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Noob deciding about Linux
I've been using Windows for every PC I've ever owned for over 20 years.
So my questions are going to be from the "what the huh?" perspective on Linux and Ubuntu
First, I need confirmation about the rumors I've collected:
I've heard that Ubuntu is very stable and has good support. I know it is free, that much I'm certain of.
I've heard that using WINE, you can run any Windows-based software.
Now I used MS-DOS before Windows, so I'm familiar with the MS-DOS command line. And I've used a tiny bit of Unix, just enough to know that it uses a whole other set of commands to do similar things as MS-DOS.
Now, the general summary of the hundreds of questions I could come up with is this:
How steep is the learning curve if someone who is very familiar with Windows, tried to switch entirely over to Linux, probably using what appears to me to be the best supported and stable Linux OS, Ubuntu?
How secure is it compared to say, Windows 7?
Are there any obvious advantages or disadvantages to using Linux over Windows (that are less than obvious to me)?
What can someone accomplish with Linux/Ubuntu that is any better than one could accomplish with Windows?
Are there any hardware compatibility issues with Linux/Ubuntu?
How effective is WINE at running Windows software? This question is going to effect my decision a lot.
Feel free to add anything, link for me any web resources that would good to have ... and thank you for taking a moment to help me understand.