Alexander The Great

March 14, 2008

Linux Looks Just Like Windows

Filed under: Software — alexanderthegreatest @ 9:30 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Here are some of the operating systems FireFox has been ported to. Xandros Linux has the most realistic version of the Windows taskbar, while Mandrake has that half transparent Start Menu like Vista.

Funny how htese different Linux distros saw fit to borrow the Windows GUI pieces that never found their way into Mac OS X. Instead of a global menu that’s shared (and heavily altered) between the operating system and running applications, a hideable taskbar is a wonderful – and clearly understandable – thing. Note the positions of the close a window button, and also minimize and maximize.

Windows Server 2003 (NT 5.2)

Firefox on Windows 2003 Server

Ubuntu Linux 5.10

Mandrake Linux

Firefox on Mandrak Linux

Xandros Linux

Firefox on Xandros Linux

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13 Comments »

  1. hey nice pics

    1. should of included similiar pictures in ubuntu with firefox stuff open and taskbar not sure why its diff

    2. pictures soo simple like this show how similiar OS can be

    3. i recently been running ubuntu, love it and hate it, learning it, its a process of love haha, i wish it had better support for windows only games

    peace

    Comment by nycste — March 15, 2008 @ 5:46 am | Reply

  2. A whole lotta flash…looks good, just not for me

    Comment by Robert P — March 15, 2008 @ 6:28 am | Reply

  3. Please remember that, in its inception, Windows heavily “borrowed” its GUI from Apple. Now, that said, the Linux GUI is developed by a community of developers and scientists which take their directives from the larger user community, namely you and me.

    Under Linux, one can get a Mac OSX experience by simply using the Gnome desktop as opposed to the KDE desktop. Both are excellent environments that offer beauty and efficiency.

    Eye candy isn’t everything in computers. While Linux is safer, faster, and stable, you will hear over and over that Vista is slow, buggy, bloated, and a horrible user experience.

    Comment by Alan C — March 15, 2008 @ 8:28 am | Reply

  4. I don’t run Vista. I’m not ready to let Bill Gates drop a steaming pile of, well, you know. I won’t pay $500 for software that’s inferior to XP, and I sure as hell won’t do it just because Microsoft wants to force my hand in the matter.

    But this notion that Windows is heavily borrowed from Mac in the GUI department is what caused me to write this post. It seems like a lot of Linux distros are awfully keen on the parts of the Windows GUI that never found their way into a Mac. And not very interested in the Mac parts. Which flies in the face of the oft repeated “wisdom”.

    I agree eye candy and bells and whistles are meaningless. But a user interface is anything but. Mac obfuscates things. The global menu bar, I just can’t get with that. Windows, for some of its faults, makes a clear distinction between different running programs. Not just in terms of process isolation, but to the people sitting at the keyboard.

    Not that I’m complaining – this is good news. If Linux is starting to borrow useability features from Windows, I might be able to use Linux. The thing is, I don’t want a Mac experience – that’s why I don’t have one. (That, and they cost 2.5x as much for the same hardware.)

    The internals of the operating system are an entirely different story, and well beyond the scope of this post. It’s not that it isn’t an interesting question, just a different one.

    Comment by alexanderthegreatest — March 15, 2008 @ 11:47 am | Reply

  5. “It seems like a lot of Linux distros are awfully keen on the parts of the Windows GUI …”

    There are stories floating about as to how Microsoft copied the GUI design of some application from a rival publisher. They set up a grid on the image of the app and had a graphics designer mimic every component. When you say things such as the above quote, it makes it sound as if you are implying that the Linux community is doing the same thing.

    So while you may not mean it to come across like that, and are simply making an observation on the similarities of the GUI, you must remember that Linux development is a collaboration of the global community, one that takes its directives from the users. So a lot of users, the ones that influence the developers, feel that the GUI should consist of a desktop, an application bar, and a menu button in the lower left hand corner.

    “If Linux is starting to borrow useability features from Windows, I might be able to use Linux.”

    This statement does not make sense. Linux developers are not copying anything from Windows, they are developing GUI features as requested by the users- that is, by consensus. The fact is, “Usability Features” are richer and more advanced in Linux than anything in Windows (XP or Vista.)

    I’ve been using Linux for a number of years, and I’m very happy to work in a stable, fast, and rich environment. The only time I have to boot Windows is for Quickbooks, and when I do, I thoroughly hate it: Everything is uglier and sluggish; psychologically I feel handicapped.

    How much better is the Linux GUI usability over Windows’? Go to YouTube and search for “compiz”… Talk about WoW!

    Comment by Alan C — March 15, 2008 @ 1:29 pm | Reply

  6. […] Linux Looks Just Like Windows Here are some of the operating systems FireFox has been ported to. Xandros Linux has the most realistic version of the […] […]

    Pingback by Top Posts « WordPress.com — March 15, 2008 @ 4:00 pm | Reply

  7. Nice Pics !! good job

    Thanks

    Comment by techbulb — March 16, 2008 @ 1:00 am | Reply

  8. Hey, Alan. Don’t take offense, but it seems like you’re putting up a very passionate article saying that you don’t want it to be true that Linux could have copied Windows. I respect your love for open source. But that doesn’t change the fact that several Linux distrobutions are borrowing user interface elements and systems that have been synonymous with Windows since 1995.

    Linux developers are not copying anything from Windows, they are developing GUI features as requested by the users- that is, by consensus.

    Many of those users are requesting Windows features (ie the taskbar and Start Menu, or, as you called it “application bar, and a menu button in the lower left hand corner”).

    Comment by alexanderthegreatest — March 16, 2008 @ 11:25 am | Reply

  9. I’m not taking offense, Alexander, I’m just setting the record straight. You keep saying “Linux distributions have copied Windows.” I’ve already explained that 1) Microsoft stole GUI features from Apple, and 2) the Linux community isn’t copying design elements from Windows, as you may insinuate that, for instance, that some KDE developer is taking measurements of a Vista button while making notes as to how it functions.

    Comment by Alan C — March 16, 2008 @ 8:22 pm | Reply

  10. Have you read 1984? You’re engaging in “doublespeak”. First, I’m present facts that speak for themselves, rather than insinuating anything. Second, based upon those facts, you’re finding your way to a conclusion that Windows stole parts of their GUI from the Mac OS, even though the specific pieces we’re talking about don’t exist in the Mac OS.

    More to the point, your premise is that because you can use grid paper to measure OS GUI components, Windows stole from the Mac. You can do the grid test – a simple version is shown above – and see without question that Windows features are identical in Linux.

    Any way you choose to spin it, by your own measure these Linux distributions use a copy of the Windows GUI. You presented the means to determine whether ‘GUI theft’ has occurred, and when a person follows the test you laid out, Linx looks just like Windows. And that’s the straight record.

    I’m not even saying it’s a bad thing, but you’re very hung up on it. Why is it that you want to hold Linux to a lower standard than Windows in this regard? That really doesn’t say much for Linux in general, you know.

    Comment by alexanderthegreatest — March 17, 2008 @ 10:32 am | Reply

  11. […] blogs on Word Press and somehow I found this doozey. It’s about a computer program called Linux. That’s where a bunch of librals sit around computer programming all day smoking the marijuana […]

    Pingback by Re: Angryxtian Calling Me A Liar « Chillin’ At The Cabstand — April 1, 2008 @ 4:19 am | Reply

  12. […] blogs on Word Press and somehow I found this doozey. It’s about a computer program called Linux. That’s where a bunch of librals sit around computer programming all day smoking the marijuana […]

    Pingback by Woah! « Shidemn’s Rantings — April 11, 2008 @ 6:13 pm | Reply

  13. […] Open Office. Vista has become the new Windows ME. Rumors of a Google OS are frightening Microsoft, Linux looks just like Windows, making the transition from a $200 operating system to a free one all the easier, and Mac’s […]

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