This is one of the most fundamental questions as many people tend to get a little confused about it. Linux itself is not an operating system, it is the central and most important part of the OS, called the kernel. The kernel is the program inside the OS that has complete control over everything in the system and is therefore the first program that is loaded when the OS boots.
As I said earlier, Linux is just a kernel, and a Linux distribution is a complete OS that contains Linux as the kernel with added programs and other software depending on what the OS is focused on. In short, Linux OCs are called a distribution.
One of the coolest things about Linux is how much choice there is. There are directly hundreds of distributions, each with its own unique set of features, but all sharing the same Linux kernel. Most distributions are created with specific purposes in mind, some are for new users like you, some are for programmers, some are for servers, and so on.
The large number of distributions out there can confuse you about where to start, and not all distributions are indeed suitable for new users. As a general suggestion for new users, choose a distribution that is quite popular because then it will be easier for you to find help when you run into any problem. The two most popular Linux distributions for both beginners and experienced users are Ubuntu and Mint. Ubuntu is more popular in one of the largest communities, but Mint is a bit easier, especially for new users.
I prefer to use the Fedora Linux Desktop distribution; in my opinion, it is a stable distribution from RedHat. I prefer to install applications using Flatpak.
This is a very interesting question, and I was fascinated as I researched it. Linux is the most popular operating system. It runs most of the supercomputers on the planet, most of the servers that power the Internet run Linux, and so on. Even Android, which currently dominates the smartphone industry, and ChromeOS run on the Linux kernel. Unfortunately, in the desktop segment, Linux lags back as it ranks third behind Windows and Mac OS X.
Linux is an open-source OS, which means that not only is it free, but you can modify and change it as you wish (as long as you know how). The only condition is that you must also distribute your modified version for free. So forget about paying a lot of money for an OS like Windows because you can legally get a Linux distribution for free. Plus, since Windows 10 is said to be based on a subscription model, which means you pay for selected features, it gives you even more reasons to switch to Linux.
Don’t worry, there are plenty of places to find help on Linux. Here on UnixWeb.info, you will find great Linux-related articles such as installation guides, software reviews, etc. Additionally, many forums and wikis will help you a lot whenever you have any questions or run into problems. Popular distros even include an IRC channel where you can ask someone directly when you run into a problem.
Linux is one of the most secure operating systems, although it is not entirely secure. Forget about paying for the antivirus software you had to install on Windows. Although Linux viruses exist, they are too few to matter. Most viruses written for Windows cannot even run on Linux. One of the reasons for this is that most viruses target Windows since it runs on most desktop computers.
Not all Linux distributions are configured securely by default; I recommend reading more about Linux security. I will share this information with you.
All Linux distributions contain a set of software repositories that contain various packages for installing software. You can install the software directly from the software manager that came with your distribution, such as smartphone app stores from which you can download the software. Additionally, software from official software repositories is quite safe to install and most of them are free. I recommend reading the official documentation for your Linux distribution; as my experience shows, it is not always possible to find up-to-date information on third-party sites.
Although there are tens of thousands of packages in the official repositories of distributions such as Debian and Ubuntu, this is still much less than that of Windows. Programs like Adobe Photoshop and iTunes are simply not available on Linux. You can look for Linux alternatives for such software or install Windows software on Linux using emulators like Wine, but they will not work perfectly as Windows is supposed to.
Linux is a powerful open-source operating system that provides high stability and security. Its flexibility allows it to be used on a wide range of devices, from servers to embedded systems. Linux provides a rich set of tools for developers and systems administrators, facilitating personal development and professional growth.
I wish you success in learning Linux!
When you’re new to this, you probably have some questions. This is normal, I also had a lot of questions at first.
Please ask questions about the Unix and GNU/Linux operating systems, I will answer them to the best of my ability. This section will be updated as your questions come in. Thank you