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Muhammad Tajy

An Open Letter to Linus Tech Tips from The Passthrough Post

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As somebody who has been an IT Consultant in the past, written and proof'd my share of manuals and guides (some IT, some other technical topics), and been a Software QA Engineer for many years (including for Apple)…I have no issue with the LTT video, except the usual clickbait title issue.

 

The main point was that VMs can be used to run Mac OS X on "any PC".  The sub-point was that this isn't as bad as trying to match parts compatibility and hope updates to break things for a native HW Hackintosh, but that tons of parts are still mismatching and not compatible and still not easy.  With my background, I watched because I wanted to do it, and quickly changed my mind because it didn't look like it would be worth the hassle.

 

FYI: Getting OS X installed in a VM is way easier if you can run the VM natively on Mac OS X and install from there, as that is supported and fully legal in most all cases.  Then you can (at least, used to be able to) futz with a few things to get the created VM to run on the same VM platform, but a different non mac system, though not always with great performance/results.

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As a user of both Linux and Windows, I think it would be common sense that everything may not work on the first try depending on what guides you use (I literally just had to nuke my Ubuntu install a few months back because I had screwed it up messing around with software and stuff). I use a mix of KVM (I've just started with messing around with advanced stuff like passthrough), VMWare (mostly because I use VMWare Workstation on my Windows PCs), and VirtualBox on my Ubuntu machine.

 

Recently I had to use a OS X VM image (which are available online) for an Operating Systems class and guess what? I was one of few people in that class that got the VM image supplied to work on my Windows PC (wouldn 't work on my Linux box), but that was after modifying the image (as per instructions for this image) and even then it was painfully slow to do the tasks required (I was running this on a NVME SSD, plenty of RAM and CPU too).

 

Since hackintoshs are hit or miss thats why I won't use them and since Apple won't do Mac Clones nor have user fixable computers anymore, I guess I will never have a PC with MacOS (I really want to switch to MacOS because of Windows 10).


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14 hours ago, LinusTech said:

I think there's a great lesson here for the vfio team, and the Linux community in general. 

 

No, people are not going to learn the inner workings of Linux just to try to use your guide. And no, most people aren't going to email you to let you know they're going to use it. 

 

So if your guide isn't user-friendly and/or is incomplete in the first place, you can't be surprised when someone tries to follow it and can't figure it out or ends up kludging their way through it.  

 

A second lesson here is that if Anthony can't follow your guide, please see the above paragraph. 

 

Anyway, I've linked Anthony to this thread to have a look at it so we can make sure we get things as right as possible for some of the future content we have planned around this.  

 

Edit: Also, trying to approach this non-emotionally in spite of the ridiculous off-platform "open letter" instead of just posting on our forum or contacting us.. So like, you don't like our video about it, but by my way of thinking, it shouldn't create a ton of strain on support if you have a guide you can just link people to that IS good. 

  

Those in glass houses etc... 

Okay seriously... I thought you had gotten your head out of your ass and maybe start improving when you made the "let's fix our misleading titles" video... But I guess not. You are truly an asshole Linus.

 

Let's break down what has happened here.

1) LTT looked up a guide on a highly complicated thing online, about a subject LTT knows very little about.

2) LTT then created their own guide on how to do the highly complicated thing, but got several things wrong.

3) The creators of the original guide reaches out and says, in a very friendly manner "hey, it seems like you got some things wrong in your guide. We're here to help if you want!"

4) You respond by insulting them, calling their guide ass and then continue to insult the entire GNU/Linux community.

 

 

This part of the post especially irks me:

14 hours ago, LinusTech said:

And no, most people aren't going to email you to let you know they're going to use it. 

Because it sounds like you're trying to paint this as "I'm just a regular user/reader so I am going to act like it". But you aren't. The reason why maybe YOU, and only you specifically, should have emailed them is because you yourself created a guide, a derivative work of their guide, which now has 1.8 million videos. That is not what the typical reader does. If the typical reader messes up somewhere in the guide, it might waste a bit of time but be a learning experience for that reader. When you messes up, you spread misinformation and cause problems for potentially 1.8 million viewers. That's why you, as a creator of guides, should be the expert and be really damn sure of what you are doing. If your video is bad then that is on you, not the person whose work you were copying.

 

 

If you ask me, you (applies to all writers/video creators) shouldn't create guides on subjects you are not familiar with at all. If I have to follow a guide to create my own guide, then clearly I do not have the knowledge and experience necessary to accurately inform and help others.

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13 hours ago, TetraSky said:

^

That's the thing with a multitude of guides on Linux.

They are garbage to anyone but the "expert" who wrote it and their fellow "experts" who pat themselves for understanding it.
They are unable to put themselves in the shoes of someone who might not know as much as them and when asked about it, their inflated ego prevents them from realizing the potential issues with their guide and proceed to forward you toward some wiki or whatever to "learn more". 

I can honestly say I have never had this problem before.

But I think a lot of that attitude comes from people who do like on this forum and ask things which can be answered by the first result on Google.

 

When asking for help on a highly technical thing then you should provide as much relevant info as possible, and be grateful and kind. They are doing YOU a favor, and in return you should try to limit the amount of their time you waste. That's what I always keep in mind when asking for help, and in general I get really helpful and kind replies. And yes, reading the wiki should be the thing you do before asking for help. If you haven't even read the wiki then I wouldn't even say you have tried to solve the issue by yourself yet.

 

You have to remember that most people who post on help forums are volunteers doing it as a kind service. Every single post you make takes time away from not only the volunteers, but also from other people who may need help. Asking for help should be a last resort when you are really stuck, not the first thing you do before even reading the documentation.

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I agree with some members here. You are not just an average user. You are always, at the end of the day, ranked as one of the top tech "influencers" (god I hate that word), so normal rules do not apply for you. If you are doing a guide on something complicating, you should do it properly, otherwise you will just do more damage than good. But you don't seem to notice that. They reached out in what can sometimes seem like an aggressive manner, but I'm sure they have the best intentions for the sake of community and you go "I don't care". You should care. 


The ability to google properly is a skill of its own. 

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8 minutes ago, JustWantTech said:

experiment

Experimenting is a keyword that'd have been quite appropriated even for the video title.

 

The video itself was pretty good to give viewers a good glance of the potential VMs have for running unsupported OS by their hardware and it directed people who got interest to places they could learn more about it.

 

So it was valid, the only issue I see here is that things end up a bit too much on a grey area leading people to thinking it might have been an easy procedure that was fully chewed up on the video which it wasn't.

 

Getting in contact with the original team that served as a source and coordinate with them would have been a good thing then again the source team could also have got in touch with LMG in a non public manner and offered their help for a follow up video what not, since this OP is indeed very lacking if anyone in here wanted to get things improved rather than just complain about it.


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All of this artificial drama, so easy to initially avoid. I watch LTT for news and entertainment and tech news, and I found the video in question curious and interesting, and all this drama is just contributing the my disappointment in the internet and humanity.

 

In my opinion, the video's metadata could be adjusted slightly to optimise for entertainment and away from guide, but I also realise that I would not have even known putting OSX in PC VM was possible until this video came out.

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Ok, as a topic, I couldn't care less about this. But replies here just scream of my intervention. As a very prominent Linus supporter and vocal critic as well.

 

21 hours ago, LinusTech said:

Edit: Also, trying to approach this non-emotionally in spite of the ridiculous off-platform "open letter" instead of just posting on our forum or contacting us.. So like, you don't like our video about it, but by my way of thinking, it shouldn't create a ton of strain on support if you have a guide you can just link people to that IS good.

 

I see you have learnt nothing from recent content ID strike drama. Should I write 2 page report on matter of how to improve your communications to community? Really man, up your communication game big time. I can link to my previous posts about this subject. Both on forum, and at Eli The Computer Guys YT where he had as valid critique as you can have with a-hole attitude attached.

 

Do you actually know what "open letter" means? It is usually posted on blog, website or publicly available place, somewhere where it doesn't face fear of censorship. We know that your mods aren't the type that would sensor valid critique, but outsiders can't be so sure. Why they didn't use Reddit for example. Well, if they dislike that as much I do...

 

Maybe they should have sent it as email too, maybe they did.

 

The last part of the quoted portion is not needed here. You are just asking to be treated like big-ass money-grabbing ass with comment like those. If you wouldn't own platform, you should get verbal warning about attempt to create flame war or something. Thats just not acceptable. Always remember first rule of posting to interent, read twice, post once.

 

21 hours ago, LinusTech said:

Those in glass houses etc... 

 

Says the one sitting up on crystal tower...

 

16 hours ago, LinusTech said:

...but I don't recall us positioning our video as the be-all and end-all guide to doing this (we rarely do).

 

If we did then that's a clear swing and a miss on our part. 

 

If we didn't, then the best thing is to just proceed with our follow up videos and get things as correct as we can moving forward. 

 

Problem is, that you are hardly clear. You don't really do reviews. Only videos which have line "Should you buy it?" are reviews. Rest are overviews while still being titled as reviews. Many of you guides are overviews on subject. These may or may not have word "guide" on title. Yet many are shown in a way where you give advice on how to do things. Another place to really look into how you want to show off this style of content. You really need to spell things out. People on the modern internet need it to get message through.

 

7 hours ago, LAwLz said:

Okay seriously...

 

Oh, you are watching videos again? Good point, but delivery still could do some tweaking.


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Wow expectations of people on the internet of a youtube channel that puts out 365+ videos a year is pretty off the charts. Think some of you guys take this WAYYY to serious. Might be time to go outside and take a walk.

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2 hours ago, suits said:

Wow expectations of people on the internet of a youtube channel that puts out 365+ videos a year is pretty off the charts. Think some of you guys take this WAYYY to serious. Might be time to go outside and take a walk.

Is your argument that because LTT releases a video a day, we should not expect the quality to be good? That the more videos a channel makes, the lower expectations people should have for each individual video?

If that's your argument, and if it is the case that LTT can't produce good videos because of their tight release time then I believe that LTT needs to scrap their "1 video a day" schedule in favor of actually making good videos. Quality over quantity.

Or maybe we should start applying the same logic to forum posts? I currently got 13,211 posts. That means I should be allowed to post absolute garbage because "you can't have high expectation from someone with that many posts", and new users with less than 100 posts need to make sure every post is exceptional.

 

 

Also, you might have missed it but Linus is going around calling other peoples' work "ass". It should be quite understandable that people are upset. Someone offered to help Linus and in return he is rude and insults them as well as other people.

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2 hours ago, LAwLz said:

Also, you might have missed it but Linus is going around calling other peoples' work "ass". It should be quite understandable that people are upset.

 

Pardon, but I didn't get that vibe from anything that Linus said. Sure, he said the guide isn't user-friendly, but Linux isn't - I think most of us accept that.

Linus isn't wrong with saying that people will learn Linux just to use their guide - that's where I'm sitting at.

 

Calling somebody's guide non-user-friendly (or stating the negative of good) is nowhere, in my eyes, close to calling somebody's work awful. It could be perfect with it's use of definition, but just using jargon or only terms that those (the vfio team) know while few else do. It could be good for some people and not others. That's just the nature of these things.

 


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Guys and gals...

11 minutes ago, Imbellis said:

Pardon, but I didn't get that vibe from anything that Linus said. Sure, he said the guide isn't user-friendly, but Linux isn't - I think most of us accept that.

Linus isn't wrong with saying that people will learn Linux just to use their guide - that's where I'm sitting at.

One could argue that anyone who would even consider running an OS like OSX in a VM would probably be OK with using Linux.  Anyone who needs OSX that bad BUT won't just buy a mac probably is OK with using Linux.  Anyone who knows what the word hackintosh means... is probably OK with using Linux.  

The problem is that Linux is not OSX.  No matter how similar certain name brand software just won't work in Linux OR no current macintosh has the ports and expansion they need. 

Apple should just sell a HDD or SSD with OSX preinstalled on it with a bajillion drivers for people to build hackintoshes around...and call that the new mac pro. 

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On 4/28/2019 at 7:46 PM, colonel_mortis said:

Fair enough, I misinterpreted your post a bit.

 

That being said, I still think it is fair to get in contact with the maintainers of projects like this when you make a video about it. It's not required, and Anthony does a very good job with these types of projects, but I don't think it would do any harm to make sure you haven't missed anything. IIRC a similar post was made by PlayOnLinux last time you and Anthony made a video about it, and just a bit of interaction with them would help to avoid that.

The other issue is that like so many open source or community-driven projects, reaching out to "the person in charge" (assuming anyone even agrees who it is...) is not necessarily easy/good use of time. 

 

In this case it might've worked out great but that's definitely not always the case. 

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3 hours ago, LAwLz said:

Is your argument that because LTT releases a video a day, we should not expect the quality to be good? That the more videos a channel makes, the lower expectations people should have for each individual video?

If that's your argument, and if it is the case that LTT can't produce good videos because of their tight release time then I believe that LTT needs to scrap their "1 video a day" schedule in favor of actually making good videos. Quality over quantity.

Or maybe we should start applying the same logic to forum posts? I currently got 13,211 posts. That means I should be allowed to post absolute garbage because "you can't have high expectation from someone with that many posts", and new users with less than 100 posts need to make sure every post is exceptional.

 

 

Also, you might have missed it but Linus is going around calling other peoples' work "ass". It should be quite understandable that people are upset. Someone offered to help Linus and in return he is rude and insults them as well as other people.

I'm not talking about quality, if you didn't think that video was quality you're being the ass. You are getting upset for reasons that are far far far above the standard of quality. 

 

Yeah Linus definitely shouldn't have said that, that doesn't look good on him. But the whining other people are doing on this post is almost just as bad.

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48 minutes ago, Uttamattamakin said:

Guys and gals...

One could argue that anyone who would even consider running an OS like OSX in a VM would probably be OK with using Linux.  Anyone who needs OSX that bad BUT won't just buy a mac probably is OK with using Linux.  Anyone who knows what the word hackintosh means... is probably OK with using Linux.  

The problem is that Linux is not OSX.  No matter how similar certain name brand software just won't work in Linux OR no current macintosh has the ports and expansion they need. 

Apple should just sell a HDD or SSD with OSX preinstalled on it with a bajillion drivers for people to build hackintoshes around...and call that the new mac pro. 

There's so many assumptions rolled into this, I'm not even sure how I feel about it.

 

First, you're assuming that Mac users are comfortable with Linux... Some (a very very small segment) perhaps are. The vast majority are not. Most Mac users have probably never even opened Terminal before.

 

Second, you're assuming the only people who would be interested in this kind of setup are already Linux users. That's another assumption I would challenge. There are plenty of Windows or Windows + Mac users who might want to try this kind of setup out (for various reasons - one being "for fun"). They might even be fairly proficient Windows users that have no experience on Linux.

 

This whole thing seems like a nothing sandwich to me. Yes, the Open Letter brings up a few points. No, Linus was never under any obligation to reach out to the "creators" of the guide, or the community, or any of that.

 

They found a cool guide online, and said "Fuck this looks cool. Let's make a video of us attempting the guide!"

 

The end.

 

Should the "community" reach out to Linus and provide feedback (in a polite manner, mind you), I have no doubt he'll take that feedback and roll it into whatever next video he does on the subject.

 

LMG has never been industry experts. Anyone who thinks so is frankly just wrong. But they've also never claimed to be experts. And that's okay. They don't need anyone's permission to do this video. They also don't need to be experts.

 

Could there be improvements? Especially with some sort of "We're not experts, your mileage may vary" disclaimer? Sure. But there's constructive feedback, and there's being an elitist dickhead.

 

And I definitely see both going on here.


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Honestly if Linus and Anthony couldn't make their guide work then its probably not ready to be used by the masses anyways. Some projects would give anything for a spot on LTT to get their kind of exposure, and these guys are blowing it big time. There was a way to say, hey we want to help you make it work better without the weird nerd rage, and this could have been positive. Instead it's kind of just another indicator to regular users like me that linux is the sweatyist OS and probably will never be user friendly enough to make it worth using. 


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5 hours ago, Imbellis said:

Pardon, but I didn't get that vibe from anything that Linus said. Sure, he said the guide isn't user-friendly, but Linux isn't - I think most of us accept that. 

Linus isn't wrong with saying that people will learn Linux just to use their guide - that's where I'm sitting at.

Maybe read Linus' posts before defending him? He actually said "I don't care that their guide was ass".

There is a big difference between "your guide isn't user-friendly" and "your guide is ass".

 

5 hours ago, suits said:

I'm not talking about quality, if you didn't think that video was quality you're being the ass. You are getting upset for reasons that are far far far above the standard of quality. 

 

Yeah Linus definitely shouldn't have said that, that doesn't look good on him. But the whining other people are doing on this post is almost just as bad.

What? You said, or at least heavily implied that some people had too high expectations from a channel that releases 365+ videos a year. I thought the only logical way of reading that was "more videos = lower quality". Is that not what you meant?

Also, it's been quite a while since I watched LTT videos regularly but they are not exactly good in terms of quality. Fancy lighting, camera angles and editing sure, all of that is top notch, but in terms of technical knowledge the bar is pretty damn low in pretty much all their videos.

And I am not really upset about the video. I am far more upset by the way Linus responded and how his fans are defending him.

 

 

 

4 hours ago, dalekphalm said:

This whole thing seems like a nothing sandwich to me. Yes, the Open Letter brings up a few points. No, Linus was never under any obligation to reach out to the "creators" of the guide, or the community, or any of that.

Nobody says Linus was under any obligation to reach out to them. What people are saying is that he should have anyway, in order to make a more informative video.

When you're doing something you have very little understanding of, and your project will be viewed by millions of people who trust and rely on you for information, then you should be cautious and try and avoid misinformation.

 

 

 

4 hours ago, dalekphalm said:

Should the "community" reach out to Linus and provide feedback (in a polite manner, mind you), I have no doubt he'll take that feedback and roll it into whatever next video he does on the subject.

The community did reach out and provide feedback in a polite manner (I've read the post twice now and don't find anything I would call rude or unprofessional). Linus responded by calling their guide ass and that Linus certainly don't have to learn some things before attempting to do a highly complicated and niche thing.

4 hours ago, dalekphalm said:

Could there be improvements? Especially with some sort of "We're not experts, your mileage may vary" disclaimer? Sure. But there's constructive feedback, and there's being an elitist dickhead. 

How is this not constructive feedback, and in what way are they being an "elitist dickhead"?

 

 

4 hours ago, AntiTrust said:

There was a way to say, hey we want to help you make it work better without the weird nerd rage, and this could have been positive.

If you ask me, they did. Linus was the one who got into a nerd rage and started insulting them for suggesting things to do differently. Which part of the post would you define as "nerd rage"?

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We are entering into territory where forum's Linus-fanboys and Linus-critics will bash their heads together. Which imo doesn't lead anywhere. Anyone who thinks there's still something to say that would sway other side?


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On 4/29/2019 at 4:14 AM, LinusTech said:

I think there's a great lesson here for the vfio team, and the Linux community in general. 

 

No, people are not going to learn the inner workings of Linux just to try to use your guide. And no, most people aren't going to email you to let you know they're going to use it.

 

So if your guide isn't user-friendly and/or is incomplete in the first place, you can't be surprised when someone tries to follow it and can't figure it out or ends up kludging their way through it. 

 

A second lesson here is that if Anthony can't follow your guide, please see the above paragraph. 

 

Anyway, I've linked Anthony to this thread to have a look at it so we can make sure we get things as right as possible for some of the future content we have planned around this. 

 

Edit: Also, trying to approach this non-emotionally in spite of the ridiculous off-platform "open letter" instead of just posting on our forum or contacting us.. So like, you don't like our video about it, but by my way of thinking, it shouldn't create a ton of strain on support if you have a guide you can just link people to that IS good.

 

Those in glass houses etc... 

To be fair, they raised some good points few newcomers to this. Such as:

 

Why can’t we use Mojave - which is the only option if you have access to a new Mac from the App Store, with a Nvidia graphics card? 

 

I think with the errors that they bought up, which is very fair since it is their software, the guide should be updated and acknowledged. It’s fairly unconventional with setting up a VM, and there are vastly easier methods if you just want to use MacOS software in a VM.

 

I’d think of this as more of a lesson for both sides. Proper communication (although seemingly unnecessary) could have solved this. A quick call when encoring a few errors or unable to follow the guide could have put everyone in touch. It’s not anyone’s fault, and it was still a great video.

 

Even if people don’t want to learn more, they probably will have to following any guide like this. 

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it looks like that "open letter" is just a cry for attention. nothing else. 

 

also, the expectation that in order to make good use of an OSS project one needs to get in contact with the creator? that is the total opposite of what open source is.

 

I saw the video on floatplane and all I have to say it 100% reflects the use of a guide like that for a normal user. I dabble in projects like this from time to time, and some times I just find a guide and roll with it, most people don't have days or weeks to research all the content of the internet to find the "right" or "perfect" step by step guide.

 

I totally hate it when the Linux community get angry when something is absolutely horrible to find. information is very outdated in some places and finding the right guide or documentation is very time consuming some times.

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3 hours ago, LoGiCalDrm said:

Anyone who thinks there's still something to say that would sway other side?

If Linus become a Hitler and start WW3, then sure.

 

I know you (and the other guy) mad at how Linus response to this but this doesn't really solves anything even if you write a 25 paged report on how to comunicate with your fans better and shove it to Linus's face.

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17 hours ago, suits said:

But the whining other people are doing on this post is almost just as bad.

As is the amount of people that defend them every single time because they post a video per day. Every. Single. Time. But that's why LMG has so many employees.

This is also about just going "we don't give a crap on what we do" when someone reaches out to you. Talk about being professional. 


The ability to google properly is a skill of its own. 

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