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Torvalds on Where Linux is Headed in 2008

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the prognostigatory-penguin-predictions dept.

Linux 305

Stony Stevenson writes "In an interview at the ITNews site, Linus Torvalds lays out his current excitement about the future of Linux. Torvalds is looking forward to hardware elements like solid-state drives, expects progress in graphics and wireless networking, and says the operating system is strong in virtualisation despite his personal lack of interest in the area. 'When you buy an OS from Microsoft, not only you can't fix it, but it has had years of being skewed by one single entity's sense of the market. It doesn't matter how competent Microsoft — or any individual company — is, it's going to reflect that fact. In contrast, look at where Linux is used. Everything from cellphones and other small embedded computers that people wouldn't even think of as computers, to the bulk of the biggest machines on the supercomputer Top-500 list. That is flexibility.'"

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305 comments

Desktop Linux (5, Funny)

David Off (101038) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476877)

So 2008 is finally the year of Linux on the desktop?

Re:Desktop Linux (5, Insightful)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476917)

No. The desktop is dead. It's the year of Linux in your pocket.

 

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Insightful)

Virgil Tibbs (999791) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476943)

See openmoko [openmoko.org] for details. On a free software mobile platform

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

amias (105819) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477019)

It looks cool and has some lovely features but it won't sell in spain .

moko is slang for bogies / buggers / snot

Toodle-pip
Amias

Re:Desktop Linux (2, Informative)

tucolino (654142) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477687)

Although you are right, it does mean snot in Spanish, this isn't something that is necessarily exposed to the end-user. OpenMoko is the platform, which most regular users don't care about. *Most* people buy Nokia/Sony Ericsson/whatever without thinking of the platform. They buy an N80, M600, etc. Just as it would would be a Neo1973 in the case of OpenMoko.

Re:Desktop Linux (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477123)

Leopard fucking sucks, because Apple sold out to all you PC users. All the interface changes--the ostentatiously translucent menu bar, the flat file folders, the dark gray backgrounds--these all feel like something Microsoft would have shat out. But no, it's apparently Apple's attempt to entice more of you Windows/Linux refugees into a community that doesn't want you mouthbreathers anywhere near.

Hope you're fucking happy, you tasteless dweebs. You better make an effort to blend in at Macworld because I'm gonna punch any of you khaki-wearing fratboys I see in the mouth. And I know all the old-school Mac users stand with me on this.

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477413)

I would so love to be punched in the mouth by a limp-wristed artiste. I laugh deeply when someone hurts themselves trying to hurt me.

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477797)

I've never seen Leopard and I'm not to blame for it, seek your answers elsewhere.

/Happy Linux user

Re:Desktop Linux (1, Troll)

aurispector (530273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477897)

The thing I love about apple fanboys is the tendency to focus on looks. I care about price and openness. Oh, wait. Rushing to dump scads of money into expensive proprietary hardware is COOL.

Funny that you say that (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477485)

I recall since early 90's, every reporter said that desktops were dead and that it was the year of laptops. And yet, desktops continue.

Re:Desktop Linux (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477539)

It's the year of Linux in your pocket.

No, really, I'm just happy to see you.

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Funny)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477999)

It's the year of Linux in your pocket.

No, really, I'm just happy to see you.

As shown by a related post [slashdot.org]: "It grows every year."

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21476973)

"In contrast, look at where Linux is used. Everything from cellphones and other small embedded computers that people wouldn't even think of as computers, to the bulk of the biggest machines on the supercomputer Top-500 list. That is flexibility.'"

What is this contrast he speaks of? Last time I checked, Windows was used in all these areas too...hmmm...Oh well I guess if the leader is deluded, all his sheep are too!

Re:Desktop Linux (5, Informative)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477003)

Not strictly true...
The same Linux kernel, admittedly often configured in different ways and with different userland apps, runs on all these devices...
The mobile versions of windows are completely different, and have very little in common with the desktop and server versions.
I have a Nokia N800, which runs an embedded linux, i can compile all the same programs i use on my desktop linux machines. Even if you have the source, it's not easy to just recompile a windows program to run on windows mobile, and most programs dont come with source anyway.

As for supercomputers, windows is pretty laughable in this area, it's only used in fairly low end clusters and is horribly inefficient (all your cluster nodes need a videocard and local hd?), most of the serious supercomputers are running linux these days. As for performance, last time i saw a windows cluster in the top500 it consisted of 660 2.8ghz dual cpu dell poweredge servers, a machine using 600 dual cpu 2.8ghz poweredge servers of the same model and running linux was 50 places higher.

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

w.hamra1987 (1193987) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477111)

now that you mentioned how laughable windows is on supercomputers, it is even laughable on desktop, there is simply no proper resource management! after upgrading to 2 gb of ram, i still got annoyed with swapping, so i checked task manager just t find out that there is almost 1 gb of ram available and 500 mb in pagefile! im using linux now, (kubuntu), and found out i dont need the 2 gigs so sold out 1 gig and my PC is happy!

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Informative)

totally bogus dude (1040246) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477331)

Task Manager reports anything which is backed on disc as page file usage. This means any program you run contributes, because the executable and DLLs are already on disc, and Windows treats them as if they're part of the paging file (i.e. it can drop the program or library from memory if need be, because it knows it's still on disc).

You can prove this by disabling paging altogether, and then amuse yourself by looking at how much of the "page file" is in use.

Also, Windows does aggressively page stuff out, which in theory should boost performance by making more memory available for useful things like disc caches, but in practice does annoy me a bit as well.

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

twistedcubic (577194) | more than 6 years ago | (#21478021)

But, you have to admit, suspend to RAM is a useful feature which is just a bitch to get working on Linux nowadays. Admittedly, I had suspend to RAM working flawlessly on Mandrake back in 2000 with APM, which doesn't exist anymore, sadly.

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477031)

Except that windoze is LOSING in several markets. Windoze is rapidly becoming little more than a game machine (and for that, I prefer a PS3, thank you very much! ;-))

And have you looked at the top500.org list? The best, most powerful computers on the planet, basically all run linux, with few exceptions. Windoze is laughable in those rankings (Don't take my word for it, go take a look.)

Linux will continue to grow, as it has over these last few years, and windoze will undoubtably slowly die, much like the falling of the Roman Empire (or any other you care to name).

M$'s time is done, and it will continue to slowly fade away.

Re:Desktop Linux (5, Informative)

arevos (659374) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477205)

What is this contrast he speaks of? Last time I checked, Windows was used in all these areas too...
Out of the 500 top supercomputers, 6 use Windows, and 426 use Linux. Windows doesn't even show up in the top 100.

I haven't been able to find information on the smallest Windows CE system, but Linux has been stuffed on a wristwatch with only 19MHz of CPU power and 8M of RAM.

So I guess Linus' point is that Linux runs a greater range of systems, from the top supercomputers in the world (the top ten all run Linux), to the very smallest of devices. Windows doesn't scale quite as well.

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

dave420 (699308) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477803)

Embedded Windows can fit in pretty tiny spaces. You can have an install of Windows 98 (including explorer) in 9MB. Windows might not scale as well as Linux (it clearly doesn't), but it's not going anywhere, and Linux still has a lot of work to do before it can really challenge it in the one place Linux is currently beaten - the desktop. I can't wait for Linux to be able to do everything currently possible in Windows - more choice is good for everyone.

Re:Desktop Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477463)

What is this contrast he speaks of? Last time I checked, Windows was used in all these areas too...

Then you didn't check very carefully. There is no Windows operating system that runs on all of those devices.

hmmm...Oh well I guess if the leader is deluded, all his sheep are too!

leader=Gates, sheep=people like you

Just Workd (1)

ebolaZaireRules (987875) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477103)

Linux will make the desktop when it 'just works', no hassle, no issues. And by just works - I mean all programs installed, not just the OS (once running... the installers seem to have gone far enough down the 'just works' route for my tastes... and they still have (most of) the fall back 'custom' selection)

Sadly, the call for 'flexibility' - which probably is its greatest strength, is also its greatest weakness. Things should "just work(TM)". In my experience, they don't... and getting better doesn't cut the mustard in todays world.

Re:Just Workd (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477519)

And by just works - I mean all programs installed, not just the OS

Um, basically all Linux distros I used in the last 10 years installed the applications along with the OS. The problem was more that often they installed _too _many applications. It is Windows that forces you to install apps independent of the OS (and forces all apps to have their own separate update facility, etc.)

Re:Desktop Linux (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477131)

No you misunderstood..
2008 will be the year of [b]Linus[/b] on the Desktop!

I bet when all the Linux machines on your desktops, in your pockets and in your toasters become networked and powerful enough (in 2008, that is), Linus' secret code be activated. I bet he's planing world domination by connecting all the Linux together and creating a really, really massive distributed computer only he can control.

I can virtually see him now with his black cape, sleep-deprived eyes and a sinister grin, pointing at Bill Gates and screaming: "KILL HIM, MY ROBOTS!!"

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Informative)

hummassa (157160) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477795)

I can virtually see him now with his black cape, sleep-deprived eyes and a sinister grin, pointing at Bill Gates and screaming: "KILL HIM, MY ROBOTS!!"
Cue to cell phone ringing (Nokia Tune ring), suspense music stops, killer robots halt mid-attack, the screen splits in half, Tove (karate-champion Linus' wife) at the phone in the other half: "Dear, would you please bring some whole milk home after you're done conquering the world? I want to make you some victory chocolate cake." Linus: "Ok, honey, luv-u." Mayhem restarts, killer robots resume attacks.

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Interesting)

scmartindale (1188813) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477203)

It's entirely possible that 2008 *will* be the year of the Linux desktop. Here's why: 1. KDE 4.0. 2. Resolution (hopefully) of the ongoing Open XML vs. ODF debate will (hopefully, again) lend some might to the OpenOffice.org front, thus removing the last remaining hurdle in the Linux-in-the-office track. 3. Ubuntu 8.4 *will* be influential. It will either sink the distro or cement its position as the most usable Linux distro - ever. 4. Windows Vista will continue to hurt Microsoft by annoying big corporates. Phasing out XP will do untold damage.

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

darthflo (1095225) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477601)

1] What's so special about KDE4? Qt4 with Windows support sure is nice, but I doubt it's going to catch on very fast, especially in the somewhat influential enterprise market. Same goes for most other innovations it incorporates. Plasma and Raptor are nice new ways of doing things, but don't forget we're (partially) talking about people sticking to Windows' classic start menu in spite of XP's innovations round there.
Also, don't forget 2008 will bring KDE 4.0, which many just won't consider stable yet. I haven't worked with 4.0 enough, but if no dramatic advances have been made in regard of stability since the 3.5 versions, a .0 is definitely not going to be an option for me; I'll stick with Gnome, thank you.
2] Call me a pessimist but I'm sure OOXML won't just "lose out" against ODF all of a sudden. Microsoft has billions of dollars to throw at this issue, an ISO standard is more or less inevitable. Thanks to, apart from the /. crowd and similarily-interested folks, few people (as opposed to corporations and governments) actually caring about the issue at all, real public outrage is unlikely.
Even if OOXML was to fail, I'm sure MS could extremely quickly push out compatibility updates for Office 2007 or even decide to ignore ODF completely. Also, the proven embrace-extend-extinguish strategy could be used for a new MSFT-exclusive dialect of ODF.
3] I fail to see the particular significance of 8.4. Sure, it's an LTS version and sure, it'll have some effect on the further progressions Ubuntu is going to make, but why would everything depend on this particular version? Care to explain? :)
4] Vista SP1 is due very soon, a lot of corporates are going to use this as an opportunity to migrate. SP2 is probably also planned for late 2008 or early 09; by then MSFT should have had enough time to gather real world feedback about Vista and make it more or less usable. Also, the time frames for large migrations is quite a bit longer than you may think. A GO I used to work for in 2006 had very specific plans about switching tens of thousands of workstations to Vista in 2008/09, long before many of Vista's faults became widely known.

Re:Desktop Linux (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477253)

Probably not. BUT, it's not because Linux isn't ready.

I've been waiting for over 10 years for this moment but I've finally been able to use Linux not just as a techo curiousity and plaything, but on my primary work and home machines. I can print with whatever I want, I can run just about any hardware, I can play any video or DVD, I can listen to any music, I have a decent Office competitor (The only thing I miss is a good Outlook clone - whatever you think otherwise, Outlook and Exchange is highly compelling over any other options), I have a good GUI to use to config if I want and this is with the roughest of the Ubuntus - Kubuntu. With the official Ubuntu with Gnome, everything just plain works, even on brand new hardware, Kubuntu is a bit odd in that it does throw a few odd things at you. Which is more than I can say for Windows, what with Vista's issues that make it difficult to stomach using and XP getting long in the tooth in that it doesn't support a lot of the new hardware unless you dump a whole load of drivers on it and get configuring. Samba even gives me a few options Windws doesnt, so I can conenct to different networks a few different ways that have made life easier. Wireless? Well yes, no problems at all, much to my surprise. Again that's easier in Linux that Windows. Anti vrus and anti spyware? No need. Firewall? Hey, there's a fuckign good one built right in. Security? Easier to manage. Updates? Well I upgraded from 7.04 to 7.10 online and it just plain damn worked, something Windows just could not do.

Because I dont play games, I have good and sometimes superior options to any Windows apps I was using, except for noted Outlook clone. Minor quibble tho to me and I'm sure someone will present a good outlook replacement that interfaces to Exchange not long after I press post.

Ubuntu is genuinely a better OS than any Windows now, which is a wonderful thing for us all. I suspect it's gaining traction too with the fuckup Vista is and frankly it's easier on my stress levels, plus morally I have no excuse for wanting anything illegal with Linux because it's all free for you if you want. That's actually a big point in it's favour.

But Windows has too much of a stranglehold on the desktop so no, it's not the Year Of Linux On The Desktop. Be that as it may however, it's finally better and highly usable even by a complete n00b. That's no longer some sort of anecdote, it's there for all to see and you can if you want escape Microsoft completely right now. Oh and if I do have an issue I fond the solution faster now.

I've been an interested follower of Linux since Red Hat 3, I'm stoked it's gotten this far and is now this good that it's my preferred OS. I doubt there will be a big cut over in the years to come, but hey fuck it. I'm personally glad Microsoft is completely gone for me.

(The only issue I'm having is that Youtube every now and then locks Firefox, which I suspect has something to do with the Flash plugin. Doesn't happen anywhere else so I can only think it's something that Youtube is doing. And posted like a true coward so I cant be accused as a Karma whore :) )

Re:Desktop Linux (5, Funny)

jonadab (583620) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477829)

> Outlook and Exchange is highly compelling over any other options

*Are* there other options? Off the top of my head, I don't even know of any other enterprise-class fully automated virus retrieval and installation systems.

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

galoise (977950) | more than 6 years ago | (#21478019)

Amen, brother!

Linux is not ready for the desktop. Yet. But it will be, and there's nothing M$ can do about it. It's rise is inevitable. unstopable. so why bother? give it a few years and it will be ready. for anything. and we can wait. there's no rush.

Because of Vista! (1)

TLZ9 (1194305) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477287)

Because of Vista Linux is bound to at least increase more than usual. I'm a XP-user and I'll probably continue to be for a while, but I've barely touched Vista and I abselutely hate it. I've Been trying out Ubuntu, and when I can't use XP anymore I'll switch for sure. (And besides, I've kinda fallen in love with Fluxbox. Tabs! :)

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

jonadab (583620) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477791)

> So 2008 is finally the year of Linux on the desktop?

That was 1998, dude. All the cool kids are using BSD on the desktop now. Where have you been?

Re:Desktop Linux (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477959)

Man, if Linux isn't running on your desktop yet, you are doing something wrong.

Of course it will take a few years before this joke dies out on Slashdot...

Keep Aim in sight (1)

veeruns (302874) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476887)

Its very important that kernel developers have their priorities right,
commenting on unnecessary things takes steam out of any initiatives

Re:Keep Aim in sight (1, Interesting)

Virgil Tibbs (999791) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476991)

I quite agree...
What I find most strange about Linus is that the Linux kernel isn't an obligatory part of a Free operating system and can easily be replaced. Perhaps he should just keep his mouth closed.
I think Linus should keep his head on the kernel, in particular how he can improve it to bring it to the level where it can compete with the opensolaris kernel when Sun GPLv3's it.

Re:Keep Aim in sight (1)

walshy007 (906710) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477333)

you'll find linus rarely comments on anything but the linux kernel in his talks, except when specifically asked for his opinion on something. i.e. somebody asks him whether he uses kde or gnome and he says he prefers the flow of kde but gnome is just fine and dandy, he is very neutral in regards to speaking on anything but the kernel in regards to almost all things.

Re:Keep Aim in sight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477631)

Dude - stop trolling with FSF propaganda. There is no part of the "Free Operating system" that cannot be replaced. Not the tool-chain, not the debugger, and there is the BSD userland if somebody needs it.

There is open solaris, Plan 9, and other arguably superior OSes out there.

The thing about linux is that it runs on almost anything, and that the project is not run by a somebody blinded by ideology.

Re:Keep Aim in sight (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477695)

I think Linus should keep his head on the kernel, in particular how he can improve it to bring it to the level where it can compete with the opensolaris kernel when Sun GPLv3's it.
When? Like that's a given and there's a timeframe? Judging by past experience, I'm guessing Sun will finally open-source it when Linux has already reimplemented all the best stuff. Though I'll be happy to be wrong.

You don't need a Linux kernel (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477833)

What I find most strange about Linus is that the Linux kernel isn't an obligatory part of a Free operating system and can easily be replaced. Perhaps he should just keep his mouth closed.
*BSD, Hurd, Linux

You can have a nearly identical operating system sitting on top of any of them. Choose your preferred kernel.

I think Linus should keep his head on the kernel, in particular how he can improve it to bring it to the level where it can compete with the opensolaris kernel when Sun GPLv3's it.
I'm sure he'll worry[1] about that when they actually do it.

[1] Where worry == rejoice.
 

Re:Keep Aim in sight (1)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477955)

Define easily.

Every kernel has its pros and cons.
Linux's best pros is awesome driver support (far better than Windows), its actively maintained and it is incredibly flexible.

Quick Summary (5, Insightful)

XMode (252740) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476891)

Not really much to the interview.. It can be summed up with 1 Q&A

Interviewer: Where is Linux going.
Linus: Its going where it wants to.

Re:Quick Summary (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476919)

Whereas Windows asks (or used to), "Where do YOU want to go today?". Evil tidings are afoot.

Re:Quick Summary (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477087)

"where do YOU want to go today' was just a clever marketing ploy.

M$ doesn't care at all where YOU want to go. Perhaps you want to go to a hassle-free, open, secure system? (Well, that ain't windoze ;-)
It was just a catchy, feel-good, 'hey, we care about YOU', advertising campaign that sheep like to hear and follow and obey.

You will go where M$ wants you to go, and that is all there is to it.

Re:Quick Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477789)

The '90s called... they want you back... the cool kids have given up M$, 'Windoze', and the like about a decade ago. It's not cool anymore. You can retire your acid washed jeans, too.

I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (2, Insightful)

jkrise (535370) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476925)

and didn't care much about the politics or market share of Linux... just in writing goog code; and preferring GPL2 to GPL3? So why should we care to read his views on topics that do not interest him?

The EEE PC from Asus shows the extents to which vested interests will go in ensuring drivers for display, ACPI, wifi etc. will be DRM-ridden binaries... and Linus hasn't had much to say about these things.

Maybe if he cared about the future of Linux so much, he would try and make as much of it GPL3 as he could?

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21476957)

Hey, I just got word from FSF HQ that Stallman just got back from the john. If you hurry you might be able to get in there and greedily gobble down his fresh turds before somebody flushes them.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (1)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476959)

See, you were modded down for posting rational things critical of Linux. This is how slashdot works.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21476999)

See, you were modded down for posting rational things critical of Linux. This is how slashdot works.
I agree. Lately /.' news picking/comments/modding are so blindly biased is not even funny anymore.
It it transforming into a mob of kids yelling "lol micro$oft sux" at any cheap flame bait news(like this one). /sigh

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (2, Insightful)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477005)

It's not rational. He's dismissing the views of Linux's leader just because he doesn't take a great deal of interest in whatever he himself cares about. It's about as rational as criticising a philharmonic orchestra for not playing Metallica.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477391)

It's not rational. He's dismissing the views of Linux's leader just because he doesn't take a great deal of interest in whatever he himself cares about.

And it's also pointlessly bringing DRM into the debate. The Eee is a great machine, they just need to release the source for some of their kernel mods. It's not a GPLv2 vs GPLv3 thing, just a GPL thing.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (1)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477527)

ah yes, this is why we see all the 'flamebait' tags for the gratuitous "RIAA suxxx / m$ suxx" posts. Puh-leeze. He was raising legitimate ancillary issues.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477645)

He was off topic, raising an ad hominem. I think we all can agree much (most?) of the moderation on Slashdot sucks, especially the fact that the most inane fanboyism will end up at +5 if it's pro Apple or Ubuntu or whatever the current fashion dictates, but there's nothing worth anything in the comment above. Flamebait? Certainly. Troll? Yes. A "RIAA /m$ suxxx" comment, on the other hand, isn't flamebait, as it's hardly a controversial statement here. Redundant, overrated, off topic, but definitely not flamebait.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (0)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476987)

The source code for the EEE is available here [asus.com]. You will need some grasp of Chinese but I dare say the zip files are pretty obvious to anyone. Now go an an remove your foot from your mouth and say sorry to Asus. Just because a couple of idiots with no patience or language skills outside of english ignorantly inform everyone a mainly chinese speaking Taiwan based company hasnt posted the source doesnt make it true.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477167)

Now go an an remove your foot from your mouth and say sorry to Asus. Just because a couple of idiots with no patience or language skills outside of english ignorantly inform everyone a mainly chinese speaking Taiwan based company hasnt posted the source doesnt make it true.
If you were reading first and insulting people later, you would know, that the 1.8GB zip archive does not contain sources for modules in question. But the knee-jerk reaction is much more easier, right?

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (0, Flamebait)

makomk (752139) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477281)

Now go an an remove your foot from your mouth and say sorry to Asus. Just because a couple of idiots with no patience or language skills outside of english ignorantly inform everyone a mainly chinese speaking Taiwan based company hasnt posted the source doesnt make it true.
If you were reading first and insulting people later, you would know, that the 1.8GB zip archive does not contain sources for modules in question. But the knee-jerk reaction is much more easier, right?
Bingo - mods on crack, etc, etc...

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (0, Offtopic)

arevos (659374) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477273)

The source code for the EEE is available here. You will need some grasp of Chinese but I dare say the zip files are pretty obvious to anyone.
I believe the original complaint was that the zip file supplied by ASUS didn't contain all the required source code. Have you checked the zip to make sure that it now contains everything?

MOD PARENT DOWN (0, Offtopic)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477451)

Because the zip doesn't contain the source, which was exactly the point. Would moderators please RTFA of that case?

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (4, Insightful)

urbanradar (1001140) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477065)

I thought Linus was just an engineer and didn't care much about the politics or market share of Linux... just in writing goog code; and preferring GPL2 to GPL3? So why should we care to read his views on topics that do not interest him? The EEE PC from Asus shows the extents to which vested interests will go in ensuring drivers for display, ACPI, wifi etc. will be DRM-ridden binaries... and Linus hasn't had much to say about these things. Maybe if he cared about the future of Linux so much, he would try and make as much of it GPL3 as he could?
A good engineer may not care about market share or politics, but who said a good engineer doesn't care about the quality, flexibility and real-world usage of something he's spent more than a decade working on? And which engineer in his right mind wouldn't be happy and proud of his life's work being a huge success?

This is not about politics, and this story has absolutely nothing to do with licensing, so let's not drag that dead horse up again. Sure, it's a valid debate, but there's a place and time for it, and this isn't it.

Re:I thought Linus was just an engineer...? (4, Insightful)

superwiz (655733) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477279)

Well, maybe once you get old enough you realize that the test of any theory is practice. And maybe Linus is old enough to realize that the test of how useful Linux happens to be is how it is used.

Games, and the next generation. (5, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476927)

If games made for Windows worked 1% faster in Linux, we'd have a generation of kids who would only know windows as the OS used in businesses.

The day I see in a game forum "Use Linux, n00b." as the usual reply to "OMG! Low fps! Getting pwned! HALP!" will set the ten year count to Linux victory over Windows.

Re:Games, and the next generation. (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477129)

Some games do, some don't...
It's not a cut and dry "linux is always 5% faster", but it's getting there...

Nvidia drivers are typically about 5% faster on linux when running native games, but wine can often reduce or cancel out that advantage. ATI's drivers tend to be noticeably slower on linux.

I think someone recently compared wine, xp and vista running a selection of games on the same hardware. XP was faster in most tests, wine was fastest in a few and vista came in last on all of them i think.

But i do think linux is more likely to take over in business first. The biggest thing missing from linux is as you noted, games... Businesses don't need games, they need secure stable workstations for their staff to do a limited set of things, and increasingly these business uses are tending towards web based apps placing even less requirements on the desktop system. They are also keen to reduce costs, and using linux means not only lower licensing costs (or no licensing costs if they choose), but also no need for certain third party apps like anti spyware and anti virus, not to mention less or no costs for keeping track of licenses, less risk from bsa audits, more competition / cheaper prices for support, less risk of lock in, less risk of a product your depending on being dropped etc.
Dos (and by extension windows) succeeded because it captured the business market first, while home users were still happily running the C64s and Amigas... Then people started buying home computers which were compatible with what they knew from work.

Nicely put. (1)

milsoRgen (1016505) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476953)

I agree with much of what was said. However, from my perspective. I believe that a very strong emphasis in laying a robust foundation for gaming should be at the top of everyone's list to see more Linux market penetration...

Re:Nicely put. (2, Informative)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477145)

There is a robust foundation for gaming...
Nvidia's drivers are very good (although proprietary), we have libraries like SDL, OpenAL etc...
Games which have native Linux versions tend to beat the windows versions by a small margin, and vista has made this gap somewhat bigger. Some games running under wine also outperform native windows in some areas, tho the results are very much variable with some games being slower or behaving erratically.

The foundation is there, what we need are the actual games.

Re:Nicely put. (2, Informative)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477377)

What are you talking about? There are tons of libraries to program games in.. off the top of my head, Ogre3d, SDL, OpenGL, PyGame, ClanLib.

If you want the majority of gaming on Linux, convince the game developers!!

The market says different (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21476961)

Dear Linus is talking like people would want flexibility, power and truth. In reality things are more close to the opposite.
Actually, most people want to be lied and to be told how to think. Flexibility is many times the opposite of easy-to-use.
Marketing will still decide how the products will look like, no matter how cumbersome/stupid it would be to use it.
Yes, I personally like Linux, but I wouldn't get pompous about taking over the OS market. Ever. It sounds weak even in a clearly Linux-biased community like /.

Oh well, nvm, where is that ol tar'n'feather? Go get them, boys!!!

Desperate sounding.. (-1, Troll)

DraconPern (521756) | more than 6 years ago | (#21476977)

Linus attacking Microsoft Windows? It sounds a bit desperate. So, why will Linux's wireless support be better in 2008? Did something in the industry change? My wireless card from 2004 still doesn't work properly, I don't think support for it is going to be better in '08. Or is there a reason for those forward looking statements?

Re:Desperate sounding.. (2, Insightful)

bheekling (976077) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477007)

If you'd even read TFA, you'd know that they're talking about Linux and Windows Server 2003, and that Linus had the following to say about them:

Is Linux kernel development proceeding faster than Windows Server development?
I'm the wrong person to ask, for multiple reasons. First off, I'm somewhat biased, of course. But the other reason is that I don't even know -- or really care -- how Windows Server development actually proceeds, so how could I even compare and make an intelligent point?

I simply don't use Microsoft products, not because I hate them, but because they aren't interesting to me.

And, they were talking about virtualisation and the development process used in both of them:

In your opinion, where does Linux shine versus Windows? Reliability? Virtualisation?

I think the real strength of Linux is not in any particular area, but in the flexibility.

So, where do Desktops and wireless come in all this again Mr. Troll?

Re:Desperate sounding.. (4, Interesting)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477047)

Linux wireless support is often better than windows (packet injection, rfmon sniffing etc)... You just need to shop around and buy decent cards if you want the best performance.
All the cards I use are Atheros based, and work perfectly with Linux... I used to use Prism2 (802.11b only) based cards which also worked well.
I've also found Intel's cards work very well.

If you run some rare type of wireless card you may find that the windows drivers aren't too great for it either, and might stop receiving any updates rather quickly. You're also more likely to have other issues, like drivers breaking when you update windows (how many older types of card don't work at all with vista? and how many of these are no longer supported by their manufacturers and so will never work?).
And don't get me started on manufacturers who sell the same model of card with different chipsets, that's wholly irresponsible. They should change the model number if they change the core chipset, as it effectively becomes a whole different card.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (1)

The_Mystic_For_Real (766020) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477805)

I'll agree with you that for some advanced functions, mostly used for security testing, linux has better support than windows. The problems I have had seem to be at the application level with gnome network manager (haven't tried KDE on a laptop). The performance was slow, and there were a number of small yet annoying bugs. Also (now for drivers) on return from hibernate the wireless card was not detected. This was with an ipw3945 card on a Thinkpad T60p running Ubuntu Edgy/Feisty/Gutsy. Using a cheap atheros based PCI bus card solved all these problems and I got to use the excellent madwifi-ng drivers as opposed to the binary intel driver.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (2, Informative)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477927)

You dont seem to emphasise how kick ass Madwifi is. :D
One card can do anything the most expensive access point you can find can do.

The most amazing thing I can think of is its ability to do multiple things with a single card seamlessly.
You can sniff networks on one channel and surf the net on another, you can have virtual access points and surf the net (while monitoring) and so on.
Absolutely amazing.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (4, Informative)

iserlohn (49556) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477095)

There is a new 80211 stack in Linux with better structure that allows easier creation of device drivers. This makes it easier for manufactures to create drivers, like the one who designed your card. For those manufacturers that do not bother, like the one who made your card, it also makes it a tiny bit easier for enthusiasts to step in.

I hope that makes it clear for you.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (1)

pionzypher (886253) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477119)

He didn't attack windows. FTA:

Is Linux kernel development proceeding faster than Windows Server development?

I'm the wrong person to ask, for multiple reasons. First off, I'm somewhat biased, of course. But the other reason is that I don't even know -- or really care -- how Windows Server development actually proceeds, so how could I even compare and make an intelligent point?

I simply don't use Microsoft products, not because I hate them, but because they aren't interesting to me.

As to where he is getting this idea of improved wireless support. FTA:

Where will the Linux kernel gain added strengths in 2008?

We really are pretty much all over the map. One of the fun things about Linux, and certainly the thing that has kept it interesting over almost two decades now, is how different people have different goals and the hardware keeps changing under us too.

So a lot of the effort ends up being hardware-related. Both in terms of peripheral drivers and simply in platform changes. The bulk of the kernel really is about hardware support, and that alone keeps us busy. The situation in graphics and wireless networking devices -- both of which have been somewhat weak spots -- is changing, and I suspect that will be a large part of what continues to happen during 2008 too.

To sum it up for you...

Linus doesn't use Windows. He declined to compare linux with Windows Server due to lack of knowledge of the platform.

Linus is kinda, sort of, a tiny bit involved in kernel development. He believes that the issue of graphics and wireless networking support is changing. I would venture a guess that this opinion was formed by his involvement in the kernel. Perhaps he is seeing more drivers written, and more frequent patch submissions. Disclaimer: I have not actually gone and validated this guess. I could very well be wrong, and it could be something else such as a call from Miss Cleo.

I have found that I have more issues with older wireless cards than new ones. There are a few brands that I just avoid, and a few that almost always work. Same with video cards (in linux and windows). ATI cards and I haven't gotten on well in the last four years or so. I hear that ATI support is much better than the last time I've tried it though.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (1)

m2943 (1140797) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477483)

My wireless card from 2004 still doesn't work properly,

Simple solution: do what you do for every other operating system--buy supported hardware.

Linux isn't even trying to support all hardware. Neither, for that matter, is Windows.

Re:Desperate sounding.. (1)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477589)

My wireless card from 2004 still doesn't work properly, I don't think support for it is going to be better in '08.
Drivers have always been a manufacturer issue. There isn't a whole lot the OS developers can do if the device manufacturer doesn't make a driver. Sure, if they release the specs it's possible for someone else to write a driver... But a lot of manufacturers don't do this either. If you pay attention when shopping around for hardware you'll see that there are plenty of devices, including wireless cards, that have drivers included for Linux.

So, why will Linux's wireless support be better in 2008? Did something in the industry change?
On the Linux side of things there's been steady work to make wireless support easier to develop. There's a new 802.11 stack that makes wireless drivers quite a bit easier to develop.

If you look at the industry in general, Linux has continued to gain ground and is now present in more computers than ever before - giving manufacturers more incentive to develop their own Linux drivers.

And wi-fi is, itself, more common. Just about any laptop you buy has it built in and it's hard to find a low-end router without it.

Let's examine his earlier claims (4, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477023)

Can someone summarize Linus' earlier claims on Linux? He must have been asked where he saw Linux in 2005, 2006 and 2007. While there must be some "right on" predictions, I am sure there are some predictions that could be seen as way off course. I slashdotter is eager to know.

2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (-1, Flamebait)

nerdyalien (1182659) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477067)

I really don't think Linux is going anywhere in 2008. What did they say this year?? Year of Desktop or something right.. but I didn't see any momentum at any place. I gave up the last Suse installed PC I had. I didn't see anyone in my office switched to Linux.. or any of my clients. Linux is so stupid. I don't know how those geeks feel, but I am sure they are the most useless idiots on the face of earth. Sure.. they have nothing else to do other than wrestling with Linux. No wonder why they are the most unproductive people on earth. Linux has no future for sure. See.. how many distros ?? How many incompatibilities with hardware ??? how many kernal updates every week ??? Linux sure got some momentum on academia. Well... to be frank.. its not because they really like. Only because they want to escapre from paying volume-licenses. Furthremore, there are linux idiots who worship linux OS, who monopolize linux-OS in their domain. Overall.. I think Linux community should give up their efforts and must try to learn some lessons from M$ and either help Windows to be better OR do something like Windows for FREE. Afterall.. true power of linux can not be executed without being a linux-geek.. who knows all the command line commands and some degree of linux kernal modding... that's pathetic.

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (2, Interesting)

szundi (946357) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477169)

pull your head out of your *ss.

my grandma is using linux all-day, i never needed to put a cd other than the install cd into the drive. add/remove programs does everything not just remove, no hw issues (no crappy hardware at all, certainly ;)

linux is geeky in some areas, but if you are a power user, you must learn ITS quirks and tricks THE SAME WAY YOU LEARN WINDOWS' ONES. it's an other world, your 10 years of windows practice means nothing for linux. clever people can learn a second operating system that serves them better. i'm playing on windows, working on linux. what's the problem? :)

this whole flame is about highlighting issues in other's operating system. linux has it's strengths (on desktop too) and windows too.

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (1)

w.hamra1987 (1193987) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477271)

you got it right, i have been using linux for almost a year now, had 2 crashes in 10 months! my winXP used to crash once every week, i didnt need drivers for anything, neither my sound card nor my lan card, nothing! i use windows only in gaming, and last week i discovered how easier it is to write math formulas in openoffice from writing them in the overbloated M$ office, and my whole linux system is barely 5 gb, whereas XP with office and few other applications is taking 12 gb! all-in-all my experience with linux has been and is still being great, no matter what!

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (1)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477441)

I got one better than that. I put Ubuntu on my sons laptop, ran like a champ. Tried XP, suddenly it couldn't find the sound card. Turns out Creative never made an XP driver for my particular card (CL PCI128) so I had to hunt to find a 3rd party created-from-the-linux-driver driver. Ubuntu, worked out of the box. Windows, refused to run it, and even with the driver it's still flaky.

Now that Linux can run my 1 Windows game, forget Windows.

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (1)

RudeBoy75 (1192289) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477587)

me too!
I re-installed Windows and Ubuntu on my laptop on the same day.
Ubuntu worked out of the box, whereas i had to look up all kinds of drivers for my windows install.
(wireless, sound card, etc etc)
Also, the ubuntu install was friendlier and much faster.

please mod parent troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477341)

Stop trolling retard

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (5, Insightful)

ThreeGigs (239452) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477685)

but I didn't see any momentum at any place
I take it you don't shop at Wal-Mart?

I didn't see anyone in my office switched to Linux.. or any of my clients.
And you probably won't, as most office PCs fall under the jurisdiction of IT overlords who dislike users replacing OSes.

Sure.. they have nothing else to do other than wrestling with Linux.
I'll take that as sarcasm, and agree with you. The biggest stumbling block to widespread Linux adoption on the desktop is that it usually does take some 'wrestling' to get it to work, whereas Windows generally 'just works'. Yet that's not a fault of Linux, it's a fault of hardware makers who decide to release a driver for Windows and NOT for Linux.

I was going to mention the lack of GUI tools for some tasks, requiring users to manualy edit init files, but then I remembered how many times I've had to open regedit and manually change registry entries. In that sense I've had to wrestle with Windows as much as Linux.

See.. how many distros ??
Actually, a good point. There are a significant fraction of Windows users who don't know which version they're running, and in order to support them you need to know that. Same with the various distros, as they all are different enough so that you need to know which you're dealing with. I was recently at an acquaintance's house and saw their computer. "Hey, you run Linux" I said.... "No, it's Ubuntu" they said. They could have just as easily said "No, it's KDE". Sadly, as much as most /. readers are pro-standards, the lack of a 'hard' standard, or small set of standard configurations is a hindrance to more widespread *desktop* adoption.

how many kernal updates every week ???
Less than the number of Patch Tuesdays in a month, apparently.

Linux sure got some momentum on academia. Well... to be frank.. its not because they really like. Only because they want to escapre from paying volume-licenses.
Actually, it *is* because 'they like'. $300 is nothing when you've got research grants in the million$. Academia likes it because they can whittle away and tweak Linux until it does *only* what they need it to do, and do it efficiently and fast. Faster than Windows. And when you only need half the computers to get the same speed, or can get twice the speed with what you've got, you use Linux.

But if you really want to argue cost, then don't forget the electricity bill. The $300 spent on a license costs more when you need to buy and power more computers to get the same results in the same time.

Furthremore, there are linux idiots who worship linux OS, who monopolize linux-OS in their domain.
There are Apple fanboys too. And yes, sometimes Windows actually *is* a better choice, although thankfully those special cases are becoming fewer and fewer as time goes on.

Linux community should give up their efforts and must try to learn some lessons from M$ and either help Windows to be better OR do something like Windows for FREE.
I think they *did* learn some lessons... lessons in what NOT to do. In fact, looking at Vista, I think MS has a few lessons that *they* need to learn from the Linux community.

As for 'doing something like Windows....for free', isn't that *exactly* what Linux is?

Afterall.. true power of linux can not be executed without being a linux-geek.. who knows all the command line commands and some degree of linux kernal modding... that's pathetic.
And the true power of Windows can not be executed... FULL STOP. Can't streamline the kernel, must know all the registry tweaks which may or may not be published anywhere. THAT is pathetic.

Re:2008 : Year of the Death of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477947)

*applause*

Bravo sir. I think I have just read the greatest rational pro-Linux post on Slashdot.

2008 will be the year of cheap laptops (5, Insightful)

eulernet (1132389) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477083)

2008 is seeing the birth of laptop computers below $300: XO, Asus EEE, and I guess some new will appear soon.

Vista alone is almost more expensive than the hardware !

Microsoft was a good alternative when computers did cost $1500, but now the price is just too heavy.
But they really can't win when the hardware is cheap.

If they keep remaining in the high performance market (which seems their belief, see DirectX 10), they'll lose their market share in 2 years, along with Dell !

I misread SSD..... (4, Funny)

tomknight (190939) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477121)

I misread "One of the things I personally am really interested in is the move over to SSD" as "to BSD " and nearly lost my coffee all over my laptop....

Also, when you buy an OS from Microsoft (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477389)

...it comes as a business platform, not an operating system. The difference is: the OS has to do its job flawlessly in the best possible way in order to minimize the amount of work (read: time, money) required, while the business platform is something that resembles an OS but also comes with a load of business services built around it in order to generate a flow of money.
The problem with the business platform is that it was built for the sole purpose of selling services, therefore when it eventually works and there's less demand for services (data recovery, repairs, etc.) it must be tagged as obsolete and replaced by something newer and shinier but still defective in order to generate again a strong demand for services.

This is the exact reason why Microsoft stopped developing XP the moment it started being a decent OS, pushing instead the adoption of that Vista crap, and also explains why anybody who cares for his/her data or systems should consider Linux, BSD and other operating systems built to work with no strings attached.

Money quote (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477437)

I really don't think there is anything real behind that whole intellectual property FUD machine.
You see, Linus, reality is vastly overrated...

Re:Money quote (0, Troll)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477545)

Well, he went on to explain how he pays no attention to the intellectual property issues. That's certainly a smart line to take. When the lawyers come knocking, they'll have him proper fucked before he even knows his pants are off.

For Make Benefit Great Nation of Finland (0, Flamebait)

TheScreenIsnt (939701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21477561)

Everything from cellphones and other small embedded computers that people wouldn't even think of as computers, to the bulk of the biggest machines on the supercomputer Top-500 list. That is flexibility.

I am just a noob, but it sound like this Linus guy is what you people are calling a "real fanboy". In my country, is easier to trust critic. In such cases we do not even read TFA.

Re:For Make Benefit Great Nation of Finland (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21477667)

I'm having difficulty determining whether you're being very sarcastic or being very stupid.
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