Thursday, October 28, 2010

Back to Ubuntu

As many would have noticed most of my recent tweets are related to MAC and not much about Ubuntu anymore. Yes, I did move to MAC as my primary OS. It's well integrated and works most cases which I felt missing in Ubuntu. That didn't abandon me from Ubuntu, watching all latest development in Ubuntu world. Now Ubuntu 10.10 is out, it's time to experiment.

Still remember the first time I had to install Linux on my desktop. RedHat was all Linux at that time, didn't knew much about partitions and ended up formatting whole partition. Since then become advanced installing Linux, recovering Linux and so. This time it was different, had to install Ubuntu on MacBook. From previous experience took cautionary precautions - backed up all my data, read documentation & forums and got prepared. Thought of having to re-install and recover data was still running back of mind.

Ubuntu installer has got elegant & beautiful. Beats both Windows & Mac. Only glitch is the top gnome panel. Installation went smooth, I could boot into both Ubuntu and Mac.

What has changed from last time I used Ubuntu? Shotwell is default photo management app, no difference for me as I was using it before. More or less looks the same and bit faster. Speed may be due to ext4 and new i5 processor. Most things worked without any tweaking. That was great.

But the negatives remains as is. My main concern is desktop space management in Ubuntu and all Linux distress. Im Mac/Windows 1440x990 is enough to have browser, chat client to be opened and not fill the desktop. In Ubuntu 1440X900 looks not even sufficient for browser. Is it window management or gnome shell itself?

Applications remains the same, doesn't look sleek at all. Rhythmbox/Banshee works but no where near iTunes. iTunes may be bloated but works fine. Shotwell is huge improvement over F-Spot but no way closer to iPhoto or Picasa. And for some reasons fonts in firefof looks crappy. Evolution mail client hanged connecting to exchange account and sucks.

Ubuntu should work well in Enterprise world. Java works well and does Eclipse. Ubuntu might work well in developer machines than for home machines.

Been 8 years I started using Linux from Mandrake, RedHat, Fedora, Yoper, Debain and to Ubuntu drawbacks had remained the same,

  1. Lack of apps that looks well and works. UI may be limited by gnome capability.
  2. No matter how higher my screen resolution is, Linux makes it looks small. Opening one application will fill up the screen.
  3. Hardware drivers - Linux on laptop has always been problematic especially video drivers. Worst performance.

For now Meerkat lives along side Snow Leopard. But not as primary OS. Haven't tried Unity desktop UI and Gnome 3. Look forward to 11.04.