Do you trust Google’s Chromebook storing everything you do in “the cloud”, in other words on their servers? Do you like the fact that Windows 10 sends data to Microsoft despite your security settings? Do you think macOS by Apple is more secure?
Personally I prefer Free and Open-Source Software, FOSS, compared to proprietary software. Then the source code can be evaluated and if you have the knowledge you can contribute with everything from developing new functions, bug fixing and translations etc.
You should think of “free” as in “free speech,” not as in “free beer”Free Software Foundation
FOSS doesn’t mean, according my opinion, that you don’t have to pay for the software you use. On the other hand you don’t have to pay if you can’t afford and you can pay not only using cash but also with your time while contributing to the development of the software.
The operating system I use on my laptop is Linux (or GNU/Linux). The difference between Linux and GNU/Linux is that Linux is the name of the kernel, while GNU/Linux is the the name of the kernel and add-ons required to create a complete operating system. However, I and many with me call the complete operating system Linux.
The first message about Linus Torvalds Linux kernel:
From: torvalds@klaava.Helsinki.FI (Linus Benedict Torvalds)
Subject: What would you like to see most in minix?
Summary: small poll for my new operating system
Date: 25 Aug 91 20:57:08 GMT
Organization: University of Helsinki
Hello everybody out there using minix –
I’m doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won’t be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones. This has been brewing since april, and is starting to get ready. I’d like any feedback on things people like/dislike in minix, as my OS resembles it somewhat (same physical layout of the file-system (due to practical reasons) among other things).
I’ve currently ported bash(1.08) and gcc(1.40), and things seem to work. This implies that I’ll get something practical within a few months, and I’d like to know what features most people would want. Any suggestions are welcome, but I won’t promise I’ll implement them 🙂
PS. Yes – it’s free of any minix code, and it has a multi-threaded fs. It is NOT protable (uses 386 task switching etc), and it probably never will support anything other than AT-harddisks, as that’s all I have :-(.
Maybe you’ve heard that Linux can be found in different variants called distributions. All distributions are different and the best recommendation I can give is that you start using the same distribution as a friend of your’s already use. Then you can get kind of first line support in an easy way.
I use Xubuntu, a derivate of Ubuntu. The reason for my choice is because Xubuntu use a Windows Manager called Xfce, know for being light weight and really fast.
LibreOffice office suite and Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail client with the Lightning callendar add-on give me everything I need for writing documents, making calculations and presentations as well as sending e-mails and being on the right place everyday.
No need for buying Microsoft Office in other words.
GIMP is an image editor – a good alternative to Adobe Photoshop!
Other FOSS software
There are of course a huge number of operating systems and applications distributed as FOSS not mentioned here. More or less regardless what you do you can do it using FOSS software!