It’s a tale as old as time: laptop user gets frustrated by Windows, tries Ubuntu, falls in love, and computes happily ever after…

After two decades of relying on Windows I decided it was time for the nuclear option…

A classic love story — one Hollywood has yet to use as source material for a major motion picture/musical starring Robert Downey Jr (I swear he’s in everything).

The latest case in point? That comes courtesy of online magazine Forbes.com and its tech contributor Jason Evangelho.

Jason shares his experience of using Ubuntu for a solid fortnight on a swanky Dell XPS 13 laptop. He says he was spurred into “ditching” Windows by yet another ill-timed and infuriating wait while the OS opted to install updates.

“After two decades of relying on Windows I finally decided it was time for the nuclear option,” he writes.

Wait — why are you writing about this?

At this point you’re probably wondering why is “omg! guy installs Ubuntu!” news.

Well, to be clear, it isn’t.

It’s nice to see Ubuntu receive positive promo in a publication that wouldn’t ordinarily write about it

I just think it’s really nice to see Ubuntu get positive prime-time promo in a publication that wouldn’t ordinarily have reason to write about it (Jason himself notes that “writing about Linux doesn’t exactly bring in the clicks”).

It’s also nice to learn what someone who doesn’t breathe Linux day-in and day-out makes of an OS some of us know a bit too well.

Disclaimer: We like it when people like Ubuntu

For instance, Jason is impressed by the breadth of well-known software that is on available through the Software Center.

The breadth of software you can install with a single click is outstanding

“The breadth of software you can install with a single click is outstanding, at least for me,” he says.

This is thanks (in part) to Canonical’s efforts to simplify and centralise app packaging and distribution of Linux software through Snaps, which has attracted big-name apps like Skype, Spotify and Discord.

He also praises Ubuntu’s installation speed — “it took literally four minutes from start to finish” — and its hardware compatibility — “Ubuntu properly detected all of my XPS 13 hardware including WiFi adapter and the gorgeous 4K 

Ubuntu’s data collection opt-in screen, Night Light feature, and extensibility also score bonus points.

‘C’mon, is this guy for real?’

Ubuntu Desktop Layout in 17.10

I often draw attention to the drawbacks of using Snaps, like its poor theme integration, slow start-up times, and the fact that the majority of Snaps aren’t maintained by their upstream developers so tend to lag behind official releases elsewhere.

I do this because I feel Snaps don’t provide a good “user experience” at present. So it’s interesting (for me, at least) to learn that Jason wasn’t bothered by (if he indeed noticed) any of this.

Which I guess is what matters for Canonical.

My laptop feels faster, is undeniably more stable and it’s just been… pleasant

He also had the “benefit” of using a laptop that is incredibly well supported by Ubuntu. Would he have Ubuntu seem as impressive had he run it on a less compatible device?

That’s difficult to say. Enthusiasm does deplete fast when faced with the Wi-Fi that won’t work, suspiciously silent speakers, and computer ports that apparently no longer exist…

Happy Ever After?

Interestingly Ubuntu wasn’t his first choice. He initially opted for the Ubuntu-based Linux Mint distribution but it failed to find a drive it could install to. Undeterred (lesser people would have given up here) he swiped himself a download of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and…

Well, I’ll let him explain:

“Overall, everything I need is present and accounted for. My laptop feels faster, is undeniably more stable and it’s just been… pleasant. Backups are easy. Navigating the operating system is intuitive. Altering the look and feel of your desktop takes a few clicks.

“[Ubuntu] is absolutely my new daily driver for writing, working, communicating, browsing and media consumption.”

Tl;dr: 😍

You can read Jason’s appraisal in full over on the Forbes.com website, which I’ve oh-so-conveniently linked to below.

Read “2 weeks with Ubuntu Linux on the Dell XPS 13”

Thanks Mike W.

Hero image credit: Forbes/Jason Evangelho