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Old 2021-10-03, 16:26   #23
chalsall
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"Chris Halsall"
Sep 2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
I standardized on Xfce many years ago and have no problems with my multi-screen Ubuntu systems.
My workstation is for work. I've been using MATE for about ten years; it's very comfortable for my workflows.

Call me an old foggy, but I'm *not* changing my window manager.
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Old 2021-11-08, 22:00   #24
chalsall
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Default Formal notice. And, thanks for wasting my time...

Ubuntu Mate has been fired!

I jumped through all the hoops. Upgraded to ubuntuMATE21.10 (as I am always reminded of by way of the cute little auto-run pop-up thing).

The last straw was when I was away from my workstation for a little while on a voice call. The screen blanker started. But seemed to be working in slow motion.

While the sun was in my eyes outside of my office, Ubuntu decided it would be a really good idea to lower the contrast on my screens as part of an animated "fade out". But, for some reason, this was taking (literally) hours.

Please forgive me for this, but FSCK me! This is almost as bad as Winblows demanding an update when the human is in front of a lot of people.

Me Human. You software stack. Do what I tell you to do, or (PLEASE) get out of my way.

Next up is FC35. I have the ISO ready to lock-and-load.
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Old 2021-11-08, 22:52   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chalsall View Post
. . .
Next up is FC35. I have the ISO ready to lock-and-load.
I just upgraded my Fedora from 33 to 34. Every time I upgrade, something more annoying has been done. This time it's Gnome, going to 40 (or 41) and changing all the familiar and less troublesome left-locked hidden menu and vertical workspaces to a bottom-locked menu and horizontal workspaces. Oh, but I can "fix" it by going and getting an extension. I can also fix it by getting rid of Gnome!
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Old 2021-11-08, 23:17   #26
chalsall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdH View Post
I just upgraded my Fedora from 33 to 34. Every time I upgrade, something more annoying has been done.
I hear you. Loud and clear.

The reason I was effectively forced to try Ubuntu as a workstation solution is because I was limping so badly along with a Fedora 33 boot set that the next Kernel upgrade would have resulted in my being unable to boot.

No joke on that.

This was a worthwhile exercise (at least, for me).

For the record... This conclusion is very subjective. I have simply personally decided that Ubuntu as a MATE workstation is not to my liking. ***WAY*** too unstable when human-facing as a workstation.

Pressing the reset button...

For me (which I will document), the next exercise will be a "fresh install" for the latest Fedora "Mate Spin".

P.S. I find it somewhat amusing that I having this conversation while I continue to rebuild so many Winblows 10 installations because they are for some reason self-destructing.

P.P.S. No joke on my P.S. Possibly statistically significant?

Last fiddled with by chalsall on 2021-11-08 at 23:20 Reason: s/to unstable/too unstable/; # Like, dudes! Earth calling Canonical...
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Old 2022-05-31, 00:43   #27
chalsall
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Hey ya' all.

How's it been going with you in your world? (Channeling my inner Kate McKinnon.)

I would like to share something interesting that went down in my world just now...

My Ubuntu workstation started *demanding* that I reboot.

Like, Really Soon Now!!!

Me: "OK... Ok... There's something you're not telling us, but OK... Let's do a full update and reboot... Just to be safe...

Breaking the "fourth wall": I followed all the directions. To the letter... And after a reboot...

I found that serious regressions had occurred!

Including the new inability to press "Ctrl-[Alt-]F2" to get to a console to then log in as root to them do stuff...!

Ubuntu is ***so*** fired in my world. Fedora 36 Mate is "in the breach, ready to load...

How was your day?
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Old 2022-05-31, 04:29   #28
retina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chalsall View Post
... do a[n] ... update ...
I found your mistake.

Once you have got to a setup that pleases you don't trust other people to keep it that way for you.

Disable updates.

Oh, but the security retina, I will be hacked and molested and raped and lynched and generally have a bad day, right? Probably not, but keep an eye on the reported CVEs, and manually patch the ones that bother you. There won't be many, perhaps one or two over the course of a few years.
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Old 2022-05-31, 06:23   #29
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I remember Desktops like Gnome and KDE, but I have long stopped using those, simply because there is too much going on under the hood. The idea is that when there seems to be nothing to do, CPU indicators should be indistinguishable from 0%.

And that is why I use Mate and XFCE now. Plus, there is less stuff that can break.

As to the underlying system and its upgrade philosophy, there are conflicting goals: You want the system to be consistent, e.g. shared library versions provided by one package are those that are actually required by the other packages. On the other hand, you want recent software, if only to be sure that you have got essential updates. So, in one way or another, incompatible updates to, say, OpenSSL, necessitate rebuilds and redistribution of a lot of other dependent software.

Debian, CentOS and the like go to incredible lengths to hide this dilemma. So, officially, they have a stone-old OpenSSL version with about the same shared library version during the lifetime of a distribution, but under the hood they backport the fixes for newer versions to that older version, so they can simply update the package without breaking shared library dependencies. At least, that is how I remember it.

This backporting is a lot of dedicated work that users have to rely on. Also, you cannot tell whether you have recent fixes just by looking at the package version because that always looks old, yet may not be. Switching to a current version of, say, Perl, Python or Ruby is near impossible because so many other packages use the old version-dependent installation paths. And every few years, the backporting burden becomes too large, and users have to switch to a new distribution all at once, which is always a big headache.

Other systems like Arch Linux simply refuse to do that hidden work and leave it to you to keep your system consistent. (They constantly rebuild dependent packages, but they do not guarantee global consistency at any given point of time.) On the plus side, you always have access (within one week or so) to the most recent upstream versions of just about any software, and the associated package version truly is that official version (with a release number appended of course). And you do not have to make the big jump of setting up an entirely new system every few years. Instead, you upgrade constantly, in small steps with usually little pain per step that you get used to handling.

On my rented server, I initially had CentOS installed. Then, when a dist upgrade went horribly wrong, I switched to Debian. On my own computers, I now use Arch Linux. There I use my own scripts that tell me whether new packages have broken library links, and if so, I can postpone or rollback the update or rebuild the dependent packages myself. For the latter, Arch Linux seems to be way easier than Debian (e.g. packages are defined using a single PKGBUILD file which is basically a bash script source), and the devtools package has tools that build packages in a chroot, as it should be.

So, you cannot have all nice things together, but if you know your way around packaging, you can become a lot less dependent on the hidden work of other packagers, and you can avoid the nightmare of a distribution-level upgrade.
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Old 2022-05-31, 07:01   #30
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Did I say, you cannot have all nice things? Well, in theory GNU GUIX can provide both recent software and ensure that every piece of installed software is linked to the exact version of its prerequisites that it has been built with. The idea is to package each version such that it can coexist with other versions, and to keep track of which versions are still needed. But I have not tried it yet.
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Old 2022-05-31, 08:40   #31
xilman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccorn View Post
...

And that is why I use Mate and XFCE now. Plus, there is less stuff that can break.

...

On my rented server, I initially had CentOS installed. Then, when a dist upgrade went horribly wrong, I switched to Debian. On my own computers, I now use Arch Linux. There I use my own scripts that tell me whether new packages have broken library links, and if so, I can postpone or rollback the update or rebuild the dependent packages myself. For the latter, Arch Linux seems to be way easier than Debian (e.g. packages are defined using a single PKGBUILD file which is basically a bash script source), and the devtools package has tools that build packages in a chroot, as it should be..
Xfce here too, mostly because I am so old that I actually prefer an old-style desktop metaphor.

Two of my systems run Gentoo/Xfce and two Ubuntu/Xfce (the server runs GUI-less). On average the Gentoo systems are slightly more trouble because I have to fiddle around with blocking packages and the occasional circular dependency.

YMMV.

Last fiddled with by xilman on 2022-05-31 at 08:40
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Old 2022-05-31, 10:35   #32
S485122
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
Xfce here too, mostly because I am so old that I actually prefer an old-style desktop metaphor.
...
You mean a desktop that is not made for users only gaming and watching videos ? Where one can work with more than one application at the same time, where the active window is recognisable, with no transparency effects*, where the controls are not hidden and you don't have to move your mouse around to find scrollbars and other controls and even links, where you don't have to click OUTSIDE a window to resize it, where the text is black on a light background** ?

I think the big problem of people directing software development is that they rely too much on telemetry : most serious users turn all that spying off, this means that there is no feedback from them. Just look at Firefox who change the interface for the worse at each update and don't seem to mind all the reactions from their users, ...

The saddening thing about this is that the underlying software still has the code for the efficient interface, it is just the access to it that is prevented.

Ergonomics is sacrificed in favour of bling-bling.

It is not a question of age IMHO, just another domain where the "communication" industry (advertising, "marketing", ...) has taken over.

* The equivalent of listening to "Friends and Neighbours" by Ornette Coleman play while the Ninth of Beethoven is playing in the background ;-)
** Just search for the justification of dark mode and you will find why, in most circumstances, it is not a good option for most users.
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Old 2022-05-31, 10:41   #33
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I'm considering Fedora Silverblue as the next step from Ubuntu 20.04, partly because Fedora tends to package more standard (closer to upstream) versions of core programs updated quicker, and redhat seem to have some momentum developing/adopting better replacements for some core things (like pipewire). Also Ubuntu keeps pushing snaps harder with 22.04 which is ludicrous, easy to workaround but why force people to workaround something as core as package management of all things. Silverblue as an immutable OS is interesting, and toolbox/distrobox are interesting, but there appear to be some limitations particularly with toolbox which might make the setup less than ideal. In theory silverblue is great, in practice place your bets.



i3/sway is the best DE hands down if you're the only one using the system and want a minimal productive environment, if there's a chance anyone other than a super nerd uses the system probably best to log in with something else.
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