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Linux INFO-SHEET (part 1/1)


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Archive-name: linux/INFO-SHEET
Last-modified: 28 Oct 97

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----

*** The `Linux INFO-SHEET' is posted automatically by the
*** Linux HOWTO coordinator, Greg Hankins <gregh@sunsite.unc.edu>.  Please
*** direct any comments or questions about this HOWTO to the author,
*** Michael K. Johnson <johnsonm@redhat.com>.

- --- BEGIN Linux INFO-SHEET part 1/1 ---

  Linux Information Sheet
  Michael K. Johnson <johnsonm@redhat.com>
  v4.13, 24 October 1997

  This document provides basic information about the Linux operating
  system, including an explanation of Linux, a list of features, some
  requirements, and some resources.

  1.  Introduction to Linux

  Linux is a completely free reimplementation of the POSIX
  specification, with SYSV and BSD extensions (which means it looks like
  Unix, but does not come from the same source code base), which is
  available in both source code and binary form.  Its copyright is owned
  by Linus Torvalds <torvalds@transmeta.com> and other contributors, and
  is freely redistributable under the terms of the GNU General Public
  License (GPL).  A copy of the GPL is included with the Linux source;
  you can also get a copy from  <ftp://prep.ai.mit.edu/pub/gnu/>

  Linux is not public domain, nor is it `shareware'.  It is `free'
  software, commonly called freeware, and you may give away or sell
  copies, but you must include the source code or make it available in
  the same way as any binaries you give or sell.  If you distribute any
  modifications, you are legally bound to distribute the source for
  those modifications.  See the GNU General Public License for details.

  Linux is still free as of version 2.0, and will continue to be free.
  Because of the nature of the GPL to which Linux is subject, it would
  be illegal for it to be made not free.  Note carefully: the `free'
  part involves access to the source code rather than money; it is
  perfectly legal to charge money for distributing Linux, so long as you
  also distribute the source code.  This is a generalization; if you
  want the fine points, read the GPL.

  Linux runs on 386/486/Pentium machines with ISA, EISA, PCI and VLB
  busses.  MCA (IBM's proprietary bus) is not well-supported in 2.0.x
  and earlier versions, but support has been added to the current
  development tree, 2.1.x.  If you are interested, see
  <http://glycerine.itsmm.uni.edu/mca>

  There is a port to multiple Motorola 680x0 platforms (currently
  running on some Amigas, Ataris, and VME machines), which now works
  quite well.  It requires a 68020 with an MMU, a 68030, 68040, or a
  68060, and also requires an FPU. Networking and X now work.  See
  <news:comp.os.linux.m68k>

  Linux runs well on DEC's Alpha CPU, currently supporting the "Jensen",
  "NoName", "Cabriolet", "Universal Desktop Box" (better known as the
  Multia), and many other platforms.  For more information, see
  <http://www.azstarnet.com/~axplinux/FAQ.html>

  Linux runs well on Sun SPARCs; most sun4c and sun4m machines now run
  Linux, with support for sun4 and sun4u in active development.  Red Hat
  Linux is (as of this writing) the only Linux distribution available
  for SPARCs; see <http://www.redhat.com/support/docs/rhl-sparc/>

  Linux is being actively ported to the PowerPC architecture, including
  PowerMac (Nubus and PCI), Motorola, IBM, and Be machines.  See
  <http://www.cs.nmt.edu/~linuxppc/> and <http://www.linuxppc.org/>

  Ports to other machines, including MIPS and ARM, are under way and
  showing various amounts of progress.  Don't hold your breath, but if
  you are interested and able to contribute, you may well find other
  developers who wish to work with you.

  Linux is no longer considered to be in beta testing, as version 1.0
  was released on March 14, 1994.  There are still bugs in the system,
  and new bugs will creep up and be fixed as time goes on.  Because
  Linux follows the ``open development model'', all new versions will be
  released to the public, whether or not they are considered
  ``production quality''.  However, in order to help people tell whether
  they are getting a stable version or not, the following scheme has
  been implemented:  Versions 1.x.y, where x is an even number, are
  stable versions, and only bug fixes will be applied as y is
  incremented.  So from version 1.2.2 to 1.2.3, there were only bug
  fixes, and no new features.  Versions 1.x.y, where x is an odd number,
  are beta-quality releases for developers only, and may be unstable and
  may crash, and are having new features added to them all the time.
  From time to time, as the currect development kernel stabilizes, it
  will be frozen as the new ``stable'' kernel, and development will
  continue on a new development version of the kernel.

  The current stable version is 2.0.31 (this will continue to change as
  new device drivers get added and bugs fixed), and development has also
  started on the experimental 2.1.x kernels.  If 2.0.x is too new for
  you, you may want to stick with 1.2.13 for the time being.  However,
  the latest releases of 2.0 have proved quite stable.  Do note that in
  order to upgrade from 1.2 to 2.0, you need to upgrade some utilities
  as well; you may wish to upgrade to the latest version of your Linux
  distribution in order to obtain those utilities.  The Linux kernel
  source code also contains a file, Documentation/Changes, which
  explains these changes and more.

  Most versions of Linux, beta or not, are quite stable, and you can
  keep using those if they do what you need and you don't want to be on
  the bleeding edge.  One site had a computer running version 0.97p1
  (dating from the summer of 1992) for over 136 days without an error or
  crash.  (It would have been longer if the backhoe operator hadn't
  mistaken a main power transformer for a dumpster...) Others have
  posted uptimes in excess of a year. One site still had a computer
  running Linux 0.99p15s over 600 days at last report.

  One thing to be aware of is that Linux is developed using an open and
  distributed model, instead of a closed and centralized model like much
  other software.  This means that the current development version is
  always public (with up to a week or two of delay) so that anybody can
  use it.  The result is that whenever a version with new functionality
  is released, it almost always contains bugs, but it also results in a
  very rapid development so that the bugs are found and corrected
  quickly, often in hours, as many people work to fix them.

  In contrast, the closed and centralized model means that there is only
  one person or team working on the project, and they only release
  software that they think is working well.  Often this leads to long
  intervals between releases, long waiting for bug fixes, and slower
  development.  The latest release of such software to the public is
  sometimes of higher quality, but the development speed is generally
  much slower.

  As of October 24, 1997, the current stable version of Linux is 2.0.31,
  and the latest development version is 2.1.59.

  2.  Linux Features

    multitasking: several programs running at once.

    multiuser: several users on the same machine at once (and no two-
     user licenses!).

    multiplatform: runs on many different CPUs, not just Intel.

    multiprocessor: SMP support is available on the Intel and SPARC
     platforms (with work currently in progress on other platforms), and
     Linux is used in several loosely-coupled MP applications, including
     Beowulf systems (see <http://cesdis.gsfc.nasa.gov/linux-
     web/beowulf/beowulf.html>) and the Fujitsu AP1000+ SPARC-based
     supercomputer.

    runs in protected mode on the 386.

    has memory protection between processes, so that one program can't
     bring the whole system down.

    demand loads executables: Linux only reads from disk those parts of
     a program that are actually used.

    shared copy-on-write pages among executables.  This means that
     multiple process can use the same memory to run in.  When one tries
     to write to that memory, that page (4KB piece of memory) is copied
     somewhere else.  Copy-on-write has two benefits: increasing speed
     and decreasing memory use.

    virtual memory using paging (not swapping whole processes) to disk:
     to a separate partition or a file in the filesystem, or both, with
     the possibility of adding more swapping areas during runtime (yes,
     they're still called swapping areas).  A total of 16 of these 128
     MB swapping areas can be used at once, for a theoretical total of 2
     GB of useable swap space.  It is simple to increase this if
     necessary, by changing a few lines of source code.

    a unified memory pool for user programs and disk cache, so that all
     free memory can be used for caching, and the cache can be reduced
     when running large programs.

    dynamically linked shared libraries (DLL's), and static libraries
     too, of course.

    does core dumps for post-mortem analysis, allowing the use of a
     debugger on a program not only while it is running but also after
     it has crashed.

    mostly compatible with POSIX, System V, and BSD at the source
     level.

    through an iBCS2-compliant emulation module, mostly compatible with
     SCO, SVR3, and SVR4 at the binary level.

    all source code is available, including the whole kernel and all
     drivers, the development tools and all user programs; also, all of
     it is freely distributable.  Plenty of commercial programs are
     being provided for Linux without source, but everything that has
     been free, including the entire base operating system, is still
     free.

    POSIX job control.

    pseudoterminals (pty's).

    387-emulation in the kernel so that programs don't need to do their
     own math emulation.  Every computer running Linux appears to have a
     math coprocessor.  Of course, if your computer already contains an
     FPU, it will be used instead of the emulation, and you can even
     compile your own kernel with math emulation removed, for a small
     memory gain.

    support for many national or customized keyboards, and it is fairly
     easy to add new ones dynamically.

    multiple virtual consoles: several independent login sessions
     through the console, you switch by pressing a hot-key combination
     (not dependent on video hardware).  These are dynamically
     allocated; you can use up to 64.

    Supports several common filesystems, including minix, Xenix, and
     all the common system V filesystems, and has an advanced filesystem
     of its own, which offers filesystems of up to 4 TB, and names up to
     255 characters long.

    transparent access to MS-DOS partitions (or OS/2 FAT partitions)
     via a special filesystem: you don't need any special commands to
     use the MS-DOS partition, it looks just like a normal Unix
     filesystem (except for funny restrictions on filenames,
     permissions, and so on).  MS-DOS 6 compressed partitions do not
     work at this time without a patch (dmsdosfs).  VFAT (WNT, Windows
     95) support is available in Linux 2.0

    special filesystem called UMSDOS which allows Linux to be installed
     on a DOS filesystem.

    read-only HPFS-2 support for OS/2 2.1

    HFS (Macintosh) file system support is available separately as a
     module.

    CD-ROM filesystem which reads all standard formats of CD-ROMs.

    TCP/IP networking, including ftp, telnet, NFS, etc.

    Appletalk server

    Netware client and server

    Lan Manager (SMB) client and server

    Many networking protocols: the base protocols available in the
     latest development kernels include TCP, IPv4, IPv6, AX.25, X.25,
     IPX, DDP (Appletalk), NetBEUI, Netrom, and others.  Stable network
     protocols included in the stable kernels currently include TCP,
     IPv4, IPX, DDP, and AX.25.

  3.  Hardware Issues

  3.1.  Minimal configuration

  The following is probably the smallest possible configuration that
  Linux will work on: 386SX/16, 1 MB RAM, 1.44 MB or 1.2 MB floppy, any
  supported video card (+ keyboards, monitors, and so on of course).
  This should allow you to boot and test whether it works at all on the
  machine, but you won't be able to do anything useful.  See
  <http://rsphy1.anu.edu.au/~gpg109/mem.html> for minimal Linux
  configurations

  In order to do something, you will want some hard disk space as well,
  5 to 10 MB should suffice for a very minimal setup (with only the most
  important commands and perhaps one or two small applications
  installed, like, say, a terminal program).  This is still very, very
  limited, and very uncomfortable, as it doesn't leave enough room to do
  just about anything, unless your applications are quite limited.  It's
  generally not recommended for anything but testing if things work, and
  of course to be able to brag about small resource requirements.

  3.2.  Usable configuration

  If you are going to run computationally intensive programs, such as
  gcc, X, and TeX, you will probably want a faster processor than a
  386SX/16, but even that should suffice if you are patient.

  In practice, you will want at least 4 MB of RAM if you don't use X,
  and 8 MB if you do.  Also, if you want to have several users at a
  time, or run several large programs (compilations for example) at a
  time, you may want more than 4 MB of memory.  It will still work with
  a smaller amount of memory (should work even with 2 MB), but it will
  use virtual memory (using the hard drive as slow memory) and that will
  be so slow as to be unusable.  If you use many programs at once, 16 MB
  will reduce swapping considerably.  If you don't want to swap
  appreciably under any normal load, 32 MB will probably suffice.  Of
  course, if you run memory-hungry applications, you may want more.

  The amount of hard disk you need depends on what software you want to
  install.  The normal basic set of Unix utilities, shells, and
  administrative programs should be comfortable in less than 10 MB, with
  a bit of room to spare for user files.  For a more complete system,
  get Red Hat, Debian, or another distribution, and assume that you will
  need 60 to 300 MB, depending on what you choose to install and what
  distribution you get.  Add whatever space you want to reserve for user
  files to these totals.  With today's prices on hard drives, if you are
  buying a new system, it makes no sense to buy a drive that is too
  small.  Get at least 500 MB, preferably 1GB or more, and you will not
  regret it.

  Add more memory, more hard disk, a faster processor and other stuff
  depending on your needs, wishes and budget to go beyond the merely
  usable.  In general, one big difference from DOS is that with Linux,
  adding memory makes a large difference, whereas with DOS, extra memory
  doesn't make that much difference.  This of course has something to do
  with DOS's 640KB limit, which is completely nonexistent under Linux.

  3.3.  Supported hardware

     CPU:
        Anything that runs 386 protected mode programs (all models of
        386's 486's, 586's, and 686's should work. 286s and below may
        someday be supported on a smaller kernel called ELKS (Embeddable
        Linux Kernel Subset), but don't expect the same capabilities).
        A version for the 680x0 CPU (for x = 2 with external MMU, 3, 4,
        and 6) which runs on Amigas and Ataris can be found at
        tsx-11.mit.edu in the 680x0 directory.  Many DEC Alphas, SPARCs,
        and PowerPC machines are supported.  Ports are also being done
        to the ARM, StrongARM, and MIPS architectures.  More details are
        available elsewhere.

     Architecture:
        ISA or EISA bus.  MCA (mostly true blue PS/2's) support is
        incomplete but improving (see above).  Local busses (VLB and
        PCI) work. Linux puts higher demands on hardware than DOS,
        Windows, and in fact most operating systems.  This means that
        some marginal hardware that doesn't fail when running less
        demanding operating system may fail when running Linux.  Linux
        is an excellent memory tester...

     RAM:
        Up to 1 GB on Intel; more on 64-bit platforms.  Some people
        (including Linus) have noted that adding ram without adding more
        cache at the same time has slowed down their machine extremely,
        so if you add memory and find your machine slower, try adding
        more cache.  Some machines can only cache certain amounts of
        memory regardless of how much RAM is installed (64 MB is the
        most one popular chipset can cache).  Over 64 MB of memory will
        require a boot-time parameter, as the BIOS cannot report more
        than 64MB, because it is ``broken as designed.''

     Data storage:
        Generic AT drives (EIDE, IDE, 16 bit HD controllers with MFM or
        RLL, or ESDI) are supported, as are SCSI hard disks and CD-ROMs,
        with a supported SCSI adaptor.  Generic XT controllers (8 bit
        controllers with MFM or RLL) are also supported.  Supported SCSI
        adaptors: Advansys, Adaptec 1542, 1522, 1740, 27xx, and 29xx
        (with some exceptions) series, Buslogic MultiMaster and
        Flashpoint, NCR53c8xx-based controllers, DPT controllers, Qlogic
        ISP and FAS controllers, Seagate ST-01 and ST-02, Future Domain
        TMC-88x series (or any board based on the TMC950 chip) and
        TMC1660/1680, Ultrastor 14F, 24F and 34F, Western Digital
        wd7000, and others.  SCSI, QIC-02, and some QIC-80 tapes are
        also supported. Several CD-ROM devices are also supported,
        including Matsushita/Panasonic, Mitsumi, Sony, Soundblaster,
        Toshiba, ATAPI (EIDE), SCSI, and others.  For exact models,
        check the hardware compatibility HOWTO.

     Video:
        VGA, EGA, CGA, or Hercules (and compatibles) work in text mode.
        For graphics and X, there is support for (at least) normal VGA,
        some super-VGA cards (most of the cards based on ET3000, ET4000,
        Paradise, and some Trident chipsets), S3, 8514/A, ATI
        MACH8/32/64, and hercules.  (Linux uses the Xfree86 X server, so
        that determines what cards are supported.  A full list of
        supported chipsets alone takes over a page.)

     Networking:
        Ethernet support includes 3COM 503/509/579/589/595/905
        (501/505/507 are supported but not recomended), AT&T GIS (ne
        NCR) WaveLAN, most WD8390-based cards, most WD80x3-based cards,
        NE1000/2000 and most clones, AC3200, Apricot 82596, AT1700, ATP,
        DE425/434/435/500, D-Link DE-600/620, DEPCA, DE100/101,
        DE200/201/202 Turbo, DE210, DE422, Cabletron E2100 (not
        recommended), Intel EtherExpress (not recommended), DEC
        EtherWORKS 3, HP LAN, HP PCLAN/plus, most AMD LANCE-based cards,
        NI5210, ni6510, SMC Ultra, DEC 21040 (tulip), Zenith Z-Note
        ethernet, All Zircom cards and all Cabletron cards other than
        the E2100 are unsupported, due to the manufacturers
        unwillingness to release programming information freely.

        FDDI support currently includes the DEFxx cards from DEC.

        Point-to-Point networking support include PPP, SLIP, CSLIP, and
        PLIP.

        Limited Token Ring support is available.

     Serial:
        Most 16450 and 16550 UART-based boards, including AST Fourport,
        the Usenet Serial Card II, and others.  Intelligent boards
        supported include Cyclades Cyclom series (supported by the
        manufacturer), Comtrol Rocketport series (supported by the
        manufacturer), Stallion (most boards; supported by the
        manufacturer), and Digi (some boards; supported by the
        manufacturer).  Some ISDN, frame relay, and leased line hardware
        is supported.

     Other hardware:
        SoundBlaster, ProAudio Spectrum 16, Gravis Ultrasound, most
        other sound cards, most (all?)  flavours of bus mice (Microsoft,
        Logitech, PS/2), etc.

  4.  An Incomplete List of Ported Programs and Other Software

  Most of the common Unix tools and programs have been ported to Linux,
  including almost all of the GNU stuff and many X clients from various
  sources.  Actually, ported is often too strong a word, since many
  programs compile out of the box without modifications, or only small
  modifications, because Linux tracks POSIX quite closely.
  Unfortunately, there are not as many end-user applications yet as we
  would like, but this is changing rapidly.  Contact the vendor of your
  favorite commercial Unix application and ask if they have ported it to
  Linux.

  Here is an incomplete list of software that is known to work under
  Linux:

     Basic Unix commands:
        ls, tr, sed, awk and so on (you name it, Linux probably has it).

     Development tools:
        gcc, gdb, make, bison, flex, perl, rcs, cvs, prof.

     Languages and Environments:
        C, C++, Objective C, Java, Modula-3, Modula-2, Oberon, Ada95,
        Pascal, Fortran, ML, scheme, Tcl/tk, Perl, Python, Common Lisp,
        and many others.

     Graphical environments:
        X11R5 (XFree86 2.x), X11R6 (XFree86 3.x), MGR.

     Editors:
        GNU Emacs, XEmacs, MicroEmacs, jove, ez, epoch, elvis (GNU vi),
        vim, vile, joe, pico, jed, and others.

     Shells:
        bash (POSIX sh-compatible), zsh (includes ksh compatiblity
        mode), pdksh, tcsh, csh, rc, es, ash (mostly sh-compatible shell
        used as /bin/sh by BSD), and many more.

     Telecommunication:
        Taylor (BNU-compatible) UUCP, SLIP, CSLIP, PPP, kermit, szrz,
        minicom, pcomm, xcomm, term (runs multiple shells, redirects
        network activity, and allows remote X, all over one modem line),
        Seyon (popular X-windows communications program), and several
        fax and voice-mail (using ZyXEL and other modems) packages are
        available.  Of course, remote serial logins are supported.

     News and mail:
        C-news, innd, trn, nn, tin, smail, elm, mh, pine, etc.

     Textprocessing:
        TeX, groff, doc, ez, LyX, Lout, Linuxdoc-SGML, and others.

     Games:
        Nethack, several Muds and X games, and lots of others.  One of
        those games is looking through all the games available at tsx-11
        and sunsite.

     Suites:
        AUIS, the Andrew User Interface System.  ez is part of this
        suite.

  All of these programs (and this isn't even a hundredth of what is
  available) are freely available.  Commercial software is becoming
  widely available; ask the vendor of your favorite commercial software
  if they support Linux.

  5.  Who uses Linux?

  Linux is freely available, and no one is required to register their
  copies with any central authority, so it is difficult to know how many
  people use Linux.  Several businesses now survive solely on selling
  and supporting Linux (and relatively few Linux users purchase products
  from those businesses), and the Linux newsgroups are some of the most
  heavily read on the internet, so the number is likely in the millions,
  but firm numbers are hard to come by.

  However, one brave soul, Harald T. Alvestrand
  <Harald.T.Alvestrand@uninett.no>, has decided to try.  If you are
  willing to be counted as a Linux user, please use the web forms
  available at  <http://counter.li.org/> Alternatively, you can send a
  message to linux-counter@uninett.no with one of the following
  subjects: `I use Linux at home', `I use Linux at work', or `I use
  Linux at home and at work'.  He will also accept `third-party'
  registrations; ask him for details.

  He posts his counts to  <news:comp.os.linux.misc> each month; they are
  also available from  <http://counter.li.org/>.

  6.  Getting Linux

  6.1.  Anonymous FTP

  For freely-redistributable Linux documentation, see the Linux
  Documentation Project sites at
  <ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/docs/LDP/> and
  <http://sunsite.unc.edu/LDP/>

  Stay tuned to the <news:comp.os.linux.announce> newsgroup for further
  developments.

  At least the following anonymous ftp sites carry Linux.

  Textual name                   Numeric address  Linux directory
  =============================  ===============  ===============
  tsx-11.mit.edu                 18.172.1.2       /pub/linux
  sunsite.unc.edu                152.2.22.81      /pub/Linux
  ftp.funet.fi                   128.214.248.6    /pub/Linux
  net.tamu.edu                   128.194.177.1    /pub/linux
  ftp.mcc.ac.uk                  130.88.203.12    /pub/linux
  src.doc.ic.ac.uk               146.169.2.1      /packages/linux
  fgb1.fgb.mw.tu-muenchen.de     129.187.200.1    /pub/linux
  ftp.informatik.tu-muenchen.de  131.159.0.110    /pub/comp/os/linux
  ftp.dfv.rwth-aachen.de         137.226.4.111    /pub/linux
  ftp.informatik.rwth-aachen.de  137.226.225.3    /pub/Linux
  ftp.Germany.EU.net             192.76.144.75    /pub/os/Linux
  ftp.ibp.fr                     132.227.60.2     /pub/linux
  ftp.uu.net                     137.39.1.9       /systems/unix/linux
  wuarchive.wustl.edu            128.252.135.4    mirrors/linux
  ftp.win.tue.nl                 131.155.70.100   /pub/linux
  ftp.stack.urc.tue.nl           131.155.2.71     /pub/linux
  srawgw.sra.co.jp               133.137.4.3      /pub/os/linux
  cair.kaist.ac.kr                                /pub/Linux
  ftp.denet.dk                   129.142.6.74     /pub/OS/linux
  NCTUCCCA.edu.tw                140.111.1.10     /Operating-Systems/Linux
  nic.switch.ch                  130.59.1.40      /mirror/linux
  sunsite.cnlab-switch.ch        193.5.24.1       /mirror/linux
  cnuce_arch.cnr.it              131.114.1.10     /pub/Linux
  ftp.monash.edu.au              130.194.11.8     /pub/linux
  ftp.dstc.edu.au                130.102.181.31   /pub/linux
  ftp.sydutech.usyd.edu.au       129.78.192.2     /pub/linux

  tsx-11.mit.edu and fgb1.fgb.mw.tu-muenchen.de are the official sites
  for Linux's GCC.  Some sites mirror other sites.  Please use the site
  closest (network-wise) to you whenever possible.

  At least sunsite.unc.edu and ftp.informatik.tu-muenchen.de offer
  ftpmail services.  Mail ftpmail@sunsite.unc.edu or ftp@informatik.tu-
  muenchen.de for help.

  If you are lost, try looking at
  <ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/distributions/>, where several
  distributions are offered.  Red Hat Linux and Debian appear to be the
  most popular distributions at the moment, at least in the U.S.

  6.2.  CDROM

  Many people now install Linux from CDROM's.  The distributions have
  grown to hundreds of MBs of Linux software, and downloading that over
  even a 28.8 modem takes a long time.

  There are essentially two ways to purchase a Linux distribution on
  CDROM: as part of an archive of FTP sites, or directly from the
  manufacturer.  If you purchase an archive, you will almost always get
  several different distributions to choose from, but usually support is
  not included.  When you purchase a distribution directly from the
  vendor, you usually only get one distribution, but you usually get
  some form of support, usually installation support.

  6.3.  Other methods of obtaining Linux

  There are many BBS's that have Linux files.  A list of them is
  occasionally posted to comp.os.linux.announce.  Ask friends and user
  groups, or order one of the commmercial distributions.  A list of
  these is contained in the Linux distribution HOWTO, available as
  <ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/Linux/docs/HOWTO/distribution-HOWTO>, and
  posted regularily to the  <news:comp.os.linux.announce> newsgroup.

  7.  Getting started

  As mentioned at the beginning, Linux is not centrally administered.
  Because of this, there is no ``official'' release that one could point
  at, and say ``That's Linux.''  Instead, there are various
  ``distributions,'' which are more or less complete collections of
  software configured and packaged so that they can be used to install a
  Linux system.

  The first thing you should do is to get and read the list of
  Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) from one of the FTP sites, or by
  using the normal Usenet FAQ archives (e.g. rtfm.mit.edu).  This
  document has plenty of instructions on what to do to get started, what
  files you need, and how to solve most of the common problems (during
  installation or otherwise).

  8.  Legal Status of Linux

  Although Linux is supplied with the complete source code, it is
  copyrighted software, not public domain.  However, it is available for
  free under the GNU General Public License, sometimes referred to as
  the ``copyleft''.  See the GPL for more information.  The programs
  that run under Linux each have their own copyright, although many of
  them use the GPL as well.  X uses the MIT X copyright, and some
  utilities are under the BSD copyright.  In any case, all of the
  software on the FTP site is freely distributable (or else it shouldn't
  be there).

  9.  News About Linux

  A monthly magazine, called Linux Journal, was launched over three
  years ago.  It includes articles intended for almost all skill levels,
  and is intended to be helpful to all Linux users.  One-year
  subscriptions are $22 in the U.S., $27 in Canada and Mexico, and $32
  elsewhere, payable in US currency.  Subscription inquiries can be sent
  via email to subs@ssc.com, or faxed to +1-206-782-7191, or phoned to
  +1-206-782-7733, or mailed to Linux Journal, PO Box 85867, Seattle, WA
  98145-1867 USA.  SSC has a PGP public key available for encrypting
  your mail to protect your credit card number; finger info@ssc.com to
  get the key.

  There are several Usenet newsgroups for Linux discussion, and also
  several mailing lists.  See the Linux FAQ for more information about
  the mailing lists (you should be able to find the FAQ either in the
  newsgroup or on the FTP sites).

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.announce> is a moderated newsgroup
  for announcements about Linux (new programs, bug fixes, etc).

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.answers> is a moderated newsgroup
  to which the Linux FAQ, HOWTO documents, and other documentation
  postings are made.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.admin> is an unmoderated newsgroup
  for discussion of administration of Linux systems.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.development.system> is an
  unmoderated newsgroup specifically for discussion of Linux kernel
  development.  The only application development questions that should
  be discussed here are those that are intimately associated with the
  kernel.  All other development questions are probably generic Unix
  development questions and should be directed to a comp.unix group
  instead, unless they are very Linux-specific applications questions,
  in which case they should be directed at
  comp.os.linux.development.apps.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.development.apps> is an unmoderated
  newsgroup specifically for discussion of Linux-related applications
  development.  It is not for discussion of where to get applications
  for Linux, nor a discussion forum for those who would like to see
  applications for Linux.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.hardware> is for Linux-specific
  hardware questions.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.networking> is for Linux-specific
  networking development and setup questions.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.x> is for Linux-specific X Windows
  questions.

  The newsgroup  <news:comp.os.linux.misc> is the replacement for
  comp.os.linux, and is meant for any discussion that doesn't belong
  elsewhere.

  In general, do not crosspost between the Linux newsgroups.  The only
  crossposting that is appropriate is an occasional posting between one
  unmoderated group and  <news:comp.os.linux.announce>.  The whole point
  of splitting the old comp.os.linux group into many groups is to reduce
  traffic in each group.  Those that do not follow this rule will be
  flamed without mercy...

  Linux is on the web at the URL <http://sunsite.unc.edu/LDP/>

  10.  The Future

  After Linux 1.0 was released, work was done on several enhancements.
  Linux 1.2 included disk access speedups, TTY improvements, virtual
  memory enhancements, multiple platform support, quotas, and more.
  Linux 2.0, the current stable version, has even more enhancements,
  including many performance improvements, several new networking
  protocols, one of the fastest TCP/IP implementations in the world, and
  far, far more.  Even higher performance, more networking protocols,
  and more device drivers will be available in Linux 2.2.

  Even with over 3/4 million lines of code in the kernel, there is
  plenty of code left to write, and even more documentation.  Please
  join the linux-doc@vger.rutgers.edu mailing list if you would like to
  contribute to the documentation. Send mail to
  majordomo@vger.rutgers.edu with a single line containing the word
  ``help'' in the body (NOT the subject) of the message.

  11.  This document

  This document is maintained by Michael K. Johnson
  <johnsonm@redhat.com>. Please mail me with any comments, no matter how
  small.  I can't do a good job of maintaining this document without
  your help.  A more-or-less current copy of this document can always be
  found at <http://sunsite.unc.edu/LDP/>

  12.  Legalese

  Trademarks are owned by their owners.  There is no warranty about the
  information in this document.  Use and distribute at your own risk.
  The content of this document is in the public domain, but please be
  polite and attribute any quotes.


- --- END Linux INFO-SHEET part 1/1 ---

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM