I have been curious with Linux for quite a while (even trying out Ubuntu 11.04 on a virtual machine). Maybe it was my reluctance to get out of the comforts of Windows that hindered me to make the switch for a long time. I have heard both good things (speed, security, performance, prettiness), and bad (software compatibility *le gasps*). But I only made the transition around two months ago when I finally installed a Linux OS (Ubuntu 11.04) on my hard drive. At first, I tried a dual boot of Windows and Ubuntu, and found myself using Ubuntu more than I did Windows. In fact, I have been almost exclusively using my Ubuntu install for quite a lot of stuff I do.
Like the average computer-using human, I have always used Windows for anything I do on the computer. In fact, I still remembered using Windows 3.1 when I was around, I think 3 or 4 years old (back when I still have to type “win” on DOS to get to the Windows proper). Since then, I have gone through almost each and every desktop version of Windows out (95, 98, a bit of 2000, XP, a bit of Vista, 7 and tried the Developer Preview of 8 on a VM).
Each year, the default desktop got prettier and prettier, and that I agree with because let’s face it, if something we face everyday is not easy to look at, chances are using it is pure and absolute torture. But at least with this line of operating systems, it comes with a price – each release (or maybe every other release), you need to buy/upgrade new hardware each time.
This particular screenshot is my current desktop wallpaper as of November 5, 2011. It’s clean, pretty, with an illustration created by Nabdal Abdulaff aptly named “Transparency”, which is one of the fundamental principles of the FOSS (Free, Open Source Software) movement. Of course with Linux, you can have many possibilities. You can opt for a clean, minimalist look (like I do), or your desktop can be you ultimate repository for files you just couldn’t be bothered to put into folders, or even do away with the GUI and just stick with the command line, old-school style!
My journey from being a long-time Windows patron, to a new Linux user, to where I am now, was anything but easy. I HAVE broken some stuff along the way, and forgot to keep both pieces, I have attempted to repair said stuff, only to worsen the damage enough to do another reinstall. But so far, I have never given up on Linux, and I never will.