Adventures In Computing

September 23, 2010

Extremists Will Ruin It for All of Us

Filed under: Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 64bit, Windows — Normand Bissonnette @ 12:05 pm

My last post, My Failures with Ubuntu 10.10 and Experimenting with Windows 7, made me realize why Linux, and even Apple to a certain extent, has trouble gaining more than a foothold as the Operating System of choice: Fanboys and the hubristic view that certain users have concerning Linux.

All OS’s have their fanboys that will not listen to reason. Just the fact that I mentioned that I liked using Windows 7 provoked a comment that annoyed me and got me thinking. If we are Ubuntu users and/or free software enthusiasts are we not allowed to say/write that we like Windows 7? The answer is obviously “NO” for the elitist/fanboys

I have tried to convert the masses to Ubuntu for 4 years and I get flak from over zealous fanboys. I am sure that if Ubuntu reaches a user base of over 5 percent of all computers, most current fanboys will abandon Ubuntu saying that it is too popular, too simplistic, too easy to use … etc, etc, etc. True computing enthusiasts will not denigrate or insult people simply because they don’t use the same OS as they do, but fanboys will. True Ubuntu enthusiasts will not drop Ubuntu because it is used by “everybody else”, but fanboys will.

The Ubuntu community must keep growing and must keep evolving for it to be a factor in the future. The voice of dissent must be heard and understood before it is just dismissed as being wrong, silly and absurd. To be part of the Ubuntu community one must follow a Code of Conduct. I urge every Ubuntu user to read it and follow it, not only when dealing with Ubuntu users, but also in life. There would be a lot less conflicts in the world if everybody did. I know that right now I am sounding a bit preachy, too bad, that is how I feel.

In a community we are all allowed to have our own opinion but in this blog I will always have the final say.


September 16, 2010

My Failures with Ubuntu 10.10 and Experimenting with Windows 7

Filed under: 64bit, GNU/Linux, Linux, Ubuntu, Ubuntu 64bit, Windows — Normand Bissonnette @ 3:05 pm

On Friday September 3rd I decided to install the first beta of Ubuntu 10.10, code name “Maverick Meerkat” on my laptop, which happens to be my main computer. I knew that since it was a beta there might be some bugs and minor inconveniences because it was not the final product. I usually try the live cd first to make sure everything works but this time I decided to just do a distro update, wrong move.

It took about an hour to complete but when I turned on my latop I was getting a psychedelic screen. It was cool looking but I could not use my computer what so ever. It was late so I fired up my desktop , which I have been using as a media server, and downloaded a live cd to install the next day.

Saturday September 4th after work I install using the live cd. When the installation is done and the computer starts up I get the same funky screen. I was starting to get annoyed. I try to fix it using the rescue mode, same screen, Crtl-Alt-f2 same thing. Try seaching the forums, nothing there to help me. I decide to download the Alternate Install disc and give that a try.

To make a long story short, this ended with the same results. At this point I was very pissed off, at my computer, at Ubuntu and most of all at myself for not trying it live first or on VirtualBox!

I then decide to do the unthinkable: I install Windows 7. I have been using linux for 4 years and 6 months and Ubuntu for 4 years, I have sworn never to use Windows as my main OS, yet I decided to see if I liked the Windows 7 experience for a month and install Ubuntu in October when the final product comes out.

Last year I installed Windows 7 beta on VirtualBox to try it out and I played with it for a few hours and decided that it was not for me. This time around I would give it a fighting chance to either impress me or disappoint me. I was going to give it a full try with no Ubuntu to fall back on.

I’ll be honest with you, all the propriety programs I installed to get my Windows to work (Office, Ant- virus, Defragmentor…) are either trial versions of the programs or pirated, I did not want to spend a fortune just to try Windows 7.

After using Windows 7 for the past 2 weeks, I am amazed that I like Windows 7, there are some thing that I don’t like but there is a lot to like. I know some of you will call me a traitor to Open Source software, that I have turned to the dark side. My answer would be:  not really, I like to try new things to keep myself up to date with PCs and we have to face fact that Windows has a 88.92% share of all computers and linux has only 1.10%. Linux has lots of space for growth.

Even tough I was pleasantly surprised by Windows 7 and my short experience was for the most part enjoyable,  I will be installing Ubuntu 10.10 on my laptop in October but I will not be dismissing Windows 7 like I did Vista and XP. I will keep on pushing the use of Open Source software.

The linux community must roll up its sleeves and continue the great work it has been doing. They must push the envelope and be leaders not followers in software development and we must educate the mass of the advantages of Open Source over the oligarchy we now have.

I am in sales and the worst thing a sales person can do is put down the competition instead of pushing the product he/she is  selling. It is always easier to put down the competition than to elevate your product, but you will feel better taking the high road, and in the long run you will gain more supporters. So if some Windows or Apple enthusiast is putting down Linux don’t stoop to his/her level just state something that you really enjoy when you use Ubuntu. Mention some option they may enjoy out of Linux, don’t just say that Windows sucks and Ubuntu rocks. You’ll just antagonize  them and chances are they won’t try Linux. (And Windows 7 doesn’t really suck).

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