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Thread: ReactOS May Begin Heavily Using Wine Code

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by yotambien View Post
    Hahah, yeah, maybe he did. But still is not a very good argument. When you consider that most people have Windows because it came installed with their systems you have to wonder what 'out of the box' means. Sure, a Windows installation CD may have less drivers than a Linux one (I don't know)
    Yes, Linux now supports more hardware than Windows ever will. The problem is that it's never the question how much hardware your OS supports, but whether it supports the particular hardware that you have.

    Both Windows and Linux are problematic in this area.

    The problem with Windows is that drivers are developed by third parties and then almost never updated. So if you want to run your scanner from 2000 on Windows 7, chances are great that it won't work anymore. You can say that Windows has a stable ABI, but that's not true in practice.

    The problem with Linux is that there is a lot of hardware, and not all of them have a Linux driver. However, once some piece of hardware does have a driver in the kernel, it will be supported indefinitely.

    So what you see is that current hardware on a modern Windows system will usually work better than on Linux. But older hardware will stop working on Windows while it continues to work on Linux.

    And what happens when old hardware doesn't run on Windows? It gets thrown out. It is 'too old'. What happens when hardware doesn't run on Linux? Linux gets thrown out.

  2. #12
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    Linux has better hardware support out of the box or in the box or around the box or anything to do with the box then Windows does. It's just that for the personal computing market Windows has much better support then Linux.

    You seee.. the PC desktop is a _small_ segment of the overall computing landscape.

    It's a little bit confusing since Windows XP has been around now for over a decade. It's basically a warmed over version of Windows 2000. So pretty much any sort of desktop, consumer oriented hardware sold in the last 10 years is going to support Windows XP.

    But, of course, not Windows Vista or Windows 7. And newer hardware is dropping support for XP.


    But Linux supports most of the PC junk, and ARM junk, and PowerPC junk, and Sun Sparc junk, etc etc. etc. Linux is all over the place.

    I expect that a surprisingly large number (30-40%) of technologically advanced people have Linux computers running is going to be higher then the numbers of Windows. Blueray players, televisions, routers, microwaves, telephones, planes/trains/automobiles, network storage devices.. All sorts of stuff all over the place.

    Windows wins by perception, simply because that is the 'PC' that people sit in front of comes with Windows installed.

    So yes... if you look at hardware commercially sold for PCs and laptops in the market today, and the last few years, then Windows has superior support.

    But in terms of numbers and scope of hardware support Linux wins.

    That's neither here nor there, of course.

    The only thing that matters is the hardware support for what people actually use.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Remco View Post
    However, once some piece of hardware does have a driver in the kernel, it will be supported indefinitely.
    Not really true, it will be supported as long as there is someone willing and able to maintain it. Android drivers for example were dropped in 2.6.33 because there wasn't anybody that came forward to maintain them.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by deanjo View Post
    Not really true, it will be supported as long as there is someone willing and able to maintain it. Android drivers for example were dropped in 2.6.33 because there wasn't anybody that came forward to maintain them.
    Well, yeah. Those were in staging. Drivers are dropped from staging all the time. Once they get into the mainline kernel, they will have a maintainer, and that maintainer will have to support it indefinitely.

    Some drivers are dropped from mainline. Those are old drivers that nobody uses anymore. If nobody uses a driver, it doesn't get tested, and it will break.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanL View Post
    Really? Even old webcams and printers?
    Wireless cards, ACPI power states, some integrated card readers, laptop docking stations...

    There are a lot a proprietary devices that vendors don't (and won't) publish specs for. Because 2007-8 ushered in an obsession with laptops (even for people who would be better served with a desktop), this is become even more of a problem. Linux supports my desktop perfectly, but that's because I built it myself, and I chose parts I knew would play nicely with Linux (even down to the keyboard and mouse). But just because it works on *our* systems doesn't mean it works on *most* current computers.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Sixpack View Post
    Wireless cards, ACPI power states, some integrated card readers, laptop docking stations...

    There are a lot a proprietary devices that vendors don't (and won't) publish specs for. Because 2007-8 ushered in an obsession with laptops (even for people who would be better served with a desktop), this is become even more of a problem. Linux supports my desktop perfectly, but that's because I built it myself, and I chose parts I knew would play nicely with Linux (even down to the keyboard and mouse). But just because it works on *our* systems doesn't mean it works on *most* current computers.
    Well, I've stopped checking whether my hardware works before I buy it, and I have yet to get burned. Okay, I did make sure not to buy any Poulsbo crap, but that stuff sucks on Windows too.

    I know it's definitely possible to get a system that doesn't work with Linux. But I know from my friends using Windows that this happens to them too. They bought new laptops which didn't work with Windows XP (which they needed for software that didn't work in Windows Vista). They bought new printers because the old ones would only print blank pages in Vista.

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    To give my own example, my TV tuner card doesn't work in Windows 7. It does in Linux.

    However, other hardware works much better in Windows while the Linux driver is a crap-fest: my AMD/ATI graphics card.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Remco View Post
    Once they get into the mainline kernel, they will have a maintainer, and that maintainer will have to support it indefinitely.

    Some drivers are dropped from mainline. Those are old drivers that nobody uses anymore. If nobody uses a driver, it doesn't get tested, and it will break.
    Which is pretty much like any other OS out there. Closed or open somebody has to step forward to maintain a working solution. In linux there is a crapload of drivers that probably aren't even really used anymore (such as ISA devices, long dead video cards, radio cards, long obsolete networking protocols, bus mice, etc). I would actually like to see the kernel developers 'prune' some of that really old, obsolete, device support and have the developers worry about devices that people actually use now days. There really is no practical reason for the developers to be patching 18 year old soundcard (gravis ultrasound for example) drivers to maintain them with the kernel changes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by deanjo View Post
    Which is pretty much like any other OS out there. Closed or open somebody has to step forward to maintain a working solution.
    Well, not like Windows. Windows is a very peculiar system, where most drivers are out of tree. Basically those drivers are written once and then promptly forgotten about. The stable ABI makes this work somewhat, but as said, it's not that stable in practice.

    Of course -- to get back on topic -- ReactOS does not have to suffer from this third party driver hell. ReactOS being free software can just port drivers from Linux and maintain them in tree.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Remco View Post
    Well, not like Windows. Windows is a very peculiar system, where most drivers are out of tree. Basically those drivers are written once and then promptly forgotten about.
    That really is an over exaggeration, I don't think I've come across a piece of hardware in windows that has had just one driver release. While yes there maybe after a while few and far in between driver releases but as mentioned it's because of it's relatively stable ABI. The drivers usually for such devices are, as I mentioned before, far more feature rich then their free counterparts and with it usually goes another layer of complexity.

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