A Possible Way to Improve Linux

SpongebobFan1994

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While there are many great things about Linux as a whole, there are also many things about it that don't work, which is why I recommend going through with these possible solutions. I'm in no way a Linux or technology expert, so if I suggest a solution that may not work, I'm willing to accept criticism for it.

Each Distro Should Be Running it's own Kernel
  • Tovalds has admitted the kernel has become bloated, and it would cost an astronomical amount of money to make any changes to it. I personally think the kernel was never designed to handle this many distros at once, which is why I recommend that each distro create their own micro-kernel to run in conjunction with it, and once they all are doing that, drop the Linux kernel and expand the micro-kernel. By having each distro running it's own kernel, controversies like the Contributor Covenant won't exist ever again. We can keep the kernel running on supercomputers, mainframes, and servers to avoid any compatibility issues, as it would reduce the bloat and cost to maintain it. While this means hardware and programs would need a lot more drivers to work, the distro development teams can work with the manufacturers of both to make that happen. I can also see some manufacturing start-ups that would create libre hardware to improve software compatibility.

  • As a Mint user, I've personally experienced issues where installing programs through Terminal can be easier said than done at times. Sometimes, I can type in "Sudo apt-get install (insert software name here)", and I can get the program up and running in minutes. Other times, I'll come across a package that claims to be "locked", and it stops the installation dead in it tracks until I unlock it. This is why I've found installing software through package managers to be much easier. It'd be nice to have the option to use either or (because some users have admitted they hate package managers), but the problem is not every package manager has every program available. I could be wrong about this, but I think why they don't include everything is due to the lack of standardization in Linux. Due to how a number of distros all operate differently from one another, trying to create a standard OS would be immensely difficult, if not impossible, to complete at this point, which is why I recommended each distro dropping the Linux kernel.

  • Unfortunately, some distros are rightfully-so more popular than others, so the ones who end up struggling to stay afloat could switch gears and create programs for other distros.
Each Distro Should Create it's own Retail Chain
  • Another reason why Linux distros haven't been widely adopted is because of a lack of retail presence, unlike Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. This is especially true for distros that are made for a specific purpose, such as business software. If each distro also had it's own retail chain, that would bring in more money for the development team, it would create more jobs, and the distro itself would sink into the public consciousness. Having a tech support team, either in-store or traveling, would be helpful because sometimes people need in-person help, or there's a hardware issue they wouldn't know how to fix. Selling hardware and fully assembled computers also helps as manufacturers could draw attention to these chains. Also, they could sell their merchandise in-store as well as online.
Each Distro Should Avoid Allowing Users to Create Forks
  • The creation of forks has led to too many distros existing at once, which makes it confusing to people looking to try Linux for the first time. There's nothing wrong with fixing bugs and improving code quality, but if someone wants to create their own OS, they might as well start from scratch.
Entertainment
  • If a number of distro development teams could talk with game development companies about porting physical games to their distro (much like how these same games are being physically ported to Xbox, Nintendo, and Playstation), the game developers would make more money, and if the game is a AAA release, those distros would start to develop more of a presence in the public eye. If each distro also creates its own multiplayer software, and its own line of gaming magazines, that's even more attention for them. While Steam and GOG have their presence, the problem is digital games are beholden to the platform.

  • On top of creating a retail spin-off, each distro could create an entertainment company spin-off, where they'd create their own games, shows, movies, comics, novels, toys, posters, t-shirts, etc, and sell them both online and in their stores.
These are just some solutions that could be implemented. If there are some Linux problems I didn't mention, feel free to do so for me along with your suggestions for them.
 


jglen490

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The beauty of Linux is that it is not only fundamentally free, it is also fundamentally open. There is not governing body that says which distros live, die, or are free to be born. It is purely market driven. Many distros have either died off or have evolved into something different.

There is no requirement for game developers to target the Linux environment. Some do, most don't. If the game developer/producer doesn't see a benefit, then it won't happen.

The GPL (and similar licensing schemes) exist to encourage not only free as in beer and free as in speech, but to ensure legal protection for those freedoms.

Sure, it can be frustrating at times. But, I'd rather have a few frustrations that can be shared with a community and resolved by the community then to have the dictatorship of MS or Apple tell me what is right for me to do.
 

f33dm3bits

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I have enough games running on GNU/Linux through Steam, either native or through proton. Eventually they will hopefully find a way to make anti-cheat work with proton but I don't play any games that use it anyways so it's not a big deal for me. It was only in the beginning when I was using GNU/Linux that I ran into frustrations because it was of my lack of knowledge then, currently I don't have any frustrations when it comes to running GNU/Linux as my daily driver.
 

captain-sensible

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The creation of forks has led to too many distros existing at once, which makes it confusing to people looking to try Linux for the first time.
yes i know where you are coming from on that. Basically people like Patrick Volkerding (Slackware) have their own ideas and pursue them. The only way of bringing distro people together would be if there were some outside force that could bring them together and work in unity. I was going to say it would involve financial incentive but actually it seems Mr Volkerding doesn't develop Slackware for the money
 

digitard

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I have limited knowledge but I read things, it seems to me that the Debian policy is the reason of the fragmentation of Linux distributions... and it seems to me like a very fn smart move especially if it was deliberate, and the current situation has been foreseen from the start. I can't see the damage they cause tho, all I know is that they have gained a determined noob like me in their dedicated user base
 

SpongebobFan1994

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The beauty of Linux is that it is not only fundamentally free, it is also fundamentally open. There is not governing body that says which distros live, die, or are free to be born. It is purely market driven. Many distros have either died off or have evolved into something different.

There is no requirement for game developers to target the Linux environment. Some do, most don't. If the game developer/producer doesn't see a benefit, then it won't happen.

The GPL (and similar licensing schemes) exist to encourage not only free as in beer and free as in speech, but to ensure legal protection for those freedoms.

Sure, it can be frustrating at times. But, I'd rather have a few frustrations that can be shared with a community and resolved by the community then to have the dictatorship of MS or Apple tell me what is right for me to do.
I'm all about the openness as well, which is why I mentioned people should be allowed to fix bugs, improve code quality, and other things. If I had the technical skills to do so, I'd make some modifications to Mint so it would look and run better.

You're right about big developers, like Capcom for example, not wanting to take a gamble on Linux because of it's lack of presence in the gaming market. That doesn't mean there are smaller developers who would make games exclusively for Linux though. Perhaps that may become more of a thing in the future.

Each distro could use permissively-free licenses. Yes, that makes the license slightly more restrictive than the GPL, but the only reason I recommend it is to avoid even more fragmentation from new forks popping up. Outside of the tiny amount of control the development team would have, people can still make 95% of whatever changes they want to it.

The forums would still exist even if each distro was running their own kernels
 

Tumalo

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I am happy to see lad you are thinking about ways to improve our OS, @SpongebobFan1994 !

However, "Retail" is an ugly word in the GNU/Linux world. Tantamount to M$. Such ideas would be considered unwelcome, especially by some Slackers with whom I am familiar in another forum. Use it with caution. Only halfway LOL!
 

SpongebobFan1994

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The only way of bringing distro people together would be if there were some outside force that could bring them together and work in unity.
As much as I'd like to see that happen like you do, I'm still trying to wrap my head around that would happen successfully and consistently. Tovalds and other big names in the scene could try to come up with a plan to make Linux standardized and unified, but good luck to them when actually getting that to work.
 

SpongebobFan1994

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I am happy to see lad you are thinking about ways to improve our OS, @SpongebobFan1994 !

However, "Retail" is an ugly word in the GNU/Linux world. Tantamount to M$. Such ideas would be considered unwelcome, especially by some Slackers with whom I am familiar in another forum. Use it with caution. Only halfway LOL!
When you say "our OS", are you talking about Linux as a whole, or were you responding to me using Mint as an example of a distro I'd improve if I could?

I'd like you to elaborate on what you mean by retail being an ugly word. I can agree that Microsoft, Apple, and Google are sleazy and greedy corporations, but that's a result of them becoming so big and dominant that they think they're immortal and bulletproof. Power and money are like drugs, once you get hooked on them, you inevitability want more. With the numerous distros in existence, I find it hard to imagine each of them becoming the next Big Tech.
 

LorenDB

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Here's my take on each point:

Each Distro Should Be Running it's own Kernel
That wouldn't really work. Many distros don't actually do any kernel work, and probably some distros aren't even run by programmers. For each distro to have to maintain a unique kernel would take so much effort that many people would just drop out of the game.

I think that the best approach to the "bloated kernel" problem would be to somehow create a system where distro maintainers could just create custom-compiled kernels with unneeded modules removed--but even then, you risk missing support of a certain piece of hardware or a certain feature for users.
Each Distro Should Create it's own Retail Chain
No.

This is why companies like System76, Star Labs, Slimbook, and Tuxedo Computers exist (and no, I didn't list them all). If you make Linux distros into retail chains, you are giving the public the impression that you are like Apple--your OS only runs on your devices.
Each Distro Should Avoid Allowing Users to Create Forks
This is a tough one. I agree, to a point, that there is too much fragmentation. Why have Ubuntu Studio when you can just install Ubuntu and your favorite media creation apps? But I also think that we need to have a level of fragmentation to maintain the concept of "Linux is about choice". Furthermore, distros like Ubuntu Studio do have a good usecase, and if the maintainers are willing to take care of the distro to simplify other people's lives, why not?

Also, forks are ethical. Consider the recent WhatsApp policy changes (which state that WhatsApp may share your personal information with Facebook). If WhatsApp was open source, people could fork it and create a private version of WhatsApp. In the same way, if a major distro (such as Ubuntu) were to make an unpopular decision, the community could "save" Ubuntu by means of a fork.

And lastly, there isn't any good way to prevent forks. With nearly all components of any given distro being open source, there is no way to stop somebody from creating a distro clone.
Entertainment
Again, the retail idea isn't very great (in my opinion) (see above). As far as porting titles to Linux, I think that that's a great idea, but the problem is that many companies aren't going to port a game unless they can get lots of users, and the users aren't going to switch to Linux if they can't get the game. I think that one of the best chances of getting big titles on Linux would be if somebody could get a guarantee (perhaps an online pledge) that if a title (say Cyberpunk 2077 (I'm not a gamer, that's just the first one I thought of)) was ported to Linux, a certain number of users (e.g. 5,000 would buy the Linux version of the game.

That's just my personal opinion on things. Of course, Linux is also about having your own opinion and preferences, so I think that your suggestions are worthy of consideration, but I personally disagree. Hopefully this won't be the start of an Internet flame war. :)
 

SpongebobFan1994

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Here's my take on each point:


That wouldn't really work. Many distros don't actually do any kernel work, and probably some distros aren't even run by programmers. For each distro to have to maintain a unique kernel would take so much effort that many people would just drop out of the game.

I think that the best approach to the "bloated kernel" problem would be to somehow create a system where distro maintainers could just create custom-compiled kernels with unneeded modules removed--but even then, you risk missing support of a certain piece of hardware or a certain feature for users.

No.

This is why companies like System76, Star Labs, Slimbook, and Tuxedo Computers exist (and no, I didn't list them all). If you make Linux distros into retail chains, you are giving the public the impression that you are like Apple--your OS only runs on your devices.

This is a tough one. I agree, to a point, that there is too much fragmentation. Why have Ubuntu Studio when you can just install Ubuntu and your favorite media creation apps? But I also think that we need to have a level of fragmentation to maintain the concept of "Linux is about choice". Furthermore, distros like Ubuntu Studio do have a good usecase, and if the maintainers are willing to take care of the distro to simplify other people's lives, why not?

Also, forks are ethical. Consider the recent WhatsApp policy changes (which state that WhatsApp may share your personal information with Facebook). If WhatsApp was open source, people could fork it and create a private version of WhatsApp. In the same way, if a major distro (such as Ubuntu) were to make an unpopular decision, the community could "save" Ubuntu by means of a fork.

And lastly, there isn't any good way to prevent forks. With nearly all components of any given distro being open source, there is no way to stop somebody from creating a distro clone.

Again, the retail idea isn't very great (in my opinion) (see above). As far as porting titles to Linux, I think that that's a great idea, but the problem is that many companies aren't going to port a game unless they can get lots of users, and the users aren't going to switch to Linux if they can't get the game. I think that one of the best chances of getting big titles on Linux would be if somebody could get a guarantee (perhaps an online pledge) that if a title (say Cyberpunk 2077 (I'm not a gamer, that's just the first one I thought of)) was ported to Linux, a certain number of users (e.g. 5,000 would buy the Linux version of the game.

That's just my personal opinion on things. Of course, Linux is also about having your own opinion and preferences, so I think that your suggestions are worthy of consideration, but I personally disagree. Hopefully this won't be the start of an Internet flame war. :)
Those are all good answers
 

Lord Boltar

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Some distros do use their own variation of the Kernel - Canonical makes it for their distros all the flavors of Buntu and it's derivatives. Debian has their own version and the variations thereof, generally you cannot install a Debian kernel on Buntu and vice-versa. Lastly, you can simply download the source code and build it yourself. I do not know how Arch does it since I do not use Arch
 

wizardfromoz

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And that was someone who has his own Distro. :)

Your Lordship, does Expirion rate as a fork of Ubuntu or some other description?

Hopefully this won't be the start of an Internet flame war.
Don't worry, if there are any flames, I am the fire extinguisher ;)

We also have another Dev in our ranks, in the form of @GeckoLinux who produces, surprise surprise, Gecko Linux.

Gecko is a fork from openSUSE.

On the subject of forks and choice, and a justification for forks - one of the reasons I like Gecko Linux and have been using it for some years is that it allows the option most Distros allow, of trying it Live from USB/DVD, whereas openSUSE for some reason unknown to me, does not. You either install or nothing.

Cheers

Wizard
 
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Linux don't need to change leave Linux be.

New Linux users need to dump their Windows mindset.

Have a read.

I don't understand why new Linux users thinks Linux needs to change. :confused:

It doesn't.

New Linux users need to learn what Linux is about and what Linux already offers OOTB.

The day Linux becomes another mainstream OS is the day Linux turns into another polluted Microsoft product and will be nothing more than another POS OS.
 
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Lord Boltar

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And that was someone who has his own Distro. :)

Your Lordship, does Expirion rate as a fork of Ubuntu or some other description?



Don't worry, if there are any flames, I am the fire extinguisher ;)

We also have another Dev in our ranks, in the form of @GeckoLinux who produces, surprise surprise, Gecko Linux.

Gecko is a fork from openSUSE.

On the subject of forks and choice, and a justification for forks - one of the reasons I like Gecko Linux and have been using it for some years is that it allows the option most Distros allow, of trying it Live from USB/DVD, whereas openSUSE for some reason unknown to me, does not. You either install or nothing.

Cheers

Wizard
Fork of Xubuntu if you want to be technical
 

SpongebobFan1994

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Linux don't need to change leave Linux be.

New Linux users need to dump their Windows mindset.

Have a read.

I don't understand why new Linux users thinks Linux needs to change. :confused:

It doesn't.

New Linux users need to learn what Linux is about and what Linux already offers OOTB.

The day Linux becomes another mainstream OS is the day Linux turns into another polluted Microsoft product and will be nothing more than another POS OS.
I've been using Mint since I was about 19 (I just turned 27), and even though I've always been a casual user (because I'm happy with it being user-friendly), that doesn't mean I have a Windows mindset because I've gotten used to Mint not being like Windows. Sure, I had to unlearn everything I became accustomed to in Windows, but like everyone else who came from it as well, I eventually got over that.
 
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Deleted member 101831

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I've been using Mint since I was about 19 (I just turned 27), and even though I've always been a casual user (because I'm happy with it being user-friendly), that doesn't mean I have a Windows mindset because I've gotten used to Mint not being like Windows. Sure, I had to unlearn everything I became accustomed to in Windows, but like everyone else who came from it as well, I eventually got over that.
Well if you've been using Linux Mint since you were about 19 and you just turned 27 than you're not a new Linux user are you.
 

SpongebobFan1994

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Well if you've been using Linux Mint since you were about 19 and you just turned 27 than you're not a new Linux user are you.
No, but you assumed I was by claiming I had a Windows mindset. Also, I never said I wanted to change Linux, because as the title says, I wanted to improve it. There's a reason why Linux holds a very small market share, and that's not necessarily due to the influence of Big Tech.
 

wizardfromoz

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:) OK folks, let's just settle a bit and agree to disagree, instead of trading barbs and gibes, or dealing in semantics.

Cheers

Wizard
 
D

Deleted member 101831

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No, but you assumed I was by claiming I had a Windows mindset. Also, I never said I wanted to change Linux, because as the title says, I wanted to improve it. There's a reason why Linux holds a very small market share, and that's not necessarily due to the influence of Big Tech.
No I didn't assume anything.

I merely stated that new Linux users in general need to dump their Windows mindset and nothing more.

Most new Linux users I've run across all say pretty much the same thing.

Linux needs to change this and make it more like Windows.

New Linux users say this because prior to using Linux all they've used and know and are accustom to are the ways of Windows hence the Windows mindset.

I speak from experience because I was exactly the same as any other Linux newbie and thought with that same Windows mindset.

But you believe what you want and or think what you want.

I'm outa this thread.
 
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