Year of the Linux Desktop

18.04.2010 16:56

Seriously, I was surprised today to see this list of minimum system requirements on a "Language Leader" CD my mum got in an English language class. I was just about to say that there's no chance this is going to work on her Ubuntu laptop.

LanguageLeader CD

Redhat, Mandrake and Debian distributions are mentioned, although only Mandrake has a version number (and there's a funny overload of "GNU" around Debian).

Of course, things didn't work as expected when we inserted the CD into her computer. Ubuntu is smart these days and tries to start programs under Wine if it sees a CD with a Windows autorun.inf file on it. Obviously, this isn't the right way to go in this case (and the installer failed to start anyway due to the "Cannot find the autorun program" bug). Is there a multiplatform way of specifying software that should automatically start after inserting media?

There's a LanguageLeader_Linux ELF executable in the root directory which promptly dies with a segmentation fault if started.

Further digging around the CD revealed a main.swf Adobe Flash file. It turns out this one will happily run in the Flash Firefox plug-in, sound and all. Problem solved.

So, it's a nice surprise, but obviously the user experience is lacking compared to other supported systems. The CD has a copyright date in 2008 and by coincidence I was doing this on Ubuntu 8.10 which was also released in 2008. I wonder how much testing, if any, this product received on Linux.

Posted by Tomaž | Categories: Code


Hah, great finding. Too bad the Desktop Computing is diying, not to mention cd-roms :-)

Posted by Yaggo

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