Ubuntu vs. Windows 7 on the business desktop

Microsoft Windows may be the de facto standard desktop operating system in business environments, but high costs, restrictive licences and constant security issues are leading an increasing number of companies to consider open source alternatives — as Kat Orphanides explains.

Ubuntu Desktop

Networking is an oft-cited problem area with Linux, but the current version of Ubuntu's Network Manager utility detected both Wi-Fi and a USB 3G modem correctly, although connection details for the latter had to be specified manually.

User Interface

Unity

Ubuntu Desktop

The biggest change introduced with Unity is the Launcher. This runs down the left of the Desktop and replaces the taskbar of old that sat at the bottom of the screen, but it performs a similar purpose. It works much like the Windows 7 Taskbar too, with a selection of pinned' quick-launch icons for commonly used applications.

Ubuntu Desktop

The Launcher is also home to Ubuntu's Workspace Switcher for managing virtual Desktops. Windows can be dragged across Desktops when this is open, which is a useful way of managing application windows without a built-in Windows equivalent.

Ubuntu Desktop
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