Why I’m glad I switched from Linux to Mac

I still use Linux for one main task: my accounts. I love GnuCash, and installing the latest version on Mac OS X is a right pain. So I run Ubuntu in a Parallels VM just so I can use GnuCash.

I was getting a bit bored of my ancient Ubuntu version so I decided to download and install the latest and greatest – 7.10 – in a new Parallels VM. After waiting an hour and a half for the 700MB ISO to download, I went through the helpful Parallels setup tool to boot the new VM and begin the Ubuntu install.

I think it survived all of two minutes before randomly expanding and contracting the Parallels window, then coming up with this spectacular message:

The display server has been shut down about 6 times in the last 90 seconds. It is likely that something bad is going on. Waiting for 2 minutes before trying again on display :0.

“It is likely that something bad is going on.” Correct. What’s going on is another user is moving further away from Linux, and that’s baaad for Linux.

Now I know the Ubuntu team do an excellent job on the whole, and they’re really trying to make Linux successful on the desktop. But when a stock, stable release of Ubuntu can’t even install itself under a Parallels VM on a Mac – hardly an uncommon scenario – then desktop-ready it ain’t.

And yes, there probably are workarounds involving hacking xorg.conf files around – oh look, here’s one – but you know what? Life’s waayyyy too short.

Right, back to doing my accounts – in my old version of Ubuntu.

(No doubt I’ll eat my words when I finally attempt to upgrade my Mac from Tiger to Leopard, and watch it eat all my apps and data. Ha ha.)

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3 Responses to “Why I’m glad I switched from Linux to Mac”

  1. db Says:

    I had the same experience on a MBP running parallels. I know that the interfaces, software, and driver support have improved so much in Linux that I want to give it a shot. The 6.06 iso installed fine, but the 7.10 was crashtacular. Thanks for the account of your problems. I agree… “life is way to short” for this.

  2. Kris Says:

    Interestingly enough, I switched from Mac to Linux. I’ve bought iMac 24” about two and half months ago, installed Leopard and then my troubles began. Compared to Tiger, it just doesn’t work. I agree “life’s way to short” for this :) So I installed BootCamp, installed Ubuntu, and never looked back. It’s just way better desktop environment than Leopard. At least for me. Seems to me that Leopard is sneak preview of things to come, but is not really production ready. That’s my feeling, anyway. But, I do have to admin that a day doesn’t go by without me thinking of just installing Tiger, overwriting everything, and world will be goood and stable again.

  3. Matt Says:

    I’m *so* scared of installing Leopard. Heard so many horror stories, and I have quite a customized system (seriously hacked netinfo, upgraded apache with php, and all sorts). I’m dreading it!

    I expect I’ll go for it when 10.5.2 is available in boxed form, as I’ve heard this version is relatively stable…

    Enjoy your Linux-on-a-Mac. I do still like using Linux, despite what my post above may have led you to believe. :)