When people see my OS, they always ask the question "What version of Windows is that?" I answer that I use Linux and most of them look at me as if I had spoken a word in some sort of an alien language. Then, afer I tell them what Linux is and what it can do, most of them give me a funny look, that funny look, as if I were delusional.
I understand that people feel comfortable with Windows, despite the fact that this OS has a talent for hiding or corrupting files, failing to rescue documents, getting all sorts of infections, and "upgrading" to mostly cosmetic features instead of significant ones. After all, under Windows, you can bloat the computer with third-party software to patch holes or obtain the benefits that an OS should give you...or, at least, to try to get very close to that.
However, without third-party solutions, Linux can rescue your files, even when Windows gives up on you. Read this. In addition, Linux has a price that is difficult to beat , and its learning curve has been grossly exaggerated.
I created this questionnaire (based on my experience with Windows) to ask back to those people who think that Linux was not a good idea for me. Maybe, this is going to explain my choice more clearly to them.
A Questionnaire for Windows Users--from an ex Windows user
1. When was the last time that Windows succeeded at rescuing your files?
2. Was the need to rescue files derived from a virus infection, a hacker intrusion, or a normal crash of your OS?
3. Do you truly think that your OS crashes should be considered "normal"?
4. What OS were you using last time you got a virus in your computer?
5. If your antivirus detects a virus but can't remove it...do you know how to remove the threat manually?
6. If you do... Is that an easy process that you can repeat in exactly the same way for all viruses?
7. How long does it take to remove a virus (in average) using your AV software?
8. And without it?
9. Are you happy when you add up the cost of the OS, the office suite, and additional security software?
10. Do you pay for all that?
11. If you pay for your OS, do you do it because you are entirely satisfied with the product, because you are a loyal costumer, or because you have no choice?
12. If you did not pay for your OS, are you a proud pirate?
13. Would you like to get a legal suit from an economically-powerful software company?
14. What would you do if you got one from the company that makes your OS?
15. If you pirate not to pay for software...don't you think that using only free software makes more sense?
16. When was the last time you had to pay for your hard disk to be formatted and your OS to be reinstalled?
17. Do you feel satisfied calling formatting and reinstalling "regular maintenance operations"?
18. If you install your OS yourself...how long does the process take?
19. Did you include the time for the office suite and all the programs that you like in your answer for #18?
20. Do you have any guarantee that the next version of the OS you use will support your printer, scanner, and other hardware?
21. How about the files you made with the office suite you paid for? Will those be supported, or are you going to be expected to buy a new office suite?
22. If you consider carefully your answers for #20 and #21, do you think that the company that makes your OS really cares for your needs as a costumer?
23. If you understand that the company wants to make a profit at your expenses and it overlooks your needs, why do you support it with your money and why are you even willing to pay others to solve the problems that the company's products create?
24. If your answer was "because there is no choice", you know there are other choices. If fact, you are seeing one. Why are you brushing off the question?
25. How much more are you willing to take in the name of your OS? Let me rephrase that, "What does it take for you to try other choices?
I asked myself all those questions a year ago and that explains why I am using Linux today. Of course, I had to learn to operate this new OS and I made mistakes. However, in all this time, I haven't had anything that resembles--even remotely-- all the problems I had with Redmond's OSs. Nothing justifies all the money and time I wasted with Windows in 11 years.
One thing is sure: when my Linux computer finally stops working, at least I will know that my OS did everything possible to keep it alive. Windows, on the other hand, just tells you that your computer is not "good enough" to run the OS. But I learned that, for Microsoft, no currently available computer is good enough to run the latest version of Windows anyway. Mark my words: your nice computer running 7 today will be "obsolete" by the time Microsoft releases Windows 8. However, we know that, although some of the hardware might have become "older", what is actually obsolete for the Redmond software company is their OS, not the computer itself. And they have no regrets about spending any amount of money to fool you into believing that your hardware is to be blamed!