Make 2013 the year you switch to Linux

Now that Windows 8 is here, there's no better time to embrace a more free, open, and desktop-friendly alternative.

By Katherine Noyes, PC World |  Operating Systems, Linux

For many PC users, the prospect of switching away from Mac or Windows and onto Linux can be a nerve-wracking one.

After all, Linux holds only a minority share of the desktop market, and not all of us know people who are already using it. The idea of making the switch can often feel like taking a blind leap into the unknown.

On the other hand, those of us on Windows are now facing the prospect of Windows 8, which by most accounts is not a happy one. Will it be more painful to jump into Modern UI, with all its attendant quirks and learning curve, or to move to a Linux distribution  and at least have a choice of desktop interfaces and experiences?

I'd like to make the case for the latter.

Linux today has at least caught up with Windows for most purposes; in many areas, it's actually overtaken it. And now, with the transition required by Windows 8, it can be a whole lot less painful getting used to a Linux distribution that's at least based on conventions you're used to.

Need more convincing? Here are five reasons why I think there's never been a better time to switch to Linux.

1. Windows 8

For years Windows users have been able to coast along contentedly in a familiar paradigm, but with Windows 8 that's all changed. A mobile-style interface without a Start button is now the reality facing Windows users who upgrade, and it's not necessarily an easy transition. Linux--and especially Ubuntu--now offers what may well be a more comfortable alternative.

2. Flavors for every taste


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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