Coming Back, Switching From Ubuntu to Fedora
Why Change Back to Fedora Now?
I'll start by saying that Ubuntu is pretty awesome. My first taste was Dapper in '06, and I've stuck strictly with Ubuntu (Lucid is my newest install) until this past week. There have been some things over the years that annoyed me, though I'm guessing they could have been fixed if I'd taken the time to do it. One was a ruckus with wireless. If I shut the lid on my laptop at work, then open it at home (no laptop shutdown, just sleeping) I had a bear of a time getting onto my own wireless network. This was worse with new (one I'd never been on before) or encrypted (and especially new encrypted) networks. I was thankful that wireless worked at all, as the shenanigans of making wireless work a few years ago are still painful memoriesd…
I'm still not sold on sudo. This may be a "Tastes Great — Less Filling" kind of argument, but I've never been comfortable with it. I'd rather root have a password and craig has no privileges at all unless he does an su -. I always ended up giving root a password anyway for some of the apps (I think MySQL related) that I needed to install. A couple days into Fedora I think that su – is not nearly as convenient as sudo… I won't get into it, but I like it better this way.
What's Different in Fedora?
So, switching to Fedora 16 involved getting GNOME 3. If anyone has not made the jump yet (the newer Ubuntu's have it but I stayed on Lucid) it is quite a radical change. I knew it was a bit different from using the livecd before the install, but didn't fully appreciate just how different until it was too late to turn back. I kept looking for a "We're the Fuggawee Tribe" button, couldn't, and threw my hands up a few times. It reminds me a lot of my Android phone, only not quite so bad. Android, I believe, was written for folks with ADD in mind. With all this starting apps and quickly moving onto others without shutting the last one down, I wonder if I'm just over thinking it. Where's the command line, anyway?
I knew I'd stick with GNOME 3 from the get go. I had heard about radical changes. With someone like Microsoft, gigantic changes would normally make me nervous (Vista anyone?) but I feel no such trepidation with GNOME. I trust that the GNOME folks had some logical reason for turning things ass over tea kettle, and am willing to ride it out and see why. As long as my computer has the horsepower to run it, I'm good to go. Now that I've gotten used to the new interface a bit, it's grown on me. If you are about to take the plunge though, you may want to have a second computer handy so that you can read tutorials on it, then switch over to the new GNOME box and follow along.
The actual operating system isn't too different for the average user. I'm not doing anything too crazy with my laptop; it will probably just be a dev LAMP box with some extras. I won't be able to tell you about a live LAMP box until I have to set one up. When I do, it will probably be with CentOS anyway, as I don't know that Fedora is something I want running out in the wild. Stuff was too new last I heard, and I'm guessing it still leans toward the "brand newest" versions of stuff.
So, I'm Done
I am all installed now, my data is sitting on my laptop (some needs to be moved around, but it's all there) and I've got a fairly good grasp on how the newfangled GNOME works. I feel like I've come home again…