Re: Linux, Solaris, and NT

If I might politely disagree on a couple of points...

Brad Teale wrote:
> 
> Linux:
> One thing to remember with Linux...It is also a new kid on the block.  It
> has only been around for aprox 8 years.  It , like NT, needs many
> improvements.  For example, a standard would be nice.

It's new, it's rapidly evolving, it's stable.  It's more stable than my
NT systems ever were.  Its lack of a common 'standard' is similar to
that of "Unix" which has managed to survive and become a de facto
standard.  

> I get tired of Red Hat's circular dependences on the rpms, and the installer
> that installs packages that I told it not to.  Although Red Hat has done a
> great deal to push Linux into the spot light, they seem to be doing a lot to
> hurt Linux.  I would venture to say, they are probably the biggest problem
> with Linux today.

RH's GUI installation script (and its non-GUI script, for that matter)
*do* add a lot of cruft.  However, a lot of the toys most of us like to
use require tidbits that are stuffed here and there in other packages. 
That said, RPM manages to do a pretty good job (and improving) of
keeping track of silly little dependencies that the SlackWare Package
Manager never managed to take care of.
 
> If your tired of Red Hat, try another distribution.  I liked slackware when
> I needed a Unix type OS.  It is the "true" Linux, and has been around the
> longest.

I'd suggest Debian.  While I *really* like Slackware, it's not
intuitive, and if you're like me, playing with OS's isn't time-budgetted
into your day.  Slackware puts most things where I expect 'em, but not
nicely.
 
> NT:
> As far as NT being stable, I would seriously doubt it will ever become as
> stable as a Unix box.  Mainly because of its design.  It allows none trusted
> programs to access trusted (OS) memory space, which is very dangerous.  NT,
> however, does have it brighter points, GUI, file system recovery, ease of
> use, etc.

My experiences with NT require me to state that stability is a relative
term.  When running it regularly, I had a "stable" NT box for my lab:  I
didn't have to boot more than 3 or so times/week.  Its GUI is nice
mainly because it's ubiquitous.  It's neither better, nor necessarily
worse, than X or the Mac GUI.  Just more widespread.  And it's not
necessarily consistent.  Its file recovery isn't any better than a *nix
system, in my experience (and its file recovery shortcomings are one
major reason I'm now running so much Linux...).  As for ease of use,
this is generally true for pure office applications, but in my
experience, not necessarily true for scientific/technical or programming
apps.  The API for programming is pretty nice, but there are similar
interfaces in Soalris and Linux. 
 
> Solaris:
> I like it, except for the Sun compilers.  They are very hard to use, and
> quite frankly sometimes don't do what you tell them to.

That's what the gnu compilers are so good for... I've had significant
troubles making a lot of things compile consistently cross-platform in
migrations to Solaris, with native compilers.  I use the gnu compilers,
now, and have few to no problems.

Gerry
--
Gerry Creager -- gerry@xxxxxxxxxxx
Network Engineering                     |Research focusing on
Academy for Advanced Telecommunications |Satellite Geodesy and 
and Learning Technologies               |Geodetic Control
Texas A&M University    979.458.4020  (Phone) -- 979.847.8578  (Fax)