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Hi... i am a danish architecture student who is sick and tired of Microsoft eating half of my computers performance. I need to run some specific programs though, and need to know if that can be done on Linux.
I need to run the Adobe CS, Auto or architecture, and various other programs designed for Windows.
Are there any userfriendly Linux distributions that can do that?
I really hope so, cause then i get to kick all the Apple users little heinies
Okay... it might not sound as a good reason, but whenever we debate wheater PC or Mac works best, it comes down to that what kills the PC is windows.
I've heard about Gimp, but isn't that more an alternative to paintshop pro?
Never heard about the other programs, and that doesn't help me, since you have to be a viz at sertain programs, that architect normally uses.
So sadly it looks like i'm stuck with windows
It isn't very common for free software community to develop giant software suites like Adobe CS, instead you should look for alternatives on each software package (or program) included in those suites, you can start at: http://alts.homelinux.net
For architects (some uses AutoCAD), as Pixellany saids, you have to search Google for Linux CAD, you'll find different approches for different needs, like sagcad, very different to qcad, LinuxCAD (propietary license) etc.
If you are a system architect: http://www.usinglinux.org/cad/
If your only worry is performance, sometimes you don't have to switch OS to improve it or to use free software (aside from the restrictive OS) like freecad, it runs over win32. At last, depending on how strong is your dependancy on particular software suites, may be you are "stuck with windows" but for good.
If you plan to use Linux long-term, I suggest trying our SuSe as Microsoft is going to work together with them to improve compatibility of those two. It can help running your "specific programs" if not now, then in future for sure.
IMHO, I'd ditch windows, but not in favor of Linux, but in favor of Mac.
I don't ride my bike to work, although I could, because it's fairly distant and my car is much faster at getting me there as it's designed for the roads I need to travel. Not that linux in all aspects is the bike, but in relation to graphical design and architectural tools, Mac sets the standard.
Now, if you were running a server, or using a typical desktop, I'd give you a million reasons and application alternative to run Linux instead of windows.
Thanks allot for all the answers. The coop between Suse and Microsoft sounds promising, but i'll rather wait some time and see how that ends.
As for the Mac/PC debate then it's true that Mac is in front considdering graffical work, exept in the field of and architecht. Some architecture-software is not out for Mac. Besides (this will really sound silly) i'm more against Mac, than Microsoft (talking about monopolly).
I hear a lot of graphic artists who say The Gimp is OK, but not quite there as a replacement for Photoshop. I'm not in a position to judge - I only ever played with photoshop briefly many years ago, and I'm really not doing that much graphics stuff.
You may be able to do what you want to do using free software, although you might have to combine the use of more than one program, so example using inkscape for vector art, and gimp for bitmap art and post-processing. There's rarely a 100% drop-in replacement for any one tool, but by being flexible in how you work you can almost always accomplish good results.
To my mind, the first thing to do is try out a liveCD, for which you don't need to install anything (bear in mind it'll be very slow running from CD).
In you think there's something of promise after playing with a LiveCD, do a backup, and install as dual boot. After playing about for a bit, set yourself a goal like doing everything in Linux for a week or a month. To start with it'll be frustrating moving to apps which you don't have experience with, but if you can break through that initial frustration, you might find everything you need, and in the long run save yourself a whole pile of cash into the bargain.
There are some real gems in the Linux way of doing things, although they're not always immediately apparent to start with. There are some pitfalls too, like farting about with 3d graphics drivers. These are fairly minor hurdles though. If you're having troubles, we're here to help.