Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop



  • I've been a bit wary of using Ubuntu as my desktop for a very long time. I've been a Fedora, OpenSuse and Linux Mint user over the years and many things before those. But on my latest laptop, an Asus ROG GL552VW the only distro that would install without an issue was Ubuntu 16.04.1. So that is what I have installed and I am giving it a chance to prove itself as a usable desktop. I have Cinnamon installed but an trying to get used to the Unity interface to see what I think of that as it has been quite some time since I have last tried it out.

    The impressive bit it just how incredibly well Ubuntu handled the install to this hardware when nothing else worked at all. Linux Mint 18, based on Ubuntu 16.04, could not even attempt to boot. OpenSuse ran but had all kinds of driver issues. But Ubuntu "just worked." Even my keyboard backlighting, special keys (except for the screen dimmer), volume, NVidia GFX, audio and everything else "just worked." It's screaming fast making Windows 10 just look sad on the same device.

    The desktop is super stylish and looks really sharp. I very much dislike that huge wastes of screen real estate for Unity, though. But I am getting used to it and while I don't love it, it seems to work just fine. So my first few days' impression is that things have come a long way and so far there have been no major issues.



  • One thing that is really very surprising coming from the Linux Mint and OpenSuse worlds is just how few applications ship with Ubuntu. I am used to have two to a dozen different applications to pick from for any little task. No matter what I want to work on, there is an app for that just a click away. Ubuntu is not like that at all. Outside of a few apps, many of which I don't know, you are left as if you are in the Windows world to go research and find an app that meets your needs and hope that they have gotten it working on Ubuntu which is a major problem due to Ubuntu's mixed versioning system where some programs require that you stay on the old LTS versions and other apps require that you stay with the current version. I'm on the 25% of the time when the two line up right now, so it will be interesting to see how things work once 16.10 rolls around.



  • My bluetooth Logitech mouse works great, by the way.



  • Big complaints: no good SIP client built in, Twinkle is there but it is so obtuse I can't tell if it is broken or just confusing. And no Pidgin or other really good IM client. Linux Mint has Linphone and Pidgin both built in and supported.



  • Skype for Linux Alpha works great. Really, really well.



  • I have thought about going the route of Linux on my office desktop.. But Seeing as I only have 20GB of free space available, I wonder if the SSD has enough left for my day to day and allowing for dual booting.



  • @gjacobse said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    I have thought about going the route of Linux on my office desktop.. But Seeing as I only have 20GB of free space available, I wonder if the SSD has enough left for my day to day and allowing for dual booting.

    Probably, it takes pretty little to run most Linux. I've got a few setups installed in 12GB or so. My current new desktop is using 5GB plus my personal files and swap space.



  • I'd recommend installing just Gnome 3 and giving that a shot. The extensions really make it an awesome tool and I have a default set of extensions I install now. I haven't installed vanilla Ububtu for a long time. My Chromebook is running the Ubuntu Gnome distribution.

    I forget, did Fedora not want to install either?



  • @gjacobse said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    I have thought about going the route of Linux on my office desktop.. But Seeing as I only have 20GB of free space available, I wonder if the SSD has enough left for my day to day and allowing for dual booting.

    Kubuntu is extremely lightweight, I used to throw it on those retired Dell D600 laptops that went out a few years ago and give them to all the underemployed people I know. Most of them still whined about wanting windows, but I personally take a hard line stance on software privacy (and win-dependency)

    Edit: If you're going to do something like this while retiring your own company assets, remember to follow DoD wiping practices.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    Skype for Linux Alpha works great. Really, really well.

    Does that support skype for business as well?



  • @DustinB3403 said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    @scottalanmiller said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    Skype for Linux Alpha works great. Really, really well.

    Does that support skype for business as well?

    Who cares! LOL



  • Skype for Business is just part of OWA, so it shows up automatically if you are logged into email.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    @DustinB3403 said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    @scottalanmiller said in Trying Out Ubuntu 16.04 As My Main Desktop:

    Skype for Linux Alpha works great. Really, really well.

    Does that support skype for business as well?

    Who cares! LOL

    Just curious lol.