Minix is an operating system designed for "resource limited" or embedded computer systems. Versions 1 and 2 were teaching operating systems upon which the famous book, Operating Systems Design and Implementation, by Andrew S Tanenbaum and Albert S Woodhull, is based and also was the inspiration for Linux. With this latest release, version 3, Minix aims to be a complete, stable, secure desktop operating system for everyday use. Does it live up to those claims?
The open source movement has it’s share of heroes. Individuals that can motivate groups of individuals and rally them behind a certain part of the development process. People like Gaël Duval, who created the Mandrake (now Mandriva) distribution, one of the most accessible and user-friendly distributions for W2L migrators. Enough has been said about him being fired from the company he helped to found. Today is today and Gaël Duval is putting himself behind a new project, a new distribution, a new way of using open source software.
You can't really call it the Holy Trinity of open source because there are four of them, but Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP, also known as LAMP, are what Free and Open Source software world revolves around. If you want to learn PHP quickly and efficiently, Ellie Quigley's book is the one to pick up.
Mandriva Flash is a 2GB Dane-Elec USB key loaded with Mandriva Linux 2007. It gets points for style: the key is an attractive deep blue surrounded by a sturdy metal fence that leaves room on both ends to attach the key to a lanyard or keychain. The release notes say that the operating system and related files only take up half the space on the USB drive, leaving 1GB for my own files. This little powerhouse packs a lot of punch, once you get it up and running.
After testing out openSUSE 10.2 @home and being exceptionally satisfied with the new release I decided to go for clean install on workstation @office, replacing the good old SUSE 10.1.
Zenwalk is a lightweight desktop oriented Slackware based GNU/Linux distribution that aims to be fast and user friendly. It is still quite new, but the growth, as well as the progress of development, has been pretty fast so far. I've taken a hike with the latest release, Zenwalk 4.0, and here's what I can say about it.
Suse 7.2 was my first Linux distribution ever, around five years ago. I was impressed but also had to struggle with all kinds of issues. That was part of the fun. I remember the sales pitch that working with Linux is like working on the engine of a car while it is running. You were supposed to fix things as you went along. Ever since, the distributions became more and more userfriendly.
So a Canadian friend of mine told me of a project up north (not too far north from Seattle where I live) called Vector. I started tracking the project back and noticed they had many of the attributes of Linux I like; XFce, Full working media, Claims of Fast performance and slimmed down instead of bloated packages.
There are several "business," "corporate," or "professional" desktop operating systems on the market today, all aimed at seeping into large corporations that already use GNU/Linux on servers. It's a pretty good plan, and most of the operating systems in this arena are pretty good -- not perfect, but pretty good. Xandros has had such a product for a while now, and it's always been near the top of the list in terms of features and quality. The market is now mature and the products are more competitive, though, and the product formerly known as Xandros Business Desktop, while still a good operating system, isn't keeping up with the industry's pace.
First impressions are important, and openSUSE 10.2 made a strong enough impression with me that I may be making openSUSE 10.2 my new desktop OS. I installed openSUSE 10.2 RC1 soon after its release in late November, and I've been kicking the tires on the final release since it was made public last Thursday. Here's my report.