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Author Topic: I can see why there isn't much Linux Support...  (Read 3710 times)

Posts: 391


« on: November 01, 2006, 04:11:32 PM »

for ham radio programs..
i have spent the last 2 weeks trying to develop my hamlogbook in linux..
what a pain in the but it is.
the database programs for linux are really limited.
nothing at all like ms access for windows.

plus.., the windows environment itself is so much easier to learn and use then linux/unix., there is just no comparison.

just my frustrated 2 cents worth.



Posts: 122

« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2006, 07:55:23 AM »

When you make statements like this are you trying to open a flame debate of Microsoft vs Linux or are you just looking for sympathy for your inadequacy as a database programmer?

Just my observation.

100% Linux Hamshack

Posts: 20

« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2006, 12:41:10 PM »

75% windows xp and 25% windows ce in the shack
80% linux at work. (I am an IT Manager/Systems Integrator...)

Access isn't truly a database. It is more of a watered down version of MS SQL. In linux you have a whole bunch of database servers. Mysql, postgres sql, oracle etc. Granted it is "Harder" to use when you are coming from a windows environment, but I would rather build an app on linux anyday. Better memory management, Better system stability, more access to directly using comports and such, more choices of programming language. The list goes on.

I am a seasoned IT professional, and I get wigged out when I sit down at a mac. Everyone has their likes and dislikes. Just like each operating system has it's quirks and features.


Posts: 52

« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2006, 03:16:41 PM »

It's interesting, don't you think, that a major vendor of IP telephony products will be releasing it's next version of pbx (telephone system) software exclusively for Linux. I am a programmer turned network engineer and development in the Linux/Unix environment is easy for me. The thought of having to work in Visual Basic gives me the screaming yips. Of course, I learned Unix where it was invented and I've been working with it for over twenty years. Microsoft is an upstart with crappy software and crappy engineering practices.

Posts: 3351


« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2006, 04:30:13 AM »

When MSNBC first started operations it was with LINUX servers.  The reason why?  At the time, they could not keep their MS servers up long enough to be usable!

Posts: 12

« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2006, 03:14:01 PM »

I dunno...but Perl isn't that difficult, and I would think that Fast Light Tool Kit might also be an option.


Posts: 105

« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2006, 10:13:23 AM »

I'm not a LINUX user but I have heard that OpenOffice, the free MS Office alternative, runs on some Linux OS's as well as Windows. I'm not 100% sure about that but if it does, there is an application in it that is nearly identical to MS Access as well as Word, Excel, & Powerpoint.

Posts: 3351


« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2006, 04:26:42 AM »

I have Open Office on my computers.  I have the free MS viewers also installed.  Note the word 'free'!  Not one cent in tribute Bill!

Posts: 77

« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2006, 07:02:03 AM »

You need a database like MySQL. If you don't know SQL then get a product like Navicat to go with it.

Linux may have a steeper learning curve than Windows for the basic operating system but that doesn't mean it is difficult. It just takes a little more effort.

tim ab0wr

Posts: 6


« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2006, 11:14:51 AM »

I got a computer from a friend who had Linux already installed and an office like product. This was a few years ago. I tried to use it, but shortly everything got messed up, probably my fault. I have a few questions from someone who knows more than I do about it.

1.   Seriously, who do you call when you have a problem with what you think is the operating system?
2.   Are all the versions of various Linux operating system the same with just a different name on them?
3.   Is Linux truly an open code system? Can I get a copy of the code?
4.   Who controls drivers and mods that have to be made for specific devices?
5.   If it is open and available, isn’t it kind of like giving the key to the hen house to the fox?
6.   If I were to get a new computer, where should I start to put Linux on it?

Thanks Larry W3OZ


Posts: 77

« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2006, 04:39:54 PM »


In answer to your questions:

Barnes and Nobles (or any good bookstore)will have a lot of books on Unix and Linux. I have always been impressed with the O'Reilly books on most any subject. You can find the answer to almost any question in a book or on line, just learn to google.

For a newbie, I would always recommend going with SUSE or Redhat. I am partial to SUSE. They will provide initial installation support and they have usenet groups where knowledgeable people hang out. Just get one of their packages, put the initial CD or DVD in your drive, reboot the computer and go from there.

The newest SUSE loads are just like Windows, you don't need to know very much to install the basic load and get a fully functioning machine. Unlike Windows, however, just a little scratching at the surface will open up lots of things for you to learn -- which you really need to know in the future if you want to practice safe computing. It's only my opinion but I think that sooner or later Windows is going to reach a point where it is unusable on the internet because of all of its vunerabilities or it will kill the internet because of those same vunerabilities.

Oh, btw, yes you *do* get the kernel source code! If you want to start playing with it, have at it. If you want to contribute time and effort to the coding of Linux, email me and I'll figure out someone to get you in touch with.

tim ab0wr

Posts: 92

« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2006, 10:07:34 PM »

W3OZ: You haven't got an answer in 10 days, so I'll give it a try. I am NOT a "Linux Guru".

1. Seriously, who do you call when you have a problem with what you think is the operating system?

Depends where you got your Linux and if you are paying for support in your purchase. "Free" like Ubuntu or Debian you'll get support thru the forums. Purchased, like Mandrake or SuSE then its part of your purchase.

2. Are all the versions of various Linux operating system the same with just a different name on them?

Yes... and no. There is only one Linux kernal, but different  "producers" will package  their Linux somewhat uniquely.

3. Is Linux truly an open code system? Can I get a copy of the code?

"Linux" is open. "Linux system" may be composed of both open and proprietary. And yes - you can have the code in the part thats "open".

4. Who controls drivers and mods that have to be made for specific devices?

You can take the Linux system code and change it to your hearts content. Do what you want. If you want to "distribute" your version, you put yur version back into the system. That is... you return the source that you've changed.

5. If it is open and available, isn�t it kind of like giving the key to the hen house to the fox?

Linux is "free". Actually its "not". Its free in the sense that it doesn't involve a licence fee or money, but its not free in the sense you don't have "responsibilities" regarding the public licence.

The whole idea is that "everyone" shares the source. Its difficult to insert anything malicious and get it distributed. Read... near impossible. As for "using the source to find "holes", its not a weakness... its a strength. Linux has an enviable record of "uptime" ***because*** of it open nature.

6. If I were to get a new computer, where should I start to put Linux on it?

Um... onto the computer disk (or DASD or "hard disk") perhaps(?) Some versions, like Knoppix will boot from the DVD and run rather well. Knoppix will even save your options to the disk drive (assuming its not all formatted HPFS) or maybe your Jumpdrive. For a good way to start into Linux, may I suggest the Ubuntu full 5 disk set or Mandrake(?) Others may have their favorite $dollarware version, but any of the 3 is a good place to start. Knoppix 5.0 is great since it will "do Linux" booting from the DVD drive and it comes with a mess of "free" applications.

Linux does have its weaknesses - especially in the area of support for all the fancy new scanners and printers. For Internet access, you're far better off with an external modem (remember those things?). It helps if your system is not at the Bleeding Edge. Still - it gets better every day with its peripheral support. Someday - maybe - every manufacturer will include Linux drivers with their hardware.

Yes - there is a "Learning Curve", but freedom always does have a price.

Posts: 152


« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2006, 03:48:26 PM »

To the OP.

You've received many good replies already.  Here are a couple of ideas.

Have you tried writing in Python and if writing a GUI, using PyQt?  I read many raves about Python as a rapid development language.  Sure, it's compiled at run-time, but most present machines have enough processing power where this really isn't an issue.  GUI development is said to be easy with tools such as Qt Designer.

For an SQL database, have you looked at SQLite?  It is an SQL database that doesn't require installing a database server nor becoming a DB admin.  It keeps all of the data in one file and has excellent support for many programming languages.

73, de Nate >>

73, de Nate
Bremen, KS

SKCC 6225

Posts: 3

« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2007, 05:35:02 PM »

I use a Linux box and a Mac, so maybe I can help.
1. You can purchase versions of Linux that come with support. Probably costs less than Windows. Google Xandros for an example of a very well supported version of Linux.

2. They differ in which version of the "kernal" they include and which ancillary programs are included in the distribution. It's important to get the most recent "kernal."

3. It is truly open and you can get a copy of the code. You can also change the code to suit your purposes. See,, and

4. Teams of volunteers develop drivers and applications software and make them freely available. Not everything you'd like to have is available, however. I have a digital camera, for example, for which, because of the manufacturer's intransigence, there is no Linux driver.

5. I don't know what you mean by giving the fox the key. If you mean its giving away the opportunity to make a profit, that's only partly true. A number of companies are doing quite well packaging free software and providing support. If you mean its giving away the intellectual content of the code, that's the whole point of the open source movement.

6. Nor do I know what you mean by "start to put Linux on it." Owing to the Redmond monopoly you can't buy a computer without an operating system, so you'll probably wind up with a new computer with windows installed. You can put Linux on it in one of three ways. 1) You can partition the hard disk to contain Linux along with windows. 2) You can wipe out windows and replace it with linux. 3) You can get a small version of linux that will boot and run from your cd-rom drive and not touch your hard disk.

To me, the great advantage of Linux and Mac is their relative immunity to viruses. But I have to admit there's a lot more ham software for windows than  for either of the other two.


Posts: 106

« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2007, 01:39:19 PM »

 Linux user here. Try Ubuntu. Very easy to deal with.
Done with M$oft.

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