One less Window
Another year, another happily recycled computer in the Booth house – thanks again to Keith! – and my daughter is thrilled to finally have her own Ubuntu machine, just in time for an early birthday present.
Funny thing about the whole ease-of-use thing: Part of what had rendered her Windows box mostly useless was its repeated wireless connection failures: It’d work for awhile, then fail to recognize the USB adapter, then find it but swear something was wrong with it. Even complete driver reinstalls didn’t fix it. So today, I plug the adapter into the Ubuntu machine. Nothing happens. I wonder if the adapter’s broken.
A single Google search later, and I have the answer. It takes about 10 minutes to get her computer hooked directly into the router, download the appropriate package which will make this driver work and get the machine cruising wirelessly, and I haven’t even furrowed my brow. Yes, this is an awfully low-level tech problem, but I’m an awfully low-level Linux user.
We’ve been really happy with the Linux switch since we made the jump as total n00bs early last year, and really haven’t missed much of Windows world at all. My only quibbles were not having the patience and expertise to get my old flatbed parallel-port scanner to play nice and not being able to watch Netflix on demand. I tried to give Audible.com’s audiobooks a shot, but they didn’t like Linuxland either, but since that was driven by the release of one audiobook in particular, it’s not like I was suddenly missing out on what had been a big part of my entertainment.
Kelsey had the old Win95 machine, so she and Jenn had access to their iTunes and Rhapsody libraries, and Jenn has since gotten an entry-level netbook with Windows 7, which not only makes their music access smoother, but gets regular Netflix use, too.
Now that Kelsey’s running Ubuntu – which officially gives Linux a majority in our house now! -her old machine will stripped down to the Win95 bare-bones just so I can reattach it to my flatbed. Yes, it will effectively make it a single-purpose machine, but it’s the easier road, frankly, until I can just get a newer scanner that’s Linux-ready.