My Ubuntu Experience

How did I start using Ubuntu?

I had just bought a new laptop in February 08. I had also paid Rs. 4500 for Windows Vista Home Basic. I was not happy. After trying in vain to optimize the Vista installation for a whole month I was ready to go back to XP and put up my Genuine Vista DVD up for sale on eBay India. I was pretty sure that it wouldn’t sell. I dont know what the actual thought was that prompted me to go to google and search for linux distros for my laptop. The general idea on the internet was that Ubuntu worked best for my laptop. So I downloaded a copy. This was Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon 7.10.

I was able to install Gutsy in about 30 minutes. All was well except my display and wifi. I got the display workig after about 30 minutes of scouring thr forums. Then the real battle started… the wifi. I tried madwifi and the ndiswrapper and the wicd and some other tools. Came back to wicd and madwifi and the back to ndiswrapper. Then I finally ended up with getting wifi to work with madwifi. Total cycle time 7 days. I was very happy.

I have been an on and off user of linux for some time now. This has been my first serious bout. Earlier I never used it for more than a few months at a time. I have gone through Red Hat, Suze, Fedora, Mandrake and a few more, I think. Anyway, Ubuntu was going to be long term.

So get back to my experience, after the first kernel upgrade, the wifi broke and I spent a few more days trying to get it back up. Hardy beta was out then and since I wasn’t too happy with Gutsy, I upgraded to Hardy beta. The wifi was still broken, and I managed to fix it after quite a bit of trial and error. Hardy was better for my laptop as he display was up out of the box. So when Hary came out of beta I was happy to upgrade instead of downgrade. Since I had put so much effort into setting up wifi in the last few months, this time wifi was easy, to say the least. I knew which thread to read at the forums and which tools to try in what order.

The other buggy thing was DVD playback. It was very inconsistent. Some DVDs played, somee  didnt; those that did play on one day didn’t play the next day etc. etc. So I kept Vista on a 50GB partition on my 160GB HDD. Mainly for these little bugs. Incedently, I solved my DVD problems just yesterday by installing the libdvdcss librarys. The DVDs run fine now.

So now I have been using Ubuntu for everything that I do on a day to day basis. I still have Windows Vista, and I am still willing to sell it as I wouldn’t mind using XP which I still have lying around.

So if you have the Acer Aspire 4520 laptop with the nvidia chipset, Athlon X2, nvidia graphics and the atheros 5007eg wifi chip, then you can see some of the links below to get ubuntu up and running on you laptop.

The full guide on the Ubuntu Forums

Setting up the Canon MP145 Multifunction printer on Ubuntu

My Home Page

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