SHCC WYSIWYG Article from December 2000

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This article appeared in the December 2000 WYSIWYG newsletter.

Operating Systems

by Jerry Carson

Choosing an operating system is a lot like choosing a religion. It's a very personal choice. Let me tell you a little about each one and you can decide if you want to switch.

Windows ME - (ME stands for Millennium Edition, 2000 was already used) This is the latest and last version of Windows 98. This OS is the friendliest of the Windows operating systems. Plug and Play works a little better, The Internet is a little better, Audio and Video is a little better, the OS is generally a little faster. If you're into games, this is the OS for you.

Windows 2000 - This is the latest version of NT. Primarily a business OS. This OS provides a much higher level of security than 98 or ME. This means that if you set up multiple accounts (one for you, one for your spouse, another for your kids, etc.) that your kids can't delete your files, and you can't accidentally remove critical system files. It also means that badly behaved programs are shutdown BEFORE they can crash your system. Unfortunately, most games and some older programs are considered badly behaved programs.

LINUX - There are a number of flavors of this OS, they have a few minor differences, usually during installation. This has all the security of Windows 2000 (in fact Windows 2000 copies a lot of the security features from UNIX/LINUX). It is also FAST, often as much as twice as fast as Windoze. Unfortunately, it will not run programs that have been written for Windows. You do not have very many software choices. On the plus side, much of the software that is available is free. Also, not a lot of hardware has drivers for LINUX so you may not be able to use the latest and greatest gizmo.

Mac OS-X - This is the latest from Apple. It only runs on Apple computers so you'll have to update your hardware as well as your software. It does have similar security to LINUX or Windows 2000. Also, it will allow you to run older Mac software which means it has a lot of software. It is also slow and more than a little buggy. You might want to wait a little for this one.

Windows Whistler - This is the next OS from Microsoft. It is supposed to combine the ease-of-use and compatibility of Windows ME with the security of Windows 2000. Sounds great if it works. Expect it in 2001, or maybe 2002, definitely by 2003, I think.

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