Right. Corporate environment boy attempts to rescue himself from void of Vista non performance on outdated hardware (duh). Installs Ubuntu and...
Honestly? I was blown away. The install is so slick, and just so non-windows. Download the ISO here, burn it to CD, reboot and you're on your way.
The major difference with Ubuntu - is that it can boot into the OS from the install CD. So essentially, you get to try before you buy. Don't underestimate the importance of this. It's just so accessible... and transparent.
There's a logo on the desktop which invites you to put the OS onto your hard drive. Click that, and be guided through some extremely friedly options - just setting up time zones etc. Even partitioning your hard drive is easy. Choose from guided or non-guided options - and whether to use the whole hard drive or install alongside windows.
It's. Just. So. Easy.
And quick! The install couldn't have taken longer than 25 minutes (this on a Celeron 1.6 GHZ with 512 MB RAM - the Vista Slug as I'm calling it now). Then it downloads about 100 updates, which took a couple of hours on a 512k ADSL line.
100 updates? Hmmm, jaaa - but when you start to get used to the Linux "package" theory - it seems a little more normal.
So. I get to play now. And OH MY GOD this thing flies. The Vista Slug has become a Stallion. It's smooth, it looks good - and it has everything pre-installed.
That's I suppose the last point for this introduction. The beauty of the latest edition of Ubuntu (and earlier editions I suppose - but this one does feel a lot friendlier) is that everything comes pre-installed. If I had to buy a computer for my mother - and all she would do is connect to the internet, use mail, do basic word processing / spreadsheets - it's perfect.
And it's free. So you don't get Arial or immediate MP3 support (another post, another time). One click install if you choose to "ignore" the licensing issues (yes, MP3 is licensed technology - didn't really know that myself).
It's a mother computer.
And that says a lot!