This computer is running Linux at the moment, specifically Ubuntu. I grew weary of Mandrake’s packaging scheme, and the Debian-based Ubuntu sounded like a good choice. It’s like Debian, but more up-to-date.

I’ve been impressed with it so far. The installer even detected my wireless card and asked for a network password.

The only major problem I found—and it was a significant problem—was that whenever the network was reasonably busy, the interface became unresponsive. Whilst downloading a big file, two-thirds of letters typed on the keyboard were dropped. Not much good, really.

After much aggravation, I finally found the culprit: the PCI latency for the PCI-to-Cardbus adapter was set ridiculously high, allowing it to block the PCI bus for a large proportion of the time. It was set at 168; a recommended value is between 0 and 5. With the aid of gpowertweak, I lowered it to 4. It fixed the problem; in fact, it now works better than it ever did in Windows.

Update—this solution doesn’t work nearly as well as I had hoped, alas. At least I’m getting a new desktop machine this weekend.