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Linux vs Windows – Which Server to Pick?

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http://linux.bihlman.com – Linux Vs Windows – Which One to Pick? By Roberto Sedycias Choosing the appropriate operating system is based on the server`s function. Linux is powerful and has a versatile operating system while Windows is well-known for its easy to use operating system and versatility. Deciding the right server was certainly a trial as a decade ago, Microsoft`s Windows NT and Novell`s NetWare4 were prominently in use, but today NetWare has totally disappeared and the Linux version is found to be a good choice. Both Windows and Linux come in server and desktop editions. Maintenance and security are one of the significant areas to comprehend the actual differences between the operating systems. Linux are commonly referred to as distributions, also known as `distros`, and are released around the same time frame using the same kernel version (operating system). Linux needs careful consideration of hardware drivers as the hardware newly released should be appropriate and this includes the motherboard as well. Linux installation should be done by people who have proper knowledge to run the operating system and its applications. Linux is stable and more secure than Windows. On the other hand, Windows offers easy installation and runs even in default modes, besides it includes a series of drivers regardless of the hardware type and has the extensive variety of software. However it suffers with frequent security problems demanding critical patches involving rebooting. Moreover it is expensive right from the purchase price to the applications, besides ongoing maintenance is a must to keep it updated and stable. The comparison of Linux vs. Window includes other considerations such as the price, specialized options and support. Linux has server oriented versions available with vendors and some are offered with 24/7 paid support. There are less expensive distribution versions obtainable at Mepis, Centos and Xandros and others, which are offered at a very low cost to get started, while Debian, Slackware, Mint, Mandriva, Fedora of Red Hat and Ubuntu are all free versions. On the other side Microsoft Windows server is regular with 32 and 64 bit versions with specialized options such that it is ideal for small as well as medium sized businesses. However, the biggest hit is that Windows is buoyed up by a multi billion dollar company and is compatible with the majority of software, besides it is very easy in using and understanding that even an average user can make the best of it. Windows pricing varies dramatically based on the numbers purchased and on the yearly maintenance agreement or the licensing plan. The significant difference in Linux version does not speak about the software quality or the drivers` availability, but the support offered. Depending upon the Linux distribution package, the user may get a quick and 24/7 paid support, and this should well suit any corporate environment. Purchasing the operating system and hardware together ensures the support for installed hardware, else it may be required researching to ensure the motherboard, network adapter, chipset and others are supported by the Linux version. The other non-Linux options include OpenSolaris and many variants of Berkley Software Distribution. Roberto Sedycias works as IT consultant for Polomercantil (General)