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 Forum index » House Training » Beginners Help ( Start Here)
First impressions from a Win-user point of view.
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Sirexel

Joined: 08 Aug 2005
Posts: 23
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 11:25    Post_subject:  First impressions from a Win-user point of view.  

I love Puppy. I want to make it my OS and I must learn about it.

In my way form XP to Puppy I think I can help to make Puppy more user friendly if I tell you my first impressions.

1. Win users are not used to see info lines during the boot up. I know is normal in Linux but if you want to make Puppy simple:
What's all this info on the screen if it is supposed you to do nothing with it?
(Suggestion: put a Splash Screen during boot up, with a key press option to see the info, just in case).

2. When you are new on a OS you don't know its apps. It's good to have a pre-selection but it is better when you have only the best* app in every field you need. [best*= best in Puppy terms]. If I'm not wrong (I'm writting from XP since my wifi card don't work on Puppy still) there are two Painting aplications, two (?) compressors, two file explorers...

3. Apps names are not descriptive for newbies. Why not call them (at least from menus and desktop) Word Procesor, Spreadsheet, File Explorer, Browser...? It's not cool but is usefull.

4. Control panel. Wizards are usefull and verbosed but there a too many in a too small place... (menu). I feel overflowed and is dificult to me to find the right one. I think a Control Panel window with just one wizard for every need (System, Net, PuppyTools, Printers, PCMCIA...) would be better.

5. Net. Why not Puppy tries to connect through eth (if detected and installed succesfully) to a DCHP and get an IP? And more enough, if that is possible, Why not to open automatically a Web Browser showing Last News About Puppy and a Tutorial Web Page?

That is zero config to surf Internet trough an ethernet conexion.
Mine did it just with two clicks on the Ethernet Wizard. What if the search for the wizard and the two clicks were not needed?

6. In Windows there is an easy acces to user folders and a (lightly-)protected acces for system folders. In Puppy at firs look you can´t find 'My Documents'. You click in 'roox' and you can see 'My Documents' and other strange folders. Things came stranger if you play around a few clicks and you enter in obscure folders: lib, mnt, and others I can't remember. The same as point 1: Why can I acces (so easily) those folders if it is supposed I have to do nothing with them?

Just my two cents.

And a reflexion: I think Linux users are so proud with their OS that they love to see its intestines. For a simple user (as me) that kind of things are not interesting at all.

Thank yoy veru must for you interest.
Thanks for Puppy.

Sirexel Smile
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11122
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 11:40    Post_subject:  

I strongly agree with pretty much everything sirexel said, except numbers 1 and 2 and 6.

1. Hiding the boot messages. One of the main gripes I have about Windows (and some versions of Linux) is they put their desktop images up before the OS is ready to go. Not only that, but they don't do anything to definitely let you know when it is ready to go. I like that Puppy waits until it is ready before it puts up the desktop screen.

2. Apparently redundant programs. I've found that if I can't do something in one program I can sometimes do it in another. It's nice to have several to try, if they don't add too much bloat to Puppy. On the other hand, it would be nice to be able to easily remove the redundant program(s) to save room, if I determine I don't need them.

3. Hidden files and folders. I really hate the idea of hiding anything. Better to mark them with special icons that indicate system folders and files, or something like that.
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edoc


Joined: 07 Aug 2005
Posts: 4379
Location: Southeast Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 11:49    Post_subject:  

Flash wrote:

1. Hiding the boot messages. One of the main gripes I have about Windows (and some versions of Linux) is they put their desktop images up before the OS is ready to go. Not only that, but they don't do anything to definitely let you know when it is ready to go. I like that Puppy waits until it is ready before it puts up the desktop screen.


As another newbie to Puppy, but a several year user of multiple Linux distros and forced use of XP at work, I have only a quibble re. the startup.

For most users a pretty picture, or series of pictures, is less fear-inducing than a bunch of lines of code. Perhaps different pictures could be displayed with text stating where in the boot process things are at?

Terrible grammar, I know! My HS grammar teacher would frown something fierce ... doc
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 12:23    Post_subject:  

Hi Sirexel,

I find that all your recommendations are excelent. Actually Most of the big Linux distributions are currently implementing them in one way or another.

Some of those recommendations could be implemented in puppy without a problem.

Still, there are a few things that may help you understand why some are not practical.

Please consider that one of the goals of Puppy is to be a very light and simple OS. That means including as little as possible while still being fully functional. That also means that it should be loaded 100% in RAM. That's what makes it so fast.

Sirexel wrote:
put a Splash Screen during boot up, with a key press option to see the info, just in case).
The 'Splash Screen' requires extra libraries and adds complexity while adding little value (other than the aesthetical one). I agree, first impresions are VERY important, but you only have to 'suffer' the boot screen for a few seconds instead of 'suffering' a pretty boot screen for a few minutes. You can latter customize your actual work environment to be pleasing. Still, not as pleasing as other major OS's, but defitetivelly faster.
Quote:
It is better when you have only the best* app in every field you need.
Couldn't agree more on this one.
Although someone will argue that for example 'different edditors have different capabilities, so they are not the same thing', I would reply: Include a decently featured one and leave the others as options to download.
Quote:
Why not call them {the apps in the menu} Word Procesor, Spreadsheet, File Explorer, Browser
In windows, is it called 'spread sheet' or 'Excel'?.
Actually regardless of what MS does, your sugestion makes a lot of sense.
The only thing I can think of is: When you install an alternative application It will look confusing, so maybe "Browser (Mozilla)".

Quote:
I think a Control Panel window with just one wizard for every need
The menu has an entry for each wizard. The control pannel was a way of simplifying it. The main problem here is that for a particular computer you may need a set of wizards, but for a different computer you may need a different set of wizards. So, I guess learning which wizards apply to you is part of the learning process. Actually I am sure that the first time you oppened the Control panel in Windows you did not have a clue what each one did. (e.g. should you use 'Add hardware' or 'Internet Options' or 'Network Connections' if you need to configure your wireless card?)[/quote]
Quote:
Why not Puppy tries to connect through eth

As far as I know networking is a work in progress.
One thing to realize, puppy does not have all the HW detection and HW libraries as other big distribution. I think that's part of the price to pay for the actuall speed once you have identified and configured your HW and drivers manually. Still, the selection of drivers included cover most HW configurations.
Quote:
Why not to open automatically a Web Browser showing Last News About Puppy and a Tutorial Web Page
Actually the tutorial should reside in the CD as part of it is 'how to set-up a connection'.
The only issue though is keeping the tutorial page current with the puppy release. Remember that currently there is only Barry working full time in Puppy.
Quote:
In Puppy at firs look you can´t find 'My Documents'. You click in 'roox' and you can see 'My Documents' and other strange folders... that you have nothing to do with
If you come to Canada you won't be able to find 'bathrooms' but there are plenty of 'washrooms'. This is: The names are strange, just because you are comming from Windows. The linux directory structure is different than that of Windows. So new operating system new concepts. I bet you had some learning curve when you started using windows. (I've never known someone that did not).

Again, great sugestions, I'm sure that Barry will take them into account when working in future puppy releases.

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doopdoop

Joined: 28 Jul 2005
Posts: 48
Location: Magdeburg, Germany

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 12:29    Post_subject:  

I strongly agree with your suggestions, sirexel.
I've started a project working on this here http://www.murga.org/~puppy/viewtopic.php?t=1485
If you have something to contribute, feel free to do so. Help, small and big, is always welcome.
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PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 12:33    Post_subject:  

I have a few more suggestions.
When accessing the icewm menu, 50% of the time I make the mistake of accidently clicking logout before the menu pops up, thus kicking me back to the console.

I use IceWM.
But is there a way to globally add this in?
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Sirexel

Joined: 08 Aug 2005
Posts: 23
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 13:07    Post_subject:  

You all are very kind.

I want to stay clear mine are just suggestions. Your work in Puppy is awesome and never enough apreciate as it should.

I will follow telling here my impressions, just in case they are usefull.
Of course sometimes I will be wrong but it's allways good to proof the stablished ideas just to know they are still good, isn't it?

Now I move to doopdoop 'project' thread with this ideas as I think his goal is my goal.

Thx
Sirexel Smile
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Sirexel

Joined: 08 Aug 2005
Posts: 23
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 14:08    Post_subject:  

Quote:
The 'Splash Screen' requires extra libraries and adds complexity(...)


I undertand. Of course no more complexity. 'KISS' rule.

Quote:

I would reply: Include a decently featured one and leave the others as options to download.


I completely agree with that.
For example, in Win, how many standard users use Notepad or Writte if they have installed Word?
Quote:


In windows, is it called 'spread sheet' or 'Excel'?.


I understand what you mean but note I'm not defending Win vs Linux. When several years ago I teached my father about PCs and Win95 I musted make links to the apps in the desktop with names 'Word Procesor, Email...'
That worked very well for him. And still today is dificult to him remember the apps names as he doesn't put attention on it.

If we could run computers from our mind if I would want to write an email I will thought in 'email' not in 'Outlook'. Email is the keyword wherever the OS (or Real Live) you came from.

Quote:

Actually regardless of what MS does,


Bah. Who cares about them anyway Smile

Quote:
your sugestion makes a lot of sense.
The only thing I can think of is: When you install an alternative application It will look confusing, so maybe "Browser (Mozilla)".


I think that users who are desiring an able to download another alternative aplication are 'power-users' for the standard of a pure Puppy easy-simple-fast.

If I want Opera sure I can realize now I'm using Mozilla. So that problem doesn't exist at all.

Quote:
So, I guess learning which wizards apply to you is part of the learning process.


I undesrtand too but, anyway, why not to make that learning curve as easy as possible?

Think on me. 10 years Win user with a good level (for a user) of PC undertanding.

I land in Puppy, I want to ve sure my hardware is detected... Oh here is 'Start' button, right... Here it is Control Panel, yes... KP, Top, Xproc, Fvwm etc, etc, etc...

Probably 'system information' its what I'm looking for just before the nonsense word 'Xproc'.

Should a newbie (coming from Win or from no OS) learn this meanless names?
I don't want to learn again all the slang of an OS. It doesn't care to me what kind of program manages my windows. I just want to change the resolution of my Display, for example.

I think the idea is to be as transparent as possible, ALLWAYS keeping the simplicity of Puppy, in case of doubt.

Quote:
Still, the selection of drivers included cover most HW configurations.


I think Puppy detected my ethernet card without problems but did not the DCHP call, the I musted to do it 'manually' through the wizard,


Quote:
The only issue though is keeping the tutorial page current with the puppy release. Remember that currently there is only Barry working full time in Puppy.


Of course, of course. Just suggestions. I'm no man to ask for nothing.

But anyway simplifing the use of Puppy would reduce the amount of Tutorial needs.

HOW TO- Write an email in Puppy.
A: Just click 'Email' on your desktop.

HOW TO- Setup my software.
A: Just go to Start/Control Panel
...

In my (anyway Puppy - ignorant) point of view the first page of Puppy Tutorial is HOW TO install Puppy, second is First Glance on Puppy and I canˇt think on third if Puppy is was usefriendly as I dream.

That remembers me:

7. I click on some files and nothing happens.
If I click a picture I want to see it (or edit it)
The same for a document.

I have learned tha you can teach rox wich program it should run on a click, but Why it is this not configured from the begining?

Quote:
So new operating system new concepts. I bet you had some learning curve when you started using windows. (I've never known someone that did not).


I would agree with you If it would exist other way. But really it's this time consuming efort needed.

I think a standard user just needs one folder for his file savings and *nothing* more. In that case no more folders are needed to be shown.


And finally a well know rule with my bad english:
80/20. The eighty percent of standard user just use the twenty percent of the options.

That is: work on that 20% and you will reach a 80% of astonished users.

I belive that is the keystone of Puppy. You can not think in all the people, just in the majority of your market niche.

...with the GREAT improvement of PuPGet DotPup wich can give more Pupy for those who need it.

(Again two aplications for a similar fucntion. Quite strange this custom for a distro that wants to be small... Wink

Very pleased to talk with all you.
Sirexel Smile
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 14:22    Post_subject:  

In my own opinion... You are right in all counts.

Hopefully we will help Puppy get there soon. (and by 'we' I mean to include you as you already started by taking the time offering your sugestions)
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Lobster
Official Crustacean


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
Location: Paradox Realm

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 15:09    Post_subject: Ay Chiwawa Welcome  

Cool

Probably what is needed is something like the Ay Chiwawa 1-Click Toolbar which is enclosed as a dotpup (clicking on it will download it - then click on the downloaded file to autoinstall and run it)

It introduces my first efforts in ZUL (a language so KUL it rhymes with Cool) - just as a pre-taster . . .

You lucky lucky Puppys! Rolling Eyes
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Guest


PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 18:50    Post_subject:  

mmmmmmm


Has anyone thought of this...


If a user started off on Linux and never used windows and then switched to windows would not things seem strange to to that user ?

Would they not have to learn to adapt ?

Would not things work in different ways ?

When switching to Linux you are lucky that you can make suggestions....Imagine the response you'd get from MS asking to SEE the boot info ?

I like the boot info at least you can see what's happening and where it gets stuck.

And not everyone connects to the internet via ADSL\Cable, not everyone has a network implemented at home....To make assumptions like these is just to further confuse people..

And another big plus......A very large proportion of virii are targeted at windows platforms...I'd rather spend a hour or so learning to use programs than spending time installing AV software and trying to get rid of virii.

Linux is much much much more secure out of the box.

And once you get over the fear of the commandline\console you'll realise how much more powerful *nix enviroments are.
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Ian
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 1237
Location: Queensland

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 19:44    Post_subject:  

I wonder what Mac users first impressions of Linux especially Puppy Linux are.

Regarding the use of splashscreens to hide the bootup info, the option to allow people to boot in a verbose mode or not could be implemented and the splashscreen is only used during bootup so it is not loaded into RAM.

Other Linux distros offer this option, Corel and Mandrake come to mind.

Bladehunter is right in what he says but with the flexibility to customize in the Linux world personal preferences can be catered for.

The hardest thing for people migrating from a Windows environment to understand is that they have the power to change any feature of their Linux setup, something that is not possible in Windows.

Sure, you can change your background and screensaver and add or delete desktop icons, create and delete files and folders and there is even a program to add additional desktops but that is about it apart from adding and removing programs which is normal for almost any OS.

But you cannot fix things easily, if a program fails or refuses to work what can you do, complain to the authors, I don't think so.

When your Win OS becomes corrupted can you fix it yourself or do you have to buy a program to do this for you.

I could go on and on but the main point is that although Linux does not appear as user friendly as Windows, it really is user friendly because it lets you get inside the works and tinker to your hearts content.
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dvw86


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 636
Location: Washington State

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 22:31    Post_subject:  

Ian wrote:
I wonder what Mac users first impressions of Linux especially Puppy Linux are.

Well as a Mac user turned Linux I think I can answer that. There are two general types of Mac users. The first is the type that uses them because Macs are very easy and intuitive to use, much more than Windows. This group would see the linux boot screen and never go beyond it. They would think that Linux is a throwback to DOS or something.The second group use Macs because it is unix based. It comes with X11, the console (called Terminal), Xterm, Apache, PHP, Postfix, and many other open source applications. To them Linux is much more configurable but not near as nice to look at. Macs are also nice because products like Adobe Photoshop and even Microsoft Office are availiable for it., but you are still in a *nix environment.

Ian wrote:

Regarding the use of splashscreens to hide the bootup info, the option to allow people to boot in a verbose mode or not could be implemented and the splashscreen is only used during bootup so it is not loaded into RAM.

Other Linux distros offer this option, Corel and Mandrake come to mind.
Macs use a splash screen but show you one line (the most recent) of the boot up information. I think this gives a very nice look while still providing some more detailed information to the user. However it can be very hard to read on a fast booting Mac since the line you are trying to read is replaced when the next one is displayed.

Ian wrote:

I could go on and on but the main point is that although Linux does not appear as user friendly as Windows, it really is user friendly because it lets you get inside the works and tinker to your hearts content.

How true. I know many people who turned away from Windows because in the end it was more work that what they thought it was.
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Lobster
Official Crustacean


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 15117
Location: Paradox Realm

PostPosted: Mon 08 Aug 2005, 23:02    Post_subject:  

The Ay Chiwawa 1-Click Toolbar aka welcome pup (see previous post) was downloaded 6 times before I was able to fix a bug Embarassed - hope it now works - would be interested if the XUL component is running on Firefox?

Just download again and it will copy over your previous version
Smile

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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11122
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Tue 09 Aug 2005, 00:21    Post_subject:  

Hey Lobster, would you add a little screen shot to your download post?
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