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Canonical Begins Tracking Ubuntu Installations

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the following-bitprints-and-scrapes-on-the-router dept.

Ubuntu 548

suraj.sun passes along this excerpt from Phoronix: "Just uploaded to the Ubuntu Lucid repository for Ubuntu 10.04 LTS (and we imagine it will appear shortly in Maverick too for Ubuntu 10.10) is a new package called canonical-census, which marks its initial release. Curious about what this package provides, we did some digging and found it's for tracking Ubuntu installations by sending an 'I am alive' ping to Canonical on a daily basis. When the canonical-census package is installed, the program is to be added to the daily Cron jobs to be executed so that each day it will report to Canonical over HTTP the number of times this system previously sent to Canonical (this counter is stored locally and with it running on a daily basis it's thereby indicating how many days the Ubuntu installation has been active), the Ubuntu distributor channel, the product name as acquired by the system's DMI information, and which Ubuntu release is being used. That's all that canonical-census does, at least for now. Previously there haven't been such Ubuntu tracking measures attempted by Canonical."

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548 comments

Phone home? (4, Insightful)

Zumbs (1241138) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201652)

While I fully understand that Canonical would like some reliable statistical information on users, I seriously hope that it will be easy to see what information is sent and opt out ... or even better ... opt in (ie. default is off).

It's about time (5, Interesting)

unixcrab (1080985) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201654)

It seems like any kind of Linux usage statistics you see these days are just a load of hot air. Hopefully this will provide some solid data and hopefully Canonical will make it public. I for one will happily enable it.

Double standard (0, Flamebait)

Bizzeh (851225) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201656)

Canonical do this and it seem to be fine, but if microsoft where to do this, they would be back up infront of the EU being fined hundreds of millions again and it would be the worlds biggest uproar. Gotta love a world of double standards

Obuntu (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201662)

The Ubuntu flavor dedicated to Barack Obama: teleprompter support, the user interface goes grey after about 2 years being installed, and it blames George Bush for all it's problems

First post! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201668)

After all these years I've finally done a first post. Now, get off my lawn. I can finally sleep knowing that I've achieved something that I've been wanting to do all these time.

I am a coward! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201672)

Yes, I agree, I am a coward!

MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201676)

MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR NIGGERS
MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR NIGGERS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ISLE OF MAN - June 1, 2006 - At a press conference today, Canonical CEO and Free Software spokesnigger Mark Shuttleworth announced the immediate availability of version 6.06 of the Ubuntu Linux distribution. The latest version, known by its code name, "The Diaper Drake," includes special features designed to make Linux easier and more comfortable for niggers the world over.

"Niggers have always had trouble understanding new technology," Shuttleworth began. "Computers are no exception. Some people have said this is because niggers are dumb, but I believe the real problem is that technology has traditionally been designed for white people. Ubuntu changes all that. It was developed from the ground up with niggers in mind. It will usher in a whole new era of Afro-ergonomic computing."

Shuttleworth presented an overview of some of the features users could expect in the latest version of Ubuntu, including an Ebonics-to-English converter, African "tribal beats" sound and desktop theme, and a collection of rap music and gay pornography, "which of course will be encoded using patent and royalty-free formats," Shuttleworth added, smiling. He proceeded to elaborate, but OpenOffice.org Impress crashed at that point.

"But this release isn't just about new features," Shuttleworth said, making a quick segue to the humanitarian and ideological concept behind Ubuntu. "This new version brings black men closer together than ever in the spirit of Ubuntu." Shuttleworth then demonstrated the concept of Ubuntu by getting on his knees and sucking a young black boy's erect penis.

About Canonical

Canonical Ltd. is committed to the development,distribution and promotion of open source software products, and to providing tools and support to the open source community. Canonical is a global organization headquartered in the Isle of Man, with employees throughout Europe, North America, South America and Australia. Canonical is a technology partner of the Gay Nigger Association of America, of which it holds a 36% equity stake.

About GNAA:
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [klerck.org] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America and the World! You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

  • First, you have to obtain a copy of GAYNIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it. You can download the movie [idge.net] (~130mb) using BitTorrent.
  • Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA First Post [wikipedia.org] on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website.
  • Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on irc.gnaa.eu, and apply for membership.

Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today! Upon submitting your application, you will be required to submit links to your successful First Post, and you will be tested on your knowledge of GAYNIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE.

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is NiggerNET, and you can connect to irc.gnaa.eu as our official server. Follow this link [irc] if you are using an irc client such as mIRC.

If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

.________________________________________________.
| ______________________________________._a,____ | Press contact:
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ | Gary Niger
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ | gary_niger@gnaa.eu [mailto]
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ | GNAA Corporate Headquarters
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ | 143 Rolloffle Avenue
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ | Tarzana, California 91356
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ | All other inquiries:
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ | Enid Al-Punjabi
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ | enid_al_punjabi@gnaa.eu [mailto]
| ______-"!^____________________________________ | GNAA World Headquarters
` _______________________________________________' 160-0023 Japan Tokyo-to Shinjuku-ku Nishi-Shinjuku 3-20-2

Copyright (c) 2003-2006 Gay Nigger Association of America [www.gnaa.eu]

Microsoft... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201680)

I imagine this will generate less outrage than if Microsoft ever tried to do it. Open Source is better than all commercial software!!!

first post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201686)

trying a first post

Double Standard (-1, Troll)

Bizzeh (851225) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201688)

this is such a double standard, if microsoft did this it would be the biggest uproar ever...

Calm down! It's OEM only. (3, Informative)

F0Cus (152582) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201692)

For a second , I really thought Canonical lost their minds... However further reading indicates this is only an OEM measure. That is, providers such as HP,DELL,ACER,etc... will engage with Canonical to provide usage data. What provoked my knee-jerk comment above was what would be so contriving to try and count the actual number of individual new download->installs on any given platform/OS release; we'd all be writing scripts to steer it in a different direction. Yeah, kinda like US Elections.

**hick**

MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201694)

MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR NIGGERS
MARK SHUTTLEWORTH AND CANONICAL ANNOUNCE LINUX FOR NIGGERS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ISLE OF MAN - June 1, 2006 - At a press conference today, Canonical CEO and Free Software spokesnigger Mark Shuttleworth announced the immediate availability of version 6.06 of the Ubuntu Linux distribution. The latest version, known by its code name, "The Diaper Drake," includes special features designed to make Linux easier and more comfortable for niggers the world over.

"Niggers have always had trouble understanding new technology," Shuttleworth began. "Computers are no exception. Some people have said this is because niggers are dumb, but I believe the real problem is that technology has traditionally been designed for white people. Ubuntu changes all that. It was developed from the ground up with niggers in mind. It will usher in a whole new era of Afro-ergonomic computing."

Shuttleworth presented an overview of some of the features users could expect in the latest version of Ubuntu, including an Ebonics-to-English converter, African "tribal beats" sound and desktop theme, and a collection of rap music and gay pornography, "which of course will be encoded using patent and royalty-free formats," Shuttleworth added, smiling. He proceeded to elaborate, but OpenOffice.org Impress crashed at that point.

"But this release isn't just about new features," Shuttleworth said, making a quick segue to the humanitarian and ideological concept behind Ubuntu. "This new version brings black men closer together than ever in the spirit of Ubuntu." Shuttleworth then demonstrated the concept of Ubuntu by getting on his knees and sucking a young black boy's erect penis.

About Canonical

Canonical Ltd. is committed to the development,distribution and promotion of open source software products, and to providing tools and support to the open source community. Canonical is a global organization headquartered in the Isle of Man, with employees throughout Europe, North America, South America and Australia. Canonical is a technology partner of the Gay Nigger Association of America, of which it holds a 36% equity stake.

About GNAA:
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [klerck.org] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America and the World! You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

  • First, you have to obtain a copy of GAYNIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it. You can download the movie [idge.net] (~130mb) using BitTorrent.
  • Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA First Post [wikipedia.org] on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website.
  • Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on irc.gnaa.eu, and apply for membership.

Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today! Upon submitting your application, you will be required to submit links to your successful First Post, and you will be tested on your knowledge of GAYNIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE.

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is NiggerNET, and you can connect to irc.gnaa.eu as our official server. Follow this link [irc] if you are using an irc client such as mIRC.

If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

.________________________________________________.
| ______________________________________._a,____ | Press contact:
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ | Gary Niger
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ | gary_niger@gnaa.eu [mailto]
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ | GNAA Corporate Headquarters
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ | 143 Rolloffle Avenue
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ | Tarzana, California 91356
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ | All other inquiries:
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ | Enid Al-Punjabi
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ | enid_al_punjabi@gnaa.eu [mailto]
| ______-"!^____________________________________ | GNAA World Headquarters
` _______________________________________________' 160-0023 Japan Tokyo-to Shinjuku-ku Nishi-Shinjuku 3-20-2

Copyright (c) 2003-2006 Gay Nigger Association of America [www.gnaa.eu]

OEM only (5, Informative)

ThoughtMonster (1602047) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201698)

The summary (conveniently?) left out the part where it says that this package is only included on OEM installations, not normal installs.

oh my (1)

pROCKrammer (1246962) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201702)

will It send just I am alive? so, if i would not connect to the Internet about a month? and I think it should send some ID of the computer in order to make it more qualitative.

Ubuntu already had popularity-content in place (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201710)

The popularity-content package in Debian and Ubuntu already existed, and collected information on the amount of submitters and the packages installed.
See http://popcon.ubuntu.com/ for the summary of that collected information. So the claim that there has not been such tracking measures in place earlier is not quite true.

Linux is communist and nigger chow (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201712)

From each according to his coding ability (Western programmers)
To each according to his wants (China downloads and builds on top of Linux, without committing any patches; the fucking niggers)

Don't like it? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201718)

Don't use it.

The last straw (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201726)

Time to switch back to Debian.

FUD? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201736)

You missed the most important information... probably because mentioning it wouldn't make the story as interesting as it sounds. Is it installed by default? Is there a notice? Is there a toggle button to install it during installation?

Statistics, statistics, statistics (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201738)

Could lead to useful statistics. Dunno why this is being made into such a big deal. Even though it sounds very much like MS Windows phoning home, both have two different objectives. Nothing to see here. Move on.

This doesn't sit well (1)

gigne (990887) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201742)

Not sure I like this even if "That's all that canonical-census does"

I think removing this on install is going to be my plan there.

TSIRF TSOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201744)

If its not opt in, its not on

oh noes (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201746)

it sloed down my computar so I failed at a frosy piss!

Opt out (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201748)

So long as it's documented and optional i don't see why anyone should have a problem with this... The install process should explain this, give the option to turn it off, and display to the user the exact information that would be sent.

Counting length of install seems quite useful, especially if they could determine why someone deleted their install after a short time...
Also it could be useful to take a hardware inventory, to determine what hardware people are using - this might also correlate with short install times if people find their hardware doesn't work properly.

First post (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201754)

I'm alive 1!

OEM installs only (1)

Jflesch (1717646) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201756)

You should specify that it's only about tracking *OEM* installations. I guess Canonical is looking for numbers to convince PC manufacturers that Ubuntu rocks.

I don't want this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201766)

It would be very nice if this were an optional package and not installed by default. I've been totally Windows free for over 4 years because I wanted my PC to be my own, not be permitted to function at the whim of some corporate DRM. Sadly, as an Ubuntu user, I feel that this will diminish my experience a bit and make my PC a little bit less my own. Sure, I can just uninstall it, but will it be forced back during every software update cycle? Every distro upgrade?

First Post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201776)

First Post ! :) sorry could not resist

They already had NTP and package updates (1)

mrcaseyj (902945) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201780)

I'm surprised they needed this given that Ubuntu already contacts the Ubuntu Network Time Protocol server and the security updates server regularly. Though I suppose both might have been redirected to local servers in some cases.

why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201788)

the purpose being??

Good on them (1)

quadrox (1174915) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201790)

I just hope they make it clear to the users what's going on - not that it's a big deal, but it would be the right thing to do. Otherwise I'm just interested in seeing some statistics myself.

Frost pist (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201792)

Frosty piss1!

way to bait... (3, Informative)

moogord (904702) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201796)

Of note to your interests. something that was skillfully left out of this slashdot article but is mentioned many times over and over in the original article. its only installed on OEM installations. the ones that are customized by canonical for use by oems. its not enabled/installed on your ubuntu install if you just download ubuntu or upgrade. geez...

Rational Response (1)

ojintoad (1310811) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201798)

Before you all don't RTFA:

The good news for those concerned about privacy is that it appears for now Canonical is just interested in tracking the users of OEM installations -- those PCs that ship with Ubuntu by default such as from ZaReason, System76, and Dell. This information will obviously be valuable to both companies to see whether customers are keeping around their Ubuntu installations or just wiping them and just how often Ubuntu is being used on these systems (judging by the number of times that system reported to Canonical's server previously). For those not wanting to participate in this anonymous data gathering process, they could always sudo apt-get remove canonical-census.

Questions, questions (1)

Dumnezeu (1673634) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201804)

it will report to Canonical over HTTP the number of times this system previously sent to Canonical (this counter is stored locally and with it running on a daily basis it's thereby indicating how many days the Ubuntu installation has been active), the Ubuntu distributor channel, the product name as acquired by the system's DMI information, and which Ubuntu release is being used. That's all that canonical-census does

So why is it an issue?

at least for now

Come back when there is a serious problem.

Previously there haven't been such Ubuntu tracking measures attempted by Canonical.

So if there would have been any previous attempts, this wouldn't have been a story?

Dear god I hope this stops the impending wave (0, Redundant)

ojintoad (1310811) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201812)

of privacy freakout from those who chose not to RTFA:

The good news for those concerned about privacy is that it appears for now Canonical is just interested in tracking the users of OEM installations -- those PCs that ship with Ubuntu by default such as from ZaReason, System76, and Dell. This information will obviously be valuable to both companies to see whether customers are keeping around their Ubuntu installations or just wiping them and just how often Ubuntu is being used on these systems (judging by the number of times that system reported to Canonical's server previously). For those not wanting to participate in this anonymous data gathering process, they could always sudo apt-get remove canonical-census.

Why? (1)

blirp (147278) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201814)

Why would they do this? It has to be something they can sell or bargain with. So does this mean they'll try to lower the price they pay to Dell for preinstalling Ubuntu (if, in fact, they're actually paying for this). Or are they planning to create an adware-version of Ubuntu?

Neither seems very likely, so ... why?

M.

I think this is a good thing (1)

Veyasu (1505999) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201816)

This could be interesting. I wonder how many will feel this is an intrusion of their privacy. Personally, as long as the community is well informed about what it does, and how it does it, and it doesn't do more than what's described in the summary, I don't mind at all. Actually, I'm quite interested in seeing some accurate numbers on how widespread Ubuntu really is.

Disappointed, but not surprised (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201818)

I suppose this is in keeping with the general philosophy of Canonical, which is all about them first, and screw the community when it suits them.

At least Fedora is honest, and they ask your permission first. I suppose honesty is a bit too much for the Ubuntu community. I'm not surprised in the least.

Not by default? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201820)

I hope this were not a default package in the future: privacy and much traffic.

Them bastards (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201822)

We should sue them for invasion of privacy and ask for our money back.

Dear lord let this stop the impending wave (0, Redundant)

ojintoad (1310811) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201824)

of collective privacy handwringing:

The good news for those concerned about privacy is that it appears for now Canonical is just interested in tracking the users of OEM installations -- those PCs that ship with Ubuntu by default such as from ZaReason, System76, and Dell. This information will obviously be valuable to both companies to see whether customers are keeping around their Ubuntu installations or just wiping them and just how often Ubuntu is being used on these systems (judging by the number of times that system reported to Canonical's server previously). For those not wanting to participate in this anonymous data gathering process, they could always sudo apt-get remove canonical-census.

Some clarifications (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201828)

Some corrections:

- It's not the Ubuntu lucid repository, it's the Canonical partner repository.
- It doesn't send the entire DMI data, just the first word of the computer product name (e. g. "Latitude" for a Dell Latitude notebook)
- It does not send anything for standard Ubuntu installations (which do not have a distributor channel)

goatse (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201834)

n/t

Not installed by default (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201842)

This isn't installed by default. Right now, it's not very different than Debian's popularity-contest package, which sends every week a list of your installed packages.

and the IP address... (1, Insightful)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201846)

...thus giving a convenient database of computer availability and movement.

The good news for those concerned about privacy is that it appears for now Canonical is just interested in tracking the users of OEM installations -- those PCs that ship with Ubuntu by default such as from ZaReason, System76, and Dell.

I'm sorry, what? Why is this good news? This sentence makes as much sense as, "The good news for those interested in peaceful action is that the sniper is only interested in targetting the Dutch."

For those not wanting to participate in this anonymous data gathering process, they could always sudo apt-get remove canonical-census.

Yeah, you can always opt-out of spam too.

Test Your Bias! (5, Interesting)

gravos (912628) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201852)

Test your Free Software bias! If this article had the following summary, would you react differently?

"Just released as part of the latest patch Tuesday for Windows 7 (and we imagine it will appear shortly in Windows Server, too) is a new feature called microsoft-census, which marks its initial release. Curious about what this feature provides, we did some digging and found it's for tracking Windows installations by sending an 'I am alive' ping to Microsoft on a daily basis. When the microsoft-census update is installed, the program is to be added to the daily scheduled tasks to be executed so that each day it will report to Microsoft over HTTP the number of times this system previously sent to Microsoft (this counter is stored locally and with it running on a daily basis it's thereby indicating how many days the Windows 7 installation has been active), the Microsoft distributor channel, the product name as acquired by the system's DMI information, and which Windows release is being used. That's all that microsoft-census does, at least for now. Previously there haven't been such Windows tracking measures attempted by Microsoft."

Big Brother (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201864)

Seems harmless enough for now, but still, go funk yourselves, biatch.

Leave my computer and my privacy alone.

let me be the first to say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201866)

ow my balls!

Do we need this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201868)

Queue privacy lunies in 3...2...1...

Optional? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201876)

Presumably this package will only be installed if you check (or fail to uncheck) a box about monitoring user statistics?

Inform the users, give option to turn off (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201882)

Just because Ubuntu is free and you call the package canonical-census instead of canonical-spy doesn't mean you'll get away with tracking. Oh well, it probably does.

why not if its optional (4, Interesting)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201886)

I'll let it run at least initially, I am curious as to how many people run ubuntu and where (to at least the country level). If ordinary users can access that information I will be happy enough to run it on my systems.

If that access isn't available then I won't.

 

No problem, as long as it's transparent! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201892)

Well I think that, it's not a big issue, as long as it's transparent to the user.
I think it's important to begin to count the Linux user's base.

Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201894)

Sounds like it will work, since Ubuntu users seem to be the clueless "I just don't want to use Windows anymore" type who don't bother to learn how to use Linux either.

First Post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201898)

Piss Fross

I am surprised it took so long! (1)

bradley13 (1118935) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201900)

From a marketing perspective, Linux has the problem that no one really knows how widely it is used. The number of downloads does not help. This is a first attempt at solving the problem.

I applaud Canonical for the courage in carrying this through, given that the privacy freaks are going to, well, freak.

No such Ubuntu tracking measures (1)

dsavi (1540343) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201902)

While that's true, it's worth noting the package popularity-contest which tracked the installations of different packages. If you can disable it while installing Ubuntu (Like you could with popularity-contest, at one point anyway, I don't know about how it is now) then I'm fine with it.

Do wherever you please (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201908)

Do wherever you please. The end-user will not care.

Isn't that great?

I can't believe this is the first post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201910)

So, are we supposed to be angry because of the privacy invasion, or happy that Ubuntu can get some decent statistics?

Little Sensationalist? (1)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201912)

So a new package just shows up that tracks installs and this instantly means it's a forced install.

Doesn't sound too different from Debian's popularity-contest package (which has cron as a recommended install).

And is there anything in a conf file to direct the reporting elsewhere? Maybe to schools, large businesses, etc

If they must do this (1)

muzip (1220080) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201914)

There should be a nice GUI which tells about the things that are sent to Canonical, and there should also be an easy way for new users to turn it off...

Slashdot broken again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201918)

Could you please stop messing around with the comment system on the live servers?

Finally.... (1)

gmueckl (950314) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201922)

... this could give some better numbers as to how many Linux systems are actually out there. As long as this package isn't installed automatically without prompting, this is great and very useful.

like popcon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201934)

like popcon or smolt, but sending less info.

first fucking gnaa post! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201938)

eat it bloggers!

What's wrong? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201942)

I posted a comment 5 minutes ago, and it still hasn't shown up.

Worrying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201946)

Canonical is the new Microsoft.

FP! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201950)

FP!

Linux Counter (1)

mammux (232575) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201960)

Would be nice if this was somehow coordinated with the Linux Counter:

http://counter.li.org/

-Magnus (Linux user #13)

Trusting the client, eh? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201968)

In that case, 10.04 will have been installed on my system since sometime in the late 70's, and will, each day, have been installed for one fewer days than it was the day before...

Good news, I think (1)

bbbaldie (935205) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201970)

It will be good to have an actual count of machines out there. I'm sick to death of hearing 1% Linux usage. OTOH, can't help but feel a bit paranoid...

Help! They're on to me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201980)

But I don't mind. I'd be more embarrassed if they found out I was using Windoze.

Sounds interesting. (1)

Elbereth (58257) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201984)

As long as they protect the users' privacy, this could end up being very interesting. As the users opt into sending more detailed information, such as CPU, video card, and memory, they can collect demographics information useful for answering questions like whether CPU/GPU intensive programs should be included in the default installation. Other information, such as whether the computer is a desktop/laptop could also be used.

Voluntary or not? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33201986)

If the package is voluntary, I don't see the problem.

Maybe some more acurate usage stats on their way? (1)

rHBa (976986) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201988)

As long as Canonical don't abuse this (by adding to it's feature set) I wouldn't mind this running on my machines. Maybe we'll get some more accurate usage stats.

Tracking at its best (1)

sipatha (1162265) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201992)

every ping has a lot of other data that can be used for tracking as you move from one network point to another. Damn.
at lease there is sudo apt-get remove canonical-census

prefer privacy? (1)

MollyB (162595) | more than 3 years ago | (#33201996)

the last line of tfa:

For those not wanting to participate in this anonymous data gathering process, they could always sudo apt-get remove canonical-census.

It was going to happen sooner or later. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33202000)

sudo apt-get purge canonical-census

They should have used popcorn (0, Redundant)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 3 years ago | (#33202006)

This would be similar to Debian's popularity-contest but with Debian you have to opt in.

http://popcon.debian.org/ [debian.org]

It seems more useful since it tells Debian which packages you have installed in addition to the fact that you have Debian installed.

Doesn't matter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33202014)

Doesn't matter really. If they try to do something stupid, there's always the possibility to do a fork.

no user specific data (1)

LukePH (1065930) | more than 3 years ago | (#33202018)

It seems like it this is only going to be used by OEMs for now (not the default install). And no user specific data is sent, not even a random id. Doesn't seem like they can do any more tracking then what they can now looking at IP address of people who update, seems like it only helps them judge the number of users.

They should have used popcorn (0, Redundant)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 3 years ago | (#33202020)

This would be similar to Debian's popularity-contest but with Debian you have to opt in.

http://popcon.debian.org/ [debian.org]

It seems more useful since it tells Debian which packages you have installed in addition to the fact that you have Debian installed.

Disable it? Or not install it? (1)

ashraya (632661) | more than 3 years ago | (#33202022)

Should be easy enough to block or disable it if there is a privacy concern. For most installations, it is optional anyways. (only comes pre-installed with OEM) - Why is this a big news? Not much different than registration for Windows, and much less than that.

I've used Ubuntu for the past 4 years, and I believe that it is the best thing that happened to Linux. If they want to gather how many installs are out there live, I will probably give it to them.

Regards,
Ashraya

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