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Old 04-09-2010, 03:08 AM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default 10 Things Linux Does Better Than Windows

There is no such thing as a "perfect" OS, but given that Microsoft's Windows costs a pretty penny and Linux is free, it's a little strange that the latter can do certain things far better than the former. We're taking a look at our favorite ten, which includes the partitioner, automatic logon, troubleshooting, customization and more.

You can read our full list here and discuss it here!
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:21 AM   #2
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Default Links

One of the biggest things missing in Windows is usable file links. Under Linux, it's a simple "ln -s" or a couple of clicks under a graphical file manager. Windows does support some types of file links, but they're much more difficult to create and use.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:24 AM   #3
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Default Not true BSOD etc

Although I generally agree with your article I cannot concur that BSOD (non recoverable) or equivalent does not occur in Linux. I used Linux Mint 64 bit and within a 4 week period had to do 5 reinstalls. Even after extensive forum queries nobody could find the solution to blank boot screens, endless scrolling of "initrd" messages, complete lockup etc. So I installed Windows XP; 12 weeks later not a single crash no BSOD's. I agree Linux is adaptable and generally user friendly BUT it is immature and prone to crashes on a constant basis and really not ready as an everyday OS.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:30 AM   #4
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Default Partitioning

I found it amusing that one of your first items was Windows' poor partitioning tools. I recently had to re-install Win 7 on my laptop and found that while the upgrade DVD was able to perform a full install, it refused to until I formatted the drive to NTFS. While this behavior is understandable 10 years ago, it is not now. One would think that Microsoft would do ALL it could to encourage re-installation of their operating system....is saying "Your drive is not formatted NTFS, would you like me to do that now? (yes/no)" so very hard ? Using a Linux-based tool (Partition Magic) in order to put Windows 7 back on seemed pretty sad to me.
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Old 04-09-2010, 12:57 PM   #5
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Default Poor command line in windows is an obsolete argument

Since powershell came (ships with Windows 7 and 2008 R2, downloadable from XP and up), you have a command line that is way more powerful than anything I ever saw on *nix systems.

The standard Console still has poor editing capabilities, but on the other hand, PowerShell ships with an Integrated Script Editor, which improves the situation somewhat. And you can debug you scripts, with breakpoints and stepping...

So before dismissing the CLI of windows, get your head wrapped around powershell.
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Old 04-09-2010, 01:48 PM   #6
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Default Theme /icons used for article

Anyone know the GTK / icon theme used in the GNOME screenshots in the article ?

i.e.

http://techgage.com/viewimg/?img=/ar...Than%20Windows
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:06 PM   #7
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Wow, who is the unregistered troll?
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:17 PM   #8
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Default

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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
One of the biggest things missing in Windows is usable file links. Under Linux, it's a simple "ln -s" or a couple of clicks under a graphical file manager. Windows does support some types of file links, but they're much more difficult to create and use.
I couldn't agree more, and it's something I've mentioned to others in the past. I'm not sure if it's just the fact that I like CLI, but I find it much easier to just open up a command-line and create a symlink rather than create shortcuts in Windows. Plus, symlinks are for more than just shortcuts of course (linking system files for example).

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I used Linux Mint 64 bit and within a 4 week period had to do 5 reinstalls. Even after extensive forum queries nobody could find the solution to blank boot screens, endless scrolling of "initrd" messages, complete lockup etc.
Your experience doesn't sound typical, because under no circumstance should you have to re-install so many times in such a short period of time (kudos for not giving up easily, though). It's hard to diagnose the issue from what you mention, but it sounds like Linux isn't agreeing with some piece of hardware in your machine.

I've actually had the opposite kind of experience. My Linux seems rock-stable, but in Windows (before I did my last PC overhaul), I'd get BSOD's after using Windows for a couple of hours on some occasions. Sorry you ran into such maddening issues!

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One would think that Microsoft would do ALL it could to encourage re-installation of their operating system....is saying "Your drive is not formatted NTFS, would you like me to do that now? (yes/no)" so very hard ? Using a Linux-based tool (Partition Magic) in order to put Windows 7 back on seemed pretty sad to me.
It's this kind of reason that highlighted Windows' partitioner faults to me. Back when I used to use Windows full-time, I found myself suckered into using commercial partitioners, and that wasn't even because I needed a Linux FS... I just wanted partitions that fit my goals. I think you mean GParted though as the Linux partitioner... Partition Magic is a commercial offering for Windows (and a good one).

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Since powershell came (ships with Windows 7 and 2008 R2, downloadable from XP and up), you have a command line that is way more powerful than anything I ever saw on *nix systems.
I gave PowerShell a test a couple of years ago and did find it to be a major improvement over the standard command-line, but I don't recall being overly impressed. Even after spending a couple of minutes with it, I didn't find it to be as jump-in-and-go as the CLI in Linux, but to be fair, a lot of new Linux users might feel the same.

PowerShell also hasn't made itself well-known outside of IT/admin environments for as long as it's existed, and Windows 7 is the first release where the tool is actually pre-installed. Linux on the other hand has a robust CLI built right into the OS, always accessible, regardless of which version you're using.

I just gave PowerShell another quick test as I wrote this, and it definitely is going to require a little studying up. I plan to do that, because who knows... I might actually begin to use it on a regular basis inside of Windows.

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Anyone know the GTK / icon theme used in the GNOME screenshots in the article?
The icon set is called Buuf Duece and can be found here:

http://www.shellscape.org/buufdeuce/

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Wow, who is the unregistered troll?
No trolling, this article's just picked up a lot of traction around the Web, and by coincidence no one chose a username to post under ;-)
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:39 PM   #9
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I found it amusing that one of your first items was Windows' poor partitioning tools. I recently had to re-install Win 7 on my laptop and found that while the upgrade DVD was able to perform a full install, it refused to until I formatted the drive to NTFS. While this behavior is understandable 10 years ago, it is not now. One would think that Microsoft would do ALL it could to encourage re-installation of their operating system....is saying "Your drive is not formatted NTFS, would you like me to do that now? (yes/no)" so very hard ? Using a Linux-based tool (Partition Magic) in order to put Windows 7 back on seemed pretty sad to me.

>>> MIERDA DE TORO! <<<
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:41 PM   #10
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>>> MIERDA DE TORO! <<<
Wrong quote!

I was refering to this:

"I agree Linux is adaptable and generally user friendly BUT it is immature and prone to crashes on a constant basis and really not ready as an everyday OS."
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Old 04-09-2010, 05:26 PM   #11
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Default response to post #8, name of partition tool

I'm poster #4 - the name of the partition software I used was Parted Magic 4.5 (from Linux Pro Magazine 12/09), not Partition Magic. I was at work and was relying on memory.
I don't hate Windows, but I do think the main article was pretty spot-on. Some features missing in Windows 7 are just so easy to implement it's shocking that they are still missing.
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:00 PM   #12
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For Windows XP, you actually have to go to the registry and find some specific string. For Windows Vista/7, you need to go to the command line and type in 'control userpasswords2'.

control userpasswords2 works in windows xp

you raise many valid points, but your windows knowledge is obviously limited
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:15 PM   #13
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Default Audiovisual optimization of Linux.

This is not possible on windows.

http://www.paradoxuncreated.com/arti...illennium.html

Ignoring the fact that closed source is a dead end, and putting people unessecary to work on similar projects, without co-operation, without the benefit of eachothers progress, resulting in inferior solutions..

I tried setting the windows timer to max, which is 1000hz or around this value (?), with an obscure closedsource shareware application, which in turn, probably came from obscure documents. Windows (XP) was stumbling. This linux-based system "Millennium" runs at 3 times that rate, and happily.


And ofcourse reason 88..

88. If Steve Ballmer desires to make the whole OS an object for attracting gay love, you can always make fork a new distro with Linux. The alternative is not thinkable.
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:39 PM   #14
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I'm poster #4 - the name of the partition software I used was Parted Magic 4.5 (from Linux Pro Magazine 12/09), not Partition Magic.
Ahh. I've never heard of Parted Magic before... will have to check it out.

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you raise many valid points, but your windows knowledge is obviously limited
One small oversight makes my Windows knowledge "obviously limited"? That's absurd. If my Windows knowledge was limited in any way, an article like this simply wouldn't be written. Up until four-and-a-half years ago, I was a full-time Windows user, with some Linux usage on the side. Both OSes have since swapped places.

With Windows XP, the way I used to fixed the auto-logon problem was with the help of TweakUI. When curiosity got the best of me and I did some searching to figure out exactly what it was that TweakUI did, I stumbled on the registry fixes. I had no idea 'control userpasswords2' also worked for XP, because it never came up in my searching.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I tried setting the windows timer to max, which is 1000hz or around this value (?), with an obscure closedsource shareware application, which in turn, probably came from obscure documents. Windows (XP) was stumbling. This linux-based system "Millennium" runs at 3 times that rate, and happily.
I took a quick look through that article and am having a difficult time understanding exactly what all these tweaks are set out to accomplish, but it's interesting nonetheless. Will have to take another look later.
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:55 PM   #15
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Ahh. I've never heard of Parted Magic before... will have to check it out.



One small oversight makes my Windows knowledge "obviously limited"? That's absurd. If my Windows knowledge was limited in any way, an article like this simply wouldn't be written. Up until four-and-a-half years ago, I was a full-time Windows user, with some Linux usage on the side. Both OSes have since swapped places.

With Windows XP, the way I used to fixed the auto-logon problem was with the help of TweakUI. When curiosity got the best of me and I did some searching to figure out exactly what it was that TweakUI did, I stumbled on the registry fixes. I had no idea 'control userpasswords2' also worked for XP, because it never came up in my searching.



I took a quick look through that article and am having a difficult time understanding exactly what all these tweaks are set out to accomplish, but it's interesting nonetheless. Will have to take another look later.
I'm a windows user and I have to say I felt his comment was accurate. The live CD issue you have brought up has been addressed as well for a long time by BartPE and WinPE. Its unfortunate because you do bring up valid points but I also did really feel like this was written by someone who is not a seasoned Windows user.
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