From Windows to Linux In No Time

There are countless users of Microsoft's Windows operating system who become Linux users each year--an important part of the engine that drives the popularity of Linux. In some cases, these migrating users want to escape the malware storm that afflicts the Windows ecosystem; in some cases they want to run Linux alongside Windows (a dual-OS strategy that has its advantages; and in some cases they want to use specific applications that are available for Linux.

For those who want to make the switch from Windows to Linux, there are a lot of good free resources that can help. There is also a lively, and pretty funny, discussion of the topic going on online. Here are the details.

Slashdot has a good discussion up on what the best Linux setup is for the user migrating from Windows. There are several informed users posting in the discussion thread who are recommending the Zorin Linux distro, which is specifically designed to cater to the Windows audience. It offers a Windows-like interface and actually lets you flip between different interface types on the fly.

Other commenters in the discussion have snide comments. Here's a good example: "I suggest giving showing them Windows 8 first. After that, the change to any of the major Linux distributions will seem trivial."

There are actually a number of free resources available for Windows users who want to take the Linux plunge, as we covered here.  Here is a concise collection of these resources:

PC World has a good Getting Started Guide for Windows users who are interested in Linux.  The guide discusses benefits of Linux, what you need to get started, and how to turn a Windows PC into a dual-boot computer, which can be one of the best ways for Linux newbies who are used to Windows to get started. Users can also brush up on the most popular Linux distributions here.


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  • Donald V Rucker Said:

    Hello, I am a very new member here. I have been wanting to make the complete switch to linux for years now but I have one obstacle. I am a musician using Ableton Live along with other window and mac based programs. My question is simple, If I completely commit to this amazing OS will there be a way to patch it for use of my programs, and what will happen to all my backup files on my external drive? Will linux recognize them? I have much to learn and I am very humble and open to any criticism. Thank you for your time. Donald.

  • Chris Said:

    Hi Donald, You can try replacing it with Audacity although I think it is aimed at basic to mid range, not pro level? You can also try running Albeton Live under Wine. I would recommend Ubuntu which is the most popular desktop Linux at the moment. If your external drive was created using Windows then it will mount automatically when you plug it in and you should be able to access your files. You might want to just try it out first, I think Ubuntu has a Live CD mode so you can try it without installing first, this will leave your current OS intact.

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