Yes, I know… When you read this title, you probably thought “Great, here’s another geek who wants to complicate my life. I get it, Linux is better… But it’s also lame.”
I don’t blame you for feeling this way. But, unlike other articles, I’m not trying to get you to switch your home PC to Linux. Instead, I want to try and illustrate some of the business benefits of converting your office desktops to Linux.
Typically, there will be two types of businesses that will want to switch to Linux.
- Businesses that want to break free from Microsoft’s restrictive licensing policies.
- Companies that are tired of dealing with spyware, malware and viruses.
And if your company is struggling with (or at least devoting significant time to) either of these two problems, then there may be a significant cost savings in switching to Linux.
Of course, they will be a few objections that come up.
My employees will have to re-learn the new operating system.
This might’ve been a problem 10 years ago. But today’s Linux desktops are incredibly user-friendly and intuitive.
It won’t detect my hardware.
Once again, this is another area where Linux has greatly improved over the years. In most cases, you can simply plug in a device and have it detected automatically.
The applications available for Linux are very limited
99% of the time, your employees will use no more than four or five common business applications. And most of these have free Linux-based alternatives.
- Open Office can replace MS Office
- Firefox can replace Internet Explorer (You should be using this anyways)
- And there are many Linux-based media players available
- And in the few cases where only a Windows version will do, you can still run windows programs using Wine.
Of course, Linux is no good for gaming. As a business owner, this should actually be a major plus for you.
Also, Linux is not very good when it comes to professional-grade graphic design software. But if this is what you need, you should probably be switching to Mac anyways.
If you’ve been a reluctance to test of Linux for yourself, you don’t need to format an entire computer and reinstall from scratch. Instead, you may want to consider running a live CD version of Linux. In other words, these are versions of Linux that run directly off of a CD. This allows you to try the operating system without making any major time commitments.
Even if you aren’t a super geek, Linux desktops still have a lot to offer for business users. I would strongly recommend giving it a try.