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A user or sysadmin posts about problems with a brand new Vista PC on a support forum. Within minutes, a "helpful" soul suggests a fix: "Install Linux!"
Enthusiasts have always touted Linux as the best operating system, and they've become more strident and shrill since Vista's launch. Despite Microsoft's optimistic predictions and fervent proselytizing, Vista has received a chilly reception in the marketplace. The reasons are legion: its price tag, the lack of driver support, legacy applications not working on Vista, and the list goes on.
Is Linux really better than Vista? Sure. Linux is free, while a flavor of Vista can be as low as $99.95 and as high as $399.95. Linux has a cute penguin for its mascot. Does Vista even have one? Even if it does, it's surely not as adorable as Tux?
Let Test Center count the ways.
Vista's system requirements are high, requiring a "modern" processor (at least a Pentium 4) and 512 Mbytes of RAM, although 1 Gbyte is recommended. The operating system takes up at least 60 GBytes of disk space, and needs at least 64 Mbytes video RAM. In contrast, some flavors of Linux can run on a box with as little as 64 Mbytes of RAM and a 486 processor. That's Linux with a graphical user interface, too. The common Linux distributions take up only 1.5 Gbytes of disk space.
Vista's Aero and the overall user interface look pretty, but it doesn't make work easier. It doesn't make finding a file on the system easier or make an application run faster, does it? Ironically, all it does is slow down the user because it uses up the system resources. Instead of using the CPU to display graphics, Vista uses the GPU, which puts a strain on memory. Vista uses 256 Mbytes just for screen rendering alone, and that's not even at optimum levels. That's a lot of memory just for graphics.
Next: Security is less of a worry to Linux users