Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Blogging from Ubuntu Installation Screen

After reading Charlie at INQ's article about using Ubuntu instead of Windows, I decided to give Ubuntu a try. I almost fell off my chair. This thing is damn cool. I push in the CD -- it's just one CD--unlike Fedora which needs 10 CDs, and in 10 seconds it starts running in this beautiful desktop environment which looks better than Windows Vista, and there you have the full OS available to use -- playing games and blogging. Note I haven't started installation yet, it was running on CD and RAM. Then I click the Install Icon on the desktop. After selecting timezone and keyboard layout, now, I am at step 5 of 6, which asks me to select a partition-- the interface looks good and clean. I wanted to share with you folks the picture, not sure what to do, I pressed the "Print Screen" key, and it saved the screen capture in PNG format.

This is much easier than Windows. See the picture below.

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

Now, I selected a partition and it's installing. Blogging while the OS is being installed? I challenge any Microsoft dudes to do the same.

You guys may say this is nothing special, but to get the pieces working together so nicely is no small feat. The amount of work put into the details indicates the quality. SUN folks worked on Solaris for 20 years, and they still rely on some primitive text interface for installation. To choose your timezone for Solaris 10, you need to press at leat 20 keys, F2, arrow, arrow....space, F2......space, space, down arrow, right arrow, space, return, F2... Crap.

After login the desktop, instead seeing zillions of menus for applications, such as five email programs and six web browsers, you see this clean interface. The nicest thing is this package manager, much better than Windows stuff, and forget about those dreadful rpm commands.

Now, I have finished installing the desktop version. I have burnt the server CD, which is less than 500MB... After giving the Ubuntu server a try, I have to say it's not very good, it doesn't give you options to choose services during installation, and it doesn't install SSHD by default... CentOS 4.4 server install CD does much better job -- it got all the essentials installed automatically. In a lot of cases, you have to get someone install the OS for you in a remote location, and the person is not good at Linux, they may not even know how to use a text editor. You need some installer which is no brainer, then you can login remotely to continue on.

Did I tell you this was being installed on an AMD64 machine with true 64 bit capability? It's not an Opteron, it's just an Athlon 64 3500+ (single core) with only 512MB RAM.

25 Comments:

Blogger Azary Omega said...

Yes. Ubuntu is the s***. I don't use it but i really wish i could (got some MS stuff i rely on). Ubuntu is neat. And clean. The only thing i don't like about it is the things you got to go to make your Good video card working fully (3d acceleration), but people, does Ubuntu have awesome Help file or what?!?! I mean it tells you everything about everything, how, where and if you should plus it doesn't threat you like a 10 years old baby (win-dos?) while keeping it simple and friendly.

Someone should invest some good money in to Ubuntu. The only words i could use to explain you how awesome Ubuntu is, is " CAN DO

11:04 PM, January 03, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cool Sharikou. I installed ubuntu few days ago. Dual booting works wonderfully, but after using Ubuntu I don't have any interest to use Windows. It's pure S**t after seeing this. It's a relief to surf around the web and pay bills without fearing virures and hackers. And heck my old amd xp 2200+ machine feels like a beast :D. No need to worry about the damn vista. Ubuntu eats about only 130MB ram, when I surf with Firefox and play music on a mp3 player. XP takes easily over 3x.

3:49 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"SUN folks worked on Solaris for 20 years, and they still rely on some primitive text interface for installation"

Even XP uses console-based installer to format hard drives :)

"After giving the Ubuntu server a try, I have to say it's not very good, it doesn't give you options to choose services during installation, and it doesn't install SSHD by default..."

That's why there is package manager.

"Did I tell you this was being installed on an AMD64 machine with true 64 bit capability?"

What kind of things are you going to do with that machine? So far I've seen only a few usage scenarios and programs getting any kind of benefit from moving to 64bit. I'd say more often you loose performance than gain thanks to a bit increased memory usage. One thing I know benefits about 10-20% speed is compiling but I don't think that is going to be the thing you will do very often.


Also I suggest you to try out KDE. I know lots of people prefer it over Gnome. Only thing might be that you loose the compositing desktop unless you swich KDE window manager to Beryl or something similar. To get KDE just install kubuntu-desktop from package manager.

4:25 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welcome to a year ago, asshat.

8:56 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous netrama said...

Man..I cant believe you are trying ubuntu only now !!

9:09 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger Sharikou, Ph. D said...

What kind of things are you going to do with that machine? So far I've seen only a few usage scenarios and programs getting any kind of benefit from moving to 64bit.

This was on a Windows XP/XP 64 dual boot desktop. It had two empty partitions to try out stuff.

What is useful about 64bit? It makes you feel evolved, IA32 is so primtive and yesterday. Of course, any code you write for that machine will be complied in 64 bit, and you know it will work for 64bit With 32 bit machines such as core duo, you never know...

9:24 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger PENIX said...

I've tried many *nix versions:
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Redhat, Fedora, Gentoo, Sabayan, Slackware, FreeBSD and Freespire to name a few.

I currently administrate 3 linux servers and develop on linux servers for a living.

I probably have more *nix experience than almost everyone here. After over a decade of using it, I fully agree with Linus Torvalds: Linux is not ready for the desktop.

I use WinXP. It's a piece of shit, but it's better than Linux.

9:34 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger PENIX said...

Are Intel based computers suitable to run Ubuntu out of the box?

9:37 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger Sharikou, Ph. D said...

I fully agree with Linus Torvalds: Linux is not ready for the desktop.


You have to check when he said it.

From what I see, Linux is getting quite ready for desktop. The only real advantage Windows has is device support. Hardware companies mostly only write drivers for Windows.

9:40 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" I fully agree with Linus Torvalds: Linux is not ready for the desktop."

- True. It's a bit hard for dummies to understand.

"You have to check when he said it.

From what I see, Linux is getting quite ready for desktop. The only real advantage Windows has is device support. Hardware companies mostly only write drivers for Windows."

Linux may be ready, but it's complicated sometimes. Common People don't understand it very well. Windows is easy and that is the advantage. And it comes with every lovely DELL pc, why would people change OS? If they have OS that is easy and allows to watch for porn with few clicks, why to change to something weird, complicated?

10:07 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger Sharikou, Ph. D said...

Linux may be ready, but it's complicated sometimes. Common People don't understand it very well. Windows is easy and that is the advantage.

No. Windows is more complicated. People just got used to it.

10:08 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"People just got used to it."

Here You are absolutely right. I have used windows since 1995, when we got our first pc.

10:19 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous netrama said...

"PENIX said...Are Intel based computers suitable to run Ubuntu out of the box? "

I had an older PIII Based SONY laptop , I was able to install ubuntu ..(everything worked from the beginning - sound, video , everything)..it was easier than installling XP , just pop in the CD and relax, and all this was an year back.
I was amazed and shocked then , as to how things went so smoothly ...it was a my lil test in choosing a sony lappy insted of the common Hp or Dell machines.

10:28 AM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Rechargeable said...

Can anyone explain this to me? I have installed Ubuntu dapper drake on a K6 II 550 with 256 MB and a Matrox G400, the system was sluggish and the desktop and others aplications as slow as my granny. Then I have restored on it the good old Windows 2000: abracadabra, the sistem was fast and really usable for common office tasks and web surfing.
I think modern PC are too fast to show the real bottleneck of an inefficient OS, at least on normal operations. But charge more the system o try the same OS on a slow machine and the truth arise.

11:55 AM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger Jeach! said...

I rarely disagree with you since we have similar views on AMD, but this is where I find your analysis VERY unfair.


it's just one CD--unlike Fedora which needs 10 CDs

I have burnt the server CD, which is less than 500MB...


I was first introduced to Linux back in 1995. It was a floppy that a friend gave me. I boot it and it was a windows manager (like Windows), web browser, FTP client/server and a few tools/games.

What I'm getting at is that when it comes to Linux, SIZE DOESN'T MATTER!

The other 9 Fedora CD/DVD's are applications/tools and are not required.

I've been using Debian for the last couple of years and I install it from a floppy. Of course, then I download and install all the apps/servers needed.

But the comparission of how many CD's or DVD's a distribution has is completely irelevant and unfair.


SUN folks worked on Solaris for 20 years, and they still rely on some primitive text interface for installation.


You really have to understand that a distribution intended to be used by professionals does NOT need GUIs and wizards?

Solaris is installed by professionals and administered by specialists/technicians. It is NOT meant for the faint-harded, unkowleged, amature... simply put, the common guy!


and it doesn't install SSHD by default...


You are criticizing peoples intent! A few years ago, most distributions installed most services by default. Millions of people would install these and leave tham as is, making everyone volnurable. Linux distributions have matured a lot in the last few years, and NOT installing any services or keeping them at a minimal is actually an intended security enhancement... not a feature to please the common guy.


In a lot of cases, you have to get someone install the OS for you in a remote location, and the person is not good at Linux, they may not even know how to use a text editor.


And they should be installed by someone knowledgable. I would guess that 95% of all people can install a Linux server, figure out how to enable the web/ssh/email services. That is the good part, but the weakest link in security is commonly the user/installer/administrator. You wouldn't believe how many of my clients tell me they set up a linux server and when I take a look at it or run my rootkit, I find holes all over the place!

For anyone who would like to discover Linux/GNU without installing anything permanently, I would encourage you try out KNOPPIX.

This is a full Linux distribution (compressed) on CD or DVD. It contains hundreds of servers and applications out of the box. Just put it in your drive and reboot your computer. When your done, take it out of the drive and boot back into your regular system!

12:10 PM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What is useful about 64bit? It makes you feel evolved"

So basically you gain nothing and loose a bit of memory?

"Of course, any code you write for that machine will be complied in 64 bit, and you know it will work for 64bit With 32 bit machines such as core duo, you never know"

Sharing only binaries under Linux is just asking for trouble. If you can write something that only works under 64bit and not in 32bit after recompile you really are a great programmer. Or perhaps a really bad one, I'm not sure.

"After over a decade of using it, I fully agree with Linus Torvalds: Linux is not ready for the desktop."

Perhaps my three years of desktop use at home and at work isn't long enough but after setting up a Gentoo box for my parents to let them pay the bills I'd say it is good enough for most people. Of cource they don't install the stuff themselves but they didn't do it under Windows either.

"Are Intel based computers suitable to run Ubuntu out of the box?"

Of cource they can. Even their later IGP's can run the composition desktop (3d effects) just fine.

Also one interesting thing is that you can have 3D desktop under Linux with very old HW. I have Beryl running on P3 500, GF2 Ti and 256M ram. Desktop effects don't need to waste gigs of memory, gigahertzes of CPU power and tons of GPU power.


"The only real advantage Windows has is device support"

If AMD/ATI could finally produce some decent drivers for their GPU's things would improve significantly. Currently ATI runs at roughly 10-25% of the Windows performance assuming you are capable of actually installing their drivers. Most other things work out-of-box. Some wifi things still might have problems but if you know you want to use Linux you can easily find supported HW from shops.

"Windows is easy and that is the advantage"

Depends on what you are used to. I haven't touched Windows for about three years and feel myself as total newbie when I have to do something with a windows box. It all comes down to previous knowledge and habits.

It is probably the first time I agree with Sharikou when he said Windows is more complicated. People just got used to it.


I'd say Linux has been ready for desktop for quite some time, just not for everyone. It works well for people who actually know what they are doing and for people who know almost nothing about PC's and let others do the difficult things. It's the ones in between that can't get used to it. They know a bit about Windows and when they try Linux they don't see much similarities and get scared. Next they start flaming how bad Linux is because they can't just jump in and feel as home.

1:09 PM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

azari, if you pair that with AMD + ATI.. you will find hell, ATI's drivers for linux are HORRIBLE

5:18 PM, January 04, 2007  
Blogger Azary Omega said...

Anonymous said...

azari, if you pair that with AMD + ATI.. you will find hell, ATI's drivers for linux are HORRIBLE


And if you'd knew more you'd know that Nvidia doesn't offer linux drivers at all (ATI does). You can find some unofficial drivers for Nvidia cards to run them on linux but they are buggy, one of the bugs i came across is that after installing those unofficial drivers you'll be able to use only one resolution (even worse: you try to change to a different monitor that has different max resolution than the the monitor you had when you installed those drivers - you'll see black screen)

10:11 PM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If they could make Xp into a a 500MB install, I would be happy. Unfortunately MS has decided to bloat each successive sp? version. I installed Win Me - I know it's a bit buggy sometimes - on a centrino laptop, man that machine was fast. Smaller is better in my opinion. They should make XP for users and XP for Retards. The retard version with all the junk that the ass clowns in their focus groups say makes their "digital life", whatever the hell that is, easier.

11:17 PM, January 04, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And if you'd knew more you'd know that Nvidia doesn't offer linux drivers at all (ATI does)."

Interesting.
I can play Serious Sam 2 under Linux just as fast as under Windows using 6600GT.

3:17 AM, January 05, 2007  
Blogger gdp77 said...

No. Windows is more complicated. People just got used to it.

If u want to install ATI or Nvidia drivers in windows, u just download them and double click the file.

Care to inform us about how "easy" is to install ATI or Nvidia drivers in Ubuntu?

3:22 AM, January 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Care to inform us about how "easy" is to install ATI or Nvidia drivers in Ubuntu?"

Just click a few times in your package manager and wait until it sais it has finished. No need to open browser, search for the correct site, wait for the download to finish, search the installer, run it, click "next" a bunch of times and restart your PC. Logging out is good enough.

9:36 AM, January 05, 2007  
Anonymous Graham said...

Now, I selected a partition and it's installing. Blogging while the OS is being installed? I challenge any Microsoft dudes to do the same.

Wow what a great usage model! Not. Who cares if you can blog while installing? I don't. I want supported software that I don't need to read a manual every time I need to reconfigure. Linux has its place but as a mainstream desktop OS, it has a long way to go ... even Ubuntu.

3:29 PM, January 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

graham, I bet you belong to the ones who aren't (yet) Linux gurus and aren't windows noobs any more? If yes then, as I said, Linux doesn't suite for you that well. It would if you would try but I bet you won't.

4:26 PM, January 05, 2007  
Anonymous edward said...

There are different OSes for different purposes. Ubuntu may be a neat desktop/consumer OS, while Solaris 10 still better for servers and workstations. Sun folks worked on Solaris for 20 years and made it superior than most OSes out there in many aspects, unfortunately not including ease of installation.

7:43 PM, January 05, 2007  

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