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Slackware Likely To Drop GNOME Support 708

Posted by timothy
from the doesn't-stop-you-from-using-it dept.
An anonymous reader writes "After Hewlett Packard, who jumped off of supporting GNOME, Red Hat has followed by splitting their Desktop Linux out to Fedora which is community driven, and now distributions like Slackware have started to drop GNOME entirely in favor of KDE. Read more about their decision here. It looks like companies as well as distributions start focusing towards one solution." Patrick Volderking's quoted message doesn't announce a final decision to drop GNOME from Slackware, however -- and as the followups in that thread note, it could be interpreted as an endorsement of the good job done by Dropline in packaging GNOME for Slack.
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Slackware Likely To Drop GNOME Support

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  • by ArmorFiend (151674) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:13PM (#10487876) Homepage Journal
    Its about time one of them, I don't kare which one, got the upper hand and snowballed.
    • Its about time one of them, I don't kare which one, got the upper hand and snowballed.

      Apparently you do...
    • Unmasked! (Score:3, Insightful)

      by 3riol (680662) *

      "I don't

      kare"

      I thought this rejoicing had something suspicious to it...

      More seriously, this whole thing sounds sensationalist to me... RedHat adopting a community model with Fedora, and one fed-up maintainer for a redundant Slackware package do not a mass defection maketh. The HP bit might be worrisome, but.

      Most of all, I fail to see how one environment 'getting the upper hand' can possibly be construed as a Good Thing. Nobody serious clamors for less operating systems, less trouser styles, or less pen

      • Re:Unmasked! (Score:3, Insightful)

        by 10Ghz (453478)

        And GNOME is definitely the more professional and efficiently designed

        What makes GNOME "more professional and efficient"? Seriously?

        Comparing how "professional" they are.... For example, KDE-folks were aware that people disliked the default style (Keramik). But they were unwilling to change it in a minor release, since change like that would significantly affect the look 'n feel of the UI. They are changing it in 3.4 though, but only after alot of forethought.

        GNOME, on the other hand, had not problems c

  • I like GNOME... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AvantLegion (595806) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:14PM (#10487881) Journal
    ... but I think it's time to start seeing distros NOT contain every software package, desktop environment, etc, under the sun.

    Choice is good, but if we're going to have a million different distros, then we don't need every single one to have all million software packages too.

    • Re:I like GNOME... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by BenjyD (316700) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:16PM (#10487896)
      especially as Slack is basically a one-man distro. I'd rather have one good desktop than two buggy ones.
    • by Colin Smith (2679) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:24PM (#10487949)
      It's not compulsory.

    • Re:I like GNOME... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by supabeast! (84658) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:00PM (#10488167)
      That's exactly why I gave up on Linux. Default installs are crammed so full of cruft that many programs are made dependent on the cruft, meaning that to get a good setup I was compiling everything myself rather than using the Gnome/KDE dependent packages that were put together for everything with a GUI. At that point it made more sense to jump ship to OS X so I can at least have a really, really pretty OS to compile on.

      • by Naffer (720686) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @07:42PM (#10488774) Journal
        Sounds like you need to use Gentoo. As soon as KDE finishes compiling (We're on day three) I'm sure it'll be great!
    • by kuom (253900) on Monday October 11, 2004 @12:02AM (#10490106)

      I might get mod down for this... but here it goes.

      My company recently made the switch to Linux, replacing most of our Windows desktops with Linux (servers are all already *NIX).

      I was invovled with the project since the planning stage, and everyone seemed to agree that GNOME was the best choice because at the time (and it might still is), GNOME was the default desktop for most commercial distros. We thought to ourselves: "Oh well, these guys must know something that we don't." Most of us ran KDE, we gave GNOME a small test drive, decided that it looked easy enough and voted for it.

      Big mistake.

      First of all, GNOME lacked documentation on how to customize it. For gconfd, the GNOME web site only provided 2 links [gnome.org], one of which is dead, and the other was last updated in the year 2000. I asked around on IRC, posted on forums and newsgroups, emailed the GNOME developers, but I did not get any responses. I ended up taking apart all the %gconf.xml files myself, and saving a profile and writing an ugly script to convert it for every user. I am sure there is a better way, but either no one has done it, or nobody cared to share.

      What's worse, are the bugs. There are minor bugs that really put a dent on the overall Linux experience, especially for those users that we just switched over. Some of them have already heard about how great Linux is, and how "stable" it is. This only makes them angrier when their Nautilus window craps out and leaves them a core dump (shows up as a little bomb). I looked up some of the bugs, most were already filed, but none fixed. Just a little while ago, there was an email [gnome.org] on the nautilus list asking people to help fix bugs, so I think some of the developers agree with me that there are way too many outstanding bugs. When I asked some of the GNOME developers, the response I got then was to "upgrade to 2.6, it is much better than 2.4!". Sounds familiar? Yup, Microsoft told me the same thing.

      The similarity doesn't end there. I installed 2.6 and tested it. In my opinion, it was worse. Yes, the spatial view is kind of cool, but you know what it reminded me of? Windows 95. And there is no easy way to turn it off (I would have expected to have it as an option in the drop-down menus). It was not more stable either, but I WAS running an early build of it. I, again, complained to some people about how 2.6 did not quite live up to my expectations, and the answer? "Wait for 2.8, it's GREAT!"

      All of this is not helping the Linux desktop movement, especially in my company, where the management was already not really happy about switching over to an "inferior" OS. This just gives them more "evidence" to talk about: "We were right. My WindowsXP box crashed much less often. Linux IS a piece of crap!" But in reality, it was only Nautilus that was crapping out when connecting to a WebDAV mounted drive, not the underlying OS... but they won't understand that, would they?

      • I agree with a lot of your points and hope that Gnome developpers will try and fix them, but it's really unfair when you say "they told me to upgrade to 2.6 just like Microsoft!". You see, unlike Microsoft, Gnome is free (and Free). Hopefully developpers move forward. I don't want them to spend their time fixing bugs in 2.4 that don't apply to 2.6 (and now 2.8), I want them to enhance Gnome (this means also fixing bugs, of course) so that I can get a better desktop... for free!

        My point is not "it's OK when
        • You see, unlike Microsoft, Gnome is free (and Free).

          I highly doubt the time he spent upgrading all the users' desktops was 'free' for his company. You see, it's not always about up-front costs when you're not a hobbyist user. If Gnome does not Just Work, then it's definitely Not Free for entreprise customers. And this kind of flies in the face of the "Gnome is more professional" ranters. NBot to mention that it doesn't help at all with the OSS software adoption on the entreprise desktop.
  • by agent dero (680753) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:14PM (#10487883) Homepage
    This is probably a good idea, for every old joe-schmoe who installs linux, there can be more or less, a unified 'look'

    Being more partial to KDE than GNOME, I don't really see a problem with it, but packaging it is the way to go. If it's a package, that can be 'apt-got' (just for example ;)), then it probably makes life much easier for everybody.
  • The new fileselector pisses me off bad enough that I'd consider switching for the express purpose of spiting the gnome devs who cooked THAT one up.
    • Well, the fileselector is much better than the old gnome-file-selector.

      Now with gnome 2.8 and udev+dbus+hal the new fileselector rocks! Navigation is much quicker (due to the "directory buttons"). Try it a while, you will love it if you just forget the Microsoft/KDE training you had.

  • Excellent... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SaDan (81097) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:15PM (#10487887) Homepage
    Less bloat for the install. Now maybe we can get Slackware back down to one CD for installation!

    I've used KDE and Gnome before, even somewhat recently, but just can't stand the overhead. They both look great, but I'm much happier in Fluxbox. All I do is work in xterms all day anyways.

    From what I've heard, Dropline Gnome really is an excellent package. Makes sense for Slackware to drop Gnome support, if there's already an excellent source for a Gnome package for Slackware.

    Kudos to both Patrick V. and the Dropline Gnome maintainers! This is how open source should work.
  • ya got it wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Professor Cool Linux (759581) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:16PM (#10487892) Homepage
    its not that pat wants one DE its that gnome is taking too much effort for so little when dropline is good enough.
  • Not so bad! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Lispy (136512) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:18PM (#10487908) Homepage
    Most Slackware Gnome addicts use Dropline anyway since it's a very lively, well maintained project.
    If Todd of Dropline and Patrick work together this could be pretty good for both projects. Of course there is PAM integration in Dropline that Patrick dislikes and therefore he won't include it in the "official" CD set. Slack with Dropline is in fact the best Desktop-Linux Experience I ever had.

    Let's hope Todds servers can handle all the load following a slashdotting. ;-)
  • by Arghdee (813921) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:18PM (#10487909)
    Look out BSD! Gnome is coming your way! /karma to burn
  • by Ianoo (711633) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:19PM (#10487913) Journal
    I'm begining to face facts. I still think that GNOME looks better, and is, in many ways, easier to use. But KDE has even made huge progress in these areas in the last year (especially with Konqueror and new skins that finally *don't* look horrible, at least to my eye).

    GNOME still has nominally better applications in certain key areas compared to KDE, for example, Ximian Evolution. However, again, KDE has made enourmous progress in this area, all in the last year. It boggles my mind to see how quickly this gap has dissapeared in one area - compare Instant Messaging in KDE and GNOME two years ago (nothing vs Gaim) to now, Kopete has developed so quickly it's just amazing.

    One thing I did miss in KDE was Mozilla. But now, we can even use Gecko as a rendering engine in Konqueror, so even, like me, if you considered that KHTML was inferior to Gecko, this "advantage" for GNOME has now dissapeared (also thanks to Apple and Safari).

    I still think KDE needs some work, especially in the ease-of-use department (too many settings presented to the user, some intelligent hiding would be appreciated) - but this is improving. And, even as a GNOME user, I have to admit that C++ as a basis is a much superior choice to C, especially considering the kludge that seems to underly GNOME, separate libraries for GTK and GNOME applications with surprisingly few applications taking advantage of the GNOME-only libraries.

    If you look at the distributions on the shelves, SuSE is KDE, Mandrake is KDE, Linsipre is KDE (with modifications). You can't buy Fedora at PC World. Any new user getting interested in Linux would probably go here first, and by consequence they're going to get KDE.

    So whilst I will keep GNOME around for a while yet, and I think the "race" is far from over (who says there has to be a winner anyway? The whole concept of a "war" is just completely silly), if KDE goes on to become the defacto Linux desktop, then I won't shed that many tears. Of course, GNOME, I'm sure, will be around for a long while yet.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:40PM (#10488039)

      As a long time KDE user, I've recently realised the opposite. I tried out GNOME and found all the crap I'd read about it was totally untrue.

      For a start, Evolution was simply in a different league from apps like Kmail... *if* you want to do anything more than simple POP3/SMTP email. Kmail is badly broken when you try anything ambitious with it, and I was rather shocked to realise how many bugs and crashes I was subconciously working around. Evolution was a, forgive the choice of words, a revelation.

      As for the developer GNOME experience... I was up and coding with GTKMM (the c++ wrappers for GNOME and GTK) in no time. In fact, I found them better organised than much of KDE -- even though the underlying Qt is a fine class library and well documented. The KDE code above is... well... less than satisfactory. I've been quite surprised to find how well organised, designed and coded most of GNOME is. I really shouldn't have listened to all the slashdot bullshit over the years.

      The desktop itself was also impressively organised and simple. There are a few Nautilus niggles that irritate me... but I was up and running in no time. I even ran a small test with friends of mine, and found that GNOME's organisation and attention to user-experience was vastly superior to KDE (even the later versions).

      In summary, I've spent a few years listening to crap about GNOME. I wish I'd tried it earlier. As far as I'm concerned it is now a much better desktop than KDE -- and GNOME apps (with one exception: CD burning, for some reason these apps are a bit naff under GNOME) are considerably more advanced than those I got used to under KDE.

      • As a long time KDE user, I've recently realised the opposite. I tried out GNOME and found all the crap I'd read about it was totally untrue.

        But is it still true that there's about ten different configuration tools for the desktop, some of which do the same thing as the other? In addition to that, there's a preferences editor which suspiciously looks and feels like regedit. Or how about the "Ok" and "Cancel" button order?

        Oh well, at least anything is better than KDE's menu system. I think I've found at le
        • Or how about the "Ok" and "Cancel" button order?

          User research has conclusively demonstrated that the OK button--which is most likely to be the one hit, and is thus the default--should be on the right hand side, since the mouse spends most of its time on the right hand side of the screen, adjusting scrollbars and the like. That's why the Mac has always had it on the right.

          Windows did it bass-ackwards, unsurprisingly, and this has been blindly copied by those with no idea of what usability means, again u

        • by John_Booty (149925) <johnbootyNO@SPAMbootyproject.org> on Monday October 11, 2004 @12:44AM (#10490238) Homepage
          Or how about the "Ok" and "Cancel" button order?

          Even thought I've always used Windows and barely dabbled in other systems, I've always thought that "OK" belonged on the right like GNOME does it.

          To me, clicking "OK" means that I want to move forward in the application. "Cancel" means I want to back up or back out. Since most languages and grapshs go from left to right, it only seems natural that "OK" should be on the right.

          Especially since a lot of applications use "Wizard"-style dialog boxes when they present a series of dialog boxes to the user. In those dialog boxes, ">" is on the right. And "Next >>" is basically the same thing as "OK"...
    • by ReinoutS (1919) <<reinout> <at> <gmail.com>> on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:43PM (#10488055) Homepage
      I have to admit that C++ as a basis is a much superior choice to C,
      If you observe recent discussions on the GNOME mailinglists, you'll see that the GNOME community realises that it should be facilitated to create GNOME apps using higer level languages. Since there's a deadlock in the C#/Java debate, Python stands a good chance.
      SuSE is KDE, Mandrake is KDE, Linsipre is KDE (with modifications).
      Don't know about SuSE and Linspire, but Mandrakesoft does deliver a first class GNOME desktop with its distro, it's just not picked as the default option.
    • if KDE goes on to become the defacto Linux desktop, then I won't shed that many tears. Of course, GNOME, I'm sure, will be around for a long while yet.

      There won't be any "defacto Linux desktop": people have too many different ideas for where to take the desktop. And that's a good thing. KDE has two additional strikes against it: the license of the underlying toolkit (dual GPL/commercial) and the fact that it's C++ based.
    • Ludicrous. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jensend (71114) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @08:08PM (#10488918)
      One thing I did miss in KDE was Mozilla.
      Why? You aren't forced to use Konq when you use KDE any more than you're forced to use Galeon when you use Gnome. Mozilla doesn't depend on any Gnome libraries, and even if it did, you could still run it under KDE, just as many run Evolution under KDE. If a programmer's choice of API determines users' choice of application, something's wrong.
      I still think KDE needs some work, especially in the ease-of-use department (too many settings presented to the user
      So in other words, you want KDE to travel down the same "I'm sorry, I can't let you do that, Dave" user-hostility path which has been ruinous for Gnome?
      I have to admit that C++ as a basis is a much superior choice to C, especially considering the kludge that seems to underly GNOME, separate libraries for GTK and GNOME applications with surprisingly few applications taking advantage of the GNOME-only libraries.
      There are also loads of apps which use QT but no KDE libs. This is not a kludge, it's the only smart decision. If your project has little or no use for the vast DE-specific libraries- you just need a toolkit and a few associated niceties- why depend on the DE libs? For political reasons (like those of a gnocatan [sf.net] developer who fanatically and laughably claimed "even if we find we have no need for the Gnome-specific libs, we should depend on them anyway to try to keep anybody who uses a non-Free Software platform like Win32 from being able to use the program")? This has, of course, nothing at all to do with the choice of language for core components, and I have no idea what makes you think it does.
      If you look at the distributions on the shelves, SuSE is KDE, Mandrake is KDE, Linsipre is KDE (with modifications). You can't buy Fedora at PC World. Any new user getting interested in Linux would probably go here first, and by consequence they're going to get KDE.
      It's fairly rare to see any linux distributions on the shelves, and when you do, you usually see RedHat EL more than anybody else. Furthermore, while Linspire and Xandros could be said to be KDE distros, it makes little sense to apply that moniker to Mandrake or SuSE (especially since Novell bought Ximian and SuSE), which are fairly DE-agnostic. But that's irrelevant anyway- shelf sales of Linux are just about never to new desktop users, regardless of distro, and that doesn't look likely to change any time soon. People first try out Linux in other ways.
      If KDE goes on to become the defacto Linux desktop, then I won't shed that many tears.
      I will- and not because I dislike KDE (though I do). Why should every app be chosen for you when you choose a task bar/pager/launch menu or a way of displaying desktop icons? Fundamentally, that's all a desktop environment ought to be, and with standards like some of those developed at freedesktop.org determining how applications can expect to interact and depend on or provide specific resources, rather than which DE the user has installed determining that, hopefully things will move in that direction. People need to get past the megalomanical viewpoint where the desktop environment subsumes everything else under the sun. It leads to overengineered frameworks of frameworks, an unmaintainable monolithic environment, and uninformed end-users making decisions about and squabbling over things they don't understand at all (such as your bias for C++ over C based on something which was not only utterly irrelevant but entirely wrong).
  • by nzkoz (139612) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:21PM (#10487926) Homepage

    HP and Redhats actions are completely different. HP sponsored SCO's roadshow, so we know how relevant their opinion is. And Redhat's Fedora uses GNOME by default!


    Sure, slackware is considering dropping gnome support, but this isn't some kind of mass migration away from GNOME, look at what Novell & Sun base their linux desktops on.


    Kudos to the submitter for successfully trolling the editors

    • by jmorris42 (1458) * <jmorris@[ ]u.org ['bea' in gap]> on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:24PM (#10488326)
      > And Redhat's Fedora uses GNOME by default!

      As does Red Hat Entrprise Linux, which just released a beta of version 4 in four flavors:

      Enterprise Server
      Advanced Server
      Workstation
      Desktop

      So whoever submitted this article is either an ignorant slut or more likely a RedHat hating KDE zealot looking to spread a bit of FUD.

      > look at what Novell & Sun base their linux

      Exactly. RedHat has far too much invested in GNOME to give it up and Novel liked Ximian so much they bought em. So all you Suse fans better get ready to love GNOME as the default/only desktop.

      > Kudos to the submitter for successfully trolling the editors

      Not all that hard, especially on an otherwise dull weekend, guess they figured there isn't anything quite like a good old-fashioned GNOME/KDE flamefest to make the ad server go "cha-ching!".

      So in the spirit of fanning the flames......

      I'll state again that while I dislike several GNOME misfeatures and greatly dread Miguel's obsession for all things Microsoft, possibly leading to a nightmare scenario of a total .net rewrite, currently GNOME has a couple of killer advantages over KDE:

      1. Language independence. Being written in C has lead to GTK being easilly wrapped in a metric buttload of languages. KDE, being based on Qt is pretty much limited to C++ and closely related OO crap.

      2. Platform independence. You can port Gtk/GNOME apps to Windows without worrying about license issues. Not so for KDE/Qt. You can port FROM Windows to the Free world but never the other way. Windows ports of the major GNOME/Gtk apps means a large userbase to tap and when they convert to Linux/GNU/X they will have never seen a KDE app but will already be up to speed on Gimp, Gaim, OpenOffice and such.
  • by Alan Hicks (660661) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:23PM (#10487944) Homepage

    Until Pat weighs in on this publically I'm not certain about the validity of this claim.

    Gnome has long ago lost focus on its goals. It used to be geared towards linux users. It was meant to be a fast and customizable linux DE. Somewhere between 1.4 and 2.0 Gnome development changed. It lost sight of those goals and became geared towards newbies and end-users.

    Frankly, it never was as good as KDE at that. Being "user friendly" meant changing the reasons so many of us used and liked Gnome, alienating their base. Gnome became difficult to compile and even more difficult to package. Why can't Gnome install nicely using "make install DESTDIR=~/pkg"?

    Pat mentioned in that e-mail that about a third of his time is spent trying to support Gnome, which given the entire size of Slackware is apalling. Spending a third of your time supporting what is around a twelth of the system's size will wear out anyone.

    My personal hope is that the Gnome developers will wake up, get their asses in gear, and realize that they're not going to beat KDE on usability for newbies. They need to return to being the fast, custimizable linux DE. I suspect that most of Gnome's old users are now using a plain window manager or Xfce (good stuff).

  • by Noryungi (70322) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:23PM (#10487945) Homepage Journal
    Please note three things real quick before screaming:

    1. Patrick Volkerding has been wondering about Gnome since version 1.4 ... So far, he hasn't taken a decision yet...
    2. The same empty rumors have been circulating about KDE... KDE is still in Slackware...
    3. This rumor comes from Dropline Gnome (a site that provides the latest version of Gnome for Slackware), and is attributed to someone who is totally unkown on their site/forum.

    All in all, this is not a final decision, it's just a rumor . As long as Patrick Volkerding has not removed Gnome and annouced it either on the Slackware website or in the ChangeLog, I won't believe it...

    And this was typed on a Slackware 10 machine running XFCE... Which, IMHO, is so much better than Gnome... ;-)

    • Hi. I'm the guy that runs the BitTorrent tracker that's been used for the past few Slackware releases ( http://transamrit.net:8082/ ). So, I suppose this should give me a teensy bit of credibility.

      Having said that:

      1. Pat's said that he wasn't eager about adding GNOME in the beginning. He's still regretting it.

      2. Rumors about KDE? Well, they're just rumors. These aren't rumors about KDE, they're straight from The Man himself. Both of those emails mentioned in the DLG thread linked above are real. I've even clarified what I could in my post (as TransAMrit).

      3. Yes, the person that posted the first email appears to be unknown to the forum, as am I. So, you can say that I may be bullshitting as well, but... well, you've gotta believe someone, don't you? :)

      And you're right, this is not a final decision. However, it is NOT a rumor. It is a decision that Pat has said he needs to make.

      He just hasn't made it yet :)
  • Pat's arguments (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Andreas(R) (448328) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:24PM (#10487951) Homepage
    I think removing it would be the best thing for Slackware as it's become a maintainance nightmare (unlike nearly every other ./configure'ed source, GNOME doesn't build into packages easily with DESTDIR).

    This was Patricks' argument for dropping GNOME. Instead of dropping GNOME support, why not communicate with the GNOME community to resolve the issues? This is really a minor technial issue, and I'm sure things can easily be done to make including GNOME as easy as KDE.

    Anyway, I'm sure Slackware will never drop GNOME support. People will stop using the distribution in a second!

    This is probably why having a single "dicator" maintaining a distribution is a bad idea: He has very little contact with the community. It's not possible for other's to get involved with the development process either. It would be a trivial task to make someone else maintain the GNOME sources in Slackware.

    I like Slackware, running slack 10 now, but this makes me change my mind.

    • Re:Pat's arguments (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jameth (664111)
      "This is probably why having a single "dicator" maintaining a distribution is a bad idea: He has very little contact with the community. It's not possible for other's to get involved with the development process either. It would be a trivial task to make someone else maintain the GNOME sources in Slackware."

      Oh, yes. Of course having a dictator is bad, which is clearly evidenced by the fact that basically the only distro run by a central dictator is also the longest running distro, one of the most popular d
    • Re:Pat's arguments (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Dr.Dubious DDQ (11968)
      [...]Instead of dropping GNOME support, why not communicate with the GNOME community to resolve the issues? This is really a minor technial issue[...]

      Problem is, Gnome has been a pain to build from source for as long as I can remember (back in the early 1.x days). It's a tangled mass of difficult-to-resolve interdependencies among separately-distributed libraries.

      KDE doesn't seem to have any fewer libraries, but they appear to be developed and packaged in more coordinated groups (e.g. the "kdelibs" proje

  • non sequitur (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kingmundi (54911) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:30PM (#10487980)
    Latin phrase meaning, "It does not follow." The characteristic feature of arguments that fail to provide adequate support for their conclusions, especially those that commit one of the fallacies of relevance.

    "After Hewlett Packard, who jumped off of supporting GNOME, Red Hat has followed by splitting their Desktop Linux out to Fedora which is community driven, and now distributions like Slackware have started to drop GNOME entirely in favor of KDE."
  • by Coryoth (254751) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:30PM (#10487982) Homepage Journal
    What's up with the quality of trolling on Slashdot these days? Even the article summary trolls are poorly written and transparent these days.

    Fedora and Redhat Workstation default to using GNOME for the desktop. Novell hasn't cancelled Ximian's GNOME efforts, and is in fact working on improving GNOME in SuSE. Solaris and Sun JDS both use GNOME.

    Not that KDE isn't doing very well for itself as well, with SuSE being a very nice KDE oriented distro, not to mention Mandrake, and many others.

    Both are doing just fine - the prospect of some distros focussing on one is not surprising, but I'd hardly call it significant. The whole DE flamewar is mostly rather silly. FreeDesktop.org is doing a good job and increasing cooperation and shared functionality between, not just KDE and GNOME, but XFCE, WindowMaker/GNUStep, and even, to some extent whatever new DE Enlightenment eventually turns out. There are different desktop needs, and different DEs pursue very different goals. As long as FreeDesktop.org manages to continue its efforts to define some good shared base standards things will work just fine.

    Jedidiah.
  • by DrWhizBang (5333) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:41PM (#10488048) Homepage Journal
    OK, I confess I have seen some bad submissions, but what does HP dropping gnome (not that I have ever seen anything in news about this), Redhat's decision to spin off Fedora, and Patrick's decision that dropline is good enough for him to stop wasting his time with gnome's odd build procedures have in common? Troll usually appear in the comments, not the articles. Although timothy did make an effort to unspin the Slackware news somewhat, it is still crazy that he would post such flamebait.

    Just for the record - in case you aren't up on the latest news - Redhat still ships a desktop linux that uses gnome, and the Fedora project is still one of the strongest linux distributions, along with Debian and Suse (Novell), who both still include gnome and have no intentions of dropping it. Additionally, Sun and IBM are still committed to gnome.

    Disclaimer: I don't like KDE. I miss my old mac.
  • QT costs too much. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DAldredge (2353) <SlashdotEmail@GMail.Com> on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:46PM (#10488075) Journal
    The only way for KDE to win is if Novell buys and LGPL's QT. Otherwise it is too expensive for small / midsize shops to buy the licenses need to ship their QT projects.

    Try getting your manager to approve such a large purchase these days when GTK is free. It is very difficult.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Try getting your manager to approve such a large purchase these days when GTK is free.

      I did, and it was not difficult at all. The amount of development and more importantly code maintenance time saved by using Qt over competing solutions (wxWidgets and especially GTK+) is largely worth the license cost.

      You may find it interesting to know that a number of companies actually request that Trolltech does not publish the fact they're using Qt, because they see Qt as an essential competitive advantage they don
    • by nonmaskable (452595) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @07:28PM (#10488690)
      Only a "pretend" commercial shop would find the Qt cost too high. Any real shop would find it a bargin comparing the quality of the documentation alone.

      Sure, if your idea of a product is 100 copies at $10, it's a lot of money but that's a hobby and not a business.

      You might have some other legitimate reason for preferring Gtk, like for example your coders don't know C++, but blaming license cost is a joke.

  • Still miss Gnome 1.4 (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mercuryresearch (680293) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:50PM (#10488098) Journal
    I'm pretty much a gnome fan, but in reading the thread linked to in the story, I have to agree: every gnome since 1.4 has just felt "off" to me.

    And having dealt with the hell of compiling gnome on slack, I can't blame Pat a bit.

    Funny thing is, although I still use gnome, I've got one box running XFCE and it feels much more like gnome 1.4 did -- I'll probably migrate there as long as I can count on a few GTK+ apps (mostly gnumeric, gvim, and I'll toy with giving up evolution if needed.)

    KDE has just never done it for me. I can't put a finger on it, it just doesn't feel right or "open" (yes, I see the irony here.)

    The main things that originally attracted me to gnome were a few well-done apps and the clean simplicity of 1.4 -- if only the gnomesters would go back to this root.

    Whatever the case, I'd like to echo sentiments here (and on the forum linked to in the article) -- it'd be great if Pat would include a well-integrated Dropline package with slackware, and if Dropline would consider a second 'standard' slackware i486 distro, as this can be counted to run on practically all platforms (the i686 won't.)

  • I see it differently (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Bull999999 (652264) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @05:54PM (#10488127) Journal
    I'm sure, but I do believe it would be best to let Dropline produce Slackware's GNOME and quit wasting my own time with it.

    It doesn't seem like GNOME will drop off of the face of Slackware as the acticle suggest, but rather, the support for GNOME on Slackware will be off loaded to the Dropline project.

    BTW, I'm currently usuing Slackware 10 with GNOME 2.6 for my Linux box. I was looking at the Dropline version of GNOME 2.8 for Slackware. Have any of you tried it?
  • Stuck in the past? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by turgid (580780) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:01PM (#10488174) Journal
    I just upgraded from Slackware 9.1 to 10.0 today. I don't use a "desktop environment" for the simple reason that I like a nice lightweight window manager, WindowMaker [windowmaker.org], and xterm.

    Maybe I'm stuck in tha past? I've always found KDE to be slow, until I got a dual 2.8GHz Xeon PC at work. Modern versions of GNOME seem to be quite lethargic and large too. I can't afford to keep buying new PCs all the time, and I'm afraid my athlon XP2000+ will have to do me at least another year.

    I have an old PC in the house running Slackware 9.1 and GNOME 2.4 which is quite slow. The GNOME terminal runs like treacle on a cold winter's morning. If I fire up a traditional xterm, it's nice and fast.

    I really wish I had time to delve through the source to see just where all this bloat and slowness is coming from. It used to be that KDE was the fatty boom boom of desktop environments, but the GNOME people seem to have out-done the C++ folks in plain old C.

    What the heck is going on?

    Anyway, life's too short to look at boring desktop environment code. Life's also too short to run a bloaty, slow desktop environment.

    I'll just stick to a plain window manager and some xterms.

  • HP + GNOME (Score:5, Informative)

    by jdub! (24149) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:46PM (#10488449) Homepage
    HP cancelled their GNOME on HP-UX port, which should tell you more about HP-UX than GNOME... ie. that HP-UX is not their leading workstation OS anymore, so it doesn't require active graphical desktop development. HP continue to be involved in the GNOME Foundation, to great effect.
  • GNOME (Score:3, Interesting)

    by hackus (159037) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:51PM (#10488474) Homepage
    Issues that caused me to switch to KDE circa Redhat 8...

    1) Miguel de Icaza.

    I will never forgive him for beginning work on Mono, fracturing the limited number of developers for the GNOME Desktop. Setting it back probably years behind KDE. For What? A Microsoft red herring planted there strategically to insure any Linux Desktop application framework built on Mono could be stopped easily using copyright, DMCA and patent law....SHOULD it become too popular.

    2) The Lack of decent or equivalent KDE development tools. KDevelop? KDesigner? KCacheGrind? KDevelop Assistant? The list is endless and the above applications will squash anything the GNOME community has like a grape to develop fine bugfree native Linux applications.

    If you do not have a coherent development framework how the hell can you develop anything decent? No wonder the Distro/End User GNOME community is fundamentally stressed out. These sorts of complaints do not exist in the KDE community.

    There are different ones. :-)

    But they do not involve resorting to talk out in the open about dumping a desktop linux initiative such as GNOME. This is VERY serious.

    The last gaffe that happened of this sort was xfree86....which is now relegated to the dust bin of history. But, AT LEAST it was reborn better than ever!

    Perhaps, what is required....is a FORK of the GNOME Desktop project? A fork of GNOME may breath new life into addressing some of its ill's...one of which is listed below...

    3) The Object Oreintation Thingy. I am really sorry if a lot of the GNOME developers think OOD when it comes to the GUI apps is so passe' I think GObject library is a throw back to the stone age, personally. I mean for Christ sake, if your going to reinvent the Object Oreintation of your GUI framework just because you cannot/do not/will not learn C++, you get the build complexity we keep reading about that is killing the GNOME release cycles.

    This is a CLUE: Adopt, understand and learn how to build a OOD/OOP conceptual framework for your interfaces and DUMP GObject. Stop reinventing what C++ already gives you. With that RANT I present Exhibit A:

    #include

    struct GTypeModule;
    struct GTypeModuleClass;
    gboolean g_type_module_use (GTypeModule *module);
    void g_type_module_unuse (GTypeModule *module);
    (ad naseum)

    I really FEEL for you if you have to deal with the kind of crap above.

    4) Finally, though I am not a GNOME fan by any means, I would hate to see the distro's...drop GNOME. It is too early to decide on a Linux Desktop architecture, per se, because there are not enough mature options out there. If you cut too many options out too early you kill a lot of innovation. That is something I feel will happen if distro's start telling people we are not supporting GNOME, if you want it go somewhere else and get the RPM's....and GOOD LUCK! We need options to fight Microsoft when they start excercising their massive patent portfolio. Which IS going to happen by the way when they start running out of money....which won't be too far off into the future. Most American companies in the software biz can't innovate their way out of a paper bag, so expect Microsoft to radically step up the Patent attacks in early 2006.

    Don't ask how I know that year either.

    I won't tell. :-)

    -hackus
  • by dangermen (248354) on Sunday October 10, 2004 @06:53PM (#10488485) Homepage
    I use packages that require GTK and KDE. My single biggest gripe about KDE and Gnome is that for me to function, I need 400megs of crap if I want to make sure I have a good foundation for me work. This is just retarded. Now is the time for all good distributions to merge for the sake of the open-source community. Both packages are excellent. Time to make the community more mean and lean, I don't care if it is knome or gde, just pick a fricken API.
  • by reallocate (142797) on Monday October 11, 2004 @08:34AM (#10491985)
    This "story" highlights the failure of so-called journalism taking place on sites like Slashdot.

    There's been no verification that the remarks attributed to Slackware's Pat. V. are true. We simply have a single pseudonymous post to one online forum.

    Where's the attempt to check with Pat V. to see if he actually made those remarks? Nowhere that I can see.

    Slashdot, among others, lathered itself in sanctimonious glee when CBS was duped by a bogus memo. How is this any different?

"Success covers a multitude of blunders." -- George Bernard Shaw

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