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Friday, April 30th, 2004

Time Event
1:49a
A question to the Mandrake people.
I'm sure my last thing here has earned me a bit of an unfavorable reputation and I'm afraid this post will get taken completely the wrong way and only deepen the bullshit. But, the curiosity is absolutely killing me.

A friend installed Mandrake 10 on his laptop a couple of days ago. He brought in the newly created PC to the office to show it off, get some more configurations done and get a little advice from a few of us that have had a bit more x86 *nix experience than he has. Now - and please read this carefully and do not take out of context. I'm completely on the level here. - Why? Why would you choose to run Mandrake? It has more wizards than Windows, has just as many restrictions on what you can and can't do, and seems to genuinely forbid the user to make any modifications to what it deems to be the best setup.

I'll give you an example. My friend had the laptop on his desk, while I was at mine. We set up the SSH server, and I sshed in to look around and generally have a good time with a new toy. The filesystem and a great many other things in Mandrake are based on RedHat, so I was very familiar with the layout and began cruising. At one point, I needed to change the IP address of the laptop. Rather than getting my fat ass out of my seat and going to his PC, I navigated over to the proper places under /etc/sysconfig and made some changes to the network setting files. Executed /etc/init.d/network restart to reload the changes and went about my business. Everything was kosher. Everything worked fine until he got back to his desk and went into "harddrake". All of the settings I changed vanished without warning. After getting over my outrage, I read some articles on the web about profiles, discovery, the wonderful intelligence of harddrake and all kinds of other documentation which completely failed to mention anything about manual overrides. Later in the day, both of us spent close to an hour at the console trying to figure out how to add a second network card and have it always be eth1, regardless of the presence of the card assigned to eth0. After about another hour we finally achieved our goal, though it took a little longer to install Fedora Core than I expected.

Back to my question. I'm quite serious here and do not in any way mean to be insulting or demeaning to Mandrake users. To each his own, I say and just because I didn't like it doesn't mean I view its users with any lowered regard. Hell, I'm still trying to convince myself that the bullshit described above was somehow due to my ignorance and poor documentation, because Linux just isn't like that. But I just want to understand what attracted you to Mandrake in the first place and what on gods' green Earth persuaded you to keep it.

Current Mood: curious
10:04p
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery? (or Why do editors assign me stories like this?)
This post is slightly off-topic, but there isn't a thriving general FOSS community here with which I'm familiar. So, I'll keep this post short.

I'm researching for an article to debunk the claims of many closed-minded, closed-source advocates that open source and free source does not "innovate". Example: Microsoft advocates claim that ASP came before PHP, which is historically untrue. There must be other examples? If you've any suggestions; please comment. The article has a submission date of the 15th and I need a few leads. Programs? Features? Anything that FOSS did first that proprietary did not, especially on the desktop?

I desperately ask you to link this post from your own journal. I need input damnit. Google has not been my friend.

Qvacks.

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