PDA

View Full Version : GUI vs. CLI



Pages : 1 2 [3] 4

kabus
May 8th, 2006, 07:28 AM
If ubuntu really is for human beings...
...Linux is supposed to be about choice..

The two stupidest non-arguments that make the rounds on these forums raise their ugly heads again...



the majority of humans are not educated enough to use computers!

It always amazes me how the proponents of 'easy gui tools', 'usability', or whatever this weeks buzzword is manage to insult the intelligence of the people they intend speak for, but that's beside point here...
The howtos that are the topic of this thread actually have very little to do with using a computer, they usually deal with system administration. Being your own administrator naturally involves some learning, no matter what type of interface you are using. As mentioned several times in this thread there are practical reasons for giving CLI instructions.

mostwanted
May 8th, 2006, 07:42 AM
I would like to remind everyone to speak in a nice way to one another, we don't need this name-calling on our forum. Do yourself a favour and think about what you're writing before you post it - you will be surprised how often an insult can be substituted with a smiley while the original post retains its meaning. Help conserve the great atmosphere of these boards.

helpme
May 8th, 2006, 08:04 AM
*Sigh*
Why do threads like this always have to turn into flamefests with pseudo 1337 haX0rs, who tell everyone that the command line is more efficient, because they are able to type apt-get into a terminal, that everyone has to do it their way and that everyone who disagrees shouldn't be using linux.
This is of course especially funny on the ubuntuforums, as Ubuntu strives to be as easy to use and as accessible as possible for everyone and it of course is a slap in the face for all those great developers spending their time and talent on making Linux easier to use.

About the original subject:
I think most of the arguments have already been made, but just to add my 5 cents:
- Command line instructions are easier to write.
- They are cross DE.
- They might even be easier to follow, as copy and past is possible.

Kvark
May 8th, 2006, 08:56 AM
Wow, what a load of junk this thread turned into!

I think everyone agrees that both GUI and CLI should be available. What is the point in arguing which interface is supperior if you all agree that both should be available anyway?

The only real answer to the "which is supperior" question is that it depends on the task. For writing a letter typing is more efficient then pointing and clicking. For drawing an image it's the other way around.

benplaut
May 8th, 2006, 09:14 AM
first of all, (as always), ayisu is perfectly right - if you know enough, do it yourself.

We're all pretty much feeding the troll ATM, and i'd like to say i don't agree with what PrimoTurbo has said -

here's my opinion:
You can't make a valid argument unless you understand both sides of an issue. Sure, use all the GUI apps you want, but spend a week with Ion and xterms - then you can argue all you want about how much it sucked.

I really hated terminals when i started out, but have learned that typing a single cp command (when using tab completion, of course) takes a fraction of the time to would take to open up a Nautilus or two and copy a file manually.

Both have their place. If you're exploring, gui fits better (imo). Anything that takes 20 clicks in a gui can usually be accomplished in 5 seconds worth of typing in the terminal.

/heavily biased,
ben

PrimoTurbo
May 8th, 2006, 10:14 AM
All I said was that GUI should be able to do what Terminal can and people started jumping on me claiming that typing is better for you and all sorts of crap. I wasn't trolling, I was trying to get my viewpoint out.

Anyways I don't care anymore, the community is obviously biased and I won't change any opinions or prove anything I'll be called a jackass and flamed.

This is probally why the AlternativeOS™ community is so seperated on many issues, Gnome/KDE, Distros, Linux/BSD, etc.

helpme
May 8th, 2006, 10:24 AM
Anyways I don't care anymore, the community is obviously biased and I won't change any opinions or prove anything I'll be called a jackass and flamed.

I can understand your frustrations, however I don't think it's fair to take the behavior (or lack thereof) of one or two people to be indicative of the community as a whole (whatever this community is supposed to be anyway).

mips
May 8th, 2006, 11:03 AM
Anyways I don't care anymore, the community is obviously biased and I won't change any opinions or prove anything I'll be called a jackass and flamed.


Don't worry about it, let them be. It's most geek driven ;)

I'm pretty comfortable with the cli and can see it's advantages. I do however think guides for newbies should have both gui & cli. When I moved to linux the cli scared the **** outta me, I was very comfortable with the gui as it made a whole lot more sense to me than all these funny commands.

fuscia
May 8th, 2006, 11:38 AM
i'm not sure about this, but right now, i am under the impression that everything that can be done in linux can be done using the cl. that's not true of the GUI.

while there may be some things that can be taken care of more simply through the use of a GUI (ndisgtk, for instance), there are other things where a GUI would make more work, like sudo deborphan | xargs sudo apt-get -y remove --purge, for example. is there a way to do that as simply using a GUI? is it true of all GUIs?

on an old piece of crapola, lots of GUI is too resource consuming. one of the advantages of linux is that is can give new life to a machine that could never run the latest offerings from windows and apple.

using a well tested text based solution to a problem is as simple as copying from one window and pasting on another. less real estate is used in both cases. when using a GUI solution, the more steps there are to that solution, the more likely one will end up with tons of windows open all over the place. and the more complicated the solution, the more effort is required by the person providing the solution. as one who has received far more help than he has given, i want the process of helping me to put as little strain as possible on those who help me.

egon spengler
May 8th, 2006, 12:37 PM
All I said was that GUI should be able to do what Terminal can and people started jumping on me claiming that typing is better for you and all sorts of crap. I wasn't trolling, I was trying to get my viewpoint out.

Anyways I don't care anymore, the community is obviously biased and I won't change any opinions or prove anything I'll be called a jackass and flamed.

This is probally why the AlternativeOS™ community is so seperated on many issues, Gnome/KDE, Distros, Linux/BSD, etc.

To be fair you was using an extremely biased argument yourself, of course clicking a button to select 1280x1024 is easier than editing xorg.conf. But then you don't need to edit xorg.conf to set your resolution

PrimoTurbo
May 8th, 2006, 05:55 PM
That was just an example, for example I need to edit my xorg to change my resolution and refresh rate for my login as it defaults to 70Hz..

TeeAhr1
May 8th, 2006, 06:05 PM
(haven't read the whole thread, I may be repeating someone else)

The obvious reason: There's a million different desktop environments, each with their own GUI tools. There's only one BASH.

EDIT: Should have figured a dozen people beat me to the punch ;-)
EDIT/ADD: Enough with the flamewars. Slashdot's down the hall.

Stormy Eyes
May 8th, 2006, 06:10 PM
Something that really has me wondering is why all howto's, wikkis and help in 99.9% of cases give only the command line solution instead of the method using the Ubuntu application GUI?

If you give GUI-oriented instructions, you have to make screenshots and host them somewhere. You also have to deal with the possibility that their GUI isn't configured the same as yours, or that they might be using KDE while you're using GNOME, etc.

Writing GUI-oriented instructions takes more time, and there's more room for misunderstandings. If I give you a set of commands, all you have to do is copy and paste them.

Omnios
May 8th, 2006, 06:42 PM
Um one bonus command line can be done from recovery mode so if you are ever locked out of the GUI command line skills can come in handy.

aysiu
May 8th, 2006, 06:56 PM
I don't see what the point of arguing about this is.

Really.

Most documentation (on the Wiki, in the HowTo section, etc.) is created by users--volunteers. That's right... users just like you and me.

If you want to create better documentation or different documentation, create it. No one's stopping you. You can't demand that other volunteers create documentation the way you want it.

If you strongly believe in graphical instructions, create them. If you don't believe in it that strongly, then deal with the command-line ones.

mike998
May 8th, 2006, 09:02 PM
I am finding myself frustrated after having read through this thread.

PrimoTurbo has issues with Gnome and Ubuntu - look at his sig (http://img182.imageshack.us/img182/6936/ubuntu5jw.jpg) to see that. That plus his aggressive attitude towards everyone who prefers to use the CLI or has a valid reason for it.

I totally understand his frustrations, but as has been said numerous times before in this thread - If you want something and nobody else is doing it, do it yourself. I have written how-tos (using the CLI) because I found something cool, or there wasn't a how-to for something I wanted. It makes me feel good that I am contributing and helping people rather than moaning and crying.


Thoughts on this, but no flames please!

FIRST POST in the thread!:D

confused57
May 8th, 2006, 09:33 PM
I think most people starting out with Linux are experienced with windows, where most everything can be done "point and click", executing a few .exe files to install, etc. GUI "howto's" would be more user friendly to newbies, but I understand the limitations: bandwith, confusion with exactly where to point & click, screenshots,etc. Using CLI instructions may frustrate new users, but someone serious about using Linux will read, study, and learn as much as they can about the Linux file systems in order to get the most out of their system.

The more GUI friendly Linux is, the more converts there will be; but, that goes back to the statement "Linux is not Windows", so someone expecting it to be like windows should stick with windows. If they want a distro that's more point and click, try SimplyMepis or PCLinuxOS(or pay for Linspire, Redhat,etc).

I've used windows for years, Linux for only 5 months; but I'm learning how powerful the CLI is and how much easier it is to use for configuring your system & repairing, just try messing around with the registry in windows.

Just my few cents worth....

Stormy Eyes
May 8th, 2006, 09:54 PM
You can't demand that other volunteers create documentation the way you want it.

Actually, you can, but there are consequences if you do. :evil:

Stormy Eyes
May 8th, 2006, 09:57 PM
I think the terminal was a great tool, but Linux should be able to exist with out it since Linux is supposed to be about choice..

Here's your choice: either implement it yourself, or stop looking gift horses in the mouth.

Omnios
May 8th, 2006, 10:09 PM
Personally I am on a dissability and have a lot of time on my hands. I have writen one graphical how to with app pics. I have writen quite a few short how to's and links pages. This takes time and not eveyone is in the same position as me and they do not have a lot of time on there hands. Needless to say The graphical how to took me about an hour writing it in terminal how to would have taken about 10 min. Also how to's take more than opening the Reply to thread window and typing away. You have to research and refresh on material that your not shure on becuase you have to try to be accurate as possible. Even link pages its good to write a description of the web links not just putting a jumble of links together and then you have to test the links.

This all takes time and describing how to use the terminal has the advantage over taking screen shots, editing them, posting them in art work and finaly putting it all together in a how to. I think more graphical how to would be a good thing but dought that you are going to see a lot of them.

Reshin
May 9th, 2006, 11:54 AM
The looks on peoples faces, when I showed them this page (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/FirefoxNewVersion): priceless!

fuscia
May 9th, 2006, 02:10 PM
The looks on peoples faces, when I showed them this page (https://wiki.ubuntu.com/FirefoxNewVersion): priceless!

i'm sure my face, when i first saw that page, was also priceless. i'm but a humble end user. ten minutes later, though, i had on a different face as i was browsing merrily with my new version of firefox. as far as i know, there is no way to do all that using a gui.

Stormy Eyes
May 9th, 2006, 02:35 PM
i'm sure my face, when i first saw that page, was also priceless. i'm but a humble end user. ten minutes later, though, i had on a different face as i was browsing merrily with my new version of firefox. as far as i know, there is no way to do all that using a gui.

Unfortunately for some people, there isn't. To be honest, the command line is a power user's tool. I think that it's in Linux's best interest to have as high a ratio of power users to "normal" users as possible.

jethro10
May 9th, 2006, 02:50 PM
It boils down to the difficulty and time needed to explain how to explain something graphicaly. Also making a graphical how to takes a long time compared to a terminal based solution.........

Windows Help forums get by.
As long as Help, which by definition is mostly for newbies, does not go graphical, linux will remain 'difficult' in most non linux users minds.

Jeff

fuscia
May 9th, 2006, 03:09 PM
Unfortunately for some people, there isn't. To be honest, the command line is a power user's tool. I think that it's in Linux's best interest to have as high a ratio of power users to "normal" users as possible.

it can also be a retard's tool, though. it's like legs - some can run with the gazelles while others can walk into a tree. something for everyone.

nocturn
May 9th, 2006, 03:23 PM
All people do know is copy and paste all the how-to's, nearly blindly. Untill something doesn't work and they need to find fix.

I'm on these forums most of the day from work. I can walk you through most stuff using commands without being at my own computer. But I do not know by heart which buttons to click to do something.

That's why I default to advising stuff like aptitude install mplayer instead of click menu1 > submenu2 > synaptic > search > ...

Also, the CLI is much more powerfull, I can give you a single command to resize all JPG's in a directory (or muliple directories), I cannot do that for a GUI (other then opening each seperate file and clicking some options I do not know by heart either).

nocturn
May 9th, 2006, 03:26 PM
Clearly it is, it's easier to click a button that does something complex then to look up the specific string. Even if you know Linux don't tell me you don't check for stuff up for specific complex operation which GUI can do with 1 click.

I disagree. GUI's are fine for straight-forward, predictable operations. They do not scale well beyond that and it is difficult to get two GUI porgrams to work together.

Take find for example, it has many options and allows you to run a command for each hit. This is not present in the GUI and even if it were, it would be hard to parse the output of GUI find to another program.

Omnios
May 9th, 2006, 03:26 PM
One inportant aspect of command line as you read the forum and solve problems with terminal you also learn how to use it. Though GUI how to's might be fairly easy and good, a lot of people will miss this terminal crash course which may cause problems later on. Another aspect that is holding me back from making a Configuration Editor how to right now is that taking a screen shot with prt Sc will not work while you have a menu open which is a serious drawback. But anyways I think this will be my next project.

nocturn
May 9th, 2006, 03:30 PM
Also the terminal is based on ENGLISH, not everyone speaks it! GUI can easily be translated and the visual can stay the same. It's easier for humans.


Yes, but when I try to help you over the forum in the GUI way, I will still recommend you click System -> Add/remove programs -> search -> apply.

Keep in mind that this thread is not about the lack of GUI tools in Ubuntu, which I believe covers nearly every configuration task.
The question was why a lot of howto's and post revert to commands when there are GUI tools available.

One answer is that a lot of the users helping out here are more used to the CLI as that is what they use most, so when asked for help, they will offer the knowledge they have at hand.

nocturn
May 9th, 2006, 03:32 PM
oh heavens no. configuring text files is just so hard! linux is not for you.

If users do not want to configure text files, they shouldn't have too. That's clearly one of the goals of Ubuntu.

This is a seperate issue however from the advice given by forum members, who will default to what they are used too (which is in their right, you're trying to help).

Stormy Eyes
May 9th, 2006, 03:32 PM
One answer is that a lot of the users helping out here are more used to the CLI as that is what they use most, so when asked for help, they will offer the knowledge they have at hand.

Also, when I am in the mood to help, I can help more people faster if I provide CLI-oriented help than if I waste time taking screenshots.

nocturn
May 9th, 2006, 03:43 PM
That was just an example, for example I need to edit my xorg to change my resolution and refresh rate for my login as it defaults to 70Hz..

You are right in that it is probably the most comfortable way for you to do this, and the lack of a good GUI to configure X is one of the biggest holes in modern Linux distros (sax from SuSE is reasonable).
For setting a screen resolution, even I may turn to using a GUI.

But for many instances, I find the CLI more comfortable, be it biased or not, it's what I'm used to. When someone gets into trouble and I want to help them out, I will give them the best advice I know, which often involves command lines.

That said, I 100% agree that there should be a GUI available for everything, but as far as advice on the forums is concerned, the user helping someone out is free to choose the method.

aysiu
May 9th, 2006, 04:21 PM
Another aspect that is holding me back from making a Configuration Editor how to right now is that taking a screen shot with prt Sc will not work while you have a menu open which is a serious drawback. But anyways I think this will be my next project. You can do this with a time delay. KSnapshot has this functionality built into it in the GUI. For Gnome's screenshot utility, you need the command-line to delay it:
gnome-screenshot --delay 5 After you type in that command, you have five seconds to get that menu open.



Also the terminal is based on ENGLISH, not everyone speaks it! GUI can easily be translated and the visual can stay the same. It's easier for humans. This is why we have multiple Ubuntu Forums. This one is for English-speaking people. English doesn't have to be your native language, but you have to understand English. There are also French forums and other language forums for Ubuntu.

fuscia
May 9th, 2006, 04:29 PM
what's the reason not to use the cl? can't copy&paste? uh...what else?

aysiu
May 9th, 2006, 04:38 PM
what's the reason not to use the cl? can't copy&paste? uh...what else? As a relatively new user myself (two weeks until my one-year Ubuntu anniversary), I can attest to the terminal being intimidating at first. Though, now that I'm more comfortable with it, I can't understand why. Someone tells you to type something... you type it. Or, better yet, you copy and paste it. Why is that intimidating?

It's hard for me to rationalize it in retrospect, but I was deathly afraid of the command-line when I first started using Linux.

BoyOfDestiny
May 9th, 2006, 04:47 PM
what's the reason not to use the cl? can't copy&paste? uh...what else?

No idea... To be honest it's been a joy for me to edit settings in a text file. It's actually human readable. Usually removing a # or changing a value is great (usually comments above contain the info you need), and I can keep some settings in home (not just /etc) so it survives a new install (like which audio in tvtime uses for the internal audio connection).

If the editing was mysteriously changing a byte in a file, that is less fun. Also, I think it's easier for someone to make a gui frontend for something human readable vs a mysterious binary config file...

Anyway, I think we are going in the right direction. All the cli stuff and human readable textfiles rock. However, I think there are some users that should never have to deal with it. As we get more things out of the box, and more apps start appearing (I have a feeling an xorg gui app will show up soon, maybe auto compilers like autodeb).

If you guys are in Dapper take a look at System -> Administration -> Software Properties, allows easy config of the update manager and what repos are enabled.
Applications -> Add/Remove, perfect for the average user IMHO. Almost no learning curve.

So ideally, we'll end up with 2 sets of how-to's for most things. The quick cli (maybe even bash scripts ;) ) and gui how-to for specific apps / desktop environments.

I would definitely be sad if we went the windows route (ok no flames on this), where they went out of their way to "hide" command line. If you want to automate something, you have to get some app that lets you record mouse clicks, highlight certain windows by title, etc. An overall iffy pain in the ***. As for windows server 2003 (what I used to use), no tab completion by default, having to use ~1 for long filenames, just a painful experience.

aysiu
May 9th, 2006, 05:02 PM
So ideally, we'll end up with 2 sets of how-to's for most things. The quick cli (maybe even bash scripts ;) ) and gui how-to for specific apps / desktop environments. Yes, ideally. But things don't happen based on what's ideal. Things happen when people make them happen.

For those who want to make the GUI tutorials, go for it. I applaud efforts like this:
http://www.monkeyblog.org/ubuntu/installing.html

tseliot
May 9th, 2006, 05:10 PM
Hi,
Something that really has me wondering is why all howto's, wikkis and help in 99.9% of cases give only the command line solution instead of the method using the Ubuntu application GUI?
Isn't the principle of "copying and pasting" commands easy enough?

And BTW in that way you can also know what happens under the hood and learn something.

The GUI way is easy to do but much longer to explain. Oh, and if your Xserver doesn't work (or you don't use it) the GUI way is not an option.

Just my 2 cents.

matthinckley
May 9th, 2006, 05:43 PM
Wow this thread is interesting...

I like the cli how-to's.. gives me a chance to use the utterly awesome highlight and middle-click paste that I'm always trying to use at work on my windows pc...

Also, I think it is awesome that no matter what problem I'm having, program I want to install, option I want to change, whatever.. I can open this one little window on my desktop and make changes to anything on my computer.. wow this one little program that opens less than two seconds after I click on the icon sure does do a lot...

If I didn't have this little program I would spend a lot more time searching through menus and window tabs, and most of the time I don't know what the thing I'm looking for is actually called.

Also, on a side note, almost every config file I've edited has had great comments explaining exactly what each option did, and the ones that didn't had explanations either in the man pages or on a wiki.

just my 2 cents..

Matt

Dr_Deadmeat
June 8th, 2006, 10:00 PM
I preffer to use the terminal than GUI to most things... I'd even started to use wget instead of clicking on links to download things that are to be installed

F.X


sudo wget http://www.<thewebsitewearetodownloadfrom/nameoffile>.deb.com && sudo dpkg -i <nameoffile>.deb

I love that way to install applications that are not in the standard repos, and I have just started with C++, and g++ is much better than VB I think =P

zolookas
June 13th, 2006, 05:50 PM
I'm not (k/x/ed)Ubuntu user, i'm Archlinux user, but i come here to see how's no #1 Desktop distro is doing. I've noticed that almost every thread has linux console commands such as:

wget http://www.example.com/package.deb
Why we can't say: "just save this file by right clicking this url?: http://www.example.com/package.deb"

And instead of

dpkg -i package.deb
double click it and press install.

I mean 70-90% of things can be done using GUI. Synaptic can add your line to /etc/apt/sources.list and "apt-get update" your sources. Also Add/Remove can install many applications beginner friendly way.

Newbies are extremely uncomfortable typing command after command into theyr "terminal" window. Most of the time they don't know that they are doing and starting to think that linux is only for geeks who can do that "command line stuff" every day.

uzi09
June 13th, 2006, 05:56 PM
1) the command line for linux is an integral part, so you should really get to know it every oppertunity you get.
2) instead of having to sit down and explain where things are in a gui, it is much easier to just tell them to copy/paste a line into the shell and hit enter.
give it a try sometime, try going through the questions and describe what to do using gui only. as easy as using a gui really is, it's easier and less complex to just type (or even copy/paste) commands that someone more experienced provides into a terminal and hitting enter.

for the whole "wget" thing, it could really be done either way, but since people are already working out of the terminal, we (or at least I) just provide the wget format.

glinsvad
June 13th, 2006, 06:33 PM
just save this file by right clicking this url?

What are you - a Windows-user? I kid ;)

I agree with uzi09, primarily because the commands "wget this" and "dpkg -i that" is quite easier than "go to this url, click save as, select some path, open the path, doubleclick this file, click install". Especially when two terminal commands are run subsequently, you are ensured that the user saves and retrieves files from the same path (when using relative paths for filenames of course).

An added bonus is that whenever something spoils your fun, the terminal outputs error information which the user can copy/paste back into the forum. The alternative, i.e. explanations such as "this program said that when I click those things", involves lengthier and somewhat tedious descriptions.

uzi09
June 13th, 2006, 06:36 PM
you gotta understand...we computer people are a lazy bunch ;)

echo $USER
June 13th, 2006, 06:46 PM
I agree w/ uzi.

zolookas
June 13th, 2006, 06:50 PM
I know command line can save so much time, i've personaly have yakuake on my kde to do updating, files editing, daemons, etc., but i see so much newbies that hate command line like "Oh, man, everything was alright until i've had to enter that command line" and etc. so i just can take it anymore.

angkor
June 13th, 2006, 07:06 PM
http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=59334

Aysiu's thread reflected my view on the topic quite well.

Think this thread needs to be moved to the cafe or the forum site discussion btw.

grsing
June 13th, 2006, 07:36 PM
It's more precise and easier to describe using terminal commands. As long as no one makes a typo, exactly what is supposed to happen will happen. With GUI, you have to describe the buttons and all that. Plus, as others said, the terminal is part of *nix, people may as well start learning it.

matthew
June 13th, 2006, 07:36 PM
Think this thread needs to be moved to the cafe or the forum site discussion btw.I agree. Since it is mainly directed at forum users and not the administration I'll put it in the cafe.

blackjack6.21.91
June 13th, 2006, 07:42 PM
Comprendo. I agree with this guy. By showing users what they are actually doing as opposed to just having them paste crap into the command line (everyone can do that), they might actually be learning things, as well as (at least for long time Windows users) having a more comfortable experience.

richbarna
June 13th, 2006, 08:56 PM
Maybe it should be half and half, a bit of give and take ?
We show the new users what to copy and paste so that they can get things working quickly. Then they can do their bit by looking up the commands and READING a bit to help themselves.
That's what I did.
We are all here to help eachother, but we shouldn't forget how to help ourselves.
How many times a week do you see repeated questions because the person can't be bothered to do a forum search ?
Or a simple question that could be found easily on Google.
I am the first person to walk new users through processes, but there has to be some give and take too.

bonzodog
June 13th, 2006, 09:02 PM
For those of you using dapper, the double click and install thing has already happened. There is now a program called gdebi in dapper, which does precisely this. Only thing at the moment though is it does not fetch dependencies, and is merely a point and click front end to dpkg.

Dr. Nick
June 13th, 2006, 10:01 PM
What I do is tell people command line stuff and sort of explan it. Their are 3 different gui distros of ubuntu (gnome, kde, and xfce) It would get very old if you told someone to open synaptic and they came back with "where is it" and you said system - administration, then they responded I only have the "K" Menu

At this point you realize they are not in gnome , but kde. Then you tell them how to use adept.

I know their are subforums to help some of this, But the Absoulte beginner section has no distinctions, And not all users put thier distro in their profile, even if they did it would still be a pain to check each time.

If I see a user specifically mention a gnome question that a gui can solve then I tell the gui method.

Plus learning some basic command line helps when you screw up X :)

poofyhairguy
June 14th, 2006, 11:53 PM
Ok, I have been away from the forums for a few months (I needed time to graduate from college and learn OSX) but this thread has brought me back into the fold. Why?

Because I 100% disagree.

Those helping people learn Linux SHOULD NOT hide the command line. It is not disgraceful or hard. Its just intimidating.

Well....honestly this issue is not completely black or white. There are some people who should probably never see the command line. People like my mother who just uses Ubuntu to browse the web, pound out some documents, etc. are in that group. Yet the default install does not serve these people (lets be honest- Ubuntu without closed media codecs is worthless to most home users) as it is. For them this like EasyUbuntu and Automatix should be used, and quite honestly I believe that in most of these cases that whoever did the hard job of installing the OS for them needs to do the command line work to set up Automatix too.

But these people are not the issue at hand.

The people who many want to hide the command line from is middle of the road windows users. These people have some sort of computer knowledge (heck, they installed Ubuntu and got past the partitioner) but they are used to a Windows World where EVERYTHING is done by the command line.

Often when people talk about hiding the command line its to hide it from these users. I have heard all the reasons-- it makes them more comfortable, they see the command line as a hold over from the primative DOS days, etc. Yet I don't think any of them are good enough.

We HARM middle of the road Windows converts when we hide the command line early on. Why? Because we put forth a false premise- that you can survive on the Linux desktop at a high level without the command line.

Its simply not true.

Sure nowadays that middle of the road user might get all the codecs set up within a GUI and they might install some basic apps needed as well.

But as soon as they want to do something harder than people like my mom would want to do, they WILL hit the command line wall. The day they buy that new video card and want XGL, or they want to emulate a Playstation game, or the time they want to set up their multibutton mouse they WILL HAVE TO use the command line. Many of the tasks that middle of the road Windows users want to do have no GUI ways to do them (or at least not decent GUI ways to do them) in Linuxland.

Thats a fact of life right now. We do them no service by hiding that fact. I'd rather these middle of the road users are hit with the knowledge DAY ONE that they HAVE TO use the command line to do some things in Linux rather then have them believe that there is a GUI for everything only to be shocked a week or a month in when they find something they want to do that requires some terminal hacking.

In Windowsland there is no decent command line. Developers cannot even make that an option. In Linuxland when a new feature is added it is done in command line FIRST usually, with GUIs later covering this command line program. Sometimes these GUIs are never made. So in the end you are stuck with a system where eventually you will at least have to copy and paste some commands if you have a lot of demands.

New middle of the road users need to know this off the bat. If they don't like it they need to stick with Windows. We can't save the whole world. And hype and deception does not make Linux something it is not (a system where you never need the command line for 99% of stuff).

Linux/Ubuntu is what it is. For many it can increase the quality of their life and we should help them if that is the case. But lets no pretend its something its not to avoid scaring middle of the road Windows users away. Thats how you create the super trolls in the Linux world- you lie to them....

Time to be honest- if you are going to use Ubuntu for much more than the defaults then you will be on the command line eventually! Its a fact of life that is not bad, just different.

Here is my other thread on the subject:

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=43911

aysiu
June 15th, 2006, 12:13 AM
What I don't get is the idea that the command-line is primitive.

If anything, it's more sophisticated. It's language. Point-and-click is not a language--it's very similar to the inarticulate gesturing our foreparents used to do to "communicate."

When you can't be bothered to learn a new language, that's often what you do. You cross your legs and jump up and down to indicate a need to go to the bathroom because you don't know how to sound out a coherent sentence in Chinese or Swahili.

Same thing here--to most of us ex-Windows users, Linux is a foreign language. Many times, it's comfortable or more convenient to use the GUI, just as in real life, sometimes I give people the thumbs-up, the OK sign, or the middle finger rather than articulate a sentence.

Still, using the command-line isn't primitive. It's often more sophisticated, just as spoken and written human languages are sophisticated.

I have to agree with Poofyhairyguy on this. There are basically three types of Linux users:

1. Users-only with basic needs. Didn't install Linux themselves--someone else did it for them.
2. ex-Windows power users with sophisticated needs and very little command-line experience.
3. Experiences Linux users with a lot of command-line experience.

Group #1 doesn't need to see the command-line ever, but it's also very unlikely to contain people who would sign up for forum help, anyway.
Group #2, as Poofyhairyguy points out, has sophisticated needs and will, at some point, need to use the command-line for whatever reason.
Group #3 uses it anyway.

AndyCooll
June 15th, 2006, 01:24 AM
I too disagree with the "improvement" suggestion and find myself siding with poofyhairguy and aysiu.

I certainly would not consider myself a command line person. Where possible the gui is for me. However, there are times when the command line "just works". I like Ubuntu precisely because it is a good mix between the two. The gui for most things, but the command line for when you want to delve deeper.

:cool:

angkor
June 15th, 2006, 07:37 AM
Ok, I have been away from the forums for a few months (I needed time to graduate from college and learn OSX) but this thread has brought me back into the fold.

Welcome back, Poof. :) With a great post I agree with I might add.

skull_leader
June 15th, 2006, 07:51 AM
Another reason why you'd use wget instead of downloading from a brower is that you can resume a download from wget if you get interrupted, whereas on a browser you'd have to start from the begining.

I don't know if this is still true on the new Firefox, but it's probably a safer bet to use wget.

poofyhairguy
June 15th, 2006, 04:01 PM
Another reason why you'd use wget instead of downloading from a brower is that you can resume a download from wget if you get interrupted, whereas on a browser you'd have to start from the begining.


I didn't know that. Neat!

egon spengler
June 15th, 2006, 04:18 PM
I find it hard to believe that an Arch user is complaining about a lack of GUI tools in ubuntu. Using Arch must be a constant torment for the poor guy

aysiu
June 15th, 2006, 04:32 PM
I think wget is just faster if you know the web address. Launching a browsing, typing in the address, and then confirming the download and placement of the download file is too much of a process.

zolookas
June 16th, 2006, 09:15 AM
Using Arch must be a constant torment for the poor guy

Actually not. I use command line everytime (currently two yakuake tabs localhost and ssh) and i don't need gui tools, but i'm talking about newbies, i'm tired of "command line is too hard" comments. If you visit digg.com linux/unix section, osnews.com then you probably know if there's a discussion about linux on the desktop, it's almost 100% i'll find comment like: "only geeks capable using command line, i was forced to use it when i tried ubuntu, i'll stick with windows and etc."

Macchi
June 16th, 2006, 10:54 AM
Command Line Interfaces are good for technical users and developers.
Graphical interfaces are good for most other human beings using computers, including Linux and particularly Ubuntu!







There are different types of users with different levels of skills and different goals while using their favorite personal computer brand and favorite software. The great majority of users have other interests and needs in life than learning the specific technological details behind how computers work. They simply want to USE the computer to achieve very specific goals.

I think it would be very nice if Linux and Ubuntu manages to fulfill the basic computing needs for most users in the market. Remember: Linux for Human Beings.

Yesterday, while speaking about Linux to a computer technician he reminded me that most of his customers are still learning the basics of using a computer. Their questions are: "What is a right-click?", "What is a file?", "How do I know the email was sent?". Their perception is that Linux requires learning too complicated things that will not be useful in their daily life.

If you go to a restaurant and ask for a certain dish because you are hungry then you probably don't want to hear a lesson from the chef on how to prepare that particular dish. If you are hungry you prioritize your food first. Eventually you might develop a wish to learn how to prepare your favorite dishes. In the long run it is better to learn how to cook that to give food, we know that. But for using a computer you don't have to know how it works!

I am sorry to jump into this discussion but I am still surprised to see people talking about command line interfaces and trying to impose them to average computer users, today in year 2006. I could accept that for twenty five years ago when cheap hardware could not deliver the power required for graphical user interfaces and when you needed a masters degree to send an email.

All this CLI-talk reminds me of the story behind the Xerox PARC and how their amazing research results could be ignored. Command line interfaces were really much more powerful at that time.

aysiu
June 16th, 2006, 04:27 PM
Macchi, if there were a graphical user interface for every single thing intermediate users wanted to do, then you would be correct.

But, as Poofyhairyguy points out, right now most of the people who migrate to Linux are people with more complicated needs than your average user. My mom won't be configuring XGL, but a lot of new Ubuntu users will want to. If you give them the impression they won't need the command-line, it's kind of a bait and switch, isn't it?

I would say you don't need the command-line ever if...

1. You have someone else install and configure Ubuntu for you.
2. You have very simple needs (email, web browsing, light word processing, photo organizing, music listening, some website design, silly games like Gnometris).

If you want to get more complicated than that, roll up your sleeves. Ubuntu is not a restaurant, unless you're going to hire someone to cook for you.

Your analogy doesn't really apply, though. Using the command-line does not make me a programmer. I don't write Ubuntu or its programs. The command-line helps me use Ubuntu, just as a graphical interface does. A more appropriate analogy would be people eating with their hands who then have to learn how to eat with forks, knives, spoons, and chopsticks.

zolookas
June 30th, 2006, 03:53 PM
Macchi, if there were a graphical user interface for every single thing intermediate users wanted to do, then you would be correct.



Of course you can't do everything using gui. Knowing command line is very useful, but do you expect people to learn command line by pasting things? Maybe, if they are very curious.




But, as Poofyhairyguy points out, right now most of the people who migrate to Linux are people with more complicated needs than your average user. My mom won't be configuring XGL, but a lot of new Ubuntu users will want to. If you give them the impression they won't need the command-line, it's kind of a bait and switch, isn't it?



You mom may buy SLED and enable xgl by selecting Desktop Effects in control panel without editing a single file.




silly games like Gnometris.



Or buy cedega and play half life 2 after double clicking .deb file.




Yet the default install does not serve these people (lets be honest- Ubuntu without closed media codecs is worthless to most home users) as it is. For them this like EasyUbuntu and Automatix should be used, and quite honestly I believe that in most of these cases that whoever did the hard job of installing the OS for them needs to do the command line work to set up Automatix too.



I'm not a Ubuntu Master Roaster, but i think i'm the only one here who knows that you can install xine/gstreamer plugins, flash, java using Add/Remove.

Just think why people are going to buy Novell SLED 10.

aysiu
July 1st, 2006, 06:17 AM
Of course you can't do everything using gui. Knowing command line is very useful, but do you expect people to learn command line by pasting things? Maybe, if they are very curious. I did.

Seriously, that's how I learned the command-line, by copying and pasting commands. How else do you learn them?


You mom may buy SLED and enable xgl by selecting Desktop Effects in control panel without editing a single file. We're talking specifically about Ubuntu, not SuSE.

H.E. Pennypacker
July 5th, 2006, 03:31 AM
I am glad someone else already posted this, because I was planning to post a thread just like this. Furthermore, I am glad that the original poster (known as "OP") has come forward, despite his allegiance to the command line. It is whistle-blowers like him who will improve Linux for the sake of the greater good, because most hardline Terminal users refuse to accept change, even if such a change means greater use of Linux in this world.

I wholeheartedly agree that most users need help in figuring out that Linux is not a text-based operating system. All that copying and pasting makes them think there is no GUI alternative, and that every little thing done in a Linux distro requires use of the command line. If downloading something is done via the command line, how are they going to listen to music? They'll never know they can always use a browser, because no one points it out.

It is all about reputation. Currently, Linux has a reputation for demanding more of its users, when it shouldn't. The truth is that Linux does not demand knowledge of the unseen and unheard of (the complicated stuff) in many cases. It's just that many Linux users give Linux converts the impression that they need to know the secrets of this world before they can watch a movie (watching a movie does not require the terminal, but playing around with gstreamer or something can require the terminal), download stuff, etc.

People like aysiu will tell you that you learn from using the Terminal. I learned from the copying and pasting only because I have the time and interest. If it wasn't for that interest, I would have never bothered paying attention to what's going on. Even today, I still don't pay attention at times, and let the command line do what it is supposed to do.

My experience with the Terminal is that it spews out more cryptic errors than the GUI. Yes, I am doing something wrong, but I can tell you those errors are a lot more understandable when it comes from GUI.

OP, thank you for your courage. The number of aysius (the poster who publicly shares his love for the terminal) will start dwindling as more people like me start using Ubuntu, because as long as people like me are around, Linux will become easier to use day by day.

aysiu
July 5th, 2006, 04:27 AM
I don't see why you're trying to paint me as some kind of command-line Nazi.

I agree in part with the original post-er's general idea--people do need to know that the majority of tasks can be accomplished through GUI. In fact, I've argued this point numerous times when people have said, "Oh, yeah, everything has to be done with commands." No. I can't think of a single thing I do on my Ubuntu computer that requires the command-line.

The point that Poofyhairyguy brought up, and which I also agree with, is that most of the people who migrate to Ubuntu are not the mythical "Joe Sixpack," "grandma," or other archetypal incompetent, computer illiterate user.

Most of the people who migrate to Ubuntu have very sophisticated needs and will, at one time or another, need to use the command-line for the 10% of tasks that require it.

You have to paint a balanced picture. On the one hand, the command-line is not required for most things in Ubuntu. On the other hand, you can't sell Ubuntu as totally not needing the command-line at all--that lures people in with false promises, especially power users who want cutting edge software, obscure software, and very special graphical effects.

Now, to go a little off-topic, I don't see what's so wrong about publicly declaring my love for the terminal. Am I a gay man in the 19th century? Am I a feminist in 1950s America? That really has nothing to do with this argument at all.

Also, I will continue to give both GUI and terminal instructions to new users, as appropriate to the situation. There are benefits to both, especially in a text-based forum. When we move to VNC-based support with VOIP guidance, maybe we'll go 100% GUI in instructions.

Finally, you'd be hard-pressed to find a forum member who has uploaded as many screenshots or created as many graphical tutorials as I have.

briancurtin
July 5th, 2006, 04:43 AM
I find it hard to believe that an Arch user is complaining about a lack of GUI tools in ubuntu. Using Arch must be a constant torment for the poor guy
i love arch because you have to use the CLI, unless someone else installs it for you and does everything while you are away from your desk.

atoponce
July 5th, 2006, 06:05 AM
I am going to weigh in my $.02 here.

I know I don't speak for everyone, and I certainly am not trying to impose some sort of philosophy by any means. However, I firmly believe that the terminal is far superior to many aspects that the GUI can bring to the table. Aside from flags, options, aliases, scripts, and about a million other things that make the terminal great, the number 1 reason it is superior is sheer speed.

What does this mean? First, it means that I can do just about anything I please with the terminal and my keyboard, and I can do it twice as fast as anyone with a mouse. Web browsing, mp3 playback, email, document creation and even photo manipulation. Second, nothing is more annoying to me than using the keyboard and then picking up the mouse just for a couple focused clicks then going back to the keyboard. For example, spreadsheets.

Again, though, I am not trying to impose solely using the terminal. They both have their place. It's just that nothing beats keyboard shortcuts and the terminal for both the 1337 and the n00b.

Dr. Nick
July 5th, 2006, 07:25 AM
I may have mentioned this before, but I feel it bears repeating. I use the gui for alot of day to day activites, but for helping users configure their hardware I feel that the command line is king. In a bad situation a new linux install may not have a GUI, If xorg doesnt get configured properly for some reason then GUI instructions are useless. Even if a new install gets a full GUI, If all a user knows is gui then they are in a tough spot should something cause X to fail.

I have started a little page that I hope will help those willing to learn. I have used the "bad" expierences I have had from other distros forums (not here) as a guide to make my advice better.
When I first got into linux I mindlessly copied/pasted. I made this page to explain to those willing to learn what the commands I recommend are used for,

http://www.geocities.com/aebcoat/commoncommands.html

That link should remain in my signature for a long time to come, and as time progresses I hope to make it even more helpful.

kabus
July 5th, 2006, 08:03 AM
because as long as people like me are around, Linux will become easier to use day by day.

By magic, I assume.

angkor
July 5th, 2006, 09:05 AM
The number of aysius (the poster who publicly shares his love for the terminal) will start dwindling as more people like me start using Ubuntu, because as long as people like me are around, Linux will become easier to use day by day.

Put your money where your mouth is H.E. Pennypacker.

If you knew what you were talking about, you'd know that Aysiu single-handedly has made Ubuntu easier for a lot of new users both on this forum and on his website. What have you done so far to achieve that?

If the number of Aysiu's will dwindle (sadly there is only one) ubuntu will be more difficult for many new users. Can the same be said if the number of pennypackers will dwindle?

I'll value your opinion more when you come up with a website like this (http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/index.php), and every howto had a gui counterpart of course.

adam.tropics
July 5th, 2006, 12:49 PM
I think quite apart from the previously mentioned benefits of the terminal for experienced users, new users in Ubuntu or any other distro, benefit from picking up on some of the basic 'workings' of Linux. Even if they are copy and pasting, over a short time, basic things for example the file system become far clearer. They figure out more of the 'why' things are done in a certain way and this knowlege will serve them well later, and enable them in turn to help the next guy more effectively.

Don't get me wrong, I want things to be straightforward for new users, and I think some of the gui based applications are excellent, but I also think people need to remember we are not trying to be, copy, or 'beat' other OS's. We are just another choice. A good one, but a choice, and like all worthwhile choices in life, Linux needs to be approached with an open mind, and recognition that the differences are going to mean at least a slight learning curve.

Dr. Nick
July 5th, 2006, 05:25 PM
One thing about command line which I havent seen mentioned is this.

Most of the command line is universal, no matter what desktop enviroment, we know this, But more importantly is its nearly universal betweeen distributions.

I started out linux back in mandrake 8, I also have used

Mandrake/Mandriva 9, 9.1, 9.2, 10 .....
Suse 9, 10
Redhat8/ Many of the fedora cores
Debian Woody/Sid
Ubuntu warty, hoary, breezy, dapper
And a few others

What I am trying to say here is that when I needed to configure something in suse, I didnt have to look for the option in a gui since I knew how to do it with a command line, just like I learned in mandrake.

Their used to be alot more differences in the GUI tools of various distributions so knowledge of command line for simple task was a real timesaver. This isnt as much a case today, but still is on occasion. If you learn how to do everything with a GUI on ubuntu, and have no basic command line knowledge then you may be lost for a few minutes if you go to a machine running fedora, or if you choose to install fedore yourself for fun.

Iandefor
July 5th, 2006, 08:15 PM
Of course you can't do everything using gui. Knowing command line is very useful, but do you expect people to learn command line by pasting things? Maybe, if they are very curious.
I did.
Seriously, that's how I learned the command-line, by copying and pasting commands. How else do you learn them? The both of you are right to some extent, imho. For example- I learned how to use the CLI (and still am learning) by copying and pasting commands... and then reading the man page for that command, and working out what the arguments mean. I can also infer things from the command itself (IE, I see an option called --br 192 and I'm asking how to encode ogg vorbis audio at 192 kb/s, I can reasonably assume that --br is the argument that sets bitrate). But it was because I was actively interested in learning how to use it proficiently that I even bothered to read the documentation. If I didn't care, I could have just stuck with copying and pasting commands without needing to understand their meaning.

I learned by doing... and having interest in learning (But it doesn't take much).

egon spengler
July 5th, 2006, 11:52 PM
OP, thank you for your courage. The number of aysius (the poster who publicly shares his love for the terminal) will start dwindling as more people like me start using Ubuntu, because as long as people like me are around, Linux will become easier to use day by day.

Well that is a very grand statement, what exactly is it that you are contributing? Really I feel this whole thread is waste. People on this forum volunteer their time and help. If someone doesn't want to accept that help because they don't like/understand the format it is offered in then they have the right to decline that assistance and look elsewhere, either in terms of avenue of support or choice of computing platform. Personally I seldom post help because I honestly don't care that much. It does strike me as a bit rich though when peole with probably less than 100 posts between them feel to admonish people who have spent 100s of hours on here volunteering their time because they "aren't offering help correctly"

Maybe you should actually contribute something yourself first and lead by example before you start telling other people their efforts are wrong

Btw, why it is that you phrase your whole post as if you were part of some counter movement to overthrow a government?

"Thanks to the bravery of these courageous whistleblowers we will be able to continute the struggle to one day free ourselves from the oppressive reigns of one aysiu. Forward comrades"

aysiu
July 5th, 2006, 11:58 PM
There are those who whine and those who act.

I have nothing but respect for the author of this tutorial:
http://www.monkeyblog.org/ubuntu/installing

On the other hand, I have very little respect for those who complain about volunteer efforts or demand things they themselves rarely (if ever) contribute.

Maybe the number of aysius will dwindle (currently only one at last count--maybe "we" will dwindle to .5 or 0). I don't see how that will help Linux become easier, but maybe H.E. Pennypacker is in the middle of creating an elaborate screenshot tutorial... after all those do take a lot of time to put together.

aysiu
July 6th, 2006, 12:20 AM
wget I've found just about always to be faster if you know the exact web address you're looking for.

It's a bit like being in a taxi--"Take me to the corner of Memorial Drive and JFK!" instead of just aimlessly wandering around until you find the bridge you're looking for...

Metacarpal
August 4th, 2006, 05:16 PM
Hi aysiu,

I was contemplating posting in the Cafe asking why, in the "Absolute Beginner Talk" forum, people constantly reference command-line code to folks who are making their first step into Linux. Whenever I see someone give command-line code for a task that can be done through Ubuntu's GUIs, I always stared in shock. I figure people who migrate from Windows aren't usually ready for all that right off the bat.

But, as I prefer to do (and really, really wish more people did!), before posting I ran a search, and I found a this thread. (What? A helpful and informative thread by aysiu? What a shock! ;)) And I gave it a read-through. Okay, so I skipped about three pages of replies, but I got the gist of it.

And while I do still think that if one can give short'n'sweet directions to GUIfy a process, I like to do that so as not to scare away the timid newbies, your post did show a lot of merit for early teaching of command-line that I hadn't previously considered.

Your strongest argument in my view? You can't copy'n'paste GUI. I read that and just thought, duh - why didn't I think of that? (The bit about aptitude being mercifully quicker than Synaptic when you know the file name is good, too. :) )

So, yeah. Thanks for helping me see the point of the other side of the issue. Also, thanks for saving me from starting a flame war of my own. :D But I'll still provide GUI instructions as best I can for those who panic at command-line code.

Now if we can just get the responders to stop assuming people know that the code goes in Terminal, what that is, and where to find it...

aysiu
August 4th, 2006, 05:25 PM
I still give GUI instructions from time to time, depending on the situation. I've uploaded a lot of screenshots to this forum!

eternalsword
August 17th, 2006, 06:45 AM
I'm pretty noob myself only been using Ubuntu for a month, but after doing some edgy upgrades - needed some libs for gaim2 and some other non-default programs - nautilus, more specifically bonobo begins consuming high cpu. So I've resorted to using the terminal. I must tell you, I'm beginning to love it. It's faster to navigate to directories if you know the whole path. I have several folders I frequent. In nautilus, I would open it, then I would have to click on the correct tree entry and then subsequently find and double click the correct folders. In the terminal with zsh and correct settings, I can do cd /m tab /s tab x1 for sda1 x2 for sda3 and x3 for sdb1 and then /down tab to get to my download folders in each of my partitions. It's so much faster. And then I've been learning about grep and find. They are invaluable, learn them. Try in nautilus to find that one zip file in in a folder with hundreds of files and you've forgotten the name but you know its there. in the terminal ls | grep .zip and bam you've found it. or even better if you forgot where you put a file and you know it's name, you can do find / -name "file.ext" and it will list all entries in everything mounted, might take some time, but it's a helluva lot faster than manually searching in nautilus.

and as far as scripting goes, I love it. I've already written a script to change wallpapers and loaded it as a cron job to do it every hour and I've written scripts to allow zsh to autocomplete for example if I type aviplay it will tab autocomplete all .avi files. aviplay is just a simple script calling gmplayer. and I have one for mkv and ogm that adds subtitle and audio parameters gmplayer -alang jpn -sid 0 which saves me from using the gui to change it, which doesn't always work anyways.

sorry it's so long, I'm just excited about learning Ubuntu and all the underlying features, including scripting and using the terminal more efficiently.

zugu
August 17th, 2006, 08:26 AM
I agree with aysiu. People should have the choice: GUI or command-line.
The problem is, many GUIs are either unusable, plain ugly, in alpha stage or non-existent. The command-line will always be there, while the GUIs can be more than one for the same application, are scattered around the net, each one providing "its way" of doing things (not necessarily a bad thing - it's just that a newb might get lost).

Now I don't say the command-line is obsolete. It's not. it's also a powerful means of achieving things IF you have the knowledge. You achieve this knowledge by reading the man page, the readme, a wiki on the web or whatever. However, I prefer a good GUI - I might not need to read the manual, because there's a great chance of me finding out how to achieve my task by just looking at the screen. If the GUI is a good GUI, I'll eventually find out what I need to click in a matter of seconds.

Someone else complained about being harder to navigate to a directory in a GUI. We all know the human mind is much more prone to respond easier to visual stimuli (I hope this is the plural form) than to command-lines. In the command line, I have to create a visual map of the directory structure, find my current position in that structure, find the directory where I want to go, eventually I need to find out the relative path to where I want to go (sometimes it might be easier to use the absolute path), write it down - all this in order to change the current directory.
In a GUI file manager I already have a visual path to where in the dir structure I am. Going to the parent dir it's just a click away, instead of typing "cd ..". So it's less time spent thinking for me, more time for me to be productive. Or for leisure.

If it's harder for you to use a GUI to navigate a file hierarchy, it's not that the command-line way it's easier, it means the GUI is improperly designed.

Back to where I began my rant, I wish to point out that the developers usually do not give a **** about the visual interfaces. They don't care, it's their product and they might feel more comfortable in it. Or they could use the plain old saying: "We're programmers, not GUI designers!" - very true in many cases.

As much as a Microsoft hater that I am, I have to see that they raised the standard with Windows 95, the first operating system to have a usable GUI. They had the insight to see that GUIs are the gateway to mainstream (please, don't say things like "Linux is not trying to get into mainstream" or such, it's pretty obvious it's trying to get there).

We could argue that the command-line is archaic. What does "archaic" mean? AFAIK, it's something that appeared/was created/used to exist in the past. We still have it today, and we can say that it's archaic, because it dates since ... I don't know, the day UNIX was created? Someone tried not to associate the word "archaic" with the command-line, as if this would diminish it's value, or contribute in a way to newbies aversion to it. Well, believe me, there's nothing wrong with a piece of software being archaic, as long as we use it today with good results. And yes, it's a turn off for newbs.

And the final point of my rant: I am tired of running things from the command-line, only to see why app XYZ crashed. Or why it's not starting anymore (this is because GNOME really is made for idiots - it's verbosity level is close to zero). I am tired of people saying that it's easier to navigate within lynx than in Firefox. I am tired of people bashing Linux distros that make things simpler for people. If you like the command-line, fine. But don't deny others' right to use GUI exclusively (although quite impossible these days). And yes, GNOME is a good desktop enviroment, except it needs some major revisions.

End rant.

aysiu
August 17th, 2006, 08:50 AM
Just for the record, eternalsword said faster, not easier (regarding terminal navigation v. Nautilus).

eternalsword
August 17th, 2006, 10:29 AM
Just for the record, eternalsword said faster, not easier (regarding terminal navigation v. Nautilus).

Yep, easier and faster don't always go hand in hand. For some things I choose easier over faster like running an Xserver for example, it's not that it's impossible to do the things I do without it and I could definitely compile/do cpu intensive tasks faster, but I like my Gnome :) And as I noted earlier, I like the terminal for it being faster.

slimdog360
August 17th, 2006, 11:46 AM
I recon the command line is user friendly if you know how to use it. When i first started out, my god I didnt know what was going on. sudo this, apt-get that, it was quite confusing.
It started to get easier with time though I really had to force myself to use it.

egon spengler
August 17th, 2006, 12:29 PM
Someone else complained about being harder to navigate to a directory in a GUI. We all know the human mind is much more prone to respond easier to visual stimuli (I hope this is the plural form) than to command-lines. In the command line, I have to create a visual map of the directory structure, find my current position in that structure, find the directory where I want to go, eventually I need to find out the relative path to where I want to go (sometimes it might be easier to use the absolute path), write it down - all this in order to change the current directory.
In a GUI file manager I already have a visual path to where in the dir structure I am. Going to the parent dir it's just a click away, instead of typing "cd ..". So it's less time spent thinking for me, more time for me to be productive. Or for leisure.

If it's harder for you to use a GUI to navigate a file hierarchy, it's not that the command-line way it's easier, it means the GUI is improperly designed.

No.

ubuntu_demon
August 17th, 2006, 12:35 PM
aysiu : great article!

"sudo apt-get programname"
Should be (without typing the $) :


$sudo apt-get install programname
$sudo aptitude install programname

aysiu
August 17th, 2006, 04:18 PM
Thanks for the note. I've updated the first post accordingly.

ubuntu_demon
August 17th, 2006, 06:34 PM
Thanks for the note. I've updated the first post accordingly.
no problem :)

I have blogged about this thread (which is also on the planet now) :
http://ubuntudemon.wordpress.com/2006/08/17/why-i-think-the-command-line-is-user-friendly/

CameronCalver
September 4th, 2006, 10:01 AM
Ok this is my say in the ∞ argument
firsly when i new nothing about ubuntu or linux and i didnt even no what all these commnands people are giving me i was a bit confused but after about 2 minutes i figured it out and i thought it was great i did not no my way around ubuntu at all but i still could do lots of things with those little commands people were giving me so i think cli is good for an extent but i think the new people to ubuntu should ask
how do i get into this graphicly if they want so they know how to get into them and that makes it there choice to get around

3rdalbum
September 4th, 2006, 12:06 PM
I once tried to give graphical instructions for some task in Ubuntu... and I ended off actually causing a problem :-)

Sometimes the CLI is quicker, especially if you run Fish and have autocompletion at your fingertips. Sometimes it's easier to remember exactly how it's done in the CLI versus the GUI ("Was that button labelled "Advanced" or "Properties"?"). Sometimes, specific things can only be done in the terminal - scheduling jobs with at or batch is the first example that comes to mind, but there are definately loads of others that even I use.

If I'm compiling a program, and it complains about dependancies, rather than fire up Synaptic and wait for it to build a dependency tree, then do a search for the exact name of the thing I need, I just go to Fish and type "sudo apt-get install libfoo", press Tab twice, and I'll be told about libfoobar, libfoobar0, libfoobar-dev, etc. Much, much, MUCH quicker.

qpieus
September 4th, 2006, 01:18 PM
1. Is pointing newbies to the command line a bad thing?
2. If they are afraid of it should I be honest and tell them "the only Linux I know of that liberates itself from the command line is SUSE?"
3. Should we make more guides to do things in a graphical way?
4. Will Ubuntu ever reach the lofty goal of "never needing the command line?"
1. No, that's what makes learning to use linux fun. I'm a new user (about 4 months) and using the command line to do stuff seemed strange at first, but it didn't take me long to realize that you can do some things faster and easier that way. Newbies need to do a little learning.
2. I don't have a problem with telling people that. If someone is so deathly afraid of the CL, then they need a distro that uses the CL less or not at all.
3. That's probably a good idea, in order to bring in more new users. But I know that'll take lots of additional time to create such guides.
4. No, but I wouldn't want it to. The CL is what makes linux different and interesting for me. If you want gui only, go with suse or linspire or something like that.

argie
September 4th, 2006, 01:20 PM
I think the * makes the CLI all powerful. Can you imagine having to rename a set of files to a different extension through the GUI? (don't ask why)

Btw, CameronCalver

"Error Keyboard Failure Press F1 to continue or DEL to enter setup
I got just this error the other day when shifting house, the keyboard wasn't plugged in and I got "Keyboard not detected Press F1 to continue DEL to enter BIOS setup".

aysiu
September 4th, 2006, 05:07 PM
I think the * makes the CLI all powerful. Can you imagine having to rename a set of files to a different extension through the GUI? (don't ask why) Sure--I just use KRename.

prizrak
September 4th, 2006, 06:05 PM
4. No, but I wouldn't want it to. The CL is what makes linux different and interesting for me. If you want gui only, go with suse or linspire or something like that.
Actually it's already at a point where you don't NEED to use the CLI. On my old laptop Dapper worked out of the box. I only had to add the Automatix repo to it to make all the extra stuff work. However that can also be done graphically (that's the way I did it).

jISh
September 4th, 2006, 11:45 PM
I always tell new people instructions using the command line. It's so much more efficient and customizable.

Anybody who wants to get the most out of their system should embrace the command line.

taurus
September 4th, 2006, 11:50 PM
It's always going to be a command line for me because you can do soooooooooo much more with it. Who needs all the happy finger clicking thing! :twisted:

Note360
September 5th, 2006, 02:41 AM
I their any way to get fish syntax highlighting in zsh or a right prompt in fish?

aysiu
December 3rd, 2006, 11:03 PM
I read this a lot, and I think it's common misperception, but I want to know what the real deal is.

Oftentimes people say, "Oh, you need to use the terminal for too many things. There aren't enough GUI frontends." Well, I'll be the first to admit that Ubuntu could certainly use a graphical way to reinstall Grub or a 100% reliable way to mount partitions with the correct permissions using the GUI and not editing the /etc/fstab file (by the way, Mepis does both of these things and has for years, so it's not a Linux problem--it's a Ubuntu one).

Seriously, though, how many things can really be done only in the terminal? I'm not talking about people preferring the terminal. After all, I think terminal commands are the most efficient and productive ways to help new users over a text-based online forum. I'm talking about tasks that can only be done in the terminal--there is no GUI option.

Can people help me compile a list of these?

Here's a start:

-- Restore Grub to the MBR
-- Reliably mount new partitions with the correct permissions
-- Fix a broken X server

Any others?

Edit: Additions to the list...

-- configuring/setting up postfix and DNS
-- Apache configuration
-- Universal internet connection proxy configuration for all kinds of applications including but not restricted to web browsers, apt, wget etc.
-- switching Usplashes
-- configuring xen
-- setting up ADSL
-- Configuring screen resolution (in many cases)
-- Dual screen setup

dbbolton
December 3rd, 2006, 11:25 PM
transcode ?

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=307065

Ramses de Norre
December 3rd, 2006, 11:26 PM
How would you fix a broken X server with a GUI?:-k

And personally I don't think there should be GUIs for everything.. Most people never need to reinstall grub and if you make a GUI for every small task ubuntu would become a little overloaded I think.

But other stuff like fstab editing could certainly require a GUI for a lot of people...

po0f
December 3rd, 2006, 11:26 PM
For new users, having to go to the command line may be a little scary and seem a little archaic at first, but hopefully they will get used to it as it is a very efficient way of getting stuff done.

That said, I think Ubuntu has the right mix of GUI-to-command line: the user isn't required to use it all the time, but it is a necessity in certain situations. They will be better off for it. And as you said, there are other distributions if they think even this is too much. :)


Restore Grub to the MBR
I believe there is a program that does this along with other basic GRUB editing, but I don't recall if it is in the repos or not.

Reliably mount new partitions with the correct permissions
Does Gedit count as a GUI? ;)

Fix a broken X server
This is the only situation where you have to go to the command line, because the "GUI" isn't working at all. Then again, you could boot a live CD and fix it after correctly mounting your partitions.

Polygon
December 3rd, 2006, 11:27 PM
techinally you could boot up into "failsafe" mode which uses a known working xorg.conf in case you bork yours up, but actually reparing the broken one on the other hand

these things could easily be done by someone who knows about these things and can just make a gui frontend for it. From what ive heard, making the GUI is the easiest part.

but the grub one is a must. the first time i tried to restore grub i ended up screwing something up and ubuntu wouldent boot, cause of that awful tutorial of going through the install cd and mounting the partitions and then skipping ahead a few steps and... ugg

but the grub-install command is much easier.

The Noble
December 3rd, 2006, 11:29 PM
I wouldn't count Fixing X server as one of those options, as when x breaks you won't have a gui in the first place. I'm assume you mean modifying X instead. I haven't used Suse or Fedora successfuly yet, but I have heard that they have a nice set of GUI tools to modify X; is it possible to port them over to Ubuntu?

atoponce
December 3rd, 2006, 11:30 PM
aysiu-

You've hit the nail on the head, as usual. There needs to be some graphical frontends for a good deal of configuring certain aspects with Ubuntu and Linux.

However, I don't mean to confuse preference with need, but I personally think that avoiding the terminal on a GNU/Linux distro does more harm than good. So, maybe there's a reason there aren't GUI frontends to these means.

IYY
December 3rd, 2006, 11:32 PM
I believe that many distributions don't offer command line solutions in some places where such solutions are needed, but I do agree that there are some places where a GUI could be helpful. Configuring X is such a case. Mounting Windows and other Linux partitions is another.

aysiu
December 3rd, 2006, 11:36 PM
No, I don't consider using Gedit to edit a text configuration file a graphical configuration tool, although it technically is.

Editing with nano is not that different from editing with Gedit. I'm talking about strictly point-and-click.

I agree with you, atoponce, that avoiding the terminal is bad. I'm just trying to determine exactly how dependent we are on the terminal as opposed to how much we choose to use it.

I even wrote an ode to the terminal in this thread: Why I think the command-line is user-friendly... (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=59334&highlight=why+terminal+user-friendly)

So, so far nothing has been added to the original list? Configure broken X, restore Grub to the MBR (if you do find a totally point-and-click Ubuntu solution, please let me know and link to it), and (in certain cases) mounting partitions.

TLE
December 3rd, 2006, 11:39 PM
Well it sort in the same ballpark.
- Configure and test X
[Edit]
I believe that about 80% of the times you end up with a broken X it is because you are trying meddle your way through some sort of configuration. Therefore I regard it is as an absolute necessity to have a GUI way to configure AND test an X configuration. I myself love this big toy that is Linux, and every time I install a new distribution is a little party, except from when I want to setup my X the way I want it, that always gets me and I end up passed up under the table, metaphorically speaking ;)

atoponce
December 3rd, 2006, 11:40 PM
Add configuring/setting up postfix and DNS to the list.

aysiu
December 3rd, 2006, 11:56 PM
Add configuring/setting up postfix and DNS to the list.
Will do.

jbtito03
December 4th, 2006, 12:00 AM
Hi guys..

As from my point of view... okey... gui-s are nice and all but... things like GRUB, FSTAB, etc. should stay in terminal only.

Why?

Cause people who use this stuff know how to handle it in the terminal and if someone wants to mess it up has to go to the forum or wiki or whatever and take a look at what GRUB is, what FSTAB is, etc. and then learn how to modify it.

For the end end end user (office scretary) it is not neccesary as she will call the sys admin to fix thing (does not matter which system).

For all others - if you know how to use your GNU/Linux from the terminal it is good for you and you may teach others how to do stuff. Educate your self people cause you are in control of the maschine and dont let the maschine be in control of you :D

GUIs are many times just supporting our lasyness - i am not saying that they are not very practicall for some things like whatching movies, listening to audio, editing text, etc.

But stuff like sys administration should be left to experts who know what they are doing and not wannabe GUI admins - at the end, linux is not WINDOZE. Please accept that :D


Cheers...

JB

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 12:04 AM
Please understand, JB--I'm not advocating removing the terminal or saying people should always prefer the GUI. I'm just trying to compile a list of tasks that require you to use the terminal, whether you like it or not.

jbtito03
December 4th, 2006, 12:18 AM
heheh...

No, i really understand your point. And sure, if there are guis people will eventually use them. But all i am sayig is, that these GUIS may do more damage (especially from the educational point of view and the "system going into garbage" view) then good. And ok, if there will be guis, they should not be preinstalled but seperated and instalable thru apt for admins if they want to.

This is just my point of view as i am working a lot with youg people in my local youth center (ok, i am young also:)) and i know that they get easily lasy if you give them the chance to get lasy in their head :D That is of course not good for their developement cause they do not know how things work or why they do so and because of that they do not evolve as they could. What i am saying is that for example windoze is making their users "stupid" and that is mostly thru GUIs and closed source.

At the end, when i started with internet 10 years ago and discowered linux i wanted everything done at the moment whithout asking why and how. I buzzed my friend to make it for me and at one point he sead "I know how to make it and i know why it works. I figured out fo myself and the best thing for you is that you figure it out the same way as i did.". At that time i called him egocentric, moron or whatever but now looking back i can just say THANK YOU! If it wasnt for him, i would just click and click and would never know as much as i know (and it is not a ot but it is a good foundation for further understanding and learning).


So these are my concerns and i am repeating - this is only my point of view :D

Cheers

JB

jamyskis
December 4th, 2006, 12:40 AM
heheh...

No, i really understand your point. And sure, if there are guis people will eventually use them. But all i am sayig is, that these GUIS may do more damage (especially from the educational point of view and the "system going into garbage" view) then good. And ok, if there will be guis, they should not be preinstalled but seperated and instalable thru apt for admins if they want to.

This is just my point of view as i am working a lot with youg people in my local youth center (ok, i am young also:)) and i know that they get easily lasy if you give them the chance to get lasy in their head :D That is of course not good for their developement cause they do not know how things work or why they do so and because of that they do not evolve as they could. What i am saying is that for example windoze is making their users "stupid" and that is mostly thru GUIs and closed source.

At the end, when i started with internet 10 years ago and discowered linux i wanted everything done at the moment whithout asking why and how. I buzzed my friend to make it for me and at one point he sead "I know how to make it and i know why it works. I figured out fo myself and the best thing for you is that you figure it out the same way as i did.". At that time i called him egocentric, moron or whatever but now looking back i can just say THANK YOU! If it wasnt for him, i would just click and click and would never know as much as i know (and it is not a ot but it is a good foundation for further understanding and learning).


So these are my concerns and i am repeating - this is only my point of view :D

Cheers

JB

I understand this point of view, but it seems to be more the Slackware way of thinking - to be perfectly blunt, it's taking the attitude that if you're not prepared to learn to use the command line, don't bother with Linux. The goal of Ubuntu is "Linux for human beings" and most human beings want a desktop That Just Works (TM). I would think it great if everyone knew how to configure an X server using nano (or in my case vim) but some people just don't have the time to learn, some just aren't technically inclined. Remember - Ubuntu is for everyone, not just techheads and not those who want to become techheads. It's all about choice - if you want to modify your config files by hand, that's fine by the rest of us.

A propos the X server configuration - there needs to be a GUI to configure it - perhaps to enable GLX extensions and select the driver used manually, for instance. Of course, there needs to be a fallback ncurses GUI just in case you're reliant on the GUI to configure X.

Also - and this has been screaming out for a proper GTK2 GUI for ages - DSL configuration. I know now that sudo pppoeconf is used for configuring broadband connections (otherwise I wouldn't be writing this :mrgreen:), but it took me hours to find this out when I first moved to Ubuntu. Given that 80%-90% of users are probably on some kind of DSL, and many won't have this patience, I think DSL needs to be more easily configurable.

TLE
December 4th, 2006, 12:41 AM
So these are my concerns and i am repeating - this is only my point of view :D
...

I respect your point of view but I don't share it.

Not everyone is interested in learning a lot about the inner workings of their computer and their OS, but are still forced to administrate their own private computer because they don't have a personal friend/Linux guru to set it up for them.
Then is Linux not for them ???

What I said in my last post about X configurations might even apply more generally, I believe that definitely more then half of the "broken system" posts in this forum are due to self inflicted configuration issues, and so for that part I believe that with the right kind of GUI's, we might actually have fewer broken systems on out hands. Obviously the Windows ones are the other extreme, and I do agree, that they don't teach the users anything, but I do think it is possibly to make ones that are better at that.

Furthermore, I think that GUI's have a significant quality that is hard to ignore. They make information and options available and visible. Meaning that in a GUI you can make options available to the user, without asking him to dig through large quantities of documentation (of varying quality) while still informing him what it does.

Regards TLE
[EDIT] jamyskis LOL two persones one thought

Old Pink
December 4th, 2006, 12:44 AM
I love the terminal, I do most things in it. :)

"Linux for Human Beings" remember? Not "Linux for Idiots" - most people can use a terminal should they do a quick google search. Seriously, stop dumbing things down further than needed.

AndyCooll
December 4th, 2006, 12:51 AM
A GUI for compiling stuff from source.

Many may consider compiling apps from source to be for the more advanced. However I've seen plenty of threads on these boards posted by newbies who've found an app they want on Sourceforge or somewhere similar and are struggling to install it because it needs compiling.

:cool:

jbtito03
December 4th, 2006, 12:56 AM
Okey okey...

It may be that i really am one that thinks in the sense of "slackware" but actually really enjoy GUI. The most fun i had was with the installation of Gentoo and the installation of freeBSD from two floppys and then over the net :D But that is really me... cause i like it - it makes me happy when i manage to make the sys working even with the hardest scenario - and i like to compile thing - not to programm... cause i dunno how, never learned it. But i never close any options and if there is no GUI i just make it the terminal way. I am not happy until it works :D So that is why i think the way i think. I know that this is good for me cause i live only one life (as far as i know) and the more i know the more i am :P

About the line that people who dont know how to use linux in terminal should not use it at all - never sead that, just sead that they should call sys admin or look it up on the net. There is mostly a solution for every problem, that needs only a small amount of time. But thru that process u get knowlege and at the end you are proud of yourself cause "YOU DID IT!(TM)" :D


So........ about missing guis - hmm.. none i miss.. :D maybe for 3d acceleration?

Have fun people... ;)

JB

jamyskis
December 4th, 2006, 12:58 AM
A GUI for compiling stuff from source.

Many may consider compiling apps from source to be for the more advanced. However I've seen plenty of threads on these boards posted by newbies who've found an app they want on Sourceforge or somewhere similar and are struggling to install it because it needs compiling.

:cool:

I've been playing with this idea for a while now. Since most compilations are simply a case of ./configure - make - make install, there's no reason why a GUI couldn't do this job nicely. Advanced features of the GUI could also cater for the various parameters that can be passed to the configure scripts and makefiles too.

PrinceArithon
December 4th, 2006, 01:43 AM
My belief is that the Terminal makes you the Lord of your whole computer. Too many times things fail in GUI, at least in the terminal you know you control the world. When Windows outed DOS from it's system Windows lost a lot of power. At least in my opinion.

atoponce
December 4th, 2006, 01:50 AM
You know, adding Apache configuration needs to be added to that list. Adding new websites and modules, unless you know what you are doing, is a pain in the rear. Especially, if dealing with sub-domains. MySQL has a gui frontend, PHP doesn't really need one, but Apache to finish off the LAMP stack is needed.

PriceChild
December 4th, 2006, 02:09 AM
btw there's a high priority spec for feisty called "Bulletproof X".

Basically If your xorg.conf is wrong, it should default to basic drivers to give you some sort of X. This could allow you to use a xorg.conf gui tool.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 02:12 AM
btw there's a high priority spec for feisty called "Bulletproof X".

Basically If your xorg.conf is wrong, it should default to basic drivers to give you some sort of X. This could allow you to use a xorg.conf gui tool.
That sounds great, PriceChild. I'm looking forward to seeing that.

PriceChild
December 4th, 2006, 02:19 AM
https://blueprints.launchpad.net/distros/ubuntu/+spec/bullet-proof-x

There we go :)

PriceChild
December 4th, 2006, 02:20 AM
Oh and you guys may like to see this:

https://blueprints.launchpad.net/distros/ubuntu/+spec/xorg-config-ui

Its been deferred from feisty though... maybe 7.10 hey?

smoker
December 4th, 2006, 02:25 AM
hi,

i dont see the problem with having a gui for everything possible. i use the terminal cause i have to, but i would rather be surfing the net or learning something more appealing to me, than spending my time scouring forums and reading man pages to find this and that command for whatever!

fair enough, use the terminal all you want, if you want, but given the choice, i'll take the point and click route.

atoponce
December 4th, 2006, 02:29 AM
I just can't imagine separating the terminal from the operating system. Linux and Unix both are just too ingrained with it. I hope they don't separate.

23meg
December 4th, 2006, 02:48 AM
Oh and you guys may like to see this:

https://blueprints.launchpad.net/distros/ubuntu/+spec/xorg-config-ui

Its been deferred from feisty though... maybe 7.10 hey?
Feisty + 1 will be using Xorg 7.3, which will detect X configuration via HAL and probably won't even require an xorg.conf, so making such a tool as a frontend for xorg.conf right now isn't really needed, especially given the existence of the bulletproof X spec.

nalmeth
December 4th, 2006, 02:54 AM
I agree with the posted GUI-less tasks, except if someone really needed a GUI to compile from source, there is kconfigure:
http://kconfigure.sourceforge.net/

/etc/fstab is the biggest one I think.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 03:02 AM
Is there any GUI interface for the Linux man pages?

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 03:05 AM
Is there any GUI interface for the Linux man pages?
Yeah. It's called a web browser.

Do a google search for
man apt-get for example.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 03:06 AM
I agree with the posted GUI-less tasks, except if someone really needed a GUI to compile from source, there is kconfigure:
http://kconfigure.sourceforge.net/

/etc/fstab is the biggest one I think.
Oh, I'll take it off the list, then, I guess.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 03:11 AM
Yeah. It's called a web browser.

Do a google search for
man apt-get for example.
Unacceptable. What if I need to read the manual to learn how to fix my broken internet connection.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 03:13 AM
Unacceptable. What if I need to read the manual to learn how to fix my broken internet connection.
Well, considering the man page is to help you use the terminal, you'd end up having to use the terminal anyway, wouldn't you? Nevertheless, I'll add it to the list.

23meg
December 4th, 2006, 03:15 AM
Is there any GUI interface for the Linux man pages?System / Help / System Documentation / Manual Pages.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 03:20 AM
System / Help / System Documentation / Manual Pages.
Hey cool!


Well, considering the man page is to help you use the terminal, you'd end up having to use the terminal anyway, wouldn't you?
Well, yes, but it's nicer to read the manual with GUI fonts. ;)
Edit: Oh, and it's all categorized and everything. I like this.

Anyone know how I could make a link directly to a particular help page from my desktop?

cleverselfreferentialname
December 4th, 2006, 03:23 AM
Before I came to Linux, my thought was "Well, there are GUIs for everything anyway, right? I don't really _need_ to use the command line."

But I did. Initially, I tried using it for as few tasks as possible.

I am very glad now that Ubuntu made me use the command line a little, because, otherwise, I never would have learned about the filesystem structure. I would be totally GUI-dependent. And I certainly wouldn't be getting interested in software development now. So, I'd say, no. Ubuntu isn't too dependent on the terminal.

Although I really would like an apache configuration GUI. :)

23meg
December 4th, 2006, 03:26 AM
Well, yes, but it's nicer to read the manual with GUI fonts. ;)
Then you'll like the fact that you can type in the Yelp search box exactly what you'd type to reach a command man page: "man app-name".

fuscia
December 4th, 2006, 03:26 AM
i don't remember the last time i had to actually use the terminal, other than installing something when i was too lazy to open synaptic.

arnieboy
December 4th, 2006, 03:29 AM
Universal internet connection proxy configuration for all kinds of applications including but not restricted to web browsers, apt, wget etc.
A lot of effort has gone into writing documentation for the same and most of it is far from perfect.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 03:38 AM
Anyone know how I could make a link directly to a particular help page from my desktop?

Well I just figured it out, so I'm going to answer my own question in case anyone is interested. When you find the help page you want to make a shortcut to, you can right click and "Copy link location". Then just make a launcher that calls yelp with that link pasted afterwards.

I put this launcher on my desktop:

yelp x-yelp-toc:Man

kevinlyfellow
December 4th, 2006, 03:52 AM
First I'd like to compliment the author of the original post for finding a way to explain why command-line is user friendly. I don't believe that the command line is always user-friendly, but it definitely can be.

Most of the replies to the article that I have read seem to concentrate on learning. Sit somebody down at a computer with only cli, and they won't know what to do. But, if you stuck someone without computer experience on a gui, they probably could experiment enough to figure it out.

There is a command that I found out about 2 years after I started linux called apropos, which helps you search through the descriptions of man pages. If a person is given this command, then it is possible that he/she could actually be able to explore enough to figure out some of the basic commands and be able to read some of the man pages (come on people, most of the man pages really aren't that hard to skim through). This makes the learning curve a lot less steep. I believe that the most important thing to using a computer is the exploration, and command-line has some tools to help explore, but there is nothing for someone who knows nothing.

In terms of usability, command line almost always wins out when working with many files, and is very useful in many other situations. Gui's are useful for looking through long lists of things (synaptic is much better than deselect) and graphics (obviously) and many more things. But since the question is not about usability, we need to think about what the right tool for the job is. I wouldn't object to the idea that they are both friendly, depending on the job, if we were to take user-friendly to mean it is easy to use.

Another interesting thought that I have is if the majority of people use linux. Learning would not be such an issue. Linux really is about community and helping others out. Command line may become an easy thing to use because it would be a common "tool" that everyone is used to and if you need to know a command, maybe your neighbor knows or a friend. I think that it would become natural for many of us to use it.

I once found a site on the internet that compared a gui to a picture book and command line to normal book. This whole issue may be as simple as knowing that the picture book is good at one stage of learning and the book is good for the next stage, but both are good and helpful for literacy.

I know I'm posting late in the thread, but I hope I added something for someone.

jamyskis
December 4th, 2006, 03:53 AM
I just can't imagine separating the terminal from the operating system. Linux and Unix both are just too ingrained with it. I hope they don't separate.

This is a common theme that keeps getting repeated. Nobody is talking about seperating the terminal from the OS - all we're discussing is providing an extra interface possibility between the GUI and the terminal.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 03:57 AM
Sounds as if you got it, kevinlyfellow. Some people are just too tied to the GUI or CLI to realize they both have value.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 04:34 AM
lol, yeah it's funny when people always bring that up. Like every time a GUI program is written, some command line application is removed from the face of the earth.

darkhatter
December 4th, 2006, 05:04 AM
techinally you could boot up into "failsafe" mode which uses a known working xorg.conf in case you bork yours up, but actually reparing the broken one on the other hand

these things could easily be done by someone who knows about these things and can just make a gui frontend for it. From what ive heard, making the GUI is the easiest part.

but the grub one is a must. the first time i tried to restore grub i ended up screwing something up and ubuntu wouldent boot, cause of that awful tutorial of going through the install cd and mounting the partitions and then skipping ahead a few steps and... ugg

but the grub-install command is much easier.

when it fails, it could restart the gui using the vesa driver then let you configure options using a tool kind of like sax from suse

atoponce
December 4th, 2006, 05:24 AM
This is a common theme that keeps getting repeated. Nobody is talking about seperating the terminal from the OS - all we're discussing is providing an extra interface possibility between the GUI and the terminal.

I am aware of that. Thank you for the clarification. However, without fail, these conversations always end up about replacing the terminal with some GUI frondend, as the terminal is archaic and cryptic. I just hope that never happens. EVER!

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 05:33 AM
Well it sort in the same ballpark.
- Configure and test X
[Edit]
I believe that about 80% of the times you end up with a broken X it is because you are trying meddle your way through some sort of configuration. Therefore I regard it is as an absolute necessity to have a GUI way to configure AND test an X configuration. I myself love this big toy that is Linux, and every time I install a new distribution is a little party, except from when I want to setup my X the way I want it, that always gets me and I end up passed up under the table, metaphorically speaking ;)This would certainly be nice (the testing part). Perhaps some dev could incorporate an xnest into the commands to test the config after you're done pointing and clicking in a GUI.

--And doesn't dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg count as a way of reconfiguring your xorg.conf when it gets botched? Perhaps creating some kind of front-end for this would be nice, but if you're GUI botched, how ya going to get this working? I suppose in Recovery mode. There I go answering my own questions again. *shakes head*

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 05:34 AM
This would certainly be nice (the testing part). Perhaps some dev could incorporate an xnest into the commands to test the config after you're done pointing and clicking in a GUI.

--And doesn't dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg count as a way of reconfiguring your xorg.conf when it gets botched?
Yes, but you have to know the command
sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg which is a terminal command.

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 05:38 AM
System / Help / System Documentation / Manual Pages.I love this answer because so often people neglect to use the docs that come with their distro. Ubuntu has good docs. :KS Except this doesn't take into account apps that you've added after the initial install ;-(

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 05:39 AM
Yes, but you have to know the command
sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg which is a terminal command.Right, which is why I suggested a gui front-end for it after I wrote that (I probably was editing my post as you were typing in yours...sorry)

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 05:54 AM
Well I just figured it out, so I'm going to answer my own question in case anyone is interested. When you find the help page you want to make a shortcut to, you can right click and "Copy link location". Then just make a launcher that calls yelp with that link pasted afterwards.

I put this launcher on my desktop:

yelp x-yelp-toc:ManThat command does nothing for me.

My links look like this:
yelp file:///usr/share/gnome/help/user-guide/C/user-guide.xml#gospanel-566
and
yelp man:/usr/share/man/man5/apt.conf.5.gz

Johnsie
December 4th, 2006, 06:20 AM
In answer to the topic, yes. It has gotten better since dapper though. Terminal should always be available as an option but in this day and age a lot of people want intuitive interfaces that are easy to use. Point and click stuff is easier for new people to understand.

Peepsalot
December 4th, 2006, 06:23 AM
That command does nothing for me.

My links look like this:
yelp file:///usr/share/gnome/help/user-guide/C/user-guide.xml#gospanel-566
and
yelp man:/usr/share/man/man5/apt.conf.5.gz
Yeah, I can't quite figure it out. I realized after I posted that, for some reason it only works if I already have another yelp window open.

sawjew
December 4th, 2006, 06:39 AM
A samba configuration gui would be great, just for things such as setting security to user or share and adding samba users and passwords.

Another gui tool I have installed and think is great is the usplash switcher. If we have a graphical boot a graphical way to configure it makes sense.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 06:42 AM
Isn't smb4k a GUI configuration for Samba?

You're right about the USplash switcher, though.

sawjew
December 4th, 2006, 07:07 AM
smb4k is a kde app and brings in nearly all of kde to install it. I have used it before in suse and simply mepis but I prefer not to have too many kde libraries and apps just to keep the clutter down.

luca.b
December 4th, 2006, 08:36 AM
smb4k isn't a Samba configuration tool, but instead a Samba network browsing and mounting application.

3rdalbum
December 4th, 2006, 09:21 AM
I don't think there's a GUI frontend for Xen.

An Apache frontend would be great too - especially if it could somehow tell you the current status of the server.

Also, a decent GUI-based Live CD installer would be good too. Like the Alternate CD installer, but written in GTK.

23meg
December 4th, 2006, 10:11 AM
I love this answer because so often people neglect to use the docs that come with their distro. Ubuntu has good docs. :KS Except this doesn't take into account apps that you've added after the initial install ;-(It does; just type "man app-name" in the search box. New apps just aren't added to the list; you can still view their man pages.

jbtito03
December 4th, 2006, 12:00 PM
Hi all...

U have a nice program/GUI for your system, cluster, network and servers called WEBMIN. It uses a stand alone server and is PERFECT for remote or local sys administartion including apache, samba, mysql, etc.

check it out:

http://www.webmin.com/


Cheers...


JB

Carrots171
December 4th, 2006, 02:31 PM
You need the terminal in Ubuntu to set up an ADSL internet connection.

SuSE and Mandriva have graphical configuration tools for ADSL and cable connections, and standalone graphical configuration tools do exist; there's one called RP-PPPOE for PPPOE connections.

atoponce
December 4th, 2006, 03:51 PM
Also, a decent GUI-based Live CD installer would be good too. Like the Alternate CD installer, but written in GTK.

I'm going to play Devil's Advocate here, but I don't see the need for a GUI-based installer. What different options are there with a GUI-based from a text-based? The only difference I see is using your mouse instead of the keyboard. The options are exactly the same.

super breadfish
December 4th, 2006, 06:26 PM
I wouldn't say Ubuntu is overly dependent on the terminal. As long as there is good documentation behind it Ubuntu can be as dependent as it likes and things should work out fine for even the newest user.
This is the thing I think Ubuntu should focus on. I'm still a fairly new user, and I've spent plenty of time reading through how tos and help files most of which use the command line. The vast majority of them read a bit like this:

Open Terminal. Enter this. Then this. And this. Done.

The problem is that while it gets things to work quickly, it doesn't teach the user anything. It's just a list of instructions that the user follows and then forgets about. There is rarely ever explanation of what these commands do. Users may use the same commands in several different guides, but never learn how to use them on their own through them.
I'm not saying each document needs a lengthy essay on the inner workings of apt-get, but just a few words about what the commands do and how they work would help a lot of people get to know the command line. Not only would it make things seem a little less scary, but it also helps to build up knowledge of the command line, so there is less dependence of GUIs for new users.

Brunellus
December 4th, 2006, 06:33 PM
I wouldn't say Ubuntu is overly dependent on the terminal. As long as there is good documentation behind it Ubuntu can be as dependent as it likes and things should work out fine for even the newest user.
This is the thing I think Ubuntu should focus on. I'm still a fairly new user, and I've spent plenty of time reading through how tos and help files most of which use the command line. The vast majority of them read a bit like this:

Open Terminal. Enter this. Then this. And this. Done.

The problem is that while it gets things to work quickly, it doesn't teach the user anything. It's just a list of instructions that the user follows and then forgets about. There is rarely ever explanation of what these commands do. Users may use the same commands in several different guides, but never learn how to use them on their own through them.
I'm not saying each document needs a lengthy essay on the inner workings of apt-get, but just a few words about what the commands do and how they work would help a lot of people get to know the command line. Not only would it make things seem a little less scary, but it also helps to build up knowledge of the command line, so there is less dependence of GUIs for new users.
we do things this way because most users really couldn't give a darn how the command line works. They want a working system, they want it NOW, or they're going to declare that LINUX ISN'T READY FOR THE DESKTOP.

So yes, we'll send them the magic spells and incantations to get things up and running. It's a LOT easier on those of us giving support to have them paste in a command that works, rather than waste time and effort talking them through a GUI.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 06:37 PM
The problem is that while it gets things to work quickly, it doesn't teach the user anything. It's just a list of instructions that the user follows and then forgets about. There is rarely ever explanation of what these commands do. Users may use the same commands in several different guides, but never learn how to use them on their own through them. I disagree entirely.

I was scared of the terminal when I first tried Ubuntu. That's what sent me off to Mepis for a month before returning to Ubuntu (and sticking with it for more than a year and half and counting).

How did I learn terminal commands? By copying and pasting them from http://www.ubuntuguide.org

That's how I learned them. Sure, if I asked, people took the time to explain them to me, but I mainly learned by doing. If you type in
sudo apt-get install nameofprogram and that installs the program, you quickly learn that apt-get install installs programs. apt-get doesn't stand for anything. That's all it is.

As Brunellus points out, most people just want something fixed. But if you do have questions about "What does this command mean?" forum members are usually more than happy to explain the meanings of those commands.

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 06:39 PM
It does; just type "man app-name" in the search box. New apps just aren't added to the list; you can still view their man pages.By golly, you're correct. Thanks for the tip!

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 06:48 PM
I wouldn't say Ubuntu is overly dependent on the terminal. As long as there is good documentation behind it Ubuntu can be as dependent as it likes and things should work out fine for even the newest user.
This is the thing I think Ubuntu should focus on. I'm still a fairly new user, and I've spent plenty of time reading through how tos and help files most of which use the command line. The vast majority of them read a bit like this:

Open Terminal. Enter this. Then this. And this. Done.

The problem is that while it gets things to work quickly, it doesn't teach the user anything. It's just a list of instructions that the user follows and then forgets about. There is rarely ever explanation of what these commands do. Users may use the same commands in several different guides, but never learn how to use them on their own through them.
I'm not saying each document needs a lengthy essay on the inner workings of apt-get, but just a few words about what the commands do and how they work would help a lot of people get to know the command line. Not only would it make things seem a little less scary, but it also helps to build up knowledge of the command line, so there is less dependence of GUIs for new users.So often people forget about this sticky post (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=232059). In addition, help is in mass abundance (was that redundant?) on the fourms, so help is never more than a click away.

Rede
December 4th, 2006, 07:27 PM
The biggest thing is reliability. I know that there are GUIs out there for some things, but I can't count on them. ie. I use Kubuntu and used the system settings to update the xorg.conf because I was feeling lazy... but it fubared my xorg.conf and I had to manually fix it. Moreover, it didn't give me all the resolutions my monitor supported (including the native resolution of 1366x768) and took 5-10 minutes to get it working.

Basically, I'd like reliability. As much as I hate using Windows, I have to admit that it is nice to be able to change my resolution and have it just work, without fighting for 5-10 minutes with xorg.conf, modelines, and whatnot. It also makes me look dumb when I just finish advocating linux to my roommates only to have them watch me spend more than 5+ minutes and be dropped to a commmand line in Kubuntu completing a task that takes 10 seconds in Windows.

But more on topic... a New Hardware/Universal Device Driver Installation gui would be useful. It could be something similar to providing a .inf file in Windows and having it take care of everything for you.

daynah
December 4th, 2006, 07:34 PM
everything I've wanted to do in ubuntu I've been able to do in except when the ATI driver messed up. And... really... there wasn't a way to do that in gui 'cause how do you have a gui when you don't have a video card?

I think people think you have to do more stuff in terminal than you have to (like editing repos and apt-get) because that's just how we offer help online; it's an easier way to offer help. Unfortunately, people don't realise that it's such an easier way to offer and receive help.

aysiu
December 4th, 2006, 07:38 PM
I think people think you have to do more stuff in terminal than you have to (like editing repos and apt-get) because that's just how we offer help online; it's an easier way to offer help. Unfortunately, people don't realise that it's such an easier way to offer and receive help. Exactly my point in creating this thread.

I'm trying to isolate exactly what needs the terminal, as opposed to tasks we prefer to use the terminal for.

omns
December 4th, 2006, 07:43 PM
.

insane_alien
December 4th, 2006, 07:57 PM
as long as the terminal never loses functionality like the crippled shell MSDOS became i'll be happy with ubuntu.

ciscosurfer
December 4th, 2006, 08:00 PM
as long as the terminal never loses functionality like the crippled shell MSDOS became i'll be happy with ubuntu.The DOS shell is still used heavily and widely by Admins -- it's feature-set is quite extensive for administering servers, etc.

Peti29
December 5th, 2006, 03:57 PM
I'm absolutely new to Ubuntu (and more or less to Linux also) however I work as a programmer.
So maybe you're interested how someone just switching from Windows sees things. (I'm intended to drop a "first impressions" post later, but now for the question: )
- In my opinion Ubuntu really needed a GUI for setting up DSL connection (as mentioned before by others). That is because when you're finally connected you may easily find answers to your problems searching the net, but until that you are on your own. Fortunately Ubuntu has a rather good built in help documentation so it didn't take long to find 'pppoeconf'. Still it was a bit confusing having GUI for proxi settings, modem config, etc. and not having one for DSL setup.
- Also some graphical command (maybe put in the panel) to connect/disconnect would be nice. I've created "shortcuts" for this task on my desktop: text files consisting merely of '#!/bin/bash pon dsl-provider' and 'poff -a' similarly. (I also missed the little icon from the task bar indicating my online status, but then I found Network Monitor :))

TitanKing
December 5th, 2006, 04:03 PM
I love the terminal, what would Linux be without it! I remotely control all my servers through SSH, the terminal is much faster. And much easier to get a noob up and running faster, sinply paste the commands.

The Terminal ROCKS !

Brunellus
December 5th, 2006, 04:26 PM
I'm absolutely new to Ubuntu (and more or less to Linux also) however I work as a programmer.
So maybe you're interested how someone just switching from Windows sees things. (I'm intended to drop a "first impressions" post later, but now for the question: )
- In my opinion Ubuntu really needed a GUI for setting up DSL connection (as mentioned before by others). That is because when you're finally connected you may easily find answers to your problems searching the net, but until that you are on your own. Fortunately Ubuntu has a rather good built in help documentation so it didn't take long to find 'pppoeconf'. Still it was a bit confusing having GUI for proxi settings, modem config, etc. and not having one for DSL setup.
- Also some graphical command (maybe put in the panel) to connect/disconnect would be nice. I've created "shortcuts" for this task on my desktop: text files consisting merely of '#!/bin/bash pon dsl-provider' and 'poff -a' similarly. (I also missed the little icon from the task bar indicating my online status, but then I found Network Monitor :))
Pet Peeve: they're "launchers," not "shortcuts."

I hate "shortcut," since MSFT have used the term very loosely in the past to refer to any or all of:

* Hypertext links
* URLs
* Bookmarked URLs
* Launchers
* Quasi-symbolic links

(I may have forgotten a few)

As such, the term is enormously unhelpful, and I find myself constantly having to ask users what they mean by the word.

jamyskis
December 5th, 2006, 11:42 PM
- In my opinion Ubuntu really needed a GUI for setting up DSL connection (as mentioned before by others). That is because when you're finally connected you may easily find answers to your problems searching the net, but until that you are on your own. Fortunately Ubuntu has a rather good built in help documentation so it didn't take long to find 'pppoeconf'. Still it was a bit confusing having GUI for proxi settings, modem config, etc. and not having one for DSL setup.


Actually the rather humorous irony of this struck me a while back. I actually found pppoeconf through ubuntuforums.org - but only because I still had my Windows partition. What happens if a user replaces his or her entire Windows partition and can't find the DSL configuration tool though? Consider the conundrum of a user who relies on mailing lists and internet forums to get his internet connection working... :mrgreen:

mushroom
December 5th, 2006, 11:42 PM
Mounting another internal drive permanently, switching Usplashes and maybe ADSL configuration (it automatically worked on my system) are the only things that really need a GUI function; external drives are usually automatically detected and you're given an option to mount it. The other proposed operations are advanced enough that someone with the intentions of doing those things shouldn't be frightened by a terminal.

sawjew
December 6th, 2006, 12:38 AM
Another gui tool I think is essential is a graphical disk formatter for flash drives and dvd-ram or other removable drives. We have the floppy formatter we need something similar, particularly for flash drives, so we can just right click and select format.

aysiu
December 6th, 2006, 12:49 AM
Another gui tool I think is essential is a graphical disk formatter for flash drives and dvd-ram or other removable drives. We have the floppy formatter we need something similar, particularly for flash drives, so we can just right click and select format.
It's called GParted.

TLE
December 6th, 2006, 12:52 AM
Mounting another internal drive permanently, switching Usplashes and maybe ADSL configuration (it automatically worked on my system) are the only things that really need a GUI function; external drives are usually automatically detected and you're given an option to mount it. The other proposed operations are advanced enough that someone with the intentions of doing those things shouldn't be frightened by a terminal.

Setting up resolutions for your flat screen?
Configuring a dualview setup ? (This is actually done without a hickup in windows and is a major pain in Linux)

sawjew
December 6th, 2006, 02:19 AM
It's called GParted.

Gparted doesn't work for dvd-ram disks and I still think it should be available on right click.

imhdd
December 6th, 2006, 02:34 AM
I believe that ubuntu has the balance just about right. As a distro it attracts newbies and experienced users alike. It must be doing something right :)

(NOTE: aysiu, this may be a little off your original topic but it seems to fit the current drift.)

I also think Ubuntu has it about right. My situation is this: I repair and build computers for people who can't afford to pay for the services. These are hard working people usually with children and low paying jobs or older folks living on Social Security. They can't afford the cost of Microsoft products and I certainly can't afford to donate the cost of an operating system for the computers I service. The main impediment to my work for the past few years is the cost of MS Windows. And it's getting worse with Vista.

What I need in an operating system is simplicity, basic functionality, a lot of help, and low cost. Ubuntu fits that description better than any distribution I've tried. I'm almost to the position of being able to install Ubuntu and give a short course in how to use it - all by point and click. The idea of any of my 'clients' using a command line is beyond imagination. And the idea of me being able to use the command line for more than the most basic functions is also out of reach at this time (I'm working on it).

My friends, there are millions and millions of 'clients' just like mine all around the world. Their goal isn't to become a geek; but they are awed when you help them point and click their way through a simple Google search.

Fortunately, Ubuntu is well on it's way to becoming the best of both worlds. The Terminal for those so inclined, and the simplicity of point and click for those who need it.

Thanks to all the Ubuntu community for all the help. Without it I wouldn't see any way to continue helping others with computers. AYSIU and ARNIEBOY are just two of my heros. Wish I could name them all.
imhdd

mushroom
December 6th, 2006, 03:59 AM
Setting up resolutions for your flat screen?
Configuring a dualview setup ? (This is actually done without a hickup in windows and is a major pain in Linux)

With NVIDIA, this is provided in their configuration utility. Of course, not everyone has NVIDIA, and there really should be a better integrated configuration utility (as far as Gnome goes, KDE does pretty well). So, yeah, I agree with you in that respect.

xhaan
December 6th, 2006, 11:41 PM
I don't think it's too dependednt.
It isn't very often that I HAVE to use the terminal, I use it because I like it.

FyreBrand
December 7th, 2006, 01:51 AM
The only two times I absolutely wished I had a gui interface was to reinstall grub and to reconfigure xorg.

For Xorg - The ncurses type of interface (if that's what it is) is okay, but when I think of an interface for reconfiguring the the xserver I think an application that have a document file that helps me choose the proper options and settings. Learning to configure this is a bear and I still suck at it.

For Grub - I would envision this utility to be on a live CD. Obviously if grub isn't working booting to Kubuntu doesn't work very well. When I reinstalled Windows for IIS/PHP it did the obligatory bootloader over-write. I wrote the grub reinstall steps down but I messed it up bad and ended up having to reinstall Kubuntu. Even a Windows utility would be nice where you can install grub to the MBR or boot partition and have it point to your Linux partition where the rest of the grub files are. I guess that's a little bit much though, eh? hehe.

aysiu
December 7th, 2006, 02:44 AM
For Grub - I would envision this utility to be on a live CD. Obviously if grub isn't working booting to Kubuntu doesn't work very well. When I reinstalled Windows for IIS/PHP it did the obligatory bootloader over-write. I wrote the grub reinstall steps down but I messed it up bad and ended up having to reinstall Kubuntu. Even a Windows utility would be nice where you can install grub to the MBR or boot partition and have it point to your Linux partition where the rest of the grub files are. I guess that's a little bit much though, eh? hehe. Not really, since Mepis has had this feature for at least two years. Mepis features KDE (just as Kubuntu does) and is now based on Ubuntu, so you may want to check it out, since you use Kubuntu.

qalimas
December 7th, 2006, 02:47 AM
Setting up resolutions for your flat screen?
Configuring a dualview setup ? (This is actually done without a hickup in windows and is a major pain in Linux)

In KDE, it was all point-and-click configuration for my twin view, took about 2 minutes...

Radiolad
December 9th, 2006, 11:55 PM
I totally agree with the need for GUI. The whole business of 'command line' is a great turn off to me and I'm sure many others. I like Ubuntu but it's like a maze that is easy to get lost in :-k
I'm a 'windows' person and GUI is sooooo much friendlier.
The Ubuntu developers must realize (replies from any are welcome) that this is 2006 and not 1986.
Those are my thoughts for what they are worth :rolleyes: Radiolad.

loell
December 10th, 2006, 12:20 AM
I totally agree with the need for GUI. The whole business of 'command line' is a great turn off to me and I'm sure many others. I like Ubuntu but it's like a maze that is easy to get lost in :-k
I'm a 'windows' person and GUI is sooooo much friendlier.
The Ubuntu developers must realize (replies from any are welcome) that this is 2006 and not 1986.
Those are my thoughts for what they are worth :rolleyes: Radiolad.

could you be more specific? the need for gui of what particularly?

ubuntu developers had made many realizations in just a short span of time.
and they are doing a great job even if many of them are just voluntary.

Fatec
December 11th, 2006, 03:56 PM
well i also tested the last suse release... the updater was not working AT ALL. It took them some months to fix it. The priority for Novell is the business distro, not the Opensuse one, that's the main advantage of ubuntu, everyone gets the same product (real open source spirit)

next is the debian base ubuntu uses. It's just the best package managing system, and the repositories are enormous. Yast and all the other tools just don't play in the same league.

For me it's not a big problem that configuration is done via the terminal. In many cases, no in basically all cases, the documentation for ubuntu & debian is perfect, and easy to reproduce.

You configure your system only once, so it shouldn't be a priority for ubuntu devs to make a gui configuration for everything.

The update system was broken in RC2 of opensuse...it is fixed in the final release (as far as i can tell, tho 912 updates to download..that was a pain)

I agree suse is ALOT easier to use than ubuntu...and has alot more gui interfaces (which admittedly i love, sometimes i just dont feel like using the command line, infact, if ive had a long day, i hate doing so and just boot into xp)

Wether linux users admit it or not, doing things by the command line isnt the best way to get people to use linux, id prefer it if linux was all gui BUT still had the option to use command lines for more advanced users (or ppl who prefer using it).

Admit it..simple *click, install, done, now go play* is better than using the terminal.

I find suse alot faster than ubuntu (suprisingly) and the default desktops are quite nice (admittedly, again, i hate ubuntus *poo* stain brown (lol)...although love ubuntu overall)

i just enjoy using my pc..ya know?...i dont wanna play around with command lines for half an hour to install something, i want a gui...as many users do...and thats why windows dominates the market. yes, windows sucks..it has many problems..but its EASY!

and smart, or not, easier is better.

Fatec
December 11th, 2006, 03:56 PM
well i also tested the last suse release... the updater was not working AT ALL. It took them some months to fix it. The priority for Novell is the business distro, not the Opensuse one, that's the main advantage of ubuntu, everyone gets the same product (real open source spirit)

next is the debian base ubuntu uses. It's just the best package managing system, and the repositories are enormous. Yast and all the other tools just don't play in the same league.

For me it's not a big problem that configuration is done via the terminal. In many cases, no in basically all cases, the documentation for ubuntu & debian is perfect, and easy to reproduce.

You configure your system only once, so it shouldn't be a priority for ubuntu devs to make a gui configuration for everything.

The update system was broken in RC2 of opensuse...it is fixed in the final release (as far as i can tell, tho 912 updates to download..that was a pain)

I agree suse is ALOT easier to use than ubuntu...and has alot more gui interfaces (which admittedly i love, sometimes i just dont feel like using the command line, infact, if ive had a long day, i hate doing so and just boot into xp)

Wether linux users admit it or not, doing things by the command line isnt the best way to get people to use linux, id prefer it if linux was all gui BUT still had the option to use command lines for more advanced users (or ppl who prefer using it).

Admit it..simple *click, install, done, now go play* is better than using the terminal.

I find suse alot faster than ubuntu (suprisingly) and the default desktops are quite nice (admittedly, again, i hate ubuntus *poo* stain brown (lol)...although love ubuntu overall)

i just enjoy using my pc..ya know?...i dont wanna play around with command lines for half an hour to install something, i want a gui...as many users do...and thats why windows dominates the market. yes, windows sucks..it has many problems..but its EASY!

and smart, or not, easier is better.

mjpoetic
December 11th, 2006, 04:30 PM
No offense, but Windows creates idiots (sort of like AOL did with internet users). There are at least a handful of distros that I have used that use a GUI for a lot of things. But seriously though...how hard is it to come onto these forums and follow a simple HOWTO? Anyway, to each his/her own.

Fatec
December 11th, 2006, 05:09 PM
No offense, but Windows creates idiots (sort of like AOL did with internet users). There are at least a handful of distros that I have used that use a GUI for a lot of things. But seriously though...how hard is it to come onto these forums and follow a simple HOWTO? Anyway, to each his/her own.

Simple? well..yes and no..alot of the howtos on here are wrong/out of date...or simply badly typed out.

i dont mind doing howtos, dont get me wrong..but as i said, after a long day of work, you dont want to go through a howto and hope it works..u want simpleness so you can enjoy urself, so yea, each to their own.

kazuya
December 11th, 2006, 05:21 PM
I could never leave from the current Ubuntu to OpenSuse. Ubuntu is just easier to manage and work with than Suse for me. I too was like the typical window user who preferred gui over CLI.

Now I use both CLI and gui. The howto guides make using CLI ridiculously easy to follow and learn. The instructions are ridiculously easy to follow. Moreover, what Ubuntu is great at is giving user the power to change or control the look of their gui from a gui and from the commandline.

Package manager is near unparallel as is typical of Debian-based distros. The forum here is the best for answering questions and having fun.

With Ubuntu, everything just works while allowing user to totally reconfigure system, while in SUSE it seems to glitter in the beginning and works also sometimes for user not seeking to revamp the system to use many other window managers.

Working at the CLI is a one time thing for me until perhaps, the next major release. And while the CLI is in work, you can do many other things like watching video, typing email, etc, etc, burning DVD, changing an icon, .. So I do not understand where the theme of no time for CLI comes in. Would user rather not even see the CLI at all ever. That would be a mistake, because GUI use alone is limiting to creativity and development. For all those gui functions, there are CLI codes at work. SOme are worth seeing and some are not. This is why we need both. If you want your distro or OS to simply put you at the GUI with no way of changing to your personal liking and ultimately sharing with other users, but prefer a company to give you options of what you call eye-candy, then go for it.

This is not what a distro should be for me. Use the CLI long enough and you may start to prefer it to some of the gui equivalents.
Also, once spoiled by the beauty of Ubuntu's adaptation of gui and CLI, it would be hard to be gone to SUSE for long.

I like many distros, and they all have their strengths. But for me, Ubuntu supplants SUSE's use and more. So I'll stick to Ubuntu over SUSE.

kazuya
December 11th, 2006, 05:21 PM
I could never leave from the current Ubuntu to OpenSuse. Ubuntu is just easier to manage and work with than Suse for me. I too was like the typical window user who preferred gui over CLI.

Now I use both CLI and gui. The howto guides make using CLI ridiculously easy to follow and learn. The instructions are ridiculously easy to follow. Moreover, what Ubuntu is great at is giving user the power to change or control the look of their gui from a gui and from the commandline.

Package manager is near unparallel as is typical of Debian-based distros. The forum here is the best for answering questions and having fun.

With Ubuntu, everything just works while allowing user to totally reconfigure system, while in SUSE it seems to glitter in the beginning and works also sometimes for user not seeking to revamp the system to use many other window managers.

Working at the CLI is a one time thing for me until perhaps, the next major release. And while the CLI is in work, you can do many other things like watching video, typing email, etc, etc, burning DVD, changing an icon, .. So I do not understand where the theme of no time for CLI comes in. Would user rather not even see the CLI at all ever. That would be a mistake, because GUI use alone is limiting to creativity and development. For all those gui functions, there are CLI codes at work. SOme are worth seeing and some are not. This is why we need both. If you want your distro or OS to simply put you at the GUI with no way of changing to your personal liking and ultimately sharing with other users, but prefer a company to give you options of what you call eye-candy, then go for it.

This is not what a distro should be for me. Use the CLI long enough and you may start to prefer it to some of the gui equivalents.
Also, once spoiled by the beauty of Ubuntu's adaptation of gui and CLI, it would be hard to be gone to SUSE for long.

I like many distros, and they all have their strengths. But for me, Ubuntu supplants SUSE's use and more. So I'll stick to Ubuntu over SUSE.

dvarsam
December 12th, 2006, 12:56 PM
Hello!

I thought I should come in & drop my few cents...


How will you get Suse then?
The .iso is about 3.7 GBs whereas Ubuntu 6.10 is only in the 600s (in MBs).

Is this considered an argument?
We nowadays have fast ADSL connections (except maybe underdeveloped countries)!
In the Future things will be faster!


That's what I love about linux in general...you can use the distro that best suits your needs.
...This forum is why I love Ubuntu so much.
I never used to get much help from the Suse based forums (when I used Suse).

Honest & fair view!


I totally agree with the need for GUI.
The whole business of 'command line'...
I'm a 'windows' person and GUI is sooooo much friendlier.
The Ubuntu developers must realize (replies from any are welcome) that this is 2006 and not 1986.

Yes, we need more GUIs!


...Could you be more specific? the need for GUI of what particularly?

It is so hard to think of some examples?

1. How about a GUI for Samba Configuration?
2. How about a GUI for NFS Configuration?

OR

3. A step-by-step Wizard to help you setup the above!

4. How about .deb files for Tapioca?
5. How about easy installation of codecs?


That's some pretty strong language for something so simple as using what's best for you.

Simple Truth here!
No need to be "fanatic" with Ubuntu & intentionally dish Suse...
However, when I pay for a distro such as MS Windows & get all these viruses, I am sorry but I would dish it too! :)
It is good that OpenSuse is free to try for those interested to buy a Full version. At least, you are offered to tryout & if you don't like, no need to make fuss about it... You didn't pay for it in the first place!


Were can i find a step by step how-to similar to https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats for opensuse? I found this http://en.opensuse.org/Restricted_Formats but it says nothing and has no links, since there are legal issues!

Don't forget that Novell is a company oriented towards profit!
And I don't think that Suse is a very profitable product up to now...
Maybe in the near future it going to be considered a gold mine!
But not for now, it is still too early...
So, don't expect too much organizing from their side.


...next is the debian base ubuntu uses.
It's just the best package managing system & the repositories are enormous. Yast and all the other tools just don't play in the same league.

Simple Truth!
I wish Suse had adopted ".deb" package management...
What a change would that be (huge progress for all the Linux community!).
But don't forget that Suse now suggests adoption of Ext3 Filesystem instead of ReiserFS (that is a big improvement!).
It is a step towards "unity" across all Linux Distros!
I guess Linux "unity" in adoption of ".deb" format or ".rpm" format should be the next step...
It would help the Linux community move forward faster!!!
And also "unity" with Terminal Commands!
It would be nice if Terminal Commands were the same across all Linux Distros.


I agree Suse is a LOT easier to use than Ubuntu...and has a lot more GUI interfaces (which admittedly i love, sometimes I just don't feel like using the command line, in fact, if Ive had a long day, I hate doing so and just boot into XP)
Whether Linux users admit it or not, doing things by the command line isn't the best way to get people to use Linux, id prefer it if Linux was all GUI BUT still had the option to use command lines for more advanced users (or ppl who prefer using it).
Admit it..simple *click, install, done, now go play* is better than using the terminal.

Simple Truth!
I especially like this part:

I just don't feel like using the command line, in fact, if Ive had a long day, I hate doing so and just boot into XP)

Dear Ubuntu Programmers, please concentrate to make our lives easier please!


No offense, but Windows creates idiots (sort of like AOL did with Internet users).
...But seriously though...how hard is it to come onto these forums & follow a simple HOWTO?

What an argument...
So you are suggesting that Terminal is better...
Are you serious man?
It would have been better to admit "I am fanatically biased towards my Ubuntu compared to any other Distros (whether it is Windows, Linux or else...".

And if you want to talk about HowTos:

Please help me in these:

1. http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=312968
OR
2. http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=311687

On above #1, I have followed every HowTo.
On above #2, a HowTo does not exist!


...a lot of the Howtos on here are wrong/out of date...or simply badly typed out.

Simple Truth!!!


...And these forums RULE!
The best I have ever seen...
I have never participated as much on forums as i am now.

And about Distros - as long as it is free software - if it works for you go for it.
By free software I mean free as in freedom.

True!
Ubuntu Forums are the best Linux Forums out there!
It might be also considered even as the best Forums out there!
... cause I haven't seen any Windows Forums out there...
I really wonder: Are there any Windows Forums out there as good as this one?

And one more thing:
The Forum Staff here care of your opinions & suggestions of improvement...
I have seen this happening...
In the near future I also hope to see this implemented too:

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=311358

Thanks.

dvarsam
December 12th, 2006, 12:56 PM
Hello!

I thought I should come in & drop my few cents...


How will you get Suse then?
The .iso is about 3.7 GBs whereas Ubuntu 6.10 is only in the 600s (in MBs).

Is this considered an argument?
We nowadays have fast ADSL connections (except maybe underdeveloped countries)!
In the Future things will be faster!


That's what I love about linux in general...you can use the distro that best suits your needs.
...This forum is why I love Ubuntu so much.
I never used to get much help from the Suse based forums (when I used Suse).

Honest & fair view!


I totally agree with the need for GUI.
The whole business of 'command line'...
I'm a 'windows' person and GUI is sooooo much friendlier.
The Ubuntu developers must realize (replies from any are welcome) that this is 2006 and not 1986.

Yes, we need more GUIs!


...Could you be more specific? the need for GUI of what particularly?

It is so hard to think of some examples?

1. How about a GUI for Samba Configuration?
2. How about a GUI for NFS Configuration?

OR

3. A step-by-step Wizard to help you setup the above!

4. How about .deb files for Tapioca?
5. How about easy installation of codecs?


That's some pretty strong language for something so simple as using what's best for you.

Simple Truth here!
No need to be "fanatic" with Ubuntu & intentionally dish Suse...
However, when I pay for a distro such as MS Windows & get all these viruses, I am sorry but I would dish it too! :)
It is good that OpenSuse is free to try for those interested to buy a Full version. At least, you are offered to tryout & if you don't like, no need to make fuss about it... You didn't pay for it in the first place!


Were can i find a step by step how-to similar to https://help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats for opensuse? I found this http://en.opensuse.org/Restricted_Formats but it says nothing and has no links, since there are legal issues!

Don't forget that Novell is a company oriented towards profit!
And I don't think that Suse is a very profitable product up to now...
Maybe in the near future it going to be considered a gold mine!
But not for now, it is still too early...
So, don't expect too much organizing from their side.


...next is the debian base ubuntu uses.
It's just the best package managing system & the repositories are enormous. Yast and all the other tools just don't play in the same league.

Simple Truth!
I wish Suse had adopted ".deb" package management...
What a change would that be (huge progress for all the Linux community!).
But don't forget that Suse now suggests adoption of Ext3 Filesystem instead of ReiserFS (that is a big improvement!).
It is a step towards "unity" across all Linux Distros!
I guess Linux "unity" in adoption of ".deb" format or ".rpm" format should be the next step...
It would help the Linux community move forward faster!!!
And also "unity" with Terminal Commands!
It would be nice if Terminal Commands were the same across all Linux Distros.


I agree Suse is a LOT easier to use than Ubuntu...and has a lot more GUI interfaces (which admittedly i love, sometimes I just don't feel like using the command line, in fact, if Ive had a long day, I hate doing so and just boot into XP)
Whether Linux users admit it or not, doing things by the command line isn't the best way to get people to use Linux, id prefer it if Linux was all GUI BUT still had the option to use command lines for more advanced users (or ppl who prefer using it).
Admit it..simple *click, install, done, now go play* is better than using the terminal.

Simple Truth!
I especially like this part:

I just don't feel like using the command line, in fact, if Ive had a long day, I hate doing so and just boot into XP)

Dear Ubuntu Programmers, please concentrate to make our lives easier please!


No offense, but Windows creates idiots (sort of like AOL did with Internet users).
...But seriously though...how hard is it to come onto these forums & follow a simple HOWTO?

What an argument...
So you are suggesting that Terminal is better...
Are you serious man?
It would have been better to admit "I am fanatically biased towards my Ubuntu compared to any other Distros (whether it is Windows, Linux or else...".

And if you want to talk about HowTos:

Please help me in these:

1. http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=312968
OR
2. http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=311687

On above #1, I have followed every HowTo.
On above #2, a HowTo does not exist!


...a lot of the Howtos on here are wrong/out of date...or simply badly typed out.

Simple Truth!!!


...And these forums RULE!
The best I have ever seen...
I have never participated as much on forums as i am now.

And about Distros - as long as it is free software - if it works for you go for it.
By free software I mean free as in freedom.

True!
Ubuntu Forums are the best Linux Forums out there!
It might be also considered even as the best Forums out there!
... cause I haven't seen any Windows Forums out there...
I really wonder: Are there any Windows Forums out there as good as this one?

And one more thing:
The Forum Staff here care of your opinions & suggestions of improvement...
I have seen this happening...
In the near future I also hope to see this implemented too:

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=311358

Thanks.

mjpoetic
December 12th, 2006, 03:36 PM
what a rant :p
Heh heh...I second that!! dvarsam, you need an extra 20 on your Bean Count for that one. Your points are well taken though. ;) Now here's my rant response. :p


We nowadays have fast ADSL connections (except maybe underdeveloped countries)!
In the Future things will be faster!Believe it or not...I live in the United States and in South Florida at that (*cough* GO HEAT! *cough*) AND there are people still on dial up.


So you are suggesting that Terminal is better...
Are you serious man?No, I am not suggesting that the terminal is better. I like GUIs...but I just don't find using the terminal such a big task as some make it out to be. Also, Windows does create idiots...sort of like calculators used for simple calculations.


It would have been better to admit "I am fanatically biased towards my Ubuntu compared to any other Distros (whether it is Windows, Linux or else...".Are you serious man? How can you draw that conclusion? Seriously, how? I am not loyal to any software. I am loyal to the ideas that Ubuntu promotes (i.e., "Linux for Human beings"). So if something else better for me came along, I would hop on that (as a matter of fact, I installed the new Suse just to see if it was better for my desktop PC).

I was just trying to say that these forums are the best. Hands down!!


And if you want to talk about HowTos...Ok, you got me there. Howtos don't always work. Then again, if they always did...people may not learn how to do things on their own.

Again, it's all you're choice what you want to do with your PC. As long as Windows isn't the choice ;) ...just kidding.

mjpoetic
December 12th, 2006, 03:36 PM
what a rant :p
Heh heh...I second that!! dvarsam, you need an extra 20 on your Bean Count for that one. Your points are well taken though. ;) Now here's my rant response. :p


We nowadays have fast ADSL connections (except maybe underdeveloped countries)!
In the Future things will be faster!Believe it or not...I live in the United States and in South Florida at that (*cough* GO HEAT! *cough*) AND there are people still on dial up.


So you are suggesting that Terminal is better...
Are you serious man?No, I am not suggesting that the terminal is better. I like GUIs...but I just don't find using the terminal such a big task as some make it out to be. Also, Windows does create idiots...sort of like calculators used for simple calculations.


It would have been better to admit "I am fanatically biased towards my Ubuntu compared to any other Distros (whether it is Windows, Linux or else...".Are you serious man? How can you draw that conclusion? Seriously, how? I am not loyal to any software. I am loyal to the ideas that Ubuntu promotes (i.e., "Linux for Human beings"). So if something else better for me came along, I would hop on that (as a matter of fact, I installed the new Suse just to see if it was better for my desktop PC).

I was just trying to say that these forums are the best. Hands down!!


And if you want to talk about HowTos...Ok, you got me there. Howtos don't always work. Then again, if they always did...people may not learn how to do things on their own.

Again, it's all you're choice what you want to do with your PC. As long as Windows isn't the choice ;) ...just kidding.

Hendrixski
December 12th, 2006, 05:28 PM
The terminal is a powerful tool, perhaps too powerful for day to day use, but we can't take it away or else how will we do power-user tasks? Sometimes It's easier to write a script than to do 100 mouse clicks.

Windows found this out the hard way, they're re-introducing the command line in Vista... and of course wrote a bloated and bug prone interface for it that had a virus written for it 10 days after he Vista Alpha was released.

As for SuSe, I'm interested to try it myself. I just really don't like having to wait hours to download gigs of stuff. And I test stuff out on virtual machines, so it takes that much longer to install. Maybe some day when I'm not lazy.

Hendrixski
December 12th, 2006, 05:28 PM
The terminal is a powerful tool, perhaps too powerful for day to day use, but we can't take it away or else how will we do power-user tasks? Sometimes It's easier to write a script than to do 100 mouse clicks.

Windows found this out the hard way, they're re-introducing the command line in Vista... and of course wrote a bloated and bug prone interface for it that had a virus written for it 10 days after he Vista Alpha was released.

As for SuSe, I'm interested to try it myself. I just really don't like having to wait hours to download gigs of stuff. And I test stuff out on virtual machines, so it takes that much longer to install. Maybe some day when I'm not lazy.

dvarsam
December 12th, 2006, 05:34 PM
Hello & thanks for your reply!


Now here's my rant response.

What does the word "rant" mean?


Believe it or not...I live in the United States and in South Florida at that (*cough* GO HEAT! *cough*) AND there are people still on dial up.

I believe you!
Hopefully if the Bush administration had tried to focus more on providing better services to his people, things would be much better for the American people...
Instead the Bush administration only cares on how to produce more weapons & throw them on somebody else's heads...:)


Are you serious man? How can you draw that conclusion? Seriously, how? I am not loyal to any software.
I am loyal to the ideas that Ubuntu promotes (i.e., "Linux for Human beings").

Ok, no hard feelings then!
But let us all admit, that we "see" many biased posts in these forums too!
So, it seems that you have straightened things out now!


So if something else better for me came along, I would hop on that (as a matter of fact, I installed the new Suse just to see if it was better for my desktop PC).

Honest & True!
I haven't done this yet, as it takes forever to download...


I was just trying to say that these forums are the best. Hands down!!

Clearly stated!
And true too!


Ok, you got me there. Howtos don't always work. Then again, if they always did...people may not learn how to do things on their own.

I hope you are NOT proposing to create HowTos which give users wrong directions, so that they can't do easily what they want unless they become true pros on the thing they are trying to put to work...
Cause in this case, I disagree totally!!!
We don't want the HowTo directions to be tricky & wrong, just to get the users more educated here...
Are the users trying to solve a HowTo puzzle/riddle or is the HowTo suppose to provide a step-by-step method to make their PCs work the easiest possible way?


Again, it's all you're choice what you want to do with your PC.
As long as Windows isn't the choice ;) ...just kidding.

Well. if Windows were designed better, with no viruses & stuff, I wouldn't mind using them...
But even with a WindowsXP SP2 & all updates installed, bundled with subscription to an Antivirus Software & me keeping getting viruses, I am sorry, but:

I hate Windows, and
I will be biased towards Linux as long as they are safer!!!

Does this make you feel better? :)
I have nothing against Windows, but it is just that Windows is NOT safe for anybody to use...
Powerful statement but True!!!
I always have troubles with it...
OS wise - not Program-wise.
However in Linux we have a fantastic OS, but the rest of the programs are primitive (& many non functional)...
So, supporting Linux is one thing!
But whether I will support Ubuntu Linux or Suse Linux or whatever else Linux depends on who is going to create the best Linux overall...

Thanks.

dvarsam
December 12th, 2006, 05:34 PM
Hello & thanks for your reply!


Now here's my rant response.

What does the word "rant" mean?


Believe it or not...I live in the United States and in South Florida at that (*cough* GO HEAT! *cough*) AND there are people still on dial up.

I believe you!
Hopefully if the Bush administration had tried to focus more on providing better services to his people, things would be much better for the American people...
Instead the Bush administration only cares on how to produce more weapons & throw them on somebody else's heads...:)


Are you serious man? How can you draw that conclusion? Seriously, how? I am not loyal to any software.
I am loyal to the ideas that Ubuntu promotes (i.e., "Linux for Human beings").

Ok, no hard feelings then!
But let us all admit, that we "see" many biased posts in these forums too!
So, it seems that you have straightened things out now!


So if something else better for me came along, I would hop on that (as a matter of fact, I installed the new Suse just to see if it was better for my desktop PC).

Honest & True!
I haven't done this yet, as it takes forever to download...


I was just trying to say that these forums are the best. Hands down!!

Clearly stated!
And true too!


Ok, you got me there. Howtos don't always work. Then again, if they always did...people may not learn how to do things on their own.

I hope you are NOT proposing to create HowTos which give users wrong directions, so that they can't do easily what they want unless they become true pros on the thing they are trying to put to work...
Cause in this case, I disagree totally!!!
We don't want the HowTo directions to be tricky & wrong, just to get the users more educated here...
Are the users trying to solve a HowTo puzzle/riddle or is the HowTo suppose to provide a step-by-step method to make their PCs work the easiest possible way?


Again, it's all you're choice what you want to do with your PC.
As long as Windows isn't the choice ;) ...just kidding.

Well. if Windows were designed better, with no viruses & stuff, I wouldn't mind using them...
But even with a WindowsXP SP2 & all updates installed, bundled with subscription to an Antivirus Software & me keeping getting viruses, I am sorry, but:

I hate Windows, and
I will be biased towards Linux as long as they are safer!!!

Does this make you feel better? :)
I have nothing against Windows, but it is just that Windows is NOT safe for anybody to use...
Powerful statement but True!!!
I always have troubles with it...
OS wise - not Program-wise.
However in Linux we have a fantastic OS, but the rest of the programs are primitive (& many non functional)...
So, supporting Linux is one thing!
But whether I will support Ubuntu Linux or Suse Linux or whatever else Linux depends on who is going to create the best Linux overall...

Thanks.

seijuro
December 12th, 2006, 05:46 PM
Anyone who doesn't type with two fingers knows that the command line is much better than point and click for many(obviously not all) tasks this is why any distro worth its salt will never have everything guied. Case and point how many times can you open a terminal and type sudo aptitude install xxxx before someone can point and click open synaptic then point and click their way to the package then point and click to install?

dvarsam
December 12th, 2006, 06:04 PM
Hello!


Anyone who doesn't type with two fingers knows that the command line is much better than point and click for many(obviously not all) tasks this is why any distro worth its salt will never have everything GUIed.

Case & point how many times can you open a terminal and type sudo aptitude install xxxx before someone can point and click open synaptic then point and click their way to the package then point and click to install?

I guess that the Terminal is always better, when doing in from the GUI does not work...

Example:

1. Try to create a Folder Share from the Menu (e.g. by using "System\Administration\Shared Folders")

2. Then, using the Terminal, locate the file where the Shared Folders "line" is listed, change it from line 3 to line 15 & also change the Shared Folder (e.g. from Terminal: change the Shared Folder from "\home\dimitris" to \home\dimitris\Desktop"), save changes, & then,

3. Try to remove the Folder Share from the Menu (e.g. by using "System\Administration\Shared Folders")...

IF you manage to successfully remove a Shared Folder this way, I will owe you a bottle of Shampagne!!!

IS this the reason why using a Terminal is better?

Because the GUI doesn't work?
If this is why, then HANDS DOWN - you win!

Thanks.

BarfBag
December 12th, 2006, 06:21 PM
The people I've introduced to Ubuntu have found the terminal interesting. As long as I walk them through it (sending commands through Gaim), they don't mind at all.

I think there should be more frontends for newbies. You guys ever seen the Mepis OS Center? It's amazing! With a click of a button, you can do things like reinstall grub, repair xorg, install your graphics driver, etc. They should take inspiration from that.

But for me - long live command line!

aysiu
December 12th, 2006, 06:30 PM
Maybe I should say this for the hundredth time.

The command-line is a type of tool. The graphical user interface is another type of tool. If you want to liken it to real life, it's like the difference between speaking and gesturing. Sometimes in life, you can convey things a lot more efficiently with a gesture (the nod of your head, the sticking up of a finger, a simple smile). Other times, you can convey things more efficiently with spoken or written language ("I'd like to order the mushroom and cheese omelette with Swiss cheese and wheat toast. Can I substitute in mashed potatoes for the home fries?").

You would be hardpressed to go through life gesturing entirely (unless, of course, you were deaf, but even then you have to learn sign language, which is just as complex as spoken language--it's just not audible). Likewise, your life would be extremely boring if you had to talk all the time or write all the time--you might as well be paralyzed from the neck down!

So ideally, you'd have both.

Most people can both speak and gesture. So most people on computers should be able to use commands and mouse points and clicks. If every task had both options available, you could pick and choose which you'd like to use. Then everybody would be happy.

Read more here:
Why I think the command-line is user-friendly... (http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=59334&highlight=command-line+user-friendly)

wrycatcher
December 12th, 2006, 10:01 PM
If you want to liken it to real life, it's like the difference between speaking and gesturing.

I have to agree with you 100%, they are two different ways of accomplishing the same end goals. Can I offer up a second analogy?

The relationship between command-line and GUI application is similar to the relationship between assembly language and C. Yes, we can write assembly code, and while powerful and complete in what it can do, it's also more machine-like and less human-like. C is built basically to sit on top of assembly. It provides us a different way to speak to communicate to the computer, even though it still results in assembly code.

So there you go, two layered ways of speaking. Both will accomplish the same thing, but sometimes using assembly to do a simple program is quicker and more efficient. If the program is larger or more complex (or the user is not familiar with assembly), then C becomes a tool by which the assembler code is an invisible intermediate product.

Does this sound about right?

coder_
December 12th, 2006, 10:20 PM
No! The terminal is GOOD!

tbroderick
December 12th, 2006, 10:46 PM
No! The terminal is GOOD!


I concur. If anything, it's too dependent on X. There should be more ncurses or dialog GUI's.

jdhore
December 13th, 2006, 01:07 AM
i honestly think GUI and CLI have their places...my dad (a noob) who runs Ubuntu would never install apps via "apt-get install thunderbird", he'd use Synaptic...i find the CLI a lot easier for some stuff...but there was a time (no less than 5 years ago) where i was almost afraid of CLI...but now i embrace it and i do a lot of stuff in it

rocknrolf77
December 14th, 2006, 06:01 PM
True!
Ubuntu Forums are the best Linux Forums out there!
It might be also considered even as the best Forums out there!
... cause I haven't seen any Windows Forums out there...
I really wonder: Are there any Windows Forums out there as good as this one?


Here is a nice forum/help site for windows users. (The name of the site, suits windows perfectly) :) http://www.annoyances.org/ :D

buuntuu!
December 18th, 2006, 03:02 PM
hello everybody!
i am into linux only for a few weeks now and have not worked a lot up to now, but a friend of mine is a crack, so i've seen how work is done with the command line. i am absolutely convinced that newbs like me need to get to grips with the cli.here's why:

1. yes, the command line is INTIMIDATING, but
2. just like a good horror movie, it frightens but FASCINATES as well! it is wonderful to type a command and see what you are doing rather than clicking your index finger off!
3. you get to understand your OS as you look "behind the scenes" of the gui
4. the gui forces you into a certain path and if you encounter problems you have no cue how to solve them. just take a look at all the forums: "ti can't find the button that does this and that" is quite common a question!

so, as a newbie i hope to see more cli- guides out there!
by the way, anybody got any links to basic command line howto's?:rolleyes:

regards
buuntuu!

Patrick-Ruff
December 18th, 2006, 03:30 PM
Here is the official Ubuntu page that relates to this:

http://udu.wiki.ubuntu.com/GraphicalConfigTools?highlight=%28MediumPriority%2 9

Makes me mad an ndiswrapper tool isn't even considered.

If there is anyone out there who wants to help Ubuntu and can program in some python....this is the way to go.

I'm learning C now, but I'm pretty sure either C++ or Python are next. so you may see my face in the future programming a bunch of programs for ubuntu. however, I favor the command line moreso then the GUI. but if it's going to have a GUI, it's going to be damn functional, I hate unusable GUI's . . . worst thing ever.

sweemeng
December 18th, 2006, 04:24 PM
if the xserver is down for some reason, such as a botched upgrade

CLI is the only thing you can depends on

aysiu
December 18th, 2006, 04:55 PM
if the xserver is down for some reason, such as a botched upgrade

CLI is the only thing you can depends on
Presumably Feisty Fawn is going to implement something called "Bulletproof X," so that that will never happen again.

misha680
December 23rd, 2006, 07:19 AM
What I've noticed about the terminal vs GUI is that for a lot of things there already _is_ a GUI way of doing it, but on the forums and HOWTOs it is usually the command-line way that is listed. I think that perhaps is the _power_ of the command line, as it is very easy to transmit the information, but maybe we should have more "point and click" resources for people to do things (for example, even in Dapper, you _never_ have to edit sources.list to add repos if you don't want to, or installing packages can always be done through Synaptic, but people always put the command-line way, although I think it is definitely easier to get across).

Anyway, just my two cents, as it took me a while to figure out some of the things can be done graphically that I was doing through the command line. Also GNOME just has so many different things everywhere that it's kind of overwhelming at first to figure out where graphical things are (I remmeber it took me forever to figure out when there is a dropdown with folders listed that the little icon next to it would let you select folders that weren't in the dropdown, or am I getting confused with Mac OS now...)

Misha

dbbolton
December 23rd, 2006, 07:21 AM
i can't blieve this thread is still going. maybe it is ...

richieboy
December 29th, 2006, 05:13 AM
i just found this post searching for vim info. i'm a newbie and i freaking LOVE the cli. i even set my computer up to boot into the command line. i hope ubuntu developers never get rid of it. i don't even play gui games anymore; i'm hooked on hack (it's part of the bsd games package). these are just my two cents.
rich

kd7swh
January 6th, 2007, 03:54 AM
I think the terminal is very important. Most of the applications that I use have GUI(s) but sometimes I don't use them because it is faster not to. On the other hand, I have some apps that I would love to see GUI(s) for.

I think it would be a good move to cut down on the dependencies that programs have for X and give users more options when it comes to user interfacing. People who are new to linux like GUI(s), but I think everyone should learn bash. :)

maddog39
January 6th, 2007, 03:59 AM
I certainly dont think its too dependent on the terminal, compared to alot of other distros. Although I think that it also really needs alot mor GUI's and or improvements to the current GUI implementations for all those noobs out there, trying to get away from windows. :)

Sef
January 6th, 2007, 06:51 AM
Oops. Posted in wrong place.

Sef
January 6th, 2007, 06:52 AM
What does the word "rant" mean?

From Dictionary.com (http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=rant)

1. a loud bombastic declamation expressed with strong emotion [syn: harangue]
2. pompous or pretentious talk or writing

Fnordle
January 6th, 2007, 03:45 PM
The problem is everything is easy when you know how. The great thing about a good GUI is you do not need to read HOWTO's and Docs to know how, you can figure it out from the information presented. There is no possible way you can 'figure things out' in a CLI, you need to read/learn everything. If someone doesn't know about | more, alien, mount, mkdir or any of the other myriad of commands then they are not going to be able to figure them out.

A good GUI allows people to use a computer without learning a large amount of prerequisite information. The key feature of a GUI is it can be intuitive, you can sit down and get started right away. With a CLI you need to grasp the whole concept and know the majority of the commands before you can be useful. The whole point of a GUI is to make things easier for users - if this wasn't the case everyone whould still be on CLI's.

The reason the CLI is 'easier' in a lot of cases is because the GUI is so badly made, not because it's an inherently better way of doing things!

wersdaluv
January 6th, 2007, 05:30 PM
Personally, as a newb, I don't find the command-line user-friendly. It's hard for me to do stuff without knowing the philosophy behind and for me, it's hard to memorize stuff. I don't know what those codes mean so for me, they don't make sense and that's what makes it hard to memorize. Also, it's hard for me to improvise the codes I need to enter because I just copied and pasted codes without knowing what they stand for. There may be guides but it's hard for me to understand. I'm not good at reading stuff for a long time so it's hard for me to comprehend instructions in text on how I can use the command-line.

Maybe, what we newbies need is a "Navigating the Terminal" movie/screencasts which tells it all about the command-line from the most basic tasks to the hardest tasks. I went to ubuntuclips.org and it's nice but there are still many things missing.

Solver
January 6th, 2007, 05:54 PM
Great original post.

The ease of command-line can not be underestimated when providing support. I often help people with their PCs (Windows, since that's what they use). I always hate it when someone calls me and requires phone support. The problem is, the vast majority of users can't explain what's going on - the ones who can are usually competent enough to fix many problems themselves.

Over the phone, you hear something to the extent of "Uh... there's this box... I see icons. File. Extract. What do I press?" It takes a long time just to understand what the user is trying to do and what's on his screen. Then, of course, to give detailed instructions, you have to remember exactly what the program looks like, or have it immediately available. That ticks me off to no end. With a command-line, support IS easier - you can simply tell the user what to type, and the user can read you the output.

Mr. Picklesworth
January 6th, 2007, 07:02 PM
Solver: You think that's bad, try "The hourglass doesn't appear!" :(

Today's GUIs have a few problems that make stuff difficult for casual users and for the people that help said casual users. For some reason they have gone by practically unnoticed, but they are glaring errors in ease of use.

-Window titles don't seem to work. There are some users who notice them, but as Solver said, some people describe problems based on a few buttons and when you ask them what program they are running they're confused. This is probably because they rarely launch programs themselves; they open automatically from the file manager based on file associations.
This means: They do not know what the file manager is called, or even that it is a file manager (I have to describe it as My Computer, which sucks).
There are a select few, like the word processor and the web browser, and that makes sense. I launch most stuff other than that from the file manager, too.
The idea here, I think, is that certain users don't understand that Files come in many different shapes and sizes. Some are Zipped and have to be unzipped, some are videos and some are text files. They just see the program being opened to view the file as a single program (the operating system) showing the file. Makes sense, but it means they don't associate anything.

-Window menus don't work. The number of people that are ignorant of the Options window in practically every program existent is very depressing. Same goes for Help, which folks seem to ignore on the believe that Help is not helpful (even though, for the most part, it is!). In fact, my experience with buffoons using computers has told me that they only recognize the File menu, and then only Save. Not very useful, as that then has them unaware of where things are and seemingly unwilling to find out.
This is rare, but it does happen; it seems that the user needs to be SHOWN the menu by another human before they can see it.

-Tabs suffer the same as menus, sadly. Get your granny to use a tabbed web browser. Does she use tabs? Does she see tabs? I've noticed a horrifying trend, where people actually do not notice them and when they see a browser with 100 tabs open they still only believe that there is a single page being viewed.

-Start pages, pop-up message boxes, warnings... If that person who does not see the tabs in Firefox was to actually read the start page which has a very nice arrow cleverly pointing at A TAB, he would know about the existence of them. It doesn't happen; the start page is ignored, because it is scary documentation. (After all, one's native language is so much more scary than an unknown computer program).
Message boxes / warnings. I recently encountered this one (in Windows, but it could be Ubuntu), where the default mail program had changed to Outlook. (This actually put me over the edge and got everything switched from "Outlook Express - Stone Age Edition" to Thunderbird). Upon opening Outlook, its helpful first run "Hi, welcome. Do you want to import your old data from Outlook Express?" wizard was too much for them. They wanted to use the old mail program (Outlook Express). The solution was to try opening "EMail" again, but this time with the thought in their mind to "OPEN THE OLD ONE". Unfortunately, computers don't read minds - even if you try 10, 20 times; They just don't. This is all with a bunch of instances of the wizard already visible, mind you. I've never seen these people multitasking before, so I was quite pleased until I realized...
They were finally trying to stop the wizard by hitting Cancel. When they hit cancel, a message box came up which says, in summary, "Are you sure you want to cancel?". They, of course, didn't think to read this message and thus pressed "No", returning them to the wizard. They then decided to get my help under the claim that "The stupid thing won't go away!". I open it, read the message, and hit YES, and it goes away. (20 more to go).
The same thing happens everywhere; people consider message boxes / alert boxes to be annoyances, so they either do not read them or only read their titles and the options given.

-Tooltips? Toolbars rely on either amazing artwork or people realizing tooltips. There seem very few people who recognize these things as a common GUI convention.


Okay, so that kind of sucks...

We can't just have a big glowing border around important things like /READ THIS MESSAGE/, but something needs to be done so that file management is either more transparent (for example, no big archive GUI; just have GNOME say "this is an archive. Do you want me to extract it?") or so that every program's true identity is made as clear as day.
A very big first-run help program needs to be devised which can teach people these things, like what window titles are and the act of reading help files. (As soon as someone dares to do it once, they'll learn that it's not actually that bad).

Hm... Search in menus? What if Gnome put an little search box beside every window menu and toolbar, so you could search for menu items? That would be helpful, because then instead of guiding people through convoluted menus you could just tell them to type Options in the box. (And hit Enter; yes, Enter).



So yah, I see where people are coming from with the problems of GUIs. There is a lot of usability stuff being ignored here!
GUIs are more like Find Waldo than actual user interfaces, and that needs to be addressed.
GUIs are, most of the time, terribly designed but that is not the OS's fault; it is the fault of other developers. However, I think that some changes in the window manager can really change that. Search boxes; more obvious menus; message boxes that look different, thus not being recognized as "those annoying pop-ups, it must be an advertisement!" (Maybe a timer to hit buttons on the important ones would be good?).


Anyway,
links -g FTW!

Jasper84
January 13th, 2007, 01:50 AM
"if you happen to know the exact name of the program you want to install, it's far easier to open a terminal and type sudo aptitude install programname"
Even if you dont know the exact name, just guess a part of the name and sudo sudo aptitude search <name part>. Can ofcourse also search the net for it. I never touch aptitude anymore since i knew this.
sudo apt-get install is quicker then sudo aptitude install, but if an install fails, try the latter. BTW too bad sudo apt-get search doesnt exist, which seems like a potential source of confusion.
I like Ubuntu (Linux) a lot better then windows, in part because of the command line.

msimon1960
January 15th, 2007, 08:36 AM
I disagree 110% with the pro commandline arguement.

In fact I'd go so far to say that the single greatest concept keeping Ubuntu from greatness is the existence of the command line.

If you really wanted to sharpen Ubuntu up -- I mean really create a stable, robust OS the next step would be to eliminate the command line. Sacriledge you say!

1. Complaints about GUI's are complaints about bad GUI's. Look at SAMBA gnome vs. SAMBA KDE as known in 6.10. Big difference in useabilty (neither works of course but Edgy KDE is at least logically laid out.

2. The documentation for any modern OS is encyclopedic. It's not reasonable to expect more than a fanatic few to actually know how all the pieces fit together.

3. It's intellectually lazy -- got a problem? -- slap on a back door fix! Good for you but a slap in the face to every other user. I'd go so far to say that it is anti-community and contrary to the philosophy of Ubuntu. Chop the command line and the GUI's in Ubuntu would improve exponentially.

Just a counter argument from someone who started out with a Sinclair and has laid hands on nearly every PC platform since then.

Matt.

Sean Heron
February 3rd, 2007, 02:18 PM
Quote: Or they forget to capitalize the X11 in /etc/X11/xorg.conf.

Thank you, thank, you, thats why I couldn´t open it! I am falling to my knees in front of you :D.

runningwithscissors
February 3rd, 2007, 03:29 PM
I disagree 110% with the pro commandline arguement.

In fact I'd go so far to say that the single greatest concept keeping Ubuntu from greatness is the existence of the command line.

If you really wanted to sharpen Ubuntu up -- I mean really create a stable, robust OS the next step would be to eliminate the command line. Sacriledge you say!

Sacrilege indeed. Ubuntu may do as it pleases. I can safely say that the command line is here to stay with Linux. Or any sane OS, for that matter.


2. The documentation for any modern OS is encyclopedic. It's not reasonable to expect more than a fanatic few to actually know how all the pieces fit together.
And you don't need to know how the pieces fit together. You only need to know what to type or what to click on.


3. It's intellectually lazy -- got a problem? -- slap on a back door fix! Good for you but a slap in the face to every other user.
Eh? What do back door fixes have to do with command line tools?


I'd go so far to say that it is anti-community and contrary to the philosophy of Ubuntu. Chop the command line and the GUI's in Ubuntu would improve exponentially.
In fact it would be more generous to include both graphical interfaces _and_ text-based tools. ;)


Just a counter argument from someone who started out with a Sinclair and has laid hands on nearly every PC platform since then.
Well, maybe then you should have tried command line tools on them a bit more. Their usefulness is undeniable.

Rui Pais
February 3rd, 2007, 03:51 PM
"if you happen to know the exact name of the program you want to install, it's far easier to open a terminal and type sudo aptitude install programname"
Even if you dont know the exact name, just guess a part of the name and sudo sudo aptitude search <name part>. Can ofcourse also search the net for it. I never touch aptitude anymore since i knew this.
sudo apt-get install is quicker then sudo aptitude install, but if an install fails, try the latter. BTW too bad sudo apt-get search doesnt exist, which seems like a potential source of confusion.
I like Ubuntu (Linux) a lot better then windows, in part because of the command line.

in fact if you know only a small hint of the name of what you want to install you don't need to do a search first.
Simply type:
sudo apt-get install <first_letters_of_app_name>+[TAB]
or
sudo aptitude install <first_letters_of_app_name>+[TAB]

bash completion will complete the name or list the availables for for the letters you give.

it's even simpler. :)

awakatanka
February 3rd, 2007, 04:38 PM
CLI is powerfull tool but not userfriendly for new people.

On the internet its indeed easy to copy paste a command but the user still didn't learn anything, He have to learn zillions of commands and syntax. People easly remember a point click thing, but forget commands very fast if you have zillions of commands.

Try to work on a phone costumer supportdesk, try to tell people to type a command you have to spell every letter and still the type it wrong. Try to explain it in a point and click manner and it almost always goes in the rightway. Even if the command is faster the point and click way is much faster on a phone.

If i put my girl behind the cli and ask here to download something from a site she can't do it then. If i put here behind a OS gui she doesn't know see will find the browser to download that file.

Learning X number of commands isn't userfriendly.

Adamant1988
February 3rd, 2007, 04:39 PM
A command line with cut-paste options, easily copiable text, and so forth would be tech-supports DREAM, and allow for quick and easy fixes to problems.
Scenario 1:
User: "My graphics are screwing up on games"
Tech Supportguy: Ok, now try to get to your control panel, then find your graphics options, and look for this button, make sure that's checked..."

Scenario 2:
User: "My graphics aren't displaying games right"
Techsupportguy: "Ok, open your Console (or command line) and type this *insert code here*
User: Ok, this is what I got from that *copy and paste*
Techsupportguy: "Great, just copy and paste this into your command line and things should be working for you "*code*"


I'll take door #2 Bob.

aysiu
February 3rd, 2007, 05:35 PM
Try to work on a phone costumer supportdesk, try to tell people to type a command you have to spell every letter and still the type it wrong. Try to explain it in a point and click manner and it almost always goes in the rightway. Even if the command is faster the point and click way is much faster on a phone. Uh, having done a form of phone support before, I can say this is absolutely untrue. Trying to describe what to click on and having the person on the other end try to describe what appears next is like some Woody Allen version of abstract art criticism. It's very painful.

In almost all cases, phone support and online support are better done with commands.

Here's a very simple scenario: you're trying to troubleshoot for a Windows user and want a screenshot emailed to you. You ask the person to press Alt-PrtScrn. Then you want her to paste it into an MS Paint document and save that.

Scenario 1:
Can you click the Start Menu?
What's the Start Menu?
It's that thing in the lower left-hand corner. It's probably a green button. It says Start in white.
Oh, that one.
Yes. Then go to All Programs.
All Programs... let me see. Okay.
Then go to Accessories
Where's Accessories?
It's probably at the top somewhere.
There are a lot of things here. The menu opened up about three times.
Well, it may be in alphabetical order, so try to look on the first part of the menu at the top somewhere.
Oh, I found it.
When you click on Accessories, do you see something like Paint or Microsoft Paint?
No.
You don't?
No.
Hm.
Well, maybe we can find it somewhere in C:\ It really should be there unless you accidentally deleted the shortcut somehow.
What's C:\? What's a shortcut?
...

Scenario 2
Hold down the Windows key and press R
What's the Windows key?
It's two keys to the left of your space bar.
Okay. I Pressed it.
Hold it down and press R at the same time. Then let go of both keys. A little dialogue box should appear.
Okay.
In that dialogue box, type m s p a i n t
m s p a i n t
Yes, it's basically m s and then the word paint
Okay.
Then press Enter

See how much easier the second scenario was? I've done this in real life because I work in a place that has two campuses, and I've actually tried to walk people (over the phone) through doing things in Windows on the other part of our office. I've always found it faster and easier to do things with the Run dialogue, typing, and keyboard shortcuts than to try to click navigate through things.

Another example: We have a shared file server where anyone in our office can dump stuff to edit and share with one another. One person in our office lost her shortcut to it and had trouble finding it again. She had written down steps to finding it--something about going to My Network Places and then clicking on some icon. Problem was the icon wasn't there. She was really frustrated because the person on the other end kept insisting the icon would be there, and she just couldn't find the icon. So what made the difference? I found out the IP address of the file server and asked her to type two backslashes and then a bunch of numbers. There was the file server.

Typing is more straightforward for support than pointing and clicking. Pointing and clicking may be more straightforward for use when you're alone (as you can discover things), but if someone else is supporting you, it suddenly becomes an electronic game of charades to try and do something simple. Why play charades when you can just cheat and tell someone what to type?

awakatanka
February 3rd, 2007, 06:07 PM
Uh, having done a form of phone support before, I can say this is absolutely untrue. Trying to describe what to click on and having the person on the other end try to describe what appears next is like some Woody Allen version of abstract art criticism. It's very painful.

In almost all cases, phone support and online support are better done with commands.

Here's a very simple scenario: you're trying to troubleshoot for a Windows user and want a screenshot emailed to you. You ask the person to press Alt-PrtScrn. Then you want her to paste it into an MS Paint document and save that.

Scenario 1:
Can you click the Start Menu?
What's the Start Menu?
It's that thing in the lower left-hand corner. It's probably a green button. It says Start in white.
Oh, that one.
Yes. Then go to All Programs.
All Programs... let me see. Okay.
Then go to Accessories
Where's Accessories?
It's probably at the top somewhere.
There are a lot of things here. The menu opened up about three times.
Well, it may be in alphabetical order, so try to look on the first part of the menu at the top somewhere.
Oh, I found it.
When you click on Accessories, do you see something like Paint or Microsoft Paint?
No.
You don't?
No.
Hm.
Well, maybe we can find it somewhere in C:\ It really should be there unless you accidentally deleted the shortcut somehow.
What's C:\? What's a shortcut?
...

Scenario 2
Hold down the Windows key and press R
What's the Windows key?
It's two keys to the left of your space bar.
Okay. I Pressed it.
Hold it down and press R at the same time. Then let go of both keys. A little dialogue box should appear.
Okay.
In that dialogue box, type m s p a i n t
m s p a i n t
Yes, it's basically m s and then the word paint
Okay.
Then press Enter

See how much easier the second scenario was? I've done this in real life because I work in a place that has two campuses, and I've actually tried to walk people (over the phone) through doing things in Windows on the other part of our office. I've always found it faster and easier to do things with the Run dialogue, typing, and keyboard shortcuts than to try to click navigate through things.

Another example: We have a shared file server where anyone in our office can dump stuff to edit and share with one another. One person in our office lost her shortcut to it and had trouble finding it again. She had written down steps to finding it--something about going to My Network Places and then clicking on some icon. Problem was the icon wasn't there. She was really frustrated because the person on the other end kept insisting the icon would be there, and she just couldn't find the icon. So what made the difference? I found out the IP address of the file server and asked her to type two backslashes and then a bunch of numbers. There was the file server.

Typing is more straightforward for support than pointing and clicking. Pointing and clicking may be more straightforward for use when you're alone (as you can discover things), but if someone else is supporting you, it suddenly becomes an electronic game of charades to try and do something simple. Why play charades when you can just cheat and tell someone what to type? Doing phone support atm in my spare time and with users that working already with windows i don't have the same experience as you have. Before i have told a person to type ncpa.cpl i have already pointed him to networking. Some persons its easier to let them type and other persons its easier to point and click. If you have to do support for linux you have to tell them to sudo apt-get install prgname And the experience i have in the phone support its easier to let them point click in adept. Got persons from 20 to 80+ on the phone and with the older people its realy much easier to point click. But 1st of all you have to know what kind of person you got on the phone.

But different people different experiences.


Btw email a screenshot is simple to explain prntscreen and open email prg and ctrl-v our right click paste in windows

Edit: Working for DSL provider company only supporting windows.

aysiu
February 3rd, 2007, 06:10 PM
You're absolutely right. It depends on the user. People who aren't comfortable typing or who are prone to typos will have difficulty with commands.

That said, I wasn't able to do the Control-V into an email. Is that an Outlook thing? We use Thunderbird at work. Out tech department won't let us use Outlook.

awakatanka
February 3rd, 2007, 06:54 PM
You're absolutely right. It depends on the user. People who aren't comfortable typing or who are prone to typos will have difficulty with commands.

That said, I wasn't able to do the Control-V into an email. Is that an Outlook thing? We use Thunderbird at work. Out tech department won't let us use Outlook.
Its indeed an outlook thing. Thats also the negative side from the place where i do support we only support MS things every other prg the user uses doesn't get support.

I'm also doing much CLI things in linux, but in the beginning i was confused and called all kind of names to my pc because i didn't understand the commands ( still do sometimes, because there so many commands ). In windows i use also commands more now. GUI only OS will not work you need CLI sometimes to recover the stupid mistakes.

Gerard Barberi
February 3rd, 2007, 07:00 PM
The Control-V does work in Thunderbird; I've used it before. And I definitely agree that it is sometimes a lot easier to use shortcut keys and commands when troubleshooting over the phone. Usually I start with the graphical way, but as soon as I get some confused responses I go to the keyboard. Course, also when I do it the graphical way, I have to be sitting in front of windows because I have a hard time visualizing it (I'm on Ubuntu most of my PC time. Windows is for work :) ).

Personally, I like the command line because I don't like switching between mouse and keyboard a lot.

Mostly, I'd rather ssh to my box at home (from work, school) then remote desktop into it. Ten times faster, much less bandwidth.

I did install NoMachine server for remote graphical if I need it.

aysiu
February 3rd, 2007, 08:03 PM
Am I missing something, then? I just tried it in Thunderbird and Windows and.. nothing.

Let me make sure I've got this straight. You press Alt-PrntScrn, open up Thunderbird, press Control-N to make a new message, and then Control-V to paste, right? If I do that, nothing pastes in. What am I missing?

Gerard Barberi
February 3rd, 2007, 08:34 PM
Am I missing something, then? I just tried it in Thunderbird and Windows and.. nothing.

Let me make sure I've got this straight. You press Alt-PrntScrn, open up Thunderbird, press Control-N to make a new message, and then Control-V to paste, right? If I do that, nothing pastes in. What am I missing?

Thunderbird, Windows, Key combos... All the same.

Very Wierd.

See Attached Screenshot

EDIT: Unless you left the cursor in the "to" field and didn't move it to the "Body" section

aysiu
February 3rd, 2007, 08:42 PM
I wonder why it's not working for me. I tried clicking into the body part, but still no go.

Gerard Barberi
February 3rd, 2007, 08:44 PM
I wonder why it's not working for me. I tried clicking into the body part, but still no go.

I don't get it; there's nothing special about my Windows.

aysiu
February 3rd, 2007, 08:45 PM
I don't get it; there's nothing special about my Windows.
Well, right now I'm trying it on my Windows computer at home. I'll try it at work on Monday. Maybe there's something wrong with my Windows installation...

aysiu
February 15th, 2007, 09:04 PM
I figured out what it was.

I have my settings not to compose in HTML (I prefer plain text).

I'll keep that in mind, though, the next time I want someone else to send me a screenshot! Most people send in HTML, after all.

.oops
February 18th, 2007, 03:06 PM
By now I've read some posts around the forum, and the solutions to the problems presented always envolve typing something in the console (is this the correct term?). My question is, can't I just double-click a file to open it like I'd do in Windows?
Thanks.

mcduck
February 18th, 2007, 03:17 PM
it depends on what file you are talking about ;)

Anyway, people like to give command line instructions because it's much easier, and you only need to copy them to a terminal so there's no much space for errors. Also CLI instructions don't depend on what desktop you are using and how you have configured it..