[GRLUG] My review of Ubuntu 7.10: Gooey Gumdrop

Marc Zuverink mzuverink at gmail.com
Wed Oct 24 02:36:10 EDT 2007

Michael Mol wrote:
> Well, after spending a day arguing with it and researching, I've
> determined a couple things.
> First, Compiz does *not* appear to be enabled by default on *upgraded*
> systems.  In fact, I've noticed aggressive appears to be due to the
> i810 X11 driver being upgraded.  Setting special effects to "normal"
> (enabling Compiz)  instead of the upgrade-default of "none" improved
> performance somewhat, mainly by not forcing re-draws of windows while
> I was resizing them.
> Setting special effects to "Extra" reveals some broken behavior,
> though.  Most folks who use GUIs should be familiar with snap effects,
> where a window will snuggle cozily against screen edges or other
> surfaces.  With special effects set to "Extra", the snap range is way
> too high; Windows within fifty pixels or so of the screen size snap to
> an edge, and can't be pulled away.  Combined with the gooey gumdrop
> appearance one gets when one drags the title bar around, one gets the
> distinct feeling one's in a tug-of-war.
> In addition, the upgraded i810 driver causes lag issues with
> Stepmania, making the game absolutely unplayable on my system.  Which
> royally sucks, because that's exactly what I'd intended to do all
> weekend.  It's likely that the i810 driver has been optimized for
> newer graphics chipsets, which means my best course of action would be
> to upgrade my video card, which is unfortunate, as I don't have
> anything better than a PCI slot. Plus, I can't spare $60 right now for
> even a PCI video card.
> Finally, there weren't any "wow" features or fixes for me in 7.10.  In
> Edgy, they fixed some wireless weirdness that was giving me a hassle.
> The biggest problem I had had with Ubuntu up to this point was a high
> latency between volume-key presses and changes in system volume. (I
> think it's starting an app to handle the key presses.)  So 7.10 is,
> for me, an overall regression.
> I hereby christen Ubuntu 7.10 as "Gooey Gumdrop", after the weird
> special effects behavior, and give it a rating of two (out of five)
> stars.
> Mike
Personally, I find that Compiz-fusion and any other compositing manager
to be a huge waste.  I cannot stand the fact that some of the major
distro's are enabling it by default, or even installing it at all.  I
have used it to show it off to Vista using friends, but then quickly
disable it.  I find it funny that Vista will not allow me to enable Aero
on my laptop, but yet Compiz-fusion and Beryl work just fine

Last weekend I decided todo a fresh install of the RC for Gutsy, and
while I was at it I reinstalled my server box, this time with Debian
Testing.  Just for Giggles I installed Gnome on that box and have found
myself using that more than my machine with the shiny new Ubuntu on it.

My overall impression is that indeed Ubuntu is becoming bloat ware. 
Like someone else in this thread I too was impressed with how Ubuntu
correctly identified my hardware on my laptop.  That was back in Warty,
I've been w/ Ubuntu since, but am starting to look for another distro to
replace it on my laptop.  I want to stay with a Debian based system
whereas I am not a big fan of .rpms, I really like my "super cow powers".

I think that the name Gutsy is a good one for it though, gutsy that they
even put it out with so many bugs still outstanding.

I will spend my weekend shopping for a new distro.

The big problem I have is that I cannot handle downgrading to earlier
versions of WM's.  I find Gnome 2.20 to be beautiful compared to even
the last release.

Battery usage on Gutsy is even worse than on Feisty, despite new kernel
power saving options, which is very disappointing.

I have also found that Ubuntu's getting a tad slow with bug fixes. 
Several of the bugs which made it into the current official build have
been reported way back in herd stage and have even been marked as
critical, yet remain unfixed.

Marc Zuverink <mzuverink at gmail.com>

"Microsoft isn't evil, they just make really crappy operating systems."
							-Linus Torvalds

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