Thursday, January 04, 2007

Linux (again)

I had reason to reinstall my laptop the other day. I had been running Vista but didn't want to activate it, so was going to reinstall XP.

I decided to do all my dev etc in a Virtual Machine, because I tend to rebuild my dev machines alot. I figured if all the dev stuff was inside a VM, it would be easier to reinstall etc.

Anyway, so I figured if I was doing that, why not run Linux as the Host OS. I like Linux, it just feels better than XP and even Vista. The security is great and works as it should and IE malware etc is just not a concern. There is one glaringly obvious problem with Linux.

Drivers, Drivers, Drivers!

Windows installs in about 30 minutes, either installs the correct drivers out of the box, or just simply install from the CD and hey presto, you're away. Linux, well that's another story.

Sometimes you are lucky and can find a driver and it installs easy. Most of the time it doesn't. Take for example the Intel Wireless Driver in my Dell laptop. To get that to work, you need to compile a new kernel. Come on people. As long as the average user needs to compile the freaking kernel to get something going, Linux ain't going to be mainstream. Period.

Yes, I understand the awesome power of doing this, but I have been trying to get my laptop going for over a day now, and the upside by far outweighs the downside.

Anyway, the kernel compile has finished so I must reboot and try again....

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