Should we all be using Linux?

Well, think about it for a minute... Microsoft have went somewhat downhill when it comes to Windows 10 and we know the many things wrong with it, and Macs are too expensive in where you're just paying for Apple's name only and, macOS will be dropping 32-bit support completely after Mojave (for those that didn't know, or don't follow Apple in general). I think if anyone wants a new computer and doesn't wish to go down any of these routes, then it seems Linux is the only way.

Okay, sure, Linux itself can be confusing and all but if the masses only just knew about Ubuntu or Linux Mint then things would be great for all of humanity. Why am I saying this? Because these two OSes are easier to use and do what they're told. None of this gimmicky crap Microsoft pulls on people or doing things behind their back and other stuff. Although, obtaining a Linux distro may be difficult for some as you can only get a DVD of it online and, I think one can download the installation media into a USB too but, the average costumer would just want to get it from a shop or even a new computer with a Linux distro built in.

And if I think everyone in this world should be using Linux, then this should apply for businesses also. As in, no more having to pay extra for a Windows OS even with Office too. Microsoft have enough money to fill their pockets with.

So, what's everyone stance on this? Agree, or disagree? I'd like to see people's answers from either side of the discussion. Should be interesting.

Comments

  • Actually, If one has a new computer newer than 3 years, he shouldn't be using Linux. If a computer is newer than 3 years, there's pretty good chance that some of its hardwares won't work. If it's newer than 1 year, well... let's just say, there's a pretty good chance that some of the hardwares will work....

    See, I have 5 desktops of varying age (15 to 1 years) and 4 of them run Linux including multi boot and VM. And 3 of those 4 have own different hardware problems. An old one has its screen displaced unless I choose nouveau instead of Radeon. One, NVidia HDMI sound doesn't work no matter what. The other one, suspend doesn't work, and recently got completely boned after upgrading to Mint 19 LTS because now hibernation is not working too. (heard there was a kernel regression recently and Ubuntu Bionic and all its derivatives are affected) The only one that doesn't have hardware problem is the one on virtual machine.

    The story doesn't end just like that. One with GTX 1070, 2/3 of the screen is distorted beyond recognition right after live boot - gave up. No distro has been successful to get bluetooth on my tablet working, making it more or less a brick with DELL logo. Plus, related to hardware problem, some commercial programs don't seem to support proprietary driver - at least not for Matlab and Abaqus, especially Abaqus - you're stuck with cpu's and no cuda.

    Think Microsoft has lost its track and screwed up many users with the recall-quality 1809 update? Sure they did... but Linux has got its own fire in the ass. Hardware problems aside; lack of standard, users still must delve deep into his arcane text files through unfathomable console commands to reconfigure something, even after all these years (related to lack of standard), fragmented and unfocussed development efforts, devs all do what they want and not what users want ignoring important bug reports... No, Linux is still not for average desktop users, who usually prefer a functional computer over a free computer. Unless one is a sysadmin, programmer, or other similarly geeky types, he's better off using Windows.

    That said, I do hope Windows market share will drop at least by 20 percent. That way both worlds will grow. MS then will actually try to make a better software, and Linux hardware problems will automatically resolve itself as Linux userbase grows.

    Currently the only enemies of Microsoft are their own former products. Like Windows 7. I find this situation somewhat analogous to Intel and AMD of last year,, except that Linux doesn't pack a strong punch like Ryzen did.

  • @Bry89 said:
    Well, think about it for a minute... Microsoft have went somewhat downhill when it comes to Windows 10 and we know the many things wrong with it

    Is Windows 10 actually a bad operating system? Because in my humble opinion, it is a pretty stable OS with lots of great features. But yes, I did hear that Windows 10 was considered a "rushed operating system" by critics when it was released back in 2015, but I both agree and disagree, mostly disagree, because Win 10 works just fine.

  • I really, really wish Linux was a truly viable alternative. I mean, it's getting there and it's closer than it ever was before... but it's just not there yet. Still too many odd problems that crop up, RDP support sucks, no support from Adobe or Microsoft for industry leading apps like Office and Photoshop and no real good alternatives for those apps (GIMP sucks, and Libre Office might be fine for documents / spreadsheets but there's no Outlook alternative that's worth anything.).

    Also, as movomo said, Linux is fragmented. There are so many distros that it's way too confusing for the average person. Also, the average person does not install their OS. They buy a computer and it comes with whatever it comes with. They don't know how or care to know how to install another OS. They also don't really care that much about cost because it's baked into the price of their computer. So they aren't paying for their OS directly. And I know back in the day, when Dell offered a computer with Ubuntu preinstalled, they actually wound up charging more because they couldn't offset the cost with preinstalled bloatware like they could with Windows. Not sure if they're still doing that or not.

    Windows 10 has such great potential to be a really nice OS. It has much better security, and stability and performance are on par with improvements made in Windows 8. But what makes me hate it is the automatic update system. This is one place Linux shines above the rest (although macOS seems to be fairly ok at this as well), updates are quick, easy and in my experience, rarely fail (I've seen it happen, but far less than I've seen on Windows). Windows on the other hand (especially since Windows 10 came out), has been an absolute shit show with updates. I cannot tell you how many fucking times an update has failed to install on my laptop. And because they have taken away your control over when and what to install for updates, it will continue to try to install a failed update and fail over and over again until the next feature update so that you can update the whole OS rather than patching. I've done that at least twice on my laptop and about 3 times on my gaming system.

    Also, I really dislike the whole cortana thing and the OOBE wizard for the latest version is terrible. Why oh why do we need to have separate screens for entering and confirming your password??!

    As much as I'm loathe to admit it, macOS is really the best alternative OS to Windows. It has widespread support for a variety of apps, it's easier to find decent alternatives to Windows apps, it has support from Adobe and Microsoft for Photoshop and Office, MS have even released their RDP app for it. Updates seem to be stable and its performance on old hardware is surprisingly good. I'm running High Sierra on a mid-2011 machine and it just flies. Unfortunately, Mojave is not supported on this hardware, so there's that. I'm not bothered by them removing 32 bit support. As far as I know, every mac since they switched to Intel has been 64 bit, so I'm surprised they haven't done it sooner. Even on the Windows side, we've had 64 bit for a while... and on servers, we've been 64 bit only for almost a decade. It's gotta happen sooner or later.

    Mac hardware sucks though. Usually overpriced and they put form over function. And the only reason macOS is a decent alternative is because developers actually support it and Apple supplies the OS and the hardware, so driver support is baked in. If Linux had that kind of support, it would probably be a real contender.

    The last point I want to address is the business users. You might think they would love Linux because it's free, but what businesses love is having someone to yell at when things go wrong. So it wouldn't be free, they'd need to pay for enterprise support for Linux. They also tend to have this weird mindset that you get what you pay for, so if you're not paying for something, it must be crap. Also, business users tend to use business apps that are barely supported on Windows, let alone Linux. And getting them to migrate to something else is a long and painstaking project. Businesses move slow. We're still supporting businesses on 2003 and I've even seen a 2000 box or two.

    Also, Windows is still king for enterprise management. When you have to manage 2000+ workstations, GPO and AD are your friends. Linux doesn't really have a decent alternative to this, although Linux can be AD joined and there is OpenLDAP as well. But I'm not aware of anything to replace GPOs.

  • edited October 17

    @JonathonWyble said:
    Is Windows 10 actually a bad operating system? Because in my humble opinion, it is a pretty stable OS with lots of great features. But yes, I did hear that Windows 10 was considered a "rushed operating system" by critics when it was released back in 2015, but I both agree and disagree, mostly disagree, because Win 10 works just fine.

    I personally think it is, when its design is the worst I've ever seen and other crap that goes on, nevermind the godawful Start Menu that's been bitched about a thousand times over. I've tried the OS myself at work experience one time and let me tell you, it was hate a first sight. Also, yes, the updates as what BlueSun said, especially when the October update caused a massive uproar when it apparently wiped people's files. No joke here.

    Also, excellent points made here so far. Thanks a lot :)

  • Personally, if Windows was my main platform (I have a Mac), I'd want to dual boot with Ubuntu. Or at least have Ubuntu on a flash drive.

    However, since macOS is based on UNIX (parts of BSD to be exact) I don't see much of a point dual booting Linux on Mac, since package managers such as Homebrew offer everything I would need from the Linux world (wget, etc).

  • Also, I'm not much of a Linux user, but I do use Chromebooks, which run Chrome OS, which is based on the Linux kernel. The reason I said that is because I actually do prefer Windows over Linux because Windows has more compatibility for more software and all that other good stuff. Linux, on the other hand, does not have much compatibility for a lot of third-party software, and on my Chromebook, I am usually stuck with having to use basic apps from the Chrome Web Store, which is okay, but not as good as software designed for PCs using Windows software. However, you can put your Chromebook in what is called "developer mode", where you can make it so that your Chromebook can run Windows software. In this case, you will need a compatibility layer software like Wine, along with something called Crouton (Chromium OS Universal Chroot Environment), which allows Linux operating systems to run parallel to Chrome OS systems.

  • My recent hatred toward Microsoft are almost exclusively about these "Windows as service" bullshit and forced auto update. Other than that Windows 10 is rock solid and pretty good.

    I mean except UWP. I especially hate their dumbed down UI where you can't place more than 3 buttons on one screen. Settings app is ok though, as long as all the legacy controls elements are merged into it. Or in the other way around. (There's one redeeming quality in UWP: it's scalable, you desperately need it when you have hidpi monitor) But I don't see it coming anytime soon. In this "rapid development" shit, devs never get a PITA stuff done because they always have a "next time".

    But why all the hatred about the start menu? Now Windows 8's Metro was a disaster, I know, but I don't see much fundamental difference between Win 7's and 10's. Besides, Win 10's allows you to put a great deal more custom stuff on one screen, you can scale it to occupy almost the whole screen, put even more stuff and arrange them visually. I came to appreciate the new menu ever since I bought a 40 in. UHD monitor.

  • Yes, I definitely agree that we all should be using Linux. Since I'm a tinkerer, I use Arch Linux 99% of the time (from my MacBook Pro to my Raspberry Pi). My dad is probably the only other Linux user I know, and he uses Ubuntu in dual-boot (he's actually the one that got me started using Linux).

    Problems I have with Windows 10:

    • Way to bloated
    • Uncustomizable
    • Is slowly being locked down
    • Collects your personal data for Microsoft to do who-knows-what

    The only way I see to get people off Windows is to have each OEM adopt/create their own Linux distro. Some examples include:

    • Raspberry Pi uses Raspbian
    • System76 uses Pop!_OS
    • Purism uses PureOS

    Even though macOS is Unix-like, I find certain things annoying/unacceptable, such as:

    • Lack of ttys (for recovering system hangs if nothing else)
    • Outdated command-line tools
    • No package manager included
    • Software quality slipping
    • Hardware incapable of being upgraded/repaired

    If you're a gamer, Steam now can play Windows games directly on Linux thanks to Proton (and developers can see how many buyers are Linux gamers).

    About the lack of standardization, that is Linux's both greatest strength and greatest weakness. However, Red Hat has been trying to standardize Linux (systemd, GNOME, flatpak, etc) even though there's been resistance. For example, you have the choice on whether to use GNOME or not, Microsoft doesn't give you that kind of a choice.

  • @movomo said:
    But why all the hatred about the start menu?

    No one wants to see ads the minute they open it. Simple.

  • I unpin all the default crap from the start menu on any new 10 set up. I find it utterly unacceptable that a "professional" edition of Windows comes with crap like candy crush preinstalled. But then again, I suppose Windows always did come with games like pinball or solitaire. It's just the new generations games... still not a fan.

    I disagree with it being bloated though. Mostly because I'm old enough to have seen that argument (and used it, unfortunately.) many times in the past about whatever the current version of Windows is. 10? Bloated. 8? Bloated. 7? Bloated. Vista? Double bloated. XP? Bloated. Hell, I'm fairly certain I've even seen that argument made about 2000.

    Windows certainly does have a large disk footprint though, especially if you compare it with older versions like 2000 or Linux.

  • @BlueSun said:
    I find it utterly unacceptable that a "professional" edition of Windows comes with crap like candy crush preinstalled.

    Rest assured that this doesn't happen for Windows 10 Enterprise LTSB, which I'd rather use if I'm able to obtain through legitimate means.

    Anyway, from the points made so far, I guess it all goes down to hardware being a major issue which hinders Linux to ever become more "popular". That would be why I'm hesitant of replacing this laptop's OS with it in the near future (especially with Win7's time ending in less than 18 months).

  • edited October 18

    There is also the looming concern of Secure Boot-- Microsoft can control which OSes you can boot, and which you can't. Currently we can disable Secure Boot through the BIOS Setup utility, but this could change in the future, requiring many Linux distros to buy a costly Secure Boot certificate.

  • @Bry89 said:

    @movomo said:
    But why all the hatred about the start menu?

    No one wants to see ads the minute they open it. Simple.

    Uh oh. Ok, can't argue that... I too decided to accept them as OS stock games, like the venerable Minesweeper... Just be sure to unpin them the moment you done installing.

    The one I loathe even more is their never-ending Edge push whenever I visit their official website, though...

    @Bry89 said:
    That would be why I'm hesitant of replacing this laptop's OS with it in the near future (especially with Win7's time ending in less than 18 months).

    I guess you could try. That's why all the Linux distros offer a live boot image in the first place. Windows doesn't need to because they know it will work on every piece of hardware they care. Best wishes! If you and your hardwares are fine with Linux, you should certainly be using it.

    Anyways, as to Windows' bloating... I don't know what amount of bloat is a right amount. I've seen Tiny Core users cursing Ubuntu and Mint that they're bloated. AntiX users often say systemd is bloated. While there is some truth in their claims, such things can be justified equally easily. Such as, for the sake of convenience. Or compatibility...

  • At this point, the main problem with Linux is the fact that hardware support is shaky at best. While most common hardware is usable, hardware that is uncommon simply doesn’t work. On top of that most people tend to use tablets that are based on ARM.

  • My view on Linux as a main desktop operating system for most people is similar to the view expressed by YouTube user Uxwbill. I want to be able to set someone down in front of a Linux computer and have them perform all of their normal tasks with (at least relative) ease. Until then, I don't see it becoming a very widespread thing for a while.
    I personally enjoy using Linux as a desktop operating system. Several times, I have used Linux Mint on both my main laptop and desktop. I find that it works quite well, even on older hardware. A while back, I built a spare parts machine with an AMD Athlon 64 X2 4450e (I think), 2GB of DDR2 and dual 80GB Seagate hard drives, both of which were failing (no RAID or anything, 1 for OS and 1 for data). Mint was the main operating system used on the machine, and it performed wonderfully. I'm OK with using Linux as a day-to-day OS, but not everyone else is.

  • @robobox said:
    At this point, the main problem with Linux is the fact that hardware support is shaky at best.

    Makes me wonder that if I install a Linux distro on this laptop right now, it may not detect my keyboard, mouse and speakers. That's another reason why I'm thinking against replacing my current OS with it.

  • Also, the lack of hardware acceleration on Chrome is perplexing. See this omgubuntu article: https://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2018/10/hardware-acceleration-chrome-linux

  • @Lenovo1984 said:
    I want to be able to set someone down in front of a Linux computer and have them perform all of their normal tasks with (at least relative) ease. Until then, I don't see it becoming a very widespread thing for a while.

    See the thing is that for most use cases, the average user would probably actually be fine with that. As long as it has a browser, they'll manage just fine. But they won't install Linux themselves. But if you give them a computer with it preloaded, they'll probably be fine.

    I recently made the bold move to switch my Uncle to Linux. He was previously using Windows XP and it has really become just about useless. Yes, there's workarounds and ways to get it to keep working, but for someone that just needs a modern web browser, it's just not worth it. But, Linux is. It has Chrome and that's all he really needed. He didn't know how to use a computer running XP and he still doesn't with Linux. So essentially nothing has changed other than the fact that he now has a modern operating system which will be supported for a few more years.

  • @BlueSun said:

    @Lenovo1984 said:
    I want to be able to set someone down in front of a Linux computer and have them perform all of their normal tasks with (at least relative) ease. Until then, I don't see it becoming a very widespread thing for a while.

    See the thing is that for most use cases, the average user would probably actually be fine with that. As long as it has a browser, they'll manage just fine. But they won't install Linux themselves. But if you give them a computer with it preloaded, they'll probably be fine.

    I recently made the bold move to switch my Uncle to Linux. He was previously using Windows XP and it has really become just about useless. Yes, there's workarounds and ways to get it to keep working, but for someone that just needs a modern web browser, it's just not worth it. But, Linux is. It has Chrome and that's all he really needed. He didn't know how to use a computer running XP and he still doesn't with Linux. So essentially nothing has changed other than the fact that he now has a modern operating system which will be supported for a few more years.

    Yeah, so I guess it just depends on the people I know who wouldn't know what to do with Linux.

  • Honestly, I think most people don't know what to do with Windows either. They just know that they click the thing and the thing happens and it takes them to the place they want to go.

  • @BlueSun said:
    Honestly, I think most people don't know what to do with Windows either. They just know that they click the thing and the thing happens and it takes them to the place they want to go.

    That is true. I have found that when I ask someone how they did something, they either have no clue or say something along the lines of "I clicked the blue button and it installed". I really wish there were more ways for people to both learn how to actually use a computer and for people to be motivated to learn how to use a computer.

  • edited October 27

    The thing is that the lack of standarization in Linux makes it really ineficient, since the average user doesn't knows what to install, not even how to do many things they usually do in Windows. There are books which help you to go througth the transition, but there should be integrated documentation in the system for users migrating if Linux really wants to attract users.

    Also, there's the driver problem, since some manufacturers give really not much documentation about their hardware, what makes the hardware akward in the system, and this happnes in Windows, the most used OS. So now imagine how akward hardware end in a little market share OS like Linux. This problem might get a workaround, which would be to implement a Windows-compatible driver system, so Windows drivers "fit" into a Linux system. Nobody says that this is an easy job, but it actaully would worth it, and part of the job could be made in base to the ReactOS driver system.

    Really I wish Linux could get better in some areas so it can finally attract Windows users

  • @SistemaRayoXP said:
    Really I wish Linux could get better in some areas so it can finally attract Windows users

    And that should've happened a long time ago, given that the Linux kernel had been around since 1991. Well, maybe not back this far but say when Windows 8 had caused a major uproar.

  • I don't see any significant standarization coming up in the foreseeable future... Linux users are kinda-sorta rebellious by nature. When they don't like something, they won't fix it, they'll just abandon it (and optionally spawn a new distro while they're at it). They did the same thing in the past at least once - Exodus from Windows, totally fine - and why not twice? That's what happend when Canonical decided that Ubuntu Unity would be a good idea.

    While I do think Ubuntu Unity was a fucking mess and was no better than Windows 8, imo this same exodus done over and over ad infinitum is what essentially made today's shattered world. Why struggle to fix the old thing when you can just make a fancy new one? Tell those don't want a new toy to walk away if you don't like it, it's not like we owe them anything anyway.

    So GTK 3 breaks GTK 2, new version of GTK 3 breaks previous version of GTK 3, and so on, so in the long run users often end up having GTK 1, 2, 3 and QT 3, 4, 5 at the same time, each controlled by separate setting and often offering no GUI interface at all. Each windows manager handles menu differently and context menu handling is left up to file mangers. Knowing there are dozens of different config schemes out there it's easy to see why there isn't any configure-all GUI program. Meanwhile on Windows, all you really need is win32api which is what makes 32-bit (or even 16-bit) Windows 95 programs run fine on Windows 10.

    As long as those issues remain, I don't see any solid progress. Linux users mostly don't seem to recognize this as a problem, though. Rather they're proud of it.

  • Daily Ubuntu linux user here. The most trouble I've had with linux is getting my grandmother's laptop to recognize a Broadcom wireless card. But that was years ago. I have not had any trouble with linux drivers for anything in at least 5 years. Even when we got a new printer, the driver wasn't included, but the Brother website had a driver designed for linux systems. Running their script installed it just fine.

    I've been using Ubuntu regularly since 2012, and have since converted my father and my grandmother to using it (my dad still has a dual-boot setup with Windows 8.1 for work stuff). And, since my grandmother switched, I've been called far less for tech support. It just works. Even when one of her laptops died, we just took the hard drive out of the dead one and stuck it in a new one. The OS reconfigured itself and there were no problems whatsoever. It's like nothing ever happened.

  • @nick99nack said:
    The most trouble I've had with linux is getting my grandmother's laptop to recognize a Broadcom wireless card.

    My main laptop uses a Broadcom wireless card, so I know your pain.

    One thing I forgot to say in my earlier post is that I don't want to buy another computer with Windows pre-installed, which leaves me with System76, Purism, or Dell (which has computers with Ubuntu pre-installed for developers).

  • Linux (Ubuntu 18.04 LTS) has been good to me on my HP bs-017ca laptop. All drivers installed with no bugs (more than can be said for Windows 10). Unfortunately, the GNOME file manager crashed on me every few days and battery usage in hibernation seemed to be higher than win7/10. Boot times and RAM usage were similar to Windows 7.

    I plan on using Windows 7 until software and hardware support really die out (the latter is nearly true though; the former should be good until after 2025 I believe). Then, I will seek out a Linux distro with a Windows-style interface. I feel that it is now a good alternative, considering that most terminal operations are quite simple; just follow instructions and you're good.

    It's also weird to see that literally everyone in my school runs Windows 10 or Mac OS on their laptops. I'm gonna break the assimilation whether it be with Aero or sudo. :smile:

  • Depends where you are coming from. If your a normal user than maybe it wouldn't be too big of a jump. Of course with the recent Window's 10 bugs, its hard to take Microsofts updates seriously. Although businesses would see a different approach as they may have legacy software running, (god I hope its virtualized) and they can't afford to leap to linux.

    This topic has been discussed before, and many times respectfully since I've been on this forum. Back then I would of said yes! But now I would say its up to you. Try a vm, if you don't like then delete the freeking thing.

    Also to those who say they want a standardization of linux. To them I say that will never happen. At least they way you may think it to be. There is standardization in the way the terminal behaves as well as how the some of the major Linux distro's work. Such as how Red Hat, Debian/Ubuntu, Suse, & Solaris based distros behave and work. Like Red Hat based distro's (Centos, Fedora, Oracle Linux) behave in very standardized way such that you wouldn't approach it exactly the same way if it was a Ubuntu based system. Like for instance their way of setting network interfaces, in Red Hat you would use a special command [nmcli]. In Ubuntu you would edit /etc/interfaces.d/interfaces file. Although Solaris has a very similar process compared to Red Hat based systems.

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