Dell: Ubuntu Safer than Windows

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the Tom's Hardware community: where nearly two million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.
Status
Not open for further replies.
G

Guest

Guest
Keep running Windows people, I'm making lots of money disinfecting it, thank you... thank you very much ;-)
 
G

Guest

Guest
You would think as an alternative to Windows, Dell would use the Kubuntu build as KDE is very similar to the Windows interface vs Ubuntu which is more like Mac. I prefer Ubuntu personally, but in my experience, Windows users feel more at home with Kubuntu.
 

carickw

Distinguished
Jul 31, 2009
104
0
18,690
1
To me, it is just the fact that MS favors usability to security. When you buy a new computer, the first account you create is the admin account. Once you are logged on, all you have to do is hit OK to do anything you want. Sure, if you create a new standard user account then this doesn't apply, but the fact that the first account is always an admin really bothers me, because most windows users just set one up and use it for everyday computing. In Linux, obviously it depends on the distribution, but most of the more packaged distros like ubuntu and fedora, the account you create is a standard user account with sudo privileges. To make changes to anything outside your /home/ directory, you need to re-enter your password. I do like, however, that with standard user accounts in Windows, you need to enter an admin password, not yours, but this is minor. Also, in windows, when you become an admin, you become that user. You are not elevating your privileges, you are changing accounts. This is just stupid because whatever that program (e.g.) does is under the other account, often leaving you with files in your "/users" directory owned by the admin ...
 

lradunovic77

Distinguished
Dec 20, 2009
405
0
18,780
0
And stupid Dell didn't say what are those security problems with Windows 7 cause there are no security problems, no more then Linux or Mac OS has and btw their computers suck.
 

zak_mckraken

Distinguished
Jan 16, 2004
1,592
0
19,780
0
"The vast majority of viruses and spyware written by hackers are not designed to target and attack Linux."
It's paradoxal because, if they manage to convince everyone to switch to a Linux-based Dell, they won't be able to use that argument anymore.
 

Regulas

Distinguished
May 11, 2008
1,202
0
19,280
0
[citation][nom]nonxcarbonx[/nom]Why not just go with Debian?[/citation]
Ubuntu is based off of Debian but Ubuntu is more user friendly.
 

cknobman

Distinguished
May 2, 2006
1,035
104
19,460
0
Regardless of what OS is safer anything made by Dell is an overpriced POS. Its SOP for Dell to offer an underpowered, under featured, more cheaply made unit than most of its competitors all while charging a higher price.

 
[citation][nom]tpho2500[/nom]who knew?[/citation]

I hope you are being sarcastic. I was under the impression that EVERYONE knew this.

Here is why this is true:
I don't know what the percentage is but lets say 90% of computers have windows. When you are a hacker why would you target Linux when it is so rarely used. If the tables were turned and right now 90% of people used Linux, I would bet every dime I make for the rest of my life that Linux would have the most viruses, malware/spyware and windows would be the one that LOOKS secure.

Same goes for MAC. Some people think MACs don't/can't get viruses. The truth is that they CAN get viruses but they are rare. Why? Because MACs aren't nearly as common as PCs so they are not being targeted. If MACs were the most common computer I promise you that they would get loaded up with spyware and viruses.

Hackers and malware programmers just target the majority. (Unless they hate a certain company or are trying to hack into a certain PC.)
 

kelemvor4

Distinguished
Oct 3, 2006
469
0
18,780
0
I'd have to agree with others who got thumbed down. One of the big reasons it's "safer" is that it's less pervasive, same as mac. Having said that, Linux users tend to be those with a great deal of technical knowledge, and can properly secure their workstation. As desktop Linux gets out to more "average" users this will no longer be the case.

On another note, Linux won't be a great desktop OS until the kernel devs address the serious kernel scheduler problems that impact multimedia performance. Well that and game devs would have to switch to OpenGL. I don't see that happening anytime soon. Game compatibility with ecks bocks is far more [strike]desirable[/strike] lucrative than with Linux and Mac combined, and that means DirectX.
 

kelemvor4

Distinguished
Oct 3, 2006
469
0
18,780
0
[citation][nom]panto[/nom]Safer only until its market share increases. Anyway, this is nothing more than marketing, and the question I have to ask is what does Dell gain by selling more Ubuntu computers while potentially making a bad political move to oppose Microsoft?Don't anyone say lower support cost, I dun wanna hear it[/citation]

Dell gains the ability to sell computers for a few hundred dollars less than their competitors who have to include a windows license with the windows based systems - presumably resulting in consumers buying DELL computers instead of HP or other competitors products. The cost for a windows license is substantial, when you're talking about a budget PC (i.e. not gaming) then the license can be as much as the whole system!

Windows 7 Full Package Retail Price (US)

* Windows 7 Home Premium (Full): $199.99
* Windows 7 Professional (Full): $299.99
* Windows 7 Ultimate (Full): $319.99

Ubuntu Linux Full Package Retail Price (US)
*Ubuntu whatever (Full): $0.00

Whenever a publicly traded company does something and you wonder why. The answer is always "to make more money".
 

Dkz

Distinguished
Oct 16, 2009
207
0
18,680
0
I read the full Dell's pdf and its full of crap, It's just another half true or lie if you like.
Ubuntu may be a great OS, but it's not easy to use for beginners, plus it's not really good working with wireless cards and if you don't have internet connection you can't ask forums what to do your doomed!
Games won't run in ubuntu, unless you work around wine and stuff like that.
I'm not saying that Ubuntu is good or bad, I'm currently using it as my netbook OS.
What it's really annoying is this war of misinform to average users who do not know better. Dell lost lots of points in my book!
 

matt_b

Distinguished
Jan 8, 2009
653
0
19,010
11
[citation][nom]arlandi[/nom]yeah. but let's take a look at servers for example. servers usually has at least one admin to take care of them. and for one to become an admin, is to have KNOWLEDGE about the OS.i mean, do you really expect a casual user to know how to "recompile the kernel" or "compile the driver"?comparing Desktop market to the Server market is not fair.[/citation]
True it is not fair. The one argument about this I'm not seeing yet is that yes Linux is king of the server market, but is not the "majority" of all computer combined which makes it a minority and doesn't make it worthwhile for a hacker/virus to go after a small market share - wrong. The most profitable and lucrative information out there is tucked away on the servers running Linux! Weather it be bank statements, financial account or routing numbers, credit card info, social security numbers, and so on. The reason why so much malicious content is out there for the Windows platform is that it's just that much more easier to infect (case in point is the classic .exe - who doesn't double click on that?). Market share aside, the money and best interests in the eyes of hackers and virus creators alike lies withing taking down these big corporations running the Linux environment hording the wealth of valuable info on them. Sure there's a chuckle in wiping out someone's picture directory or screwing with the system32 file within the windows directory - but there's no personal gain in it other than satisfaction. Security-wise, it IS harder to take down Linux which is why very few corporations running Linux report being breached/hacked, servers remotely crashed, or priceless data stolen. There is a wealth of reasoning behind these servers choosing Linux over Windows, and market share/infection ratio isn't the top one.
 

tayb

Distinguished
Jan 22, 2009
1,143
0
19,280
0
The fanboys don't know what to do. Biased towards Microsoft and biased towards Linux. Ahhhh. If only Dell was saying "Apple OS more secure than Windows" we wouldn't have such a problem with the fanboys not knowing what to do.
 

js1882

Distinguished
Apr 13, 2010
24
0
18,510
0
All those people saying that "It's only safer because it doesn't have market share" are just plain ignorant. Linux is safer by DESIGN. Why do you think that the majority of the servers run linux and not windows?
If you download something you can't just "run" it, you have to change the permissions and mark it executable before it will work. Windows was not originally designed to work over a network, the functionality was just added on top of the existing system.
 

COLGeek

Cybernaut
Moderator
While Dell is stating the obvious, it is purely a common sense observation. I, too, am a Ubuntu fan and I know how Linux distros, in general, are more secure that any MS OS.

The issue is one of numbers and where the black hats can create the most turmoil. Lots of boxes means lots of opportunity. Fewer boxes, especially when considering the technical prowess of your average Linux user, means less chances to wreak havoc.

All OSes are vulnerable to some extent. Some just make it easier than others. Having lots to target make it even easier for those.
 
[citation][nom]Emperus[/nom]The only reason windows has that dominating market share is gaming.[/citation]

No, gamers are a very small minority in the market. If you want to know why Windows is dominant:

1. It's because the vast majority of businesses use Windows because that's what most of their proprietary custom one-off applications use. It's also the OS that runs MS Office natively and runs on commodity hardware. OpenOffice works well on most MS Office-format files, but there are some incompatibilities (particularly with hacked-together Excel macros loved by accounting) and thus many want to use actual MS Office.

2. It's because of consumers who know nothing other than Windows and MacOS and not wanting to pay for the more-expensive Apple hardware.

There are just no other alternatives.
The PS3, XBox 360 and Wii aren't alternative platforms for gaming? Plus, there are quite a few games that run on Linux. They're not Crysis, but if you can live with not feeling the need to find a game that costs $60 and justifies your purchase of CrossFired 5890s and just want to play games to have fun, there are lots of games on Linux.

Moreover, majority of the people keep away from linux because of a somewhat tedious learning curve.
Most don't know it exists. There is a learning curve to move to any new OS, be it a newer version of Windows, MacOS, or Linux. People balk at moving to anything different because it takes a tiny bit of work on their part, but we're not still running Windows 3.x, so the learning curve isn't that steep to preclude people from using a different OS.
 
[citation][nom]iLLz[/nom]I don't know about "SAFER". I mean in the context that far less malicious software is written to target these systems then sure, but is it really "safer"? Windows 7 has alot of Memory Randomizations and such now to help protect the systems that run it. Not too keen on linux protection mechanisms but I doubt linux goes thru the lenghts Windows does to protect you. Im not saying Win 7 is perfect, far from it but that is the nature of software. If people have the will and persistence, they will find a weakness in ur code. To me, this Dell statement is vague and baseless and doesn't even have any data or facts to back it up, other than Microsoft has all the market share so everyone writes malware for it.[/citation]

Eh, not quite. Linux has some very sophisticated security mechanisms, such as SELinux and chroot jails. The "nobody writes viruses for Linux because nobody runs it" is also false. There are in fact a handful of pieces of Linux malware (rootkits) and specific vulnerability exploits (such as the not-quite-random OpenSSH key generation debacle of a couple of years ago). Automated port scanners and SSH brute-force password-breaking programs abound on the Internet. (Hook up a Linux machine with SSH active directly to the modem and run wireshark. Look at all of the crap pinging you on SSH's Port 22 and look at all of the failed login attempts in the system logs.) Linux runs on most Web servers and a server is far, far more attractive target to an attacker than Grandma's Windows desktop. It's much more powerful, has a fixed IP on a fat pipe, and is always on, which means it can be used for far more things (serving a warez website, etc.) than a consumer desktop or laptop.
 

kencolestud69

Distinguished
Jun 7, 2009
51
0
18,630
0
Ubuntu 10.04 rocks! Synaptic Package Manager is your friend if you are new to Linux and want to look for and install Apps/Games all for the price of $0.00
 

boogalooelectric

Distinguished
Jul 1, 2009
266
0
18,860
27
It seems a lot of Windows users here are assuming lots of things about Linux. For those who don't know Linux and are prognosticating about it I suggest you do some research or at the very least try Linux before you post things that you do not know about.

As MU_Engineer has pointed out Linux is far more control and security than people seem to think, and since I cannot explain it better than he can all i can say to support him is try it before you write it off. I have Windows 7 and Ubuntu 10.04 and the ONLY thing I use Windows for is for games, the rest of the time (browsing, email, spreadsheets, word processing or ANY application that is not a game I run in Ubuntu)
 

itpro

Distinguished
Mar 25, 2010
97
0
18,660
9
Where do you guys come up with these arguments?

"Linux dominates the server market!"
Uh, no it doesn't. I checked several sources, including IDC, Gartner, and Netcraft, and all show Windows servers dominating the market. Even among web servers, Windows still rules the roost.

"The only reason to run Windows is games!"
Sorry, but gaming is a small niche market. The reason to run Windows is the 10s of thousands of programs written for it, including almost every business program and vertical market app on the planet. Linux is fine for some uses, but the enterprise runs on Windows.

"Windows is riddled with viruses and malware, but not Linux!"
Wrong again. Most Windows users never see a virus, and newer versions of Windows like 7 are vastly improved over older versions. Add to this the recent news of Linux repositories distributing malware and malware active on Mac OS and you have an increasingly level playing field. Most malware on Windows is targeting unpatched pirated versions running in third world countries, not legitimate and updated systems in the developed world.

I have installed and used a variety of Linux systems, from desktops to servers running many different distros. Linux has its strong points, and I recommend it for appropriate applications. The Linux community would be better served by doing the same rather than making false arguments and outrageous claims that it is suitable for every one and every application. I have seen first hand the frustration of end users who bought into the hype and tried to switch to Linux only to find that it won't do what they wanted and could do easily with Windows.
 

guzz46

Distinguished
Mar 1, 2010
144
0
18,680
0
Where do you guys come up with these arguments?

"Linux dominates the server market!"
Uh, no it doesn't. I checked several sources, including IDC, Gartner, and Netcraft, and all show Windows servers dominating the market. Even among web servers, Windows still rules the roost.

"The only reason to run Windows is games!"
Sorry, but gaming is a small niche market. The reason to run Windows is the 10s of thousands of programs written for it, including almost every business program and vertical market app on the planet. Linux is fine for some uses, but the enterprise runs on Windows.

"Windows is riddled with viruses and malware, but not Linux!"
Wrong again. Most Windows users never see a virus, and newer versions of Windows like 7 are vastly improved over older versions. Add to this the recent news of Linux repositories distributing malware and malware active on Mac OS and you have an increasingly level playing field. Most malware on Windows is targeting unpatched pirated versions running in third world countries, not legitimate and updated systems in the developed world.

I have installed and used a variety of Linux systems, from desktops to servers running many different distros. Linux has its strong points, and I recommend it for appropriate applications. The Linux community would be better served by doing the same rather than making false arguments and outrageous claims that it is suitable for every one and every application. I have seen first hand the frustration of end users who bought into the hype and tried to switch to Linux only to find that it won't do what they wanted and could do easily with Windows.
From wikipedia

"Netcraft reported in September 2006 that eight of the ten most reliable internet hosting companies ran Linux distributions on their web servers, As of June 2008 Linux distributions represented five of the top ten, FreeBSD three of ten, and Microsoft two of ten, as of February 2010 Linux distributions represented six of the top ten, FreeBSD two of ten, and Microsoft one of ten"

In September 2008 Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer admitted that 60% of web-servers run Linux versus 40% that run Windows Server

Linux distributions are also commonly used as operating systems for supercomputers, as of June 2010 out of the top 500 systems 455 (91%) run a Linux distribution

I have never heard of Linux repositories distributing malware (send me some of this malware and i will try it out)
In my years of running windows i have had plenty of viruses (nothing serious but still a virus) all while running up to date antivirus software, so has all my friends and family, if you run windows sooner or later you will get a virus or at least infected with a bunch of spyware. I have never gotten a virus in years of running linux and i have been to plenty of dodgy web sites with no need for antivirus software.

Windows isn't suitable for every one and every application either, like being connected to the internet for example.
 

kingnoobe

Distinguished
Aug 20, 2008
774
0
18,980
0
Yes, guzz you must be a security expert. Seriously read up on what REAL experts say instead of simply trying to bullshit.

Heres the main reasons I use windows instead of linux, mac or any other bullshit out there.
1-compatiblity
2-compatiblity
3-compatiblity
4-etc...

I don't want to have to set there and constantly find work arounds to make shit work. I've had Ubuntu before, and now that I have two desktops I probably will use Ubuntu for my old one. But only to surf the web, and do fincial work on. As it is safer. (You usually safer living in the country then in the city commensense ftw!)
 

guzz46

Distinguished
Mar 1, 2010
144
0
18,680
0
Yes, guzz you must be a security expert. Seriously read up on what REAL experts say instead of simply trying to bullshit.

Heres the main reasons I use windows instead of linux, mac or any other bullshit out there.
1-compatiblity
2-compatiblity
3-compatiblity
4-etc...

I don't want to have to set there and constantly find work arounds to make shit work. I've had Ubuntu before, and now that I have two desktops I probably will use Ubuntu for my old one. But only to surf the web, and do fincial work on. As it is safer. (You usually safer living in the country then in the city commensense ftw!)
You don't need to be a security expert its common knowledge, even the department of defense uses linux.

Heres the main reason i use linux instead of windows
1-compatibility
2-safer
3-no viruses
4-no spyware
5-faster
6-doesn't slow down over time
7-don't need to defrag my hdd
8-free
etc..

My linux install took about 10-15 minutes and everything worked straight out of the box, where my windows 7 install took maybe 40 minutes and once done i still had to download drivers for my touchpad, soundcard, graphics card and get a antivirus program setup, in the end well over an hour.
 

mlopinto2k1

Distinguished
Apr 25, 2006
1,433
0
19,280
0
[citation][nom]flachet[/nom]A Commodore 64 is safer too, but that doesn't mean I'm ditching my Win 7 64bit.Geez.....[/citation]Actually, commodore 64's and Amiga's were prone to viruses more often than you think.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY