Switching to Linux is not as difficult as it was years ago. Before, most of the softwares and hardwares were built for Windows or Mac OS X. Their design to solely work for an operating system should signal caution for users to carefully evaluate what they are purchasing. Now, all sorts of hardware and software may work with GNU/Linux. Motherboards, hard drives, RAM, network cards, external drives, and accessories are mostly compatible with Linux without causing any trouble. It is ideal to look for these to avoid problems that may arise upon installing or rebooting. Searching via Internet for supported softwares and hardwares is necessary; this will lessen the risk of the gamble. Only a few manufacturers indicate in the product's label its compatibility to open-source operating systems. Proper assessment may seem difficult to begin because of several jargons and possibly not updated websites will arise during research. Along the way, you will understand the necessity for this step if you see Linux to fit your work and lifestyle. It will save you money for repair or purchasing again, and spare you from troubleshooting more problems.
Plenty of accessories and hardwares are silently compatible with open-source operation systems. No installation, no configuration, no plugins, nor system tweaks necessary. This kind of support for hardwares provides its edge among other OS which have hardwares designed specifically for them.
A Linux compatibility database is being updated for publishing. Check back again soon for updates.
Tip: In transitioning from another operating system to a Linux, you may search for Windows/Mac OS X applications that supply installers for your Linux version. There are lots of softwares that are compatible with open-source operating systems as well. These softwares can help you get used to a new operating system and interface easier. If you decide to try Linux apps, there are a variety of free and open-source softwares you can try. The list includes GIMP, OpenOffice, and Komodo Edit. Some are available for Windows and Mac OS X as well, and they work just as good in Linux.