Linux/Unix was around long before Microsoft was even a thing. I would say in years past Linux was the obvious choice due to database systems and web servers being more advanced and just better. The latest server operating systems from Microsoft is impressive and can do everything a Linux can and more due to native support for Microsoft development tools and languages.
From a business perspective Linux saves so much money due to being free and Microsoft products are not exactly cheap.
License costs for a large hosting company with hundreds of servers would be a huge expense, it just makes business and technical sense to choose Linux.
This whole topic got a whole lot of bloody and long history behind it. But it all came down to barrier of entry. Young, hungry web developers in the early days of complex, server sided web applications got more familiar to Apache because it's open source and you don't need to buy a license from Microsoft to just run your web applications. After that, with the increasing amount of developers familiar with the Apache and Linux server stack, innovations came left and right from open source community that further decrease the need for Microsoft Windows server.
It's pretty sad for Microsoft but i honestly can't imagine how even sadder the world would be if Microsoft won that battle. All popular Modern CMS, for example are built on open source web technology, and you don't need to pay a cent of software licensing to run wordpress on an apache server. I'd imagine the opposite would be true if Microsoft wins.
Now, almost all developers use Git for version control, which makes them even more familiar with command line, which in turn further reduce the need for Windows Server for serious web development. And of course, Git itself is open source and created by the founder of Linux, so...
That left pretty much only the enterprise space for Microsoft to compete in, but the battle for web server is already lost, 98% of public facing web servers are running Linux. That's why their priority is to maintain their edge in the enterprise with full stack solution like Azure, which is platform neutral. You don't need to use Windows to use Azure. That lowers the barrier of entry for people to start using Microsoft technology again. So in short,lower barrier of entry would be my answer.
What are the needs?
If you are running a standard website, Linux will do the job, lower costs, simple to config and secure.
Windows hosting more powerfull, I think so, but more costs, Windows Server license cost around the 1300$ and its harder to config and use it ( If you want to Improve performance you will use the Windows Core ) so the Power-shell is harder to config and use after all. but the bought have Web interface.
so again My question is what are the uses ?
About the the limits and that the Linux working more time that windows,
Windows is running on a big companies, the programmers and the developers is working hard to make windows work good and make it professional.
limits? if you are a good programmer and Sysadmin you can use windows for anything you need, so its strange to talk about the limits.
My point is: Linux & Windows are great, each of them answer other parameters of use.
We are running both Linux and Windows, and here is why Linux seems about 5 times more popular:
- Linux comes free (unless it is RHEL or CloudLinux or similar commercial distribution, but they are rarely used). And most of software for Linux comes free. That probably has the biggest impact.
- Linux started earlier and was in the very beginning of web era, while MS has joined in 2005 maybe. So a lot of solutions are Linux oriented or consider Linux as first priority
- Linux has wider community support - when you have a problem, it is more likely to find a solution or get an advice
- Linux consumes less resources, so you might save on hardware (per my observation)
- Linux seem more stable under pressure and easier to troubleshoot. That saves in maintenance effort.
In Windows it is not uncommon to be stuck in MS support queue with no resolution, no advice from community and no means to troubleshoot it by yourself
Yet, Windows remains handy from some other perspectives. i.e. running different sites on different versions of PHP was available in Windows many years earlier than in Linux. Commercial mail servers for Windows are quite powerful.