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Someone left a comment on one of my posts similar to, "Linux won't be popular on the Desktop until it runs Windows applications." To which I silently responded, "Huh? and, "You've got to be kidding me." We have WINE for running Windows applications and it works reasonably well for those who care to spend the time to work through any problems with it. I don't think the Linux Community needs to spend time on such an undertaking. Is anyone asking Apple to run Windows applications so that it will gain popularity? No? Then, why should Linux? If you want to run Windows applications, run them on Windows.

Linux is Linux. Mac OS is Mac OS. And, Windows is Windows.

Why does anyone want or need any crossover?

If application vendors want to create applications that run on Linux, that's great. I'm behind that 100 percent. If Intuit, for example, wants to create QuickBooks that runs on Linux, I'd buy it. If Adobe created Photoshop for Linux, they'd have an audience. And, if Microsoft created Microsoft Office for Linux, it would sell too. After all, the first operating system that MS Office ran on was the Mac OS.

And, why would you want to run Windows applications when we have OpenOffice.org, KOffice, GIMP and many others that are actually better than their Windows counterparts? They're so good that all three of the ones I mentioned have Windows versions available.

Why don't the other vendors make the same concessions? Why don't they provide their applications to all audiences?

I don't want Linux to run Windows applications unless those applications, produced by their respective vendors, become available as native Linux applications.

Run Windows applications on Linux? Thanks but no thanks.

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Yep! We have Linux and Apple systems in our house - no MS Cruft!
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  • [QUOTE=khess;1254689]Someone left a comment on one of my posts similar to, "Linux won't be popular on the Desktop until it runs [URL="http://www.microsoft.com"]Windows[/URL] applications." To which I silently responded, "Huh? and, "You've got to be kidding me." We have [URL="http://www.winehq.org"]WINE[/URL] for running Windows applications and it works reasonably well for those … Read More

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I whole-heartedly agree. Once you make the switch to Linux you will find that all that you regularly use in Windows has a counterpart in Linux. The better approach is to run a dual boot environment and when you need Windows run Windows. What most of us have found is that as we learn Linux we visit Windows less and less. I only use Windows for programs like ooVoo for which there is no option in Linux and that is not very often. Once I find an ooVoo alternative in Linux I will drop ooVoo.

In general, I have very little use for Windows. Each day Linux gets better, easier to use, with more applications in a free environment not subject to fear and high cost. For me Linux is not just an alternative it is the better system.

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Well, still using windows to play windows games :) Linux take good care of the rest

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If I have to, I only run Windows in a virtual machine!
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And most people now perfer to mac os x. All thing are directed by aplle.

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Thank you, KHess, for this post. Mirrors my sentiments on the subject exactly. Of course, to the gaming subject, I often say "Isn't it sad that you are letting entertainment dictate your freedom?"

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I've pretty much lost my patience with the "but Linux won't run..." crowd. Even after showing them the alternative applications, after showing them how easy it is to use them, they still balk. If the Linux app deviates one mouse-click away from what they are used to, it's game over for them.

I will bend over backwards to help a computer user but a task-set-mouse-clicker can fend for themselves. OR yes, I will help them...at the rate of 75 bucks an hour. Do it once for free and you are their free tech support for life, at least in their minds.

Edited by helios17: n/a

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I think that some of this is driven by the issues of time investment and learning curves. We live in a world that requires life-long learning. Some people have yet to accept this. I can still remember the switch from typewriters to word processors (I am dating myself :) ), how many times did I hear that the typewriter will do fine thank you? But change comes whether we like it or not. What seems clear to me is that Linux is beginning to find its way into many institutions resulting in the need to learn it. Once people learn it many will make the switch permanently. Soon a critical mass develops and a viable community grows up around the OS. This is happening with Linux.

Notice also how many times people have written that Linux will disappear. Yet it continues to grow and find its way into set-top boxes, robots, ebook readers, computers and tablets. So while Windows will continue to dominate the desktop each year it will lose a bit of ground to Linux in other areas. This is a turtle and hare paradigm. Linux will compete quite nicely over the long haul, I have few worries about that.

Finally, what is most clear, is that all of us will use many different operating systems at different times as we will be using different devices. Whether we like it or not we will have to continually have to adapt to new systems, new devices and new ways of doing things. The Windows way is no longer the only way on the information highway.

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While at this stage in the game it's a pipe dream, I think the ideal is to move the operating system farther and farther from the fore front of peoples minds. I shouldn't care about what operating system my computer is running. In an ideal world I would make my software selection and it would just work on my system. Any time spent dealing with the OS is not productive time in my opinion. I have better things to do. This goes for all OS's.

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I think this is what Google and the cloud advocates are moving toward. With the cloud the OS makes little or no difference. Thus, I think this is no pipe dream but rather the direction things are going. That said until the cloud gets a bit more speed it cannot possibly be the only alternative. Bandwidth will continue to be a problem in the short term. Someday perhaps we will all be wired to ultra high speed connections and the cloud may become our desktop. For now I won't hold my breath. Instead I will continue to chug along with Ubuntu.

Edited by ferniez: n/a

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i think that i agree with this thread. i bought a laptop that came windows pre installed. but a virus wreaked such havoc that i was forced to format the hard drive but since i received no disk i had to pay a huge amount for windows seven and i just decided to try the hard route and struglle with linux.

imagin my surprise when the greatest struggle with linux is the need to drop my windows mentality. not only is it better than windows it is also easier in many respects and where it is not there are info pages on the web which explains things quite nicely.

sure the lack of games sucks but for everything else there is an alternative. and best of all: it is all free! i have to thank that a#@e h^l% that infected my pc. he forced into making the right choice. too bad i lost all my movies though.

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This information was in my business I worked for a long time looking for such a document. Thank you very much ...

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Thank you, KHess, for this post. Mirrors my sentiments on the subject exactly. Of course, to the gaming subject, I often say "Isn't it sad that you are letting entertainment dictate your freedom?"

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With today's computers, there is no problem to run windows in a virtual machine on top of linux. all the distributions include libvirt+virt-manager nowadays, and there's no restriction to install virtualbox or something similar

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>>i always like to play games on linux

one of two questions. either how or what type of games. linux do have games yes but not the type i would like. something where you can hook up seven of your friends and play some type of rts like age of empires or something. i know i know i know. doom right? not everybody is a fps fan. something rts or roleplaying or something like mech warrior or something. that would be nice.

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I like to play Battle For Wesnoth

A normal Wesnoth player has

* 200+ unit types
* 16 different races
* 6 major factions

to choose from. Actually, you can even make your own custom units, design your own map, scenarios or even campaigns. It’s all up to your creativity. The most interesting part of any game is the ability to multiplay. You can challenge up to a total of 8 friends in multiplayer fantasy battles.

>>i always like to play games on linux

one of two questions. either how or what type of games. linux do have games yes but not the type i would like. something where you can hook up seven of your friends and play some type of rts like age of empires or something. i know i know i know. doom right? not everybody is a fps fan. something rts or roleplaying or something like mech warrior or something. that would be nice.

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wesnoth: o ok. actually i never heard of it. i'll look into it. i assume its some type of open source game? if it is good then i'll get it. i tried to get wine running this weekend but i could not. however i only need wine for age of empires. so if this impress then i guess i wont be needing wine.

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I'm using Linux daily and I am very annoyed that my games will not run and I can not use Photoshop.

GIMP is great and all, but misses speed, strength and pen tablet support.

Also, I returned my new ATI Eyefinity card worth $550 because the ATI drivers are shit and were missing out stuff that meant I couldn't even open up the game I am developing.

These things make me so angry. But I don't blame Linux at least, I blame Microsoft for "buying" the game industry and Adobe for being lazy and surely paid by Microsoft.

When people ask me: "Will Linux replace what I currently have?", I say no. It won't run your games properly, and not at all without alot of tweaking.
Then they reply to me: "Linux is shit then, why do you use it!?". I answer that Linux is the best choice for anything it is allowed to run.

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The only obstacle Linux has is the Microsoft monopoly indoctrinating their users and buying the whole computer market,

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I prefer linux myself. However, I recognize the fact that applications, games especially, require programmers. So in essence projects to produce windows app equivalents use the momentum of the contributers of source code, not the average non programmer who wont use linux because app xyz isnt supported. Sadly most of those folks wont get into it. Programmers need to eat. Time is money. etc. Proprietary apps target proprietary platforms for viability of a profitable product. That is not to say that proprietary apps dont sell for open platforms like linux, but development cycles of apps for OSes with active development cycles like linux and associated libs are more costly. The business models are evolving and and as linux gains an ever larger share of the market we should see more investment of support for good ol' app xyz from typical commercial business models. On the plus side, the growing momentum of linux platform app developers are constantly making headway into extremely competitive alternatives. Just wait until a good partially standardized linux DirectX alternative API is established and made mainstream and stronger hardware vendor support is established. Then again if all you want is interface imitation, learn an alternatiue app source code and start an interface fork. Nasty thing to do though, really. Stick with app xyz on your platform and be content to miss out on the greener grass from this side. No seriously, learn to program. Its just cool.

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Check Codelite or Code::blocks

the first is my favorite but they are good ones in Linux. there is a bunch of others like KDevelop, Anjuta et al.

And don't hijack threads like this. Start your own :)

Edited by Stefano Mtangoo: n/a

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Since I use Linux about a year ago. I never look back to Window. Yeah Window 7 looks great but the security still sucks. Games are great but once the virus attack your computer everything will be wipe out. So I cannot afford to loose my precious data and sacrifice my gaming and stick with Linux. Only one small issue with my Lexmark all in one printer. It need Window XP still no problem with virtual box but I just use it whenever I need to scan. Feel like dumping the printer and get a new one with Linux support of course.

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Since I use Linux about a year ago. I never look back to Window. Yeah Window 7 looks great but the security still sucks. Games are great but once the virus attack your computer everything will be wipe out. So I cannot afford to loose my precious data and sacrifice my gaming and stick with Linux. Only one small issue with my Lexmark all in one printer. It need Window XP still no problem with virtual box but I just use it whenever I need to scan. Feel like dumping the printer and get a new one with Linux support of course.

What Linux Distro are you using? I have Ubuntu Lucid and everything runs fine but I use HP Printers. I added it and I never installed anything. If you use Ubuntu check below links
(BTW there is a wrapper I guess ndswrapper that installs windows drivers in Linux)

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Printers
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=49714

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I am using Linux Mint (a clone of Ubuntu) right now. It is very nice!
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Someone left a comment on one of my posts similar to, "Linux won't be popular on the Desktop until it runs Windows applications." To which I silently responded, "Huh? and, "You've got to be kidding me." We have WINE for running Windows applications and it works reasonably well for those who care to spend the time to work through any problems with it. I don't think the Linux Community needs to spend time on such an undertaking. Is anyone asking Apple to run Windows applications so that it will gain popularity? No? Then, why should Linux? If you want to run Windows applications, run them on Windows.

Linux is Linux. Mac OS is Mac OS. And, Windows is Windows.

Why does anyone want or need any crossover?

If application vendors want to create applications that run on Linux, that's great. I'm behind that 100 percent. If Intuit, for example, wants to create QuickBooks that runs on Linux, I'd buy it. If Adobe created Photoshop for Linux, they'd have an audience. And, if Microsoft created Microsoft Office for Linux, it would sell too. After all, the first operating system that MS Office ran on was the Mac OS.

And, why would you want to run Windows applications when we have OpenOffice.org, KOffice, GIMP and many others that are actually better than their Windows counterparts? They're so good that all three of the ones I mentioned have Windows versions available.

Why don't the other vendors make the same concessions? Why don't they provide their applications to all audiences?

I don't want Linux to run Windows applications unless those applications, produced by their respective vendors, become available as native Linux applications.

Run Windows applications on Linux? Thanks but no thanks.

I know the feeling and I agree with you fully Ken. I'm sure there is a market for commercial software on *nix and if more commercial software vendors would make their apps cross-platform it could possibly attract a few more people to switch to *nix. And as you mentioned there are some great bits of free software available (on all platforms) that do exactly the same things as other proprietary applications, but then there's just no telling some people!

In my experience, hardcore-gamers and serious graphics guys (using Photoshop, 3DSMax and Maya etc) seem to be the most vocal ones who'll refuse to even entertain the idea of trying Linux because:
"{insert expensive game/program name here} is only available for Windows"
or
"{insert name of open source program} is a pile of crap compared to {favourite proprietary app}"

But then there are the vast masses of other ordinary computer users out there who are blissfully unaware that there are any alternative OSes to Windows, other than perhaps Mac. Many of these might actually consider trying *nix if they had any clue that it existed.

But even then, some of those who are aware of Linux's existence are so technologically timid that they are too scared of screwing up their computer to even try something as harmless as a LiveCD. (or at least a few non-techy people I've experienced have!)

I've had many people look over my shoulder when I'm using my laptop who see my Linux desktop and see things like the compiz desktop cube and ask "Wow, how did you get Windows to look like that?"

The following conversation goes something like this:
me: "It's not Windows, it's Linux!"
them: "What's Linux?"
me: "It's a free, open-source operating system"
them: "Free? Seriously?! Wow!..."

Inevitably, I then end up having to show them some of the features of the OS and explain some of the differences between Linux and Windows.

A couple of times the conversation has gone something like this:
them: "So how can I get it?"
me: "Try this, it's a LiveCD" {I hand them a CD} "you just put it in your CD/DVD drive and start your PC, select the option to 'try Linux without any changes to your system' and it loads the Linux Desktop"
them: "Will it bugger-up my copy of windows?"
me: "No, it doesn't install anything, unless you choose to install it at the start screen"
them: "But will I lose all of my documents?"
me: "Only if you install it, just select the option to try it and you'll be fine. When you shut down the PC, remove the CD and when you restart again you can get straight into windows."
them: "No, I don't want to risk messing my PC up, I know I'll mess it up or break something. You have this back, thanks anyway!"

And it doesn't matter how much I try to reassure them, some seem too afraid that they'll lose all of their precious documents or their precious Windows to even entertain the idea of trying the LiveCD out!

Like the gamers and gfx nerds, there are also the inevitable few who'll ask "But does it run {favourite windows-only app}" who are put off when the answer is "No" even if there is a perfectly good open-source equivalent!

But then some of the open source software is another thing that puts some people off. Although some of the open source programs are at least equivalent to (if not better than) their proprietary counterparts, many of them use a different workflow to what many people from a Windows background are used to.
And it would seem that for many of them, this is unacceptable.

For example, Gimp and Blender although highly powerful pieces of open-source software, (and completely disregarding the fact that they're both available for Windows) they are two of the most complained about graphics programs by artists who are moving from Windows to *nix. Mainly because the two programs utilise a completely different workflow to the likes of Photoshop and 3DS Max!


That said I have managed to have a few successes getting people to try Linux. For example I convinced my non-techy parents to completely switch and they're more than happy.

This is what happened:
Their aging desktop is a fairly low-spec machine, built for Windows XP back when XP first came out. Thanks to all of the service packs and security patches and all of the other security software they had running (anti-virus etc), their PC had slowed to a complete crawl, taking a long while to boot into the desktop and applications were very slow to load and respond.

Even with upgraded RAM, a freshly reformatted HD and a brand new, fully patched install of XP, their PC was still painfully S L O W... And my parents were sick of it.

So instead of spending ££££'s on a new PC, I convinced them to try a Ubuntu LiveCD. Initially they weren't too happy about how long the LiveCD took to boot, but I explained that the boot would be a lot faster once it was installed to the HD. Besides, I was only running the LiveCD to see whether Ubuntu would work properly with their hardware and so they could see whether or not they liked it.

Anyway, it did work, I managed to connect to their wireless network and get online, I managed to send a couple of files to their printer, the graphics card worked, sound worked OK..Excellent! Finally after a short test-drive, both of my parents were pleased with how much faster Ubuntu was compared to XP even from the liveCD. So they agreed for me to install it onto their HD, which I did.

Once the OS had installed (the speed of which also impressed my parents) I updated the system, set-up their accounts and installed some programs they wanted. I then removed some things they didn't want/need and that was that. And they haven't looked back since!

As mentioned, my parents are not particularly techie by a long shot, but they have been fine with updating their system (admittedly via the update manager GUI). And they can do all the things they did before: surf the web, send/recieve emails, spreadsheets, word-processing, photo editing etc.
They had no problems with the transition from MS OfficeXP to OpenOffice, or using any of the other open source programs installed on their machine, in fact they found things easier!

Their old computer now runs noticably faster than it used to under XP. They also saved some money too! And that was a good year or so ago now.

Back when they had Windows it seemed like I'd get phone calls every week or so asking about various problems they were having. But since installing *nix I've only been called out once when their GDM failed to start after login. It seems something got corrupted in the 'saved_state' file in ~/.gconfd/ when their PC was shut down, not sure exactly what happened. Fortunately I'd seen this once before on my own PC, so I knew exactly what to do!

I did a quick ctrl-alt-F1 to get to a terminal, renamed the 'saved_state' file:

mv ~/.gconfd/saved_state ~/.gconfd/old_saved_state.OLD

and then restarted the GDM:

sudo /etc/init.d/gdm restart

And that was that! One keyboard shortcut and two lines of code and their machine was fixed. How often is that the case with Windows when something goes wrong??

Now, I'm no Linux zealot, although you could be forgiven for mistaking me for one looking back at my post so far! I don't generally go out of my way to promote Linux, especially on online forums. I don't like seeing all of the flamewars that get started over the topic of OS choice, I'd rather the Linux users promoted and raised awareness of Linux (i.e. the fact it exists and its benefits) without judging those who feel it is not for them. But anyway, whenever anybody asks me about Linux in person, I'm usually more than happy to talk about it for hours on end!

At the end of the day a computer is little more than a tool/appliance (depending on how you use it) and with regards to OS choice that's more of a personal thing. If you want to pay for your OS and all of your software, so be it. If you want to use a free OS and free software, more power to ya! If you want the best of both worlds...Hell, dual boot I really don't care! heh heh!

All I know is, personally I'm happy running *nix on all of my home computers. It allows me to do everything I want to do and more, I prefer it to Windows and I really don't miss Windows a bit. But I still use Windows at work (Gotta pay the bills somehow!).

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When an average user demands to run Windows app on Linux, what he/she actually conveys is "I'm not satisfied with what comes with Linux as alternative". OOo is regarded like "MS Office 10 years ago". There're no equivalents of Adobe (GIMP? no, thanks) or Autocad tools. Even Nokia does not supply a Linux version of Ovi/PC Suite.
Wine is only an experiment on code reversing. Woe betide on whoever considers it seriously.
People don't ask Apple to run Windows apps because MacOS users are not constantly irritated by anti-Windows fanboys to ditch their OS and use Linux instead.

Retail (closed) software on Linux is not viable. There's not a distro-independent packaging format embraced by all distros. There's not even a release-independent packaging policy for a distro, and major distros release twice a year. Will you spend time with developing software or packaging software? Overall, the Linux world does not welcome closed source. When you open the source you cannot make money by selling license, maybe only by selling support.

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When an average user demands to run Windows app on Linux, what he/she actually conveys is "I'm not satisfied with what comes with Linux as alternative". OOo is regarded like "MS Office 10 years ago". There're no equivalents of Adobe (GIMP? no, thanks) or Autocad tools. Even Nokia does not supply a Linux version of Ovi/PC Suite.
Wine is only an experiment on code reversing. Woe betide on whoever considers it seriously.
People don't ask Apple to run Windows apps because MacOS users are not constantly irritated by anti-Windows fanboys to ditch their OS and use Linux instead.

Retail (closed) software on Linux is not viable. There's not a distro-independent packaging format embraced by all distros. There's not even a release-independent packaging policy for a distro, and major distros release twice a year. Will you spend time with developing software or packaging software? Overall, the Linux world does not welcome closed source. When you open the source you cannot make money by selling license, maybe only by selling support.

Like your thoughts. Totally flameable, but worth thinking about.

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What Linux Distro are you using? I have Ubuntu Lucid and everything runs fine but I use HP Printers. I added it and I never installed anything. If you use Ubuntu check below links
(BTW there is a wrapper I guess ndswrapper that installs windows drivers in Linux)

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Printers
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=49714

I am using Ubuntu Lucid Lynx. It is a Lexmark P3100 all in one printer. The printer works fine its just the scanner that doesn't work. I use Xsane and Simple Scan but hang even on preview. Have try several forum including Ubuntu Forum but no help. You can find me in Ubuntu Forum with the same name. Feel like ditching the Lexmark. Anyway thanks for your reply.

Votes + Comments
I have an Epson printer and scanner on my Linux systems -they both work great!
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