OK, I just installed the latest Ubuntu 10.4 aka Lucid Lynx. Well it needs tweak'in and I just gotten to like the "Human" colors on Ubuntu 9.04-9.10. I was down with brown and being a brown guy myself, was groov'in on all things brown from rich Corinthian leather to chocolate bars. This purple haze thing is.........well good thing change is good.
Well, Ubuntu 10.4 is as fine as can be expected, boots a little faster, shuts down a lot faster. In between it is just Ubuntu which is very cool. But that Gnome Shell which I admired and enjoyed in the previous version does not work for me on my PC in this version. I am so disappointed, what a let down. Gnome Shell was very cool, yet needing some revising. I would have used it as is. It is coming but we will have to wait. Stay tuned for the sequel folks.
Why change? First of all let me say that change in Linux is normal, whether it is comfortable or not depends on how much work you have to do. This 10.4 version is what they call "LTS", which I think means Long Term Stable. Meaning it is the stable base from which minor upgrades will come until the next "LTS" version down the road. If you don't need to upgrade every whenever, you can just do it when the next "LTS" comes out and still be cool.
How do you prepare for change? Being a former Microsoft guy, now a Linux guy I think it is crazy to have one hard drive on a PC. With the advent of the thumb drive and the USB external drive, I think it is wise to put your personal files on a different drive than with the operating system and applications. This is very convenient for when your system crashes, the operating system gets hosed, you want to upgrade or you want to change. If you put your stuff on an external drive you don't have to back them up, just remove the USB and plug into another PC. Now if files are suspect you can remove them from the infected PC and scan them on a good one, and repair the OS separately or reinstall it.
For this change I bought two small thumb drives 2 gig each. I will eventually get a 4 or 8 gig for this file moving business. They are also handy for putting a boot-able OS on them, so cool. If you want a bigger thumb drive, the larger USB portable drives are better priced and bigger. I was at Best Buy the other day, a 1TB hard drive, that's one terabyte or 1000 gigs for $109.99 on sale!?! If your OS, apps and movie collection all on that thing gets lost because the OS crashes badly or you have to back up that big.......... sometimes even partitioning won't save you.
Now the question comes up, do penguins shed? Just like the guy with the bag on his head, you rip off the bag to find another bag. Oh, the other question, how do you like this new Ubuntu 10.04? It works fine, perhaps better, but the art work doesn't have the zest of the previous versions. I think we sometimes strain to be fresh and different. In the end a group of folks are trying to please the masses, which means the best part of Linux is that you can still change it to suit yourself.