I've spent quite alot of time to read all the definitions gave by one or another. I'm both a linux & windows user and in the same time admin. I'm so much afraid i'll start to do devil's advocacy here for linux, but from my point of view i'm pretty much entitled to.
I'm in charge for about 400 workstations and something like 170 servers. Both types (wks & srv) runs either linux or windows. Do you folks have any ideea which is the % of the wks's suffering from sudden death like about 2 or 3 months of intensive work on them? Take a wild guess!. So, as i'm sure you already guessed what i'm talking about, i come and say: "Why in the name of God i would waste my time and my nerves on reinstalling friggin MS stuff like every 2 - 3 months", when i could just simply just check them once in a while and have them running for 1 year +. Of course it's not my call. Just as some of you like MS and some of you Linux, my users have their preferences too, therefore i got Norton Ghost to work for those bloody Windows wks's. But then again, happy people coming to work are those working on linux workstation. Debian or Gentoo powered (dont remind me of RedHat/Fedora/CentOS as they are Windows's cousins lately), my workstations are rocking from simple text files editing (OpenOffice rules by the way) to Multimedia rich applications (if you dont know there is SDL - Simple DirectMedia Layer linux alternative of DirectX as well as TransGaming's new DirectX 8 API's support in linux for latest Remedy Enterprise's Max Payne with 3D acceleration). However .. going to the server side of my story all my servers are running Linux or various flavours of BSD. I used to have some NT and 2000 or 2003 servers that i got rid off due to their instability and inconsistency plus extremely bad memory management. Benchmarking the systems it came up that on two hardware identical servers, one with linux and the other with windows 2000 advanced server, each of them with two processors and 4 GB DDR2 memory, under a stress test with 300 simultaneous clients each of them sending 1000 (one thousand) simultaneous queries to their respective localhost databases (mysql for linux and msql for windows) the windows machine bent over kneeling in front of linux. I'm sorry to dissapoint you Windows fans but Linux is better, or you would prefere to say GNU/Linux since it's widely accepted as a name for this awsome OS. And Yes, it's an OS even if at origins Linux was the name of a MINIX based free OS with a monolithic kernel, created by Linus Torvalds. Do you even know that the name "Linux" was a mistake?. By the time Linus Torvalds finished his first version of what we know today as Linux he named it Freax, but when he asked his friend Ari Lemmke (at that time the FTP admin at funet.fi) to put the new OS online for public access, his friend gave him a directory on ftp with the name Linux. And for you ignorants i repeat: Linux is a Unix-like computer operating system. It's not the name of the kernel. And also i saw many of you stating Linux is an OS accepted by geeks and nerds. Righty .. then IBM, Sun Microsystems, Hewlett-Packard, Novell are all some cheap-azz companies ran by nerds and geeks. If you say so ...
Also news for you cool guys from geeks like us .. Sony Playstation 3 will be running Linux too as confirmed by Sony's CEO Ken Kutaragi. So judging by this news Linux still not being a proper gaming environment right?.. Duh!. Take care with what you wish as the OS for your computer.

Over & Out
Andy
...Linux, MS-DOS, and Windows NT (also known as the Good, the Bad, and
the Ugly).
by tespio August 17, 2006
The best operating system (OS) in the world.
I love booting into knoppix linux with my live CD and hacking from an internet cafe'.
by l337994 May 02, 2005
1) An awesome operating system that PWNS the windows for sure.
2) Using Linux makes you l33t.If you don't agree, then you are wrong. STFU n00b.
3) Totally, the most configurable system ever!(except you are using the system that you wrote and done by yourself)
4) You cost nothing to get Linux. And windows costs $200.
5) Linux IS l33t itself, undoubtedly.
When I use Linux and running console with beryl on the background...
Me: So this is Linux, see?
Classmate 1: Oh, (Chinese) so that's l33t?
Me: Of course!
Classmate 2: Then what's the reasons that we should use Linux?
Me: Using Linux makes you l33t! And Linux can't be infected by any virus!
Classmate 1: Can I play my online-game "MapleStory" on Linux?
Me: Probably no.
Classmate 2: Linux SUX.
Me: STFU n00b. _/00 _/|_|5+ 4|_|_ /\/00|35, 455|-|0|_3! |_1/\/|_|X P\/\//\/5 _/00 4|_|_!!!
by Roger W. January 30, 2008
The BEST OS I've used in a long time, that piece of crap made by Microsoft (let's face it, all things Microsoft are crap, it's a good thing there is a way to run Linux on an XBox, assuming anyone would want to which they probaby would) was as unstable as hell. Linux is free, stable, can be used for home computing though not many people do as they think. Also, Linux is ideal for server applications though most college IT admins use Windows server instead because they are lame arses. My advice, go and get some blank cds and download Linux, you have nothing to lose
Windows: Piece of crap made by that crap software company called Microsoft (who stick product keys on the software)

Linux: Unix-type OS that is free, stable, and works 24/7
by Pika_Pikachu July 20, 2005
Simply put, it's an operating system that you can download (legally.) I's most commonly used by experienced computer users because it doesn't hold your hand as much as Windows does. It also requires emulators to run Windows programs. The source code for the kernel is available somewhere. The kernel was written in the early 90s by one Linus Torvalds in Finland, and is released under a "General Public License."
How's that? No airline suff, just the real definition.
by Utz89 June 27, 2005
the best operating system for people who really want to use a computer
man... this new linux server is fast.... it only installed in a few minutes and it dont hog RAM like windows server 2003 did.... and you can completly customize the kernel!
An operating system made for open-source software. While more stable and dependent, it is harder to learn, which confuses the poor illiterate moronic rednecks putting up spam. They are confused by an OS that wont come with everything to make life easy for them, hence the misplaced anger.
Seriously, all you anti-linux posters, just because your iq isnt above 2, doesn't mean that you can post crap.
Linux rules.
"uhh.......linux.....pedo....dork.........what was i saying?......lets go have a little backyard wrestling and then go rape some sheep!"
by Anonymous June 10, 2003
A kernel that many operating systems called "linux distros" are based off of. Linux is known mainly for being open source, and in most cases, also free to use. Many linux distros are do-it-yourself operating systems, and some come with a full GUI, and many automatic features, which makes it easier for normal people to use. These easy-to-use linux distros are commonly used as a price-effective and useful platform for public and private access to computers, and on servers. Many people criticize this operating system for not being able to run most applications, specifically games. Linux is somewhat limited to which applications it can run, but many people have made alternatives to those applications, and even ways to run those applications inside linux. In fact, many popular games can run on linux, contrary to the packaging of the game. Overall, linux is a great kernel that formed many popular and useful operating systems, which are in use by millions of people today. Linux is also available in a liveCD format, which lets users try linux before they fully install it.
"Hey, can you help me with my computer, windows crashed on me again."

"Oh, I'm sorry, I use linux, and I'm not too fond of microsoft products."

"Dude, linux sucks! It can't even run games!"

"Actually, unless you're planning to install every game on the market that was ever made, linux is actually a pretty good gaming platform. The only advice I can give you is to use linux. Here's a LiveCD"

"Okay, I guess I could try it."

2 days later.....

"What the hell man, when I tried to instal your stupid linux, it erased my windows!"

"Did you read the back of the CD? It clearly says that by default it'll erase all existing software, unless you partition your drive or install it inside windows. See, it says it right here on the CD."

"Well, it should've warned me!"

"Dude, maybe you should've just RTFM"
by 0per4t0r August 13, 2009

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