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Discussion Starter #1
My old Mac died and I can't afford a new one or even a good used one so I took the plunge and got a used Dell with XP installed.

I heard that Dell was starting to ship their new machines with Linux preinstalled. Specifically "Ubuntu Linux" which is claimed to be user friendly.

Ok so I set my Dell up to dual-boot between XP and Linux, just in case it turned out to be a headache.

It wasn't. It's great in fact! The performance is roughly double of what Windows offers, Linux is much easier on the computer's RAM as well. And there are add-ons as well, one of which (called Beryl) which gives spectacular 3D effects.

Best of all, you can download entirely for free or request free CDs. It's no Mac but it's still awesome!
 

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Yeah, I rather like it myself. Am giving serious thought to purchasing a PC with Ubuntu preinstalled, or just blank, and loading Ubuntu on it. :)
 

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I run both my laptop and desktop with ubuntu. I tried beryl, but don't feel a great need for the snazzy effects. After trying every major and many minor distro, I have to say I like Ubuntu the best.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I've got 2 Dell computers - one (my own) which I use at work and a second here, both Optiplex GX260. My boss is the emperor of cheap and uses junky old computers. I already supply my own tools and measuring instruments so why not my own computer so I can look up schematics, etc...

But I didn't want anyone messing with my computer (people at work - my boss especially - have been known to pirate Windows software, so I avoid the Windows trap entirely).

I've been running Ubuntu for the last 3 weeks now. The one at work I use Linux on it exclusively and it runs fantastic!

Ditto for the one here at home which I can still dual-boot from. But so far nobody is missing Windows.

My wife loves the effects from Beryl, I have to admit it's very eye-catching too (I use it at work too, it's just too darn neat looking!)

I was curious about something so I knocked the RAM back down to 256 MB in the home computer just to see how Ubuntu would run. And it still runs great, it loaded up (with Beryl) only used 1.4% of the swap space and the impact on speed was minimal. With 1 GB RAM or more it doesn't ever touch the swap file, I'm totally impressed with this!

There is an apparent "bug" in the hardware of my home computer only - a "bug" which required editing the start-up menu as root user:

/boot/grub/menu.lst

...and adding the command "irqpoll" to the end of any desired kernel selection (in my case right after "splash" in order to disable the "bug" (it has to do with the USB hardware, it causes the machine to retry and re-retry something with the built-in USB hub for a couple of minutes, delaying start-up quite a bit, very annoying).

The selected portion of /boot/grub/menu.lst looks like this:

title Ubuntu, kernel 2.6.20-16-generic
root (hd0,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.20-16-generic root=UUID=286d30e9-45f9-491a-a361-c6881e59b1ad ro quiet splash irqpoll
initrd /boot/initrd.img-2.6.20-16-generic
quiet
savedefault
 
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