To follow on from a recent Linux article, here are some attractive advantages of the Linux operating system. While we don't say Linux is for everyone, there are some powerful strengths to Linux. If these reasons are important to you, you'll be more likely to like what you see in Linux.
1. Security. Linux's number-one strength! While Windows systems are under such constant attack that you don't dare run them without anti-virus software, there are very few possible malware cases for Linux and no known instances of Linux viruses "in the wild". Linux is actually compliant with the Department of Defense's security rating system and is used both in the U.S. military and on Wall Street.
2. Economy. Linux is free, the software that runs on it is free, the drivers are free. You can download everything online for the price of your Internet connection. If you have a CD burner, you can even make CD copies for free.
3. Globalization. Linux has better international standards support. A Linux distro exists for the native spoken language of every medium-to-large country in the world. Linux is easy to configure for different keyboard layouts and language preferences, and is native to Unicode. You can even support multiple languages for each user on the same machine.
4. Stability. A bold claim, but Linux never crashes. Ever. An application running on Linux, such as Firefox, might freeze up, but the Linux operating system behind it will stay stable so that you can force-quit the offending application and not have to reboot.
5. Support. Since Linux is non-commercial and open source, anyone can work on it. This means that you will never have to worry about a vendor cutting you off from supporting your old version in order to force you to buy the upgrade. You will still be able to run the same software 100 years from now, provided you know how to patch it.
6. Efficiency. You don't have to upgrade your computer hardware when you get a new Linux system. Linux supports more hardware than any other operating system in history, with legacy support going all the way back to the mainframes of the 1960's. Whatever computer you have in front of you, some version of Linux can run on it. Linux itself is also very fast, and a lightweight desktop system can run very snappy, even on a 286 PC.
7. Freedom. The whole point of Linux is to give the user rights, exactly like the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. This means that there is no such thing as a "licensed copy" of Linux. You own it already! The General Public License makes Linux the public domain property of every person on Earth, to do with as they please. The only restriction is that you cannot deprive someone else of those same rights.
8. Flexibility. The choices in desktop range from the popular KDE and Gnome systems to lightweight structures like Fluxbox and Enlightenment. Linux also makes the world's best server, with no desktop even being required to run it. It has a robust command line environment, allowing you to even browse the web and process graphics from the command line. Beyond that, Linux has become the popular choice in embedded devices such as cell phones, PDAs, routers, and GPS systems.