For the first time, ever, I’ve been using Linux on raw hardware for a couple months. The experience has been utterly boring and wonderful.
Sometime in the 1990s, I upgraded a desktop computer from something like Windows 3.1 to Windows 95. The result was… not good. Some hardware wasn’t working well. I remember cursing Plug and Play. I figured out some things, but that computer never was fully right. Eventually I replaced it.
That experience left me feeling, I’d rather do any major operating system upgrade as a result of buying a new computer.
There was a time when many Windows laptops didn’t “just work” when it came to things like power management or wireless networking. Eventually that improved. But then Linux had a similar reputation for many years. And I really don’t want to spend time futzing with basics.
My previous dalliances with Linux include:
Using Linux in a Virtual Box VM. Generally works, maybe slowly.
Using crouton on a Chomebook Pixel. For awhile, this seemed like the best of both worlds, to me. Rely on Chrome OS to have decent drivers for power, networking, trackpad.
Using Windows Subsystem for Linux. This is actually what led me to go all-in. Around New Year’s, I got a Windows laptop with the idea that I’d test Racket Mode on Windows, that way. I got side-tracked by playing with WSL. Then I got frustrated by WSL support for Emacs getting worse not better over time.
About three months ago, I followed this guide: “Installing Ubuntu 18.04 LTS on a Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen 6”.
Since then, I’ve hit a few “milestones” where I expected I might have my first bad experience:
Suspend/resume? It worked.
Connecting an external 4K monitor via a USB-C cable? Both displays working fine. Laptop getting charged.
Printing? It found the driver for the printer and printed. Yawn.
Maybe it’s beginner’s luck. Maybe I’m in the honeymoon phase. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop.