"The office desktop was actually my original motivation, as it
was underpowered (the university hardly went all-out, shall we say)
and it would frequently get bogged down on fairly commonplace
tasks. Really, Ubunutu’s features and available software
compares quite favorably to XP, and I really haven’t had any
cause, save for one work-related program, to ever boot the machine
in XP. For all of its problems, I will admit that there are a few
Vista features/programs that I prefer. For example, I am not yet
100% sold on OpenOffice 3.0 v. Microsoft Office 2007. I prefer both
Word and PowerPoint to their OpenOffice counterparts, but the jury
remains out, as I have yet to do any major projects since making
the switch. I also have not yet been able to get my scanner to work
in Ubunutu, nor one of my printers.
"In general, however, I have been quite impressed and would
recommend anyone would is thinking about giving Linux a try to do
so. If you have an older machine that seems to have gotten too
sluggish, you might have revitalize it with a Linux install.
Granted, it will depend on what you need your machine for, but if
it is for web surfing, e-mail and office stuff (word processing,
spreadsheets and the like) then you will lose no functionality. I
will note that peripherals can be problematic. My HP printers at
school (a laser and an inkjet all-in-one) worked without me doing
anything, but my Brother all-in-one laser and my Epson photo
printer at home have been a different story."