Ubuntu 10.04 — Windows OS Replacement

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Ubuntu 10.04 — Windows OS Replacement

Postby Paul » Sat Jun 12, 2010 9:22 pm

Ubuntu 10.04, LTS (Long Term Service)

Having just upgraded on May 30, 2010 to Linux Ubuntu 10.04, from 9.04, I find that the reviews of the new operating system simply have not done it justice. Without doubt, this is the nicest OS I have ever experienced. I thought 9.04 was good, but the quality of display of fonts, layout, and graphics in 10.04 are extremely nice, the best I have experienced. Ubuntu 9.04 was fast, but 10.04 is fast as lightning, and everything works even better.

Ubuntu can be run on a computer from a CD to test how it runs without installation. And note, the Ubuntu OS is free, along with thousands of associated software programs, which are easily downloaded and installed through a special feature of the OS, the Ubuntu Software Center, but having an internet connection is essential. However, some software choices must be found online, downloaded, and installed, such as the Opera and Chrome browsers, which is not any problem. However, my favorite browser is Chromium, which is downloaded from the Software Center, which is a part of the OS. Chromium is a lightweight version of Chrome and is very fast.

Due to the kernel design, Linux is immanently more stable and secure than Windows. Virus and Firewall software are not necessary. However, Ubuntu is not Windows, and it takes two to four weeks to get used to doing things a new way. A free online manual helps with initial understanding of the OS, The Ubuntu Pocket Guide and Reference, which can be downloaded as a PDF.

My download of Ubuntu 10.04 took 30 minutes on WiFi, with 25 minutes to install, and 20 minutes to download and install updates. I had no problems at all, and everything worked right immediately. I then installed the Adobe Flash plug-in and MS Core Fonts from the Ubuntu Software Center. Some old videos I had did not play, as special files were required for the program involved due to copyright issues, but this could be accomplished online. Otherwise, all other videos played fine.

I was dubious about the color scheme at first and thought it might be like dating a girl with pink hair and blue fingernails. However, I got used to it right away. The high contrast menu bars makes reading very easy, and the gradient backgrounds are attractive. It is a modern design scheme with quality, that takes little time for personal adjustment. Even the shut-off screen has rotating colors.

For the most part, hardware I use installed with no problem, thumb sticks, card reader, laser printers, external floppy. However, an old external CDRW required additional files installed in order to function. The browser menus for the thumb sticks did not appear right away, but I had to go to Places/Computer and click on the drive.

Ubuntu Software

Besides FireFox as the default browser, I installed Opera and Chrome, and they are all excellent, improved in every aspect under 10.04. However, with a slow WiFi connection, Chrome is noticeably faster, and I think its graphics still have the best definition, but the difference is much less now.

The PDF viewer is the best by far I have experienced, and as I have a lot of books in PDF, this is really a blessing. I do not think any type of electronic book reader could compete with it, but I have not tried these ebook readers yet.

Besides the default F-Spot Photo Manager, good for basic editing, I also installed Krita and Gimp from the OS Software Center. For web design, I use the default Gedit text editor, but I added BlueFish for a second option. Linux does not have a GUI web design software program. It does not have yet accessibility software for the handicapped, such as voice dictation.

I still use Serif PagePlus in Windows for DTP. Linux has a Wine program for running Windows software, but I do not find that it works adequately, although I am sure a Geek could install extra files for specific programs to make this feature viable. I could purchase PageStream for DTP in Linux for $100, which is professional quality, and which includes a draw program. I do not find the Linux DTP program, Scribus, sufficiently developed to be practical. LibreOffice is most adequate for word processing and also includes accounting and slide presentation software, comparable to Excel and PowerPoint, and these Linux programs open files from their MS counterparts. GNU cash can be installed from the Software Center for more advanced accounting, which opens Quicken and Quick Books files.

For Bible software, I use BibleAnalyzer from the Software Center.

Ubuntu is a work in progress. There are improvements to come, especially with some of the associated software in development. However, it really is arriving. I just wonder what it will be like next year. I stay with the OS that comes out every April, which has long term, free support, as I think the October OS is more a stage of development.

Ubuntu Installation

I do not know if Ubuntu improved its partition divider. In doing a dual boot install, originally I had decided to use Easeus Partition Divider under Windows XP, a free download, as I did not like the options under Linux's GParted. (UPDATE -- GParted is much improved now. It is part of the live CD from which the OS is tested, and the partition can be divided with the test run, or GParted can be downloaded on line). With 9.04, I had made an unallocated partition for the Ubuntu OS, and another of 2GB for Swap, which is used to function as memory on the hard drive, in case RAM becomes full. Then, on doing the install of Ubuntu, I selected manual set up for the partitions. With installing 10.04, I set the larger partition created as ext4 and root ( / ), and the smaller one as Swap. Under XP for a dual boot install of Ubuntu, I have never had any problems using Easeus and manual installation of partitions. I understand that Windows Vista and 7 have default partition dividers of their own.

The most difficult part of installing Ubuntu for new users usually is burning the CD. Ubuntu is downloaded to a computer hard drive, and then burned as an operating system on a CD. However, Windows normally is not set up for converting a downloaded .iso file to a full running operating system CD. This usually means acquiring another CD burning software package. However, a free CD can be requested from Ubuntu, although delivery takes as long as ten weeks. A CD can be purchased on e-bay, usually for about $5 with shipping.

There is an abundance of help online for Ubuntu, and a community forum for support. There are YouTube videos for help as well.
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Re: Ubuntu 10.04 - Windows OS Replacement

Postby Paul » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:52 pm

Since my initial post on Ubunut 10.04, I have installed the OS again on another computer. The software center has changed, which actually represents its current status on Ubuntu 11.04 as well. Some software packages do not have an install button, but instead, there is a resource button for the installation at another location. However, this resource button may not work, at which time notice is given that the software catalogue must be updated. However, there is no way to make this update.

However, I first installed Ubuntu Restricted Extras, which includes software for Adobe Flash Player, for playing videos, as well as files for using an MP3 and other special devices. After this installation, the software center was completely different, with all the software I use having an installation button.

Another difference I noted was, that there is no longer an entry in the software center for MS core fonts -- which includes fonts such as Ariel, Georgia, Times New Roman, Verdana. However, there is an entry for the MS core fonts installer. After this is installed, one can go to Applications/Accessories/Terminal and type in the following code --
sudo apt-get install msttcorefonts

Now click enter, and the fonts should install after you respond to the password prompt. If you copy and paste the code, you will have to use the edit menu and click on paste.

In general, to add true type fonts to Ubuntu, go to Places/Home Folder. Then, press Ctrl + H, and all hidden files will appear, which have a "." before their name. Then, right click for a pop-up menu and click on create a folder. Name the new folder .fonts. Make sure you put in the "." before the name. Then, copy the new fonts into the new folder. If you download fonts from the internet, first you have to extract the file, (right click on it and click on extract from the pop-up menu), and then copy the new fonts to the new folder.
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