Geek week is almost over, here at The Daily Grind, but we have room for just one more post before we start publishing interesting stuff again(1).
None other than Eric Raymond ‘gets it’ about Linux, during a fraught session attempting to set up shared printing between two Red Hat boxen. I have reams and reams of logs exactly like this, from pretty much every occasion I’ve used a Linux box for anything of any significance.
My take: Linux does have a long way to go before it’s a genuinely viable end-user desktop OS, but it is getting better; recent Mandrake releases have been really rather good. However, contrast with setting up a shared printer on my parents’ Mac network: System Prefs -> Sharing -> check ‘Printer sharing.’ Firewall automatically modifies itself to allow traffic; Rendezvous stuff lets the other Mac see the shared device immediately, with no configuration of the clients at all. Job done.
Now, I’ve seen comment to the effect that setting up CUPS on a Mac is no simpler than it is on anything else, and I suspect that’s true, but it still fascinates me that this sort of problem isn’t more attractive for Linux folks to solve. That ESR himself should be narked by this stuff gives me hope.
(1). Who am I kidding? Like I’m going to stop geeking out in public. As if.