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Old 06-05-2004, 03:21 AM   #11
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What a coincidence that this topic comes up now! My laptop's hard drive crashed on Wednesday, and I was able to back it up in time. It made really grindy noises so I backed it up and turned it off. The next morning it wouldn't even come up. So I got the new hard drive this morning, and I went to re-install Windows and then restore all my stuff. Well, on the restore screen, it had the pathway of where my stuff was backed up (on our PC) but when I clicked on Next, it said I wasn't authorized. Grrr! Windows wants a password but on the restore screen, there's nowhere to type one! In Linux doing something like this would be so easy. Windows makes it much harder than it needs to be. If I didn't have all my work stuff on Excel, Word, and Money, I would switch to Linux. I think Word may run in Linux, though? My husband runs Gentoo Linux on his Dell Latitude laptop, and that's what I'm using now. I should go check on my laptop to make sure it's still restoring ok. That took a long time trying to figure out how to get the restore to start.

My "favorite" thing about Windows -- when you're working on somethingg and all of a sudden the message pops up saying that whatever application has a problem and needs to close. Grrrr.....!!
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Old 06-07-2004, 11:02 AM   #12
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My boss is running Gentoo on his laptop. I'm running SuSe. You're right, it would be easier if it was linux and not windows.

Something you may want to try is open office. It's like MS office only free...

We are testing it where I work and tomorrow it's going into production on a small scale. It opens all the microsoft stuff with no problems. Only very rarely will it lose some of the word formatting. Overall, it's a great product (did I mention it's free?).

http://www.openoffice.org/
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Old 06-07-2004, 12:10 PM   #13
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I don't run it on my main PC, but I have two Debian servers right now, one at home that is a developement box running the Unstable distro, and one in Dallas that's a production box I run some webpages on.

I haven't converted because I game heavily, which is still a sore point with Debian. I do occasionally use the dev server as a desktop though, it has X and KDE installed and a monitor
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Old 06-07-2004, 01:38 PM   #14
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I don't do as much gaming as I used to, but I'll probably be downloading Neverwinter Nights here soon. My boss says that Quake runs great on his Gentoo box...

I'm using KDE as that is what it defaulted to. I'll probably try out Gnome before too long just so I can see which one I like better...
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Old 06-08-2004, 06:32 PM   #15
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I've heard of Open Office but never tried it out before. I could try to put a few applications of Open Office on my husband's laptop with Gentoo, and then see how it opens my Microsoft files.

I like the Microsoft programs (Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) for the most part. It's just that trying to do anything with the system itself is tricky sometimes, and then there's the 20 million patches you always have to go download...

But I like iTunes, and some games, that won't run in Linux. So I will see if it's worth it to do a dual boot on my laptop.
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Old 06-08-2004, 07:56 PM   #16
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IMHO Linux is fine for servers if it fits the application. I've tried Linux on desktops. Its not for the faint of heart.

Is there a driver for my ____ ?(fill in the blank with printer, camera, cd burner, network card, disk controllers, et) Maybe, maybe not.

Are there applications that I would actually want to run on Linux regardless of the fact it might be free? Maybe, maybe not.

Are there security patches and hot fixes for Linux? Sure there are.

Do you have to run windows update on Windows systems? Sure you do.

Do you have to update Linux? Sure you do. It just might not be as easy to do so, you may have to apply the patches and hotfixes manually depending on the Linux flavor. Redhat introduced a update feature last year.

Is Linux a workable replacement for a windows desktop? Not yet IMO. With its limited applications, hit or miss device drivers, hit or miss hardware support you'll be researching the internet looking for compatibility reports and third party drivers every time you want to make a change to your system. Its not fun and not for the normal everyday computer user.

The bottom line is anyone running Windows 3,95,98,98se or ME should upgrade to the much improved, stable Windows XP os. It works so much more smoothly and crash free then its earlier versions. (no I don't work for MS )
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Old 06-08-2004, 09:11 PM   #17
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The bottom line is anyone running Windows 3,95,98,98se or ME should upgrade to the much improved, stable Windows XP os.
LOL. Sorry, I've supported XP for a part of the federal government before and although xp is better then the aforementioned 9x operating systems, it isn't that much of an improvement.

Quote:
Do you have to run windows update on Windows systems? Sure you do.
almost every day...

and don't forget the fact that the windows update program sends information about your pc to microsoft everytime you use it. what was microsoft's recent slogan? "trusted computing" if I remember right. sorry, I don't trust microsoft with any of my info. especially with the frequency of critical updates I have to preform to maintain a secure workstation.

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Its not fun and not for the normal everyday computer user.
Microsoft would have us use dumb terminals if they could...

Sorry if this sounds like a personal attack, I don't mean it as such. But you pretty much have to tell Linux to run a virus, it's not automatically run as it is in windows. Driver issues aren't that much better with windows when dealing with any twain device. And the price difference between the price of windows and a download of a free product is worth the time it takes to actually learn how a computer works. [/rant]

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Is Linux a workable replacement for a windows desktop? Not yet IMO.
Windows is only on top because bill gates is a marketing genius, not a really good programmer. I think the "not yet" is the truth here. Better operating system? Hands down. Workable for somebody who only knows how to push the power button and hope for the best, no, not yet...

please take no offense - none was intended
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Old 06-08-2004, 10:36 PM   #18
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Spoken like a true byte-head as I use to be before I moved behind a desk. All the tech talk not withstanding and which doesn't mean anything to the average user, the reason corporations and people buy computers is to run applications that they want to make use of. They want that new ERP package, they want to run the software they invested hundreds of thousands of dollars to develop, they want to plug in a printer or camera and use it right then, they want to produce those graphics for little John's school project with that $20 package from WalMart.

Linux makes a fine webserver. I've never installed a non Linux webserver box. Why? Because Linux runs 24/7 without problems and is more secure which is the same reason I've never installed a exchange server for mail. It's a target. But on the desktop, right or wrong there is only one game in town right now.

Windows has a ton of security problems and the new SP2 for XP this summer should help to elevate many of them. No matter what, no one should run a Windows based PC without a firewall and an anti virus package which can be got for free here http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/partners.asp

The Computer Associates link on the page includes a firewall along with the anti virus package.

Most people don't care how their computer works, that's why they have you . They just want to push the power button and go.
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Old 06-08-2004, 11:11 PM   #19
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I forgot to comment on a few things..

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LOL. Sorry, I've supported XP for a part of the federal government before and although xp is better then the aforementioned 9x operating systems, it isn't that much of an improvement.
Of course its an great improvement over the older OS's. Its like comparing night to day. Its even better then NT4 and Win2k. Its not a fair assessment to say its not much of an improvement.

Quote:
and don't forget the fact that the windows update program sends information about your pc to Microsoft everytime you use it. what was microsoft's recent slogan? "trusted computing" if I remember right. sorry, I don't trust microsoft with any of my info. especially with the frequency of critical updates I have to preform to maintain a secure workstation.
From the windows update screen. " Note Windows Update does not collect any form of personally identifiable information from your computer."
I just don't buy in to the Bill Gates conspiracy theories. I am far more concerned with web site privacy policy and spyware then Microsoft Windows Update.


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But you pretty much have to tell Linux to run a virus, it's not automatically run as it is in windows. Driver issues aren't that much better with windows when dealing with any twain device.
Yes its true. But the other reason why Linux has escaped virus attack is that there just isn't enough Linux boxes to make it "fun" for virus writers to develop code for. As for driver issues, The number of windows device drivers that are included in Windows XP and on the hardware install CD is incomparable to the number of Linux hardware drivers. Granted Linux driver issue are now vastly better then it was a few years ago but it still has a long way to go and that translates into undo user stress. I installed Linux on one of my boxes at home. I've been in IT for over 20 years and the various issues as to available software that I would want to use is such that I never use that machine for anything other then Web development. Its not a mature desktop platform... yet and that may change quickly. All the signs are there for it to be a challenger.
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Old 06-09-2004, 11:42 AM   #20
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From the windows update screen. " Note Windows Update does not collect any form of personally identifiable information from your computer."
I just don't buy in to the Bill Gates conspiracy theories. I am far more concerned with web site privacy policy and spyware then Microsoft Windows Update.
I didn't say that Bill is looking at my credit card info or looking through my cookies. But I don't believe for a moment that "none" of my info is being sent. By default some unique information has to be sent in order for windows update to work. The operating system also keeps track of the serial numbers of various components.

XP was originally slated to use these numbers to create a checksum that is sent to Microsoft when you register the OS (technically you are registering your product key). This number would change when you added or removed hardware and the number would be recalculated thus requiring re-registration. To prevent piracy of the Microsoft OS, users were only allowed to register the product key a certain number of times (5 I believe, but I'm not sure). --> btw, this info was provided by Microsoft at a convention I attended for an "inside look of microsoft's upcoming operating system, windows xp".

Needless to say privacy advocates went crazy and microsoft changed the way registration worked. But that is not to say that Bill doesn't know how many different pc's are using the same product key. Heck, even xp sp1 would tell you if you had a pirated key (I know this from the govt job I mentioned earlier - yes it was a big mess and I was glad that my contract with them was almost over).

I guess the key words are "personally identifiable". Sure they don't know who I am, but they know my ip and my computer (and 2+2=4(meaning they could find out who is using a pc without personally identifiable info))...

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The number of windows device drivers that are included in Windows XP and on the hardware install CD is incomparable to the number of Linux hardware drivers
I haven't tried to install any legacy devices, but everything I have have tried on new computers (all of them dell, laptops and desktops), I have had no problems with drivers. The only gripe I have personally heard about is my boss's TV card he has at home locking up every now and then.

Quote:
the reason corporations and people buy computers is to run applications that they want to make use of. They want that new ERP package, they want to run the software they invested hundreds of thousands of dollars to develop, they want to plug in a printer or camera and use it right then, they want to produce those graphics for little John's school project with that $20 package from WalMart.
I don't know about other distributions, but the one I have came with software equivalents to ms office, outlook, money, 3d studio max, photoshop, internet explorer, SQL, Visio, instant messengers etc.

I guess it's more of an issue of jumping into the unknown as opposed to sticking with the norm.

Quote:
Its not a mature desktop platform... yet and that may change quickly. All the signs are there for it to be a challenger.
I think so too. IBM is investing millions to provide free Linux training to companies looking to convert. I find that very interesting...

Anyways, I like linux. I think it fits most of the needs I have. Until it fits all my needs, I'll still have a 2k box somewhere. And I'll still download the newest weekly critical security update. And keep my Norton updates rolling in. And keep that firewall up and running. But that 2k box won't use internet explorer, it will use mozilla. And it won't use microsoft office, it will use open office. The less microsoft on my pc, the fewer holes I have to patch...
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