Why I Switched From Windows 7 to Elementary OS Luna

Akshata Shanbhag 20-03-2014

Bye bye, Windows. Hello, Linux! I have been a Windows user for 15 years now – unhappy with many of its ways, but not willing to give up what’s familar. The only time my computers saw an OS that was not Windows was during a short-lived Linux Mint installation and a failed Hackintosh attempt How to Install macOS on a PC (Mac Required) With the right combination of components and effort, you can install macOS on a regular PC. Read More . But thanks to the Ubuntu-based Elementary OS Luna, I’ve given up Windows for good.



What prompted me to try Luna? In what ways does it fare better than my previous OS, Windows 7? Why not a different Linux distro? Here are some answers.

I Took The Linux Plunge When…

I recently replaced my six-year-old Lenovo laptop with a lightweight Asus netbook fitted with a Celeron Dual Core processor and 2 GB of RAM. When it was time to swap DOS (pre-installed) with a different OS, I decided to go with Linux, because I was tired of all the work involved in customizing Windows to my satisfaction. I looked for a few Linux distros 14 Lightweight Linux Distributions to Give Your Old PC New Life Need a lightweight operating system? These special Linux distros can run on older PCs, some with as little as 100MB of RAM. Read More , and opted for Petra, the latest version of Linux Mint. It had a nice set of features, but I was not eager to make it my primary OS. I’m all for bloat-free software that gets the basics right. For this reason, when I learnt about Puppy Linux, I thought it would be the ideal OS for me. I narrowed down my choices to a couple of Puppy Linux versions, MacPup and LXPup. Feature-wise they were good, but aesthetically speaking, their low-res 90s feel was not to my taste. Since I planned to use my netbook for several hours a day, I did not want to settle for something that I was not 100% happy with.


I was ready to give up and resign myself to Windows again when I stumbled upon Luna Looking For A Beautiful, Easy To Use Linux Distro? Try Elementary OS Luna Elementary OS Luna is a lot more than Ubuntu with some tweaks and a nice theme. Here's what to expect. Read More . Impressed by its appearance and reviews, I decided to give it a shot. After a couple of days of experimentation, I abandoned Windows. Here’s what convinced me that eOS Luna is a better bet than Windows 7.


Why eOS Luna Over Windows 7?

Windows always demanded constant tweaks, because it never behaved the way I expected or wanted it to. I spent hours browsing for apps and fixes, making visual changes, organizing partitions and folders, finding and setting up antivirus programs, scanning for malware, and doing a host of other similar tasks. In a single shot, Luna reduced the need for most of those tasks.

It’s Stress-free

Many apps that come pre-installed on Windows are either just so-so or tied to Microsoft services. Some useful ones are altogether missing. In any case, you have to take the trouble of finding the right programs. Not so with Luna. It comes bundled with a set of apps that you use on a regular basis: an email client, instant messenger, archive manager, a calendar, document viewer, text editor, screenshot app, and a photo manager. These pre-installed apps are surprisingly good. Of course, you might wish to replace them anyway, but it won’t be for a lack of great defaults.


While installing apps on Windows is not difficult, it is not straightforward either. You have to scout the Web for reviews of a program, find its right version, monitor its download, and get through various dialog boxes before you can use the program. On the other hand, installing apps on Luna is a breeze. In the Software Center, find the apps you need, hit Install for each of them, and sit back as the apps are installed one by one in the background. Do ensure that you have a working Internet connection first. If you’re comfortable using the Terminal, you can also install apps using that.



You don’t really need antivirus software for Luna. As a Linux OS, it is quite secure. But if “quite secure” isn’t secure enough for you, try one of these antivirus programs for Linux The 6 Best Free Linux Antivirus Programs Think Linux doesn't need antivirus? Think again. These free antivirus tools can ensure your Linux box remains virus-free. Read More .

Fast And Gorgeous…

I’m finding Luna quick and intuitive. The only lag I experience is when I use Firefox, but that was no different when I was using Windows 7, so I guess it’s a Firefox issue rather than a Luna one. My old laptop was plagued by frequent crashes. Running even the most lightweight applications on it was time consuming and frustrating. But a fresh Luna installation has worked its magic on the dying machine. That makes me wonder if I could have done without the upgrade to the netbook. And what can I say about the Pantheon desktop environment that ships with Luna? I’m in love with it. It’s sleek and elegant, with an appealing simplicity. I haven’t changed a thing except for the wallpaper, and even that is from one of the stock options.



I consider the absence of desktop icons a big plus, and in time I have gotten used to it. The Wingpanel – the Linux equivalent of the Windows task bar + system tray – is handy, yet discreet and clutterfree. The Mac-like dock is sufficient to keep your frequently used apps ready for use. I liked the look and feel of Windows 7, and had no major complaints about its interface, but now that I have used Luna, I find Windows lacklustre.


The File Explorer is well planned, and its visual hierarchy makes it easy to find files and folders. I was surprised by the lack of a search function in the file manager, but to me that seemed minor. The file manager is different from its Windows 7 counterpart in some ways. For example, the Close button is on the left and apps open on single clicks. The good news is that you get used to these differences before you know it. I haven’t had to deal with unknown file types as much as I did on Windows. Luna opens every file I throw at it. In the rare case it can’t, it is helpful with error messages.



Unlike Windows, Luna’s interface responds brilliantly without bothering you with irritating popups or anything that feels unnecessary. Working on Luna is seamless and painless overall, which is more than I could ever say about Windows 7, or any other Windows version that I have used.

And It’s Open Source!

Luna is community driven and free to download. There are no terms and conditions to blindly agree to, no restrictions on the number of systems you can use it on, and no legalities to stop you from sharing it with others. What’s not to like? And if you’re happy with what you see, you can always make a donation to support eOS.


Bowled Over, But…

I’m gushing over Luna, but am I saying that it is devoid of flaws? Not at all, though it has been tough to find them. I still have a Windows 7 installation on a shared PC, but I haven’t returned to it for more than a month now, except for a couple of times when the Luna installation was new. I was skeptical when I decided to install Elementary OS, because it sounded too good to be true. I was tempted to stick to the familiarity of Windows 7, or maybe try a Windows 8 upgrade. But I’m glad I made the switch. It has given me a near-perfect computer setup that will not demand a revamp for quite some time. I have enjoyed the Windows experience for more than a decade and I look back on it lovingly, but I don’t see myself going back to it any time in the near future.

Is Luna The Right Introduction To Linux?

If you’re on the verge of switching from Windows to Linux, but are hesitant to take the plunge because of all the things you have heard about its complexity for beginners, try Elementary OS Luna. You can test run Linux from USB Running Linux From a USB Drive: Are You Doing It Right? Did you know that can do a full install of Linux on a USB drive? Here's how to create a Linux USB PC in your pocket! Read More till you’re ready to install it. In my experience, Luna will not disappoint. Some of you might be unwilling to give up Windows-specific features like desktop icons, or adjust to Linux-specific features. Also, you might have a Windows program or two that you just cannot give up.


There are workarounds to some of these issues, and you can use them to bring Windows features to Linux. But if you want too many of these fixes to make Linux behave like Windows, it defeats the whole point of making the transition to Linux. In that case, you’re better off continuing with Windows. Do you see yourself switching from Windows to Linux with Elementary OS Luna? Let us know in the comments.

Related topics: Linux Distro, Linux Elementary.

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  1. Derick
    November 2, 2017 at 3:54 am

    Now that Loki has been out for over a year, with a second version of it, what are your thoughts on eOS Loki? And are you gonna try Juno when it comes out?

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      November 7, 2017 at 8:29 am

      My main computer is now a Mac Air. I have been planning to install eOS on a secondary computer. Just haven't gotten around to it yet :)

  2. Jack
    October 27, 2017 at 5:24 am

  3. marinus
    February 15, 2017 at 1:23 am

    [And bless you/your site for not requiring login, that so often is glitchy!] I'm a windows 7 user that would like to go Elementary but am having a hard time getting some information.
    Being *very* distractable i need a clean desktop- can one strip all launchers etc. from E's. Does E. make this possible? Can one change colors on windows [glare white hurts my eyes]? Do you know of any background darkeners?
    Thanking you in advance...

  4. Daniel
    November 27, 2016 at 7:09 pm

    What do you use for word and spreadsheet processing? My issue/scare would be that even though LibreOffice for example, is compatible with Microsoft Word, (a format we'll have to adhere to as it is #1 globally still) I have seen some of the page layouts change going back and forth between the two programs. Am I missing something or is there another way of working that problem?

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      November 28, 2016 at 1:13 pm

      Hi Daniel,
      Since I needed only basic word and spreadsheet processing functions, I was happy to use LibreOffice. How about using MS Word/Excel on Linux with Wine or PlayOnLinux?

  5. daslicht
    November 13, 2016 at 10:36 am

    I wish I could run Music Software with the same performance as on windows/osx on elementary os. Is it already possible ?

  6. Praveen Nukala
    September 7, 2016 at 4:36 pm

    Hi I am using eOS freya and I am getting bugged with the built in email client Geary crashing somany times. Is this the problem with the mail client and if so, can I move to Thunderbird or Evolution? Whats your recommendation

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      September 7, 2016 at 5:18 pm

      Hi Praveen,

      I switched to a Mac last year and haven't used eOS beyond Luna. I did like Geary when I used it.

      Geary seems to crash often on other Linux distros as well, so switching to a different mail client would probably be best. Well, less frustrating anyway.

      I haven't used Evolution, so I can't recommend it or not recommend it either. I have used Thunderbird for a long time, and I would recommend it anyday :)

      This article from our archivesshould help you pick your next email client.

  7. Dixon
    April 14, 2016 at 5:38 am

    We have a Toshiba Satellite laptop that I buggered up. Today I took it to my local pro, who informed me that my machine wouldn't even handle Windows 10. So, after asking many questions, I took his suggestion and had him install eOS...interesting. Different. Clean, fast, not so foreign, but not the same, neither.
    I'm so n00b, it hurts, but I suspect learning about Linux is gonna be a fun challenge.

  8. Mike
    April 3, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    After 20 years as a Windows user, at the time Windows XP "went to the History" by Microsoft, I decided it's time to look around and try something else then Windows. So ... I discovered elementary OS and decide tp try it out. After that I have only one word to say: "Won-der-full!!!"

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      April 4, 2016 at 12:51 pm

      That's great! Good to hear you're loving eOS, Mike :)

  9. Harshith S
    March 20, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    do all windows 10 apps are suppourted on eOS ?

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      March 22, 2016 at 4:48 am

      Hi Harshith, are you asking about Linux versions of Windows software? If yes, many popular programs from Windows do have Linux-based versions.

  10. Andrius Dobrotinas
    January 14, 2016 at 7:55 am

    I don't mean to offend, but judging an OS by the small non-essential applications it comes preinstalled with?.. Come on! You named small applications that are so easy to find and install - I can't imagine anyone going for Linux simply because they don't like that Windows comes with IE and doesn't have an email client preinstalled. If one finds it so hard to look for an application online, I don't believe they'll find it easy to use any kind of Linux compared to Windows, especially when they run into problems -- which they most probably will (for example, driver problems) -- and solutions to which are so much harder to find online for an inexperienced user.
    And what do you need to read program reviews for? If you're an experienced user, you know what you're looking for. If you're not, your life is not going to get any easier if you switch to Linux because you'll run into other sort of problems. And, by the way, why is it that you need to read reviews for Windows programs, but you don't need to do that when looking for a program for Linux? Simply because you trust that the Software Center's suggestions?

    I, for one, think getting a program for Widnows is SO MUCH easier than getting one for Linux. You find a program that runs on Windows and you know it will run on your Windows. You find a program for Linux, but you need to make sure it does run on your distribution. I've spent some time looking for a good audio player for Linux and wasted some of it simply because players I wanted to check out didn't run on my Linux distro. Then you're limited to what the Software Center gives you - and I don't believe it can possibly know about all the programs that are out there on the internet.

    And since when installing programs on Windows is difficult? I just can't believe that anyone who says installing a program on Windows is difficult will find it easy to do it on Linux. Considering the fact that when you find a program for Linux, it doesn't necessarily mean it will install on YOUR distribution on Linux. That's a major hassle, by the way.

    I'm not against Linux at all, I'm just saying you named the wrong reasons for switching to Linux... unless you only use your computer for browsing the internet and checking your email. These reasons might be right for you, but that's not the way to promote a Linux distro.

    • Andrius Dobrotinas
      January 14, 2016 at 8:09 am

      I mean, your article makes it seem like installing small programs on Windows is such a hard task and that life with Linux is so much easier -- which isn't exactly true. And you have to keep in mind that although using Linux is easy for you, most people will run into problems.

      I'm all for people going for Linux, I just think Linux has so much more to offer than what you wrote about AND that what you wrote about is exactly one of the reasons Linux is not good. If one doesn't like the default programs that Linux comes with, it is a hassle getting one that you'll like. For example, there is an excellent audio player Foobar and video player Media Player Classic for Windows - good luck finding equally good alternatives for Linux. I've spent some time looking for a good audio player for Linux - there is a big number of them, but none of them is good enough.

      Finding the right program for Linux is actually a bigger problem than on Windows. Unless all you do with your computer is browse the internet and write emails -- and use a word processor occasionally.

      • Akshata Shanbhag
        January 25, 2016 at 6:19 pm

        Andrius, you're right that Linux is not free from problems any more than Windows or any other operating system on any other device is.

        I wrote this from the perspective of a first-time Linux user who had an easy transition thanks to Elementary OS, which is why I felt compelled to recommend it as a good option for those who're trying Linux for the first time and are hesitant about it. Of course, that's not to say the switch will be as smooth for them as it was for me and the comments here prove it.

        In the end, the article was more of a summary of my Linux experiment than a verdict. We do have other articles that pit Linux and Windows against each other with a more objective approach.

        • Andrius Dobrotinas
          January 25, 2016 at 6:45 pm

          I apologize, I misinterpreted this article.

        • Akshata Shanbhag
          January 26, 2016 at 3:21 am

          No worries, Andrius. Thank you for taking the time to craft an in-depth comment based on your perspective of things :)

  11. Lokesh Krishna
    December 31, 2015 at 8:19 am

    Made the switch from Windows 10 to Elementary OS Freya and after 2 months, I don't see myself ever returning to Windows.

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      January 1, 2016 at 3:27 pm

      That's quite a recommendation for eOS, Lokesh. Thank you for sharing your experience with the transition.

  12. Bob
    December 30, 2015 at 1:30 am

    Installed Freya on my thinkpad edge 13 a couple weeks ago, dual boot with ubuntu 15.10. Have not booted into ubuntu since. Love the clean interface and everything just works. No driver issues at all. The only issue I have seen on my rig is with a usb bluetooth adapter that won't send sound signal to paired speaker, not specific to elementary as this happens with other distros I have used as well. Love the os. Went back to the site and donated to the cause. Big thanks to the developers!!!

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      January 1, 2016 at 3:26 pm

      Great to hear you loved eOS, Bob :)

  13. Rubén
    December 29, 2015 at 11:17 am

    In the home page, it seems that you can't download the ISO without donating. I don't understand why!!!

    • Martin
      December 29, 2015 at 1:38 pm

      There is a box where you can type in a custom amount you want to donate. Just type in 0$ and you are good to go :)

      • Rubén
        January 3, 2016 at 12:49 pm

        Aaah. OK. Thanks a lot.

    • IAmTheNiggest
      January 2, 2016 at 10:39 pm

      Best. Extortion. Evar.

  14. Nelson
    November 26, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    I just did the same a few days ago. Bye bye Windows 10, welcome Linux (Freya in this case :) )

  15. Bharadwaj Raju
    November 22, 2015 at 7:27 am

    Sorry. I read your review and switched to this from Linux Mint XFCE.

    It was beautiful, I must admit.

    However, it came with

    # A broken package system

    # A (purposefully) modified GTK runtime, due to which I could not develop simple GTK applications

    # No customizability, at all.

    # Tiny bugs, like if you left-click on the panel indicators, they don’t respond to clicks in them (like the volume slider.

    I had enough and went back to the polished Mint 17.2 XFCE.

    • Akshata Shanbhag
      November 22, 2015 at 8:33 am

      Sorry to hear that Elementary OS did not work out well for you, Bharadwaj. Asking out of curiosity - is your comment based on Luna or Freya?

      • Bharadwaj Raju
        November 22, 2015 at 10:57 am


        Also, where can I file bug reports for elementary OS? I'd still love to see the bugs fixed.

        • Akshata Shanbhag
          November 22, 2015 at 11:05 am

          You can file it from the Launchpad page of Elementary OS. Look for the Get Involved section in the sidebar. You'll find the Report a Bug link there.

  16. Anonymous
    June 26, 2015 at 12:23 am

    I decided yesterday that enough was enough and got rid of that piece of shit windos8.1

    After a little bit of search, elected and installed elementary

    There are some details like desktop icons i would like to see, but, apart of that, windows never more.

  17. Anonymous
    June 13, 2015 at 4:54 am

    i love luna but for some reason my wifi if disconnecting and reconnecting at random. fully installed on my laptop as the only os as i am typing this it is disconnecting itself!!!!

    • Anonymous
      June 30, 2015 at 8:58 am

      Driver problem in terminal copy and paste this sudo apt-get install linux-generic-lts-vivid. Enter your password and thhe latest kernel will be installed.

  18. poriya
    May 14, 2015 at 10:12 am

    First and foresight thanks for the great post!
    I had luna OS in my laptop.
    The main problem was that i couldn't have lots of the APPs that i used to have in windows! Actually Wine app didn't worked well for me because it had lots of bugs and it even couldn't run 10% of the Apps from windows.
    the software center didn't offer a variety of apps.It really was a pain in neck so i was forced to go back on windows.
    But , this issue was the only problem that i faced with !
    Fortunately ; it is the most easy to use OS that i,ve ever had .
    It's beautiful and fast and low-hardware using.
    If it just could run some of the important apps for me it would be perfect! Then i wouldn't switch to windows!
    it's a shame

    • Akshata
      May 14, 2015 at 3:58 pm

      Thank you, Poriya. Btw, which Windows apps did you try to run on Luna?

      • safdar
        December 28, 2015 at 7:02 pm

        is elementary os is better for programmers to use?

        • Akshata Shanbhag
          January 1, 2016 at 3:30 pm

          Not that I know of, Safdar. Maybe one of our readers who have experience with programming can respond.

    • Anonymous
      June 30, 2015 at 9:00 am

      Use play on linux to install stuff in Eos. It easily configures application for WINE

  19. Carlos Teran
    April 30, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    I've been using Elementary OS for a whole year now (first Luna, and about to upgrade to Freya soon), and I have nothing for praise regarding its clean approach and trouble free experience. To get the best of it, it requires some tinkering, but that seems like nothing comparing with Windows. It looks the part, and it delivers too.

  20. Jesse
    April 19, 2015 at 6:03 am

    Can we geta follow-up article?

    • Akshata
      April 19, 2015 at 1:23 pm

      I will consider it, Jesse, but it will probably not be worth it. It's going to be me gushing over the next version, Freya. I'm continuing to use eOS and like it so much that I'm reluctant to switch to a different distro or even try one for a decent amount of time. Maybe I should, though.

  21. Rob
    April 13, 2015 at 10:59 am

    There are quite a number of things to say here. What I miss in all comments on the availability of apps is that if apps are written in standard C, C++ (In fact any standard language available in Linux) they should just work on all platforms after recompiling.
    A lot of games use OS calls directly, and thus loose the portability. For any app it should be strictly forbidden to use OS calls directly (that is, not through a standard library).
    And yes, I know that those libraries are not implemented exactly the same (I have had problems with getcwd() which was not available in stdlib in the past), but the vast majority of appas just work.

    As for the stability of Linux- I really don't understand the comments. In my company we have 100+ Linux servers running, and they have a very positive track record). The kernel is the same so there shouldn't be too much problems with that.

    • Anonymous
      June 25, 2015 at 12:28 am

      and you know how are the GNU/Linux servers?
      I know. They don't run a graphical GUI interface. They don't use Pantheon, Gnome3, Unity, Gnome Classic, Cinnamon, XFCE, LXQT, and others desktops interfaces, and they don't install much software in that servers, only the app armor and others defense software that run in text mode. You only see this in a black screen.

      username@pc-name: _

      That's why GNU/Linux is stable as server.

      In desktop GNU/Linux is even worst than Windows. I see alot of kernel parnics, FireFox and Chromium crash sometimes. Even with VLC and Ubuntu extras. I have some problems to reproduce some videos that shows corrupt graphics. In Windows with K-lite Codec Pack. I can see all videos without problems.

      So GNU/Linux in servers and desktops are two different things.

  22. F Scheltens
    April 12, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    One of the biggest advantages of Linux over windows is that there is quite a lot of software in linux which enables you to do things for free that you have to pay for if you want their windows equivalent.
    I wanted to design a PCB some time ago. Windows ? Payed software or a trial version that only goes up to the size of a business card. Linux? Get Keecad, design a schedule, convert to PCB, and it produces the vector files needed by a company that will ship your pcb to your home.
    Movie editing, as mentioned above?
    Windows has movie maker. It works if you only want really simple things. I tried lightworks pro (free version), but it was a pain in the ass, and can't convert footage from my cellphone. I tried converting it with handbrake, only to have LWP convert it a second time! Too much hassle.
    In linux, you have a lot of other good options though. I went with kDenlive. (Incidentally, the version in the repositories as of 04-2015 has a BIG memory leak. Get the version from the kdenlive website.)

    I am now running a dual boot with windows 7 and ubuntu studio (for low latency), and i have LOTS of programs for making images, video and music on there, all free, and way better than i am at using them....

  23. Ger
    April 10, 2015 at 12:43 am

    Actually, after visiting their website i decided to wait for Freya.
    Nevertheless i made a live-boot from usb to get the feel of Luna ;-)

    If you want try Zorin you can also use the option to run it from CD or usb-stick.
    It's not hard to make a dual or multiboot either. Just make sure that all the OS-ses have their own partitions and you'll be fine ;)

  24. Ger
    April 9, 2015 at 7:41 am

    Nice Article.
    Bumped into it looking for info from a freshly installed Zorin-system.

    Funny how some people here react, like it is some kind of religion or smth...
    In any case: i am going to give this Luna ElementaryOS a try.
    Not for myself perse, but more so for my two teenage daughters (although i may consider adding it as another boot-up-option).

    Started using computers way back in the C-64 days (Commodore 64) and witnessed the global communication (at 1st via Bulletin Board Systems, and later via Internet when it became a more public/common good). Having used many types/kinds of computer-systems but professionally and as a hobby. To name some: C64, ZX-spectrum, Commidore Amiga, PC- XT, AT & upwards, various type of Dos-based systems, windows based systems (Windows versions 3 & upwards), Apple/MacOs based systems (Mac Se and upwards).

    What strikes me most is the the industry nowadays decides for us what we NEED.
    We NEED to buy a new system at least every one or two years. We NEED new software and gadgets all the time. Do we really ? Nope, i don't think so.
    And what is even more funny is that many of the consumers feel the need to battle over what system, OS, gadget, etc is best. Hilarious & so stupid ...

    Anyway, i started looking for some alternatives for some old laptops & pc systems which still had winXP on it and bumped on Zorin a year ago or so... Good effort to make a more user-friendly & LinuxOS with some kind of windows look&feel.
    If this Luna Elelementary OS is what i expect it to be i will make a dual boot on both my daughters laptops with Win7 on it.
    Why ?
    Firstly because their windows-systems often seem to "clogg-up" & become unresponsive. I don't wanna push them something else down their throat but a dual boot to a Linux based OS will give them the option to reboot and keep continuing whatever it is they need to do, and at the same time they have the chance of getting used to working with a non windows based alternative.
    Secondly because there is absolutely no need whatsoever to buy an new laptop with Win8 or 10 pre-installed on it, when i can make their current ones work for a few more years to come. Win7 puts a giant weight on system resources but at least it's the most stable version since win2000, and in my opinion Win8 basically just sux. Considering the fact that Win7 will soon become unsupported, looking for an alternative might be a good idea. And if Luna is what i expect it to be it might be a better alternative than Zorin (educational version)...

    • Akshata
      April 9, 2015 at 4:09 pm

      Thank you, Ger. I have been meaning to install Zorin on my backup laptop, but I'm reluctant to switch from eOS :) If your daughters like eOS Luna, do keep an eye out for Freya, the next version of Luna. Its beta version looks really good.

  25. Tina
    March 6, 2015 at 12:10 am

    I don't get why the need to air a Win vs. Linux debate in this particular article because I do get what Akshata wants to share. She isn't even pointing out anything, she's simply sharing her experience of an OPTION she took, and I'm actually grateful that she did, as I think I'd want to try it out, too.

    I'm literally burned out from having to figure out why Windows freezes on me all the time (maybe I'm just unlucky) I'll take the Linux plunge. I'm new to many technologies but I'm willing to try and learn. Hopefully it works out. Great article, Akshata

    • Akshata
      March 7, 2015 at 4:43 pm

      Thank you, Tina :) I'd love to hear how Linux works out for you.

  26. el bid
    February 23, 2015 at 11:29 am

    ElementaryOS one of the baddest distibution i've used, i was unable to configure panel, sidebar or any preferences on file manager, i told myself what is this, never use again. It's good to do something beautiful but if a user cannot adapt to his needs it's not for me. so i'm using xubuntu on desktop computer and lubuntu on a netbook n270 1gb ram with 8mo of video ram (lol)

    • Akshata
      February 23, 2015 at 12:48 pm

      Sorry to hear that your eOS experience has been so bad. Perhaps I adapted to Luna quickly because I did not have much experience with how things work in Linux or how they are supposed to work. I hope Xubuntu and Lubuntu are working out fine for you.

  27. James S
    February 8, 2015 at 10:21 pm

    The author failed miserably to mention that Elementary OS or any other Linux distro sucks big time when trying to install ANY Windows compatible software through the useless WINE program. If Linux wants to attract the (massive) Windows brigade they better go back to the drawing board. I want to like Linux but I just can't. Shame as it has potential but as a decentralized OS it has no chance of ever becoming a major force in the big bad world of OS's.

  28. mike
    January 30, 2015 at 11:45 pm

    Personally I disagree, I have used ubuntu from 2010 and found it great but since then I have tried 12.10,13.04,13.10 and lately 14.04 which I find very power hungry and hard to do basic stuff which windows 7 handles well

  29. franco
    January 20, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    Linux has no decent streaming audio recorders.audacity is for nerds , complex for the average user and visually ugly. I tried audio recorder (saves everything as one audio file that needs splitting). rythmbox needs plugins that never work ,very bad sound qulity,fail to recognise devices,etc
    MS is the king.

    • mike
      January 30, 2015 at 11:48 pm

      Thats one of the many problems with Linux. Downloading torrents, converting files, any sort of media work is an absolute nightmare with ubuntu specifically

  30. Matias
    January 13, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    How about using different versions of new Linux Mint 17: KDE, Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce? I have tried tens of other Linux versions than Mint and Ubuntu and have found Mint as most user friedly, stable, easy to use and install OS. I dislike Ubuntu Unity. I used Ubuntu from 2008 to 2010 and then moved totally to Mint. Since 2012 i haven't even tried longer than few days Ubuntu 12.04 and 14.04.

  31. ohlin
    January 11, 2015 at 10:29 am

    To let you and everyone else know with a quick google you can find instructions for desktop icons and changed where the close x is on the menu bar. But anyone accustomed to linux knows you can modify the entire thing.
    eOS does not have a server edition. So I will be using Ubuntu desktop but with the eOS shell. And Ubuntu server added to that. Woot best of both!...well n dual boot with windows.

  32. Chandru
    December 29, 2014 at 7:36 am

    Hi Akshatha,

    Nice article, I really understand how you feel after switching from Windows to #Elementary.
    I am a Windows 8.1 and Elementary Freya user. I found elementary is good because of the following reasons,
    * Light & Fast
    * Unlimited customizability
    * Consumes less RAM and Disk

    But this doesn't mean #Windows is bad. I like #Windows for the following reasons,
    * My Adobe apps will not work on Freya (Ps, ID, Ai)
    * Gaming
    * My dad and mom cannot understand geeky language!

    To all the #Windows and #Linux only supporters, I didn't mean any offense to you all. This comment is just my view about 2 OS that I use.


  33. David
    December 28, 2014 at 5:19 am

    I can't think of any product we pay dearly for that is as riddled with problems as Windows operating systems and we are unable to do much about it. Their whole system seems to me to be geared up to create a monopoly. They did that part well but it's changing. I would not have the space or time to detail the Win OS dislikes but is it is slow, memory hungry, vulnerable and full of unwanted "pushy" add-ons without asking. I actually hate it. I see silly comments about Linux being ok if you don't need to 'work". What utter nonsense. Just dial up and take a look at the world's brightest that now use Linux one way or another. Juts try using Libre Office, or Open Office or imo better still Softmaker instead of MS Office. They are compatible, and you'll soon like Linux. It is fast, to the point, no nonsense, economical, and free. Sure- there's a learning curve but Linux has come of age in my book and any WinOS fills in very few gaps for me now-a-days. The speed difference alone is phenominal...and Linux functionality is superb.
    "Perfect", no, but it is sure getting there.

  34. James
    December 27, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    I am not a technical wizz or a novice. I have worked with computers in the graphic design field since the early nineties predominately on apple macintosh but also using windows. At home I have a mac running mavericks (wish I hadn't updated from 10.7) and a laptop running windows 7. At work we have a top end HP with windows 8.1 and a mid range iMac on mavericks (OSX 10.9) I never truly got on with windows, mostly this will be my need for simplicity but also the lack of familiarity in the OS. Don't get me wrong, I can find my way round it well enough it is just when there is a problem it becomes a real pain. Generally I have never needed to trouble shoot the mac's I've had. But routinely HAVE to tweak the windows boxes, remove malware, and fight against unwanted "additions that appeared after just adding a new font lol. First started looking at linux about 5 years ago. Played with some but that was all. But having now used a lot of open source software on a regular basis (blender, gimp, inkscape, Krita to name a few) I have started to look towards the OS side again. I am sad to say I don't like what Apple are doing to OSX it starts to now get in your face like windows does. I want the OS I use to be efficient and unobtrusive! So now run both mint and elementary OS in virtual mode for testing. Really like both elementary for me is winning my heart , probably because it feels more like a mac than Mac does now lol, not totally commited yet but I do like that I can just work with the graphic apps and the os just supports in the background. Yes I would miss photoshop and illustrator but that is mostly from not being as familiar with gimp and inkscape I am a firm beliver in creativity not coming from the specific tools you use I have seen beautiful things done with open source software and I have not looked at Maya in years now I use Blender. So back to using linux, jury still out but the way both Windows and OSX are heading THEY will make me change!

  35. Steven
    December 23, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    Love Luna and cannot wait until Freya is out!

    I have worked in IT for almost 20 years. I was there when Windows 3.1 was all the rage. I was and still am a big PC gamer. I have stuck with Windows products at work and at home since the beginning. Windows Vista and Windows 8/8.1 have really turned my stomach. Vista got me playing and testing in the Linux pool. My biggest hangups from making the move from Windows at home was gaming (mostly Skyrim withe the heavy graphics) and Netflix (the Ubuntu desktop app for this was not good - IMHO). The last thing was the quirkiness of all the Linux desktop environments. None seemed to be without issues.

    Then I found elementary OS - Luna and all was right with the world. The desktop was clean and easy to use. Netflix plays wonderfully through Chrome. Skyrim plays on UltraHigh settings in PlayOnLinux/Wine/Steam. Nirvana... at least for me.

    I dual booted Windows 8.1 and elementary OS for about a month. I never booted into the Windows 8.1 OS after that. I finally performed a clean install of Freya beta and have been smooth sailing for the past two months. Everything just works. I even like elementary OS over OSX.

    My wife liked it so much, we installed elementary OS Luna on her Samsung AIO PC. Works like a champ. The touchscreen does not work in Luna, but a test of the Freya CD shows it is remedied in the next release. Hurrah!

    My 70 year old mother just tried it and I am installing for her next week. She loves it as well!

    I even use Cisco AnyConnect to work from home. We are 95% Windows server shop and I remote into my Windows workstation and perform all of my network administrator duties without issue.

    It may not be for everyone, but it certainly is for me. I encourage others to honestly try elementary OS before shrugging and walking away. You will be glad you did.

    Great article Akshata!

    • Akshata
      December 25, 2014 at 8:51 am

      Thank you, Steven. Glad to hear that Luna has worked out so well for you. I have been meaning to upgrade to Freya beta, but haven't gotten around to it. Your glowing review tells me I should do it soon :)

  36. Vadim
    September 9, 2014 at 9:48 am

    Because of "tray" problems "luna" is not usable

  37. John Eckerson
    August 30, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    My four computers are now evenly divided between Windows and other OSes: Win7Ult/Win8.1Pro desktop and Win8.1Pro Thinkpad; Macbook Pro and Toshiba M55 with ElementaryOS. After using Win7Pro and Win8.1Pro on the M55, why did I opt for eOS? With the laptop Intel G945 graphics no longer supported beyond Vista by Intel OR Microsoft, I could not stream or play videos. eOS provided the hardware acceleration I needed out of the box. It also runs faster, has plenty of application options, and is free. eOS runs like a champ on this 2005 Celeron CPU with 1.5 GB RAM. Can't say the same for any iteration of Windows.

  38. Mike
    August 30, 2014 at 4:07 am

    Luna has made a very big impression on me... if it continues to develop along the clean minimalist lines, I will definitely make it my main OS...

  39. Buford T. Justice
    August 27, 2014 at 7:57 pm

    I have been getting into Linux a little myself having been a long-time Windows user. I agree with everything you said. I too looked high and low for a distro that was EASY and SIMPLE. I think I have found two that a Windows user could learn to use without constantly doing terminal commands. The one I am using right now is elementary OS "Luna". It is very nice. The other is Zorin OS. I will base the following on Luna.

    Now there is a beta out of the new elementary called Freya, but I am sticking with Luna until Freya is out of beta. Using the Software Center, I was able to find and download programs i use a lot like Firefox and Thunderbird and LibreOffice. My video, sound, and networks cards were automtically found and the correct drivers were installed. There are a few things I cannot do due to software not being available in Linux to do them.

    I use my computer to record TV shows. There is MythTV, but it doesn't support my 7+ year old WinTV-HVR-1800 TV Tuner card. I will have to get a replacement like the Hauppauge HD PVR to use it. In Windows, I was able to use my current card along with NPVR to record TV shows.

    Another problem is many websites use Adobe Flash and SilverLight for multimedia. Thankfully this is somewhat solved by using PipeLight and enabling the plugins it supports, but there needs to be native and current versions of Adobe Flash and SilverLight for Linux. PipeLight just allows you to use Windows website plugins in Linux.

    Another problem is I also use my computer as a telephone answering machine, telephone call recorder, and fax machine since I have a land line and like it. In Windows, I used a program called CallStation. There is nothing for Linux that comes remotely close to CallStation. Linux also doesn't support my Agere Winmodem. I have ordered a replacement voice modem which should work.

    The last thing is games. Now thankfully there is PlayOnLinux which can install Windows games, but there needs to be current Linux-native games. There has been news that Steam is making a Linux OS to deliver their games and Battlefield 4 might be coming to Linux natively. Only time will tell.

    Now having said all of that, I really like elementary OS. It is well-designed and easy to use. I hate using the terminal unless it is absolutely necessary. I had to use the terminal to get the Microsoft Core Fonts many websites and documents use through it as one cannot accept the license agreement getting them through the Software Center. I can install programs like CallStation using VirtualBox and Windows XP so I can survive in Linux.

    I am not sure if software developers will ever really embrace Linux. They are in the business of making money. Are they not legally bond to make their closed-source software open-source if they release stuff for Linux? Why would they ever want to do that? Unless they can keep their Linux software closed-source, it is never going to happen. If they can remain closed-source and it does happen, it is going to be pretty awesome.?

    • Akshata
      August 28, 2014 at 4:17 am

      Freya is on my list too, and so is Evolve OS. I'm tempted to switch to Zorin or Deepin, but I too think I'll stick with Luna for now.

      It's a pity that many excellent pieces of software are Windows/Mac only. The good news is that many Linux distros are making the switch to Linux increasingly easier. Since I have migrated from desktop apps to Web apps for most of my work, I'm not missing any particular Windows software. But your devices/addons seem to be heavily reliant on Windows, and Virtual Box may or may not prove to be a good long-term solution.

      Thanks for your comment, Buford.

  40. A.L.
    August 23, 2014 at 6:09 am

    I use and love Linux. Here's part of why. Last year I had to reinstall Windows 7 to a laptop. After downloading the ISO I went through the install process and used the key on the back of my machine. No go. I had to call a MSFT provided number and stay on-line to get another number. All this took well over a hour and ... tada. My desktop was black. The system did work and this problem is well known. I fixed it but what a PIA.

    Linux? None of that stuff. OS X either. With Linux I don't need malware protection. I went to a site for some photos of lovely ladies and oops. My Firefox session says I have to pay to unlock my files. I simply clicked out of the Window and restarted Firefox and no problem. To be fair their are ways to prevent the attack on Windows but many users wouldn't know how.
    Linux has its issues of course and not every version is new user friendly but you can run a modern looking and functional system with 256 mg RAM.

    Try that with Windows or OS X.

  41. Dee
    August 7, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Thanks for your helpful comment Lazy8 :-)

  42. Dee
    July 31, 2014 at 10:47 am

    Anyone of the linux pros here tested Robolinux? Apparently it can run Win xp or 7 in a VM (not using Wine I think)

    • Lazy8
      August 6, 2014 at 7:08 am

      You should be able to do this from almost ANY Linux. They are essentially just using Oracle VM VirtualBox, but you still have to provide a legal copy of whatever version of Windows you have. There's no magic here, as they aren't providing some free version of Windows. The only way to run Windows applications without actually running a "genuine" copy of Windows is still through Wine (or PlayOnLinux - a GUI for Wine).

      I prefer to simply set up a dual-boot systems. If I feel that I must use Windows, then I boot to Windows and run at the optimal performance allowed by my hardware. Otherwise, I find every application that I need (or want) that runs natively under Linux and just run with Linux.

      For newer PC's with at least 4 Gb of RAM I use either 64-bit Ubuntu or Linux Mint 17 Cinnamon. I do have one XP machine that also runs Linux Mint 17 Cinnamon (32-bit), but it has a nice high-end video card, so it doesn't take away from my limited 2Gb of RAM.

      For older XP machines with only 2 Gb of RAM (that is shared with the video chipset), I now use SolydX or Linux Mint 17 Xfce. I like Luna, but it just doesn't run reliably on those machines (otherwise it would be my OS of choice for those older XP machines).

      Thus far it's looking like SolydXK (32 and 64 bit), Mint, and Ubuntu are my favorites.

      The biggest issue that I've found with SolydXK and Mint is that the Nouveau video driver simply doesn't work well with the nVidia cards that came with my older HP PC's. I end up having to install the correct manufacturers driver from the command line. It's worth it for me, but unfortunately not user friendly for non-technical people.

      Again, if you must still run Windows only applications, then setup a dual-boot system. Otherwise, use Wine. Virtualization is great if you happen to have an extra Windows licenses available (for Windows and the applications), and enough computer resources (RAM, multi-core CPU, etc.).

      In the past I ran Linux under VMWare on a Windows machine. No license issues, and Linux probably runs better in a virtual machine under Windows than Windows in a virtual machine under Linux.

      What level (RAM, CPU, etc.) of PC do you have that you might consider running Linux, if I may ask?

  43. Rick
    July 25, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Probably my biggest complaint with ANY of the myriad Linux distros - there are NO tax programs available!!!!! One is tied to Windoze in order to do your taxes on your home machine. Yes, I know about doing things via the web, but many of the forms are NOT readily available that I need to use. So, need to use TaxAct, TurboTax, etc. in a Windoze environment.

  44. Chinmay
    July 17, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    Thank you Lazy8 for your such a detailed answer. I made live USBs of Mint17 cinn amon and eOS. I installed Mint on my pen drive. It runs quite smooth except first few minutes. eOS was getting hang while using as a live one. I want to dual boot my pc and surely I will look up Xfce desktop.
    I have Dell Inspiron 15 R with 4GB ram with i5 processor which I think has around 2.5 Ghz.(I think). So It won't be any issue to install any linux distro. :)
    Thank you once again for your time ..

    • Lazy8
      July 24, 2014 at 6:45 am


      You're welcome! Depending on the types of applications that you use, you might want to consider going with a 32-bit version, as it is lighter and will use up to 4 GB. The 64-bit version may not buy you anything.

  45. Lazy8
    July 15, 2014 at 9:01 am

    Maybe a sub-GHz CPU is the problem. If I've got several things running, including heaving applications like Firefox or Clementine, and if the desktop (or applications written for it) rely on signals (which are not reliable), then events might be missed and thus corrupting the state of the desktop or it's applications. Just thinking out loud.

  46. Lazy8
    July 14, 2014 at 10:10 pm

    Does anyone know what the minimum system requirements are for Luna?

    I'm using a 10 year old Compact Pro laptop, running a dual core AMD at just under a GHz, and with 2 Gigs of RAM. This laptop is is surprisingly fast under XP.

    The reason I want to know about the minimum requirements is that it locks up too often. The mouse cursor will work, but the desktop becomes locked-up (frozen).

    For instance, I installed and ran the music application Clementine, and while it continued to play music, everything else was frozen. I had no control over anything. I had to power the laptop off and then back on. The same thing happened while trying to look at two folders at the same time, while running Firefox. One folder was on a USB stick. This was scary because this happened while cutting one file to put somewhere else. Fortunately I didn't lose anything.

    Other times applications would appear to be present after I tried to close them. They appeared to be inactive, but weren't be visibly closed. In all cases, I had to power the laptop off and then on.

    This is why I wonder if 2 Gigs of RAM is not enough. I doubt that the CPU is an issue since XP runs nicely. Also, I installed Luna on a 25 Gig partition. Surely 25 Gigs is enough for Luna. Thus far it's been enough for any and all of my other Linux installations, including Fedora, Ubuntu, and various Linux Mints.

    • runej
      August 5, 2014 at 8:47 pm

      I have that exact problem, and it came after I lost my internal HDD to the floor so it got bad partitions. Installing Luna on an external HDD I have these problems occasionally, and I believe it's because the OS is searching for something on the broken drive. In other words, there are some files missing or misplaced.

      I say this, because I ran Luna (before I broke my HDD) fine for a year or so, no freezing.

      Now I have it usually when too many programs open and using windows exposé. It freezes and the music keeps playing and the mouse is alive, but everything else is stuck.

      Also, I have 4gb of RAM, but I have run Luna on 2. It's sufficient enough, I do not believe this to cause the freezing. As I run Clementine and my external HDD is actually USB, one of these could also cause it. Haven't thought about that. Then it could be problem with USB driver maybe, since that is what changed since I broke my HD.

    • Lazy8
      August 5, 2014 at 9:31 pm

      Mine was fresh install of Luna onto a newly created partition. I wanted to be fair so I've been running Luna now for over 3 weeks. I actually love the interface because of its simplicity. Yesterday I asked my son to try it, and then left. When I asked him what he thought of Luna, he said that nothing seemed to work. The interface froze up on him, and this was a fresh power-up.
      It's really too bad because, again, I like the interface. I think it's exactly what is needed for non-technical people who want, or need, to move away from Windows XP on older machines.

      I think that both of us have exposed obvious bugs with the Luna interface. They really need to solve these problems because most Linux newbies are going to be completely unforgiving. If their first try at Linux is bad then they'll just assume that all Linux is bad.

  47. Lazy8
    July 14, 2014 at 2:56 am

    Just so you know, I really like the layout. My primary interest in Linux is finding something that will drive old hardware better than XP, and that is easy and intuitive. Luna may fit the bill on some machines, I'd imagine.

    I've got mine setup pretty nicely with my favorite Linux applications. I'm going to test it with a few family members to see how easy it is for them. Relatively few know what they're doing so their PC's are a mess. The truth of the matter is that Microsoft just makes it possible for ANYONE to do almost anything. That is not good for people who don't know what they're doing.

    There's a huge misconception that Windows is so easy that it's idiot proof. It's not. Lots of people have me look at their PC's because something is wrong.

  48. Lazy8
    July 13, 2014 at 10:19 am

    BTW, I've been a proponent of Linux (over Windows), and realistically keep getting let down. My greatest hope is that Linux provide a serious alternative to Windows, but such hopes are thus far a pipe dream.

    My wife is an executive who handles legal matters for her company. I put together a configuration of the best that Linux has to offer in terms of software and hardware support (i.e., drivers). Thus far she is happy, which is saying alot, because she is unforgiving.

    But in truth, she has me to iron out the kinks. The average PC user can't say that. I have many reasons to hope for the best for Linux. At present, the flakyness of eOS is too much to for Windows users. Mint is infinitely better, only because it basically works. eOS is a hit or miss prayer shot from action to action. It would be a commercial disaster. So why would anyone pay for it. More importantly, why would they have the nerve to ask for money. Seems kind of shameless and thus greedy (i.e., a scam).

  49. Lazy8
    July 13, 2014 at 9:29 am

    I installed eOS today and I am very dissatisfied. Is it supposed to freeze up every other time you try to do something, because thats my experience today. I'm being VERY patient with it, and it is reliably flaky. I have not had such a disappointing experience with Linux Mint.

    I've not seen ANY Linux distro be so aggressive about pressuring one to make a donation. I can only suspect that eOS is a borderline scam to make money. There is NO value added benefit when compared with either straight Ubuntu or Mint.

    This will be another notch against Linux, and I've be either playing with, or using, Linux for over 15 years. While I will continue to use Linux, eOS makes a strong case the Linux is NOT ready for prime-time, which was wishful thinking on my part.

    Well, in all fairness, eOS is certainly not ready for prime-time, and certainly not worth any donations. It has to work first, which it doesn't. At present, it's a time-sink at best.

    • Akshata
      July 13, 2014 at 11:17 am

      My eOS experience has for the most part been positive, and four months after installation, I'm happy to continue with Luna. The response to eOS has been mixed, with many users sharing my positive experience and many others sharing your negative one.

      Except for the donation link accompanying the download on the eOS website, I haven't come across a single tactic (aggressive or otherwise) pressuring me to make a donation, so I'm not sure what you're talking about.

      From what you have described, it seems Luna is not for you. I hope you find a Linux distro that you're happy with. Zorin and Deepin are a couple of them that readers have suggested here.

    • Lazy8
      July 13, 2014 at 10:43 pm

      The donation link accompanying the download is exactly what I don't like. This is the first time that I've ever seen this tactic, so it seems suspicious. My advice is that they separate the two like everyone else does.

      I was interest in trying eOS because I have a couple of older laptops running XP. I was hoping to breath new life into them. Reading comment at another blog I got the impression that Luna might be a better option than 32-bit Mint 17 Xfce. I'm very happy with the various versions of Mint that I've tried.

      But my here's the problem. Thus far Mint has proven to drive my older hardware better than Windows (i.e., breath new life into them). I've just proved to myself that eOS does NOT drive this one laptop better than XP. I was not expecting this!

      My question is, is eOS intended for newer, faster, PC's with high-end resources (e.g., lots of RAM and a super fast CPU)? I noticed that commentors here mentioned trying this OS on 64-bit machines. I was looking for a 32-bit OS that was hopefully a better (easier/not harder) experience than XP.

      If such an OS exist, can you name it. Thus far Mint seems to be the closest that I can find, but many say that it's really not that lightweight.

    • Akshata
      July 16, 2014 at 3:00 pm

      From what I have heard, Zoris and Point Linux are worth a shot.

    • Lazy8
      July 22, 2014 at 1:57 pm


      Thank you for pointing out Zorin and Point Linux. I think that Point Linux looks most promising! I've downloaded it, and will install it today.

    • Akshata
      July 24, 2014 at 8:28 am

      You're welcome. Let's hope one of them turns out to be perfect for you.

  50. Chinmay
    July 13, 2014 at 8:28 am

    Hi Akshata,
    I liked your article. It's very nicely presented and contains all the info what a reader needs. I am a newbie to linux. I've tried live usbs of Luna, ubuntu13, mint17, and linux Deepin. Now I want to install linux in my computer and there i am confused. Which distro is to be installed? I like all except ubuntu13 and I am in dilemma between mainly Luna and Deepin. Can anyone help me out?
    Thanx. :)

    • Akshata
      July 13, 2014 at 11:06 am

      Thank you, Chinmay. Going by the extremes of comments here there's no way to predict how your Luna (or Deepin) experience will turn out. It's best to explore both using a live USB and then decide which one is better suited to your OS needs.

    • Lazy8
      July 16, 2014 at 9:57 am


      Each distro will have different minimum and practical system requirements. So a simplistic decision might be based on a couple things:
      1. Your systems resources (i.e., Installed RAM, CPU clock speed).
      2. Personal preference (i.e., look, feel, customization, usage, etc.).

      1. System Resources
      If your existing PC's resources reflect maximal XP system requirements of 2 Gbytes of RAM, and say over I GHz CPU, then your limits are pretty hard as older XP machines can't have more than 2 Gigs of RAM installed. Then you definitely want to install a 32-bit version of Linux (whatever the distro). You've already decided that you don't care for ubuntu (I don't either).

      If you have less than 2 Gigs of RAM installed, and don't want to install more, then your choices as to what version of Linux you install becomes more limited, because whatever you choose needs to effectively "fit".

      On the other end of the spectrum, if you have a 64-bit Quad-core machine, running at over 2 GHz, and can install over 4 Gigs of RAM (more is better), then you can afford install Linux with pretty much any Desktop.

      2. Personal Preferences
      Again, depending on your systems resources, you may be limited as to which Linux and desktop is practical. So far my favorite is Linux Mint 17 with the Cinnamon desktop. I've installed it on two XP laptops, each with 2 Gig RAM limit, one running at 1.8 GHz and one at 1.7 GHz. Thus far they run better than with XP.

      But I'm not you, so it's just my personal experience and opinion. So the first limiting factor is computer resources. Do a Google search for
      "Desktop Environments for Linux - Renewable PCs"
      This article might be a year or two old, but it will give you a lot of detailed and practical information about most favored desktops, including RAM and CPU requirements.

      Here are the three that interest me the most (RAM, CPU):
      Cinnamon: 512 MB, 1 GHz
      Mate: 384 MB, 800 MHz
      Xfce: 192 MB, 300 MHz

      But rather than take anyone's word, including mine, there's an easy way to determine which Linux and desktop is best for your situation (you and your PC). (In fact, this is what I'm going to do.)

      Burn a Live CD/DVD, and run each one...
      1. System Resources
      Bring up a terminal (I stretch mine - vertically), and type "top" (without the quotes) at the command line prompt. This will run the application "top", which will show you in real-time all of your systems resources and to what extent they are being used by each process, including the desktop (e.g., cinnamon).

      For instance, I show that process cinnamon is using between 0.7 and 1.3 %CPU and 4.7 %MEM (i.e., 99 MB RAM). This is on an idle system, BTW.

      2. Personal Preferences
      Play with each desktop to see how you like them. A USB memory stick might be better because it will allow you to do more (i.e., modify and install).

      For each test, make notes of system resources used, and what you liked or didn't like. So far I like Luna, but not for my particular laptop. As it turns out, the Xfce desktop is a lot like Luna, and it's suppose to be very "light weight". Assuming that resources are a limiting factor, run top against Linux Mint Xfce and Luna to see which fits your machine best.

      Good luck!

  51. Sankara
    June 24, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    Hi Akshata,

    Im gonna try this mac look flavor on my thinkpad. Im sure its gonna supercharge my lappy .Thanks for the review on elementary OS.


  52. pressanykey
    June 21, 2014 at 9:13 pm

    Akshata, Thanks! for the review. I hope it encourages others to take the plunge into Linux. I did 2 years ago with Ubuntu 11.04 as my introduction into Linux. Simple to install and use out of the box. It's such a great thing to be able to install multiple distributions and desktops on the same machine, and switch among them as the mood or task dictates! Now, I run with OPENsuse and PCLinuxOS. I have a spare partition, maybe I'll give elementary a go!

    • Akshata
      June 22, 2014 at 8:42 am

      After 4 months of using Elementary OS, I'm quite happy to keep it as my only OS. I hope your experience of eOS is just as positive :)

    June 20, 2014 at 10:41 pm

    started with ubuntu 9.04 then installed 10.04,i liked gnome2 and i do like gnome3.
    then tried fedora 19 and switched to fedora 20 because of unity desktop.
    i also have a second laptop with debian 7 installed for working safe...
    i really like eOS because it is simple to use.
    my mom's laptop runs eOS,my sisters's laptop runs eOS.
    i have installed eOS on about 12 laptops of my friends and they are all excited.
    im waiting ISIS to switch over!
    my favorite apps working fine on LUNA.
    VirtualBox 4.3.12,PlayOnLinux 4.2.2 work.
    geary,files,maya,noise,scratch are just awesome and simply...
    totem was always my favorite video player and empathy is fine for chating...
    i will be glad to donate some € because i ordered LUNA from osdic.

    June 20, 2014 at 9:15 pm


    DEBIAN 6.0.0 (2011/02/06)

    WIN7 SP1U MR (2011/05/12)

    Sorry For Caps...

  55. Michael
    June 18, 2014 at 12:14 am

    All I want is proper monitor calibration support and GIMP to work with 16-bit per channel.

    Have been using different distros on and off since Slackware 4.x to Ubuntu 9.x. Then found myself using Windows 7 and Macs again.

    Has Linux become easier? Certainly. I found myself not having to edit config files anymore about 12 years ago. The focus now need to be polish and enhancements to the apps.

  56. bagus aji santoso
    May 30, 2014 at 8:42 am

    Hello Akshata, how do you configure your files so you can open folder just like the screenshoot on this article? thank you for your answer

    • Akshata
      May 30, 2014 at 8:57 am

      Hi Bagus,

      I'm assuming that you're referring to the folder view in the 3rd image of the sub-section Fast And Gorgeous.... To set up that view, in the top bar of the File Explorer, look for the three view icons between the Back & Forward buttons and the section that displays the file and folder paths.
      The three icons stand for:
      1. Grid view
      2. List view
      3. Column view

      What you can see in the screenshot is the column view, which you can get by clicking on the 3rd view icon from the left.

    • bagus aji santoso
      May 30, 2014 at 9:14 am

      Wow, thank you very much Akshata. It's super fast respond :D, hehehe

  57. Anonymous
    May 22, 2014 at 7:28 pm

    Hi Akshata, thank you for this blog, and the rewiev of eos luna. I make the same experience like you. I tried every linux distro on the planet. But luna is the answer of all my dreams. Yes this is the year of linux...thanks butterfly...

  58. Marina
    May 22, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    "Windows always demanded constant tweaks, because it never behaved the way I expected or wanted it to. I spent hours browsing for apps and fixes, making visual changes, organizing partitions and folders, finding and setting up antivirus programs, scanning for malware, and doing a host of other similar tasks. In a single shot, Luna reduced the need for most of those tasks."

    Elementary Luna demands constant tweaking too. You need to download packages just to make visual changes, in order to organize partitions you need to be an Admin on both Windows and Linux, there is no difference. Antivirus programs and Malware are only prominent on Windows because Windows struggles with viruses - if you know how to use a Linux Distro then you wouldn't need an anti virus, I very much doubt Luna 'reduced the need for most of these tasks'

    • Akshata
      May 22, 2014 at 4:52 pm

      Hi Marina,

      You're right about Luna needing tweaks too, but most of the tweaks seem optional to me. After three months of using Luna, I still stand by what I have written i.e. Luna having reduced the need for most of the tasks you have mentioned in your comment.

      Nearly all of the tweaks I have made have been out of curiosity about what's possible and not because I needed them. Seeing how the comments in this thread have been swinging from one extreme to another, maybe that has not been the experience of a certain section of users including you. Also, maybe I was so frustrated with Windows that my introduction to Linux seemed magical in comparison. I guess our past user experiences play some part in defining our future ones :)

  59. Rune Jensen
    May 3, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    elementary has a stunning UI, I must say, although far from being complete as an OS with a lot of features missing (like global file search). I like where it's heading though, and I think what is important is not how it is now, but how it will be just in a few versions, because it has great great potential. If you look at devianArt and on sourceforge on the elementary teams dicussions, you will see, they really put a lot of thinking into everything they do, not just the aestethics, but also how to make things user friendly. And they keep an eye on the future too.. a bit like they're running a company, with the same kind of discipline. Not often to see that in Linux world. If they play their cards right, this distro will be huge.
    Have been using eOS as my main OS for a year or so, and have only been pleased with it. All I need are more features found in bigger distros or other OSes, which some of them are already on the drawing board - see elementary on bountysource. Isis definitely looks promising already, that's why I try to have patiense and keep waiting "till it's ready".

  60. S G Kris
    April 30, 2014 at 3:16 am

    Hi Akshata,
    As I mentioned above I tried and this time I could see the window displaying 'Try / Install" choice and selected 'Try'. Browsed through briefly several features etc and everything looks super. While still in 'Live CD' mode I could install Firefox, add some extensions and browse internet. In fact I am writing this while still on live cd testing. youtube works fine after installing some plugins. Picture viewer, pdf reader, audio player all work perfect.
    I am testing this now on my Thinkpad laptop. I need to install on my Dell desktop.
    Thanks for all your help. If needed I would come back with more questions.

    • Akshata
      April 30, 2014 at 3:41 am

      That's sounds great, Kris. You're welcome. I'll be happy to help if you have more questions.

  61. S Kris
    April 29, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    Thanks Akshata. That was what I did - downloaded the ISO, burned to a CD using Imgburn, booted the PC from the.CD. Everything went fine upto that. What I did not see was the choice to test it before a real installation. I have done this many times with other linux distros.

    Good to know that eOS is no exception in that respect. It is possible that I overlooked and some how missed to notice that option. I will give it second shot and see.

  62. S kris
    April 28, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Thanks for your response. Unfortunately the Dell desktop has not USB-bootable.
    I have to go optical disk route only. Does the option to try "Live CD" before real installation not available? I will try a few other distros to find out which one will work for me.
    S Kris

    • Akshata
      April 29, 2014 at 3:30 am

      Kris, the eOS download is a disk image, so you can make it into a bootable CD (using software like UltraISO) and try the OS before you opt for a full installation.

  63. Akshata
    April 28, 2014 at 5:09 am

    Hi Kris,
    Why not create a bootable flash drive using UNetbootin? I used this method and had the option to try Luna before I did a full installation. Let me know if you need more help with the installation.

  64. S G Kris
    April 28, 2014 at 1:57 am

    As a new migrant from Windows to Linux I tried a few distros and settled for Mint Cinnamon for my laptop. I am looking for one for my desktop (Mint did not work well here). I wanted to try Luna as a Live CD. But I could not find that option. It looked to me like full installation is the only available option. Am I correct? If not where is that option ? Any help/suggestion would be appreciated.

    S Kris

  65. Icarus
    April 23, 2014 at 11:07 pm

    When Isis comes out I'll be switching over. I tried Windows 8 and hated it (best £30 quid I ever spent...) and I'm just tired of Windows 7.

    I've tried Ubuntu, Kubuntu and Mint on my now dead netbook (thanks crappy charger port) and loved how Linux used a 3rd less resources on a fresh install (around 350mb vs Win7 ~1gb)
    I loved how updates were handled, it would ask me, install them and I could carry on, not being pestered to restart every time. The only thing that kept me from jumping ship was the lack of game support and thanks to Valve that's no longer a problem with new games being Linux ready and most old games being updated to be Linux ready.

    Sorry if that was a bit long but just thought I'd share.

  66. David D.D.
    April 21, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    Oh and 1 more thing. Rumor has it that the creator of linux has made a partenership with Windows to create Windows 9, adding a new kernel to make it more immune to viruses and not being so slow after 1 month of use. What do you guys think of that?

    • Akshata
      April 22, 2014 at 4:28 am

      Hi David, it's great to hear that your eOS experience has also been positive. As for the Windows 9 rumor, even if it sounds like it'll make a difference, it's best to wait till you see it to believe it :)

  67. David D.D.
    April 21, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Hey Akshata, I wanted to say that I just downloaded this OS before seeing any reviews and I have to tell you i love this OS so much. Very lightweight, easy to use, tough I'm not new to linux, this felt like a newborn experience. I was very unpleased that my windows went Slow motion and I didn't wanted to reinstall it and reinstall all of the apps i needed so i searched for the best linux and here it is...Elementary OS.
    Enjoy your OS Akshata, and the rest. Cheers1

  68. mahindra
    April 19, 2014 at 8:33 pm

    I started using linux distro 15 yrs back just to try something new apart from microsoft at that time my first distro was suse and other was slackware . I had some issues with slack and suse based distros also other buntu based distros around that time . but using from that time linux landscape started to change very fastly around past 5 years and the issues I had were sorted out . So now i m a regular linux user and dual /triple booting my desktop and 2 laptops with linux . As it seems u didn't tried too many distros what i feel u like Eos due to simplicity and beauty .

    As i have tried all distros on distrowatch the most beautiful distro i feel right now is linux Deepin alpha based on ubuntu 14.04 (and second one is Eos other was Fuduntu but right now it is dead ) it is still not stable but surely a stable version will hit soon. I m using it on my laptop so just keep an eye over Deepin u will surely like it .

    • Akshata
      April 20, 2014 at 5:47 am

      Mahindra, you're right there. I liked eOS on sight and haven't bothered to check out other Linux distros since then. I'll keep Deepin in mind when I'm tempted to switch to a different distro in future. Thanks for the suggestion :)

  69. Logan Sedergren
    April 14, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    I myself use Elementary as my main os with Windows 7 on the side for use with gaming, I have fell in love with this os, it allowed me to customize with hot strokes to speed up productivity and on the last thing you said about not having desktop icon, That is partialy untrue, yes elementary out the box doesnt but with a little tutorial you can enable the desktop by using the termial with a couple commands and now i have everything i ever wanted :)

  70. shanna
    April 13, 2014 at 7:57 am

    Having been practically weaned on Windows and having experienced multiple failures in trying to migrate to a Linux platform, i was very pleasantly surprised to discover eOS. I like it a lot except for one huge gaping hole in the usability department -- essentially unusable scroll bars. They are pathetic and it is really inconvent to use the otherwise nice interface without scrolling. What were they thinking...? I am still looking around for something with better usability, looking at Zorin but unwilling to have Chrome spyware by default. Pity.

  71. Sumit Bhardwaj
    April 13, 2014 at 7:42 am

    I switched to Linux around 2001 and since then have tries many distros but I keep coming back to Fedora. I like to have control over my computer so over simplistic distros do no appeal to me. Right now rocking Fedora 20 KDE x64 and am quite happy with it.

    Also, now i keep my distance from anything based on Ubuntu because of the way company is going on right now. The whole Wayland-Mir and Systemd-Upstart fiasco have made me uncomfortable with their philosophies about the OS and its future in the Open Source world.

    But will surely try elementry once, in VM or the Live CD/DVD to get a taste of it.

  72. Daniel Amdurer
    April 10, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    DOS?! Really?!

  73. Anthony
    March 31, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    Insteresting how many ppl will say they don't like Linux or vice versus about switching. And I'm not going to argue with either case because I'm not please with Windows and have not for a very long time. I've been off and on with different version of Linux and I finally find one that I'm please with Ubuntu Studio for what I'm using Linux for since I run a mobile DJ so I have all three OS. MacBook Pro OS for my DJing, Windows 7 for Lighting control and gaming and Ubuntu for production.
    I don't see how one person mention about being lazy and it has nothing to do with that. Everyone have a taste for certain OS just like in everything around us, vehicle brands over others... Just like many DJs would pick Technic Turn table over Pioneer just because Technic been around a long time and now it not cheap to buy them so the same goes for computers...
    Great Article anyway.

  74. Anthony
    March 31, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    Insteresting how many ppl will say they don't like Linux or vice versus about switching. And I'm not going to argue with either case because I'm not please with Windows and have not for a very long time. I've been off and on with different version of Linux and I finally find one that I'm please with Ubuntu Studio for what I'm using Linux for since I run a mobile DJ so I have all three OS. MacBook Pro OS for my DJing, Windows 7 for Lighting control and gaming and Ubuntu for production.
    I don't see how one person mention about being lazy and it has nothing to do with that. Everyone have a taste for certain OS just like in everything around us, vehicle brands over others... Just like many DJs would pick Technic Turn table over Pioneer just because Technic been around a long time and now it not cheap to buy them so the same goes for computers...
    Great Article anyway.

  75. gor
    March 28, 2014 at 10:58 am

    I make (almost) everything on Ubuntu. I use it from 9.04 and in opinion GNU/Linux OS are the best for one heavy simple reason: because it let you do it and sharing normally for free and in freedom allowing access to technologies to people that can improve them. It's a matter of time that Linux would be the most popular OS on desktops. I think it will be as popular as on mobiles, tablets, servers, mainframes...

    • Greg Harper
      April 3, 2014 at 9:58 pm

      Been using linux since early nineties,starting with Red Hat and a brief Fedora run with a lot of Mandrake to Mandriva and now Mageia. In fact on Mageia now. Wife has to use Windows for work but other than that I have a dual boot system that on very limited occassion I have to use Windows due to a program not available or app that won't run in Linux.
      All OS's have glitches albeit linux seems to have a lot less than Windows, but what gets me is why people will go out and pay hundreds of dollars for something they can get for free and is less headache to maintain. Let's face it. At home most people only use a computer to google a fact,surf the web, or email or facebook someone.
      A little more steaming takes place today than several years ago but linux easily handles that and very few people use a photo editing program that's advanced enough to reqiure any more than viewing a photo in the first place.
      For bang for the buck and ease of regualar use it's a no-brainer.

  76. Alexander Addams
    March 28, 2014 at 5:08 am

    Wow, the heaping pile of stupids in the comment section. I just skipped the last 20 cause it was the same whine.

    As a Eos user, I can assure you that ever single "complaint" mentioned has an answer. Desktop icons, I have them, in Eos, if you had bothered to google elementaryos install you will see pages and pages of "10 things to do after installing elementary os" listed everywhere. They tell how to get the icons.

    "I need microsoft office". No you don't. I call major B.S. I worked for the company that redid Zep Manufacturings entire database. The largest at the time, in the world. I can fiddle with it from libreoffice just fine, so quit your bs.
    Need a HTML wysiwyg, bluefish.
    Want another browser, software center, firefox (it's the most recent version) or google chrome (deb download, click it when done, it installs in the background, easypeasy).
    Wine runs almost every windows program I use, all 2 of them, lol (well, also about 40 games too). Aww, no antivirus, doesn't need one, unless your trying to protect another win/osx users computer from catching something you bounce to them. We don't need it. The ignorant fool who stated the need for IE... i.e. runs fine in wine (winetrick... playonwine... 5 other ways to install i.e.). Hell run the whole os from virtualbox, then at least you will finally have a protected windows version (sandbox that piece of crap). Hardware issues? Often touted by those who have never, ever installed windows fresh. Hell, one joker here stated they could have theirs up and running in 2 days... lol, 2 days, smirk, bwahahahaha... try 20 minutes, fully loaded WITH software, (Timed an install on a 6 year old dell for my sister). What else you got? Old software? Nope and fail again, it's based off Ubuntu LTS, you know, the LONG TERM edition... I am running the most recent kernel and all the most updated software in existence. Hell, I even have the beta firefox and chromiums too. Netflix, no prob, smoother than my girlfriends Macbook can do, her update slowed the machine to a crawl. At least we have debian checking updates, canocle checking updates, linux mint checking updates and about 30 other distro communities to make sure all is well BEFORE a update is release, or, you could just let windows force an update on you and sit there waiting for it to reboot for the next 5 hours... (*whistles*), then.. crap, blue screen... Better call someone in India who will tell me to send it in and charge $120 an hour for repairs (Luckier than mac users I guess...)

    And of course the learning curve... because, you know, point and click is a bitch.... (what's this terminal you speak of, haven't used that in about 3 years)

    Steam's current attempt at bringing 2 year old games up to par is a test to see how much better *nix systems are at gameplay, they just started last year-ish and are planning on making all new games multi-platformed. There are tons of *nix games out there (most free) and I with lots of mmorpg games being browser based (firefly online), platforms soon won't matter.

    I haven't had a single program I couldn't replace (calling b.s. on the adobe products whether you gimp (which is now up to par, try the new one) or wine adobe, which I do without problems) or run. And I'll skip the free part, because heavens knows that scares the poop out of most of you who have been tricked into thinking that it's not worth anything if you don't pay for it. I have personally put over a hundred people on this system and none, None have not been able to figure it out in minutes without any assistance from me and none have changed back in the last 2 years.

    On a side note; with russia enforcing change away from all american software (just dropped all ieverythings for android) most chinese running one version or another of a *nix system, they even make their own, I counted over 30 other countries ordering the switch away from MS due to NSA issues already ( and Microsoft's sudden decision to start going open source, well, it won't be long before you'll change whether you know it or not. (nice droid phone)

    But, if... If! you are so pig headed that you simply cannot change and cannot wrap your head around evolving to the next level of stress free ease as the original author of this article did, then please, please for the love of all in the linux/unix/android/GNU/etc community, do not change. Stay exactly as you are with your excuse driven crapware,malware,spyware,virus riddled OS (Comes that way from the shop *bonus* - I'm looking at you Norton). I could really use a chuckle when your kids are 12 steps ahead of you by age 8. They are growing up in a *nix/droid world. We won't need to help them. But, you asking for their help.. priceless.

    • Anthony
      August 12, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      A little late in reading this but right on man! Hit the nail on the head.

  77. Groudie
    March 24, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    I made the switch and I don't have a single regret about it. I've tried a few Linux distros, namely Ubuntu, Pear OS and Fedora but non of them had that wow factor that made me want to stay with them. Luna was fast, smooth, elegant, my computer don't get as hot, the fan isn't as loud (though the latter might be a placebo) and it was so easy to get work done with the hot corners and workspace. I still left Windows on the system because there are one or two apps I need, especially Samsung Kies for updates. It's been a little challenging getting it to work right but that's what I appreciate most about the OS. I know **so much more** now about computers and Linux than I did before and that's just priceless.

  78. A Grand Soul
    March 24, 2014 at 4:42 pm

    The 800 pound gorilla, Microsoft. how can anyone be expected to move to linux when it does not run MS Office? And no, MS office compatible suites are not 100% compatible. Ask anyone who does more advanced features like adding images, tables, formatting and you will hear the same thing. It's hit and miss. Sometimes compatibility is not an issue, other times it is. So why bother when actual corporate work is being done in Office. Informative replies welcome as i am always open to suggestions.

    • Groudie
      March 24, 2014 at 7:51 pm

      MS Office is just one of millions of application on just one of many Operating Systems. Sure they have market share numbers but that's changing. If the use of MS Office is so important to a user that it can be the only thing stopping them from switching then they are limiting themselves to a point where it is almost sad. Most people's needs, the average consumers, are not business or corporate oriented. iPads and Android tablets are outselling PCs. People don't buy PCs because of MS Office. Had it not been for the PC assigned to me at work I would I would not use MS Office at all and I bet I can do the same with with libreOffice or Google Docs.

    • Grant S
      March 24, 2014 at 8:15 pm

      "Had it not been for the PC assigned to me at work I would I would not use MS Office at all". kinda proves my point. no doubt you can manage quite well without strict MS Office compatibility. But MS gained it's shared because of adoption by corporate America. Until that changes Linux is less appealing to me. I have tried Mint, and loved it except for my office use.

    • dragonmouth
      March 25, 2014 at 8:59 pm

      "But MS gained it’s shared because of adoption by corporate America."
      I guess that is true in a general sense. Corporate America adopted Windows and other M$ products because M$, through restrictive contracts, forced hardware manufacturers to install ONLY Windows on new PCs. Corporate America bought those PCs and had to use what was installed. Now Corporate America is tied to M$ apron strings by long-term leasing agreements so that it is easier and cheaper for them to just keep buying M$. However, more and more companies are biting the bullet and switching to Linux.

      By the time Linux came on the scene, Microsoft already had their monopoly for ten years. Apple was never considered a threat to M$ because Apple computers at that time were thought of as toys and Apple DOS, ProDOS and MacOS were considered toy operating systems. Besides, Apple had very few applications that could, at the time, compete with Microsoft's. Apple computers and applications were only useful in the professional graphics field.

  79. Shanmugam
    March 23, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    Hi Akshata,
    Welcome to Linux world. I was a serious Microsoft Windows user for approximately 15 years.
    Thanks to Bill Gates I polished my IT knowledge through Windows n doubt. I learned PC troubleshooting , assembled PC and fascinated by the beauty and power of personal computing until I was bombarded with limitations based on commercialism!
    Huge fan of Mac's beauty but find it to be too pricy!
    Is tarted to use Linux from scratch mainly to troubleshoot problems created by Windows OS...Linux is my everyday OS for the past 30 months now. Still learning, using Linux Mint Debian Edition as my main OS. Tried Kubuntu for 6 months and have a collection of other distros in Live CD.

    My recomendation...LMDE for a start! Debian, if you are ready!



    • Akshata
      March 25, 2014 at 3:38 pm

      Hi Shanmugham,
      It's nice to hear that the switch to Linux has worked out great for you. As of now, I'm loving Luna :) If its attraction begins to pall a few months from now, I'll give LMDE a shot. Thanks for the tip!

    • Shanmugam
      March 25, 2014 at 6:33 pm

      You are most welcome Akshata!
      Learning curve in Linux is steep for total newcomers like me, but somehow I sailed through with the great support from online community.
      Please enjoy your Luna, the great thing about Linux is as you said you can try different distros and settle with what you have fun most!


  80. Adlan Khalidi
    March 23, 2014 at 11:34 am

    I've tried Ubuntu before. But my problem is I need to do graphic works and I can't do that on Linux - Wine. There's always an error and it doesn't feel right. Alternative like GIMP just doesn't cut it.

    I'm moving from Windows to Mac OS X and hope everything will run smoothly. If I don't have to use Adobe softwares, I have no problem using Linux as my primary computer.

  81. Marcus
    March 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm

    Thanks for this article. I'm running a dual boot of Windows 7 and Linux Mint Petra. Would love to give this distro a try but am skeptical about getting the wifi to work. My Dell Inspiron 6400 uses the Broadcom Wireless drivers. Did you have any issues in getting your wifi drivers to work with Luna?

    • Akshata
      March 23, 2014 at 4:46 am

      Hi Marcus,

      Wifi setup worked automatically for me during installation. If you're having trouble with drivers, you could try Ndiswrapper driver installation tool. It seems to have worked for many.

    • Jadon L
      March 25, 2014 at 2:53 am

      Ndiswrapper? I'll have to take a look at that! I couldn't use Luna because the version of the GNU/Linux kernel it has doesn't contain my wifi driver...

      I'll finally be able to use Luna as my primary OS! (It looked really nice on the live USB...)

  82. Nitesh Shrestha
    March 22, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Hello Sami :)
    I totally agree with your arguments i get to use all Microsoft Products for Free so it makes me a Windows Lover I guess. I never had to face any problem with solving windows problems. But yes Linux is good but not the Best Option available in my context. I have no offence to Linux I am currently using my Linux System to reply to all my comments. Windows can't be entirely replaced by Linux. I would Like to hear it form you or any of here. We have our own experiences in different environments.
    Regards, Nitesh

  83. Nitesh Shrestha
    March 22, 2014 at 11:23 am

    What will you do if something wrong goes with your system. Will you hunt the solutions on Forums? No way Forums are the worst place I have ever been to. There are different solutions by different persons for a single problem and sometimes solutions end up becoming cause of another problem. I have issue with my Linux Distro Kali Linux used for Penetration Testing and Security Stuffs . I get errors and I can't start my MySQL and I have posted queries but still it is not solved. I am not in the offence of Linux . I love it and I use it . Whereas just some hours ago Microsoft Solved an Issue with my Windows 8.1 store. I didn't had to go through any forums though i had tried to solve the issue my self searching in different forums but at the end I was unable to solve but Microsoft Solved the Issue. They solved it. I didn't have to go through different forums hunting for solution. I contacted them Yesterday on their Online Chat Answer Tech Desk. Technicians on the Help Desk tried to Solve m Issue they couldn't so they escalated my issue to Microsoft Research Team for Solution and They asked for which time is it suitable for me to connect them back today. I got a Call for Microsoft Team they asked me if I am Ready for solving the issue and it was solved in no time. Linux is good choice but not the best if you compare it form end to end.

    • Sami
      March 22, 2014 at 1:31 pm

      But you are comparing apples to oranges.
      You can buy Linux and get the same kind of support you got from MS, but you can't get Windows totally free...

      I have to use Windows at work and I use it at home to play games.
      I used to use Gentoo as my distro, because I could configure everything and only needed to boot the machine if I did kernel update. But as Linux is no longer my work environment I changed to Lubuntu as it requires less effort and less frequent updates. Still I miss the ease of configuration and possibility to left out unnecessary dependencies what binary distributions can't do.

      This whole OS "War" is totally moot as any good SW developer could tell you simply to use the best tool to every given task. And some times it's Windows and other times it's Linux or OSX or maybe even some mobile platform.

      kind regards,

  84. Bob C.
    March 22, 2014 at 9:57 am

    My previous comment starting with a "Very good comment" was meant to be a reply to "ABkyw's" first comment (3/21) starting with "My journey with Linux ...".

    @James - While I don't disagree with your comments, keep in mind that Windows has a monopoly on the PC market. If we had the same political environment that existed 40 years ago, Microsoft would have had to divest of some of its products. It also would not be able to dictate to H/W manufacturers, resellers and the like the terms that they do. One of the Linux bug-a-boos is support for the Broadcom cards. MIcrosoft has the specs, which have not been made public - so they can support the card. Linux developers have been trying to get hold of that information for a long time and cannot (at least the last time I was aware).

    Also, Microsoft has a totally different business model. Companies like Red Hat are based upon support and value added products. Plus most distros can be freely downloaded. Microsoft is a monolithic company and its workers march to the same drummer - it has one leader. The Linux community is a fractured one - which is both good and bad - it would be nice if it could come together and unite under a common distro. Ubuntu was making some headway as becoming the "de facto" distro until it switched to Unity and not only angered many of its users but also the rest of he Linux community with some of its actions and implementation.

    I don't quite agree that if Linux was in greater usage it would have the same problems as Windows from a security standpoint. They came from different bases. Windows base was that old "hobbyist DOS". When you look at its development before Gates bought it, Internet connectivity was not a big deal back then - in fact, most people did not know an internet had even existed (ARPAnet). Since it was designed for a PC that might "dial-up" a bulletin board like facility, the only concern was if someone uploaded a program containing a virus (which, back then, was a rare occurrence) and, then, a reboot typically fixed the problem given the architecture bask then. Linux, on the other hand, was built on a much sounder foundation. Unix had been developed by Bell Labs (based on the Multics project) and by the time the IBM PC came out, was making headway into the corporate world. Its base was a much sounder one. Security was somewhat of a consideration back then. While the underlaying code in Windows has been modified over the years, it still has the same base architecture and cannot deviate to much from release to release without causing a lot of disruption to its users. IBM learned that lesson years ago. Downward compatibility needs to be maintained as much as possible, otherwise you give your users an opportunity to abandon you if something better comes along. One reason why you see a lot of security updates every patch Tuesday from Microsoft (at least through Windows 7). You don't see that amount on the Linux kernel - regardless its lower number of users - if it had the same no. of users as Microsoft, I'd bet the no. of security patches would be far less than those for Windows. Look at the mainframe world - how often do you read or hear about IBM's security fixes? BTW, IBM does support Linux. As for UEFI being a more "secure" process, that has already been exposed as hogwash. Yes, it may be a better way to boot up a PC, but it has already been proven to be as unreliable as BIOS on security. See the article in ITWorld by Kevin Fogarty ( ). It makes one wonder if the real reason for that particular implementation was meant to be an obstacle for any competing OS.

    One last point. That argument about Linux "seeming" only more secure because it is only couple percent of the PC population is a misleading one. While it is true for the desktop, it is not true for the server market where Linux has made a lot of headway (even Microsoft is using Linux servers). Also, what is somewhat misleading is when someone buys a PC, it almost always comes loaded with Windows (again, part of the Microsoft arrangement). So when someone takes it home, dumps Windows and installs a Linux distro, that PC is still assumed to be a Windows PC.

    • James
      March 22, 2014 at 5:30 pm

      For sure, the Windows monopoly had a hand in keeping Linux adoption down but most over estimate that influence as products that people really want usually get pushed through no matter what company may wish to block it and the bottom line for all companies is the simple question of whether they can profit from a given choice... But there has just never been a good reason for that sort of demand to develop for Linux in the general consumer market, nor a convincing business model for most companies to really embrace it, at least not yet...

      Exception like Red Hat mainly appeal to the server market, where custom solutions that don't need to change for years or at the whim of individual consumers can be the preferred solution and thus the disparity between the server and general consumer PC markets.

      While the problem for any mainstream OS is working with the average PC user, which is why there are so many vulnerabilities that often never get removed... Things like always having to grant permissions to install a app are things the average user doesn't want to be bothered with...

      Like one of the main things people complained about Windows Vista was that it asked them for permission way too often... So MS actually had to tone that way down, thus they had to compromise on security and is something any OS that wishes to be used by the masses will have to deal with...

      The way Linux rapidly changes is another thing that may have to change with becoming a mainstream OS because people don't like having to change their OS every few months... A lot of Linux support is locked to the Kernel and isn't a matter of just updating drivers if you want to support the latest hardware...

      While, even if they managed to keep that going somehow, the need to support a much wider range of hardware will make it increasingly harder to keep from making the code more bloated, as a lot of what is considered bloat for Windows is support for a large range of hardware, and that's not even with the problem that having drivers developed by many different people will have on compatibility and stability...

      A lot of times when Windows gets a new vulnerability or new bug is because a 3rd party driver introduced it, for example... So at the very least Open Source community support has to become a lot more consistent to even attempt pushing a distro to the majority of users and the majority of hardware configurations...

      So don't underestimate the issues that being the OS used by the majority would impose on any OS...

      Like Apple didn't really focus on security until after tens of thousands of their OSX users got infected with Malware a few years ago... It was only a matter of time but they didn't even have 10% of the user base yet for that to happen to them... While Windows, at its peak had about 90%... even now they still hold on to about 85%...

      Mind, also that OSX doesn't have to deal with anywhere near as many different hardware configurations as Windows systems... So factors like 3rd party drivers are far less a issue but still there are vulnerabilities...

      While even the most secure systems can be compromised by user error, most malware on even Windows system isn't from exploits of vulnerabilities but from tricking users to install them and that's something Linux users would have to face a lot more of if they started using a distro used by the vast majority of people...

      And no, UEFI has some advantages compared to traditional BIOS but it also has new weaknesses... Which is one of the reasons why Secure Boot is actually justifiable because UEFI is more vulnerable to boot based attacks... but like many things they are all only layers of security and given time and resources any of them can be compromised or circumvented...

      PC security is a lot like home or car security, if someone really wanted in there isn't much you can do to stop it but you can try making it harder than the next target and hope that's enough to dissuade or make them go to the other less secure target.

      Much like the differences between BIOS and UEFI, even Linux has its strength and weaknesses... Just because there is strength where another OS may have a weaknesses doesn't mean it's automatically a better choice...

      Besides, on the server market... Remember that Linux already dominates there but yet we still hear of servers being hacked all the time and you can't blame all reports on the few remaining Windows servers...

      Mind, it doesn't help that most companies don't security harden their systems, or even update very often, and relying on the defaults means leaving the default vulnerabilities open and those still running on old kernels are of course vulnerable to things that may have otherwise been patched...

      Really, I've followed this for years and there is some truth to security through obscurity... Windows literally has armies of hackers and malware makers attacking all the time, but no system is 100% fool proof and by shear numbers GNU/Linux can become more vulnerable if they were ever more directly targeted...

      Just look at Android, it may only share the Kernel but shows that isn't enough to be secure as there are plenty of Malware for Android devices... and again, nothing really prevents human error except users being taught to avoid those errors and that only happens if they accept it's possible they could be vulnerable, which everyone is...

    • Bruce E
      March 23, 2014 at 9:19 pm

      @James: "the problem that having drivers developed by many different people will have on compatibility and stability" The Windows development team does not write the vast majority of drivers out there. There are a bunch of generic drivers they cater to, but the rest are done by the hardware manufacturer's teams of developers, not Microsoft. So MS must have the same argument applied to them. The difference here is that the hardware developers will write drivers for Microsoft operating systems, but Linux developers have to hope the manufacturers will provide COMPLETE specs so the open source community can write their own drivers for the device or reverse engineer the Windows drivers in order to try to support the device on Linux.

    • James
      March 24, 2014 at 6:20 am

      @Bruce E - MS does have the same argument applied to them, it's one the reasons why Windows often has problems because 3rd party drivers introduces code vectors that can introduce or cause bugs, create vulnerabilities, etc.

      Like many of the first and second gen W8 tablets had issues like problems with the Connected Standby because something like the WiFi drivers didn't allow the hardware to properly enter the CS power states and thus caused a power drain issue, among other instabilities that took awhile to fix.

      This is part of my point of the problems of making a GNU/Linux distro a mainstream OS used by the masses... Even success means dealing with new problems and a lot of the things complained about Windows is actually something any OS in its position would have to face...

      And no, many companies still refuse to provide Open Source drivers... Even on mobile devices running Android... Imagination Tech actually has about 80% of all the GPU IPs and that's not including other companies like Broadcom, etc that also push out closed drivers and is one of the reasons why GNU/Linux has had such a hard time being adopted for even ARM based devices... So this is unlikely to change any time soon...

      While Open Source doesn't mean the drivers will be handled any better than any other 3rd party driver developer... It only means they don't have to ask permission each time they want to try a change in the code but there are already examples of devices with pretty much all Open Source driver codes available and yet they are still hard to support!

      Thing to keep in mind is that Open Source is really just a tool, like any tool it can be very helpful but no one tool is ever a cure all! More often than not it's just a different way of getting the same job done, sometimes it'll be the better tool but other times it won't and that's just the way it is... mind, the Linux Community doesn't have unlimited resources and not everyone who helps develop is of top skill levels or will even bother help supporting all possible devices and hardware configurations out there... More often than not support is limited to how popular a given device/hardware is and whether those who are attracted have the skills to properly help support it or not...

      While no system that deals with a lot of people can ever be perfect.... like, just for an analogy example, take Wikipedia... a lot of people can help provide the information but similarly it doesn't mean all the information is correct and it's almost impossible to avoid errors or even correct them all the time...

      Really, any system involving people will always have issues... which is the main thing to realize why no platform can ever be without flaws as long as it has to deal with people... let alone the vast majority of them!

      Anyway, like the old saying goes... Be careful what you wish for! Even if you get it, it probably won't be like you imagined it would be...

      After all, sometimes the niche solution is the one you may really want and not something for the masses...

  85. snafubar
    March 22, 2014 at 3:45 am

    Slimboat is a very fast browser

  86. Anonymous
    March 22, 2014 at 3:34 am

    slimboat is a fast lightweight browser

  87. jonas
    March 22, 2014 at 2:57 am

    I downloaded and tested eOs 64 bit but to my surprise the screen is upside down. Even the cursor movements are in reverse. I like the OS but the display is not correct in my notebook. I like the interface and apps but I am sticking with my recent OS for a while. If this OS is not for me, I guess there are other Linux distributions fit for my taste and for a novice like me. Cheers!

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:40 am

      Oh, that's too bad, Jonas. Maybe, you could also try Zorin as a couple of commenters have suggested above.

  88. Jacob M
    March 22, 2014 at 12:53 am

    I'd like to see an update to this article in a couple of months. I remember being completely enamored by a new version of Ubuntu a couple of years ago. I thought open-source had finally caught up, but soon bugs with rather arcane fixes (if any) started popping up after I ran some updates and tried to get my VPN working. I finally went back to Windows which, excluding ME and Vista, just seems to work with any hardware or software configuration I've thrown at it. Sure there are bugs, but nothing that cripples my computer.

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:37 am

      Hi Jacob,

      My very short Linux Mint experience was something similar. But with Luna, things have been different. It's nearing 2 months since I installed Luna.

  89. CJ Cotter
    March 22, 2014 at 12:47 am's not free. They want $10 and they want your personal information to set up an account with them. What's with that? What if I just want to try it out?

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:34 am

      Hi CJ,

      It is free. Simply enter 0$ in the payment section and you can download Luna for free. No strings attached.

    • Robford
      March 30, 2014 at 5:40 pm

      There's also a "download luna for free" link just underneath the download button too.

  90. Ray
    March 22, 2014 at 12:44 am

    You are forgetting something : Linux has a long pedigree but not the distros . Mandriva is no longer here and SUSE is changed so much. When you are trying a new linux distro, it may be gone in the following two years. I would rather stick to a platform which is still on after a few years. Moreover, Linux distros are crippled by poor driver support or application incompatibilities. I spent hours setting up my printer on my previous linux distros that I would have saved on any Windows distro.

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:30 am

      Hi Ray,

      From all that I'm reading here, it looks like how a device or an OS behaves is quite unpredictable. So I thinks it's best to go with whatever works for each of us :)

    • dragonmouth
      March 25, 2014 at 8:18 pm

      " Linux has a long pedigree but not the distros"
      You're right. Slackware, Debian and Red Hat have been around only since 1993/94.

      " Mandriva is no longer here"
      Neither is Yellow Dog, Yggdrasil, Caldera, Lindows, Buffalo and hundreds of others. But there over 300 other active distributions.

      "SUSE is changed so much"
      And Windows has been exactly the same since the first release?

      "I would rather stick to a platform which is still on after a few years."
      Yes, Windows is real constant. Every few years M$ releases a new version that forces you to buy not only all new applications but all new hardware.

  91. Justin K
    March 21, 2014 at 10:47 pm

    Wow. Some people on here are just mean. The guy has an opinion and wrote it. If you don't like it, don't read it.

    Thanks for sharing dude! I like eOS as well.

  92. Jimmy
    March 21, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    I also have ElementaryOS installed on one of my computers, works well. My laptop runs Ubuntu Linux & my gaming pc has Windoze. They all have their strengths & to try as many operating systems as you can, then choose the one that works for you.

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:26 am

      You're right there, Jimmy. It all boils down to what blends well with our indivudal workflows.

  93. deewebb
    March 21, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    Akshata - Thanks for this article. I have played around with Ubuntu and Mint for several years on an older laptop. My job requires me to work with Windows, but I enjoy working with other OS's.
    Based on your write up, I installed Elementary OS - Luna on a VMWare Player virtual and I am impressed with the speed, look and feel and the overall experience...seems clean and simple. I'm thinking of replacing my Ubuntu setup with Elementary OS - Luna. Great work!

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:24 am

      Thank you, Deewebb. Nice to hear that your Luna experience was also positive :)

  94. Madhusudan Kunwar
    March 21, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    hey all :D linux user base is increasing and there is nothing MS fanboys can do to stop them :p i am a student from the begining i was too much into exploring my windows 7 OS. Everytime I did something wrong (or NEW) it was like searching the whole web and then reformatting the computer. But i have been a linux user for over an year and a half and i am happy to know that what a $500 machine can really do. I am electronics student and it is linux who taught me that i am the owner of my laptop and not some billion dollar company named microsoft. Also i love the modular approach of the linux operating systems so that whenever you want your computer to do something new you can make it to do. I do commit that linux is not as easy (for windows babies) but once you know the real power hidden in them you are going to love linux. And do i need to mention that your linux OS will work at same speed even after two years of installation. :)

  95. cicas
    March 21, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    Hi, thanks for reminding me of Luna and eOS. I plan to help friends with "XP end of life" problem by providing linux installs and will add Luna to the list of candidates :)

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:22 am

      Hi, I hope Luna works out well for your friends :)

  96. Grcoeeg
    March 21, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    I ran into Linux Zorin sometime ago, I'm now using the newest Zorin 8 core in a dual boot with Windows 7 in a Dell laptop. I like that the Zorin world is shaped to look just like Windows 7, I came into computers from Windows XP to Windows 7, and now to Linux Zorin which has been a very easy transition. Zorin is fast fast fast with a very small foot print and every thing that I want in a system so far.

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:21 am

      That sounds like another helpful Linux distro that will make the Windows to Linux switch easier for those who are attempting it. Thanks for sharing!

  97. ABkyw
    March 21, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    My journey with Linux has been fairly recent, like in the last year and a half or so, basically since the advent of Windows 8. I hated the Windows 8 preview so much I decided that if I was going to have to learn a new interface I might as well try Linux. So I've used Windows ever since Windows 95, and I've used Linux for <2 years. I say this so that people won't get on my case about anything. I've been blasted by the Windows and Linux crowds, but 1). I'm a longtime Windows user, so don't treat me like I know nothing. 2) I'm new to Linux, so take it easy on me. Things aren't always as simple as the veterans make it sound. 3) while I use and love things about both Windows and Linux, I'm also aware of where each falls short. Neither one is super easy, and both have less than obvious solutions for certain tasks. In most cases though it's almost never as bad as the other side makes it out to be (except Windows updates, those things are terrible and archaic compared to the elegant and simple system Linux has got going).

    My first impressions of Linux was good. I liked how quick it felt, how clean and uncluttered the interface felt, etc. My first distro was Fedora I believe, and I liked Gnome 3 quite a bit. I liked the minimalism. Ultimately after trying around 13 different distros on live CD I settled on Linux Mint as the desktop I liked best. Mint had codecs preinstalled, and everything worked out of the box. And Cinnamon was great too! It didn't feel too much like a copycat of Windows (a la Zorin OS), and yet it felt familiar enough that finding my way around was pretty easy.

    In comparison to Windows, Mint ran faster, more stable (for the most part, Cinnamon kept crashing on me, though that big has since been fixed), and updates were a cinch! I never had to restart for updates, and they happened in the background and were process unintensive so I could keep doing whatever I was doing at the forefront for the most part.

    There are driver issues, but really these were no worse than anything I had to deal with in Windows.

    As far as the command line goes, it is a little intimidating for a new user at first, but over time I actually preferred to install software via the consent line because it was faster than digging through the painfully slow software center. I mean sure, you've got to learn the commands, but It's not too bad. Learning how to use tar balls and compiling my own software was actually the hardest part of installing any one piece of software, but thankfully those were few and far between. For Windows programs Wine is actually pretty decent. Not prefect, but I've got the Spotify client working pretty well via Wine. There is apparently a Linux alpha client for Spotify, but there were no clear instructions of where to download.

    So now I have a dual boot set up with Mint and Windows 7 on my desktop. I still use Windows a lot, mainly because I'm a student and the school requires me to use Windows specific programs. But for personal use I've found a replacement for most Windows programs I like, and in many cases I like the replacements better. I do miss a few things from Windows, but none are deal breakers.

    I will say that Windows, for the most part has the more robust GUI experience. You can do more advanced things in the Windows GUI by default. But Linux has a far superior terminal that sometimes I wish I could fire up in Windows to fix something specific really quickly.

    I think window management is a little better in Linux though. Each window can be pinned to always stay on top. In Windows I have to install a little utility for that function. In Linux I can scroll the window behind my active window just by hovering on the desired window. This is a very simple thing, but it is so nice to have and I find it frustrating when I try doing the same in Windows and then remember I can't.

    About the only thing, besides school required programs, keeping me from ditching Windows completely is that gaming still isn't as robust as on Windows. Sure with Stream is getting better, but I still would miss out on a ton of other great games that can only be played on Windows. Wine is okay for low resource programs, and I know many Linux users play games in Wine all the time, but when I'm already pushing the limits of my hardware just to play the next gen games I know playing in an emulator just isn't going to cut it.

    I do have high hopes for future development on Linux, and I think Linux really is the future in many ways. But there are some things that need to get hammered out to get more developers building Linux applications. Sure I could hack up a workaround, but that's impractical to do all the time. Having a team of developers building hardware specific drivers and applications is probably the single weakest point on Linux that I've found so far.

    In the meantime I'll keep using both Mint and Windows in a dual boot set up. But I always keep trying new distros, and I've since made some concessions that Windows 8 wasn't as terrible as I first thought (though it's still got UI kinks to work out). The only thing I'm sure of is that I don't like OS X. It's just the lack of freedom that really gets under my skin there (and the sheer cost), more so than the UI or anything else.

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 7:14 pm

      You're cheating! You are being objective. That's not fair! You're supposed to bash either Windows or Linux or Mac. :-)

      Ubuntu-based distros use the Software Center for adding/removing packages and, IIRC, Update Center for updating existing software. As you found out they are cumbersome to use. Debian and Debian-based distros (other than the Ubuntu branch) use Synaptic as the package manager. I like using Synaptic because it has the functionality of both theSoftware Center AND Update Center in one package. Some people complain that the Synaptic UI is not as pretty as Software/Update Center. Pretty does not make a program run better. You should be able to find Synaptic in the Mint repositories.

      can do software updates and add/remove software in one process.

    • Bob C
      March 22, 2014 at 8:23 am

      Very good comment. Fair and balanced! I have used both Windows and Linux over the years. Windows since the early 80s and Linux since the early 90s. Currently, I am using Windows 7 (because my previous XP desktop crapped out and it was cheaper to buy new than to fix the old). I also have 2 old laptops (given to me). I run Ubuntu 10.04 on one and had XP dual-booting with Ubuntu 10.10. I am not a big fan of Unity (I prefer the Gnome 2 Desktop Environment (DE)). I found Gnome 2 is a good DE for someone used to Windows.
      On my Windows 7 system, I use Virtualbox and try out different distros (plus those Windows 8 previews - triple "ugh"!). I have found that I use Linux Mint with the MATE DE as much as I use Windows 7 - especially if I am going to s site and require security. It is the Linux distro that I think works well for most Linux newbies. My one laptop lost the HD a couple of months ago and I installed Mint 13 on an 16GB USB stick and Zorin OS 6.2 on another. That laptop uses an Intel "M" processor and does not support PAE. So I could not install the latest versions (Windows 8 also requires PAE). About a week ago, I read about Linux Mint DE (with MATE or Cinnamon DEs) and it supports the non-PAE environment and has "rolling updates" so reinstalls are no longer needed whenever you go to a new distro update (Ubuntu used to have similar prior to Unity - but I don't know (or care) if it kept that ability). Linux Mint DE has the latest kernel, so the rolling updates will work out well. I installed it on a 32GB USB stick (cheap < 20$). I prefer it over Zorin OS because Zorin seems to have an occasional glitch every now and them.
      Zorin OS (6.2) is another distro which has "forked" the Gnome 2 DE. It has the option to change the desktop look to mimic Windows XP or Windows 7 or Gnome 2. It can now be done dynamically (Zorin OS 5.x required logging off the user ID and relogging back on - NOT rebooting). I recently downloaded Zorin OS 8 and tried in VirtualBox, but still ran into an occasional glitch - plus it won't run on the non-PAE laptop.
      BTW, both laptops are only 5121MB - fairly old by today's standards. One has no wireless card, but it does have a PCI slot and I can plug in an external wireless card (or an USB adapter). The other (non-PAE) uses a Broadcom card which gives most Linux distros a problem (even using the Windows drivers with NDSIwrapper), It also has an external PCI slot plus the USB adapter works on it too.
      I do use WINE (also DOSBox and DOS Emulator) to run some of my favorite Windows programs - e.g., Notepad++, IrfanView and some others. I am not into gaming, but I recently read that Steam has made some significant improvements and there are over 3000 games available that it can run!

  98. Super Wario
    March 21, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    I agree with this over-the-top anti-MS bashing, it's getting old, and most of these "points are facts" are false.

    This is nonsense, the whole argument that you can't get Windows to do what you need is ridiculous... I'm sorry, but saying this just lost you any credibility you had, it's such an ignorant statement to say.

    Pro Tip: Google is your friend if you don't know how to change/modify things in Windows.

    You think Linux is easier than Windows? I can tell you never had to deal with editing scripts and/or config files, let alone the dependencies issues (ya, I know it's gotten better, but it's still a sh*t show).

    This argument can go back and forth for both camps, in all reality, I'd say they're equal.

    IMO, if you have someone that only surfs and Emails, than the popular Linux distros would be a decent/good fit for a Windows OS replacement, anything else, for the average user, forget about it.

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 6:52 pm

      " I’m sorry, but saying this just lost you any credibility you had, it’s such an ignorant statement to say."
      You are right. But saying this about Linux just lost you any credibility you had, they're such ignorant stements to say.

      Pro Tip: Google is your friend if you don’t know how to change/modify things in Linux.

      " I can tell you never had to deal with editing scripts and/or config files, let alone the dependencies issues "
      Again, you're right. I never had to deal with that because it was unncessary.

  99. Rohan Shewale
    March 21, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    other than the file manager, I the whole article seems to abstract. As far as my OS experience goes the details you have mention goes for most of gui based linux distro out today.
    and for Windows, I think you put wrong points for comparison, finding the right s/w for your needs is difficult and more difficult is tweeking it for 1st time (that goes for any OS, windows too)

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:19 am

      Hi Rohan,

      The OS experience on various other Linux distros might be similar, but since eOS Luna has been my first proper introduction to Linux, I have written about that.

      As for the finding the right software and tweaking things for the first time: Since I have written specifically about how things worked out for me, whether the points for comparison are wrong is debatable. If I compare my first-time installations of Luna and Windows 7 (and other Windows versions), with Luna I have had to make bare minimum changes to get a configuration I'm happy with.

  100. Ifeanyi
    March 21, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    different strokes for different folks is it?

  101. On W
    March 21, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    Although Linux has come a long way, it's not for everyone... yet. I still use Windows at work. It's a great OS. At home I have settled down with Linux Mint (didn't like the Unity desktop). It does what I want to do, it's free, it's relatively secured. Perhaps I'll give Luna a spin some day. It sounds exciting to use.

  102. Dhruv S
    March 21, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    Good detailed article. But I am always amazed that when someone writes such an article about about win vs linux, no one mentions that with linux most of the (keyword: most) devices run out-of-the-box. Forget the preinstalled windows laptops. If you try installing windows yourself, you have to indivisually find the drivers for every h/w - wifi, webcam, sound, graphics, etc. That's a big plus of linux. Why does no one mention that?

    • Super Wario
      March 21, 2014 at 3:37 pm

      Because the point you're making is untrue. Stop spreading nonsense around.

      To be specific, if we're talking about the latest OS in both camps, I'd say Win 8 would do a lot better job at installing all of the hardware drivers than Linux would.

      The problem with the Linux "default drivers" is they're very basic, by that, I mean any advance features (sub features) are typically not available until you "tweak" them after the fact. (Vid Cards, NICs, etc)

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 6:43 pm

      Sorry Super Wario, I plugged an HP PSC-1510 All in One into my Linux PC and it was recognized instantly with no interaction from me. Pressed Control-P and my job was printing.

      I switched to my Win computer and I get notification that a new device was found, do I want to install drivers for it. Then I get asked where the drivers are, then after searching all over the place I'm told that the O/S could not find the drivers. So I copied the Windows print file to my Linux PC and it was printede in seconds.

      Bottom line is that in the past ten years I haven't had any device problems while using various Linux distros. During the same time I had find at least dozen device drivers for Windows.

    • Dhruv S
      March 21, 2014 at 8:07 pm

      Super Wario, firstly tone down a little buddy.

      Secondly, try installing a win7 dvd on any dell laptop. No wifi, no sound, no proper graphics. For couple of them I even had to install the ethernet drivers! For linux, I do agree that advanced graphic cards and that kind of stuff bugs you. But then again, for the average user that is not at all a concern. If you are to advice a person to install an OS on his own, then what would be more prudent - mostly working out of the box or none working? I don't want them asking me every single time where to find and install the sound drivers or the ethernet drivers!

      Also I did mention *most*. So better read it again and then comment.

  103. JosefB
    March 21, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    I used to hate windows until I tried linux. (I got a really bad malware infection and gave up on fixing it.) Linux (Ubuntu then Mint) was fine for a while.

    Then my friend had to give me some large files, her hard drive was NTFS. Wasted a good hour of her time searching the crappy school internet for a "fix".

    Then my brothers got into video games and I got stuck researching how to get games to work well on my linux.

    Then I was the idiot with a linux laptop in design school trying to get 3ds max, keyshot, solidworks running on his laptop.

    I have since then bought a mac and a windows desktop as my "workhorse".

    It was an article like this that caused me to make the jump to Ubuntu way back when. It was fun but all in all not very productive experience. I don't LOVE windows but I need to run certain programs reliably and linux just cant do that for me.

  104. andycrofts
    March 21, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Right. Bored with all this crap about how good a Raspberry Pi computer is....
    Stretch the thing (OK, blew one up the other day, still have one left).
    So, let's log on from my local pub, and look at system load. 0,04. Nothing.
    Right, ya bastard. --> films, watch 'heartbeat' episode I stuck there for testing.
    OK system load about 0,08. Sodding hell. Load of 1,00 is full, but I've run with load at 8...800% overload.
    Open another tab, view same video. Both videos running without dropouts.
    System load on Pi 0.11 Sheesh - nothing!
    Pub computer fell over - had to reboot it.
    Pub computer runs XP.
    Nuff said?

  105. andycrofts
    March 21, 2014 at 10:31 am

    No real debate.
    Shove Mint Linux (Petra) on my mates' computers, they email, write letters and watch pr0n to their hearts content.
    Only feedback I get is "Can you make the mouse left-handed"?

  106. vibin
    March 21, 2014 at 8:22 am

    i loved crunchbang it was awesome period of time before my laptop went dead :P

  107. Senja
    March 21, 2014 at 6:10 am

    Good explanation. But not good enough to change the mind of hardcore users. Casual computer users might find this pretty good, but people like me - who Application Oriented instead of OS oriented - might prefer Windows/Mac over Linux based. Why?

    Adobe products work on Windows/Mac. It's running horrible in Linux via Wine. I tried to switch into GIMP, no use. Better spend some money for convenience than sacrifice into learning-curve.

    There is almost NO powerful DAW (digital audio workstation) in Linux. FL Studio, Reason, Logic, Cubase, works terrible in Linux via Wine. And still no GOOD replacement.

    Games? This is the most interesting part. Thanks to Steam, several AAA games now are available in Linux-based. Unfortunately, it's limited to Debian-based. And I tried to compare the performance when playing DOTA 2, FPS I got in Ubuntu is just ~75% from actual FPS from Windows. (dunno Mac, I haven't tried)

    Therefore, you should put a keyword of this article that this suggestion might just works for Casual User, not a gamer, not a designer, not a composer.

    FYI : have some experience in Chakra (archlinux based os). You will find the dark side of the linux :p
    P.S : don't judge me for little experience of linux. I have already used linux more than you imagine.

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 6:40 am

      Hi Senja,

      You're absolutely right. Those who use Adobe software extensively or are into gaming or can't do without certain Windows-based software are better off sticking to Windows. I have added made a note of it at the end. Also, as I mentioned in the article, using too much of Wine to make Linux behave like Windows defeats the whole point of making the switch.

      PS: I can't refute anyone's user experience, I can only speak about mine :) So whether you have much Linux experience is irrelevant.

    • Senja
      March 22, 2014 at 2:46 am

      Good then. And yes, leaning/put faith into Wine is pretty evil considering we are switching into linux (or Luna in this case) here. I'm just hoping debian-based community will get more united and unified so the "differentiation" between distros can be diminished - encouraging more AAA software developer to port their software to .deb

      *Well, yes it's irrelevant actually :) unless you have in mind/try to mock me for such little knowing about linux (if any). Aside from that, don't take this seriously XD

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:10 am

      Not at all. As a (proper) first-time Linux user, I barely know enough myself :)

  108. Nauman
    March 21, 2014 at 5:17 am

    just awesome OS, i'm gonna install this. But one thing to ask, can i install this OS with wubi without making any changes to my partitions?

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 5:40 am

      Hi Nauman,

      I was not worried about messing with existing partitions, so I did not have to think of this. I'm using Linux properly for the first time, and I'm not sure if what you're asking is possible. I will find out and let you know. In the meantime, maybe one of our readers here already has an answer ready for you.

    • Justin P
      March 25, 2014 at 3:49 pm

      Hey Nauman. So far as I know, there is no version of Wubi for Elementary OS Luna. Even Ubuntu, which maintains Wubi, discourages uses from installing with Wubi – it doesn't work with newer devices, and always seems to be somewhat unstable. If you want to give the OS a spin, try out the live environment. Not as good as installing, I realize, but it's your best bet.

  109. Spyder
    March 21, 2014 at 3:46 am

    I have used a number of Linux distribution over the years and like it. It works exactly how i want it to run without having to tweak it too much. It has full fledged desktop environment which works perfectly. Those who say i would return to Windows in a few days i have done that and always return to Linux as windows never works properly for me. Right now running debian but will try the eos in near future.

  110. epiqpwnage
    March 21, 2014 at 2:30 am

    No need for dual boot os, just install virtualbox and run linux from there. You can have the best of both worlds without having to switch OS. PC gaming is the reason why I don't switch to Linux fully.

  111. Datruth
    March 21, 2014 at 2:20 am

    I don't have any issues with Linux and I'm glad it exists in the various flavors it does. But this ridiculous anti-MS bias that permeates sites like this is really over the top. Windows 7 is an extremely polished and capable OS. Any suggestion to the contrary is ludicrous on its face. If you can't successfully customize Win7
    you really shouldn't be in the tech writing business.

    Enough of the lame MS bashing. Newsflash: it doesn't make you cool.

    • Satya
      August 12, 2014 at 9:19 pm


      No OS needs to be bashed and I agree that Win 7 is quite polished. But here's what I thoroughly dislike about Win 7:

      - The software update process is plain archaic and annoying. For an operating system that has been around so long, the update process should have been far simpler. Anti virus upgrade needs restart, system updates need restart, Adobe update needs restart. Come on now.

      - Each software I have installed has to be updated separately. A unified software center has existed in Linux since ages. In Linux? It's a small notification that sits on your task bar. You click it, it tells you all the packages of all the software installed on your machine and updates them in the background with one click. ALL of them.

      - Something went wrong when I was uninstalling a version of Python library and I had to manually delete some files. Since then, every time I open my laptop, and every 1 hour or so - I get an annoying popup that complains about a missing file. It's just ridiculous.

      - Despite hardware vendors making Windows specific device drivers, the touchpad experience in Windows lag behind that of Linux. Linux just feels smoother.

      - I hate having to watch for accidental installations of browser extensions and additional bloatware when I'm trying to install something I need.

      For the longest time, I abstained from switching to Linux completely because there was no hassle-free way to watch Netflix. But with Netflix supporting HTML5 video and Google Chrome implementing EME, my woes should go away soon.

  112. Arun
    March 21, 2014 at 1:38 am

    Mac OSX Mavericks is the best os ever….

  113. John
    March 21, 2014 at 1:36 am

    Harry G. "Yeah, there’s things like Windows Media Center and Bitlocker…but most people won’t need the latter."

    As a long time computer user and security professional, I hope most people don't take your advice. Anyone who has concerns about securing their privacy and personal information should include disk encryption as one of the basic tools. Be it TrueCrypt, BitLocker or FileVault.

  114. phillw
    March 21, 2014 at 1:16 am

    For XP users, we are fast tracking things so that they can use lubuntu in various regimes. I'm looking after the older machines that are non-pae... This is basically pentium II machines. Our long term release is not due out until after XP goes end of life. We cannot change that, but have put in many, many hours to ensure it is stable at the point of final release test version (which is when XP goes EoL). If people would like to get involved, have a read of and feel free to ask questions!

  115. Guliano
    March 21, 2014 at 1:16 am

    this is stupid, Linux will never be even at the little finger of Windows 7 !

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 6:23 pm

      Stupid is as stupid does.

  116. Yan Cole
    March 21, 2014 at 1:03 am

    I installed Windows 8.1 (BIOS type: UEFI), who can tell me how I can install Luna beside my Windows? Thanks

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 2:31 am

      Hi Yan,

      MUO author Danny wrote this post on dual booting Windows and Ubuntu. That should help. Let us know if it works for you.

    • James
      March 21, 2014 at 4:10 pm

      Well, technically speaking... Linux is only a Kernel... It's specifically GNU/Linux that are desktop OS, which is why Android, a clearly mobile OS, may be technically Linux (because it uses the Linux Kernel to run the hardware) but is not a GNU/Linux (desktop) OS...

      Anyway, while Linux provides multiple options because there are literally hundreds of distros out there... just over 200 are active but over 600 are out there... and even if no particular distro fits your needs then depending on your skill level you can either customize... Examples include taking Ubuntu, uninstall the Unity UI, and install one of the alternatives that better suites you... versus someone with enough skill simply creating a new distro customized to their specific wants and needs...

      But of course that's not something everyone can opt for... and there are other reasons why people may choose to stay with Windows besides simple familiarity...

      One of the long time issues with Linux distros and more specifically the Open Source community, is the lack of high end professional apps... Mainly because the business model of Open Source and free apps isn't one to attract developers of high end software...

      This is not to say there is nothing useful, but options like Gimp are poor alternatives to Adobe Photoshop to a professional Graphic Designer... And there are similar examples in virtually every professional type of apps out there...

      The only possible exemption being Office suites... MS Office used to have a big lead there too but the Open Source alternatives have become pretty comparable and it's mainly MS Office established ecosystem, where businesses need to be sure of compatibility with each other, that really keeps MS Office as the dominant option for most...

      While Steam for Linux hopes to change at least the gaming options but it's off to a very slow start and it's questionable how well the Linux community will accept the introduction of closed source and pay for apps... Sure, pay for apps isn't new to Linux but many have insisted on keeping it entirely Open Source but it doesn't look like it will stay that way if Steam is successful...

      And no, WINE and other solutions don't really help because they aren't 100% reliable or bug free... Along with usually forcing the need to have a higher skill level to handle configuring and customizing to get a Windows app to run properly... and there is also the issue that things like emulation also effect performance and many professional apps require all the performance you can get from a system to really do work...

      But, if you don't need a professional app then a GNU/Linux distro can be a good replacement for Windows... and you can still do a lot with the apps that are available...

    • James
      March 21, 2014 at 4:18 pm

      UEFI isn't the same as traditional BIOS, it's a different Firmware system and thus has different requirements of the Boot Loader and Kernel support from the Distro...

      So, you have to first find a distro that specifically indicates support for UEFI... Even with Secure Boot disabled, basic support for UEFI booting is the main problem...

      While, the Linux Community has released a boot loader that can work with Secure Boot enabled, it's a 64bit boot loader and the system's UEFI has to be also 64bit but some are limited to 32bit UEFI... Thus, some devices like the Asus Transformer T100 may not be a good option for running Linux distros at this time... Though, it's possible Asus may update the FW later but that's something else to watch out for...

      Support for things like Bay Trail SoCs is also something only the latest Kernel will support... So you'd have to check if the distro actually supports your hardware yet...

      However, many of the big distros like Ubuntu, etc cover instructions of how to deal with UEFI on their support pages... Just keep in mind when looking that many of the old support pages are for systems with Traditional BIOS and if you have a UEFI system then those don't apply...

      Or vice versa if you're using a older system or a desktop that has the FW option for legacy BIOS mode...

  117. Kevin
    March 20, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    Harry's comment "Linux is not a desktop os" speaks volumes about blind brand loyalty. Exploring other options is human nature and with Linux there are a lot of options. Remember, most of us started on Windows and had to learn it. Those of us that switched saw more upsides in Linux than in Windows. I started with xp, hated the limitations and security shortcomings so I tried Ubuntu, I didn't care for the Unity GUI and the corporate feel of it. Went to Mint 7 then 9, then 13, but 13 wasn't as stable as the others (though I still think Mint's package manager is the best on any os). I went to pclinuxos mate and I love it. As for "Linux is not a desktop os" just try a live version of pclinuxos fullmonty and then show me a more feature rich os. I don't use it, because it has way more features than I'll ever need. The only desktop os that's not a desktop os is Windows 8. I'm glad the author found a solution to her computing needs and encourage everyone to experiment and look at all the options at your disposal.

  118. Alejandro
    March 20, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    If you like Windows try Zorin.

  119. Fandroid
    March 20, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    With Elementary OS Luna you will spend more time tweaking so it will behave like Windows. When a problem occurs with Linux, you need to deal with the terminal. Which is much more time consuming than fixing something on Windows. Also, there's no desktop icons and very limited support. Might as well stick with the most and popular OS, Windows 7.

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 10:30 pm

      Obviously you are a fan of Windows and know little of Linux. Linux problems can be solved using GUI, same as Windows problems. However, using the terminal to solve problems, both in Windows and Linux, makes sure that GUI is not causing them. Unless, of course, you're saying that Windows never has problems.

    • Bruce E
      March 23, 2014 at 8:39 pm

      "no desktop icons" That's a problem? Let me guess, you are one of those folks who cannot see their desktop wallpaper due to the number of icons displayed there.

      "very limited support" There are hundreds of sites that can help you out with problems you encounter with ANY operating system (including this site). I don't really see how that is limited.

      "When a problem occurs with Linux, you need to deal with the terminal." And in Windows, you may need to manually deal with the command line or the registry. Which do you think carries more risk: the terminal or regedit?

  120. Rudi Pittman
    March 20, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    I'm amused by soem of the comments from both sides of the argument. I've been using opensuse linux for years as a desktop os because I spent all my time fixing other people's windows pc's and just wanted mine to work when I got home. I'm not fond of the 'buntu family because they want you to re-install every 6 months. The new version of elementary comes out in april. Lack of icons on the desktop is NOT a linux feature....elementary os is based on a mac interface. KDE runs fine for me and has all the usual features a windows user would expect such as start bar, system tray etc. The only windows pc in my house ironically is my htpc which runs win 7/media center and mediaportal to record/display locally recorded tv from networked hdhomerun tuners.

    • Bruce E
      March 23, 2014 at 8:33 pm

      " I’m not fond of the ‘buntu family because they want you to re-install every 6 months." Really? I didn't realize they were nagging you to do the semi-annual upgrade. I haven't run Ubuntu since 12.10 (in a VM) just to see what it was like. Prior to that, I was only using LTS releases. A full upgrade every 2 years. That's it.

    • Rudi Pittman
      March 23, 2014 at 11:51 pm

      No, I'm not "forced" to upgrade but it's a heck of a lot easier on opensuse to type "zypper dup" (distribution upgrade) and have it download and install all the new packages in place keeping all of my customized system files then be forced to do an unnecessary wipe/reinstall. Heck with rolling distro's like opensuse tumbleweed you don't even have the 6 month release just do zypper dup from time to time and you are current with the most stable versions.

  121. dragonmouth
    March 20, 2014 at 8:33 pm

    "On the other hand, installing apps on Luna is a breeze. "
    Why is it that every Linux review, even by experienced Linux users, always concentrates on installing new programs? Nobody ever tries to remove/uninstall unneeded packages that were installed by default, especially from Ubuntu-based distros. Try uninstalling any one of the 100 langauge packs you are not going to use, or esoteric device drivers. You will find that you can't without incapacitating the system because the vast majority of packages are integrated into the system. The last time I time I tried Ubuntu, I found close to 600 meg of packages that I could do without.

    The inability to uninstall default packages applies only to Ubuntu-based distros. Although, I suppose, for those coming from the Windows universe, the inability to remove programs should be a familiar feature. Slackware, Debian, Red Hat, openSUSE, Mandrake-based distros do not have that problem.

  122. Umfs
    March 20, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Been there, done that, always return to Windows/Mac. No matter which linux distro you try, eventually you will get frustrated disregarding it's luna or ubuntu or any future distro, it's in the core of linux, it's not the best solution for UI-related tasks. Even the most popular linux - Android, can't provide a iOS-competetive UE: the screen responsiveness, the lags....

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 8:35 pm

      Obviously you have not run Linux in quite a few years. I will take Enlightment UI over anything Microsoft or Apple have put oout.

    • Umfs
      March 20, 2014 at 9:49 pm

      In fact, I have never stopped trying out linux distros and DEs, and Enlightment has been improving a lot over a short period of time. But if you are saying it is better then MS or Apple, then clearly you haven't used Windows7/OSX. It's undeniable that Linux Desktop is far far away from the Win7/OSX user experience. Crashes, glitches, ununified visual elements and all the annoying hardware/software issues...

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 10:25 pm

      "Crashes, glitches, ununified visual elements and all the annoying hardware/software issues…"
      Clearly you haven't used the latest Linux releases. :-)
      What "all the annoying hardware/software issues"? Could you be more specific because that statement sounds like FUD. I have been a Linux user for over 10 years and I have not had those issues.

      As far as UIs go, those are our personal preferences so it cannot be said which one is better than the others. If I like oranges and you like bananas, neither fruit is better.

    • Umfs
      March 20, 2014 at 10:29 pm

      It's cool you are a satisfied Linux user. But it doesn't mean everyone has the same standard as yours. I don't bother to list the issues you can go ahead and go to launchpad...

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 6:18 pm

      "I don’t bother to list the issues you can go ahead and go to launchpad…"
      Maybe you don't bother because you can find any? Don't be bashful, I promise I won't make fun of you. :-)

    • Lyro
      March 25, 2014 at 11:31 am

      Umfs you're laughable at best...

  123. Wantoo Sevin
    March 20, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Great article! I am also very impressed with Elementary OS. It's beautiful, easy to use, and insanely powerful. I've learned so much about illustration because I've had free access to open source drawing programmes, which had always been something I had wanted to learn on my old OS but never got round to due to the cost. Open Source is amazing!!

    Keep us posted on how you fare, Akshata!

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 2:27 am

      Thank you :) Maybe using is for some more time will demand a follow up post.

  124. harry
    March 20, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    Huge waste of time. You will be back to Windows in a few days. Linux is not a desktop OS.

    • Mike
      March 21, 2014 at 2:22 am

      Interesting you would say that. I've been using Linux (mostly Debian and derivatives) as my primary desktop OS for decades. I haven't really used Windows in forever. No need. Linux dies everything I want.

    • Mike
      March 21, 2014 at 2:23 am

      *does everything I want

    • kratoz29
      March 21, 2014 at 2:46 am

      Is that for real? I have eos in my pc and laptop and I have months without like to enter to windows 7 and 8 respectively.
      I've did it one to windows 8 just to see it and my supra dies was that it got virus and I've didn't used lol.

    • kratoz29
      March 21, 2014 at 2:47 am


    • FreedomForever
      April 5, 2014 at 2:53 pm

      I've been using computers since the Commodore Vic 20. My main gripe with Windows is that it is "All Controlling." I sprung for Windows 8 upgrade when it was offered at $69 for the Win 8 Pro. It is a bloated beast, but necessary for my wife's iPhone, and iPod. Other than that I never use it. I've use Linux of some flavor since 1998. That's more than a few days. Those that love Windows, fine, but please don't knock Linux. I have Windows on my Linux (Virtual Box, and it works fine there, when I need which is very infrequently). I use Linux Mint Debian Edition, which is a rolling OS, so I never need to re-install. Wow, love it. It's been more than a few days. Unchained from the "All Controlling OS."

  125. Peng Hardin
    March 20, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Always good to see someone else discover Linux. For those who are considering a test drive of Linux I'd like to recommend SolydXK Linux ( It originally came from Linux Mint Debian Edition but has since come into its own as a solid distro with a great out of the box experience and a monthly update policy.

  126. garza
    March 20, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    @ gravedigger --- I agree that it does not come with much thats installed. I loaded and run LXLE on both of my old XP machines -- they fly now - Preloaded w/ tons of stuff and really light weight and speedy. It runs off of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS so its covered for quite soem time before a real upgrade is needed. I did load Chrome as my browser and VLC.

  127. Pedro
    March 20, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    Lol, I love Linux, I have VPS running CentOS, I run manjaro in my netbook, I love the terminal, I will never install again Linux in my main computer. Why? Not efficient. If you have one problem you will need a day sometimes to get it working just fine again. Linux is nice but not for end users. My girlfriend runs Linux mint in her computer, if the software isn't in the repositories, she can't install it. So it causes in normal users a dependency that in Windows they don't have. It's much simpler use Windows for the Daily tasks.
    Almost all reasons pointed here are fantasies for the first timers in Linux, in one year you will get bored and change back to Windows. Like almost everyone that needs normal usage of a computer.

    PS wine isn't a alternative, it's just a way to you trick yourself you don't need Windows when you really need. If you need wine you aren't ready for Linux.

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 8:42 pm

      "if the software isn’t in the repositories, she can’t install it."
      Think of a repository as a software store. If a Windows application is not in the store, no matter how good Windows is, you cannot install the application. So in that respect Linux and Windows are the same.

      "in one year you will get bored and change back to Windows. Like almost everyone that needs normal usage of a computer."
      I need normal usage and have been a Linux user for over 10 years.

  128. B_Dauterive
    March 20, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    I use both Windows 7 AND Crunchbang Linux (Waldorf). I will not give up my Win 7 Ultimate. If you are a Linux fan..then fine..but don't try to use ticky-tacky excuses to bag on Windows. It's like the Apple fan-boys who keep bagging on PC's but never take a long hard look at Apple's gilded cage.
    If you run the Professional version Windows ......problems are very few and far between. I love Linux too but "Damn !" it's a total hassle when trying to upgrade or sometimes install a lot of things. For all the talk.....Linux is only great if you have all day to cater to its whims .......not if you are busy and have a full life.

    • Technophoria
      March 20, 2014 at 4:10 pm

      You're using #! and complaining that it does only what you tell it to? Isn't that kind of the point of that distro? I honestly can't say I've had the same experience with any version linux for years. Had a box I swapped from XP to Linux Mint and it went pretty quick and smooth, no printer issues, no driver issues, it just worked. Automatic updates were automatic and I've barely had to touch it except to run updates. I use my Win7 Pro box and love it, but I think your complaints on linux are kind of ticky-tacky excuses for not using linux.

      Installing a lot of things is hard? On any Debian based synaptic, update package list, type the thing you're looking for, click a box, install....or go to site, Click the link for the .deb file, run or sudo apt-get update, sudo apt-get install foo...point and click isn't very hard for most people and you've got a lot of granular control for advanced users with CL package managers.

      These old 'nix is hard excuses just don't fly anymore. Some distros are definitely harder by design to allow more granular control, but it's essentially the same thing as slipstreaming your Windows OS or going in and making registry changes to allow for more customization. Really at this point I think most DE are on par with Windows/Mac environments especially once you get into distros like this one.

    • Howard B
      March 20, 2014 at 6:51 pm

      Since the launch of Windows XP in 2001, there's been very little difference between "Professional" and "Home" versions of Windows, *except* for the ability to join a Windows Server Domain. Yeah, there's things like Windows Media Center and Bitlocker...but most people won't need the latter.

    • NAZCA
      March 21, 2014 at 11:51 am

      Try SolydX. rocksolid and autoupdate policy each month!

    • pmshah
      March 22, 2014 at 2:17 am

      I concur. I maintain all the PCs at a fair sized travel agency. They have ticketing software that runs on line and ONLY under IE. No other browser works. Just for that reason I have to be able to duplicate their situation on my PC to guide them on corrective steps over the phone. There is no way I am shifting. I was introduced to Linux way back in 1992 when I got OS2 and Slackware 2.0 CDs with a UK PC magazine. I am happy with Win 7 Ultimate and in spite of several attempts at Win 8, am not likely to upgrade in even distant future. However when I worked on my brother's Acer Aspire V5 with some version of Acer modified Win 8 I was kind of impressed. It may be that I have developed bad habits by way of configuring my desktop and system to the nth degree to suit my needs what I saw was pretty good for novice what with a large touchscreen display. He can manage all his needs quite comfortable with the Metro interface. For him it is like starting from scratch and no expectations carried over from earlier experience.

      After all is said and done I still have Puppy Linux live on a pen drive customised to my needs that I carry around on my key chain. I can get done what I need to when not in front of my home PC.

  129. GraveDigger
    March 20, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    I'm currently running elementary OS Luna on both my 3-year old desktop and laptop systems as part of a multi-boot system (along with Windows, Ubuntu and Linux Mint) and I do think it's an excellent alternative operating system. I like the Mac-like interface and the overall design concepts used in the creation of elementary OS.

    However, since it's based upon an older version of Ubuntu (12.04) it doesn't have the latest versions of many applications in the Software Center (such as LibreOffice) that is available in the Ubuntu and Linux Mint depositories... Also, the decision to not include a basic application like an office suite in the default installation of elementary OS seems to be a rather glaring omission for a distribution that is designed for new Linux users (most simple distros like Ubuntu, Linux Mint or Zorin OS include LibreOffice as part of the default install...)

    I prefer to use Google Chrome or Chromium to Mozilla Firefox so I haven't experienced the same slowdown you indicated (although my systems do have more memory and faster processors).

    And I fear for the future of the operating system (especially with the demise of the rival Pear OS and the disappearance of the elementary tweaks website...) It might be a safer bet to go with Ubuntu or Linux Mint as they appear to have more support and are likely to be around for a while...

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 8:57 pm

      "It might be a safer bet to go with Ubuntu or Linux Mint as they appear to have more support and are likely to be around for a while…"
      The first release of Ubuntu was in 2004 and of Mint in2006. Slackware, Debian and Red Hat have been around since 1993/94 time frame. Chances are they will be around for at least another 20 years. All three have as much, if not more, user support than Ubuntu or Mint. However, they do not have much support from pundits and writers who are enamored with Ubuntu and Mint.

      FYI - Ubuntu is based on Debian.

    • GraveDigger
      March 21, 2014 at 1:41 am

      Oh, I'm quite aware that Ubuntu is based on Debian - I'm a LONG time Linux user having used TurboLinux, Novell Linux, Mandrake, Red Hat, SUSE Linux, Calera OpenLinux and many others over the years. The reason I tend to recommend Ubuntu, Linux Mint and other distributions like these is they tend to be easy to install, maintain and work with most users hardware. You don't have to wade through tons of installed applications like openSUSE and they work where many of the "power" Linux distros have to be configured by knowledgeable user and they're more difficult to maintain.

  130. JIMMY
    March 20, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Hmmm, been wanting to switch to linux, every time I installed something, it wasn't "right". Sinc eit souonds like you were in same boat, I gonna try dah luna! Thank YOU

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 2:25 am

      You're welcome, Jimmy. I hope it works out well for you.

  131. Hector
    March 20, 2014 at 2:02 pm

    The only reason keeping me from going over to Linux is because I have Windows programs I have paid for and/or cannot be run on the Linux OS.

    • Tehcnophoria
      March 20, 2014 at 3:56 pm

      Interestingly Hector that might not be a problem because of Steam. You could soon be able to stream those apps from a dedicated Windows box if Wine/VMs/KVM etc don't work. I'm curious as to which applications you're using that don't work on Linux.

    • Technophoria
      March 20, 2014 at 3:56 pm

      Typed my name wrong...failed.

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 8:59 pm

      "Typed my name wrong…failed."
      It must be Linux's fault! LOL!

    • Hector
      March 20, 2014 at 9:24 pm

      I installed Ubuntu alongside Windows 98 on an old netbook and was never able to boot into Windows after that. I have read about Wine and like programs but never took the time to sit down and figure it out.

      The paid programs that I mainly use are CofeeCup HTML editor, YNAB budgeting program and Microsoft Office 2010 (I use it at my job).

    • Cyril
      March 21, 2014 at 4:59 am

      Same !am a mixing engineers and have got a lot of softtwares I payed for. But asap as I get a new laptop Linux it is

    • James
      March 21, 2014 at 3:42 pm

      WINE has it limits, it's mainly only a work around but like emulation it doesn't work for everything and what works can differ between distros and hardware being used...

      Sure, there are system Linux distros would just work on but there are also systems that they don't... Overall, Linux driver support usually lags years behind Windows... It's one of the reasons Linus Torvalds got upset with many companies that otherwise provided Open Source drivers and supported the Linux Foundation... Windows, despite issues actually has better overall driver support and will support both Open and Closed drivers... While many times a Linux distro just uses a generic driver, they can be good but don't always support all the features and options of a given hardware...

      The rapid rate the Linux Kernel changes is another problem as it often breaks things. So support is often limited to which Kernel, as well as which distro, you're using...

      While, the main reason people can find a distro they can like is because there are literally hundreds of them, which is little different from scouring what 3rd party utilities can do to help customize Windows to someone's liking...

      In either case there are options, just different ways of going about it...

      While the complaints about W8 are also pretty strictly limited to how it looks and behaves... It is otherwise more responsive than W7, fixes a lot of the old problems like providing better multi-monitor support without needing 3rd party add ons, can support advance mobile power optimization for better battery life and support of mobile features like Connected Standby, is actually usable on small screen devices (though the desktop could still use more support for mobile devices), makes getting apps much easier and quicker with the app store (only thing limited right now is the ModernUI/Metro specific app selection but that will change over time), any device 10.8" or smaller gets the MS Office Home & Student 2013 edition for free, supports emerging technology like 3D printers, native 3.0 support, adds things Linux had for a long time like running apps Sandboxed for better stability and security, as well as things like natively being able to open ISOs and VHD files, can organize multiple partitions and drives to create one big virtual drive for better storage management, Hyper-V for better VM options, Windows To Go for an option Enterprise users never had before, Server edition can have the GUI either installed or uninstalled without re-installing the OS, among many other things...

      Meanwhile, MS has actually bothered to take at least some steps to help those who are having a hard time adapting to the way W8 looks and behaves with first the 8.1 update and now the one due out this year... Something that is significant as things like Service Pack Releases usually take over a year to push out and 2-3 are needed to equal the number of changes the W8 updates are providing but the W8 updates are annual releases and given free just like Apple's OSX updates... So, it's not like they aren't trying to improve support... Even if people don't appreciate it and turn mostly minor issues into reasons to hate the whole OS...

      Anyway, there's no perfect solution for anyone... There reasons why the market share for GNU/Linux (desktop distros) has never broken ten percent of the general consumer market and even with changes like Steam for Linux that's unlikely to change anytime soon...

      Really, taking two years to port even a OpenGL optimied game like L4D2 is not going to let them catch up to Windows gaming anytime soon and Steam will also introduce a system that promotes pay for apps that include closed drivers and code that many in the Linux community won't like because they are mostly Open Source advocates...

      It's also one of the reasons why GNU/Linux isn't already a more widely used option on ARM devices because ARM devices are a highly hardware fragmented platform that the majority of devices use closed drivers and configurations vary greatly and make consistent support very difficult to maintain... Even hardware that openly supports Open Source is often still difficult to get a GNU/Linux working properly on with everything, like hardware acceleration, enabled...

      So, while GNU/Linux can be a great solution for some it's not likely to be a solution for most people... at least not the way it is now...

      Besides, there are some misconceptions like the assumption Linux is a lot more secure than Windows... Any system can be hacked and with enough effort Linux can have a lot of malware targeted to it too... There just isn't a lot of reason yet for that to happen, as aside from the server market GNU/Linux still represents a small percentage of all PC users...

      While Android only has the Kernel in common with Linux, but is not a GNU/Linux distro... yet it does get malware... Even the more locked down iOS still gets malware and security holes... one of the more recent being a hole that allows spying of even encrypted data and even OSX has had malware that infected tens of thousands of users, which is still a significant number as OSX users are only a little over double the number of GNU/Linux users and like Linux OSX shares some Unix roots that many people just assume means they inherited the level of security...

      So there's a lot of misconceptions on the strength and weaknesses of each platform that only confuses people but like choosing a OS to fit a particular user, the basic thing to keep in mind is nothing is perfect for everyone and everything has its own unique strength and weaknesses and you have to become aware of them to use what you choose to use to its best...

    • Frugal Ben
      March 21, 2014 at 3:43 pm

      @ Technophoria
      Interesting comment about using Steam to stream Windows apps. Any suggestions about how to learn more about Steam? Where should a beginner start?

    • dragonmouth
      March 21, 2014 at 6:13 pm

      Your post is uninformed/misinformed FUD.

    • dc0de null
      March 21, 2014 at 9:48 pm

      Steam isn't really going to change the landscape.

      You want Crossover Office by Codeweavers, to run Windows applications that just don't exist in Linux.

      There is quite a bit of tweaking to get everything working... regardless, I'm typing this on my Linux laptop, at work, with my work desktop running Windows 7.

      I use linux daily, and either way, you have to know what you're doing. If you want the "Simple" experience, pay Apple lots of money for a computer that does what Apple wants you to do. If you want what you use at the office, buy a Windows system. If you want to learn how computing really works, build your own linux system.

      Just my 2cents, YMMV.

    • James
      March 22, 2014 at 4:26 pm

      @dragonmouth - Sorry but trolling won't change the truth of what I stated!

      I can point out many official examples, like for Linux there are sources like "Why Linux Sucks" from LFNW 2012, which is an example of a hard look at why Linux hasn't become more dominant already and is from Linux supporters to try to address those issues and discuss what needs to change to overcome them!

      Similar examples can be shown for every platform... It's just that few people may bother or really want to admit there are flaws with their favorite system but they all have them, no matter which platform...

      So pretending there are no problems is the real misinformation and FUD!

    • Jadon L
      March 25, 2014 at 2:46 am

      I'm just curious as to why you use MS Office- Libreoffice is a great open-source alternative that can read all MS Office files and create them...

      I mean, even when I used Windows I used Libreoffice...

    • James
      March 25, 2014 at 6:32 am

      @Jadon L - LibreOffice has only fairly recently been able to fully rival MS Office... So a lot of people who may have tried it before may not realize how much improved it is now...

      However, many who rely on being able to share editable documents need to make sure the files both open and that the formats remain exactly the same for each user but as good as LibreOffice has become it's still not 100% assured you'll be able to keep the exact same formatting...

      Not that there aren't issues between different versions of MS Office but those are usually fairly easy to get around and usually not a issue as long as everyone uses the latest version...

      Also, not all aspects of LibreOffice yet fully rival MS Office... Like Excel is still far more powerful than what LibreOffice can offer... supporting many times the number of columns, etc. So, for very large projects there are still advantages to using MS Office... though, LibreOffice can be sometimes simpler to use but like many different apps made for the same purpose, there's some things one does better and some things the other does better...

      While, among the exceptions are things like using macros, etc. that LibreOffice doesn't offer... but overall the strongest reason is most are just too used to it, there's an install base that will be hard for everyone to just convert to something they're not familiar with and for most companies the employees aren't the ones who have to worry about paying for it and only have to use it, and can usually get free copies for themselves to boot... So it's often just a write off to the company and one of the reasons why it continues to thrive in the corporate environments despite pretty good free alternatives...

      Though, things like Office 365 do allow for better corroborations between multiple users around the world that can all work on the same files, even at the same time, and the MS support is usually considered a plus to users who usually don't want to be bothered with anything remotely technical... and again, the company is the one usually paying for it all and the employees just have to use it...

      While for with LibreOffice, you'd have to also work with Cloud services like Google offers to cover the range MS covers and that can leave a rather disjointed support coverage...

      The thing to keep in mind is this doesn't change that for individuals, LibreOffice can be easily preferable but there is a reason why companies are still in the majority sticking to MS Office and its related services.

  132. Dan
    March 20, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    Been there, done that. Always returned to Windows. I will probably use Win7 until 2020, seeing as Win8 is a disaster. I've been using Windows since 3.1, and so I have learned how to tweak a new install down to an art. It may take two days to configure it to my satisfaction but once it's done, I rarely need to do much more.

    As opposed to various Linux distros which take so much of my time just tweaking to get right: editing configuration files (mostly via terminal), desperately finding drivers for esoteric hardware originally meant for Windows, relying on software that are in a perpetual state of alpha or beta for mission-critical use, recompiling software because it crashes on your PC setup, etc. I often find myself fiddling with my Linux setup on most days, months after I first installed it. My productivity suffered.

    Windows is so effortless to use (after the two day initial tweaking) that it is usually invisible. I use Firefox as my browser, TBird as my email client, Softmaker Office, XMPlay, 7Zip, Media Player Classic, and so forth. Aside from the OS itself, I don't really use any other MS product.

    Maybe in 2020, when Windows fades into obscurity and Linux really does get real support from hardware manufacturers and commercial software developers, I will finally ditch MS. But not now. Not when Win7 is still the best desktop OS on the market (sorry Linux and Apple fanboys).

    • Peter
      March 20, 2014 at 6:53 pm

      You haven't used any Linux distro in the past ten years, have you? On my past 4 Machines (Asus netbook, Self-assembled PC, Asus Zenbook, Dell XPS 13) I installed Ubuntu and everything worked out of the box. I can't say that about Windows (i.e. My touchpad doesn't work nearly as good in W7 or W8 as it does in Ubuntu). I have my System set up in about 30 minutes.

      Alpha software? We have the best browsers (Chromium, Firefox), TBird, Libreoffice (although Google Docs is imho superior due to simplicity, and if you're serious, learn LaTeX). VLC is THE Movie player, no need for anything else. The only thing Linux is lacking are Games, Video and Photo editors. Oh and my Laptop probably runs 10°C cooler on Ubuntu than on Windows. That's what I call alpha software.

      Now, I have to admit, I never used Windows 7 for more than a week exclusively, I use it for gaming from time to time. But everytime it's a massive pain: the update system seems to date back to stonehenge. I get hit in the face with notifications and pop ups all the time. The system settings are a mess, luckily there is a search field. Whenever I use W7/W8 it feels I'm not in control. It does stuff I've never asked it to do. When I tell it to shut down, I want it to shut down, not apply Updates. And the error messages are hilarious. ERROR ff3496720432rj3402. Yeah thanks, that really helps.

      I urge you to try Linux (Ubuntu, eOS) again (seriously, not just 5 min on a liveUSB).

    • Ryan
      April 4, 2014 at 3:18 pm

      Linux has a Great photo editor. GIMP. I can do ALMOST anything that Photoshop can do.

      I recently made the switch from windows 7 to Linux (using Ubuntu 13.10 currently).
      After you come to the realization that SOMETHINGS will take a bit of work to work, Linux is superior to Windows in so many ways. For one, I have money again! I'm not dishing out money for programs, I am getting top of the line software FREE and LEGALLY.

      I am still trying to find a distro that fits my style perfectly, but Ubuntu is the closest I have come so far.

    • Jo
      June 19, 2014 at 8:55 pm

      > As opposed to various Linux distros which take so much of my time just tweaking to get right: editing configuration files (mostly via terminal), desperately finding drivers for esoteric hardware originally meant for Windows, relying on software that are in a perpetual state of alpha or beta for mission-critical use, recompiling software because it crashes on your PC setup, etc. I often find myself fiddling with my Linux setup on most days, months after I first installed it.

      I think you describe the state of things how it was more than ten years ago.

      By the way - if you want a new computer that runs absolutely smoothly and stress-free, try out a Lenovo Thinkpad. If you can afford it, get one of the business models, if not, get a refurbished business exemplar. They require absolutely NO fiddling and have superior material quality.

  133. Alex
    March 20, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    Sensing a bit of anti windows sentiment lately. Getting to be a drag.

    "...because I was tired of all the work involved in customizing Windows to my satisfaction. I looked for a few Linux distros..."

    made me laugh. Fiddling with linux to get various things to work is still very much a real part of many distros.

    • Akshata
      March 20, 2014 at 1:50 pm

      Hey Alex,

      I'm not anti-Windows :) I stuck to it for so many years because I did like it. If I wasn't looking for a simpler workflow, I probably wouldn't have made the switch at all. I don't think any OS can be so perfect as to require no customization/troubleshooting at all. But with Luna (I don't know about other Linux versions) I have had to make the bare minimum changes to get a configuration I'm happy with.

    • dragonmouth
      March 20, 2014 at 9:07 pm

      "Sensing a bit of anti windows sentiment lately. Getting to be a drag."
      Get used to it as more and more people switch from Windows to Linux.

      "Fiddling with linux to get various things to work is still very much a real part of many distros."
      I suppose Windows comes all pre-configured?!
      Actually, it does. It comes pre-configured by some corporate flunkies in Redmond who TELL you how you want it configured.

    • Fadumpt
      March 21, 2014 at 12:45 pm

      Alex: In general, no the majority of hardware, there is no Linux fiddling. Most things just work when you plug them in. If not, there is almost always a fix online that you can follow.

      On Windows...The headaches start at the beginning. Don't mess around and not have a driver CD(s) or you will be stuck downloading them on another computer and dragging it all over to the new install. You are in for at least an hour of updates or more.
      Want a printer? Hopefully that install might be easy. :-/
      Then we come to software, if you know about ninite, you can at least get your system to the point that all Linux computers *start* at, easily. If not, you will be going to several sites to download software and keeping an eye on the installs to make sure crap doesn't come in too. It will though, and you will wonder how that happened. Oh well. Maybe you should buy a more expensive virus protection.
      Then it's what dragonmouth said, you are now stuck with a computer that is setup exactly how Microsoft wants you to set it up. You can change a few things easily, but if you actually want to *change* it, God help you. :)
      This last reason is the same one I came to when I gave up mac and iphone. They work great, but if it doesn't match my "workflow" then what's the point.
      ***Disclaimer*** Drama added to aid in explanation. Use as troll-bait at your own risk.

  134. Brian B
    March 20, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    Some of the reasons here are absurd. For example, with Windows you have to scour the web, check the reviews, look for the right version, and then install. That is no different than with Linux. If I want a compression utility, there are dozens or more out there. I still have to find the one that meets my needs and has a good reputation. The only version check I need for Windows is whether the program is 32-bit or 64-bit.

    • Akshata
      March 20, 2014 at 1:44 pm

      Hi Brian,

      I don't know how things work on other Linux versions, but with Luna I haven't had to do any of that (scour the web, search for reviews, look for the right version, and then install). I search for and install the apps from the Software Center (with the reviews appearing right there). Hence that portion of the post. Luna is the only Linux version I have properly used as my primary OS (and for the first time too), so my view might appear a little skewed if you have been a long-time Linux user.

    • Mark G
      March 21, 2014 at 12:45 am

      It appears you don't like choices or want to put any effort into your computing decisions. I hope you don't run the rest of your life in such a lazy way. Just like one car or one house is not right for everyone one computer operating system or server is not right for everyone. Enjoy your Windows and I'll enjoy my world of multiple Operating system on multiple devices.

    • Mark G
      March 21, 2014 at 12:50 am

      Great Article. A friend who picked up a Windows 8 computer from Walmart and was disgusted with how slow and hated the metro interface let me wipe it and install Fedora 20. He has had it for a few months now. He and his family live on the internet and watch movies on it. He was so happy with it when his mother told him she was not happy with her windows 7 computer he suggested I do the same to hers. She has had it for just a few weeks now but is amazed at the speed she gained and the ease of use. They both have android phones and she has an android tablet. They were surprised to learn the same Linux code is running on all those devices.

    • Akshata
      March 21, 2014 at 2:50 am

      Thank you, Mark. The wildly fluctuating opinions here are reinforcing how widely user experience can vary. It's nice to hear that Linux is working out well for your friend and his family.

    • Jaypeedee
      March 21, 2014 at 3:47 pm

      Thanks for an interesting article. I have been a MS slave for twenty years and I have a net-book that I would like to try this OS on. I intend to wipe the hard disk and start again. Which file system should I use and should I install partitions?

    • Paul
      March 21, 2014 at 10:33 pm

      Micro$oft FUD believer

    • Brian B
      March 22, 2014 at 2:55 am

      Wow Mark G. Way to misread my response. I have used and continue to use both Windows and Linux depending where I am at and what I am doing. Because I complained about a section of the article that I found to be unreasonable shouldn't give you the idea that it's right to vilify me without cause.

      "I hope you don’t run the rest of your life in such a lazy way." I never said that Linux is evil or any such nonsense. Now please, go out, get some fresh air, and learn that not everyone needs to be attacked.

    • Akshata
      March 22, 2014 at 7:01 am

      @Japypeedee: As you can see from the comments on this post, there's no guarantee that what worked well for me will work well for you. Why not run it from USB without installing it and see if you like it before you go in for a clean install? As for the file systems and partitions, I'm new to Linux, so I followed some tutorial I found via Google. Unfortunately, I'm not able to find that one now (I have used ext4 file system).

    • Kim
      April 29, 2014 at 9:17 am

      Linux is great if you don't do any work on it (company stuff) or play games.

      But if you're just watching movies on it or browsing the web, windows is still better. Honestly there's absolutely no reason to switch to Linux. Less user friendly, less support .. basically less of everything. But you do get that "I'm special" feeling for not using the mainstream stuff :)

    • Brian
      April 29, 2014 at 11:26 am

      Kim - Linux is no good for work or games? That's absurd -- partly.

      You are right that Microsoft does not make a version of Outlook for Linux; however, there are alternative means to access email. There are alternatives to nearly all software packages if you are not specifically tied to a particular tool.

      As far as gaming is concerned, my daughter has been using Linux Mint for about six months. She has had no problems with any entertainment. Not all games are available, but there are many. She's able to play Minecraft and most of her Steam games work just fine. And this is from a low budget, 7-year old laptop I had laying around.

    • Bruce Barnes
      May 28, 2014 at 1:21 pm

      I'm with Akshata on this one Brian. I've been using Linux for 4 years now and the software center is the superior way to go. Some things she didn't mention is that software installed through the software center is tested as compatible, malware free, and all software is automatically updated. Have you ever installed a Windows app and found out it made your computer unstable? It happens, and we all know how you have to watch those check-boxes when installing Windows apps or you'll end up with extra software you didn't want or worse you'll find a new default search engine and home page change on your web browser. One final plus I can think of is the software center shows you if an app is already installed. In the past I've gone shopping for an app just to find I already had one installed that would do the job. It came bundled with the Linux installation.

    • Jo
      June 19, 2014 at 9:23 pm

      To Kim:

      > Linux is great if you don’t do any work on it (company stuff) or play games.

      I am using Linux since 1998 for research work and programming. For me, it is way more productive than using Windows. Open source nowadays is way superior when it comes to programming, for example the Mi crosoft Team Foundation Server is a joke when compared to modern distributed version control systems (DCVS), like git. And a bad one.

      Furthermore, Linux is getting more popular in the company world, and Linux Sysops are paid significantly better today. For a young person working in IT, knowing Linux will pay out.

      With games, this is clearly one of the areas where Linux is still chasing up. But if you are interested in games, you have surely heard about Humble Bundle and Valve's Steam platform which by now contains many classic games. And other game companies are following.

      > But if you’re just watching movies on it or browsing the web, windows is still better.

      Watching movies is no problem at all with Linux. As mentioned in another post, it is wise to shop for good Linux support in the hardware, like Lenovo's Thinkpads have; also, Intel graphic cards often offer better compatibility.

      With "browsing the web", I do really not know what you mean. The Internet originated from multiuser time-sharing system which evolved into Unix. Networking was much earlier part of Unix system and was built into Linux from the start. With that came a powerful access control system and better security, issues with which Windows is struggling until today.

      > Honestly there’s absolutely no reason to switch to Linux. Less user friendly, less support .. basically less of everything. But you do get that “I’m special” feeling for not using the mainstream stuff :)

      There are plenty of reasons, albeit they of course have not the same weight for everyone. I can give you mine (and remember, I am a scientist and computer programmer):

      * better stability, software is more robust
      * more flexibility
      * better typesetting with LaTeX when I publish articles
      * no virus problems
      * practically no problem with malware
      * being part of a community of open source users
      * better protection from governmental intrusions into privacy - no backdoors
      * runs better with hardware which is a few years old
      * much less memory footprint - even on a modern desktop, 4GB is usually enough
      * technically better., no issues like disk fragmentation, since a long time support for SSDs, and so on
      * way better long-term support for file formats, I do not lose documents merely because they are a few years old
      * very good support for internationalization, using Asian fonts etc

      > > Honestly there’s absolutely no reason to switch to Linux. Less user friendly, less support .. basically less of everything.

      Linux has since the beginning great documentation, like Linux HOWTOs. If you look into forums like Ubuntu Users forum or arch Linux, there is a ton of excellent support, and for companies there is also very good commercial support available (guess what Redhat Inc. makes 1.5 billion $ revenue in 2014 ?)

      The thing is, Linux support works *different* from the Windows world. If you use classic Linux, you need to browse the web or actually *read* documentation (shocking, isn't it?). Actually, the Linux way works so great that Microsoft is trying to copy it - mostly unsuccessfully, to say.

      > But you do get that “I’m special” feeling for not using the mainstream stuff :)

      Linux was something for nerds and hackers ten or fifteen years ago. It is now making significant dents into the mainstream, specifically young users or people who simply do not want too much hassle. And in case of Android, Linux IS already mainstream.

      Apart from that, your expression "> But you do get that “I’m special” feeling for not using the mainstream stuff " sounds a bit like an ad hominem attack - sounds like you do not have more arguments but resort to personal attack. Could you clarify that?

      And one thing I want to mention, too: As a long-term Linux user, I have seen lots and lots of FUD regarding Linux. And not all was honest. What I see consistently in the last time are blogposts and forum comments where people claim that they have tried Linux, or have been long-term Linux users, and could not work well with it. And then, they usually cite concerns which were a hassle years ago, but are simply non-existent for modern Linux distros. And this smells like FUD for me. Actually, this looks like an orchestrated online campaign. There are clearly people for which Linux is not good to go at the moment, there are certainly issues which make it occasionally complex to use, but "browsing the web" or "driver issues" is certainly not a typical concern.

    • Jo
      June 19, 2014 at 9:36 pm


      > The rapid rate the Linux Kernel changes is another problem as it often breaks things. So support is often limited to which Kernel, as well as which distro, you’re using…

      This is clearly FUD. And I wouldn't be surprised if you are paid for that. What a shame.

    • Kyle
      January 24, 2015 at 8:07 am

      You idiots who actually use the acronym "FUD" don't deserve to have your comments read. "Oh, oh! I heard this great thing that I'm going to repeat it's a really obvious concept but it got appropriated for Statistics 101 students and it's called 'FUD' you should read up on it sometime Foucault once denounced the structure of language as an oppressive term so FUD makes me feel a lot better"

    • Kyle
      January 24, 2015 at 8:08 am

      Nevermind I don't care. Keep rockin' it, Jo.