[sf-lug] Consumer & admin (was: Possibly interesting data point on jobs postings)
rick at linuxmafia.com
Tue May 16 19:08:13 PDT 2006
Quoting Sarah Mei (sarahmei at gmail.com):
> I was asking in the context of a question I've been thinking about
> lately: why hasn't Linux taken off as a Windows replacement for
> non-technical home users?
If you aren't familiar with the business structure that perpetuates the
OEM preload monopoly, I discuss that here, in my answers to some
interview questions from the _Sydney Morning Herald_:
(Don't ask me why they wanted to interview me. It wasn't my idea.)
Sudden thought: If Linux _had_ taken off as a home user operating
system, would we have known? It's not like there are sales figures to
count, as any sort of reliable guide. (This is a famous problem posed
by an operating system most of whose distributions are _not_ per-seat
licensed, and may be lawfully installed and duplicated without limit
by the general public.)
> However, one interesting issue is that under Windows, non-technical
> users can do basic upkeep themselves, which is what I meant by
> "baseline admin tasks" -- the stuff you need to do to keep your
> computer running. In the Windows world, this is OS updates, virus
> software, and spyware software. In the Linux world, I suppose it's
> just OS updates. (Anything else? I'm more of a user than a sys
> So is there a distribution or an application that makes updates as
> easy as they are under Windows?
Although I have little recent experience with MS-Windows, my impression
is that you'll have at least a _little_ difficulty finding one that
_doesn't_: All of the distributions aimed at desktop users have very
smooth and effective semi-automated maintenance regimes to fetch and
apply needed security updates, with much more reliable and satisfactory
results than with the infamous Security Pack drill under MS-Windows.
> By this I mean OS updates as a fully automatic, you-never-see-it
> background feature, with the option to set various levels of
> ask-me-first-ness. Is Adept something like this?
_Fully_ automated? You don't get that on MS-Windows, either -- nor
would you want it, I think.
Why don't you just try your luck with one or two of the desktop
distributions, and see for yourself? It's much more meaningful and
useful than prolonged tire-kicking via mailing list threads.
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