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Re: Desktop Linux tidal wave alert

nessuno@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx <nessuno@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> espoused:
> In 2009, more Linux-powered desktops will sell then will Windows-
> powered ones. Sounds crazy doesn't it? Think again.  [People want fast
> boots.]
> Of course, while most of the vendors would like to give their
> customers Windows, they can't. Windows is no more capable than booting
> fast than John McCain is of winning the Olympic gold in the 100-meter
> dash. That's where Linux comes in....
> Quietly, without many people noticing, the Linux desktop has become
> the mainstream. Now, with the arrival of new, exciting Linux
> distributions like Ubuntu 8.10, users' demand for a quick boot-up
> operating system, and Microsoft's Vista failure, Linux may actually be
> on more new systems next year than Windows will be. If Microsoft takes
> too long in delivering Windows 7, its emergency Vista fix-up, who
> knows? By 2010, maybe most new PC users will be using Linux instead of
> Windows. The desktop Linux tidal wave may indeed be on its way.
> http://blogs.computerworld.com/desktop_linux_tidal_wave_alert

I don't think that Windows is fixable.  I didn't think it was fixable
in the run-up to the release of Windows 6 (Vista), the addition of 30
million new lines of code was surely a guarantee of nothing but nothing
but nothing but problems, bloat, slowness, unresponsiveness, and  the
biggest increase in vulnerabilities which Windows has seen, ever.

The funny thing here is that the game was already up at about NT5.  The
point at which Windows seemed to be at its best, was, in fact, the
pinnacle of Microsoft's world, for sure, but it was *already* massively

Even way back in 2000, Linux was hugely important on the thing which
matters most, the internet.  Since then, of course, there has been total
divergence, with Linux supporting an ever increasing number of
platforms, perhaps, most importantly, the largest selling of all the
computing platforms.  Arm.

Arm dominates the mobility space, and Linux on Arm is fantastic.

In order to become relevant again, what would Windows need to become?

Try these:

1. Support for x86, x86-64, PPC, Cell, Arm, HP Risc, Sun Risc

2. Lightweight - fast boot, no bloat

3. Modular - simple code re-use, well defined APIs

4. Secure - real security model, encryption under user control

5. Multi-user - like unix, not bolted on as an afterthought

6. Multiple file-systems support 

7. Native networking stacks

8. GUI-free operation (again, modular please!)

9. Networkable GUI

10. Terminal interface, networkable

11. Package management like Linux (apt, aptitude, synaptic)

12. Rapid, free patches

13. Foss code so that vendor lock-in is eliminated 

14. Reliable (Railway timetable machines which BSOD?  awful!)

15. No more daft vertical integration to get around court rulings

16. Release cycles << 5 years

What does linux need?  Well, I'd suggest an invariant API for hardware
drivers would be a massive boost.  Other than that, Linux merely needs
Microsoft to keep doing the same thing.

| mark at ellandroad dot demon dot co dot uk                           |
| Cola faq:  http://www.faqs.org/faqs/linux/advocacy/faq-and-primer/   |
| Cola trolls:  http://colatrolls.blogspot.com/                        |
| Open platforms prevent vendor lock-in.  Own your Own services!       |

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