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transition from Ubuntu -> Debian to avoid Unity Desktop?


On several laptops and desktops, I made the transition from Fedora ->
Ubuntu about 3 years ago.  I did that mainly because Fedora updates
kept "breaking" the Nvidia proprietary video drivers and the
developers openly said that they didn't really care whether or not
their distribution had drivers that could work with the hardware.
Ubuntu developers at least recognized the problem and have a
repository for commercial/addon drivers and they try to make sure the
OS doesn't break the video drivers.

Anyway, I just learned that in the next Ubuntu, they are adopting the
"Unity Desktop". I did some checking on that and I totally hate it.  I
hate Mac GUI and am disgusted that the free/open movement pushes to
imitate it.  If I liked the look/feel of it, then I might be willing
to put up with the pains of transition in the next Ubuntu, but, well,
I don't.  They say they will have other desktop options, but, in my
experience, it will be tough to avoid the packaging and configuration
changes that they enforce on everybody in order to make Unity work
(maybe I'm too skeptical).

Can I escape Ubuntu to Debian?

1. Is Debian defaulting to the Unity Desktop too?  (please say no)

2. How can I make a transition to Debian from Ubuntu?  So I need to
change my apt repositories and then do what else?  If glibc or the
kernel headers are new, I'll have to recompile everything I've built,
but that's OK.

3. If I make this change Ubuntu -> Debian, will I end up back in
"Nvidia Hell" where the OS updates frequently break the
commercial/proprietary video drivers?  I understand that nouveau is
providing reasonable 2D for Nvidia cards, but my job requires the 3D
support that seems available only from the commercial driver.

I'm not trolling, not trying for a flame war here. If you like Unity,
more power to you.  If you like Ubuntu, OK, it has been good for me


Paul E. Johnson
Professor, Political Science
1541 Lilac Lane, Room 504
University of Kansas

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