My life has changed quite alot since the day I switched to Ubuntu, a friendly Linux distribution with more than twenty million users around the world. I feel smarter, stronger and I am happier than ever before. At the beginning, it wasn’t easy, instead it was very hard.
The first thing that came into my mind after I did a fresh installation of Ubuntu Linux was: how am I going to use this thing that I have never seen before in my life and have absolutely no idea what it is.
To be honest with you guys when I first started using Linux I did not even know how to delete files and was very careful in every action or mouse click I made.
I was used to Recycle Bin on my old Windows machine and never heard about Trash before. I started digging information into websites and asking in forums how to delete files in Linux.
Many answers popped up!
Oww!!! It was amazing! It was my first day using Linux and I was surprised by the amount of Linux users that were trying to help me for free until I had a solution in my hands.
Linux Has a Great Community
So the first reason that you should take in consideration when thinking to switch to Linux or not, is the great and warm community that Linux has. Computer geeks, creators and builders from all over the world contribute their energy to build better open source software, Linux distributions for everyone and for any kind of machine you can can name in planet earth and what it most important these guys work to find new efficient cheap solutions.
I am very sure that if you start using Linux you will feel a freedom that it was missing before and you had no idea that such thing existed.
Linux is freedom!
Someone writes blogs and Linux tutorials to help, someone writes shell scripts so others can use to make their life easier and some stay online on IRC channels to answer your questions about Linux.
If you have a problem with your Linux machine, chances are that it will be solved very fast. We will help you, they will help you, everybody in the Linux community is contributing in his/her own way.
You Can Use Linux From GUI
The first thing most of the people think when they heard the word Linux is the terminal, a tool that only weird geeks and nerds that live in their basement with their computers can use.
Of course that the command line is a powerful tool and learning it is a skill that everyone admires, but it is completely not true and desinformative that you need to know commands in order to use a Linux distribution.
“Don’t try Linux!” “It is scary, only geeks use it!” “You have to learn a ton of crazy commands to work on that operating system.” “These people install software by typing commands in their machines, are they crazy?”
That’s what people would say to you. But, I do not blame them because they have been left in a dark, they have been used to it and they hate the light.
They have no idea about Linux, so how can we expect from the to like it if they have never or seen tried it? We as Linux people, contributors and builders should help them understand Linux and teach them Linux.
I am thinking to teach Linux to my little sister. It is also a very good idea to teach Linux to kids, because they are the future of this world. To me, a world with more Linux people means a better world.
To use a Linux distribution, you don’t need to know anything about commands and terminals. If you do it is ok, it does not hurt anyone, instead it helps you alot.
You can use Linux like you use any operating system that has a graphical user interface. You have a mouse, you can do single clicks and double clicks. Like in Windows guys!
Am I clear enough, or should I continue to explain and give you more arguments that you don’t have to be some type of computer nerd or crazy to use Linux?
Linux Is Open Source And Free
What does the fact that Linux is open source mean? It means that its code is distributed so everyone can see, use, modify for his/her own use and projects and share with others.
I feel safe to use Linux because people cannot hide a backdoors on it to spy my data and invade my privacy. Everything is open, everyone can see it.
If someone tries to put a backdoor in Linux, people will learn about it, but can you say the same for Mac OS X or Windows operating system?
I am not trying to say that they have backdoord, I am just saying that their code is closed. Maybe it is ok for you because it seems very technical to know such thing, but believe me it is not.
It is not about Linux or windows, it is about your freedom. Read more about Linux, get a fresh Linux distro on the internet and take your freedom back again.
Note: I have nothing against Windows or Mac OS X because I am a computer geek and an explorer so I like to use them. But when it comes to freedom I choose Linux.
Do you know what the best part is? You don’t have to pay a dollar to use a Linux distribution. Every Linux distribution I have tried is free and believe me there so many that you would need year to use them all.
There Is A Linux Distribution For Everyone
There are many specific Linux distributions available for download that can help in many areas such education, economy, servers and computer security.
1. Trisquel GNU/Linux
Trisquel GNU/Linux is a 100% libre Ubuntu-based Linux distribution. Its main purpose is to provide an operating system for varied audiences, including home and office users, educational institutions, multimedia workstations, etc.
Edubuntu is a partner project of Ubuntu, a distribution suitable for classroom use. The aim is that an educator with limited technical knowledge and skill will be able to set up a computer lab, or establish an on-line learning environment, in an hour or less, and then administer that environment without having to become a fully-fledged Linux geek.
UberStudent is an Ubuntu-based distribution on a DVD designed for learning and teaching academic computing in the higher education and advanced secondary levels. UberStudent comes with software for everyday computing tasks, plus a core set of programs and features designed to teach and make easier the tasks and habits common to high-performing students of all academic disciplines.
SteamOS is a Debian-based Linux distribution designed to run Valve’s Steam and Steam games. It also provides a desktop mode (GNOME) which can run regular Linux applications. In addition to a stable Debian base, SteamOS features various third-party drivers and updated graphics stack, a newer Linux kernel with long-term support, and a custom graphics compositor designed to provide a seamless transition between Steam, its games and the SteamOS system overlay. The base operating system is open-source software, but the Steam client is proprietary.
LinuxConsole is an independently developed Linux live CD with different editions designed for desktops, servers, gaming consoles, and old computers. Its primary characteristics are easy installation, extensive choice of software in the form of modules, and excellent hardware detection.
Security And Penetration Testing
If you are interested in learning computer security and penetration testing, then you should check the following Linux distributions.
1. Kali Linux
Kali Linux (formerly known as BackTrack) is a Debian-based distribution with a collection of security and forensics tools. It features timely security updates, support for the ARM architecture, a choice of four popular desktop environments, and seamless upgrades to newer versions.
2. BackBox Linux
BackBox Linux is an Ubuntu-based distribution developed to perform penetration tests and security assessments. It is designed to be fast and easy to use. It provides a minimal yet complete desktop environment, thanks to its own software repositories, which are always updated to the latest stable versions of the most often used and best-known ethical hacking tools.
CAINE (Computer Aided INvestigative Environment) is an Ubuntu-based GNU/Linux live distribution created as a project of digital forensics. It offers a complete forensic environment that is organized to integrate existing software tools as software modules and to provide a friendly graphical interface. The main design objectives that CAINE aims to guarantee are: an interoperable environment that supports the digital investigator during the four phases of the digital investigation, a user-friendly graphical interface, and a semi-automated compilation of the final report.
Matriux is a Debian-based security distribution designed for penetration testing and forensic investigations. Although it is primarily designed for security enthusiasts and professionals, it can also be used by any Linux user as a desktop system for day-to-day computing. Besides standard Debian software, Matriux also ships with an optimized GNOME desktop interface, over 300 open-source tools for penetration testing, and a custom-built Linux kernel.
5. Swift Linux
Swift Linux is a lightweight, Debian and Linux Mint-based distribution featuring the IceWM window manager. Compared to its parent, Swift Linux includes extra applications, such as BleachBit (a tool for freeing up space and clearing private information), the LibreOffice office suite, and a wide variety of forensic analysis and data recovery utilities.
6. NetSecL OS
NetSecL is a security-focused distribution and live DVD based on openSUSE (starting from version 3.0, previous versions were based on Slackware Linux). To improve the security aspect of the distribution, servers have been removed, incoming ports closed and services turned off. Additionally, several penetration tools have been included.
7. DEFT Linux
DEFT (Digital Evidence & Forensic Toolkit) is a customized distribution of the Ubuntu live Linux CD. It is an easy-to-use system that includes excellent hardware detection and some of the best open-source applications dedicated to incident response and computer forensics.
ForLEx is a lightweight Debian-based Linux live CD which boots into an LXDE desktop. The distribution’s primary goal is to provide several useful utilities for forensic analysis.
Do you have an old machine abandoned in the dust because you can not find the appropriate operating system to power it up and there is no software for it at all?
There are many small and light Linux distributions that can be used to give life to old computers. Tiny Core Linux is one of them. It is only 12 MB, runs entirely in memory and boots very quickly.
The followings are some Linux distributions that you can use in your old computers.
1. Puppy Linux
Puppy Linux is yet another Linux distribution. What’s different here is that Puppy is extraordinarily small, yet quite full-featured. Puppy boots into a ramdisk and, unlike live CD distributions that have to keep pulling stuff off the CD, it loads into RAM. This means that all applications start in the blink of an eye and respond to user input instantly. Puppy Linux has the ability to boot off a flash card or any USB memory device, CDROM, Zip disk or LS/120/240 Superdisk, floppy disks, internal hard drive. It can even use a multisession formatted CD-RW/DVD-RW to save everything back to the CD/DVD with no hard drive required at all.
2. CrunchBang Linux
CrunchBang Linux is a Debian-based distribution featuring the lightweight Openbox window manager and GTK+ applications. The distribution has been built from a minimal Debian system and customized to offer a good balance of speed and functionality. CrunchBang Linux is currently available as a live CD; however, the best performance is achieved by installing it to a hard disk.
Lubuntu is a fast, lightweight and energy-saving variant of Ubuntu using the LXDE (Lightweight X11 Desktop Environment) desktop. It is intended to have low-resource system requirements and is designed primarily for netbooks, mobile devices and older PCs.
Software And Updates Are Free
Most of the software used in Linux distributions is free. There are many developers, fans and geeks that contribute their knowledge and skills through their code in open source and free tools for all Linux people.
It is the user that decides what kind of software should come installed by default with the Linux distribution and not the creator and the maintainers of it.
Linux people, discuss ideas about software and many other things in IRC channels, blogs, mail lists, forums, meetings and big conferences.
Being a student it is very hard to pay for software. And when it comes to updates it really hurts. They are very important for your system security, software performance and make the system cooler with new features.
Thanks to Linux I don’t have to pay for software and updates. And believe me it is freedom!
There are many other reasons why one should put Linux on his/her machine, but I think I gave enough reasons and nice arguments to people that have not heard about Linux before or have not tried it.