CodyLoco's Random Rants… A little bit of everything…

26Aug/090

Ubuntu 9.04: Latest version of Ubuntu better than ever!

Ubuntu: For Desktops, Servers, Netbooks and in the cloudIf you're not yet aware, Ubuntu 9.04 has been out for a while now, and it's better than ever!  I installed it on my Asus G50V, dual-booting between it and Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit and it's running like a charm (writing this on it right now!).

As usual, you need to install the "extras" that aren't included since they are proprietary, closed source apps, in my case such as the nVidia driver, the Windows corefonts package, and ubuntu-restricted-extras to be able to play mp3s, video codecs like divx, etc.  The nice thing though, is they have been making it easier and easier to get this part up and running with the inclusion of apps such as the hardware drivers box which lets you two-click install the latest video driver (that's way easier than Windows!!!) and tons of walkthroughs and help on the Ubuntu website.  There is now even support for 64-bit Flash and Java plugins!

I also updated Wine (the Windows compatibility layer) to run MS apps, and other than having to install the Windows-propietary fonts, it thus far has run anything I try including what I'm playing now, Eve Online.  I've even installed Serato Scratch Live, which although I haven't tested it with the hardware SL1 since mine is in Costa Rica, the app itself runs as if it doesn't even know it's on Linux (and it's a fairly resource-intensive professional DJ app! - check out my AppDB Entry).  In case you didn't know, if you're thinking of switching to Ubuntu and NEED a Windows App but you there isn't an equivelant in Linux (most have one), check the WineHQ AppDB to see how well it runs under Wine.  You'll be surprised to see how many games run out of the box under Ubuntu/Wine!

My bareyl customized desktop (while editing this post).

My barely customized desktop (while editing this post).

Speaking of games... While Linux can emulate Windows games, Windows can't emulate Linux games or apps.  There are quite a few interesting games and apps available for Linux, and a good place start for games is LinuxGames and for apps is the "cool apps" thread on the Ubuntu forums.

Of course, Ubuntu does have some drawbacks.  Because I'm using the 64-bit version, some drivers I can't get to work, such as the one for my Canon scanner, however most hardware DOES work for the 32-bit Ubuntu.

All in all, other than to run Photoshop, which I haven't tried installing on Wine yet even though it says it can be done, I have had no reason what-so-ever to boot into Windows.  I can access all my files that are in the Windows partitions in Ubuntu (so I can play my music in Amarok, and my movies / videos in VLC, and edit MS Office documents in OpenOffice), play Eve Online, edit my websites and stuff with KFTPGrabber for ftp and Bluefish for PHP/HTML editing, and check my business email through Evolution mail... all just as efficiently as I would with Windows.  Only, with a MUCH stabler, customizable, prettier, and FASTER operating system.

Be sure to check out this video (it's even an OLD version of Ubuntu):

Oh, and by the way, everything about Ubuntu is completely free!  Ubuntu 1, Windows 0.

19Oct/080

No More Windows! Try the new Ubuntu 8.10 Linux OS

"Ubuntu" is an ancient African word that means "humanity to others".

An Ubuntu Desktop

A default Ubuntu Desktop with some apps open

That's quite the name to live up to if you are a linux distro.  Luckily enough, Ubuntu does live up to it's name.  It is one of the most user-friendly free open-source operating systems available, and the amount of computer users that run Ubuntu proves it.  Even large computer manufacturers such as Dell and Acer offer Ubuntu pre-loaded as an alternative to Windows when you order from them, proving that these companies have acknowledged that Ubuntu is a linux distro that is easy enough for the "common man" to operate.

Sadly, most people are under the impression that the only way to have a usable computer is to fork over the dough for a copy of Microsoft Windows and pay for the software.  Few are even aware that there are other operating systems available, and thus by default choose Windows.  Ubuntu offers all the functionality of Windows, even including support or alternative programs (still free!) for the most common tasks such as web surfing, image editing, word processing, music and video playback / editing, and more!

As of this writing, the latest version of Ubuntu, version 8.10 will be released in just under 11 days.  It includes numerous new features such tabbed Nautilus (the file browser) windows, encrypted private directories, improved guest sessions (to lend your laptop to someone to check your email, for example), updated networking and Samba support, and lots of added hardware support.

If you have never used a different operating system, you definitely owe yourself to try Ubuntu, since you may be pleasantly surprised.  You can download what is called a "Live CD", which you can boot from into Ubuntu so you can try it without making any changes to your computer.  Take the CD out, and the computer loads Windows as it always has.  Remember, the download is completely free, the operating system is free, and the software is free!  No reason not to try it out!

If you want to get the best of both worlds, you can also dual-boot your computer, so that when you turn on the computer a screen will appear asking whether you want to load into Ubuntu or Windows (Ubuntu for everyday tasks, Windows for gaming!).

Ubuntu 8.10 is currently in Beta until November 1st, 2008. I recommend you use the 8.04 version if you are downloading it before it comes out of Beta.

For more information and to download the Live CD, visit the Ubuntu Official Website and see what you have been missing!

By the way, did I forget to mention that everything Ubuntu is FREE?

Update: ShipIt is now taking pre-orders for properly pressed CD images of the LiveCD.  As with everything Ubuntu, they will actually you a copy absolutely free but it takes about two to three weeks.  If you want to order a free copy, visit this link!  Thanks to douglas1991 for the tip!