Washington Post Reviews Ubuntu 10.04

Ubuntu 10.04 is getting publicity not just from tech blogs and tech magazines, but also from mainstream media such as the Washington Post. It’s not the first time that a major newspaper like the Post has printed an article about Ubuntu. Apparently, the same author reviewed Ubuntu 6.06 several years back. Certainly, any exposure of Ubuntu to non-techie readers is a welcome change.

It’s great seeing different perspectives of Ubuntu. Here are a couple of quotes from Rob Pegoraro’s article from the Washington Post.

Linux may run TiVo video recorders and live inside Android phones, in addition to running much of the Internet’s servers, but it still lags on home PCs.

Will that change anytime soon? A new version of a consumer-oriented edition of Linux, Ubuntu (http://ubuntu.com), offers hope for Linux optimists but leaves room for doubters, too.

A fair assessment. The author continues.

Ubuntu does not, however, include the junk that’s standard issue on new Windows PCs, such as expiring trial versions or pushy security utilities. Neither can it run any Windows viruses, trojans, spyware or worms.

This has always been the biggest selling point of Ubuntu.

But Ubuntu also leaves out two things Windows users rightly expect: built-in support for common media file formats and all their computer’s parts.

To me, this is the biggest shortfall of Ubuntu. It’s the constant tinkering to make Ubuntu work with proprietary media file formats. To Linux purists, a distro release with non-proprietary software is the only choice. To most users, they just want a system that works with less tinkering, and less reading of forums to find solutions.

Compared with Windows XP and 7, Ubuntu 10.04 booted up and shut down much faster. But it needed more time to sleep and wake up and fell far short in battery life. With the screen kept on, two Web pages refreshing themselves and a music library playing, the Dell ran for two hours and 25 minutes in Linux, 23 minutes less than in XP. In the same test, the Sony lasted just under three hours in Ubuntu — but ran for another 80 minutes in Win 7.

This is another area Ubuntu can do better with regards to the battery life.

Overall, this is great exposure of Ubuntu. I’m hoping to see more articles as Ubuntu becomes more mainstream.