I’ve been using Linux since 2013, the year I started College.
I first heard of Linux in highschool when I noticed one of my teachers running.. something on his computer that I didn’t recognize. It wasn’t Windows, that’s for sure. I asked him and he said he was running Linux on his laptop, but didn’t elaborate very much. Now, years later, I recognize the distro he was running to be an old version of Linux Mint (I’m about 70% sure).
Anyways, back to 2013. My than girlfriend now wife, was having great difficulties with her Toshiba laptop running Windows. She somehow kept getting viruses, though she swore she didn’t know how lol.
Getting rather sick at that point of re-installing Windows fresh everytime things got to be too borked, I did some research on Google and found the top recommended Linux distro at that time, Linux Mint. I tested it out, and wasn’t horribly impressed with Linux on a whole until I tried out the second most recommended (at the time) distro, Ubuntu.. 14.04..? I can’t quite remember. Either way, we really liked it, and my wife was able to use programs like Inkscape and Libre Office for her school work without issues. Until she dug out her copy of The Sims 3 and all of her collected expansions and told me ‘’Make these work!’’.
I told her, I’m pretty sure that’s not going to run hun. She seemed very disappointed so I did even more Google-ing and discovered WINE.
Excited, I took (much longer than it would take me now, knowing my way around various Linux distros pretty well at this point) about a day to get everything properly configured, and have at least the base game installed for her. We were pretty happy at that point, and, as a bonus, the only times we every had to re-install Ubuntu was when I broke something accidentally. Not Microsoft.
Fast forward to 2021, and a lot has improved for Linux on a whole.
I no longer have Windows installed on any of my computers. Why does anyone else?
“Well Cara, I need Windows because I need ___”.
Let’s cover the bases of what most people use their computers for:
Listening to / Streaming Music
Starting with the first bullet; Music:
Linux has a lot of options available for music streaming:
Youtube Music Clients
Google Music Client
Apple Music Client
A variety of Internet Radio streaming applications.
Next, we have Video Streaming:
Hulu – Works fine with Firefox and Chrome
Netflix – Works fine with Firefox and Chrome
Pluto TV – Works fine with Firefox and Chrome
Youtube – Works fine with Firefox and Chrome; User-made clients available in Sotware
Than we have Gaming:
Steam – Official Steam Client, Valve loves Linux it seems, as they’ve contributed a ton to getting Linux to be a (better than OS X) great platorm for playing games; can enable a setting called ‘Steam Play’ for even greater compatibility! Expect almost everything to run.
WINE – Wine Is Not an Emulator. WINE is a compatibility layer you can install on Linux to add support for Windows programs to Linux! That’s right, Linux runs Linux appas and Windows apps.
GOG – Clients available in Software
itch.io – Provides games for multiple platforms, and has an official Linux client available on their website
Lutris – Lutris takes WINE and makes it even better, Easing installation of games that may not want to work easily for you, and unifying your game sources into one Client.
Next up we have Social Media –
fun fact if you’re not terribly technically inclined, Most social media apps like Facebook and Twitter are basically just their websites wrapped up nicely to look great on your screen, On Linux, you can obviously access the websites for facebook twitter and others in firefox or your web browser of choice; You can also find clients for Telegram, Twitter, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Twitch, Discord, and others in Software, If you prefer the look of an app!
Web browsing and podcasts –
We already addressed that Firefox and Chrome are both available on Linux; but those aren’t all: You also have Microsoft Edge, Brave, Falkon, Vildali, Gnome Web, Opera, and so very many others to choose from! Try out different ones till you find the one you prefer.
Podcasts – Many clients available in Software, and as always, you can always listen with a web browser!
Artwork – STOP USING ADOBE FOR THE LOVE OF _____
Aside from work requiring it, I can’t think of a single good reason to choose to use any Adobe subscription for creation. Here’s what you should be using:
Krita – Good replacement for Illustrator
Natron – Good replacement for After-effects
LibreSprite – Great for Pixel Art
Pixelorama – Great for Pixel Art
And that’s it!
That’s the list for art, and, actually brings this piece to its conclusion! So yeah, I hope I’ve silenced any but-’s when it comes to ditching Windows! I can’t think of anything I missed here that fits these bases, but I’m sure ya’ll have suggestions, feel free to leave them bellow! I hope you all enjoyed reading this!