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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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Linux runs multiple apps better. Linux runs multiple desktops better. Linux networks better. Linux looks better. Linux works better. Linux can be more customized. Linux will run on a wider range on machines. Linux has more desktop environment options. Linux has a wide range of apps. Linux updates better. Linux is fresher. Linux is free. Linux apps are mostly free. Linux means you can stop stealing software. Linux runs malware a lot worse.
This is one of those questions which can never be answered to the satisfaction of the person asking. The only right answer is that it is exactly the same as Windows, and since it is not, there is no 'right' answer. The poser cannot objectively evaluate anything that is not Windows, because anything that is different will be perceived as 'wrong'. Some people are just like that. We all have some of that in us. Some moreso than others.
options,options, options, ...
Isn't it great, that you have choices YOU can make.
By that i don't just mean the choice of the OS.
For example in Linux one can use 10 different web browsers out of the box. Try this and that and use what you really like.
Linux and most of the programs are opensource. You can see how it was made and make improvements, also as it is available to all, there are fewer security holes.-> Community of users, people help others!
You can use it on intel/amd x86 or x86_64 on even on computers with ppc-processors.
You can customize you OS just the way you like it.
and so on...
It still lacks good driver support from the BIG companies like ATI and INTEL (graphics cards) .
It has got that geeky atmosphere all over the place
People try to re-invent the wheel, too many projects for problems that have already got a solution and good program.
So the answer to the thread topic, why don't you just test linux, and make your own conclusions
Distribution: slackware, suse,vector linux, fedora core, a few live cd's
Well I've been useing a few distros as well . Believe me linux is the most coolest O/S in this planet. There are so many flavours to choose from. Online tutorials & support is available through sites like these. Been a newabi to linux the experience I've gained is awsome.
Well, while using MS Windows, we have to do whatever they (Microsoft) think is the best... On the other hand, while using Linux, we can do whatever we think is the best...
The answer is flexibility, stability and power...
Can I run normal programs like AIM or other such things on Linux like I would in Windows?
you can choose from several programs for AIM, ICQ, MSN, Jabber and other instant messaging services, Gaim for example (there's also a windows version of Gaim), Kopete is another one, or aMSN.
Windows programs usually don't run on GNU/Linux, although there's a project called WINE that lets you run some windows programs. Crossover Office is a special version of WINE designed to run Microsoft Office. Cedega enables you to run many Windows games on Linux. Most Linux versions (distributions) come with a wide array of pre-installed siftware, including Gaim and Kopete, Openoffice.org, Firefox, Amarok, the GIMP, and many more, I never felt the need to use WINE.
Hundreds of non-preinstalled applications are just one click away through package managers. Upgrading all software packages is usually a one-click process.
You can try many linux distros using a "Live CD". Yes, you can try linux without installing it! Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Knoppix, Mepis, PCLinuxOS all offer Live CDs. Try them all, install the one you like best. You can even run (dual boot) Linux and Windows on the same computer. SUSE and Mandriva are popular too but don't offer live CDs.
Is it easy to make my desktop look like those that I see on the internet?
I don't know what you've seen. There are two big desktop environment projects for GNU/Linux, KDE and GNOME. Most Linux distros offer you to install both. GNOME focuses on simplicity, KDE on looks and features. They're both very customisable throgh different themes and icon sets, and if you want to you can even design your own.
What's special about it? Basically just why do I want to have Linux...what's in it for me...why make the change?
o Virtually no spy-/malware and viruses. This is not because Linux is not as widely used as Windows but because it was designed to be secure. When source code is available, it is much more difficult to hide bugs and unwanted "features" from users.
o Openness. There are no limits (except for your skills) on what you can/can't do with linux. Nothing is hidden. No secret file formats like .doc, .xls etc. If you want to run a Web-/FTP-/file server from your home computer, it's there. If you want to become a programmer yourself, all the tools are there.
o it's free. you've got nothing to lose.
Last edited by stimpsonjcat; 03-08-2006 at 09:36 AM.
You'd be paying a lot more for your current o.s.
You'd have little or no choice in o.s.'s
You'd have to put up with many more bugs than your dealing with now, because the o.s. maker would be well aware that you have little or no choices.
Linux is for people who want to control their operating system and not have their operating system control them. As for the learning curve. You either have to spend time working to pay for you operating system or spend time learning how to configure your new operating system. It's your choice.
I think windows is great for gaming,but. I'm forever being pestered by friends and relatives who go online and then get their windows systems trashed. Then they call me to bail them out. I've told all of them that I'm slowly forgetting how to fix windows and really getting better at Linux. As a matter of fact. The only time I have to re-install Linux now, is when I install a new drive.
In addition to the points made in the previous posts, with most of which I agree, I am fast losing my willingness to pay people for making trouble for me. This applies equally to Microsoft, which I consider treacherous for its continuing misrepresentations of the quality of its products, and to Intel, whose Prescott chips are both suicidal and technically inferior to their Northwood predecessors.
I now have only two machines (both six-year-old Dells) running Microsoft on Intel. All the others run Linux on AMD, and they run faster, more reliably, and at lower power levels than they did with Wintel, making me much happier. I have just three reasons for keeping these two machines: they are fully depreciated, they both run Linux also, and I occasionally receive files that are easier to deal with on Windows.
I wont sugar-coat the linux experience. Its a mthrfkr to get up and running the way you want it but when you do, the self-satisfaction is euphoric. The reason I have linux is mostly for research. I want a deeper understanding of how operating systems work.
I guess if you're like me and you like tinkering the hell outa your machine then jump in and try a distro. I started with Fedora Core and Ubuntu which were good enough for a n00b like me.
What I've realized with the few distro's Ive used is that there's not much difference in terms of desktop interface and out-of-the box software. Most distros either use gnome or kde as their desktop and the software they come with seem to be same (to me at least). Reguardless, you can have as much fun with your distro as you want since the number of additional software you can get online (for free) is virtually unlimited and their pretty damn good and at times even better than the Windows equivalent.
My favorite app is probably mplayer (a media player). Its so quick and you can get a codec for almost any video/audio directly from their download pages!
If you talking bout hardcore gaming though you might need to keep Windows on another partition for that
Why I chose it: the desktop environment is more powerful, more flexible, an alternative to the DRM-infested operating system from Redmond, WA. Also: almost everything (administration-wise) can be automated from a shell script.