Operating System Comparisons: Linux
For those who do not know, Linux is an open source program, meaning its code is available to anybody, free to use and customizable. However, not to put off any would-be users with zero programming knowledge, it is fully bundled for novice use and is a completely reliable operating system used by millions both in the home and within multinational organizations - IBM, HP, Dell, Sun Microsystems to name but a few. As a flexible and highly configurable operating system it is used in a vast array of computer settings, from basic desktops to supercomputers. It even sits in many of our most common household appliances, i.e. Linux is the operating system which drives the XBox and Playstation platforms, arcade gaming and mobile phone technologies.
What sets Linux apart is its ability to enrich your operating system experience through endless flexibility and the tightest of security. For the novice user its basic functionality is straightforward and where Windows fails, for the expert user, Linux offers endless scope for enhancement. As everything is open source there is a huge variety of software utilities, applications, tools and hardware configurations. But what gives Linux a noteworthy advantage over Windows is its security. Essentially, since its creation Linux has seen very few virus attacks or security breaches and no attacks have ever spread as they do on Windows platforms.
With no major corporation making money from Linux as a product there is little push for it to be the operating system of choice on mass manufactured PC’s. No advertising arm to make a strong push for it in the market place. It is free source code, as such some non-standard hardware devices, software and games lack dedicated and official support. However such incompatibility issues are easily remedied in the Linux community because the ethos of its existence is that there are always users keen to share and develop their skills and solve problems to make the operating system as seamless and effective as possible.
From a graphical and functionality standpoint Linux is commonly adapted with a desktop platform such as Gnome or KDE. These create stunning visuals and slick front end operability. Where Linux also branches out to reach a broader market than other operating systems is that being open source there is a comprehensive list of languages that are supported. What also sets Linux apart and allows it to take the higher moral ground is that all of the code, the built platforms and functionality sets are free. It encourages open communication, a share and share alike philosophy and as such delivers an operating system that is highly professional, secure and managed by people with common interest. With this comes a constantly evolving cycle of programmer knowledge that is dispersed and harnessed for the greater good of all who use Linux. It is a constantly evolving product, free from restrictive license agreements, thus eliminating the need for illegal downloading/security breaching. While it lacks the all round compatibility of Windows Vista, Linux makes up for this with top notch security and a knowledge base forum that always delivers improved functionality at no cost to the end user.
This post is part of the series: Operating System Comparisons Between Microsoft, Apple & Linux
In this series we compare the prominent operating systems for your PC. Reviewing Windows Vista, OS X and Linux. Discussing which offers you the end user with the best PC platform. An Operating System Comparisons study for the home user.