Computer

Is Linux Better Than Mac OS X?

Damn Small Linux 1.0
Image via Wikipedia

The decision to choose a new operating system for a Windows OS user is definitely a tough one. In fact, there are many users out there who are totally unaware of the availability of other operating systems in the market. However, things are beginning to change, thanks in no small part to the increasing popularity of smart-phones and tablet PCs.

Perhaps, the most rivals to the Windows operating system are Linux and the Mac OS X. While it is a well known fact that Mac fans are very passionate about their chosen OS, there are certain points that speak well for Linux and may convince the neutral observer that the Linux OS may actually be better than the Mac OS X. Here are a few points to consider if you are about to decide on a replacement for the Windows OS.

Customisable

Virtually everything in Linux is customisable and configurable. For example, users can change the Ubuntu’s desktop from GNOME to KDE, etc. While the average user might not like to be able to customise their OS, it can provide a great experience for developers.

Hardware

Like Windows, the Mac OS X requires the latest hardware to function efficiently. However, Linux can run normally on virtually any hardware. There are actually distributions of Linux that are designed for very limited computing environments such as Puppy Linux and Damn Small Linux.

Security

When it comes to security, Mac does not appear to attract a lot of hackers hence its lower rate of malicious attacks when compared to the Windows OS. However, Linux takes security to a different level. Linux users do not automatically have administrator access thus viruses cannot automatically compromise all system files and programs. Furthermore, its open-source status allows constant examination of codes by users worldwide which results in quicker find and fix of vulnerabilities. A recent study from Secunia found Apple to possess more security vulnerabilities associated with its products than even Windows. Read full report here.

Reliability

This is one of the biggest pluses of the Linux OS and perhaps explains why it is the number one choice of servers for many hosting providers due to its significantly low system crashes and downtime when compared to other operating systems.

Cost

Ultimately, Linux is free while Mac is highly priced. While no operating system is perfect, perhaps Linux is worth giving a try the next time you are looking to switch operating systems.

Talking Point

Which is your preferred operating system – Windows, Linux, Mac or Other, and why?

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9 Comments

  1. So comprehensive comparison my friend. I love reading your points of view regarding different operating systems. Well for me, between Mac OS and Linux, I prefer using Linux. But among all the operating systems, I will stick to Windows. It’s a super user-friendly OS!

  2. If you’re an aspiring programmer, your best bet is to use Linux because it allows you to easily hack the kernel and exposes a lot of the internals to you. The same can’t be said for the MAC.

  3. Just picked up my MacBook last week. Considered taking on Linux, but I figured I could run it in a VM on the MAC. Picked up Parallels with my purchase, but still need to take the plung on Linux.

  4. I think Linux os sounds like a very viable option for many people. It might be kind of cool to be able to customize everything about your computer. For now I run Windows os

  5. Better with respect to cost (it’s free); better with respect to freedom (you’re free to with it as you please).

    Of course, there are other reasons I could name but I’d rather talk about “alternatives” rather than superlatives (better, best).

    You could say I have my own personal “try Linux” campaign going. Mainly, it’s because as a business consultant, I think business folk who are trying to build their business should be free from the stress of paying for constant updates, upgrades, and new/improved versions of every piece of software AND their operating system used to undergird their operations.

    So I consider Linux a sensible alternative. If we can get people to try Linux based on alternatives, more would leave the Microsoft camp and be happier as a result.

  6. Most important point that you skipped in your article is that “Linux is Open Source”. It doesn’t provide it’s users all the source code, but also lets them modify it.

    Cost is no doubt a crucial issue. Linux is available free of cost, and MAC, let me not speak about it, too costly in brief.

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