Can Windows/Mac users view websites hosted on Linux/Unix?

The operating system of your computer at home has nothing to do with the server of your web host. Whether your server uses any of the Windows Server family or any of the Linux/Unix based system as their operating system, you could still view any website hosted by any of the two server operating systems. This is because the sites that you view in your computer are already designed, built and crafted to run as a website and not on your computer’s operating system. Simply put, there is no need to worry about compatibility issues as both formats, Windows and Linux, are more than capable of running and powering impressive websites.

However, there may be applications that can’t be viewed or that cannot function normally if they are not supported by your system. In this case, there may be a need for you to install some patches or applications that enables your system to support the application.

Can Windows run Linux-based applications?

Windows users sure can run Linux based applications in their system. In fact, it is easier to run Linux-based applications on Windows than to run Windows-based applications on Linux. Although running Linux application on Windows does not come automatically as you may need to tweak your system or to install applications that can enable you to run the Linux on Windows. One of the reasons why it is easier to run Linux on Windows is the availability of open source applications that can be installed immediately into a Windows machine – and being open source means you install it for free. For example, anybody can simply setup a virtual machine that can be used to run Linux software using a free Linux distribution – without the hassle and the need of licensing the software.
The truth is that you can even run the whole Linux Software in your Windows machine, not just Linux-based applications by installing some necessary software into your Windows machine, even without leaving Windows.

What are the ways of running Linux based software in a Windows machine?

There are a number of ways that should allow you to run Linux software on your Windows Machine. Among them are the following:

  • With the use of Virtual Machines – Virtual machines are applications that allow you to run an operating system in your desktop. Examples of VM’s are VirtualBox and VMware player which can be installed for free and then used to download an ISO files for a Linux distribution and have it installed inside the VM just like you install it in a standard computer. With VM, you can run Linux without exiting your Windows.
  • With the use of Cygwin – Cygwin offers a Linux-like environment on your Windows machine although basically it is not the proper way to run Linux on Windows as the software needs to be recompiled to run. Cygwin can also be used to install an OpenSSH server and get SSH access to a Windows machine.
  • By Installing Ubunto through Wubi – Wubi is the supported installer for Windows that allows the safe and easy installation and uninstallation of Ubunto. However, using Ubunto with Wubi means you need to reboot your system and use Ubunto like you installed a dual-boot configuration.
  • With coLinux-based distributions – coLinux, which means Cooperative Linux, is a way to run Linux alongside the Windows that allows it to run faster than simply running Linux in a VM. The problem with coLinux is that it doesn’t support 64-bit versions of Windows which means that you have to run it with a 32-bit Windows version.

Why should we run Linux on Windows, why not choose Linux in the first place?

There are a number of good reasons why people stick with Windows. These are a few of them:

  • Linux can ‘t run everything especially applications written in .NET and ASP which needs Windows to run it.
  • Windows can run almost everything that Linux can run, which makes it pretty versatile.