26 votes

Transitioning to Linux - Own your computer.

The main advantages of Linux over Windows are its speed and stability. There is also the possibility of gaining complete control of your computer.

Linux is the perfect operating system for those who want to take control of their computers.

Windows is slow.

Windows frequently hangs.

Linux is fast and stable.
It is also secure.

It used to be indeed that the software you want to run was not available for Linux.

Now there are software packages, all of them FREE, most of them Open Source, that are actually superior to what is available from Microsoft.

Let's take for example Microsoft Office.

Now there is Libre Office. (all Libertarians should use Libre Office)
Libre Office does what Microsoft Office can do and much more.

You can open edit save your Microsoft Office documents and spreadsheets and powerpoints with Libre Office.

There are versions of Firefox and most other familiar programs for Linux.

The graphics under Linux are superior to anything I know of in Windows.

Now, there are some programs and some devices that specifically require Windows, unfortunately. For such cases, I have set my computers to dual-boot, meaning that if I have to use Windows for some reason, I just reboot the machine and start in Windows instead of Linux. Two keypresses, that's it. In my case, I have Win7 (*blech*) as my windows version, because I can't get XP drivers for some of my hardware. [Linux found and setup all of my hardware at installation]

*
The Learning Curve?

You Will learn more about your computer if you use Linux.
That is not a bad thing, and it is not difficult.

There are many different "distributions" (distros) of Linux.

The one I use is Slackware 14.1 - It is quite suitable for me and it is fast lightweight and stable. It is perhaps more technical than some other distros like Ubuntu or Mint. I taught my 14 yr old son to install and maintain it in just a few minutes.

You might want to start with one of the versions recommended for newbies such as Ubuntu, Mint, or maybe Salix. Slackware does require a little bit of study to use, but it is straightforward and performs exactly as stated. Slackware is the oldest existing distro of Linux and it is well-supported by a robust user community

The fact that Microsoft is fully cooperative with the US government agencies that want to spy on you and control you is yet another reason to give Linux a try.

Linux offers you more power and more control. It's free and generally open source.



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what about gaming?

does linux support gaming?

Thanks to Valve

Main stream gaming is on its way. Though it isn't as big as the Windows side it is growing. Valve has ported the source engine over so you do get to play their titles.

AND that's not all

With a little help from WINE you can even play your non-Linux native games for the most part. I've succesfully played many of my windows only games on Linux and more capabilities are being added by the day.

So, in short, yes Linux does support gaming.

Not yet but it is coming

Not yet but it is coming

Thanks for the many comments and lively discussion

I was very tired of being manipulated by Microsoft's marketing ploys.

I thought that others might be encouraged to look beyond Windows

Every new version of windows brings me a new learning curve. The only good reason I can think of that Microsoft brings on radical new changes is to reduce compatibility and force people to buy the next operating system or upgrade Microsoft office. Now we have .docx files and .xlsx files and I have some old .ppt files that don't open at all any more. We aren't better off for Microsoft's "Upgrades".

If you havent tried Open Office lately you should look again.
I havent found any shortcomings with the latest versions 4.2.x

Linux will run well on old machines. But it shines on new ones too.

I am a serious business, consulting, and research user. We have modern hardware. I do have some old machines around still running XP and still use some software in DOS for some work.

The machine that I use most is a i7-4770K on a Z87E-itx motherboard, it has 8GB ram, and boots from a 250GB mSATA primary SSD that is partitioned for Linux and Win7. A 2.5" Seagate 1TB disk drive is used for long term storage. the 4770K is 3.5GHz out of the box but I have it overclocked to 4.3 GHz. The memory is also overclocked. Windows becomes unstable with faster clock speeds.

The machine is built as a portable. The ITX footprint is 17cm x 17 cm. Most miniature power supplies have noisy whiny fans so I used a HeatSink cooled power supply so the machine is quiet.
Well, it's nearly silent. I had been carrying a durable Fujitsu laptop but it's heavy had a lousy battery and a colleague spilled a Pepsi on it and ruined the keyboard, and the replacement keyboard never was great so I carried a keyboard also.

So I built a ITX machine in a box that fits inside the same bag I used for the laptop. I got a little RAPOO wireless keyboard for it and built a 13" touchpanel for the road but when i am at home or office I plug in a large monitor. So this machine functions like a laptop with the power of a desktop. I do have to plug it in to AC to use it but a dead laptop battery gets you in the same place.

When I show people the graphics quality they say wow. I ask them Can you Windows 7 machine do this? Most people tell me they hate Win7 and prefer XP, but they have no choice.

This small but speedy machine runs win7 very well, but the more I use Linux the more I hate what Microsoft is doing.

There are a number of desktop options for the windowing graphics interface. Older machines might benefit from using a lightweight desktop like XFCE or LXDE. There are some very simple windowing interfaces like WindowMaker. WindowMaker is great for development work. For every day use I have gravitated to using KDE which is rather windows like as an interface.

I have heard that ARCH is good. I didn't much like Ubuntu but that was my first linux version. I am really happy with Slackware.

This really is my computer and I dont like for anyone to say what I can and cannot do with it or to it, because it is mine.

Saying Linux sofware is better doesn't make it better.

Most of the key putative software alternatives for Linux are available on Windows...and you can see for yourself they kind of suck.

GnuCash is generally a VERY poor replacement for quicken or quickbooks.

Open Office and Libre Office spreadsheet and word processing software are pretty good but they are not nearly as polished as Microsoft Excel/Word. This shows up very well when you attempt something such as a print to page on a spreadsheet. The excel spreadsheet is quite readable even when the fonts are dramatically shrunk while the Open Office spreadsheet renders something unreadable. There are plenty of other failings of the free alternatives to really stsnd up ... even after a decade of Microsoft standing still and Open Office trying to catch up.

Few people despise Microsoft as much as I do; few people would like to escape to Linux as much as I would. But saying Linux is equal or better than Windows because the software is equal or better is not remotely close to true. I don't know quite what the problem is....you'd think it would be both logical and relatively straightforward to write an equal-or-better replacement for quicken, quickbooks, word, excel, etc. but for some reason it hasn't been done yet. I've got to wonder why not.

Bill of Rights /Amendment X: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

Do you need a politician or judge to "interpret" those 28

Proprietary Fonts

I'm not a font expert. But, the font you are using may be proprietary and a scalable version not available for Linux

More info on free fonts:
http://embraceubuntu.com/2007/05/21/300-easily-installed-fre...

It's easy.

Locate the directory (folder) that contains your font.
Click on the file to look at the font with Font Viewer.
You may then install the font.
Reboot.

The new fonts are now available to you.

I just now loaded a .ttf font that I originally used with
CorelDraw on Win97.

It's easy.

Give Libre Office a try. The latest version is good.

I dont do accounting so i dont know much about quicken and quickbooks but i do use word processing and spreadsheets, vector drawing and images, and I do a lot of lectures with "Powerpoint". I dont find the latest LibreOffice to be deficient at all and in fact has many features not available in Microsoft office.

Libre Office will run on your windows machine also.

It is better in the Server Market

I've never seen 1 year uptimes of any Windoze server ever.
I have repeated uptimes of 1 year on my linux server.
Yes I run both.

____

"Take hold of the future or the future will take hold of you." -- Patrick Dixon

1 year uptime on a windows

1 year uptime on a windows box is nothing weird. I had a windows box running as a mumble and file-server for 3 years while studying. No issues with windows and uptimes. Once again it is a user problem not a OS problem

IMO

Where i work, most of our important applications run on linux/unix...currently changing our web servers from windows to linux, and the 2/3 core applications run on aix.
I have windows 7 at work and home, along with Fedora 17 at home. I prefer my windows desktop at home due to gui and it seems more convenient. Windows 7, to me is fast but it also runs on a 4 cpu, 4GB ram system.

If i was short on money I would stick with linux as it's mostly free. With Fedora you can download (for free) to usb drive and boot any 'somewhat' new PC with it. There's office apps for linux that can open and edit MS Office. All for free.

Most of the Internet is *served* by Linux.

Because Microsoft/Windows security is trash.

AutoCAD?

Does it run AutoCAD? Last I heard was that Linux does not run AutoCAD.

Depends.

Depends.

http://appdb.winehq.org/appview.php?appId=86
As you can see, wine emulation of autocad is both selective of versions and somewhat limited to the older releases. That may have more to do with autodesk than anything. I have had luck with 2012, but this Wine page gives it a "garbage" recommendation. Strangely, runs quicker and more stable under wine, than windows. Whereas 2011 was a must-run in windows for me.

KiCAD and Eagle are the tools I used most, because of what I work with, and both run better for me in a linux environment, than Windows. Also note, I'm not a linux fanboy. I'm a use what works, type of person.
QCAD, FreeCAD, Briscad, Draftsight work in linux, but if you have to rely on AutoCad specifically, then I wouldn't suggest using linux.

Just too bad

Just too bad they ripped off SCO.

LAS had en excellent stream

LAS had en excellent stream on this subject three months ago. I wish I had it bookmarked. Basically echoing the same sentiment of long-term OSS users. If people like their windows, leave them be. If they don't like windows, you don't need to preach it, they will seek out alternatives.

Look, I've been using a unix/linux/bsd/and every other major OS environment since 8bit was an amazing thing. If you discover an OS that suits your needs, that doesn't mean it suits the needs of others. Windows 7, 8(with the right tweaks), and XP (in the right hands) are fast and secure(if you drop IE immediately). MacOS.... while I don't like that level of controlware, is also very good. More shine than polish, but some people like that, hey, that's cool too.

BTW, I gave up slackware, after 18 years of loyalty to it last year for an Arch based linux distribution. If you like slack, you might love Arch or even a simpler but nearly as powerful base sub-distro like Manjaro.

When someone comes off as preachy with OSes (please, I know this is the internet and most people see everything as fighting words, take max offense, and make a bigger stink than really exists), it says they are either a fanboy, and/or new to something which doesn't make them much of an expert for testimonials. You're still free to have those opinions and testimonials, but beware, anyone that has seen this cycle before already knows.

The take home message is that LINUX is viable.

It is a great alternative to Windows.

After you use it awhile you will use Windows less and less.

Everyone is a computer expert now days. Cracks me up.

IT Professional 16 year experience.

I use Linux as my main OS on all of my computers. Have for nearly 10 years. I dual boot Windows because Linux still falls short in many areas.

I recommend sticking with Windows if you're not a power user. Meaning you have a little more knowledge than the rest. You have to be vigilant with updates and constantly checking your machine to make sure you're actually more secure. Its a mind blowing assumption that Linux is more secure than other operating systems. IF you believe this, you shouldn't use Linux. There are so many open source dependencies that an unsecured package could make its way on to your PC without you even knowing. "I just updated my PC its now up-to-date and secure!!" - HA HA What a joke. Can you verify those packages didn't introduce a new vulnerability? I didn't think so. Your PC is as secure as you make it. With each installation of new software package you open it up to the possibility of an exploit. As with ANY operating system.

If anyone decides to go the route of Linux, better dual boot or have another computer with Windows laying around. Trust me, as someone who uses Linux daily as my primary OS, it takes years to get use to and requires A LOT more knowledge to maintain over windows or mac os. You'll kick yourself for not having access to a windows machine. Wanna bet?

p.s. macOS isn't Linux. Its BSD (Unix) or Darwin at its core. Unix is not Linux. Incompatible binaries,kernals,file systems, etc....

If you had a lick of experience

You'd know that Linux is safer simply for the fact that it is open. M$ has, on multiple ocasions, simply ignored or failed to patch critical flaws. They have left gaping security holes and have been, for much of their life, the joke of the techie community. Hell, read UserFriendly for a while to see how bad this got.

AND, I will present the proof your rantings leave out

http://news.cnet.com/Microsoft-leaves-Word-zero-day-holes-un...

http://beta.slashdot.org/story/01/12/11/2125224/another-gapi...

http://www.bit-tech.net/news/bits/2013/04/10/ie10-pwn2own/1

http://techrights.org/2010/07/23/microsoft-carries-on-hiding...

As for your argument on update security ...

http://www.cnet.com/news/flame-virus-can-hijack-pcs-by-spoof...

You see, you can have both OSes set to auto update. You can trust both OSes to be secure without your input. However, only with Linux can you see what is going on and actually take control of your computer; create your own patch kind of thing. With M$ you get to wait a month for "patch Tuesday" and hope they plugged up the holes.

34 years of experience and

2 techie books under my belt.

I shot my cell phone and bought some parchment and a quill yesterday.

What? No abacus

This is more proof that all claims of experience on the net are heresay at best. ;)

wolfe's picture

...

"p.s. macOS isn't Linux. Its BSD (Unix) or Darwin at its core. Unix is not Linux. Incompatible binaries,kernals,file systems, etc...."

First, that's true about ANY linux or *nix kernal, so what's your point?

Second, fine, to be specific, it is based on the BSD kernal. So what? It's a *nix and so the statement that OS X = Linux is true in terms of everything it provides and has available.

And lastly. I have about 15 more years on ya sport, and that means a -paycheck- for 30 years, not living in a basement somewhere.

So if you were the guy who down voted me without comment. Fix it or have the balls to address me directly.

If not, then I apologize. Anonymous down votes irritate me and since you seemed to reference my comment, it was a reasonable assumption.

(IT Professional means smart enough to follow the directions provided by a programmer... In other words, a better than average trained monkey.)

Wow, I am being an ass today.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -
http://www.thephilosophyofliberty.com/

HAHA

Stand by, let me grab a tampon for you. I could care less if you have 15 more years of getting a paycheck than I. Makes no difference. I have a plethora of experience and my knowledge is likely superior to yours. Which is evident. Saying mac os is linux is a fallacy. Someone with such proclaimed experience should know better and you are obviously full of shit. A+ blood type is not = to B- blood type even though both are blood. You crack me up.

6 years as a software developer
4 years Network Engineer / Systems Admin
6 years as a Director of IT

Far from the basement old man. Down vote? Fix it? How about fuck yourself. A feature of the down vote itself is not having to comment.

IT Director

I'm not aware of any IT director being fired for recommending IBMMicrosoft

For Large corps, MS has some advantage in centralized management.
(Better AD Integration)

For a Casual user, Linux far beats Windows just because of it's better security. User's who need a specific app may need Windows, but I recommend setting up a virtual OS for Win, rather than dual boot.

wolfe's picture

clearly, you want to feel superior.

"I have a plethora of experience and my knowledge is likely superior to yours. Which is evident."

Doesn't mean you are or that your knwoledge is.

Play with semantics and whatever you want.

IT Professional = Trained Monkey.

Go get your banana... :)

The Philosophy Of Liberty -
http://www.thephilosophyofliberty.com/

nice try...

Actually not at all. You chose to compare credentials initially.I think I figured it out... You're mad cause guys like me replace dinosaurs like you. Get over it.

Got a preference, tampax or ob?

wolfe's picture

lol...

You made an entire post that "sounded" like an argument against me, but that actually agreed with every word I said.

You chose to say that "16 years" made you better than "newbs". You chose credentials as an indicator.

Dinosaur? Funny. So anyone with less experience than you is a newb, and anyone with more is a dinosaur... Making you the only one that knows "just the right amount"....

Dumbass.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -
http://www.thephilosophyofliberty.com/

...

tampax it is.

wolfe's picture

After dealing with a douche like you...

I always need a tampax.

And people that can't cut it as coders always become IT or management. Good job on figuring that out early in your career.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -
http://www.thephilosophyofliberty.com/

Sounds to me like someone

Sounds to me like your someone without upward mobility in their career. Should have known. smh