Which Linux Operating System should I use?

I am getting more and more fed up with Microsoft. In particular I am currently using Windows 10 and having upgraded to Windows 10 Creator I have a problem printing from the Outlook App. Getting a sensible answer out if them is like getting gold out of Fort Knox and one punter was told it would cost around $250 for Microsoft to put it right!! I don’t think so!! So as a newbie I am wondering which is the best Linux Operating System to use and will I have problems with the existing programs I have that currently use windows.

I’d advise you start with either:-
a) Ubuntu
b) Linux Mint
c) PeppermintOS
and not necessarily in that order.
(Full disclosure, I’m part of the PeppermintOS team … so make of that what you will :wink: )

All of which are based on Ubuntu so there’s tons of help/documentation/articles available.

Please be aware Linux is NOT a drop in replacement for Windows … your Windows applications are unlikely to run in Linux, so you’re going to need to find Linux native alternatives such as using LibreOffice instead of Microsoft Office, Firefox instead of IE/Edge … but then there are some apps that have both a Linux version as well as a Windows one, Google Chrome and Firefox for example.

We could probably advise better if you mention which Windows apps you use regularly.

Hi Mark

Thanks for your response. Probably the only Microsoft thing I use is Outlook which I think is OK. As for Office I use SoftMaker at the moment. Will this work with Linux. I am pretty well thinking of using Ubuntu but it is a question of knowing the best option for a newbie.

Softmaker do an office suite for Linux

and Thunderbird would probably be a decent replacement for Outlook … or just switch to webmail.

Ubuntu are in transition at the moment, their next release is switching from the Unity desktop to the Gnome 3 desktop (Unity being retired), so if you were to start learning on Ubuntu ‘right now’, you’d have to take that additional future learning curve into consideration.

So for someone starting in Linux ‘right now’ I’d probably suggest Mint or PeppermintOS

Mint if you want a 'full bells and whistles" distro and have recent hardware

Peppermint if you don’t like having decisions made for you … or your hardware is limited, or you don’t like wasting system resources … and if you prefer a smaller (so generally more friendly/personal) forum.

Hi Mark.

Thanks again for your responses. There are 2 other Microsoft Programmes I use and they are Outlook Calender and Microsoft note. Is there something like that with Linux? The other question on my mind is will most other programmes work with Linux?

I use Debian. I can access Outlook online through my browser - including Outlook Calendar and Microsoft OneNote - among other Microsoft/Outlook products.

It starts here: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/notifier-for-outlook/eanaffjjnnjheibhfpibkliekicgpgpn

Not Windows applications … but there’s nearly always either Linux native version or an alternative (and usually free).

I got fed up with Microsoft about three years ago. I still have dual boots with Windows XP, but I don’t let XP online. I use it for Office/printing/scanning etc.

I’ve been using Ubuntu (14.04 and now 16.04) for online stuff. It’s worked well for me, and as Mark says, there are usually alternatives to MS stuff. I just happen to prefer XP for ‘office’ stuff. For email I use Outlook.com (in Linux)…

Recently I installed Xubuntu on a laptop and I really like it. It’s a lightweight version of Ubuntu and looks very nice in my opinion. By the way, Xubuntu doesn’t use the Unity desktop, so you can forget the extra learning curve. It does have an option to switch desktops (ie the way the GUI looks/works). One option is called Redmond, and feels a lot like XP, which might make the switch a bit easier for a windows escapee…

Like all Linux distros, it’s also a lot cheaper than windows (ie: free), and a lot more secure.

Come on in. The water’s lovely. Try a live DVD.