Operating Systems Analysis
When considering which operating system for a home or business office computer or network of computers, it is important to evaluate all areas of the different operating systems options. When evaluating Microsoft Windows XP, Microsoft Windows Server 2008, and Linux operating systems it is important to consider the system requirements, the different editions available, security features, system features, updates and support, user interface, and cost effectiveness. Depending on what a person’s or organization’s needs are will determine which operating system is best fit. Operating System Requirements
The system requirements for Windows XP Home Edition and Professional Edition are the same. These requirements are a PC with a 233 megahertz or higher (a 300 megahertz + processor speed is recommended), 64 megabytes (MB) of RAM or higher (128 MB is recommended), 1.5 gigabytes (GB) of available hard drive space, a video adapter and monitor that is Super VGA (800x600) or higher-resolution, CD/DVD-ROM drive, keyboard, and mouse/pointing device. The Windows XP Starter Edition has different system requirements. These are 233MHz processor or better, 256 MB of RAM, Super VGA (800x600) video adapter and monitor, CD/DVD-ROM drive, keyboard, mouse/pointing device, DirectX 9 graphics with 32 MB of graphics memory, and Internet access is highly recommended. Although Windows XP has minimum system requirements, it also has limits on the physical memory. The maximum RAM supported for the Starter Edition is 512 MB. The Professional and Home Editions both have a physical memory limit of 4 GB. Windows XP will not recognize anything over the limits (Microsoft, 2010). Windows Server 2008
The system requirements for Windows 2008 Server Edition R2 are much higher than those needed for Windows XP Home and Professional Editions. The requirements for Windows Server 2008 are a1.4GHz (x64) processor (it also requires an Intel Itanium 2 processor for Itanium-Based systems), 512 MB of RAM or higher, 32 GB of available hard drive space, a video adapter and monitor that is Super VGA (800x600) or higher-resolution, DVD-ROM drive, keyboard, and mouse/pointing device. Like Windows XP, Windows Server 2008 also has limits on the physical memory. However, they are slightly different. The system maximum for Foundation is 8 GB, 32 GB for Standard, and 2 TB for Enterprise, Datacenter, and Itanium-Based systems. If a computer has more than 16 GB of RAM a larger hard drive is required for paging, hibernation, and dump files. Installation and Activation is quite different than that of Windows XP. Any version of Windows Server 2008 can be evaluated without a product key. However, failing to activate within ten days will cause the system to shut down every hour due to the licensing service (Microsoft, 2010). Linux
The system requirements for Red Hat Linux are very light. These are the minimum hardware requirements and they may be enough to run any other applications on the system. The requirements for text-mode are a t-mode 200 MHz Pentium Pro or better and 256 MB of RAM. The requirements for a graphical user interface are 400 MHz Pentium Pro or better and 384 MB of RAM (512 recommended). Hard drive storage space is set a 9 GB for the full installation. Of course, additional storage space will be needed to install other applications. The requirements for Red Hat Linux are very small when compared to other operating systems. Operating System Editions
There are two main editions of Windows XP. These are the Home Edition and Professional Edition. Another edition is the Starter Edition. Each edition has certain aspects that the user will need to know to determine the proper edition to meet their needs. For example, the Professional Edition may be a must for a business, but for a personal use computer the Home edition would probably be ideal. Windows XP starter edition is a...