1) Eye Candy
If I am completely honest, the biggest reason why I converted was the eye candy. Sure Windows Vista comes with lots of it, but it just isn’t as good. Ubuntu 7.04 comes with just a few of the effects seen a lot nowadays, these effects include the rotating cube desktop and wobbly windows, it just makes it much nicer to use. I have installed Beryl on my computer to give much more eye candy. I base a lot of my judgments on looks first, features later.
2) Easy to Install Applications
Installing new programs in Ubuntu is a doddle, far easier than in Windows, because there is one program that basically gives you access to most applications available to Ubuntu, simply click the program you want and it will install, you don’t need to accept agreements because its all open source so there is no need to click Next 20 times before the program is installed. Simply select the program and click OK, wallah! done.
In Windows Vista, to change a setting requires a ridiculous amount of dialog boxes and passwords, in Ubuntu, you are never logged in as an administrator (root), you are logged in as a simple user, you can change options that are only applicable to your user area but for changing options that affect the system you are required to input the administrator password, one dialog and you’re in, simple and secure. There is also the added bonus that there are very few viruses for Linux, I haven’t ever come across one yet so you can feel safe, imagine not having any virus protection software installed in Windows, there is no need for it in Linux, freedom from the threat of losing all your data.
4) Easy to change options
Ubuntu comes with a control panel but also comes with a menu next to the Applications menu where you simply select the thing you want to change, be it the Desktop background or the network settings. Everything on the windows that appear is simple and there are just the options you need so it is easy to change the options.
The community behind Linux, especially Ubuntu is what attracts many people to the operating system. People in the Linux community are mainly ex-Windows users so they know what it feels like to be new to an operating system, so they are happy to help. Whenever I had and have a problem with Ubuntu I simply post on the Ubuntu forum and within minutes there are answers to the problems. I never got put on hold or had to phone up customer service and wait for hours if I had any problems.
Everything about Ubuntu is free, the operating system (you can even have them send you a free copy of the operating system, they even pay the postage charges), the software installed is free (including all the software you can download) any help and support is free. The whole experience is 100% free, because it is open source. Open source means that you can distribute and even edit the code behind the program.
7) Simple Networking
The other day I was amazed with how easy it was to connect my Ubuntu laptop to my Windows XP PC. I simply plugged in my laptop to the network hub and it immediately connected with no problems, I didn’t even have to configure it.
OK, I know that you can use Firefox on Vista as well, but on Ubuntu, there is no Internet Explorer that keeps popping up and cant get rid of. Mozilla Firefox is the number one web browser (remember, my opinions).
Windows Vista is slow and takes up a lot of resources which means you need a pretty decent computer to run it, I know with my 1GHz computer with 512MB of RAM it was too slow to work with. Ubuntu is just fast, it doesn’t slow down in performance when it has been on for a couple of hours, it just keeps on going and everything opens literally a second after you click the icon, and closes when you click the X, with Windows Vista you have to wait for like 30 seconds before a program starts and try shutting down a program like Word 2007 or Visual Studio after using it for a couple of hours, it takes forever.
Ubuntu gets updated every 6 months, well as close as it can do, and whenever I turn my computer on there are updates for the programs installed. Compare that to Windows, how often does that get updated, well the 5 years between Windows XP and Vista sort of answers that question.