What can Windows do that Ubuntu can't.

Ubuntu has come a long way in the last few years, and since I am of the opinion that Microsoft is a spawn of the devil, only just pipped in rank evil by Apple, I would love to answer "nothing" to this question. Unfortunately my real answer is "Practically everything". In word processing, for instance, I can't set Open Office to use microsoft formats as standard, so when I want to communicate to the outside world, which is practically always, I have to convert everything, and I have to do it on a one off basis. Spreadsheets are even worse, because If I set them to Microsoft formats they take forever to save, and if I convert them as I go then every so often the formulas get replaced by the actual values.

Banking is a big issue, because however secure Ubuntu is in essence, it is still possible to get viruses, and if it isn't yet then it will be as soon as some crook thinks the user base is rich enough to make it worth his while. And last time I looked there was no equivalent to Norton, McCaffe, etc. which works with Ubuntu - so no banking for me.

Emails should be easy, but if you keep your documents on the network then unless you're a tekky you wont be able to put attachments on emails unless you import them onto your local disc first. This is not just for emails, actually, because if you want to see the network from pretty much any application you have to mount it into a share first. I am currently trying to get over this one, but so far no luck. What is involved is to grovel around in a terminal. I'm trying to follow instructions but most of the terminology is not obvious to anyone who l.ives in the real world.

And that brings me to the real answer to the question. Ubuntu has a support network that Windows would give it's eye teeth for, way better than anything else anywhere, but whenever I try to use it someone wants me to open a terminal. Usually I can manage it eventually, but why. Terminals are 1990's stuff. I wouldn't want to try to take the terminal away from the Tekky, but can the rest of us please be allowed to move on. Fine for really deep technical issues, but everything in day-to-day use should be possible without it. Whenever a support agent is tempted to type the line "sudo apt get" in an answer to the beginners forum they should slap themselves on the wrist and think of another answer. If there isn't one then it's an indication that Ubuntu doesn't work properly yet and they should send off a development request. That is, if Ubuntu ever wants to actually compete in the real world, rather than just talk about it.

So a big "please" to all Ubuntu developers. Can we once and for all commit to GUI and make things work properly.