I do voluntary tech support for a small community network in Manchester, UK. We have about 100 flats wired together with cat 5 ethernet cable. Many of our users are recent entrants into the IT world, and have cheap, old computers running Windows 95 and 98.

We run the servers on Linux, and we have a few Linux users on the network, too.

My point is a simple one. Windows breaks down more often, has to be re-installed more often, and just basically sucks up more time than Linux. Once installed, and set running, the Linux machines generally stay that way (the last time I had a support issue was over 6 months ago, when one of our Linux-using netizens accidentally moved /usr into /tmp, then couldn't work out what he'd done.)

Support issues with Windows machines are many, varied, often take hours of my time, and arrive in a continuous stream.

My own machine runs Linux exclusively, and the last time I did any serious maintenance on it was over two years ago. It just sits there and works.

In short, the claim that Linux takes more of your time than Windows, over the life of a machine, is just bogus.