When I discovered Linux two years ago, I started looking for what I called "The Perfect Rescue Distro", a somewhat mythical distribution that fitted into a CD, could mount Windows partitions, play all sorts of video/audio formats, include a productivity suite, decent image-manipulating tools, and burn backups...all in Live mode. Hence, over these two years, I have tested lots of distributions and some of them came really close to the ideal. I felt as if the Holy Grail was between an arm's reach.
However, something happened and I must abandon my quest. I never found what I was looking for; all distros I tested lacked either one feature or another. So, yes, I give up; I declare that my search for the perfect Linux Rescue Distro is officially over.
What made me abandon what once was my fundamental motivation to use Linux?
To begin with, 2011 was a real convulsive year in the Linux world. No, I will not talk about Ubuntu and its Unity UI; the distro that attracted me to Linux was Mandriva 2009, not Canonical's child.
Mandriva stumbled and, before I knew, I was not only using Mandriva, but also Pardus, Mepis, Mageia, and PCLinuxOS. I never distro hopped: all those beautiful OSs share my hard drives and I became pampered by the simplicity of Mepis, the consistency of Pardus, the familiarity of Mageia, and the responsiveness of PCLinuxOS. All Linux OSs interconnect, so I do not need to reboot to get my files from a different partition.
Along my process of adaptation, the role of the different communities was central. Everyday I go online, I visit the forums of those distros and I have learned about computers and technology as I had never in my life. For example, thanks to the help (and jokes) of PCLinuxOS users, the laptop that once sported a Windows 7 OS now boots three different Linux systems...and Microsoft's products were wiped out from the HD without any regret.
You see, it is this empowerment that made me abandon my quest for the perfect Rescue Distro. As I became a user of multiple Linux OSs, I discovered that my once primordial drive to use Linux was meaningless: there is not anything to rescue any longer! My computers work as they have never done it: now they are quick, efficient, and aesthetically-pleasing. I have no reason to use Windows and, consequently, I do not need to worry about how to rescue it.
With Linux, using a computer and retrieving files cannot be easier...even for a non-technical user like me. My search was over and I had not even realized it.