Linux is is open-source operating created by Linus Torvalds, a Finnish American software engineer, first released in 1991. The Linux kernel is the core of the operating system that is updated and, being open-source, it can be developed by any software developer, including Google, whose Android operating system for tablets and smartphones is a development of Linux. Anyone who has an Android tablet or smartphone is using such a development.
Developments of Linux run NAS storage devices, broadband routers and web servers that deliver most of the connections and most websites. Using Linux packages provided by website hosts is cheaper but more customisable than using Windows packages. When operating systems are used in most cars, Linux will be the dominant operating system, just as it is on tablets and smartphones now.
The main problem with Android is that Google drops support for a version relatively quickly and many devices can’t be upgraded to the latest version. An unsupported operating system that is being used by millions of devices is a good target for cyber criminals and hackers. The Jelly Bean version was the latest one not so long ago (reigning up to July 2013) and Google has already ended support for some of it. Lollipop is the current version of Android and support for it will probably end in a few years. However, anyone who has a laptop or desktop PC running a distribution of Linux, such as Ubuntu, also known as a distro, will always be able to update it to the latest version. Updates are also free. Ubuntu Linux can also be used on tablets and smartphones.
Upgrade from a previous version of Ubuntu –
Most Linux distros allow the latest version to be downloaded free of charge and installed on an unlimited number of computers. The developers make their money from donations and from providing support and other related services.
Many Linux distros, including Ubuntu, can run a computer from their installation disc, making it possible to test run them before deciding whether to install or not. These boot discs make excellent troubleshooters because if the disc runs a Linux distro successfully on a problematic computer that might not be booting a version of Windows, for instance, its hardware is sound and the software is the source of the problem(s).
There are still many millions of computers running Windows XP Home and Professional versions, which Microsoft no longer supports in any way, including no longer providing security updates.
The latest versions of most Linux distros work very well on most old hardware and would be far more secure than XP and they are updated to close any security vulnerabilities that are discovered, which is no longer the case with XP.
A default installation of Ubuntu Linux comes with the Mozilla Firefox web browser and plenty of other software including the LibreOffice office suite that was developed from OpenOffice and the Mozilla Thunderbird email program. Thunderbird can set up an email account automatically just by entering the email address into its setup routine. It can also be used to deal with Google’s Gmail and Microsoft’s Hotmail and Outlook.com webmail systems instead of logging into the online accounts.
Read the following Wikipedia article to find out what other software can be obtained and where to find it. A free program or app can be obtained for most purposes.
Ubuntu (operating system) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubuntu_%28operating_system%29