Casual tech users may not know all the details about the software and hardware they are using, but it’s pretty essential to understand the level of performance and features different operating systems (OS) can provide.

We’ve compiled a list with ONLY the most recent OS for Windows and Apple – since we don’t recommend students to opt for older operating systems if they want value for their money. We’ve also included Linux.

We’ve highlighted the pros and cons of each OS, to give students a clue as to what they can expect. Better informed users lead to better choices – what suits your needs?

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Moving on, here is our list of pros and cons for the leading OS systems out there in the market:

Windows 10 S

Pros:

  • Windows 10 S has more security than Windows 10 since users can only install apps from the Microsoft Store.
  • Windows 10 S offers advantages to enterprises and organizations, since it has a lot of security, and the laptops and tech that come with Windows 10 S (such as Chromebooks) are relatively affordable and even cheap. Organizations such as companies or schools, can buy in bulk and store sensitive employee/student data on the computers knowing that it is well-secured.
  • It has its own antivirus software that blocks other antivirus software. The built-in one is competent enough and, as Windows itself states, the only compatible antivirus for Windows 10 S.

Cons:

  • Since users can only install applications from the Microsoft Store, Windows 10 S is less flexible and limits users from taking advantage of apps that aren’t in the store.
  • Windows 10 S users can only use Edge as a browser and Bing as their default search engine. If other browsers are installed, Windows 10 S restricts users from making those the default web browsers.

Windows 10

Pros :

  • Smart UI (user interface) with a ‘tablet mode’ that shifts the user interface design to allow finger interactions. Buttons can get bigger and interactions use a one-tap open principle with tap-hold acting as a right-click. The moment users are back on their laptops or desktops, they can switch to Desktop mode.
  • It’s flexible. Desktop mode shifts the UI design to allow keyboard and mouse interactions.
  • Windows 10 is optimized for gamers, because of the DirectX12 API. What is it? Well, it’s a collection of application programming interfaces that enables computers to exchange data with hardware smoothly.
  • Windows 10 has a multi-screen feature (multiple screens) that enables users to multitask.
  • Windows 10 is free for official Windows 7 and Windows 8 users.

Cons:

  • Mandatory automatic updates reduce user control over update management. Updates can also cause potential damage to unsaved data, etc.
  • Limited options for notifications, which limits users’ capability to reply to notifications ASAP.
  • Some features have not been modernized, such as control panel items.

Pros and Cons of Operating Systems for Students

Mac OS 10.15

Pros:

  • No underlying 32-bit support system will slow down operations due to having to run legacy software.
  • Apple and its operating system Mac OS has great performance and long lifespan, much longer than other computers.
  • Mac OS’ default apps such as iPhoto and iMovie are practical, high-performing, and don’t slow down the computer. Some of Windows’ default apps slow down performance such as Onedrive.
  • Mac OS can run Windows operating system using Bootcamp, and so forth.
  • Mac OS users suffer fewer virus attacks since it has less user population than Windows.

Cons:

  • Will not run any application that is still 32-bit and will have problems when parts of a mostly 64-bit application are still 32-bit, which at release includes many of the music and video editing apps, such as Logic Pro X, many of the Adobe products, and many printer driver systems.
  • Apple devices are expensive compared to Windows-based laptops.
  • Limited hardware upgrade options since Mac OS is limited to Apple computers.

Linux

Pros:

  • Users can boot Linux from a USB flash drive or CD. Users don’t have to make changes to their hard drives to run it. This makes it very easy to install.
  • It’s flexible. Users can change Linux to suit their tastes. A big advantage to those with developing/programming skills. Users can configure almost everything on the system.
  • It’s very secure. There are fewer virus attacks on Linux than other OS.
  • Linux OS takes up very little space and uses very little resources.
  • Linux can be run on Windows.

Cons:

  • It’s not as user-friendly as other OS.
  • There is no dedicated tech support.
  • There are not many available games for Linux as other OS.
  • It serves better as a dual boot than an all-time replacement to other OS.

We hope this will help students find what they are looking for. Our pros and cons list should have successfully given insight into what you can expect for the different systems. Obviously, each OS can be well suited for any type of person, but each OS can suit a person better than the other.

For example, Apple with its Mac OS was basically made for artists of all kinds, with its sleek and simple UI, and its handful of default creative apps – even though it is pricier. Windows OS is ideal for gamers, and large enterprises since they come with more affordable laptops and are the most compatible with the majority of PC games. Linux, on the other hand, is a great asset for developers who want more control over their OS and who actually know how to control it. All in all, it helps to know what your tech will be used for.