Open Source – Wed, 02 Mar 2016 16:33:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 What is Linux Ubuntu? Sat, 18 Feb 2012 18:14:32 +0000 Linux Ubuntu is a computer operating system interface. It has a graphical user interface that allows the user to run the computer easily. The Linux Ubuntu GUI is easy to use and understand. Ubuntu sounds rather exotic, almost African in origin. Some of the things a user might want to know are:

  • What is Linux Ubuntu and how much does it cost?
  • Will Linux Ubuntu work on my computer?
  • Are there many programs available for it?
  • Will Ubuntu work with my hardware, such as printers and scanners?

The Linux Ubuntu operating system is based on the Linux kernel or code. The name actually comes from a word in the African Swahili language meaning community. The name was chosen because Linux Ubuntu is an open source software program. This means that a community of programmers collaborates on the system instead of one company. The open source license allows the program to be offered free to anyone who wants to use it. Therefore, Ubuntu won’t cost anything to use, either for personal or business use.

Ubuntu will run on most Windows-based PCs. However, if you want to try it before making any changes, the OS is available as a download that can be burned as a bootable CD or DVD. You can boot to the disk and run the program from there, checking for compatibility. Additionally, you can install the operating system so that it will run in conjunction with Windows in a dual boot environment. Linux Ubuntu has been used on computers running Windows 98 through Windows 7.

There are well over 30,000 programs that run on Linux Ubuntu, including office productivity suites, graphics programs and music players and recorders. Most of the programs available are free. OpenOffice and LibreOffice are two of the office suites available. Google has a version of its Chrome browser designed for Ubuntu as well.

Linux Ubuntu supports most, if not all of the peripheral hardware that a computer uses. Most printers and scanners will merely need to be plugged in to the computer. In most cases the computer will not need to be rebooted to use the hardware. Some hardware manufacturers provide programs designed specifically for Ubuntu.

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Working with Linux Fri, 17 Feb 2012 15:10:20 +0000 Started by university student Linus Torvalds when he wanted to have a UNIX-like operating system he could run on his PC, Linux has grown into a major platform used for everything from home computers to:

What is Linux, exactly?

Linux is a software kernel, providing the basic support for communication between software and hardware. This kernel is open source, letting anyone look at and modify the source code provided that they share their work. When someone says they “run Linux,” they mean they use a complete OS called a “distribution” or “distro” that’s based on this kernel.

What can Linux do, and why do people use it?

Open source software lets people borrow from existing programming instead of reinventing the wheel, making it a good place to start when building a new software platform. In fact, you’ve probably used a Linux-based system many times without realizing it: Android uses the kernel, cash registers and ATM machines run stripped down “embedded” distributions, and LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP) servers make up a large part of the Internet: In fact, there’s a good chance the page you are reading right now was sent from a Linux server.

The openness of the code also allows bugs to be identified and fixed quickly, which has lead government agencies ranging from NASA to the U.S. Department of Defense to adopt this software.

For home users, it’s all about flexibility. There are hundreds of distros tailor made for almost every purpose, from being extremely easy for new computer users to making old hardware compatible with new software standards. Whatever your needs, there’s probably a distro out there that will do what you need.

Most distros will come with enough free software to make a computer usable as soon as the OS is installed. Other software can be added using a built-in package manager, which also allows users to update their entire system by running a single program. Open source hardware support also means most new hardware works without having to install additional software.

Are there disadvantages to using Linux?

Many former problems have been eliminated in recent years: Printer support is nearly universal, while niggling annoyances like sound server compatibility have mostly been solved. Compatible equivalents exist for most major commercial software, although gaming development is lacking, and there’s no way to directly purchase from iTunes.

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