I have a (5th Gen?) ThinkPad just itching to run Linux. I’m a decades-long Mac user also itching to try Linux. This combination meant that I’ve been experimenting with Linux for several months.

But it’s over…for now.

I’ve found running Linux to be death by 1,000 cuts. Things like…

  • There seem to be 50 ways to remap caps lock to control but for the life of me I can’t get any of them to work consistently. This is an immediate must-have thing for me.
  • Why can’t I copy and paste from a terminal? I’m sure it’s possible but I can’t figure it out.
  • The Touchpad on the ThinkPad is horrible and I can’t configure it properly.
  • Why is there no sound?
  • Why can’t I get Dropbox to start automatically?
  • Shit, I forgot I don’t have TextExpander, which I use constantly on my Macs

All of these things are solvable, but solving them isn’t why I want to run Linux. I want to have a relatively inexpensive, non-Mac laptop with a decent keyboard. I want to learn some of the magical things available to me on Linux. I want to experiment with different desktop environments or distributions.

This weekend I spend half a day re-installing Manjaro i3. That’s not true, I spent about 20 minutes installing it, and then four hours swearing at everything I couldn’t get to work properly. I’ve tried a few other things like Ubuntu, Mint, Manjaro xfce, etc. but i3 is the one I’m most interested in, but oops! “There’s an error in your .i3/config”. Of course there is.

It just hasn’t been fun. Linux should be fun, right?

I’m going to shelve this experiment for a while and revisit it later. I don’t know that I’ll ever be comfortable actively running both macOS and Linux. If I were going to go all-in Linux, I’m sure it would be a better experience because I wouldn’t have a machine running macOS right over there that basically just works and has more than everything I need.

I’m not giving up on Linux yet. Just pressing pause.