[sf-lug] Ubuntu 11.04

Eric W. Rasmussen ericwrasmussen at gmail.com
Fri Apr 29 20:29:49 PDT 2011

First, let me state that when it comes time to reinstall Linux, Ubuntu 
will not be a choice.  I am at a point now that I am considering redoing 
everything just to get this monster off my machine. This is definitely 
one of those times when a spare computer comes in handy.  I had read 
some good things about 11.04 and it was asking me to upgrade, so I said, 
"Sure.  What could possibly go wrong"? I am reminded of Windows Me and 
Vista.  It's that bad, or maybe worse.

When it first loaded I expected all of my GUI customizations to be 
destroyed, but they weren't.  This made me worry because I was under the 
impression that Unity was an independent GUI.  The fact that it held on 
to my gnome/nautilus settings meant that there were going to be 
compatibility issues.  I was not wrong.

I'm going to start with their pride and joy... that trainwreck of a 
launchbar. The thing is huge and unwieldy.  What makes it all worse is 
that the main menu is scrapped, so if you want a program that is not in 
the launch bar, you have to go and search it out in a full screen 
jungle. What they are trying to do here is be more like OSX, but they 
fail when it comes to going directly to a folder in "Places"... cuz it 
ain't there anymore!!!!  Well, that's not true, exactly.  Just like OSX 
and "Finder", if you have a program open it tries to display the menu in 
the header toolbar.  So you basically have to minimize all open windows 
and then... AND GET THIS.... Mouseover on the toolbar to see the places 
link!!!  It's hidden unless you know that it is there.  Otherwise, you 
are forced to click your way through your /home directory, or worse, 
open /home and backup to get into /root . No more quick shortcuts to 
/var/www/ !!!!

You know how you can have minimized windows in the taskbar?  Not 
anymore.  You have to click on the launchbar, just like OSX.  Oh, 
sure... the behemoth disappears when a program is in full screen mode 
(after a while), but what good is that when you have to switch quickly 
through programs?

Workspaces has been eternally screwed.  One thing that they did was 
disable the drag option.  You know... you want to throw a window over to 
another desktop.  But you can't because Unity now tries to resize it 
like in Win7.  Which I think is a really great feature when you are 
dealing with an OS that doesn't have multiple desktop functionality.  I 
used to also enjoy my custom keystroke to show all desktops at once.  
Really handy when I want to minimize everything so that people don't 
eavesdrop on my work when I get up for a cup of coffee.

I really liked having my Shutoff Button on the left top.  Now I can't 
move it at all from the top right.  In fact, any widget that you wanted 
to load in the top bar is gone.  So my systems monitor graph that I use 
to watch resources has to be accessed through the applications jungle.  
Is there something up there that is useless to you? Like the 
Broadcast/Chat program? It's there forever now.

Good luck reconfiguring it so that it all works.  Even if you do figure 
out how to change the size of the Launchbar, the Desktop Effects program 
isn't even set as default and it can't be accessed in the Menu Jungle.

I have also noticed that it is sucking battery power a little more than 
before.  I've lost about 20 minutes of a 4.5 hour battery.

So, anyway.  I had to go back to Login Screen settings and set it back 
to Ubuntu Classic.  It has taken away some of the things that I really 
liked about it and I am seriously thinking of switching to another 
Distro.  Any recommendations?  I'm a student of Linux with moderate skills.

Thanks for hearing my rant.  Ubuntu 11.04 is junk.


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