[Trisquel-users] Trisquel continuously crashing, the state of the FOSS community

ethancrist96 at gmail.com ethancrist96 at gmail.com
Mon Feb 25 03:34:24 CET 2019


 > This is unusual. I have installed Trisquel on many people's computers
and they have not had this problem.

Then it appears I have been ambushed by a glint of poor fortune, since my  
success rate with this OS is 0%.

 > Maybe a hardware issue then?

Could be... I doubt it. The laptop I bought from Technoethical was  
specifically sold with this OS installed. So, unless they are foolish enough  
to sell their stock on hardware components that are incompatible with  
Trisquel, the answer is no. And if Trisquel IS incompatible with any hardware  
that exists, that is a massive adoption barrier that need be addressed.

 > If adoption of operating systems had anything to do with quality no one
would be using Windows. :) Windows 8 and 10 are far buggier than any
GNU/Linux distribution I've tried.

If the comparison we're titillating is Ubuntu, I'd be inclined to agree.  
However, Trisquel has contained more bugs than any OS I've used in my  
experience, to which I suspect all FSF distros are likely to experience  
similar fates.

 > In my opinion, the biggest obstacles to adoption of free operating
systems are social ones. If there are any significant technical
obstacles, I would say that they are the lack of free firmware for most
WiFi cards and many GPUs.

The two are tied together. When I try and convince my friends and family to  
convert to free software, and tell them all of the moral upsides, they'll  
smile and nod the whole way; but the second you tell a human being they have  
something to lose, they will immediately rationalize an excuse as to why it's  
not worth it. If there is a single aspect to be lost, or if the transition is  
in anyway cumbersome, 99% of people won't give it the time of day --  
unfortunate, but true. We can eradicate this problem by eradicating all  
downsides - bugs included, hence my urgency and tone.

 > It is completely understandable to be frustrated, and I hope we can
figure out what's wrong and stop your system from crashing, but your
experience is not universal. Most users do not encounter this issue. I
don't see any recent posts or bug reports about such any issue apart from
this thread. How can you know that people will be apathetic about your
issue before you've even told them about it?

My experience should never happen to anyone. This is not a matter of personal  
offense; I'm trying to convey a matter of principle. A principle this  
community needs to rigorously adopt. It is THE worst conceivable thing to  
happen for widespread migration when the software breaks to the point where  
it is no longer usable. The fact that this happened even once should give you  
nightmares. Why is the fact that it is not happening to everyone consolation  
to you? Where is your urgency? This community needs a radical shift of  
mentality if it ever wants to make a lasting effect.

As for why I know that people must have been negligent to let this happen, is  
due to the fact that a branch with such a fatal error was even deployed in  
the first place. Perhaps I made myself unclear in just how big of a deal I  
think this is. As much as we can have fun bashing Windows, I've never heard  
of a case where someone installed it on the first day only to experience it  
crash reboot every 10 minutes, and to have this identical experience on two  
unique machines. Further, if the Windows developers then explained this to  
their boss as "but no one told us about the bug", they would be met with  
aggressive scorn coupled with a scrunching of eyebrows. The ownness is  
irrevocably on the developer to prevent something like this from happening,  
and the proper response to discovering a case of it slipping through their  
fingers should be absolute horror. Perhaps this is my more extremist  
idealistic programmer brain seeping through, but I believe the tenets to be  

I'll have a look at the resources you provided, but in the meantime I am  
stuck as I can't look at my screen for more than 10 seconds before it shuts  



 > I have been using Trisquel for nearly 10 years without without that  
problem. Indeed, Trisquel powers the servers for fsf.org and gnu.org (which  
handles tons of traffic each day from people all over the world for the  
entire GNU Project) without any problems. Perhaps it's better if you focus on  
presenting your problem rather than saying it's some distro-wide problem and  
that the entire free software movement will fail because of some problem that  
only you are reporting.

The fact that it works on other systems consistently should be the  
expectation, not a balancing act to someone else experiencing a fatal error.  
A bug that completely breaks usability is the worst possible outcome in the  
software-verse. As for how this extends to the community as a whole, I  
believe very well that this defeatist and apathetic attitude towards  
competing with Mac and Windows is pervasive. Instead of wanting to convince  
those users to migrate, rather there is often an elitist tongue vainly  
portraying these users as sheepish, whereas they could be motivated to  
educate and persuade them. Further, there is a feeling of a lowered bar for  
the average, everyday user experience based off of the features and stability  
of the software. If you don't think so, you should ask yourself why GNU/Linux  
is the least used OS framework without defaulting to one of those two  
responses. Also ask yourself why the responses on this forum merely seem to  
confirm my view.



 > I have not. It's just as bad as Debian Stable, no worse, and a little

I don't care. It should be as good as never breaking, and as bad as only the  
best. How's that for a bar?

It's great that your machine works. Every machine needs to work.

Thanks for the link, I will utilize it.


@Magic Banana

 > Every second in fact. I believe it is a consequence of your "script that  
restarts indicator-application-service every single second". I do not  
understand why you want to blame "indicator-application-service" or  
"systemd". Would you care to explain?

After each crash, I would peruse the syslog only to find  
indicator-application-service acting up for several lines just before each  
crash, saying something about how there was already an instance running. I do  
realize my every-second killall script is a bit of a hacky solution, and as  
stated, not a long-term one. It was merely an attempt to use the damn system  
in the first place, and worked albeit briefly. systemd was suspect for  
similar reasons.

 > When a crash occurs, your syslog does not contain any error but, sometimes,  
a sequence of unprintable characters. That is why, like chaosmonk, I would  
bet on an hardware issue. Probably the RAM. Have you tested it? Memtest86+ is  
in Trisquel repository and on some live ISO (but not Trisquel's).

Come to think of it, the RAM may very well be the issue. The seller may have  
upgraded the RAM before reselling the unit to me. No matter; I'm not going to  
downgrade the RAM merely to make it usable, it would make more sense to fix  
the bug. Where would Memtest86+ be logging its output to, if anywhere?

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