I’m a Mac user, but I definitely “grew up” on a PC. I think having used a PC for over 10 years was the strongest reason that I switched to Mac. Stability was one of my biggest reasons, but also because of better applications for the things I do most, as well as access to X11 (e.g., Linux) applications.
My question is: how many of you are using the same platform you started out on, and how many of you are using a platform because of your bad experiences with the platform you started on?
I started out with the best, the TRS-80 Color Tandy Computer. I remember that cassette drive was sweet. I still have the Basic program handbook, Goto line 2, Lol! Soon after that, I had my first date with a Commodore 64 back in August of 82’. 64 kilobytes Ram and superior to the IBM.
Then came the first kit project, the 8088 PC clone. Damn thing never did work right so I purchased a Packard Hell 286, I mean Bell. Sweet little machine that ended up in the dumpster. Spent days putting that 386 together and finally figured out that the P1 cable was upside down.
I admit most of my computer problems were operator error. So, I will skip the story about the piggy backed 486, that upgraded to a Pentium, and all of the other PC desktops and laptops that demanded weekly reboots, and security downloads. My Mac G5 has only been rebooted four times in three years, and that was because of power failures. Had to reboot after OS upgrade from Panther to Tiger. It is simple to use and it works when I need it.
Guess what I am trying to say, “is that the Mac is user friendly for the average user”.
I grew up on PC’s, (not counting the ol’ Sinclair computer). They are what my college used in addition to the mainframe Digital VAX11, so I just used them. Now, PC’s with Windows are the only platform that supports any number of CAD/CAM softwares we use at work, so there really is no choice there. I have my home computer dual boot between WinXp and Ubuntu Linux and I have an old laptop with a fully installed Ubuntu 8.0 distribution in an attempt to force myself to use it. (Just because I guess) I always wind up coming back to Windows. Linux in its many flavors can make a fine system, but just trying to install software and have driver compatibility without using NDisWrapper or something is frustrating and not for the casual user. Trying to understand where everything has to go and why, takes more than the average computer user’s knowledge even though as time goes on mainstream Linux is slowly getting easier in these areas.
I have to say I have absolutely no Apple knowledge whatsoever unless you count the few times I fooled around in the Apple store at the mall.
As far as stability goes, I run memory and graphics intensive programs (Solidworks / Surfcam) all day long and rarely have to reboot or have a crash. My home PC runs for weeks and weeks on XP without having to be reset, and usually that’s due to a software installation or other update. For whatever reason I don’t seem to be having enough problems to even come close to wanting to switch to another operating system (or processor). For the record, I’ve had just as many lock-ups and crashes in Linux as I’ve ever had in Windows, though neither has been very frequent.
(I still have a complete Commodore 64 in my basement that I rescued from a dumpster if smcbride wants to go back to a computer that boots up in 1 second.)
You can’t fault anyone for a decision that they have reasoned out as being best for them. If Linux users do embrace choice, then we have to respect it even when that choice is to look elsewhere. To not use Linux is as valid a choice as it is to use it.
However, your experience with Linux does not mirror my own. I do not have crashes or lock ups and wonder what you were using that caused this. A stable release of any of the major distros should be just that. If you are using an experimental release or were trying the bleeding edge, then that could explain it. I use Ubuntu 8.10 on more than one computer with no problems. I have 12 or more distros installed, some of them experimental and have few problems, certainly nothing that would be like yours.
In Windows, I don’t have as many crashes as in the past, but it is not as productive with all of the updating and re-booting. I can’t work for a good ten minutes when I boot into Windows and a have to click on this or that to enable or disallow an update before I can even start. If it asks me to re-boot and I say no, it nags me every 9 minutes until I give in.
It is all what the user thinks is better. I know what works for me and you know what works for you. Good luck!
Wireless drivers have much greater support in the latest kernels (2.6.27+)
i.e You will probably find out you didn’t need ndiswrapper at all .
Most people I know who use both linux and windows always mention how much more realible wireless connections are in linux..
Did you try ubuntu 8.04 or 8.10 ?
Anyway have fun with your decade old OS – i’m going with something from 2008.
Opensuse 11.1 is relased tomorrow – i’ve heard thats got really good wireless support………
Which is better (or more suited to a particular purpose)- KDE4 or Gnome?
(Another Mysterious Choice for the uninitiated.)
Neither is better. It’s really a matter of what you’re familiar with. Those who started with KDE tend to be KDE fans and vice versa. If you’ve never used either, then they’re going to be about the same to you.
I do not have crashes or lock ups and wonder what you were using that caused this.
In general, I think PC hardware is more to blame than Windows/Linux for crashing. Both the best and worst aspect of the PC world is the variety of hardware. You can get a great machine, but there are far more pieces of junk. I like that Mac hardware is closely tied to the software, i.e., I can safely assume that the hardware should have no issues with the software since they came from the same vendor.
i switched to ubuntu from windows for two reasons:
1. i LOVE opensource
2. microsoft is evil
so it really, really broke my heart to have to switch back to windows eight months later. what forced my hand? device support. after trying to access and write data to 4 different cell phones, two mp3 players and a camera i just gave up on ubuntu – if i ever did manage (after hours or days of reading and tweaking) to gain access to the device, it was always far more limited than was workable, and a couple of the phones I was NEVER able to gain access to and the mp3 players could only be accessed as external drives and both would only play some of the albums regardless of switching id3 tag versions about a hundred times – album by album.
dual operating systems make little sense to me (and the concept pisses me off) so i just switched back to windows xp.
ubuntu is a superior operating system imo, but i’m just not willing to live without full, simple device support – whether it be the fault of the device manufacturers or ubuntu developers makes little difference to me, the end user, who finds it impossible to sync pretty much anything with ubuntu.
Device support is a big problem with Linux, but it’s wrong to blame Linux. (Before you start – I know you didn’t actually blame Linux, but many people do, and I’m addressing them, not you.)
Linux does have pretty good device support – most common hardware works well. But there’s a lot of stuff that just doesn’t have good support.
The real blame goes to the manufacturers, though. I do understand that they’re unwilling to take on the cost of supporting another OS that doesn’t have deep market penetration, but that shouldn’t preclude them from giving out enough information to allow open source developers to build drivers.
There’s a difference between support – which requires at least the attempt at well-written documentation, staff to answer questions, and usually some advertising and marketing efforts – and technical openness. Having one guy on staff who’s willing to answer questions in his off time would usually be enough – there are open-source drivers that have been built with far less than that.
Instead, companies treat their interfaces as if they’re state secrets. I’ve never understood the logic — the Linux market may not be huge, but it’s also not tiny. There are millions of us out here.
Instead, companies treat their interfaces as if they’re state secrets.
This is further convoluted by the fact that many companies (HP) use third party software houses for many of their drivers, so there may actually be no internal support.
Then, like in the case of the wireless USB dongle I first complained about — it was a D-Link brand with a Marvel chip inside (and probably a third party driver after that.. who knows?) A different D-LInk Revision level on the same product might use an Atheros wireless chip. The craziness lives on.
Yes it is the MFG’s fault – and rather than moving back to Windows if you voted for the MFG’s that have devices that work with Linux (by purchasing those products that do state they work with Linux or are on the HCL) maybe this crazyness could end. This is exactly the reason the M$ got sued a while back – and the little slap on the wrist they got has not detered them one bit. Your doing exactly what they hoped you would.
Another problem with device support is that the ongoing development of Linux often breaks things. I have a PocketPC that I used to be able to persuade to swap files under Dapper, but has never worked with any release since. After Gustsy it would not even sync properly. I have tried, many times, but HAL will not co-operate. I now use a windows box to grab any files off it, and move them on a memory stick to my Ubuntu machine. Similarly, I have a SCSI interface to my scanner, and although it still works, I have to reboot every time I switch it on, or it cannot be seen by the OS. With me these are little niggles, but I fully understand why this can send someone back to the “dark side”.
I have to say I’m a PC / Windows user. Certainly not out of any loyalty to Microsoft, but mainly because it was the most convenient. I started out using DOS back around 1990—which despite it’s problems, I really liked. DOS didn’t do anything until you told it to, unlike Windows which is always doing mysterious things in the background.
I started learning a little bit about UNIX in high school, but outside of that course, I never had much opportunity to use it, so I never really got into it. So, I graduated through Windows 98, NT, 2000, and XP, which I still use (I won’t touch Vista, at least not yet—like all windows versions, it needs to be out on the market for about 5 years to get all the kinks worked out—and there’s still Windows 7 soon to contend with).
I did use Macs for a couple of years at work, mostly using Adobe InDesign; but I found them awkward to use. Maybe it’s just because I was too used to windows, but I’ve always found it easier to poke around in windows and learn what I needed to learn. The Macs always made me feel hobbled. I have a friend who swears by them, however.
In the end, I miss the simplicity of DOS, just waiting for me to tell it what to do like a loyal pet. Sit DOS. Stay DOS. DIR DOS. CD.. DOS
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