Why and how you should switch to Linux – Popular Science

What are the benefits?

For a start, Linux is free and open source, which means you can add it to a computer or laptop you already own—or a machine you’ve built yourself—without paying anything. The system also comes with similarly-available software, including a web browser, media player, image editor and office suite, so you won’t need to fork out extra cash just to work on photos or documents. And of course, you get all future updates for free too.

Linux also offers stronger malware protection than its competitors, strong enough that you won’t need to run an antivirus program. Developers built it, from the ground up, with security in mind: For example, the OS only works with trusted software. Plus, very few malware programs target the system—for hackers, it’s just not worth the effort. Linux isn’t invulnerable, but the average home user sticking to approved apps doesn’t need to worry about security.

This operating system also requires fewer hardware resources than the more data-heavy Windows or macOS. Distros have fewer components than their more famous cousins, and developers have specifically written some, such Puppy Linux and Linux Lite, to be as lightweight as possible. That makes Linux a particularly good choice for those who own older computers. If your ancient laptop is wheezing under the strain of a corporate operating system, try installing Linux on top, and the machine should speed up. You don’t have to ditch your old OS if you don’t want to though, as we’ll explain in the next section.

Although you may take a little time to adjust to your new operating system, before long, you should find the Linux interface easy to use. So people of all ages and levels of technical know-how can come to grips with the software. And the online Linux community offers plenty of help and support. Speaking of the community, downloading Linux also supports the open-source software movement: developers who work together to make better programs, without chasing a profit, for users across the globe.

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