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Thread: OS Advice wanted

  1. #1
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    OS Advice wanted

    Though I would consider my expertise level of computers moderate, I'm a heavy power user and fare pretty well with regard to specs, hardware and software. As a freelancer that works from home, I utilize the internet in almost every facet of life.

    What I don't know enough about, admittedly, is Linux-based operating systems.

    About 6 months ago, I purchased a new desktop--an HP PC-and-monitor-in-one with 500 GB hard drive, Athlon Dual-Core processer with 4GB RAM. It's slim, sleek, fast and runs Windows 7.

    For its' part, the computer has been nice. It rarely gets bogged down, despite my process-intensive usage.

    However (emphasis on comma) while the Windows 7 experience has been mostly pleasant, especially relative to its predecessors, I'm growing tired of the crash dumps (i.e. BSOD). I recently downloaded the "whocrashed?" software to try and pinpoint the source of the crashes. Most of them have related to the csrss.exe files (note: I did check to make certain there were no dual instances of it as this file is known for being duplicated as a virus).

    In all probability, I could purchase a registry cleaner (which I should do anyhow) and it would likely rectify the problem(s). But I'm starting to get to the point where I'm considering switching to a Linux for now, and eventually I'll take the step I never thought I would take: switching to a MAC. I guess this is intuitive as I'm a professional in the Arts of sort, so I should probably have a MAC anyhow.

    But for now, I'm looking into switching over to Ubuntu.

    My questions are:

    1. Is this a safe, fast and reliable operating system? I've seen excellent peer reviews about its safety being open-source, but I'm not sure about its stability or speed.

    2. I use a lot of programs and I'm wondering about the compatibility with many of them. I know it's pre-packaged with Open Office, but there are a lot of features I use within Excel and Word that I'm not certain are contained in Open Office. As far as browsing, it comes with Firefox, which is nice, but I have moved on to Chrome (Canary as of this past week) and am still trying to contemplate making a switch to Opera. If I'm not mistaken, I might not be able to use these browsers (and many other programs) if I switch?

    What is the consensus? I'm truly torn on this.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

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  3. #2
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: OS Advice wanted

    For Ubuntu Firefox is the most powerful browser IIRC, they are the most up to date with the latest and greatest as far as that OS goes.

    It's a pretty fast system, however I had to do some tweaks under the hood to get it to run faster, but if you have the inclination and the ability you can tweak it to your hearts desire.

    I too have a new laptop with Win 7 on it and I plan on doing a duel boot with Ubuntu sooner or later, however with this new box I run nothing but open source software on it. No office, no IE, no outlook, no editing programs that are not open source, no games, nothing but freeware and I have had nothing but success with it, no os dumps, no crashes.

  4. #3
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: OS Advice wanted

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    For Ubuntu Firefox is the most powerful browser IIRC, they are the most up to date with the latest and greatest as far as that OS goes.

    It's a pretty fast system, however I had to do some tweaks under the hood to get it to run faster, but if you have the inclination and the ability you can tweak it to your hearts desire.

    I too have a new laptop with Win 7 on it and I plan on doing a duel boot with Ubuntu sooner or later, however with this new box I run nothing but open source software on it. No office, no IE, no outlook, no editing programs that are not open source, no games, nothing but freeware and I have had nothing but success with it, no os dumps, no crashes.
    I appreciate that feedback. That does give me a bit more confidence. I like Firefox, and wouldn't be terribly hesitant to go back simply because it's compatible with most website features (flash, Java, HTML 5, etc.) Chrome won me over in the speed department (and Opera seems even faster), but if Firefox functions well with Ubuntu, that might solve all.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  5. #4
    Vavasor TRF's Avatar
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    Re: OS Advice wanted

    My daughter, she's 12, runs Ubuntu on her Acer netbook. took her all of 10 minutes to get used to it. boots lightning fast and has NEVER crashed on her. Before jumping off Win7, I'd look at Glary Utilities and or CCleaner. that might clear up your problem.

    Ubuntu comes with Firefox and Open Office. And their software center provides download links for tons of free software from games to educational to graphics and media. You won't be able to play DVD's "out of the box" but it's easy enough to find out what you need to download. If you make the switch, once you get used to the differences, you'll like it. I have a thread in this forum called internet computer that adds a little detail.
    Suck it up cupcake.

  6. #5
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: OS Advice wanted

    Quote Originally Posted by TRF View Post
    My daughter, she's 12, runs Ubuntu on her Acer netbook. took her all of 10 minutes to get used to it. boots lightning fast and has NEVER crashed on her. Before jumping off Win7, I'd look at Glary Utilities and or CCleaner. that might clear up your problem.

    Ubuntu comes with Firefox and Open Office. And their software center provides download links for tons of free software from games to educational to graphics and media. You won't be able to play DVD's "out of the box" but it's easy enough to find out what you need to download. If you make the switch, once you get used to the differences, you'll like it. I have a thread in this forum called internet computer that adds a little detail.
    Thanks, TRF.

    How many traditional windows-based programs are compatible with Ubuntu? Obviously there are a ton of open-source programs on the Ubuntu Center written specifically for the OS, but are there many traditional programs that are available as crossovers? Other than a few photo editors, instant messaging clients and odds and ends, I suppose there's nothing I can't go without in the traditional sense. But just curious.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  7. #6
    Vavasor TRF's Avatar
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    Re: OS Advice wanted

    Open Office for the average user is very comparable to MS Office and can save as office 2007 files. If you use WINE, you can make a lot of Windows programs run. GIMP is a poor man's photoshop.
    Suck it up cupcake.


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