Operating System or better known as “OS” stands for “a software that communicates between applications and computer hardwares”. The first operating system was created by IBM in 1956 for General Motors IBM 704 mainframe. In the age of IT literacy, we may have come across terms such as IOS (Apple OS), Android (Google OS), Windows (Microsoft OS) … and many others not so popular ones line HP UX, AIS, Linux, RedHat, etc without truly understanding it’s significance role in our daily lives.
The 2 most popular genre of OS today is Unix derived (linux) and Windows OS. Generally, Unix based operating system employs Open source development, community oriented and still is freely distributed today. This have lead to companies using Unix as their base code and made modifications to fit their own needs. Believe it or not, Mac OS X is a flavor of Unix. Some of the common variation of Unix based operating systems are FreeBSD, Novell, HP/UX, Solaris, Linux – Redhat, Debian, Ubuntu, Centos, SuSE, etc. Windows OS on the other hand is a ground up Operating System developed by Microsoft. Windows is a close source development (aka proprietary) as in only Microsoft have access to its source codes and exposes API (Application Program Interface) for other vendors to develop their applications to interface with Windows.
When a publisher (eg: RedHat, Mac, etc) have placed extensive research and development into their “version” of linux … it becomes proprietary to them. They would require a team of developer to constantly improve on the “base” version of linux and as they built on top of it, it takes on a life of it’s own. Essentially, it’s still linux but much of the functionality have been enhanced or a lot of features was built into it to provide ease of management and usage.
So which is right for you? Depends. Windows is currently being used by 70% of the world PC users, whereby 90% of the world mobile users are using Android. Each OS have its strength and weakness. Use it to your advantage wherever applicable.