Hey everyone. I've been a Xubuntu and Linx in general user for about a year now, and I just switched back to Windows XP Professional. A few issues prevented full adoption:
-power management. I'm on a laptop with a nine-cell battery. On Xubuntu, after I applied a few power-saving procedures, I would only get about 4 hours of battery life. On Windows I get about 7. Lenovo/IBM provides software to configure my system (most of which is useless), but their power manager is very helpful, as it throttles my cpu and lowers my screen brightness automatically. On Linux I noticed significantly higher heat dissipation as well. On Windows it's as cool as a cucumber!
-Warcraft 3, and the upcoming Starcraft 2! I'm a big RTS fan, so it was painful being away from these. I don't like to dual boot, I feel it's kind of silly, so it's one or the other. This really isn't that big an issue for me though. (And yes, I know what WINE is... but I refuse to use what is essentially a hack)
-memory management. On Windows, applications run with significantly lower RAM usage. I'm on Opera right now, and it can go anywhere between 3 and 20 MB. On Xubuntu, it was anywhere from 80 - 100! Foobar is using 3.7 MB right now, and that is with a very heavy skin and with a large library. I simply cannot find a media player for Linux that comes anywhere close to this. The closest was Exaile, which I think went to 32MB RAM usage one time. Why is there such a disparity between applications and memory usage in Linux and Windows?
-very quirky or un-intuitive things in Linux. For instance, I have not found a way to monitor print-jobs in Xubuntu, so if something bad happens during printing (jammed, or what have you...), I'm SOL. WPA doesn't work out of box. Dual-display doesn't work out of box. Automounting doesn't work out of box. I can't get my ThinkLight to work in Linux. The Windows Control Panel isn't very powerful, but I feel it is more useful than any DE's equivalent I have tried. I use a screensaver called Electric Sheep. In Windows I just install the .exe, but in Linux, after installing it in the repo, I have to edit Xscreensaver (I think). I can't get my CD burner to work. Bluetooth won't work. I can't read micro-SD's. I'm not interested in solutions for these problems, because I don't have the energy to fix the multitude of minor problems I encounter in Linux in day-to-day use, and I've found that most fixes aren't adequate.
Things that I feel Linux does better than Windows:
-Windows does have a larger selection of programs, but this wasn't an issue for me. Linux provided everything I needed. However, I love the package management concept in Linux. This simply cannot be replicated in Windows, and it's what I'm missing most right now. Every program in Windows has it's own installation procedure and there is simply no need in Linux (or with Debian-based distros more specifically) because you have a huge repository of programs to choose from. Have you ever tried searching for programs in Windows? If you can actually find something that's NOT shareware or spyware, chances are it isn't open-source. I found myself just installing my old Linux programs over again (VLC, abiword, gnumeric, gens, thunderbird, opera...), but it isn't as easy to update or change installations. Not at all. Also, every appplication doesn't try and take over my friggin' desktop in Linux! Linux applications are definitely less-intrusive!
-The Windows XP installer, and more specifically the partitioner, is atrocious. This might be apples to oranges since they're several years apart, but it's really not very good.
-"Just Works". Xubuntu 7.04 got wireless working out of the box, as well as video card configured perfectly (both Intel). On Windows I had to go scour for drivers.
-fonts. The cleartype in Windows isn't as nice as the one in XFCE.
-workspaces. I downloaded two different workspace programs. One from Windows, and a third-party. Neither matched the simplicity and ease-of-use of Linux workspaces.
-customization. I've customized the Windows registry and services, and have tweaked the UI a lot, but without third-party things like WindowsBlinds (which is the most bloated piece of software known to man), you are severely limited. By comparison there are so many Linux distros and wm's to try it is overwhelming, and they all seem to ENCOURAGE customization!
I already miss Linux. I've learned more about computers using Linux than I ever will in Windows, but power and memory management is obviously an important issue for me, being on a laptop. ACPI is just better in Windows.
I want to give Linux some more time to mature before I try again, because I know if I try again soon I'll become frustrated over little things and go back to Windows. I will definitely still follow everything closely, and look forward to trying another distro when they become more practical for day-to-day use.