Ubuntu has just released its latest version "karmic koala" and for people who are sick Windows and want to change it is very good news. Ubuntu is an alternative operating system that is free, that's right absolutely without charge and if that wasn't enough it also has significant advantages over Windows. It's not perfect yet however as there are a couple of aspects which need improving before many people will make the switch over.
Being a distribution of Linux means that there are almost no viruses around that will affect it, we have been using Ubuntu for years now and have never seen it infected at all. This means that you don't have to install anti-virus or anti-spyware software and therefore your computer will run a lot quicker even though Ubuntu is approximately the same size as Windows.
Installation of Ubuntu is far easier and much quicker than Windows, the installation process is straightforward and generally does not involve driver installations often a major time consumer when installing Windows. No more inserting disks when trying to install hardware, just plug it in and and it goes.
Ubuntu has packaged with it a version of Openoffice an open source free alternative to Microsoft office that works just as well. Ubuntu also has packaged with it Firefox and our opinion the best browser available at the moment. And if its free software you after them and then Ubuntu has its own software centre where you can download hundreds of free applications easily and safely.
Unfortunately, there are some pieces of software that Ubuntu does not support and for many people this may be a stumbling block. For example Ubuntu does not support Itunes and although there are ways to play and copy music using Ubuntu this incredibly popular interface is not yet available although there is talk that they are working on this. This also goes for Windows live messenger and although the Ubuntu Instant Messenger is every bit as good it is not exactly the same which may put off a lot of people. This lack of compatibility with major software vendors is I believe the greatest disadvantage of Ubuntu and if it were not for this one not so minor hiccup I would quite happily swap my entire operation over to Ubuntu in a second.
Ubuntu is by far the nicest looking, easiest to use and install and the safest operating system that I know of and I believe as software compatibility increases (and it will) the major companies will not be able to stem the tide of people switching over to a free, safe and sexy looking operating system.