Since last night and up to this moment as I am writing this, my face is gleaming with joy because of a computer problem breakthrough I had last night. You see, hubby's laptop has been in operational hiatus for several months now because of a sudden mysterious breakdown it had (up to now we still couldn't figure out the cause of it, but I was suspecting it was an erroneous Windows Update, I hear that PC breakdown happens all the time because of this).
Anyways, the PC just went bizerk and Windows Vista does not load, all you'd see after it unsuccessfully boots is a black screen, the rescue and recovery tool has also gone haywire and has disappeared (corrupted too I guess). So, being the trying hard techie geek I am, I've tried all sorts of solutions to fix the problem, I did a lot of googling to see similar problems and how they were solved, but all of these to no avail. Since Vista comes loaded with the laptop and we do not have the installation and recovery disks, I've turned to other available options like using NeoSmart's Vista Recovery CD - a promising solution which worked wonders for others (but sadly didn't work for ours), rescue and recovery re-installation which didn't work either, and many other techie exploits.
Like anyone having this kind of dilemma, hubby and I were most concerned for the files (more importantly the photos) which would be lost and wiped out completely if we are to do a re-installation of Windows which seemed to be the only possible solution, so we were looking at that step as a final resort. We've put aside the laptop for a while, stubborn as we are, we still didn't turn it in to a repair shop (since I was still hopeful I could do something about it and I knew that the technician would most likely do reformat and re-installation just the same, so why bother sending it to one when I could just do that myself anyway should worse comes to worst). Well, that stubborness proved to be a good thing after all!
As the saying goes.. never say die! So, I gave the laptop one last shot these past 2 days before finally surrendering, and woohooo! this is where Google really comes in handy. After having to research many hours and (reading tons of posts in PC troubleshooting forums), I came across this "heaven sent OS" (operating System) - Ubuntu!!! (can't hide my glee, huh!).
I've heard about this Linux OS before but have dismissed it as I was under the (wrong) impression that it's designed only for programmers and that it's too hi-tech or too far-fetched as far as user-friendliness is concerned. Like many "brainwashed" users of Microsoft Windows systems, I never once considered any other existing OS out there to be at par with Windows, and boy was I very wrong!
Ubuntu is a FREE operating system, no need to spend a dime on downloading and using it (unlike Windows), and it proved to be our "PC-life saver". From my researching, I gathered that Ubuntu can save a dead PC and its installation disk utilities can help recover files from a PC that no longer boots properly. So what I did was I downloaded Ubuntu installation disk into a DVD, and used it for our laptop boot-up and presto! I was able to recover and save our lost files from the previously inaccessible hard disk. Hubby and I were so ecstatic about this, we almost lost hope of saving our valued photos (never mind the other files! by the way, big lesson learned - back-up, back-up, back-up!)
We got so excited that we decided to do away with Windows Vista on hubby's revived laptop, so I installed Ubuntu OS instead, I'm so glad I did! After exploring this new OS, which comes with built in free software applications too (like OpenOffice, in place of Windows MS Office), I discovered how user-friendly it is, how simple and straight forward the OS is, and how easily we can adapt to this OS. It proves to be a very efficient and easy to use OS (I realized it's even more preferred by many after having been to many tech forums).
Most definitely, we're giving this OS a try for hubby's laptop. I'm not doing away (yet) with my own laptop's preloaded Vista, so hubby and I can have 2 different OS to compare and evaluate side to side, but having discovered Ubuntu really provided the desperately needed fix we were looking for to bring back hubby's dead PC to life, it proves to be an excellent and impressive OS alternative. Big thanks to the developers! (If you want to check it out for yourself, click on Ubuntu's logo or link above).