I’ve spent much of my time over the last week migrating from Windows to Ubuntu on my Thinkpad T60. I’ve fiddled with linux off an on over the past 5 years (I did write the linux rpm installer for WSAD-IE v5) and did the majority of the linux testing for that release, so I was familiar with RedHat and SuSE.
I guess since those many years ago, Ubuntu has become the platform of choice and it’s easy to see why. I was able to load the CD onto my USB 2GB key drive and boot it up to play around. It also includes a powerful disk repartition program in the same vein as Partition Magic. I was able to split my primary 120GB hard drive formatted as NTFS in half without disturbing windows, so currently, I dual-boot as needed.
I could go on and on about the features of Ubuntu Hardy Heron (8.04) but you can view them all over the internet. If you plan on doing this migration on a thinkpad, check out the thinkwiki. It’s an awesome resource for thinkpads.
I have my VMs with Windows WID et al running just fine under Linux. I’ve also gone and installed the Linux native version of WID to my laptop directly. The reason I was using VMs was more about how a windows machine slowly chokes itself over the registry. I don’t think Linux has this issue, so I don’t see a point in running Linux in Linux.
My current issues with it include:
- ipod support. There’s no itunes for Linux for some reason, so you are left with Banshee or Rhythmbox neither of which I could figure out yet.
- Battery Drain. Linux seems to consume way more wattage than windows does. There is a handy utility called powerTop created by intel that allows you see what is waking up the CPU and what powersaving state it is in. Currently, I can’t really get my idle laptop with LCD screen at min and wiress connection below 18w.
- Notes Support. You have to use Notes 8.5 but sometimes my .id file doesn’t get recognized by notes and I can’t check my work mail. Also, I used to use NotesBuddy which doesn’t exist on Linux.Therefore, I use my blackberry and it’s unlimited data plan for my lightweight notes client.
If you haven’t checked out Linux for a few years, I think it may be time to go back. I’d say you still need to have that computer-oriented mind (so no migrating your mother yet) but if you are willing to occasionally browse google for a solution to your problem, it’s worth it.