So this is something I've wanted to ask for a while, but I was never sure where, as it seems impossible to have a sensible discussion about this on any Linux/Windows boards as it just brings out all the partisans. However I saw a tweet from Abner recently saying that the Handmade Dev team were now mostly using Linux, so I thought this might be the place.
I guess my main question could simply be put as "which desktop operating system do you choose to use and why?", but I think it's worth refining this a bit.
My experience has primarily been on Windows. However I've used Macs at various times, had Linux installed on all kinds of devices from old laptops to embedded devices, to netbooks and VMs and servers etc. Having just got a new PC a couple of months ago, which shipped with Windows 10, I decided it was time to make the leap to using Linux as my main OS.
Now the thing is, my experience of Linux has always been that it is extremely flaky, and installing it on a modern powerful machine as the main OS doesn't seem to have changed this one bit. I should probably be a bit clearer about what I mean by "flaky". First and foremost, I find that the OS actually crashes/freezes quite a bit, definitely more than once a week. I remember this kind of thing from Windows 95/98, less so from XP, and quite honestly, I only ever remember a couple of bugs actually bringing down Windows 7 for me (both dodgy drivers). In addition, the software on top of Linux always seems much more unstable too. Sure, the Aero desktop used to crash on me now and again, but KDE crashes several times a day. Often, core functionality doesn't seem to work either (e.g. hibernate). For me, Windows 10 doesn't seem particularly stable either. I've had a whole string of BSODs since I got it, not to mention numerous minor irritations. OS X, of which I have fairly fond memories, prove troublesome when I used it most recently (El Capitan) because it seems to make it extraordinarily difficult to install some pieces of software without jumping through all kinds of hoops.
The strange thing is though, when I ask people about this, I have met people who swear by all three of these OSs. I know lifelong Mac uses who never seem to have had any trouble with it, people who run all kinds of Linux distros on all kinds of hardware and swear it's rock solid, and I know a number of people who have been using Windows 10 since its public beta thing and are extremely happy with it. And when I say "people" here, I specifically mean other developers, not just users.
So my second question is, am I just unlucky? Do other people here face these problems? What causes the difference in experience? Is it just pot luck? Do I have more problems because I tend to have gaming PCs with more heterogeneous/esoteric hardware?
That all leads to the third question which is, if you do suffer these kinds of problems, how do you work around it? Which OSs do you find to be the most developer friendly? The most stable?