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Torvalds: Leopard file system "utter crap"

updated 05:00 pm EST, Tue February 5, 2008

Linux creator blasts 10.5

Linux creator Linus Torvalds recently blasted Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard for having a file system that is "complete and utter crap" at a Linux conference in Melbourne. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Torvalds says that while he prefers Leopard to Windows Vista, both companies are guilty of using their respective operating systems as a way of exacting control over their users, forcing both software and hardware upgrades upon them. This was in response to a query on what he felt regarding the two systems.

On his own creation, he noted that operating systems should be invisible. Torvalds said he feels that Asian hardware manufacturers are leaning towards Linux as a way of bypassing environmental limitations.

"That's the primary area that open source (software like Linux) is useful. Software is really expensive to produce and takes years," Torvalds said. He continues, "If you're a hardware company you can't really afford that, you either have to be controlled from the outside or take a pre-existing software stack that you can make changes to."

by MacNN Staff



  1. mgpalma

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Torvalds Opinion

    Is utter c*** and NOBODY cares. Get a life man, get a life...

  1. Bartman

    Joined: Dec 1969



    but configuring a wireless network on linux is a walk in the park... "On his own creation, he noted that operating systems should be invisible" maybe thats a clue on where he should go...

    lighten up Linus

  1. scottnichol

    Joined: Dec 1969


    seeding the clouds

    you ask provacative questions, you'll get provacative answers!

    seriously, what is so horrible about the OS X file system? i've got 6 hard drives, some connected via SATA internally, other connected via Firewire. all of them seem to store data just fine, my photos are easily accessible, etc.

    but i guess from an esoteric engineering standpoint when you're intimately aware of the fact that there are areas for improvement its hard not to crow about things. but the status quo is getting the job done for me right now.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Linus Torvalds, the Steve Jobs of the Linux world ("If we didn't make it, it's c***!").

    But I would say that a good OS should be invisible. Not sure when the h*** that's going to happen on any platform (well, maybe it's already there on linux, because you can't find half the stuff anyway! Oh, wait, it's in a configuration file! Of course, nothing more invisible then having no UI at all!).

    ...Asian hardware manufacturers were starting to bypass Western commercial operating systems in order to get more control over their products.

    Woohoo! So now it's not Apple who wants to wrest control, but the hardware manufacturers. And how is this better?

    The (Linux) kernel is already being used in things like cell phones, but the problems have been in the UI."

    Wait, I thought the OS should be invisible. Oh, we're not there yet?

    And that's the main problem with OSS. Most of the work done is by programmers for programmers. So the software ends up being butt-ugly c*** with 80,000 options, 16 different ways to any task, and usually any lack of following any HIG (hey, not that Apple or MS do that, either).

    Oh, and people mock all the different versions of Vista, but do we really need 500 versions of Linux floating around?

    Makes me want to steal a word from robtwo.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: seeding the clouds

    seriously, what is so horrible about the OS X file system?

    Isn't it obvious? The POS is case insensitive! Any real computer user knows that an OS's file system should allow both "Readme" and "readme" (let alone "README" because, come on, we all know file names should be in uppercase, like COPYING, and no extension or other information to let you know the type of file).

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Case Sensitive


    Under Leopard you can be case sensitive if you so choose.

  1. that one guy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not sure..

    What he is referring too, HFS+ or the file system layout itself. I would agree that HFS+ is pretty bad, which is why I am excited for Sun to finish with ZFS. Linux has some pretty good choices for file systems. EXT3 is good, XFS is good and ReiserFS4 looks to be good if it comes out.

  1. chas_m




    Linus: "The OS should be invisible." Steve: "The OS should be beautiful." Bill: "The OS should be the dominant partner in the user-computer relationship." :)

    Anyway, Linus' remarks are, as usual, a big steaming pile of self-serving BS. While I certainly agree with him that much of the OS should be "invisible" (to the user), if he thinks Linux is more "invisible" than Mac OS X I'd like to know the name of his magic mushroom supplier.

  1. chas_m




    I forgot to mention that his "file system is c***" comment probably refers to stuff like ZFS which has superior relational capabilities (but is pretty darn unpolished at this stage).

    Again, he's right in one sense and wrong in another. HFS+ has a lot of room for improvement and that's in part why Apple has started offering limited support for ZFS -- they are clearly experimenting with a replacement.

    But to imply that Linux has a superior file system is pretty laughable. Linus is beginning to remind me of Dr. Bronner, if you get my drift and I think you do.

  1. UpQuark

    Joined: Dec 1969


    He stated that the reason

    Vista and Leopard is c*** is the tight control both OSes have over their end user. This also translates into hiding all the 'geekiness' of the OS from the users. Which allows my Mom and countless others to work without knowing what vim is. There are always trade-offs in everything - unbuntu is a great iteration of Linux - but try to automatically download lyrics for a song? Or hook a HP LJ 4 and make it print. I like linux alot, but it can be a lot of work to get 'stuff' to work. make anyone...?

    He never stated that the File system sucked or the Mach kernel sucks 'cause it is monolithic bla bla bla..

    He said they suck for the control both companies push upon their end users... And, in some parts of the world, he is allowed his opinion.

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