Still Making Progress…

In four days it will be a month since I switched to Linux. Novell pretty much made it possible. I had set the ease of use and functionality of Win 2k as the base of what I would accept. My main desktop has been running openSUSE 10.1 with stability and aplomb. Digikam is more than adequate for managing my 5000+ (and growing) pictures, Amorak is way better than adequate at managing my 11000+ song music collection.

I gave up on making the Mac Mini a linux file server, after a ton of work I was able to get Ubuntu running…sort of. I couldn’t access updates…and–nothing against Ubuntu–but I like getting gobs of software with my distro. So the Mac Mini is an OS X file server now. If I can’t get rid of OS X at least I can put it somewhere where I don’t have to look at it. It seems like it should be a good low power consumption server.

Yesterday I ravaged my XP MCE box. Destroyed the hard drive trying to resize a partition…oops. I had no data on it…so not a big deal. Well…other than the fact that I destroyed my restore partition. So I installed Vista beta 2 on it…garbage. No support for my TV tuners, one of which is one of the few that is supported by MCE 2005! Since I had been wanting to play with SLED 10, I went ahead and put it on there. Still no TV tuner support (I think I can get one of the two working once I get more time.) Will probably play with XGL for a few days, then install openSUSE on it and try to restore it to its place as my TV/DVR/Game Machine.

Speaking of XGL–it seems pretty cool. No noticable slowdown or stability issues. Of course all of the stuff it does now is lame…more like demos of what developers can accomplish than anything that one would wish to use. Pretty much in the same vein as Apple’s core video and Microsoft’s Aero…good ideas, now lets see some useful aps.

Earlier I stated that it was due to Novell that I was able to maintain my switch. For a noob recent Windows power user convert, there is no other distro that compares. In the slick combination of ease of use with access to advanced features. I’m not really into gnome, and SLED’s KDE is not much different from openSuse. But openSuse more than meets my needs…I will probably standardize my desktops on it.  Has anyone done a comparison (a good one, not some fanboy crap) between openSuse, OS X and XP?

I, quite obviously, have not yet made the total switch.  And I may not ever make it on my present hardware, for instance I will never get good support for my Averatec Tablet.  But as we close in on the one month anniversary, I can confidently state that I have sent MS the last check that I will ever send them.


Feelin’ Free

Finally!!  After 6 years of fits and false starts, I have finally made the transition to Linux!  And, I do believe it is for real–and for good–this time around.  I now have had my main machine running linux for 2 weeks. My laptop is dual boot….I still have a windows based media center, and the Mac Mini has been nothing but a pain in the ass.

It feels good.  Today I was analyzing why it felt so good…I came up with the following…

1) Microsoft bugs me.  Not MS the software…I am one of those who think that MS makes the software that all others seek to imitate.  It is MS the giant corporation which seeks to foist things like WGA (see previous post) on me that bugs me.  They sell me software then change the EULA along the way.  I am fairly certain that I did not agree to any such nonsense as them periodically scanning my hard drive back in 2002 when I bought that copy of Windows.  This sort of arbitrary and capricious act makes me glad to be free of the monolith!

2) Microsoft’s newest round of products seem an awful lot like adware to me.  You can’t check “no store” or turn off links to stores anywhere from within Media Player.  Vista has “buy links” spread throughout…maybe the final release won’t be as adware-like as Beta 2.  This really bugs me.  Apple does this too…except they also ship crippleware with their adware…iWeb, iPhoto, Quicktime…all crippleware!  Bugs the shit out of me…I would be soooo happy to dump the monstrosity that is OS X and its companion crippleware.

3) I don’t have to violate copywrites on software anymore.  The EULAs are restrictive, you would need buy 3 copies of every app to avoid violating them.  Software is expensive and constantly needs updating.  I was never able to run legal copies of the software that I need to accomplish my goals with the computer.  So there is a fair amount of relief in shrugging off that guilt.

4) The sense of accomplishment in finally figuring it out enough to make the switch.  Although I must admit that the linux development community really met me more than half way.  Major kudos to them.

My pda still runs windows…no sync for it yet.

So Bill Gates and Co. may think they got over on me with thier poorly implemented WGA–when in reality all they did was push me off to another OS.  Maybe I should send them a thank you card.