Linux on the Desktop: Better Isn't Good Enough

by Andy Oram

Related link:

Mitch Wagner, on
Linux Pipeline,
airs pretty much the same arguments I made in my blog

To push desktop Linux, radical shift may be required

Will the move to desktop Linux take place?


2004-02-18 06:42:34
they just can't help themselves...
Article started good but as usual with most Linux advocates ended with a typical attack on Microsoft.

If Linux were in the position where Windows is today IT would be the main target of virusses and trojans and what a target it would be.
The users who are now irresponsibly not updating their machines and clicking on attachments in emails of unknown origin would still do that with the exact same results.

Nothing would change, except that the very same people who create the attacks would also be responsible for creating the fixes against them...
And even if they're not responsible for writing the virusses, it's not KEWL to maintain code, most any programmer would rather be writing new stuff and bugs are left to fester.
At least with a commercial interest behind fixing the problems (aka continued sales and potential legal backlash from deliberately NOT fixing a problem) there's an incentive for the programmers to go about securing their product.
If leaving holes in not only means more time for fun stuff but also helps you poke fun at newbies by taking over their desktops, why fix holes at all?

2004-02-18 08:51:33
they just can't help themselves...
I'm unclear about something - what is the real reason there aren't any trojans or viruses for Linux? Is it that it's impossible to exploit what holes exist in Linux, or is it that Linux itself is too "rare" to bother with?

I'll come to this site occasionally and see security warnings about SSH or Apache or whatever, but no one's writing code to attack those vulnerabilities - what's up with that? I know things are patched quickly in the Linux community, but isn't it still up to the individual Admin to apply those patches (just like with Windows)?

Anywho, just curious. This is an honest question, I'm not trying to bait a flame war or anything...

2004-02-19 18:40:22
they just can't help themselves...
Actually, I have the same question about Mac OSX and all UNIX variants. Maybe it's just a different class of people...
2004-02-21 09:52:58
how do you explain
If Windows is targeted for viruses merely because it's the most prevalent OS, why don't we hear more about Apache worms running rampant, since it is the most prevalent web server? ( )

2004-09-26 09:11:01
they just can't help themselves...
I have little experience with Firefox, but for the time being I realize that it is very operative to stop undesirable emails....