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Last post Author Topic: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed  (Read 13974 times)

wreckedcarzz

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PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« on: September 29, 2008, 06:20:53 PM »
I am a big fan of Linux - the idea, the operating system itself, the whole "community" system of thought and whatnot... but no one with any power gives a hoot about it. Hardware companies don't support it, Microsoft laughs at it, and the old "Mac OS X is based off UNIX" is getting old. Yet, surprisingly, the OS and community behind it lives on. I find it amazing, but thats just my point of view.

Anyways, I was googling around earlier for DirectX for WINE, a popular Windows-application handler that is capable of executing WIN32 EXE files via use of the Win32 API. In other words, EXE's are not Windows only anymore. While on my ignorant bliss of a journey through google, I stumbled on this program PlayOnLinux. It claims that you can run a wide amount of Windows applications on it (including games) with great ease. My experience?

It makes Windows look stupid. The install process was easy, and while I had to go into the terminal the first time to start the app and get to the options to activate the Ubuntu Main Menu entry, it was a no-brainer thereafter. It updates itself, takes you through a process to get all your required prerequisites (simply hitting Next a few times), and your set down in a simple GUI. Some scanning of the forum (documentation is on its way) reveals how to obtain, install, and use programs, and the website layout is smart and professional. :Thmbsup:

I can't yet speak for the program's ability to execute games (Halo Combat Evolved is being copied to my external hard drive right now), however it seems very promising. :)

Anyone here have experience with PlayOnLinux? Thoughts?

-Brandon

zridling

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2008, 11:33:35 AM »
Although I don't have any Windows programs I haven't found equal or better alternatives for under Linux, I'll install it, play around, and come back here.
_______________________________________
Quote
I am a big fan of Linux - the idea, the operating system itself, the whole "community" system of thought and whatnot... but no one with any power gives a hoot about it. Hardware companies don't support it, Microsoft laughs at it, and the old "Mac OS X is based off UNIX" is getting old. Yet, surprisingly, the OS and community behind it lives on.

Becoming Microsoft-free has been such a relief for me. It's like cleaning out your garage... and car... and basement... and attic... and closets, and finding you have a huge new house. The hardest habit to break was not rebooting out of habit.

Quote
"...no one with any power gives a hoot about it"
I presume you mean on the desktop. The Linux Foundation would beg to differ, among many major corporations.

Quote
Microsoft laughs at it, and the old "Mac OS X is based off UNIX" is getting old.
Microsoft's biggest competitor in the highly profitable server, web, and SaaS sectors is Linux. Cheaper to buy a service contract than a volume license. And OS X is based on AT&T's proprietary, but free version of Unix, BSD, which under its license allows for proprietary commercial use; that is, for the software released under the license to be incorporated into proprietary commercial products. In case anyone is interested, here's a breakdown of this license and how confusing it can get (and you'll quickly see why Apple chose it!):

http://www.linfo.org/bsdlicense.html

f0dder

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2008, 12:20:06 PM »
BSD license is much less confusing than GPL, and is true freedom, not the twisted definition the GNU people have. GPL isn't free at all - sure, it keeps projects open and available, but not free...

Oh, and OSX isn't just based on BSD, but also on the Mach microkernel (which really has nothing to do with mac/apple), and stuff from Steve Jobs' failed NeXT project... just to set the record straight :)
- carpe noctem

zridling

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2008, 09:16:05 PM »
Wow, thanks Brandon! That even played an old Windows chess game I bought a few years back.  :-*

____________________________
So true, and thanks for the clarification f0dder. Even Linus himself doesn't think the GPL should apply to everything.

wreckedcarzz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2008, 09:16:49 PM »
I managed to get Halo installed (somewhat, I got lost and confused) and after a bit of file searching and figuring out exactly what happened, I was able to watch the cinematic intro cutscences and get to in-game menus (audio only, with interaction based on my photographic memory of the thing).

It still is a dead end for that, but at least it is a large step in the right direction. Now just have to wait for WINE to become more compatible...

EDIT: I hit Post just as zridling's post showed up in Pop-Up Cody. Good to know you got it working :)

zridling

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2008, 09:19:51 PM »
Oh, and what a great idea that the PlayOnLinux Download pages list the command line installations, ha! Fast and error-free.

wreckedcarzz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2008, 09:24:47 PM »
I used the .deb file for Ubuntu, but I thought about letting Synaptic handle it. Figured I would rather know I have the latest version than hope someone has compiled and prepared the latest version. Who cares if it's unsupported- if it works, I'll keep it!

robinsiebler

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2009, 07:28:32 PM »
It's not free and I haven't tried it, but this looks promising - http://www.cedega.com/
Happiness is laced with shards of pain

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2009, 07:47:43 PM »
BSD license is much less confusing than GPL, and is true freedom, not the twisted definition the GNU people have. GPL isn't free at all - sure, it keeps projects open and available, but not free...

Agree about BSD licensing being easier to understand. It's a simpler licensing concept than GPL.

Don't follow your logic about how "GPL isn't free at all" however.

I'm confused. Care to elaborate? :)
« Last Edit: January 21, 2009, 08:00:09 PM by 40hz »

Paul Keith

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2009, 10:39:09 PM »
You know what they say...too much freedom is no freedom at all.  ;D

f0dder

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2009, 03:18:02 AM »
Don't follow your logic about how "GPL isn't free at all" however.

I'm confused. Care to elaborate? :)
That's pretty easy.

GPL pretty much guarantees that the software is open and that it will usually be gratis (at least the code, you can keep the product as a whole non-gratis by keeping data resources under a commercial license). To achieve this, however, GPL imposes a truckload of restrictions, very much inhibiting freedom.
- carpe noctem

justice

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2009, 03:58:43 AM »
Possibly a good program but someone needs to focus that website on promoting it like their life depends on it being used and promoted. At the moment I just see some random clipart, a poll and the whole site looks like a social club hangout rather than a successful software app. I can't even find out any general information about the program at first glance - version changes are more important than the program's features apparently. Sorry for the rant just something that's important to me at the moment. :)

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2009, 05:53:44 AM »
Don't follow your logic about how "GPL isn't free at all" however.

I'm confused. Care to elaborate? :)
That's pretty easy.

GPL pretty much guarantees that the software is open and that it will usually be gratis (at least the code, you can keep the product as a whole non-gratis by keeping data resources under a commercial license). To achieve this, however, GPL imposes a truckload of restrictions, very much inhibiting freedom.


I don't see it so much as restrictions. More like clauses to prevent people who like to play word games from exploiting the good-will surrounding GPL and diluting its meaning.

You can kill something by blowing it up, or with a thousand  cuts.

GPL has proven itself quite blast resistant in court. And the courts (at least in the US) have repeatedly affirmed that the GPL is enforceable despite numerous legal challenges that ranged from mere nit-picking to utterly bizarre.

So the challenge for GPL has now become how to protect itself from being slowly murdered. And this is actually a bigger threat to GPL than mere legal challenges because of the way 'human nature' works.

Consider this scenario:

You have eight hundred people in a line buying tickets. Everybody waits their turn and is behaving sociably. An adjacent ticket window opens, but the people still keep to a single line, alternately going to the next available ticket seller. Excitement builds, but everyone still remains calm and respectful since the line is moving smoothly. Most people are joking, flirting, or having conversations with their neighbors, and the whole experience of waiting in line has taken on a festive mood.

But suddenly, half way up in line, somebody lets a friend slip in ahead of them. Murmurs go up and down the line. Possibly an argument breaks out. Next a third window opens, but an announcement is made that only persons with VIP Club Cards can use that line. Thirty or so people move over to that window under the baleful glares of the rest of the line. More murmurs and comments follow, and somebody feels compelled to shout an insult at the people in the VIP line.

By now, two distinct lines have formed from the original. Alternating between the two available windows has stopped, and the crowd is now in a much less sociable mood.

Finally, a fourth window opens, and a minor mob scene ensues, with people shoving and running to queue up in that line before anybody else does. Now the crowd is jittery and hostile because the earlier cooperative social contract has been broken.

The previous goodwill has been completely replaced by a 'just give me my f***ing tickets and let me get the hell outtahere!' mindset.

And you can see this behavior repeated in parking lots, holiday checkout lines, and at 4-way stop signs. The cooperative system works just fine until one jerk decides to break the rules and set everyone else off. After that, it's Law of the Jungle time.

Sad, really. Such fragile things, these social contracts...

 :tellme:

GPL is in the same situation as that concert crowd. It only works as long as people share a basic understanding, and agree to play by the rules. One exception, one cheater, one successful attempt at circumvention, and the whole edifice can easily come tumbling down.

And because people constantly attempt to do an end run around the GPL, each successive version has become more complex and detailed in an attempt to head off this problem. If GPL has gotten complex, blame the people that are trying to game the system, not the people that are trying to keep the FOSS social contract alive.

I know the non-FOSS 'party line' is to create a fog around GPL. But when you look below the smoke, you quickly discover that GPL is based on a few very simple ideas:

1. Some people believe the world would be a far better place if the software they wrote was released with no restrictions on copying, modification, or use.

2. The GPL codebase represents tens of thousands of hours of human effort. And that codebase has a real monetary value, even though nobody gets charged to use it. 

3. GPL is like a pot-luck dinner. Anybody is allowed to sit at the GPL table and freely take as much as they want.

4. In return, people need to be willing to play by the same rules as the folks they're taking from. If you build on top of GPL software, then whatever you build should also become GPL software.

Look at it this way: if somebody lets you use their kitchen; provides some (or most) of the ingredients; and possibly offers to help you cook - then the least you should be expected to do is share the leftovers after you've eaten your fill.  In a nutshell: Don't be a pig.

 8)

So I think it really all comes back to what GPL is all about. If something is released as "free and open" under GPL - then it really should be just that. Really free. Really open. No exceptions. No Games.

It's a very straight forward idea. It only gets complicated (and ugly) when certain individuals try to figure out a ruse to get around it. But I suppose that's also just human nature.

Truth is, many people have a real problem with just 'giving' something away with no strings attached.

GPL drives these people crazy. :)

UFA.gif
« Last Edit: January 22, 2009, 03:47:56 PM by 40hz »

Paul Keith

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2009, 05:34:05 PM »
40hz, that's the thing though. Isn't the BSD license also protecting people from these restrictions?

I think the problem with GPL is that the bigger the project goes, the more you don't know who's really contributing to who and the more no one knows who cooked the best recipe because everybody has their little take on the recipe by then.

It's not that they want to steal the recipe but that they are now unable to optimize the recipe because if they change something, someone will accuse them of trying to paint a fork in a new shell but if they stay with the recipe, lots of people will be there to change the recipe haphazardly and you still get a mob where only a select view designs get into the final product and you still have restrictions and you still have problems with making the product better and then you're back to your original free desert where people aren't as motivated to use their freedom to help the project because they get into stupid arguments that are as restricting as more restrictive licenses.

With that said, I'm not really sure what I am saying either. I haven't really bother looking indepth to the GPL and there's now LGPLs and other stuff that further confuse me.

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2009, 08:59:42 PM »
someone will accuse them of trying to paint a fork

But if necessary, you can't be afraid to fork.

Forking is a safety device. It's the ultimate "deadman's switch" built into GPL.

FWIW: in every software project I've ever been involved with, there has always been a core group or individual that ultimately makes all the design decisions.

In some of the more 'democratic' (i.e less efficient) projects, more people were allowed to provide input - but what input actually made it into the project was still at the discretion of a very few people. And in most cases, that 'group' was composed of exactly one gal or guy.

Where the group that forms around the core developer(s) really comes into play is in the debugging phase. Many hands make for quick debugging.

And when you consider just how individual an activity programming is, I'm not sure actual development can be done any other way.

This is how I've seen it work:

1. Everybody gets to discuss the project.

2. One person writes the first draft design spec.

3. One person writes the baseline code. (May be the same person in step 1)

4. Everybody gets to play with the alpha and offer suggestions, corrections, and patches.

5. All the input from the alpha experience gets summarized and tabulated.

6. The lead architect (1 above) or coder (2 above) takes a look at the alpha report and decides what in that report is going to make it into the next coding cycle.

7. "Feature Freeze' is announced for the next coding cycle.

8. All go back to step one and repeat until there is a workable product (or until everybody gets sick of it, and either quits, or forks to a new project).

And so it goes.





Paul Keith

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2009, 09:29:11 PM »
That's true too. That's why it's just sad to see people in the FOSS world hate on a product because it's a fork or looks like a copy.

I'm all for criticizing on a bad fork but stuff like reading how many complained that Mint was just a poor man's copy of Ubuntu even when they were just beginning is just sad and an insult to budding developers.

I also have a hate-on for those Firefox FOSS fanboys who say "don't use IE because it's not open source" and then they pass their open source argument to Opera too yet look how much they have supported Flock, Galeon and K-meleon?

raybeere

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2009, 09:37:46 PM »
Although I don't have any Windows programs I haven't found equal or better alternatives for under Linux, I'll install it, play around, and come back here.

Should I assume you don't do a lot of word processing? Or do you know of one for Linux I've never heard of? I'm incredibly interested in the idea of finding a really good writing tool for Linux, since that is the one thing keeping me tied to Windows. Sure, I could dual-boot, but I spend far too much time writing - it wouldn't be worth the effort unless I can find something fit for a writer that works under Linux.

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2009, 09:53:12 PM »
I'm incredibly interested in the idea of finding a really good writing tool for Linux, since that is the one thing keeping me tied to Windows. Sure, I could dual-boot, but I spend far too much time writing - it wouldn't be worth the effort unless I can find something fit for a writer that works under Linux.


Could you be more specific about exactly what constitutes a "writing tool" for you? That topic has come up more than a few times on DoCo. Maybe we can point you to the appropriate forum posts once we have a better idea of what you're looking for.

Also let us know what you have tried that didn't work so we won't point you towards something you've already looked at.

 :)

Deozaan

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2009, 01:12:12 AM »
Regarding PlayOnLinux: Where's the list of compatible games?


40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2009, 11:30:36 AM »
That's true too. That's why it's just sad to see people in the FOSS world hate on a product because it's a fork or looks like a copy.

I'm all for criticizing on a bad fork but stuff like reading how many complained that Mint was just a poor man's copy of Ubuntu even when they were just beginning is just sad and an insult to budding developers.


I think that comes back to something I said earlier.

Truth is, many people have a real problem with just 'giving' something away with no strings attached.

It's very hard to let your children go off on their own. And I think that's true no matter how personally "enlightened" or dedicated to the principles of FOSS you are.

Nobody in FOSS appreciates a lack of gratitude; or duplication and fragmentation of effort. But spinoffs can, and even more importantly, will occur. And that's because the FOSS approach was specifically designed to allow it to happen, even if it doesn't exactly encourage it.

Forking is the least desirable method for resolving disputes in the open source community. Many forks occur for no other reason than somebody taking a snit - and as such, they should be discouraged.

But it's also important to note that forking has produced such beautiful offspring as Mint, Joomla, and a number of other worthwhile efforts.

I guess that's the whole problem with freedom. It just makes you so...free. ;D

---------------------

Quote
Regarding PlayOnLinux: Where's the list of compatible games?

Oh... Hi Deozan!!

That's right.

PlayOnLinux!

Was that what we were supposed to be talking about? ;D

Sorry for going so OT. :-[




Paul Keith

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2009, 12:24:06 PM »
It's very hard to let your children go off on their own. And I think that's true no matter how personally "enlightened" or dedicated to the principles of FOSS you are.

Nobody in FOSS appreciates a lack of gratitude; or duplication and fragmentation of effort. But spinoffs can, and even more importantly, will occur. And that's because the FOSS approach was specifically designed to allow it to happen, even if it doesn't exactly encourage it.

Forking is the least desirable method for resolving disputes in the open source community. Many forks occur for no other reason than somebody taking a snit - and as such, they should be discouraged.

But it's also important to note that forking has produced such beautiful offspring as Mint, Joomla, and a number of other worthwhile efforts.

I guess that's the whole problem with freedom. It just makes you so...free. ;D

Yeah, I agree with that. That's why I said earlier too much freedom is no freedom at all.

It's just sad that few FOSS advocates are as adamant at attacking these pseudo-FOSS people for restricting one's freedom.

FOSS at it's core is not just a software decision, it's a philosophy but often times FOSS people themselves aren't so adamant in upholding this philosophy as they are at using it to restrict another person's freedom through the age old adage of insulting anything that might offend their misguided fanaticism.

In the end, the core flaw of FOSS is that it gives people more freedom to be the enemies of freedom than it allows people who are truly for freedom to grow into people who spread the philosophy of freedom.

Of course to a certain extent I attribute this to the GPL too. They're the thing that got free software popular but now I think they've become the symbol of a false sense of freedom kind of like the United Nations.

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2009, 01:20:58 PM »
I guess it all depends on how much to heart you take an insult. I've got enough experience with not being treated nicely that I have become quite adept at ignoring most insults directed at me. "Sticks and stones..."

FOSS and GPL can't restrict freedom. Nobody is required to follow their philosophy or embrace GPL tenets. If you don't like what they're saying or doing you can always go your own way. But if you do buy into their community, you're also expected to play by the rules. Which isn't unreasonable. Because the very same thing applies to almost everything else we do outside the FOSS community as well. Every benefit entails some hassle, no matter where you go.

And even at it's ugliest, the FOSS community realizes (sometimes painfully) that it is a community based on complex social interactions and understandings - where just because you 'own' the bat and ball,  doesn't automatically mean you also get to make the rules.

GPL drives a hard bargain: If you release your code under GPL you are relinquishing all downstream control over how it gets used. Once it's out there it's up for grabs.

But being 'up for grabs' comes with a catch for some of the grabbers:

If you use code that was released under GPL in your own project, and (and this is important part) you in turn release it (either as your own code, product, or project) then your work must be given back to the community under the same terms as the GPL code you are using.

Basically, GPL allows for free and unlimited useage - but forbids individual ownership.

And although it seems strange, many historically successful societies (monastic orders, communes, fraternal organizations, etc.) operate on the same principle whereby individual members have access to, but not ownership of, the full resources of the community.

Under this type of arrangement, each individual member is wealthy - even though he or she owns absolutely nothing. (Wow! Heavy!!! ...say it some more, Man...)

Scary stuff if you've been brought up in a laissez-faire capitalist society like many of us have. But it does work.

At least if you let it. 8)

I've compared FOSS to a pot-luck supper. And the more I think about it, the more I think it's a valid metaphor. Still, it's a weird banquet when you look at it. The master chefs are all off in the kitchen arguing. Some of the guests are sharpening knives and glaring at each other. One or two young cooks are holding up their forks and trying to look like they mean it.

And everybody else is just sitting down at the table with a great big spoon, chowing down and enjoying the feast. 8)

« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 01:27:06 PM by 40hz »

Paul Keith

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2009, 03:25:17 PM »
I still disagree but woah...this is going on longer than I thought so I concede the discussion before we both get kicked off for off-topicness.  :P

40hz

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2009, 04:53:36 PM »
I still disagree but woah...this is going on longer than I thought so I concede the discussion before we both get kicked off for off-topicness.  :P


Not a problem. I've decided to declare a personal moratorium on my posting anything further about FOSS philosophy, GPL analysis, or any other non-technical issue surrounding Linux or open source software. DoCo isn't really the place for that sort of thing. Besides, I've pretty much said all I have to say.

Truth be told, I've noticed I'm starting to repeat myself. :tellme:

Who could possibly want to put up with to that? :P
« Last Edit: January 23, 2009, 05:15:08 PM by 40hz »

Shades

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Re: PlayOnLinux might be what the Linux world needs to succeed
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2009, 06:00:07 PM »
@40Hz:
Your girlfriend, maybe? (you know...that procreation thingie :-[)

And to be more on topic:
http://ta3d.darkstars.co.uk  for the ones that remember and loved Total Annihilation. According to the link the game can be played in Linux inside a new and improved 3D environment