[kwlug-disc] Win VS. Lin install-wise

john at netdirect.ca john at netdirect.ca
Mon Aug 17 17:11:24 EDT 2009

kwlug-disc-bounces at kwlug.org wrote on 08/17/2009 04:37:01 PM:
> From: Chris Irwin <chris at chrisirwin.ca>
> I hate being the devil's advocate :)

Okay, okay, everyone. Put away those torches and pitchforks.
> One of the problems when comparing out-of-the-box support is that we
> compare say, Ubuntu 9.04 to Windows XP, which was released in mid/late
> 2001. In 2001 Linux 2.4.0 and Redhat 7.1 were new. We don't compare to
> those very often ;)

We have to compare what's available today. And today Windows 7 isn't 
there, yet. There also isn't enough penetration to comment on Vista. I'm 
one who has used it for only a minute or two.

What's fair about the Linux to XP comparison is that there are lots of 
people wanting to upgrade from XP or even 2k. Microsoft compares Vista to 
XP why shouldn't Linux enthusiasts?
> I've got a copy of the Windows 7 RC, and it actually does a few things
> right. (I can't comment as to Vista as I never used it). It
> automatically hit the internet and grabbed the proper drivers for almost
> all of my hardware (my sound card didn't have a Win7 driver, so it
> failed there). Upgrading drivers doesn't need a reboot now, so they
> definitely have learned something.

As long as your network card is detected you'd be okay. That is a huge 
jump from XP and I suppose it boils down to how accurate the driver 
database is. 

You have touched on one of the Vista and W7 issues: abandonment of 
drivers. It happens a lot more frequently on Windows than Linux. I've 
moved scanners from Windows because of this. I moved it to Linux where I'm 
sure it would still work today, if I hadn't upgraded it.
> You're right, they will never have seamless upgrades as long as the
> upgrade process is where they make their money. I could see them
> switching to a service-based license ($X per year) and introducing
> seamless upgrades, but that would take a lot of work (and more licensing
> management. woo). And people would be upset if they went six years
> without releasing a major update ;)

Microsoft wants to get to subscriptions it's the consumer that doesn't 
want to pay yearly. Their biggest issue today is that people don't have a 
reason to upgrade hardware. I think their main revenue is from OEM sales 
and we've gotten to a point where the market is saturated and only the 
high-end users need more power. I'm a technical worker and my last upgrade 
was for hardware virtualization not performance.

And after some point a re-install might be needed. How long would it take 
to update many years of patches? Hopefully in a subscription model one 
would be able to download ISOs to jump to a latter release.
> One thing that is still a huge plus for Linux is the massive software
> repositories. I wonder if Microsoft will ever try to tie their "Live"
> accounts to a Windows app store, allowing third parties to publish
> software through it.

The other huge plus for Linux is the "try before you buy". When I want to 
try open source software it's easy, costs nothing and I get the full 
version to try. There aren't any forms to fill out and I'm not likely to 
get more spam or junk mail since I'm not giving that information out. 
Aside from what's needed to put the software in place, there are none of 
these unpleasantries with the process.

John Van Ostrand
Net Direct Inc.
564 Weber St. N. Unit 12
Waterloo, ON N2L 5C6
john at netdirect.ca
Ph: 866-883-1172
Linux Solutions / IBM Hardware
Fx: 519-883-8533

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