Thursday, March 20, 2008

Why I use Linux

This is not a why "I hate windows" post - I see no reason for having such strong feelings to a software... This post is just a list of reasons that caused me to choose to use Linux and not windows, and a list of things that are missing in Linux.

This one should be obvious - windows is simply too expensive. Perhaps its price is normal in the USA market, but it is too high for people living outside of the USA. Linux is free.
It is of course possible to download an illegal copy of windows and install it. Microsoft fights piracy as hard as it can, but this is simply not enough. But why bother? When I bought my new computer, I wanted to install windows on it. But when I started to install it turned out that I don't have the serial number... I wanted to dual-boot, and I already had a Linux CD laying on my desk. So I installed it. I thought to partition the disk, but for some reason the installer failed to partition the disk. So I was forced to install it on all of the disk.
While it may seem strange, but it is obvious from this story that the reason that caused me to use Linux was price and nothing else.

On the same hardware, Linux works better. This is partially due to the fact that there is no need in an antivirus on Linux. It also seems that the code is more efficient. My current computer is capable of running Compiz with all of its visual effects easily, but it would be too weak to run Aero (according to the official specs - my video card is too weak).

There are much more applications for windows than for Linux. Moreover there are applications whose performance or functions are unmatched by anything that you can install on a Linux only machine. For example - Rosetta stone. This is a very effective language learning program, but there is no way to run it on Linux. I used it to learn German - I finished level one and soon after it I was forced to switch to Linux...
On the other hand, it is much more simple to install applications in Linux. All you need to do is to make a search in the database of available applicators (a rather large database, by the way). Installing is as simple as pressing a button. Plus all the applications are free.

I don't use computer to play games, so I don't care about it, but the choice of games for Linux is rather limited. So if you like to play games more advanced than tetris, this is not the right OS for you.

On a final note, Linux is a great OS, as long as you feel comfortable enough to use the command line from time to time... I am using Linux for over a year now, and I managed to break it only once - took one week to fully fix.
I will probably dual boot my computer at some point - mainly because of the Rosetta stone not working in Linux, and because some gadgets are also not working in Linux due to lack of drivers.
However, I am very happy with Linux - as of now the disto I am using is Ubuntu, and it is both very functional and has a nice GUI.

No comments: