Comments and help on web development.
01 2010

Reasons against a switch from Windows XP to Ubuntu 9.10

Some weeks ago I switched from Windows XP to Ubuntu 9.10. Entirely. Without a safety net. It was a big step for me.

All-in-all I’m happy to have made Ubuntu my main system. However, there are some things that bother me here and there.

I’m maintaining a list of arguments at this place, that speak against a switch to Ubuntu:

  • Slow Flash implementation - There’s a open-source variant and a close-source version by Adobe. I have to admit, I don’t own the fastest computer anymore, but none of the offered implementation allow me to watch YouTube videos smoothly. All other Flash-video-players work to some extend, with problems here and there. YouTube, however, I can only watch when Flash is in the right mood. That always seems to be the case, when I don’t want to see anything.
  • Bad Word-support - Here, I’m talking about OpenOffice. I used it in the past on Windows XP from time to time, but it has so many flaws, that I always ended up using the original software. That’s why I’m now sitting on Word-files that I can’t open anymore. Luckily no important ones.
  • Cumbersome Whole-Disk-Encryption - With Ubuntu 9.10 you get an optional home-directory-encryption out of the box, but that’s by far not as secure as a whole-disk-encryption. On Windows XP you are able to encrypt the whole disk without any hassle with TrueCrypt. On Linux you have to create a boot-partition and chain the boot loaders - before you install Ubuntu.

That were my important arguments, that bother me personally. Others may miss, that there are only few of the latest games available for Linux, but I didn’t play much on Windows either.

On the other side, I like the fast and free installation of software, as well as the variety. What you have to search and buy on Windows, you either get by default with Ubuntu  or can be downloaded and installed with three clicks.

The best, for me as a programmer, is to get the latest developer-tools with the mentioned three clicks. And all that without Cygwin or MSYS.

Cheers for Linux and may Adobe eventually release a Flash-implementation with great performance for Linux!

3 Responses to “Reasons against a switch from Windows XP to Ubuntu 9.10”

  1. Update: I changed my ATI graphics card to a (very old) nVidia and Flash is now working fine.

  2. Why would you want to encrypt your entire hard disk?

    By default ALL your settings and files are stored in your home folder. (unless you manually inserted some stuff)

    All other folders are stuff that can be found on other systems

  3. The swap and tmp folders are leaking information if you only encrypt your home folder.
    And are you certain, that no program writes information (like logfiles) to other locations than your home folder? I’m not ;)

    Anyhow, thanks for your comment, Peter!

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