Thursday, January 12, 2017

Why I upgraded to Mint Linux ?

My home laptop was running on 12.04 Ubuntu Linux for almost four years. Some features were not working and then I realised it was time for me to upgrade. In the past two months since I had lots of spare time to fiddle with the PC and internet, I bought a copy of PC Quest mag with a Knoppix Live Linux CD.
A basic Mint Linux desktop ..

Started experimenting with different versions of Linux like Open Suse, Lubuntu, Ubuntu mate, Mint linux etc and have been able to install lot of useful software back on the laptop. Finally have decided on Mint Linux.

The audio players are high quality on all these distros as are the video players. Have also downloaded R, Octave, PSPP and loads of other useful software thru text mode using the install command. Its great to relive the IIT Bombay days here in Bangalore, getting to work on these geeky software and operating systems yet again.

Ubuntu is a very popular version of Linux that came out of South Africa. Click here to read of the passion of the originator Mark Shuttleworth to popularise Ubuntu (in South African language) a quality that includes the esential human virtues; compassion and humanity.

Ubuntu is an ancient African word meaning ‘humanity to others’. It also means ‘I am what I am because of who we all are’. The Ubuntu operating system brings the spirit of Ubuntu to the world of computers. Click here to know more ..
Dr Richard Stallman, founder, Free  Software Foundation

If we make a mention of Gnu/Linux, we cannot miss the role of Richard Stallman in founding the Free Software Movement and enriching the world by his life, philosophy and passion. 

Thanks to the Linux Users Group in Goa, I could get Dr. Richard Mathew Stallman to IIT Bombay during my PhD days there, with active help from Prof Sivakumar from Computer Science Department who was the Head of IITB  Computer Centre. 
This is a copy of the email circulated to all students and faculty at IIT Bombay on the occasion of the visit of Richard Stallman to IIT Bombay on March 23, 2002. (unfortunately I am unable to get pics of the event arranged in IITB fourteen years back .. )

Professor Richard Stallman, MIT, founder of the Free Software
Foundation and Gnu/Linux movement, will be delivering
a Public Lecture onivakumar who was heading the Computer Centre there at the time 

   Date : Saturday 23 rd March, 2002
   Time : 4 P.M.
   Venue :  Convo Hall, IIT Bombay
   Topic : The Free Software Movement and the GNU/Linux Operating System


Richard Stallman will speak about the purpose, goals, philosophy,
methods, status, and future prospects of the GNU operating system,
which in combination with the kernel Linux is now used by an
estimated 17 to 20 million users world wide.
Here is the website of the Free Software Foundation Dr Stallmann leads..

A year later when Stallman made another visit to India, I also got him to Govt College of Engineering, Goa (Goa Engineering College - GEC) where he spoke to the people of Goa. 

Continuing my passion in this area, I have started working in the area yet again. The concept of live USBs has enamoured me . I am trying to learn more on Linux. I have three USB sticks with linux ISO images to be used as live USB sticks. Of these three two of them are of 8GB capacity having live versions of Knoppix and Ubuntu mate 16.04 LTS and the third 4 GB USB stick with lubuntu ISO image installed on it. Linux Mint is another great package which I have on my laptop..

The beauty of Linux is its ease of use and being lightweight on the existing laptop hardware. Once you start working on Gnu / Linux, there is no way you will revert back to proprietary windows versions !

Some of the areas where I can give some basic advice (not learned..) are as given below
1. how to work on a live USB / CD,
2. what are the best linux distributions for different applications,
3. how to work on live linux  as well as installed OSs,
4. how to work on windows and linux distros on the same laptop
5. how to add to the existing list of linux software either in GUI mode or text mode
6. how to take care of linux machines and upgrade to newer versions
7. HDD partitioning areas I am not that strong now, have to revise some basics

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