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Opinion: What Linux Needs (or doesnt need)


There are WAY too many Linux sites in existence that all say the same exact thing! For any variation of the words linux, security, news, journal, etc ad infinitum all of the top level domains have been eaten up. Do we really need all of these opinion laden sites that say virtually the same thing and accomplish little in echoing eachother?

What are the designers of the websites for major linux distributions thinking? Of the major distribution sites the only ones that look like decent companies are RedHat and SuSE. You take a look at Slackware and it looks like something I made when I was in highschool. Debian's is a little bit better but its still lacking in its over-all look. When small to large businesses look at Linux as an alternative to Windows they are going to go research the websites. I believe RedHat is the most popular distribution in the U.S. because the site looks professional, the documentation is good, and they offer support services and not because it is the best distribution! Obviously not all of the major distributions can offer support services due to understaffing or underfunding but they can atleast spiff up their sites and at the minimum add a link to if they are lacking in their own distribution-specific documentation. When choosing a distribution to go with people are easily swayed by first impressions... distribution websites are the display window. Would you go into a store and spend money if they had a bunch of junk displayed in the front window?

If Linux is going to make it in the business world all of the distributions need to decide on a standard package manager or make all of them available at installation. APT and RPM are the most popular however Gentoo's package management is probably the best in my opinion. If businesses run homogenous distribution networks they might be okay however ALL businesses will need to decide on a standard so if you get fired from one job and move to another you don't have to learn how to use the package manager on RedHat whereas at your old job you used Debian's APT.

Take away the complexity of the filesystem structure! I dont think I will ever quite grasp the reasoning behind having a /bin, /usr/bin, /usr/local/bin, etc. Why not put them all into /bin and set the permissions respectively on each file within the one directory? MacOSX is on the right track in the way they lay things out. On a similar note... I become more and more frustrated with Windows each day but it sure is easy to find where a program is installed c:Program FilesProgramNameProgram Files... Linux/BSD/etc oughta follow suit! They kind of got the idea with /usr/local/games but what about everything else? I shouldn't have to manually set up the directories to make it easier to navigate. I tire or find / -iname stuff. Also, file extensions need to be implemented in Linux. Sometimes I ls in huge directories and end up cat/vi'ing files until the cows come home so I can make sense of what is what. It would save a lot of time if people would throw a .txt, .sh, .bin, or a common-sensical extension on the end of programs they distribute.

Until these and all other rants that are floating through my head are resolved I don't think Linux is going to make it any time soon. (Isn't it amazing how much control (I perceive) my thoughts have over the future of Linux?)
mail this link | score:6930 | -pyoor, February 10, 2003
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