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Taking the Linux plunge – Update

It’s been a couple of weeks now since I took the plunge and bought myself a Dell XPS 13 running Ubuntu 16.04.

And to be honest, so far so good! The machine itself is absolutely fantastic and apart from one issue now resolved, Ubuntu has been great to use. I used it to present my partitioning session at the Dublin User Group this week and all went well. Using SQL in a docker container and SQL Operations Studio, my demos worked no problem.

Have to admit, the only gripe I have is that there’s a windows key instead of a key with the Ubuntu logo 🙂

So once I had booted up the first thing I did was uninstall Chrome and Chromium. After that, I went and installed: –

Firefox– with DuckDuckGo as my homepage
Docker
SQL Operations Studio
Visual Studio Code
Powershell
Remmina
Franz
Spotify
Whatever – Evernote client for Linux
Keybase

OK, there’s a couple of obvious ones in there but maybe a couple that are new to you.

If you haven’t heard of Franz, it’s awesome. One of my pet peeves these days is the amount of comms apps that I have to have open. Slack, Google Hangouts, Teams, email etc. it’s a bit of a nightmare. Franz solves that issue by combining them all into one app, ok it’s a bit of a memory hog but that’s kinda to be expected.

Another app not everyone may be familiar with is Keybase. Keybase is a security app that provides public keys, encrypted chat, and an encrypted filesystem. The filesystem offering is why I went for it, you can install OneDrive on Linux but it’s a bit of a hassle and I’m not a particular fan of Dropbox so am glad that I have another option (even if it is ANOTHER chat app, and it doesn’t integrate with Franz 😦 )

One final thing to mention is Gitpitch. Gitpitch is a markdown presentation service that integrates with Github/Gitlab/Bitbucket. You write your presentation in markdown, push it to a repo, and the service renders your presentation online (which you can then download).

I used GitPitch for my presentation to the Dublin User Group this week and was a bit concerned at first as my markdown skills are, ahem, not great. You can see the presentation I wrote here, I’m really pleased with the results. I also really enjoyed creating that presentation, which is new for me as I hate writing powerpoint slides. Am going to spend some more time this weekend seeing what else the service can do.

So all in all, am really pleased with my new toy. If you’re thinking about switching to Linux, I highly recommend that you do, what’s the worst that could happen? 🙂

Have a good weekend!