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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

GNU/LINUX in different shapes and sizes

GNU/LINUX is a Free Software. Free Software is not necessarily zero cost software. Free Software allows the user freedom to copy, modify and distribute the original and the modified versions of the software. This freedom has allowed developers across the world to work on GNU/LINUX, since the source code is easily available and the developers are legally allowed to modify the source code.

Over the years developers across the world have come up with different distributions of GNU/LINUX in all shapes and sizes. Users of propriety software like Windows or Macintosh do not have any freedom to modify the software, since the source code is not available at all. 

For Windows and Macintosh users, the hardware of your system has to be upgraded to the current standard to install the latest version of the Operating System. With GNU/Linux users can find a latest distribution that fits their hardware. 

Even if you have a Pentium 2 or a Pentium 3 computer you have Linux distributions like Damn Small Linux and Puppy Linux that will fit your system requirements. In fact you can use Damn Small Linux even on a old i386 computer. 

If you have a 12 year old Pentium 4 computer, you can chose to install Lubuntu operating system which is a knocked down version of the most popular GNU/LINUX distro - Ubuntu for low power computers. For Raspberry Pi we have Pidora, Raspbian operating systems. They are Fedora and Debian operating systems optimised for the resources provided by Raspberry Pi. Raspberry Pi is low cost computer made with the intention of popularising programming among school students. It has been a world wide superhit. Today various Raspberry Pi models are available between $5 to $35.

With operating systems like Windows and Macintosh your hardware becomes obsolete within a few years. However with GNU/Linux you are likely to find a distribution that support your hardware. This becomes possible only because GNU/Linux is a free software.

(I will expand this article soon.)

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