When it comes time to obtain a dedicated server, you essentially have two platforms to choose from: Windows and Linux. Both systems have their advantages and disadvantages, ranging from costs to application requirements.
Programming Technologies and Database Servers
The major difference between Windows and Linux lies in the applications and development technologies. If you intend to run software packages such as PHP, Perl and MySQL on your server, Linux would make the best option, as it functions seamlessly with its open-source brethren.
Windows, on the other hand, was made to function with other Microsoft technologies. For example, this platform generally utilizes ASP (Active Server Pages) and the SQL Server database system. While many suggest that you should only go with Windows if you have a specific need for its proprietary solutions, this system is also capable of using many of the same tools that run on the Linux platform, which gives it a slight advantage.
The Technical Challenge
Perhaps the most important factor that needs to be considered between a Windows and Linux dedicated server is technical expertise. Windows tends to make the best option for the individual just getting his feet wet in the dedicated environment. This is mainly because the interface is similar to the Windows desktop setting and typically easier to use. Linux, on the other hand, is far more complex and recommended for the more technically inclined. Software tools like the cPanel control panel were made to simplify the Linux environment, but there are still a few options that can be intimidating to the newbie.
In closing, a Windows dedicated server is easier to use, but will require a lot more clicking, while Linux offers far more options for customization, but calls for you to remember various commands. Although making a decision can be difficult, it should be comforting to know that both platforms perform well and are ideal for individual and business applications.