Tag Archives: Linux

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

In recent years, GNU / Linux has become the operating system accessible to all users, which have proven their virtues: stability, security, customizability … and safely: most distributions can be tested without installation.

No. 1 Best user community

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

Okay, you have your favorite distro installed on the computer of your mother, and now there, watching and waiting brazenly do know it all and know what to do either. Despite what it may seem, the computer is not an exact science and will soon need to do more than write emails, surf the web or watch old episodes of “Turolenses the world.” And that’s where the community comes in.

When your mother runs into any setback, simply type into Google your problem and the name of your distro, add quotes and get results of other users who have already resolved the problem. Or write to one of the countless user forums and wait for people desviva help.

The good vibes in the community of Linux users have to do with the great altruism burden associated with their identity, and is a very pleasant surprise for any newcomer to GNU / Linux. Your mother will feel welcomed and not have to call you on Sundays at 11 pm to ask you to go home urgently to solve you the ballot.

No. 2 More secure and stable than other

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

Maybe your mother does not understand the full extent of the rail equipment safety with GNU / Linux, but enjoy its advantages. After all, not only is that less error windows or on rare need sometimes restart the computer because you are inoperative, but appear system permits access to any Linux distribution installed by default allow your mother touch the fairness of the system and, therefore, dismiss the risk of deleting important information or files. Not to mention the virtual absence of the happy virus …

So you can finally tell your mother what she – and millions like her – always wanted to hear: Luci, you can play anywhere. Do not worry, you can not break anything, you enjoy. And that is worth its weight in gold. The weight of usability, not the weight of your mother.

# 3 There is everything here, and all good

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

Do not exageraras when you tell your mother that brand for Linux, there are all kinds of software.

Whatever your taste, habits, preferences and needs … will be a program for it. And not only that, but almost certainly, a user will be translated into Castilian software (or Catalan, Galician, Basque …) so completely altruistic.

If your mother has told you a smarty anyone – your brother-safe – that Linux is difficult to install software that is beginning to ask thousands of files and additional libraries to be installed separately, check it destroys the argument by presenting one of the managers packages that are already integrated approach and a world of end user programs, perfectly filtered, classified and even reviews of other users. You can spend hours there stirring the dead like a software store sale!

# 4 Always have a distro for you

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

For programmers, for gamers, for musicians, for architects, for … do not care what your mother with your computer, there will always be a distribution (ie, a version of Linux that changes the included software desktop and other components) that will fit her like a glove and provide programs and the look she wanted.

When recycling the oldest computers in the house, Linux is also unbeatable, with light and fast distributions that seem to bring out the best of a processor that had already been sentenced to die. It is the occasion to mark you somewhat with your mother and give her an old computer to make your first steps with computers and the Internet. To choose the most suitable distribution is a particularly interesting place DistroWatch.com also ideal for keeping abreast of updates, new distros, versions, etc.

You can also get an idea of the variety on offer by reading our article 5 Linux distributions for 5 types of professionals. Hopefully other operating systems offered half chances when choosing a desk and a starting point, including software, to install and start enjoying.

No. 5 Free and free (or not)

Five arguments to convince your mother you install Linux

The last reason for your mother – she really grasped – Complete decide because you put a Linux computer in your life will love: it’s free. The vast majority of the software that will find for GNU / Linux, including the operating system itself is free. And, in a high percentage, it is also open source.

Not that your mother will start modifying code, compile and distribute their own applications – but you never know what is taught in the courses of the Day Care Centers – but as an ethical approach is very attractive for many users.

But if that does not care for your mother (we suspected) Make it clear that there are “proprietary” and commercial software. Return to mention the pocket and let him clear to your mother that the fact that Linux and free software is almost always not imply that the rate of updates, new features and enhancements that are received is below. On the contrary, the developer community is extremely active and productive, so keeping up is fast, easy … and free, as we have said.

How Common is Linux in Australia?


With this day’s web sites normally calls for simple web hosting plans regarding smooth performance from the website and also email transfer that may be essential. You will discover two modalities of web hosting planes are generally available, first can be Linux web hosting and second the first is Windows web hosting. Both have several advantages and drawbacks respectively but Depending upon small company owner’s demands suitable handled hosting plan may be selected for just a specific web site.

Well in the vast majority of normal predicaments, the common preference of small businesses for choosing web hosting plan moves to your Linux server web hosting plans in lieu of window server web hosting, because there are lots of optimistic element that influence visitors to choose this.

Expenditure Factor

The simple truth is that Linux web hosting plans tend to be much cost effective than House windows servers strategies. For all small business people the web hosting price tag matters widely. They desire to receive many options or it is possible to say facilities with a tiny spending. Most of which not expected supreme sort of security and so they also don’t bother whether it is MS-SQL repository server or some thing else in order to develop their repository. Thus Linux server is the foremost option for the children at genuinely least charge with several kinds of features.

Wide open Source Factor

Linux is an Open Source code and also enables men and women from everywhere in the world to advertise their unique knowledge for the development. This is one of the main reasons where Linux servers contain the power for you to eject House windows servers a long way away from competitive hosting market. Now the day’s, because farthest suppleness Linux becomes an original platform for lots of fresh technologies which have been mostly found in competitive web hosting industry. Which means a Linux server provides you with numerous characteristics than House windows servers may does.

Scripting Vocabulary Factor

There are numerous scripting terminology available on the web like Perl, Python, Capuccino, and PHP to build your site. All these scripting languages and have been designed on Linux / UNIX web servers and they cannot required ‘microsoft’ support to perform them. But when you use those scripting languages and this can be run with windows machines like ASP. Net then you certainly require MS-SQL in order to develop the database along with supports associated with Microsoft. Now it’s easily simple to comprehend that for small businesses Linux hosting is most beneficial to web host their website into the internet.

Reliance Factor

Now the day’s Linux can be vastly referred to as really stable and trustworthy. This ensures that Linux machines are tiny faster, user friendly and esteemed as neo crushable over a Windows server. Therefore, Linux servers provides more upgraded facilities for the website at the very least outlay.

Familiarity and Doing Speed Factor

Linux machines have decades of practical knowledge for providing services when compared with Windows machines in web hosting industry. There isn’t any such recommended difference in executing speed between Linux machines and House windows servers, nonetheless it is seen that Linux machines are slightly quicker in processing normal websites.

Efficiency Factor

Windows support ASP the programming terminology supported through Microsoft, which allows people for you to fabricate energetic database motivated websites by connecting using a MS-SQL server or Access server. It raise the production cost too. Linux none requires ASP language or MS-SQL databases to build dynamic repository driven websites, because this simply employs MySQL database which can be freely offered. Most people abroad apply for Australian Visa through Linux as it is very secure and virus-free, and the fees and other transactions can be paid through Linux. with ease.

Can’t Leave Windows?

Well that’s debatable and many hard core Linux users would beg to differ.  I’ll take the middle road on this one.  If you can do I encourage you to dump Windows as your main operating system (OS).  Unlike many others I don’t advocate giving up Windows entirely as most of the world still run Windows.  When given the choice chose Linux, but when not give a choice like in most corporate settings you’ll be stuck with using Windows (at least for now).  I still keep a Windows boxes at home operational to keep up on my Windows skills.


Why can’t there be a middle ground between the two OS’s?  You want your cake and Edith too right?  Well perhaps one of these solution will work for you.

You have 3 main choices:

  1. Keep a Windows box around

  2. Dual boot your PC

  3. Run an emulator or virtual machine

What I’ll be discussing below deals with emulators and virtual machines.  Emulators and VM’s provide functionality to emulate or install another environment from within your current environment.  What does that mean?  Well for the sake of keeping it simple, it means that you can run one operating system inside of another.

The first choice you’ll have to make is what OS will be be you base.  By base I mean what system will you run 98% of the time, Windows or Linux?  Again, I recommend Linux.  The OS you want to use that left over 2% of the time will be installed or emulated on top of your base system.  Once you have installed your base OS you must select an emulator / VM.  The emulators / VM’s I will be discussing below are WINE, Win4Lin, CoLinux, and VMWare.  The base OS you select will play a part in which of the products I discuss below you can utilize.  I use a combination of WINE and VMWare running on a base OS of Mandrakelinux 10.

So by now you are asking what do they do, how do they work, and what are their differences?


“Wine is an Open Source implementation of the Windows API on top of X and Unix.  Think of Wine as a Windows compatibility layer. Wine does not require Microsoft Windows, as it is a completely alternative implementation consisting of 100% Microsoft-free code, but it can optionally use native system DLLs if they are available.”

It’s freely available with most Linux distro’s.  I have had some success with this for programs like WinZip and WinMX, but for the most part I have found that programs don’t install and or run very well.  It’s a great idea, but still a work in progress.  It probably works a lot better with older programs since the fake windows registry it sets up mimics the Win 98 registry.  This is most likely the cause of the install issues as well.


“NeTraverse Win4Lin 5.0 enables Linux users to run the Windows operating system programs concurrently with their existing Linux operating system without additional hardware or the need to dual boot. This configuration dramatically improves productivity and saves you money by reducing hardware and OS license upgrade costs. “

Works with Windows 95/98/ME, but I don’t think it does 2000 or XP.  Never actually used it, but it sounds pretty good.  I have seen some decent reviews, but again I’m not interested in older Windows systems before 2000 or XP.  It’s not open source and does cost about $89 for a license.


“VMware Workstation is powerful virtual machine software for developers and system administrators who want to revolutionize software development, testing and deployment in their enterprise. Shipping for more than five years and winner of over a dozen major product awards, VMware Workstation enables software developers to develop and test the most complex networked server-class applications running on Microsoft Windows, Linux or NetWare all on a single desktop. Essential features such as virtual networking, live snapshots, drag and drop and shared folders, and PXE support make VMware Workstation the most powerful and indispensable tool for enterprise IT developers and system administrators. VMware Workstation works by enabling multiple operating systems and their applications to run concurrently on a single physical machine. These operating systems and applications are isolated in secure virtual machines that co-exist on a single piece of hardware. The VMware virtualization layer maps the physical hardware resources to the virtual machine’s resources, so each virtual machine has its own CPU, memory, disks, I/O devices, etc. Virtual machines are the full equivalent of a standard x86 machine.”

This one happens to be the most expensive one in the bunch at $189 for a license.  However, if you can afford it I feel it is the best!  I use this one the most.  You can install this on Windows or Linux.  Once installed you create separate virtual machines for each OS you would like to run.  It supports many versions of Linux, almost all versions of Windows, DOS, FreeBSD and Netware.  You simple boot your Linux or Windows PC, fire up VMWare, and put in the disk of the guest operating system you would like to install.  It will install the complete OS!  Then you simple boot the guest OS whenever you need it without having to shutdown your base OS.  You can ever share files back and forth between your guest OS and the base OS.

I have used this solution in the past.  I was running run Mandrakelinux 10 at the time and I had successfully installed Windows 2000 and XP virtual machines on top of Mandrake.  Both OS’s operated as if I was running Windows natively.  You even have the option to make them full screen.  It actually looks like you are running Windows.  Guess what?  When Windows crashes as it’s known to do, your virtual machine will most likely crash with it, but Linux contains the crash and continues to run unaffected.  You simply reboot the virtual machine.

Cooperative Linux (coLinux)

Last, but not least
we have coLinux.  This a relatively new project that is still
very much under development.  You may not have a use for it yet,
but keep an eye on it. “Cooperative Linux is the first working
free and open source method for optimally running Linux on Microsoft
Windows natively. More generally, Cooperative Linux (short-named
coLinux) is a port of the Linux kernel that allows it to run
cooperatively alongside another operating system on a single machine.
For instance, it allows one to freely run Linux on Windows 2000/XP,
without using a commercial PC virtualization software such as VMware,
in a way which is much more optimal than using any general purpose PC
virtualization software. In its current condition, it allows us to
run the KNOPPIX Japanese Edition on Windows.”

Good luck and happy emulating!

The History of Linux

So you may be asking yourself what is Linux and/or how did it get started? Let start of with explaining what Linux is. Chances are you have probably heard of it by now, but I’ll pretend like you haven’t. Ever heard of Unix? Again, I’ll pretend like you haven’t.

I’ll start off with something I’m sure you are familiar with and then work into the unknown. Microsoft Windows is an example of an operating system. It’s the one people are most familiar with as it currently holds about 95% of the desktop PC market. They have many different version like Windows 95, 98, NT, 2000, and XP. Unix is also an operating system. It was developed around 1970 by a group of programmers working at Bell Labs. Mind you this was well before Microsoft Windows ever started. “After three decades of use, the UNIX computer operating system is still regarded as one of the most powerful, versatile, and flexible operating systems (OS) in the computer world. Its popularity is due to many factors, including its ability to run a wide variety of machines, portability to other systems, and its multi-user / multi-processing capabilities. ” (Quote taken from here)

Linux and Unix sound a lot alike don’t they? Well I assure you there’s a good reason for that. “It was 1991, and the ruthless agonies of the cold war was gradually coming to an end. There was an air of peace and tranquility that prevailed in the horizon. In the field of computing, a great future seemed to be in the offing, as powerful hardware pushed the limits of the computers beyond what anyone expected. But still, something was missing. And it was none other than the Operating Systems, where a great void seemed to have appeared. For one thing, DOS was still reigning supreme in its vast empire of personal computers. Bought by Bill Gates from a Seattle hacker for $50,000, the bare bones operating system had sneaked into every corner of the world by virtue of a clever marketing strategy. PC users had no other choice. Apple Macs were better, but with astronomical prices that nobody could afford, they remained a horizon away from the eager millions. The other dedicated camp of computing was the Unix world. But Unix itself was far more expensive. In quest of big money, the Unix vendors priced it high enough to ensure small PC users stayed away from it. The source code of Unix, once taught in universities courtesy of Bell Labs, was now cautiously guarded and not published publicly. To add to the frustration of PC users worldwide, the big players in the software market failed to provide an efficient solution to this problem. A solution seemed to appear in form of MINIX. It was written from scratch by Andrew S. Tanenbaum, a Dutch professor who wanted to teach his students the inner workings of a real operating system. As an operating system, MINIX was not a superb one. But it had the advantage that the source code was available. Anyone who happened to get the book ‘Operating System’ by Tanenbaum could get hold of the 12,000 lines of code, written in C and assembly language. For the first time, an aspiring programmer or hacker could read the source codes of the operating system, which to that time the software vendors had guarded vigorously. A superb author, Tanenbaum captivated the brightest minds of computer science with the elaborate and immaculately lively discussion of the art of creating a working operating system. Students of Computer Science all over the world poured over the book, reading through the codes to understand the very system that runs their computer. One of them was Linus Torvalds.” (Quote taken from here)

“In 1991, Linus Benedict Torvalds was a second year student of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki and a self-taught hacker. The 21 year old sandy haired soft-spoken Finn loved to tinker with the power of the computers and the limits to which the system can be pushed. But all that was lacking was an operating system that could meet the demands of the professionals. MINIX was good, but still it was simply an operating system for the students, designed as a teaching tool rather than an industry strength one.

At that time, programmers worldwide were greatly inspired by the GNU project by Richard Stallman, a software movement to provide free and quality software. Revered as a cult hero in the realm of computing, Stallman started his awesome career in the famous Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT, and during the mid and late seventies, created the emacs editor. In the early eighties, commercial software companies lured away much of the brilliant programmers of the AI lab, and negotiated stringent nondisclosure agreements to protect their secrets. But Stallman had a different vision. His idea was that unlike other products, software should be free from restrictions against copying or modification in order to make better and efficient computer programs. With his famous 1983 manifesto that declared the beginnings of the GNU project, he started a movement to create and distribute software that covered his philosophy (Incidentally, the name GNU is a recursive acronym which actually stands for ‘GNU is Not Unix’). But to achieve this dream of ultimately creating a free operating system, he needed to create the tools first. So, beginning in 1984, Stallman started writing the GNU C Compiler (GCC), an amazing feat for an individual programmer. With his legendary technical wizardry, he alone outclassed entire groups of programmers from commercial software vendors in creating GCC, considered as one of the most efficient and robust compilers ever created.

By 1991, the GNU project had created quite a few open source applications. The much awaited Gnu C compiler was available by then, but there was still no operating system. Even MINIX had to be licensed. Work was going into the GNU Kernel HURD, but that was not supposed to come out for a few years. (Sidenote: HURD is still being developed to this day. Designers have changed paths several times continuing to delay it’s release.)

That was too much of a delay for Linus.” (Quote taken from here)

So to help understand this, think of the programs you use most often like Internet Explorer, chat programs, email programs, and Microsoft Office (i.e.) Word, Excel, Outlook, etc. Those are stand alone applications, all built to run on top of the Micro$oft Windows operating system. The Gnu project was helping to lay the groundwork that would eventually help to form the application side of their operating system. Their hope was that someday their applications would site on top of the GNU Kernel HURD. The major component behind any operating system is the Kernel. So what is a Kernel? Basically, it’s the mediator between the computers application software and its physical hardware. It helps to manage things like the PC’s memory and the CPU.

Linus was searching for the power of a UNIX machine in the comfort of his own home. The average user could never afford to purchase UNIX or the hardware needed to run it. Linus was determined to built such a system. He buckled down and coded away and by mid September 1991 Linux version 0.01 was released. He released the source code for his Kernel on to the Internet for others to grab and use. He though of it as a personal hobby and never thought it would amount to much. He asked for suggestions and comments on the Kernel. People latched on. Many people began hacking away at the Kernel and offering suggestions and patches Linus became the gatekeeper of the Linux Kernel source code. From that point on all the way up through to present day, Linus has decided what makes it into the official Kernel source code. Each version has become increasing faster, more stable, and offered increased support for newer types of hardware. In fact, Linux tends to require a less powerful PC that Windows to run.

It didn’t take long for people to put the two projects together. Linus had created the very thing that the GNU project was lacking. People began running the Linux Kernel with the GNU applications on top of it. Over time more and more application were being developed and support for hardware was growing. “Soon, commercial vendors moved in. Linux itself was, and is free. What the vendors did was to gather up various software applications and put them in a distributable format, more like the other operating systems with which people were more familiar. Red Hat , Debian, Mandrake, and some other companies gained substantial amount of response from the users worldwide. With the new Graphical User Interfaces (like X-windows, KDE, GNOME) the Linux distributions became very popular.” (Quote taken from here) This commercial vendors took the Linux Kernel, bundled it with GNU projects and other open source applications, added a few of there own tweaks, and released it as a complete operating system. Each distribution has it’s own claim to fame. Some claim to have rock solid security, others claim to look and run just like Windows, and some focus on user-friendliness, etc.

As a closing note it’s important that you realize that Linux is not the whole operating system. It’s simply the Kernel which helps power the operating system. Many people believe that the entire OS is Linux. Richard Stallman would prefer that everyone call Linux distributions, which bundle Gnu apps with Linux, Gnu/Linux. I would say that’s not a lot to ask from the man who gave a the Gnu Project and the Gnu General Public License (GPL) license that so many open source applications utilize.


MP3 Players & Linux

This article will be a bit off my normal routine.  I usually like to try things out before I write about them, but in this case I am making an exception.  Mostly because I’m not sure when I’ll have the time to try some of this stuff out, but I thought it was interesting enough that I wanted to share with everyone now.  Anyway, this article will focus on popular MP3 players and open source programs that either work on them or with them.


The Apple iPod

Below are a few projects that may interest iPod owners…


First up is the iPodLinux project.  The goal of this project is to port Linux to the iPod.  Meaning you actually run Linux directly on your iPod.  The project has been successful in porting a kernel and has developed a user interface called podzilla.  It also appears a bunch on small applications have already been developed like file browsers, image viewers, games, etc.  You can find details on the applications here & some screenshots here.  It looks as if they have even had some success getting video to play on the iPod Photo.  So what versions of the iPod work?  From their site, “iPodLinux is currently safe to install on 1st, 2nd, and 3rd generation iPods. Development is currently on-going on later generations of iPod, including the fourth generation click wheel, mini, U2, Photo/Color, Nano, and Video.”

The only iPod I have is the Shuffle so I will not be trying this out for a while.  When my Dell DJ breaks down and it’s time for a new player perhaps I will buy an iPod then and try it out.  When that happens I’ll report my impressions of the project.  However, from the outside I have to say it looks promising.

Next up….. an iTunes like application

Ok so the iPodLinux project is for putting Linux on your iPod, but what about something that lets you purchase music for your iPod like iTunes.  iTunes only runs on Windows and Macs so what is a Linux user to do?  Don’t fret.  That’s the gap SharpMusique tries to fill.  An application developed the by the man many have come to know as DVD Jon (the man who brought DVD copying to the masses).

SharpMusique, originally known as QTFairUse, can now be used on Linux systems.  It bypasses Apples DRM allowing iTunes bought music to be played on Linux.  The application allows users to perform the following actions with the iTunes Music Store:

  • Preview songs
  • Signup for an account
  • Buy songs and albums
  • Redownload songs that you bought with SharpMusique
  • Redeem Pepsi caps
  • Redeem gift certificates

You can find out more information about the project here.

Next up is something to manage your music files, sync them with your iPod, etc.  That is the goal of the gtkpod project, “gtkpod is a platform independent Graphical User Interface for Apple’s iPod using GTK2. It supports the first to fourth Generation as well as the iPod mini, iPod Photo and the iPod shuffle.”  Here are some good screenshots.

Next up is the Dell DJ…

Dell’s Digital Jukebox (Dell DJ)

There are several interesting projects involving the use of the Dell DJ with Linux.

First up is Gnomad2.  “Gnomad is a GTK+ client program for the NOMAD Jukebox, using libnjb and libid3tag to handle the jukebox communications and ID3 tagging procedures.”  Not originally written for the Dell DJ, but does work since the Dell DJ is based on the player that Gnomad was created for.  This basically works like the Dell Jukebox Explorer works in Windows.  Here are a few screenshots.

Gnomad2 is great for managing your music files, but it lacks the ability to sync up with your DJ.  That’s where this project comes into play.  DJSync allows you to sync the DJ with your local music library on Linux.

So that about wraps it up for this article.  Hopefully you have found this useful.  If you have any experience with, opinions about, or alternatives to these projects please post your comments.