Saturday, November 28, 2009

Fuck Linux

I've been running a Linux server for 10 years and I'm tired of this shit.

Upgraded the server to Ubuntu 9.10 the other day. (I gave the new release a few months to shake out... long enough... I thought.)

Well, they've decided to change the way Ubuntu starts and stops services. Fine. I'm ok with that. As long as it works, I don't care.

Well, what do you know! While everyone was out there replacing the old sysv whatever method of starting and stopping services with "upstart" (whatever in the hell that is) no one ever thought that maybe a GUI interface might be needed. So I do what one does every time Linux stops working: I consult the documentation. You probably know it as "the internet". So what do we get?

1. Fifteen thousand posts to the 'tubes' of "Hey! I can't find the old GUI that allows me to change services. How do I get it to work again?"

2. They changed it to "Upstart".

3. Cool. How do I start the "Upstart GUI"?

4. There isn't one.

5. Ok, ummm.... (posting to Ubuntu bug lists) "Can we get a GUI for upstart"?

6. 50 thousand responses of "Why don't you learn to use the command line interface?" "Any *real* Linux user doesn't need a GUI to get things done. It only slows things down."

How many go-rounds of this do we need before we just start shooting these people in the face? Let's all repeat this together: "Not everyone wants to spend their life in front of a screen trying to figure out how to turn off a fucking Linux service or some other minor horseshit to get their system working." Make an easy GUI or spend the rest of your days wondering why Apple is taking over the world. And from one geek to another: go talk to a girl for once.


zatak said...

don't be so bitter and aggressive. I'd like a GUI for upstart too. I'm too old for this shit. I want buttons. And I *do* know how to type all kinds of shit into a computer. I use ubuntu because it's the easiest UNIX, and I use UNIX because it's the easiest thing to develop software on. No, a mac is not the easiest UNIX. I've got a macbook, and I like it. But it's a pig UNIX wise, and it leaves shit strewn all over the file system instead of having a proper package management system.

Linux is, as ever was, a work in progress. And it has progressed very well in the time I've been a user. I made my first one by hand as a young nerd in 1994. It did things minix couldn't, and worked on my 386 viably which BSD didn't. That was why he wrote it.

Give them a break. It *is* free you know.

zatak said...

by the way dude - having just checked my mail and got the above comment sent back to me:

first, it is not sysv. It is sys V, as in 'system five'. Look that up. It is very, very old. Possibly older than either of us, I'm not a geek on these things (I do practice some of the nerdly arts though clearly) I don't know exactly. It needed a fresh start, but no one has had the guts to to do it. For years. Ten years maybe. Because they'd get shit for changing something so basic. Look at sendmail. That needs a large injection of xyline and ketamine; it's the kindest thing. But still, it remains the mangy, sick, hard to configure, security nightmare basis of the global email system that it's been for ten years times 3.

I spent a good deal of time trying to get my head around why the old way wasn't working on my upgraded ubuntu. Because it is a *very* old way - the way it's been forever. Hence my total failure to lateral think my way to the idea that it had changed. and hence I found my way to your blog.

the new upstart thing is actually awesome.

I will be frank with you: if you cannot cope with typing "service start ", and you cannot cope with appending that line to a shell script so that it occurs when your computer boots, and you have been using a UNIX computer system for a *decade*, then to be honest I have rather more sympathy for the geeksters telling you to start a shell once in a while than I do with you.

ten years? human years or dog years? it's "service start some_shit". or maybe "start service some_shit". Or "some_shit service start". One of them. That exhausts the combinatorial possibilities.

when someone asked you "if 3x=3 what is x" did you say "Fuck algebra" and pay someone to calculate your tips for you in restaurants for the rest of your life?

Humbug said...

Firstly, thanks for reading my rant.

Unfortunately, Linux -- like many other things -- is a "religion", so communication tends to break down quickly due to emotional issues of one sort or another.

To avoid this, I'll try to be a bit more clear than I apparently wasn't (how am I doing on the 'clear' thing so far? :-)

My issue isn't with Linux. It's with the *process* used to release Upstart. If any project is to move forward, it has to stop fighting the same battles over and over... in this case command-line vs. GUI.

I'll use an example from another post: cars. You drive your car. It's works fine. The dealer calls and says, "Drop your car off and we'll fix a bunch of problems and upgrade some things." Great!

When you get your car back, the steering wheel is missing.


What happened? Clearly the dealer screwed up and didn't replace your steering wheel. The dealer doesn't argue, "Well, yeah, we upgraded your steering, but we didn't have the steering wheel part ready yet, so we just left it off. *Real* drivers don't need steering wheels anyway."

Thankfully, the auto world is unlike computer interfaces and we don't have to suffer from some "steering wheel" vs. "control yoke" or whatever debate. If GM/Honda/Audi has a new feature and they don't have a steering wheel ready yet, the new feature *doesn't get released because it isn't done yet.*

In our example here, "Linux" -- specifically Ubuntu 9.10 -- has upgraded a way things get done. That's great. Kudos and appreciation for all their hard work. But unfortunately they didn't do a complete job in getting things back to an equivalent state to what they were. No matter how impressive their work, from a *user perspective* it was a step back. The new features are not only harder to use than the old ones but the old way of doing things no longer works.

So *from the user's perspective* it was a step backwards. Pull out the handbooks, manuals, technical bulletins, consult the web, 36 hours of work to *get back to where they already were*. All this to learn a new way of doing something they really didn't care about the nitty-gritty of to begin with. In short, it was a very Microsoft-esque way to do things. "Fuck the users, we're helping them out, if they don't love Linux as much as they do to be able to drop their day jobs to figure out the new way, then fuck 'em. It's free anyway, give us a break."

It's not that I'm not a geek. I'm a EE/CE. But I've already got my plate full of projects. I don't get ahead in *my* projects if I spend all my time trying to figure out how my frickin' OS (re)works every time some other geek decides to change things.

I should have title the post, "Fuck the process used to beta-test (without calling it that clearly) Upstart."

Since I've run into similar issues many time in my past dealings with Linux(es) I decided to tighten it up to "Fuck Linux".

In short, their rush to beta test an unready product on the end users is unprofessional and counter-productive. There's already an OS for that, it's called Windows.

zatak said...

well - I guess the thing is that ubuntu don't really develop applications - they produce distributions. and they are good distributions.

No one will write a gui for upstart until a big linux disro starts using it. There is no incentive to.

the ancient system V init scripts needed doing away with. They were old school unix, which is good when it serves a purpose and makes thee easier, and bad when it makes things pointlessly arcane, which is what it idid.

upstart is also very, very simple to use on the command line. The syntax might even be the same as windows. It's very similar for sure.

As for whether it is a beta test: clearly not. It is not buggy, it simply omits a feature that you would like. That has nothing to do with the software testing process.

As far as I can see, 9.10 is very stable.

If you want something that doesn't change, is stable and is is secure and is suitable for use on a server as opposed to a desktop, I would not recommend ubuntu.

I'd go for FreeBSD. For a server, that is brilliant stuff. For a little (maybe a little more than a little
) initial investemnt in time, you can have a system that goes forever with minimal need to maintain it. Ubuntu only goes 3 years before they make you upgrade (i.e stop releasing patches). fedora 2 years.

openBSD is even better, in terms of security. I've not used it. I think it's pretty hard to use.

but freeBSD is the system of choice if you want to set up a machine and just have it go for years and years, in a predictable and secure way.

These days, freeBSD is very easy to use I hear, including some GUI's maybe. But the point is mainly that it will need less attention once set up properly.

zatak said...

actually, if you want to stick with linux, look at cent OS.

this is red hat enterprise linux, but free. RHEL guarantees updates for 7 years I think. But it costs money. However, since it is open source, red hat have to provide the source code. They don't have to provide source rpms - but they do. centOS is based on those srpms.

provided centOS doesn't go under, an installation should run for 7 years from release with binary patches in rpm form updatable with yum, although there is a delay between redhat's patches and centOS getting up to speed, during which time you are vulnerable.

it has a GUI.

David said...

Here is an upstart GUI:

Anonymous said...

My problem is with Linux and not being able to get helpful for basic answers as simple as "how do I invoke the terminal with a keyboard"? Since I use knoppix, there's no answer, only for crapbuntu. Think about that: one of the main things (supposedly) that linux advocates advocate is learning to use the terminal, and yet I can't even get an answer as to how, without a GUI bring it up, and for a popular distro, but then again I don't remember seeing knoppix in the distrowatch top distros list...

It is astounding that after years and years, no one has found a universal or simple solution to achieving the now standard and old resolution 1080p, in fact at linuxmint I just had a question about how to do it deleted, because, for no good reason, had been banned (i wasn't even told). These linux advocates are self-defeating imbeciles, you don't delete a question that could help out linux become popular, especially a question like that, to keep some guy banned because he hurt some weak minded sissy's feelings over some unknown thing on top of it, which lol, the mod expected me to read in some obscure "github" thread. Nerdtard, I am not going to read some shitty sounding site (which to do poses an unnecessary security risk on too) about how I offended some nobody or even a somebody. Get a life linux nerds.

I'm so disgusted with Linux that I have decided to cancel a project to raise money to modernize it (good job Linux nerd gatekeepers) and use it instead to modernize ICAROS.

Anonymous said...

Oh and as if trying to get help for Linux wasn't annoying enough: I found myself prebanned, yes prebanned from major Linux forums, apparently because these gatekeepers are so malicious and control freaky that they go out of their way to call their "friends" in nerddom world to blacklist non-compliant people. Pre-banned, think about how North Korean that is. It was especially hypocritical to have it done to me at linuxforums, where you'll encounter pop up adds over and over while trying to sign up.