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Thread: Losing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
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    21

    Losing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I've been using linux for a few years now. I did my research in the beginning and ran a few live installs to test it out before eventually deciding that Mint was the best distro for me. Eventually I moved over to Ununtu. I was aware from the beginning and persevered with a few hardware issues and could usually figure out something workable. I've always liked the customisation and open source nature of linux distros but I'm finding myself getting more and more frustrated with the OS now. I'm not someone who understands terminal commands and therefore often just type in commands varbatim when I see solutions on the forums with only a vague idea of what they mean. So I depend on the GUI for the vast majority of my needs.
    So why am I getting pissed off with Ubuntu? Well, I'm running 13.04 now and I've had it for quite some time. I wiped a certain hidious MS8 OS from my machine as soon as I got it and installed Ubuntu. But now I find that I'm constantly struggling with Ubuntu.
    The home dash for example: I know it's meant to look uncluttered and quickly filter to what you want but to be perfectly honest I'd at least like to easily switch to a list of installed programs and scroll through them (like the traditional start menu). I've lost count of the times I was in the sofrware centre and found certain programs already installed on my machine that I didn't know of.
    Searching for files or browsing my HD: It seems to me that this has been deliberately made difficult for some reason. If it's not something saved in the home directory it seems very hard to find some things. For example, I installed gutenprint documentation from the software centre yet I couldn't find any gutenprint related files at all on my HD when I searched or in the home dash.
    I understand vendor support is problematic with hardware and those other two big OS's will get most of the attention for some time but it doesn't really look like linux is catching up very much in this area. WINE and VirtualBox can often offer a workaround for software but these programs can throw up many problems of their own before you even get started.
    I guess where I'm going with this is that from going from an MS install to dualbooting MS & Linux for several years, and then exclusively to linux, I'm finding the need to go back to installing another OS on my machine to service my needs. That means I'll be taking up a lot more reasources on my machine. What do I get in return? More compatibility and dare I say it usability. I know there are security issues and the infamous update / restart cycle issue but that's about it as far as I can see. Freezing is an issue we see on both platforms now too. The question then becomes, 'Why do I need the two of them? Should I be dumping linux if it can't service my needs?'
    I'm thinking that if linux is really to make a big impact then the developers of distros like Ubuntu might consider integrating programs like WINE or something similar for IOS much more seamlessly and reliably into the OS. I don't mean to just copy those OS's - we all know what linux offers but the vast majority of people NEED at least one of the other two OS's. Linux needs to by Linux and not a clone of something else but until Linux neutralises that need, people might like the idea of Linux and try it out, but eventually they'll just end up drifting back the other way out of necessity
    Does anyone else see the point I'm trying to make here? Or is anyone aware if this is an issue that's getting much attention?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    1

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    It seems like you feel Ubuntu is the only refined, stable Linux distro and is in a class of it's own and therefore your only option. The official Ubuntu derivatives have all the benefits of Ubuntu (high quality, financial backing, Launchpad to squash bugs, the best repository in Linux) without the user interface you seem to dislike. Almost all Ubuntu help you find on-line works the same way for Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu Gnome etc, it's a very easy move from Ubuntu to one it's official deriratives. I think that would be the solution to many of your issues.

    In terms of running Windows on a second partition, don't fight it just do it. Sure you may have to press the "Windows Update" button once a month and make sure your Antivirus is updating it's self but if your not tweaking it and constantly installing software as if it was your main OS it takes no significant "maintenance". If you use it you use it, if you don't you don't.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Madras, India
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    195
    Distro
    Xubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I've used both Windows and Linux in the past, but a fulltime Linux user now since it does meet all my computing needs. But this isn't the case for many people. Some popular apparently invaluable programs work only on Windows, games pretty much tie you to Windows as well, and when working with other people as a team you'll often have to use Windows/Mac simply for compatibility with the others.

    In general there is nothing wrong in using proprietary software unless you're the type who values the kind of freedom RMS talks about, or are simply distrustful of running closed-source systems, and most of us aren't that paranoid or ideological, although we do recognise that open source software is more desirable for the community from many points of view. Yet sometimes you've exhausted all possible options and still there's something for which Windows is called for. In such situations just use it (Windows) and don't worry about it.

    Linux has come far since the early days. I remember the "functionality" of DOS consoles, and people then didn't complain because no one knew of any better. It's best to be flexible and adaptable. Use Linux for all areas where it can be used without too much pain, use Windows/Mac otherwise and rest easy.

    As for integrating WINE, have you considered Crossover? It is a somewhat more polished and supported version of WINE. Nevertheless WINE will always be confined to supporting only a minority of all the Windows software out there. VM is better but still sucks for graphics and disk overhead. Dual booting is the simplest and best solution. Or perhaps a combination of a VM instance for a quick and simple task and dual boot for any involved work.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    The Left Coast of the USA
    Beans
    Hidden!
    Distro
    Kubuntu

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I think things would be a lot better if we just stopped selling an either/or proposition. Then there would be no need to find some way to make Windows stuff work in Linux.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Rural Nevada, USA
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    299
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    By "we", do you mean software developers? Yeah, it would be nice if all software was cross platform, but that would certainly restrict the usable programming languages.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    1

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    Quote Originally Posted by QIII View Post
    I think things would be a lot better if we just stopped selling an either/or proposition. Then there would be no need to find some way to make Windows stuff work in Linux.
    Yeah that's what I do, much less stressful, I have a Windows install I never tweak or customize, simply lock down the permissions of my main user account, keep Windows Update and Antivirus current, and use it for the few and far between things Linux doesn't offer.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
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    21

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I've no problem trying different distros. I've lost count of the ones I have tried already. If I find one that suits my needs I'd be delighted. Problems like the dash and search functionality can be solved with the right distro. But compatibility with hardware and software that's aimed at the other guys will remain regardless and that's the main area where I've seen little progress since I started using linux.
    santosh83 I haven't tried crossover but I'll give it a shot. I'm sure you can tell from my original post, I'm keeen to stick exclusively with linux. Having to rely on more than one OS seems dumb to me - it's kinda like eating a meal off two plates in two different houses.
    Thanks for the advise people!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
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    7

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I have always kept my eye on what is happening with Ubuntu to the extent that I download the latest version and keep it on dvd. even though I used Windows 7, although a couple of weeks ago a Virus put an end to my hard drive and my Windows partition. So I looked at Windows 8 and found it to be expensive, I could have got a good deal on a copy of Windows 7 but did you know that even if you buy a copy of Windows (legally) you can install it 3 times then you have to buy it all over again.

    After picking my self up off the floor from laughing I found my Ubuntu disk out and did a full install and everything is working great so far.

    As far as the bits I could use Windows for, so far Wine has covered it, the bits Wine doesnt or can't deal with I guess I will have to live without but lets be honest unless your a massive PC game fan then there isn't much your going to miss out on.

    John
    Last edited by john_ellis2; September 22nd, 2013 at 06:53 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Beans
    1

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    Well Linux is all about choice. When I installed Ubuntu 13.04, I did not like Unity. I went ahead and installed a tiling WM. Modified the ~/.xinitrc file so I can startx with that WM and I was set. In addition a lot of the tiling WMs have a run program option and all you do is type it in and if you are lazy you can use 'tab' to autocomplete. I'll try santosh83's suggestion of trying Crossover cause right now in one of my classes; I have to use software that's Windows only. The program is called Best Case (Bankruptcy software).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    inside my head. Hopefully
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    34
    Distro
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: Loosing faith in Linux / Ubuntu?

    I'm losing faith in Ubuntu, but not with Linux in general. I did the research, tried out the live CD, and am now running Ubuntu 12.04 with an XFCE interface and Windows 7. I quickly discovered the obnoxious laptop problems in Ubuntu, eventually I might decide to migrate to that more-powerful less user-friendly Debian Linux. I'll keep trying this thing for about a year, then I'll decide if I want to wipe Windows off entirely (I won't really need it right now. I'm in college for computer science, so I can already access Windows 7, Windows 8, MacOSx, Mac, all kinds of Linux including MATLAB software, and every single language and compiler and editor and IDE under the sun I don't see a major need for Windows until later in life; I like PC gaming and if I ever have a nice custom rig I'll want Windows, of course... or, is it legal to find a way to run the games in Linux?)

    I have some positive things to note. I'm trying to learn how to program. I put a suite of coding languages and tools on Windows, and then spent days trying to figure out how to properly apply extensions, compile, execute, all while working within the confines of whatver IDEs I could find, and I made no progress.

    Flustered, I made the switch to Ubuntu, and though it's annoying on a laptop without easy brightness control or hibernate (Thus far--I will figure this out!), I made more progress in days with programming concepts then I did in weeks on Windows. All I had to do was pick up my copy of Learn to Program by Chris Pine (I tried Python first, but I spent more time in the documentation then actually sitting down and figuring out core concepts. Ruby has a place in my heart now, it's quite forgiving), pull up gedit with customized app keys (eat dirt Windows) ALT + 2, set the highlight to Ruby script and the color to that awesome Oblivion theme (both of which features are difficult to find in any Windows editors I know of), save my examples.rb, switch workspace with control + F2, open a terminal, CD to /programs, open tab and run IRB, and get down to burning the midnight oil. When I get stuck, I hit ALT + W for Firefox, and it loads eversomuch faster than Windows, what with the lightweight XFCE desktop, which I also love. It's a beautiful balance: not too Spartan, not too flashy, easily customized. I've got my bookmarks organized for Linux, Ubuntu, Command line help, and Tech news.

    Overall, I've had a great experience so far, and for the love of God, could the people in charge just provide laptop compatability when the next stable version is released? If so, I might just stick with Ubuntu and, once I cobble my pennies for another cheap computer, try that whole Linux-from-scratch thing.

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