Is Open Source software for Windows really a good thing?

Is Open Source software for Windows really a good thing? Perhaps it’s little more than an enabler to keep people from having to switch to a more secure OS like Linux?

This article at prompts all of us to really look at the good as well as the bad that can come from using Open Source software on the Windows OS.

I’ve quietly expressed the thoughts you are about to read before, but i feel the need to grow more vocal about it. We are at a cross roads that we may not get a second chance to visit as KDE, Mozilla and OOo make determined pushes on win32.

As you read on, please keep in mind that I’m not trying to make the blanket statement that developing software for Windows is Evil. I’m speaking strictly about Free Software desktop applications being ported to Windows (and to a somewhat lesser extent MacOS X, too).

It’s All About the Applications

All other things being equal (which they aren’t, but that’s another story), the vast majority of users select which operating system to run based on the applications available for it.

This is not a modifiable behavior because applications are what enable people to get things done, be that making a spreadsheet or playing a game. If the applications people want are available on Windows, they will tend to stick with Windows. Conversely, if the applications they want are to be found only on Linux/BSD, they will eventually end up using Linux/BSD.