What's a Linux?
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CodeLongAndPros (1537)

What is Linux?

Today, I attempt to answer what Linux is, for Windows users.

First of all, let's talk what (technologically) Linux is.

Linux is the Kernel. It controls stuff like your CPU/GPU, RAM, SSD/HDD, Keyboard, Mouse...
Everything like that. But that's not useful, you say. That's wrong, you say.

But it's true, but I'll get to that later. Now, let's look at Linux's genesis.

Who made Linux?

Linux was made in 1991 by our Lord and Savior, Linus Torvalds:

It was created because Linus was too poor to afford Minix, a UNIX clone.

He GPL'd it, meaning that anyone can use it, change it, and they can't be stopped.

What is a Linux?

Above, if you remember, I said Linux is the kernel. And it is.
People take the kernel, and other tools and make a 'distro', or 'distributions'.
Most people here have a breakdown. They don't understand that they have a choice about what they use.

Some of the more popular distros are:

  • Linux Mint
  • Debian
  • Arch Linux
  • Manjaro (Based on Arch)

How can you use Linux?

There are three main ways to try Linux.

You can use QEMU. If you don't know how to use it, see my tutorial here

This is the safest option, i.e. you can't nuke your files

You can dual boot. This is the worst option, because Windows does not play well with other in the sandbox. I can't help you install it because each computer is different.
I recommend taking backups of both Win and Linux bi-daily

There's one more option:

Install Linux.
If you rely on PhotoShop, Fortnite (oof), and other Windows specific apps. dual boot is the best option, although there are risks.

This one has the potential for data loss, but only in transfer.
Linux can, and does, keep a database of every file (all 1,000,000) of them.

Some of the benefits of Linux

Linux has benefits, many more than Windows, in fact.

Let's start with the obvious:

  • Linux can run on anything, even a potato
  • Going off of that, Linux can run on pretty any computer made since 1990 (32 bit)
  • It's open source, so it's super customizable. If someone does not like it, they patch it.
  • It's rock hard.
  • It's insanely fast. My computer turned on in 12 seconds, 7 spent in the bios. That's a five second startup including GRUB. Whereas most windows machines take about 20 seconds.
  • Updates can be installed as fast as they are released (Bleeding edge), or they can be never installed (LTS). Repl is using a Linux distro released two years ago. Do that with Windows.

If you hit a snag switching to Linux, if you do, you can comment down here and I'll be happy to give remote support to an extent.

Happy hacking!

I oppose the Linux subsystem for Windows (Promoted by M$FT as WSL) and do not think it's a real solution.

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AmazingMech2418 (991)

By the way, WSL is really just a VM system for Linux in Windows. It's not too good with desktop stuff, but it at least works. Also, VirtualBox/VMWare are two other good options! Of course it will be a little slower, but at least it won't have the side-effects of dual-boot! Also, for people who need help understanding what a kernel is, it is pretty much a foundation for an operating system. Also, seriously? No Debian-derivatives? All Ubuntu and Kali users are now sad. LOL! (also, it should be "Promoted by" at the end...)

CodeLongAndPros (1537)

@AmazingMech2418 the thing it, it’s not a VM. They are going to ship the kernel with it, so people won’t install a VM, since they can just use Microsoft Linux

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros Well, WSL2 uses Hyper-V which is the Windows built-in VM system, so I'd call WSL a VM. However, it is faster than like VirtualBox or VMWare since it is a kernel actually on the Windows computer.

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros Though, with the whole "Microsoft Linux", aren't there rumors of Microsoft wanting to buy Canonical?

CodeLongAndPros (1537)

@AmazingMech2418 yeah, but Canonical only owns snap.

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros And Ubuntu... Most Ubuntu-derivatives are separate, but the base version of Ubuntu is owned by Canonical.

CodeLongAndPros (1537)

@AmazingMech2418 They don't have the rights to any of it. GNOME and Linux, Apt is safe. Just snap.

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros Well, yeah. That's because Ubuntu is mostly just Debian with a few extra things added, but the configuration of everything that is used to make Ubuntu is owned by Canonical.

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros Honestly, the only reason people use it is because it's easy. LOL! That's why I want to try Arch!

doineednumbers (15)

@CodeLongAndPros I am personally worried because I rely on a system that relies on Ubuntu :(. Also, if Microsoft changes the license, we can't have Ubuntu derivatives like Mint. Though since it's based on Debian, I don't think they can even do that.

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@doineednumbers They could just switch to Debian-derivative.

CodeLongAndPros (1537)

@doineednumbers What the heck?
Ubuntu is owned by Canonical, not M$

AmazingMech2418 (991)

@CodeLongAndPros They're saying if Microsoft acquires Canonical...