03.24.08

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Summary of Mono’s Danger to GNU/Linux and the Free Desktop

Posted in Debian, Formats, Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNOME, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Open XML, Patents, RAND, Red Hat, Samba, Ubuntu at 3:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A look back at evidence may be more compelling a proof than yet another explanation

We have received some mail recently from developers who are concerned about issues that are covered here, including OOXML and Mono. One person, for example, was concerned about pressure on KDE to implement support for OOXML (a big no-no). Coming from Debian, a concerned developer spoke about the problems surrounding Mono. Together, we ought to at least try to inform. Maybe we can help in pushing Debian to reduce its dependency on Mono, which is already present there. (correction/clarification: Mono is not there by default)

Let us quickly accumulate pointers to posts which summarise the problem and use this page as somewhat an index that makes it easy to understand for those unfamiliar with it. The list below is chronological, so better understanding has been formed by the time later posts were published, which makes them more accurate.

The presence of Mono alone should not be the key issue to address. There are legal issues. Upon attempts to demonstrate just loss of identity we were told that it would not be an issue as serious as patent-encumbered (and truly proprietary) elements like OOXML, WMV, etc.

That is indeed an issue. It also makes them more widespread, for all to suffer from.

Further throughout this discussion, the OOXML issue came up. The reader told us:


…what’s your opinion on OOXML support being added to OOo 3? Do you think rubbing it with the GPLv3 [1, 2] might yield some interesting results?


The reply is quoted verbatim:

It works badly for Novell, which is already building ‘Microsoft OpenOffice’ in a sense [1, 2, 3, 4]. Novell hates it when people use the “F” word in this context (“fork”), but it’s becoming more of a reality.

Microsoft hates the GPLv3. In fact, it turns out that GPLv3 got thrown out of Microsoft’s CodePlex. All of Microsoft’s smear campaigns against GPLv3 (through proxies in disguise, such as paid academics) show that Microsoft’s lawyers understand the ramifications.

“They, along with biased journalists who deceive, are totally falling for it.”The company works quite secretly, but understanding the strategy is not hard. Getting the word out and warning developers is another issue (PyCon, Ubuntu, OSI). They, along with biased journalists who deceive, are totally falling for it. It’s like a Big Lie campaign.

Many people are conveniently naive and it was frustrating to find that Michael T agrees with Matt Asay as far as the stance on Bruce Perens goes. He has posted about this to the OSI’s Web site. In other words, they see nothing wrong with Microsoft in the OSI, despite the fact that Ballmer sort of stuttered in an interview last month where he was going to name ‘open source’ as his number one threat. He eventually said “Open.. Linux”. He hesitated and changed his mind as he spoke. He knows that they have to pretend to like Open Source, as long as they can replace and subvert the licences to make them work Microsoft’s way (see notes above about Mono licence). Folks like Walli might already be doing a lot of legwork for Microsoft, trying to convince developers to embrace the Microsoft way, restrict openness, ownership, maybe even apply for software patents, etc.

Just say no to Mono

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52 Comments

  1. akf said,

    March 24, 2008 at 9:55 am

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    Debian is not dependent to mono. Please read the text you have linked to:

    with the minimum dependencies needed to run F-Spot!

    Of course you need mono to run a mono-application! But F-Spot is not installed automatically and nobody forces you to install it.

    By the way, you’ll get also a lot of .dll and .exe files, when you install wine…

  2. Gryc Ueusp said,

    March 24, 2008 at 11:14 am

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    @akf:
    “But F-Spot is not installed automatically and nobody forces you to install it.”

    Last I heard it’s installed by default on Ubuntu, one of the (if not _the_) largest desktop distros. Oh yeah, not to mention Beagle (GNOME’s OSX search clone) and TomBoy.

    The point of Mono (at least from a person who isnt promoting it for M$) is to provide a compatibility layer for old/legacy windows apps, not to encourage making NEW apps.

    The equivilent is if GNOME started writing programs in C++. And then compiled them for windows and ran them under wine. You’d mock them wouldnt you? You’d call them idiots and that they werent truly open source. Well they would be.

  3. b.bob said,

    March 24, 2008 at 11:30 am

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    Having mono is bad. It nearly killed my sister.

  4. Chris Cox said,

    March 24, 2008 at 11:33 am

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    Worst part is that people are using Mono to replace their implementations of .Net. For example, WinCE doesn’t include a full .Net class implementation. So some of these evil Windows developers are ditching Microsoft .Net’s class libraries and using the ones from Mono instead since they are licensed under the MIT/X11 license.

    Moving forward, it is likely that even the runtime for Mono will get licensed with the MIT/X11 style license instead of the LGPL, which will likely mean that some Windows users will use the Mono runtime instead of the Microsoft one. This may result in an open source product being used by Windows users to run critical applications.

    Additionally, with MonoDevelop now being available even under Windows, it’s possible that more Windows developers will be tempted to use Linux as a development platform (shudder!). This could result in a wider adoption of Linux by Windows users… something we obviously must try to eliminate at all cost.

    Also, those evil Novell folks have created a tool… a tool so evil is has to be stopped. The tool allows one to check their code for Mono compatibility when writing .Net applications. This tool needs to be destroyed as it will only lead to more applications which run on both Windows AND Linux. If we allow these kind of things to continue, the barriers to Linux adoption will only be weakened and that means more people using Linux… a very, very bad thing.

    It is very true that Microsoft has limited some things under non open source licensing… and indeed Mono can use those things with the obvious restrictions… but of course this is NO different that how it is with existing software packages in Linux that also have hooks to use such things (like w32codecs, etc). So I don’t see that as the crux of the matter. Seems to be the idea is to eliminate all Linux use by Windows developers as possible.

    If that means we have to take down Novell… so be it. Linux shines best when used least. Roy for President!!

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 24, 2008 at 11:55 am

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    You escape the main point. Microsoft wants GNU/Linux converted to a Mac OS equivalent, i.e. an O/S which requires cross-licensing. The strategy is already being implemented (Hyper-V being a recent example). Microsoft openly says that it’s the cost of Linux that’s daunting. If Microsoft can change this, there goes the competitive advantage. Of course, for those at Novell who want to charge $50 per year for use of the O/S, none of this is contradictory.

  6. akf said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:00 pm

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    @Ueusp: I didn’t try to defend Mono, I tried to defend Debian.

    If Mono was promoted as compatibility layer for Windows apps, I would really like it; just like wine. But if libwine was promoted as environment for writing GNU/Linux apps, I would protest too.

    The problem is the promoted purpose of it.
    The other issue is, how much other software depends on it.

    I only disagree with Schestowitz in the second point. I also think, that a dependency would be really bad, but I don’t think, that dependency is already there.

  7. Alex said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:08 pm

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    But Mono isn’t the only CLR solution. There is also DotGnu. Which has been careful to avoid all the sorts of problems highlighted in many places. Trouble is for some reason very few people seem to be picking up on it let alone helping improve it.

    Partly I’ll say from my own experience that the documentation to get into is and always has been so poor. I suspect if the available documentation for using DotGnu were as good as the efforts with Mono it would be (have been because I can’t help but feel it may be near to death) a serious alternative. And in benchmarks I’ve run it’s always outperformed Mono on my tasks.

  8. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:11 pm

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    akf, I’ve corrected the statement about Debian. Radu gave me the wrong impression about a Mono application being there by default (what about Tomboy, I wondered).

    I only disagree with Schestowitz in the second point. I also think, that a dependency would be really bad, but I don’t think, that dependency is already there.

    By shifting focus away from C++/Java/etc. and diverting everything in favour of Mono you end up with superior applications that are written in Mono. They are more likely to be (pre)packaged, so the practical dependency is there.

    If you put cakes on the table before the appetizers and main course, you are likely to ruin the meal. In this case, the cakes are very fattening. They’ll cost a lot.

  9. Alex said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:12 pm

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    I have to disagree with Roy Schestowitz on free (low price) being a competitive advantage for Linux or Free Software in general. My experience has been policy makers (cheque signers) don’t trust free and would rather pay.

  10. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:14 pm

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    What about the Chinese market where Microsoft must tolerate copyright infringement (remember what gates recently said about competing against Linux)?

  11. CoolGuy said,

    March 24, 2008 at 12:22 pm

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    Trust nothing from Novell after they signed the agreement (sold out) with M$.

  12. akf said,

    March 24, 2008 at 2:03 pm

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    Gee, I think I really made a mistake.

    In Debian Etch there really was no dependency.
    But now I had a look at the new Debian Lenny. There the meta-package “gnome” really installs Tomboy. :-(

    compare
    http://packages.debian.org/etch/gnome
    versus
    http://packages.debian.org/lenny/gnome

    Sorry, I have really seen it just now.

    But that doesn’t mean, that gnome depends on tomboy under debian, it just means, that it is installed as default. But anyway, I’m really disappointed.

  13. Victor Soliz said,

    March 24, 2008 at 4:10 pm

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    Chris Cox: Even if your statements were accurate (and they aren’t, MONO is definitely NOT going to aid more windows converts, and for GOD’s SAKE how would GPL prevent windows developers from using a lib?) It would not be worth it:

    If I had to choose between keeping our current number of Linux users and developers and improving such numbers by windowsifying Linux and making it require us to pay an MS tax, I would go for the less popular Linux option.

  14. Brent R Brian said,

    March 24, 2008 at 6:55 pm

    Gravatar

    GPL already scares a lot of folks that make money off of Intellectual Property … add to that the FACT that Microsoft AGGRESSIVELY protects their IP (remember all the BSA busts years ago, all the measures most companies employ to make sure their licenses are paid for) … getting a call from a M$ lawyer is about as welcome as a call from an IRS auditor.

  15. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 24, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    Gravatar

    GPL already scares a lot of folks

    I don’t quite agree. That’s often a Microsoft-imposed scare tactic. The same goes for GPLv3.

  16. machiner said,

    March 25, 2008 at 11:50 am

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    “akf said,

    March 24, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    Gee, I think I really made a mistake.

    In Debian Etch there really was no dependency.
    But now I had a look at the new Debian Lenny. There the meta-package “gnome” really installs Tomboy.

    compare
    http://packages.debian.org/etch/gnome
    versus
    http://packages.debian.org/lenny/gnome

    Sorry, I have really seen it just now.

    But that doesn’t mean, that gnome depends on tomboy under debian, it just means, that it is installed as default. But anyway, I’m really disappointed.”

    Installing the metapackage “gnome” will cetainly add mono, as well as Tomboy:

    abiword-gnome{a} abiword-plugins-gnome{a} alacarte{a} at-spi{a}
    binfmt-support{a} bug-buddy{a} capplets-data{a} cli-common{a} dasher{a}
    dasher-data{a} deskbar-applet{a} dia-common{a} dia-gnome{a} dia-libs{a}
    dmz-cursor-theme{a} ekiga{a} eog{a} epiphany-browser{a}
    epiphany-browser-data{a} epiphany-extensions{a} epiphany-gecko{a}
    espeak{a} espeak-data{a} evolution{a} evolution-common{a}
    evolution-data-server{a} evolution-data-server-common{a}
    evolution-plugins{a} evolution-webcal{a} fam{a}
    fast-user-switch-applet{a} freeglut3{a} gcalctool{a} gconf-editor{a}
    gda2-postgres{a} gdb{a} gdm{a} gdm-themes{a} gedit{a} gedit-common{a}
    ggzcore-bin{a} gnome gnome-about{a} gnome-accessibility-themes{a}
    gnome-applets{a} gnome-applets-data{a} gnome-backgrounds{a}
    gnome-cards-data{a} gnome-control-center{a} gnome-core{a}
    gnome-cups-manager{a} gnome-desktop-data{a} gnome-desktop-environment{a}
    gnome-doc-utils{a} gnome-games{a} gnome-games-data{a}
    gnome-games-extra-data{a} gnome-keyring-manager{a} gnome-mag{a}
    gnome-media{a} gnome-media-common{a} gnome-menus{a}
    gnome-netstatus-applet{a} gnome-nettool{a} gnome-office{a} gnome-orca{a}
    gnome-panel{a} gnome-panel-data{a} gnome-pilot{a} gnome-pilot-conduits{a}
    gnome-power-manager{a} gnome-screensaver{a} gnome-session{a}
    gnome-system-monitor{a} gnome-system-tools{a} gnome-terminal{a}
    gnome-terminal-data{a} gnome-themes{a} gnome-user-guide{a} gnome-utils{a}
    gnome-volume-manager{a} gnuchess{a} gnuchess-book{a} gok{a}
    gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg{a} gstreamer0.10-gnomevfs{a}
    gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly{a} gstreamer0.10-tools{a} gthumb{a}
    gthumb-data{a} gtkhtml3.14{a} gucharmap{a} guile-1.8-libs{a} inkscape{a}
    iso-codes{a} libart2.0-cil{a} libatspi1.0-0{a} libbeagle1{a}
    libbrlapi0.5{a} libcairomm-1.0-1{a} libcamel1.2-10{a} libcolorblind0{a}
    libcpufreq0{a} libebook1.2-9{a} libecal1.2-7{a} libedata-book1.2-2{a}
    libedata-cal1.2-6{a} libedataserver1.2-9{a} libedataserverui1.2-8{a}
    libegroupwise1.2-13{a} libelf1{a} libespeak1{a}
    libexchange-storage1.2-3{a} libexempi3{a} libfont-afm-perl{a}
    libgail-gnome-module{a} libgalago3{a} libgconf2.0-cil{a} libgda2-3{a}
    libgda2-bin{a} libgda2-common{a} libgdl-1-0{a} libgdl-1-common{a}
    libgdl-gnome-1-0{a} libggz2{a} libggzcore9{a} libggzmod4{a}
    libgksu1.2-0{a} libgksuui1.0-1{a} libglade2.0-cil{a} libglib2.0-cil{a}
    libglibmm-2.4-1c2a{a} libgmime-2.0-2{a} libgmime2.2-cil{a} libgmp3c2{a}
    libgnome-desktop-2{a} libgnome-mag2{a} libgnome-media0{a}
    libgnome-pilot2{a} libgnome-speech7{a} libgnome-vfs2.0-cil{a}
    libgnome-window-settings1{a} libgnome2.0-cil{a} libgnomecupsui1.0-1c2a{a}
    libgnomekbd-common{a} libgnomekbd1{a} libgnomekbdui1{a}
    libgnomevfs2-bin{a} libgphoto2-2{a} libgphoto2-port0{a} libgtk2.0-cil{a}
    libgtkhtml3.14-19{a} libgtkmm-2.4-1c2a{a} libgtksourceview-common{a}
    libgtksourceview1.0-0{a} libgucharmap6{a} libhtml-format-perl{a}
    libhtml-parser-perl{a} libhtml-tagset-perl{a} libhtml-tree-perl{a}
    libiptcdata0{a} libmagick++10{a} libmetacity0{a}
    libmono-addins-gui0.2-cil{a} libmono-addins0.2-cil{a}
    libmono-cairo1.0-cil{a} libmono-corlib1.0-cil{a} libmono-corlib2.0-cil{a}
    libmono-data-tds1.0-cil{a} libmono-data-tds2.0-cil{a}
    libmono-i18n1.0-cil{a} libmono-i18n2.0-cil{a} libmono-security1.0-cil{a}
    libmono-security2.0-cil{a} libmono-sharpzip0.84-cil{a}
    libmono-sharpzip2.84-cil{a} libmono-system-data1.0-cil{a}
    libmono-system-data2.0-cil{a} libmono-system-web1.0-cil{a}
    libmono-system-web2.0-cil{a} libmono-system1.0-cil{a}
    libmono-system2.0-cil{a} libmono0{a} libmono1.0-cil{a} libmono2.0-cil{a}
    libndesk-dbus-glib1.0-cil{a} libndesk-dbus1.0-cil{a} libnet-dbus-perl{a}
    libnm-glib0{a} liboobs-1-3{a} libopal-2.2{a} libosp5{a} libpisync1{a}
    libplot2c2{a} libportaudio2{a} libpstoedit0c2a{a} libpt-1.10.10{a}
    libpt-1.10.10-plugins-alsa{a} libpt-1.10.10-plugins-v4l{a} librarian0{a}
    libsidplay1{a} libslab0{a} libtie-ixhash-perl{a} libtrackerclient0{a}
    libwmf-bin{a} libwww-perl{a} libxevie1{a} libxklavier11{a}
    libxml-parser-perl{a} libxml-twig-perl{a} libxml-xpath-perl{a}
    libxml2-utils{a} menu-xdg{a} metacity{a} metacity-common{a}
    mono-common{a} mono-gac{a} mono-jit{a} mono-runtime{a} nautilus{a}
    nautilus-cd-burner{a} nautilus-data{a} perlmagick{a} pkg-config{a}
    planner{a} pstoedit{a} python-beagle{a} python-brlapi{a} python-ctypes{a}
    python-elementtree{a} python-fpconst{a} python-glade2{a} python-gmenu{a}
    python-gnome2{a} python-gnome2-desktop{a} python-gnome2-extras{a}
    python-gst0.10{a} python-gtkglext1{a} python-gtksourceview2{a}
    python-libxml2{a} python-opengl{a} python-pkg-resources{a}
    python-pyatspi{a} python-pyorbit{a} python-soappy{a} python-xml{a}
    rhythmbox{a} serpentine{a} sound-juicer{a} system-tools-backends{a}
    tomboy{a} totem{a} totem-common{a} totem-gstreamer{a} totem-mozilla{a}
    totem-plugins{a} vino{a} w3c-dtd-xhtml{a} xserver-xephyr{a}
    xulrunner-gnome-support{a} yelp{a} zenity{a}

    However, installing the metapackage ‘gnome-desktop” will not add any mono libraries or mono based apps:

    alacarte at-spi{a} bittorrent{a} bluez-audio{a} bluez-gnome
    bluez-utils{a} bsh{a} bsh-gcj{a} bug-buddy{a} capplets-data{a} dasher{a}
    dasher-data{a} deskbar-applet dhcdbd{a} dmz-cursor-theme{a} ekiga{a}
    eog{a} epiphany-browser epiphany-browser-data{a} epiphany-extensions
    epiphany-gecko{a} espeak{a} espeak-data{a} evolution{a}
    evolution-common{a} evolution-data-server{a}
    evolution-data-server-common{a} evolution-exchange evolution-plugins
    evolution-webcal fam{a} fast-user-switch-applet{a} foomatic-gui
    freeglut3{a} gcalctool{a} gcj-4.2-base{a} gcj-4.3-base{a} gconf-editor{a}
    gdb{a} gdm{a} gdm-themes{a} gedit{a} gedit-common{a} ggzcore-bin{a}
    gnome-about{a} gnome-accessibility-themes{a} gnome-applets{a}
    gnome-applets-data{a} gnome-backgrounds{a} gnome-btdownload
    gnome-cards-data{a} gnome-control-center{a} gnome-core{a}
    gnome-cups-manager gnome-desktop-data{a} gnome-desktop-environment
    gnome-doc-utils{a} gnome-games{a} gnome-games-data{a}
    gnome-games-extra-data{a} gnome-keyring-manager{a} gnome-mag{a}
    gnome-media{a} gnome-media-common{a} gnome-menus{a}
    gnome-netstatus-applet{a} gnome-nettool{a} gnome-orca{a} gnome-panel{a}
    gnome-panel-data{a} gnome-pilot{a} gnome-pilot-conduits{a}
    gnome-power-manager gnome-screensaver gnome-session{a}
    gnome-system-monitor{a} gnome-system-tools{a} gnome-terminal{a}
    gnome-terminal-data{a} gnome-themes{a} gnome-user-guide{a} gnome-utils{a}
    gnome-vfs-obexftp{a} gnome-volume-manager{a} gnomebaker gnuchess{a}
    gnuchess-book{a} gok{a} gparted gstreamer0.10-ffmpeg
    gstreamer0.10-gnomevfs{a} gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly{a}
    gstreamer0.10-tools{a} gthumb{a} gthumb-data{a} gtkhtml3.14{a}
    gucharmap{a} guile-1.8-libs{a} hardinfo icedax{a} iceweasel{a}
    iceweasel-gnome-support iproute{a} iputils-arping{a} iso-codes{a}
    libatm1{a} libatspi1.0-0{a} libbeagle1{a} libbrlapi0.5{a}
    libcairomm-1.0-1{a} libcamel1.2-10{a} libcolorblind0{a} libcpufreq0{a}
    libebook1.2-9{a} libecal1.2-7{a} libedata-book1.2-2{a}
    libedata-cal1.2-6{a} libedataserver1.2-9{a} libedataserverui1.2-8{a}
    libegroupwise1.2-13{a} libelf1{a} libespeak1{a}
    libexchange-storage1.2-3{a} libexempi3{a} libfont-afm-perl{a}
    libgail-gnome-module{a} libgalago3{a} libgcj-bc{a} libgcj-common{a}
    libgcj8-1{a} libgcj8-1-awt{a} libgcj8-jar{a} libgcj9-0{a}
    libgcj9-0-awt{a} libgcj9-jar{a} libgda2-3{a} libgda2-bin{a}
    libgda2-common{a} libgdl-1-0{a} libgdl-1-common{a} libgdl-gnome-1-0{a}
    libggz2{a} libggzcore9{a} libggzmod4{a} libgksu1.2-0{a} libgksuui1.0-1{a}
    libglibmm-2.4-1c2a{a} libgmp3c2{a} libgnome-desktop-2{a} libgnome-mag2{a}
    libgnome-media0{a} libgnome-pilot2{a} libgnome-speech7{a}
    libgnome-window-settings1{a} libgnomecupsui1.0-1c2a{a}
    libgnomekbd-common{a} libgnomekbd1{a} libgnomekbdui1{a}
    libgnomevfs2-bin{a} libgphoto2-2{a} libgphoto2-port0{a}
    libgtkhtml3.14-19{a} libgtkmm-2.4-1c2a{a} libgtksourceview-common{a}
    libgtksourceview1.0-0{a} libgucharmap6{a} libhsqldb-java{a}
    libhtml-format-perl{a} libhtml-parser-perl{a} libhtml-tagset-perl{a}
    libhtml-tree-perl{a} libhyphen0{a} libicu38{a} libieee1284-3{a}
    libiptcdata0{a} libjaxp1.3-java{a} libjaxp1.3-java-gcj{a}
    libjline-java{a} liblua5.1-0{a} libmetacity0{a} libnet-dbus-perl{a}
    libnl1{a} libnm-glib0{a} libnm-util0{a} liboobs-1-3{a} libopal-2.2{a}
    libopenobex1{a} libosp5{a} libparted1.7-1{a} libpisync1{a}
    libportaudio2{a} libprinterconf0c2a{a} libprintsys{a} libpt-1.10.10{a}
    libpt-1.10.10-plugins-alsa{a} libpt-1.10.10-plugins-v4l{a} librarian0{a}
    libsane{a} libsane-extras{a} libservlet2.4-java{a} libsidplay1{a}
    libslab0{a} libsnmpkit2c2a{a} libstlport4.6c2{a} libtdb1{a}
    libtie-ixhash-perl{a} libtrackerclient0{a} libwww-perl{a}
    libxalan2-java{a} libxalan2-java-gcj{a} libxerces2-java{a}
    libxerces2-java-gcj{a} libxevie1{a} libxklavier11{a}
    libxml-parser-perl{a} libxml-twig-perl{a} libxml-xpath-perl{a}
    libxml2-utils{a} liferea lsb-release{a} menu-xdg metacity{a}
    metacity-common{a} nautilus{a} nautilus-cd-burner{a} nautilus-data{a}
    network-manager{a} network-manager-gnome network-manager-openvpn{a}
    network-manager-openvpn-gnome{a} openoffice.org-base{a}
    openoffice.org-base-core{a} openoffice.org-common{a}
    openoffice.org-core{a} openoffice.org-evolution openoffice.org-gnome
    openoffice.org-gtk{a} openoffice.org-java-common{a}
    openoffice.org-style-andromeda{a} openoffice.org-style-crystal{a}
    openoffice.org-style-hicontrast{a} openoffice.org-style-industrial{a}
    openoffice.org-style-tango{a} openvpn{a} pconf-detect{a} pkg-config{a}
    python-apt{a} python-beagle{a} python-brlapi{a} python-ctypes{a}
    python-elementtree{a} python-foomatic{a} python-fpconst{a}
    python-glade2{a} python-gmenu{a} python-gnome2{a}
    python-gnome2-desktop{a} python-gnome2-extras{a} python-gnupginterface{a}
    python-gtkglext1{a} python-gtksourceview2{a} python-ipy{a}
    python-libxml2{a} python-notify{a} python-opengl{a}
    python-pkg-resources{a} python-pyatspi{a} python-pyorbit{a}
    python-soappy{a} rdesktop{a} rhythmbox sane-utils{a} sound-juicer{a}
    system-tools-backends{a} totem{a} totem-common{a} totem-gstreamer{a}
    totem-mozilla totem-plugins{a} tsclient ttf-opensymbol{a}
    update-manager{a} update-notifier vino{a} w3c-dtd-xhtml{a} xsane
    xsane-common{a} xserver-xephyr{a} xulrunner-gnome-support{a} yelp{a}
    zenity{a}

  17. machiner said,

    March 25, 2008 at 11:52 am

    Gravatar

    The meta-package gnome-desktop does not include mono infection. However, the direction that Debian’s upcoming release is heading in worries me.

  18. Christopher Browne said,

    March 25, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    Gravatar

    Chris Cox (long time no see, man!) stated a combination of clear facts along with some opinions. I don’t see any indications that any of his facts are wrong.

    The class libraries are, as he indicated, available under an MIT style license, and with that shift, it seems entirely plausible for the runtime portion to be, at some point, similarly relicensed.

    It is also clearly *TRUE* that MonoDevelop has been ported to run on Windows (http://www.monodevelop.com/MonoDevelopWin32), which, in that this project attracted interest, demonstrates clearly that there are people on Windows interested in running Mono-related code there.

    Chris commented that Mono libraries might be used to supplement things missing on WinCE. Contrary to the blind dismissal, that’s also true.

    It also looks like the tool Chris alluded to (validating that apps will work on Mono) exists…

    So far, I’m not seeing any place where Chris Cox has said anything that is a “matter of fact” that is in any way false.

    There are plenty of assertions, beyond that, that are MATTERS OF OPINION where it is quite evident that you guys are so blinded by your belief in the axiomatic truth of your own opinions that you are unable to make anything resembling an objective evaluation of the matter.

  19. Victor Soliz said,

    March 25, 2008 at 10:30 pm

    Gravatar

    I don’t see any indications that any of his facts are wrong

    The GPL FUD remains in his post, with the assumption that windows developers didn’t want to use MONO because it was GPLed (Which doesn’t make any sense since the libraries already use one of those non-GPL licenses anyways.


    Even assuming that his opinions are facts like you said so, it is not worth it. I still insist pleasing a couple of windows developers is not worth the total lost of identity MONO implies for Linux, not even mentioning the risks.

    There is a reason Novell pushes MONO so hard and it is that at the end of the day, it will give SLED a competitive advantage since they are the only ones with MS protection. Since you like to talk about facts so much, this IS a fact, just check the moonlight debacle out for confirmation.

  20. Victor Soliz said,

    March 25, 2008 at 10:31 pm

    Gravatar

    So, let’s assume a couple of windows developers decided to use MONO, this will not in any way represent we will have more Linux developers, MONO is a whole different platform and any application they make is going to be non-native and thus Linux wins nothing.

  21. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 25, 2008 at 10:37 pm

    Gravatar

    Mono is Novell, Novell is Mono. To many, Linux is Ubuntu (desktop), Linux is Red Hat (server). If Novell can push its little Mono revolution ‘upstream’, then it can change the rules and make a Novell ‘the’ Linux (Windows-like environment with patent covenants).

    Novell changes the identity of Linux to serve Novell and Microsoft. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the “Free Desktop” GNU wants to bring and nothing to do with the GPL, which resists software patents.

  22. infodroid said,

    March 26, 2008 at 2:20 am

    Gravatar

    Nobody here has commented from a developer’s perspective.

    I need a modern, high-level language to do development on GNOME. C++ is way to cumbersome given the power of C# and mono.

    While I would prefer to use java-gnome bindings, they are broken and poorly supported. They have been that way as long as I can remember.

    That leaves mono-gnome as the best alternative. Until java-gnome get their act together, many more developers will choose to write in mono. Not necessarily for ideological reasons, but just because its the better platform right now.

  23. Linux_Is_Fun said,

    March 26, 2008 at 3:28 am

    Gravatar

    I need a modern, high-level language to do development on GNOME. C++ is way to cumbersome given the power of C# and mono.

    You can always use Python which is very well supported in Gnome/GTK.

  24. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 26, 2008 at 3:40 am

    Gravatar

    I was pretty happy with C++ and Qt. On the GTK side, GTK 2 and C treated me well at the time. I keep seeing this pattern where the defense from ‘Mono apologists’ touches on technical merits while escaping all the issues that actually matter in this particular discussion. I’m not the only one to have noticed this.

  25. akf said,

    March 26, 2008 at 7:51 am

    Gravatar

    infodroid said,

    I need a modern, high-level language to do development on GNOME. C++ is way to cumbersome given the power of C# and mono.

    Have a look at Vala.

  26. Victor Soliz said,

    March 26, 2008 at 8:26 am

    Gravatar

    C++ is way to cumbersome given the power of C# and mono.

    That’s fun, cause the way I see interpreted and VM languages I see an intentional attempt to give us less power than what C++ does. Anyway, try out vala like the akf guy said.

    Python also works, I’ve seen many good gnome apps and later I was shocked to find python was behind them, a better solution would be to have an alternative to C#, but someone needs to come up to it, something taking the good parts of C#’s syntax, (and forgetting the bad ones) and make it able to compile naively, I think vala is promising on this subject, but some people have an irrational attachment towards garbage collectors, and Vala is only meant for gnome applications…

    It would be ideal if Java fixed its GTK bindings, and went 100% FLOSS, until that, it is not a much better alternative than MONO.

    I think that the C/++/python combo is a proven technique, although I personally don’t like python that much.

  27. Christopher Browne said,

    March 26, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    Gravatar

    Victor Soliz said:

    ——————————————————————————
    The GPL FUD remains in his post, with the assumption that windows developers didn’t want to use MONO because it was GPLed (Which doesn’t make any sense since the libraries already use one of those non-GPL licenses anyways.
    ——————————————————————————

    Well, from what I can tell, Chris Cox and I have each contributed WAY more code under both the GPL and other licenses than you have, so OUR opinions have affected software that is *actually included* in Linux and BSD distributions.

    The hysterical rantings of people who merely write about things that they *wish* they had a useful opinion on matter a whole lot less than contributions of Actual Working Code.

  28. infodroid said,

    March 26, 2008 at 3:26 pm

    Gravatar

    @Linux_Is_Fun:

    Yes, Python is great for some things. But when I need to write robust and strongly-typed code, I have found that it is the wrong language for the job. I get better results with Java.

    @akf:

    Yes, Vala is a welcome development. But it does not help the fact I am stuck writing low-level C code to do the real work instead of focusing on abstractions.

    @Victor Soliz:

    I agree in some ways VM languages are technically less “powerful”, if you mean “power” in the sense of allowing you to do whatever you want.

    However, I think many programmers think of “power” in the sense of achieving a lot of results with the minimum effort.

    In this way C#, Java, and to a great extent Python are very liberating for desktop application developers because they allow developers to go a long way without wasting time on boilerplate code.

  29. CoolGuy said,

    March 27, 2008 at 6:53 am

    Gravatar

    @infodroid

    you can always opt for QT if you are into the super-power kind of programmer.

    Gnome is more about freedom. It is lacking in some areas considering its a free project and people dont get paid to do any work on it. Same is with gnash, etc.

    Not the latest and greatest – but gets the job done. We are happy with that – as long its a FSF project.

    Those who find Gnome/GTK lacking can always use KDE/QT rather than going for Mono or any other m$ sponsored illegal crapware.net

  30. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 27, 2008 at 7:10 am

    Gravatar

    CoolGuy,

    Qt is pretty much as open as GTK. This out-of-date FUD (not blaming you by any means) often angers KDE developers who suffer from this stereotype.

  31. CoolGuy said,

    March 27, 2008 at 7:19 am

    Gravatar

    Sorry I never meant to spread FUD but I was trying to explain that there are a other options available if someone finds GTK not that “super power can do everything”.

    There is no need for MONO even on a technical merits.

  32. akf said,

    March 27, 2008 at 7:40 am

    Gravatar

    infodroid said,

    Yes, Vala is a welcome development. But it does not help the fact I am stuck writing low-level C code to do the real work instead of focusing on abstractions.

    Vala aims to be a feature-complete language. It just uses C as intermediate language, Just like C compilers use Assembler as intermediate language. This also doesn’t mean, that you are stuck writing low level Assembler programs, when you write in C. Vala is an abstraction layer above C like C is an abstraction layer above Assembler.

  33. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 27, 2008 at 7:48 am

    Gravatar

    CoolGuy, what I put there in brackets was intended to ensure you don’t see this as an accusation, just a gentle clarification because I know how angry Aaron Seigo got when Glyn Moody made a subtle incorrect insinuation. :-) :-)

    GNOME is not ‘more free’ than KDE. It hasn’t been the case for many years, so it’s really juts a dead horse to kick (the argument, that is).

  34. Miles said,

    March 27, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Gravatar

    Vala is just as potential (and likely more so) a patent minefield as Mono because Vala clones the C# syntax, and, worse yet, because it isn’t true C#, the agreement (as part of being an ECMA spec) not to sue does not apply to it.

    If you advocate staying away from Mono because of fear of infringing on patents, then I highly suggest you stay away from Vala as well.

  35. enki said,

    March 28, 2008 at 2:54 am

    Gravatar

    Yeah…monogamy is really bad thing. But why you refer to this problem as “Mono”? Am I infected by using my favourite apps like f-spot, beagle etc?
    Ok, to the case. From my user standpoint its just one thing which really sucks. Java. All java programs runs slow as hell and have usability of troglodyts. I suppose that Mono based OOO will run much better.
    And…there is moonlight project which will take web back from real evil – flash. Blame me, I am using linux just because its more stable operating system with near all features I need. I don’t have proprietary nvidia driver, I understand what evil is in this deal. But, wake up..MS is not an enemy, it’s just player on same minefield.

  36. akf said,

    March 28, 2008 at 3:35 am

    Gravatar

    Miles said,

    Vala is just as potential (and likely more so) a patent minefield as Mono because Vala clones the C# syntax

    First of all, the syntax of C# is not so very different compared to other languages. So there should be more than enough prior art.

    And even in the unlikely event, that tis becomes a problem: Vala produces C code as intermediate language. So it should be relatively easy to switch a project back to pure C.

  37. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 28, 2008 at 3:40 am

    Gravatar

    Similarity to C# is not a problem because C# is similar to Java, which is in turn similar to many other things (remember the Microsoft/Sun deal which revolved around Java?). It’s complete copying of something (backward-engineering) that becomes an issue.

  38. Novice said,

    March 28, 2008 at 3:55 am

    Gravatar

    I have been searching for a good free C++ cross-platform IDE with visual GUI builder for quiet an year or more.I should say that I have not been lucky enough. While the Eclipses and Netbeans offer the core development capabilities like debugging, syntax highlighting etc., I really wanted an application where I do the UI programming without much manual intervention, in the drag-an-drop mode.

    The repeated searches on the web kept pointing to me to Anjuta (which uses Glade), Code::blocks and Mono finally. Out of these three, I am inclined towards the C::B and Mono.

    Frankly, IMO,Linux community does not have a strong developer productivity tool for C++, which enables
    a) Visual GUI builder
    b) Cross platform development (at least Linux and Windows)
    c) Free

    I think this is where Mono scored offering all this three in a single platform.

    OTOH, I also understand the implications of going with a product which has it internals tightly integrated with M$ products or proprietary technologies.

    I am not decided on which one to choose yet….

  39. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 28, 2008 at 4:02 am

    Gravatar

    Frankly, IMO,Linux community does not have a strong developer productivity tool for C++, which enables
    a) Visual GUI builder
    b) Cross platform development (at least Linux and Windows)
    c) Free

    Try Qt.

  40. Tazman said,

    March 28, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    Gravatar

    Let’s be serious Mono is no problem for the community.
    We can always find a replacement so what is with this buzz?

  41. Victor Soliz said,

    March 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm

    Gravatar

    Why do you mean by we can always find a replacement? People are distributing mono apps are .exe that are totally tied to Mono, replacing it will mean removing all those apps, and Novell’s plan is clearly to exploit money so these apps remain better featured.

  42. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 28, 2008 at 8:09 pm

    Gravatar

    There is an application dependency that is a practical one. People have their data tied to Mono apps, not to mention skills and habits.

  43. Tazman said,

    March 29, 2008 at 5:33 am

    Gravatar

    Firt i dont think Novell is evil and this is my opinion second there are other mono alternatives if you didnt know

  44. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 29, 2008 at 8:15 am

    Gravatar

    Novell is not “evil”, but its approach towards marketing and developing GNU/Linux is more of a favour to a company that has been trying to extinguish Linux for over a decade. Novell can still try to correct what it has done, so this is not a rant but more of an instructive and gentle suggestion arguing that focus should be taken off Microsoft .NET.

  45. cojii said,

    April 24, 2008 at 12:00 pm

    Gravatar

    @roy:

    http://trolltech.com/downloads

    vs

    http://www.gtk.org/

    I do NOT Like their surface approval of c# rather than java so I wont be useing GTK anymore, but its clear from that page that LGPL ( propreitary apps can use it for free and without royalties thus making it ‘more free’ than qt ) is the preferred route as whether you like it or not, it allows the most freedom.

    cya
    cojii

  46. Roy Schestowitz said,

    April 24, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Gravatar

    I’ve used GTK and loved it (also Qt). I believe the problem is related to the equivalent of poor hiring that enables people to change the agenda of a company (or project). In private, someone has just told that OpenBSD might be having a similar issue at this very moment.

  47. mass-carpone said,

    April 25, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    Gravatar

    Lots of fuzz about nothing; don’t wet’em, aunt Tilly.

  48. Victor Soliz said,

    May 7, 2008 at 8:01 pm

    Gravatar

    Vala is just as potential (and likely more so) a patent minefield as Mono because Vala clones the C# syntax, and, worse yet, because it isn’t true C#, the agreement (as part of being an ECMA spec) not to sue does not apply to it.

    Such an irrational condition, yet so many people like MS’ pledge not to sue so much…

    I encourage more people to use C# so unique features in new languages away from .net giberish, I had in the past for a language that is compiled to some other game engine language. Anyways I have just installed (and I am using) my first vala app, “dynamicworkspaces” , very useful.

  49. Victor Soliz said,

    May 26, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    Gravatar

    Roy, I think Lucy is an advert bot, check ‘her homepage’

  50. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 26, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    Gravatar

    Yes, you’re right. And there I was thinking it wasn’t a just a discussion among males.

    Spam removed.

  51. Levi Campbell said,

    June 7, 2008 at 5:36 pm

    Gravatar

    Oh man, where do I start here?

    Roy, I think your post here is a little too one-sided, I think that if we’re going to be talking about mono, it’s important that both sides of the story are heard.

    1. The Port 25 blog has an interview with Miguel de Icaza that was posted in 2006:
    http://port25.technet.com/archive/2006/08/11/Let_2700_s-talk-Mono_3A00_–Sam-interviews-Miguel-de-Icaza.aspx

    2. The patent system in the US is messed up (and currently being discussed by congress.), so even if MS did sue someone over mono, they would have a hard time proving financial damage because they give away mono.
    http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/02/05/2157209
    http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/04/09/1856252

    3. Microsoft is starting to give away the source code for the .net framework.
    http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2008/01/16/net-framework-library-source-code-now-available.aspx
    http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2007/10/03/releasing-the-source-code-for-the-net-framework-libraries.aspx

    In closing, I hope I’ve given people some food for thought about how they see the mono project an it’s relationship with Linux and open-source software as a whole.

    Thank You.

  52. vincent said,

    August 11, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Gravatar

    The best thing would be to merge and Mono. Net and then put Mono under LGPL v3.

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