Check out our Monthly Survey Page to see what our users are running.
Why I think we should stop recommending Ubuntu to new users coming from Windows
Page: «3/4»
  Go to:
tonR 7 days ago
Based on my personal experience, Ubuntu is still the most beginner friendly distros especially for new users (unless Valve proving otherwise with Arch-based Steam OS). Such like:

- PPA (it is hard for me to separate from it)
- very friendly GUI when installation (IMO)
- rarely use command line for app installation (something that Windows users weirdly afraid of)
- GNOME is very visual friendly for old people. (tested with my dad which have stage 2 glaucoma)
- A lots of solutions about any Ubuntu problems on internet, just search it.

Sure, Ubuntu have many flaws that some supporters (include me) abandoned it. But for me, Ubuntu still hold it's reputation of beginner friendly distros right now.
slaapliedje 6 days ago
Quoting: Dennis_Payne
Quoting: denyasisI end by saying I don't think this actually solves the problem of user not being familiar with Linux. We're mostly gamers here, how do you learn a new game?

What Linux needs more than anything is a proper tutorial. Built into the system on first run. Opt-out.
Fedora already has that. I haven't used it so I don't know if it is any good.
Gbome in general has this, it is just that Fedora has it set up to run on first boot, qs the installer itself then creates the first user.
Debian has it packaged, but weirdly does not install it with GNOME under Tasksel.
Rooster 6 days ago
Quoting: EhvisI really need to take some time to check kde again and see if all issues have been fixed now.

When you do, can you please report here (or create a new thread) on how it went?
Rooster 6 days ago
Quoting: slaapliedje
Quoting: Dennis_Payne
Quoting: denyasisI end by saying I don't think this actually solves the problem of user not being familiar with Linux. We're mostly gamers here, how do you learn a new game?

What Linux needs more than anything is a proper tutorial. Built into the system on first run. Opt-out.
Fedora already has that. I haven't used it so I don't know if it is any good.
Gbome in general has this, it is just that Fedora has it set up to run on first boot, qs the installer itself then creates the first user.
Debian has it packaged, but weirdly does not install it with GNOME under Tasksel.

Mint has this as well. But I think the number of Windows users who actually go through it can be counted on one hand.
rojimboo 6 days ago
Quoting: Rooster
Quoting: EhvisA year or so back I installed Mint because the MATE windows manager is a mess and I didn't really want to go back to the GNOME UI torture. Played a game, no GSYNC. Which surprised me because the Mint windows manager is supposed to be based on GNOME. But no amount of fiddling could make it work, it simply blocks it from functioning. So bye bye Mint.

So no, I don't think you can recommend Mint when it is just another DE that wants to do things differently and breaks things while doing that. Unfortunately, this seems to apply to everything except GNOME. Even KDE (which I checked longer ago though) decided that it knew better with kwin and subsequently broke variable refresh support. I honestly don't understand why there are so many windows managers / compositors when only one seems to function correctly.

Btw, according to this post, it should work on KDE: https://www.reddit.com/r/linux4noobs/comments/kcavlj/nvidia_gsync_list_of_compatible_window_managers/

If that's true, then I'll consider recommending Kubuntu/KDE Neon instead of Mint, as I think KDE is still better DE for new users than GNOME, for the reasons stated in the OP.

Hey I wrote that a while back, :) Glad to see someone linking to it, haha.

Yeah I tested VRR/GSync with KDE/kwin about a year ago and it definitely worked then. I would be very surprised that it stopped since then, but yes regressions do happen.

Anyways, enough derailment. Let's make a separate thread if needed!
Tom B 5 days ago
I agree but I think a bigger issue is bleeding edge vs stable packages. Gamers often buy new hardware to run new games. Ubuntu makes it more difficult than other distros to update the kernel, mesa and various other packages which improve hardware support and performance. When you do want to do a kernel upgrade you have to do a dist-upgrade which can cause its own set of problems. Personally I think gamers have a better overall experience with bleeding edge, rolling release distros.

Occasionally I see people recommending things like Debian or even RedHat to gamers for stability. While this is fine for your aunt who just wants to browse the web and read emails on a 5 year old laptop, the chances of it supporting a gamers shiny fairly recent hardware is a lot less.

We really need a middle ground that provides almost bleeding edge packages in a rolling release model with a little more stability and less potential to break or update the UI than Arch or similar. Perhaps this is where SteamOS might come in.

Last edited by Tom B on 26 November 2021 at 4:52 pm UTC
dubigrasu 5 days ago
Quoting: Tom BUbuntu makes it more difficult than other distros to update the kernel, mesa and various other packages which improve hardware support and performance. When you do want to do a kernel upgrade you have to do a dist-upgrade which can cause its own set of problems.
Having the latest kernels and mesa drivers on Ubuntu is not difficult, is actually quite easy even on LTS.
Indeed, you don't get them by default and you'd have to use "mainline" or an external repo. There's the argument that a Windows user might not know how to do that, but if he can handle Arch, he can handle a PPA.
Both Arch and Ubuntu are fine for gaming.
F.Ultra 4 days ago
Honestly the entire premise is completely wrong. Look at the LTT videos, close to all the problems that both Linus and Luke encountered would not have happened in Ubuntu on Gnome.

To be fair we don't have access to a parallel reality where they had tested out Ubuntu 20.04LTS so it could be that they would have encountered different issues, but we don't so the existing LTT videos are all that we have for the time being.
g000h 4 days ago
Quoting: Tom BOccasionally I see people recommending things like Debian or even RedHat to gamers for stability. While this is fine for your aunt who just wants to browse the web and read emails on a 5 year old laptop, the chances of it supporting a gamers shiny fairly recent hardware is a lot less.

You do not need to run a rolling-release distro in order to play *most* games. As someone who *is* using stable (and testing) releases, I can tell outright that gaming works fine. I'm not speculating on it from a rolling-release user's position.

I game very well indeed (currently) on Debian Stable. (It recently shifted from Testing to Stable, so the kernel is 5.10 and the Nvidia driver is 460.91).

I have not yet bothered to dist-upgrade from current stable (Debian 11 Bullseye) to new Testing (Debian 12 Bookworm), because it is a fairly recent jump (only a couple of months ago). Still, I'll probably be doing it soon. Then I'll get kernel 5.15 and Nvidia driver 470.86 instead.

Back when I played games on Windows (7 and 10) I was not bothering to upgrade the Nvidia graphics driver every week. In fact, I could go months or even years between driver upgrades and it had very little effect on the ability to play games under Windows. Having a bleeding-edge graphics driver is not needed in order to play games.

A few years ago (maybe 4 years) I did notice that some games wouldn't work on Linux due to old drivers, but improvements over the intervening years have made it so that most games work fine. (i.e. The older drivers work fine *now*, such as 460.91 whereas back then you needed graphics drivers to be more bleeding-edge else the games wouldn't work.)

As already mentioned you can still have bleeding-edge (or close to it) in Debian, by using Debian Unstable (13), Debian Experimental (14) instead of the better-tested and more-reliable earlier releases.

Last edited by g000h on 26 November 2021 at 8:02 pm UTC
keithtoo 4 days ago
  • New User
I don't know about the premise that the DE is what drives users back into the waiting arms of Windows. I've tried quite a few of them and found that there are features in Ubuntu that I miss, but they're all (save the most minimalist distros) similar enough to Windows that it only takes an hour or so to become proficient enough to be able to run programs. I find myself running google searches with "how to ... on linux" and quickly finding what I'm looking for without even specifying the distro. Popularity is what pushes search content to the top of the list, and Ubuntu seems to be the most popular and tend to rise for the most basic searches. It's when we get to the quirks of the various distros that solving problems becomes a little more complicated.

My wife is non-technical. She would have no idea of how to install Linux or the programs she needs. She doesn't want to consider that the familiar things she runs on Windows might not be compatible with any Linux environment, she doesn't want to fiddle around with Wine, or even hunt for packages that meet her needs. There is no way she'd even approach the terminal - she doesn't even mess around with the Windows command line. And, as has already been stated, Windows takes care of her needs. She uses my computer while it's running Ubuntu (after I showed her a few of the alternative programs I installed) and can navigate as much as she needs to, but I'll never make her a convert.

Windows holds your hand a lot. Nearly everything you need to do at the system level has a pretty dialog box with a few widgets to try. Linux comes with its own assortment, but you pretty much have to learn them at a much deeper level to be effective at them. And only the hard-core users find any delight in having to install yet another package to gain access to the things they need to fix. I don't mind it, but I can see where it could be daunting to someone who only has experience with Windows.

The bottom line, I think, is that Ubuntu (and even the most Windows-like distros) will never be Windows and people will tend to gravitate towards the things they find most familiar. While it's awesome that more games are now making their way into Linux systems (and often perform even better), I don't think that's ever going to be a major selling point over Windows.
While you're here, please consider supporting GamingOnLinux on:

Patreon, Liberapay or PayPal Donation.

This ensures all of our main content remains totally free for everyone with no article paywalls. We also don't have tons of adverts, there's also no tracking and we respect your privacy. Just good, fresh content. Without your continued support, we simply could not continue!

You can find even more ways to support us on this dedicated page any time. If you already are, thank you!
Login / Register

Or login with...
Sign in with Steam Sign in with Twitter Sign in with Google
Social logins require cookies to stay logged in.

Livestreams & Videos
Community Livestreams