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Linux, beanbag - John C. Kirk

Mar. 24th, 2008

01:35 am - Linux, beanbag

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I've had a fairly productive weekend so far, tidying up my flat.

While I was shuffling books around between bookcases (so that similar ones are together), I came across my copy of the Red Hat Linux 9 Bible. I bought this back in October 2003, the idea being that I could set up my PC to dual-boot between Windows and Linux, and learn how to use it properly. However, I never got round to that, and wound up dual-booting between XP and Vista instead. Anyway, is that book still useful? Or would I be better off starting from scratch with a newer book if/when I get round to trying it out?

According to Wikipedia, Red Hat Linux has now been discontinued; this reminds me of what happened in Durham (in 1994), when I tried out the Yggdrasil distribution. Are there any current distributions which are likely to stay the course?

Meanwhile, I've been thinking about my beanbag sofa. It's very comfy, but it also takes up quite a lot of space, and I don't use it much; I hate to admit it, but I think I'd be better off without it. Would anyone else like it? It has a couple of small tears (about 1cm across) which I've covered with sellotape; it's still perfectly useable, but I don't think I'd get much for it on Ebay, so it's free to a good home. (Maybe the ICSF library?) You will need a car to collect it!

Comments:

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From:pozorvlak
Date:March 24th, 2008 10:33 am (UTC)
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Bits that are Red Hat-specific will be out of date. Bits that talk about graphical applications may well be out of date, but probably not seriously so. Stuff that deals with the packaging system will be applicable to any other RPM-based distro; there are now easier ways of doing that stuff, though (using yum), and why would you want to use an RPM distro anyway? :-)

Anything involving the underlying Unix system, or classic Unix apps like Emacs, vi, Perl, sed, troff etc will still be useful. *nix systems evolve in two ways: the outer layers of the system change in discoverable ways, and the internals change in largely invisible ways. The basic structure and core concepts change very slowly, and the constant turnover of the Windows world is alien to us. My Dad has a Unix book by Steve Bourne (of Bourne shell fame) from the seventies, almost all of which is still relevant to modern Linux distros.

As for distros, I (and many others) like Ubuntu, which is very easy to set up and administer, and seems to have momentum behind it. The choice of distro isn't all that important, though.
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From:johnckirk
Date:March 24th, 2008 01:30 pm (UTC)
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My Dad has a Unix book by Steve Bourne (of Bourne shell fame) from the seventies, almost all of which is still relevant to modern Linux distros.

"The Unix System V Environment"? I've got a copy of that here (from when I was an undergrad), so it's nice to know that's still useful.
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[User Picture]
From:pozorvlak
Date:March 24th, 2008 01:37 pm (UTC)
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I think it was just called "The Unix System". But yours will still have a lot of good stuff in, I'm sure.
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From:elvum
Date:March 24th, 2008 10:50 am (UTC)
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I believe that "Red Hat Linux" is now only available to corporations buying Red Hat's services. Red Hat still manage the Fedora distribution though, which is freely available and has its fans. I think it's maintained largely by the community now, or something. I'm with pozorvlak though - the Linux distribution that makes life easiest for users and administrators is probably Ubuntu (or its variant, Kubuntu) at the moment, and it looks as stable as anything can be in the world of IT.
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From:not_on_fire
Date:March 24th, 2008 08:27 pm (UTC)
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Isn't RHL now Fedora?

Also, I think ICSF would be very intersted in your sofa - perhaps you could mention it on the committee list? Many of the contemporary committee aren't on LJ.
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