Opinion: Do you think you’ll be using Ubuntu 3 years from now ?

I remember that a few years ago, the most recognized brand in the Linux world was RedHat. For someone who didn’t know much about Linux, that was the keyword they’d know. Now, it’s Ubuntu. I like the fact that Ubuntu is becoming popular and making people try Linux for the first time. This can be measured not only by the huge amount of messages in their forums, but also by the increasing number of Ubuntu-related blogs. As with everything that becomes popular it’s expected to appear a few people hating it with passion. I’ve seen a little of this already, mostly because of some misinformation that it’s starting to spread among Linux newcomers and the “new ubuntu experts”. For many, Linux = Ubuntu, and that is pissing off many people. I also don’t like that assumption, and it’s our job to give better information to people. On the other hand, I think the brand Ubuntu is making people try Linux, so I don’t mind people thinking that when they first arrive at Linux. At least they know Linux and are using it. Knowing that there is more to Linux than Ubuntu is a second step, that most of them will take sooner or later.
I’ve used so many distributions, that Ubuntu, for me, is just one more. I started with Slackware and then (in no particular order) RedHat, Corel Linux, Mandrake, Debian, Suse, Linux From Scratch (yep), Gentoo, Mandriva… and I think I’m forgetting a few.
I’m now using Ubuntu at home as it works fine out-of-the-box (and I needed a fast solution at the time) and has a huge enough repository for me to test new software. But I’m pretty sure that I’ll keep testing other distributions and migrating to the one I like best. I don’t think I’ll be using Ubuntu 3 years in a row, for example. There’s innovation everywhere, not only in Ubuntu. In fact, Ubuntu is not the best distribution in many situations. I hope the community can take advantage of this Ubuntu popularity and show-off the alternatives and how they’re better. Everyone gains from that.
And what do you think ? do you use Ubuntu and think you’ll still use it a few years from now ?


12 responses to “Opinion: Do you think you’ll be using Ubuntu 3 years from now ?”

  1. Filipe Correia says :

    And what do you think ? do you use Ubuntu and think you’ll still use it a few years from now ?

    Well, it depends on the alternatives really. Will there be better out-of-the-box alternatives for linux in the desktop in the next three years? I guess only time will tell.

  2. Daeng Bo says :

    No. I won’t. In fact, I quit my 3 1/2 year run on Ubuntu tonight. I’m installing Debian in a minute.

    Too many bugs just get swept under the rug. I think the assignees want to look good, so they miscategorize bugs and mark them as solved when they actually aren’t.

    8.04 killed it for me. LTS? Stable? Give me a break.

  3. Caroline says :

    Does anyone know how I can tell if my slow broadband connection is down to my pc or my broadband provider (Tiscali)? I ran a speed test here http://www.broadband-expert.co.uk/broadband/speedtest/ and it tells me I have a download speed of 2.06Mbs and an upload speed of 243 Kbps. My laptop a dell Inspiron 8600, is about 3-4 years old some and I have Windows and is running Windows 2000.

    Any or advice help would be greatly appreciated!

  4. hraq says :

    fedora 9 gave me during installation a bug message and it failed to finish; even though disk checkup concluded fine.
    Ubuntu is the best linux yet, because it has so many simple measures to let you handle the important things like screen resolution and other restricted drivers + the Add/Remove /Synaptic are the best in the amount of software it can support.

  5. Carlos Ribeiro says :

    Filipe, thanks for your comment. Yes, time will tell, but what I’m saying is that already exists others equivalent solutions and I’m pretty sure other distributions will shine in the future.

    Hi Daeng Bo, I agree with you that 8.04 has more bugs than I would expect. For an LTS it should be better. However, I din’t quit yet, I’m waiting to see what happens in the next point release (which I think is only for bugfixes).

    Caroline, I don’t really know how to help you. However, if you think is your PC (which I doubt) you can try a free Live CD of any distribution (like Ubuntu). You don’t need to install anything, just boot the PC with the CD.

    Hi hraq, yes that’s the main acomplishment of Ubuntu. It unifies processes and simplifies things. It’s not whithout bugs however. I’ve also had issues with Ubuntu installer.

  6. Aaron W says :

    You know, I’ve had nothing but good times using Ubuntu on both my laptop (an Acer Aspire 3680) and my desktop (an older Gateway E-Machines model.) The only complaint I have is regarding the desktop and how it seems to be a little slower in Ubuntu 8.04 as opposed to Win XP Pro. As far as my laptop is concerned, the only issue I ran into was the wireless card (the pesky Atheros card) but that was a cakewalk after about an hour of Google searching. Overall, I love Ubuntu… especially when compared to Windows. I’ve been blue screen of death free for months now.

  7. Carlos Ribeiro says :

    Hi Aaron, I’m glad to hear that. For now, despite a few problems here and there, I’m also happy with Ubuntu. But I’ll keep trying every new promising distribution. That’s the reason why I changed distribution several times over the years 🙂 I’ll post here if I do find something interesting 🙂

  8. George Fragos says :

    There’s more to like about Ubuntu than the distrobution itself — like the community and the release schedule. I will be using it in 3 years as long as Ubuntu doesn’t give me a reason not to.

  9. spuffler says :

    Ubuntu has never worked for me. The 64 bit version of 6.06LTS was unable initialize the installer, same for 32 bit version of same. The 32 bit version of 6.10 managed to install a 640×480 desktop on a 64 bit system, but every one of the buttons for the graphics settings window was about 600 pixels down from the top of the screen area, and you cannot move the window nor scroll the desktop to get them into view.

    Not impressed at the forum support.

  10. Mohammad Al-Shami says :

    I’d like to start by quoting from “Nip Tuck”:

    “Would a jockey like it if he came home and found his wife dressed as a horse?”

    I’ve used Gentoo for 2 years before switching to Ubuntu. Gentoo is a great distro but its high maintenance. Since I work as a system administrator I really don’t want to have to maintain yet another system. Ubuntu is fast and simple, does what I need and does it well. I guess I’m sticking with it as my desktop OS for the next few years.

    For servers I can safely say my #1 option is FreeBSD, and if I have to use Linux I would go with CentOS.

  11. Carlos Ribeiro says :

    Thanks for your comments. You point out some interesting aspects.
    I also agree that community support is very important for a distribution. It can never be a great distribution if it doesn’t have good community support. However, like spuffler, I’m also not impressed by Ubuntu forum support. I too used Gentoo for a few years, and I clearly think forum support in Gentoo is far better. Maybe not as many people hang there, but there’s more people with knowledge, so it’s a “smaller” forum, but with better quality IMHO.
    I’m not saying Ubuntu community support isn’t good, I’m just saying it’s not the best. I remember not founding a solution to some problem in their forum and finding it in Gentoo’s 🙂

  12. Aaron W says :

    The problem with Ubuntu support forums is that the solutions listed don’t often address the complications involved. Case and point – ATI Radeon cards. It tells you how to install the open source drivers (which are.. fair) and how to do the proprietary drivers (which are good but not stable) but they don’t tell you anything about some of the issues that can arise from installing either. *shrug* I’ll say this much though, if it comes down between (insert linux distro here) and Windows, I’ll take Ubuntu anyday.

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