I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won’t be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones. This has been brewing since april, and is starting to get ready. I'd like any feedback on things people like/dislike in minix, as my OS resembles it somewhat (same physical layout of the file-system (due to practical reasons) among other things).
I've currently ported bash(1.08) and gcc(1.40), and things seem to work. This implies that I'll get something practical within a few months, and I'd like to know what features most people would want. Any suggestions are welcome, but I won't promise I'll implement them :-)
PS. Yes - it's free of any minix code, and it has a multi-threaded fs. It is NOT protable (uses 386 task switching etc), and it probably never will support anything other than AT-hard disks, as that's all I have :-(.
Linux is a kernel, the brains or control center a collection of software packages, usually referred to as a Linux distribution. Popular distributions include Mandrake, Red Hat, SuSE, Debian, and others.
Is Linux really FREE?
TANSTAAFL (Robert A. Heinlein)
A free download will still cost you connection time on the Internet, disk space, time to burn the CDs, and so on.
Linux is distributed under the GNU General Public License
in essence, the GPL says that anyone may copy, distribute, and even sell the program, so long as changes to the source are reintroduced back to the community and the terms of the license remain unaltered. Free means that you are free to take Linux, modify it, and create your own version. Free means that you are not at the mercy of a single vendor who forces you into a kind of corporate servitude by making sure that it is extremely costly to convert to another environment. If you are unhappy with your Linux vendor or the support you are getting, you can move to the next vendor without forfeiting your investment in Linux.
In other words, "free as in speech", or simply "freedom".
Bugs are discovered and fixed all the time. Programs are in a constant state of fine tuning and improvement. For security reasons, or simply from a functionality standpoint, it makes sense to keep up to date and Linux provides many opportunities to do so.
Keep in mind that a high-speed connection is desirable if not essential. While updates can be easy, packages can be large and downloads over a modem connections may take a long time.
You'll find a lot of your old favorites as well as some new ones.
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