However, I do have a hard time understanding why many Linux Lovers have such a hatred of Windows, and why they continually claim that Linux is better and can do EVERYTHING that Windows can do and more.
I'm sorry to say this, and I'm really not trying to be a troll (even though I'll most likely be modded as such), but Linux is worthless to a LARGE amount of end users for simple reasons (whether or not the end user is simple themselves doesn't really matter)
A) Installation IS a pain in the ass for anyone who isn't a geek with a decent amount of experience. Hell its a pain in the ass for those who DO have a decent amount of experience, especially when trying a new distro for the first time that has a wholly different install experience.
B) Driver support sucks. Oh, sure, a lot of the big hw companies have usable drivers for Linux. But does that driver work well with your distro? Do all the features work with your distro? And what about the non-juggernaut hw companies. A vast majority of them don't have native Linux drivers, making it a super-headache to get the item to work in Linux.
C) Software selection leaves a lot to be desired. As pointed out in TFA, Open Office vs MS Office is just one of many instances where FOSS really takes a back seat. And most of the industry-standard software either doesn't run on Linux at all or works partially and only in a VM (which kind of defeats the purpose of using Linux).
D) Games. I don't think I really need to expound upon this one. We all know (even if some of you can't seem to admit it) that gaming on Linux SUCKS ASS because most games don't work on Linux.
Ok. Now I know that some of what I touched upon can be band-aided by using Wine and such, but come on. That's cheating. If the OS can't natively run the software, and has to do so in a virtual-Windows environment, why not just use Windows?
Oh, I already know what a lot of the answers to that question will be. "Windows has viruses and isn't secure!" or "Windows doesn't have good driver support either!" or even "Because MS is EEEEVVIILLLLLLLLL!!!!" Well, guess what. Windows SHIPS insecure, but once installed by any competent person who knows how to tweak the system, Windows can be as secure as any other OS out there. I've used almost every iteration of Windows, and starting with XP have never had a virus infection or security breach (and I download a LOT of crap from unreliable sources). That's not to say that a virus has never actually physically been on my system. Just that I've never had to format, reinstall, repair, or anything. Just delete the offending file, and maybe a registry entry or two. And I've had some virii show up that could have screwed me over royally. But because I tune my system the way I do, not much damage can be done, even if I intentionally download a virus (which I have tested several times). Now, I'm not saying I'm invulnerable. I know my system can get FUBAR'd by this or that virus or breach. But it's a safe bet that I'm more secure than any Linux distro out there (which I've proven via a friend who runs Debian, by betting his system would get FUBAR'd before mine after 3 consecutive days of surfing and downloading from some very disreputable sites. His system was tanked in two days, mine never got touched.)
Now, that whole paragraph above leads to the main point I'm trying to make. An average end user will not understand/like/want to go through the massive learning curve of Linux. Nor will they be happy with the horrible compatability. At the same time, they will not be happy with the virus-fest and crash-athon of Windows. But they will put up with Windows because 95% (I'm guessing) of software works with Windows, as well as 99.99% of games (not taking into consideration that many games don't work when shipped due to crappy coding and rush-rush-rush mentallity). And it is much easier to tweak and tune Windows to be more secure than it is to tweak and tune Linux to run everything and to be able to use all of your hardware. Not only that, but if its made for Windows then it works with Windows. With Linux, if its made for Linux then it works with Distribution B/C/E but not A/D/F or only with G. And only certain kernel revisions. And woe be to he who has a custom compiled kernel.
Now, having said all of the above, I'd like to point out that I would LOVE to see Linux suddenly start kicking ass and taking names. I'd love to see full interopability and compatability, ability to play all the games natively, driver support at least on par with Windows, etc. etc. I'm not looking forward to shelling out 200 bucks or more for Win7. I'd much rather have the same features and usability for 30 bucks for a distro package or for free even.
Ok. I'm done. And I have a suspicion that my karma is done too.
There. Fixed that for ya!
I'm kind of surprised at how everyone latched onto the video games, and completely ignored the rest of my post. I don't play video games all day everyday. And when I do play them, I get as much enjoyment from them as I do when I read a good book, watch a good movie, go to a car show, or go to the park. The point of my post is that price versus compatability/versatility is my biggest deciding factor when building a system. As it is for a lot of people.
I would buy Apple if their prices matched what I can build myself for less money and more versatility. No where did I say that I hate Apple or that Microsoft is god. Nor did I say that I am a troglodyte who lives in his moms basement and subsists on Hot Pockets and WOW. When it comes down to it, a lot of people prefer to have the ability to play 99% of the games on the market, use 90% of the software available, and have better control over what hardware they are using for considerably less money, versus 40% of the games, 75% of the software, and limited control over what hardware they are using for more money and a logo. A lot of people prefer to buy Apple or use Linux/etc. for their own reasons, not the least of which is percieved security (meaning that Apple has its own share of security issues, just not enough user base for the exploiters to care) and/or open source. (The preceding numbers are a quick estimation after browsing NewEgg, Amazon, and a couple of gaming sites)
Neither group is wrong and neither is right. Both have their ups and downs, pros and cons, wins and losses. In todays economy, I would not be surprised at all if Apples prices become a major loss for them. But I'm not an oracle, and I don't play the market, so I have no real idea how the whole thing will play out. I was simply stating my personal feelings and opinions. But, I forgot that this is Slashdot, where opinions are treated as heresy, and the way one person feels about something is immediately set upon by everyone whose view differs in the slightest. My bad. If you are offended by any of what I just said, sorry. Theres no reason to BE offended, but if you ARE offended, then I think the problem lies not with what I've put on the table, but rather with your inability to accept that other people don't see things the same way you do
I consider a new device or technology to have been culturally accepted when it has been used to commit a murder. -- M. Gallaher