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TwYst
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:02 am    Post subject: just a simple "why" Reply with quote

let me start by sayin hi and that i actually love the gentoo distro no matter how the rest of my post is going to sound.
first off i will give ya a lil background.. in the past 5 years i have tried alot of different distrobutions . i have settled on 2 . one of them being gentoo , but i have a few questions i can never seem to find adequate answers for.
why is it possible that with other unnamed distros i can load the full system in an hour and right off the bat they can detect i have an nvidia card and ask me if i want to install the proprietary driver for it so i can enable 3d effects and such while when i use gentoo on the exact same machine its a 52 step process just to get the screen resolution set properly much less the added 22 steps to load the nvidia drivers just to have emerge error and tell me its missing this and that .so i spend 2 days chasing all the missing dependencies down only to have gentoo tell me 3d is not possible on the same box that had beryl with full 3d running on it less than a week previously under a different distro.
funny enough one of the distros i have tried in the past was sabayon which i understand is gentoo based but works perfectly right out of the box. only reason i removed that one was my preference for gnome over kde.
although its only an opinion i think both installers for gentoo are horrible. for people like myself i could care less what my monitors refresh rate is. i dont want to have to do research to find out weather i should enable eth0 or eth1 for internet access. i want to simply install a well made distro and have things work the way they should.my system is kind of bog standard..nothing extravagant and yet even the basic things need to be set up by hand. default resolution defaults to 800x600 after installation. after tweaking and setting up the x server i can finally get it to display 1152x864 or any of the more usable resolutions. but why isnt this stuff set up from the start?
when you buy or build a computer you do so so that you can either be productive on it or play games on it, either way if we are spending all our time setting up x servers or sorting out 3d acceleration problems or any number of the other little things gentoo has the end user do instead of using a set of safe defaults that can be changed if needed to accomodate the few who the base settings wouldnt work for.
i understand gentoo has come a long way in the past year 2 years but some issues like this are enough to make some people decide gentoo is behind the times. while other distros are spending time to make sure things are easier for the end user to install and use thier distros, gentoo seems content to take the long way around when it comes to getting a working productive system going. and even longer way around when you want to add any of the current eye candy to it.
i still wont dump gentoo but i will be stuck shaking my head any time i need to install it because in this day and age of all the quality distros.. things should be easy
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GatoVolador
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A simple answer: an easy completely automated install is not one of the goals of Gentoo. Rather Gentoo aims at giving complete control (responsibility) to the user. This is inherently at odds with a completely automated installation we might find in other distros.

I must say that I do agree with you about the frustration of trying to, say, install ATI or Nvidia drivers. I have felt this frustration. Right now, ati-drivers seems to be broken as I cannot successfully compile it. However, I value the control enough to deal with the occasional snafus.

In my case, I've got a working KDE system that lets me do everything I need to (which is mostly development). It took me a while to set up, but it is noticeably more responsive than the openSUSE KDE I have installed on another faster machine. Of course I could build openSUSE up from the base install, but that is not it's goal so support for doing such a thing is limited. Of course, on Gentoo, this custom building is the goal and so the support is much better.

Anyway, I've rambled enough.
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desultory
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Moved from Other Things Gentoo to Gentoo Chat.
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i understand about the control goal in gentoo itself but would it be so hard to integrate the same control in a gui based installer... for example a tick box for minimal install with an additional tick box for installing proprietary drivers for those of us with nvidia or ati cards. then a different tick box if you prefer an advanced install where you could have the choice of how deep you want to configure your own system. things like the xserver and such should really detect and set up automatically aside from the little tweaking they may need to fine tune things
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gerard82
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are probably hundreds of distro's.
The majority have gui installers.
Stick with those.Gentoo can (and I hope) will not change it's install system.
Have you ever heard of "rpm hell"?
Try installing an rpm from distro 1 on distro 2 and you'll see what I mean.
And try upgrading one of the easily installed distro's.
And of course if you want everything to work right out of the box there is MSWindows.
Gerard.
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PaulBredbury
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TwYst wrote:
things like the xserver and such should really detect and set up automatically

True, but that's a problem with Xorg. If Xorg did it properly, then all distros would benefit.
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
And of course if you want everything to work right out of the box there is MSWindows.

lol nice way to think about constructive criticism when improvements could be made to overall make gentoo a better more usable product...lets just drive everyone away that might want to use it so we can all live on our own little island in grass huts and call ourselves elite cause we can actually spend weeks of not months to tailor gentoo into just what we want.
seriously wouldnt it be easier to make it more palatable to the normal people of the earth who want a stable solid distro?
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ok
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gerard van Vuuren wrote:
There are probably hundreds of distro's.
The majority have gui installers.
...
In my opinion gentoo should be what it is. Most distro's want to be easy to use and many doing it the "windows way". But that is not my way.
If you want the full control over your car, you don't buy one with an automatic transmission.
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Phenax
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, Gentoo is what it is. There are people (me included) that like this way. If you want a distro that does a ton of auto-detection and whatnots the majority do that.
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
If you want the full control over your car, you don't buy one with an automatic transmission.

being in the automotive trade myself this one kinda made me laugh a bit.
along that same vein if you want a sports car you buy a sports car to start with. you dont buy a vw beetle and spend months after months modifying it to be a sports car because in the end its still just a vw beetle.
but if you start with something a bit better like a ford mustang v8 and all you have to do to make it your own is say add a turbo or nitrous to get the extended preformance that you want that would beat the doors off the vw then you would be far better off in the end.
why isnt it possible to still have the control over your system if it had improved detection for non proprietary drivers? to many that would be a great convenience in itself. like "adding a turbo" quickly get the preformance you want but without the hours of hunting down dependencys just on the hope that when you are all done and finally do emerge them , that they will actually work the way intended without the silly errors.
as i stated at the beginning of this post. gentoo is one of my main distros at the minute and i dont plan on giving up on it. i just sometimes wish things were a bit easier for those of us who dont have the time to go through forums or wikis just to get something to work.
also while i am here does anyone know of a place on the net with an explination of the different portage flags that can be used. i have searched previously and came up with nothing other than the portage manual which doesnt explain flags very well?
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Phenax
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Code:
emerge nvidia-drivers
then changing the video driver in xorg.conf is what I did. Took about five minutes.


If you are 'hunting down dependencies' for packages in portage, that's likely a bug and should be filed at http://bugs.gentoo.org/

USE Flags:
http://www.gentoo.org/dyn/use-index.xml
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nativemad
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
In my opinion gentoo should be what it is.

+1
I simply love Gentoo as it is!
I don't see it as a desktop system mainly, but it can be used as such if you like and got the nerves. But probably you are right, _most_ of the people who want a linux-desktop don't like it to tweak here and there. They want just an out of the box system which works. But those aren't normally the people who are responsible for perhaps fifty or more Client installations... They don't even think that if you have to do something manual like "eselect opengl nvidia", also gives the opportunity to be easy be placed in a startup-script. Perhaps on a pxe-image which also holds the ati drivers and also intel and so on. What would you choose for such an install in the gui? Every driver? And what would the installer then write down to xorg.conf??
http://www.gentoo.org/main/en/about.xml talks about metadistribution, which i find is the right term for Gentoo.
Go for Arch, if you want a bit more control as on a _normal_ Distribution, and if Gentoo simply gives you too much choice! :wink:
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ty for the links. i am sure they will be helpful but as for emerge nvidia-drivers on 4 different installs 2 different computers 2 different nvidia cards both linux compatible..it has yet to work without either missing dependancies or basic errors that take hours to sort out.
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tld
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GatoVolador wrote:
A simple answer: an easy completely automated install is not one of the goals of Gentoo. Rather Gentoo aims at giving complete control (responsibility) to the user. This is inherently at odds with a completely automated installation we might find in other distros.


I couldn't agree more. What's more, the "automated installation" of many distros can be much worse than Gentoo if/when something goes wrong...sometimes giving you no clue what went wrong, let alone some way to address it without restarting the install or whatever.

Personally I wouldn't change a thing about the install. I don't even have any use for genkernel, let alone some attempt at making a push-button install.

Tom
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Cyker
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gentoo really is bad for people that just want to install and go.

Making a simplified installer would be redundant - Ubuntu has pretty much cornered the market in that regard, and really is a much better distro if you just want to get things going as quickly as possible.
If Linux ever becomes mainstream, it will be because of distros built like Ubuntu.

Gentoo isn't like Ubuntu. While distros like Ubuntu cater to the mainline, the consumer, Gentoo caters to the hacker*. Gentoo requires learning, understanding. You have to spend the time to read and learn and think to get it to work, and it will reward you for it.

If one can't give it that time, then it will not be a good distro for that one.

However, there is nothing stopping someone from improving the current installer - That is what the GPL and open source in general is about after all. But it won't be easy - Who will put the time in?
I am a lazy person so I try not to ask too much of others - After all, if I ain't gonna do it, what right do I have to ask of others to do it?


* And I mean the NHD/Jargon/FOLDOC 'real' definition here
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nativemad
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
but as for emerge nvidia-drivers on 4 different installs 2 different computers 2 different nvidia cards both linux compatible..it has yet to work without either missing dependancies or basic errors that take hours to sort out.

What exactly did you emerged in order? The only thing that i am aware of, is about the modularized xorg. And also this has its advantages... :wink:
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Monkeh
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2007 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TwYst wrote:
ty for the links. i am sure they will be helpful but as for emerge nvidia-drivers on 4 different installs 2 different computers 2 different nvidia cards both linux compatible..it has yet to work without either missing dependancies or basic errors that take hours to sort out.


I use nvidia-drivers with three entirely different cards, on three entirely different systems. I have never had missing dependencies, nor any basic errors which take 'hours' to sort out.
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

just last night i decided i was going to start over to see if maybe it was a fluke that nvidia drivers woudlnt load. i did a fresh install of gentoo 2007 only 2 things i chose during installation to be added was gnome and X11. that portion done i now had a linux systen with a screen default at 800x600 so i do the xorg -configure set everything up the way it should be. reboot my pc and its black screen with an error, cannot find module "nvidia" ok so i use the command line and copy my origional backup of the config file and reboot. then open a terminal type emerge nvidia-drivers and sit back n wait..2 minuted later i get the error from the installer that it cant find a usable symlink in /etc/usr/linux (why not?shouldnt this be there by default to begin with) ok so i do some more research and find out how to make a symlink.. get that part sorted and emerge nvidia-drivers again
this time install completes as it should so i open my xorg.config file and change where default was set to "nv" drivers to "nvidia" and reboot. low and behold it gives me an error that there is a missing module or something. the saga continues as this was getting late and i work early so i had to give up for the evening. but as it sits now on my other box i have a gentoo system that is less than 12 hrs old and cant do something as simple as load a set of proprietary drivers without becoming unusable or litterally taking hours to sort the issues that should never be there to begin with because it was a brand new fresh install. the fun bits gonna be after i finally get the nvidia drivers to load.. watch and see the errors i end up with when i type "emerge beryl" lol
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John R. Graham
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the movie Say Anything starring John Cusack and Ione Skye, there's a scene where he's teaching her to drive a car with a manual transmission. Needless to say, there's a lot of grinding heard. At one point she asks, "Is that normal?" The answer: "Well, no, it's not normal, but as you continue, you hear less of it."

Gentoo is (I've come to understand) intentionally tuned for the expert. Why? The experts like it that way for much the same reason that some people prefer manual transmissions. The reasons you encounter such "grinding" may not be obvious to you at your stage of learning. But the reassurance I can give you is that, if you continue, you'll see less of it. :wink:

- John
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i appreciate the fact that it is a learning experience . but when something that should be relatively painless turns into the drama i encounter time and time again all i can ask is "why?" which was my initial reason for this post to begin with.
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PaulBredbury
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hah, "relatively painless" exists in the parallel world where Claudia Schiffer is in my bedroom. With my current PC, it took about 3 months of tinkering with the multitude of bugs in the motherboard's BIOS to get it stable. On top of years of tinkering and self-education to get a free OS running smoothly, and with most of the software that I want.

As a (useless but hopefully humorous) analogy, a "relatively painless" car would be a £10 sports car that comes with a lifetime (mine, not the car's) guarantee that it will need no further maintenance, liquids, tyres, bulbs, air fresheners or other inconvenience. And that has the option of driving itself to the destination of my choice, if I'm tired or drunk or have other uses for my hands.

Back on-topic, all of these questions have been asked and answered dozens of times in extremely similar threads to this one. Here's some random truisms:

    The Gentoo devs don't have the time or motivation to make things easy for newbies.

    When things break in Gentoo, the user is supposed to have sufficient expertise to be able to fix it - otherwise, that user should not be using Gentoo. Why go through the pain. After all, this is the reason that the distro doesn't fill itself with "helpful" scripts - it keeps out of the user's way. Of course, this isn't perfect, yes we already know that.


Just thought of another car analogy: A millionaire kid passes his driving test on the 16th birthday, then buys a 5.7-litre muscle car monster (which is a few years old, and so doesn't have such baby features as traction control), after learning in a 1-litre-engined car. And then wraps it around a lamp post on the same day. He moans, "I just put my foot hard on the accelerator, like I always do, and the back-end went sideways!" Do we blame the kid, or the car (leaving the parents out of it)?

One day, when I've got nothing better to do, I'll compile a list of the many "Why isn't Gentoo exactly like Ubuntu?" threads. They often have recurring characters, although the names change - here's a politically-incorrect list:

    The "Whinger". He started the thread, and wants the moon on a stick. Inevitably, will be disappointed. May bash head on desk, or sigh audibly, as frustration mounts. Expects that unpaid geeks will treat all questions with courtesy and respect. Has done no prior research.

    The Linux/Gentoo "Fanboy" who believes that Gentoo is "perfect" as it is, and absolutely nothing could possibly make it better. Enjoys pain and suffering, especially that of others.

    The "Superman" who has never had a single problem with Gentoo, despite running it with uber-l33tness on a million servers worldwide. Cannot comprehend of all the problems that other, little, people have. Has been using Linux (wirelessly) since inside the womb.

    The "Windows basher" who couldn't care less what the topic is about. Has an urge, nay a never-ending need, to repeatedly state to anyone who will listen that, no matter how bad things are in Linux, they were much worse under Windoze. Tends to shut up only when asked where all the games are, muttering something about wine.

    The "Spoilsport" has no job or a boring job, and hence nothing better to do than respond to these threads, just to point out that all the questions are boring and have been answered in lots of other threads. Does not provide any links to said threads. Is cursed with a keen awareness of the differences of opinion expressed in the thread, and the disappointment that no-one listens to him anyway. Just like in the other threads.

    Mr. Godwin, who is the only person who can possibly end an argument between such characters. Points out that they are all really of the same mind & opinion, when they've stated their viewpoints and considered those of the others: Girls tend to be bored to tears by this stuff.


I suppose I should end this with a :wink:

Edit: Half-hearted attempt to make this post funnier, or at least more neatly-formatted.


Last edited by PaulBredbury on Thu Jul 12, 2007 12:20 pm; edited 4 times in total
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TwYst
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

heh considering i never mentioned ubuntu myself but others have in this thread , i dont use that distro personally because of its candy store approach. i chose debian and gentoo to run because i like minimal crap on my system . i only want to have the applications on my own computers that i chose to install.i would just like them to install a bit easier without the headaches involved sometimes..**bashing head on desk**
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John R. Graham
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TwYst wrote:
i appreciate the fact that it is a learning experience . but when something that should be relatively painless turns into the drama i encounter time and time again all i can ask is "why?" which was my initial reason for this post to begin with.
Benjamin Franklin once defined "insanity" as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. You, my friend, need to do something different. The Handbook explains about the kernel symlink. There's even a USE flag to automatically maintain said symlink, also documented. The Gentoo Linux nVidia Guide explains that you don't have to reboot (well, not usually) after installing the nVidia drivers, and is helpful in other ways.

A little reading will alleviate that grinding sensation. :)

(And, today, the part of "fanboy" is played, with exceptional verve, I might add, by me. :D )

- John
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PaulBredbury
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

john_r_graham wrote:
(well, not usually)

You mean "never".
Code:
/etc/init.d/xdm stop
modprobe -r nvidia
modprobe nvidia
dmesg  # Check for any moans from nvidia
/etc/init.d/xdm start

This is Gentoo, we have some standards to maintain :wink:
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John R. Graham
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2007 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You see? That just proves that Gentoo is perfect! Are you sure you're not a fanboy? :wink:

- John
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