Right from the year 1999 when I started using computers, I have used Windows as the only operating system though I started learning typing in DOS also. When I joined my college for bachelors in Mechanical Engg., we did have a subject related to primary computer skills involving hardware recognition and some elementary topics about computer software.
However, I have never encountered Linux or open source as a subject. In fact, it was very late when one of my friends introduced me to Ubuntu, a distro of Linux that I thought of using Linux as an operating system for my computers. You won’t believe the irony of using Windows: I am writing this post using Windows in my office! J
Ubuntu was an instant hit with me as I liked the interface and its ease of usage. I had my personal laptop on double boot where I could choose to run it on Windows or on Ubuntu. Later on, we introduced Ubuntu in our town by distributing CDs on large scale as Canonical was providing original Ubuntu CDs free of cost. In our spirit, we were making the positive virus of open source effective in our area!
Then, the final thought of running a system exclusively on Linux crossed our mind. We were aware of the limitations of various applications and our own limited knowledge to make tweaks wherever required. The opportunity came when I had to get a new desktop for my home where my niece could learn computers and also I could use it whenever I feel like. I got an assembled hardware of the finest quality and the optimized processor and RAM etc. The vendor gave us the hardware and we sat to configure it to run in exclusively on Ubuntu. We did it.
It has been around 3 years since that system is running exclusively on Ubuntu. My niece has used it for learning tools, games, etc through Edubuntu. My father has used it to surf internet through Mozilla Firefox. My whole family used to voice-chat with me using Skype when I was doing my job away. At the same time, I have used it whenever I felt like bored from Windows and wanted a new interface.
Overall, Linux does not suck as it helps me avoid using pirated version of Windows and also not pay to buy original ones.
Some limitations of using Linux exclusively on my desktop:
- I got married and my wife finds it difficult to use it. She is not an expert in computers and whatever she know, she learned it on Windows. It will take some time to her to get used to it.
- I am not able to tweak it if we want to use some special fonts that can write in our regional language.
- I can’t download iTunes to get free podcasts available from various sources.