5 Reasons to Use Linux

By Mike on 9:32 am

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For the longest time, if you wanted cheap PC hardware, you had to use Microsoft Windows. Using Windows is a bitter pill for many. It has it's raging fanboys who will defend it no matter what Microsoft does but many people are just fed up. However, there are alternatives while keeping your PC hardware. In the first of a series of articles, we'll talk about how to install and use Linux as your primary operating system on any PC. Here are 5 reasons to use Linux.

5. It's not Windows
A lot of people just hate Windows. Linux is not Windows and that's plenty reason for a lot of people to use it. They say they use Redmond's OS at work and they want to use something else at home. Maybe they don't like the restrictions placed on them from it's proprietary software. Maybe they feel Windows is unstable and bloated, or simply costs too much. Linux provides a Windows/Mac-like environment along with Vista Aeroglass/Expose style visual effects through it's Compiz program. Therefore, you can get the full modern experience with it without the clutter. It also can be customized to run faster on older systems, which Windows can't be.

4. It's more secure
Making the source code for the OS freely available, you'd think hackers would be having a field day. However, for every hacker, there are dozens of programmers working to patch the holes. Security and software updates are released on an almost daily basis unlike Windows and Mac which are only updated monthly or bi-montly. Therefore, problems are fixed faster. Linux also isn't affected by most viruses and other malware (rootkits and spyware) out in the wild. It's low install base on home computers also allows it to fly under the radar. Hackers want to do as much damage as possible, so they focus their efforts on Windows systems.

3. There's no Digital Rights Management or Copyright restrictions
Linux is not commercial and it's being developed by thousands of programmers all over the world. They are not pressured by Hollywood to include DRM in their OS like Windows does. Software like MythTV doesn't comply with the optional broadcast flags meaning you can record all the TV shows you want to an HTPC. The OS isn't locked down by combersome proprietary codecs and copy protection schemes, something Vista is notorious for including.

2. Includes full software packages
Windows comes pretty bare bones. Linux comes with a wide variety of open source software right out of the box so to speak. Open Office is the included Office suite, the GIMP as a Photoshop-like image editor. Other open source software can be easily downloaded and installed right from the Add/Remove Programs menu with just one click, comeplete with categories and ratings. This means that you can find exactly what you need without having to track it down or spend hundreds of dollars buying proprietary alternatives.

1. It's Free:
Since Linux is open source, the OS itself and it's source code are provided completely free of charge. For that, you get a completely full featured operating system. You can download, burn, and try different Linux distributions to see which one you like best. As your mother used to say, the best things in life are free.

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