Many people are extremely excited and anxious to try Linux in order to enjoy all the benefits of using a modern, secure, stable, and inexpensive operating system.  However, most people use Microsoft Windows today and they may need a way to "migrate" to Linux, trying it out without completely abandoning their existing MS Windows system and software.  

This page will explain six different options for doing just that, starting with our best recommendation (5 stars) and working down (1 star).

Options Ease of Installation and Use Low Cost* Stability
and
Usability
Linux
Compatibility
MS Windows
Compatibility
Desk
Space
Used
Overall
Recommen-
dation
1. Run Linux Software

Use the dozens of MS Windows file-compatible software programs.  Look at all the file types supported by Linspire.

$0


2. Switch Box

Run Linux and MS Windows on two different computers but use a "KVM switch" to share the keyboard, monitor and mouse.

Provides 100% compatibility and is very easy to set up.

$235+


3. OS Emulators

Use an OS emulator such as Win4Lin or VMWare.

Provides very good compatibility, but a little more work to set up.  Win4Lin will not support Direct X games.  Requires a copy of MS Windows.

$70 - $310


4. Partitioning

Install Linspire on a separate partition or hard drive.  Requires you to reboot to switch between OS's.

$60+


5. Two Computers

Run Linux and MS Windows on two different computers.  Very compatible but more costly and takes up more room on your desktop.

$325+


6. WINE or CodeWeavers Crossover Office

These products try to allow MS Windows programs to run on Linux.  Tends to have a lot of bugs and is only compatible with a handful of programs.  If you need or want to continue to run expensive MS Windows software, we suggest you just stick with MS Winodws.  If you want to move to Linux, move to Linux!

$0-$50

Options Ease of Installation and Use Low Cost* Stability
and
Usability
Linux
Compatibility
MS Windows
Compatibility
Desk
Space
Used
Overall
Recommen-
dation
*All prices assume you have Linspire and a CNR Membership.


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