1. Why I Should use Linux…..???Linux is a computer operating system which is based on free and open sourcesoftware. Although many different varieties of Linux exist, all are Unix-like and based onthe Linux kernel, an operating system kernel created in 1992 by Linus Torvalds.Linux V/s Windows:- “ Ill believe Linux is ready for thedesktop as soon as you can give me a Linux distribution that evenmy grandmother can run.”Im going to compare the linux and windows Linux doesn’t have the virus problems: Even Microsoft’s CEO Steve Balmer couldn’t clean Windows Viruses. Still not convinced? It’s not that there aren’t any viruses for Linux but Linux is more secure and less virus prone. Linux doesn’t need defragging: The Linux file systems work very efficiently such that it arranges data in a way that it doesn’t require defragging. Linux doesn’t crash without any apparent reasons: In Linux the core operating system (kernel) is separate from the GUl (X-Window) from the applications (OpenOffice.org, etc). So even if the application crashes, the core operating system is not affected. In Windows (Microsoft prefers to call this tight integration) if the Browser crashes, it can take down the entire operating system. Linux doesn’t crash if you accidentally pulled out your USB key/pen drive: Try this a 100 times if you don’t believe me. But don’t blame me if your pen drive data gets corrupt.
2. linux doesn’t require frequent re-installation: In Windows if the OS crashes, thereis no easy way to recover this. Many IT support staff doesn’t know what to doand all they can do is re-install Windows. Which means that users applicationsand preferences are lost, and needs to be installed again. I haven’t seen anyoneusing Linux, requiring re-installing unless there is a hard drive failure. Mostthings in Linux can be fixed without requiring re-installation.Linux doesn’t require frequent rebooting: Linux runs extremely stable, even if anapplication crashes, there is no need to reboot the whole system, just restartthat application or service. Linux also doesn’t require rebooting when a newhardware device is added configured. Linux doesn’t require rebooting when youchange any setting or re-configure your Network or when you install a newapplication.No licensing headaches: Yes Linux is free and you don’t know need to botherabout the complexion licensing of per user/per PC/per server/etc. Note: SomeLinux distributions charge a yearly subscription to get the updates and patches,however this is still simpler than the proprietary world.100 File Systems: Linux can read over a 100 different types of file systems.Windows is limited to its own two file systems. Well most general users may notcare about this but its extremely useful is you are working in a mixedenvironment or you need to extract some data from a hard drive formatted onanother computer.Source Code: You have access to the source code and the right to modify or fixthings if you are a programmer. Many end users think this is not necessary butthey will realize how important this is when their application vendor decides todiscontinue support on an older version to promote a newer one.No Piracy: You can also share the software with your friends and its completelylegal to do so. Didn’t your teacher tell you in kindergarten that you should sharethings with your friends? Linux and Open Source actually encourage that while ifyou do that in Windows its not only considered illegal but they will call you apirate!
3. Linux costs less , because not only the OS is free but the applications are alsofree. Plus since Linux doesn’t have a virus problem, you also save on therecurring cost of Anti-Virus software. Note: You may still have to pay forsupport/training but the overall running cost is low.Powerful Shell: Both Linux and Windows has shell environment Windows (knowas command prompt). The shell environments in Linux (such as bash) are morepowerful and you can write entire programs using the scripting language. This isextremely useful to automate repetitive tasks such as backup. Portability: Linux can run from a CD or can be installed on the hard drive.Windows by default doesn’t have any such option. Using live CDs such asUbuntu/Knoppix, users can try out Linux by booting from the CD, without theneed to install the operating system. Linux is extremely portable, it can also runoff usb pen drives/portable hardrives/thumb drives and more. US government have Window Backdoors: Did you know that in Windows, thereis built in back-door entry so US government can see you data as and when theylike? Yes the US NSA has the key build into every copy of Windows. In Linuxthere is no such thing possible as the operating system is open source and caneasily be detected and disabled.Linux has built in virtualization (XEN/KVM/Virtual Box/etc.) so you can runmultiple copies of Linux or Windows simultaneously. Complete Driver Packages: The Linux kernel comes shipped with large numberof hardware drivers. 3000 Printers, 1000 Digital Cameras and 200 webcams weresupported by Ubuntu. On Windows, a lot of hardware doesn’t work until youinstall the driver, this problem is worse with Vista as Microsoft doesn’t allowdrivers to be installed which are not supported/certified by Microsoft. On Linux, ahuge percentage of today’s common hardware works perfectly out-of-the-box. Linux is the most documented operating systems and most of thesedocumentations are available for free. These documents are well written andexplain computing concepts too. Excellent package management: Linux has excellent package management tools whichmake it easy to install and upgrade applications, Most Linux distributions makes it veryeasy to upgrade from one version to another.
4. No registry Keys: Unlike Windows, Linux doesn’t use registry. Most of theconfiguration is stored in plain text files, which are easy to manage/backup andtransfer between systems. Registry is a pain to manage, very complex and yoursystem configuration is stored in a proprietary format which needs special toolsto open. The biggest pain with registry is when it gets corrupted, this problem iseliminated in Linux because it doesn’t use registry.No more hardware upgrades: Linux runs happily on older hardware and thehardware requirements don’t increase with every new version. If you have reallyold computers like Pentium I/III, you can still convert them to thin clients usingLTSP and still use them. If you compare the hardware requirements betweenUbuntu and Windows, you would notice that Ubuntu’s hardware requirementshaven’t changed for many versions.No Hidden APIs: Windows many hidden or undocumented APIs which is used forunfair advantage to Microsoft. In Linux all APIs are completely open anddocumented. For example Microsoft specifies that everyone writing Internetapplication should use the Winsock API while Microsoft Internet Explorer doesn’tuse the Winsock API, it uses an undocumented API allowing Internet Explorer torun faster than other browsers. No Execute by default: By default if you download any file, it doesn’t have theexecute permission, making your system more secure. The app cannot executeunless you go and change the permissions.No write access to applications: By default users cannot install applicationsunless they change their permission or login as a supervisor. This ensures thatany virus or malicious code cannot go and write to your application folder.No open ports: By default most Linux distributions have all their incoming portsblocked, thereby making their Operating more secure from network attacks.Centralised repository of applications ensures that you are downloading yourapplications/patches only from a known source only. The repository is digitallysigned which ensures that only the right application and code can bedownloaded and installed on your computer.
5. Faster release cycle: Many Linux distributions have a fixed release cycle of 6months which makes it easy for them to incorporate all the latest applications,bug fixes, improvement and support for newer hardware. Windows release cycleis not predictable. Takes a few years and is often delayed.Multiple Interfaces: While both Linux and Windows have a GUI, Windows hasonly one default GUI. Linux is all about choice and has a option to use differenttype of GUIs or Window Managers as they are know as in Linux. Users canchoose from something that looks like their favourite Operating System or theycan choose something that’s simple and fast. Popular ones are Gnome and KDE. Free Applications: Most Linux distributions come bundled with whole lot ofapplications such as Office Suite, Photo Editing, etc. You not only get the OS forfree but you also don’t have to pay for the applications. Yes many of these opensource applications such as OpenOffice.org also run on Windows but you need tofind, download and install them where as there are available in most Linuxdistros by default.Linux saves bandwidth cost: The volume of Updates that Windows, Antivirus andsimilar applications do, is much more as compared the updated in Linux. So ifyou are paying for every MB that you download, its a big consideration.No automatic updates: Windows Vista it setup to automatically update yoursystem by default. In Linux it will alert you for an update but you have to choiceto click and apply the update. You can setup to automatic update if you like. Soyou can update when you like and not when your operating system decides toupdate.Chat and Social Networking: Empathy/Kopete popular IM clients on Linux aresingle clients that can connect to all the protocols – Facbook Chat, Google Talk,Yahoo, MSN, Jabber, ICQ, AOL and more. Twitter/Facebook broadcast from thedesktop. With Gwibber client, you can view your social network status right fromyour desktop or update your status to all your accounts without logging ontoeach of them separately.Processor scalability: Linux can scale to unlimited processors. It is alreadyrunning on a single system with 2048 CPUs. Windows can’t even claim to comeanywhere near that number.
6. No annoying message like Vista keeps telling you that xyz application is trying toaccess your system. Vista confuses the user, either the user will always clickallow or don’t know what to do.Easy to dual boot: Linux makes it easy for it to exist with any other operatingsystem. If you install Linux on a system which already has Windows, Linux willnot mess your Windows. Windows on the other hand messes up your Linuxpartition, if it finds one. Linux has bundled Databases such as MySQL and PostgreSQL which areextremely powerful and used in production environments. Customer doesn’t needto purchase expensive databases.Linux is been used for super computing clusters, most of top super computers inthe World use Linux. Windows just can’t scale to that level.File system scalability: while NTFS file system can scale up to 16TB, XFS on Linuxcan scale up to 18 million TB! Yes that bigger than what you would ever need.