If you need to upgrade your current operating system (say Windows XP or earlier) to something more up to date (say Windows 7 or Windows 8), but you don’t have the money to buy a new computer complete with “the works,” or new software and whatever other hardware upgrades you would need to run this new operating system, then consider switching to one of the following free operating systems. These systems are all Linux based, but they are, for the most part, compatible with most of the work you could get done in Windows.
It does take some time to get used to, but this is all that you’ll pay for an operating system that is more efficient, I think, faster, and customizable than Windows. Moreover, the office suites in these operating systems are free, as are almost all the software you can download for them.
I just thought I’d share these, seeing as the Lord has graciously provided for me in this way. Paying hundreds of dollars for software is simply not something I can do, nor can many others, so I am thankful for the open-source software community. Anyway, I hope these help you save money and better serve our Lord and His people.
1. Ubuntu: Ubuntu is a very user-friendly alternative to Windows. Installation and set up are painless, and downloading applications is as easy as visiting the software center and searching for what you need and, well, downloading it.
Here’s a blurb from their website:
Fast, free and incredibly easy to use, the Ubuntu operating system powers millions of desktop PCs, laptops and servers around the world. Ubuntu will work with your existing PC files, printers, cameras, music players and smartphones – and it comes with thousands of free apps.
What is an operating system?
An operating system is what makes your computer work, running all your programs and managing your hardware. Other examples include Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X.
How does it compare to my system?
With Ubuntu, you can do all the things you can do with other operating systems. But with Ubuntu you can do them faster, more securely and, of course, for free.
How can it be free?
Ubuntu is free and it always will be. That’s because it’s the work of open-source software experts from all over the world – people who believe software should be free.
2. Kubuntu: Kubuntu, as is probably evident from its name, is a variation on Ubuntu. Kubuntu has many aesthetic advantages over Ubuntu, however, that are on par with (if not better than) certain popular aesthetic features of Windows Vista, Windows 7 & Windows 8 (e.g. transparency effects, desktop widgets, taskbar window previews, etc). Kubuntu also has a software center where you can get free apps.
From their website:
Kubuntu is an operating system built by a worldwide team of expert developers. It contains all the applications you need: a web browser, an office suite, media apps, an instant messaging client and many more.
Kubuntu is an open-source alternative to Windows and Office.
3. JoliCloud: This operating system is best, I think, for netbooks as it aspires to provide a mostly cloud-based computing experience. Jolicloud is fast and reliable and downloading native software and cloud-based apps is very simple. Here is a blurb from their website:
Jolicloud was created in 2009 with the vision of combining the infinite power of the cloud with the most simple and elegant user interface. The journey started with Joli OS, a free operating system transforming the way people are using low cost computers. Today, Jolicloud is the most innovative platform to access our life online, from computers to mobile.
Founded by Tariq Krim and Romain Huet, Jolicloud is headquarted in Paris, France.
There are many more operating systems I could mention, but these are the three that I’ve had some experience with and which I think are really simple to adjust to for individuals switching over to Linux from Windows.
If you want to check out the vast variety of other Linux based operating systems, check out: