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Living in a trailer with only an iPhone 4S for a link. Tried to use a Mac G5, that Apple no longer supported. Ordered Debian Distro, but the wifi would not work properly. The USB connection from the 4S never would work with the OS, kernel panic. Was stuck taking my machine to a friends home to get packages. Finally, my wife in desperation purchased me a new motherboard and an Intel i-3450 CPU and 32G memory. What a sweetie, now I use Wheezy with all parts working. I still read about others and the wifi woes. Need to move to open hardware to get satisfaction...
I voted as using around 2010 but really first had red hat 5.1 or 5.2 installed on a
pentium machine that had a asus sp97 motherboard around 1999 I think. I overheard
a guy talking about being sick and tired or re-installing windows over and over again and
was talking about Ghost (not Norton yet) and red hat 5.2 had just come out and he handed
me a copied burnt cd of Red Hat Linux and said "It's legal to copy and burn these". he gave
me a well used red hat book that he was finished with and I somehow mounted a cd and somehow
entered in all the hardware, and somehow partitioned my hard disk and could never really
figure out how to do anything without hours of constant mistakes and starting all over.
I gave up many times and then started to look into Ubuntu as the cd's were free and they mailed them to you. I am guessing around 2006, but I didn't really use linux completely
until 2010 with Ubuntu and Debian which I also unsuccessfully screwed around with for some
years. Also the first "live cd" to stay up and running for almost a day at a time was Pc
Linux maybe about 5 years ago (guessing) and from there I progressed to Newbie. Maybe some
day I will be an intermediate if I keep on keeping on and alzheimers doesn't set in.
Oh yeah, that same guy that gave me the cd, talked about multiple desktops and that totally blew me away. He said at the time, "you can have 15 desktops at once, try that windows" and I was impressed.
First experimented around 2005/6 but didn't have the time needed to 'get it', so kept suffering Mac OS breakdowns until 2009.
Have now tried various releases of various flavours (depending on machine). Writing on a Mint LXDE.
Keep up the good work.
Distribution: Ubuntu 16.04 64bit and a few other OSs
I started 2006 while I was doing a T.A.F.E. course on Microsoft Office. One of the other students made me aware of the existence of Linux. I started with Ubuntu 6, then tried out many more; but Ubuntu is still my main distro. I like to thank all the nerds who helped me solving the many questions I encountered on my Linux path. Tux rules!
Fiddled around with Linux here and there since 2005. Installed varioud distro's and bought several reference guides. Been in info security all that time so it was handy doing audits. When I work with one of my clients who is a Linux admin and I'm always impressed with his skills. It has motivated me to actually obtain some real skills with Linux. So I joined this site for the great resources.
I started with Mandrake 7.1 in 1999 when I wanted a file server for home Windows' machines and did not want to buy another MS OS. The graphical screen was gross but I did not need it to run Samba anyway so it stayed in text mode.
First time I got my hands on a Linux distro was back in 1997. when I got Slackware on a magazine's CD. I've already used Solaris on a university server, so I found it quite interesting to have a unix at my pc too. Unfortunately, all I got was a similar experience to telneting the Solaris server since I couldn't bring up X on my Tseng ET4000 videocard, no matter the amount of fiddling by me and a friend who has already been using Linux.
About the next year, I got Redhat the same way, but I didn't like it - with KDE it seemed too much Windoze-like, and too little Unix-like to interest me :P
In 2000 I was introduced to Debian and I started regularly playing with Linux afterwards. For the next several years I've made several experimental installs mostly on laptops (it was a pain to set up the soundcard on them because practically all of them had some dreadful ISAPNP ones). From that time I mostly remember configuring and compiling kernels most of the time. During that time I also registered myself as a Linux user on The Linux Counter. Distributions I used were still Slack and Debian.
In 2007 I've made my first Linux install for daily use, I had another elderly laptop at work which had only 192 MB RAM. It originally had Windoze 98 which was quite unusable these days, so I installed Xubuntu on it. It worked perfectly! I dare say it was more pleasant to use than some newer machines with much more RAM and newer distros. The next year I got a new laptop with Vista, which I tried for a few months and then, in disgust installed and started using Linux on it. From that time on, I very rarely dual-booted to Vista, until some day I destroyed it completely. My primary OS is Linux since then.
I'd like to say thank you, Micro$oft! Had you not released Vista, perhaps I'd still be too lazy to convert to Linux for daily use, as it has been when I had 2000 and XP.
So, what year should I put in the poll? Was it 2007/08 when I started using Linux regularly? Or should I say 1997. when I installed it for the first time? I believe 1997 will do, since then there never was a year without doing at least something with Linux. All that time I have been quite confortable working in the shell, and compiling kernels, so I guess that counts.
I first started using Linux on 25 October, 2001 -- the same day Winodze Yechs Pee was released, I installed Mandrake -- 8.1, I guess it was. I tried a bunch of distros: Libranet, Debian, Red Hat, ELX (experimental from India, 'Drake based) Linaire (corporate distro like Bohdi) Gentoo, Evil Entity, Slackware. I went with Slack I guess about 2005, and have been with it ever since. I stick Enlightenment on it instead of going with the default KDE.