It has been a bit of a long time coming but I’ve finally decided to stop procrastinating and actually attempt to move my last Windows desktop to Linux. This decision was reached after I realized that for many months now my home computing use has happened almost exclusively on my Linux powered laptop, and that I actually only ever bothered to use my Windows desktop to sync my phone and for nothing else. With the latter responsibility now taken care of elsewhere it has freed me up to finally move that last desktop to Linux as well.
Now this experiment of sorts is really as much of an attempt at living without Windows as it is one of living only with Linux. While I can’t think of any use cases where I would still need Windows, I have no idea if it is actually possible to live exclusively without it. Along those lines, and as a last resort ‘cheat’ of sorts, I still maintain a Windows 8 partition on my laptop that I could boot into if desperate.
So why bother making the switch at all? Other than what I wrote above about not really needing to use my Windows desktop for anything, I’ve also become accustomed to the additional power and flexibility that a Linux install gives me as a power user. While perhaps not as refined as Windows in all aspects, Linux certainly allows you to do some pretty neat things that you just can’t do on Windows.
Finally I actually prefer the challenge, if you want to call it that, of running a Linux operating system. I’ve used Windows for so many years now that it really has just become a very dull experience for me. As a software developer by trade and a technologist by nature this is perhaps my biggest motivator.
Now on to the interesting stuff. For the desktop in question I’ve decided to install Ubuntu 14.04, mostly due to timing than anything else – my preferred distribution these days is Linux Mint but the next long term support version of that, 17, isn’t due out for a few weeks yet. Assuming the experiment is a success and lasts until the release of 17 I may go through the trouble of changing distributions at that time.
In the meantime I’ll be transferring all of my files over and setting up a work flow that (hopefully) works for me. Wish me luck!
This post is part of a series. See the next post here.