Using Linux is like doing push-ups.
No one wants to do either and this is something that should change.
In the case of push-ups, if you do them regularly you can avoid having a pirate’s dream–aka a sunken chest.
In the case of Linux, if you use it or at least try using it, you will discover the whole new world existing outside of Microsoft and Apple’s walled gardens.
I’ve been using various flavors of Linux for several years.
For the longest time, I’ve never considered it ready for general consumer use but what I did with it on a 2003 Pentium 4 PC has me singing its praises from the roof top. Specifically…
LINUX IS NOT HARD TO USE!
I hesitate to say “easy” to use, as while it may take some persistence, if you are willing to take the plunge, you can bring new life to old PCs (i.e. you can use up-to-date browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Opera, etc. on the web).
LINUX RUNS ON OLD PC’s!!
My main daily driver is a USB external drive running a generic Ubuntu Mate installation; I’ve used it on both Intel and AMD processor boxes and it works great.
The 2003 Pentium 4 HP rp5000 POS (Point-Of-Sale) PC with 1 GB of memory that I upgraded to Linux Mint 19 is now nothing short of sublime.
It was a glorified cash register at the time of its release back in ’03 boasting 256 MB of memory and running Microsoft’s then ubiquitous Windows XP.
Now, and after a little bit of time, energy and persistence, it capably runs the just-released and latest version of Linux Mint (19 “Tara”) with all the goodness.
Readers need to understand this machine wasn’t a speed demon to begin with and XP, while still being used across the world, is a nasty nest of security violations waiting to hatch on its unsuspecting users.
The rp5000 presently suffers no such issues. It’s running the latest Linux Mint distribution and features up-to-date and secure browsers.
Did I mention this machine is 15 years old?
This is one of the dirty little secrets of Linux; it can be used on machines considered obsolete and not supported by virtue of their age by their original manufacturers.
Microsoft is not so bad. That’s because Windows 10 can run on really old boxes, too, but it costs money and it’s not always a slam dunk installation, either.
Linux, on the other hand, and while you can make donations to the authors of the flavors you support, is either available for a modest download fee or is completely free of charge (with donations optional where appropriate and applicable).
I would suggest supporting Linux developers with your donations where you can.
Instead of using an old PC as a door stop, why not put it to use again. Or even better yet, keep it out of the landfill. I know we’re supposed to recycle where we can but I bet you dollars to donuts too many PCs still make their way to the dump.
Not having to pay for a new PC or Mac (for that matter, and yes, with some TLC, effort and the appropriate distribution, Linux runs on Macs!) is a big deal.
I hesitate to call Macs junk but they are most definitely overpriced for the power, performance and durability you receive in return.
PC’s need updated virus and malware protection and while you can try getting by with only Microsoft’s built-in Windows Defender solution, the chance still exists for chaos should you click on the wrong link and Defender does not come to your rescue leaving you at risk for a nasty infection and a hefty repair bill from your technician.
Linux doesn’t have iTunes, but it has a reasonable facsimile thereof. In fact, unless you’re a professional designer and/or need certain PC-only commercial application(s), there is a substitute you can find in the Linux world that does the job quite nicely.
This article isn’t about all the programs that can be used in place of all the programs you use on a PC or a Mac.
It’s about doing something for yourself that puts you back in control over how you use a computer.
Apple tends to cut off latest OS support for its hardware at 5 to 7 years max.
Microsoft is better, but there are too many costs with both hardware and software considerations.
So, do yourself some favors.
Start doing push-ups regularly.
And talk to your friendly Linux-knowledgeable guy or gal to see about getting you behind the wheel of a nice new operating system inside a beloved and vintage computer.
Your chest will thank you and so will your wallet.
That sounds like a recipe for serenity if you ask me.