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Welcome From The Chief Editor

Radically Simple. That has been the PCLinuxOS slogan for as long as I can remember. There's a lot that can be said about the benefits of simplicity, too. Far too often, "people" tend to over-think "things." The end result is turning something simple into something incredibly difficult.

So ... how is PCLinuxOS "Radically Simple?"

To start with, PCLinuxOS is much easier and faster to install than any of the "commercial" operating systems. A full installation of PCLinuxOS (which typically includes software to get the most users set up and being productive, unless you install one of the "Mini" versions designed so that experienced users can install only those programs that they need) takes less than 30 minutes to accomplish. That time is decreased even more if you have a newer computer with a fast processor and ample amounts of RAM. A typical installation of Windows XP took an hour or more, and subsequent versions of Windows take even longer.

With the "commercial" operating systems, you are severely limited as far as what you can do once it is installed. Word processing or office suite? Forget about it. That will cost you a (another) hefty chunk of change. Graphics manipulation software? Nope. That, too, will impose on your finances and wallet. With PCLinuxOS, all of that (and much more) is included in an installation of any of the "full" versions.

Often times, the installation of the "latest and greatest" "commercial" operating system requires you to spend money on hardware upgrades ... and sometimes, even a new computer. PCLinuxOS runs on older hardware, as well as newer hardware. I currently have PCLinuxOS running on computers with Pentium III processors and 512MB RAM. They're not speed demons, but they get the "basic" tasks (chat, email, browsing the web) done just fine.

Radically Simple means that I don't have to go out and buy tons of "extra" programs to get the tasks I need to do done. Nope. I just launch the Synaptic package manager and install what I need, without having to even open my wallet or pocketbook.

It also means that I don't need to "buy" extra software to protect my computer from vicious computer viruses. PCLinuxOS, like all Linux distributions, is secure from all of that. Quite simply (there's that word again), there are NO viruses (virii?) that exist in the wild for Linux. Often times, antivirus programs for the "commercial" operating systems become their own virus of sorts, slowing down your system as it searches through an ever-expanding database of virus definitions.

PCLinuxOS also has some of the best -- if not the best -- hardware recognition of any Linux installer. Despite the gagillion different computer configurations, PCLinuxOS is typically able to install the proper drivers for most of them. It's rare that PCLinuxOS isn't able to properly detect and install the proper drivers. With the "commercial" operating systems, you can spend an incredible amount of time searching for (and trying to find) the proper drivers for your hardware -- if you can even find them at all. Even during the eight-plus years I've used PCLinuxOS, I've seen one of the best installers get better and better at hardware recognition.

Getting help with PCLinuxOS is easy and free. The most common way is via the PCLinuxOS forum. There, it's like one big, happy family, users helping other users. There are no "pay-as-you-go" help lines, no support "contracts," no subscriptions, no waiting forever on hold. Simply post your problem and wait for one of the more experienced users to come along and provide assistance. You usually don't have to wait long, either. Often times, the help is provided within an hour or less. PCLinuxOS users tend to be a rather resourceful bunch.

There is also no "phoning home" to PCLinuxOS Headquarters with details of your every move and use of the computer. With the "commercial" operating systems, this is becoming an ever-increasing concern. Not only will they phone home to the company headquarters with details about your email, which websites you've visited, etc., but they will also scan the files stored on your computer. If they, in their snooping, suspect that you've done something "illegal," they will notify the "authorities" and report you.

Yep. I'd say that PCLinuxOS lives up to its slogan, Radically Simple. To borrow from the guy who runs one of my favorite YouTube channels (hickok45) ... with PCLinuxOS, "life is good."

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