Linux or Windows server? Understand the differences!

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One question that has been hotly debated by website developers is which server  (Linux or Windows) is the best choice. Linux is more versatile, with a huge range of customization and specialization options, while Windows is seen by many as friendlier and capable of supporting a wider range of applications and hardware.

But is one really better than the other? We dive into the pros and cons of each operating system to see how they compare face to face. Check it out below!

Linux or Windows: which is better?

When it comes to choosing the operating system for personal use, the Linux vs. Linux debate. Windows (vs. macOS) is an endless battle. The choice of an operating system for one's own use is usually influenced more by a personal matter than the technical aspects that the system can offer.

Of course in both options, there are advantages and disadvantages, but it is up to the user to decide which aspects are most important to use, and how to deal with the sacrifices of each choice.

However, when talking about the server operating system, the story is a little different. To choose the best operating system for a server, you need to consider the technical aspects and requirements of the application that will run on it. As well as calculate the expenses that will be involved depending on how the server is configured.

Linux server or Windows server?

In professional or corporate use, Linux or Windows servers are the most used options worldwide, so it is between these two systems that you should choose for your server.

According to W3Techs statistics, considering all web sites, 39.3% of sites use Linux servers, while 31.9% use Windows servers, but these numbers approximate when we compare only the most visited sites in the world.

Before making the choice of a server operating system, it is important to know more about the options available and to be prepared for the challenges that will be faced in both choices.

Linux server

A Linux server is a server that uses a system built with Linux at its core. Free of charge for software licenses, Linux enables companies to save on infrastructure and to deliver content, applications, and services to their customers.

Because it is open source and has an open-source license, Linux benefits from contributions from developers and users around the globe, making the system maintain a high level of quality. And having a modular structure, the system can be adjusted and modified by any project according to specific needs.

What we get as a result are hundreds of Linux-based operating systems, known as distributions, or Linux distros that can be used on servers.

Top Distributions for Linux Servers

When you hire a server running Linux, you usually have more than one operating system option to use on the server. Major distributions for Linux servers include:

Ubuntu Server

Ubuntu is arguably the best known Linux operating system. It and its variants offer great user experiences. Its popularity is due to the ease of use in its desktop version.

Even in the server version, Ubuntu is a popular option that offers good stability and package availability.

For hosting services, VPS, and dedicated servers, having Ubuntu Server available is virtually a rule. Most Linux users are already used to using the system on the desktop, and dealing with the server version turns out to be much easier for those who know it.

CentOS

CentOS is an open-source distribution derived from RHEL. In addition to providing a stable environment, it offers an enterprise-class server experience.

Notably, based on RHEL, CentOS has an excellent history of stability on enterprise servers.

The biggest disadvantage of CentOS over RHEL is the support offered. While CentOS is maintained by the community, RHEL has corporate support that specializes in its distribution and related technologies.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)

When it comes to Linux for business use, Red Hat Linux (RHEL) is one of the most prominent distros. RHEL is maintained by Red Hat, the first open-source company valued at over $ 1 billion.

The highlight of RHEL is the support service that is offered to customers, apart from the technologies in constant development.

However, despite its superior features and excellent support service, RHEL is not for novices. Administration and configuration can seem a bit complicated and you will need a systems administrator to handle a server with this operating system.

Debian

Debian is one of the best systems to use on a Linux server. Debian's focus is on package security, stability, and reliability.

Due to strict security processes, Debian generally releases more outdated packages than other distributions.

However, in many cases having an extremely stable and reliable system is more important than having the most current packages and programs in the latest versions. And that's where Debian stands out from other distributions on Linux servers.

Windows servers

Windows has prospered globally, and all users receive constant support and product updates. Individuals who are familiar with its graphical user interface tend to choose the same operating system for their server as well.

However, Windows requires more hardware resources – faster processor, more internal memory and more storage space.

Although Microsoft claims that it is because of the extra functionality each application provides, the heavy resource requirements leave many users frustrated.

In addition, users must meet extra expenses for software development and licensing tools. The cheapest license for Windows Server costs more than $ 500 (about $ 2,000 at current conversion) and so the cost for a Windows server can be higher.

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