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Ubuntu Continues to Grab Market Share

CmdrTaco posted more than 6 years ago | from the i-blame-someone dept.

Operating Systems 427

slasher writes "MadPenguin.org discusses the future of Ubuntu and confirms Ubuntu's growing market share in the Linux market. Author Matt Hartley writes, "Now, for the biggest question: do high numbers mean that Ubuntu is the best distribution out there? Some will argue that this is an impossible point to make, as each person has different needs from their distribution. But for the sake of this article, we will be considering the average user, not the Slackware crowd, who is obviously much more comfortable within a command line environment than mainstream users."

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427 comments

good. (-1)

apodyopsis (1048476) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825509)

very good.

nuff said.

Course, I prefer Xubuntu...

Re:good. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825779)

Oh noes, teh homos [gaybuntu.com] are winning.

Re:good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825909)

yeah Debian unstable is good enough, plus the non graphical installed is so tops now, 'crypted disk / lvm.

But I Thought That Was Pointless? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825513)

But, two days ago you said this was pointless [slashdot.org].

I'm so confused, I don't even know what to believe anymore!

Re:But I Thought That Was Pointless? (1)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825661)

It's very doubtful that was flamebait. The Coward parent was simply pointing out some internal inconsistencies, as everyone is wont to do on Slashdot. Kudos to the parent poster, I say.

Re:But I Thought That Was Pointless? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825807)

When Reiser is acquitted of murdering his wife, there will be a celebration outside the courthouse where we will carry him on our shoulders and march down the street towards a local park to have a BBQ. The date is not set right now, but please continue to monitor Slashdot for the developments. We need people to hold signs outside of the courthouse demanding that Reiser must be set free.

A WHOLE FILE SYSTEM IS TEETERING ON THE VERGE OF COLLAPSE DUE TO AN UNJUST LEGAL SYSTEM.

Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825515)

But will it work well enough ? I can't always get my external devices to work with Ubuntu, and I am a sys admin.

Ubuntu's biggest users are (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825525)

so called "African Americans" with the help of directed advertisements on BET.

yo dawg, dis ubuntu cuz be da bomb, yo. pop pop gunshot, oh shiet da po-lice. whoop whoop.

My experience (5, Interesting)

aldousd666 (640240) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825535)

I've had a much easier time getting my boss to look at it because when I install it, it just works... Also it's very nice play with dual boot for the skittish XP users is a good thing. They have it very well packaged, though that may be all it actually is, it's very nearly a deal closer with skeptics who hate command lines, but still should be learning linux for cost reasons. I have it on my host, and personally, I like it very much. (A quick vmware-server install allows for all of the windows one will ever need.)

Frist post? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825549)

Where is everyone at?

I just can't wait (2, Insightful)

danbert8 (1024253) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825563)

The next release will be interesting to see. Being a LTS version, I can see it spreading rather quickly and staying there for quite a while. It definitely has had a lot of upgrades since the last LTS flavor.
 
I think the main reason Ubuntu is doing so well is that it has a consistent and relatively quick release cycle, so it always has the latest drivers/software/utilities and more importantly, it has great package management build on Debian. That was always what I disliked about Debian, that it took way to long for programs to filter down to the stable repos.
 
Props to you Ubuntu and friends, I look forward to working with you down the road.

Re:I just can't wait (4, Informative)

kebes (861706) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826891)

The next release will be interesting to see. Being a LTS version...
Small correction: The next release will be 7.10 (Gusty Gibbon, October 2007). However the next "Long Term Support" (LTS) release, according to this page [ubuntu.com], will be "Feisty+2", or the release after Gusty. This release will probably be in April 2008.

I agree with everything you said, however. I use the LTS edition for servers that need to be stable, and use the latest version for desktops. The Long Term Support is long enough that you can be confident with it (and easily upgrade to the next LTS when it comes along). Upgrading Ubuntu (e.g. from Edgy to Feisty) has always been painless in my experience. (Yes, YMMV.)

I'm very pleased with the speed (and predictability) of the Ubuntu release schedule, and with the quality of what gets put out.

Re:I just can't wait (1)

Braino420 (896819) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826895)

The next release will be interesting to see. Being a LTS version, I can see it spreading rather quickly and staying there for quite a while. It definitely has had a lot of upgrades since the last LTS flavor.
This is incorrect. Shuttleworth says here [ubuntu.com] that it will not be a LTS release. I remember him saying somewhere that it will probably be gutsy+1.

My Opinion (5, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825569)

Personally, I've been using Mandriva/Mandrake for about 5 years, and I don't see anything that Ubuntu has that Mandrake didn't have 3 years ago. I'm not sure why Ubuntu is catching all this attention. Maybe I'm missing something really big, but I seriously don't see what makes Ubuntu so much better than Mandriva, or most other desktop oriented distros. I actually prefer Mandriva, because I find that the Admin tools are much better.

Re:My Opinion (2, Insightful)

xhrit (915936) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825649)

>Maybe I'm missing something really big, but I seriously don't see what makes Ubuntu so much better than Mandriva, or most other desktop oriented distros.

Big money advertising.

Re:My Opinion (3, Insightful)

McDutchie (151611) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825677)

I'm not sure why Ubuntu is catching all this attention.

Simple: Ubuntu has a charismatic millionaire behind it. That's really all there is to it. Marketing is everything.

Re:My Opinion (4, Insightful)

Oldsmobile (930596) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826227)

Simple: Ubuntu has a charismatic millionaire behind it. That's really all there is to it. Marketing is everything.
No, you are simply wrong. I've been an off-and-on linux user for a few years now, but I've always gone back to XP due to never coming to grips with using the command line and hating it when you have get something to work it's a pain in the ass to get working.

Also installing programs was always so easy with XP and a pain with most linux distros.

Now with Ubuntu, I've for the VERY FIRST TIME ran into a distro that is in many respects better than XP! I'm astounded by how much better the usability is.

Not only that, but it's the first distro that's totally agreeable to the "don't click that, computer will explode" -crowd.

Re:My Opinion (4, Funny)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826319)

Simple: Ubuntu has a charismatic millionaire behind it. That's really all there is to it. Marketing is everything

Uhh, no, it has to do with being called "Feisty Fawn". I mean, what's hotter than Bambi being naughty? ;-) (BTW, I've been a Debian user for 6 years and don't understand the hype either).

Re:My Opinion (4, Insightful)

greg_barton (5551) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826469)

That's really all there is to it. Marketing is everything.

That's a load of horse hockey.

I started out using Mandrake, back in '98 or so. I wanted a distro that "just worked" and it was fine in that respect...until it wasn't. Once I was comfortable enough with linux I used Gentoo for a few years. Then it started crashing and burning, even on the "stable" configuration. After that, Ubuntu was the choice for a distro that "just worked," and it's served that purpose for me for the last few years. Marketing had nothing to do with my decision to use Ubuntu. Zippo. It has value on it's technical merits alone. Just because it's publicized and wrapped in a pretty package does not mean it's value is decreased. Marketing and technical merit are not mutually exclusive.

Re:My Opinion (1)

hollywoodb (809541) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826903)

I agree with this completely. RedHat has marketing team that gets them tons of exposure, but they're a different market.

I'm glad Ubuntu is gaining marketshare, but I wish they'd drop the six-month release cycle or at least try to squash more bugs. I've all but eliminated Ubuntu as a viable option on any of my systems over Debian if I'm looking to apt-get my way to nirvana.

I'm afraid that as Ubuntu gets *really* popular that it will be on the receiving end of more and more criticism and less praise, and there is quite a bit to criticize.

Not that Slackware is a viable option for many Linux desktop users, but if Ubuntu had the quality control and stability of Slackware with its current feature set and user base... Wow, that would be cause for some noise.

Re:My Opinion (3, Insightful)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826937)

Simple: Ubuntu has a charismatic millionaire behind it.

Umm, no. For a lot of us, Ubuntu has Debian behind it. It's like the pretty, desktop-oriented version of Debian for people who want relatively recent software without running "unstable". Should Ubuntu cease to exist today, I'll point my sources.list to debian.org and crossgrade back to the parent system.

I like Gentoo and Slackware and FreeBSD and OpenBSD, but Ubuntu is what I use when I want a Debian system with a little bit of polish. It really hit the sweet spot for a lot of people.

Re:My Opinion (2, Interesting)

Bovarchist (782773) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825729)

I have to agree with you. I installed Ubuntu 5.x and 6.x on my home system and never could get everything to work, even after a bit of tweaking. I installed Mandriva and everything worked immediately. What annoyed me most about Ubuntu was that the help files and man pages weren't included with the ISO and were only available online. I know space is precious in a single ISO, but they could at least include *something*.

Re:My Opinion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825761)

I switched from Mandrake to Ubuntu last year, so I can tell you what the difference is: Ubuntu works. Mandrake was brittle and top-heavy. Ubuntu is less bloated (but only a little. Linux is just too big and sprawling these days) and generally just works. Oh and proper free updates. That's pretty useful.

Re:My Opinion (3, Insightful)

zebslash (1107957) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825841)

Mandriva has always provided free updates...

Re:My Opinion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826155)

Yeah, if I download and install the packages myself. You don't get update notifications, though (unless they've changed things, again). Not to mention the very reason I decided to switch to Ubuntu instead of the latest version of Mandriva was because the last time I attempted an upgrade of Mandrake it totally hosed the system and I ended up re-installing from scratch anyway. I figured if I was going to be re-installing from scratch, I might as well spend a little time looking for something that didn't annoy the piss out of me so much. I'm not the only one: the poster below tells pretty much the same story.

Re:My Opinion (3, Insightful)

zebslash (1107957) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826435)

This is FUD. No need to download and install. urpmi --auto-select will do this for you, as much as apt-get can do it. Very soon you are going to say there is dependency hell with rpm, which has been solved for years with urpmi. And I know Ubuntu users for whom the update did not go as smoothly as you claim (just have a look on support forums).

Re:My Opinion (1)

xtracto (837672) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825929)

I switched from Mandrake to Ubuntu last year, so I can tell you what the difference is: Ubuntu works

So Mandr[ake/iva] has still the same problems than before? I used to be a Mandrake fan from the 5.0 times. Unfortunately is became so unstable at each next iteration that I had to look for some other distro. I went through Red Hat, Fedora Core and Suse but now I have settled with Ubuntu as well. As you have stated it /just works/ and is easy to maintain plus the majority of solutions to hardware or software problems can be looked at ubuntu forums, hence the community side of it is really nice.

Of course I agree that all of these features could not been achieved if it was not because of the "millionare" backup Ubuntu has... but then again I have to wonder how a one-man team can achieve something that some (Novell, RedHat, Linspire, etc etc) with much more resources cannot. My answer? WILL.

Re:My Opinion (2, Informative)

thsths (31372) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826405)

> I switched from Mandrake to Ubuntu last year, so I can tell you what the difference is: Ubuntu works.

I have not tried Mandrake, but I still like your point. Ubuntu just does what the users want, and it does it properly. It is not so much that Ubuntu is perfect, but it does not have a strong argument going against it. Every other distribution seems to have that:

RedHat is very expensive, or Fedore is very incomplete.
SuSE used to be a good choice, but since Novell is trying to "improve" it, it is going downhill.
Debian is technically usually excellent, but the "holly than the pope" attitude has scared more than a few users.

And Ubuntu is just like Debian without the attitude, or SuSE without the commercial issues.

Re:My Opinion (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826099)

I think we will hear reports that Distro-A works better than Distro-B where any distribution name could be used in either place, A or B. The big-picture observation that I'd like to make is that it's largely in the hardware support and how well it works.

I have been a RedHat user since 4.0 and have simply been accustomed to the RedHat way. I stopped compiling my own custom kernels when Fedora Core 1 came out and was accustomed to certain types of tweaking to make things work properly. But with each release, less tweaking has been necessary and with F7, I don't even need to locate and install the firmware for my IPW2200 wireless device on my laptop any longer. I still tweak a little... adding MP3 support, DVD playback and proprietary video drivers and I think "out of the box" suspend doesn't work like it did with FC6. But other people with other hardware have had better and worse results than myself with the same distro.

The big picture? Hardware support out of the box makes all the difference. The biggest winner in the "Best Distro" category will be the one that works on the most hardware. There will not be an easy winner to choose from though. If you have seen the problems I have seen with Windows, the OS that 99.999% of these machines were "designed" to run, my conclusion is that the level of hardware support that modern Linux distros currently enjoy is nothing short of miraculous at the moment and beyond miraculous tomorrow.

Still, it would be nice to see some sort of improved hardware support standards project created or something... maybe there already is.

Re:My Opinion (5, Insightful)

Wylfing (144940) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826167)

I'm foregoing modding you (it would have been +1 Insightful) in order to reply.

I used to be a Mandrake "subscriber." I paid my yearly dollars, because Mandrake was really the best distro out there that I had tried. Even when Fedora came around, I gave that a whirl and it wasn't up to the Mandrake level in my opinion.

It is true that Mandrake pioneered most of the user-friendliness that Ubuntu now capitalizes upon. However, in my time with Mandrake there was always something that didn't work right. It changed from release to release, but it was always something. Like they had 98% of everything nailed down, but that one thing just bugged me to death, because it would be something like, oh, printing. I frequently built custom kernels under Mandrake in order to get things to work, and even then there were often a few things that were broken beyond my ability to repair. Now when Ubuntu came around, I installed on a test machine (I do this often with new releases of distros I'm not using just to see how they fare). I was so happy -- there was nothing that didn't work, straight out of the box. No fiddling, no custom kernels. They had closed that last 2% of functionality. It was almost zero configuration for printing and wireless networking, two things that historically have been a problem.

So yes, Mandrake was (and is) a leader in making an easy-to-use desktop distribution. But Ubuntu blew the doors off with its "it just works" quality. That's why people love it, and that's why it's on all my desktops to this day.

Re:My Opinion (3, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826407)

Maybe I just have different hardware or software needs, but for me, there is no 2% of stuff that doesn't work on Mandriva. For me, personally, it has always just worked. And considering only 2% isn't working, it's probably not that uncommon for people to not experience any problems with Mandriva. Also, Ubuntu might also have 2% of stuff not working, and you just haven't run into it. Like I said, the administration tools from Mandriva are much better, and maybe that's the "2%" of stuff that I don't like from Ubuntu. Also, saying that Ubuntu blew the doors off of Mandriva by filling in the last 2% is a little bit of an exaggeration. At most it is a minor improvemnt, and if you were already a happy Mandriva user, I don't think it would be worth switching over to Ubuntu.

Re:My Opinion (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826353)

Price.

I stopped using Mandriva (was still Mandrake maybe) when I couldn't get the AMD64 build with my bargain basement club membership (in their defense they said it was worthless and not to get it).

I was building a new computer and buying OEM XP for $70.00, I realized I payed well over $100.00 for Mandrake, was still paying, and after many months still didn't have the version that ran native. XP was going to last me years, and Mandrake was another 60.00 every year (5.00/month).

I then pirated the full version of Mandrake, but never used it (or even burned) and the sour taste put me back on Windows for a while.

I now use Ubuntu exclusivly (except for TMPGEnc, which beat ffmpeg hands down for VCD compatible MPEG1 files). I like Ubuntu a lot, and am constantly impressed by it. I even use the default gnome over the highly customized KDE I used to use.

Before I got upset with Mandrake I had exclusively used it for a few years, and it was only recently we retired it at work for the servers. The complete freeness of Ubuntu makes a very compelling argument. I also trust apt for distribution upgrades far more than any RPM based systems I have used (based on my Debian expieriences and then Mandrake).

What I do like that I have seen in Mandriva is their insanely awesome build your own GUI 3D desktop.

Re:My Opinion (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826681)

I don't see anything that Ubuntu has that Mandrake didn't have 3 years ago

Automatic installation of restricted codecs. Easy installation and removal of as well as information about proprietary drivers. Very smooth handling of removable media (not Ubuntu-specific but a Gnome feature). Easy setup of 3D eyecandy for supported cards. Great attention to little details. A pretty polished Gnome (not meant as flamebait, but KDE does overwhelm casual users).

Re:My Opinion (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826979)

I used to use Mandriva, but things would often blow up (I liked to toy around with stuff a lot, such as XGL) and only be fixable with a reinstall. Ditto for OpenSuse. Ever since I've gone to Ubuntu however, I've actually been pleased with what I have and actually have gone through my computers and placing ubuntu feisty over windows or the current flavor or linux it had before it. I now have two 100% ubuntu work computers, one 100% ubunu personal computer, and only one computer left with windows for gaming and beyondtv (still can't get mythTV to run right) even it is set up for dual boot with ubuntu. No other linux flavor would have made me even make one of my computers 100% linux before now. I have seen the light, and I crave more!

Re:My Opinion (1)

Teun (17872) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826983)

I've never used Mandriva, I started out with an early Red Hat till the second Fedora release.
Because I could not always get the answers I needed with Fedora and after playing with a (Debian based) Knoppix install I went with Kubuntu.

I find the biggest attraction of *ubuntu lies in the very helpful user base.
Of course all the effort Ubuntu has and is putting in hardware support and ease of install is a big bonus too.

http://www.thecounter.com/stats/2007/June/os.php (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825589)

Still kickin' 0% !! Way to go, Linux !!

http://www.thecounter.com/stats/2007/June/os.php [thecounter.com]

OS Stats
Fri Jun 1 00:01:02 2007 - Sat Jun 30 23:58:00 2007 30.0 Days

1. Windows XP 54432747 (81%)
2. Win 2000 3862599 (5%)
3. Mac 2666623 (4%)
4. Win NT 2511918 (3%)
5. Win 98 1571989 (2%)
6. Unknown 999498 (1%)
7. Linux 344807 (0%)
8. Win 3.x 78191 (0%)
9. WebTV 41986 (0%)
10. Unix 23485 (0%)
11. Win 95 19368 (0%)
12. OS/2 2064 (0%)
13. Windows ME 1773 (0%)
14. Windows Vista 81 (0%)
15. Amiga 52 (0%)

Re:http://www.thecounter.com/stats/2007/June/os.ph (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825655)

It's still 344807/81 times better than Vista. Man, it must suck to use Vista.

Re:http://www.thecounter.com/stats/2007/June/os.ph (4, Funny)

smchris (464899) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826303)

We were right! OS/2 can compete with Windows 95!

If we just hang in there, we'll overtake them yet!

Growing Market Share (0, Troll)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825603)

0.0001% to 0.0002%. Woohoo!

Re:Growing Market Share (2, Funny)

lilomar (1072448) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825825)

You sir, are a horrible statistician.
The correct way to say it is that the market share has increased to 200%.
See? 200 is way bigger than .0002.
Lies, damned-lies, statistics.

Is it the best distribution? (4, Insightful)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825613)

That's the question posed. Well, we only have to look at the market penetration of Windows to know that question is rather meaningless. Ubuntu is a good distribution. "Best distribution" is a bit presumptuous as people who would be interested in a Linux distribution have different needs.

Re:Is it the best distribution? (1)

silgaun (1029852) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825653)

I agree. I use mostly Debian for my servers and a knoppix live cd for any poking around/demo to people that I need to do. I've tried a bunch others over the years, but found that I tend to use these more often. I'm not saying that they are the best, just my personal preference.

Power users love extra work? (2, Interesting)

Yath (6378) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825627)

From the article:

RPM based distros are solid, but unfortunately, they lack hand-holding for beginners.
Will someone explain to me why, as a power user, I am expected to enjoy doing a lot of make-work whenever I install an OS?

This just in: it's an Ubuntu future.
AN Ubuntu future? You get a D+. This article contains nothing useful.

Re:Power users love extra work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825927)

Ubuntu is pronounced /ùbúntú/ (oo-bun-too), thus "an Ubuntu future" would be more appropriate here.

Re:Power users love extra work? (3, Informative)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825963)

Yes, 'an'.

http://www.ubuntu.com/aboutus/faq [ubuntu.com]

How do you pronounce Ubuntu?
Ubuntu, an African word from Zulu and Xhosa, is pronounced "oo-BOON-too".


Before a vowel sound, you use 'an' instead of 'a'.

Anyhow, doesn't matter cuz Kubuntu is better. ;)

I used Debian (long ago) and then more recently Slackware. When Kubuntu Dapper came out, I switched to that and never looked back. It had everything that Slackware did, but the ease of 'apt-get install x' for almost all the software I wanted. Slackware worked well and all, but any time I wanted to install something, I was expected to configure and make it, or download a slackware package from some third-party site that had stuff that worked about 2/3 of the time. (My definition of not-working includes compiles that leave out options that are pretty necessary as well as just plain broken.)

2 versions later, I can't imagine using another OS as my primary OS. There are drawbacks, like proprietary drivers for the major video cards, and lacking the fancy interface of certain fruit-oriented OS's, but I'm more efficient on Kubuntu than any other OS I've used.

Re:Power users love extra work? (1)

burnin1965 (535071) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826557)

Will someone explain to me why, as a power user, I am expected to enjoy doing a lot of make-work whenever I install an OS?


I don't believe he is saying that a power user enjoys it, but it is expected that when the hand holding doesn't work you, as a power user, can work your way through it yourself. A beginner will be incapable of working their way through an install or maintenance when the hand holding fails.

I.E. I recently installed Ubuntu on a system with 4 SATA drives and 2 PATA drives setup with multiple RAID1 and LVM partitions. The Ubuntu installer choked on the number of drives and partitions and I ended up having to hold Ubuntu's hand and guide it through the install. Unfortunately even after helping the installer along the system would not boot because, although the /boot directory was on a basic non RAID partition, the root / was on a RAID partition and due to a bug in the Ubuntu init scripts the RAID drivers were not loaded before the /etc/ directory was needed so the boot would choke. Manually editing the init scripts was necessary to resolve the issue.

So much for the hand holding, the beginner wouldn't have even made it past the installers partitioning snafu.

AN Ubuntu future? You get a D+. This article contains nothing useful.

I have to agree, it seemed like alot of flag waving by a fan, but I will also admit that I am testing out Ubuntu because there is a perception that it will have a significant market presence. In the past I stuck with Fedora because it seems like a good community supported distro which is also a good starting point to Red Hat's enterprise accepted offerings. I ended up converting the file server project over to Fedora but I'll still try Ubuntu on something less complex.

Re:Power users love extra work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826961)

I.E. I recently installed Ubuntu on a system with 4 SATA drives and 2 PATA drives setup with multiple RAID1 and LVM partitions. ...

So much for the hand holding, the beginner wouldn't have even made it past the installers partitioning snafu.
A beginner shouldn't start off with installing on such a setup.

Average user? (4, Insightful)

siwelwerd (869956) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825663)

What does average user even mean? For the average Windows user, I'd say Ubuntu would be the best for them without hesitation. For the average Linux user, the question becomes trickier. I don't know that there is a well-defined "average Linux user".

Re:Average user? (1)

NotFamous (827147) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825965)

What does average user even mean? For the average Windows user, I'd say Ubuntu would be the best for them without hesitation. For the average Linux user, the question becomes trickier. I don't know that there is a well-defined "average Linux user".
Based on the stats, I would say the average (norm) Linux user is an Ubuntu user. Since the average Linux user is already using Ubuntu, it stands to (circular) reasoning that Ubuntu is best for the average Linux user. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

Slackware crowd? (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825697)

This is kind of confusing to me that the excluded the 'Slackware crowd's preferences. If there exist Linux distros that the 'Slackware crowd' prefers (not rhetorical - I really am not aware of Linux user preferences), then isn't there scope for improving the user interface of these distros to make them more accessible to the common user and trump Ubuntu? Why hasn't this been done? Did Ubuntu make a rapid rise to the top and leave others behind? If so, they'll catch up I'm sure. Since the Linux developers community probably consists of more 'Slackware crowd' members, wouldn't develop their preferred flavor as opposed to an inferior flavor? These aspects make me think that Ubuntu might be considered superior to other distros even amongst the 'Slackware crowd'

One possible thing I am missing might be that ease of use compromises on functionality as a general rule (like Photoshop vs. Paint). Other reasons?

Cheers!

Re:Slackware crowd? (3, Insightful)

Otter Escaping North (945051) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825887)

This is kind of confusing to me that the excluded the 'Slackware crowd's preferences. If there exist Linux distros that the 'Slackware crowd' prefers (not rhetorical - I really am not aware of Linux user preferences), then isn't there scope for improving the user interface of these distros to make them more accessible to the common user and trump Ubuntu?

Being an Ubuntu user who is also part of the "Slackware crowd" (you insensitive clod!), I think there's also a danger in running too far with the notion that a particular distro suits a particular number of users. I am but one user with multiple tasks to perform; I don't have requirements - my tasks do. I use Slackware on my servers, because I have evaluated it to be the best tool for the jobs I need the platform to do. I use Ubuntu on my desktop workstations because I think it is the best tool for those jobs.

I understand the need for simplification when doing an article like this, and maybe that's why the author just wanted to start by moving pains-in-the-ass like me off the table and stick with ye-average-joes who have perhaps one PC that they use. It drastically limits the complexity of the issue; but it inexorably limits the relevance of the article at the same time.

Re:Slackware crowd? (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826173)

Ahhh... I completely ignored the fact that there might be a Linux user who is not a fanboi. I have used Linux on a few separate occasions (most of the time not even knowing/caring about the flavor), but to me again, it really there was no noticeable difference in the flavors for really basic tasks as long as you're using Gnome/KDE or something. The other stuff, I had to figure out, so I cannot really comment on ease of use since it could have been due to my ignorance. FC6 is probably the only Linux disto I am (rather, used to be) remotely familiar with. Most linux users I talk to drool about the particular flavor of Linux they're using.

P.S. Funny story about me at an Apple store with my friend trying to talk him out of buying a Mac (he wanted it because it looked cool and wasn't ever going to do anything but Office apps on it and I wanted him to get a UMPC). The Apple rep comes over eavesdrops on us. I was telling my friend that a tiny laptop turns more heads and is a lot more convenient and portable and that it suited him better. The Apple guy interjects and debates with me for about 5 minutes about how Apples are superawesome. Eventually, he goes "Sir if you do not mind but tell me what OS you have on your PC" and I reply with "FC6" and the guy says... "Ok. Well, I guess you know what you are talking about and I'll let you guys continue" and leaves. That was hilarious!! Unfortunately, the flood of milky white goodness overcame my buddy and he took home a MacBook and inspite of my crusade for the next 14 days, he didn't do it because it looked so shiny. Now he runs Windows XP on it (like I had predicted) and suffers from poor battery life. *sigh*

Cheers!

Maybe... (2, Informative)

jeevesbond (1066726) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825725)

Maybe I'm missing something about this article, but it's very short, makes no real points and doesn't back up its claims. How can we ever know which distro is the most used? Distrowatch? Their methods [distrowatch.com] are hardly reliable!

Sadly it seems this article has been written to get people arguing on social networking sites instead of bringing anything new to the table. Yes, I know: I must be new here. :)

Re:Maybe... (1)

ZachMG (1122511) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825907)

*Sarcastically*What? Don't all linux ditros monitor our every movement like Microsoft does, I thought it just sent back who was using it, where they are going online, and all their friends birthdays back jsut for fun

Yes, the best distribution. (5, Insightful)

An Ominous Coward (13324) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825733)

For this particular situation, yes, Ubuntu's popularity does mean it is the best distro. Ubuntu is the first Linux that's had "mass market" appeal, bringing in people from outside the *NIX world, due to its easy of install and use, but also for being "hot" at the right time: when Microsoft is trying to shove a slow, bloated, DRM-filled downgrade called Vista on its users.

So even if Ubuntu isn't ideal for all Linux users, it has the opportunity to greatly increase the Linux user population, bringing more and wider-ranged development to the OS, which will benefit us all regardless of our distro of choice.

Re:Yes, the best distribution. (1)

SandwhichMaster (1044184) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826963)

"Ubuntu's popularity does mean it is the best distro"

Really? So, I guess that means that Windows is the best OS, because its the most popular. And Vista must be the best version of Windows, because currently more people are buying Vista than XP.

Popular != Best

My take on Ubuntu and its derivatives (2, Insightful)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825753)

[...]do high numbers mean that Ubuntu is the best distribution out there?[...]

No doubt, the (*)Ubuntus are great distros. One thing continues to baffle my mind in the general Linux world:

Why won't the fonts look beautiful by default?

Why, after all these years Linux has existed, do we have to seek help from Microsoft with its fonts in order to have a desktop that is a pleasure to look at?

Why is it that there is still debate as to whether wizzard like setps would be good for the desktop or the server? On this point, a wizzard like setup routine to handle an application like the Apache web server would make things easier for a lot of folks.

What makes me mad is that those who have the skills do do the needful, still refuse to see what seems to be obvious. Time will tell.

Re:My take on Ubuntu and its derivatives (1, Insightful)

Alphager (957739) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825903)

Why is it that there is still debate as to whether wizzard like setps would be good for the desktop or the server? On this point, a wizzard like setup routine to handle an application like the Apache web server would make things easier for a lot of folks.

If you require a graphical wizard to install apache, you don't have the necessary skills to be running a webserver.
Ignoring that, there _are_ graphical programs to install apache on most distros nowadays (adept & synaptic on ubuntu). The really hard part is configuring apache, and as the apache has _bazillions_ of options, no good-enough wizard can be made for that.

What makes me mad is that those who have the skills do do the needful, still refuse to see what seems to be obvious. Time will tell.

What exactly are you missing? Installing apache2 under Ubuntu (or any Debian-based distro) is easy; there exist graphical tools for that. Once installed, it has a basic configuration which just uses /var/www/ as the webserver-root and places everything under it onto the web. What more do you want?

Re:My take on Ubuntu and its derivatives (2, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826773)

If you require a graphical wizard to install apache, you don't have the necessary skills to be running a webserver.

What skills would those be? I have the knowledge necessary to host all of my own services (DNS, e-mail, etc) and the one thing that requires almost zero effort on my part is Apache. Why would it be different for someone else? You're making it sound like there's so much to do other than start the daemon.

This Just In: Ubuntu is Not Dying (4, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825757)

It is now official. MadPenguin.org has confirmed: Ubuntu is not dying.

One more encouraging sign hit the already triumphant Ubuntu community when MadPenguin confirmed that Ubuntu market share has risen yet again, now up to to some number that would actually make this parody much easier to write had been cited in the fucking article.

Coming with a hotlink to a recent MadPenguin.org article which plainly states that Microsoft Does't Care About Destroying Linux, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. It's simply a matter of numbers, despite it being a sore spot with Fedora and SuSe users who've failed to get over it.

You don't need to be the Amazing Kreskin to predict Ubuntu's future. The hand writing is on the wall: Ubuntu has won the hearts of common users. In fact there won't be any future at all without Ubuntu because Ubuntu is not dying. Things are looking very good for Ubuntu. As many of us are already aware, Ubuntu continues to gain market share. Take a cold, hard look around.

Debian is the most endangered of them all, had a much slower development cycle than many of us would amit. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time Fedora communicy relations issues only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: Ubuntu is not dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

If there were any in TFA, I'd have talked about the number of users Ubuntu has, made a few wisecracks about Theo and FreeBSD, and compared the number of Ubuntu vs FreeBSD articles on Slashdot, divided by the number of modpoints used. So let's just skip that bit and call it as done. Throw me a frickin' bone here, I haven't even had my morning coffee yet.

All major surveys show that Ubuntu has steadily risen in market share. Ubuntu is very healthy and its long term survival prospects are very good. If Ubuntu is to triumph at all it will be over Vista itself. Ubuntu continues to grow. Nothing short of a disaster could kill it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, Ubuntu is alive.

Re:This Just In: Ubuntu is Not Dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826491)

You could just say "the article sucks" and cut the caustic, sarcastic crap.

Re:This Just In: Ubuntu is Not Dying (2, Insightful)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826847)

> You could just say "the article sucks" and cut the caustic, sarcastic crap.

"Welcome to Slashdot!"

Actually, I liked the article (although I would have preferred it if the claims on market share had been backed up with links -- and not just because it would have made a parody "FreeBSD is Dying" easier to write). The author's underlying thesis is correct: if Linux is going to become a viable alternative for Aunt Tillie, rather than just us Slashdotters, it needs to be as easy for Aunt Tillie to administer as Windows and OS X. Ubuntu's the first beginner-friendly distro that's gained significant mindshare (which is why we all accept the claims of Ubuntu's popularity even without links to the numbers), and in so doing, probably has positioned itself as the most likely beginner-friendly distro to take over that segment of the Linux marketspace. That's an interesting development, and reason to believe that Matt's article won't turn out to be as off-the-mark as Netcraft's FreeBSD report.

Re:This Just In: Ubuntu is Not Dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826497)

Endangered? I don't get it, don't they both use the same kernel? In fact, who cares what name it uses. gnuSense makes sense, I like the name better then Ubuntu or Debian.

This is a review? (1)

CheeseTroll (696413) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825763)

Did I miss something, or was this hardly a review? Seems more like a few questions posed, a couple paragraphs of off-the-cuff analysis, and voila - it's an article. More has been written in the /. comments already than what was contained in TFA.

How do they define user base? (1)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825783)

If its number of downloads, do they take into account the number of people who download it and don't use it because they find it lacking?

I've experienced Ubuntu, the last version was a little slow on my machine, and the software manager broke it once. The current version is mostly faster except with task switching, where it is still noticably slow. The software manager, thus far, has only managed to break itself when it crashed (getting some wireless connection related packages). I'm sure I'll get help from various sources on fixing the crash, but the performance is still lackluster compared to that of FreeBSD, and even WindowsXP, on my notebook. Windows 'just works' quite well for me. FreeBSD doesn't do as well in that department, but when there are errors, the output messages typically give me so much information, that finding a solution is usually very trivial.

So, while I've downloaded ubuntu a few times, I have not kept it.

So, back to the original thought (my experiences mentioned above are why I have that thought) - how do they measure their user base? It wasn't mentioned in the article.

same true for windows... (1)

number6x (626555) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826233)

The last three computers I bought came with Windows. None of these computers have Windows on them now.

Installing Linux is usually the first thing I do to a computer.

So while I've bought Windows a few times, I have not kept it.

How does Microsoft measure its user base? I see sales numbers fron Forrester and IDC, but couldn't MS publish actual numbers. You have to register Windows don't you? (I guess that doesn't count the cracked pirated versions).

I gues the real answer is that all of these methods are just eductaed guessing.

Most useless article ever? (2, Interesting)

hirschma (187820) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825787)

Summary: Ubuntu is the biggest Linux distro because I say so. Discuss.

How much did they pay slashdot for the traffic being generated?

What?? (1)

tygerstripes (832644) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825789)

Some will argue that this is an impossible point to make, as each person has different needs from their distribution. But for the sake of this article, we will be considering the average user
Average user? Average user?? That's exactly the sort of thinking and language that screws up these debates to begin with. You start by ceding the point that distro preference is down to user needs & priorities, and then totally contradict that point by taking the "average" user as a point of reference.

That isn't a concession for practical purposes - it's a complete contradiction. If you can give a definition of an "average user" that is practical for the purposes of building a perfect everyman OS, why the hell do these debates happen?

Sorry, but you may as well say "Okay, everyone wants something different from a car, but putting such considerations aside, which one is best?". Excuse the overused analogy, but frankly what a ridiculous story.


Now, on a more general note: of course Ubuntu is gaining ground. There are a lot of people who want something that isn't MS but that works on their existing PC. Ubuntu is often proferred as the easiest to install and use for a novice. It's got nothing to do with it being the best - it just meets that very important criterion for the mass of Linux novices out there (my Missus included), and has the reputation to get their attention. There's no mystery.

/indignant rage

Average = Windows User (1)

MaizeMan (1076255) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826733)

In these debates, average doesn't refer the average needs of linux users, who, like you said, have a wide range of needs and use a wide range of distros optimized for those needs. It means the vast majority of computer users who use their windows boxes for nothing but e-mail, word processing, and surfing porn.

ubuntu is great (1)

SolusSD (680489) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825793)

... though i prefer a kde desktop-- but that's what kubuntu is for. The great thing about linux distros is the shear abundance of options you have. If ubuntu starts sucking someday it isn't terribly hard to switch to a different distro. I've taken the path of SuSE -> Ubuntu/Kubuntu -> Gentoo, but Ubuntu isn't inferior to Gentoo- just a little different. SuSE.. well.. its become what it aimed to become- a bloated enterprise distro.

Dual displays is "strong functionality"? (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825795)

FTA:

"Then we have Fedora with strong functionality (dual displays, anyone?),"

Err , dual (and more) displays have been a feature of X windows since at least the early 90s. Not sure when XF86 and Xorg incorporated it but it was long before Fedora came onto the scene. Wtf is this guy on about? You can have dual displays on any linux install so long as your card and drivers support it.

I've Switched (3, Interesting)

J3M (546439) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825833)

I've completely switched to Ubuntu at home. For the most part, it has been relatively painless. My wife has had a few printing issues. I had to spend some time getting the wireless to work in our Dell laptop and I had to tweak our ATI card settings in xorg.conf manually to get a good resolution.

Other than those minor things, it has just worked.

I use our main PC as a studio PC. It has a M-Audio 1010LT card which worked, but it took me some time to get the recording issues sorted out. JACK has a slight learning curve as did Ardour, but no more so than Adobe Audition did on XP. I've been rather pleased with the free available software for studio use.

I've even used GIMP a few times to edit some photos. While I had to hunt around a bit looking for the feature I wanted, I haven't run into anything it can't do that I need. Photoshop was always overkill for me anyway.

My experiment at home to run Ubuntu on our laptop has turned into a complete conversion and I'm not looking back. I talk it up to anyone who'll listen.

The Money Effect (-1, Troll)

mpapet (761907) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825855)

The difference between Canonical and the Debian giant it stands on is Mark is flushing money down the drain promoting his distro. That includes a healthy PR budget, government sales people and the corruption taxes that Canonical pays to land contracts and distribution deals like Dell.

What happens when Mark gets tired of sinking money into the project? Right now it's not going to happen because mark understands it's a money sucking blood bath getting to that #1 distro slot. But what happens when the honeymoon is over?

I completely agree with another post that claims that the Canonical distros are nothing special. As a 24-7 sysadmin that likes getting sleep on a regular basis, I'll never move a ubuntu distro into production.

Re:The Money Effect (1)

moco (222985) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826825)

As a 24-7 sysadmin that likes getting sleep on a regular basis, I'll never move a ubuntu distro into production.
Care to elaborate? We have been running ubuntu LTS on the production environment for a year and I have hardly lost any sleep at all.

Branded as "desktop friendly" (1)

athloi (1075845) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825867)

People like Ubuntu because they have a perception that it installs easily on the desktop and just works. This is like the perception that Macs are arty, and that Windows runs all old software and comes from a stable company. Whether others did it first, Ubuntu is the first to brand itself with this identity and so is gaining new converts. The question is: how many were already Linux users, and how many have newly-fled from corporate platforms like OS X and Windows?

Is that it? (1)

pedramnavid (1069694) | more than 6 years ago | (#19825885)

This is a weak article. This seems more like a cheap attempt to increase pagehits.

Re:Is that it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826555)

All of Matt Hartley's article are wastes of space. Ever since Mad Penguin sold out to its current membership it's been nothing but garbage.

Can we get the pronunciation right yet?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19825931)

For anyone who gets an ill feeling when they hear Linux pronounced as "Line-ux" I get a similar feeling when I hear "You-buhn-two" or "Ooo-buhn-two." I haven't heard anyone say "Line-ux" in a long time and I think it's because so many people remained vigilant with correcting people.

However, at a local Linux user group, I still hear Ubuntu mispronounced. So I have to wonder how much vigilance will be needed to get people to say it right finally?

Re:Can we get the pronunciation right yet?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826135)

If it's not
"You-buhn-two" or "Ooo-buhn-two."

How do you pronounce it? From their own FAQ...

How do you pronounce Ubuntu? Ubuntu, an African word from Zulu and Xhosa, is pronounced "oo-BOON-too".
Isn't 'oo-BOON-too' and "Ooo-buhn-two." pretty much the same?

I think we have finally found it (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826113)

A worthy successor to Year of the Linux desktop headlines...

Not a very good article... (1)

absent_speaker (905145) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826403)

The author of the links doesn't really make a compelling argument. He pretty much states his opinion, but fails to offer any specific analysis to back up his claims. He talks about the numbers support his argument, but fails to offer up any such numbers. While I happen to agree with the guy, I don't know why he didn't take a few minutes to add in some numbers, rather than just penning some long opinion piece. Bla....

Pretty good but.... (1)

pablo_max (626328) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826449)

Still needs lots of work. I say that being a person who switched to Ubuntu from Windows in my home. I have no past experience with Linux other then having to start an app now and again.
The set up went fine and soon enough it was "working"
I say "working" because it was and it wasnt. For example I had to search for hours to properly install the Nvidia driver and get my 1366x168 rez on my monitor (37icn LCD). Being that the primary use was multi-media, I also had to spend literally days trying to get the sound to come from all channels and it still does not work completely.
Over all, I am happy with it, but I have way more patients the average consumer does.
It's just my opinion but I really dont think most people want to deal with things like that. They dont want to have to worry about if you have multiverse repositories are enabled. They want to click something and have it install..not run a command script.
Is Ubuntu better then Windows? In some ways yes, and others not even close. Windows, for the most really does "Just work" and the best part is...I don't need to know how it works ;)
That said, I only boot Windows when I need run certain programs or want to play games.

Why mutiple distros? (1, Troll)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826525)

Why is there more than one linux distribution in the first place?

This is one of the most confusing things to new users. If they want to buy Windows, they go to the store and buy Windows. It isn't available from 17 different companies; only Microsoft sells Windows. There are a few versions (home, professional, etc) but the installation/upgrade user experience is common across all of them.

Imagine if all of the programmer time and effort that goes towards packaging and installation programs for the various Linux distributions was spent on something important, like fixing bugs.....

Re:Why mutiple distros? (1)

tuffy (10202) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826611)

If they want to buy Windows, they go to the store and buy Windows.

XP Home? XP Professional? Vista Home Basic? Vista Home Premium? Vista Business? Vista Enterprise? Vista Ultimate?

There's lots of Linux distros for the same reason there's lots of Windows versions - because they are aimed at different users with different needs.

Stats (1)

Mockylock (1087585) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826659)

I know it's a good build and system, plus more are moving to it. But, does anyone have any statistics to show how much it's growing?

Ubuntu too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19826693)

I personally don't think Ubuntu's popularity has anything to do with it's distribution. I believe it's due to word-of-mouth on the internet. Never underestimate the power of verbose users and fanbois.

Why I use Ubuntu (4, Insightful)

loconet (415875) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826753)

I've been using Linux for about 8 years (desktops and servers) and have tried numerous distributions (Redhat, SuSe, Mandrake/Mandriva, Slackware) as a desktop OS. As far as the desktop goes, here are some things off the top of my head that Ubuntu offers me that other distros did not at the time of my experience with them (which may have been several years ago).

#1: No nonsense software manager. Ubuntu's Add/remove programs system just works. No dependency nightmare, rarely the need for command line, no need to compile/mock around with make files (although I'm comfortable with the process) but if there is the need, the option is there. Don't need to signup to get updates, it just works.
- All of my hardware works. ATI card, LCD (minimum tweak needed to get native res), ipod, firewire card, cellphone through USB, digi cams, cd/dvd writers, etc, etc.
- Relative cutting edge and stable software versions, I don't remember the last time I had x/gnome crash on me.
- Great software selection through their reps.
- Sane directory structure/menus setup.
- Excellent community support / forums.
- Ease of installation (although most distros offered this as well)

Never been happier with a Linux desktop.

Why I chose Ubuntu (3, Interesting)

AntonDevious (879535) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826767)

I've been in the computer industry for 20+ years. I've pretty much used every flavor of Unix and several different linux distros. Needless to say I'm in the "command line friendly" crowd. I enjoy tinkering with thing and yet I chose Ubuntu. My main job, day today needs solid email, web browsing and office apps world. So as long as I have a good text editor for code, and those apps, I'm happy. Fedora was too much work. I had to think about it as I'm trying to do my job. It was bloated, way too much stuff running, different tools trying to update/install software that didn't work together (update manager - yum - rpm), one could run while the other was running and hose your database, etc. I need to reinstall the OS and after 4 hours and 5 CD's of Fedora I was quite unhappy. So the next time I installed, it was one disk, 30 minutes, minimal bloat and I've never had my software package management fail to work together. With Ubuntu, I don't have to think about the OS and the apps. I can think about my work. And there is still plenty of tinker room with Ubuntu!

There's no "one size fits all" distro (3, Informative)

bzipitidoo (647217) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826787)

Obviously. And Ubuntu is no exception to that. On old PCs that have less than 256M RAM, you can't use the standard Ubuntu live/install CD. Laptops have always been a little behind desktops, making it even harder to find a suitable distro for an old laptop. If one of the brags of Linux is that old hardware isn't left out in the cold, many of the distros make that untrue by building for Pentium IIs at a minimum. Embedded is even harder-- there are few enough options that you can be pretty much stuck heavily modifying and compiling some sort of Gentoo style distro, or even making up a distro yourself. A 386 with 4M of RAM isn't a usable computer anymore, but it's not because it can't do useful work, it's because software has become so much more demanding. I used to surf the Internet on just such a 386, with Netscape 3 running in X.

I've been trying distro after distro, trying to find something lightweight and full featured not just because I have old computers, but also because I like fast response times. Slackware derivatives seem most promising, so have tried Zenwalk, Vector, and Slackware itself. Also tried Xubuntu. Next on my list of distros to try is KateOS.

Someone asked why Mandriva wasn't more popular. In 2 words, nagging and blinders. Mandriva by default points a lot of things to various nag messages, like the default browser homepage. Lot of the help functions launch a browser which, guess what? Loads up another part of the Mandriva web site with both a) nagging, and b) blinders, as in a search function that searches only Mandriva's stuff. Once you get tired of not finding answers there, you forget their help functions, and try your luck with a real search engine, or the Howtos from linux.org, or (gasp) the docs from the homepage of whatever generic app you're trying to use.

The article (1)

m3gatr0nX (1066120) | more than 6 years ago | (#19826795)

So I RTFA...and it's one of the worst written ones I've read in a while. I'm not sure what the author is trying to prove, and his argument has no substance to it at all. I'd expect more from a 4th grader writing a term paper.

Apparently he's trying to say that Ubuntu is very popular for the casual Linux user. Ok, that's an easy call. But in his comparison with Debian, Fedora and Suse, he says Debian doesn't release fast enough, Fedora has "community relations issues" and "SuSE 10 was strong, 10.1 was not too impressive, and I have not had enough time to take their latest release for a solid test drive..."

Umm...well that's one hell of a comparison there.

"RPM Based Distros Are Simply Not Popular With Newer Users ...they lack hand-holding for beginners." Again...please tell me why users don't like RPM based distros. How do they lack hand-holding....especially with yum which in a lot of ways mimics apt-get.

Add on top of all that, it's in their "Reviews" section. This was a review of what? Random words on a page? Then it ends up on the Slashdot front page...funny.
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