Moving to Linux

Sun Jan 30 2022

The last time I posted a blog, I wrote about setting up a Windows Dev Environment. At the time, I only had one personal machine, which is based in Windows - and that's because I enjoy being able to easily play PC games :)

However, for hobby development work, I found that working with the Windows environment was a lot more difficult than I had anticipated. What follows is my experience in deciding to get a Linux machine.

Things like WSL seemed promising at first, but my initial forays into working with it weren't as ergonomic as I had expected. Plus, working with the native Windows command prompt was a big departure from working with *nix-like terminals, since I primarily use MacOS in my day job.

It's very possible I could have dual-booted my Windows machine with Ubuntu or some other flavor of Linux. However, the machine itself is particularly big and heavy, since it's a "gaming" laptop. For the last 6 years, it's been rare for me to be in any spot for more than 1 year, so I've never quite felt the need to buy a desktop for gaming.

Thus began my search to find a separate laptop for dedicated Linux usage. I initially considered buying a new laptop and putting Ubuntu on it, but that seemed very wasteful, financially speaking.

So I started looking into getting secondhand laptops to install Linux on. Since I didn't trust strangers on the internet all that much - who knows what kind of stuff they may have put in the machines before selling them, I reached out to close friends to see if they were willing to part ways with an older laptop of theirs.

Luckily, one of my close friends was willing to part ways with an old gaming laptop that had 16gb of RAM(!), which was a spec I was looking for in a development machine :) I'm truly indebted to that person for not only providing the laptop to me, but for also making sure it was all fixed up and ready for me to use when I received it.

I'm still deciding what to tweak in regards to the visual elements, but the neofetch screenshot below is what I'm starting off with.

neofetch output