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GNU is Not Unix Software

TheOpenCD 1.4 Released 278

Lykos writes "From OpenCD's website: 'TheOpenCD is a collection of high quality Free and Open Source Software. The programs run in Windows and cover the most common tasks such as word processing, presentations, e-mail, web browsing, web design, and image manipulation.' This is a great little package to leave lying around your friends' workplace to convince them to go opensource. =) Lots of quality programs in one convenient package."
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TheOpenCD 1.4 Released

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  • My problem (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:49PM (#9056229)
    Is that when I leave the CD open, it won't boot it. I have to close the CD to get the Open CD to work.
  • Torrent (Score:5, Informative)

    by r84x ( 650348 ) <r84x@yahoo.GAUSScom minus math_god> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:51PM (#9056258) Homepage Journal
    sorry about whoring...

    but just in case...

    torrent [sunsite.dk]

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:51PM (#9056262)
    Richard Stallman -- Lead Flute
    Miguel De Icaza -- Banjo
    Alan Cox -- Washboard
  • Fred Fish (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tttonyyy ( 726776 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:51PM (#9056266) Homepage Journal
    Heh, reminds me of the old Fred Fish disks for the Amiga, crammed with free/shareware stuff. They were great days. :)
    • Re:Fred Fish (Score:3, Interesting)

      by booch ( 4157 )
      It's interesting to note that Fred Fish is somewhat active in the GNU community. If you do a Google search, you can find several of his contributions and mailing list posts in several GNU projects.
  • CD Program Contents (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:52PM (#9056285)
    already slow... here's the cd list...

    Office & Design
    OpenOffice.org, AbiWord, PDFCreator, GIMP

    Internet & Communication
    Mozilla, Miranda IM, FileZilla, TightVNC, WinHTTrack, PuTTY

    Multimedia & Games
    Audacity, CDex, Tux Paint, Crack Attack!, Sokoban YASC,
    Neverball, Celestia, Really Slick Screensavers

    Utilities & Other
    7-Zip, SciTE, WinPT, NetTime
    • by LittleBigScript ( 618162 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:09PM (#9056531) Homepage Journal
      I think it is interesting how important security is on slashdot to people, but there is no mention about any anti-(spam | virus | worm).

      There is also no firewall? Come on...

      I can't recommend it, anyway, because it doesn't have Nethack.
      • Re:No firewall? (Score:5, Informative)

        by NineNine ( 235196 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:16PM (#9056614)
        I use free-av.com. Best virus app I've seen, and it's 100% free for personal use. It's updated almost daily, and it doesn't cause problems like Norton & McAffee.
      • Are there any mature OSS anti-virus or firewall programs for Windows? I've never heard of any.

        • Re:No firewall? (Score:2, Informative)

          by zcat_NZ ( 267672 )
          ClamAV has a windows version, and an OE plugin.

          It doesn't do continuous scanning, but I usually switch that off, on the basis that if I'm scanning everything as it comes in I'm not likely to have written a virus to file in the first place.

          Nice easy installer, and everything. http://clamwin.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]
      • I think it is interesting how important security is on slashdot to people, but there is no mention about any anti-(spam | virus | worm).

        If you use the IE and Outlook alternatives on the CD and a little common sense, you virtually don't need AV. I haven't used it in years, and I've never had a problem.

        I can't recommend it, anyway, because it doesn't have Nethack.

        At risk of sounding entirely humorless, I don't think Nethack is released under the GPL.
  • oh, please. zero comments and the link is already slashdotted. Grrr.
  • previous coverage (Score:4, Informative)

    by werdnapk ( 706357 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:53PM (#9056295)
    previous coverage here [slashdot.org] and here [slashdot.org]
  • Also take a look.. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Karamchand ( 607798 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:53PM (#9056298)
    ..at GNUWin II [gnuwin.epfl.ch], a similar project.
  • Really cool idea (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Black_Logic ( 79637 ) * <`moc.liamg' `ta' `etumretniw'> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:54PM (#9056315) Homepage Journal
    This seems like a pretty cool idea. I thought about something like this a while back. I'm not to familiar with windows any more. Would it be possible to have these programs execute straight from the cd instead of installing? That would defninitely come in handy at say, the school labs where you can't install programs and they don't have your favorite OS program installed.

    Seems like a good list of programs, firefox may be a nice addition, though.
  • by hal2814 ( 725639 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:54PM (#9056319)
    I'm thinking that an easy to use Web portal to this kind of software would be a better idea. That way the user can get the most up-to-date version of the software and any new software deemed "worthy" of the list could be distributed to everyone by updating a Web page.
  • by utahraptor ( 703433 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:54PM (#9056321) Homepage
    This is one of those deals that is outdated before download completes.
  • Mirror here (Score:4, Informative)

    by broothal ( 186066 ) <christian@fabel.dk> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:54PM (#9056322) Homepage Journal
    Poor webserver is already bending over backwards. Find your mirror here. []
    • Re:Mirror here (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MartinG ( 52587 )
      None of the mirrors listed there have this version yet. The page linked even says so.
      • To mail me: echo wgz2pxf4zg11lbjlwyxbhyb3q | tr bfghjlpqwxyz1234 .@acdeikmnorstuw

        I guess you don't want Windows users e-mailing you (unless they have Cygwin installed, that is).

        Sounds like a good plan if you ask me...

  • It's interesting... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AKAImBatman ( 238306 ) <{akaimbatman} {at} {gmail.com}> on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @04:55PM (#9056331) Homepage Journal
    ...how much my software has changed. It used to be that I'd use MS Office, Internet Explorer, Paintshop Pro, WinZIP, and other for-pay applications to get my work done. These days I find myself using FireFox, OpenOffice, JEdit, NetBeans, Cygwin, EnZIP, GIMP, and other Open Source tools. And nearly every one of them is superior to the application I replaced. Fascinating world we live in.

  • Slashdot is responsive, but even this google cache [] of the mirror sites isn't working for me.

    Sasser, or is it just me?

  • by saskboy ( 600063 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:02PM (#9056425) Homepage Journal
    The Ultimate Boot CD [ultimatebootcd.com]

    This CD and the Open CD are about all you need to get your friends computer working in tip top shape.

  • No it isn't. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cnelzie ( 451984 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:02PM (#9056426) Homepage
    Leaving that CD around won't convince anybody to go to OpenSource software. I don't have the time to look at some CD that was left around by someone attempting to tempt me to 'go over' to their side.

    As the Purchasing Agent and the entire IT Staff I get all sorts of DemoCD Crap sent to me all the time. All sorts of "Look at how awesome our crap is!", "Try it once and wonder how you ever did without it!"

    Most of it is all the same, they come from silly 'Microsoft Partners' all selling the same thing... Some kind of 'Revolutionary Business Management Software' that we would have to build our business around to get anything out of it. The rest of it is a mess of various CAD/CAM systems, most of which are the worst crap you ever did see...

    Do you know what I do with it all? I dump it into the trash first thing. I don't read the marketing hype, I don't waste a moment attempting to load something that then demands I 'Register' the Demo to get a Demo unlock code that does nothing but mark me as a 'target' to their sales drones...

    If we need software, my job is to head out and find it. I look at OSS first, because most of the little side software packages we need won't require massive retraining, like zip software or other utilities like that...

    So, would a CD Found laying around our office end up in any PC? Heck no, especially if it is unmarked... There could be all sorts of nasties on it we don't want/need on our network...

    Keep your CD to yourself unless someone mentions looking for a mess of free software, then give them the CD.
    • Re:No it isn't. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by penguinoid ( 724646 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:26PM (#9056731) Homepage Journal
      So, would a CD Found laying around our office end up in any PC?

      Yes. There are people who read spam. There are people who open random attachments. There are people who use AOL cds. There will be people who would read an unlabled CD.

      In fact, I have a feeling that quite a few people would be interested in a CD that has a good picture and something like "Open CD" and url ending with .org on it.
    • Re:No it isn't. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by bcrowell ( 177657 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @10:41PM (#9059657) Homepage
      Leaving that CD around won't convince anybody to go to OpenSource software. I don't have the time to look at some CD that was left around by someone attempting to tempt me to 'go over' to their side.
      Unfortunately, I'd have to agree based on my experience with using TheOpenCD and GnuWinII as tools for evangelizing free software. For me, the results were really disappointing. I teach physics at a community college. A lot of my students don't have much money, and it seemed to me like they'd just naturally be interested in free alternatives to Office, etc. I handed out free CDs on the first day of class, and got exactly zero interest. Not a single student mentioned having used the software. Not a single student started using OSS for doing graphs in their lab reports.

      Some possible reasons:

      • Hard as it may be for me (and other Slashdotters) to conceive, many people simply don't consider playing with software to be a fun activity.
      • I don't think they say, "Hmm...should I spend X dollars for a legal copy of Office, or should I run OSS?" They say, "Hmm...should I spend X dollars for a legal copy of Office, or should I get a copy from my friend?"

      I've gotten better results simply by putting my old FreeBSD box in the lab alongside the school's Windows machines. KDE is installed, and I think a lot of them just start using it without even realizing at first that it's not Windows. After a while, the message may sink in that this alternative at least exists.

  • As usual, I downloaded their last version just two days ago.

    Good thing I hadn't gotten around to burning it yet, I guess.
  • by Karamchand ( 607798 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:05PM (#9056462)
    If you take a look at the screenshots of all the included apps you'll notice the many different sets of widgets. One uses native W32 widgets, the other one GNOME-style, the third one has own.. - this will only confuse the user and in my opinion shows a large problem free GUI software is facing today.
    • You mean like eg all the Windows media players which all have exactly this one and only skin which makes them look conform to the native W32 widget set?
    • by TwinkieStix ( 571736 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:32PM (#9056792) Homepage
      People complain about this all the time on Slashdot, but I don't think it's as bad as people think. I think that if the features are there and there is no-more usable alternative for the same cost, the interface isn't that big of a selling point.

      Look at winamp. It's always had a non-standard interface and before microsoft started bundling the same features into windows, was the de-facto standard media player.

      Another example was the old Napster. Remember how it used buttons instead of tabs for the tabed-like interface? That took me, a slashdot reading geek a few extra minutes to figure out, yet it still managed to be the biggest thing in the news for several months.
      • You cite exceptional examples. WinAmp was the first full-featured Windows MP3 player. Napster was the first huge p2p app. Both of them hit at just the right time to ride the MP3 wave to popularity.

        Many people probably used these applications in /spite/ of their interface; they were just so hot and unlike anything else at the time.

        Now, not to say there isn't some innovative FOSS software out there; but a lot of it is rather mundane, i.e. apps that already exist in the closed-source world. In the midst
    • Maybe I'm blinded by my exposure to all different types of software, but does it matter if the widgets are different? For example, Mac users complain about the widgets on the Mac OpenOffice port. To me this makes absolutely no difference! It's mostly aesthetic. I've heard complaints that this makes the software 'unusable.' I don't even notice! In my experience you have to learn how each piece of software works. Whether they all look/behave the same is less important than how well each of them are desi
      • Oh you mean like the standard widgets used in photo shop and perhaps like the standard widgets used in
        macromedia products?

        Give me a break those guys all use custom widget sets so what the hell is the difference. Go troll on zdnet or something would you.
    • Widgets, schmidgets.

      The web has taught people that buttons can look like just about any damn thing the designer pleases, and they'll happily point'n'click at anything that looks vaguely clickable. Different skins for media apps prove that.

      I'm not arguing that it's efficient, mind, but anyone who is confused over different widget sets has other, worse problems.
  • by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:05PM (#9056468) Homepage Journal
    I dont want to run anything that isnt approved safe by my government..

    Have they approved its use on windows longhorn?

    sheep go baaaaah.
  • by shnives ( 763003 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:17PM (#9056626)
    I have a general security question about open source software. I am not a programmer so bear with me if this is redundant. The idea I have is that open source would by nature be more vulnerable to viri, spywarez, etc because anyone can see the source code. wouldnt this be much easier for "evildoers" to take advantage of? obviously the argument that keeping source code secret makes it safer is a shaky one, kinda like to one about outlawing guns (then only outlaws will have em...) people are already finding tons of flaws in windsows, and M$ writing quality on the box doesnt seem to do much about this. and this is with little or no info on sourrce code. wouldnt this type of activity be much higher (if it is easier to do, more people will do it) with open source software? I think there are 2 reasons why linux virii are not a factor. 1 there are too few computers out there for anything to replicate itself. 2 more importantly, the linux crowd is a tech savvy one, keeping a regular eye on their machines, and if a problem is found they deal with it themselves. I see a big problem here with open source goin mainstream. even if open source became simple to install. ie fool proof gui, that said install, yes, no, back and next. sure more people would have it, but there will always be people that are not tech savvy. some of them may be very intelligent etc, but just do not have the time to worry about it. I know this is kinda off topic, but would be really interested to read what the /. crowd thinks about open source being more secure, and why.
    • by Jestrzcap ( 46989 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:47PM (#9057004)
      An insightful post, and good points. I'd like to use a bit of an analogy to respond. Computers and computer system (home network, business networks, the internet) are becoming more and more akin to biology and ecosystems. Your first point is (to a point) right on. But it has less to do with number of system running linux, and more to do with the fact that most linux systems (server or otherwise) are not in fact running the same sets of software and have very different configurations. This means that if you have a virus targeted at a certain flaw in a certain system, the odds that you are going to find a significant number of those system to infect is minimal. Mutations allow for survival. This is why some people can still be killed by the common cold. With something as homogenous as windows (2k,xp,server2k3 are vunerable to all the same problems) you not only have a greater number of hosts to propigate to, you also have the same flaws that allow you to infect them. Mutations are required for survival.
      Your second point is good but I do not know that it is a correct assumption. Yes, most people who are going to use linux are more tech savvy, but that doesnt mean they are smart about things like securing their systems. They may be more equipped to deal with a problem, but the smart ones know enough to avoid the problem to begin with. Dont you think that 10 years is enough time to improve a product so that it doesnt fall victim to some of these hideous data destroying worms that happen monthly (sometimes weekly)? I'm not trying to bash Microsoft for their flaws so much (they do, after all have 100x more people working against them than for them), but they have not focused on making their product better over the years, just more desireable. Nowadays they are so big, the only thing they really need to concern themselves with is how can they make people (and companies) buy more of their products, any improvements they make are only done so to placate their customers.
      Does having the source code make something more of a security risk? The answer is really, only if it was hidden to begin with. The benefit to having everyone staring at your code, is that the people who intend to use the code will make sure that youve done a good job coding it and will point out the grevious errors youve made. Opening up closed souce is going to allow people to suddenly find all of those flaws at once because noone ever pointed them out before. Open source code is in a constant state of having its (if any) flaws fixed, and stable releases of such software should be significantly more bug/error/flaw free than similar closed software (again this all varies depending on who is writing the code).
  • by Anonymous Coward

    The Open CD project aims to introduce users of MS-Windows to the benefits of Open Source Software. We include only the highest quality programs, which have been carefully tested for stability and which we consider appropriate for a broad audience. We provide a description and screen-shots of each program, so you can get an idea of what it does before installing. All these applications install and un-install cleanly, so you can be comfortable testing them with the knowledge that they will not ad
  • I see people commenting about the server being slashdotted already. I mean how come open source advocates (which should already have most of the software they need actually _installed_ on their system) care to download this _now_.

    Are most of you really going to burn copies like crazy for the next few days and flood your friends with them?

    • In a word, yes. Hell, I keep a CD full of useful sofware myself, but it doesn't get updated very often, so something like this is very useful to me. There are also a lot of people (me among them) that are continually reinstalling the same software on new computers or operating systems. Having ready access to an up to date iso image is very helpful.

      Having said all that, be careful what you download. Just because somebody releases a collection of open source software does not mean that there are no nasties o
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @05:53PM (#9057066)
    The ClosedCD... Includes: Microsoft Windows XP Professional Adobe Photoshop CS Microsoft Office 2003 and a host more goodies, all packed into one tiny DVD - Available at any good Chinese Market Stall near you!
  • What would slashdotters recommend I install on a computer for Grandma? I have to reinstall her computer from scratch every MONTH or so because it becomes completely unusable due to viruses, spyware, and other random windows deitrius.

    I'd rather stay Windows than Linux because it's what she know how to use. She only does web browsing and email.

    With all this amazing open source software available it should be possible to set up a computer that's easy to use for a novice, and safe from malware.
  • More (Score:5, Informative)

    by aking137 ( 266199 ) on Tuesday May 04, 2004 @06:44PM (#9057540)
    This is a great idea, but there's not a great deal on there. I've been making up CDs full of free and open source Windows software for a couple of years now, which (along with Knoppix [knoppix.org] and Toms [toms.net]) prove to be extremely useful. Here's just some of what's on there (note that some of the links don't actually point to the Windows version of that software; you might need to dig around a bit):
    • Abiword [abisource.com] - Word processor, supports .doc, .rtf, GPL.
    • Open Office [openoffice.org] - Whole Office suite, including a database frontend and BASIC macro language.
    • Perl [perl.com] - Scripting language
    • Python [python.org] - Scripting language
    • Cygwin [cygwin.com] - UNIX emulator. Can create Windows programs, reliant on a cygwin1.dll.
    • MinGW [mingw.org] - Port of some of the UNIX utilities (BASH, gcc, vi...) to Windows.
    • djgpp [delorie.com] - UNIX emulator for DOS.
    • Mozilla, Firefox, Thunderbird [mozilla.org] - Web browser, e-mail client, IRC client, lots more.
    • Filezilla [sourceforge.net] - FTP client.
    • xchat [xchat.org] - IRC client.
    • putty, pscp, psftp [greenend.org.uk] and others - Telnet/SSH clients.
    • Gaim [sf.net] - Client for IRC/Yahoo/MSN/ICQ/AIM and more.
    • gzip [gnu.org] - Compression (usually better than .zip).
    • tar [gnu.org] - Extracts/Makes tar archives.
    • bzip2 [redhat.com] - Totally ace compression (usually better than gzip).
    • Info-ZIP [info-zip.org] - Support for .zip. Good free substitute for Winzip.
    • 7-zip [7-zip.org] - Support for multiple compression formats.
    • frhed [kibria.de] - Hex editor
    • Ext2fs [sourceforge.net] - Several programs for doing Ext2 under Windows.
    • Antiword [demon.nl] - Converts documents out of the proprietary .doc format.
    • MySQL [mysql.com] - RDBMS.
    • Apache [apache.org] - Web/Proxy server
    • sendmail [sendmail.org] - Mail server
    • squid [squid-cache.org] - Proxy server
    • freeamp [freeamp.org] - Audio player
    • winlame [sourceforge.net] - MP3 encoder
    • cd-ex [n3.net] - MP3/OGG encoder?
    • gimp [gimp.org] - Very detailed graphics program.
    • imagemagick [imagemagick.org] - Graphic manipulation. Provides the 'convert' utility under UNIX.
    • freeciv [freeciv.org] - Civilisation clone.
    • gnuplot [gnuplot.info] - Plotting package.
    • TightVNC [tightvnc.com] - A fork of VNC, with enhancements.
    • RealVNC [realvnc.com] - The original VNC.
    • rdesktop [rdesktop.org] - Access Windows Terminal Services and Remote Desktops.
    • Nmap [insecure.org] - Well known port scanner.
    • John the Ripper [openwall.com] - Password cracker. Does NT and MD5.

Marvelous! The super-user's going to boot me! What a finely tuned response to the situation!