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Author Topic: VL is looking good  (Read 19497 times)
tripleRsystem
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« on: September 14, 2008, 01:14:01 pm »

I picked up on VL from distrowatch.  In any direction taken to build market share it will take money; it is a costly matter to promote the better mousetrap.  The Ubuntu founder has spent a tonne of money to get Ubuntu where it is today.  However, there are low budget distros, such as PCLOS, Mint that are ranked near the top simply because a host of Linux users believe they are better suited too their likes and dislikes.  My short experience with VL tells me VL is certainly a well done distro, so VL will climb in the rank as Linux users give it ago. 
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vector
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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2008, 11:51:06 pm »

Thank you for the kind words. My problem is Vector has been around longer than Ubuntu, mint or even pclos. In fact we are older than than 90% of the distros on distrowatch but still people do not know vector and still think its a new distro much of the time. We get usually five reviews per release all generally good to excellent
and yet no respect............what are we to do .............after 10 years I am out of ideas.............so new ideas would be good!

Vector
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tripleRsystem
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« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2008, 08:14:52 pm »

Well, I'll put my thinking cap on and try to come up with an idea or two.   First and foremost the world always beats a path to a better mousetrap.  One must ask:  What are the top ten ranking distros doing that justifies their popularity.  You rightfully point out, Vector is an old timer in the business and offers a broad line of quality distros'.  I believe first it must be quantified as to exactly what it is that makes PCLOS, a derivative of Mandriva, and Mint, a knock off from Ubuntu, more popular than Vector.  In the final analysis it may simply be karma! And then again, there may not be an answer, who would of thought a distro done in brown would survive let alone succeed to the level of Ubuntu.  However, you may have pointed to part of your problem. If it is true that Vector is seen as a new distro then it is also seen as work in progress i.e; unstable and buggy.   This image of the new kid on the block must be reversed or Vector Linux will remain as it is today, a quality distro but an oddity unable to break-out and will simply remain a jr varsity red shirt, or just another also ran.  I will continue to give this some thought, and simply PM.  Of course the use of PM may be counter productive since an open forum discourse may bring additional and better ideas to the table. 

As a closing thought: It seems perhaps some vintage leverage may be possible from an associated name Slackware?  You would understand the vagaries of this better than I.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 09:04:08 pm by tripleRsystem » Logged
M0E-lnx
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« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2008, 11:00:51 am »

You make a good point in stating the fact that a distro would never make it to the top if seen as a "work in progress". I think that makes a lot of sense. One also has to consider how important it is to stay up-to-date with new software, or else you will be seen as the old dusty book in the library that no body touches. Keep that in mind when you think of other well known distros that make few but solid releases (dare I say "Slackware"?). That being said, I think a better approach to the VL development would be to make fewer solid releases (maybe once a year or so) that way, you have enough time for more extensive testing and bugfixing.

My 2 cents worth
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caitlyn
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2008, 12:36:19 pm »

Umm... Vector has only one version released per year.  5.8 was 12/06.  5.9 was 12/07.  It looks like 6.0 might be 12/08.  There are variations on a theme (SOHO, Live, Light) but only one real release.  Less than that and we'd be ignored for sure.

I do think the association with Slackware hurts more than it helps.  Slackware, to many people means difficult, geeky, unfriendly, and generally a pain in the a**.  IT also means fast, stable, and reliable and what Vector Linux does is add the user friendliness and a decent sized repository that Slackware lacks.  The problme Vector, Zenwalk, Wolvix, Nonux, etc... all have is getting people to understand that Slackware derivative doesn't necessarily mean just like Slackware.  We take all the good that Slackware offers and add what many (most?) people find lacking.  It isn't just a Slackware respin the way so many Ubuntu derivatives are just Ubuntu with a new theme and a different package list.  Vector is to Slackware what Ubuntu is to Debian and I don't think most people understand that.

Work in progress?  All operating systems are perpetual works in progress.  They have to be to keep up with new technologies.  I don't think VL is any more a work in porgress than other distros.  If anything it's less so.  We seem to have fewer bugs than Ubuntu in a given release.

Maybe it's time I write a new article, one not limited to Vector...
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M0E-lnx
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2008, 12:45:49 pm »

The reason I mentioned that was because I think I recall an change made after 5.9 went final where VL was going to try more frequent incremental releases.
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tripleRsystem
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« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2008, 01:40:25 pm »

Great post caitlyn, your post sure sold me on Vector Linux, however, I'm part of the quire.  What troubles me it seems Vector Linux is doing everything right, and, if true, there is no room for improvement or change. [But] where does that lead us in our quest to lead the pack.  In business there is an old axiom  "Advertise or Die."  Vector Linux, for whatever the reason, is attempting to sell itself to the community, and exactly how to do this is the problem.  Vector Linux would not be the first business to do a complete make over to achieve an image that sells.  I'm not convinced that steps need be initiated to change the product, I only suggest more exposer is required to get your post to the broader community and beyound.  Five or six positive reviews per year and one or two articles will not help move Vector Linux forward and out of the surrounding pack.  Vector Linux must offer the community something unique and/or bury the community with its presence until the name Vector Linux becomes as common as Comet Cleanser.         
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caitlyn
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2008, 02:40:48 pm »

What makes you think Vector Linux is a business?  There is no corporate entity so far as I know.  I don't think it's particularly important that VL become as popular as Ubuntu.

Is VL doing everything right?  Not hardly.  I don't know any distributor that is.  OTOH, things have improved steadily over the years IMHO.
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CentOS 6.5 (will try VL64-7.1 soon)

Toshiba Satellite A135-S4727,  Intel Pentium T2080 / 1.73 GHz, 2GB RAM, Intel GMA 950

HP Mini 110 netbook, 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU, 2GB RAM, Intel 950 video, VL 7.1
bigpaws
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« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2008, 06:02:06 pm »

Quote
What makes you think Vector Linux is a business?  There is no corporate entity so far as I know.

Vector is a legal business.

Bigpaws
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tripleRsystem
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« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2008, 07:39:24 pm »

Thank you for the kind words. My problem is Vector has been around longer than Ubuntu, mint or even pclos. In fact we are older than than 90% of the distros on distrowatch but still people do not know vector and still think its a new distro much of the time. We get usually five reviews per release all generally good to excellent
and yet no respect............what are we to do .............after 10 years I am out of ideas.............so new ideas would be good!

Vector

My involvement in this discussion is simply focused upon the comments steeped in frustration as offered by Vector.

Suggesting Vector Linux will eventually win or hold its current market share i.e.; ranking, simply because it's a well done distro will not make it so Scotty.  There are simply many distros equal to or better than Vector Linux.  So, if Vector Linux refuses to adjust to the market place, Vector Linux can expect a strong cult following but not the broader community respect Vector is looking for.

Success requires a plan, and serious planning is big business wheather or not its a POP and MOM operation or General Motors or Vector Linux it's all about market share, and right now Vector Linux has very little market share, the community is a mobile and tight market. 

Beneath Ubuntus' brown facade is Canonical, dig deeper and it will be dicovered Ubuntus' early success was not simply happenstance.  Canonical understood in the beginning what it wanted and it knew exactly what it had to do to achieve its goal.  Ubuntu like Phoenix rising from the ashes took command of the community before most distros understood what was upon them.  It was not happenstance that made Ubuntu the success that it is.  One doesn't need to be a business to apply successful business thought and practice, one only needs to understand profit and loss and benefit ratio.

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GrannyGeek
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« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2008, 08:35:30 pm »

Please remember that Ubuntu started out with millions in capital behind it. It can afford to send free CDs to anyone who asks for them. RedHat and SuSE have huge companies behind them and their free distros (Fedora and OpenSuSE) benefit from this.

I think Ubuntu has a lot of (undeserved) buzz because of marketing possible from all the money behind it. VectorLinux can't compete with that. It then became a dogma that Ubuntu was easy to use compared with other Linuxes and this has been repeated ad nauseam by columnists in print and on the Web. Now a lot of people think Linux=Ubuntu.

Frankly, I don't want us to become like Ubuntu. I think it has *too many* users, with the result that its user support forums are overwhelming and questions posted are liable to disappear from view too fast.

I don't want VL to be obscure--it wouldn't bother me, but it's not my business. I'm sure Vec and others with a financial stake in the company would quite rightly want more income from it and they deserve it.

VL isn't doing badly at Distrowatch. We've hovered a few places under or over 20 for years.

I think VL's best selling points are stability and SPEED. It was the speed that got me to abandon trying other distros and stick with VL back in the days of VL 4.3. It was just so overwhelmingly faster than other distros I was trying. I've run Ubuntu Live CDs from time to time just to see what the buzz is about and I was never impressed.

Another thing about VL is that you can learn Linux, not just how to run whatever GUI tools the distro gives you. *NOT* shielding the user from the guts of the system is a great benefit. At the same time, VL does include tools that make things easier. So I think we have the best of both worlds. The thing is, it's hard to convey these advantages in a proverbial 30-second sound bite.

What I do to promote VL is mention that I use it in every forum I participate in whenever the chance comes up and I describe it in more detail when it's appropriate. It's important to stress ease of use because many people have the idea that "Linux is hard." Ubuntu has put a lot of emphasis on saying how easy it is to use.

My own feeling is that new releases come out too often. I HATE building a new system once a year. I'd rather see a three-year cycle for a complete new release and a Windows-style Service Pack annually. The idea of setting up a new installation twice a year is horrifying.
--GrannyGeek
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tripleRsystem
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« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2008, 08:41:56 pm »

Caitlyn: 

In re reading your posting I discover a possibility.

You post:

"Slackware, to many people means difficult, geeky, unfriendly, and generally a pain.  IT also means fast, stable, and reliable and what Vector Linux does is add the user friendliness."

So I read this as Vector Linux is the friendly face for Slackware.  I'm sure there are many sem-geeks in the community who discover Slackware beyound their level of Linux comprehension, and are frustrated at not being able to experience the Slackware model.  Additionally, I would wager there are many semi-geeks unaware Vector Linux is their ticket to a Slackware ride the easy way.  I suspect there is a real possibility your words could produce a beneficial link between Slackware and Vector Linux.  Again were looking for longevity with stability.       
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tripleRsystem
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« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2008, 09:17:37 pm »

GrannyGeek:

Your excellent post makes many valid points, and I will addess but one:

You Post:

"VL isn't doing badly at Distrowatch. We've hovered a few places under or over 20 for years."

That is exactly the problem.  Vector Linux seems to have taken umbrage with the near-do-wells.  When the community at large begins to realize that Vector Linux will be found at the same Distrowatch ranking year after year this may be great for cult members but not so good for VL.  When sharks quit swimming they die.  Vector wants community respect.  Vector Linux is a quality distro and deserves respect, however, this respect will not come with equilibrium at number twenty or there abouts.   
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Dweeberkitty
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« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2008, 06:16:20 am »

GrannyGeek:

Your excellent post makes many valid points, and I will addess but one:

You Post:

"VL isn't doing badly at Distrowatch. We've hovered a few places under or over 20 for years."

That is exactly the problem.  Vector Linux seems to have taken umbrage with the near-do-wells.  When the community at large begins to realize that Vector Linux will be found at the same Distrowatch ranking year after year this may be great for cult members but not so good for VL.  When sharks quit swimming they die.  Vector wants community respect.  Vector Linux is a quality distro and deserves respect, however, this respect will not come with equilibrium at number twenty or there abouts.   

Good point actually.
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uelsk8s
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« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2008, 06:32:55 am »

I think we should get a few things straight.

1) the rankings on DW do not tell how popular a distribution is.  the ranking there only show how often a distributions name is clicked, and once you know about a distro there is not much motivation to go back to DW and click.

2) The DW rankings are easy to cheat. I have seen a script that finds proxy servers and hits DW repeatedly. The same could be done by asking your forum members to click DW each day or placing a redirect on your homepage, all have been done by other  distributions.
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