If Macintosh + Windows, Then why Linux?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Pika, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #1
    If you have both OS then give me a good reason why use a Linux distribution?

    I am asking this because all of the applications found on Linux are also compatible with Windows and Macintosh and i see no reason to use Linux other then using it as a server.

    What's the point of having Linux anyways?
     
  2. barkmonster macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

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    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #2
    cost! Linux is freely available and isn't a "for Profit" product.

    Apple and Microsoft will only "Sell" you their OS

    People want to save as much money as possible when they're building servers, render farms etc... so hundreds of licensed copies of windows or hundreds of Apple Xserves might be above their budget.

    Also, it's good to have competition. A lot of people say to me, why do I bother using a Mac when I could just get a PC and those people will NEVER understand that I like to have a choice in what I use. The whole concept of having a choice is why Linux even exists. That and the fact it's a variant of UNIX which is the oldest and most reliable O/S available. OS X is based on UNIX.
     
  3. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    Mar 26, 2008
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    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #3
    Linux is also great for business use - suppose you need 50 computers and want to save money? 50 computers with either osx or Windows will cost more than 50 computers running just linux.
     
  4. Lycidas macrumors newbie

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    Germany
    #4
    I have used Linux for several years at home and are still using it at work.

    GNU/Linux is freely available, highly adaptable and most distributions include a more or less painless way of installing a huge selection of (also freely available) software, especially for software development.
    There is a reason Apple chose to ship bash, gcc etc. with OS X.

    On the other hand, the added choice and adaptability Linux offers has its drawbacks.

    Since I got my MacBook I have pretty much ceased to use my PC except for the occasional Windows gaming. I found that OS X combined the level of power I was used from Linux with an accessible and *consistent* GUI.
    At the moment, I have Linux in a VM on my MacBook.

    I used to be a strong advocate for free software (in the GPL sense, not in the $$$ sense), but I have since come to see the benefits of proprietary software as well. I think both concepts should coexist to further innovation and progress.

    Coming back to your question: You are right in that with Mac OS X and Windows, you have pretty much all your bases covered. Trying out other OSes can't hurt though. Maybe you discover things that you can do with your computer you weren't aware of before!

    Oh and... my first post on MR, so yeah!
     
  5. areusche macrumors regular

    areusche

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    #5
    I love linux. I fondly remember that one summer I learned how to comfortably work in a console.

    I haven't been watching the distros lately. I started on Fedora and worked my way over to Gentoo. Gentoo was a lot of fun getting up and running especially on my best of a machine. I think I remember the excitement of it actually booting up correctly at 4 am :)
     
  6. macffooky macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 13, 2004
    Location:
    The 51st State
    #6
    Both my Intel Macs triple-boot OS X, XP and Ubuntu. If our new Dell Mini 9 had a big enough SSD it would as well but it'll be OS X only once I get a big enough USB drive for the install.

    I like to keep a Linux install running for a number of reasons; not least because it's fun (in a geeky kind of way) and has led to a better understanding and more frequent use of the underlying system in OS X. It's also something of a contingency measure for me. I'm not terribly impressed with the way Apple hardware is heading both in hardware decisions and (UK) price.

    I'd hate to have to use Windows as a primary OS...not for quasi-religious reasons but because I just don't like the way it works. If the worse comes to the worse, Ubuntu has developed enough in the two years I've been running it that I think I could use it primarily by the time that might become necessary for me.
     
  7. lordthistle macrumors 6502

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    Feb 29, 2008
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    Italy
    #7
    Strange. Linux is not Unix. Mac OS is not based on Unix, it's Unix, a variant but Unix. An OS is either is Unix or is not. An OS based on another OS does not have any sense: it would be an application (which some consider to be a reasonable definition of the MacOS essence, even if I do not think it's correct).

    Going back on theme: if there are FIATs and FORDs, what's the point of a Ferrari? That's the question.

    Do you think MacOS represents a real choice for everyone? Have you ever thought how much more you need to spend for using MacOS?

    MacOS represents a luxury good: it's not a choice for a lot of people. Thank gods there are Microsoft and the various Linux. Thanks to all the MacOS alternatives, even people with a very low budget can use the computer and browse the internet.

    thistle
     
  8. jjprusk macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    #8
    Uhmmm - barkmonster is correct. There is only one real Unix and it was developed at AT&T. The important of Unix was to write an operating system in a coherent language (C), have a consistent API, and set of commands. The folks Berkeley didn't want to pay AT&T a royalty, so they essentially reverse engineered Unix and produced BSD, which had the same APIs, command line interface, written in C, etc. but was royalty-free (and source code was available). Unix (and later Posix) has evolved into a set of specifications, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single_UNIX_Specification, for implementing an operating system that can be called Unix. Mac OSX is based on Darwin, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darwin_(operating_system), which uses code and ideas from a variety of Unix operating systems, such as BSD, Mach, etc.

    I believe what barkmonster means by "Unix variant" is Unix-like, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix-like, which include Unix, OSX, Linux, BSD, etc. All of these are operating systems, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operating_system, and not applications. However, the line gets blurred with virtual machine technology, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_machine, where you could argue that an operating system running as a VM is actually an application in the strict sense.

    I would recommend that lordthistle do a little research...
     
  9. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

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    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #9
    Excellent applications which are all open source. So I can modify them and add my own tools and routines to them! Easy-peazy! That's the biggest combo-reason for me anyway!
     
  10. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #10
    Unix is just a name now. Mac OS X is not a Unix-like OS, it is Unix. Officially it has the right to call itself as it complies with all the Unix standards.

    BSD and Linux are Unix-like operating systems because they have not passed the tests and as such can not call themselves Unix. That is why the Unix-like terms was invented, to get around the licensing issues while still describing the OS.

    Saying that there is only one true Unix is ridiculous is this day and age. Unix has been around the 70's, it is more a philosophy of software than an actual OS now. Just a collection of standards that a system must adhere too in order to call itself Unix.
     
  11. lordthistle macrumors 6502

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    Feb 29, 2008
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    Italy
    #11
    ... and the pigs fly.

    Yeah, I will do it, don't know why but I promise.

    Meanwhile, become aware there's Knowledge also in places whose name doesn't start with the string "wiki". Sometimes things called books can give more valuable and precise information.

    - thistle
     
  12. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Britain
    #12
    If you had read further down on that link, you would see that Leopard passed the single Unix spec, taking it from a Unix like OS, to a Unix OS. Mac OS X is Unix, full stop.

    As Cromulent points out, Unix is just a name and a set of specs for developers to adhere to.

    Linux, and other systems are Unix like, either because they don't have the man power or money to make their OS follow the Unix spec, or because they think they can do better than what is set out by the Unix spec, or because they don't need all of what is defined in the Unix spec.
     
  13. lostngone macrumors demi-god

    lostngone

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    Anchorage
    #13
    A better question is, if you have Mac OS X why do you need windows???

    Mac OS X is unix so it does almost everything you need when it comes to Linux.
     
  14. jjprusk macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    #14
    If Macintosh + Windows, Then why Linux? Reply to Thread

    The problem is that OS X only runs [legally] on Apple hardware, which is only a small percentage of shipping hardware (ie, computers of various kinds). If Apple released OS X to run outside of Apple, then it would be a viable candidate for general desktop use. Until then its really Linux distributions, the leader being, Ubuntu, that appear to be leading the way. Windows is obviously still by far the largest player but only because of their proprietary lockins such as .net WinAPI, and DirectX - the kernel is irrelevant. Each of the lockins is SLOWLY being replaced with open and/or standards-based approaches (Mono, OpenGL, etc.) M$ built their business model using the 1980's IBM business model (ie, leverage the heck out of a monopoly), riding the PC platform that became ubiquitous. They were extremely successful in the 1990's and early 2000's using this model, but has become obvious to most that their model is outdated. My guess is that in the 2010's the Windows kernel will be basically gone (along with Office, etc.) and M$ will derive revenues through consulting and patent royalties.
     
  15. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #15
    Mac OS X has a larger market share than all the Linux distributions combined (except in the server arena).
     
  16. Denarius macrumors 6502a

    Denarius

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    #16
    I don't think Linux will ever take hold as a mainstream system (outside servers of course) unless they consolidate their efforts into one distro and focus on maximising hardware compatibility, which is an area where Linux is somewhat less than 100% in my view. Those very issues were why I gave up in the end as I was spending more time tweaking things than I was getting work done.
     
  17. belvdr macrumors 603

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    Aug 15, 2005
    #17
    The distributions have very few differences in hardware support, aside from the ports to rare systems. The hardware drivers are loaded into the kernel as modules, which is shared among the distributions.
     
  18. dimme macrumors 65816

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    SF, CA
    #18
    If Linux would run Adobe CS applications I would use it. I need to run Photoshop & Illustrator. So OS X is the best for that.
     
  19. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #19
    ...and in the sciences. Basically, if you need something non-proprietary, functional, and reliable you go with Linux.

    Agreed. Linux at the moment is somewhat non-user friendly to the average person. Although this trend towards closed hardware (Apple and the iPod, for example) won't last.
     
  20. Matek macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    #20
    Well, you can think the Apple way - OS X is only made to run on a small portion of hardware available out there. Some hardware companies support Linux a great deal, so if you put your box together with that in mind, you can have everything up and running wonderfully out of the box.
     
  21. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020

    Tex-Twil

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    May 28, 2008
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    Europe
    #21
    I have OSX + Windows in Boot Camp and I also have Linux in a vmware because there are some things you can not do with OSX or windows ;)

    Tex
     
  22. VPrime macrumors 68000

    VPrime

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    Dec 19, 2008
    Location:
    London Ontario
    #22
    kisMac :apple::D
     
  23. Tex-Twil macrumors 68020

    Tex-Twil

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    May 28, 2008
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    Europe
    #23
    This won't allow me to put my card in monitor mode and do packet injection ... if I'm not wrong.

    T.
     
  24. macrem macrumors 65816

    macrem

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    #24
    IMO OS X + Macports (or Fink) covers all your Mac and Linux needs, so there is no real need to run both unless maybe you have and extra PC laying around and want to install Linux to put it to full use rather than cripple it with Windows. That's what I do: OS X and Linux (Ubuntu) household with no microcrap.
     
  25. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

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    Japan
    #25
    Whoa, dewd... Are you like, a spy or something?
     

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