Aragorn and I were just yapping on irc and this came up..thought it might make an interesting topic.
So...why did you decide on linux?
I've used MS from day 1 of my computing, started with Win95.
Personally, I *really* like Win2k. I've beat the hell out of it and it's stayed solid and stable and really useful for me...much moreso than Win9x or NT...though I'm not much of a gamer to begin with. I haven't, nor do I intend to, mess around with WinXP. And that brings me to why I've decided on linux.
I've grown past the point of the mindless, point & click, do it for me, MS is god, I'll blindy take what they say as gospel sort of mindframe
My biggest issues with MS are privacy and security.
I don't care to deal with any sort of .NET thingie, and have my personal info stored and sent to god knows who without my knowledge....no f**in' thanks.
Security on the other hand, is a different issue. MS has the most popular OS's on the planet, so of course they're going to be the victims of the majority of the exploit. *Nix is no stranger to major exploits either though.
MS's recent stand on exploit disclusure is an atrocity.
Yea, I'd *love* to find out, 3 months after the fact, that my personal and credit card data, has been available to any script kiddee with an internet connection, and MS knew about it the whole time...kiss my ass.
Disclosure of exploits is *the best* way to be sure that vendors take care of problems and potential problems as soon as possible.
Take a gander at the bugtraq mailing list sometime (www.securityfocus.com). You'll be amazed and possibly frightened at what's going on who knows about it. If MS's viewpoint becomes the norm, people are going to become more and more the mindless automaton thinking that they're privacy is intact when it really isn't. Good god...some vendors actually have blown off serious issues, calling them non-issues, for months until something major has happened and their customers have been compromised.
And that's just unacceptable.
With linux... *I* have the power to do something about it. I have access to the source codes for apps that I can patch myself if need be, though most things are updated within hours of something being discovered. That's not necessarily the case with MS. Sometimes you have to wait until "the next service patch" comes out, and then hope it doesn't utterly screw up your system...
And that's not to mention the fact that you have to reboot the machine for most changes to MS to take effect. Um..isn't NT/2k supposed to be a hardcore networking OS? how the hell can that be justified when you have downtime because you had to reboot to make a SOFTWARE change take effect? I can't even install a patch to Outlook Express (an email client!!)without rebooting it, much less, change the static IP of a winbox.
That just boggles me completely, always has.
I've yet to find these issues with linux, and I'm learning so much in the process that I never would have been able to with MS without spending thousands upon thousands of dollars.
So for me, the major issues have been prvicay, security, and ultimately, financial.
That, and the fact that I'm a geek wannabe at heart
Well my reasoning is a bit more simplistic.
I have many qualms with MS, the main one being the fact that they can't produce a OS that is stable. When I first started programming, I was on Windows 3.1. This was stable, I'll give you that, well not entirely, but stable enough. But I was always crashing it with my programs. This was unacceptable, then 95 came out, we all know how that went. Then 98, well by 95 I had given Redhat a try. I liked it, but it had a few hardware issues that I wasn't willing to resolve at the time because yes, I was a microsoft fan. Soo I was still young and naieve..
Well stuff just kept getting more and more stable, and I started looking into OS development. I was pointed in the direction of Linux, I knew of it because I had used it once before, this time I was determined to give it a true shot. Soo I did it, I downloaded and installed it, this time Mandrake. I loved it, my hardware detected, and nothing ever crashed. I wrote a small program, where it created a thread after a thread after a thread, all processing algorithms. It never crashed, I had 560 threads going at once and it never crashed, let me tell you something if you don't know about programming, that is a shitload of work. Windows would have crashed in the 100 or so range.
Anyways, from there I was stuck. I got even more deeply into it in college, when I realized the networking power of Linux. It was awesome.
Also raw power and effeciency(sp?). I didn't necessarily have the fastest computer(but was close.. ) but I was always our quake server because Linux handled it so well, nobody ever skipped, it was great.
Anyways, there are a lot more reasons, mainly for development.
If you give a man a fire he'll be warm, if you light the man on fire he'll be warm for life.