Why do we like Linux?
Cross-platform: communicates with PCs and Macintoshes.
Low-cost: Because it is distributed with the GPL license,
the cost is very low, or non-existent.
Customizable: The source code is available so we
can make adjustments as needed.
Not demanding: A Linux server can run on a lower-end
computer than NT or Mac servers.
Free Support: The Linux community supports itself
through newsgroups and websites.
Low virus incidence: Non-existent?
Security: Excellent security options for individuals
and groups. Linux is a UNIX-like 32-bit operating system
that runs on a variety of platforms, including Intel, SPARC,
PowerPC, and DEC Alpha processors, as well as multiprocessing
systems. The operating system is essentially free and you
can download it from the Web. You can buy fully supported
commercial versions from Red Hat, Caldera Systems, and other
Linux is a "user-developed"
product, meaning that many of its components and drivers
have been developed by users around the world who ran the
operating system for their own use. The original operating
system was developed by Linus Torvalds as a college project.
It is now well supported and gaining ground as a respectable
operating system despite its homegrown roots. The operating
system is used by many Web site developers and is now available
as an embedded system, either as a small software kernel
or burned into a chip.
Anyone planning to use Linux
for production use should first make sure that the applications
they need to use run on the operating system, and that appropriate
drivers are available to support hardware and software.
On the Web, Linux is one
of the most well-documented and talked-about products around.
You can visit many different sites for more information
about the latest releases of Linux and programs written
for Linux. Linux International (LI) is a nonprofit association
that promotes the growth of Linux. The LI Web site has historical
information, Linux resources, links, mailing lists, documentation,
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions), and other information.
Distributors such as Red
Hat, Caldera, Walnut Creek, and WorkGroup Solutions bundle
the basic Linux kernel with additional utilities and product
support. Some of the versions are quite sophisticated and
include cross-platform utilities that interoperate with
other operating systems.
Linux is a completely free reimplementation of the POSIX
specification, with SYSV and BSD extensions (which means
it looks like Unix, but does not come from the same source
code base), which is available in both source code and binary
Linux, per se, is only the
kernel of the operating system, the part that controls hardware,
manages files, separates processes, and so forth. There
are several combinations of Linux with sets of utilities
and applications to form a complete operating system. Each
of these combinations is called a distribution of Linux.
The word Linux, though it in its strictest form refers specifically
to the kernel, is also widely and correctly to refer to
an entire operating system built around the Linux kernel.