5 reasons why I don’t do Linux

…or FreeBSD or MacX Leopard or Solaris, and stick to plain old windows.

1. Too much effort
True, Windows is not the most straightforward operating system in the world, but at least it’s the most familiar one in the world. Click a file to select. Double click to open. Right-click to modify. How much simpler can it get?
Compare this with everything else. You need to mount drives before you can use them (and dismount them afterwards), manually install applications, change settings for pretty much everything and in short, have an idea of how the whole thing actually works before you can do something on it.

2. Too much geek talk
Normally, you don’t hear too many people talking about modifying binary keys on the Windows Registry…and that’s about as geeky as it gets.
For Linux users, the day routinely involves tweaking the Kernel, swapping drives, compiling programs, or simply doing itsy-bitsy things to make your machine a tad bit leaner and faster.

3. Too many versions
For 7yrs, Windows xp was just one thing. And now you have Vista. And even though they do come in lots of flavors, the basic package is pretty much the same thing; give or take a few additional features. Nothing more, nothing less.

Linux, on the other hand, comes in so many distributions, its easy to get lost in there. You have popular commercial versions such as SUSE and Red Hat, you have ‘community’ versions like Ubuntu and Fedora; and then you have those little versions someone decided to make for themselves…like Arch Linux. To top things, with a little know-how, you can make your own distro…sometimes small enough to fit on a USB stick. Why would anyone wanna do that is beyond me. I prefer to take my entire notebook along, not just the operating system.

4. Apply the Applications
I’m sorry to say this, but when you take the list of applications in the world available for windows, and compare it with everything else; things just don’t add up. Now you can scream all you want on how popular software is always available for Mac and Linux, but its usually more difficult to find unless its in your job to do so.
The rest of us happy-go-lucky computer users prefer to walk into a store and walk out with the DVD, without having to ask too many questions on compatibility and whatever.

5. Getting the job done.
For people like me, at the end of the day it’s all about how much I get done “on” my computer and not “for” my computer.

Tweaking system settings for the hell of it is fun when that’s all you have to do. But when you’re at work and running multiple server-side production environments, an interface monitor and an Email client, the last thing you'd care about is how much processing your workstation is using and how you can tweak the whatever to speed it up. Nor do you care to compile and manually install that tiny little file-zip application.

You need something that’s easy, and doesn’t demand learning the operating core to get your job done. And that’s what windows gives me.

After all, it’s the applications that run on it that I’m interested in.

Boy, I know I made some enemies up there…to all the penguin fans reading this; sorry you guys. But I couldn’t help myself :)


Anonymous said...

I'm sure I don't have as much 'technical' knowledge as you, but I love my Mac. :) It works like a charm. When I compare the number of problems I've had with it to the number of problems most of my friends (who use Windows) have, it is so minimal I have to end up laughing at my friends. ;)

Anonymous said...

Avast ! The Penguin Liberation Front shall hear of this !

I agree with you on most points. I am not an evangelist and I've learned over the past few years to stick to your point 5.
Forcing change is useless - but guiding and teaching the change to a willing learner makes a difference.

But I do disagree with you on a 2 points.

Windows on it's own is not a straight forward operating system - it is straight forward to you because you've been using it for so many years.
Ask a long time Mac user to try windows for one day and see what he says !
Similarly long time windows users will not feel at home on a mac.

An array of distributions is the beauty of Unix. There is a flavor of Unix for every type of user and every type of machine out there.
It is much easier to tweak Linux for specialized applications.
On the other hand - Mac and Windows look and behave the same but they don't serve the purpose when it comes to specialized apps - ex NASA, LHC and Nuclear Power Generation.

That's all from me for now.

Anonymous said...


To each his own I say. Personally, I moved to using Linux because it's free (of cost), stable, fast, runs super on crappy hardware and is more secure. There are more reasons than I can possibly list out at the moment, but those were the important ones. I use Arch Linux and Ubuntu Linux at present, and am thinking of giving FreeBSD a try sometime soon. Like it or not alternatives to Windows are here to stay. Check out Why Linux Is Better for a funny looking presentation in support of Linux as a desktop platform.

Also check out my Linux Screenshots set on my Flickr photostream where I upload screenshots of my desktop every now and then.

-=A.R.N.=- said...

Actually I love Macs too...except that they're a bit expensive.
I remember those Apple Ads where they bash the PC for its share of troubles :)
That's where they also claim that Leopard only has one version with everything you need; in comparision with Vista.

The Leopard is one OS that is simpler and more idiot-friendly than anything else.

-=A.R.N.=- said...

Expected nothing less than an outburst bro! Hope The Penguin folks don't take it out too hard on me.
Actually, I didn't say that Windows is straightforward...its anything but that. But in the Window-dominated world, I guess we'll have to accept that its the most familiar one.

And agree completely with the flexibility of the L/Unix core. I'd love to see the guys at CERN use a Windows machine:
"This Collider has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down"

Its the tweak-it-for-everyday-use part abt Linux that bums me out.

Right you are with the advantages part..function-wise I guess the Penguin beats MS hands down.
But that's not what my problem is. My problem is, I like my OS to take care of itself and leave me to concentrate on my real applications; instead of manually installing programs, setting up files paths and stuff.

p.s. your screenshots are awesome

Rayees Ahamed said...

I am not much computer expert, but i do use both operating system. Linux for profession(coz it is more secure, fast(for running huge simulations, good networking) and windows for personal things(coz more user friendly, good entertainment and graphics).

In my experience Linux is best for professional applications, Windows is good for personal desktop use.

A big advantage of Linux is, you may perhaps never have to worry about system hacked through viruses, or stolen credit-card details, nor to buy any Anti virus softwares.

Recent versions of suse linux have the same aspects like

Right-click to select and modify, no need for double click but a simple single click to open. automatic detection mounting of removable drives, etc etc.,

In windows to install a new software one has to download .exe file and install it. for example you want to install vlc player , you have to download it and then install manually.

Installation is no more a big deal as Linux has programs like "smart", which install whatever software you want, just type the name it will search by itself in the internet for the software and install it for you.

I do agree , as far as user friendliness is concerned windows is good, but recent versions of Linux also have most of the features you need...

-=A.R.N.=- said...


Hmm, no dude, you do seem fairly knowledge abt Linux; I must say, I'm totally ignorant of any Linux flavor that searches and automatically installs software for you...in fact thats one of the biggest things that's keeping me off the penguin.

Ultimately I guess its all about getting the job done, isn't it?

A wo(a)ndering mind said...

i completely agree with you.. but your point 4: there are unfortunately 2 important softwares i need for work and damn they run on linux. Its been a mere nightmare trying to use linux and getting them to work.
for sure, in this world, there is no linux for dummies..

-=A.R.N.=- said...

@a wondering mind.
Like Jaffer and Rayees pointed out, beauty of Linux is that its tailored for specialized apps...and I'm sure what you're talking abt is something like that.

Unfortunately most of what I work on, runs straight off Windows so I've never really bothered myself with Tux.