Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

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Linkdead_
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Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Linkdead_ » Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:55 am

Pretty straight forward, I was looking for the answer online but couldn't find a direct answer. Why is it that so much software is not made available on Linux? I have a feeling it has to do with something more than just software manufacturers not wanting to take the time to do it. With how large the Linux communities seem to be, it seems like it would be profitable for them.

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kc1di
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by kc1di » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:38 pm

Hi,
It has mostly to do with money and legalities. Licenses- the GPL and some other software licenses Linux requires states that any code must be open source that is it must be available and open not hidden. So anyone in the community who so desires may modify and change it and pass it on freely. and it must remain free.
Many software developers for Windows will not allow their software to be open sourced and available for modification, ETC.
You can learn more, Here are a few links:

https://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-3.0.en.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Gener ... ic_License

For most closed proprietary software company will not allow free access to there products and thus do not provide linux or open source programs for the Linux system.
There are however many good alternatives in Linux for most of the software out there.
Here is another good article: https://www.digitalocean.com/community/ ... e-Software
Easy tips : https://sites.google.com/site/easylinuxtipsproject/
Linux Mint Installation Guide: http://linuxmint-installation-guide.rea ... en/latest/
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by altair4 » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:43 pm

If the question pertains to Linux on the desktop specifically I suspect the answer is here: https://netmarketshare.com/operating-sy ... 1000%22%7D
Please add a [SOLVED] at the end of your original subject header if your question has been answered and solved.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by xenopeek » Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:50 pm

With respect kc1di but what has any of that to do with OP's question, unless you believe that to make software run on Linux it must use the GPL? In fact, software on Linux is available under a wide selection of both free and non-free licenses (free as in free speech). Just look at the thousands of games for Linux on Steam. Libraries commonly use the LGPL (https://tldrlegal.com/license/gnu-lesse ... 3-(lgpl-3)). As long as software is dynamically linked to the library (thus, doesn't include the compiled library in its own executable), the software can be distributed under whatever license the developer wants. It's only when statically linking (including the compiled library in the executable of the software) that the LGPL requires the software to also be distributed under the LGPL.
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by kc1di » Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:08 pm

Thanks xenopeek for your clarifications. I should know better than to try to make a coherent statement when I'm home sick with the flu.
:)
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by xenopeek » Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:27 pm

kc1di wrote:I should know better than to try to make a coherent statement when I'm home sick with the flu.
I guess so :) Take it easy and get well soon!
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by jimallyn » Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:53 pm

I think most of them consider us second class citizens, and don't feel any need to serve our community. It is quite possible to write software that will run on any common OS. Look at LibreOffice and Firefox, for example. And Audacity, and VLC, and Skype, and Teamviewer, and many more. (I think that Skype and Teamviewer are actually Windows executables that run with the help of Wine. .... OK, I know that Teamviewer is, when I start it, TeamViewer.exe and wineserver start, and when I exit TeamViewer, TeamViewer.exe and wineserver stop running.)

However, there is a Linux equivalent for just about any program you would like to run. Is there something in particular you are looking for?
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by phd21 » Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:19 pm

Hi "Linkdead_",

Welcome to the wonderful world of Linux Mint and its excellent forum!

I just read your post and the good replies to it. Here are my thoughts on this as well.

It would help to know more about your system setup. If you run "inxi -Fxzd" from the console terminal prompt, highlight the results, copy and paste them back here, that should provide enough information.

It would certainly help to tell us what software you are looking for using in your Linux Mint system?

In case you did not know there are usually over 50,000 software packages available in the Software Manager or Synaptic Package Manager (SPM) (aka Mint repositories, repos), and there are many others available outside of the Mint repositories for practically anything anyone could want. Always look first in the Software Manager or Synaptic Package Manager (SPM) for software.

A lot of software is developed using certain development environments specific to MS Windows or Mac, so naturally, they work on those systems and not on Linux. But for years now, software developers have a good choice of development environments that are "cross-platform" and their software will install and work on Linux, MS Windows, or Mac. Smart developers are using these cross-platform development environments to appeal to all users.

Although Linux does not have the "market share" that MS Windows or Mac has yet, it is growing rapidly every year.

Most software for Linux is free and "open source" and just as good or better than their MS Windows or Mac counterparts, with some exceptions. And there is proprietary "closed source" software, some of which are free and others are paid for, and there is nothing wrong with that. Usually, with the paid for software, they offer some features free and other features are only included if you pay for the software.

Also, In Linux you do not need all the anti-virus or anti-malware applications and drive defragmenting and registry maintenance applications that MS Windows and Mac systems need. Although some are available.

If there is some MS Windows only software that someone must have for whatever reasons, they can install Virtualbox or VMware, then install a version of MS windows in that, and then install and run any MS Windows applications in that while still in Linux Mint.

Hope this helps ...
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Linkdead_ » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:37 am

I'm not really looking for any softwares in particular. There is only one thing I can't run on Linux, so I keep Windows dual booted and when I want to play it, I load up into windows (it feels like taking off a comfy sweater and putting on a turtle neck that's too small xD.) I'm just asking questions that I can't find answers to while googling. I am trying to get a better understanding of Linux mainly because I am a nerd that wants to know the ins and outs of everything his computer does, and I am also going to be recommending Mint to some friends and family but before that I need to make sure I can solve their issues when they arise! I really enjoy the OS, and the community is simply fantastic. Thank you all for your replies, I am sure you will get sick of seeing my posts by the time I get comfy with mint though!

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Arch_Enemy » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:08 am

Linkdead_ wrote:Pretty straight forward, I was looking for the answer online but couldn't find a direct answer. Why is it that so much software is not made available on Linux? I have a feeling it has to do with something more than just software manufacturers not wanting to take the time to do it. With how large the Linux communities seem to be, it seems like it would be profitable for them.
A lot do. I'm running Corel Aftershot Pro, but it's not free. However, they put it on sale all the time.

Most don't bother because we're used to free software and they know we're a bunch of cheap b@$t@rds and aren't going to PAY for software when there's usually a free alternative.
Also, with only ~3% of the OS marketshare, it's just not worth it for them to take the time to make a Linux version, and most programmers grew up programming for Windows.
When I was taking my few programming classes in college back in the Dark Ages, we were programming for DOS! What the heck is this "Linux" you speak of! :D
I have travelled 35629424162.9 miles in my lifetime

One thing I would suggest, create a partition a ~28G partition as /. Partition the rest as /Home.
When the system fails, reinstall and use the exact same username and all your 'stuff' comes back to you.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Arch_Enemy » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:10 am

Linkdead_ wrote:I'm not really looking for any softwares in particular. There is only one thing I can't run on Linux, so I keep Windows dual booted and when I want to play it, I load up into windows (it feels like taking off a comfy sweater and putting on a turtle neck that's too small xD.) I'm just asking questions that I can't find answers to while googling. I am trying to get a better understanding of Linux mainly because I am a nerd that wants to know the ins and outs of everything his computer does, and I am also going to be recommending Mint to some friends and family but before that I need to make sure I can solve their issues when they arise! I really enjoy the OS, and the community is simply fantastic. Thank you all for your replies, I am sure you will get sick of seeing my posts by the time I get comfy with mint though!
Nah. Even Gurus were once N00bs. I've been at it for 15 years and I still have to seek professional help...

and a bartender...;)
I have travelled 35629424162.9 miles in my lifetime

One thing I would suggest, create a partition a ~28G partition as /. Partition the rest as /Home.
When the system fails, reinstall and use the exact same username and all your 'stuff' comes back to you.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Hoser Rob » Thu Jan 04, 2018 9:43 am

Well, there's the tiny market share, the inconsistent package managing across distros, the almost complete lack of stable APIs ... try reading this if you dare ...

https://itvision.altervista.org/why.lin ... rrent.html

Note the author LIKES linux. So do I ... I yanked WIndows a while ago.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Arch_Enemy » Thu Jan 04, 2018 12:36 pm

Hoser Rob wrote:Well, there's the tiny market share, the inconsistent package managing across distros, the almost complete lack of stable APIs ... try reading this if you dare ...

https://itvision.altervista.org/why.lin ... rrent.html

Note the author LIKES linux. So do I ... I yanked WIndows a while ago.

I've read that before. My only comment: I would love to get my hands on a model kit like that!

BTW, certainly concur with package management. No real standard as to packaging and installation.
One thing I like about Arch and Gentoo, or installing yourself from TARs: The package gets compiled on YOUR computer, so it is tailored to YOUR computer.
APT and YUM are cool and quick, but the package was compiled on someone else's computer. This has caused problems at times.
I have travelled 35629424162.9 miles in my lifetime

One thing I would suggest, create a partition a ~28G partition as /. Partition the rest as /Home.
When the system fails, reinstall and use the exact same username and all your 'stuff' comes back to you.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by jimallyn » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:35 pm

Linkdead_ wrote:I'm just asking questions that I can't find answers to while googling.
You are perfectly welcome to do that here! :D
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by jglen490 » Sat Jan 27, 2018 1:39 am

Linkdead_ wrote:Pretty straight forward, I was looking for the answer online but couldn't find a direct answer. Why is it that so much software is not made available on Linux? I have a feeling it has to do with something more than just software manufacturers not wanting to take the time to do it. With how large the Linux communities seem to be, it seems like it would be profitable for them.
Money. It takes money to at least re-compile a Windows or Mac program for the Linux environment. More money if it has to be re-written. No money coming in from Linux, because most Linux users will use a free program over a for-pay program unless the for-pay is really, really worth the money over the free one that has 90% plus of the functionality of the for-pay program.

It's a good day to be a cheapskate :lol:
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Petermint » Sun Jan 28, 2018 5:09 pm

From a software support perspective:

Which version of Windows? 7

Which version of Linux? Linux Mint 18.3 with an older kernel, I forget which, to fix a video problem. Wait, I added some other repositories to get different versions. I will send you the list of repositories and PPAs. The list is only 20 MB. No, that software was compiled with code I downloaded from somewhere, I should have written down the URL. Updates, yes I apply them all, except maybe level 5 or 4 and some where I do not recognise the name. What are headers anyway? And the GUI is XFCE, Lxde, and KDE. I used one of them when your program crashed. Fix it!

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Moem » Sun Jan 28, 2018 5:13 pm

Petermint wrote:Fix it!
I laughed out loud and then read this post to Mr Moem. He, too, said that you made a good point. This is very high praise. 8)
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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Schultz » Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:43 pm

Time may be an issue for a small-time operation. I keep a Windows computer around for a program that is only available for Windows. I sent the developer (one person) an email asking to port it over to Linux, and if I recall correctly his issue was time. Then maybe another reason for a small-time operation is the lack of knowledge of how to do it? :?: I'm not a developer so I really don't know how hard/easy it is.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by Petermint » Sun Jan 28, 2018 11:53 pm

@Schultz, the development work depends on the type of work the program performs. Python and Java applications move easily when they are very generic. Files are just files. The user interface is not specific to anything and users complain about lack of operating system specific shortcut keys, etc.

You can usually open a file easily in any operating system. When you want to set permissions or some other complexity, every operating system is different. In Windows, a file named example is just that, a file named example. In Linux, your example file will not be found if the user typed Example.

As an example, a three hour "Introduction to Linux for computer novices" class wasted twenty minutes trying to find a utility. The fact that a beginner had to use a command line utility was a big fail. The utility is in many different locations across distributions of Linux. The utility name is decorated with capital letters in some versions. This was pre Nemo. The file system is not semantic and the presenter did not know of a semantic search. We sat and waited, waited, waited, dreaming of Windows.

An example of something difficult is a full backup program. You have to gain system access to backup the settings that are stored outside your user directory. In Windows, it is really easy to have a whole Web development project in one directory within your user directory and back up everything with a single directory copy. In Linux, you can spend many days trying to find all the bits and move them into your development project. You have to add extra code to Apache/Nginx. You have to dive into /etc and other places to fix config files. There is no single online document on how to do it. Imagine application developers with working backup utilities on Windows trying to find all the bits of data before trying to develop a backup for the Linux mess.

When you get into complicated areas, it is often easier for the experienced Linux developer to independently create something to perform the same function.

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Re: Why do so many programs not have a Linux port?

Post by BigEasy » Mon Jan 29, 2018 4:14 am

Linkdead_ wrote:Why is it that so much software is not made available on Linux?
Mostly because Linux very often reinventing the wheel: X11, Wayland, Mir, GTK 1, 2, 3, Qt, Unity - progressive and great, Unity - canceled (appeared bad?)... e.t.c, e.t.c, e.t.c. Very few wants to mess with this chaos.
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