Posts Tagged ‘development’

[K]ubuntu 8.04

April 28, 2008

Last week I have installed Kubuntu 8.04 on my machine. And I have got a pleasant surprise. First time in my life, all hardware are functional after a Linux installation. My wireless card, Marvell Libertas based, required ndiswrapper, which was not on the installation CD (it’s supposed to download the driver of the network card), and I installed it manually with a memory stick.

Next, the nVidia Geforce 7 card (on the motherboard) required nVidia “proprietary” drivers. Since it works, I don’t see an issue with the lack of open source drivers.

The big surprise was the sound card, not recognized by other older distributions; no configuration was required and it “simply worked” after disabling the KDE sound manager.

Enabling Compiz under newly installed video driver was also easy and near the window effects I could find some useful shortcuts, such as full screen for any window. Also fonts are looking better rendered than with the standard VGA driver and the controls show more responsive.  Some other “Vista-like” candies like 3D window / desktop switching are also there.

No operating system is useful without applications. Kubuntu has two package managers, which seem very developer friendly. I could install Apache Maven, Sun Java SDK and Subversion and Eclipse with no effort, I have just queried the package database. This was _much_ easier than doing it under Windows, under normal circumstances.

So for a Java developer I think Linux is a better choice because of:

– zero cost of the operating system

– easy to install all the needed tools

– availability of major IDEs (Eclipse or Netbeans)

– availability of server applications (most if not all of the J2EE servers run on Linux as well)

– database servers available – Oracle, MySQL, Postgresql

Of course, there are also reasons to use Windows:

– Microsoft SQL Server, runs on Windows only

– .Net platform (this belongs actually to .net developers)

– you have hardware which does not works under Linux

So my conclusion are:

– installing Linux is faster then installing Windows

– installing Linux is more difficult than installing Windows, if you are unlucky with the hardware. If you are really unlucky with the hardware or simply not skilled enough, you may have no chance to make it run.

– installing developer tools is much easier and faster under Linux