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rishi_singh
September 26th, 2011, 06:48 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?


That was very long. Thanks for reading patiently.

malspa
September 26th, 2011, 06:55 PM
I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

"Better" in what way?

Seems to me that just about any distro would be good for learning Linux; it's just that with some distros you really have to learn more about Linux faster just to be able to use them.

I don't think there are any reliable statistics on market share for various distros. Murky waters; there's no way to really tell what people are using.

haqking
September 26th, 2011, 06:55 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

It is not trying to challenge it, one is free and one isnt, its personal choice what you use, people stay with they are familiar with.

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

none, it is not windows. or make it look that way if you wish with various themes

(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

Redhat is targeted at corporate servers, if you want a desktop go for fedora which is redhats spin off. And if price means better than does that mean windows is better than Linux ? price does not mean anything other than someone is making money, besides you are paying for licencing and a red fedora logo with redhat, you can get the same with CentOS without paying for the hat ;-)

(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

no idea, im sure google has some

(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

The Ubuntu forums is full of them, take a look around.

(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?

there is no better, only different and what you get on with.

That was very long. Thanks for reading patiently.


All my opinions of course, i am sure others will argue the point or provide there own.

peace

polardude1983
September 26th, 2011, 06:56 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

1. Driver/device support. If it could support any driver/device like windows. I think it could do it.

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

]2. I believe there is PClinuxOS, but then I feel any linux distro with the right theme could look like Windows. www.gnome-look.org

(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

3. I don't know

(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

4. www.distrowatch.com should be the answer

(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

5. There are a few stories on here of parents and what-not loving it.

(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?

6. There are some guides, then there are also some flame wars. There are some videos also done on youtube by the osgui show. But he might be more opiniated then one might like. But that's ok for me.

That was very long. Thanks for reading patiently.

Hope this helps

malspa
September 26th, 2011, 06:59 PM
www.distrowatch.com should be the answer

No. Distrowatch counts page hit rankings only.

Linuxratty
September 26th, 2011, 07:06 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

Because Microsoft dominates the market and they play dirty.

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

Any with KDE as the desktop environment. as far as looks.
I like Mint,the 'buntus, Mepis and there are others I plan to try.
I've never found one that's difficult to use. The only difficult one I can think of off the top of my head would be Slackware,which takes some work on your part. I stay with distros that just work myself.

(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ?

Fedora would be fine.

I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such.

Most distros offer driver support. That's something you don't have to pay for. Run some distros live and see how they work with your stuff.


I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

Just cause it has a price does not make it better. You can buy support for Ubuntu as well if you want it.

(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

I've never looked. I just select what I like,install it, and I'm good to go.

(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

Plenty...Most of the people on most Linux forums are users..I'm a user.I left Microsoft about six years ago and I'm quite happy with that decision.

(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?

Sure:

http://www.whylinuxisbetter.net/

That was very long. Thanks for reading patiently.

Sure thing.

rishi_singh
September 26th, 2011, 07:13 PM
"Better" in what way?

Seems to me that just about any distro would be good for learning Linux; it's just that with some distros you really have to learn more about Linux faster just to be able to use them.

I don't think there are any reliable statistics on market share for various distros. Murky waters; there's no way to really tell what people are using.

Better -> i guess that if they demand a price, they will try to make drivers for me and help me to get my system running. After that, i can figure out things myself by trial-n-error, books and forums.

3Miro
September 26th, 2011, 07:16 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

It is a combination of bad marketing, MS monopoly preserving policies, the community can be a pain to work with and corporations don't care to get in with Linux much.

Just like Google got Linux and made huge success out of Android, someone else can do this with Linux on the desktop. Nobody sees enough money in challenging MS to a fight.



(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

Ubuntu is generally the easiest to use. Maybe Mint and PCLinuxOS can claim that title. In terms of general Windows like look and feel, look for something with KDE. (I don't know about ease of use, some of us find Windows rather hard to use)



(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

I disagree with your mentality that paying for something necessarily makes it better. Software can be distributed at such a low cost that paying isn't really an issue.

Red Hat is mostly designed for corporate use. It will have older and more stable software and the biggest part of the price is the Red Hat support. If you want to pay, you can purchase Ubuntu support from Canonical, that is a phone number that you can call and yell at people when things don't work.

For a student trying to learn, I would suggest starting with Ubuntu, then quickly moving to Fedora and then Arch and Gentoo.



(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

It is practically impossible to come up with accurate statistics on this. The Server and Supercomputer market may have semi-accurate starts, but the Desktop is impossible to figure out.



(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

Off the top of my head, some governments around the world (like the French) have adopted Linux exclusively. I think the Russian and Chinese are working on this as well.



(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?

There are two main points. One the is the Unix vs NT design. While Linux is not Unix, Linux uses the same underlying Unix design (the design is the main strength of Unix).

The second point is the philosophy of giving users freedom vs corporate restricting the user in order to increase profit. Look up GNU project, Free as in Freedom and Free Software Foundation.

prodigy_
September 26th, 2011, 07:55 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?
Linux is a mainstream OS. Very much so if you take servers and mobile devices into account. On the other hand there are many exotic and proof of concept OSes you probably have never even heard of.

To challenge Windows in desktop market Linux would need to gain an obvious advantage in some area that is directly tied to user experience. It has none. To challenge Windows in corporate market Linux need to offer lower maintenance costs. As of now maintenance costs are actually higher. (Windows/AD can be handled by a bunch of trained monkeys but with a Linux-based network you need competent people in your IT department.) OEMs also prefer to pre-install Windows because they get it a very low price while it still adds perceived value to their PCs and laptops.


(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

None. You can use a Windows-like theme but Linux will never feel like Windows. The perceived ease of use depends heavily on your tasks but Ubuntu is probably one of the most user-friendly distros overall.


(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

When you buy RHEL, you pay for their customer support not for the software. If you don't need support, various RHEL clones are available for free. Take a look at Scientific Linux (http://www.scientificlinux.org/) for example.


(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

Define "huge". This forum has 1.5 million registered accounts.


(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?

Linux isn't better than Windows and the opposite is also true. If you need a webserver and consider Windows/IIS then you're either a Microsoft employee or a Microsoft fanboy working for a rich company. But if you need a multimedia or gaming PC, Linux is a poor choice.

---

All in all you ask a lot of vague questions. Looks like a homework, I'd say.

t0p
September 26th, 2011, 08:47 PM
Linux is not Unix.

I know Linux is named after progenitor Linus Torvalds; but I find it amusing that it's (almost) a recursive acronym - Linux Is Not UniX. We need a revisionist historian to make it so.

wolfen69
September 26th, 2011, 09:29 PM
Better -> i guess that if they demand a price, they will try to make drivers for me and help me to get my system running. After that, i can figure out things myself by trial-n-error, books and forums.

Redhat doesn't support more hardware than ubuntu. Paying for Redhat just means that you have the right to call them up and bitch if something doesn't work. ;)

rishi_singh
September 26th, 2011, 09:52 PM
All in all you ask a lot of vague questions. Looks like a homework, I'd say.

I was afraid that someone would say that. Its not home work. As regards the "huge" i was looking for reports like "xyz big corporation/office with 1000-2000 systems decides to use linux"....followed by another report "3-4 years later, xyz is still using linux and not looking back. It helped them to reduce abc costs while maintaining productivity".

bobbob94
September 26th, 2011, 10:14 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Linux_adopters

There's a fair few large scale deployments of desktop linux in education and government it seems, probably less in business settings. Of course this is just talking about desktop linux, in the server market linux is already very much a mainstream operating system...

3Miro
September 26th, 2011, 11:30 PM
Redhat doesn't support more hardware than ubuntu. Paying for Redhat just means that you have the right to call them up and bitch if something doesn't work. ;)

Great point. If anything, Redhat uses a little bit older kernel and the latest hardware may not be supported yet. Overall the hardware support in for one Linux distribution is about the same as all the others.

SeijiSensei
September 27th, 2011, 12:30 AM
Great point. If anything, Redhat uses a little bit older kernel and the latest hardware may not be supported yet. Overall the hardware support in for one Linux distribution is about the same as all the others.

RedHat writes drivers for some arcane hardware like the RAID cards used in Dell servers. I don't know how many of these drivers are adopted by other distros.

@OP
I'd give CentOS (http://www.centos.org/) a try if you're interested in RH-flavored distros. As mentioned before, Scientific Linux is another good choice.

rishi_singh
September 27th, 2011, 01:19 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Linux_adopters

There's a fair few large scale deployments of desktop linux in education and government it seems, probably less in business settings. Of course this is just talking about desktop linux, in the server market linux is already very much a mainstream operating system...

Thanks. That is one of the things I was looking for.

3Miro
September 27th, 2011, 02:46 AM
RedHat writes drivers for some arcane hardware like the RAID cards used in Dell servers. I don't know how many of these drivers are adopted by other distros.


Red Hat probably makes more Linux drivers than any other distro/company/community. The thing is that they probably just submit those to the main Linux development branch. I wouldn't expect Red hat to keep drivers private or proprietary and once the drivers are part of the main branch, they should be adopted by everyone.

Maybe I am wrong.

Linuxratty
September 27th, 2011, 01:15 PM
Linux is also the backbone for making cga movies like Avatar,Shrek,etc.
It's also used for programs like Watson on Jeopardy. And Linux is in more devices than you can shake a stick at,like phones,Tivo,etc.
Also you might want to check out the new Raspberry Pi.

Copper Bezel
September 27th, 2011, 02:42 PM
A couple of people have mentioned Mint in reference to #2, but put more explicitly, Mint is actually marketed as a "migration" distro, intended specifically to be as approachable as possible for Windows users. But yeah, if #3 is the important one, Fedora is the obvious choice. It's tied to Redhat (the entity as well as RHEL) and they're closely tied to development both in the kernel and in the Gnome environment, so it's the bleeding edge of vanilla.

prodigy_, I dig the answer to #1. That's a lot more concise and a lot more objective than most folks would make it and needs to be repeated more often. = )


I know Linux is named after progenitor Linus Torvalds; but I find it amusing that it's (almost) a recursive acronym - Linux Is Not UniX. We need a revisionist historian to make it so.

I was just thinking this the other day. We need to make this rehappen.

haqking
September 27th, 2011, 02:48 PM
A couple of people have mentioned Mint in reference to #2, but put more explicitly, Mint is actually marketed as a "migration" distro, intended specifically to be as approachable as possible for Windows users. But yeah, if #3 is the important one, Fedora is the obvious choice. It's tied to Redhat (the entity, not RHEL) and they're closely tied to development both in the kernel and in the Gnome environment, so it's the bleeding edge of vanilla.

prodigy, I dig the answer to #1. That's a lot more concise and a lot more objective than most folks would make it. = )



I was just thinking this the other day. We need to make this rehappen.

it is often seen as Linux Is Not UniX

http://acronyms.thefreedictionary.com/LINUX

Dangertux
September 27th, 2011, 03:56 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?Mainstream in what sense? Linux is quite mainstream in the corporate world, and in terms of enterprise see here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_adoption) for more questions on that. If you mean mainstream for desktop users there are a lot of reasons. Lack of unified standards when it comes to fonts, and printing are a big one. A lot of proprietary developers don't jump on board, because they are afraid that what is today's big distro might not be tomorrow's. Thus the crowd of Windows users who don't want to try new things won't have their favorite video game or Adobe photoshop in Linux , so they don't switch.



(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?
None - besides the obvious trademark issues that exist with making that happen Linux is not Windows it is Linux. It is an entirely different operating system. Ease of use is relative to your skill level and willingness to learn new things.



(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.
Fedora -- All you are paying for with Red Hat is a trademarked logo and technical support. Canonical also offers paid support contracts if you're interested in going that route.



(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?
I would say that they are probably not reliable, for one , accountability measures for who is using what distro are not really in place. Obviously, when you buy a Windows license Microsoft knows they sold a product, thus they can say 3 million people bought Windows 7 this quarter, this is not in place in the Linux community. However, I'm sure a simple google search would give you at least a pretty good picture of what is popular.



(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?
What is "huge"? If you are looking for noticeable and quantifiable numbers I would suggest you look around this forum, most of these people are not computer scientists I would wager. I would also wager that if you met them any place but here you probably wouldn't think they are nerds, just average people.



(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?
Any such guide would be written from a very ignorant perspective. It is not about which is "better". "better" is an incredibly vague and subjective term. I feel that Linux is better than Windows, I feel this way because it accomplishes the things I need and want to do with little effort. It also natively supports all of the applications I need, and is more relevant in my field of work. Now, if you just want to play video games your outlook may not be the same. Right tool for the right job, if Linux doesn't do what you want, it's not going to be better for you. Trying to change solely because something is "better" because someone said so, is stupid.



Hope that helps.

rishi_singh
September 27th, 2011, 04:53 PM
[QUOTE=Dangertux;11290132........ here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_adoption).....
Hope that helps.[/QUOTE]

Yes, it is helpful. Thanks !

praveenthivari
September 27th, 2011, 05:26 PM
Before I answer OP's question let me make myself clear that I am not a developer/ Engineering student. Am just casual user who loved the linux philosophy.


(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ? Because it doesn't have a strong backing of companies which can showcase linux to common people and developers just like microsoft showcases it's win8, apple it's ios and google it's android. Canonical does it to some extent but still it requires a LOT of money to be poured into advertising it initially so that it can get DEVELOPER & consumer traction. I feel Linux community failed to get that mass traction. The spread and use of linux operating systems (desktops ) is mainly because of viral spread among friends who recommend it to their friends. So it's very slow publicity.

The linux desktop landscape can change the day any big corporation comes out and advertizes and gives a sense that it will take care of os. Just see how android got traction among developers and users.

Another point is that though linux has strong corporate backup, the application which are to be run on this do not have that strong backup. That is the reason a new user who may use the application starts to find applications which are alien to him.

Although I am strongly support linux, watever I said above is just a my perspective of wat a average friend of mine would feel.


(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ? As has been said above NONE of the linux distroes feel like windows.
FEEL wise KDE does look like win7 (if u just saw it on screenshot or pictures) but but but ....... it's way too different than wat it may appear from screen shot of desktop.


(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.U can take any linux. All have the same base. But if u want to know how a OS links everything and runs, I recommend ARCH linux. I used it and definitely learned a lot about OS. U just need to try to install arch. that's enough to make u wonder at beauty of linux. (By the way it's not difficult to install to install :-) )


(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?
No point in seeing statistics. It's the way u believe. If believe it good for u then even if it's 1% market share u'll use it.
No reliable statistics are available because it is supplied by many companies and in many ways. Since microsoft is single company looking after whole of windows it's easier for it give a statistics. :p


(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ? I am one of those NON COMPUTER SCIENTISTS. Though may not represent large number u r asking for:D:D:D



(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other?A lot on web. Google it and u find many.

www.omgubuntu.co.uk/ (http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/) ----- popular ubuntu blog
www.webupd8 (http://www.%3Cb%3Ewebupd8%3C/b%3E).org/ -------- another popular ubuntu blog
http://www.tuxfiles.org ------ for linux basics
wiki.archlinux.org -------may help u understand various aspects of arch linux

Hope it helps you in having best time with linux OS:D:D

ninjaaron
September 27th, 2011, 06:46 PM
Better -> i guess that if they demand a price, they will try to make drivers for me and help me to get my system running. After that, i can figure out things myself by trial-n-error, books and forums.

All kernel devs, including many from Red Hat, are already making drivers for you regardless of which distro you use. Changing distros will not make this happen more quickly. If your hardware is not supported in the current kernel, then that's all there is to it. Better luck in several months.

rishi_singh
September 28th, 2011, 06:32 AM
All kernel devs, including many from Red Hat, are already making drivers for you regardless of which distro you use. Changing distros will not make this happen more quickly. If your hardware is not supported in the current kernel, then that's all there is to it. Better luck in several months.

:( what about that ndis wrapper thing. Will it ALWAYS work for cases where there is no driver available ?

wolfen69
September 28th, 2011, 06:48 AM
If your hardware is not supported in the current kernel, then that's all there is to it. Better luck in several months.

Bingo! That's why I build my computers with equipment 6 month to a year old. It's usually well supported by then, and fast as heck.

wolfen69
September 28th, 2011, 06:54 AM
:( what about that ndis wrapper thing. Will it ALWAYS work for cases where there is no driver available ?

The best thing to do is buy linux, just like you did with windows.(or mac) If you're willing. ;)

Copper Bezel
September 28th, 2011, 07:08 AM
Meh. Not enough models available. I don't want to choose my machine based on who's partnering with whom. System76 machines aren't exactly the prettiest on the market.


what about that ndis wrapper thing. Will it ALWAYS work for cases where there is no driver available ?

In my experience, no. However, it's usually worth a shot, and when it works, the results are tolerable. = )

wolfen69
September 28th, 2011, 07:33 AM
Meh. Not enough models available. I don't want to choose my machine based on who's partnering with whom. System76 machines aren't exactly the prettiest on the market.


Then be prepared for a life of "security". We should know by now that we are all VERY different.

vehemoth
September 28th, 2011, 08:26 AM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

I think that other questions have been answered reasonably well so I'll just throw my 2 cents in for these two.
!) Ask yourself how did you come to hear about linux, linux has been around for a long time and has been very user friendly for quite a few years. It's not that linux isn't capable to take over the desktop market, it's just going to take a bit longer as the consumer has to want to put the effort in to learn another operating system.
From my experience they have to get annoyed by their current one first, I know very few people that switched from mac to windows, or windows to mac until they found a problem with there current set up.

2) I'm not a fan of the look of windows, if you like it then there are distros out there that look similar but I'd recommend trying ubuntu first because it looks nice and is easy to learn on, after that you could move onto something else or just keep using ubuntu, it's really up to you and what you want.
As for the ease of use, it's all a matter of opinion. I find windows to be clumsy whenever I try to use and have done since the days that I used to dual boot. I have non-geek friends who found ubuntu before I met them and they also get slightly annoyed with windows whenever they have to use it for work.

If you're not using linux for the philosophy standpoint then that's okay just try to treat it the same as when you were learning windows or mac, because it's not likely to be any harder and at the end of the day no matter what you use, you'll feel like you've accomplished something and have new skills.

rishi_singh
September 28th, 2011, 08:41 AM
Thanks for all your valuable inputs ! I guess i can put this thread to rest now.

3rdalbum
September 28th, 2011, 11:19 AM
(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

You want to pay hundreds of dollars for Red Hat Linux, but you don't want to pay $10 for an out-of-the-box compatible wifi device? Funny priorities there.

And FYI, just because you pay for Red Hat does NOT mean that they'll write a driver for you. They will tell you to buy a wifi device that's on their official compatibility list.

Red Hat makes enterprise Linux distributions. Enterprise is codeword for "obsolete" - the latest Red Hat Enterprise Linux will be using old software.


(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

About 50% of computer users in India. The other 50% of computer users in India are using pirated Windows.

haqking
September 28th, 2011, 11:49 AM
Enterprise is codeword for "obsolete"

About 50% of computer users in India. The other 50% of computer users in India are using pirated Windows.

Quality, great T-shirt slogans right there ;-)

kaldor
September 28th, 2011, 05:44 PM
(1) Why is any linux unable to become a mainstream os ? Why cant it challenge windows seriously ?

(2) Which is the distro which is similar to windows in terms of look, feel and ease of use ?

(3) Which version of red hat linux would be good for a student trying to learn linux ? I am willing to pay for only the os, provided that i get support for drivers and such. No extra help for using the os is needed. I guess that red hat would be better than ubuntu because it has a price.

(4) Any reliable statistics to show the market share of each popular distro and the rise/fall in share over the past few years ?

(5) Any solid examples where non-computer scientists and non-nerds have adopted and continue to use linux in huge numbers and are satisfied ?

(6) Any introductory/basic guides which explain the differences between windows and linux and why one is better than the other ?


That was very long. Thanks for reading patiently.

Note that the following is entirely my opinion.

1) The development of desktop Linux is in such a way that it makes things difficult for hardware manafacturers to keep up. It's fast-paced and often drivers break between kernel updates. However, on (at least web) servers and embedded devices, Linux is by far ahead of Windows.

2) There are lots, but in many cases just reskinned versions of Ubuntu, Fedora, etc. This makes them redundant and useless. If you want Windows, use Windows; Linux will never take that place.

3) Since Red Hat Enterprise Linux is expensive (due to support) I strongly recommend Scientific Linux. It's a free clone of RHEL and works exactly the same. Fedora is another good choice because it releases fast (every ~6 months) and will eventually be forked into RHEL. This allows you to see the upcoming RHEL features without needing to stick to Scientific Linux or RHEL. CentOS is another alternative to RHEL, but due to personal experiences I question the competence of CentOS as a team and MUCH prefer SL.

4) It's too hit and miss, but check Distrowatch.

5) Huge numbers? All the people who use Android Phones and similar devices. But this isn't the same as desktop Linux.

6) It depends entirely on what you need your computer for. What may be perfect for me might be useless for you.


Have fun, and never worry about asking questions; that's what the community is here for. :)

rishi_singh
September 28th, 2011, 05:54 PM
You want to pay hundreds of dollars for Red Hat Linux, but you don't want to pay $10 for an out-of-the-box compatible wifi device? Funny priorities there.


Only upto $50 for life time upgrades, drivers and such. No support needed. I guess that option is available. I already have too many usb devices (hdd, mouse, etc) with me and i hate so many things sticking out. I want to keep one port free.



About 50% of computer users in India. The other 50% of computer users in India are using pirated Windows.
50% ??? I'd say a lot more. Not to mention all the MS office users - that must be 90%.