I must be cursed with technology. For the last three or four years my computers all seem to die an untimely death. It all began with my PC after installing Doom 3. It roasted my power supply which in turn roasted everything attached to it. I tried to replace the parts, but there were bits that just maintained the curse of doom making it impossible for me to ever trust that machine as a fully functional computer ever again. It died a terrible death one final time after I moved to my current apartment back in 2006 and I was pretty much forced to build a new PC from scratch. That PC nearly suffered a stroke sometime in 2008 when one of the motherboard fans went wonky and I had to do a bit of open case surgery. My computers at work have suffered various aliments too from bad graphics cards to well…all kinds of harddrive problems. I now have a graveyard of harddrives in my cube from failed attempts to get me working again — my current computer is in good health.
So yesterday my laptop crashed. Windows XP Home suffered from some kind of IRQL_LESS_THAN_OR_EQUAL error that it could not recover from. I didn’t have my recovery discs with me. So game over man, end of story. I now have an 8.5 lb doorstop with me on my Christmas break.
Until I decided, “What the hell. I’ll install Ubuntu Linux.”
I haven’t used a Unix system since college. How hard was it?
Step 1. Download the ISO and burn it.
Step 2. Backup all my crap on the computer and pop the disc in the CD tray
Step 3. I pick install from the Ubuntu menu and answer some questions and BAM
Step 4. Done.
So far nothing seems to terrible. There are things I don’t understand about Linux yet, but what the hell, I’ll go with the flow and deal with the challenges as the arise. The most important things I got out of the way. Web browsing is built in with firefox. I got VLC to play DVDs and videos. MP3s can be played by some software already preloaded on the OS. It connects to USB devices without a hitch.
I know there are things I can’t do. I suspect I can’t play Netflix online movie player on Ubuntu since Firefox doesn’t support it. I probably won’t be able to play my iTunes m4ps but there’s a simple way around that.
Regardless, so far playing with Ubuntu is going fairly smoothly, and I’ll keep you updated as I discover the limitations of this new OS.