ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Facebook, Wine And Bits.

with 3 comments

I haven’t posted much on technology for ages, so I thought for those of you more interested in politics that I would briefly outline things.

Facebook has added “location-based services”, but if you want to turn them off here’s how to do it.

A new version of Wine is out, it allows you to run Windows applications under Linux and is first rate.

There is more than one way to execute Windows applications on Linux, using Virtual Box is another method and virtual images are exceedingly flexible, if you have the space.

Perplexed nontechnical readers may be wondering why they would want to run Linux? Basically it’s an alternative to Microsoft’s operating systems, Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7.

Linux does essentially the same, better and often quicker.

Linux will run on comparatively slow hardware and make it usable, it is free and comes with access to thousands of applications, also free. Microsoft operating systems tend to need lots of memory and modern hardware to run at acceptable speeds.

If there’s a job you do under Microsoft Windows then 98% of the time you can find a good as, if not better, Linux alternative, free.

I won’t deny that initially Linux can be a little bit hard to set up, sometimes, but once it is there you’ll find it rocksolid and you won’t need to reboot every couple of hours, as with Microsoft operating systems.

Linux is used extensively in business and a sizeable percentage of Internet service providers will host their pages under Linux, my bet is that WordPress runs on Linux so you are reading these pages courtesy of Linux, either directly or via Google, which extensively uses Linux.

I favour several versions of Linux, (there are lots!) PClinuxos, MEPIS, Antix Linux and Mint. They’ll do for starters.

Basically, you download a big image (called an ISO) burn it to a CD, reboot and install using that, following the defaults, but reading the screens very carefully. Have a spare CD ready.

The alternative is to use Unetbootin. Have a blank USB ready, it will overwrite it completely. Download and execute Unetbootin, it will prompt for which version of Linux you’d like, after which it will download the ISO and burn it to the USB stick. Again, once it has been successful, reboot and install if you wish.

Personally, I would start using a spare machine if you have one, an old one, just to get use to the installation procedure.

These copies of Linux will boot a Live version running from the CD/USB and then give you the option to install on the hard drive if you want. You will need to partition the disk (the hardest part), which makes space for Linux. Then do the install. Easy. Normally takes anywhere from 3 to 10 minutes!

Have a play around on that spare machine and you can’t do much damage.

Written by modernityblog

23/08/2010 at 14:32

3 Responses

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  1. Thanks Mod. Seriously, I tend to mock Linux users, but I went to the PC shop the other day and asked how much for the Windows 7, and it was 400 shekels the upgrade…
    Maybe someday I will help me with your instructions in this post. I have so much invested in configuring my present machine which I use for work that I won’t be installing anything here quite yet. But maybe someday.

    Fabian from Israel

    23/08/2010 at 15:33

  2. There’s another advantage: Linux is essentially (up to now) virus-free!

    zumb

    24/08/2010 at 12:54

  3. Yes, good point, Linux doesn’t have viruses.

    Fabian,

    Thanks for that I will endeavour to explain how it all hangs together in another post. Can you get your hands on a spare machine?

    modernityblog

    24/08/2010 at 14:12


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