What makes Ubuntu so great?

Matthew Carpenter matt at eisgr.com
Thu Jul 26 14:16:57 UTC 2007

On Thursday 26 July 2007, Joel Bryan Juliano wrote:
> Great CD design and artwork, best of all, it's free.
> On 7/26/07, Fajar Priyanto <fajarpri at cbn.net.id> wrote:
> > Hello all,
> > I'm writing an article about Ubuntu for my personal website about Ubuntu.
> > I want to know what makes Ubuntu to become #1 distro for the last 2,5
> > years according to distrowatch.com?
> >
> > Here is my exploration so far in #Ubuntu IRC channel:
> > (07:18:18 PM) ari_stress: hello guys, i want to know... why UBUNTU is #1
> > for the last 2 years according to www.distrowatch.com? What makes Ubuntu
> > so great???
> > (07:18:46 PM) IdleOne: ari_stress, ease of use and a great community
> > (07:18:50 PM) sipior: ari_stress: love?
> > (07:18:53 PM) ziroday: ari_stress: hey again, its because we "supposodly"
> > give the best user experience
> > (07:19:17 PM) Terrasque: ari_stress: the new and improved brain wipe
> > satelites
> >
> > Do you have any other reasons?

My reasons:
* All Free All the Time  (ie. No 'pay-for' versions)
	This is more than just being cheap.  It's about pay-for support benefitting 
from the experience of the ENTIRE user-base and the Free installs get all the 
software unhindered
* Canonical Support Contracts for corporate environments
* Server and Workstation use the same repos, even if they have recently been 
released using different CDs
* KDE and Gnome using the same repos, but targetting install CDs
* Debian APT-GET and all the power, flexibility, and userbase that come with 
* HUGE repository!  I used to install a base distro then compile from source 
what I really wanted.  Now, I maybe install one package from outside the 
repos and it's still a deb package (Webmin)
* Debian based (Debian has always been solid, if a little unfriendly to n00bs)
* OUTSTANDING Community!  From this list to the Wiki's, the amount of support 
provided by the users is amazing.  If I think "I wonder how I do this with 
Linux" I have about a 95% success rate of googling "site:ubuntu.com how do I 
do X" or "site:ubuntuforums.org how do I do X" and I get a hit which explains 
*exactly* how to get Ubuntu to do so.  Sometimes they are a version or two 
off from what I'm using, but the concepts are normally all the same.
* Beautify usability.  I'm a KDE user, but Ubuntu's Gnome implementation is 
the best I've ever seen.  The KDE experience is wonderful as well (that's not 
completely Kubuntu, but I love the wrapping of SUDO into everything)
* Culture.  Ubuntu is about an idea, even more than about free software.  This 
is seen throughout the community at every level.  Cheezy as it sounds, it's 
about "wellness to all".

Those are the top reasons for choosing Ubuntu that come to mind offhand.  
There are technical underpinnings to most of them, the details of which I 
will spare you.  The most understated item is "APT-GET".  It makes such a 
huge difference, allowing real in-place upgrades of systems from one version 
of the distro to the next, it makes software very easy to manage and install, 
and it's completely open and well-documented by many third-parties (even 

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