Tag: kde

GNOME logoBy Marcos Aguilar

With the arrival of Gnome3 and Ubuntu 11.04 with Unity, it is necessary to clarify two concepts that are different and that tend to generate confusion: Desktop Environment and Window Manager.

DESKTOP ENVIRONMENT

(GNOME, KDE, XFCE, LXDE)

What a desktop environment does is bring together different X clients and use them to create a common graphical user environment and a development platform. These advanced desktop environments allow X clients and the applications to run and communicate with each other, allowing those applications to perform advanced tasks, such as drag and drop, eg.

WINDOW MANAGERS

(Metacity, Compiz, Mutter, Kwin)

They are X client programs that can also be independent (eg. Mwm). Its main purpose is to control the way graphical windows are displayed (position, resize, move, appearance.) and features (links to the mouse buttons, title bars, shortcuts, focus behavior).

Kwin-> Window manager for KDE. Supports interchangeable styles, which control not only its appearance but also some aspects of their behavior.

Distribution: Kubuntu

Metacity-> This is for GNOME2. It has few configuration options. But in return Gnome2 is highly configurable and allows other operators to install more advanced customizable applications like Compiz.

Distribution: Ubuntu 10.10 and above

Mutter-> This is for GNOME3 (new) not allowed to use any window manager without rewriting code, so that no window manager different than Mutter can be installed in Gnome3.

Distribution: Fedora 15

Compiz-> This is for GNOME-Unity in Ubuntu 11.04. It is the most advanced and configurable manager and can usually be installed anywhere, provided you have 3D acceleration (OpenGL).

Distribution: Ubuntu 11.04

Xfwm-> This is for Xfce. Provides its own compositing manager, the first of its kind when it was released. Supports keyboard shortcuts and its graphics are completely modifiable.

Distribution: Xubuntu

Openbox-> This is for LXDE. Was derived from Blackbox 0.65 in the beginning, but has been completely rewritten and is no longer based on Blackbox. It is designed to be fast and consume a minimum amount of resources while sacrificing some features.

Distribution: Lubuntu

Fluxbox-> It is a minimalist, light and customizable. Its visual appearance is changed from text files. It is based on Blackbox code.

IceWM-> is a lightweight and minimalist. Its main goal is to be good looking and still light. It is configured from text files. The themes IceWM can also be used with KWin (KDE), provided the kdeartwork package installed.

Motif(mwm) -> is a very basic and independent manager. Not to be used with GNOME or KDE.

Read more about KDE and GNOME.

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By Emma Rosenberg

Linux Mint

In this tutorial, the reader will learn how to install the Linux Mint 12 KDE on a btrfs file KDE logosystem. The B-tree File system (abbreviated to acronym Btrfs) has not matured far enough to be used as a default file system on Linux machines. Fortunately, those who choose to run Linux with btrfs do have options on installing useful components such as the highly coveted Linux Mint 12 KDE. For those who are not familiar, Linux Mint 12 KDE is a linux distribution based on the Ubuntu desktop operating system, and is gaining massive popularity in the past couple of months in the world of the low cost dedicated server running Linux. Due to popular demand, this tutorial will teach how to precisely install Linux Mint KDE on a btrfs file system.

Before we proceed, do keep in mind that this tutorial is optimized for the current version of Linux Mint made available on their main website on January 11,2012, which is still a release candidate. Regardless, the stable version will likely have an identical installation process as the current release candidate, so it should not affect the validity of this article.

Installing a Linux distribution on a btrfs file system will require three partitions. The first partition is a boot partition, which is mounted at the /boot. The second partition is the root partition, which is mounted at /. The last partition is for the Swap partition, which provides disk space that the system will use as virtual memory.

In order to setup these partitions, download the installation file for the distribution from the Linux Mint download page. Stick the downloaded package onto either a DVD or a USB stick, and boot the computer accordingly.

After the computer has booted, the Linux Mint 12 KDE installation should be on your desktop. Click on the “Install Linux Mint” icon on the desktop. Click the Continue button to proceed onto the next step. Two disk partitioning options are available, default and manual. Make sure you use Manual, so that we can install it on a Btrfs file system.

Selecting Manual will pull up the advanced disk partitioning tool. Make sure the target disk has been initialized before you create the partitions. Select the appropriate disk and click on the New Partition Table button. There will now be a free space option on your menu. Select the free space, and then click on the Add button so that the first partition can be created.

The first partition will be mounted at /boot. Make sure it is a Primary partition out of the two options. A disk space of 500 MB should be plenty for this partition, so go ahead and put 500 MB. Even though we are installing on a Btrfs file system, make the boot partition as a Ext4 file system. It will still work properly.

Now that the boot partition has been created, select the remaining free space and once again, press the Add button to create the next partition. This time this partition is for /, which is the main file system. Instead of choosing Primary, choose Logical. The majority of the remaining disk space can be put on this file system, leaving only 4 GB for the last partition. Then, make sure the btrfs journaling file system option is chosen for this partition. Mount point will be set as /. Press ok, and the second partition is finished.

Lastly, choose the remaining free space and press Add button. Depending on the disk space, allocate 2 to 4 GB for the Swap partition. Make the partition type Logical. Finally, use the partition as swap area under the Use as drop down menu. Press ok, and the third and last partition is created.

Double check that all three of these partitions were created properly. If the list checks out, click on Install Now. Congratulations, you have now installed Linux Mint 12 KDE using the Btrfs file system!

Learn more about free and popular Linux distributions to use on your low cost dedicated server.

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By Robert Fanning

Linux Mint KDE is another quality KDE distribution that you can choose from. It’s actually based on Ubuntu which will still give you access to those repositories giving you easy access to installing software that you need. It’s what’s called a community edition meaning that volunteers actually put this distribution together. Generally it’s a version behind the main version of Mint but still has everything you need.

Linux Mint KDE has a basic desktop that is already customized. It’s comes with a fresh blue look to it with the default KDE grey title bars. It’s set up quite a bit like Windows with the “start” button the bottom left, a basic taskbar, notification icons, and a clock. It’s your standard KDE layout for those who know what this look like.

It uses the new KDE 4 with the plasma desktop. If you are using the KDE edition of Mint, then you probably love the new plasma and don’t mind the extra resources that this uses over the old KDE 3. There are many who are split on the differences between the two but users have gradually accepted version four’s changes.

Some wonder why to use Mint’s KDE edition over something like Kubuntu since both are based on Ubuntu. Linux Mint comes with proprietary drivers installed to play music, dvd, flash, and java. These do not have to be installed by you at all unlike Kubuntu. By default it also uses Firefox and Thunderbird instead of the traditional KDE browser and mail programs. Mint also has some features like MintInstall and MintUpdate. These will help you get new applications installed and updated really easily.

If you don’t like the KDE edition, there are also Fluxbox, XFCE, and Gnome editions of Mint to try out as well as other distributions that use KDE.

Robert is an author who specializes in niche markets. Come visit his latest website http://www.dragonvoicerecognition.org for product information regarding voice recognition software.

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By Richard Hove

One huge advantage of Linux is it’s flexibility. Different pieces of open source software can be put together in order to make it work on certain types of hardware. One graphical user interface that is good for older hardware is Fluxbox. It Linux Mint Fluxboxuses so little resources that even a machine that is nearly 10 years old can run it well. The problem is that very few distributions actually have a Fluxbox edition. Linux Mint 8 has now come out with their Fluxbox edition meaning it’s one of the most modern and up to date versions of Linux that is using Fluxbox.

Linux Mint is a distribution that is based on Ubuntu. There are a few differences. First, it looks better than Ubuntu. Instead of the brown and orange colors, it uses greens and blacks to create a pretty slick looking desktop. It also comes with proprietary plugins already installed like Flash and Java as well as the codex that you will need to play certain music formats on your computer. While you can install these manually with Ubuntu, Mint has it done when you install the distribution.

Fluxbox can be added onto any Linux distribution. The problem is that you will have to configure it to work well. While this can be done by expert users, newer users have a hard time knowing all the pieces that you will need to make it work properly. Linux Mint 8 Fluxbox has all this already done for you setting it up so that everything works that way you need it to.

While it is made for older hardware, you might not be a huge fan of interfaces like Gnome and KDE. Fluxbox and XFCE are some popular alternatives to these. The advantage of Fluxbox is that it’s so simple that it doesn’t get in the way like other interfaces tend to do. You can use this edition even on a high power machine if that is something you want.

The author has developed a website dedicated to the Excalibur food dehydrator of which he is a big fan. He uses the Excalibur 2900 dehydrator. Take a look at his site for some great deals and a guide to buying one.

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By David Childers

The use of the text based command line for running applications or configuring computer systems can be a daunting task. Special commands must be used which may require additional modifiers to invoke the desired computer function. Both Desktop Environments and Windows Mangers provide a graphical method for users to control and configure a Unix operating system, without the need for using text based command line control. Graphical user interfaces eliminate the tedious memorization of text based commands.

Desktop environments are graphic interfaces that provide user control and configuration of a computer operating system in addition to installed applications. The graphic interface generally consist of menus, icons and background desktop images. It also allows users to manipulate items with the drag and drop function or use the point and click function to execute applications on the desktop itself.

The following are Open Source / Free Desktop Environment packages for the Unix operating systems. (Linux, OpenBSD, FreeBSD, NetBSD, and Solaris)

These desktop environments provide users with the ability to utilize software developed with various computer languages, and the ability to utilize the software on different computer hardware configurations.

kde logoKDE is based on the Qt 4 programming language and allows applications to be integrated within the desktop. KDE uses the KWin window manager.

 

gnome logoGNOME is based on the GTK+ programming language and allows applications to be integrated within the desktop. Gnome uses the Metacity window manager.

 

xfce logoXFCE is based on the the GTK+ programming language. Xfce uses the Xfwm window manager.

 
lxde logoLXDE does not have applications integrated into the desktop. LXDE uses the Openbox window manager.

 

The X window manager is an application that controls the function of the X Window System. It can be configured to manage the visual appearance of display windows and control panels. The X window manager also controls how users interact with these graphical interfaces.

The X Window System provides the system resources and software components necessary for the creation of graphical user interfaces (Windows Managers and Desktop Environments).

The following are the most common Open Source / Free Window Manager packages for the Unix operating systems : Linux, OpenBSD, FreeBSD, NetBSD, and Solaris.

These window managers provide users with the ability to utilize the software on different computer hardware configurations and provide various visual appearance.

- Blackbox is written in C++. It offers support for multiple workspaces.

- Fluxbox is based on Blackbox 0.61.1. It offers minimal support for graphical icons.

- Openbox was originally based on Blackbox 0.65.0. It allows users to utilize applications without a full desktop environment installed.

- Enlightenment can be used as a substitute for a complete desktop environment.

- IceWM was written in C++. It can be configured to recreate the visual appearance of various desktop environments.

- Window Maker provides drag and drop user control in addition to supporting multiple workspaces.

- Sawfish is written with a scripting language that is similar to Lisp. It provides very basic features.

- Metacity is written in GTK+. It was created for use with the Gnome Desktop Environment.

- MWM is based on the Motif toolkit. It does not support desktop icons or multiple workspaces.

- FVWM is based on TWM. It provides the ability to display a 3D visualization ( similar to MWM ) and supports basic multiple workspace.

- AfterStep was originally based on FVWM and was designed to provide a NextStep themed appearance.

- CTWM is based on TWM. It provides rudimentary GNOME desktop support and multiple workspaces.

Text based command line configuration and control can provide a comprehensive method for daily computer management and operation. Unfortunately, users are required to know the necessary unique commands and their unique structure that must be used. Graphical user interfaces alleviate that requirement and make the use of a computer both simple and effective.

You can find more information about these software applications here: http://www.scenicradio.com/unix.htm

Dave Childers is a freelance Internet broadcast consultant, writer and webmaster of http://www.scvi.net – The Winamp TV, NullSoft Video information website.

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What Is Ubuntu?

What Is Ubuntu?

By Roharme D

Ubuntu is an easy version of Linux. It is not windows,but it is almost user friendly like windows. No all applications have graphical interface. Many applications force users to use commands to run them.Commands are mandatory to work with Linux and Ubuntu is not an exception.

Useful Commands:

* apt-get – Call Advanced Packaging Tool.

* clear – Clears terminal screen

* cat [filename] – Opens the file in terminal

* cat > [filename] – Createsa file with name mentioned

* chmod – Change the mode of a file to read, write, execute, extract etc.

* gedit – Opens gnome editor

* gksudo [program name] – Open graphic interface of an application with administrator

* install – Install a package or a component

* pon – Trigger a dsl-connection

* poff – Turn of a dsl-connection

* plog -PPPOE Log file.

* sudo -To become an administration for that particular transaction / terminal session alone.

* privileges.

* synaptic – Open package installer

* vi – Opens VI editor

Installing a software:

Ubuntu does not support direct executable files. You will either be provided with a compiled object that can be installed as such or the complete source code itself. In case of source code, it must be compiled first to proceed with the installation. There is no fixed way to compile the code. It depends upon the language in which the software has been written.

Fully compiled software will have standard extensions which Ubuntu understands by their extension.Some standard file type are

*.run – These files types must be executed with shell command as

* sh.run

*.deb – Deb is the abbreviated form of Debian packages. These packages can be installed right away by double clicking.It opens itself in package installer.

*.bin – These are standard binary files. They might be locked sometimes. They must be provided privileges before executing. The privileges can be changed by the command chmod with the switch +x.To install the software, use the command./[FILENAME].bin (note the dot in the beginning)

There are many other ways of installing a software.

Synaptic Manager:

This is a built-in Ubuntu installer. Ubuntu, keeps track of many useful and popular packages. They are indexed in the synaptic manager. You can install the software using the synaptic manager, if the software is listed in it.

To start synaptic manager, use the command sudo synaptic

Application Package Tool:

APT is one of the typical features of Ubuntu. There are plenty of software and utilities that can directly be installed in your system without having a downloaded soft copy. Just naming the package would suffice. Some famous package that can be installed with APT are

sudo apt-get install sun-java6-sdk sudo apt-get install xmms sudo apt-get install vlc sudo apt-get install mvn sudo apt-get install ant sudo apt-get install svn

Almost all applications can be opened using a command line. Command line version of software are faster than graphic interface as they occupy less memory.This could be a handy guide for beginners. But this is just a piece of Ubuntu. There are many things are there to be learnt to play with Ubuntu.

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Linux Operating System – Things I’ve Learned About This System Over the Years
By Richard S. Corbin

The Linux operating system is being talked about more and more these days. The current financial crisis has had large corporations as well as governments rethinking what it costs to be online and just how much is being spent on computing technology.

A recent BBC news feed reported that a portion of the government dealing with the public could save millions of pounds yearly by switching to Open Source for it’s computer needs and indeed would be switching this year.

Here are some things I’ve learned in the last 5 years of using Linux( Ubuntu and Kubuntu versions):

  • Easy to acquire this technology. Linux is everywhere on the internet. You simply download it or send for a CD copy of it. I think the cds cost about $5.00. Not bad for a complete operating system.
  • The system includes a full office suite, e-mail program, web browser, audio and video programs, graphics programs, photo software, CD/DVD software etc. Also, there are many different types of the software mentioned to pick and choose from. I’ve seen lists of over 20,000 different software packages to choose from. It’s simply amazing. However, I must mention, just because this software is free does not mean it is cheap or poorly made. An example is the Open Office Suite that comes with the operating system. This suite is made by Sun Microsystems and is equal to and better than Microsoft Office in many ways. (Have you priced Microsoft Office lately?)
  • Very user friendly software. You can run it from the CD and try it out before you even load it on your computer. Also, you can install it along side your existing software so that you can compare them and decide for yourself which one is better.
  • I have learned how to set it up and simply use it or with the help of support from around the world I have tweaked it and changed it to suit how I wanted it to operate. Don’t get me wrong, I have totally messed up my system also. However, with all of the free support I have fixed the problems I have created too.
  • I have tried different distributions of Linux also. Sometimes having three versions on my computer at one time, just to see how they compare!
  • It was surprisingly liberating to get out from under the restrictions of Windows. I could do whatever I wanted. Upgrade, downgrade, tweak, and even mess up, knowing that I could just download a new version if I totally screwed up my computer. No registration, always supported, no costly upgrades. Freedom with my computer. And if I chose to set it up and not mess with it but use it continually I could do that. I actually have a second computer to try different stuff on.

I would have to say that my experience with Linux over the years has been a blast. I feel like I am in control. I have never had to take my computer in to have it serviced. Which I might add was why I switched from Windows. I was in service a lot and paying big bucks to have someone fix it because I couldn’t afford to call support and get them to try on the phone to fix it. I was very frustrated to say the least.

Now you can try the Linux operating system for yourself and have some fun and freedom.

At the following site you can see a comparison of Windows software to Linux software. There is also a free gift. http://www.linuxez.info

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Differences Between Linux And Windows
By Matt Gebhardt

This article will discuss the differences between the Linux and Windows operating software; we discuss some of the pro’s and con’s of each system.

tux-100x100Let us first start out with a general overview of the Linux operating system. Linux at its most basic form is a computer kernel. The Kernel is the underlying computer code, used to communicate with hardware, and other system software, it also runs all of the basic functions of the computer.

The Linux Kernel is an operating system, which runs on a wide variety of hardware and for a variety of purposes. Linux is capable of running on devices as simple as a wrist watch, or a cell phone, but it can also run on a home computer using, for example Intel, or AMD processors, and its even capable of running on high end servers using Sun Sparc CPU’s or IBM power PC processors. Some Linux distro’s can only run one processor, while others can run many at once.

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Common uses for Linux include that of a home desktop computing system, or more commonly for a server application, such as use as a web server, or mail server. You can even use Linux as a dedicated firewall to help protect other machines that are on the same network.

imagesA programmer student named Linus Torvalds first made Linux as a variant of the Unix operating system in 1991. Linus Torvalds made Linux open source with the GNU (GPL) (General Public License), so other programmers could download the source code free of charge and alter it any way they see fit. Thousands of coders throughout the world began downloading and altering the source code of Linux, applying patches, and bug fixes, and other improvements, to make the OS better and better. Over the years Linux has gone from a simple text based clone of Unix, to a powerful operating software, with full-featured desktop environments, and unprecedented portability, and a variety of uses. Most of the original Unix code has also been gradually written out of Linux over the years.

As a result of Linux being open source software, there is no one version of Linux; instead there are many different versions or distributions of Linux, that are suited for a variety of different users and task. Some Distributions of Linux include Gentoo, and Slackware, which due to the lack of a complete graphical environment is best, suited for Linux experts, programmers, and other users that know their way around a command prompt. Distributions that lack a graphical environment are best suited for older computers lacking the processing power necessary to process graphics, or for computers performing processor intensive task, where it is desirable to have all of the system resources focused on the task at hand, rather than wasting resources by processing graphics. Other Linux distributions aim at making the computing experience as easy as possible. Distributions such as Ubuntu, or Linspire make Linux far easier to use, by offering full-featured graphical environments that help eliminate the need for a command prompt. Of course the downside of ease of use is less configurability, and wasted system resources on graphics processing. Other distributions such as Suse try to find a common ground between ease of use and configurability.

“Linux has two parts, they include the Kernel mentioned previously, and in most circumstances it will also include a graphical user interface, which runs atop the Kernel” reference #3. In most cases the user will communicate with the computer via the graphical user interface. (ref #6) Some of the more common graphical environments that can run on Linux include the following. The KDE GUI (Graphical user interface). Matthias Ettrich developed KDE in 1996. He wanted a GUI for the Unix desktop that would make all of the applications look and feel alike. He also wanted a desktop environment for Unix that would be easier to use than the ones available at the time. KDE is a free open source project, with millions of coders working on it throughout the world, but it also has some commercial support from companies such as Novell, Troltech, and Mandriva. KDE aims to make an easy to use desktop environment without sacrificing configurability. Windows users might note that KDE has a similar look to Windows. Another popular GUI is (ref #7) GNOME. GNOME puts a heavy emphasis on simplicity, and user ability. Much like KDE GNOME is open source and is free to download. One notable feature of GNOME is the fact that it supports many different languages; GNOME supports over 100 different languages. Gnome is license under the LGPL license (lesser general public license). The license allows applications written for GNOME to use a much wider set of licenses, including some commercial applications. The name GNOME stands for GNU Network object model environment. GNOME’s look and feel is similar to that of other desktop environments. Fluxbox is another example of a Linux GUI. With less of an emphasis on ease of use and eye candy, Fluxbox aims to be a very lightweight, and a more efficient user of system resources. The interface has only a taskbar and a menu bar, which is accessed by right clicking over the desktop. Fluxbox is most popular for use with older computers that have a limited abundance of system resources.

Although most Linux distributions offer a graphical environment, to simplify the user experience, they all also offer a way for more technically involved users to directly communicate with the Kernel via a shell or command line. The command line allows you to run the computer without a GUI, by executing commands from a text-based interface. An advantage of using the command prompt is it uses less system resources and enables your computer to focus more of its energy on the task at hand. Examples of commands include the cd command for changing your directory, or the halt command for shutting down your system, or the reboot command for restarting the computer ect.

Now that we are more familiar with the Linux operating system, we can note the many ways in which Linux differs from the worlds most popular OS, Microsoft Windows. From this point forward we will discuss some of the more prominent ways in which Linux deferrers from Windows.

Windows_7For starters there is only one company that releases a Windows operating system, and that company is Microsoft. All versions of Windows, weather Windows XP Home, Business, or Vista, all updates, security patches, and service patches for Windows comes from Microsoft. With Linux on the other hand there is not one company that releases it. Linux has millions of coders and companies throughout the world, volunteering their time to work on patches, updates, newer versions, and software applications. Although some companies, charge for TECH support, and others charge for their distribution of Linux, by packaging it with non-free software, you will always be able to get the Linux Kernel for free, and you can get full-featured Linux desktops with all the necessary applications for general use, for free as well. The vendors that charge money for their distribution of Linux are also required to release a free version in order to comply with the GPL License agreement. With Microsoft Windows on the other hand you have to pay Microsoft for the software, and you will also have to pay for most of the applications that you will use.

Windows and Linux also differ on TECH support issues. Windows is backed by the Microsoft Corporation, which means that if you have an issue with any of their products the company should resolve it. For example if Microsoft Windows is not working right, then you should be able to call Microsoft and make use of their TECH support to fix the issue. TECH support is usually included with the purchase of the product for a certain amount of time, maybe a two year period, and from there on you may be charged for the service. Although IBM backs their Linux products, for the most part if you use Linux you are on your own. If you have a problem with Ubuntu Linux you cannot call Ubuntu and expect any help. Despite the lack of professional help, you can however receive good TECH advice, from the thousands or millions of Linux forums that are on the web. You ca also get great help from social networking sites such as Myspace, by posting questions in the many Linux groups. You can usually receive responses for your questions in a matter of hours form many qualified people.

Configurability is another key difference between the two operating software’s. Although Windows offers its control panel to help users configure the computer to their liking, it does not match the configuring options that Linux provides especially if you are a real TECH savvy user. In Linux the Kernel is open source, so if you have the know how, you can modify it in virtually any way that you see fit. Also Linux offers a variety of Graphical environments to further suit your needs. As mentioned earlier Linux is capable of running full-featured graphical environments like KDE, or more lightweight and resource friendly GUI’s like Fluxbox, or Blackbox, to suit users with older computers. There are also versions of Linux that are designed to emulate the Windows look and feel as closely as possible. Distributions such as Linspire are best suited for users that are migrating over from the Windows world. There are also distributions that include no graphical environment at all to better suit users that need to squeeze out all of the computing power that they can get for various computing activities, and for users that are more advanced than others. All of this configurability can be problematic sometimes, as you will have to make a decision on which desktop is right for you, and to make things easier on yourself you will need to only install applications that are native to your distribution and graphical environment.

(ref #1) The cost effectiveness of Linux is another way it separates itself from Windows. For home use Linux is cheap and in most cases completely free, while Windows varies in cost depending on which version you buy. With Linux most of the applications will also be free, however for Windows in the majority of cases you are suppose to pay for the applications. For most cases, with Linux there is no need to enter a product activation key when performing an installation, you are free to install it on as many computers as you’d like. With Windows you are only allowed to install it on one computer and Microsoft uses product activation software to enforce this rule. When installing Window’s you must enter a product activation key, which will expire after so many uses. If you wish too, you can purchase Linux from a variety of vendors, which will include a boxed set of CDs, Manuals, and TECH support for around 40-130$. Of course If you purchase a high-end version of Linux used for servers it may cost any where from 400$- 2000$. “In 2002 computer world magazine quoted the chief technology architect at Merrill Lynch in New York, as saying “the cost of running Linux is typically a tenth of the cost of running Unix or Windows alternatively.” (ref#1)

(ref #1) Installation of Windows is generally easier, than installing Linux. “With Windows XP there are three main ways to install. There is a clean install, in which you install Windows on a blank hard drive. There is also an upgrade install, in which you start with an older version of Windows and “upgrade” to a newer one. An advantage of upgrading is that all of the files on the older system should remain intact throughout the process. You can also perform a repair install, in which case you are installing the same version of Windows on top of itself in order to fix a damaged version of Windows. There is also a recovery, which Technically is not an install; it is used to restore a copy of Windows back to its factory settings. The disadvantage of recovering Windows is the fact that you will loose all of your data, which resides on the damaged copy of Windows.” (ref#1) Also with Windows you can rest assured that your hardware will most likely be supported by the operating software, although this is not much of a problem with Linux you cant be sure if Linux will support all of your hardware. With Linux installation varies greatly from Distro to Distro. You may be presented with a graphical installer or it may be a text-based installer, these variations make Linux a bit more difficult and unpredictable to install than is Windows, (although the difficulty is disappearing). You may perform a clean install of Linux or dual boot it, to co-exist with another operation software. With Linux rather than having to buy an upgrade Cd, you can install updates by downloading and then installing them while your desktop is running. With Linux it is also not necessary to reboot your computer after most upgrades, It is only necessary to reboot after an upgrade to the kernel. It is also possible to run Linux without ever needing to install it on a hard drive; there are many distributions of Linux that will allow you to run it straight off of a live cd. The advantage of this is that you do not need to alter your system in order to try Linux. You can run Linux off of the CD so you do not have to damage your Windows partition. Other advantages include the ability to rescue a broken Linux system. If your Linux computer will not boot, then you may insert a live cd and boot off it, so you can repair the damaged version of Linux. Also you may use a Linux live cd to recover files from a damaged Windows computer that will no longer boot up. Since Linux is capable of reading NTFS files you may copy files form a Windows computer to a USB flash drive or floppy drive etc.

Another major difference between Linux and Windows is the applications that you will use with either OS. Windows includes a much wider abundance of commercially backed applications than does Linux. It is much easier to find the software that you are looking for with Windows than it is with Linux, because so many software vendors make their products compatible with Windows only. With Linux you will for the most part be forced to let go of the familiar applications that you have grown accustomed to with Windows, in favor of lesser-known open source apps that are made for Linux. Applications such as Microsoft office, Outlook, Internet Explorer, Adobe Creative suite, and chat clients such as MSN messenger, do not work natively with Linux. Although with Linux you can get Microsoft office and Adobe creative suite to work using software from codeWeavers called cross Over Office. Instead of using these applications you will need to use Linux apps such as open office, The Gimp Image Editor, The ThunderBird email client, Instead of the MSN messenger you can use the GAIM messenger, and you can use Firefox as your web browser. Also with Linux it can be difficult to install software even if it is made for Linux. This is due to the fact that Linux has so many different versions. Software that is made to install on one version probably will require some configuration in order to install on another version. An example would be if you were trying to install software that was made for the KDE graphical environment, on the GNOME GUI, This app would not easily install on the GNOME GUI, and would require some configuring on your part to successfully install it.

The type of hard ware that Linux and windows runs on also causes them to differ. Linux will run on many different hardware platforms, from Intel and AMD chips, to computers running IBM power Pc processors. Linux will run on the slowest 386 machines to the biggest mainframes on the planet, newer versions of Windows will not run on the same amount of hardware as Linux. Linux can even be configured to run on apples, Ipod’s, or smart phones. A disadvantage of Linux is when it comes to using hardware devices such as Printers, Scanners, or Digital camera’s. Where as the driver software for these devices will often be easily available for Windows, with Linux you are for the most part left on your own to find drivers for these devices. Most Linux users will find comfort in the fact that drivers for the latest hardware are constantly being written by coders throughout the world and are usually very quickly made available.

(ref #1) One of the most notable differences between the two operating software’s is Windows legendary problems with malicious code, known as Viruses and Spy ware. Viruses, Spy-ware and a general lack of security are the biggest problems facing the Windows community. Under Windows Viruses and Spy-ware have the ability to execute themselves with little or no input from the user. This makes guarding against them a constant concern for any Windows user. Windows users are forced to employ third party anti virus software to help limit the possibility of the computer being rendered useless by malicious code. Anti virus software often has the negative side effect of hogging system resources, thus slowing down your entire computer, also most anti virus software requires that you pay a subscription service, and that you constantly download updates in order to stay ahead of the intruders. With Linux on the other hand problems with viruses are practically non-existent, and in reality you do not even need virus protection for your Linux machine. One reason why Viruses and Spy-ware are not a problem for Linux is simply due to the fact that there are far fewer being made for Linux. A more important reason is that running a virus on a Linux machine is more difficult and requires a lot more input from the user. With Windows you may accidentally run and execute a virus, by opening an email attachment, or by double clicking on a file that contains malicious code. However with Linux a virus would need to run in the terminal, which requires the user to give the file execute permissions, and then open it in the terminal. And in order to cause any real damage to the system the user would have to log in as root, by typing a user name and password before running the virus. Foe example to run a virus that is embedded in an email attachment the user would have to, open the attachment, then save it, then right click the file and chose properties form the menu, in properties they can give it execute permissions, they would then be able to open the file in the terminal to run the virus. And even then the user would only be able to damage his or her home folder, all other users data will be left untouched, and all root system files would also remain untouched, because Linux would require a root password to make changes to these files. The only way the user can damage the whole computer would be if he or she logged in as root user by providing the root user name and password to the terminal before running the virus. Unlike Windows in Linux an executable file cannot run automatically, It needs to be given execute permissions manually this significantly improves security. In Linux the only realistic reason you would need virus protection is if you share files with Windows users, and that is to protect them not you, so you are not to accidentally pass a virus to the Windows computer that you are sharing files with.

The above was a general over view of some differences between the Windows operating system, and Linux. To recap we started with the fact that Windows has only one vendor that releases the software, while Linux comes from millions of different coders throughout the world. We also commented on the fact that the Linux Kernel and much of the applications used with it are completely free of charge, where as with windows you are forced to pay for most of the software. Unlike Widows Linux is often lacking in professional Tech support, and Linux users are often left on their own to solve Technical issues. Linux users can either pay for Tech support or rely on the many Linux Forums and groups available on the Internet. Due to the fact that the kernel is open source, Linux has a huge advantage over Windows in configurability. You can configure Linux to run almost any way you see fit by manipulating the Kernel. Installing the Windows Operating software and applications is easier due to the fact that it has a universal installer. Also finding applications for Windows is easier because of its popularity most apps are available for Windows only, and are made easily available. Linux will run on a greater variety of hard ware than does Windows, from mainframe super computers running multiple IBM Power PC Chips, to a small laptop running an AMD processor. And of course the biggest difference in this writer’s opinion is the fact that Linux does not suffer from an onslaught of Viruses and other malicious code, unlike Windows which is plagued by countless number of malicious code that can easily destroy your system if not properly guarded against.

In conclusion we will conclude that the Linux OS really is the superior software. Other than a few minor nuisances, linux out performs Windows in most categories. The fact that Linux is more secure is the tipping point, that tilts the scales in the favor of Linux. Windows simply suffers from far to many security vulnerabilities for it to be considered the better over all desktop environment.

References

michaelhorowitz.com/Linux.vs.Windows.html Reference #1

theinquirer.net/en/inquirer/news/2004/10/27/linux-more-secure-than-windows-says-study Reference #2

linux.com/whatislinux/ reference number 3

.linux.org/info/

Reference #4

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux%5Fkernel Reference #5

/en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KDE Reference #6

/en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNOME Reference #7

http://www.alinuxworld.com i wrote this article for part of a final project for my unix class while in college. i also run a linux website at the following url http://www.alinuxworld.com

<p>Increase your profit with an efficient <a href=“http://www.peer1.com/hosting/dedicated_servers.php”>Dedicated Server Hosting</a> from one of the leading agencies.</p>
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Debian Chinese How-To

Debian Chinese How-To
By Yien Bin

This is my personal experience with chinese environment setup on my Debian Box, with KDE desktop.

Here is my specs.

  • Debian Unstable, kernel 2.6.18-1-686
  • xserver-xorg 7.1.0-4
  • kde 3.5.5

50px-Debian-OpenLogo.svgSetting your system with english locales, so that your desktop, menus and programs’ file menus won’t show english characters in blurry chinese ttf fonts. You will still have the ability to input chinese in almost everything(browsers, konquerer, instant messengers, konsole, xchat and more).
Here is a step by step instruction.

  1. Setting UTF-8 Locale system wide

    dpkg-reconfigure locales

    This command will prompt you a screen to select your desired locales. For my case, I have selected

    1. en_US ISO-8859-1
    2. en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8
    3. zh_CN GB2312
    4. zh_CN.GB18030 GB18030
    5. zh_CN.GB18030 GB18030
    6. zh_CN.GB18030 GB18030
    7. zh_TW BIG5
    8. zh_TW.UTF-8 UTF-8

    Set en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8 as default locales. By now, when you output your locales settings with locale command, all the variables with “LC_XXX” shoud be already in “en_US.UTF-8“.

    65px-Zhongwen.svg

  2. Displaying Chinese

    There are a few packages you need to get in order to get chinese text displayed correctly in your KDE desktop.
    These are for KDE Internationalization.

    • kde-i18n-zhcn (for Simplified Chinese)
    • kde-i18n-zhtw (for Big5 Chinese)

    You can always add your desired encoding for other languages. I have also kde-i18n-ko for korean, and kde-i18n-ja for Japan.
    After installing the internationalized packages, you will have to install TTF(true type fonts). Here’s the list.

    • ttf-arphic-bkai00mp (“AR PL KaitiM Big5″ Chinese TrueType font)
    • ttf-arphic-bsmi00lp (“AR PL Mingti2L Big5″ Chinese TrueType font)
    • ttf-arphic-gbsn00lp (“AR PL SungtiL GB” Chinese TrueType font)
    • ttf-arphic-gkai00mp (“AR PL KaitiM GB” Chinese TrueType font)
    • ttf-arphic-uming (“AR PL ShanHeiSun Uni” Chinese Unicode TrueType font)
    • ttf-fireflysung (“AR PL New Sung” Chinese TrueType font)
    • ttf-kochi-gothic-naga10 (Kochi Subst Gothic Japanese TrueType font)

    My default chinese font is ttf-fireflysung which I’ve forgot where to get. I remember getting it from a Taiwan site, if any of you have the address, please kindly let me know. If you are unable to get firefly, uming is probably your best choice for chinese text.

  3. Changing font for chinese text display

    Sometimes in your KDE desktop, if you have downloaded files with chinese/japanese file names, it will be displayed in square unreadable characters. This means KDE is unable to find appropriate font substitution for unknown characters. You can get qt3-qtconfig to deal with this problem. Inside the program you will get to set font substitution for your default KDE font(mine is Bitstream Vera). Apply several substitution TTFs like AR PL New Sung and AR PL ShanHeiSun Uni, so your text will be displayed correctly.

    For other programs like Firefox, Xchat, amarok and more. You will get to choose their own default font. For my case, once qt3-qtconfig is set properly, these programs have no problem using the settings.

    If above methods still do not work out for you. You can try also install gtk2-engines-gtk-qt. This program will use your Qt settings to draw your GTK applications’ user interface, including the fonts of course. You should also check with

    update-alternatives –config qtconfig

    to see whether which qt config is currently in use. If you have used qt3-qtconfig, you definitely should choose “/usr/bin/qtconfig-qt3″ as your default.

  4. Chinese Input Method

    IMO, scim is always the best choice because it has pinyin support, the only chinese input method I’m familiar with. You will have to get these packages.

    • scim
    • scim-chinese
    • scim-gtk2-immodule
    • scim-modules-socket
    • scim-pinyin
    • libscim8c2a

    In order to get scim to work in almost everywhere in KDE, some settings need to be done.
    First, in your ~/.bashrc file, add in this line.

    export LC_CTYPE=”zh_CN.UTF-8″

    This will export your LC_TYPE as zh_CN.UTF-8 since we have already set all these to en_US.UTF-8. This is per user’s local setting, for my case I’ve set my LC_TYPE to zh_CN.UTF-8 system wide, with this command.

    dpkg-reconfigure localesconf

    Use this command to set scim as your default input method for X.

    update-alternatives –config xinput-all_ALL

    Again this is my system wide setting. For user’s local setting, add these lines in your ~/.bashrc

    export XIM=SCIM
    export XIM_PROGRAM=/usr/bin/scim
    export XIM_ARGS=”-d”
    export GTK_IM_MODULE=xim
    export QT_IM_MODULE=xim

    Restart your X-server, and login to KDE. In any text input field(Gaim, Firefox, Xchat, Open Office, Thunderbird and more), when you hit CTRL+Space, the scim toolbar will pop up and you are able to input chinese text. CTRL+Space again to switch back to English.

    Remember not to install the Skim(KDE frontend for scim), as it will somehow freeze your keyboard frequently.

A very useful page at http://www.unifont.org/fontguide/, you might want to check it out.

Yien Bin is a part-time tech blogger. Debian is his favorite operating system. His blog can be found at http://www.nixser.com

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Welcome to the World of Knoppix
By Mike Ber

Knoppix is a bootable CD with a collection of GNU/Linux software, automatic hardware detection, and support for many graphics cards, sound cards, SCSI and USB devices and other peripherals. Knoppix can be used as a Linux demo, 272px-Knoppix-logo.svgeducational CD, rescue system, or adapted and used as a platform for commercial software product demos. It is not necessary to install anything on a hard disk. Due to on-the-fly decompression, the CD can have up to 2 GB of executable software installed on it.

If one is to believe news from the Linux camp one could be forgiven for thinking that the world was out to destroy the beautiful thing that is the Open Source movement. Angry fingers would be pointed in several directions, surprisingly (or unsurprisingly) all in the general vicinity of Microsoft. Of course, the noises from the other side are just as loud (actually quite a bit louder). They, in turn, claim that Linux is ‘unsafe’, hard to use and even harder to maintain, and worse of all, prone to exploitation by hackers (since the source code is open source and thus can essentially be seen and played around with by anyone).

I’ve always preferred the uncomfortable seat on the fence, despite the green grass on both sides. Granted, you tend to get sore sitting in such a way after a while, but the view from here is great, and argument very clear. The battle between proprietary code (led by Microsoft, no less) and open source (Linux) has been going on ever since Linus Torvalds created Linux and started the process that has made it the genuine force that it is today. And as is the case in such fighting, there are three sides to the story: Microsoft’s tale, Linux’s woes and my bit of the story. And my part begins with the most interesting OS of them all…

What if you had an operating system that ran completely from a CD? That’s right, just one CD. And this CD also contained very useful programs for word-processing, data recovery and system repair utilities, image-editing and internet connectivity, along with excellent audio and video players? What if all you had to do was to boot from this CD and voila, in a few minutes your new OS had taken over your PC. Taken over? Nothing to worry about, as removing the OS from your computer was to be as easy as removing the CD. Literally.

300px-KNOPPIXWelcome to the world of Knoppix.

Given the fact that we are in the midst of multi-gigabyte operating systems that we there would be such a competent one that could be run entirely from a CD-ROM is stupendous. Imagine the possibilities. Customized versions of the Knoppix OS would mean that you could literally carry a streamlined version of your home PC around with you wherever you went. Need to recover data from a crashed hard-disk? Boot into Knoppix and use the system repair and data recovery tools to retrieve your data (burn it to a CD-R, or transfer it via a PC-to-PC connection) and maybe attempt to fix the disk as well. Secondly, if you are a web developer who wants to check how sites look from within a Linux environment, all you need to do is pop Knoppix in and check out your websites from Mozilla or Konqueror. Away from the office and want to work on customized software specially made for your company? Knoppix, along with a USB drive to store data, turns your crisis into a simple matter of finding a PC. And like all Linux versions, meeting the minimum system requirements (see http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html#requirements) would be a snap (82 MB RAM, CDROM drive, SVGA card, Intel compatible CPU (i486 or better)).

Knoppix also boasts a classic boot screen

KNOPPIX_booting440width

There is a lot to be said for Knoppix, especially for its appeal to Linux newbies (or ‘noobs’, as vernacular has it). With no need for an installation (although that is given as an option), and with excellent hardware detection, Knoppix has single-handedly done away with the two major concerns for Windows users wanting to try out Linux: A complicated installation process, and the problem of finding the right drivers for all your hardware. In effect, Knoppix is an excellent choice for someone who wants to try out Linux without having to go through the usual hassle. It’s easy to use, and doesn’t mess with your system either. Despite being run completely off the CD, it runs pretty quickly as well.

Knoppix also boasts a comprehensive suite of programs that has almost everything that home/office desktop could be used for. The package list is tremendous, with the compression system allowing for over 2GB of stuff to be stored. This is amazing and is certainly more than any other single live CD can hold. For a basic idea as to how you should be fine, Knoppix contains 2 office suites (Koffice and OpenOffice), has KDE, Mozilla (web+mail+IRC), PHP, MySql, samba, xmms and tons more. This is no gaming platform, but more than enough is packed in there to let you do accomplish most of your usual tasks on the PC (see http://www.distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=knoppix for a complete list). And if you want more, do an installation and now that you can write on the hard-disk, use apt-get upgrade, apt-get dist-upgrade (after making sure your sources.list is correct) to get more.

Knoppix does have a few minor problems. These are limited to a few quirks within the KDE, some problems with hardware detection and complaints that 5 minutes to boot a PC is too long (which, by the way, is quite quick for a live-CD OS). The reality is that such problems are expected from an Open Source operating system. Linux platforms are not judged by the same criteria that Windows, or any other ‘paid-for’ OS is (this is perhaps a major reason behind the Linux-bashing that goes on in Microsoft-related circles). No one expects Knoppix to work perfectly when detecting hardware, and the fact that it more often than not works extremely well forms the basis of our judgment, whereas if Windows XP Professional refused to detect my LAN card I would not stop cursing their ineptitude (no matter that it detected everything else, or everyone else’s card). The standards applied here are totally different, and thus Knoppix survives all such criticism and continues to bathe in the afterglow of a job well done.

A few thoughts on customization. One gets a feeling that the package is perhaps too comprehensive (how many text editors do you really need?). My view is that at least for the downloadable version, there should be a way for the user to select or unselect the programs that are required. As such, one could select their favorite browser, text editor, office suite, etc. and produce a more compact installation package. Theoretically, you could also build a custom Knoppix installation that would even run your office applications (as mentioned earlier). The possibilities are great, and hopefully the Knoppix development team will take into consideration the idea of streamlining / customization, if only for the downloadable version.

So there you have it. A special flavor of Linux that offers, apart from a live-CD OS, a quite stable operating environment as well (and comes bundled with lots of goodies) that is unprecedented in terms of hardware detection. And more importantly, this could be a precursor of things to come with respect to OS development and how the industry perceives the role of an operating system, be it Linux or Windows. Maybe it’s time for diversification and specialization in the OS market, and maybe, just maybe, Microsoft is set to lose more ground as the ‘free’ operating systems get better and better.

Mike Ber is the owner of the Canadian Domain Name Portal called http://www.Every.ca. He is also a contributing author to Canadian Computer Magazine and http://www.Developer.ca website.

Buy Knoppix today!

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