Linux vs Microsoft Windows

Discussion in 'Computers' started by G4GMO, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    A very contentious subject since most people do not want to fiddle with their computer, they just want to use it.

    I have been evaluating the pros and cons of migrating to Linux for a couple of years having tried a few and failed but I am now running Linux Mint 8 on a server that has been running for a couple of months, I am converted. I have now installed Linux Mint 8 on my laptop.

    I have to say the transition was almost painless. There were no drivers to install no extra programs to add other then Skype and any that were not added existed in the repositories for download and install relatively easily.

    I will say it isn't for the feint hearted but is no more difficult than installing MS Windows and I will say, this takes a mere fraction of the time to install.

    If you aren't certain that your pc is compatible you can always try the live CD version and check out that all your hardware works and all the programs you want to run work too before installing it on your hard drive without damaging your windows installation.

    If you have programs that are specifically MS based and there is no Linux version maybe it will run under Wine, a windows environment running in Linux (not exactly an emulator but it does the trick for some windows based software).

    If my post does nothing more than cause discussion fine but I am a happy Linux user with no need for antivirus or antispyware. And it's completely free apart from the fact you have to download an ISO and burn a cd to install it.

    Got to beat paying MS for an operating system that ties you down in my humble opinion.

    Oh and it keeps the brain cells working.
     
  2. American Dream

    American Dream Read Only Funster

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    Fair comment here...

    Why do you think that most server systems run on a Unix platform...?:thumb:

    It's just the compatibility issue that puts most people off..

    Horses for courses....But it won't suit all..

    However...Most source code is open to the public...And..IMHO.....sooner or later...it will be exploited ...

    I do hope I'm wrong....
     
  3. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    Quite right it will be exploited but it may never become mainstream as an OS. And even if it does the permissions will "hopefully" stop most attacks.

    I have been monitoring the available OSs for use and it has now, certainly for me, become a viable opportunity that 2 years ago I would have said wasn't suitable for my needs or abilities.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2010
  4. Yorkie

    Yorkie Read Only Funster

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    i have partitioned my hard drive and run windows vista for using normal programs (photoshop etc.) and ubuntu 8 (linux) for going on the internet.

    internet seems faster on ubuntu, page loading and streaming
     
  5. reader

    reader Deleted User

    I think you picked a good distro in Mint as its probably the closest in appearance I have seen to Windows, but with all the benefits that Linux offers and makes the transition easier.

    I run Ubuntu on my laptop and have seemed to settled with that with little or no problems. I think if people can try the various distributions they would find with the update and package manager system life is less stressfull than with Windoze.

    Regarding AV software, yes there is an opinion that you dont need it but Avira AntiVir, Avast and AVG all do Linux
    AV software (free)

    Have you resolved your Skype problem? I did have initial problems but have now sorted with soundcard settings. It is an older version that the current windows one. If not I will post you my soundcard settings as it works fine here (for backchat on 2m nets!!!).

    There is no best package for all, select what suits and thats one of the benefits of Linux.

    I would like to pick your brain though (G4GMO) have you managed to get any HR software running under Wine, what I am thinking of is Ham Radio DeLuxe, MixW or WinEQF
     
  6. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    The issue with antivirus programs is that they only protect those using windows and not the Linux user because of the permissions issue. As far as I can ascertain there is no likelyhood of anything getting past a Linux PC with no antivirus anymore than a Windows 7 with the best antivirus program on the planet.

    Yes I have Skype working fine, I initially had issues on my server using skype as my interface for speach but it was mostly a lack of knowledge but I am now only interested in PSK31 and I can now have PSK31 contacts with less hassle than HRD. No HRD does not work under Wine, there are issues that I am unable to explain, like moving the mouse over the display freezing the program so I use Fldigi.

    Sorry i'm getting too deep and some will have tuned off. Only too willing to offer help/advice. :Smile: Not tried the other two you mentioned though.
     
  7. AdgeRas

    AdgeRas Read Only Funster

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    The good thing about it being open so everyone can change it is that as soon as someone exploits it and opens the software for abuse, someone else will notice it and fix the exploit, and the exploit that someone could have made would still have to get past the release by the developers before ending up with the public :Smile:

    I used Ubuntu on my laptop a few years ago but due to wireless network problems I ended up reverting to XP, and since then have not been using any linux distribution.

    Another major thing that keeps me from using Linux is the fact that I like to play computer games and I am not sure how compatible they are with windows (but unless I try the compatibility, I will never find out)

    I might give Linux another go on my laptop at some point in the future, but for now I stick to windows

    The other half does use Unix though, but in the form of Mac which is based on an Unix-kernel :Smile:

    Rasmus
     
  8. olley

    olley Funster

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    Hi this isn't a contentious issue for most computer users, they simply want their programs to run.

    olley
     
  9. American Dream

    American Dream Read Only Funster

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    I love Linux...Certainly the virus writers don't deem to go for attacking it the same way as they do with Windows....

    I'd love to see a quick alternative to windows with less of the compatibility issues.

    There's a rumour that Google are releasing a lightweight os soon for the breed of Lightweight netbooks doing the rounds....

    http://googlesystem.blogspot.com/2009/07/google-chrome-operating-system.html

    What's happened to the "OS on a stick" running totally in memory?

    That must be the way to go...

    IMO The hard disk is the biggest culprit of "unreliability" in laptop devices, (still being vulnerable to mechanical shock) and limiting speed of data transfer...Even with the incredible advances made

    SSD's and memory advances seem to be almost there...

    To be able to buy a complete "Plug and boot" OS on memory....instead of the old Load the dvd etc way...Now there's my dream.

    It could be updated the same way but to the memory itself with a boot restore to factory partition and driver partition for the individual machines.
     
  10. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    I always find these discussions interesting having spent over 30 years in IT.

    I agree that it would be nice to have an OS which loaded quickly from memory - just as it does on a PDA - but an OS for a PC has so much more functionality so (even ignoring the inefficiencies of modern coding as opposed to real programming) it is so much bigger. Hard drive technology won't be replaced by solid state technology until the costs of the two are much closer to each other.

    Olley is quite right about people just wanting their programs to run. For our business we have to run several genealogy packages which simply don't exist for Linux. We must, therefore, run Windows.

    Graham
     
  11. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Just one question then, what have you gained ?
     
  12. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    I put Centos5 on and old 486 machine, purely so I could learn the operating system as it also runs on our server. It installs easily and quickly, it installs drivers that you need easily and keeps them upto date automatically. I use it for browsing, accounting and wordprocessing and as a backup machine.

    What have I gained? In theory I suppose I've saved around £150 which is what windows would cost. The speed gain is significant, Centos has a tiny footprint and gives you almost all your memory and system resources to use for your programs, rather than hogging massive chunks of it for itself.

    The smug feeling of getting something for nothing is also a gain for me.:BigGrin: If I wasn't happy with XP then I would certainly consider using Linux exclusively, but while XP works, I won't be in a hurry to change.
     
  13. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    A good question.

    I have gained a system that no longer takes forever to boot or shut down. It doesn't seem to suffer the program crashes I used to get. Some of the hardware I couldn't get to run in XP now just works. No hunting for that illusive driver that wouldn't load. No hunting for that illusive free program to do a simple task only once that some company wanted £25 for. Not being tied to expensive upgrades. And it's free.

    Call me an opportunist if you like but I like my computer to do all the things I bought it for without having to fork out ridiculous amounts of money for operating systems and programs that don't do what I want.

    Granted there are programs that will not run in Linux and if you have specific tasks that require a MS Windows OS to do your work then for now that will be your only way but there are Linux alternatives for a wide range of MS Windows based programs. There is Wine (a windows environment for linux) which works quite well for a large number of programs that aren'tavailable for Linux.

    I'm sure I will think of other benefits long after I have finished typing this.

    :Smile:
     
  14. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Go on then.

    >> I have gained a system that no longer takes forever to boot or shut down.
    I like that.

    >> It doesn't seem to suffer the program crashes I used to get
    That has never been a problem for me. Though a firefox plugin caused me some grief a couple of weeks ago.

    >> No hunting for that illusive driver that wouldn't load.
    I've no idea what hardware you are using but windows drivers are usually freely available.

    >> No hunting for that illusive free program to do a simple task
    Is it easier to find a Linux program than to find a windows one ? Logic says that since windows outnumbers Linux by 100,000 to 1 then windows will have more software.

    >> Not being tied to expensive upgrades.
    This is typed in XT PRO SP2, I've not bothered with SP3 and SP4 is a no-no. Cost, what ?, £80 6 years ago. Most computers have it included anyway.

    >> And it's free.
    Free is good but only if the product is also good. It's hard for Jo Public to buy a PC without windows. Netbooks quickly shifted to XT.

    >> Granted there are programs that will not run in Linux
    Always my problem. The people who use my software run windows. I'd have starved to death a long time ago trying to earn a living writing for Linux. I did use Xenox but that was long before windows.

    A good few years ago I had an old PC and thought "I'll try Linux". So I re-formatted and installed Linux. Easy enough. Pretty nice GUI. But in terms of speed and disc space it was no different to the windows at that time - it may have been Millennium. After that disappointment I asked "what can I do with this ?". I could have done word processing, mail but nothing to earn money. So I tossed it in the skip.
     
  15. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    Oh yes ..... a computer that is faster.
    Not requiring an anti-virus program. I ought to really to protect the few remaining PCs running MS Windoze in my home but this will not be for long :Rofl1:
    A more secure environment in which to do my on-line financial transactions. Note I said more, I am not complacent just because I'm using Linux. :Smile:
     
  16. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    >> Oh yes ..... a computer that is faster
    Fast is GOOD. Gates has cost the world countless billions due to bloated sloppy programming. OTOH this has pushed the boundaries of computers.

    >> I ought to really to protect the few remaining PCs running MS Windoze in my home
    AVG 9 Free is not giving me any problems. I have turned one or two bits off, it might have been this crashing firefox.
     
  17. G4GMO

    G4GMO Read Only Funster

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    Linux seems to have all the drivers I needed, with Windoze I spent hours looking for drivers. There are many programs in the repository which don't require hours surfing the net. It also takes little effort to install than windoze which seems to take me all morning. Linux took me about 15 minutes. If you run from a live CD it takes no longer than booting the computer in MS Windoze. And there's no registry to screw up or clean.

    But hey I'm not talking from a professional point of view but as a home user and from where I'm standing it all stacks up.
     
  18. American Dream

    American Dream Read Only Funster

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    And there lies the problem....although s s memory is advancing at a fair rate....PC Speed is effectively being held back by the "glitzy" bloatware that is now windows....

    The packages only exist for windows because of the "fantastic" marketing of Bill's Boys....

    Does anyone remember OS2? IBM Do...

    I read that Bill Gates had bought 49% of Mac.....

    Was anyone around to remember when he was effectively sued for allegedly.....copying the mac interface which was "allegedly" the first windows?

    I too have been in the IT environment for well over 30 years and I remember...
     
  19. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    I remember OS/2. If I recall correctly not the best in its first iteration but better than Windows (at the time) once IBM sorted themselves out :Smile:

    Can't remember if Billy Boy was at PARC at the same time as Steve Jobs but they both nicked the original GUI from Xerox didn't they?

    The thing with Windows is the same as with so many other things (VHS v Betamax, Ethernet v Token Ring for instance) - it ain't necessarily what's best, it's what's marketed at a price people will pay that wins.

    Thing that made me laugh last year was talking to a MS customer engineer in the course of a dispute. When I mentioned I had worked on mainframe systems he said "You mean .Net?". Poor kid was serious, he just hadn't a clue what happened more than 5 years ago :BigGrin:

    Graham
     
  20. American Dream

    American Dream Read Only Funster

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    The youngsters nowadays know B++++++ all about the IT industry in the earlier days.....

    They are brought up with systems that are already working and then proceed....in the main....to blag their way through it.

    I thought Steve Jobs and Bill Gates did work together at some time but had a major dispute and split......

    Saw some big mainframes in the early years.....

    Some of the first BIG drum type hard discs that were removable and housed in air-filtered/conditioned rooms.

    Also the punch tape and tape drives....

    They have no idea....:Doh:

    Mention ARPA to them and they wouldn't have a clue where it originated.....
     
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