Talk:Criticism of desktop Linux

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thats a pity, because has valuable informations and analysis inside... but was unable to find the author's name... seems to be some theodore (but not theodore tso) (talk) 22:27, 29 September 2010 (UTC)

We are pretty much governed by the restrictions at WP:SPS in not using blogs as references, but if you can find that same information else where in a more reliable source it would be helpful. - Ahunt (talk) 22:35, 29 September 2010 (UTC)

More Up to date Criticisms[edit]

The Viability page has criticisms related to Ubuntu which is 5 or 6 releases of Ubuntu out of date. It's also written by someone with ties to microsoft. I'll look for criticisms from a more NPOV source, anyone able to help also would be appreciated. IRWolfie- (talk) 10:06, 6 October 2010 (UTC)

It would be good to update these. i am always prowling around looking for updated criticisms of Ubuntu and Linux desktops in general. The main problem is that, especially in the case of Ubuntu, Canonical has taken criticisms seriously and has largely worked to eliminate the problems that were criticized. This has resulted in largely a dearth of criticisms in recent years as problems get addressed quickly. This all makes finding criticisms difficult these days. - Ahunt (talk) 11:58, 6 October 2010 (UTC)
If I want technical criticisms I may as well wait for 10.10 this weekend IRWolfie- (talk) 10:26, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
There does not appear to be the common technical criticisms I had anticipated. IRWolfie- (talk) 13:22, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

I removed Arve Bersvenden's comments: in 2007 he completely changed his mind: IRWolfie- (talk) 13:33, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

I'm going to remove quote by A. Russell Jones and here is the reasoning: His comments are from 2003, his example and target of criticism is to the now non-existent mandrake linux. Modern distributions do make the choices for you (i.e Fedora, Ubuntu choose Gnome). I notice they have a pretty low alexa rank (~7000) too so I'm not sure how noteworthy his comments are or were. IRWolfie- (talk) 14:01, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

The only comment I would make is that I think historical criticisms (i.e. those that were valid at one time, but that have been addressed) have some value in the article provided that it is made clear that they are historical in nature. Because Linux and the distros are generally moving fast in addressing problems if you remove all the criticisms that have been fixed, then we will soon be able to AfD this article for "no content". I guess there are two ways to go on this article: either it can deal with the history of criticisms over time and how they have been addressed (or not yet), or it can be a list of the current outstanding issues yet to be addressed. - Ahunt (talk) 14:12, 20 October 2010 (UTC)
hmmm, imho the criticism of "to many choices for the user" is still valid (even if this specific examples are a little bit outdated) ... still the required selection of distro, flavours of distros (ubuntu, kubuntu, ubuntu... ), tools and applications (video players, editors...). pre-selections of distros differ (LSB still to weak) and changing fast as version numbers increasing ... might be still a significant user experience problem for joe normal-user. Shaddam (talk) 17:35, 2 November 2010 (UTC)
If you have some good reliable sources it would be a good addition to the article, but, I think the choice for example ubuntu is pretty much made for you (i.e gnome), one has to dig to find the alternatives. The tools and apps argument seems especially puzzling to me because of the vast range of applications in all areas on windows. Perhaps a reliable source discussing LSB conformance would be a particularly relevant addition.IRWolfie- (talk) 00:27, 3 November 2010 (UTC)

Having out of date criticisms seems confusing to me, Desktop Linux has been around for the last about 20 years, the original quotes were added because they were perceived as being relevant at the time but are no longer, but they do not have historical criticisms, i.e pre-1999. Perhaps, as you say, there would be merit in a section on historical criticisms and how they were addressed. I'll do a little research on past criticisms and how they were addressed, i.e the old issues of: Lack of driver compatibility, too much distribution choice (Ubuntu has essentially eliminated this by being the de facto beginner distribution), confusing Windows managers. IRWolfie- (talk) 14:44, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

There is quite a bit that was in the article at one time and also in Criticism of Linux along with refs. I agree that perhaps separating them into "current" and "historical" sections makes sense. As an analogy, if you limited Criticism of the Third Reich to current criticism, then it would look like it was a great organization today! - Ahunt (talk) 14:59, 20 October 2010 (UTC)
aha, Touché. IRWolfie- (talk) 15:05, 20 October 2010 (UTC)
Not to indicate that Linux and the Third Reich have much in common...! - Ahunt (talk) 15:07, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

The article directly contradicts itself: "Linux has been criticized for a number of reasons, including lack of user-friendliness[2] and having a high learning curve,[3] being inadequate for desktop use, " with "Both critics indicated that Linux did not fail on the desktop due to being "too geeky," "too hard to use," or "too obscure". Both had praise for distributions, Strohmeyer saying "the best-known distribution, Ubuntu, has received high marks for usability from every major player in the technology press"." Can we also not use a more reputable site than techeye for a source, perhaps one that doesn't refer to Apple uses as "barking" or linux users as "open sauce loonies", (it seems to deliberately weaken the criticism from pc world by linking it with a fringe source). I also don't buy the argument of the ideology being the issue since of the large user share linux has in terms of servers and mobile devices (in android), I'll try for look for refs to support this IRWolfie- (talk) 23:27, 13 November 2010 (UTC)

I was just working with the refs we have from below, but if you can find additional ones that would be helpful! You can note that the refs supporting "lack of user-friendliness[2] and having a high learning curve,[3] being inadequate for desktop use" are from 2006 and 2007 and while that may have been the case back then, this is clearly not true any more in 2010, as the refs from this year state. I think this is why it is important to show when these criticisms were leveled, as things have changed quickly in the past four years. - Ahunt (talk) 23:53, 13 November 2010 (UTC)


potential contributions? (talk) 13:44, 12 November 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for finding those, I have written a new section based on the two most recent of them. - Ahunt (talk) 16:09, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
I also added a counter-point quote and ref to the criticism to add some balance. - Ahunt (talk) 21:12, 12 November 2010 (UTC)

Con Kolivas - Reasoning for quitting different here[edit]

His reasoning for quitting is given as that the initial development he had done became more and more like work: IRWolfie- (talk) 13:59, 3 December 2010 (UTC)


The Criticism of Desktop Linux is a history of comment on the perceived shortcomings of Linux distributions in desktop computing use.

Is this self-referential? Is "Criticism of Desktop Linux" the title of this article? It's confusing what it's referring to. The first line makes it sound like this is some essay or something and not an encyclopedia article. (talk) 02:49, 12 December 2010 (UTC)

All Wikipedia articles are required to start off like this, please see Wikipedia:Manual of Style (lead section). - Ahunt (talk) 14:42, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
NO U. It's totally not how other articles start. lol.. (talk) 15:08, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Linux is not windows[edit]

A common complaint is that linux isn't windows etc, I'll try and add this or if anyone else can also. IRWolfie- (talk) 23:53, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

The existing ref #13 in the article may be of some use in that regard. - Ahunt (talk) 01:25, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
While that article provides some insight into how Windows users who are new to Linux criticize the OS, I don't think it can really provide much of the "real" criticism, ie: "X freezes on older nvidia cards", or something like that. Sentient Planet (talk) 22:54, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
The problem with criticism like X freezes on older nvidia cards" is that it may be distro/version specific or becomes out of date quickly. IRWolfie- (talk) 13:45, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
More than likely a certain version of X with a certain version of the non-free nVidia driver on one distribution, not really notable. Windows won't work on all hardware, but you don't see that mentioned. - Ahunt (talk) 16:54, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
But Windows works with a much wider variety of hardware. This is probably not because of any inherent flaw with linux, or nVIDIA, so much as the fact that Sony/Lenovo/whoever isn't going to sell a laptop or desktop that doesn't work with recent Windows but they've got no problem selling one that doesn't work with recent Ubuntu, Fedora, etc. But the explanation (even if it weren't my personal opinion/original research) doesn't change the fact that all versions of Windows XP, Vista, and 7 with either Microsoft's or nVIDIA's drivers work without freezing, and then you install some version of some linux distro with some driver and it freezes. It's a reasonably frequent and legitimate criticism, and if it has verifiable sources, it's worth mentioning. -- (talk) 23:55, 17 September 2012 (UTC)

Reliable source?[edit]

I wish to expand the driver support section, and add citations to the already existing material there. Please review this page for reliability. While it suggests a solution for driver support, it still looks very opinionated to me. Please review it and tell me if you think this is can viewed as a reliable source. I will obviously not use it if it's not. On top of that, it almost looks like a blog post to me, and I know blogs are not considered reliable sources. Sentient Planet (talk) 23:16, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

It is a blog; bottom right column: "Blog under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License". He does have a good point, though... --DanielPharos (talk) 09:55, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
Yeah blogs aren't reliable (and it also doesn't appear to give his name, another issue). IRWolfie- (talk) 20:31, 13 February 2011 (UTC)


There seems to be a lot of quotes. anyone mind if I paraphrase them? — Preceding unsigned comment added by IRWolfie- (talkcontribs) 20:37, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

It would probably make some sense to do that as they are a bit too many in number. - Ahunt (talk) 23:35, 13 February 2011 (UTC)
No one seemed to be objecting so I paraphrased the quotes. IRWolfie- (talk) 22:21, 26 March 2011 (UTC)
Looks okay, certainly tightens the article up! - Ahunt (talk) 16:02, 27 March 2011 (UTC)

Con Kolivas[edit]

I thought I'd bring this in here to decide whether it should be scrapped or not. The quote mentions nothing about his desktop user-focussed approach being the reason for quitting, userspace problems here is problems in the GNU operating system userspace. See section "Why do you quit kernel developement"[sic]. IRWolfie- (talk) 20:52, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

Actually I just thought, I can move it back to criticism of linux with some small modifications. IRWolfie- (talk) 20:54, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

Moved it, see Criticism_of_Linux#Con_Kolivas_criticism. IRWolfie- (talk) 21:00, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

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sources are old[edit]

Most of the sources in the article are old and most likely out of date in almost all respects. IRWolfie- (talk) 23:57, 3 May 2012 (UTC)

What new sources and topics do you suggest need adding? - Ahunt (talk) 00:39, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
I was thinking about going through the section again and seeing if they are still issues; if I can find more modern sources. IRWolfie- (talk) 19:18, 5 September 2012 (UTC)
That sounds worthwhile. There may be newer issues to add as well. - Ahunt (talk) 20:07, 5 September 2012 (UTC)

Improved Portability of Shared Libraries[edit]

I found a link to the report mentioned in footnote 11, "Improved Portability of Shared Libraries," on the Wayback machine. The footnote says it is link rot. Can the Wayback machine URL be used to point the reader to the article text? It is at . Thanks Furchild (talk) 05:25, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done, thanks for pointing that out! - Ahunt (talk) 23:05, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

Point by point refutation[edit]

One thing I noticed about this article is that some criticisms are matched with a counter argument. I believe that the only way to keep the article unbiased is to include a refutation for each criticism also doing such has the advantage of keeping the article more consistent. I want the though of other Wikipedia members as this would entail lots of changes to the article.Sonic12228 (talk) 00:06, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

A lot of that hinges on finding reliable refs that support the potential refutations. If they can be found then it should be fine to add them. - Ahunt (talk) 13:08, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
No, that's in fact the usual way criticisms are written in Wikipedia:
1. argument, 2. counterargument (3. let the reader decide),
or perhaps:
1. argument, 2. counterargument, 3. extra argument (4. let the reader decide),
or sometimes:
1. argument, (2. let the reader decide),
that's how the business goes on in Wikipedia, and it's what the policies proscribe. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 14:47, 14 January 2015 (UTC)