Hi there. I follow up this discussion and I think it can be helpful for you to have the point of view of a windows user in order to understand which are the reasons that could drive a person like me to change to Qubes os.
And… Also the reasons why I am still stucked to my windows laptop instead of getting ahead with Qubes.
Mainly the first reasons I have chosen to get to Qubes are privacy, security and anonymity. I worked for decades as a paramedic and I am deeply involved in health concerned topics.
From 2013 I decided to become an instructor for health related purposes and I cover a lot of topics mainly for nurses.
As you certainly knows, there are differents ways of teaching.
The first one is to stick to government and system requisite and speak about the general point of view which in some points is far away from real job. My students often ask me to speak “true” not to speak system… Keeping the line in this environment is sometimes like to acting undercovered.
The second aspect of my life is that I am an ecology and environment activist, implied in topics in relation with health concerns.
The 3rd aspect of my life is that i am christian definitely.
And as you can imagine, these 3 aspects of my life need to be separated hence I would get fired which has already occured.
So I began to search for ways to separate, compartimenting my digital life.
And digging the web, Qubes os seems to be the best option,no doubt about it.
Some recent events occured in my life y the way.
I realized, digging deeper that I would have to enhance a lot my privacy. When I went on digging deeper on some health related topics in order to get some valuable scientific piece of truth, I realized that main web stream was far deeper from truth than I really thought it was and i get caught and surprized to see how fast you can be analyzed and categorized and decided to get ahead.
By acting this way, I get time after time some evidences that I was somehow tracked and spied in a windows classic environment.
Anonymity is not a real option but a real concern…
On the same time, and in order to enhance the consistency of my courses, I decided to create my own training center from scratch and begun to learn how to develop web apps and online courses. And my first misinterpretation was to think it would be simple with Qubes os.
I followed the recommendations, bought a Nitrokey X230 lenovo laptop and… Realized very rapidly some important things.
I had no linux prio experience and, sorry for this but coming from windows to linux, and especially to Qubes is like passing from air to water, becoming a fish when you were a bird !
2 worlds looking at each other with so little communication between them !
I mean… After 2 days, trying to understand how things could work I get the strong impression that using Qubes os on a daily base would require a master degree in computing…
And I will explain you why.
The first thing which is very hard to understand is that, for a large majority of configurations there is no GUI…
This, is very confusing at the beginning. A normal windowsian is used to configure out some stuffs by answering questions, downloading some additionnal softwares which would keep on asking him to make some choices.
He is hardly concerned by the way things works inside and except for some specific profiles will not have a programming vision of things.
I hardly ever thought about a certain strategy, considering options…
I simply downloaded softwares one after the other that I thought this could handle th job for me.
So working with command lines… Tricky job !
But after all why not ? So I decided to go ahead.
After all i am not stupid and with the help of tutorials, documentation, it will be ok.
it’s not ok at all !
There are, as far as i know nothing very interesting after the “unboxing and install” lectures and videos you can find around.
By not very interesting, i mean concrete and useful for a newbees.
(Please note that here I describe the point of view of a windowsian user who naturally expects to find out tons of tutorials training courses, demos on youtube, elearning platforms, and so on and please apologize for aiming only this point of view. It is not at all the reflect of the substantial job your team does on a daily basis, and their clear implication. This is just to stand out the point of view of a classical windowsian user and his expectations.)
The official documentation is too generic in some consideration and the other supports I could see are too technical and somehow too hard to understand when you know nothing about linux and or Qubes and when you harly understand how things works.
I leave you some questions that I faced.
For some reasons, Nitrokey configured my qubes version in english while i am a french speaking person… How could I change the settings once installed ?
I have a printer… How can I configure it out for it can simply print and scan documents ?
These only “details” can really take you hours when you have never configured it !
Then come the other problems…
I mean… Using pgp ! yes ! I would love it !
Using SSh! yes great !
Euh… Where is the button ?
I joke ut felt really frightened so see how much I was out of reality…
Configuring a network without even knowing what I was doing was my reality in a windows environment…
Reading again the rich contributions to this post, I can tell you that normal windowsian user like me has gotten zombified for the long time and live on a myth…
Reading something about security, downloading a software, configuring it out and leave to others the way to handle my own security….
It’s crazy when you think about it !
“And now you have to QVMpref …” Yes, of course ! But what is QVMpref ?
During 2 nights I tried out. Both on my template vm and my appvm.
Until I realised i had to go to dom0…
Now let’s install some useful softwares…
First get the official pgp signature…
Oups ! there seems to, before doing this, making a pgp split.
So, now, let’s go ahead.
Get the pgp signature from the soft provider , allow the trust and then store it…
Ok but where and how ? On which file ? Another night upon this…
Ok, seems it is done, and now, to install the soft, type snap install…
Does not work on template vm since it is not connected to the internet and so can not retrieve the package.
Ok, let’s try with the appvm.
Good it works !
Time to go to sleep. log off and the next day… modifications disappeared !
And these are only few of configuration issues I had to face lacking of basic knowledge…
As far as now, to tell you the truth, my Qubes os is still under construction on the laptop while it should be everyday’s operating system and i am disappointed about this…
What could we do to avoid this kind of disappointment ?
From the user side, doc and step by steps tutorials should be extended to newbees level of knowledge.
From the instructor side it is a very challenging job to work on this.
If somebody could explain me things in a comprehensive way, I could then transform it into comprehensive and progressive courses.
And if we can propose online video trainings, we would have gone a big step away from a windowsian point of view.
So, if some of are interesting in a long lasting, challenging and not paid work, please consider i could be of help on this.
Good evening to you all and don’t hesitate to contact.