jbi, I am happy to oblige. I did eventually get Firefox 3.5 going, but somethign really awful happened before that.
When I came to work yesterday, my PC was sleeping in Windows 7 RC. I rebooted to play in Linux last night and it came up at what I think was 800x600 (on my 1440x900 display, no less) to complain that Ubuntu was running in low-graphics mode. I could restore from a backup of my config (which was fruitless), I could reboot and try again, and I could set up a new config. So I set up a new config and restarted, and it was OK again. That did not happen before I got the ATI proprietary drivers (which I ran without for a few days prior to getting them Sunday night). We'll see what happens tonight, but if it does the same thing again I'll dump those drivers and go unaccelerated, I guess.
That's really weird; off the top of my head I do not have an explanation, other than that it sounds like your X configuration got corrupted somehow. A few random thoughts:
- Are you using a KVM? Perhaps X mis-detected your monitor?
- I've never really completely trusted wubi; there seem to be a fair number of reports of mysterious glitches from people who use it. Yes, it is a cool way to try things out if your system already has Windows on it; but if you plan to have Windows and Ubuntu co-existing for any length of time, IMO you should either do a true dual-boot, or run one of the OSes in a virtual machine.
- Video and WiFi are the two areas where hardware support tends to lag the bleeding edge distros a bit. Perhaps not coincidentally, these are the two areas where Linux still relies heavily on proprietary closed-source drivers and firmware. With all the different distros out there (and the rapid, unsynchronized release cycles), hardware vendors simply can't keep up with certifying their drivers for every version of Linux.
Kinda freaky; not sure what I'd do if that happened on a production machine.
If you want to run Linux on a production machine, your viable options are:
- Ubuntu LTS (Long Term Support), which is currently 8.04.
- Debian Stable (currently 5.0).
- Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), or its free derivative (CentOS).
- SuSE Linux Enterprise.
I would not
recommend running any of the "bleeding edge" distros (latest Ubuntu, Debian Testing/Unstable, Fedora, OpenSuSE) in a production or mission critical role. At work our production Linux server runs Debian Stable; my work desktop runs Ubuntu LTS; and we're also using a stripped down Debian Stable as the OS for an embedded product.
I do run 9.04 at home, but I'm willing to tolerate the occasional "WTF?!??" moment there in exchange for getting to try out some of the more bleeding edge features! Edit
: Or to put it another way: Think of the non-LTS Ubuntu releases as betas for the next LTS release. Similarly, Fedora releases are kind of like betas for the next RHEL.