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LINUX vs.

WINDOWS
A comparison of Linux and Windows
This is a non-biased and incomplete comparison of Linu and Windo!s. It can serve as
an introduction to Linu for Windo!s users. I created it !hile learnin" about Linu as a
sort of personal cheat-sheet. The topics are in no particular order.
TOPICS: Flavors, Graphical User Interface, Text Mode
Interface, Cost, Getting Linux, Low cost laptops,
Installing, Running Linux Without Installing It, pplication
!oftware, Crossing the "! #oundar$, !ecurit$, Users and
%asswords, #ugs, Is It !oup &et', (e)s *ead +i,, !upported
(ardware *evices, (ardware the "! Runs "n, Clustering,
Multiple Users, -etwor.ing, (ard *is. %artitions, !wap
Files, File !$ste,s, File (ierarch$, (idden Files, Case,
Mode,s, !cripting, %rinter *rivers, (elp, User *ata,
!hutting *own, "dds and /nds, Updating !oftware, 00 Linux1
onl$ Things, Choosing Linux vs2 Windows, M$ 3 cents, Related
Lin.s
Note# Wor$ has be"un on lettin" %ou suppress the displa% of certain topics - to save paper
!hen printin".
&lavors# 'ide Sho!
&lavors (This topic was last revised April 2007)
(oth Windo!s and Linu come in man% flavors. )ll the flavors of Windo!s come from
*icrosoft+ the various distributions of Linu come from different companies ,i.e.
Linspire+ -ed 'at+ SuS.+ Ubuntu+ Xandros+ /noppi+ Slac$!are+ L%coris+ etc. 0.
Windo!s has t!o main lines. The older flavors are referred to as 1Win21 and consist of
Windo!s 23+ 24+ 24S. and *e. The ne!er flavors are referred to as 1NT class1 and
consist of Windo!s NT5+ NT6+ 7888+ X9 and :ista. ;oin" bac$ in time+ Windo!s 5.
preceded Windo!s 23 b% a fe! %ears. )nd before that+ there !ere earlier versons of
Windo!s+ but the% !ere not popular. *icrosoft no lon"er supports Windo!s NT5+ NT6+
all the 2 versions and of course an%thin" older. Support for Windo!s 7888 is partial ,as
of )pril 788<0.
The flavors of Linu are referred to as distributions ,often shortened to 1distros10. )ll the
Linu distributions released around the same time frame !ill use the same $ernel ,the
"uts of the Operatin" S%stem0. The% differ in the add-on soft!are provided+ ;UI+ install
process+ price+ documentation and technical support. (oth Linu and Windo!s come in
des$top and server editions.
There ma% be too man% distributions of Linu+ it=s possible that this is hurtin" Linu in
the mar$etplace. It could be that the lac$ of a Linu distro from a ma>or computer
compan% is also hurtin" it in the mar$etplace. I(* is a bi" Linu bac$er but does not
have their o!n branded distribution. ?urrentl% there seem to be man% nice thin"s said
about the Ubuntu distribution.
Linu is customi@able in a !a% that Windo!s is not. &or one+ the user interface+ !hile
similar in concept+ varies in detail from distribution to distribution. &or eample+ the tas$
bar ma% default to bein" on the top or the bottom. )lso+ there are man% special purpose
versions of Linu above and be%ond the full blo!n distributions described above. &or
eample+ N)SLite is a version of Linu that runs off a sin"le flopp% dis$ ,since revised
to also boot from a ?D0 and converts an old computer into a file server. This ultra small
edition of Linu is capable of net!or$in"+ file sharin" and bein" a !eb server.
;raphical User Interface# 'ide Sho! top
;raphical User Interface (Last updated July 10, 2008 / June 20, 200)
NOT.# )dded Aul% B8+ 7884# On Aul% 7+ 7884 Walter *ossber" !rote an introduction to
the *ac OS X user interface for Windo!s X9 users. I then blo""ed on the same interface
topics that he mentioned on m% ?N.T blo"# Introducin" the Linu user interface. In m%
opinion a Windo!s X9 user s!itchin" to Ubuntu 4.86 !ill feel much more at home !ith
Ubuntu compared to Leopard.
NOT.# The para"raphs belo! !ere last revie!ed in Aune 7883
(oth Linu and Windo!s provide a ;UI and a command line interface. The Windo!s
;UI has chan"ed from Windo!s 5.B to Windo!s 23 ,drasticall%0 to Windo!s 7888
,sli"htl%0 to Windo!s X9 ,fairl% lar"e0 and is slated to chan"e a"ain !ith the net version
of Windo!s+ the one that !ill replace X9. Windo!s X9 has a themes feature that offers
some customi@ation of the loo$ and feel of the ;UI.
Linu t%picall% provides t!o ;UIs+ /D. and ;nome. !ee a screen shot o" Lycoris and
Lindows in action "ro# the $al%&art we' site( The lynucs(or) we' site has e*a#ples
o" #any su'stantially di""erent Linu* +,-s( ." the #a/or Linu* distri'utions, Lindows
has #ade their user inter"ace loo0 #ore li0e $indows than the others( 1ere is a
screen shot o" Linu* #ade to loo0 li0e $indows 23( Then too, there is 23de "or Linu*
which really #a0es Linu* loo0 li0e $indows( 4uotin) their we' site "It's a desktop
environment (XPde) and a window manager (XPwm) for Linux. It tries to make
easier for Windows XP users to use a Linux box."
&ar0 &inasi #a0es the point ($indows and (56T #a)a7ine, &arch 2000) that the
Linu* +,- is optional while the $indows +,- is an inte)ral co#ponent o" the .!( 1e
says that speed, e""iciency and relia'ility are all increased 'y runnin) a server
instance o" Linu* without a +,-, so#ethin) that server versions o" $indows can not
do( -n the sa#e article he points out that the detached nature o" the Linu* +,-
#a0es re#ote control and re#ote ad#inistration o" a Linu* co#puter si#pler and
#ore natural than a $indows co#puter(
-s the "le*i'ility o" the Linu* +,- a )ood thin)8 9es and 5o( $hile advanced users
can custo#i7e thin)s to their li0in), it #a0es thin)s harder on new users "or who#
every Linu* co#puter they encounter #ay loo0 and act di""erently(
Te*t &ode -nter"ace: 1ide !how top
Te*t &ode -nter"ace
This is also 0nown as a co##and interpreter( $indows users so#eti#es call it a ;.!
pro#pt( Linu* users re"er to it as a shell( 6ach version o" $indows has a sin)le
co##and interpreter, 'ut the di""erent "lavors o" $indows have di""erent
interpreters( -n )eneral, the co##and interpreters in the $indows <* series are very
si#ilar to each other and the 5T class versions o" $indows (5T, 2000, 23) also have
si#ilar co##and interpreters( There are however di""erences 'etween a $indows <*
co##and interpreter and one in an 5T class "lavor o" $indows( Linu*, li0e all
versions o" ,ni*, supports #ultiple co##and interpreters, 'ut it usually uses one
called =A!1 (=ourne A)ain !hell)( .thers are the >orn shell, the =ourne shell, ash
and the ? shell (pun, no dou't, intended)(
?ost: 1ide !how top
?ost
@or des0top or ho#e use, Linu* is very cheap or "ree, $indows is e*pensive( @or
server use, Linu* is very cheap co#pared to $indows( &icroso"t allows a sin)le copy
o" $indows to 'e used on only one co#puter( !tartin) with $indows 23, they use
so"tware to en"orce this rule ($indows 3roduct Activation at "irst, later +enuine
$indows)( -n contrast, once you have purchased Linu*, you can run it on any
nu#'er o" co#puters "or no additional char)e(
As o" January 200, the up)rade edition o" $indows 23 1o#e 6dition sells "or a'out
A100, 23 3ro"essional is a'out A200( The B"ullB version o" 23 1o#e is a'out A200,
the "ull version o" 23 3ro"essional is AC00( $indows !erver 200C !tandard 6dition
with 10 ?lient licenses is a'out A1,100( =ecause they save A100 or so on the cost o"
$indows, $al%&art can sell a Linu* 'ased co#puter "or A200 (without a #onitor)
whereas their cheapest $indows 23 co#puter is AC00 (as o" January 200)(
The irony here is that $indows rose to do#inance, way 'ac0 when, in lar)e part 'y
undercuttin) the co#petition (&acs) on cost( 5ow Linu* #ay do the sa#e thin) to
$indows(
9ou can 'uy a Linu* 'oo0 and )et the operatin) syste# included with the 'oo0 "or
"ree( 9ou can also download Linu* "or "ree "ro# each o" the Linu* vendors (assu#in)
your -nternet connection is "ast enou)h "or a D00 &= "ile and you have a ?; 'urner)
or "ro# www(linu*iso(or)( =oth these options however, co#e without technical
support( All versions o" the ,'untu distri'ution are "ree(
9ou can purchase assorted distri'utions o" Linu* in a 'o* with a ?; and #anuals and
technical support "or around AE0 to A80 (so#e distri'utions #ay 'e less, others #ay
'e #ore)( Fe)ular updates and on)oin) support ran)e "ro# AC a year "or a des0top
version o" Linu* to A1,00 "or a hi)h%end server version( Au)ust 200E Fed 1at
started sellin) a des0top oriented version o" Linu* "or under AD per user per year(
A"ter the initial cost (or lac0 thereo") o" o'tainin) so"tware, there is the on)oin) cost
o" its care and "eedin)( -n .cto'er 2002, ?o#puter$orld #a)a7ine Guoted the chie"
technolo)y architect at &errill Lynch H ?o( in 5ew 9or0 as sayin) that Bthe cost o"
runnin) Linu* is typically a tenth o" the cost o" ,ni* and &icroso"t alternatives(B The
head technician at oil co#pany A#erada 1ess #ana)es E00 Linu* servers 'y
hi#sel"( 1e was Guoted as sayin) B-t ta0es "ewer people to #ana)e the Linu*
#achines than $indows #achines(B &icroso"t co##issioned a study that (no
surprise) "ound it cheaper to #aintain $indows than Linu*( 1owever, one o" the
authors o" the study accused &icroso"t o" stac0in) the dec0 'y selectin) scenarios
that are #ore e*pensive to #aintain on Linu*(
- donIt 0now i" there will ever 'e an o'/ective #easure o" the on)oin) care and
"eedin) costs "or Linu* vs( $indows( -" there were however, it would have to
consider:
;ealin) with 'u)s in the operatin) syste#
;ealin) with 'u)s in application so"tware
;ealin) with viruses, wor#s, !pyware, etc(('i) advanta)e to Linu* here)
;ealin) with so"tware up)rades to new versions ('oth the .! and
applications)
+ettin) Linu*: 1ide !how top
+ettin) Linu* (Topic re%written June 2007, then a)ain in January 2008)
5ote: !ee the ne*t topic too(
July <, 2008 ,'untu Linu* )oes retail( 9ou can now 'uy an ,'untu Linu* ?; with
v8(0E at =est =uy "or A20 in a pac0a)e that includes D0 days o" technical support to
help you started(
5othin) need 'e said a'out )ettin) $indows( As "or Linu*, you can 'uy a co#puter
with it pre%installed, 'ut usually not at #a/or retailers( All the #a/or 3? vendors have
'een sellin) Linu* 'ased #achines on their we' sites "or years( -n lar)e part thou)h,
these were server co#puters tar)eted at 'usinesses not consu#ers( Linu* pre%
installed on consu#er #achines has 'een hit or #iss, #ostly #iss( =ut, there are
si)ns that this is chan)in) (see the ne*t topic % low cost laptops % "or #ore on this)(
There see#s to 'e (as o" 5ove#'er 2007) a new trend in tar)etin) Linu* "or
consu#ers( &any di""erent co#panies are o""erin) co#puters with low end ?3,s
tar)eted as second #achines, or "or use 'y children( This could 'e a $indows Jista
'ac0lash( &ovin) "ro# $indows 23 to Jista reGuires #ore co#ple*ity, #ore
hardware horsepower and learnin) a new inter"ace( 3lus, itIs e*pensive 'oth "or the
hardware and the so"tware( -n contrast these latest Linu* 'ased co#puters #achines
have a si#pli"ied user inter"ace and reGuire the sa#e or less hardware horsepower
than $indows 23( And they are #uch cheaper, 'oth "or hardware and so"tware
reasons( The Linu* inter"ace can 'e custo#i7ed, and every co#pany sellin) a Linu*
'ased #achine custo#i7es the loo0 and "eel( !o#e )o "or si#plicity hopin) the
#achine can 'e used 'y children and non%techies( .ther try to #i#ic the $indows
23 inter"ace(
An interestin) article on cheap Linu* co#puters "or consu#ers is @ive reasons not to
"ear a A200 Linu* 3? 'y 6rica .)) o" ?56T dated January 2E, 2008( The su'title is:
A rash o" supre#ely a""orda'le 3?s preloaded with Linu* has hit #ainstrea# retail
stores( And tryin) one is not as ris0y a proposition as you #i)ht thin0(
$al%&art was a very early player when it ca#e to sellin) co#puters runnin) Linu*(
-n 5ove#'er 2007 they started a)ain, a"ter 'ac0in) away "ro# it( The 6vere* +reen
)3? T?202 is A200 (/ust "or the co#puter, no #onitor), e#phasi7es online
applications 'ut co#es with .pen .""ice, runs a version o" Linu* called ).! (which
itsel" is a version o" ,'untu v7(10) and co#es with 12&= o" FA&, an 80+= hard
dis0, a ?; 'urner/;J; reader and 'oth 6thernet and a #ode# "or connectin) to the
-nternet( Accordin) to a ?56T review in also includes 2E/7 toll%"ree tech support(
!hortly a"ter its release, it appears to 'e popular( !ee also Feview o" the 6vere*
T?202 +reen )3? and A200 ,'untu Linu* 3? 5ow Availa'le at $al%&art( - have
used this #achine( - hated it % "or the so"tware not "or the hardware(
3reviously, $al%&art sold 3?s with Lycoris, Lindows and !u!6 also "or as low as
A200( -n &arch 200E, they started sellin) !un &icrosyste#sI version o" Linu*, the
!un Java ;es0top, startin) at A2<8( -n ;ece#'er 200E, $al%&art started sellin) a
AE<8 laptop co#puter runnin) Linspire( - donIt thin0 these were 'i) successes(
-n January 2008, !ears started sellin) a Linu* 'ased tower #achine "or AC00, with a
A100 re'ate that 'rin)s it down to A200( The hardware is "ro# &irus -nnovations
and it co#es with a ?eleron processor, 80+= hard dis0, 1+= ra#, a ?; 'urner and
@reespire version 2(0 (a version o" Linspire)(
The Kon'u ;es0top #ini is s#all, silent and cheap( -t is appro*i#ately * 7 * inches
with no #ovin) parts, 12 &= ra#, and E+= o" "lash 'ased stora)e( -t costs A100 to
AC00 dependin) on the service plan you chose (as o" January 2008)( !ervice plans
include continuous online 'ac0up( !ee .ne wee0 with Kon'u 'y 3eter +las0ows0y at
?56T !epte#'er 1E, 2007(
-n June 2007 ;ell started sellin) consu#er #achines with ,'untu Linu* pre%installed(
!ee ;ell pic0s ,'untu "or Linu* 3?s at ?56T 5ews(co#( As o" ;ece#'er 2007 they
sell #achines with ,'untu Linu* version 7(10( As o" July 2008, ;ell was still o""erin)
,'untu 7(10 despite the "act that version 8(0E had 'een out "or a couple #onths(
Also as o" July 2008, ;ell also o""ers Fed 1at and 5ovell Linu* on various #achines(
!ee here and also dell(co#/linu* and linu*(dell(co#(
-n January 2008 !huttle introduced a A200 Linu* 'ased co#puter runnin) @oresi)ht
Linu* 2(0 with no optical drive, no 0ey'oard and no #ouse( !ee the !huttle >3?
ho#e pa)e( As o" July 2008, a A22< #odel had a ?eleron processor, 12&= ra# and
an 80+= hard dis0( @or AC00 you )ot a 3entiu# dual%core, 1+= o" ra# and a 1D0+=
hard dis0( Li0e all !huttles, itIs s#all: D(EB hi)h, 11B lon), and 7(B wide( ?56T
reviewed it in &ay 2008(
Also in January 2008 Asus said it will release a des0top version o" the 6ee 3? to 'e
called the 6%;T( The 6%;T is e*pected to cost 'etween A200 and AC00 (o'viously this
is without a #onitor)(
-n Au)ust 2007 Lenovo announced plans to sell laptop co#puters with Linu* pre%
installed( They ran a Linu* distri'ution "ro# 5ovell and went on sale in January
2008( - 'lo))ed a'out a Linu* Thin0pad in &ay 2008( -n !epte#'er 2008, Lenovo
'ac0ed o"", they no lon)er o""er Linu* pre%installed( !ee Lenovo 6*its pre%-nstalled
Linu* ;es0top =usiness(
13 dipped their toe into consu#er Linu*, 'ut as o" June 2007, every 13 consu#er
des0top is runnin) $indows Jista( .n their C8 consu#er laptops, C7 are runnin)
Jista, one uses 23( 6ven their s#all 'usiness des0top #achines are all $indows(
They only sell server versions o" Linu*( =ac0 in 200E 13 was plannin) to o""er a
'usiness note'oo0 co#puter, the ?o#paG n*000, with !,!6 Linu* pre%installed(
Linu* ?erti"ied sells nor#al laptops (that is, not the newer low end laptops such as
the Asus 666) with Linu* pre%installed( -n Au)ust 2008 they had three #odels "or
A700 and they also sell Thin03ad TD1 #odels with Linu* "or prices "ro# A1,C00 to
A1,800(
6#peror Linu* loads Linu* distri'utions on laptops "ro# ;ell, Lenovo (Thin03ad
2D1s), @u/itsu, !ony and others( They o""er a ta'let co#puter runnin) Linu* and the
3anasonic ru))ed Tou)h'oo0 ?@%,1 with Linu*(
3o)o Linu* sells custo#%'uilt des0tops, wor0stations, 'lades and servers loaded with
your choice o" seven Linu* distri'utions(
A""ordy sells the Titan line o" co#puters with a custo#i7ed version o" ,'untu, called
Titan L6J, pre%installed( ;es0top #achines start at A218 (last chec0ed .cto'er
2008)(
KAFeason sells laptops, des0tops and s#all "or# "actor co#ptuers with Linu* pre%
installed( As o" 5ove#'er 2008, their cheapest laptop was an Asus 6ee 3? 1000
runnin) ,'untu 8(10 "or A<<( A#on) their other o""erin)s is the !huttle >3?, also
runin) ,'untu 8(10, "or A210(
-n Au)ust 2008 ;ana =lan0enhorn did a series o" 'lo) postin)s at K;5et a'out
'uyin) a Linu* Laptop(
Low cost laptops: 1ide !how top
Low ?ost Laptops (Topic added January 2008)
NOTE: This topic was written in January of 2008 and as of now (October
2008) it is very outdated. The Netboo !aret has "rown and e#panded
i!!ense$y.
An e*citin) new trend is the appearance o" Linu* pre%installed in #any new lost%cost
laptop co#puters(
The #ost popular e*a#ple o" this is the A!,! 6ee 3? E+ which was released in
5ove#'er 2007( - have 'rie"ly used one and itIs very i#pressive( 3rices ran)e "ro#
AC00 to A00 (as o" January 2008)( The AC00 #odel stri0es #e as a hu)e 'ar)ain,
even i" the screen is a 'it too s#all(
The A200 2. laptop "ro# the .ne Laptop 3er ?hild @oundation has )otten #uch
pu'licity( - used one and hated it( That said, it is tar)eted at children in developin)
countries and 'ein) an adult livin) in 5ew 9or0, -I# not the tar)et audience( As "ar
as - can tell you canIt 'uy one anyway (as o" January 2008)(
6vere* started sellin) their s#all Linu* laptop, called the ?loud=oo0, in @e'ruary
2008 "or AE00( -t is 'ein) sold at $al%&art, 5ewe)) and Ti)er;irect, and
KaFeason(co#( -t see#s to co#pete directly with the Asus 666 laptop( !ee 6n)ad)et
and +i7#odo( -t has a 7B 800 * E80 display, 12&= o" ra#, a C0+= traditional (not
"lash) hard drive, $i%@i, 6thernet, a E%in%1 card reader, a we'ca# and an ,'untu%
'ased version o" Linu* called ).!( -t will wei)h two pounds and the si7e is
appro*i#ately <B * 7B * 1B(
-ntel #a0es the ?lass#ate 3?( 4uotin) -ntel they are B#o'ile personal learnin)
devices "or pri#ary students (a)es %1E) in e#er)in) #ar0ets(B The ?lass#ate was
never intended "or sale to the )eneral pu'lic( -Ive read that this was out o" "ear 'y
-ntel that low cost Linu* laptops would cut into their pro"it #ar)ins( As "ar as - can
tell, they are not 'ein) sold in the ,nited !tates( The ?lass#ate uses #any o" the
sa#e parts as the Asus 666 laptop( -t has a 7B screen with an 800*E80 resolution, a
?eleron processor, $i@i and 2+= o" "lash 'ased hard dis0 stora)e(
Kon'u o""ers a laptop 'ut it is a "ull si7e #achine with a 1(EB wide screen and a
'uilt%in ;J;%F.&/?;%F$( As o" January 2008, it sells "or A280 to AE80 dependin)
on the service plan(
-" - had to 'et, -Id say that low cost Linu* laptops will ta0e o""( The cost, si#plicity
and porta'ility are li0ely to 'e the 'i) appeal( 5ot to #ention i##unity "ro# #ost
#alicious so"tware and the lac0 o" a nor#al dis0 that increases the 'attery li"e and
#a0es the #achine #ore ru))ed( Linu* can only run a hand"ul o" $indows
pro)ra#s, 'ut out o" the 'o* these #achines (e*cept the 2.) can do what #ost
people need #ost o" the ti#e( -Ive read that -ntel is wor0in) on a new processor
called !ilverthorne ("or now) that will 'e cheap and en)er)y e""icient and #ay spurn
#ore cheap Linu* laptops to appear on the #ar0et(
-nstallin): 1ide !how top
-nstallin) the .peratin) !yste# (This topic was re%written twice in June 2007)
There are three ways to install $indows 23: a clean install, an up)rade install and a
repair install( Then, there is a BrecoveryB install, which is not an install in the true
sense o" the word 'ut rather the restoration o" a dis0 i#a)e 'ac0up(
A clean install re"ers to startin) with nothin) (either an entirely e#pty hard
dis0 or /ust an e#pty partition or /ust unallocated space on the hard dis0) and
endin) up with /ust $indows(
An up)rade install re"ers to startin) with an older version o" $indows and
endin) up with a newer version( 6*istin) data "iles and applications should not
'e a""ected 'y the up)rade to the newer edition o" $indows(
A repair install re"ers to installin) the sa#e version o" $indows on top o"
itsel"( This is used to "i* a 'ro0en copy o" $indows and e*istin) data "iles and
applications are not a""ected(
A BrecoveryB is typically used to restore a co#puter to its "actory "resh state(
All data "iles are wiped out( All applications installed since the co#puter was
new, are wiped out( All up)rades to $indows itsel" (patches, service pac0s)
are lost( Applications pre%installed 'y the co#puter #anu"acturer are
restored( .ri)inally this was done "ro# ?;s, then ;J;s( 5ow it is nor#ally
done "ro# a hidden area o" the hard dis0(
Then there is $indows Jista where #uch has chan)ed( -I# not "a#iliar with the
install options "or Jista( Andy 3ennell, a &icroso"t e#ployee, wrote a'out his
pro'le#s installin) Jista on June 21, 2007( 1e is very "a#iliar with $indows and
installed Jista onto a second internal hard dis0, leavin) the e*istin) hard dis0 with
$indows 23 unchan)ed( At least that was the plan( !ee -nstallin) Jista: &y 3ersonal
1ell( -nstallin) Jista on a co#puter with an e*istin) copy o" $indows, with the
intention o" dual%'ootin), is #uch tric0ier than it used to 'e with earlier versions o"
$indows(
There is a hu)e variation in the Linu* installation procedure( ;i""erent distri'utions o"
Linu* have their own installation pro)ra#s (which #ay even chan)e with di""erent
versions o" the sa#e distri'ution)( -nstallin) Linu* on a co#puter without an e*istin)
operatin) syste# is muc easier than installin) it on a #achine with an e*istin) .!
that you want to preserve(
-I# sure that installin) Linu* is )ettin) easier all the ti#e( $hile - havenIt done it all
that o"ten, - have seen it 'eco#e easier over ti#e( -s it easy enou)h "or you8
6d =ott 'lo))ed a'out his e*perience installin) Linu* on July C1, 200D( Linu*,
23, and #y old 3?
-n &arch 2007, he tried a)ain with #i*ed success( $hy does Linu* hate #e8
A picture is worth a thousand words so this July 2007 picture show at K;net
on -nstallin) .pen!,!6 10(2 is instructive
-n June 2007, - installed ,'untu v7(E on an -=& 5etJista #achine that was
a'out "our years old( The syste# would only run at DE0*E80 and thin)s went
downhill "ro# there( The pro'le# #ay have 'een due to a >J& switch that
prevented the syste# "ro# Gueryin) the #onitor( 1owever, instead o" as0in)
#e or tellin) #e anythin) a'out a "ailure to detect the #onitor, it /ust ran at
DE0*E80 with no +,- 'ased "acility to increase the resolution(
$hen installin) Linu* on a #achine where you donIt need to preserve the e*istin)
operatin) syste#, there is li0ely to 'e an option to clo''er the e*istin) .! as part o"
the Linu* installation procedure( .r, you can use a pro)ra# to totally wipe everythin)
o"" the hard dis0 'e"ore installin) Linu*( The "ree ;ari0Is =oot and 5u0e is "airly
"a#ous "or this( =etter yet, the hard dis0 vendor should have a "ree utility that not
only wipes the hard dis0 'ut also can run dia)nostics on the dis0(
9ou can also 'uy a new co#puter without any operatin) syste#( A low end ;ell
server, the 3ower6d)e 8E0 sold "or AD00 in June 2007( 9ou can 'uy an 13 3roLiant
server startin) at A00 that is certi"ied to run si* Linu* distri'utions( -=& is 'i) on
Linu*, Guotin) their we' site: "!e entire I"# $%stems product &ine is Linux
enab&ed." They sell co#puters 'oth with no operatin) syste# and with Linu* pre%
installed( 5othin) there is cheap however( $al%&art used to sell &icrotel #achines
without an .!, 'ut no #ore(
-nstallin) Linu* "or dual 'ootin), that is, 0eepin) the e*istin) operatin) syste# in
tact, is pro'a'ly 'est le"t to techies( -t is all too easy to lose the pre%e*istin) .!( 9ou
need to 'e "a#iliar with hard dis0 partitions and so#e Linu* ter#inolo)y( $ith Fed
1at Linu* 8, the 'oo0let on how to install the .! was over a hundred pa)es(
-n his Linu* 'oo0, &ar0 &inasi said that installin) Linu* on a des0top co#puter was
#ore li0ely to 'e success"ul than on a laptop co#puter(
Funnin) Linu* $ithout -nstallin) -t 1ide !how top
Funnin) Linu* $ithout -nstallin) -t (This topic was re%written in April 2007)
Added 5ove#'er 2C, 2008: KAFeason sells a 'oota'le copy o" ,'untu on a
E+= ,!= "lash drive "or AC<(<<( -n )eneral new co#puters can 'oot "ro# a ,!= "lash
drive, however older co#puters #ay not 'e a'le to( Accordin) to the co#pany, the
drive is con"i)ured to support persistence, 'ut it is not the de"ault option( That is, 'y
de"ault it "unctions li0e a Live ?; and throws away all record o" your actions(
1owever, at 'ootup you can select persistence i" you want( That said, the co#pany
noted in an e#ail that versions o" ,'untu prior to -ntreped were Bso#ewhat 'u))y
with persistenceB(
Added July 10, 2008: @ro# #y ?56T 'lo) $hy you want a Linu* Live ?;(
.ne thin) that Linu* can do that $indows can not, is run fro! a %&( To run
$indows, it has to "irst 'e installed to your hard dis0( 5or#ally Linu* also runs "ro#
a hard dis0, 'ut there are Guite a "ew versions o" Linu* that run comp&ete&% "ro# a
?; without havin) to 'e installed to a hard dis0( The ter# "or this is a BLiveB ?;(
Funnin) a Live ?; version o" Linu* is a )reat way "or $indows users to e*perience
Linu* "or the "irst ti#e( A#on) the Linu* distros that have a ?;%only version are
>noppi*, ,'untu and .pen !u!6)( - tried !u!6 Live 6val version < in .cto'er 200C
and had so#e )ripes( @ree=!;, a version o" ,ni* (rather than Linu*), also has a
Live?;(
That said, i" $indows is 'ro0en to the point that it canIt start up, there is a "ree
pro)ra# called =artIs 3reinstalled 6nviron#ent (=art36) that can run a "ew $indows
pro)ra#s "ro# a 'oota'le ?;( 1owever, this is not "ro# &icroso"t and is only
intended to "i* a 'ro0en copy o" $indows, it is not "or everyday use( =art36 can only
run a hand"ul o" pro)ra#s that have 'een set up ahead o" ti#e "or use with it(
=art36 "ills an i#portant need, 'ut creatin) the ?; is not trivial, it reGuires a
$indows ?; (not recovery ?;s or ;J;s) and it only wor0s with $indows 23 and
200C (not sure a'out Jista)( The #ain point stands, in and o" itsel", $indows can not
run "ro# a ?;(
The ?; 'ased versions o" Linu* di""er in their use o" the hard dis0( !o#e, such as
Lindows, do not write anythin) at all to your hard dis0, #a0in) it the sa"est and
easiest way to e*perience Linu*( The downside o" this is speed (?;s are #uch slower
than hard dis0s) and continuity ('ein) a'le to save data 'etween uses)( .ther
versions, such as !u!6 < (this is now up to v10(2), do use your hard dis0 (!u!6 <
creates over 200 &= worth o" "iles)( $hat you )ive up in sa"ety, you )ain in speed(
@or reviews o" Linu* distri'utions that run "ro# a ?; see A Taste o" Linu* 'y Ji#
Lynch at 6*tre#eTech January 2C, 200E and A Taste o" Linu*, 3art Two 'y Ji# Lynch
&arch , 200E(
-n addition to 0ic0in) the tires on Linu*, a Live ?; can also 'e used to insure that
your hardware is supported 'y that speci"ic version o" Linu*( =oota'le Linu* ?;s are
also used to recover "iles when $indows 'rea0s to the point o" not 'ein) a'le to start
up( A recent Live Linu* ?; should 'e a'le to see all $indows "iles (they can read
5T@!) and copy the# to an e*ternal ,!= device or another co#puter on a LA5(
.lder ?; 'ased versions o" Lindows and !u!6 could not read "iles stored in an 5T@!
partition(
-n .cto'er 200 a whole new way o" runnin) Linu* without installin) it was
introduced: 'irtua$ (achines "ro# J&ware( Jirtual #achines let you run #ultiple
operatin) syste#s on one co#puter at the sa#e ti#e( 9ou canIt 'eat it (virtual
#achines are used to run $indows on the -ntel 'ased &acs)(
,sin) the "ree J&ware 3layer you can download pre%'uilt Linu* virtual #achines(
Thin0 o" the J&ware 3layer as analo)ous to the Ado'e Acro'at Feader( ?reatin)
virtual #achines costs #oney, 'ut playin) the# does not(
J&ware has 'een creatin) virtual #achines on 3?s "or a lon) ti#e( Funnin) a virtual
#achine previously reGuired their e*pensive so"tware (J&$are $or0station was
A200 in April 2007, only a couple years previously it cost al#ost twice that)( 5ow it
can 'e done "or "ree( And prior to .cto'er 200 there were no pre%'uilt virtual
#achines availa'le "ro# J&$are, i" you wanted to run Linu*, you had to install it(
5ow you can )et a pre%installed virtual copy o" ,'untu v7(0E !erver, .pen=!; E(0
and ?ent.! (0( 6ven 'etter, #any pre%'uilt Linu* virtual #achines co#e with pre%
installed applications( $ant to run the Apache we' server and the &y!4L data'ase8
Just download a J& with the# installed(
@or years you could have installed Linu* into a new virtual #achine( -t is a )reat way
to learn and e*peri#ent( 1owever, creatin) a new virtual virtual #achine reGuired
the so#ewhat e*pensive J&$are wor0station( 5ow, the "ree J&ware !erver
so"tware can 'e used to create a new virtual #achine into which you can install any
operatin) syste#( 9ou can also download new, e#pty virtual #achines "ro#
6asyJ&2(
J&$are !erver has another 'i) plus: it supports a chec0point (a(0(a( restore point,
synch point)( 9ou can ta0e a chec0point in your virtual #achine, wor0 on it a while
and then revert the J& 'ac0 to the chec0point( All "or "ree( 1ow thin)s chan)e(
&icroso"t also has "ree virtual #achine so"tware 'ut there are no%pre'uilt virtual
#achines "or it( 5eedless to say, &icroso"t is not )oin) to provide Linu* virtual
#achines and they #a0e a lot o" #oney sellin) $indows so theyIre not )oin) to )ive
it away( Also, their so"tware is not as #ature as J&ware, not as ro'ust and -Ive read
that it runs slower(
J&ware is not the only "ree virtual #achine so"tware( Jirtual=o* is "ree and open
source(
9et another way to run Linu* without installin) it is fro! a f$ash drive (a(0(a thu#'
drive, ,!= drive, pen drive, #e#ory stic0, etc()(
-n June 200D ;avid 3o)ue wrote a'out Linu* distros can run "ro# a thu#' drive (A
1andy Tip @ro# a Feader on @lash ;rives) where the two distros #entioned are
0&= (;a#n !#all Linu*) and 70&=( -n "act, ;a#n !#all Linu* does even #ore
tric0s( -t can run "ro# within $indowsL And, i" you have 128&= o" ra# to spare, it
can run co#pletely in ra#, which has )ot to 'e "ast( !ee Linu* in $indows (( A)ain
at )hac0s(net(
-n 5ove#'er 200, you could have purchased a C+= &icro;rive (1 inch hard dis0)
with ,'untu Linu*( The drive plu)s into a ,!= port and is "ully powered 'y the ,!=
port( !ee Ta0in) Linu* .n The Foad $ith ,'untu at To#s 1ardware( -I# not sure i"
this is still availa'le(
And wor0 is on)oin) on creatin) porta'le Linu* applications (as o" &arch 2007)(
Application !o"tware 1ide !how top
Application !o"tware (This topic was revised in &ay 2008)
There is #ore application so"tware availa'le "or $indows( Then a)ain, there #ay 'e
su""icient Linu* so"tware "or your needs(
Obtainin" app$ication software: -" you 'uy a copy o" $indows on a ?;%F.&, you
)et no application so"tware with it( -" you 'uy a copy o" Linu* on a ?;%F.& (or two
or three) it typically co#es with )o's o" "ree application so"tware( Li0ewise, Linu*
-!. downloads usually include lots o" application so"tware( The e*ception are Linu*
distri'utions that are s#all on purpose such as ;a#n !#all Linu* or 3en ;rive Linu*(
A new co#puter with $indows pre%installed nor#ally co#es additional application
so"tware, e*actly what to include is up to the 3? vendor( .n one e*tre#e, - have
seen a new !harp laptop #achine that ca#e with no so"tware other than $indows
itsel"( This is rare( -n contrast, !ony JA-.s, "or e*a#ple, are #ore #ainstrea# and
co#e with a lot o" so"tware( 1owever, there are two pro'le#s with the pre%installed
application so"tware on $indows co#puters(
@irst, #uch o" it is /un0( !o #uch, that a new ter# BcrapwareB is 'ein) used to
descri'e it( The 3? vendors #a0e #oney 'y installin) this so"tware that #any people
consider worse than useless( -n "act, the "irst thin) #any techies do is un%install this
so"tware, so#eone even ca#e out with a 3? de%crapi"ier pro)ra# to auto#ate the
un%installs( $indows co#puters sold to 'usinesses tend to have less undesira'le
application so"tware pre%installed co#pared to co#puters sold to consu#ers( - have
never heard o" anyone co#plainin) a'out the so"tware that co#es pre%installed in
the nor#al, popular versions o" Linu*(
!econd, i#portant so"tware is o"ten #issin) or old( @or e*a#ple, the Ado'e Acro'at
reader, #ay not pre%installed 'y the 3? vendor( -n @e'ruary 2008, - 'lo))ed a'out a
new Lenovo co#puter that ca#e with terri'ly old versions o" application so"tware(
.n the Linu* side, to )et a "eel "or the application so"tware that co#es with ,'untu
version 8(0E see Adventures with open source apps on Linu* % 3art 1 'y Adrian
>in)sley%1u)hes "ro# &ay 2Crd, 2008(
)pp$ication software insta$$ation: The installation o" applications under $indows,
while not standardi7ed, is )enerally consistent and )enerally pretty easy( -nstallin)
so"tware under Linu* varies with each distri'ution and has not 'een nearly as si#ple,
easy or o'vious as $indows( A couple articles "ro# 200E )riped a'out how hard it
was to install so"tware in Liun*: The &ay 20, 200E issue o" the Lan)a list newsletter
and a July E, 200E review o" Linu* in the $ashin)ton 3ost (Linu*, !till an Aw0ward
Alternative) where Fo' 3e)oraro called application so"tware installation "Linux's
biggest embarrassment"(
That said, current Linu* distri'utions have an application so#ewhat a0in to $indows
update that can 'e used to install so"tware( - donIt have #uch e*perience doin) this(
1owever, in April 2008 - used one o" the new A200 $al#art Linu* ).! #achines and
"ound the application "or installin) so"tware very con"usin), and it "ailed every ti#e -
tried to install so#ethin)(
?rossin) the .! =oundary 1ide !how top
?rossin) the .! =oundary (This topic was revised in .cto'er 2007)
A pro)ra# written "or Linu* will not run under $indows and vice versa(
@or e*a#ple, &icroso"t #a0es a version o" .""ice "or $indows and another version
"or the &ac( They are two di""erent products, each capa'le o" only runnin) on the
operatin) syste# it was desi)ned "or( There is no version o" &icroso"t .""ice "or
Linu*(
.n the other hand, so#e pro)ra#s, such as @ire"o*, are availa'le "or #ultiple
operatin) syste#s( @ire"o* runs on Linu*, $indows, &acs and #ore( .pen .""ice
co#petes with &icroso"t .""ice and co#es in versions "or $indows (all the way "ro#
$indows <8 up to Jista), +5,/Linu* (BLinu*B), !un !olaris, &ac .! 2 (under 211),
and @ree=!;(
The process o" #a0in) a new version o" a pro)ra# that will run on a di""erent
operatin) syste# is called Bportin)B( =ut there are other ways to )et a pro)ra# to
run on an operatin) syste# other than the one it was desi)ned "or(
'irtua$ (achines
The #ost a#'itious approach is to install one operatin) syste# inside another(
3erhaps the #ost popular e*a#ple o" this is with -ntel 'ased &acintosh co#puters(
!o"tware "ro# 3arallels (3arallels ;es0top C(0 "or &ac) and "ro# J&ware (@usion)
lets you run $indows at the sa#e ti#e as &ac .! 2( -n this e*a#ple, the &ac .! 2
is re"erred to as the host or native operatin) syste#, itIs the one that )ets run when
the co#puter is turned on( $indows is re"erred to as the )uest operatin) syste#(
This approach is called Jirtual &achines( Assorted virtual #achine so"tware is
availa'le that lets Linu*, &acs and $indows operate as either the host or )uest
operatin) syste#(
-n a )uest copy o" $indows, runnin) under either Linu* or &ac .! 2 as the host .!,
you can install any and all $indows pro)ra#s( !o#ewhat li0e a split personality, one
co#puter can run two (or #ore) operatin) syste#s at the sa#e ti#e( J&ware was
the "irst to #ar0et with a virtual #achine product (also called J&ware) "or personal
co#puters( Jirtual 3?, has co#peted with J&ware "or a lon) ti#e( 3arallels is a #ore
recent co#petitor( Jirtual=o* is "ree and open source virtual #achine so"tware(
Jirtual &achine products "ro# these co#panies di""er in their supported host and
)uest operatin) syste#s(
$inELin is virtual #achine so"tware that only supports Linu* as the host .! and only
supports $indows (<, <8, &e, 2000 or 23) as the )uest .!(
*pecific )pp$ications
Less a#'itious than virtual #achine products (which let you run an% application in
the )uest .!) are approaches tar)eted at only runnin) a hand"ul o" $indows
applications under Linu*(
The si#plest e*a#ple is pro'a'ly -6s E Linu* which lets you run -nternet 6*plorer
versions D and under Linu*( -tIs "ree( @or #ore, see Fun -nternet 6*plorer on Linu*
'y =rian !#ith .ct 11, 2007(
!o#e distri'utions o" Linu* include co##ercial so"tware called ?rossover .""ice "ro#
?ode$eavers that runs &icroso"t .""ice (versions 200C, 23, 2000 and <7) and so#e
other $indows applications under Linu*( $hile this approach does less, it does not
reGuire a $indows license( ?odeweavers has a list o" supported applications and a
co#parison o" their approach vs( virtual #achines(
!ince ?rossover .""ice is a co##ercial product, it is not included in the "ree
distri'utions o" Linu*( As o" .cto'er 2007 ?ode$eavers sold it "or AE0 or A70
dependin) on the version(
?ross.ver is 'ased on the $ine pro/ect( $ine is "ree so"tware and is included with
#any +5,/Linu* distri'utions( A"ter 1 years o" develop#ent, the "irst B"inishedB
version o" $ine was released in June 2008 (see Fun $indows !o"tware on Linu* with
$ine 1(0)( $ine is, to a co#puter nerd, very interestin)( -t lets $indows applications
run under Linu* without a copy o" $indows and without any virtuali7ation( $indows
applications tal0 to $indows usin) a speci"ication 0nown as the $indows A3-( $ine
intercepts each $indows A3- co##and/reGuest #ade 'y a $indows pro)ra# and
does, in Linu*, the "unctions $indows does in response to the sa#e co##and(
$ine does not, and will not, provide 100M co#pati'ilityN it will never run all
$indows applications per"ectly( 6ven applications that it runs well, #ay not have all
their "eatures and "unctions availa'le( The $ine 3ro/ect #aintains a list o"
applications and how well they run under $ine( Li"e1ac0er did a )ood intro to $ine
in June 2008: Fun $indows Apps in Linu* with $ine 1(0(
&ary Jo @oley wrote that the &icroso"t $+A ($indows +enuine Advanta)e) pro)ra#
loo0s "or $indows pro)ra#s runnin) with $ine and purposely )enerates an error(
!ee &icroso"t !ee0s to =ottle ,p .pen !ource $ine (@e'ruary 18, 200)(
As "ar as - 0now, the "irst Linu* distri'ution that could run $indows applications was
Lindows( As "ar 'ac0 as .cto'er 2002, 2andros Linu* ;es0top v1(0 (previously ?orel
Linu*) could run $indows applications( (6*tre#eTech review)( $hen !u!6 Linu*
.""ice ;es0top was released in January 200C, it too could run &icroso"t .""ice
applications than0s to ?rossover .""ice(
Trans+a#in) #a0es $ine2 which allows Linu* users to run various $indows )a#es
that reGuire .pen+L and ;irect2( The co#'ination o" ?ross.ver .""ice and $ine2
should let you run #any $indows pro)ra#s under Linu*( -n July 200E Trans+a#in)
)ave $ine2 a new na#e, ?ede)a, and announced support so#e ;irect2 < )a#es(
(Linu* Ta0es on $indows +a#in) "ro# 6*tre#eTech July 28, 200E)
.n yet another "ront, 2i#ian (owned 'y 5ovell) is developin) 3ro/ect &ono, which
will allow &icroso"t (5et applications to run on Linu*(
.n still another "ront, Ado'e Air lets you run the sa#e application on #ultiple
.peratin) !yste#s(
-nterestin) article on whether runnin) $indows applications under Linu* is a )ood
idea: +5,/Linu* ;es0top: The ?ase A)ainst Funnin) $indows Apps 'y =ruce =y"ield
@e'ruary 2D, 2008(
*erver +ased )pp$ications
There is yet another approach to crossin) the operatin) syste# divide that )oes 'y
the na#es Ter#inal !ervices, !erver =ased ?o#putin) and Thin ?lient ?o#putin)(
This approach runs applications on a server and sends a picture o" the output to
another (client) co#puter( @ro# the client co#puter, 0eystro0es and #ouse
#ove#ents are sent 'ac0 to the server( This approach is totally dependent on a
networ0(
$indows applications are run 'y a server version o" $indows and use the Ter#inal
!ervices "eature to co##unicate with a client co#puter( ;ependin) on the so"tware
used, the client co#puter #ay 'e runnin) Linu* or $indows or a &ac( The all
&icroso"t solution can 'e supple#ented with so"tware "ro# other co#panies (?itri*
'ein) the #ar0et leader) to provide advanced "eatures( 9ears 'ac0, - used an earlier
version o" the ?itri* so"tware, then 0nown as $in@ra#e, to provide $indows 5T
applications to client co#puters runnin) $indows < and <8( 4uite cool(
.n the Linu*/,ni* side, Tarantella supports the display o" ,ni* server applications on
non%,ni*, non%Linu* #achines(
!ecurity 1ide !how top
!ecurity (?reated 5ove#'er 2008)
The vast #a/ority o" #alicious so"tware (o" all types) runs on $indows( - donIt 0now
the actual percenta)es, 'ut it wouldnIt surprise #e i" it was <8M or so( $indows
users are 'urdened with the need "or anti%virus and anti%spyware so"tware( Linu*
users are not( $hy is this8
-n Linu* vs( $indows: $hich is &ost !ecure8 (&arch 2007) >enneth van $y0 writes:
Linux 'as( ... te notion of an administrative (root) user tat maintains and
operates te s%stem) and desktop users wo on&% run te software on te s%stem) is
comp&ete&% ingrained in most Linux distributions. *ow it+s true tat man% Linux users
ignore tese features and run a&& teir software from a root,&eve& account an%wa%)
but tat+s a coice tat te%+ve made. !e s%stem defau&ts to protecting te
operating s%stem components from its user+s actions (intentiona& or oterwise). !at
feature a&one must account in &arge degree for te deart of viruses and oter
ma&icious vermin on Linux and -*IX p&atforms. Windows) on te oter and) started
&ife as a sing&e user s%stem) wit tat sing&e user being a&&,powerfu&. .&toug tat+s
no &onger te case) te genera& attitude can sti&& be found in man% Windows,based
software products / man% of wic 0ust can+t be insta&&ed and1or run proper&%
witout desktop administrator privi&eges. !is is a&& canging for te better) but it
took #icrosoft far too &ong to adopt tis defau&t,secure configuration practice.
-n 5ove#'er 2008 - purchased an Asus 6ee 3? 1000 which ca#e with a #odi"ied
version o" 2andros Linu*( !urprisin)ly it also ca#e with a version o" the 5.;C2
antivirus pro)ra# "ro# 6set(
,sers and 3asswords 1ide !how top
,sers and 3asswords (Last 'i) update Au)ust 200)
=oth Linu* and $indows 2000/23 reGuire a userid and password and 'oot ti#e( That
said, $indows 23 supports users without a password (a very 'ad idea), -I# not sure
i" Linu* does(
$indows can 'e con"i)ured to either as0 "or the userid/password at startup ti#e or a
de"ault can 'e set instead( -n $indows 2000 it is very easy to set a de"ault
userid/password, in $indows 23 the #ethod varies 'etween the 1o#e and 3ro
versions % in one it is strai)ht"orward, in the other itIs a pain(
-Ive 'een told that in Linu* the >;& and +;& lo)in #ana)ers support auto#atic
lo)in( -Ive also 'een told that #ost versions o" Linu* do not allow the root user to
lo)in auto#atically( $indows, in contrast, is happy to let an Ad#inistrative user
auto%lo)in( +et started "aster in ,'untu e*plains how to con"i)ure ,'untu to 'oot
without as0in) "or a userid/password(
A new $indows 23 #achine used 'y a ho#e user is li0ely to not as0 "or a
userid/password at start%up( 1owever, this depends on the nu#'er o" users de"ined
to $indows( $hen you create a new user in 23 the de"ault is not to reGuire a
password (user "riendly triu#phs over security % the &icroso"t way)( $indows <8,
never #ind(
$indows 23, 2000 and Linu* all support di""erent types or classes o" users( $indows
23 1o#e 6dition supports Ad#inistrator class users that have "ull and total access to
the syste# and restricted users that, a#on) other restrictions, canIt install so"tware(
$indows 23 3ro and $indows 2000 support additional levels o" users(
=oth Linu* and $indows can )roup users into )roups ("inally, so#ethin) well na#ed)
and assi)n privile)es to the )roup rather than to each individual user( $indows 23
and 2000 co#e with so#e pre%de"ined user )roups (such as 3ower ,sers), - donIt
thin0 Linu* does ('ut -I# not sure)( -n 23 and 2000 user BAd#inistratorB is a
#e#'er o" the Ad#inistrators )roup(
Linu* privile)es are 'asically whether you can read, #odi"y or e*ecute a "ile( @iles in
Linu* are always owned 'y a speci"ic user and )roup( $indows has si#ilar "ile%
related privile)es 'ut only when usin) the 5T@! "ile syste#( The earlier @AT and
@ATC2 "ile syste#s had no "ile level security(
-I# told that $indows 5T@! per#issions are a 'it #ore "unctional than those in
Linu*, 'ut that Linu* distri'utions are startin) to use e*tended Access ?ontrol Lists
as a part o" the "ile syste#, 'rin)in) the# #ore on par with 5T@!( (- wonIt swear 'y
this)
Jery o"ten $indows users use an Ad#inistrator class userid which )ives viruses total
access to their syste# (see $hy you should not run your co#puter as an
ad#inistrator "ro# &icroso"t)( This o'viates the security rules discussed a'ove( -n
contrast, Linu* users o"ten run as re)ular non%root users which not only #eans
'etter security it also #eans that, i" they )et a virus, the operatin) syste# )reatly
restricts what the virus can do(
- have tried a couple ti#es to set up a $indows 23 co#puter "or use 'y a "a#ily,
creatin) Ad#inistrator class userids "or the parents and restricted userids "or
children( =oth cases "ailed 'ecause there were too #any pro)ra#s that did not
"unction correctly when run 'y a restricted $indows user (#ore details here)( $hile
Linu* has supported the concept o" root and restricted users "ro# the )et%)o, this is
a relatively new thin) to $indows( -t will 'e a lon) ti#e 'e"ore all $indows so"tware
is desi)ned to 'e used 'y a restricted user( ,ntil then, viruses and #alware will have
"ree rei)n on $indows #achines( ?ertainly so"tware written "or $indows <, <8 and
&e e*pects total syste# access and #ay not wor0 when run "ro# a restricted userid(
!ee also $indows v Linu* security: the real "acts 'y John Lettice .cto'er 22, 200E in
The Fe)ister
!ecurity Feport: $indows vs Linu* 'y 5icholas 3etreley .cto'er 22, 200E
=u)s
All so"tware has and will have 'u)s (pro)ra##in) #ista0es)( Linu* has a reputation
"or "ewer 'u)s than $indows, 'ut it certainly has its "air share( This is a di""icult
thin) to /ud)e and "indin) an i#partial source on this su'/ect is also di""icult( @red
Lan)a wrote an interestin) article on whether Linu* or $indows has "ewer 'u)s in
-n"or#ation $ee0 #a)a7ine January 27, 200C( The article also addressed whether
0nown 'u)s are "i*ed "aster with Linu* or $indows( -n 'rie", he "elt that 'u)s used to
'e "i*ed "aster in Linu*, 'ut that thin)s have slowed down( !ee this article
too !ecurity research su))ests Linu* has "ewer "laws ;ece#'er 1C, 200E "ro# ?56T
5ews(co#(
-n &arch 28, 200C, &icroso"t decreed that it will not issue a $indows 5TE 'u) "i* "or
a security pro'le# that e""ects $indows 2000, 23 and 5TE( They would pre"er
custo#ers to #ove o"" o" 5TE, thus #a0in) &icroso"t #ore #oney( -t is their 'all,
their 'at and their "ield( This is not true with an open source operatin) syste# such
as Linu*( 5o one can decree that a 'u) will not 'e "i*ed in a speci"ic version o" Linu*(
The di""erence in .! develop#ent #ethodolo)ies #ay e*plain why Linu* is
considered #ore sta'le( $indows is developed 'y "aceless pro)ra##ers whose
#ista0es are hidden "ro# the outside world 'ecause &icroso"t does not pu'lish the
underlyin) code "or $indows( They consider it a trade secret( -n contrast, Linu* is
developed 'y hundreds o" pro)ra##ers all over the world( They pu'lish the source
code "or the operatin) syste# and any interested pro)ra##er, anywhere in the
world can review it( =esides the wide audience "or peer review, there is li0ely to 'e
pride o" ownership on the part o" the developers o" Linu* that can not e*ist with
$indows( The officia& ter# is Be)o'ooB which re"ers to the rush a pro)ra##er )ets
"ro# pu'lic reco)nition, especially "or so#ethin) done "or "ree( =ruce 3erens
(=usiness $ee0 #a)a7ine, &arch C, 200C issue) co##ented on why open source
so"tware wor0s well:
...it taps into te true motivation of programmers in a wa% tat corporations often
don't. Programmers are &ike artists ... !e% &ike to sowcase teir best stuff for teir
peers. In open source) te% can. "ut at most corporations) teir best work is idden
beind &ocked and guarded doors.
As to &icroso"tIs .! develop#ent #ethodolo)y, &ichael &iller o" 3? &a)a7ine
reported that ?hris Jones, Jice 3resident o" the $indows ?lient tea#, BstressedB that
&icroso"tIs priority when developin) Jista Bwas to cange te process of deve&oping
Windows to ensure tat te under&%ing code was tigter and more secure(B Jista will
'e the tenth version o" $indows produced 'y &icroso"t and they ad#it that the
develop#ent process needs to 'e i#proved( !ee Jista: - ?an !ee ?learly 5ow July
2, 200(
Note: !hortly a"ter - revised this section, all hec0 'ro0e loose on the -nternet due to
a 'u) in the 3lu)%and%3lay portion o" $indows (see @ast%&ovin) $or#s !la# &edia,
6nterprise 5etwor0s e$ee0 Au)ust 17, 200)( .n Au)ust <, 200 &icroso"t issued a
"i* "or this 'u)( $ithin a wee0 there were a do7en di""erent #alicious pro)ra#s
actively attac0in) co#puters without the 'u) "i*( &any lar)e co#panies were hit(
This is par "or the course, 'ut it in li)ht o" this topic, it occurred to #e that no story
on the pro'le# loo0ed to "ind/'la#e/na#e the pro)ra##er that wrote the 'u))y
3lu)%and%3lay code( 5o dou't, the world will never who caused all this )rie"( $hen
"aceless pro)ra##ers can hide 'ehind a corporate wall, these thin)s are #ore li0ely(
&icroso"t clai#ed that the 3lu)%and%3lay 'u) only a""ected $indows 2000( Anti%virus
co#panies clai#ed to have seen #any other versions o" $indows )et in"ected( $as
&icroso"t lyin) to #ini#i7e the 'ad pu'licity8 $ere anti%virus co#panies tryin) to
#a0e their products see# #ore use"ul8 $ithout access to the source code "or
$indows, no one can 0now "or sure( - wonder i" &icroso"t "ired the person(s) who
wrote the 'u))y code or i" they even 0now who did it8
-s -t !oup 9et8 (Last updated Au)ust 200)
$hen is a new version o" an .peratin) !yste# done8 1ard to say( All so"tware has
'u)s and .!s, 'ein) very lar)e so"tware are very li0ely to have #any 'u)s( $hen a
new version o" an .peratin) !yste# is 'ein) developed, so#eone, at so#e point,
has to say Benou)h is enou)hB( That is, so#eone decides that a reasona'le nu#'er
o" 'u)s have 'een "ound and "i*ed and the .! can now 'e considered "inished( Linu*
and $indows di""er )reatly in how this decision is #ade(
$ith Linu*, the decision is #ade 'y a co#puter nerd with a pu'lic reputation to
protect( $ith $indows, the decision is #ade 'y 'usiness people with 'illions o"
dollars in pro"it at sta0e( !pea0s "or itsel"(
=e sure to read the e*cellent 1ow &icroso"tIs &isunderstandin) o" .pen !ource 1urts
,s All 'y Fo'ert 2( ?rin)ely (.cto'er 2C, 200C)( The article ar)ues in "avor o" Linu*
and ridicules co##ents 'y !teve =all#er( Addressin) the B-s it soup yet8B issue, this
article includes a Guote "ro# &r( Linu*, Linus Torvalds (the nerd with the reputation
to protect):
B"ecause te software is free) tere is no pressure to re&ease it before it is rea&&%
read% 0ust to acieve some sa&es target. 2ver% version of Linux is dec&ared to be
finised on&% wen it is actua&&% finised) wic exp&ains w% it is so so&id. !e oter
reason w% free software is better is because te persona& reputation of te
deve&oper is attaced to ever% re&ease."
-n contrast, &icroso"t #a0es hu)e pro"its on a new version o" $indows( $hoever
decides when a new version o" $indows (currently Lon)horn/Jista) is ready to ship,
has a lot #ore on their plate than /ust 'u) "i*es( 5o dou't, &icroso"t de"enders will
cite the #any #onths, i" not years, that a new version o" $indows is 'eta tested 'y
thousands o" people 'e"ore it is released( -tIs not enou)h( Anyone who recalls the
'ra))in) done a'out sta'ility when 'oth $indows 2000 and 23 were released #ust
wince with the hundreds and hundreds o" 'u) "i*es 'oth versions have reGuired over
the years(
&icroso"t de"enders #ay also note that $indows is a "reGuent tar)et o" attac0 'y the
'ad )uys /ust 'ecause it is so widely e#ployed( True( =ut this /ust #a)ni"ies the
"allout "ro# any corners that #ay )et cut on the way to releasin) a new version o"
$indows(
1eIs ;ead Ji#
(Au)ust 200) .n the other end o" the li"e cycle, /ust as a particular version o"
$indows )ets relia'le, and everyone )ets used to its Guir0s and other so"tware
inter"aces with it well, &icroso"t wal0s away "ro# it( 5ot enou)h pro"it in it(
- a# not "a#iliar with the retire#ent policies o" the various Linu* vendors re)ardin)
old versions o" their Linu* distri'utions( =ut at least there is choice in the Linu*
#ar0etplace(
!upported 1ardware ;evices
$hile Linu* itsel" runs on #any #ore co#puters than $indows, when it co#es to
hardware peripherals, #any wor0 with $indows 'ut not with Linu*( The hardware
vendors write drivers "or $indows #ore o"ten than they do "or Linu*( &ar0et share
and all that( !o#e hardware vendors will release technical specs so that so#eone in
the Linu* co##unity can write a driver "or the device, 'ut other vendors arenIt so
open #inded(
6verythin) isnIt rosy in the $indows world however( $hen $indows 23 was released,
#any e*istin) peripherals would not wor0 with it 'ecause 23 reGuired new drivers
and the vendors had little #otivation to write drivers "or old hardware( The e*act
sa#e scenario played out all over a)ain when Jista was released( - thin0 itIs "air to
say that hardware support was pretty la#e when Jista was "irst released( This is not
a 0noc0 on &icroso"t(
The poor hardware support in Linu* is drastically illustrated in an article 'y @red
Lan)a( 1e wrote a'out pro'le#s )ettin) nine di""erent Linu* distri'utions (versions)
to wor0 correctly with two di""erent sound cards (one real, one virtual) that all
versions o" $indows, even 'ac0 to $indows <, dealt with per"ectly (see Linu*Is
AchillesI 1eel, -n"or#ation $ee0 #a)a7ine( April 1<, 200E)(
-n Ten 0ey di""erences 'etween Linu* and $indows (!epte#'er 2008) Jac0 $allen, a
Linu* devotee, a'out this: B.ne issue that is slowly 'eco#in) none*istent is
hardware support ((( 9ou can )ra' a 3? (or laptop) and #ost li0ely )et one or #ore
Linu* distri'utions to install and wor0 nearly 100 percent( =ut there are still so#e
e*ceptionsN "or instance, hi'ernate/suspend re#ains a pro'le# with #any laptops,
althou)h it has co#e a lon) way(B
1ardware the .! runs on (Last updated &arch 200)
Linu* runs on #any di""erent hardware plat"or#s, not so with $indows( @or e*a#ple,
$indows 5T used to run on &-3! ?3,s until &icroso"t chan)ed their #ind( -t also
used to run on Alpha ?3,s, a)ain, until &icroso"t chan)ed their #ind( 5o one )ets to
chan)e their #ind with Linu*( -t runs on a very wide ran)e o" co#puters, "ro# the
lowest o" the low to the hi)hest o" the hi)h( The supported ran)e o" co#puters is all
'ut stunnin)(
=ecause o" its a'ility to run without a +,-, and thus need less hardware horsepower
than $indows, Linu* can run on very old personal co#puters such as E8D 'ased
#achines( - too0 a Linu* class where the server the students used was a 100 &17
3entiu#( To )et #ore #ilea)e out o" old hardware, 3apa JohnIs converted 2,<00
pi77erias to Linu*( .n the hi)h end, Linu* runs natively on -=& #ain"ra#es (the K
series) and on other hi)h end -=& servers( e=ay runs their we' site on Linu* as does
+oo)le( -=&Is "a#ily o" B=lue +eneB superco#puters, used 'y Lawrence Liver#ore
5ational La'oratory "or nuclear weapons si#ulations, run Linu*( 5A!A uses it on
superco#puters that run space%shuttle si#ulations( .n the s#all side, the i3odLinu*
3ro/ect created a version o" Linu* that runs on Apple i3ods( 56? is wor0in) on Linu*%
'ased cell phones and &otorola is )oin) to #a0e Linu* its pri#ary operatin) syste#
"or s#art cell phones( ;e'ian Linu* can run on on a co#puter the si7e o" a dec0 o"
playin) cards (100## 'y ##) with an AF& cpu( -n the ho#e, !ony and
&atsushita (parent co#pany o" 3anasonic) will use Linu* to 'uild increasin)ly Is#artI
#icrowave ovens, TJs and other consu#er )i7#os( Li0ewise &ontaJista !o"tware will
release a version o" its e#'edded Linu* "or use in consu#er electronics devices( $e'
site linu*devices(co# see#s to trac0 this(
?lusterin)
Linu* has an ed)e here( -t has 'een used to #a0e enor#ous clusters o" co#puters(
-n .cto'er 2002, ?o#puter$orld #a)a7ine said: BLinu* clusters provide
superco#puter%type per"or#ance at a "raction o" the e*pense(B The sa#e article
reported that &errill Lynch runs a cluster o" 0 Linu* co#puters( -n &arch 200,
@or'es #a)a7ine reported that: "Linux now as become so tecnica&&% powerfu& tat
it &a%s c&aim to a prestigious tit&e,,it runs more of te wor&d's top supercomputers
tan an% oter operating s%stem."(see Linu* Fules !uperco#puters 'y ;aniel Lyons
&arch 1, 200)(
&ultiple ,sers
Linu* is a #ulti%user syste#, $indows is not( That is, $indows is desi)ned to 'e
used 'y one person at a ti#e( ;ata'ases runnin) under $indows allow concurrent
access 'y #ultiple users, 'ut the .peratin) !yste# itsel" is desi)ned to deal with a
sin)le hu#an 'ein) at a ti#e( Linu*, li0e all ,ni* variants, is desi)ned to handle
#ultiple concurrent users( $indows, o" course, can run #any pro)ra#s concurrently,
as can Linu*( There is a #ulti%user version o" $indows called Ter#inal !erver 'ut
this is not the $indows pre%installed on personal co#puters(
5etwor0in)
They 'oth do T?3/-3( Linu* can do $indows networ0in), which #eans that a Linu*
co#puter can appear on a networ0 o" $indows co#puters and share its "iles and
printers( Linu* #achines can participate on a $indows 'ased networ0 and vice
versa( !ee &i*in) ,ni* and $indows =y Larry !elt7er (July 2002)(
1ard ;is0 3artitions (Last updated Au)ust 200D)
$indows #ust 'e installed to and 'oot "ro# a pri#ary partition( There are a
#a*i#u# o" "our pri#ary partitions on a sin)le hard dis0 (a co#puter with two hard
dis0s can have ei)ht pri#ary partitions)( Linu* is 'etter in this re)ard as it can 'e
installed to and 'oot "ro# either a pri#ary partition or a lo)ical partition( Lo)ical
partitions reside inside a special type o" pri#ary partition called an e*tended
partition( There is no practical li#it to the nu#'er o" lo)ical partitions that can e*ist
on a sin)le hard dis0( Thus you can easily e*peri#ent with a do7en di""erent Linu*
distri'utions 'y installin) each one in a di""erent lo)ical partition(
$indows #ust 'oot "ro# the "irst hard dis0( 1ere too Linu* is 'etter, it can 'oot "ro#
any hard dis0 in the co#puter(
!wap @iles: 1ide !how top
!wap @iles
A swap "ile (a(0(a( pa)e "ile) is used 'y the .peratin) !yste# when the de#ands on
FA& e*ceed the availa'le capacity( $indows uses a hidden "ile "or its swap "ile( =y
de"ault, this "ile resides in the sa#e partition as the .!, althou)h you can put it in
another partition, a"ter $indows is installed( -n $indows 23, the swap "ile resides
initially on the ? dis0 as a "ile called pa)e"ile(sys( Linu* li0es to use a dedicated
partition "or its swap "ile, however advanced users can opt to i#ple#ent the swap
"ile as a "ile in the sa#e partition as the .!( -I# not sure i" this issue is clearly
presented and e*plained when installin) Linu*( 3ro'a'ly not( 2andros vE, "or
e*a#ple, #ay use a separate swap partition or not, dependin) on the partition
environ#ent it "inds at install ti#e( 2andros E does not e*plain any o" this(
,pdated Au)ust 200D: $ith $indows 23 the de"ault si,e o" the swap "ile is 1( ti#es
the a#ount o" FA& in the #achine at the ti#e $indows was installed( - donIt 0now
how Linu* chooses a de"ault swap "ile si7e( -n $indows 23 you can chan)e the swap
"ile si7e and location with ?ontrol 3anel %O !yste# 3roperties %O Advanced ta' %O
3er"or#ance !ettin)s %O Advanced ta' a)ain %O ?han)e 'utton, which opens the
Jirtual &e#ory window( =e aware that this window violates user inter"ace standards(
-t is the only window - 0now o" where clic0in) the .> 'utton a"ter #a0in) a chan)e,
does not activate the chan)e( To chan)e the si7e o" the pa)e/swap "ile, you #ust
clic0 the !et 'utton( - donIt 0now how to chan)e the si7e o" a Linu* swap "ile(
@ile !yste#s: 1ide !how top
@ile !yste#s (Last 'i) update: !epte#'er 200)
$indows uses @AT12, @AT1D, @ATC2 and/or 5T@! with 5T@! al#ost always 'ein) the
'est choice( The @AT* "ile syste#s are older and have assorted li#itations on "ile and
partition si7e that #a0e the# pro'le#atical in the current environ#ent( Linu* also
has a nu#'er o" its own native "ile syste#s( The de"ault "ile syste# "or Linu* used to
'e e*t2, now it is typically e*tC( .ther supported "ile syste#s includes 2@!, J@!, J@@!
and FeiserC( FeiserE is in develop#ent(
(Added ;ece#'er 2008: The e*tC "ile syste# is 'ein) replaced 'y e*tE( A#on) the
i#prove#ents in e*tE is an increase in the #a*i#u# "ilesyste# si7e "ro# 1D
tera'ytes in e*tC to one e*a'yte( The lar)est "ile in e*tC is 2 tera'ytes, in e*tE it is
1D tera'ytes( .pen!olaris includes K@! which see#s li0e a drastic chan)e in "ile
syste# desi)n(
@ile syste#s can 'e either /ournaled or not( 5on%/ournaled syste#s are su'/ect to
pro'le#s when stopped a'ruptly( All the @AT variants and e*t2 are non%/ournaled(
A"ter a crash, they should 'e e*a#ined 'y their respective health chec0 utilities
(!can ;is0 or ?hec0 ;is0 or "sc0)( -n contrast, when a /ournaled "ile syste# is
stopped a'ruptly, recovery is auto#atic at the ne*t re'oot( 5T@! is /ournaled( Linu*
supports several /ournaled "ile syste#s: e*tC, e*tE, reiser"s and /"s(
All the "ile syste#s use directories and su'directories( $indows separates directories
with a 'ac0 slash, Linu* uses a nor#al "orward slash( $indows "ile na#es are not
case sensitive( Linu* "ile na#es are( @or e*a#ple Ba4cB and B a#CB are di""erent "iles
in Linu*, whereas in $indows it would re"er to the sa#e "ile( ?ase sensitivity has
'een a pro'le# "or this very we' pa)e, the na#e o" which is B
Linux2vs2Windows2ht,lB( At ti#es, people have tried to )et to this pa)e usin) B
linux2vs2windows2ht,lB (all lower case) which resulted in a 3a)e 5ot @ound error(
6ventually, - created a new we' pa)e with the na#e in all lower case and this new
pa)e si#ply re%directs you to the real pa)e, the one you are readin) now (with a
capital L and $)(
-ra"!entation: (Added January 2008)$indows "ile syste#s all su""er "ro#
"ra)#entation, which results in a "ile 'ein) scattered all over the hard dis0( -I# told
that Linu* "ile syste#s are #uch less prone to this, 'ut - donIt 0now the details and
whether it applies to all or so#e o" the Linu* "ile syste#s( $ith classic #a)netic
platter 'ased hard dis0s, "ra)#entation can 'e a 'i) deal as the dis0 is !uch slower
than the FA& or ?3, and havin) to wal0 all over the hard dis0 to )et a "ile slows
thin)s down( 1ow this will play out on newer !!;s - donIt 0now( $hile there is no
waitin) "or spinnin) platters, !!;s have to deal with wear levelin), a "eature
desi)ned to e*tend their li#ited li"espan( !pea0in) o" "ra)#entation, -Ive heard very
)ood thin)s a'out Fa*coIs 3er"ect;is0 "or $indows(
%rossin" Over: (Last ,pdated: June 2007) As "or supportin) each others "ile
syste#s, Linu* can read/write @AT1D and @ATC2( $hen - "irst wrote this topic, only
so#e Linu* distri'utions could read 5T@! partitions( 5ow #ore can 'oth read and
update 5T@!, a "eature critical to usin) Linu* as a Fescue ?; "or a 'ro0en copy o"
$indows(
?aptive%5T@! was "te first free *!3$ read1write fi&es%stem for 4*-1Linux"( -t is no
lon)er 'ein) #aintained( -n its place is the 5T@!%C+ Fead/$rite ;river which the
we'site descri'es as "an open source) free&% avai&ab&e read1write *!3$ driver for
Linux) 3ree"$5) 6$ X) and *et"$5." 5T@!%C+ is "airly new, 'ein) considered sta'le
only since @e'ruary 2007( -t can deal with the #ultiple versions o" 5T@! used 'y
$indows 23, $indows !erver 200C, $indows 2000 and $indows Jista( At least 8
distri'utions support 5T@!%C+ in so#e #anner, a#on) the#: ,'untu, Fed 1at,
;e'ian, >noppi* and &andriva(
-n !epte#'er 200, 3? &a)a7ine reviewed a product called 5T@! "or Linu* "ro# the
3ara)on !o"tware +roup that )ives Linu* read/write access to 5T@! partitions( @or
#ore in"or#ation on Linu* and 5T@!, see the Linu* 5T@! 3ro/ect(
.n its own, $indows can not read partitions "or#atted with any Linu* "ile syste#(
1owever, a nu#'er o" products (- havenIt tried any o" the#) ena'le this:
6*plore2"s 'y John 5ew'i)in can 'e used to read Linu* e*t2 and e*tC
partitions( 3orta'le version
6*t2@sd clai#s to 'e an 6*t2 @ile !yste# ;river "or $indows
An open source pro/ect, the 6*t2 @ile !yste# ;river "or $indows
The "ree Linu* Feader "or $indows "ro# ;is0internals can read the 6*t2/6*tC
"ile syste#s (added !epte#'er 2007) 3orta'le version
The 6*t2 -nstalla'le @ile !yste# @or $indows is "ree and provides "ull read
and write access to partitions and "loppy dis0s "or#atted with either 6*t2 or
6*tC( -t wor0s with $indows 5TE, 2000, 23 and 200C( -tIs also re"erred to as
6*t2 -@! "or $indows( -" you are runnin) a 5A! device, it #ay very well 'e
storin) "iles usin) the 6*t2 or 6*tC "ile syste#(
-i$e .ierarchy: $indows and Linu* use di""erent concepts "or their "ile hierarchy(
$indows uses a volu#e%'ased "ile hierarchy, Linu* uses a uni"ied sche#e( $indows
uses letters o" the alpha'et to represent di""erent devices and di""erent hard dis0
partitions( ,nder $indows, you need to 0now what volu#e (?:, ;:,((() a "ile resides
on to select it, the "ileIs physical location is part o" itIs na#e( -n Linu* all directories
are attached to the root directory, which is identi"ied 'y a "orward%slash, B/B( @or
e*a#ple, 'elow are so#e second%level directories:
54in5 1111 s$ste, 4inaries, user progra,s with nor,al user per,issions
5s4in 111 executa4les that need root per,ission
5data5 111 a user defined director$
5dev5 1111 s$ste, device tree
5etc5 1111 s$ste, configuration
5ho,e5 111 users) su4directories
5ho,e56userna,e7 a.in to the Windows M$ *ocu,ents folder
5t,p5 1111 s$ste, te,porar$ files
5usr5 1111 applications software
5usr54in 1 executa4les for progra,s with user per,ission
5var5 1111 s$ste, varia4les
5li4 111 li4raries needed for installed progra,s to run
6very device and hard dis0 partition is represented in the Linu* "ile syste# as a
su'directory o" the lone root directory( @or e*a#ple, the "loppy dis0 drive in Linu*
#i)ht 'e 5etc5flopp$( The root directory lives in the root partition, 'ut other
directories (and the devices they represent) can reside anywhere( Fe#ova'le devices
and hard dis0 partitions other than the root are attached (i(e(, B#ountedB) to
su'directories in the directory tree( This is done either at syste# initiali7ation or in
response to a #ount co##and(
There are no standards in Linu* "or which su'directories are used "or which devices(
This contrasts with $indows where the A dis0 is always the "loppy drive and the ?
dis0 is al#ost always the 'oot partition(
.idden -i$es: =oth support the concept o" hidden "iles, which are "iles that, 'y
de"ault, are not shown to the user when listin) "iles in a directory( Linu* i#ple#ents
this with a "ilena#e that starts with a period( $indows trac0s this as a "ile attri'ute
in the "ile #etadata (alon) with thin)s li0e the last update date)( -n 'oth .!s the
user can over%ride the de"ault 'ehavior and "orce the syste# to list hidden "iles(
%ase: ?ase sensitivity is the sa#e with co##ands as with "ile na#es( $hen enterin)
co##ands in a ;.!/co##and window under any version o" $indows, BdirB is the
sa#e as B;-FB( -n Linu* BdirB is a di""erent co##and than B;-FB(
&ode#s
To save #oney, #any internal #ode#s do not include their own processor, instead
they rely on the #ain cpu in the co#puter "or their processin) needs( These cheap
#ode#s are re"erred to as Bwin#ode#sB 'ecause they typically include low level
calls to the $indows operatin) syste# that can not 'e replicated in Linu*( @or the
#ost part, win#ode#s will not wor0 under Linu*( -" you need to run a win#ode#
under Linu* see Lin#ode#s(or) and www(linu*ant(co#/drivers(
!criptin)
$indows started with =AT "iles (a co#'ination o" .! co##ands and optionally its
own lan)ua)e) and then pro)ressed to $indows !criptin) 1ost ($!1) which
supports two lan)ua)es, Java!cript and J= !cript( $indows also has $&-, the
$indows &ana)e#ent -nter"ace which #a0es #any "unctions availa'le to scripts(
The lastest scriptin) en)ine "ro# &icroso"t is $indows 3ower!hell (ori)inally called
&onad)( The "irst release (e*cludin) =etas) was 5ove#'er 200D( 3ower!hell reGuires
version 2(0 o" the &icroso"t (56T @ra#ewor0 and runs only under $indows 23, Jista
and !erver 200C((,pdated &ay 2007)
Linu*, li0e all ,ni* variants, provides #ultiple scriptin) lan)ua)es, re"erred to as
shell scripts( A#on) the# are the =ourne shell, the ? shell, 3erl, 3ython and Fu'y( -
have used the "irst three, 'ut not 3ython and Fu'y( - "ind the Linu* scriptin)
lan)ua)es cruder than $!1 'ut #uch #ore power"ul than =AT "iles( They tend to
use special characters instead o" 6n)lish co##ands and donIt support o'/ects (this
only #atters to pro)ra##ers)(
.ne scriptin) lan)ua)e that can run on 'oth Linu* and $indows is 313( -t always has
to 'e installed under $indows, it #ay have to 'e installed under Linu*( 313 is
typically "ound runnin) on Linu* 'ased we' servers in co#'ination with Apache, 'ut
it is capa'le o" runnin) Bclient sideB (on your co#puter)(
(The 'elow was added &ay 2007)
There is a philosophy to scriptin) and startin) with 3ower!hell &icroso"t has chan)ed
theirs, to "ollow/copy that o" Linu*( The issue -I# re"errin) to is the #ain inter"ace to
the operatin) syste#(
.n Linu*/,ni* the scripts are the #ain inter"ace to the syste# and any +,- is 'uilt
on top o" the scripts( Thus a Linu* syste# can have #ultiple +,-s to acco#plish the
sa#e thin) as they all end up callin) the script inter"ace anyway( 9ou can even run
Linu* without any +,- at all(
$indows has always 'een loc0ed into and 0eyed o"" its +,- inter"ace( !criptin) was
an a"ter%thou)ht( $ith the introduction o" 3ower!hell, &icroso"t says it will adopt the
Linu* way, #a0in) the script inte"ace the #ain one( This should #ean that anythin)
and everythin) can 'e scripted( $eIll see(
3rinter ;rivers
6very co#puter printer ships with drivers "or last last "ew versions o" $indows (at
the ti#e it was #anu"actured)( Funnin) the printer on a very old or too new version
o" $indows #ay or #ay not wor0( !till, this a "ar 'etter situation than with Linu*
which does not support as #any printers as $indows( -n an environ#ent with #any
Linu* users, shared networ0 printers a tech support sta"", this should not 'e an issue
as you can li#it yoursel" to well supported printers( 1o#e users o" Linu* however,
will no dou't su""er "ro# the relatively poor support "or printers( !tephen &anes
wrote in @or'es #a)a7ine (.cto'er 2002) that BLinu* printer drivers tend to handle
the si#plest o" printin) "unctions and leave out the restB(
The A<< Kon'u co#puter wor0s with 1,00 printers (accordin) to the co#pany)(
1elp
!tephen &anes wrote in @or'es #a)a7ine (.cto'er 28, 2002) that Linu* B7e&p
screens often omit ever%ting but te most rudimentar% information and te most
arcane." @or co##ands, 'oth .!s o""er help on the synta* and options o" individual
co##ands, providin) you 0now the co##and( -n Linu* it is o"ten done 'y
appendin) %%help or %h to the co##and( -n $indows itIs o"ten done 'y appendin) /8
to the co##and(
.win) to itIs co##and line history, Linu* also o""ers help via the #an (short "or
#anual) and in"o co##ands( The #an docu#entation "or the ls co##and, "or
e*a#ple, is re"erred to as the #an pa)e "or ls( @ro# the Linu* co##and line you can
search the #an data'ase with B#an %0 so#estrin)B which produces a list o" #anual
pa)es containin) Bso#estrin)B(
$indows o""ers help in the +,- inter"ace "or the +,- inter"ace( .n the Linu* side,
'oth >;6 and +no#e also have 'uilt%in help a'out usin) the#selves( -I# told that
the $indows help is 'etter "or newco#ers (nerds hate writin) docu#entation,
especially on an introductory level, and Linu* is done 'y volunteers)(
,ser ;ata
$indows allows pro)ra#s to store user in"or#ation ("iles and settin)s) anywhere(
This #a0es it i#possi'ly hard to 'ac0up user data "iles and settin)s and to switch to
a new co#puter( -n contrast, Linu* stores all user data in the ho#e directory #a0in)
it #uch easier to #i)rate "ro# an old co#puter to a new one( -" ho#e directories are
se)re)ated in their own partition, you can even up)rade "ro# one version o" Linu* to
another without havin) to #i)rate user data and settin)s(
!huttin) ;own
=oth have to 'e told to shut down and "or the sa#e reason, to Guiesce in%"li)ht
activity in an orderly #anner( 9ou shut down $indows thru the !tart 'utton, then
select !hutdown( -n 'oth the >;6 and +no#e +,-s "or Linu*, you shut the syste#
down 'y "irst lo))in) out (eGuivalent to lo))in) o"" in $indows)( -n +no#e, you
select the 1alt option, in >;6, the shutdown option( Linu* can also 'e shut down
"ro# a co##and pro#pt usin) the shutdown co##and which can either shut the
syste# down i##ediately or 'e told to shut it down at so#e ti#e in the "uture(
$indows 23 also has a shutdown co##and, earlier versions o" $indows did not
(,pdated ;ece#'er 200) The scheduler 'uilt into $indows 23 is not a'le to
schedule pro)ra#s to run at shutdown ti#e( - "ind this annoyin), 'ecause its an
e*cellent ti#e to schedule 'ac0ups( Linu* can schedule pro)ra#s to run
auto#atically at shutdown ti#e( - havenIt tried this 'ut a Guic0 )lance at 1ow Linu*
'oots #a0es it see# co#plicated( -I# told to "ollow the instructions in this article 'ut
replace runlevel with runlevel 7ero, which represents shutdown ti#e(
.dds and 6nds: 1ide !how top
.dds and 6nds
=oth $indows and Linu* have des0top shortcuts to applications( Linu* even has the
eGuivalent o" the Guic0 launch tool'ar, a "avorite "eature o" #ine( -n ,'untu, add a
shortcut to the panel at the top o" the screen with: ri)ht%clic0 an e#pty area o" the
panel, choose Add to 3anel, select the pro)ra# you want to add, clic0 the Add
'utton((added &arch 2008)
Accordin) to ?o#puter$orld 'lo))er !teven J( Jau)han%5ichols, BLinu* needs to do
a #uch 'etter /o' o" #ana)in) power( $ith #ore and #ore o" us doin) our wor0 on
laptops, net'oo0s, and the li0e, )ettin) the #ost out o" 'attery li"e is 'eco#in)
increasin)ly i#portant((( To really )et the #ost "ro# a 'attery reGuires power%aware
device drivers, power%aware applications and "ine )ranular control over each
co#ponent in a syste#( Linu* has #iles to )o 'e"ore it can eGual &acs or even
$indows in this area(B (added Au)ust 11, 2008)
,pdatin) !o"tware: 1ide !how top
,pdatin) !o"tware (?reated: July 2008, Last ,pdated: January 200<)
This is a 'i) topic that - should have added lon) a)o( - havenIt used Linu* enou)h to
"or# #y own an opinion on this "ro# the Linu* side, so - present the opinions o"
others( -n $indows, while each pro)ra# has its own custo# 'uilt installation
procedure they very o"ten "ollow the sa#e pattern( -n Linu*, each pro)ra# is
installed in a standard way, 'ut there are way too #any standards( The so"tware that
installs everythin) in Linu* is called a pac0a)e #ana)er(
There are way too #any pac0a)e #ana)ers( ,'untu Linu*, "or e*a#ple, has three(
$hatIs the di""erence 'etween the#8 ,'untu o""ers no help( The Advanced
3ac0a)in) Tool (apt%)et) is used 'y ;e'ian, ,'untu, ).!, Linu* &int and >noppi*(
9,& is used 'y @edora and ?ent.!( .pen!,!6 uses 9a!T( +entoo uses 3orta)e(
&andriva uses urp#i( and thereIs also !ynaptic and 3ac0a)e>it(
@ro# the January 200< article A =e)innerIs +uide on 1ow to -nstall Linu* !o"tware:
"!ere are severa& different t%pes of insta&&ation fi&es for -buntu) and few of tem are
as eas% to insta&& as te 2X2 insta&&ation fi&es found on Windows. If %ou need to
down&oad an app&ication to %our s%stem tat is not found in .dd18emove
.pp&ications) ten %ou wi&& find %ourse&f wit one of severa& different t%pes of fi&es9
.deb) .rpm) .bin) .tar.g:) I*$!.LL) .s) etc. !ese different fi&es a&& ave a different
metod of execution." The article e*plains how to deal with these types o" "iles to
install so"tware(
?o#puterworld 'lo))er !teven J( Jau)han%5ichols is pro%Linu*( 9et, he ad#its that
new Linu* users will 'e thrown "or a loop when they "irst try to install so"tware( -n
@e'ruary 200< he said "Wen we &ive wit an% tecno&og%) we start taking for
granted know&edge tat we ave tat's a foreign &anguage to oters. $o) wi&e
package manager programs ... make insta&&ing software eas%) te% don't give new
Linux users muc of a c&ue wat it is te%'re insta&&ing." 1e also wrote Linu* so"tware
installation #yths in 5ove#'er 2008(
Jac0 $allen is a Linu* enthusiast who wrote the "ollowin) in !epte#'er 2008: "Wit
Linux %ou ave (wit near&% ever% distribution) a centra&i:ed &ocation were %ou can
searc for) add or remove software. I'm ta&king about package management
s%stems) suc as $%naptic. Wit $%naptic) %ou can open up one too&) searc for an
app&ication (or group of app&ications)) and insta&& tat app&ication witout aving to
do an% web searcing (or purcasing). Windows as noting &ike tis. Wit Windows)
%ou must know were to find te software %ou want to insta&& ... 3or man% %ears) it
was tougt tat insta&&ing app&ications on Windows was far easier tan on Linux.
.nd for man% %ears) tat tougt was rigt on target. *ot so muc now. Insta&&ation
under Linux is simp&e) pain&ess and centra&i:ed."
6d =ott is a $indows enthusiast( -n July 2008 he wrote a'out this: $indows ,pdate
vs( ,'untu ,pdate(
11 Linu*%only Thin)s: 1ide !how top
11 Linu*%only Thin)s
This is a su##ary o" an article 'y ;an &artin called Thin)s - can do in Linu* that -
canIt do on $indows "ro# &arch C, 2007( (added !epte#'er 2007)
The "irst ite# on his list stri0es #e as very i#portant % you can update "ever% sing&e
piece of software on m% s%stem wit a sing&e action." $indows and &icroso"t ,pdate
only do a hand"ul o" &icroso"t applications( $ith Linu*, the .! updater application
handles so"tware "ro# other co#panies too( 1u)e plus "or Linu*( 1u)e(
An interestin) point was the a'ility to "8un Internet 2xp&orer ;.<) ;.;) =.<) and >.<
on te same desktop" usin) so"tware called -6sELinu*( .ther points included the "act
that #ost updates donIt reGuire a re%'oot, Linu* has a lesser need "or anti%#alware
so"tware and the a'ility to ta0e Bsettin)sB with you when travelin)(
.verall, &r( &artin is very 'iased( @or e*a#ple, with porta'le applications, $indows
users can carry entire applications with the# with travelin)( 1e also 'ra)s that Linu*
users can understand everythin) )oin) on inside their co#puter, 'ut, he doesnIt o""er
so"tware "or doin) this( $indows users have the e*cellent 3rocess 6*plorer pro)ra#
which shows tons o" in"or#ation a'out whatIs )oin) on under the hood( 3rocess
6*plorer is a "reat pro)ra#( @inally, so#e ite#s on his list stri0e #e as un%
i#portant(
&arch 10, 2008: 1ereIs another Linu* only thin), the a'ility to 0eep an applicationIs
window on top o" other windows( @ro# ?56T 'lo))er ;ennis .IFeilly: ". nice feature
of -buntu tat Windows &acks (un&ess %ou tweak te 8egistr% or down&oad a
separate a&wa%s,on,top uti&it%) is te abi&it% to keep a window on top of a&& oters.
?ust rigt,c&ick te bar a&ong te top of te window) and se&ect .&wa%s on !op from
te drop,down menu." Accordin) to reader co##ents this is really a +5.&6 thin),
rather than an ,'untu thin)(
?hoosin) Linu* vs( $indows: 1ide !how top
?hoosin) Linu* vs( $indows
(These three para)raphs added &ay 1, 2007) $hen this pa)e was created 23 was
the current version o" $indows( 5ow it is Jista( - #ention this 'ecause #any people
"ind the Jista e*perience stin0s( -t is e*pensive, 'u))y, slow and su""ers "ro# 'oth
hardware and so"tware inco#pati'ilities( There see#s to 'e a )rowin) 'ac0lash
a)ainst Jista, which is chan)in) this topic o" choosin) Linu* vs( $indows(
!o#e $indows people (the s#art ones in #y opinion) are optin) to stic0 with 23 and
avoid Jista( ;ell initially converted all their new consu#er #achines "ro# 23 to Jista,
althou)h they and others always sold 'usiness tar)eted #achines with 23(
Fespondin) to consu#er de#and ('usinesses were not )oin) to use Jista "or a lon)
ti#e anyway), ;ell 'ac0trac0ed in April 2007 and re%introduced new consu#er
#achines with 23 pre%installed( 1eresy( &icroso"t could not have 'een happy(
And then ((( alon) ca#e Linu*( -n &ay 2007 ;ell announced they would start to o""er
consu#er #achines with ,'untu Linu* vesion 7(0E pre%installed( 9ou have to wonder
i" Jista is drivin) people to Linu*( .h, and &ichael ;ell runs ,'untu Linu* on a
co#puter at his ho#e (April 18, 2007)(
&artin ,lti#a, the person 'ehind the ,lti#a Linu* distri'ution, does not see a "uture
"or Linu* on des0top co#puters( 1is reasons: video drivers are too hard to set up,
#any distri'utions o#it @lash, a wor0in) #edia player, C; )raphics and so#e "onts,
there are too #any distri'utions, so"tware develop#ent on Linu* is Bpain"ulB, poor
support "or $i@i, printers and other hardware, and poor .! docu#entation( 1e also
points out the 12 years a"ter $indows introduced ?; auto%#ountin), it is /ust
startin) to appear in #ainstrea# Linu* distri'utions( (para)raph added July 20,
2007)
.n the 3ersonal ?o#puter show in ;ece#'er 200C John ?( ;vora0 predicted a 'ri)ht
"uture "or Linu*( 1is #ain points 'ein): itIs "ree, the applications are )ettin) #ore
#ainstrea#, .pen .""ice is a B"a'ulousB product, the +,- is pretty #uch li0e
$indows, itIs hi)h Guality, 'ullet proo" and resistant to the thousands o" $indows
viruses and wor#s( -" he owned a co#pany with thousands o" 3?s, he would put
everyone on Linu*(
To date the only or)ani7ations (that -Ive heard a'out) usin) hundreds or thousands
o" Linu* 'ased co#puters are )overn#ent a)encies in countries all over the world(
They #ay 'e driven 'y cost and/or security concerns (practically spea0in) there are
no Linu* viruses)( !o#e countries also #ay not li0e 'ein) 'eholden to a ,(!( 'ased
co#pany "or so #uch o" their so"tware(
!ee &ore =alls Throu)h $indows "ro# The 6cono#ist April 20, 200E on c"o(co#( -s
&icroso"t "inally a'out to "ace real co#petition in des0top%co#puter so"tware8 This
article raises a point - a)ree with( The ne*t version o" $indows, the one that will
replace 23, is not )oin) to 'e delivered "or a lon) ti#e openin) up a window o"
opportunity "or Linu*( -n addition, the upco#in) version o" $indows is li0ely to 'e
e*pensive and reGuire new hardware, two other areas where Linu* co#petes well( -t
#ay also involve too #any chan)es( =y the ti#e itIs delivered, #ore and #ore Linu*
distri'utions will loo0 #ore li0e $indows, /ust as &icroso"t rolls out a new user
inter"ace( 3eople accusto#ed to the current $indows ,- #ay resist the chan)e(
1owever, &icroso"t "i)hts the spread o" Linu* at all costs( @or e*a#ple, when
Thailand was )oin) to #a0e )overn#ent su'sidi7ed Linu* 'ased co#puters availa'le
throu)hout the country, &icroso"t cut a deal with the Thai -n"or#ation,
?o##unication and Technolo)y &inistry( 3eople in Thailand can 'uy $indows 23 and
.""ice 23 (without .utloo0) pre%installed, activated, and ready to run "or the
eGuivalent o" AC7 ,! dollars( !ee &icroso"t o""ers cut%rate $indows "ro# ?56T
5ews(co# @e'ruary <, 200E( Then a)ain, the )overn#ents o" ?hina, Japan and
!outh >orea are tea#in) up to create their own Asian "lavor o" Linu*(
&y 2 ?ents: 1ide !how top
&y 2 ?ents
The a'ove are "acts, to the 'est o" #y 0nowled)e, not opinion(
This is opinion(
$ill Linu* spread to the point o" 'eco#in) a serious co#petitor to $indows on the
des0top8 5o( And this has nothin) to do with which is 'etter, no #atter how you
/ud)e B'etterB(
?onsider the 0ey'oard in "ront o" you( The 0ey arran)e#ent was #ade lon) a)o
when 0eepin) the #etal wires connected to the 0eys "ro# hittin) each other was the
'i) consideration( 5ow that that no lon)er applies, does any'ody switch over to a
0ey'oard with a 'etter desi)n8 5o( All o" us who 0now how to type, are used to the
current arran)e#ent o" 0eys( !witchin) to a new layout would 'e a #a/or disruption
and thus have to pay 'ac0 in a #a/or way( - donIt thin0 des0top versions o" Linu* will
pay 'ac0 enou)h to encoura)e people to switch( &y Linu* e*perience is not
e*tensive, 'ut co#in) to it with a $indows 'ac0)round, as #ost people will, it is
o"ten "rustratin) to "i)ure out how to do ordinary everyday thin)s(
!ervers are another story( !o too are call centers and other sin)le%use environ#ents
where Linu* #a0es a lot o" sense(
/e$ated 0ins
*ewer &inks are at te bottom
-n 5ove#'er 2002, a security pro'le# in a &icroso"t @T3 server resulted in the
e*posure o" internal &icroso"t docu#ents( A#on) these was a white paper discussin)
the approach they used to convert 1ot#ail "ro# ,5-2 to $indows 2000( The white
paper includes these topics: Advanta)es o" ,5-2, 3ro'le#s o" $indows, !tren)ths o"
$indows(
Linu* vs( $indows de'ate / discussion at ;es0topLinu*(co#(
An article on the $ine pro/ect "ro# 3? $orld &a)a7ine, @e'ruary 2002(
An article on Lindows, includin) co##ents on $ine, 'y @red Lan)a in -n"or#ation
$ee0, ;ece#'er 2002(
?an - run $indows so"tware on ,5-28 AnandTech( July 1Eth, 2002
Linu* runs .""ice 23, 'ut not .utloo0( April 2C, 200C( ?ross .ver .""ice (a'out A)
'y ?ode$eavers ena'les Linu* users to run &icroso"t .""ice 23, 'ut it is not possi'le
to use .utloo0 23 or Access 23( .utloo0 2000 and Access 2000 are supported under
Linu*(
A =e)innerIs +uide to Linu* 'y ;avid 3o)ue in the 5ew 9or0 Ti#es( ;ece#'er ,
2002
$indows is cheaper than Linu* =y .liver Fist o" K;5et( ;ece#'er <, 2002( The
article says the cost o" ownin) a server .! is #ostly due to the #an%hours spent on
#aintenance( @or 'asic "ile and print servin), $indows is plu)%and%play, #eanin)
less ti#e spent twea0in) con"i)urations( The author says that Linu* servers ta0e
lon)er to con"i)ure and trou'leshoot than $indows servers 'ut notes that once this
is done, Linu* reGuires si)ni"icantly less trou'leshootin) than $indows( 1owever, this
only applies to standard Linu* installations( Any #odi"ications thou)h, and you are
own your own( As to security, the author says that only so#eone s#art, and
there"ore e*pensive, can #ana)e Linu* security( -n contrast, $indows 2000
auto#atic security updates can 'e overseen 'y anyone( ."ten $indows security
patches cause so#ethin) else to drop dead, a hu)e waste o" ti#e, e""ort and
e*pense( The author has al#ost never seen this happen with Linu*(
Linu* continues des0top #arch( K;5et (,>)( January C, 200C( -t was predicted that
Linu* will surpass the &ac .! as the nu#'er two des0top operatin) syste#(
1owever, its )rowth is 'ein) held 'ac0 'y a lac0 o" well%esta'lished applications(
;espite the "act that there are Linu* pro)ra#s that co#pete reasona'ly well with
&icroso"t .""ice and .utloo0, the article Guotes so#eone as sayin) that co#panies
o"ten pre"er to )o with the #ost popular so"tware( The "u77y situation with technical
support when runnin) &icroso"t .""ice directly under Linu* (via ?rossover .""ice) is
also considered a hindrance( .n the other hand, #a/or Linu* vendors are /ust
startin) to pay attention to the des0top #ar0et( 13 will support des0tops with
&andra0e Linu* and the )overn#ents o" assorted countries are interested in open
source so"tware(
@riend or "oe8 April 10, 200C( The 6cono#ist #a)a7ine( The rise o" Linu* is dividin)
the co#puter industry into winners and losers( Linu* is chan)in) the dyna#ics o" the
co#puter 'usiness( !o#e o" the industryIs titans 'ene"it "ro# its advance, while
others lose(
$hy 9ou $onIt =e +ettin) A Linu* 3? 'y Lisa ;i?arlo, @or'es #a)a7ine( June
17,200C
The Li#itations ." Linu* 'y Lisa ;i?arlo, @or'es #a)a7ine( June 1D, 200C
The 5ove#'er 2, 200C issue o" 3? &a)a7ine has an article co#parin) Linu* and
$indows( &ichael &iller said B!e comp&exit% of Linux as kept peop&e awa%) but
tat's a&& canging. #an% current distributions &ook a &ot &ike WindowsB( The article is
-" 9ou ;onIt ;o $indows Linu* developers have polished their des0tops, and those at
Apple have created their richest .! to date, #a0in) 'oth .!s #ore appealin) than
ever to the #ainstrea# 3? owner(
?rossover .""ice 2(1 Funs &! $indows !o"tware on +5,%Linu* !yste#s An
-#ple#entation o" &! $indows A3-s "or Linu* providin) a Linu*%'ased, $indows%
so"tware co#pati'le environ#ent 'y &i0e An)elo 5ove#'er 10, 200C
Learn a'out Linu* "ro# the Linu* ;ocu#entation 3ro/ect( &uch o" it is "or techies,
'ut it includes -ntroduction to Linu* % A 1ands on +uide
,ni* "or $indows =y To# 9a)er in -n"o$orld January 2C, 200E( A'out runnin)
$indows applications on Linu* and vice versa(
Linu* and $indows &any articles a'out #a0in) the two .peratin) !yste#s wor0
to)ether(
Linu* Loyalists Leery @or'es &arch C1, 200E( A'out the sellin) o" Linu*( 1ow cheap
does it need to 'e to co#pete with $indows8
3lu))in) the Linu* holes April C0, 200E ?56T 5ews(co# The lac0 o" so#e "a#iliar
applications is slowin) Linu* adoption(
!till another way to run $indows pro)ra#s under Linu*8 -tIs called ;avid "ro# a
co#pany called !pec.ps( Too early to tell i" this is real or a hoa*( ;avid is not a
Jirtual &achine product, it is Bsyste# serviceB( -nstall ;avid, and then install your
$indows applications (or so they say)(
@indin) the #issin) lin0 in Linu*%$indows co#pati'ility April 2, 200E =y 6rwin
Le#uel +( .liva on -547(net
!pec.p! La's Analysis: -s it real8 on Linu*electrons(co#
Linu* vs $indows: Another +reat .! Leap @orward .n the $ay8 April 21, 200E on
Linu*$orld(co#
$hy $indows =eats Linu* 'y !cot @innie in 3? Today &ay 200E
?ross.ver .""ice 3ro"essional C(0(1 reviewed 'y Ji# Lynch at 6*tre#eTech(co# June
C0, 200E( -ncluded is a list o" the $indows applications that it can run under Linu*(
;es0top Linu* a vehicle "or piratin) $indows ?56T 5ews(co# !epte#'er 2<, 200E
?o#parin) $indows with Linu* and ,5-2 "ro# !teve =all#er, head honcho at
&icroso"t( ?onsider the source( .cto'er 27, 200E
Linu*/,ni* vs( $indows 1ostin) "ro# !ite&ount a we' site hostin) co#pany( Added
July 200(
-s Linu* @or Losers8 'y ;aniel Lyons in "or'es(co#( June 1D, 200( Linu* is not the
only "ree clone/copy/edition o" ,ni*, there are three open source versions o" =!;
,ni* (@ree=!;, 5et=!; and .pen=!;)( -n this article, the lead developer o"
.pen=!; 'ra)s a'out how #uch 'etter it is than Linu*(
$indows vs( Linu*/.!! today, part 2 'y Jan !ta""ord !earch6nterpriseLinu*(co# July
27, 200
$indows vs( Linu* .pinion 'y 3aul Jene7ia !epte#'er D, 200 -n"o$orld 'y way o"
?o#puter$orld
Linu* on a Thin03ad which #odels are certi"ied "or which Linu* distri'utions( Last
#odi"ied ;ece#'er 1, 200(
;es0top Linu* versus $indows 23 shootout 'y +eor)e .u ;ece#'er 20, 200( A
K;net 'lo)(
La?ie sells two +lo'e Trotter e*ternal hard dis0s with &andriva 200 pre%installed(
The drives are 'oota'le, so you can turn an% co#puter into %our co#puter( A E0 +=
#odel is A1E0 as o" late @e'ruary 200D(
$indows%"riendly des0top Linu* launches 'y 3eter Jud)e ?56T June 2C, 200D(
2andros E(0 can read and write 5T@! partitions usin) the included 5T@! "or Linu*
"ro# 3ara)on !o"tware( -t is also desi)ned to closely #i#ic the loo0 and "eel o"
$indows( Also included is ?ross.ver .""ice "ro# ?ode$eavers to let you run so#e
$indows applications under Linu*( -t can even i#port so#e settin)s and data "ro#
$indows usin) JersoraIs 3ro)ression ;es0top(