Fwd: Is disabling ctrl-alt-backspace really such a good idea?

Mike Jones eternalorb at gmail.com
Fri Feb 13 22:42:47 UTC 2009


I'm sorry if I appear to be bitching / whining. That wasn't my intention. If
you would like I can stop posting my thoughts. I didn't intend to cause

**    Your problem, really.

    I don't believe so. While the command line is reasonably simple to use
for me, as I have said in other posts, it is not so simple for others that I
know. They are very hesitant to ever use it, and some of them do not know
that there are virtual terminals in the first place.

    But the problem of lost work is not what bothers me. Please rest assured
my work is very important to me. But I save often enough that it is
impractical to worry about it.  As I've posted previous to your reply, my
concern is for the time. Given a capped, or uncapped length of time needed
to be spent getting back to what i was doing, I choose a capped and finite
amount of time. That's my choice and I have no problem with losing my
(rarely) unsaved work because of it.

    For the example of say my grandparents. They do not know what the
terminal is. They do not know they have a series of virtual terminals, and
they also do not have the capability to reliably use either when given voice
direction. They do not have any understanding of networking, or port
forwarding, so sshing into their machine is not conceivable, and
occasionally, I do get a phone call from them asking me why their mouse
won't respond. Every time, my question is "will you lose anything
important?", every time their reply is "no, i was only reading email" and
every time my response is to do "C-A-B".

    Yes, as I've said before, editing a config file is not impossible. But
for my grandparents, who I cannot reasonably be expected to have physical
contact with more often that every few months, it is entirely impossible.

    Your reply will be to tell them not to upgrade to jaunty. My reply is
that they should be able to use the updater without worrying that they
cannoy rely on their grandson for support because he will ask them to use
the command line.

    For various reasons which I may have mentioned before. I have had to
kill X using the C-A-B key shortcuts several dozen times per month since I
began using Linux. Am I doing something wrong? Ubuntu freezes or misbehaves
quite a bit less than Windows does, and I assumed that because many of the
packages I used were still being improved, there may have been bugs or
problems. When I have been able to I have submitted a report.

    Perhaps I am doing something I'm not supposed to with the way I have my
machine set up? I could give you information about it if you can tell me
what to provide. I would be very grateful for your help if you could point
out what I'm doing that causes me so many problems.

    Thank you

-Michael Jones

On Fri, Feb 13, 2009 at 5:19 PM, Mario Vukelic <mario.vukelic at dantian.org>wrote:

> On Fri, 2009-02-13 at 11:15 -0500, Mike Jones wrote:
> >   Yes. I would rather lose my work than switch to a virtual console
> > and spend half an hour finding out which offending program to kill.
> Your problem, really.
> >     I have tried several times to use C-A-F# to get back control of my
> > gnome session, and have yet to succeed. I rarely, if ever, have
> > completely unrecoverable work being preformed.
> Well, other people actually do useful work on their computers and lose
> it because they accidentally hit C-A-B. I don't think that executing *a
> single command* to reenable it, if your really want it, is worth all the
> bitching on the list.
> I, personally, have used Linux distros extensively since 1996 and can't
> even recall the last time I had to kill X, it certainly was before 2000.
> And maybe 5 times in all, I'd guess.
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