There are a lot of advantages to using Linux instead of Windows or macOS, as Linux enthusiasts are keen to point out. However, no operating system is faultless, and many people have switched to Linux only to return shortly thereafter. But wait, there’s a catch.
I’ve been using Linux as my primary operating system for well over a year now. No matter how much I try to convert people to Linux, I can’t say that it’s always easy or even always a good idea.
Even the most devoted Linux users are frustrated by several shortcomings that make the operating system a non-starter for them.
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Initial Setup & Installation
Making the move to Linux requires you to install it alongside or instead of your PC’s existing operating system unless you buy one with Linux pre-installed.
This isn’t the easiest operation if you’re not used to managing partitions and creating user accounts. A few more steps may be required to set up a certain gear if it gives you trouble during installation.
Having said that, it’s not impossible. To attract as many users as possible, software developers automate and simplify the installation process as much as feasible.
In less than an hour, with the help of an excellent Linux installation tutorial, you can have your new open-source desktop up and running.
If you’re still unsure or have problems, having a geeky buddy at your side will come in very handy. The installation and setup process should be straightforward for someone with computer skills, and a kind geek could even handle it for you.
A scarcity of Linux-specific software and games
Once you’ve successfully installed and configured Linux, you may be disappointed by the programme choices available for Linux. All of your standards, necessary programmes will be available, such as a web browser, file browser, notepad and calculator.
However, there are few or no Linux variants of Microsoft Office and Adobe suites, which are more specialised (although Office alternatives and Photoshop substitutes abound). Native support for popular games is often a source of frustration for gamers.
Why? It’s not as though Linux is incapable of running these programmes. In reality, several tests demonstrate that Linux is superior to Windows in terms of performance.
The minuscule market share of Linux desktop users is also to blame since there is little need for software developers to create a Linux version of their programme.
There are a few solutions available if you want to use those programmes on Linux. You can run the Windows version of a programme using a compatibility layer like Wine or Proton, or you can utilise the web app version (if available) in your browser.
These tools allow you to run software on platforms it wasn’t designed to operate on. New releases may take some time to receive support from these tools since perfect functioning cannot be guaranteed.
There’s also the option of running Windows or macOS in a virtual machine on Linux. Virtualization may be quite demanding on your PC, so this isn’t a great option. You’ll also likely see poor performance from the programme.
As a result, many business customers who are dependent on OS-specific programmes choose Windows or macOS over the other options.
There is only limited support for Linux native applications
Despite this, it’s fairly unusual for developers to emphasise Windows and Mac compatibility even while creating Linux adaptations of their products.
The Linux version of an app might not acquire the latest and greatest features right away, and issues that are unique to the Linux platform may be overlooked for a longer time.
This issue is well illustrated by Spotify. A notice reads: “Spotify is now available on Linux” when you access its website for downloading.
We built Spotify for Linux because our engineers wanted to use it on their Linux development computers while working in the field. Their efforts are unpaid, and we do not actively promote them at the moment. Other Spotify Desktop clients, such as Windows and Mac, may have a different experience.
Most Linux features that lag are specialised or experimental, and as a result, only power users will use (or even be aware of) them. Any Linux programme, including Spotify’s, that is advertised as native by the manufacturer is a sure guarantee that it will perform as advertised.
There isn’t any assistance from the manufacturer
But who do you call if anything goes wrong with your Linux computer? Technical help for some Linux distributions is only available to paying enterprise customers. You may seek assistance from more experienced users of the community by joining a forum or chat group for any popular distribution (and sometimes the developers themselves).
As a result, you won’t have to contact a technical support number and be on hold. However, not everyone in the community is kind and helpful to newcomers.
Another option is to make excellent use of that search engine. Since Linux users have been discussing their problems online for years, you’re likely to discover someone else who had the same problem and had it resolved. The “thrill of the chase” that comes with finding solutions in this manner excites some Linux users; however, you may not.
Even while a local expert may help, they may not be enthusiastic about working on a Linux machine. Some people are frustrated by the absence of professional help and decide to stop using Linux.
Is it a mistake to go from Windows to Linux?
Some readers will skim the article’s headlines and conclude that switching to Linux was a mistake. Whether or whether you make the transition is completely up to you.
Do you extensively rely on non-official Linux versions of Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Word, or Avid Pro Tools? Do you frequently require the assistance of tech support lines or shops to resolve issues with your PC? If you said yes, it’s safe to assume Linux won’t be your primary operating system.
However, this does not rule out using Linux in the future. Because of its adaptability, you may use it regularly without worrying about running into issues. For starters, Linux can coexist peacefully with Windows. If you’ve got an old laptop lying around, Linux will take better care of it.
As a backup PC, a kid’s first computer, or a multi-purpose headless server, it’s perfect for any situation. You may also experiment with Linux tools under WSL, which is an excellent way to benefit from Linux without making a major change to your desktop environment.