Screenshots: Windows 10 alternatives that won't disappoint

Windows 10 is highly anticipated for a variety of reasons, including it brings a great deal more sanity to the unmitigated mess of Windows 8, and it does not require a third-party utility to make it usable for a natural (or a classic, depending on who you ask) desktop workflow.

However, the underlying operating system (OS) that a user runs is becoming an afterthought. The primary focus for many users is on the web -- as such, the availability of browsers and day-to-day productivity software is more relevant to end users than the old era of buying boxed software in stores.

This gallery highlights various OSs that are, for most users, adequate replacements for Windows 10. Many of the options featured here can be used in VirtualBox, if you prefer to give it a spin without dual-booting or formatting your system.

Also read:Windows 10 review: Full of promise, but not a must-have just yet

Image: James Sanders

By James Sanders

James Sanders is an analyst for 451 Research. He was formerly a Staff Technology Writer for TechRepublic.