I've been playing with linux-audio for a long while now and just thought I'd add to what's been stated here. I'd agree wholeheartedly with holotone and say audio under linux has many advantages, with a caveat. It is NOT an out of the box experience, and you have to give yourself a transition period, and be prepared to setup your system.
As for Windows software, I personally run three instances of Audiomulch at low-latency (using the wine-asio driver under openSUSE based Jacklab) on a single desktop interconnected with other audio apps via the aforementioned JACK. This includes running windows vsts, but the options are greater when you take native linux vsts and ladspa, dssi and lv2 plugins into account. I can't say that wine-asio is perfect - there are mostly issues with screen redraws causing audio glitches when using flashy GUI based software. This causes no problem for me though, as everything is controlled via tactile controllers so I rarely if ever need to adjust parameters via the screen.
There are modular environments that run native in linux of varying complexity, from Alsamodularsynth, to Ingen, to PD as mentioned and more. I'll probably be switching ot one or more of these platforms to phase out use of wine altogether eventually, but its a matter of time. I think software can be quite personal, and only you can decide, after trying things out, if you are comfortable with the environment, and again, this takes a the time and patience to learn.
The huge bonus, and the daunting barrier to entry to linux, is that everything is configurable, so if you desire you can tailor build a system from the ground up. That being said, I'd highly recommend giving either Jacklab or PlanetCCRMA a go if you want to explore, and others seem to find UbuntuStudio adequate. There is also Studio64, which has an excellent reputation for stability as well as commercial support avenues.
In short, don't discount linux, as the more users that hop on board, the more potential there is for growth as the platform develops over time.
Michael John Noble
networking practice for sound environments :: http://nowhere.iamnobody.net