"Amigos y nadie más. El resto, la selva"
-- Jorge Guillén

Linux adoption improves computing quality

During my years as a junior sysadmin, I quickly realized the importance of a good night sleep. Many, many sleepless nights taught me the importance of having a stable environment to avoid spurious problems i.e. preventable failures.

The first sign of this was when I started converting my friends and family computers from other popular operating systems to Linux. The number of calls I used to receive for various issues went from 10 or so a week to 0 as more and more made the switch.

Linux conversion graph This graph shows an inversely proportional relationship between the use of Linux and support phone calls

Typically the conversions followed this line:
Person A: "my computer is slow. Can you please help me, I have such and such big project to finish by XYZ date."
Me: "okay, I'll be there this weekend" (or that same day depending on my availability)

I'd then proceed to take my usual toolkit of software, spend countless hours fixing malware issues and other nasty problems. And eventually, as the same problem recurred, suggested switching to Ubuntu Linux.

Initially the switch caused people to be a bit off their ground, since they had years used to familiar interfaces and sets of menus for programs that they needed for their daily work or school projects; but the learning curve quickly subsided as they approach the new operating systems with patience.

In the end, about 1% of the people converted requested to go back to their other operating system. I have to admit that it was a bit discouraging for me, but I needed to understand their need and respect their preference. Those that continued with their new operating system called me back and constantly thanked me because I saved them time and a lot of money on technical support issues that they no longer needed to pay anybody for!

I knew that converting people to Linux would stop them from paying me, or others, for support. However, I valued my sleep more than money, and especially, I valued the truly thankful friends and family who would forever be grateful about their new toy.


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