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broad overview and history of LINUX

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  1. 1. LINUX
  2. 2. The Early Days of Computing Back in the day when computers were really only used in Universities and large corporations, the software was free. The code was readily available and exchanged with others much like the science community works today in sharing information. This allowed for modifications based on your specific needs.
  3. 3. Bell Laboratories - UNIX is born In the late 1960’s UNIX was born in the Bell labs, part of AT&T. Ken Thompson and Dennis Richie were trying to simplify the existing operating system as well as create a system that could form a community, not just a system to execute tasks but one that would communicate with others within the community. This system was UNIX. AT&T initially released it as a demo and soon saw the possibilities and began distributing it for a cost. -the system excelled as a multi-user OS -also allowed for multi tasking OS
  4. 4. Birth of Open Source 10 years later licensing of UNIX began in 1979. CPU licensing started at about $7,000 per license. Richard Stallman - Created Free Software Foundation - idea is to publish open source code, not compiled binary. GNU - “GNU is not UNIX” GNU Project - Stallman wrote an open source OS (a platform that allows all of the programs to run). This was in response to the efforts of UNIX, Microsoft and others compiling source code to generate money. He hoped that with his OS he could create a community that would have enough programmers creating enough software that nobody would need to use proprietary software. Central Ideas: -every element of the OS is run by the community, to help the better of the OS. -the freedom to run the pro- gram however you wish -study the source code and change it to do what you wish -freedom to distribute modified versions
  5. 5. The Kernel By the 1990’s Stallman’s OS was still missing one key component, the kernal. WHAT IS THE KERNEL? OS is made up of 3 parts: utilities - perform tasks that are all the other programs not provided directly as part of the OS kernel shell - command interpreter, command line or GUI. The communication between user and system kernel - manages the control of the machine and supervises the various user programs. central part of the operating system. when an application needs something it requires a set of hardware resources. the kernel is the middle-man btwn the applications and the resources. it is used to create file structure and manage the interface btwn hardware and the programs that use the hardware. - keyboard, mouse, etc.
  6. 6. Andrew and MINIX Andrew Tanenbaum - Teacher of computer science using UNIX as an educational tool but resorted to other measures once UNIX became a licensed product costing up to $7,000 per computer. Tannebaum tweaked UNIX and created a similar OS named MINIX. He licensed the software for a minimal fee but the source code was not completely open, a restrictive license was ap- plied in the form of floppy discs for sale through a publication of MINIX. Because of this the OS did not initially take off but many students were introduced to MINIX, one of these was Linus Torvalds.
  7. 7. Linus and LINUX In 1991 a Helsinki University student, Linus Torvalds wrote a MINIX version completely open source (free of AT&T and LINUX) code as a hobby that turned into his thesis project titled: Linux: A Portable Operating System. In 1992 the first version of LINUX is released through the U. of Manchester. That same year the GUI for LINUX was released. The OS could be run from the command line or through the more commonly used GUI.
  8. 8. LINUX Spreads More and more people started using LINUX and creating their own programs running LINUX: Debian- OS system using the LINUX kernel Slackware- OS system Suse- creators of OS system and distros RedHat- server based desktops Google- widely popular search engine using LINUX By 2000, IBM announced that they were going to invest $1 billion in LINUX development. Ubuntu- OS based on the Debian LINUX kernel Linspire- formally known as Lindows, based on Ubuntu- OS Knoppix- OS booted from CD or USB OLPC - “one laptop per child” goal to make affordable computers for kids in developing countries. runs on ‘Sugar’, OS software design.
  9. 9. why use LINUX? SECURITY: Viruses are less of a threat on Linux. The very way a Linux system is designed makes it very difficult for a virus to function as it does in Windows. COST: Most people would put this at the top of the list. The cost ad- vantage of Linux is huge. In a nutshell, you get the complete OS, thousands upon thousands of applications AND support for the grand total price of….$0 SUPPORT: You can easily get support when you do run into difficulties. In addition to the plethora of online forms, both independent and those provided by the distro supplier, there are also more and more 3rd party service providers that offer service contracts for Linux systems. There is also support offered by more and more traditional Technology names such as Dell, IBM, Novell, Sun and others. GUI: An excellent window system called X; the equivalent of Windows but more flexible. CUSTOMIZING: Thousands of applications, software, etc. to customize the look, feel and overall performance of your workstation. Thousands of people have made themes or written programs that you can use to customize based on your tastes and preferences.
  10. 10. Where LINUX fails COMPUTER ABILITY: To install and keep a LINUX system working at its best, the user(s) must be a proficient with computers and should ready to be hands on (aware of possible vulnerabilities). The responsible person should be used to Unix type commands. A working knowledge of Unix is useful because some work may be needed to be done in a non-graphical environment. NEED OF PROPRIETARY SOFTWARE: If there is a piece of software that you absolutely cannot work without, then keeping Windows is probably a good choice. How- ever, you can have both operating systems installed (often called “dual-booting”), which can be used to suit your needs. Lacks in many print and media editing programs. LACK OF STANDARDIZATION: The openness of the application has also created a lack of stan- dardizing. A few dozen ways to install drivers/programs is a major gripe of LINUX. PRODUCTIVITY: Because of the nature of a community “tinkering” some projects are not as productive as a team solely focused on creating. More commercially backed programs need to come about.