[svlug] FUD: Are Linux Users Sloppy?

Rick Kwan kenobi at coruscant.lightsaber.com
Thu May 4 00:56:50 PDT 2000

I wanna respond to a lot, but I feel like I'm getting too wordy...
Besides, I'd be preaching to the choir.

dfox at belvdere.vip.best.com wrote in response to me:
> > were so complicated, they reminded me of programming large control
> > blocks for an IBM mainframe.  Knowing the right way to use them was
> ISTR some JCL from 370 programming classes. Pretty complicated way
> to do things IMHO.

JCL could be complicated.  That was nothing compared to the 360/370
Assembler macros that they translated to, even for the simple stuff.
Those were the things that the NT I/O functions reminded me of.

> > a nightmare.  In fact, I seriously suspect that most NT developers
> > don't program at that level, and that Microsoft doesn't want them
> Then again, most people don't program in raw Xlib either :).

No, they don't.  But a lot of UNIX folks do pipe(), fork(),
and exec() - easily.  Try doing the equivalent in WIN32 on NT.
Not their pseudo-POSIX API (which didn't work).  WIN32.  I tried.
It wasn't pretty.

Back to the subject line.  Are Linux users sloppy?

My answer is:  no more so than Windows 9x power users.  They and the
NT administrators are the Windows users more likely to try Linux.
(But I don't expect most NT admins to be sloppy.)  IMHO, the issue
is that they are being given server-capable systems, and they have
minimal previous server experience.  What they mostly need/want
are Internet-ready client systems.

But that's what I thought a lot of Linux distributions now offer.
Are client installs not being exercised?  Is the lure of server
capability too exciting?  Some of the distribution houses must have
a handle on their customers are doing; I hope they are taking note.

--Rick Kwan, Lightsaber Computing
  rick.kwan at lightsaber.com

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