3. "It's free, so it must be pirated"
Despite the growing use of free and open source software in governments and other organizations, some people still believe that any software that's free must be illegally copied. Fortunately, that's completely false. The notion of "taking" software off the Internet and then "tampering with it" for your own ends can strike litigation fears into the hearts of those unfamiliar with the concept, but fear not! Free and open source software is designed from the start to be free in cost as well as open to modification and improvement. That's how it works and gets better.
4. "There's no support"
Vendors of proprietary software love to strike more fear into business users' hearts by painting a picture of the Linux user alone at sea, without anyone to ask for help. Once again, completely false!
First of all, every Linux distribution has an online community with excellent forums for getting help. There are also forums dedicated to small businesses and for newcomers in need of extra explanation. For those who want even more assurance, commercial Linux versions such as Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop come with vendor support. It's entirely up to you which route to choose.
5. "It's not compatible"
There are very few instances of hardware and software remaining that can't be used with Linux. One of the operating system's many advantages, in fact, is that it's designed not to hog resources, and so doesn't require the latest, cutting-edge hardware. Most peripherals are compatible as well, particularly in distributions such as Ubuntu.
On the application side, it's also rare to find a problem. If there is something your business needs that can be run only on Windows, however, there are packages like Wine and Crossover Linux to make that happen. There are also countless comparable and Linux-friendly alternatives that can be easily installed, including all basic productivity packages.
6. "It's less secure"
Of all the myths perpetuated about Linux, I'd say this is the one with the least merit. The reality, in fact, is quite the reverse: Linux is far *more* secure than either Windows or Macs, as countless examples and security researchers such as Secunia have confirmed. In a nutshell, Linux's superior security derives from the way privileges are assigned, the fact that it's open to scrutiny by countless developers the world over, and the diversity of distributions in use.
Ever wonder why you've never heard of the Linux equivalent of Microsoft's "Patch Tuesday"? That's because there isn't one--it's not necessary. Neither is antivirus software. Strange but true.
7. "It's not reliable"
If you're using a Mac or Windows, it goes without saying that you are intimately familiar with crashes and downtime. Part of that is due to those systems' vulnerability to malware, but part is also simply inherent in the software. That's a big reason why Linux is used so heavily on servers--it almost never goes down. Imagine a day in the life of your business with no downtime!