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What is Linux

It is no secret that on the majority of computers and laptops the Windows operating system is installed. Many know Mac OS system from the Apple company. And very few people are familiar with free and free Linux system (Linux is said). And if it is familiar, only for a moment heard and, as they say, did not hold in hand.

InfoAdvisor.net decided to correct this oversight. We present to your attention a cycle of articles which will be entirely devoted to Linux!

If it is correctly to speak, Linux — it not an operating system. It only kernel of system. Here simple analogy. The kernel of system — is the building base. And the graphic environment (a desktop, labels, dialog boxes) and programs — is walls, a roof and all the rest. Without the base it will not turn out to construct walls, without kernel there will be no system also.

And here on this kernel many operating systems are created. Some hundreds, about 600 by different calculations! Each of these systems separately is called as a distribution kit. Well or simply Linux. The most known of them — it is to Ubuntu (ubunta), Mint (mint), Debian (debian), Gentoo (Ghent or Ghent), Fedora (Fedor) and other.

That is interesting, many distribution kits were created on the basis of other distribution kits. Here Ubuntu is based on Debian, and Mint — on Ubuntu. So, Ubuntu Debianovna can speak, for example. But it already such "professional" jokes.

All Linuxes externally differ from the same Windows or Mac OS a little. Here too there is a window interface, labels, icons, badges. It is possible to work quietly in office programs, to watch the sites on the Internet, to communicate on Skype, to play games and so on. The main distinctions inside, in a code of system. But the ordinary user will hardly get into initial files.

Distribution kits according to the destination differ. Is ground under the maximum convenience of the user: same Ubuntu, Mint, Elementary OS, Fedora. Some have the most flexible settings: Gentoo, Slackware (it is possible simply a slaka), Arch (Arch). Even installation completely depends on the user: he chooses necessary only to it components. Therefore the system will quicker work at the concrete computer. There are distribution kits focused on safety and many others.

By the way, Android too is based on Linux kernel! Let in the market of desktop computers of Linux-system occupy only couple of percent, but the majority of smartphones and tablets works at Android!

At once it is worth mentioning about important difference of Linux from Windows. In Linux the user has opportunity to completely change the interface of system. It is not simple to change badges and the subject, and to replace the interface completely! It is possible to replace a so-called user environment. Somewhat there is a lot of them: Gnome, xfce, KDE, LXDE, Unity, Cinnamon, MATE and many others. However, we will talk about them later.

For now it would be desirable to tell about history of creation of a kernel of Linux a little. Many years ago, in 1987, professor Andrew Tanenbaum wrote the book "Operating systems: development and realization". By way of illustration to the textbook he wrote the Minix operating system (miniks).

Among read this book there was the Finnish student Linus Torvalds. Some time he used Miniks, but found in it a set of shortcomings. In particular, Miniks was single-task (could start only one program). Gradually Linus improved everything and improved Minix on the computer. Later, in 1991, Torvalds finished work on own kernel which received the name Linux.

Of course, the naked kernel in itself means nothing. It demands "the user environment" - the interface, programs and other. And here the most interesting is covered. In the same time Richard Stallman worked on free system under the name GNU. It had this environment, but... there was no kernel! Linus, using possibilities of the license GNU GPL (in fact, it is the license for free use and modification of the program) "attached" an environment to the kernel. The GNU/Linux system was born. Linus chose as its symbol a penguin, "full and happy".

    And in general I recommend Linus Torvalds's book of "Just For Fun" for reading. In it the history of creation of Linux is in detail described. And there is some autobiography and philosophy. About penguins too there are some pages.

Merits and demerits Linux systems

Today Linux is used in the most different spheres. Defensive systems use Linux. The most powerful supercomputers in the world work at Linux. The largest servers which "accept" hundreds of thousands visitors on the sites, work at Linux. Because it is the most reliable and safe system.

Viruses for Linux-systems can be counted on fingers of one hand. And that goes an old joke that "half-night needs to be taken to force to work the only virus under Linux". In each joke there is a grain of truth, as they say.

And, perhaps, the most important line of Linux — it is absolutely free, as well as the majority of programs for it! Yes! You do not owe developers kopeks! The vast majority of distribution kits extends free of charge. There is some paid, for example, RHEL. But it is got usually by owners of business firms.

"And on what there live developers?", - you ask. They receive money due to paid technical support, for example, of sale of souvenirs, paid services: cloudy services, shops of music and other.

One more advantage — any piracy follows from all this. Forget about keygena, kryaka and other bad things. It is possible not to be picked file hosting services and to extort from there viruses and trojans. In Linux everything is much simpler: opened "The center of appendices", wrote the name it is necessary programs, pressed "to Establish". Well, or opened the official site of the developer. In total!

There is one question which very much disturbs Windows-users: "And how on business Linux with office programs?". It is not necessary to worry, Microsoft Office can completely replace with free office LibreOffice package (earlier it was called as Open Office). It works with the text (Writer editor), with presentations (Impress), spreadsheets (Calc). Problems with compatibility of different formats of files are not present.

Unfortunately, the majority of programs for Windows do not work in Linux: Photoshop, AfterEffects, 3DS Max and other. But there are also free analogs — Gimp for the Photoshop, Blender for 3DS Max. Of course, the functionality of the same Gimp will not be compared to functionality of the Photoshop. But, on the other hand, what part of opportunities of a child of Adobe is used by the ordinary user? To correct color balance, contrast, it is possible to otkadrirovat the image and to use pair of simple filters and in Gimp'e.

At once we will note that it is possible to start programs from Windows in Linux by means of one appendix. Mirsovetov will tell about it in one of the following articles, do not pass.

There is also one more shortcoming. On Linux very much there are no "powerful" games of an AAA class (very best high-class). Well, the same Valve takes some steps. Ported all Half-Life, Portal, Left 4 Dead in Steam for Linux. Even the video game console is done on Debiana. But we will be frank: so far only the small part of games is available. Bye. And further we will look.

There is one more interesting moment in work with Linux. In Windows problems are solved the next way: "The mistake got out; remembered the instruction of the friend/self-instruction manual, pressed such buttons and forgot". In Linux all in a different way: "The mistake got out; I know how it everything works, corrected so and so, established a missing component / changed settings, forgot forever". Linux can be adjusted once and forever. Literally for one - to arrange two-three days under itself, and then the system works years.

Now there is a wish to tell a couple of words about Ubuntu distribution kit. Few years ago it was the most popular "дистр", about 20 million people used it every day. Now leadership was taken by Mint, but will look that will be further.

The Ubuntu developer is the Canonical company (from the word "canon" - an example, a standard) led by the South African businessman (and still he is the space tourist!) Mark Shattlvort. To Ubunt it is translated with South African as "humanity". In the Republic of South Africa it is the whole ideology on which their state is under construction. As at them it is told, "The person about an ubunta is open for other people".

Why to Ubunt it is so popular among users? This system is initially aimed at convenience of the user. Here to you and some options of a distribution kit (Kubuntu with a cover of KDE, Lubuntu — with LXDE, Xubuntu for weak computers — with xfce, Edubuntu — a distribution kit especially for schools). In usual Ubuntu, by the way, the graphic Unity environment (Unity) is used.

    After installation the user receives system, ready to work. At once the necessary set of programs is established: media player, browser, office package, e-mail client and so on.

At Ubuntu huge base of users, and from here and set of the managements, large number of forums. By the way, at Ubuntu very amicable community. All are ready to help each other, to tell about any details, to solve some problems, to share the experience. Also it is necessary for beginners of that!

It looks approximately so. Well, not Ubuntu, but Unity interface. Its key feature — tightly the start panel "beaten" to edge (to Launcher — a launcher). The Start-up buttons are not present here, in this Unity is similar to Windows 8. But there is Dash (desh or you will give), in which it is possible to carry out search in the installed programs and files, and also to look for something in Google, Wikipedias and so on.

One more feature of Unity — the global menu. Usually the menu of appendices is under line of heading (all these "File", "Editing"...). Here all differently. This menu goes to the top panel and appears if only guide the mouse cursor at this panel. At the beginning it is unusual but when you get used, it becomes very convenient.

Each Ubuntu version is designated as follows: 9.04, 12.04, 13.10. The first two figures — year of a release of the version, the last two — month. New versions appear each half a year: in April and October. Each two years (10, 12, 14) in April appears the LTS version. It has more than a term of support, reliability, a minimum of bugs and mistakes is higher.

Well and concluding remarks. I will tell on the experience, as the user of Ubuntu. To use Linux in general and Ubuntu in particular is very cheerful. Very much questions and exclamations of friends and acquaintances please: "Oh, and what at you stands up for Windows? What else Ubuntu? Cool looks. And tanks go here? And deliver also to me such!".

InfoAdvisor.net recommends to you to try to establish Ubuntu. Yes, by the way. Ubunt can load without installation on the hard drive! How? Read in the following article!

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