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apachedude 05-18-2006 09:23 PM

I think I'll go back to Windows for the time being
 
I've been using Linux for 2 years now, and up until last week, had been single booting without Windows for a year. There are many things I love about Linux, including the free ideology.

But last week, as I had two lab reports due. For the first lab report, OpenOffice.org kept crashing on me as I tried to delete a page break. I had to resort to CrossOver Office to delete the page break. But CrossOver Office itself was buggy, and I had to switch between OpenOffice and MS/CrossOver just to finish. I barely did before the deadline.

For the second lab report, I needed a Windows-only application.

So I grudgingly installed Windows.

I find myself spending more and more time on Windows now. I'm in a unique situation. Many Windows->Linux converts find themselves unable to stay on Linux because of stuff they are so used to on Linux. I can't switch completely to Windows because I'm so used to many things on Linux. But dual-booting is a waste of my time. I need to pick one operating system.

Unfortunately, until an "easy" Linux distribution is fast enough and stable enough, until it supports features such as hibernation and suspend on laptops, 3D acceleration for all graphics cards, offers complete compatibility with all my hardware (Rio Cali, Palm Zire 72, maybe a TV tuner, etc.), regardless of whose "fault" it is, the choice must be Windows. Games, which I rarely play, besides Madden and NBA Live, are a small bonus.

My distribution, SUSE, came out with a 10.1 release so far. It promised so much potential, and I can see its polish. But it is buggy as hell. Crash, crash, crash. It's much faster than 10.0, but still much slower than Windows (at least on boot up). It suffers from the same memory leaks as Windows, which I had thought two years ago Linux was immune from. I know there are more stable OSes out there. Don't tell me, I've tried them all--Red Hat, Fedora, Slackware, Mandrake, Ubuntu, Debian, Gentoo, PCLinux, Yoper, MEPIS. They all have one problem or another. So does Windows, but those problems are less critical to me.

I don't want to delete my Linux partition yet, because it truly is the OS I prefer. I'm not saying that Linux is not "ready"--it is ready for me. I've been using it primarily for two years, and almost exclusively for one. But Windows is better, for all its flaws. As a power user, I can secure my Windows OS unlike most users.

I think KDE is the main saving grace for Linux. I'm addicted to it. I think that if a Windows port of KDE 4 were to be released, I'd lose this "barrier to entry" to Windows. But that's fine. I'm sure that Linux will steadily improve, and that in the future, maybe next year, maybe 20 years from now, Linux will be better than Windows.

That's my rant. I suppose I'm going to configure GRUB to put my Windows partition as default. I might have to repartition my hard drive, because all my data right now lies in an ext3 home partition. And I'll have to try something like Cygwin, because there are truly things I really do like about *nix still. In fact, I think my overall experience with Linux is positive. There are just several critical dealbreakers that need to be overcome for someone like me. And still more for the average computer user.

I'll probably still participate in the community in forums such as these. I'll be keeping close attention to how the Linux world develops. Hopefully, I'll be back sometime soon--because that will mean that Linux is that much closer to ready.

kencaz 05-18-2006 09:38 PM

That was confusing... You praise Linux but are switching back to windows!!! If you want to use windows you don't need to give excuses and all that explaining...If that's what you need to get the job done then do it...

I don't get why duel booting is so difficult or why you have to choose one or the other. I use Linux almost exclusively but have a separate windows box for some apps that just run better their. I don't feel guilty using windows though.

I know that after using linux for 10+ years there is no way I would ever go back to windows exclusively, and I don't need too... Both are available so I use them.

Just a thought on your way out...

KC

meng 05-18-2006 09:46 PM

Thanks for sharing your experiences, I think the community will benefit from understanding the wide variety of individuals' needs. Myself, I recently reduced my need for Windows down from three to two items, having worked out how to use VPN to connect to work. Now all that remains to conquer is MSN video conferencing (with audio) and internet grocery shopping (bad javascripted website). Also, I've been very impressed with the java applications that allow me to port data between my home Linux box and my work Windows desktops.

apachedude 05-18-2006 09:48 PM

Dual booting is inefficient, but I need Windows more and more for this next lab report.

Right now I have a tiny Windows partition and the rest of my hard drive is ext3 or reiser. I have to first reconstruct it to make Windows primary with a huge partition, a huge FAT to share, and ext3 for Linux.

Quite frankly, I'm being locked in by Akregator right now. I want to keep all my old feeds if I were to switch an RSS reader. I think if I could do that, I could get just about everything I need on Windows, with an occasional single-boot into Linux.

No, I can't go back to Windows exclusively. I think what I meant was, I have to make Windows primary though. Because Windows is doing 25% of what I do right now and Linux 75%. But Windows can do 99% of what I want to do and Linux can only do 95%. I think I'll stop before I confuse you guys even more.


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