Come to the Dark Side….

Or is it “into the light!”
Depending on your perspective, of course.

Yesterday I decided I was going to go down the path of the “righteous”.
I was reading about Windows Vista and it’s release delays and the new features and the latest “to protect your rights” DRM crap.
I read about pricing models – how they are now increasingly difficult to understand.
i read about Office 2007 and how that is becoming the basis for life everywhere and you can’t live without it.

And then I said to myself – I’m going to try an alternative.

For sooooo many years the home computer market has been awash with a single operating system (I’m not counting MAC’s as they are proprietary hardware and REALLY expensive) that could be installed on an i386 chip architecture (for the uninitiated – “Pentium”).

But now, the dawning of a new age has arrived, bringing with it a wide variety of full-featured operating systems, and all absolutely 100% at no cost.
Spend as much as you want getting custom hardware to tweak your system out – just make sure it’s Linux compatible.

So yes, I have installed Ubuntu 6.10 Edgy Eft on my main desktop machine here at home.
It took a while, and is still incomplete.

For your average desktop user, who uses Internet (Web & Email), office-style apps and a few kinds of games, this OS is perfect. It runs well on really low-end hardware and I’m running it on a much more than low-end. 🙂

I think that this is slowly becoming one of the more user-friendly operating systems, and I must say that although I absolutely love sticking it to “Big M$”, it’s nice to not have to.

Let me know if you’re interested in more details.

  • lahedge

    “Linux is only free if your time is worthless”.

  • angeleyes1701

    The only (ONLY!) reason I have yet to install Linux as my primary OS on the home desktop is Adobe Photoshop. The instant they have a Linux compatible version – I am switching over.

  • miketheman

    Somewhat true, but I find the learning process valuable as well.

  • miketheman

    Have you tried something like this?

  • angeleyes1701

    Might work… Now I just need a free weekend to format and install Linux on the desktop. Got a free weekend to loan me?

  • miketheman

    How about the next one? Happy to help.

  • angeleyes1701

    Actually, *I* need a free weekend. I haven’t the time to breathe, let alone spend quality time with Isis, my desktop.

  • lahedge

    The “Crossover” is a commercial implementation of Wine – which reportedly supports all office applications.

    It might be quite a good solution for networks. A Linux+Crossover workstation is much cheaper then a Windows workstation.

    But, as a workstation by itself, I don’t think Linux is ready for the real world yet. They are quite close, I’ll give them that.

  • ethan1701

    I downloaded Ubuntu months ago, but have yet to try it.
    So we have Thunderbird and FireFox for web and email, I assume there’s a Linux version of Media layer Classic? What about your file sharing programs? Emule? MicroTorrent?
    And there’s the good-ol’ questions of drivers for your peripherals: will I find drivers for my printer? BlueTooth Dongle? Sony-Ericsson phone? heck- my network card?

    And the only reason I’m asking you and not Google is because you offered. And because your answer (I hope) would be more refined than Google’s

  • miketheman

    Ok, after one week, I’ve broke.

    Apparently, I have way too much “designed for Windows” hardware and that causes some serious issues.

    I have had repeated problems with my screen card and sound card, and have finally turned back to Windows.

    If you are still interested (and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be), it goes like this:

    For multimedia playback there are about 4 major lines of software, use what feels good to you. There’s basic support for open-media codecs, such as Ogg, and any others must be installed (there’s some automatic software for that).

    File-sharing: aMule for ed2k network and Azereus for BT – there’s also a nice DC++ client. The file transfer speeds were a lot better on Ubuntu than they ever were on Windows.

    Hardware: You will probably have basic support for most of your drivers out-of-the-box. The fancier functions might require a lot of tweaking – but then again, it might not.
    BlueTooth is usually well supported, as most network cards. Phone are trickier – see here for other people’s experiences.

    The way I see it, if I had more “standard” hardware, I’d still be running *nux – and I’ll probably go back someday, when I plan for the hardware.

    But a good way to just give it a test run and see if your major hardware is recognized (screen card, network), download the latest Ubuntu Desktop CD and boot it. It’s a LiveCD that will let you get a quick preview of the system before installing it. – Oh, and take into account that NTFS drives are a little tricky as well – if you can, convert them to FAT32 before installation.