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Windows v Linux

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Windows v Linux

I have a feeling this will be a good debate. I assume most of the users here use Windows on their primary PC. This is probably due to the ease of use and compatibility Windows has with almost everything. It is also pretty stable - enough for home users anyway.

But Linux really is the hard core nerd's OS....or at least it was. Recently developments and advances in the GUI systems like KDE and GNOME means you don't need to remember loads of commands.

But which system really is better. That is a hard question, and is very difficult one to answer unless given a context. So I'd prefer 2 points of discussion for this:

Which is better for a) a home user environment and b) a server environment?

Remember the new Lindows OS when you discuss this as well.
17 REPLIES
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

...

For me I choose Linux for both the server environment and the desktop environment, Windows just doesn't have anywhere near as good stability. The maximum up time I've had from WinXP Pro is approximately 3 weeks, current uptime on my linux box is 72 days, 21 hours and still rising.
In the webserver market *nix has the majority of the market, approximately 65% as opposed to Microsoft's falling 24% (Data available here)
But I grew up with a command line and enjoy the raw power of Linux, not sure how less able users feel.
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,878
Registered: 04-04-2007

Windows v Linux

I'd say overall on the desktop market (taking into account people who have very little computer experience) Windows is the best way to go.
Easy to install, easy to use, easy to obtain and install hardware and software.

Linux certinaly beats windows on stability etc and is a lot better for running a server, although you do need to consider what your server is running, if you want to serve ASP pages then Windows is better, with Windows you also have a lot of easy to access support in place, making it suitable for a small server for a small office, ie to run exchange or another mail server and intranet.

Then you also have to look at things like Solaris, HPUX etc which are cosidered more suitable than Linux for some server applications.

And some people claim them horrible Macs are better for a home user.

Chris
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Windows v Linux

I use XP most of the time. Kids use a couple of ageing '98 machines.

£15 P200, 64M RAM - is fileserver (£100 / 100Gb harddrive), firewall, router, gateway, MP3 jukebox, Apache Server (internal, mainly for documents and the Jukebox controls).

Top
12:27pm up 57 days, 1:22, 1 user, load average: 0.06, 0.02, 0.00
47 processes: 45 sleeping, 2 running, 0 zombie, 0 stopped
CPU states: 0.3% user, 0.7% system, 0.0% nice, 98.8% idle
Mem: 126616K av, 123268K used, 3348K free, 0K shrd, 42680K buff
Swap: 265064K av, 5844K used, 259220K free

It's FAB - no bother at all - 2 security updates in nearly 60 days - no reboots.
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Windows v Linux

I have a larges mixed bag up my sleve.

Linux is my favourate and I currently use RH 8 and 7.3 as my chosen OS's.

I also love Knoppix. It is kept in my bag of bits and is used more than once a week for the purpose of restoring deleted files, or cleaning a HD to place important files to one side of a corrupted install.

At the same time, I love XP. However, I prefer Home to Pro. UPnP in XP is falky, and causes me to have to reboot when I reset our router.

I use windows mainly for web-design, however, all my graphic work is done on a a PPC G4 and Gimp on linux.

The main point leaving Linux in the dirt, are propritory hardware drivers, most simply fail to help at all. Once more companies at least join the bandwaggon and help produce at least some information for the Open Source comunity to use, then it will likely remain like that.

As for uptimes, windows doesn't compete with linux, but it isn't as bad as you make out.

My best Linux uptime is 481 Days and climbing, though that is my personal fileserver in work.

At home I have 241 days for linux and 194 days for Windows XP Home.

One other point that puts people off, while it should be a good thing, the choice is overwelming.
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Windows v Linux

The only reason I only have 57 days up-time is because I joined +Net. First I had to install a 50p LAN card then, having made a LOT of changes for security reasons (with new BB connection) I had to re-boot to ensure changes remained perm. in the event of a power cut when I was busy.

Still have to reboot XP EVERY time I update software for security and very often for other reasons. Also, laptop overheats in this weather (Grrr...) - hardware solution, 4 stick-on rubber feet.
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Windows v Linux

I don't have any figures but my XP Pro machine can run for pretty much as long as I want it to. I've had it since march and had no more than 2 blue screens which were due to dodgy drivers. The main reason it reboots is because of the processor overheating (the heat sink i got with it was useless at cooling).
I've been able to keep temperature under control with 3 fans (and another 2 coming soon Smiley)
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Windows v Linux

Tee Hee. Still prefer my passive rubber feet to fans - and the Hoover applied to the fan grid once a week to get rid of the dust and fag-ash. 1.4GHz laptop is fastest machine in the house (18 months old - Advent 6422 from PC World) - crap air-flow. Only about 5mm clearance between desk and fan. It also seems designed as an igloo heater which is why the battery only lasts < 1hr.

1st solution was the two volumes of the shorter Oxford English Distionary to create an air gap. Laptop took on a slant (\) when I had to look up words in the range A-M and a slant (\) for words N-Z. Stick on feet are cheap. Cheesy
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Windows v Linux

I use XP Home on my main machine. I use it for web design and development...the useful thing is I can run any app I want on it without having to worry about dependancies etc. However, I have a laptop which is running Red Hat 9 where I developing my own brand of Linux (soon to be released).

I played with Lindows on my desktop and it is very good, especially Click n Run. But the compaitibility with all my apps is just not there yet. We just have to wait for that.
shellsong
Grafter
Posts: 2,191
Registered: 03-08-2007

Windows v Linux

If you dislike having to search around for all the dependancies for a program you should try Gentoo, it has a really nice portage system whereby you can simply type for example "emerge kde" and It'll download and compile all the dependancies for kde then download and compile kde itself. Smiley
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Windows v Linux

Apt-get is supposed to do that but it doesn't work that well in my opinion. THat is where Click-n-run is good - it does it all for you. I have looked at Gentoo and that looked likeone of the best features.
csogilvie
Grafter
Posts: 5,852
Registered: 04-04-2007

Windows v Linux

My main machine runs Windows XP Pro, which I use for almost everything. I will be making it a duel boot PC running a distro of linux (Gentoo looks good, Mandrake I have experience of) once I get round to buying my Broadband Router (I stupidly got the ADSL modem option when I upgraded to Boradband). My current laptop runs Windows 2000 Pro and duel boots with Mandrake that I use for hacking "linux-centric" web applications (ones I can't convince to run under Apache on Windows). Its a bit slow for every day use though Sad

I like XP now that I've got rid of some of the horrid features of the new UI. I've had no stability issues with any of the NT brances of Windows (NT4, 2000, XP)
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Windows v Linux

There was a recent study that suggested that Windows XP and recent versions of Linux were roughly comparable in terms of user-friendliness (Link).

Personally I use MacOS X as a client and RedHat Linux as a server. In the nine years I've been using Linux, I've never had a kernel panic (equivalent to blue screen in Windows) although I have seen it at work a couple of times. Pretty good for a server OS I'd say.

OS X isn't quite that stable but is certainly good enough. It's difficult to describe why, but it's much nicer environment to work in than Windows (which is what I use at work).

--> Stephen

[Moderators note (by Thomas): I've added some display text to the link, as its length was disrupting the thread page layout.]
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Windows v Linux

Ah, the love / hate relationship with computers continues. Nobody's perfect.

A few of the things that appeal to me are reliability, low-maintainance, no charges and a wealth of written support. Some people prefer good looks and will sacrifice some core essentials for these. UNIX is/was great - so is C. It would seem Uncle Bill IS catching up in a few areas - he's got a long way to go and can throw money at problems. Some of these problems just don't exist with Linux due to it's pedigree and breeding. It's quite good-looking too, dresses well and now has an understanding of cosmetics.
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Windows v Linux

I like the way that if there is a problem with Linux, anyone can fix it but with Windows you have to wait for MS to produce the official patch. the fact that Linux is open source means that any problems are picked up extremely quickly.