It all started when I wanted to play a DVD on my laptop. The default Ubuntu movie player recognised that a DVD was in the drive but wouldn't play it at all no matter how I approached the problem.
I searched for a solution and the normally awesome VLC appeared to work for some people, I use it on my Mac all the time. Downloading VLC through the Software Centre was a doddle but the DVD still wouldn't play on my system.
More searching... VLC apparently needs something called libdvdread3 installed, probably. It might be 4 not 3 though or maybe 5.
Found out how to do that using Terminal, copy and paste and etc. Nothing.
More searching and I realised I was in a Search-of-Death loop of the most irritating kind: site1 refer to site2 refer to site3 refer to site1. Much of the searching brought up instructions for previous builds of Ubuntu or talked about pieces of software that weren't applicable to my system.
Then it turns out that for legal reasons Ubuntu doesn't work with encrypted DVDs and I need to install Restricted Drivers. That makes sense and I was aware of this having already got Flash and a few other bits and bobs playing but i must have missed something.
(Why there isn't a 'Read Me' installed on the desktop of all new Ubuntu installations with some links and straightforward up to date instructions to the common problems new users will face I'll be dashed if I know.)
Bored by now, I thought I'd try out Abiword, a basic and beautiful word processor I use fairly regularly on other systems.
Abiword was in the Software Centre and was installed in minutes.
Crash Bang Wallop.
It wouldn't save, wouldn't allow copy and paste and crashed all the time. All the time.
The reviews mentioned that it was an experimental build or some such that had been installed and I should get an older version from the site.
Off I go, but you can't just download older version; you are sent to back the Ubuntu Software centre and at least one of the help links gets you into a Search-of-Death loop and by this time I was bored and disillusioned and my hopes were dashed.
Very sadly, I restarted back into Windows, fired up Abiword and it worked a charm.
So I got on with some writing.