As stated in the main page in this section, OS-College covers apps that work equally well on Linux distros, as well as Windows and Mac. Many of the screenshots and videos on this Website feature the applications covered running in a Linux distro.
Linux distros are important to the world. While Linux has had huge success on servers and other devices, it has barely made a dent in the PC market share, running on about 2-3 percent of desktops and laptops. Windows continues to dominate this market. Many may question, therefore, why it these operating systems are important.
The importance comes from the open-source nature of Linux and the distros based on it. This gives people who enjoy working on computers and the desire to make an operating system perfectly integrate with their hardware. It gives average users, those who don’t like to spend time modifying their systems, more control over their computer-using experience. The desktops are also very good at interacting and testing servers, with similar software running on them.
Enthusiasts have liked to tinker with computer technology for decades. The 1970s saw the start of Microsoft, Apple, and several other computer companies. At this time, there were also many people building their own computers.The first PCs were not ready to use out of box, and many worked on building their own, as well as joining clubs to share components and ideas.
This hobby has continued on to this day. Even though, fully functioning computers with user-friendly and powerful operating systems can be purchased inexpensively, there are those who enjoy modifying their hardware and software.
Many enthusiasts use Windows, but Linux distros are more flexible. They can be rebuilt from the ground up, and many hobbyists want the ability to customize their systems at this level.
Linux in organizations and corporations
Several organizations and corporations have installed Linux distros on desktops their employees use. They want operating systems that have a minimal footprint, so they contain only the features and functions necessary for the employees to do their jobs. The organizations also provide Linux desktops for employees working on their Linux servers. The Linux desktops work better than other operating systems at modifying and testing the server.
For organizations and corporations, as well as individual users, Linux distros give them control that Windows does not give them. The open-source nature of the Linux means the source code is not exclusive to any particular operating system and can be modified by them.
If they have issues with a particular operating system, they can possibly find someone who has modified the code, or they can modify it themselves. They also could use a different Linux distro.
They cannot modify or even look at the source code for Windows. When people experience frustrations when Microsoft controls the update schedule and eventually abandon securing older operating system, users have no recourse against this except to wait and upgrade to the latest Windows operating system.
OS-College and open-source software
While Linux distros give users more freedom than Windows, that freedom would be limited if they didn’t have common applications to use, such as an office suite and Web browser.
Several communities have developed software that has the same features on every Linux distro, as well as Windows and Mac. These applications are open-source, so their code can be studied and modified. They also can be freely distributed, in accordance with their respective licenses.
This helps give individual users, corporations, and organizations by giving them options. If they want to continue to use Windows, they can. However, they do not have to use it. They can use one of the many other operating systems.
OS-College supports open-source and cross-platform software because it deeply values giving users a choice. Linux distros are part of this software. While its focus will be on the applications that run on them, rather than the distros themselves, much of the testing, screenshots, and videos will be done with these important platforms.