What's the worst thing about operating systems and progress?
And, fedora has both: allot of OS and allot of progress
While reading over the usability discussion on the devel list, I noticed
someone's comment on the frantic release cycle - which is great, I want the
latest and greatest. But, the clean install every 6mths or less has got the be
the biggest pita for fedora.
This is of course true with all OSs, only fedora clicks over three times the
speed of anything else. Three times the pita. And we all want a clean-install
cf. upgrade because we all want to make use of the latest and greatest fedora
has to offer (never mind the questions of whether an upgrade ever actually works
- on any OS).
Many years ago I installed all the interactions between MacOS 7.1 and 8.1, and
then some. The greatest thing I ever found was this:
It's called Clean-Install Assistant. A wizard that steps you through the
process of saving your custom config (by comparing the system against a database
of non-custom system) installing a clean system and then re-installing the
Of course fedora is somewhat more sophisticated than MacOS 8.1, but the
principle's the same. Basically, what I have to do at least every 6mths is:
- List my packages
- List all changes to /home/me/
- List all changes to /etc/
- back up /home/me/ and /etc/
- Clean install
- List my new packages and yum the diff
- Go through my lists of /home/me/ and /etc/ and move-reconfig from the backups
- Then muck around for the next month or so fine tuning all the stuff that I
don't know about and never will that naturally gets customised through use
- By which time it's time to go through the whole process again! (not quite:)
So, what a blessing it would be to have a wizard that by a few clicks of a mouse
stepped you effortlessly and comprehensively through that pita I've just listed
I know, my Mac heritage is showing:) But, the principle is a valid one and what
a relief it would be.
fedora: Freedom Forever!
"By choosing not to ship any proprietary or binary drivers, Fedora does differ
from other distributions. ..."
Quote: Max Spevik
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Damien Durand <splinux(a)fedoraproject.org>
Date: 29 août 2006 17:55
Subject: Re: [fab] [Usability] : First report of the Fedora Usability Sig
To: Karsten Wade <kwade(a)redhat.com>
Well, I can move the guide if you want, no problem for this. But let me know
if the documentation team is agree with this.
2006/8/29, Karsten Wade < kwade(a)redhat.com>:
> On Sun, 2006-08-27 at 15:40 +0200, Damien Durand wrote:
> - Introduction guide
> Damien Durand has started the usability introction guide :
> You can and you are encouraged to modify it.
> /!\ This guide is not official and is not a part of the Fedora
> Documentation Project
You can move this to the draft documents location, Docs/Drafts/.
Functionally it is the same, except:
i. It is more formal, not being tied to a specific user's NameSpace
ii. Editors and writers watch Docs/Drafts.* and can help improve the
iii. Docs/Drafts is part of a process that I guess you would want the
Usability Introduction Guide to be part of
Just a suggestion. :) Other sub-projects use their own namespace, which
makes sense, too. It depends on if you think of this guide as being
"for all of Fedora" (Docs/Drafts) or project-specific ( e.g., SELinux/,
Karsten Wade, RHCE, 108 Editor ^ Fedora Documentation Project
Sr. Developer Relations Mgr. | fedoraproject.org/wiki/DocsProjectquaid.108.redhat.com | gpg key: AD0E0C41
fedora-advisory-board mailing list
fedora-advisory-board-readonly mailing list
I hope my two cents here is what the Fedora Usability Project is looking
For office desktop users, there are several usability issues with the
old "ethernet cable is unplugged" problem. These problems affect a
"normal" Fedora Core 5 office computer that uses ethernet, DHCP, NIS
(for authentication), and NFS (especially for users' home directories).
Some of the problems also affect (a) home users and (b) situations where
the cable is plugged in but the network services are unavailable.
1. If the computer starts with the cable unplugged, then there's a
start-up message like "Determining IP information for eth0:. Failed or
link not present. Check cable?" First, some people may not read it
because the startup messages are a bunch of technical mumbo-jumbo.
Second, some people may be getting a cup of coffee instead of watching
the screen during (long) startup process.
2. If the ethernet doesn't work at startup, it dies forever. If I plug
in my ethernet cable some time later after startup, nothing happens.
Even if the user can figure out the problem, it seems the user has to
have root privileges to do "service network restart" to get the network
3. If ypbind can't connect at startup, it just dies forever. Even if
the user can figure out the problem, it seems the user has to have root
privileges to do "service ypbind restart".
4. If NFS mounting fails at startup, it stays unmounted until manually
mounted. Even if the user can figure out the problem, it seems the user
has to have root privileges to do mount the directories. Though there
is a setting in /etc/fstab to allow users to mount directories without
root privileges, it also allows them to unmount the directories.
5. If a user tries to log in when the system is suffering from the above
problems, GDM just tells him his username or password is incorrect.
This error message is misleading: the more fundamental problem is
related to networking.
Based on these problems, here's what would reduce confusion, eliminate
help desk calls, and make people happy:
1. If the network cable is unplugged and the system requires networking
for authentication (NIS), then display a warning in GDM.
2. Better yet, cache authentication from ypbind. Supposedly, there are
ways to do it, but the only way it's ever worked for me is to configure
the system as a slave NIS server.
3. If the user is already logged in when the ethernet network goes down,
display from the system tray using the new pop-up notification system in
Gnome 2.14. Also, a system tray icon may be helpful if the user is away
from his desk when the problem happens.
4. If the DHCP server/NIS server/NFS server is unavailable when the
system starts but is available later, the system should do something
roughly equivalent to "service network restart; service ypbind restart"
and then mount NFS drives. Basically, DHCP, ypbind, and NFS mounts
should be more resilient.
As a quick competitive analysis, a Windows 2000 system does not suffer
any of these problems while not requiring any extra configuration.
Here's something I filed in Bugzilla back in June. Fixing this issue
would make life easier for enterprise users, but it's not clear what
exactly the solution would be. Should the proxy control be integrated
into system-config-network, Sabayon, or somewhere else?
Description of problem:
Imagine the scenario of a multi-computer office network, and each
computer has multiple users. The office firewall does not allow direct
port 80 access, so all web traffic must go through the web proxy.
Setting the proxy for each application for each user on each computer
can be tiring.
In SUSE 10.1, Yast can configure a system wide proxy which affects (at
least) Firefox, Gnome, KDE, and environment variables. Programs such as
wget, links, and yum (on Fedora) obey the environment variables. In SUSE
10.1, OpenOffice.org's proxy setting is not affected (but it would be
nice if it were).
In Microsoft Windows, most applications obey the system proxy settings
(Control Panel->Internet Options->Connections).
Recently, I thought about two other nuances. First, when yum runs as a
service, (by default) it doesn't load environment variables from
/etc/profile.d/*sh, which is a convenient place to setup proxy
environment variables. Second, non-GUI Linux programs (unlike GUI web
browsers, for example) support neither proxy auto-detection nor
automatic configuration URLs.
(Sorry, I don't have FC6, so I can't check the new system-config-printer.)
Say you are adding a new printer using the wizard. You get to the
screen "Printer model" when you realize you forgot to add the PPD. The
wizard doesn't let you add a PPD at this point, and since the wizard is
modal, you can't add a PPD from the main window. So, you have to abort
the wizard to add a PPD.
It would be easier and intuitive to have an "Add a PPD" button on the
Wizard's "Printer model" page.
I personally do not prefer the "bubbly" theme introduced in recent
versions of Fedora and am not immediately fond of the artwork path the
Fedora team seems to be taking. To me it seems to be departing away
from the regular/old redhat-artwork team which imo is a bad thing. I
liked bluecurve when it first came out and many people did, but in any
way it did create A LOT of attention onto Redhat. It was a nice and
professional theme and still looks pretty good today except for the
use of grey and "blah" buttons.
The icon theme though is still nice and the artwork (GDm theme, splash
screen etc.) shown in RHEL4 is more of the kind of stuff I would like
to see instead of the "kiddish" kind of look Fedora seems to be taking
on. I believe many want a professional looking distro and
Redhat/Fedora was/is that and I would like if perhaps we could take
some different directions in the artwork again, perhaps more in tune
to what RHEL team does. I have looked at the new icon theme (Echo) and
I think I like it and I even like the Bluecurve GDM theme shipped
w/FC5 as well as the splash screen for GNOME. Its the bubbily/light
blue theme and such that is in the new release that I do not like.
Hopefully we can discuss this more.
Dear board and Fedora Usability members,
I'm writing this mail to speak about the Fedora Usability project/sigs.
Explain the objectifs and fix various conflicts about this.
First a description : The Fedora Usability project aims to provide
coherence, accessibility and intuivity for all people using Fedora Core and
its associated resources.
Then my goals with this project/sigs are :
- Help the developer team to build coherent and easy to use applications
- Help the webmaster team to provide a coherent comprehensive website
- Help the documentation team to provide a coherent and comprehensive
- Track the uncoherent things in the Fedora softwares, read the Fedora
contents about the documentation and websites. Once a thing is detected,
this one is reported to the Usability Schedule and is fixed by a patch. Next
this patch is send to the maintainer.
The Usability project/sigs allows to us to study the user actions and
understand how the users use the Fedora distribution and different
resources. Correct me If I'm wrong but Fedora is not only a distribution for
sysadmins and developers. Fedora must be usable by everyone! So it's my
opinion and people who don't agree with this will not have a beer to the
next fudcon ;-)
I'll make a rapport about this project/sigs every weeks and send it to
Thomas Chung to show the advancements.
Fedora must be simple and for everyone and we make an effort whit that.
Good day to all and thanks in advance,