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Ubuntu Moves Away From GNOME

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the end-of-an-era dept.

GNOME 514

An anonymous reader writes "It's official: Ubuntu has, with its ironically named 'Unity' interface, chosen to move away from GNOME for Ubuntu Natty Narwhal. Or at least move away from GNOME Shell. Mark Shuttleworth says that Ubuntu will still be 'GNOME,' even if it's not using GNOME Shell. Do you agree?"

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514 comments

Wow (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012434)

can they still do that under the gnu license?

Re:Wow (2, Interesting)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012532)

Gnome Shell - YES, I have tried this in Beta - is a real drag.

KDE4 was a cock-up. It's taken, what? 2 years to get back to everyday, usable? Gnome is great. The Gnome Shell will only take 1 year to do the same.

I don't know about Unity. But Gnome shell is a productivity / usability killer.

Example: Gnome Application Menu in the current Panel. Sure, it doesn't scale when you have 30 audio applications and as many "Internet" apps. But Gnome Shell? Only a handful available - in a non scrolling, apparently unconfigurable "top-ten" or so. None of which I chose to be displayed. Hey? Where'd WebHTTRack go?

Re:Wow (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012570)

I can't freakin' STAND KDE. I never really understood the appeal of it...just seemed like a convuluted mess to me.

Re:Wow (5, Insightful)

heathen_01 (1191043) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012928)

I can't freakin' STAND Gnome. I never really understood the appeal of it...just seemed like a convuluted mess to me.

Re:Wow (1, Informative)

0123456 (636235) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013186)

I can't freakin' STAND Gnome. I never really understood the appeal of it...just seemed like a convuluted mess to me.

Gnome is basically Windows XP/MacOS/Solaris/every other GUI for the last twenty years. KDE is... actually I don't really know what it is, it just seems like a mess every time I try to use it.

Re:Wow (1, Interesting)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013266)

So you are upset that KDE is not a copy of basically Windows XP/MacOS/Solaris/every other GUI?

How far we have come. When I started using linux, the complaint was that KDE was "just" a badly implemented copy of windows.

If I could get last pass to work with Konqueror, I would drop Chromium. That - and handbrake - are the only non-kde program that I daily use.

Re:Wow (1, Insightful)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013062)

I can't freakin' STAND KDE. I never really understood the appeal of it...just seemed like a convuluted mess to me.

It was good and I liked it until KDE 4 came out. After trying to use it for 4 hours I switched to XFCE and have never looked back.

Re:Wow (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013268)

KDE's my favorite desktop, but then, I was using it back when I ran Mandrake; tried KDE and Gnome and preferred KDE. I'm running kubuntu at home, I guess I should try Gnome again.

Re:Wow (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013250)

I would have thought they could use as much or as little of Gnome as they please. This is hardly anything new: for instance, back in the late '90s, RedHat shipped with Gnome by default, using Enlightenment as its window manager. (IIRC in at least versions 5.2 to 6.2 of the distro.)

On my present (Arch Linux) desktop boxes, it's no longer immediately obvious how much of Gnome I'm using any more. At the UI level, I've done a bit of cherry-picking, using things like compiz-fusion for managing windows and Avant Window Navigator instead of gnome-panel. I spent some time playing with other file managers, but in the end decided Nautilus was actually pretty OK. I haven't had any good reason, however, to replace much of the stuff under the hood that gets fired up by gdm, since I'm fairly happy with how everything works.

For those who wonder what Gnome Shell is ... (4, Informative)

sourcerror (1718066) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012440)

From TFA:
"GNOME Shell is the interface being developed for GNOME 3.0, which was delayed to spring 2011."

Re:For those who wonder what Gnome Shell is ... (3, Informative)

pietromenna (1118063) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012478)

From TFA: "GNOME Shell is the interface being developed for GNOME 3.0, which was delayed to spring 2011."

Probably then they are switching to Unity due to the schedule?

Re:For those who wonder what Gnome Shell is ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012612)

So what is unity?

Re:For those who wonder what Gnome Shell is ... (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012704)

That's not terribly informative. What part of GNOME is the interface? The window manager? The desktop? The panel? All of that? One might as well ask what part of GNOME isn't Gnome Shell.

Ordinary people use Ubuntu (4, Informative)

captainpanic (1173915) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012762)

From TFA:
"GNOME Shell is the interface being developed for GNOME 3.0, which was delayed to spring 2011."

On the plus side: there are now also ordinary people using Ubuntu - people that don't know anything.
On the down side: they still don't understand what a shell is, even after that explanation (see quoted text).

To me, it's not really clear where GNOME starts or stops... So there's at least one Ubuntu user who is quite clueless what this is all about.

The value of this post? I show you all that there are people able to use Ubuntu without even the basic knowledge of the processes or even the names of them running on the computer. I always think of myself as the target group for Ubuntu. The wizkids can use the other Linux systems.

Re:Ordinary people use Ubuntu (5, Insightful)

corbettw (214229) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012872)

That's funny, because I consider myself in another target group of Ubuntu users. I know all about the guts of Linux, but frankly, computers are not my life. I'm too busy with a wife, kids, social obligations, neighborhood functions, and just living life to bother with all the work that seems to go along with most other distributions. Using Ubuntu allows me to free my time to spend on those things I find important rather than downloading, compiling, and installing the latest kernel once a month. I can just put "aptitude safe-upgrade" in cron to run at 1am on the first Sunday of each month and I know I'm good.

Natty Narwhal? (1)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012460)

What the hell does a sea unicorn have to do with $5.00/case frat boy beer?

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012606)

Seriously. Their names get stupider every release.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012682)

I don't even know why they bother with names. They are confusing and random, and I don't use them. I don't use the Mac OS names either. I just use the version number:

Laptop 1 = Ubuntu 8.0 (first version of 2008)
Laptop 2 = Lightweight Ubuntu 10.1 (second version of 2010)
Mac G3 = 10.4
Mac G5 = 10.5

Not a clue what their "names" are supposed to be.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

js_sebastian (946118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012774)

I don't even know why they bother with names. They are confusing and random, and I don't use them. I don't use the Mac OS names either. I just use the version number:

Laptop 1 = Ubuntu 8.0 (first version of 2008) Laptop 2 = Lightweight Ubuntu 10.1 (second version of 2010) Mac G3 = 10.4 Mac G5 = 10.5

Not a clue what their "names" are supposed to be.

Names are much easier to google than version numbers, especially if they are unusual words not frequently used in the tech domain. So yes, please keep up using those natty names...

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1, Interesting)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012934)

>>>Names are much easier to google than version numbers

???
what?
http://www.google.com/search?q=ubuntu+10.10 [google.com]
http://www.google.com/search?q=mac+os+10.3 [google.com]
http://www.google.com/search?q=mac+os+10 [google.com]

That wasn't difficult at all. In fact it was extremely easy, and I didn't have to remember if 10.10 == busty brassiere or Mac OS 10.3 == ugly unicorn, or whatever.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

imakemusic (1164993) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013070)

Yeah, that's all well and good until you have a problem with running Random Program 10.4 on Mac OS 10.6 and all the search engines give you is advice on how to run Random Program 10.6 on Mac OS 10.4. That's when the names are useful.

And you can still use the version numbers if you prefer.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012940)

Also, the names are versioned as well. You'll probably notice that all of them have the same first letter in both name components, and that letter advances by 1 down the alphabet for every release. What they do on Release 27 I don't know, but it's still a ways off.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34013010)

Those aren't Mac OS names. The G3 is a PowerPC processor. So is the G4 and G5 (Generation 3, 4, and 5). Goddamn you're ignorant about the things you claim to know about.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012810)

They have always been stupid. The only difference is that Warty Warthog didn't have 10 stupid predecessors. Why will the next one be even stupider? Because that one will have 11 stupid predecessors.

If you really want to revolt, you could always insist on calling it by its very practical and informative version number, and then judge people based on your newly found change.

Re:Natty Narwhal? (2, Interesting)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013050)

Just wait for Orgasmic Octopus.. it's everywhere you want it to be..

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013206)

Ubuntu 2020.1 Orgasmic Octopus - Serving 8 users at once. Other possible names:

Leapin' Lizards!
Orange Orangutan
Manacles (for) Microsoft
Ugly Unicorn
Pregnant Pussy

And last but not least: Symbian's Sexy Sybian

Re:Natty Narwhal? (1)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013100)

I think originally it was a development codename and then many users latched onto this. It seems to me that this is happening to Android now too, more people I've talked to seem to refer to the current version of Android as "Froyo" and not "2.2". However, the older versions seem to be more commonly referred to by version number, i.e. 1.6 instead of "Donut".

Re:Natty Narwhal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34013030)

For most of us computing types; Linux is the cheap beer of OSs.

Unity has it's problems (3, Insightful)

EricTheRed (5613) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012472)

I know some people say you can't configure Unity (running it on a netbook) the one thing it really needs is the ability to auto-hide as I've now got this big column of desktop real estate on the left of the screen I can't do anything with anymore.

NB: To those complaining about lack of configurability - try dragging icons around or right clicking them - you can modify it...

Re:Unity has it's problems (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012718)

I want something that looks like Windows (start button, trashbin, tabs on bottom or top, etc). I tried to find Unity screenshots but found nothing. Does it look/feel like a Windows PC?

Re:Unity has it's problems (1)

icegreentea (974342) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012880)

It's vaguely like Windows 7 with a side bar instead at the bottom. And kind of a start button.

There's some screens below.

http://arstechnica.com/open-source/reviews/2010/10/ars-reviews-ubuntu-1010-wip.ars/7

KUbuntu 4.5/Linux 2.6.35? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012912)

"I want something that looks like Windows (start button, trashbin, tabs on bottom or top, etc)." - by commodore64_love (1445365) on Monday October 25, @11:22AM (#34012718)

See subject-line above, because afaik? That's as CLOSE as you'll get to the "Windows look & feel", w/out going to some sort of "Lindows" build (there used to be such a build, and probably there still may be if you check distrowatch.com )...

I felt much the same as you, which is WHY I chose KUbuntu 10.10 & 10.04 before that this year.

Anyhow/anyways:

Personally, I think Linux has FINALLY come to the point where it's a decent Operating System for most end-user oriented tasks @ home daily (e.g. - websurfing, home office tasks via OpenOffice, multimedia tasks etc./et al)... &, that's "ME", the "original posterboy for 'Windows fanboy @ /.'" pretty much, saying it.

What does Linux lack? Ok, from my perspective @ least:

HOMEFRONT:

More games, & of the calibre Windows enjoys... folks game @ home, face it, & most folks tend to use their PC's as a "Wintendo", or information gathering system/shopping system online.

INDUSTRIAL:

Better "esoteric peripheral equipment" support in drivers, and a VOLUME MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (a good one of the likes of the one Windows has with NTFS & Active Directory, OR, a ZFS filesystem)

Other than that though? Linux is pretty damned good, I have to admit it. Good enough for me to use daily in fact, and for around 1/2 yr. now consistently here @ home so far... I told Foredecker (a senior MS manager who posts here, via email, that EVENTUALLY? Linux WOULD "catch up" & it appears to be nearing that point finally, after oh, 15++ yrs. or thereabouts, imo @ least). Cover those bases above I noted?? It'll be there...

APK

P.S.=> Again though, is there a "closer build" to the look/feel of Windows? Well, check on "Lindows" online on GOOGLE to see what the case is there for that, because iirc, the 'tell' online was that it was almost EXACTLY a Windows 9.x shell look/feel (don't quote me on that though, I only heard the online "rumor mill"), which is what it sounds you are looking for... apk

Re:KUbuntu 4.5/Linux 2.6.35? (2, Insightful)

marsu_k (701360) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013174)

For the love of $DEITY, stop recommending Kubuntu, it's an half-assed effort that keeps giving KDE a bad name. Yes, the 4.0 release was a PR disaster, whether it was the fault of the developers or distros is debatable but irrelevant now. If you want to run KDE, do yourself a favor and use a distro that puts some effort to it, like Mandriva, OpenSUSE or Chakra.

Re:KUbuntu 4.5/Linux 2.6.35? (1)

wastedlife (1319259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013260)

"Lindows" was a some crap put together to try and not scare off Walmart customers from buying a $200 PC without Windows. It probably did more harm than good, as it was not free, which to home users is really one of the biggest advantages for linux. Microsoft complained about the name, and it was briefly renamed "Linspire" until Xandros bought them and dropped the product entirely. The only interesting thing it had going for it was the "Click'N'Run" app store, which was supposed to combine a good package management system (I think they used apt) with a front-end for searching and buying applications. However, IIRC it cost a subscription fee just to use the store.

Re:Unity has it's problems (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012856)

Unity as shipped with 10.10 was not ready for prime-time (slow, glitchy). Your best bet for a decent UI on 10.10 is to use the regular GNOME interface, delete the bottom panel, and replace it with Docky (which is an OSX-looking launcher/task switcher).

Re:Unity has it's problems (2, Informative)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013118)

Seconded :) I also install Gnome Do as well to get back the functionality it had while Docky was part of Gnome-Do. I tend to launch things with Gnome Do, and use Docky for a task manager/trashcan.

Re:Unity has it's problems (1)

shawn(at)fsu (447153) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012936)

I was using it on a netbook. It's is a pita. I know this might sound stupid and maybe I was missing something obvious but I couldn't get files/folders on my desktop. In fact it was a bit of a struggle just to get a navigation window open so I could go to my Windows partition. I would exactly call it a very intuitive interface. I don't plan on trying unity again for a very long time if ever.

I agree... (5, Insightful)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012476)

...that the summary is +1 flamebait, apparently just a thinly-veiled attack on their decision. How about a summary that describes what they're doing (without using the word ironic), and why?

Re:I agree... (5, Informative)

nine-times (778537) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012770)

I agree that the summary is far from unbiased. It's making it sound like Ubuntu is dropping Gnome, which isn't quite what's happening.

A more reasonable way to look at it, in my opinion, is that Gnome is currently undergoing a large set of changes in the 3.0 release. The people running the Gnome project are planning a radical shift from the current UI to something called "Gnome-Shell". Ubuntu is apparently not sold on this dramatic redesign, so instead they'll be going their own way with a UI that is, in some ways, closer to the current UI.

Having tried Gnome-Shell out for a little while, I have to say I'm not excited about the change. I appreciate that they're trying something very new and trying to be innovative, but at the very least it didn't feel ready for use.

Re:I agree... (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012780)

Reporters routinely inject words like "ironic" or "far ___ wing" or whatever to make their articles more interesting. No reason /. reporters would be any different.

And it is ironic the desktop's called "unity" but appears to be dividing the community.
Similar to when Puppy Linux switched from SeaMonkey to Chromium - it created division not unity.

Re:I agree... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012784)

CmdrTaco must be desperate for page hits today.

Aero (4, Funny)

cerberusss (660701) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012502)

Mark Shuttleworth says that Ubuntu will still be "GNOME," even if it's not using GNOME Shell.

I've got a mole in the Ubuntu organisation. The word is that mr. Shuttleworth has been in secret talks with Darth^WSteve Ballmer to negotiate the rights for Vista's Aero interface. It was available for pennies due to the number of unsold Vista licenses. The next version of Ubuntu will sport the familiar Aero interface, with features such as the nifty and user-friendly Deny/Allow-widget, grafted straight onto the Linux Kernel.

Open source community, what more do you want?

Re:Aero (5, Funny)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012634)

well ... considering that Miguel de Icaza has been in secret talks with Palpat^WSteve Jobs to make Gnome so hard to customize that people won't see why they should use it instead of just buying a mac, it's just being fair to both sides.

Re:Aero (1)

grikdog (697841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013092)

well ... considering that Miguel de Icaza has been in secret talks with Palpat^WSteve Jobs to make Gnome so hard to customize that people won't see why they should use it instead of just buying a mac, it's just being fair to both sides.

It's not a joke! Marvelous Mudcat has got me thinking about switching back to MacWindows just to run Adobe Illustrator. Bearing in mind that the only bugs us "below average" users ever see are in the GUI, which means GNOME.

Re:Aero (2, Insightful)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012752)

I've got a mole in the Ubuntu organisation. The word is that mr. Shuttleworth has been in secret talks with Darth^WSteve Ballmer to negotiate the rights for Vista's Aero interface. It was available for pennies due to the number of unsold Vista licenses. The next version of Ubuntu will sport the familiar Aero interface, with features such as the nifty and user-friendly Deny/Allow-widget, grafted straight onto the Linux Kernel.

Open source community, what more do you want?

The WPS from OS/2, prettied up for the modern age. It's not like anyone is using THAT, right?

Re:Aero (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012812)

>>>Open source community, what more do you want?

(1) Amiga OS. I miss it.
(2) Or if I can't have that, a clone of the Windows OS so I'm no longer locked into the Microsoft Monopoly when running MS software. Something like Wine but bigger.

Re:Aero (1)

1336 (898588) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013080)

>> what more do you want?

> Amiga OS. I miss it. Or if I can't have that, a clone of the Windows OS so I'm no longer locked into the Microsoft Monopoly when running MS software. Something like Wine but bigger.

Aside from the fact that it is still in alpha 12 years after it was started, what you're describing is ReactOS: http://www.reactos.org/ [reactos.org]

But FYI, so long as you need to run apps designed for "the Microsoft Monopoly", you will always be locked into it in.

Re:Aero (2, Interesting)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013226)

1) The last update to AmigaOS 4.1 was just 5 months ago. It doesn't seem to be dead.

2)

ReactOS® is a free, modern operating system based on the design of Windows® XP/2003. Written completely from scratch, it aims to follow the Windows-NT® architecture designed by Microsoft from the hardware level right through to the application level. This is not a Linux based system, and shares none of the unix architecture.
The main goal of the ReactOS project is to provide an operating system which is binary compatible with Windows. This will allow your Windows applications and drivers to run as they would on your Windows system. Additionally, the look and feel of the Windows operating system is used, such that people accustomed to the familiar user interface of Windows® would find using ReactOS straightforward. The ultimate goal of ReactOS is to allow you to remove Windows® and install ReactOS without the end user noticing the change.

Still alpha, though.

Sounds fine (3, Insightful)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012506)

Thanks to desktop standards, people have been doing this for years... makes sense that a major distro is following suit.

My desktop pretty much only uses gdm and gnome-terminal from GNOME, and occasionally nautilus (though I turn off the desktop handling).

Using Enlightenment DR16 or occasionally compiz as the window manager, and awn ("Avant Window Navigator") as the panel, with compatible taskbar and notification area.

Re:Sounds fine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012736)

My desktop pretty much only uses gdm and gnome-terminal from GNOME, and occasionally nautilus

Personally, I never understood the advantage of GDM when it's so easy to just type startx or startxfce4 from a TTY. Does Gnome terminal still use an obscene amount of RAM? I used a few lighter weight terminal apps before the days of vte, now I stick with the xfce terminal. Nautilus though... I use the shell but recall Nautilus being absolutely awful. When I've had to configure a file manager for someone else, I have found that Rox and Thunar do the job with a minimum of fuss.

So although it's been a few years since I used Gnome, it sounds to me like you hand-selected some of the (IMHO) worst parts. Have Gnome Terminal and Nautilus seen drastic improvement since I used them or why specifically do you choose them?

Re:Sounds fine (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012834)

My desktop pretty much only uses gdm and gnome-terminal from GNOME, and occasionally nautilus (though I turn off the desktop handling).

So why not run Kubuntu or Xubuntu and avoid some of the GNOME bloat?

Re:Sounds fine (1)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013126)

I've used KDE in KNOPPIX... I guess I like the execution, but it reminds me too much of Windows. Gnome seems simpler for the most part.

I never really liked XFCE... I was more of a fan of NeXT-ish interfaces like WindowMaker.

The GNOME bloat is well-documented, so I know my way around all the settings in gconf-editor and elsewhere. That also ends up helping out with all the CentOS machines at work.

To the AC above this, I do like Nautilus in browser mode, but yeah, the "spatial mode" is pretty frustrating. And I like Gnome-terminal because I'm pretty much a sucker for composited translucency :P

If I didn't have an obscene amount of RAM, I'd probably be running LXDE, but its lack of compositing annoys my sensibilities. My eeebuntu netbook runs the full compiz + GNOME with nary a hiccup, though.

And on low res displays such as the VNC session I run to connect to from my Palm / Android PDA, I tend to use icewm with a plain theme.

Re:Sounds fine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34013152)

My desktop pretty much only uses gdm and gnome-terminal from GNOME, and occasionally nautilus (though I turn off the desktop handling)

So why not run Kubuntu or Xubuntu and avoid some of the GNOME bloat?

I feel for you for your inadequate attention span, but maybe you should have read the GP's next sentence as well:

Using Enlightenment DR16 or occasionally compiz as the window manager, and awn ("Avant Window Navigator") as the panel, with compatible taskbar and notification area

He's using 3% of GNOME, 0% of KDE, 0% of XFCE. What makes you think [XK]ubuntu would match his preference any better?

Bye bye (2, Interesting)

l33tmyst (1373841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012528)

Bye bye Ubuntu. You made me switch with Maverick Meerkat, but seeing as that's not an LTS as of Natty Narwhal I'll be going back to good ol' Debian.

Do i agreee? Do whatever works. (2, Interesting)

drolli (522659) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012530)

The times when i used not-the-standard-configuration-of-whatever distribution i installed to save memory are gone with my last laptop below 512MB of Ram. If Canonical thinks its easier to maintain it in a different way, fine with me. If it does'nt work i can tune, switch, get into the details and fix it. Until that point i would be happy not to figure out about changes......

If they do weird things, i am happy to use debian again.

Re:Do i agreee? Do whatever works. (2, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012748)

The nice thing about light weight GUIs is that it's a lot easier to tune and fix than a giant stack of software is. Saving memory isn't the only reason to use Fluxbox, etc. Once you settle on a good configuration (which doesn't take that much time), you never have to worry about the choices your distro will make in the future. It's much nicer to sit down and figure out your GUI once, than to relearn every time they release a new version.

Semantic questions... (2, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012550)

Semantic questions, and questions of categorization, can be interesting and(when all goes well) can even clarify your thinking about a topic; but are otherwise rather pointless.

On the one hand, it is trivially obvious that if you aren't running the GNOME desktop environment, you aren't runnning GNOME. On the other hand, if you are running a set of programs, and depending on a set of libraries, essentially identical to that of a GNOME desktop, just window managed by something else, it is much more meaningful to say that you are "running GNOME" or "running a GNOME derivative" than it is to say much else.

Unless you want to actually come up with some set-based definition of what "Running GNOME" means, you won't really be able to conclusively answer the question one way or the other.

I'm confused (1)

Builder (103701) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012566)

So the news is that they're moving away from something that doesn't exist yet?

Maybe they just want to wait for it to exist and test it and shake the bugs out before they decide to use it ?

Well this statement ought to sort it out... (1)

Fibe-Piper (1879824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012692)

from TFA:

"Unity is 'a shell for GNOME, even if it isn't GNOME shell'"

Riiiiiiiiighhhhttttt... Why do people say things like that? It may be true, but it's like people in the community purposely try to make desktop Linux as confusing and unapproachable as possible.

And this is why people stick with other OSes (4, Insightful)

TrisexualPuppy (976893) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012578)

Consistency.

When you product changes all the time, people are going to have to deal with these changes. When I "upgraded" versions of Ubuntu, I had to deal with a completely different looking interface. WHY? Change for the sake of change seems to be a big driving force in this project. Honestly, the UI that I am using now is no different than it was in 2004. I could have made something in 2004 look exactly like what Ubuntu looks like today. So there really isn't even an excuse that things are being changed to add features. We get a "new look" every rev because some dev thinks that it looks cool. It gets really old when your task bar is moved to the other side of the screen, your menus are all reorganized, and the terminal session shortcut that used to be on a particular convenient context menu is now gone.

Up until recently (Vista/Ribbon interface) and arguably even now, Microsoft has been able to provide more consistency than a lot of these Linux distros.

Are we going to see a Gubuntu now?

Mod parent up! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012604)

Great comment

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012728)

Gee, and other operating systems NEVER change...

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (5, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012878)

OTOH, I am free to use the same UI I was using in 1998. This won't quite fly with either MacOS or Windows.

Sure, you can try to enable "legacy interfaces" with other operating systems but their GUIs simply aren't built to be modular.

Linux is. That's why I can run whatever I want despite what the "guys in charge" think. Changing or keeping my own customizations is also pretty trivial.

If you think "everything has changed" from one version of Ubuntu to the next, I suspect that you are only looking at a clean install.

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (0, Flamebait)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012844)

So how many versions did you upgrade at once? "Completely different?" I think not. Sure there are minor changes to how things look across consecutive versions, nothing is as drastic as you describe. You just sound like an old man waving his cane around.

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012886)

I agree but thats one of the things I like about Gnome/Linux. If you dont like the way something looks there is probably a way to do it. If you want it to look like OSX or Vista http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=490398 [ubuntuforums.org] you can do that too.
They're just trying different things to see what people like best.

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (4, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012938)

I have just stuck with fvwm, from slackware, to debian, gentoo, now ubuntu. It's lighting-quick, doesn't waste screen real estate, and basically gives me nothing to complain about. I've had the same config file for at least 10 years, I just copy it over to each new machine and tweak it when I start using an app enough to want it on the launch menu.

Ubuntu makes it easy to do this; fvwm is available from the default package set, then select it as your "session" at the login screen.

My point being, I share your dislike of needless changes, but I don't feel I've been forced to change.

Mwahaahaaa! (3, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012946)

Good one. Either you are very young or sarcastic.

Windows 1-3. Complete changes. 3.1 to 95. Complete change. 95-98 the look didn't change, just where everything was. 98 to 2000... don't get me started. 2K to XP, lots of changes again. Vista so many changes many did not bother. W7, must have been a big change because people don't hate it as much as Vista.

Every single version of Windows has changed the layout and organization of basic configurations until the point where messing with your disks is so many layers deep I need a mining canary to find it.

Compared with that both OSX and Ubuntu have been solid rock.

Which probably is what sits in your head... MS and consistent interface...

Re:Mwahaahaaa! (1)

jimicus (737525) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013064)

Actually, Windows 7 wasn't that big a change. Most of the UI improvements from XP to 7 actually debuted in Vista.

The biggest differences are it was slimmed down to run reasonably well and the hardware had caught up with the requirements of the OS.

Quite why Microsoft thought it wise to release an OS that required a faster PC than the basic machines on the market at the time is something that shall remain forever a mystery.

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012998)

>>>It gets really old when your task bar is moved to the other side of the screen, your menus are all reorganized,

100% agree. Of as I said further below: "Not a clue what any of this means. I'll just stick with Windows or Mac. You buy it, turn it on, and it works." - Joe Q Public. People are looking for CONSISTENCY in how things work. They want the gas pedal, the brake pedal, the gear shift, the turn signal, headlights, start menu, tabs, trashcan, and other things in the SAME position. Not changed every 6-12 months.

Re:And this is why people stick with other OSes (1)

Cruciform (42896) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013072)

Consistency is what the LTS releases are for. You shouldn't see significant changes in your system just running software updates.

If you don't want to see rapid change and experimentation with the user experience then stop doing dist-upgrade and stick with the LTS.

Ubuntu is *NOT* ditching gnome (5, Informative)

arhhook (995275) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012580)

There is going to be some questions about this decision in relation to GNOME. I want to make something crystal clear: Ubuntu is GNOME distribution, we ship the GNOME stack, we will continue to ship GNOME apps, and we optimize Ubuntu for GNOME. The only difference is that Unity is a different shell for GNOME, but we continue to support the latest GNOME Shell development work in the Ubuntu archives.

Jono Bacon from http://www.jonobacon.org/2010/10/25/ubuntu-11-04-to-ship-unity/ [jonobacon.org]

Forking GNOME! (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012588)

FTA: "Earlier this year, Canonical representatives had to deny that they were forking GNOME..."

This apparently is a common refrain when asked, no one will EVER admit to it.

Re:Forking GNOME! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34013052)

It's funny. You're saying with the phrasing "no one will EVER admit it" that they really ARE forking, but just won't admit it. Why do you assume that, when you could take the exact same information as meaning "We're not forking GNOME."

When they came to take away ... (0)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012600)

When they came to take away the Gnome Shell, I said nothing, for I do everything from the command line anyway (higher bandwidth than clicky-clicky)

When they came to take away the Gnome, I said nothing, for I run KDE, really just kdm/konsole.

When they came to take away emacs, I said nothing, for I am a VIM user.

When they came to take me away, there was no one left to defend me, because everyone else had upgraded to the latest Debian stable, now releasing 3 times as fast as recent Winders releases.

Confusion (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012610)

"Not a clue what any of this means. I'll just stick with Windows or Mac. You buy it, turn it on, and it works." - Joe Q Public

Re:Confusion (2, Insightful)

Confusador (1783468) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012814)

Which, really, has nothing to do with this. Anyone who doesn't know what Aero or Aqua are doesn't need to know whether they are using Unity or GNOME either, both will just work. For some of us, though, it's interesting news.

Re:Confusion (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34013060)

Disagree. I think a guy further up summarized my point perfectly:

"Consistency. When your product changes all the time, people are going to have to deal with these changes..... it gets really old when your task bar is moved to the other side of the screen, your menus are all reorganized, and the terminal session shortcut that used to be on a particular convenient context menu is now gone."

Joe Q Public won't put up with this crap, and that's why 99% of them never touch Ubuntu or any other Linux desktop. "Microsoft [and Mac] has been able to provide more consistency than a lot of these Linux distros."

Re:Confusion (4, Informative)

maugle (1369813) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012862)

"Not a clue what any of this means. I'll just stick with Windows or Mac. You buy it, turn it on, and it works." - Joe Q Public

"I hope my neighbour's kid can make my damn Windows machine work again." -Joe Q Public, 2 weeks and 10 malware infections later

Re:Confusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012910)

From rwa2 earlier:

...gdm and gnome-terminal...nautilus (though I turn off the desktop handling)...Enlightenment DR16...compiz as the window manager...awn ("Avant Window Navigator") as the panel, with compatible taskbar and notification area

Joe Q Public:

So, where's the Start button? Which one of those is the Finder? What the hell is a window manager and desktop handling? Why the hell did I install/buy/allow someone to give me this crazy machine?!?! Fuck it, I'm buying an iPad.

Re:Confusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012948)

Didn't know Joe Q Public reads the news about Ubuntu's minor internal details.

About time. (1, Interesting)

glrotate (300695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012618)

Gnome has held GNU/Linux back for nearly 10 years now.

Re:About time. (2, Informative)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012696)

Gnome has held GNU/Linux back for nearly 10 years now.

Started 1997, first release 1999, more like 11 to 13 years rather than nearly 10 years.

Why? (1)

supersloshy (1273442) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012620)

I like the idea of Unity somewhat, but it really isn't much more than an omni-present dock, some shiny effects, and icons. GNOME Shell uses less horizontal space and equal vertical space, scales well for netbooks as well as desktops, has much better notification organization than Unity [gnome.org], is supported upstream much more, it has extensions [gnome.org] which allow great control over the system (including this very nice and extremely lightweight dock extension [blogspot.com]), an Application Menu [gnome.org] which lets you quit all windows of an application (and in the future, let you access options that apply to the application as a whole), and so much more! Unity, on the other hand, confuses me. The user interface prefers icons instead of words for telling us what things do, it wastes horizontal space by having that dock, it doesn't have nearly as good workspace management as GNOME Shell, it's slow-ish at the moment, and so on.

GNOME Shell has been steadily improving. You can check the git server right here [gnome.org], which I do every day. And just so you know, the overlay re-design is being worked on and is in a separate branch, which you can find here: http://git.gnome.org/browse/gnome-shell/log/?h=overview-relayout [gnome.org].

Ubuntu is dead to me. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012622)

Ubuntu had a great deal of promise. But they have failed to deliver. It's been years, and they still cause hard drives to crash, they still fail to support hardware, and they still have shitty updates that break things. I'm done with Ubuntu and it makes me sad, because I can't go back to Windows now. My next computer is going to be an Apple and I don't give a damn about the apple tax, because apparently it is the only way to get a real unix desktop with well-supported software and hardware, that works. Shame on you Ubuntu.

Re:Ubuntu is dead to me. (4, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012922)

I would use MacOS if not for that whole "failing to support hardware" thing that you like to give Ubuntu flack for.

Seriously. I run Linux on Apple gear because Linux hardware support is better.

If your thing is "everything is supported", then Apple really isn't the platform for you.

killer feature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012632)

Gnome Shell is going to be the killer feature of Gnome 3 and probably makes it DOA.

Meh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34012642)

FWIW, I wish there was a window manager that set it's own paradigm. GNOME to me seemed to mimic early versions of Mac OS and OS X. KDE seemed to mimic Microsoft Windows. Granted most of the concepts are ripped straight from Xerox, it'd be nice if there was a window manager that set the standard for FOSS GUI desktops.

As it is now, I tend to use XFCE the most... blazing fast and rock solid stable on both slackware and freebsd... But I keep checking on KDE...

Re:Meh. (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012858)

"As it is now, I tend to use XFCE the most."

It IS fast. Given the convenience, everyone ought to try a few window managers.

Stick with gnome (1)

GoJays (1793832) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012716)

So Unity is a shell developed by Gnome, but it is not the true Gnome shell? What is the point of this? Why not just stick with what has made Ubuntu the most popular distribution of Linux. This to me is one of the flaws of Linux, nobody can make up their mind. Once a distro decides to use a certain shell stick with it. New users don't want to have to learn multiple shells. This way when a user picks a certain distro they know what they are getting in the form of a shell. How many Ubuntu users who are not computer geeks, but enjoy open source are going to pissed off once Unity is rolled out and their desktop looks completely different one day?

GNOME is going downhill (3, Interesting)

Improv (2467) | more than 3 years ago | (#34012860)

I can't blame distributions for not following the GNOME project in all their technical decisions - some parts of GNOME are (and continue to be) neat, but several, particularly those bits tied with Mono and other attempts to wear Microsoft's leash, are lousy (plus some bits duplicate functionality better done elsewhere, e.g. Empathy over Pidgin).

GNOME is still a pretty decent development environment, and there are a lot of nice applications that use the GNOME libraries. Still, there's no reason distros need the detault GNOME desktop to run them, and people/distros can be perfectly happy taking GNOME components and standards piecemail.

Ubuntu failed with KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34013078)

Ubuntu was great few years ago, equally supporting KDE and GNOME. Since then they failed to keep up with KDE version and trashed the user experience. I went to OpenSUSE and it's superior compared to latest Ubuntu or Kubuntu. It's fast, has latest KDE4 (that WORKS) and it has GUI tools (for system configuration, like adding printer from network) that are reliable. Even plugging secondary monitor to my laptop, finally started to work like it should.

Kubuntu had OpenOffice save dialog broken for two latest releases. If you tried to save anything, dialog would go stuck for 30 seconds and everytime you click anything (browse folders) it goes stuck again. Actually, i'm not sure if that is still broken?

Now it's Ubuntu this and Ubuntu that. Ubuntu doing something CraZy and n3w that just confuses users that just want to get job done.

Every now and then, everyone should try other Linux distributions too.

 

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