Someone at Linus Media Group, decided to start an argument over on Twitter by asking -
Congrats guys. The bloodshed in the comments was predictable.
I thought I'd take this post to go through the three operating systems and offer my opinions on why I like/hate them.
I'll get MacOS out of the way first.
I put my money where my mouth was and got a Macbook Air a few years back. I had already had a company iPhone and hated it. To cut a long story short, the white background hurt my eyes after too much use with text... as it was primarily for works e-mails. I used it for some pictures and as my laptop was Linux at the time, I couldn't get the phone to talk with the laptop. I tried to get bluetooth working and went through a shop load of free bluetooth apps, but none of them worked... as it looked like the phone didn't have any native bluetooth file transfer on board. I also wanted to find my way out of an unfamiliar steam rally, but the phone didn't have a GPS navigation system on board. And that was the second iPhone as the first was faulty out of the box... the phone wouldn't ring. No audio. Speaker dead. - These things were available to me out of the box with Android, but I left even Android for Sailfish in 2012/13 when I became one of the first backers to Jolla. I've been using Sailfish ever since. Ok, so the phone doesn't game well, but hey ho. It's backed by the Russians and Chinese (they called it Aurora) so I expect Sailfish to grow into a respectable competitor as the years continue to roll on.
iOS didn't allow me the fine control I was used to. I did a vblog on the built in camera and tried to compress it for upload, but it didn't give me options for fine control of the compression; just some overall generic options, so I couldn't fine choose a bitrate. I also wanted to install some software that required compiling, and the Air took about half an hour, with the processor running full pelt and eventually I gave up looking at the progress on the command line, before finally giving up on iOS and loading Linux Mint on the thing.
Windows I use for work. Linux Mint and OpenIndiana I use at home.
I started with DOS, so I've had experience of Windows from the start. It got to the stage where a rebuild of Windows XP would take all day. It wasn't only installing the operating system itself, but all the applications. Licence codes had to be found, then patches, drivers... removing all the user data and then putting it all back on at the end of it. The applications would also need to be reconfigured as the settings had gone.
At home I had a Netware server with ZEN installed, so I had put some effort into packaging my software. Build the OS, install the Netware client, log on and things would come down automatically with the appropriate registry keys and configuration files... and the "deny priority" active directory never did measure up to the superb operation of Novel Directory Services... however Novell eventually went to the wall and it was back to struggling with Windows manually.
I also had a number of friends who were having their systems toasted with updates. They were utterly fed up to the point that when I suggested teaching them Linux, they didn't exactly want to leave the familiarity of Windows, but they took me at my word and I converted their systems to Linux Mint and spent a day teaching them how to use the GUI. I used my Linux knowledge to configure the systems so that the pain was taken out for them.
They now love Linux as it's stable for them. They're not power users by any stretch of the imagination.
It took them a while to learn things like The Gimp rather than Photoshop, but Libre Office and Firefox were no brainers. Also, with the preset folders for Videos, Music, Documents, Downloads, etc. it was easy for them. I also have a NAS set up for some of them, so that the Linux script auto-maps a share and they've got redundant storage available without having to mess around, and if they want to check the health, they just need to glance at the LED's to know all is well.
Yesterday I heard from another friend who had ordered himself a nice PC. It's coming to me to put Linux Mint on it, as he's had enough of Windows... and like me, he's a little bit of a gamer as well. He also cited hating the push to cloud services and subscription licenses as well as the telemetry. This is something I'm hearing more of, and I'm installing Libre Office for people on Windows now.
Software costs are something that featured also. Windows of that era didn't come with CD/DVD writing software and there were other small things like this, that you had to pay for... and in some cases keep paying if you lost the e-mail with the license code in a hard disk crash, with no backup.
For me... I configure things with a server at home, so there's redundancy but also sharing. My pictures, movies and files are available to all machines. Things are only on the local machines for processing. Once done, they're put to the server where I have everything sorted in folders. The PC's themselves have smaller SSD's on board and the important ones RSYNC themselves to the server twice a week... so if the SSD dies, I've got a backup of the whole, "home" directory.
As they've got SSD's, I install good amounts of RAM so that I don't have to use a swap file. I give a 20gig partition for \ (maybe 25 for some Linux variants) and the rest is given to \home ... so that if I have to rebuild the OS, I don't have to trash the home directory and all my files. I can just erase the \ partition and reinstall. Even change distro if I want.
I have an sh file which runs an apt-get install to go grab all my programs for me, so I can reinstall the OS and bring it up to date in less than an hour, and install all the apps in about another hour. Much of that is unattended. The configuration files in the home directory already contain my configurations.
Where Linux drags me down is drivers and manufacturer. These days graphics drivers are much easier than they used to be, and the effort put into games by Steam is superb. I still have UT 2004 which came with a Linux installer out of the box... sadly it doesn't play any more because of the change of audio driver ALSA/PULSE and while I could mess around... I don't really want to. RGB lighting doesn't work readily, if my Ducky keyboard flakes out on me, I've got to use a Windows system to re-flash the firmware, the configuration software for my Logitech G402 is also Windows only, just as my AverMedia Portable recorder. One of my friends bought a printer, but I had to wait for him to come back from France before I could install the Canon driver for him. It was too messy over the phone in his poor internet area.
Linux has, for a good number of years now, been much better than Windows for stability and free software that just makes things happen. I have bought licenses for some software on Linux as well as supported games. Yes, Steam is full of games that just won't run on Linux, but I'm happy enough with what I've got. I also support Mint on Patreon... and Mint sometimes use the funds on there to support other developers further upstream. Yes... that means that I'd have paid more in a year, than I'd have paid for a Windows pro licence.... roughly. And there is a fair chunk of indie games on Linux as well... no Wine or VirtualBox required. That's my kind of game.
Windows has the larger compatibility base for software and drivers, but the hassle with licenses, activation, upgrading and losing a day to reinstall a borked system... I just use it at work where we have things like SCCM to automate the build process.
OpenIndiana/Solaris/Unix... well, that's another story.