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A widely discussed topic of these days is Linux vs. windows which is going to be discussed here in these papers. Both of them can be compared by assessing two major factors: investment and security.

Linux which is open source software is a potential example of the open source operating system which stands in the competition with the Microsoft windows which is a proprietary operating system. To count the total cost of ownership (TCO) for both; Linux and Windows for any application is not easy. The investment is higher when the OS (operating system) is on the open source rather than the proprietary. But basically this question needs systematic analyses because the answers may vary from organization to organization. The latest study of International Data Corporation (IDC) has written that the TOC for the Linux was 11% to 22% higher than that of the windows. The main two components for TCO are the staffing costs and the downtime. When it comes to technocrats, Linux needs more experts and expertise. And if we think about the migration, then the migration from Microsoft windows to Linux is more expensive than the migration from UNIX to Linux.

As far as the security is concerned, the Microsoft is more vulnerable than the Linux. Linux provides protection against attacks from buffer and against other problems which rely upon overwriting the data. While thinking about the Microsoft, it has the tendency to mix data and program code in its applications. It might allow the distrusted data from out side the system and also activate the arbitrary code and sometimes it also allows digitally signed code to be supplied from outside the system.

Microsoft is striving to make the windows server truly enterprise ready where as the UNIX systems are considered as highly secure and reliable for almost all the enterprise scenario. The windows server is designed to slash the time of implementing and managing the solution by regulating the administration tasks and providing vigorous tools for customised administration.

It is observed that after moving to the Microsoft software, the job of maintaining company’s IT system becomes easier. But as the big IT companies like IBM has started sponsoring Linux, the expectations of the customers for the prospects of the platform is also elevating. When it comes to either Linux or windows, it depends upon the IT infrastructure of the company, capabilities of employees, over all skill of the firm and lots more. But it is observed that most of the firms prefer the amalgam of both Linux and windows.

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