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Red Hat Returns To the Linux Desktop

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the sequels-can-be-good dept.

Red Hat Software 192

CWmike writes "Red Hat used to be in the desktop business along with all the other Linux distributors. Then, they left. Now, however, Red Hat is switching from Xen to KVM for virtualization. As part of that switchover, Red Hat will be using not only KVM, but the SolidICE/SPICE desktop virtualization and management software suite to introduce a new server-based desktop virtualization system. Does this mean that Red Hat will be getting back into the Linux desktop business? That's the question I posed to Red Hat CTO Brian Stevens, in a phone call after the Red Hat/KVM press conference, and he told me that, 'Yes. Red Hat will indeed be pushing the Linux desktop again.'"

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192 comments

Hey, I said nigger (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972417)

Nigger returns to the African desktop. Mod me down.

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Offtopic)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972497)

Before you mod the boy down, consider having some pity... His idea of a hobby is incessantly refresh Slashdot until he gets first post, and then to post offensive words. Of all the things he could be doing right now, he chooses this. Obviously life is not exactly going his way.

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Offtopic)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972787)

Before you mod the boy down, consider having some pity...

...and mod him down with extreme prejudice. Because that's having pity on all of Slashdot.

You know, you don't do anyone any favors when you let them get away with bad shit. You just teach them to keep doing it.

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973017)

Your sig describes a 3some manwich. It's also gay and outdated. Who uses WWW anymore?

Re:Hey, I said nigger (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973867)

It's a Dr. Seuss quote, but for you it seems to be a sort of Rorschach test:

Your sig describes a 3some manwich.

And your answer reveals something quite interesting.

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Offtopic)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973203)

Dude, you need to join Biters Anonymous [kuro5hin.org]

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Offtopic)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973617)

But... I don't WANT to stop biting yet! If you don't feed the trolls, they DIE! Poor little trolls.

Re:Hey, I said nigger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26974125)

He probably *was* the original anonymous troll and only replied to guarantee that the thread wouldn't disappear. That's why I always mod every non-anonymous user under a troll offtopic - you're lucky I don't have mods ;)

Re:Hey, I said nigger (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973331)

Future Ubuntu Releases:

Busty Beaner
Crackhead Coon
Drunk Darkie
Grumpy Gringo
Humping Homosexual
Jackin' Jiggabgoo
Klepto Kike
Limey Lobersterback
Morose Moonie
Nappy Nigger
Sleezy Spic

With RedHat. (3, Funny)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972451)

It will make 2009 the year of the... Oh never mind...

Re:With RedHat. (3, Funny)

genner (694963) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972491)

It will make 2009 the year of the... Oh never mind...

Year of the Ox?
China agrees.

Re:With RedHat. (2, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972593)

If Microsoft succeeds in putting out Windows 7 this year, 2009 may become the Year of Windows on the... Oh wait, nevermind.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972683)

It will make 2009 the year of the... Oh never mind...

The year of the lame repetitive Slashdot meme?

Ok mods, you can give him a +1 Funny and me a -1 Flamebait now. "We like our lame repetitive memes, mmkay? Thankyouverymuch."

Re:With RedHat. (0, Offtopic)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972979)

Dood, in Soviet Russia, lame repetitive meme uses YOU, covered in hot grits from a statue of Natalie Portman...

Re:With RedHat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26974767)

Wait, I thought that in Soviet Russia, petrified hot grits were covered in Natalie Portman.

Re:With RedHat. (0, Offtopic)

causality (777677) | more than 4 years ago | (#26975149)

Dood, in Soviet Russia, lame repetitive meme uses YOU, covered in hot grits from a statue of Natalie Portman...

Sitting at +5, Informative. Now, I'm going to step out on a limb here and suggest that there is nothing "insightful" about it. Funny maybe (debatable), but not insightful. If the mods haven't proven the AC's point then I'm not sure what could.

Re:With RedHat. (-1, Flamebait)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973661)

In my opinion Linux has a long way to go before it replaces Windows. It has too many Non-user-friendly features. Examples:

- I changed my laptop from 1280x1024 resolution to 640x480 resolution. Then I decided to go back, but the desktop properties windows has the "OK" button off the screen. With Windows such a problem would not happen because pressing the Enter key automatically selects okay. On Ubuntu Linux it does not. Now I'm stuck with 640x480. :-|

- I still can't get my Ubuntu machine to connect to my Netscape Dialup ISP. The Netscape software crashes, and even after a connection is established, all I see is a lot of garbage.

- I have no idea what speed the CPU is, or how much RAM, because I can't find a "My Computer" or equivalent properties icon. The size of the hard drive is also a mystery; Ubuntu keeps telling me it's 20 gig, even though I'm fairly certain it's 300 based upon the specs at compaq.com. Weird.

- And other niddly little frustrations.

I've used a wide range of OSes from Commodore GEOS to Amiga Workbench to Mac to Windows 3.1 to modern Windows, so I'm used to dealing with the learning curve of switching between them, and the inherent frustrations. A casual user is not. A casual user needs an OS to be stupidity proof, and blindingly obvious to navigate. Linux just ain't there yet.

Re:With RedHat. (2, Informative)

Drinking Bleach (975757) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974069)

Is this a joke post? I seriously can't tell.

- I just tried using GNOME at 640x480, the screen resolution dialog box fits perfectly fine even with tons of space on every side of the window. Either Ubuntu seriously fucked things up (I use Debian), or you are spreading shit.

- Netscape software? What are you doing using that ancient piece of crap? the Network-Manager in GNOME supports dialup just fine.

- Applications -> System Tools -> System Monitor. Has tabs for filesystems and general hardware specs. Amazing, huh?

Re:With RedHat. (-1, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974265)

Yes of course. I was lying.

(rolls eyes)

I've been using home computers since 1984... probably since before you were born... and I'm fairly certain I would not come on here and just randomly make up problems. Ubuntu's desktop properties window is "higher" than 480 lines such that I can't access the okay button, and therefore cannot switch it back to 1280x1024. I'm sorry that my sharing of this difficulty offends you; I recommend you never work in tech support.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974975)

Right click the window bar and select "Move" Alt + clicking into windows & holding left mouse button lets you do the same.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974171)

Uhhhh, you trolled the internet to find these petty problem, without searching for solutions, right? I suppose you should be modded "funny" for your effort to make us laugh. A: change desktop resolution from the konsole. B: Stop using netscape software - you need a driver for your modem, nothing more, nothing less. C: Gparted will tell you everything there is to know about your hard drive. D: in the konsole, try "htop" Other niddly frustrations? Try google, "forums + + + Linux" Ubuntu forums MAY BE the best place to find help with those niddly frustrations. (stress the "may be" - there are other excellent forums out there, of course)

Re:With RedHat. (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974345)

Or just keep using Windows or Mac OS, which don't hide important functions in obscure programs with nondescriptive names.

Re:With RedHat. (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974515)

P.S.

Well I followed your instructions. A: Konsole opened-up a CLI window to type commands which I do not know. Therefore I'm still stuck at 640x480. B: I already tried direct-dialing the modem, connected to my ISP, and it just came-up with garbage. C: I don't see any program called "gparted" therefore I can't run it, and I still don't know the size of my HDD, speed of my CPU, or how much memory I have. D: "The program htop is not installed." Well so much for that.

Is this what you call user friendly?
Ready for distribution to the typical Joe American as a Windows replacement???
(laughs)

Re:With RedHat. (1)

afairch (56711) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974903)

[Alt] + Left mouse button anywhere on the window will allow you to move it so the buttons will be visible.

From a command line, 'cat /proc/cpuinfo' will give you processor information, including speed, alternatively you could issue the command 'dmesg' and find the information there. 'cat /proc/meminfo' will give you memory information, you can also get this from using 'top' (also from a terminal window)

You can get the hard drive information from 'dmesg' as well. The 'gparted' program suggested earlier is probably a better idea, so if you don't have that installed, try 'sudo apt-get install gparted', or the add/remove programs application.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974709)

Or just keep using Windows or Mac OS, which don't hide important functions in obscure programs with nondescriptive names.

Or use windows and regedit and reboot to perform anything but the most trivial tasks. And reboot again for regular patches. And reboot again when random bits of software just stop working. And still have to run virus scanning software to check every IO operation against a database of known exploits.

Windows has never been ready for desktop or server use.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

causality (777677) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974525)

- I changed my laptop from 1280x1024 resolution to 640x480 resolution. Then I decided to go back, but the desktop properties windows has the "OK" button off the screen. With Windows such a problem would not happen because pressing the Enter key automatically selects okay. On Ubuntu Linux it does not. Now I'm stuck with 640x480. :-|

Now, I'm not sure exactly what you used to adjust the resolution but this should be an easy solution that doesn't depend on exactly what method you used. If you look in your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file, you should see a line like this (in Section Screen):

Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

Those are the resolutions available (yours is likely to be different). There is no need to edit that line; you can switch among those modes during a running X session by using key combinations. You can use CTRL-ALT-KeypadMinus and CTRL-ALT-KeypadPlus (must be the minus and plus keys on the right-hand keypad) to change back and forth. This is an X11 feature and is independent from the window manager or desktop environment (i.e. KDE or Gnome) you're using. Once you can see that "OK" button you can select the desired mode and click OK and it'll set it ot whatever option you chose.

I still can't get my Ubuntu machine to connect to my Netscape Dialup ISP. The Netscape software crashes, and even after a connection is established, all I see is a lot of garbage.

Unfortunately I know nothing about Netscape Dialup and can't really help you there. If the software you mention is proprietary and provided by Netscape, they should help you with that. If you are using standard programs (which are unlikely to crash so I doubt this is the case) then you would need to know which PPP settings Netscape is using, particularly with regard to password authentication. If it really is a proprietary system, this is where I would say that just because proprietary systems have such a strong preference for accommodating Windows does not mean that they are a good idea.

I have no idea what speed the CPU is, or how much RAM, because I can't find a "My Computer" or equivalent properties icon. The size of the hard drive is also a mystery; Ubuntu keeps telling me it's 20 gig, even though I'm fairly certain it's 300 based upon the specs at compaq.com. Weird.

For the CPU information, open a shell (a regular user should be able to do this, no need for root) and type this command: cat /proc/cpuinfo. If you have a multi-core CPU, it will have an entry for each core.

For memory, try the "free" command or maybe "free -m" for units in megabytes. For this to make sense you'll need to know a bit about how Linux uses memory. The memory listed as "free", that is, completely unused, will probably be quite low almost all the time. Linux uses a lot of memory that would otherwise be empty (and thus wasted) as disk and file cache; any memory used this way is instantly available anytime a program you are using needs it. Generally, "buffers" + "shared" + "free" memory is what's actually available to use.

For partition sizes, you can use this shell command: df -h. That will list all of them. The "-h" option is for human-readable; that is, it shows a figure like 30G for 30 gigabytes instead of 31443696 blocks. I'm guessing that the smaller partition you are seeing is your boot partition, but the layout of your hard drive(s) is entirely optional and your particular setup might be different.

Those are the more basic command-line functions. You can also use a GUI utility like KInfoCenter (a KDE app) or the Gnome System Monitor or gkrellm etc. for a nice readable display of this kind of information.

I've used a wide range of OSes from Commodore GEOS to Amiga Workbench to Mac to Windows 3.1 to modern Windows, so I'm used to dealing with the learning curve of switching between them, and the inherent frustrations. A casual user is not. A casual user needs an OS to be stupidity proof, and blindingly obvious to navigate. Linux just ain't there yet.

"Just ain't there yet" seems to have an underlying assumption that usability for the non-technically-inclined is the one and only criteria of advancement. I'm not trying to read anything into what you said that wasn't actually intended, but that was the impression I had when I read this. In my opinion I've never felt like Linux or its creators have any obligation to accommodate casual users. Almost all of the computing market already does this, especially Windows and Mac OSX. They don't do it out of any sort of principles or ideals but simply because mass appeal is where the money is. There just aren't many systems that are so easy to appreciate from a technical perspective that also have the wide variety and easy availability of software like Linux.

What you refer to there as frustrations don't really have to be. If a user is expecting it to act just like Windows they are setting themselves up for disappointment and may feel frustrated indeed. One thing I like so much about Linux is the general transparency of the system. If I don't like something it does, there is almost always something I can do about it. The learning curve you mention is key; I see it as an investment that continues to pay off in the form of a system that does exactly what I want it to do and nothing that I don't want it to do. Also, distros like Ubuntu are coming a long way towards removing some of the usability issues you mention. I can easily see them eventually becoming a lot like OSX -- a solid, robust Unix-like system with a nice usable interface. I just feel like these things should be done because better ways to do things are found and not as an attempt to appease or appeal to a class of users.

Possibly I say that because almost everything I don't like about Windows ultimately seems to come from marketing and mass appeal and its attempt to be too many things for too many people. It's just a business reality that making a mediocre product and selling lots of it is more profitable than making a truly excellent product for largely undiscerning customers who neither demand excellence nor appreciate it. Microsoft certainly has the wealth and the talent and the resources to produce real excellence. What they don't have is a business incentive to do so and the need to market to a massive non-technical audience which neither understands computing nor cares to understand computing has a lot to do with that. That Linux has so far not taken this path in spite of the commercial distributions is one thing I very much like about it. If usability issues are to be addressed, we can learn from the experience of Windows and do it for the right reasons.

Re:With RedHat. (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974911)

>>>"Just ain't there yet" seems to have an underlying assumption that usability for the non-technically-inclined is the one and only criteria of advancement.

No of course not. Lots of systems are designed for technicians/engineers only, but the OP that I replied to (and many other posters) said "YEAR OF THE LNUX DESKTOP" which implies a desktop usable by everybody, same as Windows or Mac OS, and directly replacing those. That was the assumption.

>>>Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

Unfortunately that line does not exist.

>>>For the CPU information, open a shell

I assume you mean Konsole. It tells me I have a 1.7 GHz Pentium M with 502 MB of total mem, and 36G of hard drive. That seems rather small. Oh well. The "free" command's output reminds me of Amiga's version of that command, albeit Amigaspace was divided into CHIP and FAST RAM. (sigh) I miss my Amiga; it's a shame the company went bankrupt.

Pretty eyes (0, Offtopic)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972467)

I don't wanna sound like a queer or nothing, but Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, Cyber Cynic, has striking green eyes. I wonder if he did that with Photoshop?

Re:Pretty eyes (0, Troll)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972575)

Offtopic? The article was written by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, Cyber Cynic! Did you even RTFA, mods? I didn't think so.

Now you're giving me a headache!

I don't get it (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972537)

Why would I want to use a server solution on my desktop? Right now, there's only this OSs to use in the desktop:

- Mac OS X
- Windows

The other ones are just server OS, is time to accept it.

Re:I don't get it (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972645)

Because Linux is Free as in feeling that somehow your choice in a Computer Operating Systems makes you morally superior.

Or it is free as in beer so When OS X or Windows dies on you you have a quick free OS to install to get your work done.

Or it helps you become an Alpha Geek... If a girl is gonna go for a geek they at least will go for the Alpha geek.

Or the very rare case that there is an app the only runs well in Linux that they need to use.

Re:I don't get it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972877)

Alpha geek? Are you referring to a job position at the Best Buy Geeksquad?

Re:I don't get it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973207)

Ha, Ha. Got the troll label.

Re:I don't get it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972705)

Why would I want to use a server solution on my desktop? Right now, there's only this OSs to use in the desktop:

- Mac OS X
- Windows

The other ones are just server OS, is time to accept it.

So Windows and MacOS aren't suitable for servers, then? *whew* Guess this [microsoft.com] and this [apple.com] are just figments of my imagination.

Re:I don't get it (1)

TheLinuxSRC (683475) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973051)

Wow.. you sure are gullible. You are assuming that the vendor who is selling you a (server) OS is telling you the truth? I prefer to do a little research and put my money in the solution *I* determine will work for my situation; not the solution some marketroid determined will (might) do the job.

Cost-Performance Utopia (4, Interesting)

foobsr (693224) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972551)

From TFA: Specifically, the new virtual Red Hat Desktop will be managed by Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager for Desktops. This virtual desktops management system, Red Hat claims, will deliver three to five times better cost-performance for both Linux and Windows desktops. (emphasis mine)

Beyond my comprehension; anyone have an explanation?

CC.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (2, Insightful)

firespade (1030302) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972677)

In other words instead of going out and purchasing, let's say, a Xen license to run a cluster of VMs (as my company does). They're pushing to trump the VM industry with their own software. How this differs from the rest? I haven't the slightest clue. I honestly don't think it's even worth looking into. All they can say is the the VM Manager will reduce your budget to a fraction of what it is with the competitor, but isn't that the whole point of capitalizing on technology????

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (4, Informative)

QuantumRiff (120817) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973231)

This isn't for server virtual machines. its for pushing apps and environments out to clients seamlessly. Microsoft has something similar, APP-V, and VMWare is working on it too. Why have office installed on every machine? Why not just push or stream an image out to the machine, and then you only have one spot to update, one spot to upgrade, etc. Think LTSP but on steroids... Companies are once again realizing that the biggest cost in computers is keeping the things secure and running...

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1)

firespade (1030302) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974389)

Right, I misspoke. Thanks for the correction. I agree with the fact of centralizing the software suite to reduce cost in business practices. I agree streamlining apps is the way to go, however there are going to be downsides to this as well. You can't forget that even though you're centralizing the entirety of the software suite, we then fall into a issue of having developer platform utilities side by side with the front desk secretary. I agree that it reduces cost but you have to take affirmative action towards the security aspect, if not you'll soon see serious repercussions.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (3, Funny)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972693)

They didn't put in parentheses for order-of-operations:

LinuxNew = 325x(costLinuxOld - performanceLinuxOld)
and
WindowsNew = 325x(costWindowsOld - performanceWindowsOld)

    There.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (4, Funny)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972977)

So, LinuxNew will be a large negative number and WindowsNew will be a large positive number?

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972825)

Besides the Xen thing, maybe they're trying to say you can virtualize multiple servers onto 1 and save money that way.

I think it's BS unless you have almost zero load, but hey! That's marketing for you.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973025)

I'm not a big fan of virtualization, but there's some truth to it. When I buy servers I buy for a worst-load case. So yeah, my machines aren't totally busy 100% of the time. Using the spare cycles for something else increases the cost/performance thingy.

Of course, if all hell breaks loose and all of the VMs are busy at the same time you kind of lose...

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (2, Interesting)

bberens (965711) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973323)

Virtualization is a huge cost saver in our shop. We bought one blade system and we have our source control, developer box (build system, wiki, etc.), a few QA and development servers (including a few db servers for dev/qa). And that's just the stuff MY department puts on there. We are also moving to have a few virtual machines set up as hot backup for some live systems with dedicated boxes. Eventually I predict we'll also put some actual production systems in virtual machines once the pointy hairs have built up some confidence in them in cases where it makes sense to do so.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (4, Insightful)

davecb (6526) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972851)

No utopia, just an improvement.

A desktop workstation or fast laptop is optimal for a developer or fairly heavy user, but in a business context requires

  1. buying the darn things
  2. an imaging server, to create/update them
  3. a backup and/or synchronization server (samba, unison and a tape changer).
  4. Etc, etc.

However, many users don't actually need any more than a cheap diskless netbook or a glorified X-terminal, and can do all their computing on a back-end timesharing server.

As in "The Unix Timesharing System" that we grew up with, which was always orders of magnitude more cost-effective than individual shared-nothing workstations.

--dave

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973249)

Unless you started doing anything CPU intensive and went to lunch.

Then it was very efficient at making everyone but you nonproductive.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (3, Funny)

zooblethorpe (686757) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973453)

Unless you started doing anything CPU intensive and went to lunch.

Then it was very efficient at making everyone but you nonproductive.

Hey, now! When we'd muck about on the old VAX in college, that was definitely not a bug, that was a *feature*!

Cheers,

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (3, Interesting)

davecb (6526) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973891)

Resource management was pretty horrid in those days: users had to do it themselves with "nice". And they usually weren't (;-))

These days, Linux is a hotbed of resource management research and one of it's biggest supporters, IBM, has done some impressive work on zOS.

--dave

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974029)

Which with correct provisioning of resources in the virtual environment shouldn't be a problem anymore.

Re:Cost-Performance Utopia (1)

yanyan (302849) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973179)

Beyond my comprehension; anyone have an explanation?

It's just marketing-speak.

About time (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972591)

I never understood why the left in the first place. They used to be at the top of the game- Fedora, not so much.

Re:About time (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972665)

I never understood why the left in the first place

Because they know that Linux will be never a serious alternative on the desktop. You see, that's why every company that is producing a distribution is trying to get the server market: becuase Linux was and is designed to be a SO for the servers.

I know, it is really hard to accept, but we have to move on and stop fooling around.

Re:About time (3, Interesting)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973103)

I never understood why the left in the first place

Because they know that Linux will be never a serious alternative on the desktop. You see, that's why every company that is producing a distribution is trying to get the server market: becuase Linux was and is designed to be a SO for the servers.

Wish you woulda told me that before I installed the then-new Redhat 3.0.3 back in '96. I stuck with them til I went Ubuntu with Hoary in mid-'05. Been daily using Linux as a desktop since '96, nice to know I've been wasting my time on an impossible goal.

Re:About time (1)

styrotech (136124) | more than 4 years ago | (#26975199)

Because they know that Linux will be never a serious alternative on the desktop. You see, that's why every company that is producing a distribution is trying to get the server market: becuase Linux was and is designed to be a SO for the servers.

That's about as stupid as saying Windows can never be a server because it was and is designed to be an OS for desktops.

Re:About time (4, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972849)

I never understood why the[y] left in the first place.

  1. They weren't making money in that area.
  2. Most of the problems with desktop Linux at that time revolved around the fact that you need to need to break the law to in Red Hat's country of origin to distribute a useable system
  3. They didn't want to compete head-to-head with Microsoft.

Things have improved somewhat since then: Other projects like Ubuntu and FreeDesktop.org have paved the way for desktop Linux; a lot of codecs have been re-implemented as open source and patents are expiring on some codecs; Microsoft doesn't quite have the teeth they used to have.

Re:About time (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972921)

The same shit is being repeated over and over again. The truth is that nothing have been improved and MS is having the same teeth they used to have.

Re:About time (3, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973117)

Do you care to expand on your argument, this time laying out your reasons for making it in clear, concise manner with appropriate references? Because I can.

OTOH, you have given us no reason to accept your argument.

Re:About time (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974059)

His argument isn't the kind you present reasons for. You're just supports to recognize its truth from its inherent truthiness.

Re:About time (2, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974329)

If the answer seems obvious, you aren't thinking critically. A critical thinker knows good arguments for both sides.

Your signature line seems oddly appropriate here. ;)

Zomg TEH LUNIX!!!111!!one (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972607)

ZOMG!!! Teh Lunix on Teh Desktop!!

Just what everyone needs- another distro and another ten versions of a text editor!

Win7 is right around the corner- new tail lights to chase!

They had their chance (0)

Wee (17189) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972627)

I started using Red Hat around 4.2. I used it as my primary desktop OS around 5-something. Used it all the way up to version 9. And then I had to find a new OS for not only my desktop but all the servers we ran.

Sorry, Red Hat. Fool me once...

-B

Re:They had their chance (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972745)

And then I had to find a new OS for not only my desktop but all the servers we ran.

What, you didn't want to give them a big pile of money per-server, even though the amount of effort they have to put out for you to have them work is the same for one or for ten? Say it ain't so!?

I left Redhat when they went Fedora and have never looked back. I hope I never have to.

Re:They had their chance (1)

Tanktalus (794810) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973439)

The amount of effort they have to put out is the same for one or ten? Really? So, ten different machines aren't more likely than a single machine to have more problems? Sure, there'll undoubtedly be some overlap, but that's what large-scale pricing is for. You shouldn't be paying ten times a single-server cost when you buy ten licenses, whether that's RHEL, SLES, Windows Server, or any other software. But, you will definitely be a bigger risk for a higher call count than someone who only has one server. And staffing those call centers do cost real bucks. And they need to have appropriate worst-case staffing to meet demand within their designated goals (e.g., 90% of calls answered within 5 minutes, 95% of the time, or whatever their numbers are).

I used to run RHEL - my employer gave me the option of RHEL or SLES, and SLES simply didn't have all the desktop tools (and SLED didn't have the server tools), so I chose RHEL. Eventually, a few years ago, I gave up on that and went to Gentoo. But that wasn't about cost - it was about flexibility.

Re:They had their chance (2, Interesting)

Galois2 (1481427) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974093)

I left Redhat when they went Fedora and have never looked back. I hope I never have to.

Oh, so you've stopped using the kernel, ext3, Xorg, usb, glib, glibc, gcc, gnome, KDE, nautilus, gconf, dbus, hal, NetworkManager, coreutils, parted, grub, rpm, yum, anaconda, kudzu, ntsysv, and firefox? If not, you haven't left Red Hat. They write, maintain, or make major contributions to all of these areas, and you're using RH whether you're using their branded distribution or not.

I am grateful for all that RH has done and is continuing to do for linux.

Re:They had their chance (4, Interesting)

jmyers (208878) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972865)

I started using red hat with 2.0.2. I currently use fedora 9. As far as I could tell the switch from red hat 9 to fc 1 was a name change only. I have not seen anything out of line with the way the distribution has worked all along. There may have been differences, but as far as I can tell they were marketing and name of the distribution. Not function and the normal evolution of the product. As far as stability I had as many (most likely more) issues with red hat releases as I have with new fedora releases.

How exactly were you burned by a name change of a free product?

Re:They had their chance (3, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973081)

I have.

RH9.0 was rock solid.

FC1-4 were buggy as hell with major problems. I jumped ship. I was a solid Redhat Guy.

If they are better, I'll never know. I'm not gonna dump any more time into Fedora.

Re:They had their chance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973133)

As far as stability I had as many (most likely more) issues with red hat releases as I have with new fedora releases.

Huh. Wait till FC10. 9 went in pretty much fine, but 10, arggg! The installer shows up as garbled graphics with some readable text on my screen and then it locks up my system. It's like fc10 went backwards or it stopped supporting the hardware I have.

It sure pissed me off! I may be on fc9 on this machine until it dies.

Re:They had their chance (1)

Wee (17189) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974013)

How exactly were you burned by a name change of a free product?

It wasn't a name change, it was a support issue for a free product which suddenly became non-free. When you have many dozens of servers, you want support. Red Hat wanted us to pay for security updates and such. That wasn't in our budget, and so we had to go through an enormous hassle to migrate away from Red Hat.

Fedora has a very aggressive release cycle which essentially means that any version released now will be unsupported in 18 months (at least this was the case when the Fedora project started; I've not bothered to look at it since). That's unacceptable for servers. It's marginally acceptable for workstations.

In any case, other distributions work well and hopefully won't pull the rug out from under us like Red Hat did.

-B

Re:They had their chance (1)

Richard W.M. Jones (591125) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974123)

It wasn't a name change, it was a support issue for a free product which suddenly became non-free. When you have many dozens of servers, you want support. Red Hat wanted us to pay for security updates and such.

You were greatly misinformed. Red Hat Enterprise Linux is completely Free software. You can download every single line of source from Red Hat's FTP server. It is recompiled and offered at no cost by third parties such as CentOS. CentOS makes available the security updates, at no cost.

Red Hat's releases are supported for 7 years from the date of release, and licenses that large businesses pay support this work and (more practically) get them direct access to experts to help them fix their problems. But if paying for the huge amount of work involved in backporting features and security fixes into the stable versions of RHEL is too much trouble, you can get CentOS to give you them for no cost.

Rich.

Re:They had their chance (2, Informative)

jmyers (208878) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974751)

My point is that the Red Hat distribution prior to RHEL was more like Fedora than the current RHEL. RHEL was the new product. RH9 was a name change to FC1. I don't see much difference in the rate of change and stability of the Fedora releases vs what I saw with Red Hat releases. I started with 2.0.2 in 1995 and was on 9 in 2003, the OS changed massively during that time as well.

Take a look at the version history here...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Hat_Linux [wikipedia.org]

Anyone that could have dealt with that release pace could deal with Fedora for servers. I like the new RHEL pace for server installs and currently use CentOS. But for the desktop Fedora is much better and the quick upgrade cycle is a good thing.

   

Re:They had their chance (1)

TypoNAM (695420) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973045)

I was in the same boat. I had a few Red hat servers and one Red hat desktop, but then received an email that they were no longer providing up2date support for non-enterprise customers. I then switched to Debian for servers and Ubuntu for my desktop, never had looked back since. Now with my desktop I did try Fedora (its crap), Slackware (good, but package management not to my liking), and then just used Debian for a while until a heard about Ubuntu.

I still got my Red hat 5.2 Deluxe edition box with the discs and manual. It was the first Linux distribution I tried and got me hooked around 1998 or so. I didn't purchase it as it was handed to me by somebody who didn't understand it and gave up. Used it on my old AMD Am486 SX2-66 box back then. :)

Because of my initial good experience with Red hat I didn't look to try out other distributions cause I stuck with what works all the way to Red hat 9 (I kept my servers at 7.3 though at the time, too much bloat in 8.0 - 9).

Re:They had their chance (2, Informative)

jmyers (208878) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973161)

Why do you say Fedora is crap? I have used it since inception up through 9, have not tried 10 yet. I have also installed and tried various versions of Ubuntu, most recently 8.10. The only difference I have seen is that Ubuntu includes non-free codecs that will will play dvd and mp3 out of the box. With Fedora it takes an extra 2 minutes to get that capability. Other than that the color scheme is different. As far as usability I see no other differences. There may be some deep down feature differences but for my home desktop of web surfing, open office, etc there is no noticeable difference.

yum has been in fedora from the start and was/is just as good or better than up2date.

Re:They had their chance (2, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973355)

Yum and up2date both sucked compared to apt-get.

Do this;
remove all your kernels, then add one back and see how it treats it. Last time I did that yum left me with a non-booting box.

not that desktop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26972687)

RedHat didn't leave the "desktop" so much as they left consumers. While many of us (including me) used desktop Red Hat back in day, they made their money selling support contracts to businesses using Red Hat on the server. Using a GUI-based app for managing Xen doesn't mean jack shit for the "linux desktop".

Based on colour... (4, Interesting)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972689)

Since most of my hats are brown (along with a couple black ones), I guess I'll have to run Ubuntu.

It's not that I really mind running beta software, it's this whole "you people are testing what we expect to sell as 'enterprise' for a premium later on, we're waiting for your bug reports" thing that I don't really like with the current RH. Although truthfully I haven't run RH since RH 3 or 4.

Not that distributions really matter all that much in the end, after you've been through the rounds and you're done with dicking around with your machine and you finally settle with just using it, you realise that they all ship pretty much the same stuff. And that the details really don't matter all that much. So unless you're really excited with a given logo, you can just pick one at random. They're all the same.
If you're in a corporate setting pick the one that's supported by the package you need, or if you don't require anything external, the one you already know, you'll save a week of work. Doesn't matter. Basically they all mostly work (and/or are broken in the same kinds of places). Same as most operating systems really.

And honestly I really doubt one couldn't have used RH on the desktop those past years. No Gnome or KDE repositories (or XFCE, or any other desktop ? did it even have X11 ? Or was it too hard for "grandma" (who is surely glad that RH finally pandered to her needs) ?

Bah.

Re:Based on colour... (-1, Flamebait)

Ex-Linux-Fanboy (1311235) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973735)

you people are testing what we expect to sell as 'enterprise' for a premium later on

If you want to download RHEL for free, get CentOS. Identical to RHEL, but free. And, from what I hear, RedHat doesn't mind CentOS' existence.

The issue with Ubuntu is that it's buggy as hell. RedHat at least admits that Fedora Core is an open beta; Ubuntu 8.10 is an open beta but Ubuntu didn't inform me of this fact.

I've had enough of Ubuntu's bugs. I'm going back to Fedora Core.

Re:Based on colour... (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974209)

If you want to download RHEL for free, get CentOS. Identical to RHEL, but free. And, from what I hear, RedHat doesn't mind CentOS' existence.

They don't mind it because the license says they can't help it.

The issue with Ubuntu is that it's buggy as hell. RedHat at least admits that Fedora Core is an open beta; Ubuntu 8.10 is an open beta but Ubuntu didn't inform me of this fact.

That's true enough (somewhat), except that RH started by saying that FC was to be their "free" offering and you actually had to read between the lines to figure out that you were a beta tester for the paying customers that were to come further along (which is what made me leave RH for good).
Nowadays they are a bit more open about the purpose of Fedora. Although "Will you be a free beta-tester for our commercial product" still doesn't feature very proeminently on their website. Granted, CentOS is there.

About Ubuntu, they suffer from the same plague that many other "desktop" distros are doomed with, namely feature creep. "Gotta have more features than the neighbour".

I've been running running Linux systems on desktop and (later) servers since 1994. I've tried all of the major distros, including Yggdrasil (at the very beginning).

Re:Based on colour... (1)

turbidostato (878842) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974655)

"They don't mind it because the license says they can't help it."

But they could do it hell more difficult and still well within GPL's "spirit".

For instance, they could allow access to sources only to their paying customers just like they do for binary updates.

And/or they could allow access to the unpackaged sources instead of those nifty srpm packages.

Re:Based on colour... (4, Insightful)

Richard W.M. Jones (591125) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973903)

How did the parent comment get "+4 interesting" when it so full of gross errors?

Ubuntu depends on the kernel and GNOME developers funded by Red Hat. Red Hat contributes everything back into the upstream projects, which Ubuntu has been noticeably bad [lwn.net] about doing.

RHEL has both GNOME and KDE (and obviously X11).

Rich.

Re:Based on colour... (0, Troll)

Ex-Linux-Fanboy (1311235) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974191)

It's called the invasion of the clueless Ubuntu fanboys. Who, instead of wanting to discuss the issues with Ubuntu's various bugs [blogspot.com] , just moderate up anyone who is part of the church of Ubuntu and moderate anyone down who doesn't think Ubuntu's is God's gift to the earth.

I've been using Linux since 1995. I wonder how many of these Ubuntu fanboyz know how to configure an ethernet card with ifconfig? Or how to make a Linux live CD distribution? Or the difference between xdm and gdm. Or know that X is a network desktop.

Re:Based on colour... (1)

Patch86 (1465427) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974583)

I've been using Linux since 1995. I wonder how many of these Ubuntu fanboyz know how to configure an ethernet card with ifconfig? Or how to make a Linux live CD distribution? Or the difference between xdm and gdm. Or know that X is a network desktop.

And why should they? None of them know those kind of facts about Windows or Mac either, but it doesn't put people off using them (and paying for the privilege). Get right down to it, 90% of the computer using population aren't interested in file systems, config files or display managers, they just want a box that can surf Facebook and You Tube. And why the heck not? If Canonical can carve out a healthy business catering for that market, then good luck to them.

Speaking of Canonical's lacklustre upstream contributions, we all need to keep in mind they're still a relatively fresh start-up. They have only recently raised the prospect of being a self-sustaining, profitable company- until now they've been munching through capital. In a company's early days, 100% of their resources goes into building up their profit-making business- and for a Linux vendor, kernel patches are pretty low on the agenda.

Now they're becoming / have become an established profitable company, now it's time to watch them. If they continue their bad record, then they'll need a spanking. Everything up to now seems fairly par for the course.

Desktop Redhat? (1)

thermian (1267986) | more than 4 years ago | (#26972821)

I don't know. I mean it was a great desktop years back, probably the best (discounting Debian), I used it for the whole of my time at university, but things have moved on.
I use it for servers nowadays, servers that I set up and don't change, aside from updates, but as a deasktop system it would need to compete with Ubuntu for ease of use and administration. Ubuntu's a long way ahead in those respects.

Still, I'm mildly interested to see what they might offer.

Re:Desktop Redhat? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973475)

Ubuntu, a long way ahead of other desktop distros, when they have no distinctive feature whatsoever ? When they depend on software that competitors write and maintain, and merely repackage six months later, without contributing anything valuable to the ecosystem ? When they -already !- have most of their work cut by Debian proper ? When do not have any more expertise at supporting their own distro than any capable Debian freelancer as shown by their absence of upstream contribution of any magnitude ? And when they maintain this most hypocritical attitude toward free software with on the one hand all the bullshit about the Ubuntu philosophy and on the other hand proprietary compromises galore ?
Technically, Ubuntu is probably the blandest distribution around, yet it is surrounded by some disturbingly powerful and irrational goodwill. Say, like... Apple ?
The difference is that the FreeBSD people are certainly OK that Apple take advantage of their work without giving much back. Freeloading in a mostly GPL environment when you pretend to be a major commercial player, however, sucks big time.

Re:Desktop Redhat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26973657)

Ubuntu, a long way ahead of other desktop distros, when they have no distinctive feature whatsoever ?

What about the shiny notifications that are designed to not notify you of anything important?

http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/265 [markshuttleworth.com]

THIS IS GOING TO CHANGE THE WORLD! EVERYONE INSTALL UBUNTU!!!!!!!!

Re:Desktop Redhat? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#26974157)

Virtually all of the the BSD code Apple uses is available on their darwin page. Personally, I think it's slightly douchebaggy to release BSD code under a new license, but at least they don't pretend to do it in order to make it more FREE. They also have improved khtml/kjs (WebKit) and are involved in llvm.

Other open source projects started at Apple include bonjour, core foundation lite, launchd.

I don't really know (or care) what Ubuntu has done, since I'm a FreeBSD/Debian guy.

Re:Desktop Redhat? (1, Insightful)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974761)

Ubuntu may not do any one thing better, but the overall end-user experience is much better with Ubuntu than with any other desktop distro I've tried lately. There's something to be said about streamlining existing work. Just because they don't contribute a ton of actual code doesn't mean they aren't contributing anything. Of course, it's only typical that a programmer thinks that if you aren't writing code, you can't be doing anything useful...

Re:Desktop Redhat? (-1, Troll)

Ex-Linux-Fanboy (1311235) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973511)

My issue with Ubuntu is that it's buggy as hell. I've been using Ubuntu 8.10 64-bit for a month and it's been one headache after another headache. I have written about some of my issues on my blog [blogspot.com] .

I am going to go back to Redhat. The difference between Ubuntu and Fedora Core is that RedHat admits that Fedora Core is an open beta. If you don't want a beta, you can get RHEL for free as CentOS.

The meaning of the article is unclear (5, Informative)

Galois2 (1481427) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973109)

The article seems to conflate "desktop" and "desktop virtualization."

RH has been on the desktop since the beginning. They offered Red Hat Linux 1.0 in 1995, all the way up through RHL 9 in 2003. They followed that with 10 bleeding-edge releases of Fedora and five main releases of RH Enterprise Linux. All 100% open, including their own work on utilities, Gnome/KDE, and kernel development. They have done more for linux on the desktop than just about any other company. And now we all reap the benefit, even if we use another distribution like Ubuntu.

So it is nonsense to say RH "returns" to the desktop. They never left.

Now, the article goes on to talk a lot about desktop *virtualization.* That's a totally different topic. Maybe the article should have been titled RH returns to desktop virtualization.

Re:The meaning of the article is unclear (1)

demachina (71715) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974969)

As someone who used RedHat on the desktop from 6 through 9 and actually had just bought "support" when they "left" just to show my support for them I assure you when they abandoned RH 7-9 it most definitely felt like they "left". Way back they were a company with a loyal customer base who bought their boxed distributions even when we didn't have to just to support them. Then they went "public" and suddenly the people that got them to where they were and helped them get rich when they IPO'ed were dirt, and the only people they cared about sat on Wall Street and in the Fortune 500. As we've all seen lately the people on Wall Street are a pack of thieves, their loyal customers were worth a lot more to them than they apparently thought.

I do appreciate all they've contributed to Linux over the years but I've never installed Red Hat or Fedora since they "left" and I never will again.

Re:The meaning of the article is unclear (1)

firespade (1030302) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974989)

I agree. As I was stating above.. "You can't forget that even though you're centralizing the entirety of the software suite, we then fall into a issue of having developer platform utilities side by side with the front desk secretary. I agree that it reduces cost but you have to take affirmative action towards the security aspect, if not you'll soon see serious repercussions." This is a great technology but we have to find a middle ground to stand on before "releasing the hounds"..

Desktop eh? (1)

certain death (947081) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973291)

I think the problem with most Linux distros is the Desktop system...being KDE, Gnome, etc. The OS runs like a scalded dog, but the GUI sucks wind. The only serious crashes I have ever had on Linux was due to the Windowing system, nothing else that I can recall. If they could get their heads together and come up with something that was stable and usable (Gnome and Xfce are better now-a-days) they would probably own. One of the problems my own mother has had was the fact that there were too many choices when it came to the GUI, she could not decide and eventually gave up.

Re:Desktop eh? (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974793)

X is going through some pretty good growing pains now, removing a lot of the required configuration settings and autodetecting things. And KDE/Gnome really aren't that bad.

And if your mother can't deal with the choices, why didn't you just make one for her? Seriously... the whole POINT of Linux is that it gives you choice. If you don't want choice, pay for Apple.

Re:Desktop eh? (1)

certain death (947081) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974879)

My mom is a BOFH! She has been using/managing computers since I was 6 years old and I am OLD!! She wouldn't allow me to make the decision for her. :o)

Schitzo Hat (1)

gmdiesel (1272738) | more than 4 years ago | (#26973419)

Someday Red Hat is going to decide who they want to be. But until then, I'm keeping them out of my systems, and out of my portfolio.

Yeah, but rpm's still stink (1)

ProteusQ (665382) | more than 4 years ago | (#26974859)

I tried a Fedora release not too long ago and found myself in dep-hell before the install was set up to my specs. That was the reason I bailed on RH back when they were on v8.1 If they can't fix that in the space of several years, why bother?

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