Many applicable factors like security concerns, Microsoft poorly received launch of Windows 11 and the sheer costs of software on platforms like Apple, Linux has been driven more as a potential cheap replacement for your computer operating system needs. While a large community will stand only by Linux, there are a few aspects to look at before considering making the change yourself.

What Is Linux?

Linux is an open-source Unix based operating system which operates as the largest open-source operating system in the world. Like Windows or OS X, Linux has a graphical user interface for ease of use and has the majority of the software that the other operating systems have.

There are differences, but most things you may need to do on a Windows or OS X machine, Linux will likely be able to do just as well. Linux is available with hundreds of different distros, to cater for anything you want to do or how you want it to operate. Frequently referred to as the most versatile and modifiable operating system in the world, Linux is a jack of all trades. You may not know it, but you have likely used many Linux based systems before. OS X is also a branch off of the Unix base, while other operating systems like ChromeOS and Android are based solely on Linux.

Linux Strength

Linux has a lot of strengths to discuss, here we look at the strengths that will affect everybody, not fringe use case.

  • Open source – Linux is open source, meaning the operating system is completely free, there are one or two specialized distros which will cost money, but those are far beyond the average person’s use case. Not only is the operating system open source, but the majority of software available to Linux is as well. This means that most of the software available for Linux will be so free of charge. No more expensive software, but free versions that are in some cases better.
  • Customizability – Linux is customizable in every sense of the world. From the interface to actions and accessibility. Every detail of the operating system is in your control.
  • Security – Linux in general does offer more options for security and privacy than any other operating system today, although you are able to take it a step further as well. If you are extremely privacy and security orientated, distros like Tails and Kodachi offer the bleeding edge of this space.

Linux Weakness

Linux is incredibly versatile and useful for most of the tasks a computer user could want. There are, however, a few exceptions.

  • Gaming – While programs like wine do further game support on Linux, the experience is still lacking compared to what you’ll enjoy at on Windows.
  • Software – There are alternatives to most kinds of software available on Linux. If you want a particular software for a specific job, it may be best to stick to your current OS.
  • User-friendly – As user-friendly as some distros like POP!_OS are, Linux is still catered towards power users. It is still complicated to get third party equipment to function correctly.
Last modified: December 6, 2021