Linux, Without Command Line

What do you think of Linux minus the command line? HP Mini Mi is the netbook powered with Linux, sans command line. The general efforts of making Linux more usable seem to be going against the command line. While I think that GUI is functional and easier to start with, the command line is the best tool to make best use of the powerful shells and scripting to get more productive. Of course, the common man might not miss the command line, and it might not hurt the sales. However, I sincerely feel that the path to productivity is not towards avoiding command line, but using it along with the GUI. In this case, maybe HP should offer a way of enabling the command line instead of locking it away.

Discussion [Participate or Link]

  1. Celsius1414 said:

    Somebody, I think on Slashdot, pointed out that those who might want the command line are used to tweaking things manually and thus could, without much trouble, tweak a terminal for themselves on this computer. Thus, a tempest in a teapot.

  2. Raseel said:

    I think you hit the nail when you said “the common man”. If Linux is to make it’s mark as the Desktop OS, we have to think about the “common man”, the non-techie, about making it so simple that our Grandmoms can use it.
    I , personally, wouldn’t want a Desktop without the command-line. But considering the fact that I started using Linux only 6-7 years ago, I can see how people survive without it 😉

  3. Lewis Cowles said:

    I believe the command line is a necessary evil however Linux does not need it as the default for new users!

    Linux developers need to look at new ways to make the command-line less accidentally accessible, already I have read a post on Linux.com asking how to transfer from the command-line back to the GUI in Ubuntu.

    One solution I can think of is to have more in-built account types, so root, admin, power-user, user etc, all they need is one template file for the account types and they will be laughing. Then command line could be restricted to root, admin and in limited capacity on power-user profiles.

    Maybe there should be a GUI button to go to the command-line to safeguard new Linux users and come away from the old way of text-first then pictures.

    Doing it “the CLI way” is a massive assumption that people would rather have text than nothing at all and I think they are dead wrong! if mac osx cannot boot to gui it simply error’s out and reboots which gives the more CLI inclined the opportunity to play god with their systems, and for the rest a trip down to their local PC Fixamabob store. Linux has framebuffer support on most hardware these days anyway so maybe they should look into establishing a framebuffer then switching drivers (something I have never understood Linux not doing anyway, it’s naff to have to reboot to get new drivers working)

    just my 2cents

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Abhijit Nadgouda
iface Consulting
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