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What OS/tools are people using?


SamC
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Been away for a little while concentrating on CSS3 transitions/animations this time so not had time to check into the forum. Also been mucking around with Ubuntu Mate 16.04 and looking at Ubuntu Budgue and Ubuntu Gnome (both 17.04 I think).

So, out of curiosity, what OS do people use around here? I have OSX on a macbook (enjoy this, terminal, homebrew, makes things so easy), Win10 (scoop 'almost' emulates homebrew) and Ubuntu Mate 16.04 (wired internet didn't work lol) on an mini ITX PC. Love the small size, hooks right up to the tv for some retro emulationstation/retroarch goodness! :)

Anyway, let's hear it.

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I was raised on the C64 and then the Amiga. Those were great times for me. Sadly, my Amiga died in the 90s, so I reluctantly moved over to the PC. I used the Mac in college, but that was purely for Photoshop, and nothing ever had the same impact as my trusty Amiga.

After years of using Windows, I decided that Windows 7 was the last version I'd use. It's a good OS, but I only really used it for Photoshop etc. So since then I have been using Manjaro Linux. I won't touch anything else other than an Arch-based OS anymore, and Manjaro adds a nice user-friendly option for it. I've tried all flavours of Linux, but I've always had problems at some point over silly little things. Manjaro? never had a single problem.

https://manjaro.org/

Note: I use the main XFCE edition as it's lightweight and stable.

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At the moment, I'm on Win10, using ST3 and scoop for pretty much everything dev-related. Looking to switch to the next iteration of Ubuntu, which I hear is dropping Unity in favour of Gnome. I can imagine it'll be quite the change, especially with tools exclusive to Windows, such as Adobe CC. (so I'd have to use wine or a VM for that). Guess I'll miss WIndows incredibly as I'm so used to it, but change is as good as a holiday, as they say, and I'm in serious need of a holiday (or ten, consecutively).

As for why I'm going to land up going this route: Windows is starting this whole SaaS paradigm, which I'm seriously not into at all. If I did land up getting into it, I'd probably only do it for the unix part of Windows. That said, better to develop on Linux as most servers are linux-based and, with Windows, you can ignore a whole host of things that don't make any difference (you know, like permissions, paths, etc).

Side note: Office 2016 feels like a joke to me. Much buggier than 2013. However, I really like Exchange, but I'm sure there are good Linux clients that could handle Exchange pretty well (there's also OWA, which is actually pretty good for my needs).

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Even though I'm using a mac almost exclusively at the moment, a couple of Linux distros worth checking out are ChaletOS and Zorin OS. Both are highly usable Windows replacements, as is Manjaro, as suggested by @GuruMeditation. We installed them at the last place I worked for (a mix of Manjaro, Chalet, Zorin and Mint due to some antediluvian hardware), in the telesales department after one of them managed to get CryptoLocker on her PC. Don't think they even noticed.

Also, while I'm chiming in with software recommendations, LibreOffice is a very capable MS Office replacement (and much better than OpenOffice).

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19 hours ago, GuruMeditation said:

I was raised on the C64 and then the Amiga. Those were great times for me. Sadly, my Amiga died in the 90s, so I reluctantly moved over to the PC. I used the Mac in college, but that was purely for Photoshop, and nothing ever had the same impact as my trusty Amiga.

Ha yeah! I had a ZX spectrum +2 with the tape loader which was awesome, used BBC in school, then got my Amiga 500. Never had megadrive/snes or anything like that.

Windows after that, win95 all the way to win10 mixed with a few Mac Minis and Macbooks. Amiga is the one that brings back the best memories though.

I'd go full time linux if they could meet my very undemanding requirements:

1) XAMPP
2) ST3
3) Filezilla
4) Gimp
5) Inkscape

...all good so far, then it starts to fall apart

6) Skype (bit ropey)
7) Spotify (broken and not updated)
8) Steam (good if you can get proprietary drivers working without tearing) - ultimately, it sucks and works much better on Windows
9) Studio One 3 with my RME babyface for recording guitars (absolute fail, and Wine makes me want to gouge my eyes out)
10) Office 2016, yeah there's libreoffice but it just doesn't cut it, I tried for a year. That said, I'd give it another go.
11)  Stop me having to do this for sanities sake! https://patrickmn.com/aside/lowering-gaming-mouse-sensitivity-in-ubuntu-9-10/  I have a gaming mouse, so it's xinput time. See when this article was originally written?!

I do actually really like Linux but number (9) is an absolute dealbreaker (and the other items on the second list are a compromise with no really decent solution, unless you store all your music locally, like I did in the 90s...) so I always have to have a WIndows partition i.e. keeping two OSs updated.

For me, it's like this: OSX is super expensive and no tinkering allowed (hackintosh nearly had me bald after a couple of weeks, and that was just getting it to work), Windows doesn't have the awesome unix style base (love me some terminal), Linux doesn't run everything I use.

Should just give up and become a farmer, far far away from computers :lol:

@DaveP I'll check them out thanks. @GuruMeditation manjaro looks promising. See what's happening? Already distracted lol.

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Ditched windows 2000 in '04 for *nix and never looked back. Desktop is ubuntu, servers are freebsd and debian. 

As far as the software goes, I have only been limited to windows by certain companies that won't develop on anything but windows. Those are specific to my previous employment though, so I don't care.

@SamC, Have you looked at ardour? I haven't used it in a while but does run on linux and did what I needed at the time. I also use musescore for printed versions.

 

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8 hours ago, SamC said:

...all good so far, then it starts to fall apart

6) Skype (bit ropey)
7) Spotify (broken and not updated)
8) Steam (good if you can get proprietary drivers working without tearing) - ultimately, it sucks and works much better on Windows
9) Studio One 3 with my RME babyface for recording guitars (absolute fail, and Wine makes me want to gouge my eyes out)
10) Office 2016, yeah there's libreoffice but it just doesn't cut it, I tried for a year. That said, I'd give it another go.
11)  Stop me having to do this for sanities sake! https://patrickmn.com/aside/lowering-gaming-mouse-sensitivity-in-ubuntu-9-10/  I have a gaming mouse, so it's xinput time. See when this article was originally written?!

I do actually really like Linux but number (9) is an absolute dealbreaker (and the other items on the second list are a compromise with no really decent solution, unless you store all your music locally, like I did in the 90s...) so I always have to have a WIndows partition i.e. keeping two OSs updated.

I don't use any of them, so I can't really comment. Studio One however looks a lot like FruityLoops to me, which I had on Windows. An alternative I used for Linux was LMMS. I'm not sure if you're tried it, but it can be found here: https://lmms.io/

As for Manjaro, I much prefer it over Ubuntu. Changing the Kernel version is a breeze, as is switching between display drivers. On the occasion I've messed things up, I've managed to solve it by reading through the docs. If you can't find what you're looking for there, just head over to the Arch website for answers, as Manjaro is just Arch with some nice additional features on top.

I've spent many years trying to find my perfect OS, and Manjaro seems to be it. Sure there are things that I need Windows for, like my printing and cutting software, but I'm always amazed to find open source alternatives.

But yeah, let's relive the Amiga years and all our problems will be solved ;)

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10 hours ago, SamC said:


9) Studio One 3 with my RME babyface for recording guitars (absolute fail, and Wine makes me want to gouge my eyes out)

I do actually really like Linux but number (9) is an absolute dealbreaker (and the other items on the second list are a compromise with no really decent solution, unless you store all your music locally, like I did in the 90s...) so I always have to have a WIndows partition i.e. keeping two OSs updated.

I feel you on number 9 (number 9, number 9) :-). It's been a while since I've used Linux in earnest, and it was the impossibility of getting a functional music production setup that was the nail in the coffin. Funny thing is that while desktop Linux never really caught on with the general public, it spoiled me for things like real virtual desktops and multi-tab file browsers WAY before they came to Mac/Windows.

I'd recommend Bitwig Studio or Renoise, both of which have native Linux support and will run VST plugins compiled for Linux. At least on Mac/Windows RME is known for best-in-the biz-hardware, drivers, and low latency performance, not sure about Linux (especially if FireWire).

I use Mac at home, Windows 7 at work, and would be happy to use a stable Linux again for development. Each OS has its flaws and strengths. I try to use cross-platform tools as much as possible (Sublime or Visual Code and MAMP/MAMP for Windows) to minimize mental gear-shifting.

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14 hours ago, rick said:

@SamC, Have you looked at ardour? I haven't used it in a while but does run on linux and did what I needed at the time. I also use musescore for printed versions.

I have in the past, eye gouging moments again.

6 hours ago, GuruMeditation said:

I don't use any of them, so I can't really comment. Studio One however looks a lot like FruityLoops to me, which I had on Windows. An alternative I used for Linux was LMMS. I'm not sure if you're tried it, but it can be found here: https://lmms.io/

But yeah, let's relive the Amiga years and all our problems will be solved ;)

Studio One 3 is my DAW of choice but I'll have a look at LMMS, thanks.

3 hours ago, WinnieB said:

I feel you on number 9 (number 9, number 9) :-). It's been a while since I've used Linux in earnest, and it was the impossibility of getting a functional music production setup that was the nail in the coffin. Funny thing is that while desktop Linux never really caught on with the general public, it spoiled me for things like real virtual desktops and multi-tab file browsers WAY before they came to Mac/Windows.

I'd recommend Bitwig Studio or Renoise, both of which have native Linux support and will run VST plugins compiled for Linux. At least on Mac/Windows RME is known for best-in-the biz-hardware, drivers, and low latency performance, not sure about Linux (especially if FireWire).

I use Mac at home, Windows 7 at work, and would be happy to use a stable Linux again for development. Each OS has its flaws and strengths. I try to use cross-platform tools as much as possible (Sublime or Visual Code and MAMP/MAMP for Windows) to minimize mental gear-shifting.

RME drivers are astonishing, USB latency is like sorcery, don't know how they do it! The problems in Linux are mostly with VST plugins written just for OSX/Windows.

I think I love/hate Linux at the same time, open source is great, but too many cooks can spoil the broth. Instead of fixing things and working together, devs seem to just 'fork' something into something similar (read: the same, but blue this time). Choice is great, but for me, Linux is like a beautiful guitar that doesn't stay in tune, you'd LOVE to play it and use it all the time, but you just know deep down that the old trusty one in the corner is more productive, less annoying and gets the job done much quicker. I think a big plus for (modern) Linux is how good it looks, budgie desktop & elementary OS are the gold standard and IMHO look and feel better than both OSX and Windows. They've done away with the old fashioned looking huge red cross/green tick combos and the other dated looking UI elements that still lurk in most distros.

Moaning aside, I'll always have a drive dedicated to it in my rig! Just about to try a few distros now as it happens :lol:

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  • 1 month later...

Can I add to this, in case anyone is using an RME babyface and linux, and has no sound. The solution for me was to boot into linux, unplug the USB from the babyface, plug it back in whilst holding down select and recall buttons. This puts the device into class compliant mode, which can then be seen in (in my case) Ubuntu Budgie.

I'm on linux right now, with sound!

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