Win98 -- all kidding aside

Bart Silverstrim bsilver at
Wed Jul 30 13:15:07 UTC 2008

Jimmy Montague wrote:
> On Tue, 2008-07-29 at 21:55 -0700, Pastor JW wrote:
>> On Friday 25 July 2008 01:58:23 am Mario Spinthiras wrote:
>>> I'm sure there are reasons to run Microsoft products , I just haven't been
>>> able to think of any for the past 15 years :)
>> I thought I had found one a couple years ago but I was wrong,  merely a case 
>> of believing windoze couldn't possibly be as bad as everybody said it was.  
>> In truth, it was even worse.
>> -- 
>> 73 de N7PSV aka Pastor JW <n><   PDGA# 35276
> Win98 had its good features -- and some bad ones. I remember when I
> first installed Win98, it was able to access floppy drives with no help
> from me at all. As a home user, the worst problem I had with my new
> Win98 system was that I couldn't shut it off.
> By contrast, I've had Ubuntu in this box for two weeks, now, and I'm
> still trying to make it handle my floppy drive correctly. That any
> flavor of Linux should be unable to handle floppies correctly, out of
> the box, after the OS has been nearly 20 years in development speaks
> volumes about the quality of the Linux development process. Those
> enraged by that statement may get their ire cooled somewhat by my
> admission that, also unlike Win98, Ubuntu is easy to shut off.

I don't know...until recently, Linux didn't really use automounting of 
volumes, so the whole model has changed. Couple that with the fact that 
today the majority of temporary storage comes from USB drives and CD's, 
both of which sense when media has changed as opposed to floppies which 
are very limited in storage capacity and reliability to begin with, let 
alone don't sense when media is inserted and thus force a user to tell 
Linux "Hey, this changed!" makes the complaint more akin to bitching 
that linux won't read my tapes without hassle (yeah, the old TRS and 
Commodore days of yore seem to have passed me by...)

It's still possible today to do it the old fashioned way; use the mount 
command, do what is needed from /mnt/floppy, and then unmount it. 
Otherwise you're probably dealing with a Nautilus problem or 
automounting problem with a medium that should have gone by the wayside 
a long time ago.

As for the development process I think the fact that some university 
kid's spare time project now being used in everything from the tiny EEE 
PC to multi-million dollar data centers handling major infrastructure 
services speaks volumes.

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