For the last 24 hours I’ve been configuring and tweaking Ubuntu 13.10 on a Samsung model R580 notebook. The notebook is three years old. It initially came with Windows 7 installed. My daughter had been using it for her school, and later regular work, until the beginning of December. At that time the machine picked up a root kit and in the process of her trying to rid the machine of it, wound up essentially trashing the hard drive. I was planning on giving her a new Samsung with Windows 8.1 and Kaspersky installed anyway. So I prepped the new one, getting it fully upgraded and patched, with Kaspersky installed, then delivered it to her in Gainesville where I swapped the new one with the old one.
Once I got the old machine home I physically cleaned it up, created a 4GB thumb drive with Ubuntu 13.10 installed on it, booted the notebook via the thumb drive and then proceeded to wipe Windows 7 off and install Ubuntu. Every device, and I mean every device, was supported by Ubuntu.
The Samsung R580 has the following essentials: 4GB memory, quad-core i5 M430 processor running at 2.27GHz, a 500GB HDD, a 1366 x 768 panel, and a Blu-Ray disk. The usual panoply of internal devices such as WiFi, USB 2, HDMI, and eSata round out the notebook. I’ve tested everything except HDMI and eSata. And it all works.
The screen capture is from a Star Trek (2009) Blu-Ray disk playing in the drive. I decided to go for a higher standard this time with regards to disk media; in the past I considered it a minor miracle if I got a regular DVD playing. Getting Blu-Ray playback properly installed turned out to be far easier than DVD playback. I’ve also been able to play back Hulu, YouTube, and other streaming services that can support Flash and HTML5. Unfortunately I can’t get Netflix to play back because of its dependency on Silverlight. I really think I need to get rid Netflix anyway.
I’ll have a deeper “review” of the current state of Linux in the near future. But for now, Linux in general and Ubuntu 13.10 in particular has proven its mettle. I remember from my past encounters with this notebook running Windows 7, and I can say without exaggeration that it runs considerably faster and smoother with Ubuntu 13.10.