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View Full Version : Linux Vs Windows XP at Rancho Gaz?


Gaz
04-02-2005, 09:04 AM
Is Linux intrinsically more secure than Windows XP or is it just a case of the vast majority of hacker ‘holes targeting Microsoft products?

I am willing to try a LiveCD audition of Linux to see what applications I would have to replace. The Knoppix distribution looks like a good fit for my level of competence and cheapness. I see no major downside to a test-run [except for the sinking feeling in my nether regions when I contemplate altering the BIOS settings to boot from CD], but am I really going to be more stable and secure under Linux?

Let me state that I do not hate Microsoft, so a personal dislike for Gates or his company is a non-issue. I just want a stable, user-friendly and ‘hole-proof OS.

xoxo~
Gaz
Barely computer-literate.

morphius
04-02-2005, 09:18 AM
If you want to make it secure you need to make sure not to install a bunch of the software. Normally the default install installs a bunch of these things. As a short list, don't install apache server, you shouldn't need to run a DNS server or a sendmail server either. Don't allow remote commands, rcp rsh/remsh type of commands. Don't run smtp. I can think of some more, but that is a good start.

Basically, just don't install anything you don't think you need.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 09:24 AM
Is it natively more secure or do hacker ‘holes just hate MS more?

xoxo~
Gaz
Has a specific goal in mind.

Otter
04-02-2005, 09:59 AM
I run SuSie Linux on one computer and XP Pro on the other so I may have some insight to offer your question.

How do you use your computer? Or maybe, what do you use your computer for is a better way of phrasing.

It's tough to find drivers for some hardware and software in Linux. That IMHO is the biggest factor when deciding between the two OS.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 10:08 AM
Word-processing [Microsoft Office].
Music [download, rip, burn and synch with my iRiver player].
Surfing [Firefox].
Checkbook balancing [Quicken].
Mail [Outlook].

I do not watch or edit video. I do not play any resource-hungry games [I like FreeCell, Mrs. Gaz likes Tetris]. Do not network, nor am I at all interested in the guts of my OS.

xoxo~
Gaz
User-lite.

morphius
04-02-2005, 10:47 AM
It depends on your definition of natively. It is more secure then windows, but you just have to know what you are installing because some software creates holes. If that makes any sense?

I guess one way to look at it, if you don't install outlook, then a virus written for outlook isn't going to effect you. Well, if you don't install some of the things I mentioned, then it will make it harder to break in. The thing that has to be remembered, if a hacker really wants to get on your machine, they most likely well.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 11:12 AM
Well, if I wanted perfect security, I would just disconnect the cable modem. I realize that the act of accessing the internet exposes me to risk. I am just looking to minimize the risk in a way that does not impede my limited ability to use the computer.

My computer is a tool for doing stuff. I am not interested in the tool itself. I read a lot of folks who are into the idea of open source software. I could not care less.

I am used to Windows, so I would like something that operates in the same general manner. I am willing to learn a few new tricks as long as I do not have to be totally retrained. It looks like there are several Linux desktops that mimic the basic configuration of Windows, so that would not be a major problem. OpenOffice claims to be able to read MS Office files. I do not care what program fetches my email, as long as it fetches.

Once again, I have no animosity towards Microsoft. If Windows XP is the best axe for chopping my particular woodpile, then I will stick with it.

The driver here is the best security I can get without making computer operation a chore.

Currently, I have a subscription of McAfee for anti-virus protection. I run Ad-Aware, MS anti-spyware and Spybot several times a week.

xoxo~
Gaz
Wishing a fatal heart attack on every hacker out there.

unlurking
04-02-2005, 11:52 AM
Is Linux intrinsically more secure than Windows XP or is it just a case of the vast majority of hacker ‘holes targeting Microsoft products?

I am willing to try a LiveCD audition of Linux to see what applications I would have to replace. The Knoppix distribution looks like a good fit for my level of competence and cheapness. I see no major downside to a test-run [except for the sinking feeling in my nether regions when I contemplate altering the BIOS settings to boot from CD], but am I really going to be more stable and secure under Linux?

Let me state that I do not hate Microsoft, so a personal dislike for Gates or his company is a non-issue. I just want a stable, user-friendly and ‘hole-proof OS.

xoxo~
Gaz
Barely computer-literate.


Natively?

YES!

But only if you run "properly".

Windows can be made to be very secure, IF you "harden" the system, and are constantly "aware" of security (i.e. patches, virus updates, how you surf, attachments, etc.). Remember that for ANY OS you run.

The Linux kernel is more secure be default, due to the nature of permissions and memory allocations. Unfortunately, this has been "minimized" by the fact that MOST of the "newbie" distros turn everything on by default. As Morphius pointed out, why have every service in the world open? That's a typical Microsoft approach, and is the anti-thesis of what Linux is all about (IMHO).

As far as spybots and AV, I don't use them with Linux. At this present moment in time, there is no need.

If security is a primary goal, Linux beats Windows hands down (although any system is insecure if configured that way).

A while back, Microsoft launched a media blitz against Linux stating it wasn't any more secure. Here is an article debasing that theory. It is rather lengthy, but is very good for a high level review of the environment, without any deep technical explanations in the core differences that confuse most people.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/security/security_report_windows_vs_linux/#myth1

You can find MANY articles that go into a deeper technical discussion regarding the base kernel differences that lead towards *nix being a more secure platform.

As far as compatible products, you can continue using many of your Windows applications. I highly recommend CrossOver Office for a simple "plug-n-play" wine solution. Visio has been a required desktop application for me for many years, and was the one thing keeping me from completely moving to Linux. That ended about 5 years ago when I found CrossOver.

http://www.codeweavers.com/

I'll attach a pic, but must apologize for the size. If I scale it back much further you cannot see the installed Windows applicattions.

Anyways, I'm starting to ramble and will shut up now, if you have any more specific questions, just ask.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 12:19 PM
I have been surfing for Linux reviews most of the day [a quiet one at work]. It appears to me that the Knoppix LiveCD might be a good fit for Mrs. Gaz and I. I definitely want to take it on a test drive, rather than leaping in. I like the idea of running from the CD and not installing it on my hard drive.

Most of what I read says that Knoppix is newbie-friendly and the desktop looks Windowy enough that I think I can navigate with a minimum of confusion.

Is there a better LiveCD choice than Knoppix?

xoxo~
Gaz
Looking fearfully into the OS abyss.

unlurking
04-02-2005, 12:34 PM
I've only tested security specific LiveCDs like PHLAK and Whoppix, but my understanding is that Knoppix is the most popular standard LiveCD distro.

As mentioned earlier, here is a pic of Quicken. For compatibility questions regarding Windows applications and my favorite pre-configured wine emulator, go to http://www.codeweavers.com/compatibility/search/.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 12:39 PM
That looks like Quicken, all right.

Okay, the Knoppix LiveCD test drive is the current frontrunner.

Anyone have a better idea for dipping my toes into the Linux pond?

Thanks for your input, folks.

xoxo~
Gaz
A bit nervous about this whole thing.

KC Jones
04-02-2005, 12:59 PM
Recent tests indicated that XP with service pack 2 is every bit as secure as Linux or Mac OSX. So you can now get a secure windows install out of the box. However, it's easier to screw up windows and open it up in the future thanks to the rampant number of worms and bad software written out there. As a general rule, software should only run under administrative priveleges when it's a really important and well secured application. However windows programmers have long continued to write software to run as admin or with too many priveleges opening big security holes.

If you don't frequent porn sites, don't install and trust every bit of software that a website tells you to, you should be safe with windows XP SP2.

As for linux, knoppix is the most well known liveCD distro but there are others now too. I play around with installing linux on different partitions all the time. Right now I'm primarily something of a SUSE afficianado, and I think their YaST tool makes it really easy for newbies to install things that will work right out of the box and get security updates. Xandros is another good pay distro that's very business friendly and comes with "cross over office" (a windows emulator) to run windows applications. You should be able to install your MS apps and use them pretty easily if you like.

Good luck!

Gaz
04-02-2005, 01:08 PM
Please bear in mind that I am not looking for a permanent OS. I just want to check out Linux to see if we can play well together. I am definitely looking for a newbie distribution that looks like Windows when I boot it up. Since this is a test-drive, I am not particularly interested in buying an OS. I want to boot and run from the CD without installing it on my hard drive. A simple reboot to Windows XP gives me a warm fuzzy.

Is there a better newbie test-drive distribution than Knoppix?

xoxo~
Gaz
Realizes he might end up running back into Microsoft’s waiting arms.

unlurking
04-02-2005, 01:09 PM
Check out distrowatch.com.

At this link...

http://distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=major

...you can read reviews on most popular distros, and they rank them buy type (beginner, LiveCD, multimedia, etc.)

KC Jones
04-02-2005, 01:10 PM
Word-processing [Microsoft Office].
Music [download, rip, burn and synch with my iRiver player].
Surfing [Firefox].
Checkbook balancing [Quicken].
Mail [Outlook].

I do not watch or edit video. I do not play any resource-hungry games [I like FreeCell, Mrs. Gaz likes Tetris]. Do not network, nor am I at all interested in the guts of my OS.

xoxo~
Gaz
User-lite.


With some distros you can get windows apps to run on them. Also, their are free applications that are really pretty decent to replace some of the apps on your list.

Quicken would be the hardest to replace. There is something called gnuCash and they've come a long way with features and wizards to make it easily usable. It is a true double entry general ledger system which for accountants is the most common knock on Quicken.

As for ripping/burning - there are plenty of great applications out there. Getting them onto your MP3 player might be an issue if it uses some kind of proprietary transmission or format (probably not though). You can probably find something out there to do it and there seems to be great support for USB connected devices nowadays.

You can replace outlook easily enough with any of a number of email/pim applications for linux.

Open Office is free and will do everything you need in terms of MS Office including reading or creating MS Office docs. There can be some issues with layout from time to time. Every once in a while I get bad bullet lists or documents that should be 1 page going slightly over a page.

KC Jones
04-02-2005, 01:17 PM
Please bear in mind that I am not looking for a permanent OS. I just want to check out Linux to see if we can play well together. I am definitely looking for a newbie distribution that looks like Windows when I boot it up. Since this is a test-drive, I am not particularly interested in buying an OS. I want to boot and run from the CD without installing it on my hard drive. A simple reboot to Windows XP gives me a warm fuzzy.

Is there a better newbie test-drive distribution than Knoppix?

xoxo~
Gaz
Realizes he might end up running back into Microsoft’s waiting arms.



In that case check out this list: http://www.frozentech.com/content/livecd.php

I'd reccomend the Knoppix, Ubuntu, and Suse Live Eval downloads. MEPIS is another one I've heard good things about.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 01:20 PM
unlurking-

Distrowatch was one of the sites I blundered into whilst Googling for Linux LiveCD. Good information, although not really aimed at someone of my knowledge level [what is the level below “beginner,” anyway?]. They list Knoppix as the top liveCD distribution, but it does not even appear on under user-friendly list [a bit worrisome, that].

At least MEPIS makes both lists. Is that where I should be leaning?

xoxo~
Gaz
Thoroughly, and perhaps irreparably, confused.

Gaz
04-02-2005, 01:26 PM
Done for the day.

I will check back tomorrow to see what tidbits of knowledge you folks have left for me.

Thanks again.

xoxo~
Gaz
Just about overwhelmed with new tricks.

KC Jones
04-02-2005, 01:33 PM
unlurking-

Distrowatch was one of the sites I blundered into whilst Googling for Linux LiveCD. Good information, although not really aimed at someone of my knowledge level [what is the level below “beginner,” anyway?]. They list Knoppix as the top liveCD distribution, but it does not even appear on under user-friendly list [a bit worrisome, that].

At least MEPIS makes both lists. Is that where I should be leaning?

xoxo~
Gaz
Thoroughly, and perhaps irreparably, confused.


Don't worry about it. Download MEPIS, KNOPPIX, and Suse Live Eval and burn the CDs. Pop them in and try them out for a few hours each. They're running off the Cd not the hard drive so you can reboot back to windows whenever you want. If you hate them all then odds are you want Windows XP. It won't destroy your computer or delete any of you data. Yes, there are a lot of Linux distrobutions out there, but sticking with a big mainstream one like Suse, Debian (or Debian based like Knopix/MEPIS), RedHat, etc. you'll be part of a large user base and can get questions answered easily.

unlurking
04-02-2005, 01:55 PM
I've never tried MEPIS, but the good thing with a LiveCD is you can download and tryout both with very little effort. I'd recommend trying both, just to get a feel for some of the differences between distros.

To be honest, I don't consider myself a "guru" or anything, but I haven't played with an "easy" distro (like RH, Mandrake, SuSe, etc.) in years. I really couldn't make too many recommendations distro-wise. I became a SlackFanatic years ago, and haven't strayed except to play with a few security toolkit LiveCDs.

I like to have full control of my system and know how to customize it for my requirements. Distros that are "easy" I feel are detrimental to that as they coerce the user into using custom distro GUIs, which tell you nothing about what actually is happening.

One problem I had was with Mandrake many moons ago on a partners system. He was trying to install SAINT, but he was getting errors because of the custom version of perl that Mandrake includes. I told him to just download the latest "real" version and install. He did, and was able to install SAINT and run it with no problems. Unfortunately, all of the Mandrake GUI configuartion tools relied on the custom version of perl and would no longer work. Without a true understanding of the Linux platform, he wasn't able to perform basic system task, like changing an IP address or configure his mouse. He soon switched to Slack.

Anyway, I'm rambling again, but I guess what I'm trying to say is this...

Beginner distro means "most" everything works right out of the box and you shouldn't really have too many issues. Unfortunately, because it's a beginner distro, you will likely never learn much about the OS and when incredibally easy/minor issues come up, you'll have to ask for help.

Advanced distro means you will have to do more to get everything working the way you want, but in the process, you'll learn how to overcome any significant issues that arise with much more ease. With 6 months tinkering on an advanced distro, you could probably become a guru on a beginner distro.

One thing I would HIGHLY recommend if you do actually install a distro in the future. Create a separate partition and mount it as /home. This will allow you to keep your user profile settings, files, etc. 100% intact if you decide to reinstall. Think of it as being able to keep your "Documents & Settings" (I think that's what MS calls it now) intact whenever you reload Windows.

Oh yeah, in order to test MS applications under Linux using something like CrossOver Office, you will actually have to install a distro. You cannot install applications to a LiveCD. I know you have a concern for applications you can use under Linux, but CrossOver really does make it easy and will help.

God, I need to learn how to stop rambling!

unlurking
04-02-2005, 02:00 PM
Don't worry about it. Download MEPIS, KNOPPIX, and Suse Live Eval and burn the CDs. Pop them in and try them out for a few hours each. They're running off the Cd not the hard drive so you can reboot back to windows whenever you want. If you hate them all then odds are you want Windows XP. It won't destroy your computer or delete any of you data. Yes, there are a lot of Linux distrobutions out there, but sticking with a big mainstream one like Suse, Debian (or Debian based like Knopix/MEPIS), RedHat, etc. you'll be part of a large user base and can get questions answered easily.
Agreed.

Stick with a top 10 distro (if you decide to actually switch) and support online is pretty good.

And remember to try multiple WMs (Window Managers). KDE and Gnome are the 2 most popular and compatible. Of those 2, I prefer KDE, but I think that's just my aversion to RH. Try both of them, as they will probably be a bigger difference for you than any actual distro you choose.

unlurking
04-02-2005, 02:04 PM
Hey KCJ, I see you are a SuSE fan. Have you seen any improvements/problems since the Novell takeover? Any integrated Novell products?

I'm considering putting EFS and NetMail (man I wish Hula were further along) on a Slack box to test. I really like what Novell is trying to do on the Linux side. I'm just concerned about how much they "customize" their base Linux offering.

KC Jones
04-03-2005, 12:29 PM
Hey KCJ, I see you are a SuSE fan. Have you seen any improvements/problems since the Novell takeover? Any integrated Novell products?

I'm considering putting EFS and NetMail (man I wish Hula were further along) on a Slack box to test. I really like what Novell is trying to do on the Linux side. I'm just concerned about how much they "customize" their base Linux offering.

I haven't noticed any integrated Novell tools yet, but I don't have the enterprise server version which is where they are focusing that stuff. Active Directory is the killer server app where MS has Linux beat, and now that Novell is into OSS and Linux I expect great things from their enterprise distro. I think the biggest benefit Novell has brought to Suse is better QA and release management. 9.2 is outstanding especially when it comes to laptop support for things like ACPI.

I bail out of the safe stuff from YaST all the time to get more recent versions of stuff running. So far no major problems with breaking YaST or having it try to override my set up.

unlurking
04-03-2005, 04:45 PM
Good to here. I know SuSe and Mandrake for a time were releasing a lot of stuff that wasn't quite stable.

Simplex3
04-03-2005, 09:32 PM
That looks like Quicken, all right.

Okay, the Knoppix LiveCD test drive is the current frontrunner.

Anyone have a better idea for dipping my toes into the Linux pond?

Thanks for your input, folks.

xoxo~
Gaz
A bit nervous about this whole thing.

The MEPIS LiveCD may have more things you want installed out of the box.

http://www.mepis.org/

It has WINE (the Windows emulator) installed out of the box, the latest version of Firefox, OpenOffice, etc. If you decide you like it and that's the way to go it can be installed to the HDD with a nice point and click interface.

Simplex3
04-03-2005, 09:36 PM
Recent tests indicated that XP with service pack 2 is every bit as secure as Linux or Mac OSX. So you can now get a secure windows install out of the box. However, it's easier to screw up windows and open it up in the future thanks to the rampant number of worms and bad software written out there. As a general rule, software should only run under administrative priveleges when it's a really important and well secured application. However windows programmers have long continued to write software to run as admin or with too many priveleges opening big security holes.
As a long time Windows coder and 2-time MCSD (MS's coding cert) I can assure you that you have to go long and far to make your app secure and stable, and even then there is only so much you can do. The various *nix's on the other hand, are quite secure and frankly more stable.

If you don't frequent porn sites, don't install and trust every bit of software that a website tells you to, you should be safe with windows XP SP2.

As for linux, knoppix is the most well known liveCD distro but there are others now too. I play around with installing linux on different partitions all the time. Right now I'm primarily something of a SUSE afficianado, and I think their YaST tool makes it really easy for newbies to install things that will work right out of the box and get security updates. Xandros is another good pay distro that's very business friendly and comes with "cross over office" (a windows emulator) to run windows applications. You should be able to install your MS apps and use them pretty easily if you like.

Good luck!
I'm running Suse 9.2 Pro, also. They have decently up to date packages and good hardware support. I was running Mandrake (very happily I might add) until I needed to run some commercial Linux apps and they simply wouldn't go. Of course RH and Suse are typically the only two "supported" distros.

Simplex3
04-03-2005, 09:39 PM
Since this is a test-drive, I am not particularly interested in buying an OS.
Don't get fooled into buying a Linux distro. They have to provide the software for free, so you're really only paying for a box that you'll lose, a manual that is out of date, and a CD you could have burned yourself.

The "pay" distros MAY include some copywritten software such as RealPlayer, but it's nothing you can't get yourself for free with about 5 minutes of googling.

Simplex3
04-03-2005, 09:48 PM
Good to here. I know SuSe and Mandrake for a time were releasing a lot of stuff that wasn't quite stable.
I've run Mandrake 10.x and Suse 9.x on both test servers and my development workstations (one desktop, one laptop) and both were wonderful. It's true that Mandrake has a tendency to have "specialized" versions of some packages, I'm sure Suse does the same thing. I've been trying to test out Novell's Enterprise Linux Desktop product but couldn't ever get the damn ISO's to download. Of course it's a Gnome based distro and I'm not a huge Gnome fan (who the f**k though spacial desktops were a good thing for coders?).

As for servers I'm a FreeBSD fan. After chatting with one of the founders of nCircle and one of the coders he's working with in his new company, then testing it in our labs, I must say I'm sold. It also has one hell of a good community.

penguinz
04-04-2005, 08:51 AM
Don't get fooled into buying a Linux distro. They have to provide the software for free, so you're really only paying for a box that you'll lose, a manual that is out of date, and a CD you could have burned yourself.

The "pay" distros MAY include some copywritten software such as RealPlayer, but it's nothing you can't get yourself for free with about 5 minutes of googling.You are paying for their support when you buy it.

Saulbadguy
04-04-2005, 08:59 AM
I'm running Novell Linux Desktop on one of my PC's at work. We are going to be running the enterprise server here in a few months.

Simplex3
04-04-2005, 09:23 AM
You are paying for their support when you buy it.
I've always gotten better support from the user community than the mfg.

Simplex3
04-04-2005, 09:24 AM
I'm running Novell Linux Desktop on one of my PC's at work. We are going to be running the enterprise server here in a few months.
So how has your NLD experience been? Is there anything "magical" about it?

Saulbadguy
04-04-2005, 09:34 AM
So how has your NLD experience been? Is there anything "magical" about it?
I don't think so..then again, I don't know how to work it. I'm a Linux noob. I hate installing things via the bash prompt..just let me double click it, damnit.

ConsoleOne runs very fast...much faster than on my Windows machine, which has twice the memory the Linux machine does. But, it doesn't have Groupwise extensions. Piece of shit. Thats Novell for you...release the product, and then release the management tool 6 months later.

Simplex3
04-04-2005, 09:48 AM
I don't think so..then again, I don't know how to work it. I'm a Linux noob. I hate installing things via the bash prompt..just let me double click it, damnit.

ConsoleOne runs very fast...much faster than on my Windows machine, which has twice the memory the Linux machine does. But, it doesn't have Groupwise extensions. Piece of shit. Thats Novell for you...release the product, and then release the management tool 6 months later.
I know there was a point and click software management tool in NLD, you should jack around with it for a while.

My move from Windows (MCSE, MSCD) to Linux was tough at first but now you couldn't get me to go back. The benefits far outweigh any issues you have with lack of commercial software. Just stick with it, you'll be shocked at how little Windows can do over *nix and how many things you can do on *nix with ease that Windows can't even dream of.

Gaz
04-04-2005, 12:58 PM
I downloaded and burned the SimplyMEPIS ISO yesterday. I popped in the LiveCD and MEPIS loaded just as advertised. I poked around a bit, did not have time to do much exploring. It looked similar to Windows, which was encouraging. And Windows XP came back up when I rebooted, quieting that tiny voice screaming in the back of my head.

No disasters during the first load.

Thanks to everyone who helped me out.

xoxo~
Gaz
Still shaking.

The Rick
04-04-2005, 03:04 PM
I think I saw someone mention Ubuntu which is a good one to check out. It's one of the latest "darlings" of the Linux industry. It's completely free and they have live CD distros for you to check out.

Ubuntu comes standard with Gnome. There is a version called Kubuntu if you are a fan of KDE. I just downloaded the live CD of Kubuntu and was very impressed.

I'd highly recommend that you check out Ubuntu/Kubuntu.

Ubuntu - http://www.ubuntulinux.com/
Kubuntu - http://www.kubuntu.org/

Screenshots of Ubuntu can be found here:

http://shots.osdir.com/slideshows/slideshow.php?release=235&slide=1&title=ubuntu+linux+5.04+array-4+live+cd+screenshots

Screenshots of Kubuntu can be found here:

http://shots.osdir.com/slideshows/slideshow.php?release=286&slide=1

BigRedChief
04-04-2005, 08:57 PM
Linux for the desktop is no more secure than Windows. And why deal with all the compatibility issues associated with Linux?

Simplex3
04-04-2005, 09:38 PM
Linux for the desktop is no more secure than Windows. And why deal with all the compatibility issues associated with Linux?
ROFL

BigRedChief
04-04-2005, 09:46 PM
ROFL

I'm glad someone got it.:thumb:

Simplex3
04-04-2005, 09:52 PM
I'm glad someone got it.:thumb:
I figured anyone smart enough to spell "Chief" correctly had to be joking...

Gaz
04-05-2005, 07:29 AM
I am starting to think that it would be less dangerous to just pile on anti-virus and anti-spyware programs under Windows XP rather than run an OS that would allow me to honk things up so easily.

Windows XP seems more of a “point and shoot” OS, as opposed to Linux giving me manual control over F-stop, aperture, focus and the like. All I want to do is “point and shoot.”

I will continue my exploration of the SimplyMEPIS Linux LiveCD, but I suspect I will end up sticking with the devil I know. The one that protects me from myself.

xoxo~
Gaz
Proverbial bull in the china closet.

Simplex3
04-05-2005, 11:55 AM
I am starting to think that it would be less dangerous to just pile on anti-virus and anti-spyware programs under Windows XP rather than run an OS that would allow me to honk things up so easily.

Windows XP seems more of a “point and shoot” OS, as opposed to Linux giving me manual control over F-stop, aperture, focus and the like. All I want to do is “point and shoot.”

I will continue my exploration of the SimplyMEPIS Linux LiveCD, but I suspect I will end up sticking with the devil I know. The one that protects me from myself.

xoxo~
Gaz
Proverbial bull in the china closet.

Actually, *nix does a marvelous job protecting you from yourself. Far better than Winblows, IMO, and I hold MS's MCSE. You can't do anything truly important (read: destructive) as a normal user in *nix. As for anti-virus, anti-spyware, etc on *nix: don't bother. First, there are precious few viruses that can affect it and second, most of them aren't in the wild. I've never had a piece of spyware in the years I've run a *nix desktop. I know a guy *cough, cough* who surfs a lot of seedy sites with Linux and he's never had any issues, either.

The beauty of *nix is that it is secure enough to not need all that crap you have to fiddle with on Windows. Windows needs all that crap because of the sorry ass security it implements, especially if you don't have an active directory domain (read: LDAP).

Braincase
04-05-2005, 02:05 PM
I've used both and am certified in both (Every MCSE since 3.51...wait... that's all of 'em) and have the now defunkt SAIR/GNU LCP cert. I was SME on the Linux+ cert so I'm a little more versed in both than average. The problem for the user is the "devil you know" side of things. Linux/BSD/Unix has become more accessible, but it still has more of a learning curve than Windows. Windows is more secure than it used to be, but as Windows is a bigger target than any other OS, a few arrow ar bound to stick. A properly patched M$ OS is going to be as secure as any other out there.

And service pack 2 for XP is good. If you're software doesn't work with SP2, then whover wrote the app needs to update - their code isn't properly secure.

My .02.

BC