Is Linux harder to use than Windows?

January 29, 2010

There has been a lot of debate on various websites recently on whether Desktop Linux is harder to use than Windows. From my own experience and for the average user I have to say that in the vast majority of cases the answer is no.

I joined the then budding IT industry in the late eighties, was at the launch of Windows 3.0, supported the various iterations of that software through to Vista. Throughout those years I supported mostly end users in their various guises, from the workers on the office floor through to senior management. The level of their experience ran the whole gamut, from the endless tinkerer who regularly called in desperation when something they were doing went haywire to the ones suffering from technology shock when presented with a computer. I also became the person to call when a family member or friend had a problem, the fount of all knowledge technological, spending many hours reloading Windows, installing software and sorting out virus infected machines.

Now, thanks to Linux those days, at least for family and friends have ended, they are all happy and contented Ubuntu users. They are with one exception average everyday users, their PCs and laptops used for email, browsing the web, occasional letter writing and photo management. They want for nothing more. Ubuntu provides them with a stable and secure platform that does not need to be defragged, does not bombard them with system messages telling them that their computer is not secure, that Windows cannot find any anti-virus software installed or any of the other myriad pop-up messages that plague Vista especially. The only support that I provide now is the occasional reminder to keep their machines updated so that they remain secure.

Do they care that they are running Ubuntu and not Windows…..No!

Do they, the average user find their daily computing any harder…..No!