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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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Originally posted on LXer.comHow To Give Linux Away by Scott Ruecker As a community we would like to see a large computer manufacturers sell PCs with Linux already on them. Is this the only option? I work as a sales rep. for one of the large PC manufacturers. I work at many different technology retail stores. Three years ago, I heard about Open Source and Linux. My first exposure came in the form of the Firefox browser. When I speak with customers I will talk about my experiences using Linux. I ask them if their computer is running slow, and the answer is always
I read the article. It's very informative. I've in the last couple of years become involved in proliferating the Gnu-based software. I usually start by giving them links to OpenOffice, Firefox, VLC media player, and others so that when I drop the Linux bomb on their harddrive, they won't be lost by this totally different environment.
I tried to start a grass roots program based on a local program called "Computers for kids." I called mine "Linux for Kids." I gave about 30 older used machines away. Linux runs great on cheap hardware. It was a marginal success.
I did have complaints from parents though that they couldn't run "Internet Nanny" type programs to control what webpages children use. I replied with "If you teach your children good morals, you don't need them." Linux is about freedom, not restriction.
Besides, which is worse, a kid stumbling across an adult website, or a virus giving away a kid's password?
I woke up the discussion and weighed in with my thoughts and my personal preferences. I have used lots of different Linux distros over the past thirteen years. Each of them certainly has something to offer.
For my personal tastes, I want to be easily able to install and remove software. I want a choice between stable software (I always try to keep at least one conservative system around - I pick SimplyMEPIS as easy and conservative), light and fast (I pick MEPIS derivative antiX for that) and cutting edge, (I use Debian Sid, but I've really grown to love sidux, a true Debian Sid derivative that emphasizes software freedom and cutting edge technology on a free only base platform). sidux will allow you to add on proprietary software and drivers to get stuff like wireless networks going and to view multimedia content. Their documentation explains how to do it, but they make it clear that they include only free software with free license terms, and I find that to be a reasonable posture. I can get what I want with sidux very quickly, even if I do want to add in non-free components.
I use sidux, SimplyMEPIS, and antiX on a variety of desktop and laptop systems, a few of them dating back near the beginning of this decade, a few others new within the past year. All three systems work well with all generations of hardware that I currently own.