Has anyone switched from OS X to linux?

UPDATE: after 2 - 3 weeks I was spending too much time on Google searching for solutions to my Linux issues. I wasnt getting much web dev done because I was busy being Linux sysadmin :frowning: I found a 2015 mb Pro on Craigslist and switched back.

The screen and trackpad on the Mac are much better. OS X just works in the background. It is not where I spend the majority of my computing time. 3x in the past 8 years I have tried a non Apple laptop. All 3x I was disappointed, for various reasons, and back to an Apple within a month or two.

tldr; I really wanted to save some $, but Linux just isn’t there for me yet.

The cost of Apple laptops is getting out of hand. I needed a new machine so I decided to give Linux a try, specifically Pop!_OS (based on Ubuntu). It’s been 2 days. So far there are lots of things I can do in OS X that I still need to figure out in Linux.

I was wondering if anyone else has switched and how long it took you to get comfortable?

I’ve been using both Linux variants and OS X (macOS) for the last decade. For me, it was the opposite as I had to get used to the Apple way of doing things after years of Linux. Aside from the audio work I used to do, I’ve been using my Macbook as though it were a Linux machine - using a package manager, sticking to open source software whenever possible, and preferring to edit config files in the terminal over GUI setups. My biggest hurdle when getting my next LInux laptop will be finding an email client that doesn’t suck.

Change doesn’t happen overnight, but once you are neck deep in a new OS, you adapt quickly. It’s a question of what you are trying to accomplish. What about your Macbook experience are you trying to replicate on your new machine? There may be a way to accomplish it, or you may find that you don’t need it at all.

Also, my Dad says that you can get OS X for something like $25 and install it on whatever machine you have. He said that you could probably even build a machine that is as powerful or more powerful than an equivalent Mac for cheaper.

Personally, I use Ubuntu 16.04. My Dad has a Mac, though. Linux is less polished in matters of UI and ease of use sometimes. You do have to get used to doing some stuff yourself and learning how to configure stuff without a GUI, but I have never had something in Linux that I couldn’t fix ( not that that probably isn’t true on OS X as well ). If you don’t know how to do something, it is very likely there is something somewhere on the Internet that will tell you how to do it.


There is a good size community out there for “Hackintosh” computers. Running OS X on unsupported hardware seems more difficult than learning OS X linux.

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I can’t launch VS Code from the command line, I am still working on installing zshell/prezto. My ‘flow’ feels clumsy and unproductive. I haven’t found a text expander to replace atext. Installing programs is a little confusing between apt-get, linuxbrew, and AppImages I am not sure which method to go for.

I was doing some stuff on the command line in OS x. I should probably just give it more time

I made this switch ~10 years ago.

The gap in “UI polish” has narrowed drastically in that timeframe. I see little reason to run Hackintosh these days.

You should be able to get up to speed pretty quickly using a nice friendly distro like Pop! (Can I assume you bought a System76 machine?)

@jastuccio I recommend ditching linuxbrew and AppImages and using just apt, which is fairly standard across Debian-like distros and will leave you with drastically more portable knowledge. For shells I’m a big fan of fish which has some very good built-ins for text expansion and the like, but it does break some conventions so oftentimes bash snippets need to be slightly tweaked.

As with anytime you change things up, some clumsiness is to be expected, but IMO is very worth it.

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I recently found fish, I now use it instead of bash. Its very nice.

Yeah. You just have to learn to rewrite bash snippets from:

export FOO=bar&&baz


set -x FOO bar; and baz

That Pop! OS looks good. Do you know how to put an ISO onto a USB drive?

I’m a huge fan of Etcher these days. Makes burning images much easier than using dd.


another vote for etcher

I installed Pop! on a 4 year old thinkpad. I wanted something inexpensive to try linux on.

I’d never heard of Pop! OS before. It looks nice. Does anybody know how it compares to Ubuntu? I know that it is based on Ubuntu, but what is it supposed to be better at. Is it just UI?

That Pop! looks very interesting… currently downloading it right now. Will try to run it as a VM under Parallels.

LOL, I’m starting up a virtualbox image with it right now. :smiley:

It’s taking forever to install. Did you get yours running?

Not yet, mine is taking a while, too. It seems to take longer than I remember my Ubuntu VM taking. I think it’s almost done.

Unfortunately I’ve tried to install it twice now, but it fails and won’t let me continue the install.

It asks me to select another device to install the bootloader on, but when I select /dev/sda and hit OK nothing happens. :frowning_face:

I tried multiple times too, adjusting some VM settings (maybe I thought it needs more memory or cpu)… but no go.

And this OS didn’t have Parallels Tools for it… so even if it got working, I predict performance will be bad under Parallels.

Hey I got it! I had to enable EFI on the Virtualbox. :smiley: Hope this helps you.

Also, I gave it 2221 MB ram and 4 cpus. I increased the video memory to 40 MB, but I doubt that would change much. I do think it helped UI performance, though.