The Edubuntu Difference
Compatible - Most educational computer networks are some mix of Microsoft Windows, Apple OS X and Linux. In this setting, you need an operating system that plays well with others. Edubuntu does that. Edubuntu servers can happily coexist on the same network as other operating systems, OpenOffice.org can open and save Microsoft Office formats, such as Powerpoint, Word and Excel documents and you can even install Edubuntu and another operating system on the same machine. Need to share files between Edubuntu and other operating system or connect to a remote server? Edubuntu does that too.
- Secure - Security has become a key challenge for educators and the team behind Edubuntu recognize this. Often schools lack the specialized IT staff or time to lock and cleanup computers. Edubuntu, being a Linux-based operating system, enjoys the security advantages of its Unix-like and open source heritages. This translates into higher quality code and less spyware and viruses that plague other operating systems. In addition, Edubuntu has a strict, proactive security policy, meaning many common problems such as open ports or misconfigured software, are much less of an issue. Finally, Edubuntu is a true multiuser operating system, making it easy to allow users to complete their tasks without compromising the system.
- Managable - With teachers and school IT departments deploying and administering an increasingly large number of computers, time spent managing individual computers is scarce to non-existant. Edubuntu, by using LTSP thin client technology, makes deployment and management simple and easy. A single server is all that is needed to setup, manage and administrate an entire class of computers. The Edubuntu team also recognizes that not every school's setup is the same. As such, Edubuntu is easy to customize for your unique needs, whether it be a simple rebranding, or the addition or removal of programs. Hence Edubuntu can reduce the amount of time you spend administrating your computers.
- Cost Effective - With ever increasing demands on budgets, it seems expensive technology is often last on the list. Edubuntu can help you offer what your students increasingly require from computer technology, without breaking the bank. Edubuntu is and always will be free to acquire, use and modify. Need to setup another machine? Or another 100? Just install them! No more expensive OS upgrades and licenses, or only having specific programs on some computers. By being built on Open Source software, schools are welcome to seek whomever they wish to help them support their computers and are not locked into getting help from the vendor. Edubuntu can also help you save hardware costs, by allowing you to redeploy older machines as thin clients using LTSP technology.
- Well Supported - Edubuntu support is available from both the Edubuntu, and larger Ubuntu, communities. Many of the authors of the software included in Edubuntu can be contacted directly via mailing lists and IRC channels, including the Edubuntu developers themselves. There are many forms of support available, on mailing lists, wiki websites, IRC channels and bug trackers. There is also a special support group for using Edubuntu in schools. Should you want paid support, Canonical, who funds Edubuntu and Ubuntu development, can offer assistance, or you could find a local company who offer similar services. With Edubuntu, the choice is yours.
- Built for Education - Above all, what sets Edubuntu apart from other operating systems is its unwavering focus on the educational needs of children all over the world. Edubuntu's motto is "Linux for Young Human Beings" and every development decision and application has that goal in mind. Edubuntu comes with translations for many languages and localization features that allow people from all over the world enjoy their computing experience as well as acessibility features to help disabled users. Using the live CD means pupils are able to boot their home computer into Edubuntu and use exactly the same applications that they are using at school. The LTSP server software allows teachers and administrators to create a low cost computer lab so that students can have access to the educational opportunities that Edubuntu and the Internet can provide.