06/07/2007

Windows, XP & Linux

Not that I'm considering upgrading to Vista, but I've been reading various posts that give me the distinct idea that I absolutely don't want to upgrade. First, Dan at ITdiaries.com walked us through the Vista EULA (end user license agreement) which I haven't read, but if Dan's analysis is taken at face value, makes Vista sound pretty intrusive and prohibitive. Then, langardmicro at SEF says:

Vista is XP dumbed-down to childish. It's an ultimate-skin makeover to disguise all the worthless security measures that prevent anyone, with any knowledge, from doing anything in a timely manner. It's the incarnation of "Microsoft Bob" all over again. It's the reducio ad absurdum of marketing ploys.

Well. This makes me very happy that I'd purchased XP a few weeks ago for our last remaining Windows 2000 machine, just after Darin (smartcodetips.com — gotta love a programmer's website!) commented, "Can you still buy that?" That was my cue to buy it that day or risk the "can't-buy-Win2K-anymore" type of consequences. I went for the full install package, too; no fooling around with OEM versions or upgrade packages because I don't want to discover that an upgrade won't work for any reason long after the full version has been pulled from the market.

That's just me being careful; I figure that XP is my last Windows OS (I know; I said that about Win2K, too) because I just need my machines to work. We buy legal versions of all of our software (and music), so that's not the issue. I just don't need intrusiveness or balkiness from my work machines. No, I figure that Linux is somewhere in our future, probably years from now. The problem with that, of course, is buying a lot of new software, versions of which may not exist for Linux. However, this comment from zawam at SEF gives hope:

If you use WINE, add a few bits here and there that can be "borrowed" from a windows installation, then Linux can run a fair few Windows Apps…

I have DW, Flash and Fireworks running on Linux

Well, some hope. No idea what "bits" would need to be "borrowed" or whether that would be legal. Still, I'll be keeping an eye out. All I want to do is run my Windows versions of apps on Linux. I figure that's coming, if it isn't here already.

[ADDED] Actually, I'd done a quick review of Simply Mepis in 2004, so I can't say I have no experience with Linux. Just … most of it's with web servers. :)

10 Comments to "Windows, XP & Linux"

  1. Carmelo Lisciotto says:

    It most definitely can run some windows apps…

    Carmelo Lisciotto

  2. Diane Vigil says:

    Thanks, Carmelo. I'm sure that's true.

    The question we've all been trying to answer is whether it will run the Windows apps that *we* need to run without any problems at all. Otherwise, we're faced with purchasing new versions of our vital programs (if they exist for Linux).

    Of course, there are various Linux-based programs that are "like" industry-standard programs such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, etc. But being similar does not mean that they're the same.

    For instance, I'd used OpenOffice for Windows, a word processor very similar to Word — only it displayed some things a little differently, and so problems arose.

    I'm not dumping this on you, though. It's just a question many of us have had for some years.

  3. Ron Carnell says:

    I was forced to buy a new computer not long ago to replace my main machine and, of course, it came loaded with Vista. I wiped the hard disk (I always do that any way) and configured a dual-boot implementation with both XP and Vista. With disk space so cheap these days, it wasn't any problem to install most of my software under both operating systems, with data of course being shared across the board.

    It's been something like two months now and the only time I boot up XP is to edit videos (Nero just doesn't work well under Vista). There were some few problems (Firefox, for example, couldn't install its own upgrade until I figured out I had to run it as Administrator), but really, surprisingly few considered the (extremely!) increased security under Vista.

    The flip side to that, however, is that if you don't need the (extremely!) increased security features of Vista (I know what phishing is and don't give Internet programs access to my hard disk), there's really no compelling reason to upgrade. Multimedia is a little more robust under Vista (think XP Media Center Edition pretty much all grown up), but I suspect most people are like me and those really into multimedia use applications, not the OS, to do what they want. The Vista "gadgets" are cute, I guess, but not very useful yet.

    In short, Vista is okay. It's just not a great deal more than okay. :)

  4. Diane Vigil says:

    Thanks, Ron; that's good to know. Sounds like a good OS for those who are less "street smart".

    I use Mailwasher, as it allows me to check email (and from multiple websites at once) — and I can read it onscreen before deleting it in Mailwasher or downloading it. One benefit is that, although it displays the text portion of links, it *also* displays the real link URL, so it's fairly clear when the link is, well, funky. Of course, that requires that one know the difference between paypal.com/whatever and paypal.com/dir1/dir2/realsite.com.

    Didn't know you were into film editing. Now I'm curious. :)

  5. Clarks says:

    When I was about to upgrade from Win2k to XP, I was also looking into Linux, I did install it, but I ended up installing XP, because Linux was simple not my piece of pie, its not user friendly.

    I will stick to Win XP as long as I can. Beacause Vista does not deserve to be on my machine. I have bought a Home (basic) edition of Vista, and I was not comfortable working on it.

  6. Diane Vigil says:

    I'm going the same way, I have to say. My main issue is the Vista EULA, which seems overboard in allowing other companies to access your machine.

    At the point where it becomes necessary (and I've been watching this for some years), we'll switch to a Linux version that allows the running of Windows software. Thing is, people who must run a lot of top-of-the-line Windows software (particulary Adobe stuff) don't particularly want to have to buy Linux versions; we're talking a few thousand dollars here. (And, no, I don't want to switch to The Gimp; while it's "quite a lot" like Photoshop, it isn't Photoshop. It just isn't.)

  7. LA Head Shot Photography says:

    From what I've heard, I think I'll keep XP!!!

  8. Diane Vigil says:

    I don't blame you. It's going to be a while before we have to upgrade or move to something else — and, depending on what types of software you use, that might be an even longer while. (Good to see you here!)

  9. Clarks says:

    I have started learning Linux now, Its a totally different platform, and not so user friendly. Stuck in between Mac, Linux and XP.

  10. Diane Vigil says:

    Yep, I know what you mean. Although I think it depends on what version (or distribution) of Linux you're using. Which one are you using?

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