I would like to share My Linux experience here and how I finally ended with Ubuntu Mate.
I am an Indian college fresher now (20 Dec 2017).
I got my first computer when I was in 3rd Standard (aged 7 or 8). It was a HCL PC preloaded with Windows XP. But somehow the seller had removed the orignal activated one, and installed another pirated version of XP with several softwares. I used the computer for several years just to play games online and do stupid stuff. I was completely ignorant of anything like Linux and Free software. India still faces this problem, very few know about the free open source softwares.
The PC had a Intel Pentium processor, 2 GB of RAM, and a 1600x900 resolution display, 300GB Hard Disk. No Discrete Graphics.
But this changed when I moved to Agra, the city of Taj. There in my seventh or eighth standard, A guy boasted about how his OS was linked to the PC’s motherboard and how if it went corrupt it could burn the entire motherboard. I was intrigued by it, I knew nothing about operating systems other than Windows. That was my age when I had newly realised that I could search the web and learn from it (I had self-learned a very little html from the internet). I inquired and he named the OS as Ubuntu (He pronounced it You-buntu).
I searched about this OS and It came out as just another operating system, the catch being it was free. I remember the release of Ubuntu I downloaded, it was Saucy Salamander (13.10). The name itself was quite interesting it itself. And then on a 3GB/month internet I downloaded the release (About 800+ MB).
And then I installed it from a Disc, It was Great. It was fast, new, and more efficient than Windows 7 that I ran on the PC. I used it for a lot of time, but since it could not run MS office, or any games that I loved I simply removed it by deleting the partition and then unfortunately screwing up with grub, I had to reinstall Windows 7.
I then used my PC normally for a year or two, but later the PC performed poorly on windows, It ran slow, terribly slow. So I reinstalled Ubuntu and then I discovered the free software community, And wow was it amazing.
I then got to know that there were several alternatives to popular Windows only apps. I also came to like the free software foundations Principals. I till then still didn’t know of various other Linux Distros.
On a day just browsing the web, I came to a page of best Linux distros, I read it and then searched on google about “Distros”. I then understood that I had a choice to install different distros and different Desktop Environments. I searched a lot and Elementary OS attracted my attention. It was new then and it was very pleasing to look at. It also was quite user-friendly, (My family wasn’t much enthusiastic of me installing a different OS (according to them) every once in a while).
I installed the Elementary OS and it was great. It lacked many Unity features but it still worked for me. I was delighted by it. I learned Python and C++ on elementary OS. This was also the time when I first contributed to an Open Source project, I designed the Icon for Mark My Words (an elementary app). I then contributed a little here and there.
I later tried installing the newer Release of Freya 0.3.1. It didn’t install for some reason and I had to look for other options. I looked for Ubuntu again, but this time I looked at its other flavors.
I first booted Ubuntu Gnome and I disliked it straight away, it was the gnome shell. I then turned to Kubuntu, it had the new and flashy+modern KDE 5. And boy it looked awesome. It didn’t run Gnome apps that good (they looked horrible). And KDE5 was still quite buggy and unstable, I think they might have fixed it now. I used Kubuntu for two to three months before looking for other options.
And then by miracle I discovered Ubuntu Mate. I read an article in OMG Ubuntu about the UMate becoming an official flavour. I researched (a synonym for Googled) about Umate and I found it quite pleasing, just the right apps in a minimal distro. I installed it and I was hooked.
I then never worried about anything. I installed 16.04 later and removed Windows for good, since it was a LTS release. I was actually quite fed up reinstalling different OSes and I wanted stability from then on. I worked later on Ubuntu Mate for everything, mostly programming. (I even customized their community website and added a few wallpapers to some releases).
I used the username @adiultra back then, now I have switched to @xypnox
Then this year December 2017, I bought an XPS 15 for college. It was worth a fortune but I am quite happy with it. Also the first thing I did was dual-boot Umate 16.04.3 on it. I have not completely removed windows on this because I sometimes get MSOffice files which don’t go so nicely with Libre Office. And yes I wanted a little gaming once in a while.
I still am not perfectly happy with UMate and I think a few things can be improved here and there, But its far better than Windows. In fact UMate launches Atom in less than 2 seconds while Windows takes a good load of 12 seconds (on a hyper powerful laptop).
So this was my tale with Linux. Hope you liked it!
Sooner or later, everything ends.