Advantages of Ubuntu?

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#1 Cuzzie  Icon User is offline

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Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:01 PM

Hi there Dream-In-Code.net!! Um, are there any Ubuntu users here? I was a Windows user last time, but after that, I dual-booted it with Ubuntu, and have been using it ever since. Well, I did that cause I was pretty frustrated with Vista...the explorer.exe kept getting itself overloaded, and I had no idea how to solve it. After using Ubuntu for a few months, it does seem to be nicer than Vista, but I would really like to know if there're any advantages that makes people choose Ubuntu over Windows...just wanna know your opinions.. :D

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#2 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:10 PM

Any advantages are usually those of Linux and not Ubuntu specifically, but I'll try to list some Ubuntu-specific reasons that I use it. I use Ubuntu because I can roll with it's LTS release cycle, it's probably the most documented of all Linux-based OSes, and it is what I'm familiar with. They're nice enough to send out free installation disks, which is a big plus for me, and they have Wubi, which is how I like to install Ubuntu.

This post has been edited by Raynes: 17 July 2010 - 12:12 PM

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#3 Cuzzie  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:31 PM

Oh I see...thanks for the feedback. Hmm, then is there any advantage that is related to programming? Sorry if I'm asking stupid questions, I'm really no computer pro..
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#4 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:38 PM

Well, it's much more straight-forward to compile software on Linux. You have all of the tools, and all of the dependency packages right there in your distribution's software repository, usually. It's one of the primary reasons I like Linux. I like to compile stuff.

A lot of people find Linux to just generally be a better environment for coding than other platforms, but most of that is subjective by nature, so I wont say that "It is better for coding".
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#5 Cuzzie  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:47 PM

Hmm..that makes sense. Erm, since you've mentioned it, one more question...like, when you want to install programs, you can install from .deb packages, or from Ubuntu Software Center, or by compiling the program yourself, right? Are there any advantages if you choose to compile the program yourself, compared to other methods?

This post has been edited by orangcacat: 17 July 2010 - 12:47 PM

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#6 moopet  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:52 PM

There are quite a few linux users here, and I dare say a lot of them probably use Ubuntu.

Ubuntu has a bad rap sometimes for being too "user-friendly" - as in, it's perceived as trying too hard to be like Windows - but it's a perfectly good OS, for the most part. I'm using it on this PC right now.

The major advantage to me is that I'm not using proprietary software, which I generally think of as a bad thing for haumanity. Ubuntu isn't the best there either, it bundles or allows easy and unnoticed installation of non-free software, which is why it's not listed as being free by the FSF.

Other obvious benefits include the wealth of software available to install within seconds from repositories, the fact that you can set your machine up exactly the same as the server you're deploying something to and the way it has an army of followers online who can help you out when things break.

In context of DIC, it's a very good programming platform for anything non-proprietary. Obviously Apple make sure you can't code for their stuff without paying for a Mac (and possibly a little bit of rubber to make it connect to your network or something without exploding) but there are ways around that. You can do a fair amount of Windows programming on it too, but generally you don't. Generally a programmer on linux makes software that works or has the potential to work anywhere. Websites, java apps, QT stuff... whatever. It tends to be stuff that anyone can use. This means programmers on linux are possibly more likely to be of long-term benefit to the world... maybe.

In the context of regular users, it's customisable and doesn't require a fast or modern computer. You can get eye-candy better than Vista's on a machine with half the spec. You can choose to redefine every aspect of the user interface. Compare that with Windows' themes or Apple's... er... colour hints? If you have your laptop in the kitchen, you can make its controls look like your microwave. You can make it control your household lighting or feed the cat. You can remotely connect to it *properly*. I mean, you can even do remote-assistance by text-terminal for gawdsake. Macs can do that too, yes. But they're deliberately crippled so you can't do just anything you want with them without going to major effort.

View Postorangcacat, on 17 July 2010 - 06:47 PM, said:

Hmm..that makes sense. Erm, since you've mentioned it, one more question...like, when you want to install programs, you can install from .deb packages, or from Ubuntu Software Center, or by compiling the program yourself, right? Are there any advantages if you choose to compile the program yourself, compared to other methods?


Yes: there may not be a package for your architecture. It may be only available as an RPM, for instance, or the author may have made a 32-bit version and you're running 64-bit. It may well be that you can just compile it yourself and it'll be natively 64-bit rather than wrapped 32-bit (this gets a little complicated but I'm making simple-pie)

Or you may want to change it so the binary app says "I rule you suck" instead of "Welcome to Pidgin" for example.

Other than that, not so much. Installing a .deb means the system has an inkling of where the files went, so you can easily uninstall it or find what files it's using. Compiling and installing by hand often leaves you in the dark.
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#7 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 12:56 PM

View Postorangcacat, on 17 July 2010 - 11:47 AM, said:

Hmm..that makes sense. Erm, since you've mentioned it, one more question...like, when you want to install programs, you can install from .deb packages, or from Ubuntu Software Center, or by compiling the program yourself, right? Are there any advantages if you choose to compile the program yourself, compared to other methods?


The advantages of compiling an application yourself are that you can build it how you want to, where you want to, and with whatever options you want to. Also, this application will have been compiled on your system FOR your system. However, usually .deb packages are built for specific versions of Ubuntu, and really kill most of these benefits.

It's generally recommended that you get software from the software repositories if possible. If not, if you can get a deb package from a PPA or something, that is good as well. Finally, compiling should probably be your last option, unless you just want to compile it for specific reasons, such as using bleeding-edge stuff that doesn't have any binaries available, or if the only thing available in the repos is an old version.
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#8 monkeyC  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 06:47 PM

I have ubuntu on one of my boxes. The main advantage with ubuntu, is that ubuntu feeds off the massive work done by the debian community, the way I have understood it. They have a huge amount of packages in their repository. Untweaked, the boot times are faster on my computer, than using fedora. Ubuntu tends to be a rather early adopting distro, meaning that you get pretty new versions of software installed, and available in the repositories corresponding to your release. It is not quite as bleeding edge as fedora, or like debian unstable, sidux and arch.

The large community over at ubuntuforums is both an upside and a downside. I have the impression that threads are started without any real searching, and that the sheer amount of n00bs asking n00b-stuff makes it easier for your questions to drown amidst the masses. Compare that to the forums of Arch linux, where you have a really great wiki, and a smaller community of n00bs making it more likely for you to find someone willing to give you a boot. I don't know much about the fedoraforums or debians forums, as I generally googled my way around when I started distro-hopping, having learnt just the necessary basics to get the OSes up and running.

If you are hardcore into free and open source, then I guess there is no way round gNewSense, like Stallmann. Another alternative to Ubuntu is the sibling Linux Mint, which is Ubuntu, with more automated and preinstalled stuff. That is a really polished and great distro imho. Back in 2008, when my roomie's PC got too many Viruses, and needed IV drips in the ICU, we gave him a dose of Linux Mint, and it ran happily ever after, used by a total n00b. :bigsmile:

Last advantage of ubuntu, especially over fedora, is how you build your kernel. I tried this a couple of time, and fedora has this special process where you need to set up a buildtree, and then you download kernel images from fedoras servers or something. Debian's/Ubuntu's/Mint's way of installing and compiling a new kernel was way easier, and left me with .debs that could be used as backup for easy installing, or for installing on another pc (if the configuration of that pc fits my custom-kernel). Needless to say, I am quite fond of .deb files.

This post has been edited by monkeyC: 17 July 2010 - 06:56 PM

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#9 SpeedisaVirus  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 07:07 PM

Yeah, I was a Minty for a good bit. Mint is Ubuntu but better.
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#10 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 09:36 PM

I don't think I feel safe using a derivative of a derivative.
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#11 macosxnerd101  Icon User is online

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 09:52 PM

But what about the integral of a derivative? ;)
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#12 Raynes  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 17 July 2010 - 09:57 PM

Touché.
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#13 Sergio Tapia  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 20 July 2010 - 07:25 AM

If you enjoy using Ubuntu, I really recommend you look into Linux Mint. There's a reason this distro is quickly catching up to the number one distro out there in such a short time span. It's elegant, and it just works. :)
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#14 Nykc  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 20 July 2010 - 08:15 AM

I been using Ubuntu since 6.10 - I have since switched to the LTS cycles and currently have been running 10.04 since release without a single issue.

I develop websites and applications primarily using my Ubuntu Lappy.

LAMP/AptanaStudi/Inkscape = Web Development
Python/IDLE
Eclipse/Code::Blocks

pretty much encompasses everything I need. Not to mention Ubuntuforums.org is an awesome resource to get the help you need when in a jam.
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#15 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Advantages of Ubuntu?

Posted 20 July 2010 - 11:12 AM

I used to get hundreds of Ubuntu cds to hand out at computer shows. I got free stickers with Ubuntu. So my answer to the question 'what is advantages of Ubuntu'... free stickers.
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