There are three big players when it comes to Operating Systems. Windows, macOS, and Linux. They all have pros and cons that have entire books written about them, so we will keep this as simple as possible.
If you are dependent on commercial software like Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, or various proprietary business solutions, then Windows is the best choice.
If you are an average internet user who likes to tinker with your machine and not worry about viruses, then Linux is your best bet.
If you have an Apple computer, then you have macOS. You can install Windows or Linux on your Mac using BootCamp, but you can’t install macOS on a non-Apple computer legally.
Now for the more intricate details:
Windows is the most significant player in Operating Systems globally. Almost everyone has used it, and it’s compatible with virtually all the programs you’d ever want to use. The downside is the cost, and also stability issues that come with Windows.
Overall, most viruses are programmed for Windows vs. macOS or Linux. That is mostly due to it having over 70% of the market share for all computers. That doesn’t mean macOS or Linux cannot get viruses, but they are very rare.
Windows is also the main platform if you are playing games on your computer. When it comes to compatibility, Windows is the king. Linux is steadily getting more ground on Windows for compatibility. However, for the average user, it isn’t worth the limitations if you are into gaming.
Windows and macOS are also what you’d call “out of the box” operating systems, which means most of the things you want to do on your computer will “just work” compared to some flavors of Linux.
So why would you want to use Linux over Windows? While Windows is the king of operating systems right now, Linux does have some unique advantages over windows. Most of it is very technical, but to keep it simple, here are a few reasons.
Linux is open-source, meaning it is 100% FREE, and it is built and maintained by a community of volunteers.
Linux is more secure and less prone to crashing and viruses due to the way the system was built.
Linux rarely requires a reboot when installing software or updates, meaning the uptime of your system will be 24/7 for the most part. This is a considerable advantage for servers.
There are 100’s of different “distros” to choose from, so if you are comfortable with macOS, you can choose a flavor like Elementary OS. If you are a lifelong Windows user, ZorinOS or Linux Mint would be perfect for you.
Linux is faster on older hardware. New versions of Windows need more power under the hood to run. Linux, on the other hand, can run on almost anything built within the last 15 years without a hitch with the newest software and updates.
The software for Linux is “free.” While there may be a few (I haven’t found any yet) applications that cost money, 99% of all Linux based software is 100% FREE. There are no licenses to buy or anything. Just download it, and you’re good to go. This, however, is also true on Windows if you are willing to dig for it.