LXer Feature: 20-May-2011
In recent years, Ubuntu Linux has become increasingly popular as a replacement for Windows. Ubuntu is an operating system which features a number of advantages that make it an appealing alternative for everyday users. Here are 10 reasons why Ubuntu beats Windows hands down.
While Google's Android and Apple's iOS have conquered the smart phone world, Microsoft Windows is still the reigning champion on the desktop. In recent years, Ubuntu Linux has become increasingly popular as a replacement for Windows. Ubuntu is an operating system which features a number of advantages that make it an appealing alternative for everyday users. Here are 10 reasons why Ubuntu beats Windows hands down.
1. It's Free
Most importantly, Ubuntu doesn't cost anything. You can download it either from Ubuntu's main website or via Bittorrent. Purchasing a new Windows license can cost hundreds of dollars, and you need to upgrade every few years to get the latest features available. Ubuntu eliminates the cost associated with keeping up to date when it comes to software.
2. It's Secure
Linux is inherently more secure than Windows, for two main reasons. First, Ubuntu requires permission from the user before installing new software. That makes it more difficult for malware to install itself on your computer. And secondly, most viruses are targeted at Windows due to its popularity on the desktop, where it has over 90% market share. Linux is so secure that many users don't even bother to install an anti-virus program
3. It's Just As Easy As Windows
A common misconception is that Linux is tough to use and really only popular amongst the technically savvy. This was somewhat true a decade ago, but is demonstrably false in 2011. The main appeal of Ubuntu is its user-friendliness and intuitiveness. Appearances aside, most users won't be able to tell the difference between Windows and Linux in terms of basic functionality.
4. It's Customizable and Modular
Another reason that Ubuntu is so popular is that it's easy to configure the desktop to suite your own personal tastes. Ubuntu features support for a variety of Desktop Environments like Gnome, KDE, Openbox and many more. You can also select from a variety of themes and icon sets to make your desktop as unique as you want it to be.
5. Hardware Recognition and Peripherals
A common gripe you'll hear after a new version of Windows has come out is that older peripherals and devices like printers, scanners and fax machines no longer work. In this department, Ubuntu is easily more versatile than Windows and actually recognizes a wider array of legacy hardware and peripherals. The latest version of Ubuntu even features iPhone sync support as well as support for a number of other mobile devices.
6. It's Lean and Lightweight
Ubuntu is the perfect operating system for older computers that won't run the latest version of Windows. As operating systems become more sophisticated, they require faster CPUs and more RAM to function properly. Ubuntu requires only 512 MB of RAM and a 1 GHz processor to run satisfactorily. It's faster and more responsive than Windows, and can potentially save an older PC from the landfill for a few years.
7. Community Support
One of the best selling points for Ubuntu is its loyal community of rabid fans. Many users are extremely passionate about open source software and Ubuntu in particular. They're more than willing to help new users solve problems and teach them how to make the most of the operating system. If you can't figure something out, somebody on ubuntuforums.org will have an answer for you.
8. Server Training
Because Linux is extremely secure and free, many web hosts use it as the basis for unlimited hosting on their servers. A familiarity with Linux will help you out later if you decide to start up a website. Cheap Linux hosting is the default standard for most Wordpress blogs. Even though these hosts usually feature web-based administrative panels for inexperienced users, some basic Linux knowledge will help you run your website more effectively. Ubuntu is a terrific, hands-on learning environment in which to acquire some basic Linux skills.
9. Software Diversity
It may come as a surprise to some, but there are actually more software programs available for Ubuntu and Linux in general than there are for the Windows and Mac platforms. Ubuntu has over 10,000 programs in its software repositories that can be installed easily with just a few mouse clicks. Whatever your needs, Ubuntu has a software solution for it.
10. Easy Upgrades
Last but not least, Ubuntu is absolutely dead simple to update and upgrade. Updates for all software are handled through a unified, comprehensive Update Manager. And when a new version of the operating system itself comes out every six months, it only takes a few clicks to seamlessly upgrade the entire distribution in less than an hour.
As you can plainly see, Ubuntu has a lot going for it. It may just be the best operating system available on the market today. Best of all, you don't have to spend a penny to find out how well it can work for you. As such, you've got nothing to lose by downloading Ubuntu Linux and giving it a shot today.