I tried ubuntu 12.04 and found the human interface horrendous. I switched to Mint and have recently updated my laptop from ubuntu 10.04 to Mint as well.
Mint uses a sub-set of ubuntu buit has a better gui based on the older ubuntu gnome.
|I discovered a minimalist GUI called XUbuntu |
I quite like xfce myself. I switch often between Unity (which did take me a few months to get used to) and xfce (which I've traditionally used on all of my unix machines for years now), but...
|So now I've installed Ubuntu 12.04 Server LTS to match the OS I'm using on my live webserver. |
Get a real server OS. ;-) No, that's not fair, because I do use Ubuntu in a server config on some stuff, but I prefer FreeBSD on my servers and Ubuntu on my desktops.
FreeBSD has a sane init and file structure. I hate chasing down issues when you try and do something non-standard on an Ubuntu server.
|That still didn't get me in business but now that I have a GUI via XUbuntu I'm going to try reinstalling my 256MB PCI video card to try and milk a bit more performance out of this thing. |
If you're using nvidia cards, make sure to use the proprietary drivers. The open source ones are terrible.
[edited by: bakedjake at 10:34 pm (utc) on Feb 13, 2013]
I prefer FreeBSD or CentOS on my servers and Mint on my desktops..
The desktops that are allowed to connect permanently to the web..they all "dual boot" Mint with Win7 ulti..and (v Adobe software and others oblige..) the "do not connect permanently to the net" Dev boxen also dual boot Mint and win7 ulti..
Posted from Mint Maya ( with mate )..via Opera..
I got it working with my 256MB video card back in and there is definitely a noticeable difference. Didn't have to go looking for the manufacturer drivers either. Just booted it up after reinserting the card and it brought up the GUI. Nice.
Oh and in he OP I made a mistake saying it's 256MB of RAM -- it's actually 512MB. 256MB was for the video card.
Yeah that's what I'm using too now. After I posted the OP I started exploring and saw that as a second option for logging in so I gave it a whirl. It's consuming far less CPU. XUbuntu was using a near constant of 37% CPU (according to TOP). Xfce here is only taking it at about 5%.
|FreeBSD has a sane init and file structure. |
|I prefer FreeBSD or CentOS |
I might give those other OSs a try some day but for now I just want to experiment with this. My reason is because I want to become proficient enough to run my web server without the added layer of Plesk.
Right now I do as much as I can via command line but for some of the tougher stuff (for me) I rely on Plesk. However Plesk is really a pain because it adds another layer of complication and conflicts between the OS and LAMP with all their proprietary settings.
I had too many issues with my last new setup a month ago. But at the same time I learned a lot from it. I'm hoping to get to know how to use Linux exclusively for my next upgrade whenever it eventually comes to that. Even the upstream provider tech support team were giving me wrong answers to problems and I had to figure it out on my own.
I went from Ubuntu 8.04 LTS / Plesk 9.3 to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS / Plesk 11.0. I figured 3 days prior to my old subscription expiring would be plenty of time to get the new one up and running, configured, and manually migrate websites to it. I was wrong. In the end I managed to get it functioning as needed with only half an hour to spare before I shut down the old one but I was at it constantly.
Xubuntu is very snappy: it runs on my netbook as (subjectively)responsively as Unity runs on the desktop.
The only issue I have is that it does not automatically switch back to the netbook screen when I unplug an externa monitor. I am sure there is a fix for that somewhere.
Yep. And while FreeBSD remains a solid Unix OS, as a direct descendant of Unix, Linux moves further away from Unix and I no longer consider it Unix-like.
|FreeBSD has a sane init and file structure. |
What started out as wanting to become proficient in Linux command line use is taking a turn here :)
I've been using Linux on my old desktop almost exclusively for the last week, barely booted my new laptop. This has just accelerated in he last 2 days after discovering Ubuntu Unity Desktop! Oh my gosh how is this thing managing to remain hidden from the general public? I have to say for me (as a non-Linux user in the past) there has always been a mystique of complexity surrounding the OS.
Based on my experiences of the past week this isn't deserved. It's as intuitive to use as Windows is. In fact right now anyone transitioning to Windows 8 (Metro?) from a previous version would have an easier time figuring out Ubuntu Unity than Windows 8.
I've been stumbling along here discovering all sorts of power tools and I really luv the total control I have over my system with Ubuntu.
What started out as trying to install Ubuntu Desktop 12.10 (unsuccessfully) has in fact brought me to that point but through the backdoor. I ended up abandoning my attempt with desktop and instead installed 12.04 Server LTS. Then I discovered GUI packages that gave me (what I considered archaic as compared to Windows) desktop functionality. I think it's what's known as GNOME or KDE?
Finally 2 days ago I discovered Unity and I'm loving it so this brings me to the point of jumping back in here. I want to install this setup on my modern hardware on my laptop as a dual boot. By the way in all the stuff I had mentioned previously I had not indicated that I installed Server 12.04 on my old system as a dual boot leaving Windows XP in place for emergencies or as a potential software environment for program incompatibilities with Windows 8.
That intention was primarily due to 1 critical SEO program I use that I could not work without, got it from some Russians a few years ago. It's not available for download on the internet anywhere, I checked a few weeks ago. I've had it for years and have backup copies of the original exe stashed on disks, thumb drives, HDDs, all over the place! I was concerned it might not run on Windows 8 but to my delight it does.
I cannot get over the simplicity of installing programs via Linux Ubuntu. When I became aware of Unity, and because I'm just using the setup for learning, I just typed in 'aptitude install ubuntu-desktop' (I was already 'root') on the command line and away it went. I don't have to go looking for software on the internet, the OS just takes care of it all for me. It even installs dependencies if there are any.
Back to my reason for this post. I have a question concerning file system compatibilities. On the old box I didn't care if the whole thing went BANG and burned up like a meteor over Russia. None the less all has been well with the dual boot being managed by GRUB (and it's not like I haven't been providing the setup with opportunities to break itself). But, I have not tried reformatting the whole drive to see if it can all be reclaimed if I wanted to revert back to only Windows again.
From within Windows XP disk management it says it doesn't recognize the file system that Linux is using. I'm not sure if that means it just cannot read the contents or it would not be able to format that virtual portion of the HDD if I were to attempt it. I could get my answer by trying of course but figured it would be less time consuming to ask here.
If there is no issues with file system compatibility then I now want to go ahead and also install Ubuntu Server 12.04 LTS and Unity Desktop on my laptop as a dual boot alongside Windows 8 to use the abundant system disk space, CPU and RAM resources. I just want to make sure I can revert back to only Windows HDD if need be -- even if it means performing a factory reinstall from the recovery disks. What say ye fine folks?
PS: I am so luvin' the abundance of open source programs available for Linux, especially the network tools and the Aptitude management interface is quite nice too :)
If anyone reading this is curious check out some screenshots via image search for [Ubuntu Unity]. Also if you have an insatiable curiosity (like I do), and have an old box kicking around gathering dust, it's worth every bit the experience if even only for the sake of discovering something new.
Why does everyone talk about installing Linux on an old dusty box they have laying around and never about a new box? Personally, I'm gearing up to build my next new mega-god-explosive-three-terabyte-googlflop (in 3D!) machine and Windows will never see it. Well, neither will Linux since I run FreeBSD but, still...
|I'm not sure if that means it just cannot read the contents or it would not be able to format that virtual portion of the HDD |
The former. It is possible to read Linux file systems from Windows. If it is a recent Linux install it is probably an ext4 file system (you can check using "disk utility" from Ubuntu) which may mean you cannot write to the Linux file system from Windows, but you will be able to read it.
I used Ubuntu for 6 years until the new interface came out and I hated it. I have been on Mint now for about a year and love it. I highly recommend it. I have been using Google Docs and Libre Office more and more, so MS Office is really not an issue for me anymore, except MS Access. There are a few programs I still need Windows for. I refuse to use WINE on Linux. I've tried it in the past, worked sort of and I feel just kept me more and more dependent on Windoze. I have it installed on a high end computer and it works great... very fast...
|brotherhood of LAN|
It seems no one (at least no one with a tech background) likes Unity.
You can change it to the 'classic' layout by installing gnome-session-fallback.
|It seems no one (at least no one with a tech background) likes Unity. |
I suspect a good portion of that is resistance for resistance's sake. Most of us are creatures of habit that don't like it when our cheese is moved.
Personally I am just now adopting Linux, Ubuntu Unity in particular, and I like it very much. I'll especially like it when I can finally actually get it dual-booted along with Windows 8! I can then get the best of both worlds. I did have it up and running via a backwards kind of way last week but it was rather sluggish.
There is still a lot to like about Windows, especially in Windows 8, but I'm discovering day by day for a few weeks now that for a technical user there are far more useful features in Linux.
I'm enjoying the discovery of network monitoring via Wireshark (my own internal network, not someone else's!). I also really like the abundance of system tools of every imaginable kind. For example I can analyze my desktop hardware architecture in minute detail. I barely have to open a browser that much anymore while on my desktop here that is running Mint Nadia at the moment.
It's obvious that Ubuntu is looking ahead to the 'Unity' of providing a user with the same 'feel' across all devices they may use.
|It seems no one (at least no one with a tech background) likes Unity. |
Unity is very good, but its easy to use rather than a geek's power tool. Its where Ubuntu wants to be.
I have switched one PC to Fedora XFCE. Less works out of the box (for example I had to install avahi and another package when I needed zeroconf) but its a minutes work if you know what you are doing. The software installer is also less user friendly (I mean less user friendly that synaptic, let alone Ubuntu Software Centre).
On the other hand its configurable, stuff you do not need is less likely to be installed by default, updates are faster (it downloads deltas of updates), and most packages are more up to date.
I once posted a thread in this form [webmasterworld.com...]
A week without Microsoft Windows.
In that thread I decided to run Ubuntu for a week. That was in 2010, and I am still a Linux user,
At first there was a bit of a learning curve, but as you get to know the system it all just makes sense.
I just find myself being a lot more productive using Linux as opposed to Windows. I know that is a personal thing, and others may disagree, but for me it really helps with my work flow.
Unity is actually growing on me. I used to dislike it, but the recent updates have made it a lot more user friendly. My personal choice of desktop is still KDE. You can install the KDE based version of Ubuntu (Kubuntu), but I find that by installing the core Ubuntu OS then the K desktop environment you end up with a much richer and more refined system than vanilla Kubuntu.
I dual booted in 2004 cause I was worried there was something I would miss if I dropped Windows. After a few weeks, I realized I was in Ubuntu for something more than a week without switching back and I've not used Windows since then.
|In that thread I decided to run Ubuntu for a week. That was in 2010, and I am still a Linux user, |
|Why does everyone talk about installing Linux on an old dusty box they have laying around and never about a new box? |
Because for learning it's better to risk and old box rather than a new PC. When all the experimenting is done and over with then I can install it on a new PC.
|It is possible to read Linux file systems from Windows. If it is a recent Linux install it is probably an ext4 file system (you can check using "disk utility" from Ubuntu) which may mean you cannot write to the Linux file system from Windows, but you will be able to read it. |
Yeah, I've sorta found my way around all that since I asked originally.
|The software installer is also less user friendly (I mean less user friendly that synaptic, let alone Ubuntu Software Centre). |
I haven't been using any GUI. I prefer, and have been using, Aptitude via a terminal (on my desktop).
@mack -- thanks for that link to your experiences with the transition. I read some of it day before yesterday but didn't have time to get through it all. I've bookmarked it and will go back to it when I get my own dilemmas ironed out here to see what I can glean from it.
Speaking of dilemmas here's the latest. I had time to spare this afternoon so I created a backup of my Windows 8 data from my laptop and then reformatted back to factory new. When it booted up after 3 1/2 hour reinstall process the modified boot record was still in place! That was annoying but at least I was able to boot into Windows 8. It was indeed a complete reinstall. Then I proceeded with part deux -- install Linux Ubuntu 12.10 64 bit as a dual boot setup. The Linux install was quick and all went well. Rebooted the laptop, Windows MBR was in control and says Ubuntu doesn't exist, very heavy sigh. No way says I, I refuse to take no as an answer. Found a utility for Ubuntu called boot-repair. Put the LiveDVD back in drive and reboot, used command line, installed boot-repair, and performed, ahhh repair. It said it was successful! I reboot the laptop, what comes up? Ubuntu GRUB! Yay, I got into Ubuntu and this blazin' fast 8GB RAM laptop, smiles everywhere. Play with it a bit then figure okay now let me reboot and try Windows. GRUB comes up, select Windows 8, nooooooooooooo -- error unable to boot into Windows!
That's it for tonight I think. Stay tuned in this ongoing drama.
I know that, on FreeBSD, dual booting was always a problem with Windows because Windows always wants to control the hardware so it tends to overwrite things and we have to install BSD and Windows in a specific order to prevent that. Whether this is still true, or true for Linux, I don't know but I thought I'd throw that out there.
Finally. It works. Both OSs on laptop, I can boot to either. Both are stable but I'm not happy with the sloppy boot process that gets me there.
On every boot I initially get the GRUB loader, which is fine, that's what I want. From there I can boot into Ubuntu. At that point it also recognizes Windows 8 and provides an option to boot to it but that doesn't work. Instead I have to select the Windows UEFI choice and that will then lead me to the Windows MBR -- a double boot process so to speak. From there I am presented with the choice of Windows or Ubuntu, but Ubuntu isn't recognized, so I can only boot into Windows once I'm gone that far into the process.
I installed both OSs with UEFI and Secure Boot enabled but ultimately the only way I did get it to work though is by disabling Secure Boot in the BIOS. It's enabled by default on all new Windows 8 laptops/desktops. Certainly it has a potential of discouraging a less-than-technical person from ploughing ahead with the process beyond an initial attempt. It feels like yet another barrier to slow down innovation while raising the bar on protectionism higher.
Conclusion -- I'm not happy with the sloppy process to get there. Back to the drawing board. I'm going to wipe it all clean and start over from scratch yet again.
|the only way I did get it to work though is by disabling Secure Boot in the BIOS. It's enabled by default on all new Windows 8 laptops/desktops. Certainly it has a potential of discouraging a less-than-technical person from ploughing ahead with the process beyond an initial attempt. It feels like yet another barrier to slow down innovation while raising the bar on protectionism higher. |
Mr Ballmer will be pleased to know that that particular scheme at least, is going according to his ( oft publicly denied ) plan..
I still don't know why this is not being investigated by the US Justice Department. I filed a complaint with them and received a response from the former head litigator (US vs Microsoft) and from two Congressmen. I got the impression they were all very much aware of this which leads me to believe an action may eventually come about but who knows when?
No chance. Current laws were not devised with this sort of thing in mind, and I doubt that that will change (what percentage of legislators do you think know you can installed a different OS on a PC from the one that came with or would care if they knew).
I also very much doubt they wan to open this can of worms. Almost every technology business is trying for customer lock-in of one sort or another (Google subtly, Apple blatantly, Amazon very cleverly) and they would all oppose it. A good many non-tech businesses would see benefits in locking down technology more, most importantly the media.
Governments these days are business friendly, and real competition is unfriendly!
I have two laptops:
- the one I'm writing this text and where I do most of my job with Linux Mint and a dormant partition for Windows XP (there's some Windows only software)
- another one, a secondary/reserve unit with Windows 7 and an almost forgotten partition with Ubuntu
I still see a lot of strange faces asking "Linux? How it goes?" but I don't try to convince them; they're happy and me too.
They already have, and the guy who already hauled Microsoft to court is the one who responded to me.
|No chance. Current laws were not devised with this sort of thing in mind |
All of them. Well, at least the two who wrote me back knew exactly what I was talking about and said there were already conversations in their office about the subject.
|what percentage of legislators do you think know you can installed a different OS on a PC from the one that came with or would care if they knew |
|wa desert rat|
It's interesting to see the interplay between a completely new user to Linux and more experienced users; especially in regard to Unity. It's easy to believe that it's a curmudgeon issue but I really think it's a matter of once being able to customize things and no longer being able to. So a new user, used to Windows and/or Mac, where what you get is pretty much what you use, Unity is familiar and easy. To old-time users it's a PITA. But new users is where Ubuntu wants to go and, from SevenCubed reaction to it I am greatly heartened.
I have, by the way, found that to become used to Linux you must abandon Windows; at least for some period of time. I have watched many, many users load up Linux on an old machine and play for a few hours but go back to Windows for "real" computing. Maybe Ubuntu and Unity have discovered a way around this. But so many users become accustomed to only the applications they've had on Windows. Even with Firefox and Chrome being virtually identical on all platforms this is common.
For the record, my first OS was RT11 on a DEC in the 1970s. From there I went to Xenix, then to DOS, then to Windows, then to Windows with DESQview, then to Linux (in 1994). I have run many variants of *nix (including Coherent, FreeBSD, SunOS, etc.) and find myself much more comfortable with Linux as the "Swiss Army Knife of Operating Systems".
I have Linux boxes (mostly running Centos) scattered around the relatively small (in population) county where I live where they quietly perform tasks mostly unseen by the clients. I have run Ubuntu 10.04 on a desktop for a few years but have to change since it no longer will update. Probably to Mint.
But I have NEVER dual-booted. :)
I had used Unix but not Linux 9 or so years ago. One day I had a need to start getting into Linux and installed Wubi, thinking I had a need to keep Windows around. About a week later I realized I had not booted back into Windows for anything and that was last time I ever installed Windows again.