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Ubuntu vs. Windows 10 — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Published on January 4, 2024
Ubuntu is a free, open-source Linux OS focusing on ease of use and privacy, while Windows 10 is a commercial OS known for its wide application support and user-friendly interface.
Ubuntu vs. Windows 10 — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Ubuntu and Windows 10


Key Differences

Ubuntu is an open-source operating system based on Linux, designed with a focus on software freedom and accessibility. It's known for its regular release cycle, with new versions coming out every six months, ensuring up-to-date software and security patches. Windows 10, on the other hand, is a proprietary operating system developed by Microsoft. It emphasizes user experience, compatibility, and comes with a broad ecosystem of applications specifically designed for its environment.
Ubuntu offers a different user interface called GNOME, which can be customized extensively using third-party tools. Windows 10 features the familiar Start menu and taskbar, with a focus on intuitive use for the average user. While Ubuntu's user interface is clean and efficient, Windows 10 is geared more towards touch-screen devices with features like tablet mode, which Ubuntu lacks.
When it comes to software installation, Ubuntu uses software repositories and a package manager which makes software installation and updates seamless and secure. Windows 10, in contrast, relies on executable files or app packages and features the Microsoft Store for downloading applications, which provides a different range of software, including major office and creative suites.
Security in Ubuntu is often considered stronger due to its Unix architecture, lower market share (hence fewer targeted attacks), and open-source nature that allows anyone to review its code for vulnerabilities. Windows 10 has made significant improvements in security over its predecessors but still remains a bigger target for malware due to its larger user base.
In terms of support, Ubuntu, being community-driven, relies on forums, free documentation, and paid professional services for support. Microsoft provides extensive support for Windows 10, with a variety of professional support services, regular updates, and patches for both security and feature improvements.

Comparison Chart


Free and open-source.
Proprietary, commercial.

Default User Interface

GNOME (customizable).
Start menu and taskbar (touch-screen friendly).

Software Installation

Package manager and repositories.
Executable files and Microsoft Store.


Generally considered more secure due to architecture.
Improved but targeted more by malware.


Community-driven support with option for paid services.
Comprehensive support from Microsoft.

Compare with Definitions


It's a popular distribution known for its user-friendliness and community support.
Ubuntu's active forums helped me solve my software issue.

Windows 10

Windows 10 integrates with Microsoft's cloud services and software suite.
With Windows 10, I can easily sync my documents through OneDrive.


Ubuntu boasts a comprehensive software repository.
I can find almost any program I need in the Ubuntu Software Center.

Windows 10

The OS includes Cortana, a digital assistant, to help with tasks.
Cortana set a reminder for me on my Windows 10 device.


Ubuntu is freely available and encourages open-source collaboration.
Developing my app was easier thanks to Ubuntu's open-source libraries.

Windows 10

It's designed to be user-friendly and is widely used in the business and consumer markets.
Our office computers run Windows 10 because it supports all our applications.


Ubuntu is a Linux-based operating system for computers.
I installed Ubuntu on my laptop because I prefer Linux.

Windows 10

Windows 10 features regular updates to enhance security and functionality.
My Windows 10 system just downloaded the latest security update.


The OS prioritizes security and privacy for its users.
I trust Ubuntu to keep my personal data safe from viruses.

Windows 10

Windows 10 is Microsoft's flagship operating system for personal computers.
Most of my PC games are compatible with Windows 10.


A philosophical doctrine or approach to life that emphasizes social unity and generosity of spirit.


(South Africa) A Nguni Bantu ideology focusing on people's allegiances and relations with each other.

Common Curiosities

What is Windows 10?

Windows 10 is a commercial operating system developed by Microsoft.

Is Ubuntu compatible with Microsoft Office?

Not natively, but alternatives like LibreOffice are available, or you can use Office 365 online.

What is Ubuntu?

Ubuntu is a free and open-source Linux operating system.

How often does Windows 10 receive updates?

Windows 10 receives regular updates for security and features.

Is Ubuntu good for beginners?

Yes, Ubuntu is user-friendly and suitable for beginners.

Can Ubuntu run on older hardware?

Yes, Ubuntu can run on older hardware, often with better performance than Windows.

Is Windows 10 secure?

Windows 10 includes various security features but users should still practice safe computing habits.

Can I play games on Windows 10?

Yes, Windows 10 has a wide range of games available, including AAA titles.

Does Windows 10 support touch screens?

Yes, Windows 10 is designed to work with touch screens.

Can I use Ubuntu for software development?

Yes, Ubuntu is widely used for software development and supports many programming languages and tools.

What support options are available for Ubuntu?

Support comes from the community, online resources, and paid professional services.

Are there any privacy concerns with Windows 10?

Some users have concerns over data collection in Windows 10, which can be adjusted in settings.

What is the default web browser in Ubuntu?

The default browser is Firefox.

How much does Windows 10 cost?

The price of Windows 10 varies depending on the edition and licensing terms.

Can I upgrade from an older version of Windows to Windows 10?

Yes, Microsoft offers upgrade paths from certain previous versions of Windows.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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