Even Adobe is Abandoning Flash?
Sometime last month, I saw a news article stating that Adobe would not be releasing any new updates for the Linux version of their flash player, except for security backports.
My initial reaction was a mixture of surprise and “so what?”. I didn’t really consider Flash being as relevant as it used to be, and that I could do just fine without it or the security/performance problems that came with it. I was actually pleased a year or two ago when I learned that Adobe had discontinued Linux support for Adobe AIR (which, in my experience, had been total garbage).
However, what was most interesting was the closing statement at the bottom of the article:
"Adobe itself has also been stepping away from Flash, too, and virtually all of its recent projects for web developers have been about supporting web standards and creating HTML5-based sites."
This puts the discontinued Linux support into a new perspective for me. I had initially thought they had written off Linux as not worth the effort, in spite of growing interest in it (especially with gaming, something Flash is used for a lot).
Now, what I’m thinking is that they discontinued it because they are devoting fewer resources and developers to Flash, in favor of their newer web projects.
Either way, though, I can’t say I’ll miss Flash when it finally goes the way of the dinosaur.
Done With Arch Linux, Displeased With SystemD
I have once again switched the Linux distro I was using, moving from Arch Linux to Linux Mint, but the switch was one I was forced to make. Here’s the full details:
For the past month or two, I had been having increasing instability in Arch Linux. Because Arch Linux is a “bleeding edge” distro, things will sometimes work poorly, or just break, or make you want to cut yourself (which must be how the term “bleeding edge” was coined).
In my case, my most frequent problems were:
* The /home directory was missing on bootup, though data was intact. I had to recreate the /home directory and then mount the home partition to it.
* When the /home directory was not missing on bootup, something would sometimes use very high CPU and RAM.
* When shutting down or suspending, the system would randomly freeze, forcing a manual reboot/shutdown.
* Random crashes with lm_sensors, and it would take gkrellm with it. Either that, or gkrellm was crashing due to a glitch with lm_sensors.
Because of these problems, I was already considering a move to a more stable distro, and I was thinking of Linux Mint. But then stuff happened yesterday afternoon that forced me to move.
I did an update for a lot of packages, and then rebooted after they were installed. Shutdown froze, once again, but this time I saw some messages about failing to disable USB devices. I was forced to manually reboot.
On bootup, things got even worse. USB devices were not working, and it took two more reboots and the removal of a few USB devices just to get working keyboard input.
Next problem, no graphics. Xorg wasn’t starting, and attempting to start LXDM resulted in silent failure. I attempted to do another system update, in the hopes that there was a critical package that got missed due to mirror syncing.
No such luck: networking was dead as well. I checked the /etc/rc.d folder and saw that numerous daemons were missing (though I was later told that with SystemD, this was irrelevant). I shutdown the desktop, booted up my laptop, and downloaded a Linux Mint install DVD. After burning it, I booted up into the Linux Mint live environment, backed up my files to a flash drive, and then installed Linux Mint.
I could have reinstalled Arch Linux, but why bother? I’d run into the same problems again, and their installation procedure has become far more involved and complicated than it was two years ago. I didn’t have the patience to sit through all of that for the now-questionable benefits of Arch Linux, so I simply chose to go to a more stable linux distro.
SystemD is another thing where I am not convinced the benefits are worth the while. SystemD is like PulseAudio: it brings more problems for debatable benefits when systems that already exist simply work, are rock solid, and do the job without any problems. One frequent claim I see is “faster boot times”, but I didn’t see any gains in boot speed at all.
So, all in all, I’m finished with Arch Linux. Probably for good this time. I also don’t see myself ever using any linux distributions that make SystemD mandatory.