Windows vs. Linux: A Beginner’s Lesson

Windows vs Linux

Though numerous operating systems (OS) are in the market today, Windows and Linux are well-known names with a popularity that shows no signs of waning. Linux and Windows supremacy battles also continue in the computer world to this day, and oftentimes, no one wins. These operating systems are completely different, and their benefits are often subjective. If you want to decide which one to opt for without getting too much into the technical nuances, you’ve found the right article. 

1. Costs

Linux is free, and Windows is not, but that is not the whole picture. Depending on whether you’re getting it for personal or office use, the costs can vary. For example, you’ll have to hire IT professionals and set up the required infrastructure. Linux requires an advanced skill set to read and fix, so Linux professionals can be more expensive,  though the transparency of the code means you get definite returns on your investment.

2. Versions and Ease of Use  

Linux is an open-source software free of cost, whereas you will have to buy a license to use Windows. Windows has had nine major versions since its release, and it comes installed on many computers beforehand. Many users are more familiar with it, giving it an advantage over Linux.  

When Linux was released, it was complicated to use. However, now more than 300 distributions (distros) of it are being actively maintained, with many focusing on ease of use. Installing and using this OS has been made easier over time, and ease of use is no longer a barrier for users.  

3. Compatibility with Apps and Games

A variety of applications are developed specifically for Windows, though many have free, open-source alternatives for Linux available on the internet. The edge Windows has on the gaming side is undeniable: games are majorly designed for Windows, to begin with. There isn’t much speech-to-text software available on Linux either, whereas Windows has Cortana to do things for you. 

4. Speed

Windows faces a lot of criticism for how it starts to lag after a while. While this may not always be the case, Linux is faster and more efficient, even when using multiple applications. Many distros in Linux can enhance the speed further by relieving it of some UI features. 

5. Security

When discussing security, you have to keep in mind that Windows was made for commercial use, targeting everyday consumers. Knowing what’s going on behind the interface isn’t an easy task. This can let bugs, or hacking activities, go by undetected. The Windows OS does not come with as many variations as Linux, and neither is the code in public eyes, so knowledgeable hackers and spammers can take their time to learn the central software and mess with it. Microsoft releases its updates periodically to fix bugs and security issues. 

Linux is extremely advantageous in how transparent it is. As its design focuses on server usage, the security bar is high, to begin with. The visibility in code allows the detection of issues and even enables the modification of features. Given that it's open-source, people regularly scan the distro releases for flaws because it's open-source. Not only is Linux more secure, but maintaining its security and fixing its issues is unproblematic. Additionally, unlike Windows, user data is not collected on Linux, so privacy is better maintained. 

6. Support

Microsoft offers a central support platform for its users, so getting help is simple. Linux takes another approach by fostering an open-source community. Numerous forums, websites, and threads let users engage in discussing all types of concerns, and this peer culture is highly collaborative.  


Both these operating systems come with their distinct set of advantages and hold an edge over the other in alternating areas. Microsoft wins in how it has made Windows around accessibility and user-friendliness and that multiple popular applications are compatible with it, whereas Linux is optimal for those looking for speed, security, customizability, and privacy. Windows is popular for regular, everyday use, gaming, and in offices. On the other hand, Linux is popular among programmers and tech giants like Facebook, Google, and Oracle, though nothing is barring users from using it for regular tasks anymore. If you’re more into the Linux world, you need to check out how we ported Linux on M1.


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