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Why Linux will succeed on the desktop

Stony Stevenson (954022) writes | more than 6 years ago

Linux Business 3

Stony Stevenson (954022) writes "In this opinion piece on itnews, former Linux Journal editor Nicholas Petreley, argues that the open-source operating system will break through big time on the client side, especially if pre-installs increase and the KDE graphical environment is adopted. He counts the global push for open standards, the prohibitive costs of upgrades for new Windows machines and the "free-ness" of Linux, both in its ideals and costs, will make it a massive hit on the common desktop.

Petreley says: "There is one additional factor that cannot be overstated. To anyone who truly knows what free software means, they know that "free" as in liberty is the greatest strength of Linux. However, one cannot deny the power of "free" as in "free beer." Microsoft applied this power to make Internet Explorer the most popular browser in the world. Of the three top competitors on the desktop, Windows, Mac OS-X, and Linux, only one of them is free as in beer. That will go along way toward making it the de-facto standard on the desktop."

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Anecdotal Evidence (1)

srollyson (1184197) | more than 6 years ago | (#21235901)

I have to agree with you. Linux has come a long way. Anecdotally, I recently purchased a Dell Ubuntu system for $370 and installed Gutsy Gibbon (7.10) on it. It took no longer than 20 minutes to have everything up and running (including nVidia's proprietary drivers and Compiz!) I was pretty amazed, in other words. Too bad nVidia is still releasing binary blobs, though.

A Good Question. (1)

twitter (104583) | more than 6 years ago | (#21236333)

From the Fine Article:

Once you eliminate the problem of migrating to a new document format, the question becomes, "Why am I paying through the nose for a buggy, bloated, insecure and buggy Windows?" Put more simply, take away the force of legacy inertia, and the cheapest, least-problematic desktop becomes the most desirable.

The sooner you escape the M$ domination, the more time and money you save.

Great Article! (1)

pilbender (925017) | more than 6 years ago | (#21250645)

I think it's only a matter of time. It could be 5 or 10 years, but it's only a matter of time.

I've been using Linux as my exclusive desktop for 7 years. I don't believe I've missed anything positive by not being on Windows. KDE has been far superior to anything Microsoft has put out for a long time. I tell people to use KDE for 2 weeks and you'll never be able to use XP without being irritated again.

I too question why so many distributions have not moved to KDE by default. Kubuntu is likely the best distribution out there for mainstream use. I still use Slackware on my systems but I realize what I'm using isn't necessarily good for Joe Six-Pack. I keep one system with Kubuntu on it just to watch it evolve. There's truly no better desktop operating system. Is it ready for mainstream? Absolutely! Kubuntu is a great desktop system.

They've also made it extremely easy to do desktop type tasks. Windows doesn't come close for ease of use. The only obstacles are document formats like office and programs you can't get for Linux. As Windows and it's viability are marginalized more and more I look forward to watching Microsoft squirm.

At work we use Windows because it's mandated. I get crashes at least a couple of times a week. The bugs aren't even fixed in XP and now Vista is out. My Linux systems never crash or lose my information. I have no idea what that costs my employer, but I'm a well paid developer so it can't be cheap!

I have to agree with the author. The best thing about Linux is that there is no conflict of interest between the vendor and the user. It's a user oriented system and freedom from all the nonsense the proprietary vendors force on users is what keeps me on Linux.

Knowing that there's no shenanigans goes a long way toward my personal comfort and I'm quite certain I'm not alone. No spyware and no crapware... ever! No one gathering marketing data. No one logging my activities. No virus scanner (although I use Tripwire). No restrictions ever. No proprietary system is ever going to be able to offer this level of confidence. No vendor can compete with that paradigm in the long term.
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