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193 comments

Linux vendor? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619320)

This is not a good business model, when you can simply download the software for free.

Re:Linux vendor? (-1, Troll)

jbonomi (1839286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619524)

You're a gay.

Re:Linux vendor? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619666)

What a waste of otherwise perfectly good protoplasm. (Both of you knotheads.)

Re:Linux vendor? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619908)

I know you are, but what am I? I know you are, but what am I? Infinity!

Re:Linux vendor? (5, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619928)

And you just hit the nail on the head on why there aren't any Linux desktops that can compete with the polish and intuitiveness of OSX and Windows. to bring Linux up to that level would cost tens if not hundreds of millions of dollar because the only way to herd developers is by paying them, otherwise you get what you have now with everyone scratching their own personal itches and then none of the "busted shitters" as i call them get fixed. When folks are doing work for free they are gonna do what they consider fun, nobody wants to be the guy that goes and fixes the busted shitters. just look at how many bugs on canonical is over two years, over three, i think the oldest ones are going on six years now because nobody wants the shitty jobs so they just don't get done.

Well when you are building a consumer OS guess what? there are literally THOUSANDS of truly shitty thankless lousy jobs that need doing. there is bug fixing and QA and regression testing and making sure all the UIs match the OS standard and maintaining your own kernel because God knows when Torvalds will get an itch and break all your drivers and writing all the help files and documentation and I'm sure if i sat here a couple of minutes i could easily name a dozen or two more truly lousy, boring, shitty, thankless jobs that HAVE to be done if you want a world class highly polished OS where everything "Just works" and is so simple and intuitive that Suzy the checkout girl can work it. This is why Apple and MSFT pay a metric shitload of money to developers, because they won't do those shitty jobs for free.

And THAT, that right there, is the problem. Consumers won't buy support contracts so the Red Hat method of making money is right out and why should the OEMs pay you shit when they can just "pull a CentOS" and have the thing for free? Gotta look out for the shareholders you know. i'm sure dell threw a few bucks Canonical's way but I seriously doubt it was even 1/10th what they were spending to build Ubuntu. Has Canonical even made a dime in profit yet? and the much vaunted community won't back you up, just look at how ATI bent over backwards to open up their code, even hiring driver developers to work for the free driver group out of their own pocket only to have every forum covered with posts that read "LOL use Nvidia" or the simple fact that more than a THIRD of the webservers on the entire planet are not using RHEL but, survey says....CentOS, an OS created by a bunch of cheapskates that used to sell an appliance that required RHEL who said "Fuck 'em, we'll just cut out the copyrights and then we won't have to pay shit!" and now of course they don't pay shit, not when compared to the RHEL licenses they used to buy.

How many here have cut a check to canonical? How many have sent money to their favorite distro? despite the BS I'm sure this post will get i bet if you looked at the numbers you are talking maybe 1 in 10,000 if you are lucky. So don't complain when Linux on the desktop goes exactly nowhere, just look at how canonical is now gonna be selling some tablet starting at CES and is spending an increasing amount of their limited resources on the server. its simply because with the FOSS model there isn't any money to be made on consumers and if anyone was to sink the hundreds of millions required to make a world class rock solid picture perfect Linux desktop it wouldn't be five minutes before just like Mint you had a knockoff stealing all the users thanks to being 'free as in beer" but without the work and money required to bring it up to OSX and Win 7 its 'free as in worthless" and despite the modbombing i'm sure to get for pointing out the truth THAT is why Linux isn't gaining shit on the desktop. I mean when MSFT puts out a flaming turd like Vista and the OS with a $1000 barrier to entry gains like mad and the "free as in beer" OS don't gain shit, how big of a cluebat do you have to be hit by to see the FOSS model don't work in this case? Home users don't care about freedom or CLI or DIY they care about "its just works and keeps working and is easy to use" and I'm sorry but Linux is still a long way from that friends and I don't see it getting any better, if anything all the itch scratching by the DE devs has made it worse.

Re:Linux vendor? (1, Offtopic)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620232)

Come on - how this post can be modded down "troll"? This is a constructive opinion on the Linux business model.
Should be at least "interesting". In other words, where are my mod points :-(

Re:Linux vendor? (2, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620576)

And you just hit the nail on the head on why there aren't any Linux desktops that can compete with the polish and intuitiveness of OSX and Windows.

And that's the fundamental flaw of your whole argument. Gnome 2 and KDE 3 are DIFFERENT, but they are DEFINITELY "polished" and very usable, even if you don't PERSONALLY like them. To claim otherwise is such biased claptrap it's sickening.

Re:Linux vendor? (0)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620680)

Of course, but we're not talking about Gnome or KDE here, but about Linux. AFAIK, Gnome is not yet an OS.

Ah, and try to launch ghostview in a KDE or Gnome envionment and watch everyone struggle to understand how you're supposed to scroll. Or an xterm. That's where Linux falls short. All this shit shouldn't even be in the repos. But then the whole platform would be worthless becauss there would be so many apps missing.

Do you see the catch 22 there?

Re:Linux vendor? (1)

Pf0tzenpfritz (1402005) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620928)

And Linux itself does not provide *any* UI. Polished and intuitive or not. So you, Sir, are obviously talking about something that does not even exist. Catch 22, indeed.

Re:Linux vendor? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620758)

You know what? I've been a rabid Debian fan for (holy crap, I'm old) 10 years now. In fact, I own and administer several hundred Debian servers, and I frequently use a Gnome desktop. I also use a Macbook. After reading the GP's entire post, I have to say he's actually mostly right. Why are you so narrow-minded that you didn't bother to read and address the entire post?

Re:Linux vendor? (3, Insightful)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620786)

And you just hit the nail on the head on why there aren't any Linux desktops that can compete with the polish and intuitiveness of OSX and Windows.

And that's the fundamental flaw of your whole argument. Gnome 2 and KDE 3 are DIFFERENT, but they are DEFINITELY "polished" and very usable, even if you don't PERSONALLY like them. To claim otherwise is such biased claptrap it's sickening.

I think you missed his point - successful desktop OS are successful because they just work - Linux is not there yet; and there is very little interest in fixing things that keep that from happening. Linux is very much a hobbyist OS for people who ilk ego tinker - but most computer users don't ant to tinker, or as the OP put it:

Home users don't care about freedom or CLI or DIY they care about "its just works and keeps working and is easy to use"

Ad to that there is no money in making it just work - why should a Dell, for example, turn it into a viable alternative when any competitor can take their work for free? And so Linux languishes on the desktop; and finds its niche in areas where companies can make money.

I'd add to his argument that there is no "killer app" for Linux that makes switching from WIN/OSX necessary. Much of the effort goes to building free "me too" apps to replicate apps on those platforms., and in many cases those same me too apps are available for them, so why bother switching?

Re:Linux vendor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620736)

First, Windows is not polished. Not even a tiny bit. Have you ever seen an iPad or any Android cellphone? After looking at these and comparing them to Windows, one cannot but think M$ alternatives are generations behind.

I work with Vista/W7 and it's a huge pain in my two jewels. It simply does not work. I had to install an utility to make file copies (teracopy), because the default mechanism was so braindamaged that even Suzy complained it took ages to copy a jpeg.

Another Suzy had a computer at home and told me she told she simply didn't use it at home because it was somewhat broken and she just wanted to chill off (a computer at home is supposed to be very fun, but not when it run like molasses). After some months, she arranged for a friend to fix "the computer" by reinstalling the software. How on earth one can call "this just works"?

Compare that to my Linux experience where hardware (like a disk or memory) has really to be flawed to mess things up. Every time I mention that, someone says Linux has complex commands to type at xterm; well, what about the many Windows articles teaching how to regedit accumulated trash or kill some system process to be able to rename a file?

Second, nobody in his/her sound mind would install Windows. It's way too complicated -- for a techie!!! Linux installs much more easily. If PCs came with Linux from factory and some suggested installing Windows, it would be met either with mockery or rage... No, Windows simply is neither polished nor easy.

The problem lies not in Linux, but in distros: some, like Mandriva, have an impressively high technical level coupled with a very moronic view of management. Compare that to M$, which is very bad technically, but is so good at management it can influence and control external entities like PC makers, standard organizations and even governments.

If Mandriva (or any other distro) wants success they need to play by the M$ book (at least enough well to thrive or even go further and become evil, too) or redefine success -- for instance doing like Libreoffice or Mageia, which are not after the money for the money. Sometimes, a good compromise is attained, ass in the Mozilla case.

A last point, OS can and do make money when you find some way to stick them to the hardware (like Apple does with its own hardware and making sure no one else can make it, or M$ with its PC maker tight control via hardware compatibility list).

Mandriva, and any other distro, if they want to survive need to learn how to serve all users, including those which just want the computer as a tool; they need to unite to fight common enemies (M$ or Apple); they need to be better managed (4 million euros for a distro? wtf? this is so crazy it almost works as an epitaph!)

I must say I'm very impressed with Mandriva since many years ago (about 10, I suppose). Not only for the technical prowess, but also for the attention to detail, balance in providing a thoroughly complete desktop environment (I like to think they rounded some KDE corners with their drak* tools) and even security aspects.

It's the distro I'd recommend to anyone.

But then I myself posted lots and lots of business suggestions and ideas to them thru the years. Their management must be smarter and work less. One's not going to cross a wall by beating one's head into it, no matter how hard one tries.

Re:Linux vendor? (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620860)

The only way any Linux distro would be successful is if a computer manufacturer took it, built a set of hardware just for it, and then sold that entire solution as a system, w/ whatever software the customer wanted. Price everything appropriately - don't charge $500 or $800 or $250 per software, but don't charge $0 either. Offering package suites, where one can get the OS for, say, $50, or Libre Office for $40, and so on. That way, every bit of software is paid for, but is known to work, since it comes pre-installed on the computer w/ all known features enabled.

That way, a customer of something can be guaranteed that something works - something that none of the licenses would ever assure one. Truly speaking, one of the major reasons that all the Linuxes & BSDs are a bust is that they are all competing w/ Windows on the same platform. It would be different if someone like Sun was selling it on their SparcStations. Really, their window of opporunity existed in the 90s, when MS was struggling to get Windows 95 out,, and had the Linuxes or BSDs been as usable as today, they'd have captured a large portion of the market. But by the time they (and Apple) got their act together, Microsoft had captured a huge portion of the market. But anyone who builds PCs based on things like ARM, or Loongson can still make a credible case for the unixes, provided they do what's been suggested above and in the parent post.

Dilution sucks! (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619328)

An existing investor wants to make sure that his investment isn't marginalized through accepting additional investment at unfavorable terms, in turn reducing their effective ownership over Mandriva.
 
  can you blame them?

Re:Dilution sucks! (2)

postmortem (906676) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619368)

Something is better than nothing. Ask old GM shareholders.

Re:Dilution sucks! (2)

noh8rz2 (2538714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619654)

Something is better than nothing.

False choice, mon frere. Investors are hoping for a negotiated solution that will be better than both "something" and "nothing". More power to them. to be fair, this isn't exactly high stakes. Some business drama over a third tier Linux distro that most people have never heard of. If the company goes under then somebody else will just run with the source code, just like Mandriva was born from mandrake code.

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Coeurderoy (717228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620922)

If you ask the shareholders, yes, but if you ask the "fund manager" no, s/he prefers you to keep junk papers, as long as you have somehow the illusion that it just might potentially have some value sometimes, so that you keep paying the manager to "handle" these funds...

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619396)

And now he can own 100% of nothing, all to himself. Ain't he proud!

Re:Dilution sucks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619516)

Or perhaps he could put his money into something worthwhile.

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620290)

Here is the logical plan :
Linlux, old investor, block the whole nagociation ( because he is 40% of something like that ).
New investor ( russian guy ), has no choice but to buy the shares so Linlux is no longer blocking, or the company die.

Old investor get out of Mandriva, because he doesn't belive in it ( especially after putting several millions in it ). New investor who did a real great deal ( since he didn't have to pay for debt, and so got everything really cheaply ) will have to finally pay more for the company.

The real question is "why do russian still pay for mandriva SA" since there is like 10 to 15 people in France. The whole product is free and can be forked without much problem ( see what Mageia did, and they add less ressources than a company of the size of Rosalab ), the russian company have been hiring lots of people ( and some several high profiles, like Per Oyvind Karlsten, Jeff Johnson, trying to recruit during Linuxcon in CZ this year ).

The only thing that would be worth from Mandriva is the trademark, but I seriously that 4 000 000 would be the right price for that.

Re:Dilution sucks! (0)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619940)

Show me the law in any nation that states you have the Freedom to Unlimited Profit.

One investor's greedy dog-in-a-manger attitude is KILLING A COMPANY and you DEFEND that behaviour?

Apparently Americans aren't the only ones who've let greed overcome sanity.

Re:Dilution sucks! (0)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619958)

Typo: Right to Unlimited Profit.

Show me where any nation's laws mandate that corporations seek profit before compliance with their version of a Constitution, Charter of Rights, and existing law.

Show me where a nation's laws guarantee shareholders be "compensated" before basic operational and growth funding are covered.

Explain to me the rational for hiring executives who extort MILLIONS in compensation before they even start working for the company. This is someone you think has the company's best interests at heart? Are you SERIOUS?

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Lisias (447563) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620314)

Show me the law in any nation that states you have the Right to Unlimited Profit.

Such a Law is not needed. You have all the rights you think you have, EXCEPT the ones explicitly (or implicitly) denied to you by the Law.

On the other hand, nobody have the DUTY to grant you Unlimited Profit, so good luck pursuing this right. :-)

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620634)

There is no law, but thats not the point - if the original investor paid $X for Y% ownership of the company through share issuances, and now the company is diluting that Y% ownership to Y/2% ownership, then the company is effectively stealing from the original investor and he has a right to challenge that.

There is no right to profit, but there is a right to not be stolen from - if it takes a threat to the existence to the company to stop it, then that sounds fair.

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620746)

There is no law, but thats not the point - if the original investor paid $X for Y% ownership of the company through share issuances, and now the company is diluting that Y% ownership to Y/2% ownership, then the company is effectively stealing from the original investor and he has a right to challenge that.

There is no right to profit, but there is a right to not be stolen from - if it takes a threat to the existence to the company to stop it, then that sounds fair.

An influx of cash does not dilute an investment. For example, if you own 50% of a company that is worth a dollar, you have an investment worth 50 cents. If I invest a dollar in the company, it is now worth $2 and you still have a 50 cent investment. No dilution has ooccurred, your original investment value is the same even if it's a smaller fraction of the total. No one is stealing anything from anybody, since their original investment is still there. Now, they certainly have the right to decide if they want to give up some control in exchange for cash and a more valuable company; but that is a different argument than the dilution one.

Re:Dilution sucks! (2)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620996)

Your point is wrong, because my original 50% ownership entitles me to 50% of the company, regardless of worth - so if you invest $1 to make the companies worth $2, then my share becomes $1.

Devaluing my ownership is what is in question here - and the ownership stands completely apart from company worth. Just because the company suddenly becomes twice as rich doesn't mean my ownership devalues of its own accord.

There are two ways for the investment to be made - as a fixed return, or by taking an ownership in the company for a potential return later on.

If the return is fixed, then its a monetary cost to the company, not a cost to the shareholders.

If the return is an ownership of the company, then that ownership needs to come from somewhere - it should come from an unissued pool retained by the company for this opportunity, or it can come from existing share holders. If it comes from an unissued pool, then that counts against the 50% of the company I do not own and thus does not affect my share holding so long as the new issuing does not cause all issued shares to exceed 100% at the original percentage value (so if they issue 25% to the new investor, and I already hold 50%, but there are two other investors which hold 15% each, then we have an issue as now we have 110% of the company issued - since it cannot be more than 100% of the company, that means there is a 10% devaluation of everyones issued shares...)

So yes, someone is stealing here because the issue is not that of original investment, its one of ownership of the company. You gave me 50% of the company in return for whatever my original investment was - that doesn't limit my entitlement to 50c of the company, it limits my entitlement to 50% of the company whatever that may be. If you cause my entitlement to drop below 50% without recompense, then you have stolen some of the company from me.

So yes, dilution is happening.

Re:Dilution sucks! (1)

Coeurderoy (717228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620910)

No, the manager of an existing investment fund fears that dilution will make him redundant, he repeatedly blocked any "way out" for Mandriva, his only interest is to keep being paid a yearly percentage of the "nominal value" of the investment for doing absolutely nothing useful.

It is a general problem of our current brand of financial capitalism that the investor have in practice no direct contact nor real interest in the companies they invest in.
The decision makers ware the investment fund manager, who manage "other peoples money", and their interest is either to maximise the number of transaction at a more or less "stable or growing price" (slicing out some management "fees") or holding "values" if they happen to plummet (since then the "holding fees" are higher than the "transaction fees")..
The "invisible hand of the market" is holding our b*s and squeezing...
 

It's a damn shame (4, Informative)

sconeu (64226) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619356)

I was a Mandrake/Mandriva guy for years. Before Ubuntu, it was THE "newbie" distro. It's still very user-friendly.

Once all this uncertainty started about a year ago, I switched to Mageia [mageia.org] , which is a community fork of Mandrake.

Re:It's a damn shame (4, Insightful)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619438)

Same here. In addition to being user friendly, it was, in my opinion, rock solid stable. Mandrake is what got me using Linux not just playing with it. It was never right at the cutting edge; always one back from the latest release of KDE or Gnome or what have you. I stuck with it through the change to Mandriva and still use it on a couple of machines. I'll miss it if it folds.

Re:It's a damn shame (2)

sgunhouse (1050564) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620366)

Started with 7.0 myself in 2000. There were a couple of times when they left my old equipment behind (during one such time I used OpenSUSE), but once I had equipment that was more up-to-date I went back to Mandriva.

(For those asking about the name, Mandrake merged with the Brazilian distro Connectiva and combined the names to get Mandriva.)

Mind you, the latest version again doesn't work on my equipment, but Mageia does, so you know where I am.

Re:It's a damn shame (1)

xtracto (837672) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620404)

(For those asking about the name, Mandrake merged with the Brazilian distro Connectiva and combined the names to get Mandriva.)

Please do not tell me you just explained where the Mandriva name comes from here in /.

Man times have changed in here.

Re:It's a damn shame (5, Insightful)

formfeed (703859) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619478)

Mandrake has a tradition of problems, basically since they were Mandrake. Back then, they used to be the more desktop friendly redhat. Being French, they had good i18n support before redhat did, switched to utf early one, provided international packages, and also multimedia. But at that time their community was registered users only, if you didn't have the current version purchased: no soup for you.

Mandrake was always reluctant to share documentation. As a result, they cut themselves off from the larger community. Good innovations like a metapackager, that got users out of rpm-dependency hell long before redhat moved in that direction, or also mandrakes system of setting security level never made it back to a wider audience.

Re:It's a damn shame (4, Interesting)

hduff (570443) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619818)

Mandrake has a tradition of problems, basically since they were Mandrake. Back then, they used to be the more desktop friendly redhat. Being French, they had good i18n support before redhat did, switched to utf early one, provided international packages, and also multimedia. But at that time their community was registered users only, if you didn't have the current version purchased: no soup for you.

Mandrake was always reluctant to share documentation. As a result, they cut themselves off from the larger community. Good innovations like a metapackager, that got users out of rpm-dependency hell long before redhat moved in that direction, or also mandrakes system of setting security level never made it back to a wider audience.

I worked on the docs until the 8.x releases, IIRC. They wanted everything done in DocBook or your could not participate.

The problems with wider adoption of urpmi, mcc and msec and other Mandriva utilities (including their installer) were that they were written in perl and the RedHat world used python. They would also get great ideas for some things and then never maintain them.

And they had a leader who was more interested in computer aided "learning centers" and squandered a good deal of their cash.

I still use Mandriva (stopped at 2010.2). I don't care for some of the folks at Mageia, so I'll be sad to see Mandriva go if it does (used it since 5.2).

Re:It's a damn shame (2)

hduff (570443) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619826)

Oh, and their artwork was always (and continues to be) childish and amateurish looking. Their user icons look like they belong in children's software.

Re:It's a damn shame (3, Interesting)

mpol (719243) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620338)

Yes, technically Mandrake/Mandriva was always innovative. I especially liked the installer and the DrakX tools. System-config-whatever doesn't even come close, and it's been 10 years.

Financially they were always in terrible shape. First there was the investment or loan they had from I think an Americain investor. They controlled management, and decided to head into the directionm of education. The management didn't want that, they wanted to stay in de Linux distro business. That caused the loan/investment to terminate, and there had to be paid millions back in a short timeframe.
Later on they had raised money through shares. Still they always needed money from the users, with subscriptions through the Club.
There was always the continuous hiring of people, and then the next reorganisation where people had to be let go. It seemed to happen every year.
And always there was the promise of becoming profitable next year. I even read in it this news.
For me the straw broke when they decided to let all their French developers go, and refocus of Brazilian and Russian developers.

I've used Fedora, but the upgrades every half year were a bit terrible (a whole evening of fiddling). I'm now on Debian. That's one distro that I feel will always be around, and gives lots of freedom.

Re:It's a damn shame (1)

xtracto (837672) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620428)

Once all this uncertainty started about a year ago, I switched to Mageia [mageia.org], which is a community fork of Mandrake.

So... let's see what this Mageia is about...

NEWS:
Dec 19 2011Server outage

Ahmmm, no thanks.

Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (3, Interesting)

mfearby (1653) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619412)

Since the Ubuntu desktop wreckage of late I've switched to Debian. couldn't be happer. cut out Shuttleworth's meddling and go straight to the source :-)

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619482)

THIS. I've been an AC here since before Caldera Linux existed. I believe, Debian is bar-none the most stable usable distro.It's what pulled me from BSD to Linux.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619930)

THIS. I've been an AC here since before Caldera Linux existed. I believe, Debian is bar-none the most stable usable distro.It's what pulled me from BSD to Linux.

Um you realise Debian is also KFreeBSD right?

The only problem with Debian is the current influx of Ewebuntards (not saying you're one of them) flooding the lists and forums with stupidity and "demands". Suddenly it's a right to swear and be downright offensive while demanding that Unstable Gnome/XFCE or whatever DE they want - stay exactly as it was. Gnome3/KDE4/PulseAudio is evil, it's too hard - but we DEMAND it run on our phone/fondle slab/SandyBridge so we can update our bling on a daily basis - but IT MUST STAY THE SAME (and support their proprietary hardware, and Flash). After all - Free Open Source Software is all about the "user" right? (sigh).

It was bad enough weeding out all the #!/Mint/Sidux/Ubuntu users pretending to run Debian and demanding developer drop everything now and get their week old multifunction printer/scanner/fax machine talking to Facebook - but now the fuckers *are* actually using Debian. Last month - they used KDE, then dumped it like lemming because all the old documentation they love for KDE3.5 is wrong, then the same thing with Gnome, now its XFCE.

The thing they don't get about Debian is that "it" doesn't have plans to dominate the desktop - just be a reliable source of packages that can be assembled by non-lazy people to build whatever they want.

Glad you're liking Debian - hope you stick around and hope you're one of those people who understand that we give our time because we like what we create - not to please brats.

And you AC (#38619508) [slashdot.org] are mistaken - there's difference between "initial (formal. finished) release" (floppy disk release with 4 times the number of packages Red Hat had at the time), and "founded" - it was available since it's inception, 16 August 1993 (I first installed it Xmas 94,
Slackware was the only other workable distro around that time).

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (3, Informative)

TheGoodNamesWereGone (1844118) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619976)

You just triggered a memory... Does anyone else recall Yggrasill? I remember buying the whole package... it came with a videotape explaining how to install it and a massive 10-lb phonebook of a manual called "The Gnu Testament". This must've been around 1995 or so. Good times. Debian is along with Slackware indeed the granddaddy of 'em all. I use OpenSUSE now but sometimes wish I was on Debian every time another bug comes up. It may be a generation or two behind the curve, but it's tested and stable (no pun intended).

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

Coeurderoy (717228) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620956)

Yep, and it was probably the first CD bootable "live" distribution that you could try before installing!
Although we used slakware mostly at the time (to be able to make "small installs" on servers I loved it.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (0)

Khyber (864651) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620268)

"/PulseAudio is evil"

Fuck yes it IS. That's one of the worst tangled messes I've ever seen, and I've had the (dis)pleasure of working with the kX SBLive drivers.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (2)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620584)

The only problem with Debian is the current influx of Ewebuntards (not saying you're one of them) flooding the lists and forums with stupidity and "demands". Suddenly it's a right to swear and be downright offensive while demanding (...)

Funny. I think this is the result of Ubuntu's Code of Conduct preventing education of the more obnoxious people on the Ubuntu users mailing list. While requiring contributers to be friendly to newbs was a good idea originally and probably contributed to a generally good atmosphere on the users list, when I left there had developed a subset of people who were endlessly demanding, annoying, stupid, and offensive, with no way left to reign them in. Every time you told them that it's enough now, some well-meaning guy showed up and scolded you for violating the CoC or for perceived elitism. I saw many knowledgeable people leave the list because of this. It made me think back to my own newb days on Debian, and how instructive it was long-term to occasionally be treated harshly when I had not thought things through, in stead of being endlessly pampered.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620942)

Is KFreeBSD even ready? Where is it in comparison w/ FreeBSD? One thing I like about Debian is them doing different OSs - not just Linux, but also KFreeBSD and HURD. Wish they'd take up Minix as well @ some point.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619508)

You realize that as awesome as Debian is, it's initial release was in 1996, whereas Red Hat's was in 1993, right?. Considering Mandrake was originally based off of it, I'd say that if anything's the grand-daddy - it's Red Hat.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (5, Informative)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619604)

I'd say that if anything's the grand-daddy - it's Red Hat.

Bitch, please! [slackware.com] ;)

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619748)

I remember using Slackware when the current Linux kernel was 0.96. It's what pulled me from BSD to Linux.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

wmac1 (2478314) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619884)

Exactly! slackware was released at 1993 (but almost the same time as RedHat). But it was more geeky.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

astro (20275) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620400)

I would mod this up if my points hadn't expired yesterday. Mod parent up!

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620492)

Slack gives you a nice command line environment, but it's not worth my time anymore until its package manager can resolve dependencies.

I understand it's basically just Patrick running his own distro (and it's pretty good for that), but still.

Ubuntu 11.10 sucks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619772)

In my opinion, the default desktop is dumb, the retractable bar on the left is stupid, the way you search for files is dumb, the errors in dmesg and ~/.xsession-errors are dumb, it's a worthless install! I've had apps as simple as the gnome log viewer crash when loading a log, multiple times, try it yourself, start gnome log viewer and load up several logs, watch it crash! I was even using it after installing gnome 2.x by gnome-fallback or gnome-session I don't recall what it was I installed to get the default monster out of my sight.

Don't get me started on alternate desktops (Xubuntu, Kubuntu) they have their problems, too! I loaded up one alternate DM and the command line said no users were logged in! Regular Ubuntu gave conflicting information, I'd sign on tty1 and it would show correct # of users online, then go back to tty7/gnome and it would say no one was logged in or 2 users logged in, one being me and the other not shown! Now unless I was rooted, that's just too weird.

Instead, I recommend using Debian and installing XFCE or a lightweight WM.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619812)

> Since the Ubuntu desktop wreckage of late I've switched to Debian.

Why not just stay on Ubuntu but change the desktop?

I doubt you'd change to Debian because Ubuntu installed something like Abiword by default.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619922)

>Why not just stay on Ubuntu but change the desktop?

I doubt you'd change to Debian because Ubuntu installed something like Abiword by default.

Which desktop would you say that Ubuntu has implemented well?

hahahahahahah (0, Troll)

decora (1710862) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620318)

shuttleworth's meddling is the only reason people dont have to spend 20 hours fucking with /etc/X11.conf just to get X running.

debian has had to up its game to match ubuntu. people who dont understand this are just living in fantasy land, and do not remember the 1990s.

if you want to know what its like without ubuntu, go install NetBSD and see if you can get gnome working in under 10 hours, with 200KBPS internet link and an old computer. good luck. that's what debian used to be like.

Re:hahahahahahah (3, Insightful)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620968)

Correlation, causation, etc. When exactly did the Ubuntu project contribute to X.org?

The reason you don't have to spend 20 hours fucking with X configuration files is because the X project improved, not because of Ubuntu.

Re:Just install the big grand-daddy of them all (1)

bmo (77928) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620936)

Oh look, it's an off-topic flame of Ubuntu with nothing to justify it.

It's like I'm really on /g/

--
BMO

If they were profitable... (2)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619428)

If they were profitable, or even revenue neutral, this wouldn't be a problem.

I'm not saying anything bad about Mandriva, rather the summary who seems to blame the inability to get loans, whereas the inability to get loans is the natural way of the world. Eventually it happens to everyone.

Re:If they were profitable... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619512)

This.

Beyond the strong possibility that Europe is heading into another liquidity crunch in which loans won't be forthcoming even to profitable companies, it is not sensible to continue pouring money into a company that's already been restructured and still isn't performing. Remember, this is a company, not the entire Linux community or even the entire *nix business ecosystem: what's failed is the leadership and business model. The technology won't evaporate, and other companies with better leadership have already filled Mandriva's shoes. Let evolution weed out bad business and foster better leadership in new companies; intervention is inappropriate here.

Re:If they were profitable... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619988)

Majority (> 50%) shareholder says it needs Mandriva for a long-term project and offers to cover all the needed expenses by issuing addiional Mandriva shares and buying them. Minority shareholder agreed neither to that nor to the split proportional to current share counts (at least not by the time TFA appeared).

Re:If they were profitable... (1)

Lisias (447563) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620348)

What makes me think if there're not obscure interests from that same minority shareholders.

Who do you know interested on a linux distro's demise, and with cash enough to buy that shareholders?

thats not how capitalism works. (2)

decora (1710862) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620352)

there are a large number of profitable, and/or revenue neutral businesses that are closed all the time. why?

because profit and revenue are not the only things that matter. sometimes politics matters more. and sometimes someone thinks they can make 'more profit' for themselves by closing down a profitable company than by keeping it open.

the article explains all this very simply.

Based on my experience with Mandriva (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619448)

I'd say the real threat to Mandriva is Mandriva itself.

Re:Based on my experience with Mandriva (1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619544)

I'd say the real threat to Mandriva is Mandriva itself.

Your comment would be more useful if you elaborated, otherwise one might conclude you're just trolling.

Re:Based on my experience with Mandriva (0, Troll)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619602)

The name doesn't help. "Man driva" sounds like a gay porn.

Re:Based on my experience with Mandriva (1)

haruchai (17472) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619920)

That much I agree with; I was using it from the 1st release and it's Mandrake to me, nothing else.

Re:Based on my experience with Mandriva (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619952)

The name doesn't help. "Man driva" sounds like a gay porn.

Still, a lot better then: Windows [wikipedia.org] , MacOS [wiktionary.org] , BSD [wikipedia.org] (also [wikipedia.org] ), Ubuntu [wikipedia.org] , Red Hat [genesisonline.com] and Feodora [costumesupercenter.com]

Re:Based on my experience with Mandriva (1)

TheGoodNamesWereGone (1844118) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619998)

Ma-Gay-a sounds worse. It's a shame this is happening. I fondly remember using Mandrake 8.1 and really liking it back in the day.

A translation of the letter. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619456)

The phrasing in that letter is kind of torturous and very flowery, and Google translate misses in a few spots.. (But does shockingly well over all.)

Here's a slightly cleaner translation (my own):

To the associates and directors of Bryan Garnier:
Mr. Olivier Garnier De Falletans,
In this letter, we wish to bring to your attention the extreme gravity of the situation which we believe ourselves, as employees of Mandriva, to be the victims.
We are determined to no longer sit back and endure this situation passively.
In less than four weeks, our company could be effectively forced to file for bankruptcy and cease all activities because its indispensable recapitilization has been two times prevented by Linlux SARL, and this even though Townarea Trading & Investment Ltd, our other majority shareholder, was inclined to support entirely the cost, an amount of 4,000,000 euro.
Now, Linux SARL, an organization which seems to be under your control and that of Mr. Marc Goldberg, your employee and manager, had itself no financial obligation and therefore could not be but a beneficiary of this salvage operation.
The refusal which was offered by Linlux SARL to all the propositions made during the general assemblies of September 30th and December 5th 2011 is and remains for us absolutely incomprehensible and absolutely unjustifiable.
There are no less and no more than 45 direct jobs between Paris, Brasil, our external personnel, and all the indirect jobs at our subcontractors and suppliers.
In addition, following a reorganization already in progress, the operations in Brasil are almost breaking even, and a new business plan lays out the reorientation of the business with solid prospects for growth for next year.
Very worried for the future of our company, we ask you please to immediately reconsider a decision, which will turn out not only extremely negative for our and your future, but also for that of the world of free software in Europe.
While waiting for your prompt decision, we hope you will accept, Ms, Mr., our sincere regards.

Re:A translation of the letter. (3, Informative)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619600)

(But does shockingly well over all.)

French is one of the easier (easiest?) languages to translate into English. After the colonization of England by the French, the language was left with many words which haven't changed substantially in meaning from the original French, enough to form a fairly complete vocabulary. In fact, one can get by quite well in English without using too many anglo-saxon words. Moreover, the logical structure of the French grammar is a bonus for machine translation algorithms. It's harder to translate English into French, actually.

Re:A translation of the letter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620432)

When did the French colonise us? They certainly invaded us, but we're still speaking English, as indeed you are in the actual colonies. Stupid American doesn't know history and confuses opinion with fact

Re:A translation of the letter. (1, Flamebait)

Nimey (114278) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620506)

1066 and all that. You're not speaking Old English with only Anglo-Saxon words anymore, idiot.

Re:A translation of the letter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620706)

An invasion is not a colonisation idiot. Two different words, two different meanings, I know that's a little complicated for you.

Re:A translation of the letter. (1)

notjim (879031) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620450)

I think this is what Samuel Beckett meant when he explained he wrote in French rather than his native (Hiberno-)English because in French "it is easier to write without style".

Re:A translation of the letter. (2)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620512)

After the colonization of England by the French, the language was left with many words which haven't changed substantially in meaning from the original French

This, frankly, is garbage.

One, the Normans were of Viking origin and spoke a peculiar dialect of French. Two, even if they'd spoken the standard French of the time[1], it and modern French have had a thousand years to diverge.

In fact, the most common words - family members, body parts, domestic animals, prepositions - are overwhelmingly of Germanic origin.

[1] And there was no such thing until relatively recent times.

Re:A translation of the letter. (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620894)

Languages like Flemish, Dutch and German are certainly closer to English than French is.

Re:A translation of the letter. (2)

aurizon (122550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619760)

It will be interesting to see how the fall into bankruptcy is managed. With the connivance of the right judge to set the right trustee, who relays to one side what the Russian partners bid is, so it can be slightly beaten, then the Greenberg faction will own it all. Even if they pay a high bid, since Greenberg will win they will get most of the money back after paying creditors, and they will have control of whatever is paid and they can quickly divert the kitty to themselves by well known legal methods.

The key is to avoid a trustee who is overly friendly to the Goldberg faction, although I suspect that such a trustee might already be positioned to be so, since it only takes a friendly judge to make it so.

What is needed is a motion in court to look into this and make a ruling. As for Greenberg dilution, let him pay his portion of the 4,000,000 euro, and their relative positions will be unchanged. He knows this and hopes to steal away the Russian portion in the bankruptcy and own the whole thing, but I think now the Russian buyer will bring pressure to bear..

Re:A translation of the letter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619782)

Yep. sounds French. almost unintelligible and could be reduced to about 20 words.

That was the problem with Mandriva's documentation.

Re:A translation of the letter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619836)

Isn't it written "S.à r.l."? "Société à responsibilité limitée"? That's how I learned it.

Re:A translation of the letter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620890)

It should, however abbreviation are written in all capital letters (-> S.À.R.L.), and due to lack of accented capital letters on AZERTY keyboards, they are not used (-> S.A.R.L.) Finaly, concerning the dots between the letters, they are most of the time skipped (or only the last dot remains), even if they are part of the abreviation (hence the "Linlux SARL")

Suse is in on the carnage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619628)

http://linuxpr.com/releases/2749.html is an indication that the people pulling the strings through Linux SARL are actually Suse...Read Novell...read......... the only so called financially successful OSS venture that only saved itself by swallowing the coolaid from Redmond ...read http://www.microsoft.com .. who is slowly hacking its way into the OSS world with money. By bribing, cajoling, threatening, and exerting political influence to eliminate any chance of a real company ever succeeding in getting into their kitchen in the world of enterprise software. Novell has just become another OSS trojan horse for Steve Ballmer. SCO was no different. But this time it will work, and they will get away with it. Good by Mandrake my old friend.

Shit they put a trojan horse dictator into Nokia and got away with it in the EU. Who will be next to swallow the coolaid... and turn against GNU .... Patrick Volkerding, Or maybe to be really scary Richard Stallman. Hell maybe even Slashdot will turn against Google and rail against open source by restricting projects on Sourceforge under orders from Washington DC and State (read Redmond) because there is software there that can be used to circumvent copy protection of other software. Who knows the whole thing might just BOOMERANG on everybody though if the truth of what is really happening ever becomes common public knowledge. http://boomerang.sourceforge.net/

mod this up. only post in this thread making sense (1)

decora (1710862) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620378)

all of the threads complaining about how it was not a profitable company, etc, are wrong. this guy has hit the nail on the head. capitalism doesnt care if you are profitable, it only cares if you could be sold off for MORE profit than you are making.

the personal profit of a very powerful group is often behind these things. its the whole point of corporate raiding. 'mergers and acquisitions'. private equity firms.

the 'linux companies' are not competing on quality, they are competing on who can survive the monopoly in Redmond without getting sued for patent infringement. its not about building products for customers. its about raw, naked, animal aggression, as microsoft has always been, ever since the days of Dr Dos and before.

Mandrake to Mandriva was such a loss (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619684)

Once upon a time Mandrake Linux had RPMs which Redhat did not. Most today would not understand what Redhat 6.1 was like. Most are moaning over GNOME or KDE. Loosing Mandriva would perhaps not cause much pain to many, but turning it to dust and just forget what it brought to the current 'plug n play' scene would be a shame.

I'm Debian's bitch for life! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619752)

This is one reason why DEBIAN will always be my favorite and go-to choice. (i just love that kangaroo! - stupid commercial!) Instead of turning a buck, they turn out freedom. And we all know how yummy freedom is!

Silly Comment (1)

FairAndHateful (2522378) | more than 2 years ago | (#38619816)

one of the oldest commercial Linux vendors at risk of shuttering on January 16

That's exactly one year to the day after I first arrived in Texas... Look out! Bad things come in threes! (Sorry, I couldn't help myself. Please forgive me.)

Balance (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38619820)

The problem here is that so many distributions are high-quality and free that these days, you need to offer something extra in order to either excite people into using and coding to support your distro and creating hype and popularity or giving them enough in support to encouraged a paid-for environment that works. With Ubuntu, it's been usability...it's such a far-reaching and diverse distro with several major window managers offered that it covers a lot of ground -- and handing out disks for free way back in the day (are they still? -- I'm personally not sure...) certainly helped a lot. My first installation of Ubuntu was from a free disk I got from them. The user base and support system is also MASSIVE. I mean, I've used many, many distros over the years from Fedora to Mint to Ubuntu and many more but usually whenever I'd search for the fix to some problem it would inevitably be posted in some Ubuntu forum or blog. That not only gets the name out there but helps users to easily get accustomed to the different environment if they're switching from another OS.

I never even tried Mandriva. Why? It didn't seem like it had anything special to offer. Now keep in mind that I've tried over 20 or so distros over the years. The fact that wasn't one of them says something. If they want to stick around, they need to take a lead from other Open Source software like Ubuntu, Slackware, or even non-Linux distributions...just desktop software that's become popular like various media players or Firefox itself.

Bottom line? Offer something unique/special/above the competition and you'll succeed...if you're not going to do that...then the question really becomes: why would anyone move to your distro anyway, let alone stick with it?

blah blah blah, read articles much? (1)

decora (1710862) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620390)

look guy, this is not what happened. just take a few minutes and read the article. its not about products, its not about business models. its about one gangster mowing down a bunch of innocent people, robbing them, taking their money, and selling their clothes for a profit.

this child like fairyland view of how high-stakes capitalism works: "build a good product, people will buy it, therefore if you go bankrupt, your product must have been bad", is just absolutely hilarious, and sad.

Re:Balance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620962)

You're an idiot.

Freetards want money (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620096)

hahahahahahaha

inb4 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38620248)

Mandriva != Linux Kernel

Yes... I am visiting Slashdot for more than 10 years now and I know what I am doing.

Revolting Mandriva revolt (2)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 2 years ago | (#38620832)

I have been with Mandriva since version 9, it was the distro I picked which got me into Linux, so have been with the distro for a lot of years now. However since the beta of Mageia 1 came out, I jumped ship - I didn't want to deal with Mandriva's new menu system for a start.

The problem I see with a shareholder revolt is, the company should have found a way to not fire their main developers in the first place. Now they are working on the community Mageia Linux [mageia.org] version, and who is left at Mandriva?

IMO if they wanted a better distro, you should get more people to bother to report bugs so they can be investigated, not think someone else has found it. This should be made easy for non technical users so that others with more experience may try re-creating the bug. The various distro webpages to report a bug are way over the top for a new person to understand and report a bug.

I myself among now lots of others reported various Nouveau free nVidia driver [freedesktop.org] issues where there are problems if you want to switch to the real nVidia driver to get 3D. Stuff like Compiz, Google Earth, or BZFlag won't work with the Nouveau driver.... but 2D stuff works fine with Nouveau.

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