On the other side of Linux desktop migration

Although it is inferred by the previous post, I can now say that I have made the transition to Debian GNU/Linux as my primary operating system. My email has been migrated over for weeks (go Thunderbird!), along with my non-multimedia files. With the advent of Eclipse 3 on my install, all of my Java development projects are moved over. Did I mention that the MyEclipse IDE plug-in works just fine?

The really huge breakthrough for me was getting GPRS working over Bluetooth. That was do or die, and for days I had been lugging another PowerBook running OS X to work that served as a wireless access point for my Linux PowerBook. Talk about motivation to get GPRS working! My laptop bag was instantly six pounds lighter. I figured that would incentivize me to take the time to work it out and not cop out by switching back.

KDE is pretty good; the KPPP applet is what I am using for GPRS. However, I think I might like Gnome better. Most of my critical apps are GTK-based. However, when I look at installing it via aptitude, I usually get one or two complaints about broken or unavailable packages. That's enough to scare me out of it; my GTK apps breaking in the past have been part of my past Linux desktop migration disasters.

Having hardware that Linux can work with has been a lifesaver. If you are thinking of switching to a Linux distro, for heaven's sake do your homework on your hardware, especially if you are looking to purchase hardware. Don't go for the latest and greatest; that's a recipe for misery and disappointment. Plus, you will find that Linux with older hardware probably runs as good or better than the proprietary operating systems on the latest and greatest hardware. That's not biased, manical raving, either. Booting back and forth between Debian and OS X, I have gotten a kick out of the difference in speed for certain things like application launches.


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