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Running Linux on the home computer

Posted by Chance on May 30, 2011

So, I’ve been running Linux Mint 10 on my home computer.  I’ve been pretty happy with it.  Other than games, Linux will do about 95% of the stuff a Windows machine will do, and it does it much better in my opinion.

My wife and I actually do not use the PC too much any more, with most of our computer tasks being performed on her iPhone or my Android phone.  So we pretty much use our PC as a photo repository, for my blogging, and for our occasional word processing.  Linux cannot run Word, but it can run LibreOffice (formerly OpenOffice), and of course, there is always Google Docs.

I haven’t gone completely to Linux for a long period of time due to the lack of an internet accountability program like Covenant Eyes, which operates on Windows.  There is an open source program for Linux, however, called Net Responsibility.  It doesn’t have the advanced reporting capability of Covenant Eyes, but it still provides the essential component of internet monitoring and log emails.

The primary motivation of moving from Windows to Linux is that a computer running Linux is as fast today as it was 2 years ago.  Windows computers deal with an ever-bloating registry and they simply slow down over time.   Also, newer Windows versions have higher demand on hardware.  I have a new version of Linux Mint that I’m running on a Dell Optiplex GX270 – a five year old computer that I bought from eBay for about $85.  I couldn’t do that with Windows 7.

But everyone has different needs.  For PC gamers a Linux box simply wouldn’t be suitable.  I’m not one.  And for those who still need Windows to do a few things, they may want to consider a dual boot or holding onto an old Windows computer.  I have an old Dell laptop from which I run Windows.  Basically I use it to sideload library eBooks to our Nook and if we need to update the OS on the iPhone.

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4 Responses to “Running Linux on the home computer”

  1. Neil said

    I don’t use Linux, but I’m glad it is out there. I remember being at Compaq in the late 90’s and hating having to deal with Microsoft. I hoped that something like Linux would come along, and it did! Too bad I didn’t invest in it early. . .

  2. Chance said

    I’m hoping that Google will take what they’ve done for the smart phone (the Linux based Android) and take it to the desktop arena. I think the problem with Linux taking off is that they actually need to commercialise it a little more and focus on making a business out of it. Some people have, but more so in the server area. Google is doing so to some extent with their Chrome OS, but it is focusing on cloud computing, and I don’t know if the average user is ready to jump to that yet (I could be wrong though).

  3. Neil said

    Agreed. I’m just glad to see some real competition between MS, Google, Apple, etc. Monopolies are a drag!

  4. […] mentioned in an earlier post how I decided to run Linux as my home OS. However, I recently switched […]

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