As many of you know, when I purchased a laptop a little over a year ago I wanted nothing to do with Vista. As a result I was determined to create a dual-boot setup with Windows XP (so I could play some games) and Ubuntu (so I could actually have a working system). I installed Ubuntu 7.04 last June, and I’ve yet to look back. Of course, Ubuntu 8.04 has been out for awhile now, and I’ve simply been delinquent in upgrading. I finally decided that it was time to upgrade a few days ago, since in two weeks my semester will start and any hope of upgrading will disappear.
To be honest, I didn’t think I could be any more amazed than I was with Ubuntu 7.04. I was wrong. I repent of my unbelief. If I had ashes readily available I’d throw some on my head and rip my clothing to express the extent of my sorrowful repentance. Ubuntu 8.04 is simply amazing. Everything works right out of the box. I’m sure there are some systems where this isn’t the case, but my Dell Inspiron 6400 is, apparently, well-supported in Ubuntu. I have desktop effects (compiz) running nicely, with some much more flashy effects than were available in 7.04. Hebrew support was even easier to setup than in 7.04. My networking worked automagically, and I’m currently transferring my files back to my laptop from a networked computer. With a few clicks I can watch WMV and other such movie formats. Installing Flash support was completely painless in the new Firefox (whether this is Ubuntu’s doing or a feature of Firefox 3, I’m unsure).
To be completely honest, I’d really like to setup my mother with Ubuntu. She doesn’t have a clue about how computers work. But she could install Ubuntu in her sleep. I can’t say the same thing about Vista. I’m really trying to convince myself that Linux still lacks something–but I just can’t manage it. Wait! Games; I still can’t play retail games, generally speaking.
I mean, come one! in under three hours I have my computer back up and running, and it was an enjoyable process. My dual-boot is completely intact, and everything is working. Compare this to the time we had earlier this summer with Mandy’s computers and you’ll quickly see why I intend to never return to the shackles of Windows again.