Help, Suggestions, Comments
Please feel free to make use of the Forums, we aim to answer all questions providing help and support where possible. If you’d like to contribute here, please contact Mark on the Forums.
New to Linux?
Check out the tabs across the top of this page, start with the Introduction and follow the white rabbit!
Thanks to the latest version of W$, the Linux Desktop is finally about to make it’s name as a mainstream home user OS as “I have to run W$ to play games..” goes out the Window(s).
The word Linux is generally used to describe an Open Source computer Operating System based on the Linux Kernel that typically forms the basis for free alternatives to Microsoft Windows or offerings from Apple computers. Linux runs on a variety of hardware platforms from mobile phones right up to IBM mainframes, click below for more.
In a World without Walls and Fences, who needs Gates and Windows?– Echoes from Cyberspace
Who uses Linux?
Most if not all large organisations and government bodies around the world use Linux to varying degrees including IBM, Google, Oracle, Amazon, US DOD, US Navy, City of Munich, Spain, The French Parliment, and the Commercial bank of China.
Linux typically comes bundled with lots of other free software components and packaged in such a way as to be relatively easy to install on your computer. Typically, you have the choice of running Linux from one of the following media, but bear in mind you will only get full performance from a Hard Drive installation.
Choosing a distribution
As you would expect there are pro’s and con’s to all distributions, of which there are many. For users who are new to Linux we would currently recommend one of the following options;
Help! It’s all gone wrong!
If you have a problem, the best place to go for free support are the support forums attached to this site where enthusiasts will try to help you on a free of charge basis. If on the other hand you need a faster fix and are prepared to pay, there are a number of companies in the UK who can provide you with commercial technical support.
You may occasionally come across this response when asking questions online, it’s an acronym for Read the Fine Manual. Not only are there many online document to which you can refer, there are many very good books available which you may find useful.
Unlike commercial or branded Operating Systems, Linux offers you a choice of how you would like your User Interface to Look and Feel, beyond just choosing a theme. Currently there are four main options;
One thing to be aware of is that although Linux will not run Windows programs, there often better Linux alternatives and there are ways to run Windows programs indirectly. You can either use a package called WINE to run some programs within your Linux environment, or you can use a virtualisation product to run Windows itself on top of Linux.
A typical Linux Server distribution will come with sufficient software to replicate the functionality of your current Windows servers and will include free application software that would typically cost many thousands had you purchased the Windows equivalent.
Can it do the job? Yes, and probably better than what you’re using at the moment, indeed it’s been preferred by many corporates like IBM, Oracle and Novell for quite some time.
Ever feel like they are out to get you?
It’s a nice feeling knowing nobody is going to try to sue you for using unlicensed software – because your software is all Free! Must be very tough and quite scary running Windows on your computers, all those programs, all that fine print …
Getting commercial Products and Services
Anyone can download Linux, burn it to a CD or USB key and install either a desktop or server version onto their own or their company’s computers. This is relatively straightforward proposition, especially if you know what you’re doing and on a small scale where mistakes are sustainable. For larger operations, there are many considerations and implications that may not be immediately apparent and you may wish to consider obtaining some external help before committing to what is likely to be a fairly major transition.
Note that we accept no liability for any vendors listed here, but merely suggest this as a starting point in your search for Linux expertise. If you would like to appear on this page, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0845 5082719 and ask for ‘support’.
To make an informed decision on which computer Operating System you should choose for yourself or your company, there are a number of factors to be considered beyond simply looking at the initial price. Large IT companies often make a lot of noise about the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of a system as it’s a good way to obscure the typically high price of their software. Unfortunately studies suggest that the TCO of a typical Linux based IT solution is almost half that of a Windows based solution. So moving on to the features of Linux …
Basic Feature List
- Runs on PC’s, Laptops, Netbooks
- Very quick and extremely reliable
- Huge base of available software
- Established technology – 20 years old!
- Supported by OSI, FSF, GNU
- Many free distributions to choose from
- Free and commercial support available
Advanced Feature List
- Networking, IPV4 and IPV6
- Windows network file share / printing
- Windows document compatibility
- Outlook / Exchange compatibility
- Firefox, Chrome and Opera browsers
- Support for .NET, Flash , Java
- Fantastic Multimedia support
Features for Gurus
- FAT, NTFS, HFS+, ZFS, NFS, SMB
- Virtualization with KVM, XEN, VMWare
- Cluster filesystems OCFS2, GFS
- Compilers available for most languages
- Support for majority of PC hardware
- Range of failover and HA facilities
- Support for 32bit and 64bit CPUs
Linux.co.uk Website Performance according to Pingdom
For those not familiar with Pingdom, these stats indicate the performance of this site relative to the Pingdom monitoring servers. So although this gives a good guide to performance, it is subject to interruption of service over the Internet between various monitoring servers and the web server. (which hasn’t been ‘down’ at all over the last 3 months …)
Please note that Linux UK is not a company or legal entity and this site is merely a support platform run by people (in the UK) who are interested in Linux, for people (in the UK) who are interested in Linux. If you would like to get involved submitting and maintaining content on this site, then please contact the admins via the Forums or email us at email@example.com .