Monday, May 03, 2010

Lucid Lynx is Free! Upgrading Ubuntu to 10.04 LTS.

It's the time every Ubuntu fan loves: upgrade time. This past weekend, there was a flurry of upgrading and installing of Lucid Lynx as fans, including moi, pounced on the new Ubuntu 10.04 LTS version. Most Octobers and Aprils, the months of Ubuntu upgrades, I usually set aside a whole day because the one time I tried the automatic upgrade, it caused much worry; I decided a full install, complete with burning a new CD, was much the better way to go. Because I found it onerous doing a full install and reinstalling all my apps and data, I skipped one upgrade cycle. But through the good folks on Twitter, I learnt that if I moved my /home folder to a separate data partition, I could make the upgrading part of my life much easier. I did that a few months ago. And this past weekend, upgrading to Lucid Lynx was a breeze. Instead of spending a day on it, I spent just over an hour using the auto upgrade feature and didn't have to reinstall my apps and data.

I'm liking the new themes of Ambiance and Radiance. And the rotating cosmic background is way cool. But I don't understand why every time I upgrade Ubuntu, the battery icon goes back to being uninformative and the brightness button no longer works. Each time my laptop suddenly runs out of battery juice without me being informed that it was running low. Each time, these two things are fixed eventually, but then crap out with the next new version. Why is this? Do the folks who develop Ubuntu paste in buggy old code for the battery indicator and brightness adjuster instead of using the fixed code? The other thing I find puzzling is that when I first tried this Linux-based OS by putting Xubuntu on a very old laptop, my battery life shot up. But Ubuntu on my Sony Vaio gets less or about the same battery time than Windows Vista. I thought it was Windows that was the power hog.

Regardless, Ubuntu is a great OS. It's always been fast, but with Lucid Lynx, it loads so fast that as soon as one is in, there's no waiting to start browsing, check e-mail, or run an app. Unlike Windows. And it doesn't annoy me with silly pop up messages about what I'm doing or choose not to do. And best of all, it's free, control-freak free, and fun.

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