I found a distribution made from Ubuntu Feisty Fawn, which is the Ubuntu Studio 7.04 that I installed on my computer. I haven’t thought of switching back to Windows even once.
There are some Windows programs that absolutely refuse to run on Linux, but I’ve managed to find Linux ways to cover almost everything they did. There’s a ton of new stuff too – for things I never imagined being so necessary.
I’m most impressed with the philosophy of Ubuntu Linux. http://www.ubuntu.com/community/ubuntustory/philosophy
They explain how Ubuntu means “a community” in South Africa, and the whole idea of free, community-maintained software stems from that starting point. They make a huge deal out of “restricted software,” which basically means software that doesn’t have its source code freely available – even going as far as not including a single restricted software program or driver in the initial installation of Ubuntu Linux. To list some popular restricted software, we have: MP3, Flash, AVI and WMV, ATI and nVidia graphics card drivers, etc. etc. Luckily, all of these can be installed in moments with the integrated package manager.
One very funny thing is that I don’t have any kind of spyware, antivirus, or firewall programs running at any time. The Ubuntu core comes with a fully functional firewall software, and there’s too little in the way of spyware or virii that work in Linux to get worried over them. Malicious scripts are of course a possible problem in Linux, but there are two ways I can figure out around them with my first month of Linux expertise: Either use only community-approved software (it’s a huge library on its own), or look at what the script is going to do before giving it executing rights.
The possible negative aspect of Ubuntu – and Linux in general – is that while Ubuntu is a perfectly functional desktop computer just about out-of-box, you still need an inclination towards the proverbial screwdriver if you want to get things really going. Windows gives you polished software with plastic coverings hiding all the inner workings. In Linux, it’s usually a different approach. You find rough graphical interfaces at times, with blunt guides telling how to start with dismantling things and remodeling them to suit your needs. You get intimately familiar with the command prompt.
For me this was another selling point. I know many people who hate Linux for this same thing and don’t want to use it.