I downloaded the beta version of the up coming Ubuntu Karmic Koala and gave it a try. To say I am impressed is an understatement. There is no doubt the amount of work that has gone into this release since Jaunty. Everything worked out of the box. I did not have to tinker with anything.
This then set me thinking about why people would pay money to get to use the upcoming Windows 7 when Ubuntu Karmic will also debut around that time and will be available for free. You see, it is not just some kind of empty propaganda or fanboyism when we say Ubuntu is a matured alternative to Windows. The OS that you use on your computer is a means to a certain end. Why then, should you spend money on a certain means when you can get one equally good for free?
After testing out the beta of Karmic Koala, I am now left with now doubt that Ubuntu is ready and can now be a perfect replacement for Windows 7. Karmic has basically everything that Windows 7 can boast of. It is polished, fast, supports a wide array of hardware among others. What more could you ask for? Not to mention that all the core applications you will need come with just one install.
I know some people will disagree with me. However, I strongly believe Ubuntu can now stand up to Windows as a viable OS on the desktop. Windows 7 is very polished, but underneath that shiny looking cover is a big pack of trouble. Believe me, Windows 7 is not going to be anymore different than its predecessors. Wait till the bad guys start bombarding it with trojans, malware and viruses, then you will see that despite its nice looks, it is still Windows.
To prove my assertions, Microsoft has now released its own security suite named MS Security Essentials. That alone should tell you how vulnerable Windows is and how desperate Microsoft has become- going to the extent of releasing an antivirus for FREE. That also is an implicit acknowledgment of the fact that Windows cannot stand on its own without a third party guard! Would you want to pay for such an OS? I would not in a thousand years.
Before you decide to pay for a Windows 7 license, I would humbly urge you to first download a copy of Karmic Koala, give it a try for a week or two and then make an unbiased assessment of it yourself. You will see that you would not have to spend money whatsoever on a pile of software that crumbles at the least attack made on it. Do you intend using Windows 7? Please tell us why or why you would not use Ubuntu.