How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

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35 Replies - 4205 Views - Last Post: 03 October 2013 - 06:24 AM

#1 nathanpc  Icon User is offline

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How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 27 July 2013 - 07:52 AM

Today when I woke up for some reason I remembered of the first time I used Linux in my life. It was around 2004, I had a old IBM ThinkPad 500e running Windows 98 (I also had a good desktop running Windows XP, I can't remember the specs very well, but it ran NFS Hot Pursuit 2), it was slow as hell, so one of my uncles said "You should try this thing called Linux. It's like Windows, but faster.", then he went on to explain that there were different OSes and stuff like that. So I asked him if he could install it in my computer, he did (and I watched every step so I could install it in other machines if I liked). At the time we had a very popular Debian-based distro here in Brazil called Kurumin, this is how it looked like out of the box:

Posted Image

As you can see it was very appealing to the eyes with the good ol' KDE, a Docky-like application tray, and a awesome GKrellM sidebar. My first experience was awesome, it looked fantastic, configuring and customizing was extremely easy, installing applications was easy, and most of my daily use applications had alternatives for Linux. I started searching for Linux community sites and found a bunch, from those I learned all the basics of Linux and all of its advantages. I won't continue because you know how this story continues.

Something that I forgot to mention is that Linux was what got me started in programming. That distro had a category in the applications menu called "Programming", I was curious, so I launched the only program in that menu "Python IDLE". I had no idea how to use it, so I search on Google and discovered the wonderful world of programming.

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#2 Dogstopper  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 27 July 2013 - 09:04 AM

My first experience with Linux was unfortunately terrible. It did not work out of the box (I tried Kubuntu and Ubuntu) and I never could get it to a stable state. On the upside, the community, ubuntuforums.org was a fantastic site full of Ubuntu super genuiuses. The only issue that I had is I am just very unlucky, and even when the experts said "okay, it should be working now", it never did. And then when something finally happened good, it would have a random issue the next day or two that would require a reinstall.

My impression of Linux has changed since then. Getting punched in the stomach repetitively by Linux has made me a little bit better than I normally would be with it. I like Linux for most of my Web and Mobile based apps but I'm still a gamer and not enough of my stuff has been ported over yet. So I use VM Linux for most of the time, cause I hate having to reboot to switch.
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#3 ConciselyVerbose  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 27 July 2013 - 09:13 AM

We had an old computer that you couldn't really get away with windows on any more so my dad switched it over. It was nice.

I just installed Linux on my Mac mini, and it is mildly annoying, because there were some extra steps just to get a liveUSB to run, and I still have some drivers to download without wifi (everything needed for the wifi driver, for one), which means moving my computer. Once I get past the setup I'll be good though.
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#4 xclite  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 27 July 2013 - 02:35 PM

My experiences as a user of the power that Linux provides far outshine my experiences installing, configuring, and maintaining it.
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#5 GunnerInc  Icon User is online

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 27 July 2013 - 02:49 PM

My first experience???? It sucked, it was many, many, many years ago. Most hardware was manufactured for Windows, so to get a super fast 9600 baud modem to work was a pain, getting a graphics card and sound card to work? HA, you lost hair in the process. Then, there were only a few distros, mostly command line unless you got the xserver to work for graphics. Now there are way too may distros, but that is good since there are many folks modifying the code base to work. There is still a learning curve, but it is a powerful, solid OS. Good choice of desktop managers and other goodies.
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#6 raspinudo  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 28 July 2013 - 12:19 AM

My first experience was magical. I was using ubuntu 9 or 10, and it just worked like a charm.
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#7 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 28 July 2013 - 12:32 AM

My first experience with linux? "Wow, this is pretty much like unix..."
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#8 lordofduct  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 28 July 2013 - 09:53 AM

I don't even remember the first time I used linux... it was a very long time ago.
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#9 Mossypne  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 28 July 2013 - 01:12 PM

Still need to get around to giving Linux ago. Always used Windows on my computer. Been planning on dual booting for a while but just haven't gotten around to it.
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#10 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 28 July 2013 - 01:22 PM

You should give it a try. It's a nice feeling when you realize that you actually are in control of your own machine.

There are some resources around to help you get started, but I suggest the FSF guide to the command line- if you really want to get the most out of linux, you have to know your way around the shell. (the link is to the book page on the Free Software Foundation's shop, but you'll find a link to a free electronic copy)

Also, make sure you install the BSD nonfree games package so you can experience rogue and adventure, which were a big part of my early love of unix.
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#11 peace_fixation  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 30 July 2013 - 04:41 AM

My first experience was awful, but got better and it's been a fun ride. I've been using it everyday for years now. I still run it in a VM on a Win7 host, but I'm not even sure why anymore. I play a few games from time to time but less and less these days. All my programming is done in a Linux environment.

It's not as polished a desktop experience as Windows or OSX, but I kind of scoff at that. Linux is a workhorse and it works good. Desktop experiences are for suckers! DRAW FRACTALS. <3
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#12 cfoley  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 30 July 2013 - 04:56 PM

First experience was poor. I did an elective as a programming class and the lab had linux (or maybe a different unix) installed. The unfamiliar command line and poor GUI got in the way of my goal of writing some java. These days I demonstrate in the same computer labs. The Ububtu installed seems a world apart from what was there a decade ago but it's dual boot. Even though I encourage the students to give linux a try, I sympathise with their choice of Windows. It's just easier to learn one new thing at a time.

Second experience was much better. I wanted to extend the life of an ageing laptop and installed Zenwalk linux. The difference this time was I had the time to play with it.
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#13 GenR_18  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 31 July 2013 - 03:25 PM

Well, my first experience was really good, but not shocking, for me is not a very "different" OS , i just have used Ubuntu, Fedora, BackTrack and Arch Linux.
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#14 Lemur  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 31 July 2013 - 03:30 PM

Profound. As soon as I realized there was an entire swath of activity behind the point and click and that I actually had to learn how things worked to get fast it started me down the rabbit hole.
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#15 BetaWar  Icon User is offline

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Re: How was your experience when you used Linux for the first time?

Posted 31 July 2013 - 03:45 PM

My first experience with Linux was running a Knopix live CD on a Windows 95 machine. I thought it was really cool because it had a star map application. I didn't actually use Linux for anything until much later in time though, and when I did it was Ubuntu for quite a few years. I liked Ubuntu and used it up until they switched over to the Unity window manager, then I tried getting it to run with Gnome3 and saw how difficult it was to customize Ubuntu away from Unity (it isn't that difficult, but not easy to clean up after) so I swapped to Arch. Arch eventually annoyed me by deciding that they wanted to be an "advanced" distro and removing the OS installer from the ISO image. After a few failed attempts at getting a machine to run that way I moved over to Fedora, which I absolutely love. It works the way I want it to, it has security in mind (sometimes to an annoying degree) and is fairly lightweight (at least in comparison to Ubuntu).

Now, I always use VMs for my Linux, and I do the vast majority of my development in Linux. The problem that I have is that libreoffice is nowhere close to Microsoft office in terms of stability or capability, so I want to have that around, and I game on my PC which not all of my games have Linux ports and I don't want to give them up. And dual-booting is just too much work.
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