No, it's not an April Fools post, I'm seriously thinking of converting... to Linux, thanks to the latest version of Ubuntu
It all starting through some good natured ribbing from a fellow Tory thanks to the Confiker worm, (for which, for some reason, I'm still ranked really high on Google)
after I sent out some instructions on patching Windows computers
to all my fellow Tory contacts. Anyway, he sends back some smart-alec comment about how it's time to finally time to come to the "dark side" and make the switch. So, since I figured I've been meaning to give it a whirl on my HP Pavilion dv9000 laptop (remember, the one I bought with Vista?)
, so I looked up the latest version of Ubuntu, which is the Beta version 9.04. Downloaded it, burned it, and rebooted.
Seriously, even with repartitioning my drive so both Ubuntu and Vista can live side by side, it took all of about 20 minutes to get it all loaded. (on my second attempt mind you, tried installing first on my second hard drive but my dv9000 didn't like that, wouldn't give me the option to boot from my second drive, so I had to install again)
Booted up, man is it ever fast. It's easy to navigate, nice and cleanly designed. First time around, my wireless didn't work, so I plugged in to my router, and ran a hardware update. Found a suitable driver, loaded it, and that was it
. Ran some tests, and from a cold boot, it takes one minute and twenty eight seconds
till I'm fully online. And that's including the time required to enter my username and password, and automatically attach to my home wireless network.
I've always been hesitant to make the switch, because I've never been much of a programmer, and because basically, Windows has always just worked for me. (especially Windows XP Pro SP2, by far their best OS ever)
Linux has always had the problem of getting applications installed, which is a snap with Windows. In Linux, you need the right RPM's, tarball files, the right kernel, etc. Could never be bothered to work through all of that.
But there's been a dramatic shift in the last couple of years. With the advent of high-speed internet connections, everything is moving to an online application model. You've got your Hotmail and GMail for e-mail, you've got OpenOffice and Google Docs for word processing, you've got Facebook, etc., etc., etc. Essentially, the average user doesn't need to install much software anymore.
As such, once you're online, you're pretty well done. You can do everything you need online. Therefore, since I pretty much use my laptop for online communication, I figured what the heck, let's give it a go.
Again, I'm hugely impressed. So much so, that I'm posting this post from the SECOND computer that I've converted, the old P4 tower in my home office. Only a P4 1.6Ghz with 768MB of RAM and a 20GB HDD, and the thing still screams. Of course, XP would also work nice on those specs, but why would I want to spend money and buy an OS to put on that old thing? Exactly... free is good.
Of course, should the need arise, I can always turn to VMWare... I've got the VMWare Player installed on the box, so I can call up an MS Virtual PC image from work should I need it. All in all, it's pretty sweet.
Anyway, I'm sure I'll have more to say in the weeks to come. Also got the ISO file configured on a USB stick, from which I can run a LiveCD boot on most computers, so I'll be playing with it on various hardware, like my eeePC. I'll let you know how it goes.
Labels: IT, Microsoft, Ubuntu