Linux Just Works
But I’m a developer. I want more. I want ruby. And subversion. And cvs. And build tools. Each is only an apt-get away. There even is a convenient GUI for this. Ray’s vision of the future, I have today. And whereas Windows Update kept the OS and selected Microsoft tools up to date, the Debian packaging manager keeps everything up to date and in synch. Without ever needing to reboot.
Source: Sam Ruby: It Just Works
This is why I always try to have a Debian netinst CD within arm's reach. Given a working high-speed internet connection, I can go from a random PC, tabula rasa, to a fully functioning and useful server or workstation in under 20 mostly unattended minutes. And as a server, that little thing can jump right into handling files, email, authentication, and a whole pile of other office-related necessities.
Given about 10 more minutes, I can have a Subversion repository, Trac install, and a full suite of collaboration tools available. And then...? It all just keeps working, mostly. And for the most part, an
apt-get upgrade from time to time keeps things up to date.
I've never, ever had this experience with Microsoft technology. On the other hand, I suspect that I should give Ubuntu a look or two, from what I've been hearing.