Windows optimize

10 reasons why Linux will triumph over Windows

Windows 7 may be generating some positive buzz, but Jack Wallen remains skeptical. In fact, he says it's only a matter of time before Linux takes its rightful spot at the top of the OS heap.

Windows 7 may be generating some positive buzz, but Jack Wallen remains skeptical. In fact, he says it's only a matter of time before Linux takes its rightful spot at the top of the OS heap.


I have an announcement. The error of Microsoft's ways is finally catching up and will cause the once-invincible juggernaut to kneel before that which is Linux. How is this? Microsoft started a tiny snowball when it released Windows Me. That snowball did nothing but gain momentum. There have been ups and downs along the way (XP being an up, for sure). But for the most part, the court of public opinion has steady lost faith in what once was considered the heart of personal computing.

If you don't believe me, read on.

Note: This article is also available as a PDF download.

1: Inconsistent Windows releases

One of the things you can always count on from Microsoft is that you can't count on its new operating systems to be reliable. Let's take a look at the individual releases:

  • Windows 95: Revolutionized personal computing.
  • Windows 98: Attempted to improve on Windows 95; failed miserably.
  • Windows Me: A joke, plain and simple.
  • Windows NT: Attempted to bring enterprise-level seriousness to the operating system; would have succeeded had it not taken Steven Hawking-like intelligence to get it working.
  • Windows XP: Brought life back to the failing Windows operating system. It hadn't been since Windows 95 that the operating system was this simple.
  • Windows Vista: See Windows Me.

With this in mind, what do we expect from Windows 7? Myself, not much.

2: Consistent Linux releases

Converse to number 1, you have the far more consistent releases of the various Linux distributions. Yes, there have been a few dips along the way (Fedora 9 being one of them). But for the most part, the climb for Linux has been steadily upward. Nearly every Linux distribution has improved with age. And this improvement isn't limited to the kernel. Look at how desktops, end-user software, servers, security, admin tools, etc., have all improved over time. Once could easily argue that KDE 4 is an example of a sharp decrease in improvement. However, if you look at how quickly KDE 4 has improved from 4.0 to 4.3 you can see nothing but gains. This holds true with applications and systems across the board with Linux.

3. Continuing Windows price hikes

Recently, I have had a number of long-time Microsoft administrators asking my advice on solid replacements for Exchange. The reason? Microsoft changed its licensing for Exchange to a per-user seat. Now anyone who logs on to an Exchange server must have a license. You have 100 employees (including administrators) who need to log on to Exchange? Pony up! This gets serious when your company starts having to cough up the money for 500+ Exchange licenses. The very idea that Microsoft would make such a bold change to licenses is made even more ridiculous considering the current state of the economy. Companies worldwide are having to scale back. And like Exxon Mobile celebrating record profits amid the catastrophe known as Hurricane Katrina, Microsoft creating such a cost barrier while the globe is facing serious recession is irresponsible and reprehensible.

4. Stable Linux "prices"

Converse to number 3, the prices of open source software licenses have remained the same -- $0.00. When those administrators come to me asking for open source replacements for Exchange I point them to eGroupware and Open-X-Change. Both are outstanding groupware tools that offer an even larger feature set than their Microsoft equivalent. Both are reliable, scalable, secure, and free. The only cost you will have with either is the hardware they are installed upon. And with both packages, there is no limit to the amount of users that can be set up. One user, 1,000 users -- it's all good with open source software.

5: Windows hardware incompatibility

Microsoft Vista was a nightmare when it came to hardware compatibility. Not only was Vista incompatible with numerous peripherals, it took supercomputer-level iron to run the operating system! Sure this was a boon to Intel, which stood to make a pretty shiny penny. Intel knew a good amount of the public would be shelling out for new hardware, and the new hardware would cost more because it had to be faster to run Vista in all its Aero glory. But even hardware that would run nearly any other OS with lightening-fast speed was brought to a slow, grinding halt with Vista.

6: Linux hardware compatibility

Converse to number 5, Linux continues to advance in the category of hardware compatibility. Take Xorg, for example. Recent developments with the star of Linux' graphical desktops have the X Windows server running sans xorg.conf. This was done primarily because the system had grown so good at detecting hardware. And so long as there wasn't a cheap KVM between your monitor and your PC, Xorg would easily find the mode for your display and run X properly. With new distributions (such as Fedora 10), X configuration is becoming a thing of the past. Most other pieces of hardware are finding the same level of recognition.

7: Windows promises

I wanted to save this for last, but seeing as how it is number 7... We've all heard the pundits proclaiming Windows 7 will be the resurrection of the Microsoft operating system. But I recall this same proclamation with nearly every release from Redmond. Windows Vista was going to revolutionize the way the user interfaced with the computer. Vista was going to be the operating system you would never notice. Instead, Vista refused to NOT let you notice. And Windows Me was going to take Windows 98 and make it far more simple for the average user. What did it really do? Remove nearly every actual functioning system in the operating system, leaving little more than a browser and an e-mail client.

Everyone is always fond of saying the next Windows release will redefine the personal computer. But the public has finally reached such a point of apathy for Microsoft's up and coming, the majority doesn't even realize something new is coming out. The media can continue to push Windows 7, but the public will continue using XP until Microsoft pries it from its cold, dead fingers. And of course no one really knows when Windows 7 will land. How many dates Microsoft announces vs. how many dates change will probably be a 1:1 ratio.

8: Linux transparency

Converse to 7... The next release of any Linux distribution is never shrouded in mystery. Because of the nature of open source, the release candidates are always available to the public (and not on a limited basis), and the timeline is always made available. Any user can know exactly when a feature-freeze happens for a release of any distribution. And all Linux distributions work under the "full disclosure" model. Because of this, there is little false advertising going on with Linux. And unlike with Microsoft, you will never hear of a distribution claiming that its next release will revolutionize computing. If you go to the Fedora Project Wiki, you can view all the proposed and accepted features that will be included in the next release. You can also view the completed release schedule, where you will see that Fedora 11 has set an alpha release of 02/03/09, a beta release of 03/24/09, and a final release of 05/26/09. These dates are fairly firm and almost always on target.

9: Feature comparison

Let's compare the feature lists of Windows 7 and Fedora 11.

  • Windows 7: OS X-like Doc, Multi-touch screen, mapping application similar to Google Earth, Hyper-Visor virtualization, location-aware apps, User Access Control improvements, Sidebar removal.
  • Fedora 11: 20-second boot time, btrfs file system, Better C++ support, Cups PolicyKit integration, DNS Security (DNS SECurity), ext4 default file system, Fingerprint reader integration, IBUS input method replaces SCIM (to overcome limitations), GNOME 2.26, KDE 4.2, Windows cross-compiler inclusion.

If you look at those features in and of themselves, you could easily argue that either one could be the more impressive list (depends upon your bias). But understand that the Fedora 11 features are added on an already outstanding operating system, whereas the Windows 7 features are being added to a lesser operating system. And what Microsoft is proclaiming to be the biggest improvement (multi-touch) doesn't actually improve the operating system and also requires, surprise, new hardware! To get the most out of Fedora 11, you'll be good to go with what you already have.

10: Hardware requirements

Vista-lite? Out of the mouths of Microsoft comes the proclamation that Windows 7 will run on any hardware that would run Vista and even slightly less powerful hardware. Slightly less powerful? What exactly does that mean? Well for one, Windows 7 will have no luck in the netbook market. And since XP is dying, the netbook market will be owned by Linux. Netbooks are not gaining enough power to run anything from Windows but the watered-down version of XP. Netbooks are not going anywhere, and consumers (both home and corporate) have their limits on how many hardware upgrades they will make to fulfill an operating systems' needs. As of Fedora 10, the minimum system requirements look like something out of the mid '90s.

Your take

In your opinion, has the court of public opinion already condemned Microsoft to failure or will Windows 7 pull Microsoft out of the muck and mire created by Vista? Will Linux continue its climb above Microsoft?

About

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website getjackd.net.

281 comments
jlavellx
jlavellx

Linux on the Desktop takes a lot less time for users to learn then you might think! support calls are almost non existent!!! it just works.

WTRTHS
WTRTHS

Yeah, the uphill climb of Linux, the better hardware support, whatever... why was only the debian install cd nice enough to tell me they couldn't load my cd drive because it was sata? I couldn't load kubuntu, I couldn't load gentoo, I couldn't load Debian. I didn't even get a screen to install, it just wouldn't boot. I have tried installing Linux a few times, and it's always been such a pain in the rear, unlike installing Windows, any version. Yeah, I didn't do much research, no I didn't spend hours trying to get it to work, because I didn't feel the need to spend my precious free time on getting hardware support for the oh so mighty linux!

Nsaf
Nsaf

Yeah right!!!!!

jdclyde
jdclyde

With the global economy in the basement, not many businesses are seriourly going to be looking at throwing away their entire current hardware investment and start over from scratch with Vista. If it was back in 1999 when many of us were handed a blank check to make sure things work, it would have been different. The economy and the unreasonable system requirement to have a word processor are what is (in my opinion) giving linux the biggest advantages right now. Well, that and because of the learning curve for Vista and Office07, MS gave away the ONLY real advantage it had, the retraining of the work force requirement.

rascilon
rascilon

Not once does your article mention that many home computers are used primarily as gaming/entertainment platforms. Windows succeeds where Linux and MacOS fail in part by not ignoring this large consumer demographic.

jdclyde
jdclyde

3.1 was what opened the world to a GUI, 95 just happened to be there as the hardware prices started to drop. 98SE was a HUGE improvement over 95, in both usability and function. Win2k was again a huge improvement, even if NT was to limited. I STILL have a few systems running win2k and they are rock solid and keeps that old PII400 responding as quickly as any Vista system I have seen. The thing I do like about the "commercial grade" linux flavors, is only an id10t would ever run "bleeding edge" software in a corporate environment. That is a stupid as buying a .0 version of any windows software.

lethality
lethality

Linux will never, EVER, be a desktop OS of choice.

renecastillo75
renecastillo75

One important feature I've realized Linux has over Windows is the time it takes either for recovering used resources, or use unused resources after a long period of "being on". I could leave my PC turned on running Linux over a week, either P2P'ing or doing some long-time process and when I log into my user account again and I need to use my PC I know those resources will be available for my daily use. But in Windows try leaving on your PC for some days/weeks and its resources will be heavily beaten by a storm of continues lags what will make your average use slow and annoying. Even the more basic processes will take more time to be completed. I mean is a really massive leak of resources that you really feel abandoned your PC, and only by reebooting your machine, they will be hopefully recovered. Having said that... let me remember, that's nothing new on Windows environments. This is a cancer that has spread over these environments from its very beginings. I don't even remember a version of Windows that has been released from this illness.

Charles Bundy
Charles Bundy

"Uhhh what are we going to do tonight Brain?" "The same thing we do every night Pinky. Try and take over the WORLD!"

wizardtranslations
wizardtranslations

Yeah, right! Half of the people can't even get through the **** install, so they don't even have a chance to call support. Second, if the make the install, they don't usually pay, so there is no tech support for them to call. Support call to where? To what number? I have a Linux system on dual boot. Who do I call when I have a problem? No one. I just swap over to Windows and get the job done there.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

"support calls are almost non existent!!!" Of course they are; with the exception of RH and Suse, there's no one to call.

daileyml
daileyml

Which distro(s) did you deploy to get those results? I've heard nothing but complaints from test users we've tried to put in front of desktop Linux (granted, we didn't go through a heck of a lot of training, it was more of a litmus test to gauge user reaction). We have a few clients considering a trial run at desktop Linux, so your claims of success jumped out at me. It isn't functionality that has the clients concerned, it is the users perceived usability of the desktop environment.

Nsaf
Nsaf

it doesn't give you constant error messages when you try to load stuff....

Slayer_
Slayer_

I'm betting on the third path, rather than them moving to linux, they will simply keep using XP, even long after it is no longer supported. until something worth swtiching too is released. Considering that computer hardware "should" be able to last at least 7 years, and should last longer, hopefully 10 years, systems built now should last far into the next decade of system and OS's, and then the cost will be justifyable. This could be the cheapest approach ever :). The trick here is workers can't be using 100 dollar systems designed to only last 2 years...

wvczombie
wvczombie

Gaming on Linux works very well. Unfortunately, not many game writers are making their games to run on Linux. I wish they would, too. My work load would be reduced significantly as online gamers would not have all of the network issues they do with the MS networking snafus. I have noticed, though, that a great number of the hosting servers for the games played on MS Workstations run Linux. This is primarily due to many of the reasons provided in other posts (memory leaks, etc) and the rock-solid networking provided in Linux.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

There far more games in a linux install than a windows one.? Oh you mean commercial games?. The ones written FOR windows, using proprietry hardware drivers written FOR windows. Wake up guy. Other wise you'll be the proud owner of two bridges.

jdclyde
jdclyde

was not the primary use, nor the reason windows first became popular. If IBM would have been smarter about their marketing and delivery, OS2 would have beat out Windows in a side by side comparison everytime. And there are a lot of people that don't buy our computers as toys, and the corporate systems fit in the tool category.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

[i]Windows succeeds where Linux and MacOS fail in part by not ignoring this large consumer demographic. [/i] If you can answer these questions, you will also understand why I'm laughing uproariously as I type: Who writes the game software? Is it the OS developers? Why are game developers ignoring the rapidly growing Linux/Mac user demographic?

rcfoulk
rcfoulk

History is littered with the bodies of people who bank their thinking on absolutes. As someone who has run a MS DOS, then Windows shop since the 80s I can tell you unequivocally that we are likely to move our clients in the direction of Open Source in response to yet a second MS OS release that we feel fails any reasonable test of cost/benefit (once we actually need to move them from XP which will be quite a while). Frankly, if you can give a business a solution that works that doesn't require a major investment in hardware in addition to the major investment in OS software and consultant time they will be quite happy. Many business people know that Linux is an emerging (okay, it's here) option. Stupid interface, too few enhancements that make a real difference and way too much money will limit the adoption of Windows 7 as compared to 2000/XP and more than a trivial group of business will start to migrate Linux from the server room to the desktop/laptop.

Lady Vadalon
Lady Vadalon

GOS Walmart 300.00 it is not just for nerds

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

You can grab me a bottle of Coke while your out picking those boxed licenses up at the store. I'll wait here doing stuff with my machine.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Its just that not many people that see sunlight and dwell in public places will make that choice.

FastEddie2009
FastEddie2009

Dont like your tone... but I do agree with you ;-)

Charles Bundy
Charles Bundy

Because I just can't HELP myself! Linux and UNIX are already a desktop OS of choice, it's just that those that choose it usually have more to do computationally than the "happy mouse click crowd." I guess that's why we're in the minority. :)

mamies
mamies

You might be right. People like you live in the world and prefer to use Windows. Seriously I dont understand why it wouldn't be. It has developed alot lately and even the "hard" task of installing programs is as easy as pressing a button now or hardware support is amazing in Ubuntu. Ive heard it doesnt do well for wireless but my old Toshiba that Vista hates works well with it. Linux is getting better so if I were Windows i would be hoping that this new Windows 7 will do alot better then any distro of Linux. Linux seems to be gaining knowledge and part of the market very fast.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Your first day here and you've decide to start by calling people names, making an unsupported prediction, and assuming you know what others prefer. Three strikes; maybe you'll come up again in a couple of innings.

jdclyde
jdclyde

and why would you call yourself "nerds" as if you were plural? Yeah, no one would ever look seriously at an OS that runs faster on the same hardware, doesn't require AV software, and is stable.

jdclyde
jdclyde

now is time for the enterprise desktop.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

conditions doesn't it? Is linux trying to take over the world or just take it back? It used to be ours you know.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

when Windows craps out? Last time I saw a home user with an issue Microsoft was not interested and the computer vendor tech supported started with "have you used the recover disk to put it back to a fresh install?" The best part was that, when they finally gave an RMA number and took the unit back; it was a failed network card not a single thing to do with software. See, when I need to get some real work done, I switch over to Linux.. but then.. as a server administrator and security professional; Windows is grossly lacking in the tools, stability and security I need professionally. It runs games awful nice though so I keep it around for that.

jlavellx
jlavellx

I am providing support, Setting it up for the best possible user experience. (Xgl or Compiz) 3d desktop multiple workspaces...very cool baby! Nvidia deffenly has the best driver support right now, Flash, codecs using totem or vlc for video or dvd. a ton of printer driver as well as usb camera's are there. also turbo print if you there are no driver for you printer, a small price to pay when the OS is free and every one saves time because the OS is so stable and reliable. OpenSuse 11.1 and SLED 10, Very user friendly, run it your self and you will see. PS. Cedega for a lot of Windows games, uses Wine and seems to run better then any time set up on the native platform, i know it sounds crazy but it's true, it just works!

Slayer_
Slayer_

That would come down to whoever installed it, if it is getting errors, they need to fix them, and they should have fixed them at the install. Nix like any other OS can and will suffer errors do to any number of problems. I don't think it's even possible to compare installation errors between the two. If i had to guess I'd say Nix OS's are more volitile during install cause you have so many more options, and if you make enough uneducated choices, you can break the system.

jdclyde
jdclyde

Which means a lot of revenue MS will NOT see for a few years. The big question, is Windows7 just a re-packaging of Vista? Probably.

FastEddie2009
FastEddie2009

Of the online gaming hosters... who is actually doing it on Linux ? SonyOnline... Nope ActiveGame (FOX)... Nope Microsoft... a Big NOPE The list is LONG... and I dont know any of the true BIG providers who are doing it on Linux... They might be running a firewall or a DNS server or some fun thing like that but not the actuall game servers... which is to the point that not many game developers are putting the games on Linux ! Linux is good... but still a 'skunk works' operation to most. sad but true.

jdclyde
jdclyde

It is amazing how slow this is coming about. The rule of business is ALWAYS be the first to saturate a new market, especially if your current market is over saturated. On the other hand, it is taking getting people to use linux because it is better, not because it is "free" to get a customer base. The early adopters of linux were more amused in cracking the "security" on software than actually playing the game. That was THEIR idea of a "game".

jdclyde
jdclyde

the poster, that is. A simpleton like that is not LOOKING for choices, because that would require a little thought and even a little effort. Keep handing him the shrink wrapped box. It is something he can understand.

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

Why - Because there are no Viruses for it, no Becasue it has no security flaws - no Then why? There are more windows viruses perhaps because there are more windows installs. Writers release them to make the biggest damage footprint. Where would that be?

Charles Bundy
Charles Bundy

January 09 statistics http://ftp.isc.org/www/survey/reports/current/report.fpdns I'd say there are two things holding back enterprise adoption on the desktop. One is the Exchange/Sharepoint/MS-Office integration stranglehold. The other is custom applications targeted towards .NET. Folks may use a UNIX database server backend but the apps are so easy to churn out on the client frontend for Windows. Adoption on the desktop at home probably break down to gaming and "streaming media of ill repute" :) Get EA to target Madden for Linux and you've probably made a bunch of Linux converts...

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

For a server, if you don't go RH or Suse then you go it alone with Debian or BSD. Debian Stable has been a fantastic learning experience for servers. Config files are well layed out and defaults seem like a distro trying to build a server install; which it is. They have a pretty well known hardware stack so support isn't an issue of having the latest kernel and mods available. For a desktop, I get draktools and great hardware support from Mandriva. Wifi card installs and network connections haven't been a hasle since 2007.0 even when required to use a Windows driver file. There are also very few bits of hardware not detected by the OS even if the software to make use of the hardware was a bit of a pain (still fighting with Hauppauge.. it was supposed to fix my machine's ATI syndrom.. bah.. damn pebkac errors). If Debian Testing had clean wifi support and config tools then I'd probably be using that as my default notebook distro. The desktop would need nVidia support but the more stable builds of tools would be welcome. (mandriva's netdiscover blows up, never an issue with Debian's netdiscover or the Maemo fork of it) I also like my desktop to be a custom build. Install the minimum to get past a first reboot plus the cli package manager. After that, I isntall what I need as I need it for the new build and my fresh software stack grows organically. Stuff i no longer use falls off the install list quickly. I can also run a build script against cli package management and config so rebuilds of a system are mostly waiting for progress bars to finish. Debian does not let me install as granular a KDE app selection as I'd like. With Mandriva, I say "urpmi kdebase-konsole" and I get the mimimal KDE I need to run that not everything attached to the KDE meta-package. Now, I'm not yet tickelled by KDE4 and 2008.1 is still getting regular updates so no reason to move to 2009.0. I'll see how Mandriva 2009.1 does though. But then, there is Backtrack for a toolbox along side my custom toolbox built into a VM. Various more specialized liveCD also add to the list. Desktop and Server is easy but then distro choices depending on specific task can make things complicated for those outside my head.

jdclyde
jdclyde

was until about a year or so ago, I really didn't CARE about a desktop, it was exclusively servers for corporate use. It wasn't until I saw what a pig Vista is, that I started getting serious about loading a desktop. So, I am basically starting over. Your desktop Mandrake now? What do you use for business servers? How did your server upgrade/replace go? Go with Dell/HP/IBM? (think you were leaning towards HP?)

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Someone handed me a Slackware book and install disk. I didn't do so well with it but Red hat 3 or 4 did the trick until Mandrake.

jdclyde
jdclyde

because otherwise they are not generally ALLOWED to charge for more than the cost of the media. Like the assclown that was on ebay selling OpenOffice disks. :0 My first introduction was Redhat 5.2 in a box.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

"Expensive means Better" does ring true with luxury items but in the general consumer markets, "Expensive" just means "can generate a better markup based on what the market is willing to pay" not "built to detailed specs with materials that justify our price including 20% markup". OpenBSD, but that's free.. how could it possibly have such a bug and patch history?

jdclyde
jdclyde

because so many people don't understand the business model, if you are not spending a lot of money for it, it couldn't possibly be good, right?

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

A shrink-wrapped box, that is. I don't think it's been tried for several years.

jdclyde
jdclyde

one, running as user, the worst you can do is toast your own profile and data, not the system. two, no active X. three, no active X. (important enough to say twice! :D ) four, you can't install software without being asked for the root password, so no silent installs, right? There ARE exploits for linux, BUT they are more difficult to exploit AND the exploit gets FIXED, instead of hoping you will load third party packages to protect from the known flaws.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

All those webservers out there with the majority share being non-Windows platforms, where are all the torrents of successful exploits available for them? I wouldn't run a Linux based box without AV but the purpose is to catch Windows viruses before passing them on to a machine that they could effect. In terms of viruses that target Unix like platforms, they exist but the time they remain effective is pretty short since the developers see them as prof-of-concept for a bug that needs to be fixed. It's a little different then the "it's not our developer's fault, go buy a third party AV bandaide" aproach commonly seen.

jdclyde
jdclyde

one, need to have a "simple" option. two, need to have a consistent file structure so software can be loaded on ANY linux flavor consistently. My 16 year old boy has been 100% windows free for a month now, using Mint Linux, and at this point has no intention of going back. B-)

robsku
robsku

...the world. If *nix systems suddenly dissapeared... well, I let you figure what would be the rosults for average PC users? *nix holds together large systems (like internet) and much more. It's sad if you think that unices have lost.

Charles Bundy
Charles Bundy

I guess each operating system is fielded for it's relative strengths. UNIX never lost on the server side. (I go back as far as SunOS 3.x and had an ATT SysV wedge shaped workstation circa 1990-1991.) Us CS lab rats never considered them mere "desktops". Spreadsheets made PC's the defacto bean counter desktop. Bean counters 1, computer geeks 0. Faulty memory time - Due to their price IBM PC's had UNIX workstations beat on deployment in the late 80's. E.G. you could get a UNIX workstation for around 12K and a PC for around 3K. (I recall Apple II+ w/48K & Amdek color monitor for around $2500 circa 1981 :))

jdclyde
jdclyde

how about IBM-DOS? That is what made 1-2-3 possible. how about Unix that Dos was based upon? IF wasn't for Unix, there would not BE windows. B-) how far back do we go? Thanks to Unix for giving us TCP/IP and ALL scalable networking.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Business wouldn't have started purchasing large quantities of DOS-based desktop computers. No DOS, no Windows. No 1-2-3, no Excel. Sure, Windows and Excel would eventually supplant DOS and 1-2-3, but the earlier OS and app combination is what started the world moving away from big iron and *nix systems.

jdclyde
jdclyde

because when excel came out for windows, lotus tried that HORRIBLE 3.x version to give the user a mouse in a dos environment. When that failed miserably, 1-2-3 v4 came out, still sucked ass compared to excel. 1-2-3 v5 took the crown back. The thing that allowed MS Office to take over was when 1-2-3 made a suite and word perfect made their own suite. If the two standards in computing would have joined instead of going opposite ways, MS would never have stood a chance in the office fight.

jdclyde
jdclyde

windows followed apple (then marketed better) the idea of click on a pretty picture to do something, so people with barely the brain capacity to be sucking oxygen could use a computer. The REAL change was prices of hardware dropping, so it was affordable to have a home market, AND drop a computer on every desk regardless of the education level of the position. It never lost the server war.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Lotus 1-2-3 changed it. The original workplace killer app for Intel-DOS personal computers.