Why isn't Ubuntu more popular?

Hi folks:
Been wondering about this for a while a figured I’d ask here for opinions.
Why, being a free operating system and one that will always be free and always gets updated twice a year, isn’t Ubuntu more popular?
I’m a ‘Windows’ user and have been since the days just past ‘dos’ and where using Norton Commander was the easiest way to get around for the average person. Now, every few years Windows has a new version that we buy into and discard our old systems because we’re told the new one’s better. Personally, other than eye candy for the most part, I never had a problem with all the older versions but like everyone else keep upgrading.
Other folks have migrated to Apple systems and swear that these are the best. I’ve only tried a virtual version of Apple so can’t really comment on it…other than it is costly.
I have Ubuntu 12.04installed on a spare computer and it runs smooth as can be. All the programs the average person would need (maybe) are free to download as well. Everything is automatic for the most part as far as installing things.
Here’s the weird part, though. I also have a ‘borrowed’ version of Windows 7 on the same machine and I keep using that. It this ‘conditioning’?
I don’t really know why I still use Windows.
Anyways, that’s it.
Anybody have an opinion on why ‘free’ isn’t ruling the home computer world?

The number one reason is because computers do not come pre-loaded with it and the average user doesn’t give a shit about the OS. They just want to check their email, go on facebook and watch their porn.

Yeah, for sure. Other than it not being installed on their new computer, they can still do all that with Ubuntu.

Nobody is denying that… but again they don’t care about the operating system they run. They just want to use the computer. Installing ubuntu = effort to do what they already can do. In addition to installing ubuntu they would also need to learn how to use ubuntu which although not very difficult is another barrier.

I’ve run linux since redhat 5 IMO it (not redhat 5) is a superior OS but again, most people are happy enough driving their honda civic :wink:

Not as much third-party software for it.
Driver development for new hardware is iffy.
When you state: “I’m running Ubuntu” it sounds like you’re running a race in Africa - which is about how far away driver support and third-party development of software is.

Because Linux doesn’t work. I downloaded MSN Messenger dozens of times and it won’t even install. Same with IncrediMail. It’s useless.
Can’t even Facebook on Linux, there’s no Internet Explorer.
If Ubuntu was any good they’d have advertisements on tv. That’s how Bill Gates got so rich, you get Windows free on every real computer.

The other person who bought a lInux system from us (an original 7" Asus 2GB EEE) is still using it, and unaware he’s using Linux.

I’ve run linux since redhat 5 IMO it (not redhat 5) is a superior OS but again, most people are happy enough driving their honda civic :wink:[/quote]

Agreed. I’ve run Linux for a little over 10 years and it is my OS of choice (at the moment I’m running Slackware and Debian). As you said previously people have little interest installing and/or configuring operating systems. Linux has the mystique of being difficult to use which is nonsense as the big distros: Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSuse are all dead simple to install.

Yes, Ubuntu is super easy to install…follow the prompts just like any Windows installation…or if you want to just check it out, run it from disc to see what it looks like.
I don’t know anyone that uses Internet Explorer any more, nor MSN Messenger since Facebook and Twitter were introduced.
Since these programs are usable in Firefox and probably most other browsers, and work fine in Ubuntu I guess my original question still stands…Why isn’t Ubuntu more popular?

Herbie: Love the sarcasm.

[quote=“MeepMeepZoom”]Not as much third-party software for it.
Driver development for new hardware is iffy.
When you state: “I’m running Ubuntu” it sounds like you’re running a race in Africa - which is about how far away driver support and third-party development of software is.[/quote]

When is the last time you used linux? I run into as many driver problems on windows as linux now and the fix is usually easier on linux. As for third party software? well you’re right but there is almost always an alternative that is almost as good/as good/better than whatever third party option.

Linux isn’t perfect but almost the entire reason it isnt as popular as osx/windows is because it doesnt come by default. Car analogy: The majority of people do not care what kind of engine is in their car so long as it starts when they turn the key (or press teh button) and drives/steers. When there is a problem they take it to a mechanic.

I actually use Ubuntu on an old laptop. I mostly use it for web programming, since you don’t need much muscle for a code editor.

While it does have a bit of a learning curve, it’s quite good at what it does.

But to answer your question, I think it’s simply a case of Ubuntu (or other Linux distros) not being pre-installed on machines. Plus, Windows is so widely installed that it’s what most people are used to. People tend to stick with what they know, and they usually don’t know Linux.

Not to be argumentative but people typically have a choice between Apple and PC, and the majority choose to purchase PC’s. Because market penetration, ability to fix and the price point (while not free) is reasonable.

re: Linux:
Free is good to a point, but when you are at a disadvantage for interoperability with mostly everyone you know, it kind of loses its appeal.

Reminds me of back in the day when the Atari 2600 was battling it out against the Intellivision. The latter was technically a much better system, but the former had far more games. More importantly, it was the system that most people already had; if you wanted to play the same games your friends were playing, you really needed to have the same machine to play them on.

Ubuntu is the most popular Linux OS already. You can see by Googling <Ubunutu any damn question you want? and see the huge number of responses.
Nice in that unlike Googling <Windows any damn question? you don’t get the first 7 pages companies trying to sell things, fake searches, unanswered posts, etc.

Have noticed one big problem - in 10,04, 11 series the .xsessionerrors log can get huge and eventually crash the whole thing. I’ve had to write cron jobs to erase it nightly on a couple computers.
As for the drivers complaint, I’ve had far less trouble than with Windows and the damned drivers. Ubuntu driver problems seem to show up mostly when the system has utter garbage devices - like HP IDT sound or useless Broadcom wireless. Few problems with video, WTF would you use a bleeding edge video card in a Linux box for anyway?

I use it for my 3d porn.

I have 3 laptops, 1 home server, 4 VPSs, all running Ubuntu. The laptops all run Xubuntu, as does my home server (minecraft and photos, mainly). That server used to run Windows, but Windows 7 doesn’t support the video card (which is an on-board Intel chip), so I switched it to Xubuntu 12.04 which detected and supports the video no problem.

The only reason I use it is because it’s much better on older hardware. And I find a lot of things easier to do in Unix than in other operating systems – like automating rsync backups every night.

Hey Jesus, are you a Redhat advocate now?

Redhat? Me? Nope, rhel is nice for enterprisey type stuff because proprietary packages are generally designed for it or released as rpm only. Im still a debian guy and use kubuntu for my desktop because its less strict on gpl. Im a right tool for the job kind of guy but redhat was my first distro

Everybody else using linux:


me using linux:

me using linux:



Slackware 14.0 was released yesterday. Just finished my first install this morning. :smile:

I love xfce, it’s the only reason I can still use Ubuntu. If there was no Xubuntu, I’d probably be using Slackware too.

Here’s my screenshot :smile:


Using Xubuntu 12.04 on this laptop (running the projector) because though it’s powerful enough for Windows 7 (or Windows Thin PC), the video card isn’t properly supported either. And this is a Thinkpad from a few years ago. Sad.

So that’s two computers that would otherwise be running Windows, had there been decent Windows drivers for the video. Good for Ubuntu, I guess. How sad is it that I have to run Windows inside a virtual machine on this laptop just to watch Netflix on the projector?

Now if only I could play MW3 or Diablo 3 on Ubuntu…