I used Linux for the last couple years and on and off since about 2009. I’ve mostly used Ubuntu, but I used Mint for a little while until I ran into GFX card problems. I gave Fedora 20 a legit shot, but just got fed up with it. I’ve also used Debian 6, but it was lacking too much as a Desktop.
The first time I switched off Linux was when I was first starting to look for Intern jobs and my resume looked completely different on Open Office than it did on Word. I worked pretty hard to keep it at one page and I think it ended up being almost 2 pages when printed out in Word. I was still playing games and I was dual booting anyway, so it made the transition back to Windows pretty easy.
Fast forward to 2012/2013 and I switched back to Linux, because I pretty much quit playing games and had no use for Open Office and I started doing a lot more development than when I was in college. I really liked it, but it was frustrating sometimes when programs didn’t work or I had to run a VM to run things. The last 2 places I’ve worked, both use Citrix to remote in to my work machine, which did not have a good Linux Client so I had to run a Windows VM for that and setting up Photoshop on Wine was a pain in the butt, so I ran a VM for that. There were a few other programs, too that I missed and didn’t have.
For development, it’s great. Everything is native and command line driven, there’s no “oops, I used the wrong slash”. It’s just freeing. Especially for personal projects, where you have full control over the dev and production environments. Plus, most dev articles/tutorials/etc are written for terminal. There’s no need to translate it to CMD in your head or figure out a work around, you can just keep flowing with it. (not to mention, Linux terminal commands actually make sense)
Not to mention, the Linux Desktop platforms are the best. Unity is pretty good, Gnome3 is my favorite, and KDE is very clean as well (even if I wasn’t a big fan).
A few months ago, I switched to Mac. I like it, but it’s not quite what I expected. There are a few things I like and a few things from Linux I miss.
####Things I miss from Linux
- I loved natively browsing my remote servers via SFTP on Linux and I freaking hate using CyberDuck.
- command line installers
apt-get… I don’t really like
brew, it feels like a bandaid.
- everything is mostly free, where on a Mac everything is mostly paid for. I find the amount of non-free software on Mac pretty ridiculous.
####Things I like about Mac
- you get a lot of the new development stuff first. If it’s webdev related and only written for 1 system, it’s probably going to be Mac.
- I love the fact that I have not had a single thing randomly break my computer from an update, which happens from time to time on Linux.
- Most of the time I can use real software and not crappy FOSS copies of real software
My next computer will probably be another Linux machine, but I’m happy with my Mac for now and I got the whole “wanting a Mac” bug out of my system. Plus, I’m a pretty big Android fan, so iOS and all that is just not even a consideration for me.
I’ll probably never switch back to Windows again and I don’t really have a reason to. Windows 10 is really going to be nice, but it’s not enough to save the platform for me. There’s just nothing there that I want or need.
My perfect OS would be the stability and the amount of apps Mac has, but on Linux. I really think Linux is nearing that level pretty rapidly, but doubt that important niche apps, like Citrix, will really ever have the level of adoption they deserve.
My first shot at Linux was 2001. I bought Mandrake Linux from Best Buy. I fully admit that the combination of Linux being a lot less user friendly, slower internet (still 56k), and less resources to learn online was too much for me.