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Old 11-29-2013, 10:31 AM   #1
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Unhappy Questions about Linux

I have XP now,but the Microsoft support is running out in April 2014. Does Linus do the same thing as XP? Will all my files and programs convert over to Linux? Does Linus help to set up my Linux Progrm? Does Linux really have a 5 year support system? As you all can tell I am a novice and really need detailed information to make an informed decision. Thank you all very much. djbacon
Old 11-29-2013, 10:45 AM   #2
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Linux has no support whatsoever ass Linux is a kernel project and not an operating system nor a specific product. And Linus (Torvalds) is just one man, no he won't do your support for you.

There are plenty of support options available for various Linux distributions, but the differ a lot, so you need to be clear on what you actually expect to get, whether you wish to pay for it etc. Community based distributions have a lot fo people working on the projects and will provide security and bug fixes on older software for many years, although under no ongoing obligation to do so. On the other hand, RedHat will happily take thousands and thousands of pounds off of you to provide 4hour turn around support for anything you want to do, so it depends what you want.

Depending on what you mean by it programs will not "Convert over" no. There is probably a Linux equivalent for whatever ou have been doing on windows, but you've not given any specific details to work on here.
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Old 11-29-2013, 10:59 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forums!

I highly recommend that you create a Live DVD or Live USB of a few different Linux distributions or "distros" and take them for a test drive (try without installing) so that you can see for yourself exactly what Linux is like.

Linux is a completely different operating system than Windows; it would be kind of like switching from a PC to a Mac for example.
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Old 11-29-2013, 11:06 AM   #4
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Welcome to Linux Questions!

It rather looks like you've just blurted out a load of questions without trying to search for the answers within the forums yourself. They've been asked loads of times.

However, and without going into a lot of detail...
Does Linus do the same thing as XP
Linux and Windows XP are both Operating systems with their own fil e systems and ways of doing things.

Check out: for a very good comparison.

Will all my files and programs convert over to Linux
You need to be more specific about what file types your data has. Linux has native applications which can open documents, spreadsheets and images which may have been created under XP applications, so in escence, unless you've got some weird Windows program for doing, er..., something weird, you should be OK.

Does Linux really have a 5 year support system?
Stable LT versions of Linux tend to have a long lifetime, not sure about the 5 years, but upgrades are generally free and pretty safe these days. Changes to default windows managers can sometimes hurt as you may have to relearn how to do something, but then again, there are quite a few windows managers to choose from unlike XP. Note also that when the Linux ecosystem doesn't just keep the kernel up to date, the applications you have installed are kept up to date as well, unlike Windows in most cases where you have to pay for application upgrades and install them separately.

WIndows .exe files don't run on Linux but you can add an application layer called Wine which will allow some stuff to run.

Linux doesn't have Windows gaming capability but checkout Steam: where things are changing quite quickly in this respect

That should keep you amused for a while, you'll no doubt get inundated with info about which Linux distribution you should try. Most can be tried from a live CD - Boot the CD to try it out, if you like it, you can then install it. Your existing system/hard disk is not affected while you do this as it all runs in memory.

So... Play bonny!

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Old 11-29-2013, 11:31 AM   #5
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Freedom ain't easy. So, it can be more work (doesn't have to be the case nowadays just some learning like when you started with microcoughed,) "Questions about Linux" those could go on for ever I'd suggest learning to search well and more efficiently and trying many LTS distros\WMs; mostly if you're testing the cutting-edge, experimental-stuff aside from the occasional bug or possible security flaw answers are normally out there.

Last edited by jamison20000e; 11-29-2013 at 12:44 PM.
Old 11-29-2013, 01:45 PM   #6
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If you want to see the sort of software which will replace your windows programs, visit

The integrated nature of Linux distributions makes support easier than with Windows. If you go to Microsoft to get Windows updates, then that's all you'll get. With a Linux distro, you can get an update and all the software from that distributer gets updated. Support periods vary: 7 (10?) years for CentOS, 5 for Salix or Mint Long Term Support version, 3 for Debian Stable — right down to 9 months for ordinary Mint. Some distros are rolling-release: they continuously update without having versions. This can make them rather unstable, although not always.

The obvious thing to do is to start trying things. Most distros are available as live disks, so that you can see what they look like before installing. A big difference to Windows is that the GUI is not built in, so you get a choice: plain, fancy, big, small, seriously weird; a pair of distros with different GUIs can look and feel like different operating systems. I'd suggest trying whatever sounds interesting from

1. KDE desktop: the king of bling, with all the eye candy the heart could desire. This needs a modern computer, preferably with 2GB. PCLinuxOS is one of the best here (rolling release) or OpenSUSE (not if you have Intel graphics)
2. Unity desktop: makes your computer look as if it's turned into a smart phone, so you'll either love it or loath it. Ubuntu (not if you have Intel graphics) is the only one here.
3. Gnome desktop: a bit "phonish". Best with 1GB. ZorinOS is good.
4. Mate desktop: more conventional, like XP. Mint is the best.
5. Xfce desktop: similarly conventional and runs happily in 512MB. Salix (long-term support) and Manjaro (rolling release) are nice.
6. Ice window manager: if your computer's really old, this will work in 128MB! AntiX.
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Old 11-29-2013, 03:36 PM   #7
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At first using a Linux was a bit more work ( back in 2004 )
but now using OpenSUSE 12.3 and ScientificLinux 6.4 is LESS work that XP ever was
and is STILL less work than Win7

BUT you have TO LEARN a new way of doing things
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