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Operating Systems Linux

Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop' 727

Posted by Soulskill
from the go-big-or-go-home dept.
darthcamaro writes: Linux has clawed its way into lots of places these days. But at the LinuxCon conference in Chicago today Linus Torvalds was asked where Linux should go next. Torvalds didn't hesitate with his reply. "I still want the desktop," Torvalds said, as the audience erupted into boisterous applause. Torvalds doesn't see the desktop as being a kernel problem at this point, either, but rather one about infrastructure. While not ready to declare a "Year of the Linux Desktop" he still expects that to happen — one day.
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Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

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  • by Your.Master (1088569) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @03:53PM (#47714855)

    What's he doubling down though? That term implies some stakes are being allocated.

    It goes on to say he doesn't think the desktop is a kernel problem. Well, that kind of means he's not spending specific resources on desktop, which means that wanting the desktop doesn't contradict "doubling down" on the device market.

    The actual part of the article that talks about investing is when he talked about shrinking Linux and about addressing the embedded market.

  • by jcdr (178250) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @04:42PM (#47715379)

    Packaging is a very big achievement. Even Android use packaging with APK file. Really, packaging is not the problem. I remember systems before packaging, this was a nightmare. Never return to this hell...

    The problem is to have popular tools able to build and publish proper *.deb package as easy as for *.apk packages. For example a good IDE where you find a "new C++ Debian package" button (and others language option of course), fill a simple form and start coding your application from a functional template. Then a "build" button should create the *.deb package and you should be able to debug it. The IDE should have a "Add Debian repository" button with a simple form to create a remote Debian repository using FTP or SSH. Finally the IDE should be able to publish your packages in your remote repository. Like for Android, the IDE should be able to build package compatible with a choice of releases.

    From my point of view, the packaging is not the problem. The lack of competitive developers tools advancement in the Linux distribution compared to Android is in my opinion far more the root cause if the problem. While structured very differently, *.deb and *.apk packages target almost the same goals from the system and user point of view.

    The situation in creating and publishing *.deb package is actually like if you create and publish *.apk packages all by hand using a lot of command line, instead of a easy and shiny IDE.

  • by orasio (188021) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @04:46PM (#47715417) Homepage

    Feeding the shill/troll here...

    Linux is was not, and is not meant to be anything but a hobby OS for someones spare time, or a companies spare time that they can develop a UI for and deploy their own flavors (android, Red Hat, Ubuntu, etc.) Linux is far too complicated for the everyday user to understand. Even something as simple as entering a static IP address sometimes requires going back to the terminal windows (command prompt) and setting it the hard way. And THAT's the problem with Linux! It was never meant to be a GUI OS just like it's parent, UNIX.

    That's why desktop users use Ubuntu.
    1 - Open network meny by clicking network indicator at the top bar of the desktop
    2 - Choose "edit connections"
    3 - Choose the connection you want to edit - click "edit"
    4 - Click "IPv4 settings"
    5 - Change IP

    Please, remind me how that's done in windows 8.1. Feel free to explain differences with windows 8, 7 , XP.

    The drivers for Linux SUCK and that's because it's an open source OS and there's no one "single" distro.

    Just like any other OS. Supported hardware works, and in this case, backwards compatibility is maintained. Unsupported hardware, shockingly, doesn't work.

  • Re:Infrastructure? (Score:4, Informative)

    by RabidReindeer (2625839) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @05:12PM (#47715641)

    The difference is that Linux desktop comes running out of the box.

    I had to use Windows 7 the other day for the first time in 6 months, repairing someone's failed Windows Update.

    After the system was all cleaned up, I clicked the login button. And waited. And waited. And waited. And watched the disk drive light flicker like nobody's business. And waited. All those "essential" accessories starting up, disk scans, mysterious machine-eating magic, all shouldering themselves between me and being able to do anything.

    I'm not in love with the current crop of Linux desktops, but at least I can begin using the bloody things within a few seconds of logging on.

  • by worf_mo (193770) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @05:15PM (#47715685)

    We need a free desktop OS. Linux is the only contender.

    Is [openindiana.org] that [pcbsd.org] so [reactos.org]?

  • by cmdr_tofu (826352) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @06:23PM (#47716193) Homepage

    So what you are saying is that NVIDIA and ATI don't release closed source binary-only drivers? I wonder what this whole tainted kernel thing is about then?

    I wrote a FUSE driver for a toy fs in Linux a VFS driver to do the same thing in kernel-space, and it's funny, I don't remember getting cooperation "from the " whole "Linux kernel team". Apparently Basil Brush and hairyfeet are involved in anti-Linux FUD.

  • by John Bokma (834313) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @07:46PM (#47716719) Homepage
    Neither do some geeks. I prefer my OS working reasonable well out of the box without the need (!) to have to reconfigure things. I don't want a Lego set for each and everything in my life; thank you!
  • by whoever57 (658626) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @07:51PM (#47716745) Journal

    In Linux, there is no ABI. Drivers have to be accepted and included in the kernel source tree. Yes really. It's that fucked up.

    This is complete BS. Drivers can be delivered as source and built on the target machine or as binaries with the appropriate packageing. For example, drivers can be delivered like the ElRepo kABI-tracking kmods [elrepo.org] (this includes such things as the Nvidia drivers), or installed via DKMS.

    What is true however is that, without an open-source shim layer, drivers have to be delivered as source, which some closed-source bigots hate.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 21, 2014 @12:15AM (#47717953)

    Linus can talk about "wanting the desktop" all he wants, but the sad fact is Linux will NEVER own the desktop.

    As big of a piece of shit as Windows 8 is, [insert Linux distro here] is worse in many ways. I've been trying to give this OS the benefit of the doubt for decades and these people still find ways to fuck everything up. Don't even get me started on Linux Mint. I had version 15 installed on my netbook, and went to install some programs recently through the package manager. Kept getting a bunch of "file not found" errors. Turns out that Mint, in their INFINITE GENIUS, decided to base their distro on Ubuntu's package repository. And guess what Ubuntu did, when the idiotically short "support period" for that version ("Faggotry Falcon" or "Idiotic Ibis" or some other cutesy name, can't remember which) expired? They just ALL of those fucking package files off their server! So guess what my only solution is if I ever want to update this OS or even install a fucking application from the repository? I get to wipe the hard drive and reinstall something else.

    Are you fucking kidding me? This is what I should expect and be happy with in glorious and amazing 2014? Wait, don't answer that--of course you're serious. This is just ONE example among countless others of how the Linux community's head is collectively shoved up its own asshole. ONE example or thousands. But try going to some IRC channel and being upset or enraged about the status quo, if you dare; they will give you excuse after excuse why it has to be this way, and here's some workarounds to try, just type [insert bullshit here] into the command line and edit [this fucking file] and wave a magic wand and tap your heels together and that's all you have to do. Still upset at the idiocy of it all? You'll be mocked and flamed and ridiculed and kicked off, told you are unworthy of Linux and should just go back to Windows.

    So go ahead assholes, just keep on dreaming about being the choice for desktop computing. It will never happen, as long as you continue releasing such PIECES OF SHIT, deluding yourselves into believing it's gold and being oh so confused as to why nobody is interested in installing your PILE OF SHIT.

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