My Uncle mentioned that the audio on this aging PC wasn’t working ever since he got it “repaired”. It was running Windows XP and we were initially unable to find the right audio drivers online so I thought I’d give Ubuntu a go on it. Sure enough, the audio worked fine in Ubuntu. However, with the machine running Ubuntu, it was incredibly slow and unstable. It crashed every 5 mins with either a white screen of death or a screen that looked like a jail with vertical bars going across it. My uncle said ”

Yeah, this ooobuntooo thing is ok but it keeps freezing like a zoo and I have to switch the computer off and on again

” 🙂 .

I tried Linux Mint 12 instead of Ubuntu and got the same instablility. I was left with no choice other than to leave with Windows set as the default grub option. Oh Ubuntu, you have failed me – You are slower and less stable than Windows XP, on at least 1 machine. In fact Windows was a better experience in terms of speed and stability by a significant distance! Sad days. Ubuntu, please step-up. I love you, but only because you are better than the competition.

Another problem that left a sour taste in my month was that my Uncles old monitor didn’t like grub and switched off after the initial bios splash screen, kept switched off during grub and then switched back on when the OS actually started booting. Luckily I guessed than Ubuntu is usually at the top of the menu and Windows at the bottom so was able to choose the right OS even though nothing was on the screen. but having grub invisible is not a good user experience! And it make it tricky to change the default to Windows (I had to guess the GRUB_DEFAULT value in /etc/default/grub).