One major problem with Linux

Categories: Geekdom, Technology
Comments: 2 Comments
Published on: March 18, 2006

I love Linux, don’t get me wrong, but it does have one problem. This problem is this, if you want to install a program, you may find that you have to install more libs then you care to. Take today, I am working on getting a computer up and running for my church so we can record the sermons on it, and put them on the net in mp3 format. On my Mac at home I use a program called audacity, a very nice program to work with. So I decided that I would use it on a Linux system to do the recording. Well when I went to install it, I find out I need to install wxWindows, ok no big deal. Well then as I keep going at it I find that i have to also install 4 other libs, as I try to install one, it says it needs another so to install audacity, I had to install the following 5 libs, wxWindwos, GTK+, gLib, ATK, and finally pango. This is the problem to install one program you have to install a lot of accompanying libs (dll for those of you in the windows world) What Linux people need to do, is eather include in the build systems, or the RPM or what ever, include the libs that you will need to run the program, I am a programmer, and a computer geek, but you will never get a non-geek to use Linux if it takes hours to install a simple program, and one forth of that time is spent just searching the web for the libs you need, and the correct versions. Right now I am still working on compiling gtk+ (I have been at this for 3 hours now)
To those of you that write Linux programs, or libs, maybe consider this, people don’t what to have to search high and low for the libs they need, just package them all together so you get what you need when you are set to install a program, many end users will not have the patiences to look for all the libs they might need, heck I don’t even think they would know how to deal with this situation, if you want Joe six pack to use Linux, you will have to meet him half way. Now if you don’t want end users to use Linux, but just computer geeks, well you are well on the right path, because only a geek will take this kind of time to make things work.

  1. SimDan says:

    Have you tried using a package manager? Just tell it what you want to install and it goes and grabs all the dependencies for you. Wikipedia has a list of common package managers for the common package formats. Hope this helps!

  2. Well I did try the one that came with FC4. It worked well for emacs, but it know nothing about audacity, and it just reported the dependancies then bailed on me. I did not want to go though the same problem with putting a package manager on that I just when though for audacity, this computer will do one thing and one thing only, so I don’t see me putting much more programms on it.

    I am finally done with it, and all I have to do now is move it to the location.

    I have install FC4 on 4 computers today, why FC4, I will post that later as a blog entry.

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