back to article You GNOME it: Windows and Apple devs get a compelling reason to turn to Linux

The biggest open source story of 2017 was unquestionably Canonical's decision to stop developing its Unity desktop and move Ubuntu to the GNOME Shell desktop. What made the story that much more entertaining was how well Canonical pulled off the transition. Ubuntu 17.10 was quite simply one of the best releases of the year and …

  1. frank ly Silver badge

    snap/flatpak/.appimage

    I've been using .appimage excecutables for a while now, which are essentially unmanaged (at the user end) self-contained applications with no dependencies on installed libraries, etc. Does anyone know if there are major technical or security differences between snap, flatpak and .appimage applications?

    1. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

      Well for one thing you will have a lot less spare space - every image will contain its own libraries so there will be multiple copies of them rather than the single one that is really needed and that leads on to the problem of security - when a security problem is found normally the library would be updated and all will be well but every image will have to be updated and then tested and then downloaded.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

        Yep, it's like throwing away all the goodness of package management and open source to go full Windows. At best, it allows developers to install parallel versions, at it's worse it's how to wrap up a massive mess so you don't have to sort it out. Just give the mess to everyone in a container! Thus solving the problem forever...FOREVER!

    2. teknopaul Bronze badge

      Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

      Major technical difference is no access to the filesystem. Its a dealbreaker for me.

      Unix = everything is a file.

      You get /var/snap and thats it. So you cant write an editor for example.

      No access to /proc to check memory usage etc etc.

      Also the permissions system is really stupidly restrictive, and worse its getting more restrictive not less.

      Like that kernel fiasco recently where linus had a rant about sectypes breaking stuff by default. Snap is tha problem multiplied by one thousand.

      1. tekHedd

        Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

        "You get /var/snap and thats it."

        Flatpak can have similar issues. I've been using monodevelop in flatpak, and it includes /usr/bin/perl, which hides the system /usr/bin/perl with external commands, which means I can't use any CPAN modules. Whatever the app packager decides in terms of sandboxing, that's what you're stuck with as an end user.

        For now, I still think AppImage kicks flatpak's butt all over the place. I suppose that could change now that it's trendy. :/

        1. MyffyW Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

          I love IKEA, but I'm not sure flatpack is always the answer ....

          [mines the red duffel coat with the marmalade sandwich in each pocket]

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

      "You GNOME it: Windows and Apple devs get a compelling reason to turn to Linux "

      "Canonical pulled Ubuntu 17.10 downloads from its website last month due to a "bug" that could corrupt BIOS settings on some laptops. "

      This must be some use of the word compelling that I was previously unaware of. Pretty much no one uses Linux on a desktop unless they have to.

      1. auspex

        Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

        Really? Even my computerly-challenged wife installed Ubuntu on her machine _without my help!_

        1. Field Commander A9

          Re: snap/flatpak/.appimage

          Really? Even my computerly-challenged wife installed Ubuntu on her machine _without my help!_

          These kind of users are better of with an iPad Pro than an actual PC.

  2. nematoad Silver badge
    WTF?

    Discuss

    "...making GNOME Shell the de facto standard Linux desktop."

    Citation required.

    Looking on Distrowatch Ubuntu is sitting on 1490 hits per day whereas Linux Mint is on 2615 and I don't suppose that many people running Mint are using anything other than Cinnamon or Mate.

    This piece sound like a panegyric to Gnome and I for one would like the figures to back up the author's statements.

    1. m3l7

      Re: Discuss

      Are you basing your statements on distrowatch clicks? lol

      1. nematoad Silver badge

        Re: Discuss

        "Are you basing your statements on distrowatch clicks? lol"

        Do you have an alternative source?

      2. oneguycoding

        Re: Discuss

        Heh heh, yeah, (s)he wants numbers dammit! Even if it's distrowatch that is being used as the benchmark for desktop installs.

        If I wanted to live in 2003 I'd definitely be settling on Mint or Cinnamon.

        1. Mage Silver badge

          Re: live in 2003

          Last sane versions of Windows, (server 2003), MS Office. Nokia Communicator not quite dead, they might have gone with S80 / Crystal / Touch instead of S60 abomination.

          1600 x 1200 4:3 LCDs on Laptops and better.

          What is so great about 2007 to 2017 in the world and IT?

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Discuss

      "I don't suppose that many people running Mint are using anything other than Cinnamon or Mate"

      KDE

    3. Mage Silver badge
      Linux

      Re: Cinnamon or Mate, not just Gnome

      Linux Mint (18.3) now has flatpacks on Mate. I think Cinnamon too.

      It's #1 on Distrowatch and Ubuntu is #4.

      Gnome is probably possible on Mint, but it's not a default option.

    4. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Discuss

      "This piece sound like a panegyric to Gnome"

      right, and I was thinking about Mate (and why I use Mate instead of Gnome 3) while reading it...

      Cinnamon seems to have the best "windows-like" appearance, and Mate the best overall [my $.10 worth]. Gnome 3 is what the millenial "shove it up your rectum" types *FEEL* we should have. Same *kinds* of people seem to drive Firef*x Australis and Chrome's UI.

      nevermind "the rest of us" particularly power users...

      1. nijam Silver badge

        Re: Discuss

        > Gnome 3 is what the millenial "shove it up your rectum" types *FEEL* we should have

        With the possible exception of the now-defunct Unity, Gnome 3 (specifically, its front-end, Gnome Shell) is the worst desktop available to Linux users. Windows 8 brought the same kind of uselessness to Microsoft's clientele.

      2. John Robson Silver badge

        Re: Discuss

        "Cinnamon seems to have the best "windows-like" appearance"

        My car has the best 'crash like' brakes available...

    5. MyffyW Silver badge

      Re: Discuss

      Don't get me wrong, Gnome is a fine desktop. But having used a lighter desktop (LXDE) on my carry-anywhere laptop I rather appreciate the "let-a-thousand-flowers-bloom" approach.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Death by 100 distributions

      Looking on Distrowatch Ubuntu is sitting on 1490 hits per day whereas Linux Mint is on 2615

      Maybe looking at distrowatch regularly signifies that you're not happy with your OS and are thinking of switching?

      Mint = 2617

      Ubuntu = Ubuntu + Lubuntu + Ubuntu MATE + Xubuntu + Ubuntu Budgie + Kubuntu + Ubuntu Studio + Emmabuntüs + Ubuntu DP = 3438

      PS. Am typing this on Mint MATE.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

    Don't worry, they'll tell you.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

      Not sure why you typed the word "Arch" in the middle of that sentence....

    2. Androgynous Cupboard Silver badge

      Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

      Based on the comments here, it's the same for Mint.

      Hint for above poster: DistroWatch users are a self-selecting subset of Linux users primarily interested in which distro they're using. Everyone else just wants something that works reasonably well and doesn't feel the need to bang on about it.

      1. detuur
        Linux

        Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

        Literally no one of the daily Linux users I know, all Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora and even Arch/Gentoo users, really pays attention to distrowatch (or even knows what it is). Mint being popular on distro watch says just one thing, which is that it's popular with distrowatch frequenters.

        The most popular distro on 4chan's /g/ is Gentoo but you don't see me peddling that as some kind of proof that it's the most popular distro _out there_.

        1. 'andsorfme'andle

          Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

          "Literally no one of the daily Linux users I know, all Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora and even Arch/Gentoo users, really pays attention to distrowatch (or even knows what it is). Mint being popular on distro watch says just one thing, which is that it's popular with distrowatch frequenters."

          I used Fedora for years - Fedora 5? being the first. Eventually I did get a little tired of issues/problems, and, having consulted Distrowatch and a few other sites, where the general advice seemed to be "if you want it to just work, use Mint" - I switched to Mint, and have had far fewer issues (on the same hardware).

          YMMV.

          Depends what you are after....

      2. FIA

        Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

        Hint for above poster: DistroWatch users are a self-selecting subset of Linux users primarily interested in which distro they're using. Everyone else just wants something that works reasonably well and doesn't feel the need to bang on about it.

        It's not a very good hint though as they were just asking for some evidence to backup the assertion that Gnome is the de facto standard Linux desktop.

    3. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

      How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

      Don't worry, they'll tell you.

      9 out of 10 Arch users will tell you to Read the Manual first, though.

      1. nijam Silver badge

        Re: How do you know if someone uses Arch Linux?

        > 9 out of 10 Arch users will tell you to Read the Manual first

        ...and rightly so.

  4. joma0711

    I have to say I only moved permanently to linux desktop (having been a linux server wrangler for a decade or so) when i found the cinammon and mate desktops. Thank you Mint project :-)

    custom centos build for sure, but cinnamon on hardware and mate on interactive VMs every time. I look at gnome every few months, but it still looks like a poor win 8.1 shell clone to me...

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "I look at gnome every few months, but it still looks like a poor win 8.1 shell clone to me."

      I thought that was Unity.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Trollface

        Unity would be a "poor win 8.0 clone"

        (or maybe the other way around? I think Unity came first...)

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        I think that's right. Windows 8 (and beyond) seems to have borrowed many of its worst aspects from Unity. Fair disclaimer, though -- I absolutely hate Unity, but merely strongly dislike Gnome.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      KDE on hardware, bash on VMs here.

  5. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Facepalm

    So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

    Colour me unconvinced. Gnome is years behind all the other major GUI systems and isn't even that popular among Linux diehards – not that these are the people who do lots of GUI development.

    Now, Android on a desktop is a more interesting and likely development.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

      With you until you got to Android. Android? Seriously?

      1. Mage Silver badge

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        Android?

        It looks nice and is OK for a phone. Poor on a large tablet. Erratic application support for printing and external storage. They are gradually getting actual GUI features (not appearance) to about the level of Win 3.1 / Win95.

        A USB ethernet dongle works on DHCP, but no interface to settings on any Android version I have.

        Android is a work in progress, permanently in Beta. The Android TV seems designed for people at a desk using a 24" HD screen and only apps and streaming. The program guide too small font, sorting stations (esp on built in sat tuners) a disaster and GUI generally puts broadcast use & input selection far less important than streaming/apps. It's no use on a 50" 4K TV at 2m viewing distance (average bed or lounge settee viewing).

        Also the Google T&C you MUST agree to on Android TV before tuning are probably illegal in EU.

        Android is increasingly Google Spyware (as is Chrome Browser, Google Analytics, Chrome OS). They don't need streetview WiFi slurp now.

        Android is a GUI for Mobile gadgets & essentially Google controlled Apps (Their version of Java on their version of JVM, Davik). The underlying OS is based on Linux based on Linux Kernel.

        Android and Chrome OS are inferior to Linux and ANY decent GUI/Desktop. Both assume the Cloud. I'd prefer Linux on any 7" HD or larger tablet, especially if using to create content, rather than purely consume.

      2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        With you until you got to Android. Android? Seriously?

        Well, only in the sense that we'll probably seem more desktop systems with Android than Linux ones. We all know it isn't ready for prime time yet but it has the advantage of the apps: want MS Word on a non-MS machine? Well, with Android you can have it. I also think we'll see Samsung developing and pushing DeX for enterprise. This won't suit everyone but I think the market is big enough for Samsung to want to continue it.

        Google is also, of course, trying to merge the castrated Chrome OS with Android for the kidz but it probably won't be until Fuchsia is around that we'll see what's really possible. 'Course Fuchsia might remove much of the remaining ties to Linux…

        1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

          Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

          I think the clue to the purpose of Fuchsia is in the name.

      3. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        "Android? Seriously?"

        ACK - the button-icon-menu (think 'Unity' yeah) interface that 'droid is famous for works very well on phones and devices (like slabs) without keyboards. Once you have a mouse and keyboard, it *STINKS*.

        Apple has OS/X _and_ iOS with different interfaces that make sense for the use case. "Everybody Else" (Especially Micro-shaft) needs to STOP IT with the "one interface" crap.

        If 'droid had a MATE-LIKE interface on the desktop, though, I'd be VERY happy with it! That assumes it's not 2D FLATSO. 2D FLATSO is a _major_ DEAL BREAKER with me. But Google has a history of that with Chrome. So I doubt their internal culture of arrogance would excrete ANYTHING ELSE...

      4. timrichardson

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        I'm a lot, lot less sceptical about Android on the desktop after being the owner of a recent Chromebook. Most reviews of Android on Chromebooks are lukewarm, and I didn't expect to find more than a curiosity, but the actual experience has been very good. Highly stable, and very usfeul.

      5. ibmalone Silver badge

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        I left Gnome when it started to turn into TouchWiz on a desktop. Maybe that's improved now, but it wasn't so much the look, it was that if you tried to suggest usability wasn't perfect or some things were steps backwards then you were WRONG and they were RIGHT. Don't miss that much.

    2. Mike Moyle Silver badge

      Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

      More to the point:

      "Combine a de facto standard desktop with a standard means of packaging applications and you have a platform that's just as easy to develop for as any other, say Windows or macOS."

      The real question is, will it be as easy to USE as the others? Because, if the words "apt-get" or "go to the command line and type..." appear anywhere in standard user documentation then we can be fairly sure that "The Year of Linux on the Desktop" will, once again, be "Not This Year".

      1. Chemist

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        "Because, if the words "apt-get" or "go to the command line and type...""

        If you don't want to use the command-line use a distro where you don't have to - there are plenty available. Ditto with updates

        1. auspex

          Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

          > If you don't want to use the command-line use a distro where you don't have to

          Which would be pretty well all of them. But he has a point. While you can install your software from a GUI interface on every Linux desktop I know of, we don't generally put that in the documentation, because there are so _many_ ways to do it. It's cleaner to specify apt, or yum, or the package manager of choice, from a CLI.

      2. nijam Silver badge

        Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

        So, exactly how is "apt" (apt-get is obsolete, obviously) any worse than the maze of cryptically-named menu entries you have to navigate through to make Windows update (or, more importantly these days, *not* update)?

        I ask out of interest, but as I write this, I realise I won't get an interesting answer.

        1. Naselus Silver badge

          Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

          "So, exactly how is "apt" (apt-get is obsolete, obviously) any worse than the maze of cryptically-named menu entries you have to navigate through to make Windows update (or, more importantly these days, *not* update)?"

          It involves typing, and remembering a command-line input that isn't basic spoken English. This is literally a deal-breaker to 90% of the computer-using population.

          The inability of most Linux users to accept this is one of the reasons why the YOLOTD never comes.

          1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

            Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

            Most of the time it involves copy-paste, as opposed to typing.

            The only typing would be to input your password for "sudo".

            I find this much faster than following directions on what menus to open in Windows (version dependent, not to mention language dependent).

            Granted, I know the shell well enough to be able to identify if the command line is legit. This is where trusted sources of advice comes in. (Not that different from when using Windows. Don't do whatever someone on YouTube says will be great.)

        2. Mike Moyle Silver badge

          Re: So, 2018 will be the year of the Linux desktop because of Gnome?

          "So, exactly how is "apt" (apt-get is obsolete, obviously) any worse than the maze of cryptically-named menu entries you have to navigate through to make Windows update (or, more importantly these days, *not* update)?"

          Basically, if you want Linux to become more than a niche OS -- and I'm assuming here that you are comfortable with the command line and likely comfortable building computers and/or modifying system files to get your machine to work just the way you want it -- you need it to meet potential users where THEY are, rather than making them come to where YOU are. Would they be more competent and independent computer users if they knew more about their machine's internals? Probably so, but they wouldn't necessarily be HAPPIER, and people want to use their machines -- be they computers, cars, or cook-stoves -- to perform the tasks that THEY want to do to make themselves happier. There is a reason that most modern microwave ovens come with a "one touch = one minute on high power" button or a "Popcorn" button, as well as the plethora of settings for time, power intensity, etc. It's because most people just want to be able to heat something for three minutes and enjoy it in as easy a manner as possible. It's why car manufacturers figured out how to provide automatic starters, spark-timing, and shifting; because most people just wanted to GO somewhere with minimal effort. The enthusiast who enjoys tinkering under the hood has his place, but he is NOT the mass market. The mass of computer users just want to be able to shop online, email their friends, and maybe see the video of the new grandkid. They don't want to tinker under the hood, they don't want to learn a new language, and -- with rare exceptions -- they don't think that doing either of those will make them happier.

          I used to work in tech documentation. Among other gigs, I worked for an -- at the time -- Fortune 400 computer manufacturer, for a networking hardware startup, and for an automobile-security accessory manufacturer. And in literally EVERY case, the project engineers were convinced that their designs were so intuitively obvious that documentation wasn't necessary. (Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed!) People who are highly technically literate in a particular field often forget that not everyone is nor cares to be and often forget their stumbling early days ("It's all so SIMPLE once you get used to it!"). But those latter "I just want to do 'X'," people are the ones who will take a product mass-market. The technical leader -- the explorer -- has to be the first out into the frontier, but if the greater population -- the homesteaders, if you will -- choose not to follow because the explorer insists that the only way to go is on foot with a bedroll, a frying pan, and a knife, the migration into the new land will be stalled before it starts.

          That is where the larger take-up of the Linux desktop has stalled. The mass market doesn't want to worry about WHICH "repository" they need to go to to get an application ("A 'repository...?' Isn't that one of those things Gramps used to use when he couldn't go...?"); they want to go to THE app store. The. The One. The Only One. Sneer at the Apple "Walled Garden" all you want but, with their App Store, as long as you know WHAT you want to do, they made it just about as easy to find and get a HOW that'll do it as it is possible to get. And they don't want to know from "dependencies", "SUDO", or anything else that gets between their "what" and their "how"; they just want to do their "what".

          Don't assume that they're stupid; in general, they're at least smart enough to judge whether a tool will let them do their what as easily as possible -- by THEIR terms -- and go elsewhere if it won't.

          "I ask out of interest, but as I write this, I realise I won't get an interesting answer."

          Sorry to be boring.

    3. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  6. WonkoTheSane
    Linux

    Unimpressed by Gnome

    It seems that every time Gnome releases an update, at least one feature or setting that everybody uses has been removed for "reasons".

    This is why I switched to Kubuntu (Ubuntu with KDE) when they announced the switch.

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

      Not to mention GNOME's apparent dependency on systemd these days. But as you say, the most annoying aspect if the removal of useful features because some developer would rather cull code than fix bugs.

      Do you still get GNOME for other non-systemd systems like Solaris, OpenBSD, etc?

      1. Dinsdale247

        Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

        GhostBSD 11.1 (FreeBSD 11.1) is a Gnome based release. TrueOS (FreeBSD HEAD/CURRENT) supports Gnome but I use their home-grown Lumina desktop (it's new software, it takes some time to get used to).

        GhostBSD is nice and stable. I enjoy using Gnome but do most thing command line. I need three things from a desktop: A GUI web browser, multiple terminal emulation, and Geany (Yes, I can use vim. byte me). Everything else is fluff. If I want fluffy, I want wobbly windows so my preference is for KDE.

    2. Carlie J. Coats, Jr.

      Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

      GNOME 3.28 Removes Option to Put Icons on the Desktop --

      http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2018/01/gnome-desktop-icons-removed-3-28

      1. Mark #255
        Coat

        Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

        Reading the comments, it seems that the (old, unmaintained, switched-off-by-default, won't-work-on -Wayland) option to put icons on the desktop is to be replaced with an extension to provide the same functionality.

        (Mine's the one with the "Not upgrading from 14.04 until 18.04's been out a few months" lapel pin.)

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

          "won't-work-on-Wayland"

          THAT explains it! @#$$%(*#@$&* WAYLAND!!! (that thing needs to *DIE* by being *MURDERED* *TO* *DEATH* and *BURNED* *WITH* *FIRE*)

          Wayland: NUKE IT 'TILL IT GLOWS, then SHOOT! IT! IN! THE! DARK!!! (and buried under tons of concrete in a grave next to systemd)

        2. auspex

          Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

          No, it's NOT being replaced by an extension--at least not by the Gnome team. The Gnome team decided to drop support for icons on the desktop, with NO plan to replace the functionality. So, a Gnome developer promised to write an extension.

          If Gnome had announced that they were replacing the desktop-icon support (from Nautilus) with an extension to do the same thing, and not pulled the nautilus support until the extension was ready, nobody would have batted an eyelash.

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

        "GNOME 3.28 Removes Option to Put Icons on the Desktop"

        Then *WHY* *HAVE* *A* *DESKTOP* if you can't put icons on it? What ARE you going to put on it, *ADS*???

        1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

          Gnome is still the trainwreck that started with V3.0

          I have tried and tried to get to like it but frankly, it sucks big time.

          Now I run CentOS with Cinamon.

          The Gnome devs really must be smoking some serious shit to think that the crap they are releasing is acceptable. For one thing, 'Ease of Use' went by the wayside years ago.

        2. dajames Silver badge

          Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

          Then *WHY* *HAVE* *A* *DESKTOP* if you can't put icons on it? What ARE you going to put on it, *ADS*???

          Why put icons on the desktop when, most of the time, there are going to be application windows obscuring them? Surely it's better to put the functionality that might be accessed through desktop icons onto toolbars or menus or something that won't be covered up by application windows and so are always accessible?

          Not that I have any objection to a few icons on the desktop -- it's important that users should have the choice -- but I really don't think they're all that useful.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

          > Then *WHY* *HAVE* *A* *DESKTOP* if you can't put icons on it? What ARE you going to put on it, *ADS*???

          Win 10 has arrived at my workplace. Lock screen has ads. It says something about the past decade that I was unsurprised.

      3. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

        Re: Example in today's news: Unimpressed by Gnome

        "GNOME 3.28 Removes Option to Put Icons on the Desktop"

        Read your link and had a laugh!

        Just show the limited mindset of some of the people working on these things. No grasp of the wider consequences of their fiddling at all.

    3. Tom 38 Silver badge

      Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

      I switched to MATE, and still changes in Gnome affect me. The latest one is that libvte (a Gnome library used by Gnome and MATE to implement terminal applications) lost the ability to set the selection by word characters AND they changed the stock selection by word characters to not include ":", which means that when you double click to select a URL, it doesn't select the protocol anymore.

      What was more confusing was that MATE terminal still has the relevant config option, but as libvte isn't reading it anymore, you can put whatever the fuck you want in there and nothing will change.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

        ACK on the influence by Gnome 3 "developers" on Mate. I have trouble running certain mate applications (like pluma, for one) when I do the following:

        su - differentuser

        export DISPLAY=localhost:0.0

        pluma &

        it gripes like hell at me and won't load the settings properly. same with Atril.

        Additionally, if I'm running a fluxbox desktop via tiger VNC (so I can user vncviewer and debug X11 applications from within a GUI without the server hanging) and I run 'mate-terminal' I can't save the settings, nor can I run it without the "--disable-factory" paremeter [or it crashes]. this is on FreeBSD by the way, and this USED to work PERFECTLY a couple of years ago with gnome 2 and so I have to ask, W.T.F.? dd the Mate devs _DO_ to make *THIS* a problem, now? I suggest they followed _SOMETHING_ _CRAPPY_ that the Gnome 3 "developers" did, probably with gsettings or systemd or both.

    4. NoneSuch
      Linux

      Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

      "This is why I switched to Kubuntu (Ubuntu with KDE) when they announced the switch."

      I've been on Kubuntu for many years now. Gnome never grabbed my attention. It always seemed the blander choice.

      1. Zolko

        Kubuntu ?

        try KDE Neon (that's the latest LTS Ubuntu with the latest KDE Plasma Build).

        Best choice so far, may-be even better than Mint

        1. simonb_london

          Re: Kubuntu ?

          Especially since Mint are dropping KDE support. Killjoys!

    5. hititzombisi

      Re: Unimpressed by Gnome

      I am convinced that Gnome project will achieve its founding target when the Desktop on Linux consists of a single application with a single button and a single mouse action to click on it.

      1. DougS Silver badge
        Facepalm

        @hititzombisi - single application with single button

        And that application will be emacs, after it has been integrated into systemd.

        1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

          Re: @hititzombisi - single application with single button

          That tiny little application called Emacs? I know, it used to be seen as massive and overladen, and look now! Now it looks tiny and spartan compared to the bloat we are used to!

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So developers will turn to an OS which has a market share of around 1.5% and whose users have historically been unwilling to pay for software? Aye, right

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > So developers will turn to an OS

      Not really, I would say it's about 40/60 Linux / OSX (or whatever Apple's system is called nowadays). They produce the software that makes things such as posting your very comment possible.

      While having nothing much against Microsoft's operating system per se, in terms of sheer usability it strikes me as a throwback to the 90s and I have to wonder by what feat of marketing people are still using it.

      Bit like Ubuntu, mind.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "While having nothing much against Microsoft's operating system per se, in terms of sheer usability it strikes me as a throwback to the 90s"

        A throwback to the 90s to early 2000s would be fine. That's when they got it right give or take a few things such as multiple workspaces.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > A throwback to the 90s to early 2000s would be fine. That's when they got it right give or take a few things such as multiple workspaces.

          Back in the 90s ubiquitous networking wasn't a thing yet at the consumer level. Getting network transparency in Windows still seems to be like pulling teeth.

          A few other random things that I can see no justification for:

          * Very limited keyboard input choices, compared to Linux and Mac. It seems that you are limited to the basic 100 or so keyboard symbols, and from there it is Alt + numeric keypad all the way. If you need proper typography without using your word processor as a crutch, that is kind of important.

          * Weird limitations in file naming and case conventions (from memory, no colons, no case sensitivity, no question marks, …)

          * Weird file locking limitations built right into the OS?

          * Lack of multiple workspaces.

          * Single clipboard with no history.

          * Lack of basic tools, such as a working text editor, SSH client (and SFTP?)

          * Lack of proper synchronisation between phone and desktop (clipboard sharing, making and taking calls from the desktop.

          * The strange patching system that prevents people from shutting down or logging into their laptops. Or forces them to reboot.

      2. Mage Silver badge
        Flame

        a throwback to the 90s

        No, WIn 3.x, NT3.5x, Win9x and NT4.0 were all FAR more usable than Win 10.

        Win10 is like Win1.0 except able to use more RAM and storage. Certainly I've used Windows 2.x, the Windows 286 and Windows 386 and Win10 is less private, more aggravating and less customisable GUI and TOO BLOODY FLAT. What the hell am I supposed click on to change a setting? At least a DOS 2D 256 colour click and point adventure could be fun. And Coloured! I've not used monochrome since 1980s. A simple pair of highlight lines and drop shadow lines doesn't tax any HW made in last 20 years and even fits on a 320 x 200 screen. Is anything less less than 800 x 600, and I don't think Windows 10 works on less than 800 or 1024 lines high? Needs more screen than XP anyway. So what is the point of the Win10 styling?

        Maybe Linux can't "win" the OS "wars", but MS are certainly able to commit suicide.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      1.5% of the market and the lack of good tools for GUI development. VI and EMACS are not exactly wonderful tools for that...

      While having a common API across distro is better, under Windows, for example, it's years very few applications are written using directly the Win32 API. Most use some framework built atop it to make development, easier faster, well integrated with development tools like IDEs, expandable, and with many "widgets" not offered directly by the OS.

      It takes years to create an ecosystem around a GUI API, and there should be compelling reasons to do so.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "lack of good tools for GUI development. VI and EMACS are not exactly wonderful tools for that."

        That's why they're not used for GUI development - there are much more suitable options for that. For text file wrangling, however, if you really have to use Windows you'd be well advised to install vi.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "there are much more suitable options for that"

          Feel free to name them... Eclipse? Lazarus?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

            Eclipse? Barely good for Java development - and itself a display of a ill designed, badly implemented GUI.

            Lazarus? Still a copy of Delphi 7 - a tool seventeen years old.

            Linux for far too long underestimated the need for good GUI development tools - which are essential if you need desktop market share, and not only servers.

            In the 1990s/early 2000s, Visual Basic and Delphi - with their florid ecosystem, gave a big boost to Windows applications, because they took away a lot of the difficulties to develop them. Those applications may not have been stellar and may have had internal design and coding issues, but they worked and gave users what they needed.

            Linux people looked at them with disdain because they were not "proper tools", and of course "real programmers don't use an IDE" - thereby Linux is still chasing the desktop user.... while now running copies of outdated versions of IDEs like Lazarus.

            1. JohnFen Silver badge

              Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

              " Those applications may not have been stellar"

              You have a gift for understatement!

              "Linux is still chasing the desktop user"

              Some distros are, but there isn't anything like a universal agreement that it's a desirable thing for Linux to become a mainstream desktop OS. Personally, I hope that it doesn't really happen -- there are too many bad effects to that. I want an OS that is solid, efficient, and works well. Those goals seem to preclude being suitable as a mass market consumer OS.

              1. Ian Joyner

                Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                "I want an OS that is solid, efficient, and works well. Those goals seem to preclude being suitable as a mass market consumer OS."

                It is actually more important for a consumer OS to be solid and work well. That is because consumers know little about the running of a computer system, so the system must do everything to protect the consumer (against themselves and others).

                The monolithic kernel architecture of Linux is against that. Linux is good at being run on servers where it is run and maintained by professionals who rarely update anything before a lot of testing. Linux is good in that environment, but those who run those environments should not say that Linux is good for all - it is not.

                1. nijam Silver badge

                  Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                  > It is actually more important for a consumer OS to be solid and work well

                  Don't tell us, run along to tell Microsoft.

                2. nijam Silver badge

                  Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                  > The monolithic kernel architecture of Linux is against that

                  What on earth has that got to do with it?

                  1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

                    Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                    He/she/it just had to say "monolithic kernel architecture" to try to seem knowledgeable.

                    It failed.

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                      > He/she/it just had to say "monolithic kernel architecture" to try to seem knowledgeable.

                      > It failed.

                      Yeah. It had failed the first time around in 1992 already.

                      1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

                        Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                        I remember that well!

                        Pragmatism vs purity.

                        I might still have my Minix somewhere. Nice learning tool. It predated Linux, I believe. (I used Minix on an 8086 back in ca '87.)

                        I'd argue that being for a micro kernel architecture is being knowledgeable, but being against other more pragmatic solutions as a consequence of that is less so.

                        Thanks for the link to that nostalgic look back at a flame war! Linus was just as undiplomatic then as now, so no news there!

                3. JohnFen Silver badge

                  Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                  "It is actually more important for a consumer OS to be solid and work well."

                  Not more important. Equally important, perhaps.

                  "That is because consumers know little about the running of a computer system, so the system must do everything to protect the consumer (against themselves and others)."

                  Which is a huge part of why I'm not thrilled by the idea of Linux being a mainstream consumer OS. You have to give up far too much in terms of flexibility, control, and usability to meet the goal of being idiot-proof.

            2. dajames Silver badge

              Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

              ... "real programmers don't use an IDE" ...

              Yes, that may have been true when IDEs were all toys. Things have changed.

              It used to be that real programmers used commandline tools because it was easier to get real work done with those tools than with the rudimentary IDEs of the day. Now IDEs have become more sophisticated; you can do everything you need with a good IDE ... and it hooks into the version control system, the bugs database, the build server, and loads more besides.

              Unfortunately this has made IDEs and their accompanying baggage so complicated to configure, maintain, and use that I find myself nostalgic for the old days when I had some time free to write code as well!

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

                > Now IDEs have become more sophisticated; you can do everything you need with a good IDE

                Probably. But should you?

                > Unfortunately this has made IDEs and their accompanying baggage so complicated to configure, maintain, and use that I find myself nostalgic for the old days when I had some time free to write code as well!

                That is exactly the feeling I had when I looked at things like Eclipse and NetBeans. ☺ Maybe I'm an idiot, but I write bugs in GitLab or GitHub, depending on the project, use Git from the command line, write code using a bog standard syntax-highlighting text editor, and don't really have to deal with builds, testing and deployment beyond writing a .gitlab-ci.yml or similar sort of CI script (again with a bog-standard text editor). Each one of those are sort of micro-skills that are transferable and won't get obsoleted any time soon, nor will I get irreversibly locked into any one vendor's systems.

                Or are we talking non-general purpose IDEs? Such as Qt Develop for Qt, or Apache Directory Studio for LDAP?

                So, honest question from the point of view of ignorance: what would a "proper" IDE be like and what does it give you beyond that which I described above?

          2. keithzg

            Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

            QtCreator? KDevelop? I certainly have found both of those feeling more modern and less aggravating and crashy than Visual Studio, in my own anecdotal experience.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              QTCreator?

              Delphi 1 (1995) was better.... and Qt widgets, after years, are still ugly - cross platforms libraries are always far uglier than native ones.

              KDevelop is KDE based, and it's GUI designers are no better.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: QTCreator?

                > Qt widgets, after years, are still ugly - cross platforms libraries are always far uglier than native ones.

                > KDevelop is KDE based, and it's GUI designers are no better.

                Whoa! A lot of hand waving there!

                And dodgy spelling.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "there are much more suitable options for that"

            > Feel free to name them... Eclipse? Lazarus?

            Not entirely sure what "GUI development" is. My experience with developing graphical user interfaces, or GUI-based applications is mostly limited to Qt, and I used to use the Qt development tools for that.

            Other than that, my main workhorse is Kate, backed by the power of Git, GitLab, and various continuous integration and deployment tools, so most stuff happens automatically when it has to. If you are pointing and clicking while doing development, you are probably doing it wrong, and certainly doing it slow.

            Apologies if I got the wrong end of the stick though. Just not entirely clear what the question is about.

        2. Mage Silver badge

          Text wrangling on windows

          Notepad++

          (I even have it on WINE on Linux, sacrilege maybe, but I'm pragmatic not dogmatically religious about SW).

          1. timrichardson

            Re: Text wrangling on windows

            Both apps are great open source projects

          2. Dinsdale247

            Re: Text wrangling on windows

            "Notepad++

            (I even have it on WINE on Linux, sacrilege maybe, but I'm pragmatic not dogmatically religious about SW)."

            Interesting becuase both Scite and Geany are written using the same scintilla engine as Notepad++ and are natively supported. :-/

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Text wrangling on windows

            I like Notepad++ and use it at work, but what does it offer that Geany doesn't?

          4. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Text wrangling on windows

            > Notepad++

            I installed that when I had to borrow a Window computer last week. It is certainly a fine and very complete editor. But it is not part of the standard offering, which comes with something called Notepad and can't even do proper UTF8 (or recognise other than \r\n for line ends).

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Devil

          lack of good tools for GUI development

          I've been working (for years) on a decent tool for GUI development with X11. If I could get paid for it I'd have it done by end of 2018...

          (the intent is to have a Win32 layer so the same code builds/runs on both windows AND with native X11 libs).

          My main motivation for NOT using GTK is the way it handles dialog boxes and edit windows. I don't like it. Instead I'm doing something that uses native X11 calls. The edit window is about half-working, the clipboard works properly, most of the dialog box features work, but it lacks completion of the edit window [including a working undo buffer], some dialog box features, a dialog box graphical layout editor, property sheets for configuring the application, a refactor tool, integrated gdb debugging, something to work around X11 server lockup if you break in the middle of an X11 call, and the "wizards".

          yeah a lot left to do, but I could STILL do a basic dialog box application with it right now...

          the intent is to make it work like devstudio, without the crappy/irritating interface - more focused on typists and power users instead of VB "programmers".

          1. Def Silver badge

            Re: lack of good tools for GUI development

            ...integrated gdb debugging...

            This is why Linux will never succeed in developer's eyes. The Visual Studio debugger is light years ahead of GDB in every way possible. And has been for decades.

            A lot of the problems can't be solved by just getting rid of GDB either. The whole Linux subsystem (specifically how it approaches debug symbols and core dumps) needs to be thrown away and rewritten by someone who knows what they're doing. (Which will never happen - so basically on Linux you're always going to be stuck with shitty AT&T assembler syntax and whatever crappy UI has been slapped over GDB that implements a quarter of the useful functionality badly, and gives you a terminal window for all the shit the developers of said UI didn't understand or couldn't be bothered to implement.)

            1. bombastic bob Silver badge
              Devil

              Re: lack of good tools for GUI development

              "The Visual Studio debugger is light years ahead of GDB in every way possible. And has been for decades."

              not really. gdb was intended to have a wrapper around it, as I understand. It's a lot like the old codeview application, but simpler. Also similar to the way kernel debugging works, for those of us who've done that.

              DevStudio's debugging interface isn't any better than 'ddd' as far as I am concerned. In fact, I think it's HARDER to use DevStudio nowadays (compared to '98 which was probably the BEST version for people who like to type and not mousie-clickie every damn thing), with the way the hotkeys and toolbars and displayed source files have been screwed all to hell (as far as I can tell, anyway). It was MUCH easier (and saner) in "the old days".

              If you've ever used 'ddd' (a GUI wrapper around gdb) you'll see an example of GUI integration around gdb, which is as good as anything else as far as I'm concerned.

              Where 'ddd' falls apart is when you set a breakpoint during event handling from X11 from within the SAME desktop as the process being debugged. Basically there's a lock on the X server so everything freezes up due to the 'deadlock'.

              So, there are 2 basic solutions to that: a) use a separate desktop (which I already do) for the debugging session, and b) fix the interface (i.e. re-write your own gdb wrapper) so that it unlocks the X server across debug breakpoints. Managing the 2nd option may require some clever hacking. But I intend to give it a good try anyway.

              The X11 library has a locking mechanism for multiple threads accessing the X server, mainly XLockDisplay() and XUnlockDisplay() (if you initialize it for threaded behavior; I keep the events in the main thread to avoid problems). Additionally, you can lock/unlock the server itself via XLockServer and XUnlockServer (you sometimes need to do this with certain operations, like mouse-dragging). These may be implicit with certain kinds of X11 library calls and event handling itself. So if I spend some time digging through the X11 library I bet I'll find something _like_ this being used during event processing, locking the X server (or the library) for concurrency reasons. I would then intercept that when I hit a breakpoint, shut it off while in the debugger GUI, and re-do the state prior to returning to the program.

              So yeah once that's solved, everything's good again, you can debug in X11 and Micro-shaft can keep their bloatware developer studio and any incarnations they attempt to make runnable on Linux.

              [and I doubt Wayland would "fix" anything, either - it would probably make things WORSE]

            2. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

              Re: lack of good tools for GUI development

              Seems Linux was good enough for Google to use internally for all its development.

              And OSX, a Unix derivative, was good enough for Apple for development and end user products.

              Guess real programmers can use tools that aren't babysitting them all the time. (Too much babysitting only gets in the way anyway.)

    3. Mage Silver badge

      turn to an OS which has a market share of around 1.5%

      If Apple continues to iOS-afy OSX and MS continues to crapatise Win10, Linux only needs to stand still on development!

      MS is still designing for an OS with now maybe 1/5th of Linux support. As well as forcing a ChromeOS style cloud dependency.

    4. HieronymusBloggs Silver badge

      "So developers will turn to an OS which has a market share of around 1.5%"

      What is this "market share" of which you speak?

      And accepting for the sake of argument that "market" even applies to a largely free (as in beer) OS, whose hat was that 1.5% figure pulled from?

    5. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

      I don't know if you are aware of this, but Android is Linux. The Internet is largely run on Linux. I would be surprised if you didn't have several instances of Linux kernels running in your home already.

  8. Tom Paine Silver badge

    ""bug""

    Why the scare quotes?

    1. caffeine addict Silver badge

      Re: ""bug""

      At a guess, because enabling something in config isn't so much a bug but a deliberate action.

  9. phuzz Silver badge
    Gimp

    "Windows and Apple devs get a compelling reason to turn to Linux"

    Because Ubuntu now uses Gnome (again)?

    I don't think the author really understands why people choose not to use linux, it's not because of the window managers.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "I don't think the author really understands why people choose not to use linux, it's not because of the window managers."

      It's because they don't know any better?

      1. phuzz Silver badge

        Joking aside, I'd guess software compatibility is one of the main reasons.

        1. Geoffrey W Silver badge

          Also lack of brilliant, as opposed to simply good, development environments; and more importantly, lack of end users.

          1. nijam Silver badge

            > Also lack of brilliant, as opposed to simply good, development environments

            I've never seen a commercial IDE that didn't impose a broken and/or dim-witted development model. Brilliant? Only in the "blinding" sense of the word.

            1. Geoffrey W Silver badge

              RE: I've never seen a commercial IDE that didn't impose a broken and/or dim-witted development model.

              I've never seen a non commercial IDE that came anywhere close to being broken or dim witted since non of them are finished to the point of having a fully working model that we can judge. They are all following in the shadows of a certain elephant in the room, trying to catch up. Eclipse and Bloodshed/Dev-C++/Orwell, et al, are all very good and muchly usable but they all, as yet, fall short of the dim witted elephant. ;-P

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Unhappy

        "It's because they don't know any better?"

        more like, commercial software vendors don't know any better [and do not produce Linux versions]. They also tend to swallow Micro-shaft's coolaid, i.e. ".Not" "C-pound" and "UWP"...

        collective wisdom in the decision-making positions seems to be lacking, yeah.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "They also tend to swallow Micro-shaft's coolaid, i.e. ".Not" "C-pound" and "UWP"."

          Actually, they don't - some small shop do, but big ones don't - and that's always been a thorn in MS side.

          Most big and expensive Windows applications are still C/C++ Win32 applications - after all, even own MS ones are.

          1. bombastic bob Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: "They also tend to swallow Micro-shaft's coolaid, i.e. ".Not" "C-pound" and "UWP"."

            "Actually, they don't - some small shop do, but big ones don't - and that's always been a thorn in MS side."

            I would *REALLY* *LIKE* to see more evidence of that (what YOU said), because it's what I _WANT_ to hear, but I have been hearing nothing but the MS coolaid mantra for so long that maybe my perception of this situation is off... because the perception Micro-shaft wants people to have is that it "everyone" is doing it Micro-shaft's way [whatever that might be this month] and as such, if you're not on the SAME bandwagon, you're an old, stick-in-the-mud, obstructionist dinosaur that should have gone extinct already.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              "I would *REALLY* *LIKE* to see more evidence of that"

              Microsoft has always been a company telling you "do as I say and not as I do".

              It is true MS marketing and salespeople (including the so called "sales engineers", whose actual role is "social engineer") always asked (naive) customers to use each and every technology MS has or had to sale - even those that had no future, but if you look at Microsoft product themselves, they have been much more conservative.

              But what MS want is not what you should do, because it's not always good for you. Smart (and successful) companies understood that many years ago, and don't run to jump on any new bandwagon MS rolls out, and care about what their sales say, not what the average naive tech journo says about the latest shiny technology (DevOps, anyone?).

              Some others do listen to anything MS says, and often pay it dearly, when the bandwagon is EOLed and desupported.

              1. GrapeBunch Bronze badge

                Re: "I would *REALLY* *LIKE* to see more evidence of that"

                Say it ain't so, AnCo.

                Surely there's no such thing as a sales engineer. Real engineers bristled at the term "software engineer", I guess because it was often self-referred and not the result of a course of study at a recognized school of engineering and subsequent professional qualification. But maybe they worked out the objections. The idea that there could ever be a sales engineer is at best a joke and at worst an insult to engineering. At least, that's what it says in this here book, "Word Neurosurgery".

  10. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    Are there two versions of Ubuntu 17.10?

    Because mine has been really glitchy. The daily stuff like the video driver, keyboard shortcuts, and networking is a hot mess since I upgraded from 16. What really makes it worse is the Ubuntu Software App. You'd think Ubuntu would want to promote Linux with some really good open source and commercial software. Instead, it launches with "Sorry, something went wrong." If it does work, it dishes up a long list of 1-star reviewed apps that won't even install.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

    ...would be a damn good start... of the beginning of the death of Windows. Browsers, office apps are abundant on Linux, what else would normal people actually need?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

      Ubuntu's next desktop will be Flash based for the die-hard Adobe users.....

    2. Mage Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

      And being able to BUY Adobe SW instead of rent via Cloud would be even better.

      If Adobe continue on current route there may be viable alternatives.

    3. Mage Silver badge

      Re: what else would normal people actually need?

      Sage Accounts

      Payroll apps

      CRM

      (The leaders on all those sort of applications are Windows only).

      Perhaps SAP

      1. hititzombisi

        Re: what else would normal people actually need?

        Most of these business apps have moved to the cloud already, and available by common garden browsers. There's almost zero reason to install MS Office any more to support office-work, if one is bound by it.

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: what else would normal people actually need?

        I thought the question was about "normal people"...

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

      Just, you won't have direct support from the original maker for any device you need to use with it - pen tablets/displays, graphics/photo printers, color calibration tools, monitor (those with hardware calibration), cameras, etc. etc.

      Especially on systems where many users still fume at just the sight of a proprietary video driver (which you'll want for max GPU performance...)

      How well your $8,995 60" photo printer works with an unsupported driver - which also means no support if you have troubles? Also the management and calibration utilities won't work, until ported too.

      There's also the GPL issue - Adobe should be very careful to avoid to link to anything that could trigger it.

      You'd need a complete workflow, not just a single application - and how many Linux users are going to pay the Adobe CS subscription would be another big unknown.

      Linux put a a lot of roadblocks to itself, to become a widespread desktop OS - and many issue are down to Stallman ideology - it doesn't fit many business models.

      1. John Sanders
        Linux

        Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

        >>> Linux put a a lot of roadblocks to itself, to become a widespread desktop OS - and many issue are down to Stallman ideology - it doesn't fit many business models.

        Dude, the GPL is never a problem unless you try to use GPL code without respecting the license.

        Do not use GPL code if you do not plan on following the license, and use your own code.

        Simples.

        (Read more and try to understand when and where the GPL is an issue)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Read more and try to understand when and where the GPL is an issue"

          I know exactly what the GPL is, and how much it make developing closed source commercial software on Linux difficult - it's exactly the very reason it was created. GPLv3, with its anti-DRM clauses, it's even worse when you need exactly to create DRM protected stuff. Believe it or not, there are people who need it. Apple had to remove Samba from macOS exactly for that reason.

          Why companies like Adobe should develop software in a license minefield like Linux, to target a few percent of the desktop market, and where many other pieces are missing for professional users? Do you believe they would go open source, with all the IP they have to protect?

          That's another reason why development tools on Linux are poor, or are the by-side product of a big company needing them for their own expensive middleware, like Eclipse.

          Linux is the worst enemy of itself. Really, instead of the penguin icon we need a Stallman one...

          1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

            Re: "Read more and try to understand when and where the GPL is an issue"

            The GPL doesn't seem to have stopped Google?

          2. nijam Silver badge

            Re: "Read more and try to understand when and where the GPL is an issue"

            > I know exactly what the GPL is...

            Very evidently you don't. And, at the very least, it is far, far less restrictive than the onerous and obstructive licences beloved of commercial vendors.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "Read more and try to understand when and where the GPL is an issue"

            > I know exactly what the GPL is,

            No you don't.

            There is no such thing as "exactitude" in law. This is something that has been emphasised by each and every one of my lecturers (I took a few law subjects in addition to my core studies).

            > and how much it make developing closed source commercial software on Linux difficult

            Nonsense. Every major Linux vendor, starting with Google, have a significant portfolio of closed-source products.

        2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

          Dude, the GPL is never a problem unless you try to use GPL code without respecting the license.

          Hogwash: the GPL's biggest problem has always been trying to infect other code with the licence and where this hasn't worked, duplicating existing code with its own.

        3. auspex

          Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

          You missed the point that _using_ GPL code (that is, just running GPL apps, rather than developing programs that link to it) does not put any roadblocks on using the Linux desktop.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

          > (Read more and try to understand [...]

          Well said. It surprises me the amount of people who turn up in here parroting bollocks from 15 years ago. Why would anyone feel the urge to waste their time with such displays of ignorance?

      2. teknopaul Bronze badge

        Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

        True, the flipside of that is that there are lots of good free Linux drivers out there and lots of example code. So the effort for smaller hardware vendors is less. Microsoft charge a fortune just to sign a driver. So lots of stuff works out of the box with Linux even its not advertised or supported. I fixed the linux driver for a dj console I bought recently to support newer kernels, its to possible for consumers to upgrade drivers for windows. The source code is not available.

        Quite a lot of hardware uses common chips under the hood e.g. the sound card in my mixer. It officially has no linux support but unlike windows users I get a mixer with the driver sourcecode included because the sound card company provide source downloads.

        Thats the Torvalds method not the Stallman method.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "there are lots of good free Linux drivers "

          When you work with expensive hardware, you may care less about "good free drivers". You need vendor supported drivers because if your hardware doesn't work as expected, you call the technician and expect he brings it up to specs. You don't want an answer like "you're using it with unsupported software, goodbye".

          And, no, you aren't going to fix it yourself because if you're an artist you may know nothing about drivers and kernels and compilers and whatever. Nor you will look some unknown stranger in a forum and pay him to fix it for you, without any warranty.

          And it's not only the driver, but all the management and calibrations tools you need, which usually work very close to the drivers.

          My monitor performs color calibration in hardware - it needs its software, and the spectrophotometer one, to be calibrated and load the calibration at startup. The printer has media management and accounting software, which are essential in a professional workflow.

          When you are using several thousands dollars of equipment to deliver your products, the cost of the OS and the software is almost irrelevant. The costs of fighting with unsupported software could be much higher.

          When it is no longer supported by your OS, probably you have already used it enough it's time to replace it anyway, if you didn't already.

      3. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

        Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

        "How well your $8,995 60" photo printer works with an unsupported driver "

        If you have such a printer you have a dedicated PC driving it. You pick whatever OS it needs, and preferably take it off-line if it's Windows so MS can't ruin your day/week/year/life.

    5. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

      So, QT as the GUI framework then?

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

        "QT as the GUI framework then?"

        works for me! then, it would be totally cross-platform. and commercially supported.

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

          Plus, QT is actually an excellent framework. The best I've found on any platform.

        2. Dinsdale247

          Re: Adobe Creative Suite on Linux...

          I know your just trolling. But it's a great idea...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    > I don't think the author really understands why people choose not to use linux, it's not because of the window managers.

    No, just as with the vast majority of other choices, it is heavily based on marketing signals. People either do not choose at all or they do so driven largely by emotions.

    How many people do you know who tested rationally and objectively their choice of operating system, brand of mobile phone, model of car, location and characteristics of dwelling, etc., etc.?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Linux works nicely as long as it works. As soon as things go wrong, a non-technical user's best bet is a clean install. Other OSes provide better support/salvage options for non-technical users (and honestly, things break less often). While I personally use a mix of Mint, Fedora and Windows, I would not recommend the linux solutions to my tech-challenged family members

      1. tiggity Silver badge

        @ Anonymous Coward

        "Linux works nicely as long as it works. As soon as things go wrong, a non-technical user's best bet is a clean install."

        The same often applies to Windows, OSX / MacOS (choose your preference on old / new name)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: AC

        "Linux works nicely as long as it works. As soon as things go wrong, a non-technical user's best bet is a clean install."

        Maybe you're speaking from your own experience, as my experience shows the opposite to be true.

        I use Linux and Windows for many years, and I have needed to look for solutions to problems online, just like anybody does really.

        In my experience, Linux forums have a far greater number of people willing to spend their time helping out with more obscure problems. Generally I see a bunch of "Try this," "Try that" posts, followed by "Thank you, that fixed the issue!"

        I don't think I have ever come across a post where a rebuild has been suggested by someone answering a question.

        Conversely, I find Windows forums to have a far greater number of replies SUGGESTING that the OP rebuild their machine.

        I also see a lot more obscure Windows questions being asked with zero replies because people are scared to get involved.

        Overall, my experience has been:

        If it's a known, documented issue that the internet knows about then you'll find the answer reposted on any number of forums. If it's a more complicated issue then with Windows, a rebuild is a better option and with Linux you'll stand more chance of getting help with it.

        1. wallaby

          Re: AC

          "In my experience, Linux forums have a far greater number of people willing to spend their time helping out with more obscure problems. Generally I see a bunch of "Try this," "Try that" posts, followed by "Thank you, that fixed the issue!""

          Rot !!!!

          in my experience when asking a question in a Linux forum is a boat load of abuse by a bunch of petulant children (must be something they picked up from the lord high penguin wrangler himself). I'm not asking questions that can be googled in 30 seconds (before anyone comes up with that excuse).

          Linux user forums and the a**e wipes (rail against that description if you like - it'll tell me where you stand) are the only thing keeping me off Linux except where I need to use it.

          1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

            Re: AC

            Are you sure you are not confusing "Linux forum" with Youtube?

            1. wallaby

              Re: AC

              yeah maybe, both are full of people with childish attitudes

              That's not to say there aren't a lot of great Linux people out there (there are), problem is they let the kids play on their fields and don't keep them under control.

          2. auspex

            Re: AC

            Then you haven't learned where to go for good advice.

            You _will_ get abused if it looks like you haven't even googled your problem, but if entering your own question into a search engine doesn't immediately provide the answer, most people will try to help until you annoy them enough to tell you to go back to Windows.

            1. wallaby

              Re: AC

              All my questions have not had answers that are discoverable by Google before or I would have found it and sorted it (I'm a man - I don't ask for directions unless its a last resort).

              The crap starts as soon as I mention its for Windows integration - then - as in these forums - any mention of Microsoft is greeted by derision.

              Your answer is (as I expected from someone supporting - if not one yourself) the penguinistas in question. I have been an ardent follower of Linux since the early days, unfortunately the attitude in Linux user environments towards Microsoft products that most of the world chooses to purchase and use is to say the least deplorable. It seems that many in the community don't believe in choice when it comes to operating systems other than Linux but will happily shout that people should choose Linux at every opportunity.

              The world has space for all OS's, just wish people would get over that and stop the garbage - maybe - maybe then the days of Linux on the desktop just might happen - until then anyone considering the move - one look in the forums will sure as hell put them off (as will LT himself).

      3. auspex

        Really? For a home user, Windows provides ZERO support, and Microsoft's advice is almost always "clean install", so that's a non-argument.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        > Other OSes provide better support/salvage options for non-technical users

        Yes. The option being to call that friend of yours who *is* a technical user, though he doesn't know the first thing about things Microsofty, to sort it out mostly by way of sharp Google DuckDuckGo skills.

        Ask me how I know. :-(

    2. tiggity Silver badge

      @ Anonymous Coward

      "How many people do you know who tested rationally and objectively their choice of operating system, brand of mobile phone, model of car, location and characteristics of dwelling, etc., etc.?"

      Most people (with a clue) in UK when but=ying a house get a survey done, this reveals potential issues( to lesser or greater degree depending on survey type / cost) - so there is some testing of charactersitics of a building.

      Similarly location, people normally have some location reasons

      e.g. In catchment area for school x

      Handy for particular bus, train , driving route

      In an urban area with lots of amenities - be they sporting, cultural or just lots of different cuisine restaurants

      Opposite to above, in a more out of town area, with a bit more greenery,peace & quiet etc.

      Dwelling choice does have more thought / investigation (unsurprising as be it rent or buy its a hefty cash outlay to get wrong!!)

      Similarly, cars are not cheap, so although not to house level, some effort will have gone into investigating options.

      You might see a pattern , related to cost, perceived importance (at the end of the day, shelter is a pretty important human need so housing likely to have a bit of time & effort spent on assessing it)

  13. Paul Woodhouse

    I quite like gnome 3, the same system has mate on it but I keep finding myself booting into Gnome, still got my workhorse desktops running with Unity though, will be a bit sad when it goes, I quite like using it.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Quote: "...ubiquity of GNOME is something that hasn't been the case previously...

    Combine a de facto standard desktop with a standard means of packaging applications and you have a platform that's just as easy to develop for as any other..."

    Two things about this article:

    1. Users (USERS) need to adopt in droves FIRST. Developers will follow...not the other way round.

    2. Lots of current Linux users HATE Gnome. Just look at the tidal wave of disgust when G3 was announced. Just look at the good press XFCE and MATE get. If current users of Linux don't like G3, where are the evangelists going to come from to persuade others to use Linux? (See point 1 above)

    Signed: An XFCE Fan

  15. Triumphantape

    I made the switch

    Bought a Lenovo Thinkpad P71 for xmas, running XUbuntu (currently might switch after they fix the bug) and I haven't looked back.

    The motivator for me was how horrible Windows 10 is (IMO). I still run Win7 on my gaming box and MacOS on an iMac for other task.

    Just for giggles I run a Mint 18 VM on the Thinkpad too (I only web surf through VM's never on the host).

  16. handleoclast Silver badge
    Flame

    Pros and cons

    Pro: a lot of distros have standardized on Gnome, so Linux presents a more unified appearance across disrtros.

    Con: Gnome 3 is a smelly,.disgusting, disease-ridden turd.

  17. teknopaul Bronze badge

    I tried Gnome JavaScript

    The JavaScript api sounded like a good idea. I tried the hello world and got no further.

    No docs, just a autogenerated api dump.

    And none of your existing nodejs code works so basically everything you would have to rewrite.

    Gtk native front end with node io and networking might be interesting: gtk's undocumented networking is not about to be the next big thing.

  18. P.B. Lecavalier

    Drinking the Koolaid?

    Why would anyone rely on GTK3 when those behind it take weird decisions, such as removing menu icons and mnemonics? And why? Because... it is not cool enough for them? Because you don't have that on most phone apps, you should not have that on a "desktop app"? (app: crappy and embarrassing piece of software)

    I heard over the years lots of rant against GTK3 and praise for Qt5 (because it seems it allows people to do what the f*** they want to do, without being judgemental).

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Drinking the Koolaid?

      "when those behind it take weird decisions, such as removing menu icons and mnemonics"

      Ack. I concluded that the gnome 3 dev team is a closed "in a bubble world" set of millenial-minded "developers" that fall into the following traps:

      a) they like the 2D FLATSO because THEY *FEEL* it is "cool" or something...

      b) they "feel" they know better than YOU do how to use YOUR computer

      c) they are 4-inchers - i.e. they do MOST things on a 4" screen

      d) they lack the experience that resulted in the original 'WIMP' solution (like using DOS systems for years).

      e) they INSIST on FORCING people to use THEIR way [i.e. they're ARROGANT ELITISTS]

      only a very young person would even DARE to use 'soft color on white' for a user interface, because "pretty much" everyone over 35 needs glasses to even SEE that, let alone the low contrast color-only distinction. Keep in mind that rods are more common than cones in the retina, but rods respond to luminocity, and cones to color, so people over 35 generally need some pretty THICK glasses to read text that is light blue on white... and only a CHILDISH IDIOT would _INSIST_ on that in the FIRST place! Right 'Australis' inventors? Right, Chrome "developers"? Right, Micro-shaft?

      Gnome 3's devs are WAY too much like the arrogant idiots (that horked up Win-10-nic) over at Micro-shaft, for this very reason. WAY too many similarities.

      It's why Mate forked, why Devuan exists, and why there is so much OUTRAGE every time you mention gnome 3, systemd, or wayland.

      Linus on gnome 3

  19. Howard Hanek Bronze badge
    Linux

    Almost There

    I've installed 17.10 on several desktops and a couple of laptops for testing but, as far as I'm concerned, it's not ready for production just yet. A major problem is that it breaks VMware and I haven't found a truly working fix for that. A major application for many working in development who need to port their projects to various OSs.

  20. DougS Silver badge

    GNOME 3 is a compelling reason to avoid Linux

    If I didn't have the option of Cinnamon (or various other non-horrible options that aren't GNOME 3) there's a 100% chance I'd be typing this on a Mac running OS X instead of a PC running Fedora Linux.

  21. Ian Joyner

    Marketing Linux?

    Since when has Register become a marketing mouthpiece for Linux. It is a ridiculous headline with nothing much to do with the article.

    Developers of end-user systems are best to stay away from Linux which because of its monolithic kernel is less secure (OK, maybe I'm not talking about Windows!). Particularly with the Meltdown and Spectre bugs more security that partition Kernel and User space is needed.

    Linux is good for speed – but it gets this at the sacrifice of security. Linux is good for well-managed, seldom-updated environments like servers, but a poor choice for end users.

  22. timrichardson

    Actually LTS users upgrade at 18.04.1

    I think from memory that the LTS upgrade activates after the first point release of the new LTS, so 16.04 desktop users will move in mass when 18.04.1 is available, more like June than April.

  23. J J Carter Silver badge
    Windows

    Oh, dear

    Linux fanboys are still having religious arguments about which shell to use. In 2018? Oh, my sides!

    1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

      Re: Oh, dear

      At least those "fanboys" have choices, which, incidentally, might be why they are debating the relative merits of them. Cough, cough... Windows 10, cough.

  24. John Crisp

    RedHat takeover?

    Systemd

    Gnome

    What will they wreck next.... ?

  25. RonWheeler

    Dump the stupid penguin. Now.

    Nothing screams 'geek virgin trying to be cute' like a couple of bellends romping about it dumb onesies.

  26. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    Is the full title..

    "You break it, you GNOME it: ..."?

  27. To Mars in Man Bras!
    Facepalm

    Damning With Faint Praise

    >Ubuntu 17.10 was quite simply one of the best releases of the year and certainly the best release Ubuntu has put out in a good long time.

    and, a few paragraphs later:

    >Canonical pulled Ubuntu 17.10 downloads from its website last month due to a "bug" that could corrupt BIOS settings on some laptops. Lenovo laptops appear to be the most common source of problems, though users also reported problems with Acer and Dell...

    See title!

  28. Paul Chambers

    I don't get the antipathy towards gnome...

    Gnome is a nice simple corporate style window manager. It looks familiar to the end user, and does not impede productivity (as long as the machine has the resources to run it properly). It has nice things like online account integration, and dash to dock, that add to ease of use. User sees a consistent interface, i can optimise the underlying system to perform specific workloads. I can deploy any of the major distributions (for reason based on role), whether that be Centos, Debian, Ubuntu, or Fedora.

    I, personally, use peppermintos (for the ease of integrating with my web services, as well as the lower resource footprint) on my laptop. I also use gnome (I'm currently a debian house, but that has been and may be again Ubuntu: Just not until unity has been purged. Yuk - in the sense that it has never worked) with dash to dock on my multi-screen powerhouse workstations.

    There is a big difference between the individual users preferences on a development machine, and a large scale deployment* and training. For the later, I'd pick Gnome.

    *My large scale deployments are only 3-10 users these days, but the consistent interface means that I can write user level training materials that are equally applicable whatever the underlying machine, role, and OS.

    1. handleoclast Silver badge

      Re: I don't get the antipathy towards gnome...

      The antipathy towards Gnome 3 is because it's a phone interface.

      I look at all the things I can do with right- and middle-clicks on Gnome 2. Things I use a lot, like right-clicking on stuff in the task bar. Can't do them on Gnome 3 because it's a phone interface and so only left-click does anything. Not even some indirect method (such as drilling down through a menu or even going to a control panel) of getting to the same functionality (if there is, I haven't found it).

      Lots of magic areas on screen. Stuff is hiding until it magically decides to pop up, or I accidentally move the pointer to a magic zone (when something I didn't want to pop up does pop up) because it's a phone interface. An interface for a phone with a tiny screen where you can't afford the luxury of a taskbar.

      Most apps don't have menu bars but have a hamburger icon. So more clicks to do anything. Because it's a phone interface for phones with tiny screens.

      They could have made it bi-modal. "I'm running on a proper computer so I'll give you a rich interface" and "I'm running on a phone so I'll give you a minimal interface." They could also have had a config option to say "Give me a phone interface even on a proper computer so I always see the same thing." At the very least they could have made it possible to do the same things that you can with middle- and right-clicks in a roundabout way. They didn't do any of those things.

      You know what really annoys me? When the idle lockout kicks in. On Gnome 2 I can press a key or move the mouse to make it wake up and give me a login box. On Gnome 3 I have to click with the mouse and drag upwards, just like on a phone. This is to protect me from putting my desktop and monitor in my pocket and accidentally waking up the computer as I walk. That is fucking insane.

      I have nothing but contempt for Gnome 3 and the people who developed it. Even after all the complaints, even after the Mate/Cinnamon forks, they insist on doing things a fucking stupid way so it works on phones. How many commercial phones have Gnome 3 as the UI? How many are ever likely to?

      Consistently doing something in a stupid, counter-productive way is no virtue.

  29. auspex

    Ubuntu is not moving TO Gnome

    Ubuntu is moving _back_ to Gnome.

    "Users upgrading between LTS releases will get their first taste of Ubuntu with GNOME come April."

    First? I can't remember how many times I've installed Ubuntu-with-Gnome, decided I hate the look, and gone back to Kubuntu (probably about every second release since Warty).

    Ubuntu used Gnome for years before they started on Unity.

  30. twenex

    As a devoted desktop Linux user for twenty years, I can say definitely that GNOME 3 is a steaming pile of utter garbage.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      > As a devoted desktop Linux user for twenty years, I can say definitely that GNOME 3 is a steaming pile of utter garbage.

      As a desktop Linux user for twenty three years, I definitely cannot say that.

      Mostly because I haven't seen Gnome since about 1998. :-)

  31. Joe Gurman

    I must have missed something

    But where in the article is headline explained or justified? Yes, almost every bistro on the planet is now shipping with GNOME. But so what? How many desktop/laptop Linux systems are there, and how much are their users willing to spend on software each year? Class, compare and contrast with the number of Windows desktop/laptops or even Macs out there, and please tell me why there is a compelling reason (other than the personal like/dislike ones that have aways been there) for a dev to start supporting Linux apps now.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I must have missed something

      Were you thinking of a glass of wine and a baguette when you wrote this?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I must have missed something

      > Yes, almost every bistro on the planet is now shipping with GNOME.

      Not my favourite one. They still serve a great steak though.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In defense of Gnome 3

    Gnome polishes up quite well once you install and play with the Tweak Tool. It may be slightly greedy on resources, but unfortunately, it is the only fully working desktop, and likely, viable GUI on Linux.

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