Roughly 9 out of 10 people own a personal computer. While most of those computers statistically run the Windows operating system, several are using macOS, and a few others are using systems you’ve probably never heard of.
The variances that exist between operating systems complicate the process of choosing an operating system which is what brings us to why we’ve written this post.
Our team wants to go over a handful of the elements that should influence your OS decision. By weighing each of them, we’re confident you’ll be able to pick a system that allows you to get the most out of your PC usage, budget, and more.
Curious to learn what you need to mull over before committing to an OS? If so, keep reading to satiate your need to know!
How good are you with computers? Are you a whizz that can do just about anything with your machine? Do you struggle to find an internet browser?
Your computer skills, or more specifically, your skills on a particular operating system should influence the OS you select when choosing an operating system.
For example, if you don’t acclimate quickly to technology and have only ever used Windows systems, you should probably stick with Windows. The same would be true for whatever other OS you’re familiar with.
On the flip side, if you’re a computer savant, even if you haven’t used a particular operating system before, it may be that you can quickly acclimate to it.
How much money do you have to invest in an operating system? After all, the ones that you know and love aren’t free.
Take Windows for example. Windows might seem like it’s free because it comes pre-installed on your computer. Part of your computer’s price tag, however, includes the price of Windows. That means that if you wanted to upgrade your Windows OS to a later version, doing so would likely set you back hundreds of dollars.
Believe it or not, some operating systems are free. Linux, for example, is an open-source OS. The means that members of the computing community all take the time to donate their skills to its improvement and share their additions with the world so others may continue their work.
You can learn more about Linux systems here.
You tinkerers out there may want to work in an operating system that you can easily make modifications to. As you may already know, some operating systems enable that end better than others.
Take mobile phones for example. An iPhone is much more closed off than an Android phone which you can do tons of things with, especially if you go through the simple process of obtaining root access. iPhones don’t even give you the option of obtaining root access which makes it so hackers need to exploit iOS to gain additional system permissions.
macOS is much less malleable than Windows and Windows less so than some flavors of Linux.
Most people aren’t asking themselves ethical questions when choosing an operating system. You might be the exception to that rule and if so, may want to opt for free, open-source systems as a means of powering your computer.
As we alluded to earlier, free, open-source operating system lovers that enjoy supporting non-profits should flock towards Linux systems. Linux comes in several varietals that are made to accommodate users of different computer skills, interfaces, settings preferences, and more.
Our team is a big fan of Ubuntu but feel free to explore this list of other Linux flavors.
What do you want to use your computer for? If your primary use cases are web browsing and document processing, the world is your oyster.
If you’re trying to be a gamer, your options will be much more limited.
Looking at gaming specifically, several of the best games are only designed to work on Windows systems. That’s because the vast majority of the world uses Windows so developers see developing games for other OS’ as being cost-prohibitive.
Granted, you could discover more about virtual machines to learn how to run Windows games on Mac systems and vice versa. As a general rule though, if you’re finding that your OS doesn’t support your most common use cases natively, you should move on.
The type of personal computer you have will have an impact on which PC operating system you can use. Take macOS for instance. Did you know that it’s against Apple’s TOS for you to install macOS on a non-Apple machine? Of course, people do it anyway. If you’re worried about legal implications though, that conversation could be a non-starter.
Alternatively, consider a very weak piece of computer hardware. It may be that the newest version of Windows runs too slow on it. That may inspire you to install a stripped-down version with Linux on it.
The bottom line, the beefier your machine, the more apt it will be to work with different operating systems.
Choosing an Operating System Doesn’t Mean Life or Death
Going through the choosing an operating system process can be stressful. The good news is that your decision doesn’t have life or death implications.
If you try out a Windows operating system and find that you don’t like it, you can simply overwrite your install with Linux or other viable options.
That fact should empower you to sample different operating system choices to hopefully stumble on the one you can’t live without. Which operating system ends up inspiring those feelings in you may very well catch you by surprise.
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