (for every game one might play, let alone the games I listed specifically). There's even less information about how well this would work in WINE.

Your rant about how the "linux port would most likely lag behind the windows version" is a poorly constructed straw-man -- until one exists, and the company proves that they are going to update it less frequently, you really have no argument.

Re:2009 (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376427)

You mean, all the stuff that doesn't have Vista/Windows 7 drivers and never will, but works in Linux?

If only Microsoft hadn't deliberately broken XP drivers in Vista ...

Re:2009 (1)

michrech (468134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379575)

Ummmm... What?

Of the three desktops I currently have running in my house, none of them less than a year to year and a half old, not one of them has a piece of hardware that worked in XP, but not Vista. My laptop required some downloads from device vendors (because MSI only bundled drivers for Vista), but that wasn't difficult. I actually had more of an issue getting the webcam, bluetooth, and sound working in XP (again, the OEM didn't bundle XP drivers on the driver disk the system came with). I purchased a MSI barebones 17" laptop. Once I downloaded drivers for the three items I mentioned, the laptop has worked great ever since. Even worked great in linux (though I didn't try the web cam or bluetooth -- all the games I mentioned do not work in linux, so it ended up with XP).

Re:2009 (2, Informative)

w0mprat (1317953) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375269)

KDE4 and Win7 are only superficially similar in looks. There are similarities, but not enough to even justify the implication that someone copied someone of course.

Both seemed to have drawn ideas by looking at the popular themes from the OS skinning community associated with each interfaces. It's a shame that this wasn't done back in the Win9x+WindowsBlinds days when Microsoft thought Luna would impress everyone.

Re:2009 (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375277)

And on the negative side, there would be no alternative to the notoriously bad interface design of Microsoft and those imitating them.

I just hope I can finish my current projects quickly and help fix this mess...

Re:2009 (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376405)

I used to get confused between my KDE 3.5 laptop and my Windows 2000 work desktop - "oh hold on, that isn't on this desktop ..."

Re:2009 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373571)

The last thing i want is Linux to be windows. Thats why i don't use windows.

That leaves few options, and judging by your post I guess you prefer OSX. It makes you feel special, right? Like it's "made" especially for you. Gives you the feeling that you're a part of a community, a member of "the club". One of those that "gets it", while others keep on living their "dull" lives. Such a machine is just perfect to bring along to Starbucks. You just sit there, occasionally taking a sip of that wonderful rose scented macchiato, right? Yeah -- apart from turning you into a complete douche, it seems to be working out quite well for you.

Re:2009 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374775)

...occasionally taking a sip of that wonderful rose scented macchiato...

Rose and coffee??? Those flavors would go together horribly. Have you never tried anything rose flavored?

Re:2009 (1)

Bastard of Subhumani (827601) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375807)

Turkish delight is rose flavoured and it goes OK with coffee.

Re:2009 (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376285)

Such a machine is just perfect to bring along to Starbucks. You just sit there, occasionally taking a sip of that wonderful rose scented macchiato, right?

Insecure much? Your post says for more about yourself than it contributes to the conversation.

Re:2009 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374785)

My primary integration target asked me to recommend a "handbag PC" for her so I recommended the Acer Aspire One A150L (saving £55 by not having to pay for the Windows tax).

Her first reaction (before switching it on) was "Oh, cool, it's so cute - the colour matches my party dress! Perfect." I figured there and then I'd made fourth base.

Then I get a 'phone call belittling my IT talents because it's [supposedly] got Windows XP on it.

After attempting - and failing - to explain the bizarre decision by Acer to mickey the Windows XP theme on their GNU / Linux offerings, peace was restored by installing Ubuntu on it because "It looks decent".

There should be some baby penguins appearing in around nine months time and we can all live happily ever after.

Re:2009 (2, Informative)

SombreReptile (455564) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377437)

It is in Vietnam!

Re:2009 (3, Insightful)

StormReaver (59959) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377969)

1999 was the year of Linux on my desktop. And 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, to infinity and beyond.

You got modded as funny because people who were raised on Microsoft desktops just can't imagine anything else. But remember that Linux doesn't have to destroy Microsoft to win. Linux just has to even the playing field, something that is occurring slowly but steadily. The moment that Microsoft loses its ability to dictate something because Linux provides an alternative, Microsoft has lost something. Over time, those little losses add up.

Re:2009 (1)

cp.tar (871488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26378785)

...is presumably the Year Of Linux On The Desktop?

No. It is not.
And why should it be?
The market is slowly moving away from the desktop and towards laptops, netbooks, embedded devices... and Linux is not that uncommon there. And is getting commoner.

On the timeline (1)

Icegryphon (715550) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373161)

Do they show when Linux Kernel Surpasses 10 Million Lines of Code? [slashdot.org]

Re:On the timeline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373389)

Because Linux operating system has now over 10 million Lines of Code, it is so remarkable thing it should be listed there!

The U.S.A. Collapse Timeline +1, Interesting (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373193)

In other words, the U.S. will collapse as predicted by
Professor Panarin [wsj.com] and discounted in the English business and political propaganda paper named the Wall St. Journal.

I hope this helps your emigration plans.

Cordially,
Kilgore Trout

Re:The U.S.A. Collapse Timeline +1, Interesting (0, Offtopic)

fprintf (82740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373483)

Too bad you posted AC. That was a very interesting read. I'm not sure I believe everything in that article, but the point about the U.S. economy being a giant pyramid scheme, built currently on the foriegn economic investment, seems right on.

As always (4, Funny)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373221)

Just a funny way to phrase it: As always, 2008 proved to be interesting... It sounds like 2008 happens all the time, and it is usually interesting...

Re:As always (1)

ryzvonusef (1151717) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374823)

---As always, 2008 proved to be an interesting year--- ??? WTH? Its like as if this is the Groundhog day, and 2008 keeps repeating it self... The n+1th iteration is always more interesting than last time...

Re:As always (1)

carlmenezes (204187) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375437)

As always, we live in interesting times.

Re:As always (1)

Tweenk (1274968) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379237)

"For every year y where y = 2008, y is interesting" - this makes sense in the mathematic sense, but in the language sense it doesn't.

Correction (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373223)

It is _Linux-powered_ netbooks, _not_ Linux-based netbooks.

Re:Correction (4, Funny)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373295)

I am fairly certain that they still run on electricity... I could be wrong, but last time I checked...

Re:Correction (3, Funny)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373381)

Actually, they are based on electricity, and powered by Linux.

Re:Correction (1)

Fri13 (963421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373459)

Actually they are based to silicon, powered by elecricity and run by Linux-Operating System when controlled with Gnome-desktop environment and plastic keyboard and mouse.

Re:Correction (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373775)

when controlled with Gnome-desktop environment

Actually, the Asus EEE and the Acer Aspire One, probably the two most popular, use KDE. Not sure about the others. Sorry to be so pedantic.

Re:Correction (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374479)

Actually, the Asus EEE and the Acer Aspire One, probably the two most popular, use KDE. Not sure about the others. Sorry to be so pedantic.

I think they use XFCE out of the box, but with a lot of KDE applications and the Qt libraries. Couldn't confirm this, though, I installed Ubuntu on my Eee :-)

Re:Correction (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374561)

the EEE has KDE sure, but the launcher it has sitting on top of it is what is shipped and used by default, so I imagine it wouldn't matter to most if it wasn't KDE. Of course eeebuntu is my preferred choice for the EEE, with the sexy netbook remix :)

Re:Correction (1)

jd (1658) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375037)

Actually they are based on planet Earth, based around silicon, based in semiconductor phenomena, powered by electricity, controlled by the Linux Operating System, regulated by I2C-based feedback mechanisms, presented by a Framebuffer- or X11-based interface, fed by inputs from electro-mechanical devices and operated by geeks and freaks.

Re:Correction (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373481)

Ooooooh! So that's what the three E's refer to in the netbook by Asus.

* CannonballHead runs off to tell all his friends that his laptop is based on electricity but is powered by (wireless!) Linux

Re:Correction (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376445)

They have a little penguin running in a wheel.

Re:Correction (1)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373517)

I'd pay extra for one powered by Linus

"time" is a heathen concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373259)

Jesus is the LORD and computers are your GRAVE for DEVIL WORSHopping mastorbaots. Only hamburgers for me sir!

Re:"time" is a heathen concept (1)

Kerstyun (832278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376833)

Tell it how it is brothar!

Stand back, we're doing science! (3, Funny)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373395)

Yes. Our community has made excellent progress this past year. We created our first undead corporation. We shall now replicate this process to form legions of unkillable tech companies that are immune to lawyers, governments, and fanboys. And Microsoft outdid themselves... We thought Microsoft Bob was their rock bottom, but Vista proved that our expectations were, perhaps, not low enough. Wonder twin powers of Vampirism and Suck unite!

most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (5, Interesting)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373421)

The most exciting thing for me that's happened in free software in the last year was Wine 1.0. The "1.0" is not itself as important, but the usability in wine of many apps has improved dramatically in the last year. I can remember that wine in principal was a fantastic idea, but in practice it was so difficult to get anything to run your time was better spent dual-booting. E.g., this time last year, I was still having to run a patched version of winex from cedega to get the map editor in neverwinter nights to run and even then it still crashed periodically. This year, that app runs using the stock wine code.

The thing is, I'm no longer playing nwn because I can run Civ IV, Medieval 2 and a bunch of other newer games using wine instead. Yes, I still have to dual-boot into windows to run the newest games at high resolutions and good frame-rates, but older games are getting very playable using wine and the number of hacks you have to do to get them to run is decreasing. It's great! Just about the only one that you have to install on a regular basis is the no-CD hack, but that's a useful thing to have anyway. Some stuff just makes me laugh, like when punkbuster runs for Far Cry 2 and bitches at you because it thinks you're a punk, you just close the window and the installation continues. (Unfortunately Far Cry 2 is one of those that doesn't run very well at high resolution.)

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373523)

E.g., this time last year, I was still having to run a patched version of winex from cedega to get the map editor in neverwinter nights to run and even then it still crashed periodically. This year, that app runs using the stock wine code.

The NWN map editor wasn't released as a Linux version like the NWN client was?

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (1)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373557)

Nope, never was. That was incredibly annoying for me because it basically meant I was shut out of any developer stuff on my server until I managed to get the map editor running using winex.

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373769)

That's pretty weird. I had nostalgic fun running NWN in Linux when the client came out, but I never tried using the map editor.

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374153)

Fuck you. Because of you I now have to reinstall a large bunch of old games on Wine to see if I can make them work again.

I hope you are proud of yourself now, asshole.

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374541)

It's a shame that Linux distros don't take wine seriously.

On desktop distros, wine should be installed by default so that installing a windows game is as easy as in windows (run setup.exe automatically - or at least ask the user, etc).

And it's not impossible to have a database of "hacks" which automatically detects (hashes, file names) which game is being loaded, and applies automatically the required hack.

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (3, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375289)

And yet, bug 6971 [winehq.org] is still outstanding. It's the second highest voted bug on their bugzilla, and it's been open since 2006. They call it a "normal" severity bug, yet it clearly meets the definition for a "major" severity bug. That is: "Major loss of functionality for a wide range of applications." Just about every Unreal engine game is unplayable because of this bug. It was supposed to be fixed for 1.0, but it keeps getting deferred. I don't see why this isn't a higher priority for them. It obviously affects a lot of users, just look at all the duplicate bug reports for this one!

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (2, Insightful)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376945)

The answer is, of course, "so code it please kthx." Or buy Codeweaver Games and ask they get onto this one.

Re:most exciting thing for me: Wine 1.0 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26377781)

Wine... virtually every single thing I've ever tried in wine (over the space of about 4 years and several different PCs and distros) ends like this:

wine: Unhandled page fault on write access to 0x000b0000 at address 0x52cb42 (thread 0009), starting debugger...

Or slight variants thereof... it's practically useless.

My hope (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26373615)

I hope that Windows 7 will help the open source community as already it did (a bit) with Vista!

Re:My hope (1, Interesting)

KasperMeerts (1305097) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373835)

I'm afraid Microsoft will have felt the warm breath of the FOSS community in its fat neck, so I predict Windows 7 will actually be pleasant to use.

Re:My hope (1)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374517)

I'm afraid Microsoft will have felt the warm breath of the FOSS community in its fat neck, so I predict Windows 7 will actually be pleasant to use.

But that's good, right? After all, the point of all of this is that competition leads to improvements all around, and anything which makes something better for the consumer is a bonus. After all, this is about giving the consumer more and better choices, yes? Not just some arbitrary ego-massaging war...

Re:My hope (1)

KasperMeerts (1305097) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375029)

Of course it's great!
But part of me wants Microsoft to fail again, because that could drive them over the edge.

Competition's great and that's why without one monolithic company controlling 90% of the OS market, the consumer would be better off.

Ah Yes... (5, Funny)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373795)

As always, 2008 proved to be an interesting year

Yes, I remember the last time 2008 rolled around...we celebrated until dawn, frolicking in our pantaloons, firmly supported by our onion-garnished belts...

Re:Ah Yes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374975)

And why I was not invited to your "pantaloon party"? It's my garlic breath isn't it?

linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373887)

Looking at the changes to the kernel over the year, there have been a few minor releases. The change notices for these summed them up as

".. most of it really is one-liners, and mostly not very exciting ones at that."

So it seems to me that all the advances have been in products and peripheral applications, rather than in the fundamental core of Linux: the operating system. This is a rather ominous sign as it makes me think that the development initiative has pretty much stalled - since nothing new in the way of functionality or features appeared. Support for new hardware and bug fixes are always nice, but they indicate a "support-phase" project rather than new developments.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (2, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374373)

This is a GOOD thing. A major issue facing Linux concerns the availability of drivers, especially for obscure hardware, and one of the reasons that smaller hardware vendors shied away from driver development early on was that the kernel changed too many times, and those changes required constant work on their drivers. The Windows driver API was static for so long that small hardware vendors became comfortable just releasing a driver for Windows and not touching it much for years on end. If we finally have a stable Linux kernel that just gets maintenance fixes, that will go a long way toward increasing hardware support and Linux use.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375117)

yes, I agree that instability in the interface is a bad thing and makes vendors stay away from Linux. However it's not impossible to design a decent ABI (or API, even) with enough flexibility to allow for future developments.

What I'm concerned about is that Linux seems to have stalled - if minor point releases, bug fixes and new hardware are all they're doing, then I think it will be hard to keep developers interested in doing kernel work - it will seem too much like real work, but unpaid. Linux used to be exciting and cutting-edge, now it just seems to be in the doldrums.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375165)

Many Linux kernel developers are paid -- they work for companies like Red Hat or IBM, which have a vested interest in a minor releases and bug fixes. Linux has come a long way since the days of arguments among volunteers on Usenet...

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376909)

Maybe there's no major changes because it's almost finished? (insert your own Duke Nukem joke here).

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374645)

http://kernelnewbies.org/Linux_2_6_24 [kernelnewbies.org]
http://kernelnewbies.org/Linux_2_6_25 [kernelnewbies.org]
http://kernelnewbies.org/Linux_2_6_26 [kernelnewbies.org]
http://kernelnewbies.org/Linux_2_6_27 [kernelnewbies.org]
http://kernelnewbies.org/Linux_2_6_28 [kernelnewbies.org]

Those are the 2008 kernel releases. They look exciting to me...

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374893)

News of a new, fully-integrated real-time patch seems exciting to me. But, then, I'm weird. However, I want to know when Sun acquired the Lustre filesystem and if it was this year, why it wasn't mentioned anywhere. Sun's debacle with MySQL isn't boosting my confidence any, Lustre no longer post their development snapshots or news on what's being changed, resulting in one of the premiere open-source distributed filing systems becoming distinctly less open. THAT bothers me.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26375951)

News of a new, fully-integrated real-time patch seems exciting to me. But, then, I'm weird.

Yes. It's not really of interest to desktop or server users, is it? Only a certain segment of embedded developers. On the other hand, we've got a new scheduler, tickless, a new stable filesystem, usermode driver support, and other cool stuff.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376781)

Real-time desktops should play DVDs more smoothly when also browsing the Internet or ripping a CD at the same time. Real-time servers - yeah, those would not really have any added value. The new scheduler is definitely cool, tickless is cool, a new stable filesystem AND TWO possibly-superior new experimental filesystems - all definitely cool, usermode drivers I'm not sure on but the ingiuity involved is most certainly cool, new I/O schedulers (now those ARE cool for servers), a candidate for a better DMA allocator (good for anyone who fragments memory - ie: most gamers and most database users), and yes, lots of other cool stuff.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (2, Informative)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376987)

Ticklessness is very interesting to me, because it's why I get 3.5 hours' battery life in Linux on the same laptop that gets 2 hours booted into Windows.

Re:linux kernel: a year of standing still? (4, Informative)

ianare (1132971) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375377)

The Linux code base has done anything but stall, it is growing, and has been growing even more rapidly in the last couple years.
looky here [wordpress.com]

As far as quality of code, good news there as well, 2008 saw some nice updates to kernel scheduling, better virtualization, a completely new kernel-level graphic manager, and the EXT4 filesystem. These are all 'big deals' in both difficulty of coding and improvements they bring.

My Contribution To the Time LIne (1, Offtopic)

kenp2002 (545495) | more than 5 years ago | (#26373897)

Jan 3rd 2006 - Installed Gentoo Linux as a firewall+tarpit\snort\IDS\reporting server. Set up scheduled Emerge update world in Crontab
Sept 11th 2007 - rebooted said server moving to 2.6 kernel. Some issues with with portage after reboot but nothing the Gentoo Wiki didn't answer.
Sept 12th 2007 - Went to bar with friends.
Today - no reboots yet, 99.9% uptime for all reported services.

Re:My Contribution To the Time LIne (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26376327)

So running Gentoo is somehow related to only going out with friends once in a three year period?

Re:My Contribution To the Time LIne (1)

Stoian Ivanov (818158) | more than 5 years ago | (#26378435)

I call B.S. last time I checked - emerge did not restart any service nor auto merge settings changes! so you could easily go without that crontab line! Gentoo is great for desktop dev-station but router - there is more suitable project - Debian. atp does restart and aoutomerge settings.

Significant events that did not happen for Linux (1, Troll)

sundarvenkata (1214396) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374537)

1) Unified API for interacting with the umpteen number of desktop environments like GNOME, KDE, Englightenment, ad nauseam. 2) Decent voice chat clients (no please do not tell me Skype Beta works in your *picked for linux* hardware) 3) Unified package management system. 4) Decent IDE for Python that does not suck balls (Anjuta, Pydev do not cut it). 5) Google Chrome 6) Default system fonts that do not make you puke.

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375219)

7) a killer webcam application that "just works"

8) a desktop based on "what do you want to do?", rather than "guess which one of the cutely named, but obscure application with far too many overly-complicated and poorly explained options, might just do half of what you want"

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

PeterBrett (780946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375915)

8) a desktop based on "what do you want to do?", rather than "guess which one of the cutely named, but obscure application with far too many overly-complicated and poorly explained options, might just do half of what you want"

When click on the system menu here I get a list of applications called, 'Web Browser', 'Text Editor', 'E-mail Client', etc. This on a Fedora 10 KDE 4 desktop. I think that if I wanted to do something like take a screenshot, I might click on 'Graphics' and then 'Screenshot Capture Program'. Compare this to Windows, where if you want to carry out a task you usually have to remember which company wrote the piece of software that you intend to use.

You're either a troll or an idiot who hasn't touched a Linux workstation in years.

By the way, what would you guess each of these does from the name: Outlook, QuickTime, Skype, Safari, Excel, or Cubase?

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

cp.tar (871488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379141)

By the way, what would you guess each of these does from the name: Outlook, QuickTime, Skype, Safari, Excel, or Cubase?

Outlook: either for looking out the window(s) or for estimating the odds for something. So maybe some kind of spreadsheet?

QuickTime: something to make the time pass quicker. Something to do on a boring day at work? Maybe one of those programs where you detect hidden mines?

Skype: begins like a sky, rhymes with type... maybe one of those old-style text processors like WordPerfect which let you type on a sky-blue background?

Safari: roaming in a car and looking at wildlife. Sounds like browsing. Especially when there are trolls around.

Excel: sounds like a platform game. Something where you have to get to the top.

Cubase: a cubic base? A LEGO model builder/designer?

How many did I guess?

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

Tweenk (1274968) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379213)

7) In Gnome that would be Cheese, but it depends on the drivers. Most webcams are based on the USB Video class or on GSPCA, and both of those types are supported on recent kernels. I haven't used it much (I don't have a webcam myself), but it looks OK.

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

PeterBrett (780946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375739)

1) Unified API for interacting with the umpteen number of desktop environments like GNOME, KDE, Englightenment, ad nauseam.

I'm not sure what you're actually asking here. Could you expand a bit?

2) Decent voice chat clients (no please do not tell me Skype Beta works in your *picked for linux* hardware)

The Skype client works just fine on my bog-standard-off-the-shelf hardware. But I agree that a free software client would be nice. Have you tried Ekiga?

3) Unified package management system.

You're making a classic mistake. Linux is an operating system kernel. Debian, Fedora, Ubuntu and SuSE are operating system distributions. Windows is an operating system distribution and an operating system kernel. You should compare Windows to Ubuntu, or compare Windows to Fedora, or compare Windows to Debian, not compare Windows to Linux. What this means is that the idea of a 'unified package management system' doesn't mean very much. Do you mean that you should be able to sit at any Linux machine and use exactly the same command set and package names to manipulate the software load? Do you mean that you should be able to take package of binaries from a vendor and install it on any Linux machine? The latter is perfectly possible, as long as the vendor statically links all of the required libraries. They can even wrap it in a nice executable install script for you. See for instance the Quake 4 installer. And if the distribution you're installing it on top of complies with the Linux Standard Base, you might even get desktop icons and file associations. But it sounds like you're pouting, stomping your foot and insisting that every distribution use <insert your favourite package management system here>. And, as far as I can tell, that will never happen: each distribution has chosen a system which suits them, and to move to a different one would require there to be a significant technical advantage to doing so. In my opinion, none of the major distributions have any glaring deficiencies in their package/repository systems today, and I don't expect them to change any time in the next 12 months at least.

4) Decent IDE for Python that does not suck balls (Anjuta, Pydev do not cut it).

Once again, complaints with no substance. What aspects of Anjuta and Pydev make them 'suck balls'? I get on very well editing my Python code in Emacs, and it works well for me.

5) Google Chrome

Why would anyone want this anyway?

6) Default system fonts that do not make you puke.

My system fonts don't make me nauseous. I doubt yours do, either. Maybe if you stated what your grievance is with the fonts, someone could explain how to fix the problem or explain why the problem can't be fixed in more detail.

Anyway, I think that's enough trollfeed for now. Feel free to return to your bridge.

If you say so (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377083)

"You're making a classic mistake. Linux is an operating system kernel. Debian, Fedora, Ubuntu and SuSE are operating system distributions. Windows is an operating system distribution and an operating system kernel. You should compare Windows to Ubuntu, or compare Windows to Fedora, or compare Windows to Debian, not compare Windows to Linux"

Joe Sixpack: I've heard of this new OS called Linux. Should I get it instead of Windows?

Linux guy: No, Linux is just a kernel, you can't do anything with it.

Re:If you say so (1)

PeterBrett (780946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377119)

Joe Sixpack: I've heard of this new OS called Linux. Should I get it instead of Windows?

Linux guy: No, Linux is just a kernel, you can't do anything with it.

Linux guy with a clue: "Well, it's not as simple as that... believe it or not, you probably already have a computer that runs Linux, you just don't know it! You see, ..."

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

cp.tar (871488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379169)

Do you mean that you should be able to sit at any Linux machine and use exactly the same command set and package names to manipulate the software load? Do you mean that you should be able to take package of binaries from a vendor and install it on any Linux machine? The latter is perfectly possible, as long as the vendor statically links all of the required libraries. They can even wrap it in a nice executable install script for you. See for instance the Quake 4 installer. And if the distribution you're installing it on top of complies with the Linux Standard Base, you might even get desktop icons and file associations.

I don't see why that would be a problem, as the same thing is used in OS X .app bundles. Therefore, the GP is just whining.

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

ianare (1132971) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375997)

what's this new python IDE you speak of ? The new netbeans implementation [netbeans.org] ?

IDE for Python. (1)

Balinares (316703) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376889)

> 4) Decent IDE for Python that does not suck balls

You want Eric [python-projects.org] . Great piece of software, very complete, great debugger integration.

Re:IDE for Python. (1)

Internalist (928097) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377407)

Or WingIDE [wingware.com] ...(yes, yes...non-FREE, yadda yadda)...it's a great IDE that does all the good stuff you want (great code completion, good customizability, good VCS integration, good project management, etc). Has been rock-solid on my Kubuntu (6.10-8.04) boxes.

AND, if you're a Linux developer working on a project, it's free-as-in-beer...yup, they'll give you a license for the Personal (maybe even the Professional?) version.

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#26377025)

The purpose of freedesktop.org is to solve 1., and a lot of stuff is now in fact working well between the two (and others).

Re:Significant events that did not happen for Linu (1)

Tweenk (1274968) | more than 5 years ago | (#26379167)

Except there is a bit of stagnation around the specifications. For example, no standard suspend and hibernate icon names since 2 years. This is rather annoying, but I hope they will add them soon.

More Windows XP Based Netbooks than Linux... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374579)

I've been seeing more and more Windows XP Home based netbooks out on the market than Linux based. This is a shame. I'm not even sure why this happening, but I was personally hoping for the netbooks to be mostly Linux based and leave Windows for those who want to pay the premium for less storage and RAM.

More Linux programs, amaaaaaaazing ^^ (1)

Yfrwlf (998822) | more than 5 years ago | (#26374797)

Yes, programs were updated, "distro" isos bundled those updates, another fun year of Linux software development indeedy. ^^

Politics and such can be interesting sorta, but the most interesting things to me are the best new software features, and great new Linux software in general. IMO, Linux software projects should be much more of a focus in the media, and less politics. New features and new software, especially that which is cross-distro so everyone can have access. (was going to say cross-platform too, but that's not the point of the Linux section) ^^

Ninnle has always been free (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26374811)

...and always will be. Ninnle Linux, NinnleBSD and NinWM too.

When did Sun buy Lustre? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375239)

I must've been asleep when that was announced.

2008 timeline (4, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26375597)

Jan: Linux conquers the desktop!
Feb: No, wait...
Mar: OK, now!
Apr: Nope. Hang on...
May: Linux conquers- no, wait.
Jun: Vacation
Jul: Staycation
Aug: OK, conquering in 3... 2... wait...
Sep: Nnnnnnnnnnnnnnn...
Oct: ...nnnnnnnnnnnn...
Nov: nnnnnnnnnnnnow!
Dec: No, wait...

Debian (1)

mcubed (556032) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376155)

Sept: "The Debian project runs into problems with firmware (again) along with an unclear general resolution ballot which causes discord, eventually leading to the resignation of the project secretary"

2008 was a typical year for Debian. By the time Lenny is released, it'll be retro-cool.

I switched, that's worth something, right? (3)

Palal (836081) | more than 5 years ago | (#26376469)

I switched, that's worth something, right?
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