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HP Releases New Netbook GUI For Ubuntu

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the user-friendly-the-new-goal dept.

HP 261

dan of the north writes to tell us that a new custom version of Ubuntu aimed at netbooks and based on 8.04 Hardy Heron has been released by HP. Targeted to the HP Mini 1000 Mi, the netbook customization comes complete with OpenOffice, Firefox, Thunderbird, Sunbird, Pidgin, and a few others. "Overall, HP has created one of the best thought out Linux interfaces for netbooks. The software is designed so that users who have never used Linux should have no trouble performing basic tasks. But experienced Linux users can always fire up a terminal window by hitting Alt+F2 and entering 'gnome-terminal.'"

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fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756055)

i win!

Re:fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756065)

ur mom...

Congratulation (-1, Offtopic)

messner_007 (1042060) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757061)

"i win!"

An award for the greatest idiot of all times ...

FOSS At Its Best (5, Insightful)

phantomcircuit (938963) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756083)

HP has taken a solid product improved it and is using it to improve the value of it's own product.

Everybody involved benefits (except microsoft...).

Re:FOSS At Its Best (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756155)

I wouldn't call this "improve".

Re:FOSS At Its Best (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756373)

I would. Taking a free resource and creating a GUI to make what your customers want easier to do and more easier to understand is far from a bad thing. It's an improvement to get more attention and more computers on linux.

This would be perfect for older generations who do not understand the difference in computers and really only understand what they can do with the software that boots up and opens in front of them. Having something like this for an older parent might be all they need and might make their computer use more efficient. For those of us like me... I still want to be able to do everything and never have it change... most of "us" realize we're a bit too picky at times.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756887)

Oh, stop with this older generation stuff...

Those days are past. There are precious few parents old enough such that they have not gleaned any experience with computers by now. Those that haven't are well into their 80s and have more than likely lost interest in anything but pictures of grand kids.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756969)

Please. That's a terribly narrow-minded viewpoint. Sure, many people older than, say, 50 can and do use computers. However, they still intimidate the heck out of many, if not most, of that age group -- even those that do use them regularly. Making it easier is always good (provided that doing so doesn't sacrifice functionality for those who do understand it).

Re:FOSS At Its Best (1, Interesting)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757289)

It's a terribly narrow-minded viewpoint to assume much in either direction. For instance, in all the discussions we have had lately over the digital TV switchover, several people always complain about the old folk who aren't prepared for the conversion.

Now, that's not really true, and it has been pointed out in those threads before. Surveys have been done, and "Seasoned Citizens" are as prepared for the conversion as the general populace. The segments that are unprepared are the poor, minority, and immigrant... those without cable, without a computer, sometimes with poor literacy. Not the senior citizens.

But the assumptions and blame keep on being pitched.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (4, Insightful)

Hordeking (1237940) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757007)

Oh, stop with this older generation stuff...

Those days are past. There are precious few parents old enough such that they have not gleaned any experience with computers by now. Those that haven't are well into their 80s and have more than likely lost interest in anything but pictures of grand kids.

Well, maybe not grandparents, but people who don't want to learn, or maybe aren't tech inclined. My grandfather is somewhat decent with computers, but my parents can barely click a mouse (even when told to, they ask "what?" and click slowly). I've run into lots of 20-somethings who can barely do anything besides open the default word processor (my girlfriend comes to mind). It's not an age thing.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757111)

Start hanging out with older people. I know a ton of people under 70, under 60, and even under 50 that don't have that much experience with computers and don't have that much time OR desire to hang out with them long enough to get it. They just want to use it and reap the benefits. Sorta like we do with cell phones.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756989)

Older generations always come up during these netbook discussions. I have to point out that most of the older people I know *want* a desktop with a large screen, and a giant keyboard with big easy to hit keys. There's no way my parents could read the tiny text on my Eee, let alone hit the tiny keys.

Netbooks get bought up by young geeks who know they only need web and e-mail. An easy-to-use specialized linux interface would do better on the basic desktop at Best Buy.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756643)

They've been making improvements in lots of products including Microsofts. Adding Apple/Time Machine support in their Home Server based on XP Server was genius.

Re:FOSS At Its Best (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756781)

The special thing about this high tech gadget is "hitting Alt+F2 and entering 'gnome-terminal."

In my notebook book, the terminal is launched by a selecting it in the menu in the file browser. I definitely need to replace mine.

FOSS Humiliated By HP (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756913)

In just a short time HP took what the open source clowns had been working so hard on and getting nowhere in the market and created a polished and commercial quality UI for their hardware.

Just tried out the latest Ubuntu vmware image to check the progress once again. And no surprise:

* The same old shitty font rendering, layout, spacing, kerning, and on and on

* The most basic UI widget spacing and alignment completely ignored - hell, the one off stuff I've thrown together in Interface Builder looks commercial quality compared to the app and system UI shit in Ubuntu

* Even something as trivial as the damn Solitaire app that has mass market appeal to average users looks like some piece of shit shareware title from the mid-1990s.

So keep patting yourselves on the back about 'teh power of open source'. Don't cry when more and more companies take your shit and actually do something commercial grade and useful to use for people outside of 30 year old Star Trek fans still living in the parents basement.

Keep spouting that +5 Insightful Slashdot bullshit:

* You can change the theme and make it look 'pretty'

* You have version 0.2367, version 0.2368 is supposed to be much better. Just grab a source tarball

* If's free, stop complaining

* Well --I-- think the (shitty)fonts/colour choice/UI spacing/widgets/etc look great!

* Who cares about silly little 'nitpicking' UI problems, we can spin the whole desktop as a cube! Take that Microsoft and Apple. Linux is 'ahead'!

Re:FOSS Humiliated By HP (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756949)

Thrash, dinosaur, thrash!

Re:FOSS Humiliated By HP (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26757125)

I love it when someone is dumb enough to try to use the word 'dinosaur' as an insult.

How many millions of years did the dinosaurs dominate the Earth?

How many millions of years have humans? 200,000 for modern humans. 1-2 for the primitive humans.

Save your shit talking for another couple hundred million years you Bearded GNU Freak. Less frisbee golf, bong hits, and Star Trek conventions and more coding. Linux is so shitty that even in the worst economic conditions in decades, Microsoft on the PR ropes with Vista that a fucking free for everyone Linux is going exactly no where in the marketplace.

Re:FOSS Humiliated By HP (2, Funny)

linhares (1241614) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757095)

Bastard stole my comment.

Re:FOSS Humiliated By HP (3, Insightful)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757203)

But the only reason HP even attempted to go in and fix all the niggardly little details was because FOSS programmers built a whole operating system for them to use. This seems like everything is working just the way it's supposed to, to everybody's benefit. Linux is getting improvements from both ends.

The Secret Of HP's Success (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26757303)

The engineers, managers, and artists who worked on this woke up, got to work by 9 to 10am, worked all day with a 1 hour lunch break, and went home at 5pm.

The junior programmer who wanted to work on adding cool new features was given a stern lecture from his boss and ended up doing the messing and unrewarding work of fixing existing bugs and problems

The weirdo who wanted neon pink and green as the default UI color scheme and then demanded there be a UI option to support his personal choice was fired

When one engineer's code was causing problems in another engineer's code and tried to say it wasn't his problem, he got a serious talking to by his manager and he fixed his code

Re:FOSS At Its Best (3, Informative)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757029)

I heard that they just used Elisa Media center....

http://elisa.fluendo.com/ [fluendo.com]

Not in the UK (4, Informative)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756145)

The Register reports that this version will not be available in the UK. The Limeys have to run Billyware only.

Re:Not in the UK (1)

dk90406 (797452) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756271)

So it is not GNU code? If it were, anybody would be able to download, compile and install it.

Re:Not in the UK (1)

dk90406 (797452) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756343)

I meant: So it is not GPL?

The links says it will be a download (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756399)

The linked article says HP will offer a download to create a flash boot disk.

Re:Not in the UK (1)

Anonymous Cowbell (1456535) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756725)

we're still bitter about that whole taxation without representation thing

Re:Not in the UK (4, Funny)

MarkRose (820682) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757253)

The Limeys have to run Billyware only.

You mean I'll have to have a goat on my computer? But I prefer sheep!

netbook (5, Interesting)

flynt (248848) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756173)

I almost got the HP Mini 1000 but decided on a different netbook due to the proprietary VGA cable needed to connect the HP to a larger screen. I went with the Samsung NC10 instead, and I am not disappointed in the least. The first thing I did was to install Ubuntu on the Samsung, and it works just fine for the most part (the function keys to control brightness being the only thing I had to work around). I got a 2GB stick of RAM for it, and honestly don't find it underpowered in the least. I think it's a great machine to bring on the road to get some coding done; I don't think it's limited to simply web browsing and email.

Re:netbook (1)

weddellharbor (732345) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756593)

Agreed - I did the same thing (except for the 2GB ram) and it's absolutely fine. The brightness key workaround is a snap (just adjust brightness at the boot screen), and any other problems were readily fixable. Netbooks seem to be ideal platforms for linux - let's hope this catches on.

Re:netbook (1)

ch0ad (1127549) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756809)

i have the same netbook, and it's currently my only operational machine... so i'd be very appreciative if you could tell me how to get the touchpad to behave, and also how to stop the screen tearing (it's the same with and without compiz).

great little machine tho! perfect for taking notes at lectures.

A way to unseat Windows dominance (5, Interesting)

bbasgen (165297) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756177)

Netbooks can play a huge role in unseating the Windows monopoly. Just as Linux has "snuck in the backdoor" as the leading OS on embedded devices, it is also the most obvious and best answer for netbooks. As we move away from expensive "generalist" computers into the realm of truly commodity hardware, Windows just can't compete. Hopefully wide-scale netbook adoption of Linux can get a big enough base of ordinary users that Linux can grow to adapt to their needs. :)

Re:A way to unseat Windows dominance (5, Funny)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756577)

Oh we'll see about that.

In 15 minutes, I'll be in a meeting with some HP people I know. And I'm going to one thing very clear to them: Keep selling Linux on your Netbooks and I will fucking kill you. I've done it before and I will do it again.

With push overs like these HP fuckers, I won't even need the chair this time.

Yours Truly,
Steve B

Re:A way to unseat Windows dominance (5, Insightful)

linhares (1241614) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757209)

Not only netbooks. Anything below the $400 price point can't afford $30+ if there's a cheaper alternative. Probably some larger laptops (13"?) will use atoms of via nanos and drop the dvd. With more space, they could run cooler and get even cheaper parts. Anything below $250 cannot afford $30+ for windows. All the upcoming ***tops below $250 will run linux, I bet.

Pretty cool, actually (5, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756201)

Frankly, it makes sense that a computer system company (HP, Dell, etc) would actively pursue releasing a linux distro that works well/specifically designed to work well with their specific hardware, etc. (I presume this is going to include drivers for all of the included hardware in the mini), and is "easy" to use and looks good...

I'm surprised more companies haven't done this, actually.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (3, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756269)

Frankly, it makes sense that a computer system company (HP, Dell, etc) would actively pursue releasing a linux distro that works well/specifically designed to work well with their specific hardware, etc. (I presume this is going to include drivers for all of the included hardware in the mini), and is "easy" to use and looks good...

S/LINUX/UNIX

What, like Apple?

Re:Pretty cool, actually (2, Interesting)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756327)

Eh... yeah, Unix, too, I guess. I'm not as much of a fan of Unix, having used solaris/hp-ux/aix.

Apple is a bit different in that they have a proprietary OS that they license only for specific hardware (isn't that still the way it is? or no? I could be behind the times here). I'm not a fan of that.

I also just generally dislike the "I'm cool, I have an Apple. I'm artsy. PC users automatically get -5 points for using a PC even if their [music, art, web design] is great." thing, but that's neither here nor there (not sure where it is, I guess) :)

Re:Pretty cool, actually (5, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756527)

I was just making the point that the OP shouldn't have been surprised that a company would choose to tweak on OS to run well on the hardware they sell. This is the crux of Apple's computer business model.

Apples are easy to use, and optimised for certain tasks... and this is possible because Apple only has to deal with a very limited set of hardware components and configurations.

HP contributing to a Linux distro in order to optimise for their particular hardware configuration is similar to what Apple did.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (2, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756911)

Except HP is not, as far as I can tell from NOT RTA, selling their Ubuntu based Linux distro and allowing people to only use it on HP Minis.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (3, Funny)

linhares (1241614) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757257)

By the way, HP, WHERE IS THE FUCKING CODE? I'm guessing here you have to release it, or face my fury!

Re:Pretty cool, actually (4, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756565)

Apple is a bit different in that they have a proprietary OS that they license only for specific hardware (isn't that still the way it is? or no? I could be behind the times here).

Not exactly-- really it depends a bit on what you consider the "OS" to be. The underlying OS [wikipedia.org] is open source, and "free" in the FSF sense. The graphical layer that runs on top is proprietary and only licensed to be installed on Apple hardware. You can take their OS and replace the graphical layer with X11 and Gnome, and the whole thing runs.

Now a lot of people would say this is splitting hairs, saying that since you can't run OSX apps on a "free" system, you can't say the OS in "free". It's a valid objection. However, I still think it's noteworthy that code for the kernel and lots of other stuff is available to developer to look at and copy.

I also just generally dislike the "I'm cool, I have an Apple. I'm artsy. PC users automatically get -5 points for using a PC even if their [music, art, web design] is great."

Me too, I guess, insofar as there are Apple users who act that way. I don't let it stop me from using a Mac when it happens to be the best tool for the job (which sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn't). Also, lots of Mac users aren't really like that. A fair amount these days are normal computer geeks who just happen to want a Unix system that is also formally supported by Photoshop (or some similar needs).

But really, we're straying off course a bit here.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756895)

Definitely off course but always fun to mention. ;)

You're right, the underlying "OS" is ... I was using a broader term, however. Just as one would call "Ubuntu" an OS and "Linux" an OS. I prefer not to try to remember the differences between the kernel, device drivers, filesystems, volume managers, window managers, desktop environments... at least not unless I really have to :( :)

Re:Pretty cool, actually (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757165)

Yeah, I think often when people use the term "operating system", they're talking about everything that gets installed by default from a particular vendor-- or something like that. So when you stick an Ubuntu disk in and do a default installation, everything you get is "part of the operating system". Some might even go as far as to say it includes everything that can be installed through the default package servers.

But if you really want to get into it, it can be a little bit more subtle than that. For example, if HP builds on top of Ubuntu but changes some of the packages, is it still Ubuntu? What HP completely rewrote Gnome and X.org, but their Gnome/X.org replacements are GPL and maintain full application compatibility with Ubuntu? Is it still Ubuntu then? Does it change the situation if HP wrote a proprietary replacement for Gnome/X.org, but still maintained application compatibility? Would it still be Ubuntu? Would it still be Linux?

I don't think those questions are all that easy to answer. Whether they could keep the Ubuntu branding would largely be a legal issue of whether Canonical allowed it. If HP tried to replace X.org with something proprietary, whether or not it's still "Linux" (or legal), you'd have a lot of pissed off people.

Anyway, it'll be interesting to me to see, if a lot of OEMs start shipping with Linux, exactly how much customization they do. Realistically, they could just work with a given distribution to make sure their hardware is well-supported, and then install the normal/vanilla install of that distribution, but they could also effectively roll their own distro. It could get interesting (but unfortunately probably won't).

Re:Pretty cool, actually (2, Funny)

onefriedrice (1171917) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756707)

I also just generally dislike the "I'm cool, I have an Apple. I'm artsy. PC users automatically get -5 points for using a PC even if their [music, art, web design] is great." thing, but that's neither here nor there (not sure where it is, I guess) :)

You can ignore that if you want. I used a Mac clear through the nineties, during the time when it was clearly unpopular to do so. Apple's rise in popularity doesn't directly effect my computing experience.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756931)

Yeah, I can. I actually prefer Windows still, at this point, though. *shrugs* But I don't do a whole lot of audio/video editing, either. I do think Apple's stuff is overpriced (especially the laptops?), too, but then I think the same thing about Sony and a lot of other ... merchandise where you pay just to have a brand name. At times, I guess it may be warranted (Barracuda or something?), but IMO it's not with Apple. At least not the ones I've used, which admittedly were older. Haven't used much newer Apple stuff.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (1)

Aphoxema (1088507) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756431)

This is a little shocking, I was just thinking HP needs to fancy up to Ubuntu after I played with a Touchsmart a little while ago.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (3, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756613)

I'm surprised more companies haven't done this, actually.

It's not that surprising when you consider that Microsoft has made a practice or retaliating against OEMs who sell non-MS systems. I don't have good citations here, but I remember reading that Microsoft used to put things in their deals like, "If you advertise or openly sell non-MS desktop systems, we'll raise the cost of your OEM versions of Windows $X per copy." Even if X is a pretty small number, it can add up to be a lot of money for big OEMs.

Re:Pretty cool, actually (4, Interesting)

ericrost (1049312) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756791)

Except all their doing is fancying up the interface, the drivers are already there for everything. I installed vanilla Ubuntu Netbook Remix on one of these pre-Xmas and it ran perfectly out of the box:

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=997590 [ubuntuforums.org]

Excellent! (5, Interesting)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756217)

This is precisely what we want to see. Hardware manufacturers using the openness and customizability of Linux and free software to ensure not only that their software and their hardware play nice but to give the device a look and feel that is distinct and tailored to the device. I think we can all agree that Apple owes at least part of its success to a relatively seamless and user-friendly interface between hardware and software. Linux and open source software should allow the same thing but any hardware manufacturer could do it rather than just Apple. If they had put windows on it, this netbook would act more or less like every other windows laptop out there, just less powerful. Instead, they have something that is actually exciting.

Re:Excellent! (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756833)

Yeah, I've sort of been waiting for this. It makes a lot of sense to me that OEMs would want their pre-installed OS to be something that they could control completely, even if they don't technically "own" it.

Once upon a time, every computer company came out with their own hardware and software package. You had Apple, IBM, Commodore, etc. Some of the reason that everyone came out with their own software was because they weren't allowed to just take each others' software, but some of it was also that they each had different ideas about what was important.

That model fell apart because it was too expensive for everyone to develop everything themselves from scratch, and also because it was too annoying to deal with all the incompatibilities. However, by turning to Microsoft as an alternate solution, everyone sacrificed a lot of power and control over their own products.

Now that there are credible FOSS operating systems just sitting around waiting to be used, the problems of "starting from scratch" and "dealing with incompatibilities" are pretty much gone. If I were running Dell or HP, I would have had people working on custom/rebranded Linux or BSD distributions for several years already, including packaging systems and servers that would allow my company to control updates too.

Re:Excellent! (0)

rhsanborn (773855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757365)

Except for the hitch where grandma calls and asks why she can't install her grandsons jump start program. Or Billy's mom can't figure out why turbo tax doesn't work. These aren't insignificant issues for HP, Dell and the like. These people tie up support lines and definitely have a cost associated with them.

What Ubuntu? (0, Flamebait)

rotteneffekt (1365853) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756243)

It uses win3.1 file manager! Apart from the home screen, i don't see what's the big improvement, just another try to outbling apple's piano black darkness. A step in the right direction though.

Why 8.04? (1)

Facegarden (967477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756245)

Why are they using 8.04? Shouldn't it be 8.10?
-Taylor

Re:Why 8.04? (5, Insightful)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756277)

Just guessing, but 8.04 is a Long-Term-Support release.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756281)

8.04 is LTS, wheras 8.10 is not.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

spikeb (966663) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756287)

Long Term Support.

Re:Why 8.04? (0, Flamebait)

spikeb (966663) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756447)

not to mention 8.10 is a load of buggy crap that isn't being fixed.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756647)

It may not seem logical, but upgrading my laptop from 8.04 to 8.10 made me wipe the partition and install Debian Experimental and so far it's been a good move. I did it because so much wasn't working in 8.10. Some things were fixed, but there were more headaches than fixes.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756325)

LTS.

8.04 gets Long Term Support from the developers, where 8.10 gets more limited support. You can expect them to upgrade to 10.04 since it'll be the next one with LTS.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

doti (966971) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756701)

Isn't 9.10 the next LTS? IIRC, it's every 18 months, or three releases.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756797)

I thought so, too, so I looked it up before posting. For some reason, it's 2 years this time. Maybe to re-sync with kubuntu?

Re:Why 8.04? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756345)

Because it's a lts release (long term support) meaning it has a longer support period than the other releases which is important for businesses.

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756503)

Because it's a lts release (long term support) meaning it has a longer support period than the other releases which is important for businesses.

And users that don't like fiddling too much.

Really, I wouldn't recommend 8.10 for people that can't tolerate a bit of breakage (a bit like Fedora releases - some has to be on the cutting edge).

Re:Why 8.04? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756741)

I've noticed this. 8.10 has broke my CF reader and my ability to put music on my ipod...

Re:Why 8.04? (4, Informative)

somenickname (1270442) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756571)

8.04 has become the equivalent of Debian stable. It works for the vast majority of people and if there are specific apps you want to upgrade, you can find newer versions that integrate perfectly with your system. My machine has about 3000 packages installed on it. I only care about 15-20. I just hand upgrade those packages and let the reset sit at their stable state.

Re:Why 8.04? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756691)

8.04 is the LTS release for 2008.

Ninnle version forthcoming (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756267)

HP has also been working with Ninnle Labs on a similar project, and predict that a Ninnle Linux distro aimed at HP netbooks will be released shortly. The version is to be called HP NetNinnle.

How is this new? (0, Troll)

Taibhsear (1286214) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756309)

Ubuntu EEE [geteasypeasy.com] (now called easy peasy)

Re:How is this new? (3, Informative)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756481)

Uhhh, because it's a different GUI than the one used in Easy Peasy/Ubuntu EEE. HP has developed their own GUI, which is what makes it new.

Re:How is this new? (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757047)

easy peasy looks like crap in comparison, they really need to ditch the rainbowy-hippy look. Personally I've come to like eeeBuntu [eeebuntu.org] better.

installing the HP packages? (2, Interesting)

crazybilly (947714) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756353)

Anybody tried installing the hp repos and packages on a normal Ubuntu install yet?

Mini 100 specs are the same as most netbooks... (3, Interesting)

bleh-of-the-huns (17740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756355)

With that said, I do not see there being any problem installing this on other brands.... Specifically in my case, the Samsung NC10, which has identical hardware.

One thing I did not check out was the keyboard layout, and how the extra function keys (volume, brightness etc) are mapped, and whether those will work with this distro.

And it won't even... (5, Insightful)

arhhook (995275) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756363)

It won't even come bundled with toolbars, trials, demos, etc that their Windows computers come bundled with.

This is excellent to see.

So what is it made of (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756385)

The linked article was rather sparse with technical details. What's the window manager? What are the building blocks? Doesn't look like a vanilla gnome setup...

Win+R (2, Interesting)

nemeosis (259734) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756429)

Alt+F2

This is one of most annoying things about Linux. It sometimes tries to copy Windows, but instead, does a half-assed job.

Why not just use the WIN+R command? Microsoft created the Run command, and the Windows Key makes the keystroke very easy. It is certainly easier than reaching for Alt+F2.

Even Apple created their launch application using the command+spacebar keystroke.

Why can't this be made standard? Instead of having to add some other unsupported key application just to get that mapping to use the Windows Key. Practically all keyboards have the Windows key standard.

Re:Win+R (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756543)

you are a fucking moron

Re:Win+R (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756559)

From an ergonomic standpoint, "ALT+F2" is easier to press in almost all scenarios than "Windows Key+R"

If you hunt-and-peck:
- ALT+F2: Thumb on alt, Index finger on F2. One does not need to bend their wrists upwards
- WIN+R: Thumb on Win, index on R. One has to rotate wrist, elbow, and shoulder.

If you use home row:
- ALT+F2: Same as the hunt-and-peck
- WIN+R: Bending either the left or right thumb inwards, extending index finger to the R key.

If you have a DVORAK layout:
- ALT+F2: No fucking clue, I don't use DVORAK keyboards because the name reminds me of John Dvorak.
- WIN+R: Same as above

Re:Win+R (2, Informative)

glennpratt (1230636) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757031)

Why would I bend my thumb for WIN+R? I put my left pinky on WIN and my left index on R. Easy. Just like CTRL+F, which I use constantly.

This would all be well and good if F2 was an easy key to touch type or hunt and peck. It's not. Even if I can see my keyboard, hunting and pecking F keys take forever and the F keys are located in slightly different locations on every keyboard and notebook.

I really don't care, I don't know why I wrote this, but I don't feel like deleting it now... cool.

Use your pinky (1)

tknd (979052) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757231)

CTRL+C: (pinky CTRL, index finger C)
WIN+R: (pinky Winkey, index finger R)
Type a captital R: SHIFT+R (similar fingers)

For me ALT+F2 is more awkward since the distance between the ALT+F2 keys is farther than WIN+R.

Re:Win+R (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26757299)

What's funny is that if we're going to go this route and make comparisons, we may as well throw all the CTRL key options for Windows and *nix and all the Splat-key combinations in for the Mac. Once those are all in place, the Mac wins almost every single time for ease of reach/use.

Re:Win+R (0, Flamebait)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756579)

It's because Linux nerds hate MS so much that they refuse to acknowledge the existence of a "Windows key", and they have yet to agree on a "free" (as in Linux nerds) name for it.

Also, Linux nerds use the old IBM 42H1292, which lack said key.

Re:Win+R (1, Informative)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756773)

It's called "Meta"

The Meta key was a special key on old MIT computer keyboards, such as the Space-cadet keyboard. Sun keyboards continue to include a Meta key, marked as a solid diamond.

The key may be considered equivalent to the Macintosh's command key, which has the same location and similar function. On modern keyboards, it is usually emulated with Alt key or with the Windows key.

Re:Win+R (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757009)

Umm, linux users are pretty unanimous in their use of the term "the super button." And guess what, it was a Mac button before it was ever a Windows button, so stop acting like Microsoft invented it.

Re:Win+R (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757155)

Mine has a Windows logo on it. Calling it a "super button" makes no sense, just like calling it a "return" key when it says "enter" regardless of what the key originally said on it. Stop acting like any reference to Microsoft is a curse? :)

Incidentally, if I'm on a Mac, I don't call it a Windows key, nor do I call the "ALT" or "CTRL" keys "command" or "function" keys. They clearly say "Alt" and "Ctrl" and Macs clearly do not (I forget which one has the Apple logo and which one doesn't, so I forget which one is comparable to alt and which one is comparable to ctrl...)

Re:Win+R (1)

gzipped_tar (1151931) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756601)

Alt+F2

This is one of most annoying things about Linux. It sometimes tries to copy Windows, but instead, does a half-assed job.

Why not just use the WIN+R command? Microsoft created the Run command, and the Windows Key makes the keystroke very easy. It is certainly easier than reaching for Alt+F2.

Even Apple created their launch application using the command+spacebar keystroke.

Why can't this be made standard? Instead of having to add some other unsupported key application just to get that mapping to use the Windows Key. Practically all keyboards have the Windows key standard.

Quit whining. Train yourself with EMACS. ;)

Well seriously, I believe you should be given the choice of overriding default keyboard bindings. The details would depend on the WM/library used to handle these stuff.

Re:Win+R (1)

nemeosis (259734) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757147)

My comment wasn't supposed to be a flamebait.

It's an "opportunity for improvement".

Even if you Google how to map the Windows key, the solutions are not supported, or isn't exactly very natural.

The power of the Windows Run command, allows you to quickly execute a command line program, without the need to open up a command prompt. Or it allows you to open up a specific program directly, without having to navigate for it through the myriad of menus and sub-menus. Quick and easy.

Re:Win+R (1)

NullProg (70833) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757207)

Microsoft created the Run command

Your being silly, Wozniak invented the RUN command.

Microsoft created PEEK() and POKE().

Enjoy,

Mythtv (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756435)

This looks handy for mythtv; everything is large and looks sharp at the same time.

I don't get it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26756627)

Where's the Australian connection?

wimps (1)

gzipped_tar (1151931) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756663)

But experienced Linux users can always fire up a terminal window by hitting Alt+F2 and entering 'gnome-terminal.

Gnome-terminal for wimps. Real geek uses the non-X11 terminals and GNU Screen ;)

Theme available to download? (4, Interesting)

edmicman (830206) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756689)

I *think* this was posted on Lifehacker yesterday, that you could download and install the theme that this uses. Here's the link:
http://lifehacker.com/5147379/get-hps-dark+themed-mini-look-on-your-ubuntu-desktop [lifehacker.com]

I tried it last night, on 8.10, and didn't have much luck. I'd really like a dark theme, but none of the ones I find seem to work well. Sure, I'll grant that the theme *did* look good. But it screwed up the controls so that iGoogle looked like crap and I couldn't read half the HTML elements. I like the window border of the theme, but if I only use that I lose the all-black task bar. All in all, I thought Firefox looked pretty bad under this.

Also, I still didn't like the icons. Why do 99% of the gnome icon themes suck? They all have this ugly volume control, and ugly 4 bars for the wireless connection. I've found some nice minimalist OSX-like icons themes, but they are always black and don't work well with the dark interfaces!

I did like the mini-style of the theme. Changing back to some of my others I realized how much space is wasted on some of the menus and the bars. Just my $.02.

Its about time.... (5, Insightful)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756721)

For almost 25 years Microsoft has been dictating the OS and hardware for personal computers. Both consumers and producers alike have suffered.

Better systems not supported by Microsoft languished.

Companies with really good ideas run bankrupt when Microsoft copies them and incorporates their knock-off into DOS/Windows.

Before Microsoft, system companies competed on features and support. These days everything is about price and with "windows" being the price point, the HPs and Dells of the world have to play ball with Microsoft.

If, however, the Windows stranglehold can be weakened in that people accept that they don't NEED windows, then that opens opportunity for Linux and other systems.

It is about time the OEMs started flexing their muscle. Once they free themselves, they opportunities will grow!! Economic growth for sure!

Terminal Window (1)

koh (124962) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756765)

But experienced Linux users can always fire up a terminal window by hitting Alt+F2 and entering 'gnome-terminal.'

Not really. "Experienced Linux users" probably have a shortcut key bound to gnome-terminal (and three or four instances always available on spare workspaces). I don't understand why the shortcut key to launch a terminal still does not have a default value in GNOME (at least on my distro). It would simplify things:

But everyone can always fire up a terminal window by hitting Ctrl+Alt+T

Then again, that's a simple thing to contribute. Maybe I should shut up and submit something ;)

Ubuntu Netbook Remix (1)

rlp (11898) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756783)

I use the Ubuntu Netbook Remix GUI for my Asus EEE 900. It's very nice and I very much prefer it to the default Asus interface. It's also built on Ubuntu 8.04.

Re:Ubuntu Netbook Remix (1)

nintendo_is_a_cereal (891137) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757037)

Ditto that. I'm using UNR on my Dell Mini 9 and it is a pleasant to look at black theme. Works rather well. I'm using 8.10 though not 8.04.

alt-f2 + gnome-terminal (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26756957)

that shows what's wrong with gnome. alt-f2 isn't an easy key combo, and then having to type "gnome-terminal", with a -, not the easiest character to type. On OS X, command-space (possibly the easiest key combo) brings up the spotlight menu, which will find Terminal after 1-2 letters.

Why 8.04? (0)

DiegoBravo (324012) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757193)

Intrepid (8.10) has several months out. Ok, maybe it is because 8.10 is not a LTS, but (obviously) netbooks are not meant to be used as servers, so it make sense to use the last version. That's the reason I was yet waiting for the Dell mini-9 (that too comes with 8.04) to buy with an upgraded OS.

Eyecandy! (1)

LunarEffect (1309467) | more than 5 years ago | (#26757225)

It makes you eye-teeth fall out =)
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