So Long, Windows
It all started when I got my current job. Since 2018, I’ve been rocking a gaming laptop from MSI, running Windows all this time. I started with Windows 10 and then upgraded to 11, even got one of those snazzy pro OEM licenses. The main reason I went pro was for Docker, but honestly, it didn’t bring me any extra benefits.
As a full-stack developer at my current gig, I use Typescript, Node, AWS, and Next — nothing too crazy. But even with 16 GB of RAM and a 9th-gen i7 processor, my computer struggled whenever I tried to fire up the backend project running on Lambdas. Everything just became painfully slow. I used to love WebStorm as my IDE but I had to switch to VS Code. It’s not my favorite, but hey, it gets the job done.
I’ve never been too careful about monitoring my computer’s performance, but now I noticed it was constantly hovering around seventy percent of memory usage. Every time I joined a Meets meeting, my laptop would just freeze up completely. Not cool.
This went on for weeks, and I also noticed that the OS itself, with nothing else open, was consuming around thirty-three percent of memory. Is that normal? I don’t have a ton of stuff installed or running simultaneously. No antivirus either — yeah, I’m living life on the edge without one.
That’s when I started to dance with the idea of Linux. I had tried Ubuntu LTS in the past (can’t remember the version), but it was slower than molasses, so I gave up on it. This time, I researched various distros, keeping it simple for a Linux newbie like me, no need to wrestle with drivers. Linux Mint was the chosen one.
I read about all the advantages of making the switch, especially the performance boost. Many forums praised it as a top choice for software development. However, I hadn’t encountered any major issues with Windows, especially with WSL 2, so that wasn’t the deciding factor for me.
My research led me to an interesting and important figure for some people, Richard Stallman, and the GNU project. I knew of their existence and the whole open-source thing, but just on the surface. I hadn’t taken the time to dig deep into it all. I won’t delve into GNU now, at least not yet, but I will say…