My laptop had been acting squirrelly for the better part of several months. It finally got to the point where I decided it was time to flatten it and start over. And so I did the fdisk thing and started going to town. I had my Vista install disks and my MS Office disks and everything I needed to start fresh. Everything was going swimmingly until I hit the point where I was asked to enter my key. Which I did. It was at this point that the install process came to a screeching halt. Evidently Microsoft was suspicious of this installation. I don’t know why. I think this was the second time I’d ever used the installation media. It was suggested that I call MS support to verify my installation. I don’t know why, but for some reason this really really pissed me off. I didn’t want to call MS to verify my key. I spent ~$100 on this software, I should be able to use it without getting permission.
And it was at this point that I decided to take a look and see what had been going on in the Linux world. I’ve used various Linux distributions in the past. Occasionally they worked to do what I needed to get done… which was usually something fairly specific. More often than not it was a huge pain in the ass. It had been such a pain in the ass that I’d never really considered using Linux as my main O/S. I think the last time I’d made an honest stab at getting a Linux setup working was on an old machine that I wanted to use to move VHS tapes to digital. After much tinkering I had managed to get Puppy Linux to work on it. That machine ended up having a catastrophic failure in either the ram or the processor.
But back to my laptop… I spent quite a bit of time researching different distributions before making the decision of what to install. As the title suggests, I decided to install Linux Mint, specifically version 17.1 Rebecca. I downloaded the installation image and burnt it to a DVD and then prepared myself for the hell that was to come.
Then something totally unexpected happened, it worked.
Seriously, straight up worked. I was floored. Everything worked. No tinkering. But I knew that this was Linux so I knew sooner or later the monster would raise it’s head and breath destruction. I’m still waiting for that to happen. I’ve had Mint installed on this laptop for over 6 months and I’ve only had to reset the system once and funny enough it was when I tried emulating a Windows program.
I find this hard to believe much less say, but for nearly every type of user, this distribution of Linux can be considered a replacement for Windows.