Windows to Linux and back again

We have recently recruited Dave, our new website designer, who being from a windows background has not really clicked with our linux platform and so has swapped back to Windows (whilst I was on holiday!).  I thought someone may be interested in his experience and rational, so here goes:

“After being a Windows user for 14 years, the move back from linux was a choice that had to be made based on old habits and autonomy picked up from prolonged use. I don’t feel windows is any better as an operating system, or any better as a tool in aiding web design. What I did feel was I couldn’t work as efficiently without the software and menus that I have grown accustomed to. I needed my ‘start button’, dreamweaver, and photoshop on my local PC without any modifications, hacks or virtual machines.

In summary, like someone who uses an Ipod for their music, I use a PC with Windows, because it works for me.”

I’d be interested in peoples views of this, can you only migrate users to an unfamiliar OS if they are told to do it, or how long does it take to be as efficient on a linux desktop as a seasoned windows user?

Thanks for the feedback Dave!

  • Martyn

    Adrian,

    I was a long time windows user and was wedded to my pivot tables in Excel – I was what you might call a “power user”…. on steroids!

    The change to Ubuntu was surprisingly easy for me apart from the lack of excel – that was hard for a few weeks but after that, no problem… and I usually found other (sometimes better!) ways to do the things I needed to do.

    I now try to “do my stuff” the right way. Rather than using excel as a swiss army knife I try to use an appropriate tool and more often than not there is one available in the FOSS world.

    I’d say your users have to have an open mind and be prepared to learn new things rather than being forced onto a new platform.

  • People also assume that they need a certain program. Even though I put VLC, Inkscape, Scribus, GIMP, Pidgin, Open Office and Songbird on their computers they always get their friends to put cracked versions of the proprietary alternatives on.

    Although I say it ironically, when it gets easy to install pirated software on Linux I think more people will use it.