Contrary to common knowledge, there’s more to operating systems than Windows and Mac. There’s Chrome, Ubuntu, Linux, Solaris, and more. But here’s the question: what is the fastest operating system for a laptop?
Here, we will take a look at the leading operating systems and see how each performs.
What is an operating system?
An operating system or OS is the program that manages all the files on your computer. This is the very first that will be loaded the moment you press the power button on your laptop. The operating system has the defined application program interface (API) which your apps use to operate.
Your laptop’s OS also manages the sharing and retrieval of internal memory across applications. Also, it helps identify which software should run in a specific order during multi-tasking.
Aside from laptops, smartphones and tablets also have operating systems. Here’s more about operating systems:
But when it comes to laptops, what is the best OS? Let’s take a look at this short roundup:
The Windows OS is one of the most common and popular of all the available operating systems for computers. Over the years, Windows has released updated versions, the latest is Windows 10.
Windows Home is one of the common OS among laptops nowadays. Its main goal is to streamline Microsoft products. True enough, it’s a major leap from Windows 7 and the less appealing Windows 8.
Performance-wise, Windows excels in hardware availability. Unlike Mac, Windows gives its users more freedom to upgrade the graphics card, CPU, and other components. This OS is a good option if you’re looking for flexibility later on.
Windows is also excellent in third-party software compatibility which it ties in the same position as Mac. The same goes for search and setup experience.
The only small gripe we have with Windows is that it’s not as excellent when it comes to mobile device support. If we are to compare it to Mac, Windows is a loser when it comes to connecting multiple devices of the same OS. Still, Windows is making great strides in improving this part.
Mac is the biggest contender of Windows. This UNIX-based operating system is a proprietary OS of Apple on its MacBook laptops. When it comes to built-in apps, Mac has a better edge over Windows with the addition of premium video editor, streaming apps, and utility features.
So what is the fastest operating system for a laptop? Above all, Mac stands out because of its superior connectivity across Apple devices. Performance-wise, Mac is lauded for its tough security features and functionality that sells to artists, designers, and professionals. Still, Mac isn’t totally invincible to web attacks.
However, Mac falls short on touch capabilities. Windows is way advanced when it comes to integrating full touch screen support as well as additional devices like pen input.
But if we’re going to talk about mobile support, Mac is the clear winner. You can sync your iPhone on your MacBook to send messages, use FaceTime, and even connect your AppleWatch.
However, Mac OS is only available on Apple laptops. If you want to use this operating system, you have to pay premium money because MacBooks are pretty expensive.
3. Chrome OS
The Chrome OS is a proprietary operating system of Google. It’s used on Chromebooks and is basically focused on making searching a breeze. Upon its launch, Chrome OS is targeted toward smaller laptops like netbooks.
When it comes to availability, the Chrome OS is available for everyone in a free download format. But before you can set this up, your laptop needs to have Linux plus an account with complete root access.
However, you should know that the Chrome OS is purely designed for laptops that are connected to the internet. Everything – including apps and programs – will be operated on the web. This isn’t surprising since Chromebooks have very small memory size.
The good thing with Chrome OS is it supports Google PlayStore. If you’re a student with a basic word processor and internet needs, this OS will work just fine. But aside from that, it’s not as reliable as Windows or Mac.
Laptops running in Chrome OS are very affordable but it also has limited features.
What is the fastest operating system for a laptop? Basically, Ubuntu is a customized version of the Linux OS. It’s an open-source operating system that contains almost all basic functionality you’ll find on Windows. And since this is an open-source platform, it’s free for everyone to download. That’s a big difference to Windows, especially with Mac.
The biggest advantage of Ubuntu is that viruses can’t survive on its nature. This is a big plus over Windows where viruses are commonplace.
Also, Ubuntu is very easy to update, unlike Windows where you’ll have to update each time.
However, if you’re planning to use Ubuntu for streaming and entertainment, you might be disappointed to discover that it’s not made for that.
Also, you can’t play games in Ubuntu and there’s very little support for photo and video editing programs like Adobe. Still, when it comes to core performance, Ubuntu is better than Windows.
But with such limited features for typical users, who would use Ubuntu? For programmers, Ubuntu has the upper hand due to its better interface and functionality.
If there’s one thing that makes Linux stand out, it would be its monolithic kernel. This means that all the process including file scheduling, file management, and storage all works in single kernel space.
With this, the user will have full freedom to run programs for almost every purpose. Just like Ubuntu, it gives you the freedom to re-program and edit a program to add or remove certain functionality.
So who should use Linux? If you’re tired of virus and malware-ridden Windows, you can try this OS. However, the interface is pretty basic and less appealing as compared to Windows 10.
The biggest benefit from Linux is you no longer have to keep watch of multiple servers every single day. This is golden for system administrators.
But unlike Windows and Mac, Linux is complicated to set up. Still, Linux can stop at different levels should issues take place. Whereas in Windows, you need to reboot at Level 3 or root the device to find the problem.
FreeBSD is a lesser-known operating system but it’s actually a powerhouse OS for very busy websites. This is a UNIX-based OS that excels in networking, compatibility, security, and performance for developers and programmers.
For jobs that need robust internet and Intranet server performance, FreeBSD is one of the few OS that can endure the heaviest system loads without sacrificing response times.
But just like Linux, FreeBSD requires technical knowledge to set up. Also, this isn’t recommended for casual Windows or Mac users. The interface and functionality of this OS aren’t made for streaming or entertainment purposes.
The good news, though, is that FreeBSD is free and an open-source platform. It also allows the distribution of binary-only sources.
Still, FreeBSD isn’t one without some disadvantages. The main downside to this system is that the support community is still in its infancy. Also, its file system is old and it lacks driver support for various devices.
If you’re a gamer, FreeBSD isn’t the OS for you. This is a little limited when it comes to modern processes. So what is the fastest operating system for a laptop? It can be FreeBSD.
Slackware is a Linux distribution and those who plan to use this OS should have a high level of technical knowledge. This OS isn’t for dummies since it’s far from the usual turnkey systems like Windows and Mac.
Slackware is very short of graphical configurations and it can be a pain if you have very little programming and developing skill. Also, it still uses the ncurses installer which is a bit old school. Still, for tech geeks, this works just as fine.
Overall, this OS can be used at home and at work. Still, we want to warn of its simplicity to the point that it will be different to use for a typical Mac and Windows user.
Slackware still supports some multimedia functions. However, if you want to read DVDs or CDs, you’ll need to put on more codecs. As you see, this is seriously for technically-skilled users.
Despite all these, the biggest consolation with the Slackware OS is it sticks to the most stable versions of PC programs. However, if you want to see mind-blowing graphics and designs, Slackware is a big downer.
8. Chromium OS
The Chromium OS shouldn’t be confused with its cousin Chrome OS. Chromium works hand in hand with Chrome OS so the latter can be installed as a DIY installer.
The biggest difference is that Chromium is open-source and can be used by anyone. Meanwhile, Chrome is usually found on Chromebooks.
However, Chromium seems to fall short of functionality as compared to the more popular Chrome OS. First, it doesn’t have any auto-updates by default. If you make any code changes, you will have to manually erase it to overwrite it with the new one.
Still, there are good things with Chromium. It’s very easy to install plus it has a faster startup time. It’s also compatible with ARM device, PC, x86, and x64.
However, it doesn’t have Adobe Flash, HTML5 EME, and Widevine CDM. But if you want an easier way to browse the web, Chromium OS will suit you well.
So if you’re looking to perform memory-intensive software, you’re better off with Windows or Mac.
Fedora is another Linux-based operating system built on the latter’s kernel architecture. It’s also an open-source OS and all Linux applications can be run on it seamlessly.
But unlike non-dummy Linux-based OS, Fedora is more user-friendly and can be used in office settings with its productivity tools and closeness to most OS used nowadays.
The good thing with Fedora is it has a media playback feature as well as virus protection. At some point, it outperforms Windows but there’s no denying that Fedora doesn’t come close to the slew of apps you can find on Windows.
Performance-wise, Fedora has an edge over Windows. Fedora only takes 15 seconds to boot while Windows will be as slow as 30 seconds. One reason for this is the limited apps running on the background of Fedora.
The best part of this OS is that driver installation is no longer required. It detects hardware like a mouse, pen, keyboard, and so on automatically and faster than Windows.
When it comes to stability, Fedora shares the same precision of most Linux OS. You can open a resource-heavy website and still enjoy fast response time.
Lastly, we have Solaris. It’s an old-school, UNIX-based OS known for its extensive scalability. It can endure a ton of workload without crashing or freezing.
What is the best OS for a laptop? When it comes to computing, Solaris is a total champ. It has an automated self-healing feature that detects problems even before it compromises the system.
What’s more is that Solaris has a disaster recovery capability which enlists default file systems. By reading this, you’ll know that Solaris is best for heavy programming, cloud computing, and in-depth computer processes.
This OS is fully virus protected and it contains good backup systems. It can also handle multiple users at a time, thanks to its solid structure.
What to choose?
It all boils down to what you need. If you’re a programmer or software developer, you’ll have more convenience with Linux-based OS. Still, Windows, Mac, Chrome, and Chromium have something to offer.
For casual laptop users, we recommend that you stick with Windows or Mac. These two OS have full-circle of features that suit typical internet, multimedia, and software usage.
You’re free to explore other operating systems as you wish. But before you click that install button, you should study its requirements first. This will save you from the hassle of ruining your laptop’s system.
So what is the fastest operating system for a laptop? This will depend on how much load you’re processing on your computer. In the end, it’s not just about the OS. You should also factor in the hardware capabilities of your device.