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What OS to use?

by EE4life
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Aug13-14, 08:26 PM
enorbet's Avatar
P: 146
It is all too easy to fall into the trap of simply adopting old cliches and joining the "My Ford Rocks! Your Chevy Sucks!" syndrome, when the solution is so simple and even simpler with operating systems since the advent of Linux.

Let me explain. Aside from the extremely limited Windows Pre-Install Environment hack which was most notably found, researched for legality, and utilized by Bart's PE (which allows for a portable drive to boot a limited windows environment on virtually any machine) the only full OpSys that can be booted from any manner of drive; hard, optical, magnetic, etc., is Linux. This makes it easy to try it and even use it (especially for mobile and highly secure work) because the user doesn't have to commit to anything nor change anything existing on whatever machine he chooses.

Add to that the fact that there are hundreds of Live CDs (boot anywhere, as above) and many hundreds of hard installed distributions, many of which have worked very hard and put huge sums of money (IBM has spent many billions - yup BILLIONS) into making Linux adaptable to all levels of users. Now, much like Fords and Chevys it is possible to "drive one" without knowing anything of what is "under the hood". However should you decide to learn how to "change a tire" or "improve your gas mileage" all the way up to the deepest and most fundamental workings are all available, free, and above all, unhidden.

In summary, Linux (which is just the kernel) has distributions/versions that are all but without effort to learn and use, and any investment in time is paid back by not having to mess with (or pay for) maintenance software such as anti virus and malware at the very least. It/They offer a great deal and anyone can try as many as they like, free of charge.

Macs have a reputation for high prices because originally the OpSys was tied to a very lean kernel (only supporting an extremely small list of top notch hardware such as SCSI hard drives) so it was in essence micromanaged and pared down as well as of extreme high quality. Many people also assumed that once clones of the iPod appeared, many were half the price that this just reflected that "gouging" .... but have you ever used an iPod? The sound quality is superb... better than anything cheaper and you can get to a specific song in under 5 clicks even if you have 10,000 songs on it. How much is your time (and annoyance/convenience) and listening pleasure worth?

So let's lay it to rest.

1) Macs are no longer way overpriced compared to PCs. They are slightly higher because they are extremely well designed and still prefer higher quality hardware, just not as exclusive as it once was, largely thanks to OSX which is based on BSD, another Unix-like OpSys.

2) Linux is no longer just for hackers and software geeks. It's easy compared to the years any windows user has already invested in learning it and it won't turn you into a cash cow.

3) That said, Windows also has it's niche and viability. It is rather amazing how successful they have been at creating a "one size fits all" system with the only cost being ever increasing hardware requirements to keep up with all the bloat, and of course the ever slowing user experience if you don't upgrade regularly including reinstalling.

These are "flavors" each with it's own distinct pros and cons, but none of them are so exclusive as to be head and shoulders above the others in all categories and the difference grows slighter (excluding cost in money and freedom) over time.
Aug14-14, 07:55 AM
P: 46
I agree with you. It is a very opinionated issue, with no clear right or wrong answer. I'd rather spend my life doing stuff than trying stuff (another opinion), so I will hold off on linux until I make a friend who uses linux to show me the ropes. I earnestly tried ubuntu and linux mint and I think linux is "cool", but, as my incomplete experience shows...I really don't know.

Let's talk about life philosophy. More choices make you more miserable than more happy. Google the book: the paradox of choice.
Aug14-14, 03:59 PM
enorbet's Avatar
P: 146
Quote Quote by EE4life View Post
Let's talk about life philosophy. More choices make you more miserable than more happy. Google the book: the paradox of choice.
I actually disagree with that philosophy both personally and in an objective view. It doesn't depress me in the least that Baskin-Robbins has 31 flavors of which I think I may have tried 8 or 10. Somebody(s) are buying the other 21 since Baskin-Robbins is the largest ice cream chain in the world and also one of the oldest, having been founded in 1945. I'm mildly joyful that should I "get a wild hair" it is there as well as that many people can also satisfy their tastes and whims for a nice treat.

Decision making is an important skill and I try to embrace it. That said, there are some areas that aren't perfectly pleasurable for me. It is a bittersweet experience to walk into a bookstore since, all at the same time, I am "pumped up" in eyes-wide wonder at all the beautiful books but the knowledge that even if I was put on life-support and read 24/7 for the rest of a very long life, I could not even read all the ones I would dearly enjoy.

All I can do is try to make my choices count.
Aug14-14, 09:08 PM
jtbell's Avatar
P: 11,738
Let's stick to computer operating systems in this thread, please. General discussion of life-philosophy belongs better in... um... General Discussion. (subject to Evo's philosophy for that forum, of course. )
Aug15-14, 03:00 PM
Evo's Avatar
P: 26,522
And I don't allow philosophy.

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