There are a number of operating systems available for personal use as well as small and large businesses. Probably the two most popular are Linux and Windows. In order to determine what operating system best suits your needs, it’s important to know some background on Linux and Windows. Some important factors to consider in the selection of an operating system are what are some of the things that make Linux and Windows appealing and what are some of their drawbacks. In today’s economic conditions, it’s vital for companies to try and keep costs down. This paper will also look at the cost of each operating system. Based on all of these factors, one of the operating systems is recommended for your business.
Linux Operating System
The Linux operating system is one of the most widely used operating systems in today’s market. It gives an everyday personal computer the same power and flexibility as a UNIX workstation with an entire Internet application set and a fully functional graphical user interface. Even though it offers the benefits of a Unix workstation, novice users shouldn’t be concerned because it’s an easy operating system that anyone can use. (Asprey & Seruzzi, 2008) A little background on Unix will help with understanding Linux. Unix was developed in 1969 for a research community in need of a flexible an efficient operating system. It evolved from a system designed by one person into an operating system published by many different companies and was given free-of-charge to many university computer science departments, one of which was University of California at Berkley. They took the software and developed it further, adding a bunch of new features that were incorporated into the basic software. This modified software was used by the Department of Defense in the research project known as Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) that was the precursor to today’s Internet. Berkley’s version released in 1983 incorporated powerful and sophisticated file management and Internet network-based networking protocols that are the same protocols used for today’s Internet. (Asprey & Seruzzi, 2008) Linux actually got its start from a developer by the name of Linus Torvalds and some other programmers from around the world during the early 1990’s. It came about because there were only a couple of options for operating systems at the time. One was Disk Operating System (DOS) and the other was UNIX. DOS was owned by Bill Gates or Microsoft and seemed to corner the market for personal computer operating systems. UNIX was priced very high to try and keep it out of the hands of the personal computer users as well as increasing the profit margin of the vendors. (Hasan, 2005) Professor Andrew S. Tanenbaum filled a gap when he wrote an operating system called MINIX, used to teach students all the behind- the-scenes workings of an operating system. Tanenbaum went on to write a book, ‘ Operating Systems: Design and Implementation’ that opened the door for millions of potential programmers and hackers, including Linus Torvalds, allowing them access to operating system source code. This was the beginning of Linux. (Asprey & Seruzzi, 2008) The Linux operating system is available free, or what is called an open source software/application. You can customize your system to what you need or want based on how you are going to use your personal computer or workstation. There are thousands of applications available for use with Linux through websites such as gnomefiles.org, (GNU Network Object Model Environment), kde-apps.org (K Desktop Environment), and sourceforge.net. Because Linux generated such a large following, commercial vendors started to put together different sets of software that people had become familiar with and offer them for sale to the general public. Some of the most popular distributors are Ubuntu, Red Hat,...