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Thread: How is Linux different from Windows or OSX?

  1. #1
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    How is Linux different from Windows or OSX?

    Just out of curiosity, how is Linux different from Windows and OSX. Like in compatability, usability, etc.

    Thanks for any answers.

    From a Windows liker and an OSX love/hater.
    mIkE

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  2. #2
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    how is Linux different from Windows

    How is Toyota different from Ford? No, I'm serious...Both are cars, run on the same gas and have 4 tires, but the resemblance ends there. Then again, depending on which desktop you use the Linux desktop itself can be much different or very similar, plus you can easily log out of one and into another if you want a change of pace.

    Like in compatability

    Hardware or between each other? Back to the Ford/Toyota analogy, abot the only thing interchangeable between the two is the tires and possibly the battery, depends on which models you're dealing with.

    So...software inter-compatibility-none. A Wine emulator is available that is intended to let Linux run Windows software, I've never tried it and last I heard it was still unreliable at best.

    Hardware compatibility- Good. I have a couple of older devices Linux won't recognize, Intel web cam and 3 or 4 scanners, scanner companies have been really stingy about providing open source developers with technical data so Linux drivers can be written for their hardware. Other than a couple of items here and there, I've found hardware compatibility to be good. Even my Lexar USB drive works with Mandrake 9.2 and 10.

    Usability-

    Getting better all the time. Mandrake 8.1 was my first attempt at Linux, it worked well but gave me trouble trying to network it, 9.2 and 10 seem to be more user friendly, I haven't tried to network either.

    Best thing to do is go grab a copy of Knoppix and check it out without fear of risking your OS, Feather Linux is a lot smaller and an easy overnight download if you're on slow dial up, same for Damn Small Linux. I've used both, they work great but have limited applications to keep the total size down. Both will fit on a business card CD. All 3, Knoppix, DSL and Feather have a tutorial file that opens on start up, you just put in the CD (while running Windows if you wish) and reboot, make sure BIOS is set to boot to CD first, and you'll boot right into Linux. Shut down, reboot and you're back in Windows, the hard drive is never touched. If you like it, then consider a full distribution. If you don't, you haven't changed a thing, Windows should still be installed and running with no changes made at all.
    Why do I drive way out here to see the wildlife when all the animals live in town?

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  3. #3
    If you decide you like Knoppix, you might try installing Mandrake. I've used it for almost a year now, it's very user-friendly. The only hardware that I have much trouble with are wireless NICs, which can be very difficult to get working properly.
    Wine works quite well for many applications, however, 3d type games require software called Cedega, which is unfortunately not free.
    That is one of the advantages of Linux, that nearly all software is free, as the OS itself is.

  4. #4
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    I've used Linux before but I want to check out this Knoppix Linux on a CD. Might there be a problem with the size of the .iso file being 699MB and a generic CDRW disk limit of around 650MB? I don't have a DVDR. I've only burned a .iso once before (UBCD) and never even looked at the original size. I suppose I could just try it and either it works or it doesn't.
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  5. #5
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    pop pop - there should be/have no problem burning 699mb .iso to a cd-r, i burnt 3 knoppix live cds and had no problems, its a good way to play and learn Linux.
    Sometimes your the pigeon, sometimes your the stache.

  6. #6
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    Thannks.

    I guess I should read the CD label--74 min 650MB/80 min 700MB
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  7. #7
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    Hehe...I'm glad you noticed that, most CD R media these days will handle 700MB, and Knoppix fits on them nicely. I've burned several copies in the past few weeks for myself and friends to tinker with. Don't know how Windows handles it, but I downloaded and burned it on a Mandrake machine, the file manager has a right click option that opens KBIII and burns a bootable CD with no problems every time. I've had no trouble with Knoppix except for a game (Galaga) crashing, but it shuts down and restarts every time with no apparent detrimental effect on the system. I've had trouble getting it to run on laptops, but on standard PCs it does fine, and I've run the latest Knoppix on a 466 w/128MB RAM so it doesn't require the latest and fastest hardware.
    Why do I drive way out here to see the wildlife when all the animals live in town?

    Note: Please post your questions on the forums, not in my email. Otherwise I may sic my armed bear on you!

    My Photography

  8. #8
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    Which one of the Knoppix files would one need to download? I wanted to download it, but I was presented with about 50 different download possibilities. Thanks.

  9. #9
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    Looks like the latest version is KNOPPIX_V3.7-2004-12-08-EN.iso
    "Nuclear war can ruin your whole compile."
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  10. #10
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    That's the one and it's really rather good for a Live CD.

    I finally went with Mandrake for a full installation last week. Mandrake and I had some issues and came to blows a few times but were getting along nicely right now.
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  11. #11
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    Thanks Pave. I'm going to give that one a shot.

  12. #12
    This may be a dumb question but are there many Linux compatible games or are all games Linux compatible if they are Windows compatible?

  13. #13
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    UT2k, Return to Castle Wolfenstein, and Americas Army among others have Linux versions.
    It is also possible to install a number of Windows only games using WineX. I still keep a windows drive for occasional gaming.
    "Nuclear war can ruin your whole compile."
    -- Karl Lehenbauer

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