[Ardour-Users] The future for Linux multimedia looks bright

Ralf Mardorf ralf.mardorf at alice-dsl.net
Mon Dec 22 09:20:29 PST 2008

Hi :)

> All the contributors and especially the lead developers deserve nothing but respect and appreciation for their time and hard work.

I agree (and hope nobody think that I doesn't).

"Never change a winning team", so if a workstation is stable, there
isn't any need to upgrade the hardware and software. Hard drives are
less expensive nowadays and it's possible to rsync a system and while
not being in a production to test changes.

Were I wish to have a change for audio and (underlined!) _MIDI_, is to
talk about some weak points, so that they can be easier solved.

A reason to do a new install is, when e.g. the hardware gets broken and
it's not possible to repair it. I guess even developers doing research
about hardware that is fine with Linux, not seldom will have bad luck
too and get hardware that causes problems.

The old install might cause problems with the new hardware, e.g. for me
jackd 0.103 now has got timeouts. To do a bug report, I wouldn't expect
that developers working on jackd 0.116 will check up what might be wrong
with an outdated version of their project, so upgrades are needed.

If you do an upgrade and the upgrade repositories has bad packages, that
also isn't a problem, errors will happen.

I'm missing to be allowed to point out an error, without being abused to
have no basic knowledge or not to respect developers.

I don't think it's a problem to suggest missing functions for a Linux
application to the developers. What's missing today, will be there
tomorrow. Thinking about this I agree that the future can be bright.

Maybe I had generalized bad experiences, after having a breather my view
changed, but still there are some problems.

Some of the troubles I had, I solved for my new hardware for 64 Studio,
when I tried to adapted this changes to Suse, I was told not do it for
Suse, I should not compile oldish software, but use latest versions from
I also was told that the repositories are proved, the people who told
me, would use them their self. I often had this, that people attest they
make music with packages, while it turned out, that this isn't possible,
because the packages are broken.

I know that there are at least two other people having troubles with the
mobo I've got and I don't know anybody having no troubles. Instead of
abusing people, that try to get less expensive, but actual hardware run
with Linux, I wish that there will be more interest in doing this.
Talking about professional studios, there are problems for Windows and
MacOS too. A professional studio directly will change the hardware to
solve such trouble, but homerecording and semi-professional studios
haven't that alternative.

I learned to use only distros for audio, that are audio distros that are
always in progress. At http://lau.linuxaudio.org/ there is no Suse, but
64 Studio.

64 Studio isn't fine with on my machine, jackd is 0.103 and gets
timeouts. The next question isn't about my problem. I now check up if a
32bit install on my new 64bit hardware can solve the problem, I'm still
in progress. Just a 48 hour test, isn't a production, with all the real

What should people do, that need new hardware while the old is broken?

Reliable research about what hardware is fine with Linux often fails,
because people aren't really working, especially with MIDI and reliable
statements about hardware that's fine, is about hardware you can only
buy second hand in Germany. For my old hardware I have the problem that
e.g. Suse don't pay attention at exotic IDE stuff any more. And exotic
means a 08/15 LG DVDRAM.

I just want to point out, that oldish, secondhand hardware will be
supported fewer and fewer, while new hardware often is not supported,
some people waited 2 years and then the hardware was fine.

I fear about a less bright future, because there are hardware issues
that needs to be solved. It doesn't matter if there are similar problems
for Windows and MacOS too, because I don't care about their future.

I'm absolute sure, that I'm not the only one thinking about this and
having troubles with this.

Does nobody here fear that this is an issue. I guess there are very less
people doing professional audio _AND MIDI_ work with Linux, that have
less problems.

For example, I have two consumer DAT recorders that were fine, fine for
consumer usage, but both get broken in a very short time, while I used
them for professional work. I know people having both, consumer and
professional DAT recorders, their consumer recorders are defect too,
while the professionals are still fine.

Even if Linux won't fail, if you do a lot of work (even just
homerecording) your computer hardware might not be fine for so many
years, as it will be by weekend homerecording.

It's not possible to be safe, that there wont be the need to change the


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