Suramya's Blog : Welcome to my crazy life…

March 11, 2023

Thoughts about a list explaining how Linux users are characterized by these properties

Filed under: Linux/Unix Related,My Thoughts — Suramya @ 10:44 PM

It is always amusing to me when I read these lists that claim to characterize people, in this case while I was researching about companies acquired by Microsoft I ended up at Rational Wiki: OS Wars section where there is a section that claims that “Linux users are characterized by the following properties: I found it amusing so I am going to list them out here with my comments and thoughts about each of them.

An unhealthy desire to recompile the kernel at every opportunity.

[ST] Compiling a kernel was something that we had to do in Linux back in early 2000’s, but even then I never really had to compile the kernel to get things to work. I did do it to understand the process, but was never forced to do so. In fact I can’t remember the last time I had to compile the kernel on my system.

A disdain for newcomers who don’t know how to recompile the kernel.
Constantly rebuilding their machines because a kernel recompile failed.

[ST] Since I never had to compile it, I don’t expect others to do so. If you want to do it then its your prerogative but I don’t care one way or another.

Thinking those who don’t compile on their own computers or don’t use shell scripts and terminals on a daily basis are not real Linux users.

[ST] Unfortunately, there are idiots who think this, and attempt to gatekeep others and put them down just because they don’t use the ‘proper tools’/command line etc. I did write about this earlier: Stop hating on people because they don’t use the same tools as you because everyone has a different way of working and what works for you might not work for them and vice-versa. For example, I really dislike video tutorials and prefer text but I know plenty of folks who like video because it shows them what to do instead of having them imagine it. There is no one true way…

Constantly having incidents reported for not being in the sudoers file, but not being sure who they’re being reported to.

[ST] I don’t have incidents being reported constantly but did have to look up where the incidents are reported, which as expected was in the log files that an admin/root can audit.

Believing vowels are over rated, especially when it comes to naming important programs you expect to use every day.

[ST] Nope. I like my program names to be descriptive and really dislike SMS talk.

Cursing at Mac users for the number of shiny devices they can connect their computers to.

[ST] Again a nope. I can connect more things to my Linux machine and have them work off the bat than I could on a Mac. Sure some of the software is more polished on a Mac but from a connectivity perspective my Linux machine can connect to pretty much anything (sometimes a bit of tinkering might be required).

Either cursing that they need root, or cursing because they ran something as root that they really shouldn’t have.

[ST] Had this issue only when I was first starting out. After a little while things become automatic, if I run a root command as a non-root user, I just have to prepend sudo to it (or copy it to the root terminal). Accidentally running a command as root on the other hand is a much bigger issue. Haven’t done it in a while now but it is something to be careful of. I set the prompt to let me know what machine I am connected to and as what user so it makes it easier to spot if you are in the wrong window.

Believing a windowing system is a very clever way of having lots of command lines on screen at the same time. Like screen only less clever.

[ST] I really don’t get people who think like this and unfortunately there are folks who are like this. They think they are cleverer than everyone else and love putting others down.

Arguing with each other over which distribution to use.
Arguing with BSD users over their OS of choice.

[ST] This is a fight that I still see every once in a while but things have calmed down quite a bit from the earlier days where a question about which is the best distribution would ignite a flame war.

Arguing over whether to use a GUI or command line.

A lot of people think that using a command line makes you superior to other users, I think that you should use whatever works best for you at that point in time for the task you are doing. For example, if I am editing a video or sorting images I will prefer to use a GUI but for other tasks I prefer using the commandline. At the end of the day the idea is to get the work done, not argue about what is the best interface to do the work in.

Arguing about whether Emacs or vi is better. (Obviously vi is way better. No question. Unless you’re Richard Stallman or another member of the Church of Emacs.)

[ST] I prefer vi because it is installed by default on all Linux systems so if I ever have to recover from a crashed system I have an editor that I can use to edit files. Emacs is fine but I prefer vi / Notepad++ / kwrite for general editing.

Arguing about which language is the best for writing scripts (essentially the modern-day equivalent of the Tcl Wars between Tcl and GNU Guile’s implementation of Scheme).

[ST] I have no idea about the TCL wars and don’t really care what language you use for writing scripts. I have written scripts in Bash, Perl and Python for the automation and scripting I had to do and the language was chosen based on 1) What I was trying to do and how complicated the logic was 2) If I was trying to learn a new language the script was written in that language.

Complaining that we’re calling it Linux and not GNU/Linux.
Interjecting for a moment to explain why it’s actually GNU/Linux
Complaining that we’re calling it Open Source and not Free Software.

[ST] Complaining about the fact that someone calls it Linux and not GNU/Linux is just annoying and doesn’t make you look knowledgeable it makes you annoying. Technically they are correct but Linux is the expected usage and no, I am not about to start calling it GNU Linux just because some idiot thinks I should do so.

Constantly complaining about virtually all sorts of random, obscure problems such as their computer randomly shutting itself off at 9 pm on Mondays.

[ST] This is not just Linux users, any person who is a power user will face these kinds of issues and will ask around on how to fix them. General users will just get the helpdesk to come fix their systems for them.

Complaining that this list is not indexed from 0.

No, I don’t number my lists from 0. Just because Arrays are indexed from 0 doesn’t mean that I have to number everything starting from 0. However, I do prefer that the ground floor (1st floor in the US) be called the 0th Floor (or G Floor) instead of 1st floor like they do in the US because that’s how they do it in the rest of the world.

Believing that time started on January 1970.

πŸ™‚ No comments πŸ™‚

Being able to understand this list.

Ha ha… I think any person actively working with computers like a sysadmin/programmer would understand this list.

I think the list should be updated but it did make me smile so I guess that is a win πŸ™‚

– Suramya

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