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Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
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An extremely up-to-date Linux From Scratch system that boots up with a graphical welcoming message with progress bar. Goes straight into GNOME logged in as a normal user. (super fast booting - fast as XP boot currently)
Note: small winXP partition for MS-only apps (not like word n stuff, but programs for work/games with no linux alternatives or ports) - Windows only boots up if you hold down F10 at start up (no graphical choice, if you don't hold down F10 at start you don't see anything, if you do, it boots to windows, no GRUB stuff)
GNOME is heavily customised - nice theme, good panel usage etc. (better file manager - nauticlus or whatever doesn't do it for me...)
Able to watch DVDs and MPGs, etc with Mplayer, XMMS for music, Nedit for developing, simple RTF editor for word processing (not openoffice), mozilla for surfing, G++ for developing, Gaim for chatting, ut2003 & other linux games for fun, broodwar (hope it gets ported), good linux firewall & anti virus program, eraser for getting rid of sensitive files
Umm, ability to update kernel & all apps and system tools like autoconf without re-installing whole system (i.e. recompiling)
all stable updates and patches notices for all my apps emailed to me straight away. & security threats, etc
err, fast shutdown. it switches itself off, too (no "now it is safe to turn off business")
Distribution: Lots of distros in the past, now Linux Mint
No, most of what you want is there, you just need to alter a couple options. Sure, some of them may not be in a pretty menu, but to do a lot of fairly simple stuff in windows you have to go to the registry, so it's a tradeoff. Most of the things you're waiting for have been available before XP even had a name. As for the "auto" updates, debian is perfect for you, but it can be a bear to install that first time (this is changing in the very near future), but apt-get beats the heck out of rpm's and windows update.
Basically, my suggestion is to install debian, then "upgrade" to the unstable branch, and run with it. It's a more painful install than most other distros, but I think it'll make you happier in the end.
Don't even get me started on the power management (the shutdown stuff). The reason some Linux distros don't do that by default is because Linux has the ability to run on a huge amount of hardware. Not the best excuse, but it's better to be safe than sorry, so most only enable that stuff when they are absolutely sure there's no chance for error. Changing that behavior is usually easier than wetting yourself.
Well, almost all of those things are achievable, so good luck! Go forth and make the dream come true.
I've already got my dream Linux OS, it's Mandrake 9.1. The only thing I can't do is use 3d acceleration, and that's because nobody's written an XFree driver with DRI support for my graphics controller yet, so no amount of chaning distros can help that.
My next task is to get an svideo-scart cable so I can connect my notebook to my TV and use Linux to power my home entertainment - much funkier than buying a separate dvd player!
I got pretty much all of that "dream os"
dvd's, 3d drivers ,games (currently moo3 moo2 gpl grimfandango)
nice font's ,nice custom gnome setup, custom 2.4.23-pre8 athlon kernel,
fast boot, etc..
I've been using linux about one year and i don't need windoze
anymore (ms free!!) , using slackware 9.1 right now..
Keep your dreams going, linux ain't that hard.