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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Linux Trip: Disunity

If you have been following my saga with Linux you know that in the 13 years I was Mac OS X, not much had changed. Installing Linux meant making some extra finger configurations on the keyboard and adding some extra switches on the command line. After that, the new modern Linux desktops that were "better" than their alternatives, had much to be desired.

After a couple of weeks of installs and re-installs, I had decided that Ubuntu with its Unity desktop was going to be my best choice. It felt familiar enough and, if nothing else, looked modern and not like a relic from the last century.

Disunity is the best description I can offer for what followed. First, was the attempt to sell me something from Amazon every time I opened the HUD. When you think of the definition of dickass, you can now imagine whoever thought of putting Amazon.com search results next to your application suggestions. Second, was the crashes. I mean crash, after crash, after crash. I have not rebooted a computer this many times since the last century. No really, it was worse than Windows 3.0.

So, with this disappointment I was ready to forget Linux, but I had a geek bug and had not cured it... yet. When I played with Linux in the 1990s I enjoyed the KDE desktop. From what I was reading on Internet forums, OpenSuse had the best KDE experience, but I wanted to try it before I committed to an install. That's the great thing about Linux, you have the freedom to make such choices. I opened the App Store, sorry Software Manager, and installed the KDE desktop.

Again, I was surprised. From what I had read you would think KDE 4 was the devil's ass. But it wasn't, it was modern, it was flexible, and I liked it. The ability to change the Plasma interface from Netbook to Desktop was amazing. It didn't crash while I was using it for this experiment so I went to the OpenSuse site and downloaded an ISO.

This was the first, of my two worst experiences with Linux.

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