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Why we work with Linux

An explanation of why we work with Linux over Windows

NOTE: This post has been backdated from our Wixsite!

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Hey everyone – it’s been almost 2 weeks since we posted last, we’re sorry for not keeping in contact as much as we’d like, we’ve been quite busy and we’re trying our best to update everyone as often as possible.

We’ve had quite a few questions about why we’ve decided to work with Linux instead of Windows, what our plan is etc, and we’re aiming to answer some of that with this post.

First of all, what is Linux? It’s an Operating System (OS), the same type of program as Windows – it’s part of the bridge between your computer’s components and the programs you’re more familiar with such as games, internet browsers and more.

If Linux is the same type of program as Windows, what are the differences? Linux is very different from Windows is too many ways to list, but the most notable differences are:

  • Price: All versions of Linux-based OS’s are FREE
  • Privacy: Everything to do with Linux is “open-source” (with the exception of a few programs you can download from the internet), which, among other things, means anyone can read the code behind a program and see exactly what it does and how – which makes privacy breaches from malicious programs more difficult
  • Modularity: Installing extra functionalities or features is often very simple. For example, applying a theme to all programs and parts of Linux system-wide is often as simple as downloading the theme, double-clicking it, and then picking it in the settings menu of some of your programs
  • Security: Linux offers utilities that allow disk encryption out-of-the-box, either of your whole computer or just your personal files like Downloads, Documents, Pictures, Videos, etc
  • And many, many more

What versions of Linux do we ship with systems and why? Currently, Linux Mint 19.2 is our choice, this is because Linux Mint is maintained by a dedicated community, overseen by a non-profit foundation. The next version of Linux Mint (19.3) is slated for public release in December 2019 and we’ll install the new version on our systems when it’s available.

What are the problems with Windows 10? This is a somewhat opinion-based question, but in general:

  • Windows 10 Home from official sources costs £120, the Pro version with all features unlocked costs £220 NOTE: Windows can be used without payment, but many additional basic features are locked down and it’s generally considered unusable
  • Windows 10’s Xbox-based features simply don’t work without a lot of complicated workarounds, and even then is unreliable at best. Teredo is a perfect example of this, and is required by Game Bar voice chats
  • Windows 10’s centralised configuration design (the registry) is a considerable weakpoint. Malicious programs run with Administration rights (such as installers) can fairly easily edit your registry which can cause all manor of problems, from stopping boot at all to slowdowns
  • A somewhat related point, Windows 10 can slow down the longer it’s used, sometimes quite considerably
  • Windows 10’s boot sequence normally takes longer than that of a Linux OS
  • Windows 10 updates are infamously annoying and can sometimes even cause damage to your programs or personal data
  • Windows 10 settings are somewhat sparse in comparison to most Linux versions

Will we still offer Windows on our systems? Unfortunately, no. However we will include a Windows 10 Installation USB with our dispatched systems, for an additional fee. You’ll have to install this yourself in place of the pre-installed Linux Mint OS and pay for the appropriate license from Microsoft.

Do the same programs work on Linux as on Windows? That depends on the programmer. Sometimes they allow Windows and Linux, sometimes just Windows, and (rarely) just Linux. There’s usually either an alternative program that’s designed to be similar for the other OS – failing that, there are various (somewhat unofficial) ways to get Windows-only programs working inside Linux and vice versa. For example, Microsoft Office in Windows can be replaced by LibreOffice in Linux. The only major differences are appearance and integration with other Microsoft services. Many of the same options, functions and menus exist within LibreOffice as in Microsoft Office – they even support document types that are made and edited by one-another.

We’re always happy to answer more Linux questions on our forums or via messaging!

Thanks for reading! See you next time.

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