[scribus] Linux vs Windows for Scribus ?

Henry Hartley henryhartley at westat.com
Fri Sep 4 15:46:59 CEST 2009

Robert Marma wrote
>> This time, my question has to do with using Linux.  I installed
>> Scribus on two Windows XP-based laptops--a 6-year-old Compaq
>> Presario and a recently purchased Asus EeePC netbook.  I was
>> wondering if there would be any advantage(s) to partitioning the
>> hard drive of each system, and then running Linux/Windows and
>> installing a Linux version of Scribus, which the majority of the
>> contributors to this e-mailing appear to be using.  For example,
>> are there more dependencies, script libraries, and other GPL
>> software available for the Linux version and for Linux, in
>> general?

There are plenty of good reasons to install Linux, either in a dual boot configuration or in a bold switch to something new. The thought of running your computer with 100% free and open source software is quite compelling and it's been a reasonable choice for most people for some time. I would not say, however, that the ability to run the stable release of Scribus or any software associated with publishing is by itself a compelling reason. Scribus runs fine on Windows XP, as does GIMP, Inkscape, and many other graphics oriented packages. For pure writing both MS Windows and Linux have lots of options. So, I'd say there are advantages to Linux but they have more to do with cost and freedom than with the ability to get something done, at least in this field.

I run Windows XP at work because I must but I can run Linux in a window using the VMWare Player when I need to (which is really cool). I also boot my machine from a USB flash drive now and then. Still, Scribus works just fine under Windows XP, thank you very much. At home I have a dual boot machine that runs Fedora and Windows XP (actually, two separate installs of XP, but that's another story) because the web sites my daughter sometimes must use for school will often only work well in IE -- yes, I bring it up but she still has to get her homework done. Also, I have an investment (both in terms of money, time spent learning, and file sharing with my office computer) in Photoshop and Illustrator. On the other hand, my home laptop, a new 64bit desktop, a machine dedicated to scanning, two servers, a firewall, and the jukebox connected to my stereo are all either CentOS or Fedora and I don't miss Windows XP (ever).

So, I do encourage you to experiment with Linux. I encourage you to remove the shackles the bind you to a company that doesn't seem to have your best interest at heart and that has some pretty significant flaws.* But I don't think the need to run Scribus is enough on its own to justify moving to Linux. Certainly not in terms of getting help from this list.


* Actually, I think many of the developers at MS really DO want to make good software and there are some really smart people who work there. I don't always share their view of what makes good software but then again, I don't always agree 100% with the developers of open source software, either.

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