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Using Linux in Practice

Anyone has experience of this?

Didn't find your answer?

At the moment we are running our small practice on iMacs and have done so for many years. We keep a small dedicated PC to run payroll software but otherwise, most software is in the cloud.

Like many Apple business users I am slightly frustrated by the way the OS X is moving - closer to a phone operating system with each iteration. Small irritations but things like being unable to resize a ridiculously thin scrollbar just make the work environment a little less friendly each time.

With that in mind we are just about to start experimenting with Linux (in particular, Linux Mint) which seems to have matured and become much more user-friendly over the years. Of course, being a UNIX-based system it's likely to be extremely stable and because it's open source there are lots of developers out there with all sorts of applications and tools avalable. If it's as much fun as I hope it will be then we will eventually dump the macOS and run the iMacs on Linux.

I would just be interested to hear if anyone has been through a similar experience? All comments and criticisms welcome.

Replies (51)

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By johnt27
09th Mar 2021 11:59

Whilst I've dabbled with Linux operating systems on a home PC and had a number of Linux servers over time I suspect your biggest issue will be dealing with staff familiarity and being able to run local apps. If most things are browser based probably less of an issue but in the past it's been a pain to run Excel/Word well in Linux environments, but again less of a problem now and you can always use these in browser too.

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Replying to johnt27:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 12:06

Thankfully, just two of us - and my son is the IT exert guiding us.

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By DaveyJonesLocker
09th Mar 2021 11:59

Sorry, no answer here, but wanted to say how I agree with how each iteration is becoming just a clone of iOS. Nothing wrong with iOS on my iPhone or iPad but I want my computer to be a computer.
And how I hate how programs on Mac and Windows these days are called Apps. Arrrgghh

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Replying to DaveyJonesLocker:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 12:08

Me too - the work iMacs run Mojave but my favourite iMac at home still runs Snow Leopard (the best OS X, in my view) for my home video / music / audiobooks. It's a 2009 machine and shows no sign of stopping!

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
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By DaveyJonesLocker
09th Mar 2021 12:17

Yes, people tend to look at the initial price of iMacs and think they are overpriced, but they have a much longer lifespan than a Windows PC so they're not expensive in the long term

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By Duggimon
09th Mar 2021 12:25

You could just change how you use the systems rather than dumping the entire OS because the scroll bars are too small. There are a lot of ways to scroll.

Presumably you have other issues but do you have any that actually are an issue beyond "I don't like change"?

I'm sure Linux works fine but I would sooner cut one of my legs off, even if it was the good one, than try to move our office to a new OS that nobody in it has ever used before, and I'm concerned for you that this sounds like a huge reaction to a small issue.

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Replying to Duggimon:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 13:16

Sorry, I probably didn't explain that very well.

The scrollbar is just one small example of the (very) many issues where OSX is moving further away from being a fantastic operating system for the working environment - which it used to be - to one which is fatally tied to Apple's phones. Like the phones it's just becoming an extension of the App Store - and I have a few clients who are commercial photographers or designer (and are therefore dedicated Apple users) who think the same. I don't have an iPhone so the built-in "benefits" which Apple introduce are of no interest to me.

So the scrollbar was just an illustration of this trend whereby Apple won't allow you to make any changes to the user interface. And the whole process of "Apple's way or the highway" will only get worse over time which is why I am looking at Linux now.

Back in the day I moved from Windows to OSX because, as was the case at at that time, keeping Windows from falling over was becoming a full-time job (its' much better these days). So I have no issue with embracing change. But, probably like you, I spend long hours working at my screen and I want it to be the best experience it possibly can.

My search is for an environment which looks as good as OS X, which can be achieved with Linux, but with the ability to tweak the environment when necessary, which Apple won't allow.

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Replying to Duggimon:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 13:28

Sorry, I didn't explain that very well.

I just used the issue of the scrollbars as an example of how changes to the OSX interface can no longer be made, which is a fairly recent development. Previous versions of the operating system would allow a degree of customisation which I think is essential for the best user experience.

I know from my use of Windows in the old days (we still have a Windows 10 machine) that tweaking the system to present itself exactly how I wanted meant that my working environment became exactly how I would like it. However, Apple believe they know better - hence the well-known phrase "Apple's way or the highway".

I could list all of the current OSX niggles but that's not really the point of this post. What I'm looking for is something which looks as pleasant as OSX - which Linux will allow - with an ability to set the system up exactly how we want, which I don't have at the moment.

So it's the way we will go and I was just looking for input from any other practitioners who have used Linux with their tax software to see how well they fared.

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By zebaa
09th Mar 2021 13:58

Yes, is the simple answer. Here is more detail; There is a lack of good, desktop based, financial software for the UK market. So, spreadsheets are no problem ( use Libre Calc) but if you want to run it with financial software written for Excel you are out of luck.

Payroll software my be fine on cloud systems that don't care about your operating system, but not so on a desktop. Same for tax returns, but here you have the added complication you are getting information from one system, calculation the data on another system & then sending it off to yet another.

So, you can use some Linux computers, but you will need to keep other operating systems, in my opinion, at least for years to come. Most choose Microsoft, simply because of the wide choice in software. In time most things will become cloud based & differing operating systems less of a factor.

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Replying to zebaa:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 14:14

Thanks, that's pretty much as expected. We don't use Excel, we use OpenOffice which will port across to Linux so no problems there - but your other comments are valid and, more or less what I was anticipating.

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By paul.benny
09th Mar 2021 14:03

Absolutely no experience of Linux (or for that matter IOS). The reason for that is that when you use a minority product, there's less software, less support, less choice.

Just like if you use Economy 7 electricity, LPG in your car, Betamax, laserdisc, Minidisc (if you were around when they were current). They may be superior for your demands but swimming against the tide is always harder work than going with the flow.

And that does actually matter, because you can't afford to have tax software where you can't confidently rely on the results.

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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 14:17

Absolutely true - clearly I have a perverse streak. As a teenager I wanted Wrangler jeans when everyone else wanted Levi's.

We are currently looking critically at all the software we actually use and most, such as Taxfiler, are cloud-based and so won't be a problem. Fingers crossed.

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By tom123
09th Mar 2021 15:07

I have a laptop at home I put onto Linux purely for amusement - and I quite like it. It makes a change from what I am staring at all day..

Not sure I would like to run the office on it though.

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Replying to tom123:
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By TaxTeddy
09th Mar 2021 15:37

A fair point - and exactly why we are running a testbed / sandbox version to kick off. And of course, there are so many different distros to choose from we may try a few flavours as part of the process, just to see which we like best.

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By ArianBloodwood
11th Mar 2021 10:52

I changed to only Linux about 4 years ago for security reasons. My entire business is online cloud-based (except I have about 2 inches of physical files in a filing cabinet drawer).

Initially I used Ubuntu 16.04 and now Ubuntu 20.04. My security teacher helped me with the initial setup. Even in my 4 years with it the user interface has vastly improved. Installing the major software elements is pretty smooth - even HMRC's Basic PAYE Tools is easy. The tricky bits are with peripherals (e.g. printer drivers for Windows-intended printers, or multiple monitors) and tweaking the work environment (e.g. setting startup applications). It's always possible to do stuff in the Linux environment, but sometimes it will require some specialist tech support.

Once you have your work environment set up, though, it is super smooth and super stable.

There's a massive online community of geeks and enthusiasts too - if that appeals to you ( it does to me).

Re Excel and Word, I use SoftMaker office suite which is 100% compatible with MSOffice, is very cheap, and is better featured than LibreOffice, good though that is.

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Replying to ArianBloodwood:
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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:03

Thanks. It's looking good so far. We have chosen LINUX Mint which is looking very straightforward. I spent some time yesterday with our IT guy (my son) where he ran through the set up so far and it is completely trouble-free. Currently we are running the sandbox on a 2009 iMac which easily provides the resources for this system.

All the software I want to run - OpenOffice, Brave browser, Thunderbird - is already running and it even looks like we have a substitute for the excellent OSX finder (with columns view) instead of a Windows style file manager.

Fingers crossed.

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By dl100tr
11th Mar 2021 11:01

I have been running Linux since 2014 as I was unhappy with Windows (still am!) and it's really easy to get used to in my opinion. It's generally rock solid and you have complete control of things like updates - unlike Window 10. The problem is running Windows specific accounting packages and I haven't completely cracked that yet. TaxCalc do a Linux version that works perfectly and I have Moneysoft Payroll running under Wine (the Linux Windows emulator). Libre Office is fine for spreadsheets although I guess there may be some things out there that definitely need Excel. If you have to have a Windows package then you use an emulator like VirtualBox - most Linux distributions have this built in - and install a copy of Windows within that.
If you are using a cloud based accounting package there will be very little you can't do with Linux in my opinion.
Kubuntu is the distribution I currently use and it looks and feels almost like Windows 10 in terms of the desktop layout and it really shouldn't be difficult to get to grips with.
Of course you wouldn't have Outlook but Thunderbird, which is the pretty standard email client in Linux, is fine. The great thing about it is that it's free and easy to install & try.
You could install VirtualBox on your Windows machine and set Linus up as a virtual machine in there to give it a go.
I haven't regretted moving to it at all - it's great and there's a whole community of people out there who are really willing to help with most problems.
Give it a go!

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Replying to dl100tr:
By SteveHa
11th Mar 2021 16:49

dl100tr wrote:

..... and I have Moneysoft Payroll running under Wine (the Linux Windows emulator).

WINE=Wine Is Not an Emulator. It's a compatibility layer, and is dependent upon having the same architecture for the program as the "host" machine. i.e. You can't run a Windows ARM program on x86 Linux using WINE. That would require an emulator, and not a compatibility layer.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By dl100tr
12th Mar 2021 14:42

Yes, I was imprecise in my description of WINE - you are quite correct of course. Apologies!

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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:06

Yes, the only sticking point is running payroll software which is a Windows-based system. But I have that problem at the moment with Mac OS X so that's nothing new. I'm happy to keep a small PC just to run the payroll.

But the Linux experience so far has been so good that I am very tempted to run a Windows emulator. I have done it previously on the Mac with Parallels and it was a bit "meh". We are still thinking about this one.

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By SteveHa
11th Mar 2021 11:35

I've been using Linux exclusively on my home systems for more than 15 years. For using at work, especially where you use proprietary software, you have options:

Set up a single machine as a Windows server and remote desktop to that (can be done if you use a VPN tunnel, too). This is how I connect to the work systems.

Software such as Moneysoft, whilst I haven't tested extensively, does install and run using WINE.

Anything that will run in a browser will work without issue.

LibreOffice is actually more compatible with MS Office than MS Office is, so no problems there. (Yes, I've proved this more than once, where MS Office refuses to open one of it's own files, whilst LO doesn't bat an eyelid).

Oh, and there's always the option of running a VM in, e.g. VirtualBox to get proprietary software going, at a pinch.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:08

Interesting - it's Moneysoft which is our only Windows software. So I think we will follow your advice and start with WINE to see how it plays out.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By paulwakefield1
15th Mar 2021 09:08

Very interesting discussion.

SteveHa wrote:

LibreOffice is actually more compatible with MS Office than MS Office is, so no problems there. (Yes, I've proved this more than once, where MS Office refuses to open one of it's own files, whilst LO doesn't bat an eyelid).

I agree - LibreOffice is brilliant at handling the odd recalcitrant file and it is also very useful when encountering old file formats.

But Excel for me has too many abilities that LibreOffice does not that would enable me to forsake it.

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By Kernowlive
11th Mar 2021 11:34

I use Linux Mint and have done for several years, currently Mint 20 Cinammon. It works very well, but occassionally I have problems with a particular website that is fussy about the browser. That can be frustrating as it isn't always clear what the problem is (on-line reporting of residential capital gains for example). To deal with that I run Windows PCs as well. That also allows me to use programs that are not designed for linux such as VT & Moneysoft. Having two systems can be a nuisance at times, but it also means increased flexibility and stability so I think it is worth it. For normal use I much prefer the Mint (it's what I am using at the moment).

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Replying to Kernowlive:
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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:16

Thanks, that's an interesting point about the browser. I will make sure that we run a long-term test on browsing. To be honest, for my work machine I don't really use browsing for anything other than technical issues so I'm hoping it will work out fine.

Until recently I have been a lifelong Firefox user but I was irritated by the constant prompts to update so I have moved to Brave which is working out very well so far (it's written on Chromium).

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
By SteveHa
12th Mar 2021 11:52

Migrating to Linux will stop the upgrade prompts from Firefox. It will simply update as and when whenever you do a sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade (Debian based distros), pacman -Syu (Arch based distros), RPM for Red Hat etc.

Also useful to install Chrome as a backup (not Chromium, anymore, unless you are certain that you won't need the Google APIs, since they have now restricted access)

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
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By C.Y.Nical
14th Mar 2021 16:30

Me too - I just moved to Brave for exactly the same reason, also it's quicker than the current iteration of Firefox.

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By KH
11th Mar 2021 13:39

Why bother upgrading the operating system each time a new one is announced? Download a workable copy of the last MacOS that you really liked, and install that, and keep to it ... I really don't see the need to continually update the OS ... I have a couple of iMacs, one running Snow Leopard, the other Yosemite ... and no problems.

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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:14

I actually still have a Mac running on Snow Leopard. Best ever OSX. All my media files are on that machine and it has a 'proper' version of iTunes (before it became a shopfront).

The problem you have with that is certain functionality gets lost over time - for example I used to watch ITV Hub on this machine but I can no longer do so because Firefox won't update (newer versions require a new OS X) to a version which is recent enough to allow the ITV site to function. Spotify also tells me that it will no longer support my OS after the next couple of months - although it's been saying that for a year now.

I have to keep an old version of an iPod for compatibility with the legacy version of iTunes - but to be honest that's what I would use anyway.

So some restrictions, but nothing serious.

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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 08:18

Can I just say a big thanks to everyone who has contributed to this discussion. This is extremely helpful. For me this is quite a big step and something I've been thinking about for a very long time but it looks like we are finding our way much more easily than I had expected to be the case and while I fully accept that the use of Windows / Mac / Linux is essentially a personal choice I make no excuses for trying to make my work environment just how I would like it. I spend an awful lot of time at this desk and it might as well be as pleasurable as possible.

So thanks again to everyone for the positivity and for pointing out some possible bear traps.

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By jantill
12th Mar 2021 12:17

We have been using Linux Ubuntu since 2006 for the business. We only use the LTS (Long Term Support) versions. We used Ubuntu 10.04 through to 18.04 and soon to be version 20.04.
I also use VirtualBox to run Windows 10 for payroll software that is not supported natively in Linux.
Few people I know have even heard of Linux but I use search engines or the Linux Forums for support and it can take some time to deal with my own support.
I used to use OpenOffice but now use LibreOffice for spreadsheets and word processing, Thunderbird for email and Firefox for browsing.
It was a nasty surprise when I last installed Windows 10 on a laptop and then had to find masses of Windows software utilities which with my Linux installations were already installed (free) with the OS or were readily available (mostly free) from software depositories. It was a worse surprise when there was a major Windows 10 update which left the laptop unusable and I had to wipe the hard drive and completely re-install Windows.
I remember years ago when most people seemed to expect and accept that Windows software would frequently crash and need re-booting with all recent work lost. When I suggested that this was not normal people were amazed.

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Replying to jantill:
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By TaxTeddy
12th Mar 2021 13:08

I am greatly encouraged by the number of people in the profession who are familiar with Linux and in some cases are even running it.

It's funny you should mention your Windows 10 experience because although I have had the move to Linux in mind for quite some time, it was my son's recent experience on his Windows 10 gaming PC - where the latest updates were crashing his VR and other hardware - that made me accelerate my plans.

I agree that when you don't use Windows on a daily basis and you come to it after a while it is a bit of a shock. So with the continuing nightmare of Windows updates on one side and Apple's locking down of their OS on the other, the world of open source software never looked more attractive.

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By dl100tr
12th Mar 2021 14:48

"It was a worse surprise when there was a major Windows 10 update which left the laptop unusable and I had to wipe the hard drive and completely re-install Windows"

Just happened to me too - fortunately Windows running in a virtual machine so not too difficult to start again but a PITA all the same!

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By adam.arca
12th Mar 2021 13:33

Very interesting thread, thanks muchly to all.

I've occasionally thought about moving away from Microsoft, partially to get away from Bill Gates (although he seems to have mellowed), partially for security, and partially because I once had a unix-based server which was the dog's.

Unfortunately, I've never really had the motivation to deal with hardware issues, tweak settings and all that jazz (I do enjoy playing around with VBA but that's coding and is a completely different kettle of fish IMO). And as at least 50% of that discussion has whooshed clean over the top of me, you've not really done anything to convince me or, presumably, other waverers!

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By AS
12th Mar 2021 14:41

It has been a while since I tried to use Linux. It worked but I had issues with certain hardware as some printers did not work, some wireless keyboards and mice also had issues, etc.

The closest to a Linux system that is simple, easy and cheap browser based system that I have been using regularly is actually a Chrome Book. It just works and, as we have a Remote Desktop server set up in the office, I could log on to that for any legacy software.

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By dl100tr
12th Mar 2021 14:50

"It has been a while since I tried to use Linux. It worked but I had issues with certain hardware as some printers did not work, some wireless keyboards and mice also had issues, etc."

Things have changed I think - never had a problem with printers or wireless connections. Depending on the flavour of Linux you may have to think about printer drivers, for example, but usually they just work!

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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 08:22

Just for the record - our old printer / scanner (Epson WF3640) plays nicely with Linux Mint with no problems.

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By C.Y.Nical
14th Mar 2021 16:35

@TaxTeddy
I need to migrate to Linux too, and would be grateful if you will report back when you have some results - particularly with regard to using peripherals including multiple monitors and printers. Thanks.

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Replying to C.Y.Nical:
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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 08:25

Happy to do so. In fact, this was my intention for anyone who might be interested although you'll appreciate that this is very much a "sandbox" project at the moment and I don't expect to have any firm decisions on this until around the end of this year.

And the caveat I would add is that there are only two of us working here, with only me requiring access to our tax and accounting software and technical library - so the whole issue relating to multiple users won't really apply to us and we therefore probably won't be much help to anyone who needs this facility.

But I will post the results at the end of this year for what it's worth.

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By johnhemming
15th Mar 2021 06:56

When I bought my current laptop I got Linux installed on a dual boot basis as I wanted to investigate Linux a bit more. I do a lot of coding in Java which can run just as well (if not better) on Linux as Windows.

However, it is only recently I have started looking at it in earnest. That is because I am doing some more complex network support work which is best done with Linux (things like setting up Reverse Proxies and Penetration Testing).

I find it quite interesting and in many ways it holds together better that Windows. However, I would expect to keep Windows going for some time longer.

A lot of the cloud virtual machines are more cost effective using Linux and if I were a more technically orientated accountant (not being an accountant) I would look potentially at renting a virtual machine in the cloud for that sort of thing.

I would expect Linux to gradually become more popular. I don't really use iOS although via the cloud I support iOS. Android is a sort of form of Linux and I have done Android coding for about 9 years.

Hence I think it is really driven by what operational need you have for anything else (Windows or Apple). Its definitely worth a look at.

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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 08:28

Wow, you are way ahead of me technically speaking.

But one thing I have noticed which supports your comment is that Linux is extremely light in terms of resources. I'm not a big user of Windows 10 so I can't make a direct comparison but in terms of size, Linux seems much smaller and less hungry for resources, as far as I can tell.

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
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By johnhemming
15th Mar 2021 09:19

I am a tecchie rather than an accountant.

One thing accountants should watch when swapping between Apple, Windows and Linux is how text files are terminated.

On windows the end of a line is terminated by the characters Carriage Return (CR) and then Line Feed (LF) which are indicated by the ascii (unicode) hex characters 0xd and oxA.

On Linux the default is to just have Line Feed. (but sometimes it does CRLF)

On Apple the default is to just have Carriage Return. (and sometimes it does CRLF)

This can cause all sorts of chaos. Some software if presented say on linux with CRLF will display the CR as a full stop.

What it results in is text configuration files going wrong when swapped between systems.

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Replying to johnhemming:
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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 10:09

That's a really interesting point and exactly the sort of problem I was hoping to highlight in this thread.

So if I understand this correctly - if I were to write a text document in Libre Office / Open Office on the Linux machine it would be fine but if some of my legacy .odt files which were originally written under the Mac OS were to be imported then there could be errors. Is that the issue?

If so, that's a fairly important point because I do have legacy documents such as client engagement templates which would need to be updated when we migrate across.

Thanks for mentioning this.

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
By SteveHa
15th Mar 2021 10:22

I've never had any issues with open document format docs prepared and opened on the different platforms with LibreOffice, and in fact as I previously mentioned, LibreOffice is sometime more compatible with MS Office docs than MS Office is.

Weird, I know, but you should have no problems whatsoever with .odt.

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Replying to SteveHa:
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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 15:50

Thanks - I did hope that when Apache were porting OpenOffice to Linux they would be aware of this. I haven't yet got as far as trying legacy documents - so we'll see.

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
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By johnhemming
15th Mar 2021 16:31

TaxTeddy wrote:

So if I understand this correctly - if I were to write a text document in Libre Office / Open Office on the Linux machine it would be fine but if some of my legacy .odt files which were originally written under the Mac OS were to be imported then there could be errors. Is that the issue?

On windows text files have the suffix .txt, but also include csv files. They are files where lines matter.

Word processing files tend to have their own format, but could depend upon what the particular machines treats as a new line.

It will be more of a problem with csv files and configuration files than word processing I would expect although it could be a problem with word processing with old versions of files. More recent software is likely to handle this more effectively.

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Replying to TaxTeddy:
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By jantill
15th Mar 2021 10:39

I started with Microsoft DOS 3.1 and migrated to Windows 3, 95, 98, 2000, XP, 7 and finally Windows 10. I have used Ubuntu 10.04 through to 20.04 with trials of Linux Mint and Puppy Linux. All OS's take time for familiarity but for ease of installation I go for Linux every time. I make great use of the various forums and also web-searches where most problems have been solved already.
One thing to bear in mind is that at the heart of a Linux PC is a core. On top of the core is placed a desktop which is what one sees on the screen.
There are dozens different desktops and thus dozens of versions on Linux all based on the same core. Windows 10 mostly needs higher resources than Linux. With Linux the user can choose to use a relatively resource-heavy Linux desktop such as Ubuntu, Mint, etc or a resource-light desktop such as Lubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Puppy Linux, etc.
On the subject of drivers, I choose printers/copiers which have Linux drivers available but mostly hardware is just seen by the OS and relevent drivers are installed automatically on installation, somewhat unlike the situation with many laptops when Windows 10 was released and e.g. WiFi stopped working because there were no drivers.
Moving from Windows might be daunting so you could try out a lightweight version on an old PC which won't run Windows 10.
One of the beauties of Linux is that nearly all varieties are free to download and use without all the tedium of installation codes and licences. However, you will need an investment of time but think how much time you will have spent over the years sorting out Windows crashes with work lost and other problems.

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Replying to jantill:
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By TaxTeddy
15th Mar 2021 15:48

Agreed - we need to spend time with this. Thankfully, back in the 80s I engaged a lot with UNIX so the idea of commands and syntax aren't too alien. I also regularly use the Terminal on our iMacs so migrating from Mac to Linux doesn't look too scary - yet.

Our testbed is a 2009 iMac and it's adapted to Linux with no problem at all so far.

Your comment about the core makes me think I might also try Ubuntu before finally deciding on the best distro for the business. Thanks.

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Maytuna
By DJKL
15th Mar 2021 11:01

My son, a software developer , prefers Linux to both Windows and Mac, he currently sits across the landing from me in his office with his bank of machines and screens operating Linux, Mac and Windows. Years ago (when he was still at Uni) we had a household desktop and and asked him to add some software he ended up saving everything to an external HD, partitioning the disk and loading Linux into one part and Windows to the other and we were forced to choose on boot.

Apparently the bulk of his former university colleagues (A cohort who all took Comp Sci at St Andrews) all prefer Linux, it is the in thing. However being cynical I wonder if if it the choice of the pros because it differentiates them from the hoi polloi, in effect it it the cool Indy Band rather than the mainstream one everyone else likes.

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Replying to DJKL:
By SteveHa
15th Mar 2021 12:34

It's a generally accepted principle that development tools on Linux based systems are better and more rounded than on Windows and Mac. That will probably explain your son's preference.

I know that, on the admittedly rare occasions these days, that I return to development it's Linux I would go to. Having said that, most of the stuff I do these days is relatively simple bash scripting which can be knocked up very quickly in a text editor such as vim.

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