Trying to move from Mac to Ubuntu, again!

I’m trying to move from Mac to Ubuntu as a full daily driver for my personal use. Privacy, control, ethics … i suspect many here operate in a similar space.

I work with linux servers for my day job, so I’m comfortable with what’s under the hood in linux, it’s the apps for daily use that are giving me grief. I tried the move last year, but there is just too much friction in trying to get basic productivity working and having the nice clean simple consistent look of macos.

But I’m trying again. the datagrab and LLM landscape that seems to lack any ethics at all that is plaguing windows and the internet (and Adobe recently), and is probably going to plague Apple in the future, is forcing me to try again and be willing to live with compromise.

I need help with two areas. Email/contacts/calendar and keyboard mappings.

email/contacts/calendar - it looks like the top contenders are evolution or geary/calendar/contacts. I really would prefer a clean simple UI for each, and don’t want to be messing around with hacks like those required to get icloud calendar to sync with thunderbird. i want to stick with icloud for calendar and contacts for now as I have an iphone and share calendars with my iphone loving wife. the UI for those apps looks clean, and a look around online suggests they are easy to get synced to icloud.


  • any other alternatives to consider?
  • any tips or lessons learned in trying to get the above to sync with icloud?

keyboard mappings - I’ve used windows/linux for decades, I have the muscle memory for most common shortcuts, but for my hands, i just prefer the mac keyboard shortcuts.


what are the best ways to remap the linux keyboard to mac shortcuts? is it always going to be a config file somewhere? fine if it is i guess, at least i can version control that along with my other config files.

are there easy ways that are safe? kinto looks good GitHub - rbreaves/kinto: Mac-style shortcut keys for Linux & Windows. but the install script pulled by the given install with curl from the internet just links more scripts/zips and python files.

I’m being a bit lazy here, given enough time i can figure this all out, but any tips or help would be appreciated, thanks

also, just come across OnlyOffice

it looks clean and simple and what I am looking for

anything to beware off? privacy concerns? bad business practices? security breaches and poor breach disclosure?

Onlyoffice is good.

As someone who has gone around the world of operating systems, i gave up trying to make one operate like another. While it is possible, things can break and do weirdness after. As deep as the muscle memory is, a couple months and the change will work out. Though i do usually still type ifconfig when sitting at a windows pc at least once.


Calendar: If you only need to access icloud calenders, you could still use the webpage. I do this, if I am on other operating systems.

Otherwise you could also switch the backend to a self hosted nextcloud instance and convince your wife to sync their calenders / adress there. I don’t think there is much difference in the functionality. But that is of course pretty involved.

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Dratatoo is right, if you’re really worried about privacy, simply switching client OSs won’t be enough. Nextcloud is a good place to start, as they have mail, contacts and calendar that can also work through WebDAV.

For example: you’re on your current system editing a document with OnlyOffice, through Nextcloud’s OO integration, then emailing that document through Nextcloud’s mail plugin to your wife whose contact information is stored on Nextcloud as well. Your wife gets that email on her phones Mail app, opens the document using Pages, and then creates an item in Reminders, which is synced to Nextcloud. All you need is a web browser, and your wife gets to keep her phone.

Another plus about Nextcloud is they provide a light shim for self-hosted models to ingest your mail, contacts, calendar, photos, documents, etc. So you can spin up a LocalAI server on your end that exposes Llama 3 through a copy of the ChatGPT API. Nextcloud understands the ChatGPT API and you use Llama 3 as a stand-in, getting you close to 50% of the experience of the services Apple, MS, etc. will offer, but nothing leaves your server.

There are many other options out there as well, and they may suit your cases better, but Nextcloud is an easy, AIO place to start.

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That makes a lot of sense, thanks

Thanks for recommendations and details on nextcloud, haven’t used that provider before, will have a read and a test.