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Linux vs Other Operating Systems : 7 common myths busted

Updated on August 8, 2014


When it comes to operating systems people have always hailed Windows and Mac OS X as the two front-runners of the OS battle. However, due to recent efforts of the ever-growing Linux community, this scenario has changed only to accommodate Linux as a beleaguered underdog. Thanks to its escalating popularity amongst desktop users worldwide, the open source operating system has already been deemed as a serious competitor to Windows and Mac OS X . Similarly on the server side, many corporations are switching to Linux due to its reliability and speed. So then, what is it that makes Linux so special when contrasted with other OS’s namely Windows and Macs? Why are many people switching to an operating system that is not only free but is not even backed by any multi-million dollar corporation? This article answers many such questions.

Why not Windows or Mac OS X?

Ok, let us tackle the problems with Windows and Macs first. Windows, developed by Microsoft Corporation, is the Operating System with the largest market share. However, this doesn’t make it the best when it comes to quality and consistency as it is constantly marred with problems of viruses and malware. Also, the initial investment in a Windows PC is much higher than what a consumer expects to pay. First it is the cost of the hardware itself, then the cost of the license to run Windows, then an Office program, and finally to protect it all, a decent antivirus software. In short, the license may carry an affordable price tag but the expenses finally pile up to burn a large hole in the consumer's pocket. As for computers that come with Windows pre-installed, the cost of antivirus, Office utilities and other non-free programs usually overrides the buyer's budget. Furthermore, the version of Windows provided is usually Home or Business edition, which lacks many features the Ultimate version provides.

Coming to Macintosh computers, they, unlike Microsoft, prefer to sell their software bundled with their own hardware. Apple claims that their design, feature-set and stability are much superior to any of Microsoft products; even if it comes at a very high price point. Nevertheless, Macs, despite their holier-than-thou attitude towards Windows and Linux, are far from being the perfect computers. Consumers and Microsoft employees frequently complain that Macs are significantly overpriced than a normal laptop/PC. Apple does have many quality programs for its users but most of them are highly priced and are not open source. Furthermore, Apple has gained notoriety for making closed, locked-down Mac exclusive products thus creating a walled garden of their own.

Note: The points mentioned above are not intended to offend any Windows or Mac lovers. I'm merely pointing out that Windows and Macs, contrary to popular belief and marketing claims, are far from being perfect and flawless products.

Why Linux?

After pointing out all the downsides of Windows and Macs, I come to the main point, that is, why should anyone switch to Linux. We all know that it is for geeks, don't we? Besides, how good can an OS be if it completely free and open source? Let's tackle all these questions one by one.

Myth 1: Linux is just for geeks

Linux is for everyone. While Linux based distributions like Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Fedora are developed with the non-technical user in mind, Slackware and others appeal to the more geeky ones. Believe it or not, installing Ubuntu is actually easier than a Windows installation , and using it requires no special skills. 

Myth 2 : Linux can’t handle Excel, Word, Powerpoint

Linux can handle all the major file formats when it comes to documents as it comes with a powerful opensource Office suite called (soon to be replaced by Libreoffice). So, apart from doing all the spreadsheets, presentations, and word processing out of the box, Linux can do tasks like publishing, image editing using only free and open source applications.

Myth 3 : Linux is free, so it sucks.

Many people think that Linux, because it is free, cannot be considered as a 'product', and thus, it may not be as good as Windows and Macs. This belief however, is completely wrong. Linux is the result of contributions by millions of users from all around the world, and it is through their incessant efforts that Linux continues to be free. Besides, what’s bad about being free anyway? After all, the best things in life are free; aren’t they?

Myth 4 : Desktops are dead, so is Linux

With the rapid emergence of smartphones, tablets and a myriad of handheld devices running powerful softwares, the popularity of desktops is slowly falling. However, this process is slow, and many have denied the fact that desktops will get replaced by devices like tablets; at least for the next 5 years. Whichever way the paradigm shifts, Linux enthusiasts won't be disappointed as almost all the next-gen gadgets being developed are already capable of running Linux. Consider for example, Android smartphones which are rapidly overtaking Apple's iphones; these devices are running on Android Operating System which is based on … yes, you guessed it right … Linux. Also when it comes to tablets, Android powered tablets have started appearing in the market ready to take on Apple's ipad. Finally, with the steady growth of Linux based netbooks, one can without any doubt, conclude that whatever happens to desktops, Linux isn't dead or dying; it is in fact, the future.

Myth 5 : But Linux can’t handle my favorite software XYZ which is windows-only.

Linux maybe not be capable of running a particular program like Photoshop, but it does have an opensource alternative with equivalent features called Gimp. Many such closed-source programs exist to which Linux provides great open source alternatives. A good way to find those is through this site which provides a list of quality alternatives to many leading applications. Furthermore, a popular software called Wine makes it possible for Linux users to run many Windows programs without any virtualization or emulation. If that too, doesn't suit the user, he or she can always try dual booting which many Linux users do.

Myth 6 : Linux can’t do gaming

Windows, unlike Linux and Macs can always boast of the thousands of games it is capable of running. However, that doesn't mean gaming is a Utopian concept to the Linux world. Many indie developers have started developing games for Linux , and of course many games that run on Windows work flawlessly on Linux thanks to softwares like Wine, PlayonLinux and Transgaming Cedega. Here’s a list of the much-awaited games for Linux in 2011. Also, Steam now works flawlessly and natively on Linux making the OS a hotbed for new innovation in gaming

Myth 7 : Linux lacks support.

While Microsoft and Apple both boast of an excellent support, Linux, by default doesn't offer any professional support. To make up for the lack of support, Linux offers multiple ways of seeking help; one such way is through forums .The Linux community is very large and simply posing a question in a forum, one gets a reply within a few minutes and sometimes seconds. Don't believe me? Try asking a valid, Linux related question on and a helpful reply will come quicker than you expect. For the impatient ones, there is IRC; that is, internet relay chat, where many developers and users hang out to helping other users. If that isn't adequate, one can always buy professional support offered by Ubuntu, which comes at a fair and reasonable price.


Summing up, Linux in almost all aspects matches up to its closest competitors and in some areas outstrips them hands down. That said, Linux’s market share still stands at a meager 2% thanks to widespread vendor lock-ins and a general lack of awareness amongst non-technical folk. This fallacy however, is slowly being overcome only to make the software world a free and better place.


Which OS Do You Use?

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    • profile image

      PG 2 years ago

      There are too many Linux versions , all with their own qwirks and problems , I am going back to a basic Unix system , from where it all started .

      Apple and Microsoft are all taking the easy way out , one size fits all .

    • profile image

      -hh 3 years ago

      Anyone who claims that LibreOffice/OpenOffice is 100% compatible with MS-Office is fooling themselves. Ditto that GIMP is equal to Photoshop.

      At best, you're looking at 75% solutions - they're fine for the user who can't ever bring himself to spend money on quality tools, but that doesn't make them "equals".

      Insofar as the rest, an OS is always merely a tool to get the user to his productivity applications - no one runs an OS to merely stare at a screen saver.


    • profile image

      Raphael 3 years ago

      You can't play the same games on Linux that you play on windows. I installed Linux on a high-end machine and it took like 5 minutes to enter CS:GO (and it worked terrible). After that, I installed League of Legends ( it never opens). Linux is still very bad for gaming.

    • profile image

      Colin 3 years ago

      I wanted to use Linux and I have tried many times. The ONLY reason i gave up is because it is sooooo hard to install new software. (To install the OS is quite simple and easy. )

      For people who are not technically gifted, to type certain codes in Terminal is way too complicated. I do wish some day users can install a software just by clicking on it and follow on-screen instructions like windows and OS x. If and when that happens, Linux would no doubt become a main stream OS.

    • profile image

      steviant 3 years ago

      I have no doubt that people belittling the usefulness of Unix systems to the modern desktop user don't think of the *nix powered smartphones they use to "still live in 1984".

      When you use your Windows desktop computer with Internet Explorer to access Google or Dropbox or almost any other cloud service you can name, you've given up all usability claims of Windows by using it as a terminal to display an interface generated and served by Linux.

    • profile image

      Jean 3 years ago

      Hm, well... Linux can`t handle Excel, Word etc. Have you ever tried working as a legal contractor using OpenOffice or the like? There are essential tools like "Track Changes" or commenting that won't even work if all parties use Openoffice. The same goes for GIMP etc. I know a LOT of people in the design business. NONE of them uses open source solutions. Simply because they universally lack tools which are industrial standard in the non-IT business world. Open source is great for institutions or big companies that have IT-manpower and want to cooperate with developers/other companies. For people who use software for productivity reasons, the open source community has yet to come up with a single useful application suitable for professional use.

    • profile image

      Windjammer 3 years ago

      Sorry to be a debbie downer here but I have tried multiple times to use Ubintu or other linux flavors to do certain things, it ALWAYS invloves serious time to get certain things to run. In an environment where time is money - linux has been a SERIOUS detriment. Sure it can whip the tar out of Windows for day to day operations, but try to configure something extraordinary on it that works on Windows - you will quickly run into SERIOUS learning curves that will plague you and you will either spend weeks working on a solution or you will give up and revert to a Windows environment simply to keep the users working and performing their jobs - NOT waiting for you to figure out issues with the linux stamp. Don't get me wrong - I like Linux, and Mac OSX over Windows - but the reality is that I always have to KLUGE something to get it to work where a simple install works on Windows. Until this becomes a reality Linux will have some serious limitation for desktop replacement.

    • profile image

      JP Pieterson 3 years ago

      Linux is good for embedded environments and servers. As a PC desktop it's rubbish. It's complicated and you frequently need to go to the command line - it's like going back in a time machine to the 80s or even 70s. It's slow and resource hungry relative to Windows (except for maybe a brand PC configured Vista). Basically all these myths aren't myths - 1. It is for geeks (why else would you value the countless hours at the command line as being cheaper than the retail cost of a mainstream OS); 2. It doesn't run MS Office, it runs open source alternatives that also run on Windows; 3. Linux is free, it sucks for a desktop but is useful for other applications; It can't handle a lot of software as quickly or reliably as Windows; it's pretty sh!t for gaming and the support is only good if you are an advanced computer user to start with.

    • profile image

      Programmer 3 years ago

      The only problem with Linux , is not for programmers , you can use office and install apache , but no real professional develop environment besides notepad and other truly crappy visual studio attempts , and frankly every linux program try to emulates a real professional windows software for example "total commander" in linux are many similar but no one works well , and when the bug of scroll buffer in all text boxes will be fixed ? , conclusion 90 % of linux software make the impression of being developed by fan boys , and the lack of knowledge about events and gui interfaces are superb .

    • profile image

      angry 3 years ago

      linux IS for geeks. I always have to go through forums and forums to make something work. it thinks my android is a camera and won't let me connect it. if it wasn't pretty and purple i'd change back to windows right now.

    • profile image

      SmilingAhab 3 years ago

      Broadcom and laptops. With Windows, it just works. People trying to install Ubuntu on a system with hardware Ubuntu doesn't support out of the box, who have also never had the pleasure of destroying two dozen installations of linux just to grasp the basics of the terminal have to brave the forums (I've never been told so many times in my life to f**k off and just google it than by Linux forum users - OK, I'll leave you alone and just stick to Windows) and dive into the guts of an OS that is a lot easier to break than Windows just to obtain basic functionality are not going to go through all of that. They'll stick to the OSes that they can just install, click on the few programs they want, and go.

      Linux is not Windows, and it will never be truly EFTP family-friendly, no matter how much eye-candy or advanced guis are thrown at it, and it will never actually work out of the box because of FOSS' natural aversion to proprietary software. It's like the difference between a lego car kit and just a toy car - some, mostly in the IN family, want to be able to pull it apart and play with the guts and all that, and some just want a toy car. It will always be a system crowdsourced for programmers by programmers; that advanced computing knowledge is needed for anything outside web browsing on even Ubuntu, it will always be avoided by the majority of the human race, because for most of the human race a computer is just another tool, like a wrench, used in the periphery of their otherwise social lives, and when a tool doesn't work out-of-the-box, it gets replaced by one that does. Linux users may understand software, but Microsoft understands human behavior and the predominant capitalist paradigm of IP law, and that is why they will always have by far the dominant market share.

    • profile image

      cheesenibbles3 3 years ago

      I find the most helpful thing about Linux is probably apt. It is really useful when installing applications because you don't have to worry about dependencies and you don't have to try to find it on the internet.

    • profile image

      Cybercrisis 3 years ago

      I've used linux for nearly 20 years. The fact is; linux sucks b/c there is no unity. File systems are different between versions and distros. No one cares about backwards compatibility. Just try and run Corel Word Perfect or Draw for Linux on any recent distribution. Once again this article shows the idiocy of most linux users thinking there are no viruses/malware/rootkits for linux. There are!!! There's just no applications capable of detecting them properly much less able to get rid of them without doing a "bare metal restore". Look into RKHunter (a rootkit detector for linux). The reason that no software company will develop an application for linux is that the next "update/upgrade", which is usually now in as little as 6 months, will break their application. Who in the hell would want to recompile their application b/c some freetard decided to change a library, or drop support through the kernel??? By contrast a well written application for Windows 95 will run on Windows 7/8. That's nearly 20 years of API backwards compatibility!! Please people until the so called "open source community" actually comes together this OS will NEVER be able to replace windows!!!

    • jponiato profile image

      jponiato 3 years ago from Mid-Michigan

      On the contrary, Azzythehillbilly. The most popular distributions (like Ubuntu) are at *least* as easy to use as Windows.

    • profile image

      mymother 3 years ago

      Linux is usable by anyone. I've installed it on many boxes for family and friends and they get along just fine (an no they are not your typical power user... why do you think got Microsoft to begin with). And they've had plenty of problems with junky Microsoft products, too. If I can't install Linux over Windows, I use Cygwin... it makes a Windows box actually usable.

    • profile image

      Azzythehillbilly 4 years ago

      The statement that Linux is as easy to use ( and useful) as Windows is a myth.

      It is NOT usable by the average computer owner. mainly the fanboys/nerds might. And they consistently over hype.

      I think the Linux bubble is about to burst.

    • profile image

      Xavier 4 years ago

      Wait, in the costs of Windows, you're saying I can't run a free office product with a free antivirus, cause you kinda made it sound like I have to pay for office program and antivirus.

      And where do you see these myths, especially at a consumer level. What I've found most lacking in Linux is in the advertisement of itself to consumers, that it doesn't come out of shadow to present itself as the competitor and/or winner articled. I've used flavors of RedHat, Mandrake, Mandriva, OpenSuse, even Sun's attempt at linux, and besides Redhat and Ubuntu, none of soared in the ability to present a strong case to the consumer who's looking for easy-in and able to run the proprietary formats used at the time on the Windows or Apple, to replicate what they use at work to play.

    • profile image

      Cappy 4 years ago

      been using Ubuntu 13.1 up date. Prior to that, Ubuntu 13.04. found it to be very good with tons of apps and software for me. Have dual booted win 7 as well, but are finding my using that to be less and less. Linux is good stuff!

    • profile image

      Iulian 4 years ago

      I have used Linux Ubuntu for more than 8 months.

      I learned to forgive the fact that it was so complex to make such simple things, things that in windows you would have made in 5 seconds with your eyes closed.

      Forgiven the fact that you struggled for days to find an application that did 60% of what a windows application did (and you found it in 10 seconds in Windows).

      I have forgiven the bad errors and very annoying updates that 50% of the times broke more things than fixed.

      I have forgiven the fact that the OS had such bad nvidia drivers and used like 70% of my GPU power and features.

      What killed the OS in my eyes in the end was , it's not a very straight forward approach. It's like trying to jump a puddle ( in Windows you could just jump it easillly, in Linux you must wait for it to dry to pass by).

      Conclusion: If you have alot of time in your life and want some frustrations along the way , get a Linux distro if not, Windows/Mac...

    • jponiato profile image

      jponiato 4 years ago from Mid-Michigan

      Nice write-up. It is obvious from some of the comments here that their experiences with Linux are a bit dated. There is no requirement to learn or use the command-line (as you pointed out). It is there for those of us who like it because it is faster and easier than using the GUI for anything beyond launching applications. And good luck automating anything using just a GUI (in any OS).

    • profile image

      disater 4 years ago

      well for business ,apple and windows

      and for end user is linux, well those who have no pockets like me

      but mostly linux is using for super computer for the security...

    • profile image

      Real 4 years ago

      I like Linux for enterprise hosting, but it is primitive compared to OS X, which is BSD Unix based, just like Linux. Actually I Run Linux (Windoesnot) on my Mac through Parallels. For desktop and mobile computing, Apple has the best OS and I should know. I used everyone since CP/M.

    • ChrisJawalka profile image

      Chris Jawalka 4 years ago from Louisville, OH

      Nicely written piece. While I agree with all of your myths you debunked (so well, I might add)... I would like to point out one or two flaws I noticed. When talking about Windows and the prices. I can build a Windows rig for the same price that I can build a Linux rig for... minus the price for the OS, which of course all the money goes to. While there are a lot of open source software out the for Windows, there doesn't seem to be much around for Mac. And building a Mac rig, well forget about that. It's too propitiatory to even try. As for Linux and it's indie games? I'd say no thank you. I am an avid Windows gamer, but I do dual boot into Ubunto... Well, because Windows is pretty much trash for anything but gaming (and that is only because the big game companies don't support Linux). Great article though! Much enjoyed the read.

    • profile image

      bo 4 years ago

      windows are going downhills,Mac will never create something the working class can afford and linux is allright.The alternative os:s are they bootable without a lot of fuss,support for 4 G do they have device drivers.Solaris was 7 8 a joke.I look for lightweight linux distros.Now they want to kill the netbook.smartphones are spyphones.Tablets are a joke.I WANT BETTER NETBOOKS WITH SMALL OS:S THAT BOOTS IN SECONDS I AM STUCK WITH LINUX I AM TIRED OF THIS I WOULD GLADLY PAY FOR AN EFFICIENT MICROKERNEL OS IN ASSEMBLER WITH DEVICE DRIVERS AND PROGRAMS FOR THE FUTURE.

    • Zakmoonbeam profile image

      Michael Murchie 5 years ago from Parts Unknown

      I would class myself as an "above average" user on a technical level, and have just taken my first steps into Linux using Ubuntu, and this article was very, very helpful in making the change!

      Its small steps to begin with, as I am running a triple boot system, but I have to say that the latest updates have left me impressed.

    • profile image

      tom 5 years ago

      saying ubuntu is easy to use is bullshit! im a web developer, dont know much about unix or anything like that, but know more about computers than an average person. switching to ubuntu has been a fookin nightmare. im still running this piece of shit until i have the money for a mac. i loved the idea of linux, it's just nowhere near good enough.

    • profile image

      YvonGauthier 5 years ago

      I work at a College, actually a campus but I heard from a coworker at our main campus that they had a guy from Europe come work with them for a while. Apparently in Europe, users AND businesses run mostly Linux and OpenOffice which costs nothing! He was wondering why Canada and U.S. spend big $$$ when they can get it for free.

      I must say that I agree with this guy. Yes, at first, it would cost a lot of $$$ to train workers on a new platform (probably not anymore than when Windows upgrades or MS Office with their stupid ribbon!) but once it's done, no more buying licenses! For the users who need better software, then buy one for that one user, not everyone needs the power of MS Office or Adobe Photoshop.

    • profile image

      Conan 5 years ago

      No company would ever discard windows for linux. I believe linux is a fine operating system but it is a curiousity - a place to experiment and play. In a sense it is a work of art - not a tool to be used in the work environment.

    • profile image

      Fotzenlecker aus dem Arsch 6 years ago

      Been using Ubuntu alongside Windows 7 for half a year now. Windows 7 runs definitely faster and is easier to use.

    • profile image

      JoeZiehmer 6 years ago

      Been using Ubuntu and other distributions since 2006-present and even at the time of this writing running a dual boot with Ubuntu and Windows XP; after speed testing my Ubuntu box is flat out faster then any other Windows spin-off at the present.

    • profile image

      CarlOS 6 years ago

      It's true that linux isn't for any one because it's only friendly whe it works. When you ha

    • Dr Rockpile profile image

      Dr Rockpile 6 years ago from USA

      I don't think I could ever give up my desktop. I've heard great things about Linux, but I still don't know if I'm up for the switch.

    • profile image

      Jean Christophe 6 years ago

      Ubuntu right now is so superior to W7 in so many ways. It installs so smoothly and so quickly you wonder how it's not becoming all the rage. Plus, you've got all the basic software required to start off, when exactly was that supposed to happen on Windows? Plus downloading and installing software is a piece of cake without having to surf the web for hours searching a decent application that suits your needs. People (and by people i mean average users) are going to start considering other alternatives if MS continues delivering the same crap every 3 years as Linux is slowly but steadily conquering average users as myself. To be fair, i've had some hard times learning to use this OS, but that was because i had no one to learn from, nobody to ask for help when I was stucked. But right now, I couldn't live without the terminal. People around me find linux incredibly easy to use when I explain to them how to use it. It requires some time and someone besides you but it worth the cost. I would say Ubuntu is easier to install, use, update and upgrade than Wdos for the plain newbie who hasn't touched a computer before. In addition, its more tweakable, better looking, smoother and faster. Off course, its quite hard to make run native programs written for Windows on a linux-based systems, sush as games, mainly released for Windows or reference applications such as Adobe Photoshop or MS Office. I myself had this year a course on Excel, and I couldn't get around it using wine, I had to reinstall W7 on a partition using it to run Excel.

    • profile image

      knife4 6 years ago

      Great article and very interesting comments. I personally have never used a Mac or any OS related to Apple, so no comments on that. However, I have grown up using Windows; even though it has greatly developed as an OS of choice over the years, it is still plagued with the biggest problem of all time: security.

      I will not take away the credit from the developers who have worked on Windows 7, but it still leaves a lot to be desired from something you pay so much for.

      Now coming to Linux distro's,I have only recently started using Ubuntu as a dual boot along with windows 7 and I have to admit, it does breathe fresh life into hardware that struggles to run paid operating systems. I have already made up my mind that once I get a proper hang of the system, I will change over from windows 7 being my main OS to a Linux distro, preferably Ubuntu.

    • myi4u profile image

      myi4u 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      Hi Vikeyev, I appreciate what you are saying. But in order to really compare these OSes, one really has to use all of them in a significantly long period to understand the pros and cons. I must say I am not expert in IT but I have at least 15 years of experience working with all sorts of computers software and hardware.

      I personally installed Linux, Windows (since 3.1) and Mac OS X on my computers and have used them for a period of at least a year.

      As much as I love Linux, it's like a younger brother of Mac OS X based on the way it operates and the interface. I am not great at OS programming, so pardon me if they work totally different in the background.

      The many software that I can find in Linux, can also be found in Windows and Mac OS X. And often they are no better than Windows or Mac OS X. Gimp is a great free tool but Adobe Photoshop is far more superior. It's not that I like to think Gimp is not better than Adobe Photoshop, it's just a fact. But I still appreciate Gimp because for a free software category, it has done well enough.

      Mentioning Windows or Linux on a Mac forum is irrelevant unless you want to pick up a fight. But if you were to ask if there's an alternative to what you can do in Windows but in a Mac way, I am sure they will be able to help. I won't be surprised if someone asks to ditch Windows and that someone won't be a true Mac user. Vice versa.

    • profile image

      Vikeyev 6 years ago


      Linux does not have a registry, only windows has a registry no other operating systems do. You should be happy about that, it's inefficient, causes slowdown and is a single point of failure making it a big risk.

      But to break it down, you don't need one, you don't even need a defragmentor, Linux doesn't fragment.

    • profile image

      Vikeyev 6 years ago


      "We never heard of people wanting to run Linux program on Windows or Mac OS X?"

      There is a couple reasons for this:

      1. Many linux programs are open-source and cross platform ie: they have native MAC OSX and Windows clients.

      2. Microsoft and Apple like to keep people using their products by bundling them with their software (or in Apples case with their hardware) so often times people don't know/won't try any alternatives.

      3. As you have notice with all OS's (and not just OS's, just about everything) there are many fanboys/fangirls who refuse to believe that anything could ever be better NO MATTER WHAT! (ever tried mentioning windows or linux on a Mac forum? I dare you to try it).

    • lazko profile image

      lazko 6 years ago from the Earth

      I love the Ubuntu Software Package module too. I dont use my laptop much, mainly for writing and listening to webradio. I searched for a reg.sleaner software but i didn't managed to find any. Whe ni used windows in the past, ccleaner was very nice, does anyone knows some alternative for in Ubuntu? Thanks for the hub, its really cool and comprehensive.

    • myi4u profile image

      myi4u 6 years ago from United Kingdom

      I used Red Hat once and I was quite baffled by it due to my limited knowledge in its commands. I then moved on to Ubuntu recently and I was quite satisfied with the performance and everything. Even so, it just getting slower by days and I was not quite sure. I didn't have many programs installed and I loved the Ubuntu Software Package module. However, it died a couple of weeks ago and I haven't got the chance to reinstall it.

      I like to make a point here. Even though OpenOffice is free, I struggled to get my work done using OpenOffice when I have to use Microsoft Office in my office. OpenOffice opened Word documents fine but it couldn't cope with the formatting.

      I have nothing against Linux and personally, I believe it is a good operating system on the server side but for the client side, it is still not well established enough compared to Windows and Mac OS X. True, we can use Wine to run Windows programs. But that kind of defeat the purpose of branding Linux as a powerful OS compared to Windows or Mac OS X. We never heard of people wanting to run Linux program on Windows or Mac OS X?

    • profile image

      Trimp 6 years ago


      Oh dear. For each statement you make the equivalent can be made for closed source/Windows/Mac. Care to cite why Gnome/KDE are shit? Have you used them? In what way are they shit compared to Windows or OS X?

      Care to list some disadvantages of open source? Privacy and security are more easily assured if the source code is open for everyone to see and assess. Closed source code can be riddled with security issues (Microsoft) and gather have all sorts of privacy concerns (Apple).

      I'm not sure the last time you installed an application on a modern Linux distribution, but the "'makefile' and what not" that you ignorantly refer to is something that very rarely has to be done now and installing software is less painful than it is on Windows. Certainly installing the average Linux application in my experience is faster, works first time every time and doesn't regress some other application or require me to reboot my computer. At least with open source and Linux you have the option of compiling the code yourself using 'makefiles' and what not, so that your code can be as efficient as possible for the hardware it's running on. You don't get that with Windows/Mac. You get code compiled that's most likely to work for everyone. A generic, bloated installation that often doesn't work for everyone specifically because they've tried to make it work for everyone.

      Terminal isn't for everyone, but then, neither is Microsoft's woeful version CMD. At least when you have to resort to the terminal in Linux you have a high quality tool with a decent command history, colour, full scripting capabilities, access to and control of every aspect of the underlying operating system with a sufficient level of access and ultimately something that many could not live without and for good reason - they're job and the systems they maintain using that command line - often systems the general public use on a daily basis - rely on it. I don't know of a single Windows admin who relies on CMD and who doesn't install additional (often open source, shareware, freeware) tool to assist them.

      Please don't make up this rubbish unless you can provide high quality arguments instead of spouting uninformed rhetoric.

    • profile image

      Angad 6 years ago

      The OS is personal choice of tool, not a religion. Linux distros have their share of problems which would be unfair to ignore. GNOME and KDE are absolutely shit window managers compared to the Windows or Mac equivalent. Open source has its major disadvantages and is rarely as good as it sounds on paper. Privacy and resulting security of source code cannot be ignored. Also, installing applications is still largely a pain on Linux systems and has a huge learning curve. (anybody who disputes is ignoring all the 'makefile' and what not) I for one love the UNIX derivative's terminal,but everybody doesn't. Please stop going all I'm-open-source-you-aren't.

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      Capitalist Pig Oook Oook 6 years ago


      I think you may have miss-read my post. I was saying it is worth the expense of time to learn it. I prefer the command line. Especially Linux's command line. Grep in linux is a million times more powerful than Window's findstr. There is also head, tail, sed, awk, ... so many other powerful tools to make things easier for scripting. Also getting variables from commands into environment variables is also so much easier in Linux (in Windows batch I needed for loops to get variables from other command line tools). I learned the other day about a Linux command line tool that even found the make and model of the laptop I ran it on allowing for easily identifying all the hardware. Windows users had to look for the marker on the computer great if your at the computer but what if you are remote. Similar tools in windows do cost money and are not cheap nor scriptable like I can do with Linux.

      I also know there is a GUI in Linux however Linux GUIs seem to suffer from the same fate as the Windows GUI. It often changes to the point that there is an expensive new learning cost associated. I recommend people spend the time and learn the command line and if they stick with Windows I recommend they learn its command line because even in Windows there are option only available via command line. In Windows I show how to edit the options for a file type and how it uses the Windows command line for these options. There are expenses in learning on all operating systems. Again I would argue that the learning costs on Linux are less than the learning costs of Windows. Static cost of a windows license is not a big consideration of most industries vers cost of training. Linux training is good for life vers Windows training is good till the next release. There are a few new things in linux requiring learning but not nearly as many it was already nearly complete as it is so Unix like.

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      Capitalist Pig Oook Oook 6 years ago

      "when people say that linux is free (as in price) they mean that you don't have to pay for a license. And that's true."

      That is correct however most peoples' time is worth something.(enjoyment or money)

      People buying a computer with Windows will say they got the license free with the computer. We know this is false but the perception is hard to fight.

      People claim that they "already know Windows" and that there is no time cost involved with Windows. How often I hear that and learn that they really don't know Windows and in reality they get windows 7 issues and incompatibility issues with old apps and or devices. I would argue that time learning Linux is worth it and that there are less compatibility issues with Linux that don't get resolved by the developers of the apps that you learn to use in Linux. And that "their" argument of "not having to learn new stuff" would better fit in the Linux realm where user interfaces don't have to change as often. Although KDE 4 from KDE 3 was a bit of a shock and as I have read Gnome's new desktop is a bit of a shock as well. Since I always open terminals I seldom deal with desktop issues. And the biggest difference I noticed was when tar changed the options to untar a bzipped file.

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      Ken 6 years ago

      @Capitalist Pig Oook Oook - I see you've been caught up in some of the linux myths as well - since pretty much most distro's have a gui setup for the majority of funcitons. Those of us who use the command line do so as a preference because it's usually quicker and can get things done better once you do learn the command line.

      For example - need to find what hardware is on your computer? usually about 6-10 clicks (regardless of o/s) to get to the window that lists your hardware - with command line it's a matter of click on the command line icon, type "lspci -v" and there's the list of your hardware.

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      Nikkels 6 years ago

      >>Linux has only 2 to 4 % market share, so, Linux sucks

      Mercedes Benz only has 3 to 4 % market share, so Mercedes sucks

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      Bruno 6 years ago

      "Linux like all other OS's has the cost of learning."

      when people say that linux is free (as in price) they mean that you don't have to pay for a license. And that's true.

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      Capitalist Pig Oook Oook 6 years ago

      Wrong on Myth 3: Linux is not Free (This is not a bad thing.)

      Linux like all other OS's has the cost of learning. This is an expense of time. Learning the command line is an expensive endeavour but often worth it; for afterwards you can script many repetitive tasks and work more efficiently across slow networks. Same goes for learning Windows command line; however there is much to be desired from its lack of included command line tools. Command line tools change significantly less then their GUI counter parts over time.

      Another cost to Linux is done by developers and testers which is also a cost of time but this is spent in debugging and developing a program. This cost is so much cheaper than Windows as there is much better help on forums for Linux vs. Windows or Macs.

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      IGnatius T Foobar 6 years ago

      Linux does not have 2% market share. Consider that every time someone buys a desktop or laptop that comes bundled with a copy of Windows that they didn't want, and installs Linux on top of it, it gets counted as a Windows installation rather than a Linux installation. I suspect that Linux has closer to 10% market share, but we have no way of knowing for sure.

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      JA 6 years ago

      I concur with Caitlyn.

      Also, there's one thing that clearly says that Linux is for everyone and is backed up by big corporations. That is, almost every gadget can and many (if not most) of them run Linux. TVs, set top boxes, dvd players, navigators, network and storage equipment (switches, routers, wlan, authentication servers, NAS...). List goes on and on. From the pocket to the largest supercomputers and distributed systems (like CERN LHC).

      It's funny how some people write "Linux sucks!!11oneone" and they don't realize that they're typically running (2-10 times) more Linux machines than Windows/Mac machines in their homes. Better yet, nowadays one can write "Linux sucks" and not realize that motherboard on that very machine has one preinstalled.

      They also depend on Linux when they want to connect and do anything online.

      The desktop? Yes, MS Windows has the largest market share. Apple Mac OS hasn't. So what?

      Linux already can be found from the pockets of the youngest and the oldest, our homes, our cars, planes we fly in, boats we sail, services we use: everywhere.

      Linux is hard to use? Enough! It's freaking transparent.

      Everyone should just keep enjoying Linux and let MS and Apple argue what is the best OS. Comparing Linux to their products is just pointless.

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      Caitlyn Martin 6 years ago

      You are actually spreading some common myths about Linux. First, you say "That said, Linux’s market share still stands at a meager 2%..." That's a false statement no matter how you define market share. Depending on who you believe Linux stands somewhere between 35-40% of the server market, with Linux plus UNIX holding the majority since 1999. On the desktop the 2% number is much lower than even Microsoft claims for Linux. See: The actual number is probably still under 10%.

      You state "Why are many people switching to an operating system that is not only free but is not even backed by any multi-million dollar corporation?" Linux isn't backed by any one multi-million dollar corporation but rather by many such corporations. Red Hat revenue is expect to eclipse $1 billion this year. Look at the Linux Foundation membership and corporate investment in Linux by companies like Intel, HP and IBM.

      It seems like you've bought into some of the popular FUD about Linux as well.

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      hasben 6 years ago

      excellent article. Couldn't agree with you more. Who needs windows and especially OS x when there's linux?

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      Charlie 6 years ago

      I have used Ubuntu for a few years, most recently on Windows 7 machines in dual boot configuration, and while I rely on Windows 7 for work, I rely on Linux for get in, get out, make it happen tasks. I am upgrading the 11.04 as I write, and have high hopes: I would like to switch entirely to Linux, even on our newer machines. Our older machines all run Linux. Never throw away a computer that works... just put Linux on it and watch what happens.

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      garryjbs 6 years ago

      I use linux on server (very flexible because you can made all from command line interface) and I like use windows on my working PC. In any case I very glad that Microsoft get real competitors in DeskTop OS business.

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      ArchSpader 6 years ago

      Windows Update: Linux

      Linux was offered as DOS2 at the college I went to. The Mac class was discontinued because the college thought we would never have to work on a Mac. Ever since I updated my Windows to Linux it has worked a let better. No nagging icon to get anti-virus; No nagging icon telling me that I only have so many days to register my operating system.

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      KRM 6 years ago


      As long as Terminal exists Reminds me of DOS!!!! Linux will always be second best. All programs must I repeat must be able to be installed via Package Manager, I speak as a "New Boy" only been using Linux for a year. To me XP was the high point of Microsoft Linux to my mind beats Windows 7 hands down.



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      DarwinSurvivor 6 years ago

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      DarwinSurvivor 6 years ago

      "Linux lacks support". Unless you pay $250 for a BOXED version of Windows, it doesn't come with support either. The closest you get is support from the hardware manufacturer, but I've yet to see a hardware manufacturer that had any software solutions besides "reinstall the driver" or "reinstall windows".

      for $250 you can get 2 1/2 years of support ( That's longer than your hardware manufacturer will give you and longer than you'd probably get from Microsoft if you purchased a second copy of Windows in a box.

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      fossmaniac 6 years ago from Earth

      @CiscoPixie Glad you liked the article! Thanks a lot.

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      CiscoPixie 6 years ago from I'm in a world of my own, but aren't we all?

      Loved this one too ^^ and it's so true that there are many myths surrounding Linux. I think the Linux community is an absolutely amazing one. It's people who take 5 minutes out to solve someone else's problem and most of them don't even get paid but the satisfaction of helping others is enough for them.

      Thumbs up!