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Why I chose Ubuntu after trying Windows 7

A couple of years ago I would probably easily dismiss the idea of trying out a new version of Windows on the basis of a Free Software ideology or the chorus of voices of Free Software or Open Source fans saying how it just sucks and I better not bother. But things have changed and while some may accuse me of betraying my own four freedoms or even worse the sin of promoting subjugation of computer users, my "evolution" (or de-evolution, perhaps, in some views), has exactly a lot to do with freedom. For what that's worth to would be detractors, it's freedom that I rediscovered, not that I betrayed.

But that's a much deeper topic so I'll suffice with saying that I found freedom to be a far more fundamental a concept than the legal crumbs you call "four freedoms" (hint: beyond copyright and government).

That's a part of what opened me up to the idea of trying out Windows 7, but partly it was also the recommendations of a friend who actually switched to it on his home computer and kept giving it rather high praise. He too used to be a big Free Software guy and a Linux advocate. Microsoft actually offered a release candidate of its new OS for free testing for almost a year, a fully unlocked ultimate edition so I downloaded it and first tested it in VirtualBox and was quite impressed by the UI changes. It was enough to get me to consider installing it for real on another partition as a dual boot with Ubuntu, which I did after some time of putting it off.

This isn't a full review of Windows 7 so I wont get into all the boring details. I will describe my thoughts and feelings about it instead. I do think that this is a significant improvement over Windows Vista, let alone XP and would agree with those who would say it's Vista done right. I've been told this is solely because computers today are more powerful than they used to be when Vista came out, so nobody is noticing the ongoing high requirements. Even so, however, changes go beyond just reducing the resource requirements. Most notable is the new panel, especially with regards to how open windows are handled. It seems like an amalgam of Mac OS X' dock and the old Windows panel.

Another thing are neat window management improvements such as the ability to quickly tile windows to half a screen by just moving them to the right or left border of the screen or maximize them by moving them to the top. And of course, it's flashy as hell, like Vista. The glow of panel buttons actually follows mouse movements (which looks pretty cool), window border and titlebar blurred transparency is everywhere and window buttons glow like traffic lights when hovered.

Overall, however, much of what I would consider the pros of using Windows 7 are the pros of using any windows, except now it actually feels like using a modern OS that doesn't feel as bloated as Vista so I would say that Windows 7 is merely a "bonus".. Perhaps those who characterize it as a service pack to Vista aren't too far off. In any case, the biggest advantages of using Windows that I personally find are:

  • Production software availability - with windows you pretty much know that you'll be able to find software for what you need such as for instance good video editing applications. And Windows 7 seems to be compatible with programs made for Vista, which has been around long enough.
  • Better 3D support - while there is no Windows 7 driver for my video card (ATI Radeon X800) probably for the same reason why there isn't one for Ubuntu 9.04 (AMD discontinued support), the Vista driver works and offers complete support not matched by free Xorg drivers I'm relegated to on Ubuntu, making sure that all 3D needs are met properly.
  • Gaming - which is a no brainer. Like it or not, unfortunately, most good games will still run best on Windows (and I have a few games from Steam).

As you can see this isn't particularly specific to Windows 7, but Windows in general.

On the other hand, the ongoing advantages of using Ubuntu are:

  • Cleaner, more flexible and customizable UI - despite all the improvements Windows just doesn't compare with something like a GNOME desktop with workspaces and compiz powered expo effect. And you can completely change how the desktop looks and feels. I'm spoiled by this.
  • Easily available software from central repository (synaptic and Add/Remove Programs), offering software that covers majority of all of my needs and never contains ads or requires registration.
  • Peace of mind that comes from knowing that Ubuntu is based on a platform with a good security track record, and which is Free Software, widely disseminated and reviewed, which alleviates some of my paranoia.
  • It keeps improving faster than Windows constantly showing potential for addressing whatever issues I may even have. Trying stuff out is also a good way to simmer thoughts that I can share on Nuxified.
  • Familiarity. I am at home with console, GNOME, KDE, apt-get, synaptic etc. I get things running faster.

I think it is becoming rather obvious why Ubuntu rears itself as a better choice here. Availability of production software is an issue that I face only a small minority of time. I mainly do web development or writing which I can easily do with tools readily available. Fun stuff like watching movies, listening to music, watching videos online, chatting etc. is all well supported. So the things that are missing are things which I need too sparsely to warrant switching to a new OS, let alone paying for it.

The same goes for gaming and 3D support, which are most related to each other. While I can't quite game on Linux (especially now with only free Xorg drivers), a dual boot is an acceptable option given that I game so rarely, and there are technologies on the horizon which may completely remove that need as well, such as Onlive which will allow anyone with a web browser and broadband to game easily and without compromise regardless of which OS they're on.

I think many others may find themselves in similar situations. It's always about a few productivity applications, 3D support and gaming, isn't it? However, WINE supports more and more of the windows applications better and better and there is virtualization for the rest and dual booting as a last resort. Onlive will pretty much bring modern gaming to all platforms. And 3D support keeps improving. I happen to own an old card for which there isn't a native driver for Windows 7 either, but the free driver is improving and proprietary drivers work for all newer cards better than they used to.

All in all, a good case is being built for popular, well supported Linux based OS's like Ubuntu.

Comments

It wants to be KDE4 when it grows up

 

There's an assortment of OSes in my house - Ubuntu, Debian, FreeBSD, Mac OS X, Windows XP.

I tried the Windows 7 beta (build 7000) in a 512MB VirtualBox. It was surprisingly responsive and usable. Slow to boot and the laptop's power consumption went through the roof ... but it was really nice.

We then tried the RC (build 7100) on a PC with 1 GB memory. It spent its entire time thrashing. Literally, it never stopped. It was slower than the beta was in a 512MB VirtualBox. We eventually gave up because of video driver problems - such that sending a Flash video full-screen on BBC iPlayer would reliably blue-screen the box.

My girlfriend's comment on Windows 7: "It wants to be KDE 4 when it grows up." And it so does!

As I probably have

 

As I probably have mentioned somewhere before I am actually in the situation that on Linux I use software which I wouldn't know how to replace when using Windows without either paying a lot of money or using pirated versions.

And I am actually talking about video-editing.
What I'm doing here of course isn't what you'd even consider calling professional, mostly it's just recording stuff from my DV-camera to the PC, cutting out a few bits and pieces and then exporting it to MPEG2 in order to record it to DVD. But the program(s) I use actually can do more than just that.

Mostly I use Kino, as it has the interface to control my cam through Firewire and record directly to raw DV (which is a bit big, but it's still the best source as it'll be stored on my HD the same way it's on the tape).
With Kino I can then also add certain effects, like some fades, titles, etc.
Once, just for fun, I took one of my recorded sets and "exorcistized" it. If you have ever seen "The Exorcist" you probably know that at some points of the movie the face of a demon flashes onscreen. Well, that's what I did.

Now what does Windows offer in this regard. Out of the box there's only that rotten Windows Media Encoder (or whatever it's called). Well, it does support recording from my cam, but it insists on saving as WMV, which sucks if you still want to edit the video and further export it, because it means a loss in quality. Furthermore it really sucks because it records into memory first, which means that unlike you have really lots of memory your system will be unusable within just a few minutes (if it takes that long at all) because all your RAM is used up. Not only does this make it impossible to record an hour of recording at a time, but also it is highly inconvenient as it makes it impossible to use your PC at the time of the recording. Both of those problems do not exist with Kino, which pushes what it reads from the cam directly onto the HD at pretty low CPU-load and memory-consumption so you can still do whatever you like to do.

To wrap it up: Yes, Windows has it's use, I still have an installation too. I use it for games. Nothing else. Everything else I do I can do with Linux. There surely are lots of very expensive tools for Windows which may be better than what I use on Linux, for example Photoshop instead of Gimp, some other Adobe-shit (forgot the name) instead of Kino, Maya instead of Blender, ... but what for?
I can't even fully harness the power of the tools I am using, as I am just an amateur in those fields, so why should I waste a lot of money on software, which may or may not be better, I cannot fully utilize anyway because I actually have no clue what the hell I am doing there?
On the other hand I have a lot of tools for Linux which I'd miss when using Windows.

Linux Video stuff

 

@reptiler

I do agree with the sentiment of your post. I do not play 3D games and therefore have not needed Windows in years.

I use Kino to capture video, but then run Kdenlive for the editing and rendering. There are several others to try. OpenMovieEditor, Pitivi, Cinnerella to name a few. The other big advantage is the range of free video converters. Handbrake is great, I use it to make 16:9 versions of my old 4:3 camcorder stuff. I have stopped making DVDs of my home movies and render to mp4 and playback from a WD TV Media Player and a portable hard drive. So many free tools to play with, not professional tools but more than adequate for home movies.

So much to play with - zero dollars. If a program does not meet my needs I try another.

Agree

 

I also prefer Ubuntu. Hands-down the best.

I actually don't have

 

I actually don't have Windows on any working computer. I have a hard drive with Windows XP and a VM of it (however, I don't have vmplayer installed, just Virtual Box and I don't really have a need to install vmplayer just to use Windows (I lost the installation disk)).

However, I AM a gamer. The difference is, I am not influenced by the market. I play what I enjoy playing. Most of the games installed are free and/or open source, but I do have quite a few commercial games installed too.

For more information, http://sakuramboo.com/blog/2009/04/game-on/

I have used Linux on all of my computers for the past 5 years and have not seen one reason to use anything but.

However, I also agree that there is a time and place for any OS. I do advocate Linux, but only in the places I know it would work best. I would not try to push Linux on a 14 year old kid who is hell bent on getting better FPS rates in CS:S or what ever the hot game of the year is.

To give an example, my friend's laptop just was craptastic. It was running Windows XP, her daughter used it before and like most 15 year old girls, they know nothing of computer security, so it was riddled with malware to the point where it would take 30+ minutes just to get to a state where she can run firefox. Long story, short, her laptop needed to be fixed. Since this is now her laptop and not her daughters anymore, she only needs a laptop to check her email and write little papers, nothing more. So, why put Windows on it if the same thing is gonna happen to it? So I put Ubuntu on it, showed her how to get to firefox and how to start OOo and hasn't had any problems ever since. And this was 6 months ago and now, her daughters ask to use her laptop because its faster than theres!

The point is, I looked at her situation and knew that something non-Windows would be the best route for her. It didn't have to be Ubuntu, I could have put PC-BSD or SkyOS or some hacked version of OSX on it. I chose Ubuntu because of their hardware support (I firmly believe that it's better than Fedora right now). Now, if she was some hardcore gamer, then I would have installed Windows XP and locked it down via strong ass ACL's and permissions to help against the malware. But she wasn't, so I didn't. Smiling

Free games, etc.

 
sakuramboo wrote:

The difference is, I am not influenced by the market. I play what I enjoy playing. Most of the games installed are free and/or open source, but I do have quite a few commercial games installed too.

Me neither. Many of the games I play I can comfortably play in DOSBox, as they are pretty old, like Bioforge or System Shock. Others I can play in native engines, like Exult, OpenTTD and the likes.
Of course I also play many free software games, like Nethack or Wormux.

sakuramboo wrote:

I have used Linux on all of my computers for the past 5 years and have not seen one reason to use anything but.

Except for a handful of relatively recent games, like Doom 3, GTR Evolution and a few others, I have no reason for Windows either. I switched 10 years ago and found the transition very easy as my focus always was on trying stuff, like programming, networking and stuff like that. But I do enjoy the occasional game now and then to relax a bit in between.

sakuramboo wrote:

I would not try to push Linux on a 14 year old kid who is hell bent on getting better FPS rates in CS:S or what ever the hot game of the year is.

It depends on how you push it onto that kid. I have two step-kids, 13 and 10. They were no big PC-users before moving in with me. Thus they pretty much got exposed to Linux right away, without having much choice. They do know that there is a Windows-installation somewhere on my PC, but they don't know how to get to it. ;-)
So, given that they were pretty much forced to use Linux right from the start that's now what they are used to. And when they have some CD with some crap game from a magazine they accept that it won't run because it's for Windows (of course I could try Wine, or even let them try it in Windows, but the latter I don't really want, seeing how unaware users can easily mess up a system. And I don't want to put too much time into locking down my Windows. At some point I may explain Wine to them though.

sakuramboo wrote:

I firmly believe that it's better than Fedora right now

Seeing how Fedora usually has the later kernel I'd rather pass the flag to Fedora here. But I guess it doesn't matter much and is probably a thing of personal preference.

But all this is pretty much off-topic I'd say. ;-)

The thing about 3D gaming

The thing about 3D gaming on Linux kinda falls apart when video card support goes missing, like in my case where I can't run much of the 3D games even if they're native and FOSS. But then again this mostly appears to be AMD's fault as they dropped support for older cards which affected not only Linux OS's with new Xorg, but Windows 7 as well (no driver).

Windows 7 and Ubuntu then end up being sort of equal in that respect. Windows now does have a built in generic driver which works fairly well and might even be better than an incomplete free Xorg driver, but I'm not sure about that. They're both fine for desktop effects and occasional lucky game.

That said, I have an admission to make here. After writing the above entry a friend I mentioned (Linux user who switched his home computer (but not work computer) completely to Windows 7) attempted to shoot down all of my advantages of using Ubuntu.. and kinda succeeded. I'm currently on Windows 7. But I'm still not sure if I'll stick with it and frankly my indecisiveness has led me to decide to not decide. Laughing out loud

I'm therefore simply gonna be using both, whatever works and feels comfortable at any given point in time. I have converted my data partition to NTFS so it's accessible to both and makes switching my work between the two effortless.

Maybe after a while of that I'll be able to do a more comprehensive comparison between the two. Smiling

Cheers

Well, you are free to

 

Well, you are free to choose whatever you like. And if you for some reason prefer Windows that is up to you. I am pretty sure that a lot of the software you'll use there will still be free software, like Firefox, OpenOffice and stuff like that.
And maybe you'll find after some time playing with Windows that you're just too fond of Linux, the way all your software is easily updated (which is a point your friend won't be able to invalidate), and not just your OS and you need to take care of the rest yourself, the way you have multiple desktops you can easily switch around, which makes organizing your desktop so much easier, ...

I don't deny Windows the right to exist. As said, I also have an installation which I from time to time fire up. I am comfortable with Linux, and I have no reason at all to abandon it. Sure, it would be nice if I could actually harness the whole power of my RadeonHD-card and play more sophisticated stuff (like aforementioned Doom 3, which can be run natively on Linux), or even just things like Celestia, properly.
The free RadeonHD-driver doesn't seem to be capable to do this magic yet for my chip, the official Linux-driver doesn't seem to work for me. Maybe because I use 64-bit, maybe for some other reason.

But hey, this is a problem I can live with, and it'll get fixed sooner or later, especially since AMD has released the documentation for the ATI-chips.

Doom 3

 
reptiler wrote:
sakuramboo wrote:

I have used Linux on all of my computers for the past 5 years and have not seen one reason to use anything but.

Except for a handful of relatively recent games, like Doom 3,

That first example is really bad because Doom 3 runs natively in Linux. Eye

http://zerowing.idsoftware.com/linux/doom/

EDIT: oops, sorry, didn't read your last post where you corrected yourself.

Yeah... It may be a little

Yeah...

It may be a little odd to have a guy who runs a largely pro-FOSS and pro-Linux site actually run Windows, right? Smiling

But on the other hand, more than a year ago the idea was propagated that this site should be support for FOSS everywhere, no matter which operating system people run with emphasis on Free Operating Systems of course. There is a good point to be made about increasing the adoption of FOSS used on Windows. Since it is still used, for better or for worse, by a great majority of people supporting people who run Free Software on Windows might have a bigger impact than solely supporting people who run FOSS on a Free OS like Linux.

It's just our current branding is ambiguous and I'm actually tempted to change it from "Free Software Support Community" to "Open Source Support Community". Regardless of what FSF supporters would say, it actually more clearly denotes the difference between proprietary freeware and actual "free as in freedom" software, and in all honesty I've personally lost the zeal for FSF's point of view... not because I turned anti-freedom, but because I turned anti-copyright (FSF can only get its way through increasingly rigorous enforcement of GPL through copyright whereas open source more generally is about sharing software with source code and not necessarily seeking of anyone to share it further under your rules, not even BSD rules. Only carefully crafted specific contracts can change that without the copyright law).

Anyway I'll probably elaborate on that in some next article or entry, but I wonder what you guys think about it?

That said, I hear great things about OpenSUSE 11.1 and 11.2 with its smooth implementation of KDE4 so my "honey moon" with Windows may still end at some point soon. Eye I'm still not sure I like it enough to pay for it once that time comes somewhere in 2010 (I'm running a legal and free release candidate now).

Cheers

I have a VM with OpenSuse

 

I have a VM with OpenSuse 11.1. It can by default run with KDE, but Fedora can do the same, if you install from the KDE LiveCD. Advantage on Fedora clearly is that you have a much better version of KDE, as OpenSuse still uses KDE 4.1, whereas Fedora already has KDE 4.2, which pretty much is what KDE 4.0 was expected to be by those who pretty much ignored the announcements that KDE 4.0 will not be totally complete and mostly aimed at developers/testers.
KDE 4.1 isn't bad, personally I wouldn't even say that about KDE 4.0, but seeing the improvements KDE 4.2 brought over 4.1 (not that I could name any right now, but the KDE-homepage should offer extensive information on this) I'd prefer Fedora simply for the newer KDE (leaving aside that I anyway prefer Fedora).

But nonetheless OpenSuse offers you a system which seems to be quite "round". Haven't actually played much with it yet, and mostly installed it to have a look at AppArmor, Novell's MAC-system, but the overall impression from the installer, the first clicks and looking and the update- and package-managers actually give quite a good impression.

Finally I can only conclude that I'd suggest that you simply give it a try. And also consider that just yesterday Fedora 11 has been released, which may also be worth a look. ;-)

You might be right. I tried

You might be right. I tried Fedora 11 preview live CD already, but only the GNOME version and it didn't impress me more than Ubuntu. I should probably still try the final though, at least KDE version.

At this point though I like things to be as well rounded and polished as possible which as you say may give OpenSUSE an edge, and I also hear Zypper performs better than yum for package management...

I'll probably just give both a spin. Smiling

Cheers

Well, as said, I don't

 

Well, as said, I don't really like Suse. Which not even has anything to do with Novell's deal with Microsoft, but actually this dislike may not even be justified anymore as it already is quite some years old. I surely have mentioned it somewhere, back in 1999 my first steps with Linux were with Suse Linux 6.2, which at the time cost me a 100 DM (roughly 50 Euro, at least at the time the Euro was introduced, as it was 1 Euro=2 DM, but I don't think this calculation would still be valid today) for a box with a fat handbook and 6 CDs. At the moment I'm actually considering having my mom send me the CDs and, just for giggles, install that system in a VM. Would be somehow cool to see this old crap (kernel 2.2.10, KDE 1, ...) run again.

So, as said, my dislike towards Suse may be completely unjustified nowadays, but right now I am really happy with Fedora, and I really like SELinux, especially compared with AppArmor, which Novell still ships, although development seems to have stopped after all the developers have been sacked...

But yes, OpenSuse looks like quite a nice system. As you are currently evaluating what should power your computer it might be an option. If I ever get into that situation again I might consider it as well, along with a few other options. After all, the distros keep moving and over time certain reasons for not picking a certain distro may vanish.

KDE3 in openSuSE 11.1 is

KDE3 in openSuSE 11.1 is good, but IMHO I don't even think using the KDE4 as the default desktop in openSuSE 11.1 is even usable.

Why would you say KDE 4

 

Why would you say KDE 4 isn't usable in OpenSuse 11.1? As said, I haven't played around much with OpenSuse, but from the few clicks I did I didn't find anything I'd consider a show-stopper.
I've been using KDE 4 since 4.0, as the Fedora project adopted it already in Fedora 9, and have seen many improvements over time, up to KDE 4.2 now. And since KDE 4.1 I'd say that KDE 4 is pretty usable.
But maybe it's something Suse messed up. So, I'd love to read more about why you say it's unusable (in OpenSuse 11.1).

Of course, not all applications have been ported yet, thus you usually don't get around also having the KDE3-libraries installed, KDevelop 4 is still under construction and the KDE 4 version of K3B also isn't ready yet. Still you get lots of applications, most of which are ported to KDE 4 already. And anyway, as a Linux-user you're pretty used to using "mixed applications" (like GTK-apps in KDE, or KDE-apps in Gnome), so it's not such a big deal anyway I'd say.

Why I choose anything else than Ubuntu

 

- Free CD's is all they got to offer and it's all about promotion and business ..

- OpenSuSE and Fedora has got far better "control panel" replacements.

- Ubuntu's wiki is a total mess and most of the writers in the forum and wiki is half-baked Linux users who only see Linux through their own coffee-brown glasses, which twists the reality to a point that makes me puke, it's total useless compared to Gentoo, ArchLinux etc. the list goes on everyone can do better!

- Ubuntu is too heavy (But we aim for 10 seconds boot-time!! Make it happen first and after that start bragging about it, and then you could turn off Compiz from default which is actually still experimental software, and who says anyone needs it?)

- Ubuntu's tools for configuring Xorg and others are badly written and sometimes bricks your Xorg.conf and then where is the "Linux for human beings" as they say, you stumble upon the same door as with any other distribution, so why not use something that is not coffee brown?

- All Ubuntu has to offer is a Debian-based distribution (Thank lord no more RPM, which was the case the times before Ubuntu) and Debian is just as easy as Ubuntu to install nowadays, go with a Debian with GNOME and you will have a better experience in the long run when you will not have to run several nasty fixes and the so infamous PulseAudio, known for giving Ubuntu users alot of trouble (It's called Pulse because most of the time there's silence) ..

Ubuntu got alot of users to Linux - Fine, thank you.
Ubuntu got free CDs - Thank you!
Ubuntu got compiz - No thanks.
Ubuntu every Windows-kid on the block - But do that makes them more comfortable on Linux? Or is it just GNOME in coffee-brown? What windows-users knows as Ubuntu is GNOME mostly which is easily available on any other distribution.
Ubuntu has got a .com domain - This is suspicious already Eye
Ubuntu has got fancy names - like Coco-Pops, Worthy Warning, Juggernaut-Bitch

Don't be offended, this is just my 5 cents about Ubuntu, and I choose ANYTHING ELSE than Ubuntu in regards to a replacement for Windows.

Ubuntu

 

Well, although I also happen to not be a big fan of Ubuntu, for no clear reason at all, I think I was just repelled by the hype, I want to pick out a few of your points and reply to them.

Anonymous wrote:

- Ubuntu is too heavy (But we aim for 10 seconds boot-time!! Make it happen first and after that start bragging about it, and then you could turn off Compiz from default which is actually still experimental software, and who says anyone needs it?)

Fedora aims for 20 seconds with their latest release, Fedora 11. Although I haven't measured it I can indeed see an improvement here.
Ubuntu started in the right direction by starting upstart, that init-replacement capable of starting services parallel, but then they don't change init-scripts to be actually capable of doing so. Fedora actually may have that now, as said, booting and shutting down feels quite a bit faster than it did with F10...

Anonymous wrote:

- Ubuntu's tools for configuring Xorg and others are badly written and sometimes bricks your Xorg.conf

That display-manager I found in Ubuntu seems to be the same one as is used in Fedora, which I so far didn't have any problems with.

Anonymous wrote:

- All Ubuntu has to offer is a Debian-based distribution (Thank lord no more RPM, which was the case the times before Ubuntu) and Debian is just as easy as Ubuntu to install nowadays, go with a Debian with GNOME and you will have a better experience in the long run ...

Yes, Debian is a good system, but I don't see it very suitable for the desktop, simply because it's already outdated when it's released.

Anonymous wrote:

... when you will not have to run several nasty fixes and the so infamous PulseAudio, known for giving Ubuntu users alot of trouble (It's called Pulse because most of the time there's silence) ..

Fedora uses PulseAudio, and although it isn't perfect I cannot really complain about it. It's not like it frequently makes trouble.
The problem is not that there are sound-servers like PulseAudio, but that we need them at all. If the sound-device could be concurrently used by multiple applications there would be no need for all that stuff. Let's just hope that PulseAudio finally makes the cut to be "the one" sound-server.

Overall I think Ubuntu isn't really bad. Promoting it as "the one Linux for everybody" may be a bit over the top, but hey, I guess it helped encouraging people to make the move.

RE: Ubuntu

 

I understand your point, but most Ubuntu users never gets away from the dirty hacks you have to do in an everyday life as Ubuntu user, everytime the GUI-road goes no more you're back to where you started ..

Praising Gentoo and Arch

Praising Gentoo and Arch gives you away as someone who has preferences that differ quite a bit from the majority of people, including me for the last couple or so years. This has a lot to do with Ubuntu's popularity of course.

There are people who would say something is bloated and thus "crappy" just for being a GUI. It's all just preferences and perspective. Something that sucks to you may be perfection to me. Not everything about operating system has an only one right way.

Also, judging from the fact that I actually ended up at Windows 7 for these few days even after writing this article says that not even Ubuntu is good enough anymore (to me at least, though they're close). I don't want to be mean, but to those who have it in their interest for GNU/Linux based OS's to succeed on the desktop, that should probably be alarming (not that I represent everyone, but I still am a long time Linux user who actually found Windows very good).

I've been among those who bought into the hype that everything MS does must by definition suck and be immoral, only to find that is a popular hoax.

.....

reptiler wrote:

Why would you say KDE 4 isn't usable in OpenSuse 11.1? As said, I haven't played around much with OpenSuse, but from the few clicks I did I didn't find anything I'd consider a show-stopper.
I've been using KDE 4 since 4.0, as the Fedora project adopted it already in Fedora 9, and have seen many improvements over time, up to KDE 4.2 now. And since KDE 4.1 I'd say that KDE 4 is pretty usable.
But maybe it's something Suse messed up. So, I'd love to read more about why you say it's unusable (in OpenSuse 11.1).

Of course, not all applications have been ported yet, thus you usually don't get around also having the KDE3-libraries installed, KDevelop 4 is still under construction and the KDE 4 version of K3B also isn't ready yet. Still you get lots of applications, most of which are ported to KDE 4 already. And anyway, as a Linux-user you're pretty used to using "mixed applications" (like GTK-apps in KDE, or KDE-apps in Gnome), so it's not such a big deal anyway I'd say.

well maybe because I don't have a computer which is good enough, but everything is just extremely laggy when using openSuSE 11.1's KDE4 (for example, there is an almost 2-second delay for the decoration of any window to be shown - which didn't happen in KDE3), and many KDE components also crashes a lot. I don't mind "mixing" applications from KDE3/GNOME though.

 
libervisco wrote:

I've been among those who bought into the hype that everything MS does must by definition suck and be immoral, only to find that is a popular hoax.

Well, I wouldn't say that this is the case at all. Although I usually stay away from MS-software (except that Windows-installation I have for gaming) I have to say that I really like the hardware MS produces. For the last years, probably ten or more, I had MS-mice, at this moment it's the Microsoft Laser Mouse 6000, and I love it. Their hardware works good and very reliable. My last mouse just started failing after several years of extensive use.
Also, although I usually avoid it, MS software isn't as bad as its reputation, at least not anymore.
For me the biggest reason for not liking MS is simply politics, the way they so often have bashed against Linux/OpenSource with campaigns that were full of lies.
Their software surely has a right to exist, but for myself I simply don't see the point of spending a lot of money for a OS, plus another pile of cash for additional software, if I can get all the functionality I need for free.

Yes, money is a big reason for me, but also security and stability. MS may have caught up on the latter two over the last couple of releases, but they can't beat the price.
Another reason of course is that I can have Linux the way I like it. I like tinkering, I think my project EasyLFS is proof enough for that.

Also, I'm an IT-guy. I do server-stuff and web-development. What better platform is there for this than Linux? It's the most widespread environment for web-hosting, so why not directly use it for development?

Well, I have a host of reasons for using Linux. Most, if not all, I have mentioned before, and I don't actually like repeating myself. So I guess I'll leave it at that.

Anyway, your reasons for using Windows are yours. If you are happy with it, well, good for you.

reptiler wrote:

I hate having to supply subject-lines when quoting posts...

Funny I was just adding the module that fixes that on another site I'm working on and now that you mentioned it I thought I'd add it to Nuxified as well, so here goes. From now on subject field will be automatically filled with a proper "Re: previous post" subject line. Smiling

reptiler wrote:

For me the biggest reason for not liking MS is simply politics, the way they so often have bashed against Linux/OpenSource with campaigns that were full of lies.

Same here actually. By using Windows I'm not necessarily agreeing with MS corporate culture nor the stuff Ballmer sometimes likes to spout about FOSS.. That said, it's politics in general that I've come to despise, even when it comes from the Free Software crowd. From my current point of view "politically" speaking FOSS is merely a lesser evil. Since I no longer believe in copyright I don't believe in copyright licenses, only contracts (ideally unregulated by states), and I don't believe that people should have a monopoly on terms under which people who never got the software directly from the author should use it, even if those terms are GPL or BSD.

Suffice it to say that wherever I go and whatever I use I end up in a fundamentally same situation as far as "supporting" something I disagree with is concerned. It's like being on an alien planet and stuck using the alien technology. I simply have no better choice so I might as well use what works best for me at any point in time and completely ignore copyright, licenses and all the other flawed things (not being ignorant in the sense of not knowing what's what, but in the sense of not taking them as significant variables in my decisions what to use).

reptiler wrote:

Their software surely has a right to exist, but for myself I simply don't see the point of spending a lot of money for a OS, plus another pile of cash for additional software, if I can get all the functionality I need for free.

I don't like that prospect either and am still not convinced this is worth paying for. I'm simply using the Release Candidate for the time being. I'm hoping by the end of the year KDE 4.3 will be super stable and some sort of a resolution for the 3D drivers will be found (even if it meant buying a cheap new video card) and I'll settle back on Kubuntu or OpenSUSE. Sticking out tongue

That said, most FOSS runs on Windows so you hardly really need to spend any money on additional software.

reptiler wrote:

Anyway, your reasons for using Windows are yours. If you are happy with it, well, good for you.

My ideal OS is a combination.. and it doesn't exist. I gave up looking for perfection. So long as it doesn't exist I actually probably don't care so much. Data is portable. OS's are easy to install for me.. I'll just use what works right now right here, no matter what it is. I guess I'm past having "One Single OS" that I use for very long periods of time, at least for now. Smiling

Cheers

Re: Yeah... It may be a little

There will always be the big problem of the term "open source": it does not make sense for interpreted languages.

Well, I'm back to Ubuntu after I bought a new video card.. Nvidia 9600GT.. KDE4.2 remains buggy though, but at least it doesn't freeze up and performs MUCH smoother than I've ever had it before. I hear KDE 4.3 has much of this fixed.

I am using a proprietary nvidia driver, probably the best video card driver that exists for Linux. How do I reconcile that with my purported and well publicized boycott of nvidia because they said no to releasing their drivers as free software? The same way I reconcile the fact that I no longer have an FSF style purist view of the software world. Otherwise I don't reconcile anything. I'm simply changed. Sticking out tongue

It's true that, as far as end users go, Nvidia does offer a "sweet deal". And at the same time it's true that having their drivers proprietary they could just drop support at some point. Well, how has that played out in case of FREE drivers for radeon? Well, probably half a decade old drivers were so bad I ended up buying a new card, that's how. Openness means squat if it doesn't work and if it takes years to move a zilch. Hardware gets obsolete. If I wanna be on the bleeding edge I ought to expect older cards to be dropped. Nothing wrong with that. Now I can sell it for less to someone who doesn't mind running older operating systems (which are still supported).

Nvidia, AFAIK, *employs* people to do the work for Linux and even FreeBSD and OpenSolaris, and do it WELL. I don't feel like a "slave". I don't feel like my freedom is somehow trampled. Just the opposite. I feel freer than ever because I don't believe in the fraud that is the concept of "sacrificing yourself for your own freedom". "Sacrificing for freedom" is a god damn oxymoron. Freedom is all about being you and making choices that absolutely and fully suit YOU, not undercutting you for some vague self-contradictory ideal.

Re: Yeah... It may be a little

a thing wrote:

There will always be the big problem of the term "open source": it does not make sense for interpreted languages.

I don't know about that.. There is still a difference between the code being interpreted and the result of its interpretation (a final program you see and use). It's just that interpreted languages have their source open all the time so the distinction is lost.

Is that a problem? If you want to differentiate between different license or contract terms yes, but from where I stand today arbitrarily calling the terms consistent with FSF's "four freedoms" as terms that guarantee "freedom" is just that.. arbitrary. Choose software under terms of your choice, period. There isn't even a need for a special buzzword for a certain set of arbitrary choices that you may prefer.

But I don't mind either way though, at least given the tradition of calling "four freedoms" consistent licensing/contracting as "Free Software".. It's understood what it means, among us at least..

Re: Why I chose Ubuntu after trying Windows 7

 
libervisco wrote:

Well, I'm back to Ubuntu after I bought a new video card.. Nvidia 9600GT.. KDE4.2 remains buggy though, but at least it doesn't freeze up and performs MUCH smoother than I've ever had it before. I hear KDE 4.3 has much of this fixed.

I am using a proprietary nvidia driver, probably the best video card driver that exists for Linux. How do I reconcile that with my purported and well publicized boycott of nvidia because they said no to releasing their drivers as free software? The same way I reconcile the fact that I no longer have an FSF style purist view of the software world. Otherwise I don't reconcile anything. I'm simply changed. Sticking out tongue

It's true that, as far as end users go, Nvidia does offer a "sweet deal". And at the same time it's true that having their drivers proprietary they could just drop support at some point. Well, how has that played out in case of FREE drivers for radeon? Well, probably half a decade old drivers were so bad I ended up buying a new card, that's how. Openness means squat if it doesn't work and if it takes years to move a zilch. Hardware gets obsolete. If I wanna be on the bleeding edge I ought to expect older cards to be dropped. Nothing wrong with that. Now I can sell it for less to someone who doesn't mind running older operating systems (which are still supported).

Nvidia, AFAIK, *employs* people to do the work for Linux and even FreeBSD and OpenSolaris, and do it WELL. I don't feel like a "slave". I don't feel like my freedom is somehow trampled. Just the opposite. I feel freer than ever because I don't believe in the fraud that is the concept of "sacrificing yourself for your own freedom". "Sacrificing for freedom" is a god damn oxymoron. Freedom is all about being you and making choices that absolutely and fully suit YOU, not undercutting you for some vague self-contradictory ideal.

Wow. How little you understand, and value, freedom. If there had never been anyone who had sacrificed themselves for their own, and other's, freedoms the concept of freedom would be unknown in today's world, and completely absent in practice in all societies.

Freedom isn't free, and never has been. It always costs. Moreover, any sacrifice a person makes for their freedom isn't undercutting themselves. It's making a value judgment as to what is more important. Anyone who makes sacrifices for freedom, any freedom, does so of their own free will.

Only a selfish moron would think that "sacrificing for freedom" is an oxymoron. The ability to make a choice to sacrifice for something greater than yourself is freedom, in and of itself.

Chill anonymous. You don't know me and my history well enough to claim how "little" do I understand and value freedom. For the last 5 years freedom was the core issue of everything I did and it remains so. I have no life according to some people. I am an isolated freak who desperately wishes the world was a different place, but can only do so much and has limited amounts of motivation.

It is impossible for freedom to become unknown as a concept because it is the default state of every human being. I would rather point out at all of the violations of individual freedom which are being perpetrated daily, even hourly, across the world and called as "perfectly A OK" even by those who preach they are pro-freedom. I have learned to be far more critical in my thinking over the last couple of years and this has led to changing of some of my opinions, including views on Free Software.

When you say that any sacrifice a person makes for their freedom is a value judgment and made out of their own free will, you are basically saying that their sacrifice was in fact not a sacrifice. If one pursues what is to him or her most valuable then that is a behavior consistent with pursuit of self interest, not sacrifice. So unless you define sacrifice as something other than an anti-self-interested action, what you're describing cannot be a sacrifice.

And the reason why the path to freedom is not paved by sacrifices defined as above should be quite obvious to any critical thinker. If freedom is the right to do what you wish, to behave how you wish, to pursue your values and interests (so long as you allow others the same right) then any behavior that is against ones self interest is not pro-freedom, but anti-freedom. It is like telling others "go free yourself" while enslaving yourself. That doesn't work. If you want to be free then break out and be free. Do what you believe you are right to do no matter what someone says or threatens to do (in the latter case, if you're brave enough). That applies even to relatively trivial matters such as wanting a better video experience. If that's what I want, that's what I am gonna get and no self contradictory supposedly "pro-freedom" BS is gonna stop me.

And yes it's self contradictory, as demonstrated. Such people preach freedom and then come around and scorn you when you actually use your freedom to choose what they don't like you to choose or even issue statements like "proprietary software should be illegal" indicating a desire to FORCE people to not make a particular choice.

And in case you're one of those who I was (a Free Software purist), before you go preaching on about how proprietary software tramples this or that please do take this into your context. I do not believe in copyright. I believe in being able to choose for myself and I am a voluntaryist as I don't believe in coercion of any kind. This doesn't quite fit in the neat worldview of a free software purist who thinks they discovered holy grail in copyleft while still supporting all kinds of coercion (even by orgs like FSF and SFLC) and are thus simultaneously preaching freedom and supporting its opposite.

calm down, I don't think it's needed to jump on every roof to claim/rant about something like that Smiling

still though, now I mostly consider the "freedom" of free software as something practical (i.e., the flexibility, customizability and without worrying about legal obligations - and I think that gets it better than just "source" is "open" which most of the people could not even understand about what "source" is) rather than something political or some ideal.

about the nvidia cards, well I already had the experience of not being able to use newer kernels with the last version of proprietary drivers which supports my old TNT2 card (and it's years before I can buy a new computer), and I don't think that's what I want Smiling

 
Quote:

Only a selfish moron...

Only a retarded coward would keep commenting like this without at least having the courtesy to register...
Does it make you feel big posting anonymous comments like this? Wow! I hope you enjoy wanking yourself into sleep every night because you are such a big boy who can spit big words but not be man enough to show who you are.

Congratulations! You have won "Who wants to be a total retard?"

This comment has been presented by Blue Ice beer...

Re: Why I chose Ubuntu after trying Windows 7

 

libervisco,

"Like it or not, unfortunately, most good games will still run best on Windows (and I have a few games from Steam)."

That is such a lie, take "Enemy Territory: Quake Wars" for example, you can read literally hundreds of articles about "Enemy Territory: Quake Wars" on GNU/Linux running faster, not only gameplay, but, start-up time, spawning time, and map loading time.

If there is