Complete Switch to *NIX and Linux: May 17, 2015


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HeartsOfWar

In all fairness Windows can be awfully intimidating and unforgiving to the uninitiated.  I'm my entire families tech support and have seen jaw dropping things as a result of a BSOD :laugh:

 

I'm simply pointing that out due to the level of polish I've seen getting back to Linux in recent weeks. Anyone using windows could just as easily use a mildy tweaked install of Ubuntu/Mint or even Opensuse. Enough so to get me to order another laptop that will be strictly Linux for home use.

 

I agree... I will admit that I haven't spent much time with Windows 8 / 8.1, but what I have seen / used... I think it has a lot of awful /horrible design decisions. Charms bar??? What?

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adrynalyne

Aren't they the same?

No.

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Lazy8s

I agree... I will admit that I haven't spent much time with Windows 8 / 8.1, but what I have seen / used... I think it has a lot of awful /horrible design decisions. Charms bar??? What?

Once used to it it's not that bad....kind of...but enough to make MS backpedal on the start menu. The charms bar lol...I rarely use it. The UI isn't really all that much different from the all apps function in Opensuse, but Suse's layout and design are just...simpler, and more aesthetically pleasing imo.

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Max Norris

The UI isn't really all that much different from the all apps function in Opensuse, but Suse's layout and design are just...simpler, and more aesthetically pleasing imo.

Assuming KDE?  (OpenSUSE supports multiple environments.)  Yea, it's pretty nice, OpenSUSE does put some decent polish on it, KDE in general probably having the nicest (in my opinion) balance of usability and modernization, just wish they'd fix some of those long time bugs.  Others like Cinnamon are nice but still feel pretty dated, that taskbar for example, ick, straight out of XP.  Get something like Gnome 3 though.  Yikes, some crazy design decisions in that, makes Windows 8.x look positively tame. 

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Lazy8s

Assuming KDE?  (OpenSUSE supports multiple environments.)  Yea, it's pretty nice, OpenSUSE does put some decent polish on it, KDE in general probably having the nicest (in my opinion) balance of usability and modernization, just wish they'd fix some of those long time bugs.  Others like Cinnamon are nice but still feel pretty dated, that taskbar for example, ick, straight out of XP.  Get something like Gnome 3 though.  Yikes, some crazy design decisions in that, makes Windows 8.x look positively tame. 

Mentioning the DE would have helped eh? Lol - yes, KDE is what I'm running now,and haven't bumped into any bugs yet,although it's only been a week. You worded my impressions perfectly - I liked Mint/Cinnamon a lot, but dated feeling is the perfect description. KDE just feels more modern. Well done and very user friendly imo.

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+InsaneNutter

Really? Then tell me, how many cell phones need their users to type terminal commands or edit files or whatever, in order to fix an issue? You can't compare the desktop with phones. It's like apples and oranges. It doesn't matter if the mobile OS is based on Linux, it's not the same thing as using Linux on your desktop.

 

"Linux is capable of providing a complete friendly experience" - well, by this logic Windows is also capable of providing a complete friendly mobile experience too, right?

 

I agree it's like comparing apples to oranges, however you can certainly call up the terminal with Android and do things you can't from the UI. Such as use iptables to make it so any device tethering via Wi-Fi is routed through the phones VPN connection.

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TDT

I agree it's like comparing apples to oranges, however you can certainly call up the terminal with Android and do things you can't from the UI. Such as use iptables to make it so any device tethering via Wi-Fi is routed through the phones VPN connection.

I know you can, that wasn't the point. I meant you don't have to do this if you have issues on Android, most of the time it comes down to a reboot or reflash of the rom and that issue is fixed. On the desktop, things can get messy very fast if you're a noob. 

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Depicus

On the desktop, things can get messy very fast if you're a noob. 

 

Indeed I've seen more than my fair share of Windows machines messed up by tinkering fingers. 

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gohpep

Nope. I wasn't comparing Android to the Linux desktop. What I was doing was stating that if developers recognize their audience correctly, even Linux can succeed in the wild against Windows. It's not impossible for Linux just because it's an unforgiving OS according to most. It just takes an exceptional design vision / goal.

 

In case you haven't figured it out: 99% of the market that is Linux / Unix is the cell-phone market... not the desktop as you think. You need to read / comprehend better.

The kernel doesn't affect the user experience that much. What does is the OS components, like Xserver, GNU stuff, etc.

Aren't they the same?

https://www.gnu.org/gnu/linux-and-gnu.html

 

----

 

Personally, I really feel like GNU/Linux with a modern window manager suits the needs of many computer users. You don't have to use the terminal anymore, except if you are doing things that are meant for advanced users anyway. Of course, GNU/Linux is not ready for the masses, just for people who are a little less than computer savvy. This situation is improving, as we see less focus on making a complete operating system and more a usable one.

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f0rk_b0mb

Yeap. Linux breaks so easily just because it's not so easy to fix something. Sometimes trying to fix an issue leads to other issues and so on until the system becomes a complete mess. Yeah, you're protected against viruses, but who needs viruses to get their system screwed when you can do it too? :rolleyes:

 

Linux does exactly what you tell it to do because it assumes you are a technical user. If Linux broke, it's because you broke it due to your tweaking or you are running unstable repositories, and in that case you have what's coming to you.

 

Linux is stable if you leave it alone and let it do its job. The same theory applies to Windows, OS X, and pretty much every OS out there. 

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adrynalyne

Linux does exactly what you tell it to do because it assumes you are a technical user. If Linux broke, it's because you broke it due to your tweaking or you are running unstable repositories or someone pushed a broken package to the stable repos, and in that case you have what's coming to you.

 

Linux is stable if you leave it alone and let it do its job. The same theory applies to Windows, OS X, and pretty much every OS out there. 

FTFY.

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TDT

Linux does exactly what you tell it to do because it assumes you are a technical user. If Linux broke, it's because you broke it due to your tweaking or you are running unstable repositories, and in that case you have what's coming to you.

 

Linux is stable if you leave it alone and let it do its job. The same theory applies to Windows, OS X, and pretty much every OS out there. 

Spot on. So you can agree that Linux is NOT for any noob. There, 1,57% market share explained :)

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gohpep

Spot on. So you can agree that Linux is NOT for any noob. There, 1,57% market share explained :)

No, because non-technical users won't mess around. The technical users have already configured your operating system. Further tweaking it is up to you, for your needs, as the default config might generalize too much, but this again only matter to technical users.

 

The only reason it has that market share is because of marketing, and legacy. Free projects don't have that much of a marketing budget. Windows is the standard because it has been the most used operating system, and people will continue to use it. Why do people continue to use it? Because they used it in the past.

 

 

FTFY.

Many popular distributions have a strict testing policy and QA to ensure this never happens. Of course, as with any operating system, or any human made product, bugs come up with updates, just like that Windows update that bricked some systems.

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TDT

No, because non-technical users won't mess around. The technical users have already configured your operating system. Further tweaking it is up to you, for your needs, as the default config might generalize too much, but this again only matter to technical users.

 

The only reason it has that market share is because of marketing, and legacy. Free projects don't have that much of a marketing budget. Windows is the standard because it has been the most used operating system, and people will continue to use it. Why do people continue to use it? Because they used it in the past.

 

Non-technical users WILL mess around simply because they don't know that they could break things. And if they break something and realize that a reboot doesn't fix it, bye bye Linux. Also, one other thing that really bugs me about Linux: when you have a problem, try to ask somewhere (like FB, or G+) in the official community of that distro and you get a "file a bug at Launchpad". Gladly, but I had bugs that after almost 1 year never got past the "undecided" status. I had to dig a lot to fix my issues. So this is another annoying thing...

And the last line, seriously? The force of habit? THAT's why people still use Windows? If you really believe that, then I'm sorry but I really don't want to give an answer...

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gohpep

Non-technical users WILL mess around simply because they don't know that they could break things. And if they break something and realize that a reboot doesn't fix it, bye bye Linux. Also, one other thing that really bugs me about Linux: when you have a problem, try to ask somewhere (like FB, or G+) in the official community of that distro and you get a "file a bug at Launchpad". Gladly, but I had bugs that after almost 1 year never got past the "undecided" status. I had to dig a lot to fix my issues. So this is another annoying thing...

And the last line, seriously? The force of habit? THAT's why people still use Windows? If you really believe that, then I'm sorry but I really don't want to give an answer...

There isn't anything to do in the UI that could break your system. I don't think anyone is apt enough to use the terminal if they are clueless already. You can do tons of bad things using the Command Line and regedit on Windows. It is just that non technical users never mess around past a few settings. Most will never even touch their settings. It is a known fact that the majority of computer users keep their computer defaults. They just want to use their computer.

 

You also are acting as if Windows never has problems. There are tons of many successful businesses thriving on the fact that Windows will break and they can fix it.

 

I've never had that problem, nor have I seen it. I've seen that Linux has a more vibrant community than Microsoft in this field. With Microsoft, you get an MVP on their question forums answering your question with a generic answer that has nothing to do with the question, so they can get more points to get an upgraded forum status. On linux questions, and Linux Stack Exchange, you have experienced users that know exactly what they're doing and they can explain to you your problem, and how to fix it. If you're not technical, you can just say that and they will guide you through it that way.

 

 

Sorry, that last sentence had implied implications. When people use Windows previously, it means they are in an environment with Windows tools and apps, and it is easier for them to continue in this environment. Since they've been on Windows previously and are continuing to do so, Windows retains its market share, and these enhanced environments stay on Windows rather than moving to Linux. So, when someone considers change, they've already been locked in with apps so they can't switch. I'll admit that if you expect Linux to be exactly like Windows or compatible with it, or you want to make it that way, it requires technical skill for messing around with Wine, or even Crossover and PlayOnLinux, although the situation is rapidly improving. Of course, there are mostly free, Linux alternatives for pretty much every Windows app. Though again, people like to stay with what is comfortable and what they are used to, and changing operating systems is enough for even most semi technical users, much less changing their programs.

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TDT

There isn't anything to do in the UI that could break your system. I don't think anyone is apt enough to use the terminal if they are clueless already. You can do tons of bad things using the Command Line and regedit on Windows. It is just that non technical users never mess around past a few settings. Most will never even touch their settings. It is a known fact that the majority of computer users keep their computer defaults. They just want to use their computer.

Well let me give you an example: the UI freezes, for some reason (happened to me just yesterday, with the damn Openshot app). In Windows, before you hit the reset button, you at least try ctrl+alt+del to launch the task manager. Believe me, to this day I don't know if Linux has something like this and WHAT is the damn keyboard combination. And this is frustrating.

And while it's true that today they have "dumbed down" Linux (some distros) so people can't screw it up, it wasn't always like that. My first Linux installation was Slackware, and I broke that thing like 3 times/day.  :laugh: I was a total noob. 

 

You also are acting as if Windows never has problems. There are tons of many successful businesses thriving on the fact that Windows will break and they can fix it.

I never said such a thing. Of course Windows has problems, but it's quite normal, and I've been saying this to people complaining about it: think of how many different types of PC configurations are in this world, how can you expect Microsoft to test Windows on EACH one before they launch it? Also, higher market share means malware, viruses, etc., it's a target. This "our OS has no viruses and no malware" thing that you hear at Apple (and maybe Linux too) is just a marketing crap.

 

 

I've never had that problem, nor have I seen it. I've seen that Linux has a more vibrant community than Microsoft in this field. With Microsoft, you get an MVP on their question forums answering your question with a generic answer that has nothing to do with the question, so they can get more points to get an upgraded forum status. On linux questions, and Linux Stack Exchange, you have experienced users that know exactly what they're doing and they can explain to you your problem, and how to fix it. If you're not technical, you can just say that and they will guide you through it that way.

I'm sorry, but Microsoft's support line (not some forum, use the phone, is much faster), at least in my country, has always been excellent. I never had an issue that wasn't fixed fast, without the need to report bugs on Launchpad and never hear back (I get the need for feedback in the Linux community, but I also expect FAST answers). If we're talking about online communities, then maybe Linux has a much bigger one, but if I'm at work and I have a problem with Windows, do you really think I'll post on a forum rather than calling their support desk? :)

 

To end this with a conclusion, I would say that switching to Linux fully means you know what you're doing and you enjoy these occasional challenges, like making a Windows app run in Wine for example. This is what I do, I "play" with Linux every day and I love to experiment all kind of stuff, but that's because (most of the time) I know what I'm doing. I really don't care about the free part, because most of the apps that I NEED to use are shareware so I need a license even if I make them work in Wine. I don't use free apps, except browsers and VLC, and these are free in Windows too.

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gohpep

Well let me give you an example: the UI freezes, for some reason (happened to me just yesterday, with the damn Openshot app). In Windows, before you hit the reset button, you at least try ctrl+alt+del to launch the task manager. Believe me, to this day I don't know if Linux has something like this and WHAT is the damn keyboard combination. And this is frustrating.

And while it's true that today they have "dumbed down" Linux (some distros) so people can't screw it up, it wasn't always like that. My first Linux installation was Slackware, and I broke that thing like 3 times/day.  :laugh: I was a total noob. 

I never said such a thing. Of course Windows has problems, but it's quite normal, and I've been saying this to people complaining about it: think of how many different types of PC configurations are in this world, how can you expect Microsoft to test Windows on EACH one before they launch it? Also, higher market share means malware, viruses, etc., it's a target. This "our OS has no viruses and no malware" thing that you hear at Apple (and maybe Linux too) is just a marketing crap.

 

I'm sorry, but Microsoft's support line (not some forum, use the phone, is much faster), at least in my country, has always been excellent. I never had an issue that wasn't fixed fast, without the need to report bugs on Launchpad and never hear back (I get the need for feedback in the Linux community, but I also expect FAST answers). If we're talking about online communities, then maybe Linux has a much bigger one, but if I'm at work and I have a problem with Windows, do you really think I'll post on a forum rather than calling their support desk? :)

 

To end this with a conclusion, I would say that switching to Linux fully means you know what you're doing and you enjoy these occasional challenges, like making a Windows app run in Wine for example. This is what I do, I "play" with Linux every day and I love to experiment all kind of stuff, but that's because (most of the time) I know what I'm doing. I really don't care about the free part, because most of the apps that I NEED to use are shareware so I need a license even if I make them work in Wine. I don't use free apps, except browsers and VLC, and these are free in Windows too.

I didn't say that Linux was always user friendly. But now that Linux is generally stable and feature-rich, more focus is going into usability.

Linux doesn't have very good crash handling, I'll admit that, but it mattering depends on how stable your distro is. Some distros provide little QA to their packages, while distros like Fedora are rigorous in testing.

 

Yeah, both operating systems have their problems that don't outweight each other in that regard.

 

As for Linux malware, Linux is a very secure operating system, and unlike Mac OS, "Linux doesn't get viruses" is a mostly true statement. Even though Windows has more market share, Linux systems are generally more high value targets, as servers (with tons of client info) typically use Linux.

 

I don't know where you go for support, but suggesting to report a bug for a computing issue is wrong. In my experience, with the sites I've gone on, this has never happened. Microsoft's support has always been bad for me, no matter the system, phone, internet, live chat. As for waiting for an answer, a lot of issues have already been posted on forums and most of them have been answered on Linux forums. The same can be said about Microsoft forums, however the answers are never helpful. Of course, if you find the telephone support more convenient, I won't argue with you.

 

I guess it is always preference that decides. Though I think you may agree that Linux is on the road to becoming even more friendly and someday it will be a superior OS in all aspects. I don't expect Linux to always require technical aptitude for some issues.

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TDT

I don't know where you go for support, but suggesting to report a bug for a computing issue is wrong. In my experience, with the sites I've gone on, this has never happened. Microsoft's support has always been bad for me, no matter the system, phone, internet, live chat. As for waiting for an answer, a lot of issues have already been posted on forums and most of them have been answered on Linux forums. The same can be said about Microsoft forums, however the answers are never helpful. Of course, if you find the telephone support more convenient, I won't argue with you.

 

I guess it is always preference that decides. Though I think you may agree that Linux is on the road to becoming even more friendly and someday it will be a superior OS in all aspects. I don't expect Linux to always require technical aptitude for some issues.

I agree. That's why I said is annoying. Right now, I have 6 bugs posted on elementary OS Launchpad page, and guess what? 5 of them are "undecided" and one is "incomplete". Of those 6, I managed to fix 4 of them by reading a lot of forum posts and opinions... This was time consuming and clearly not the way to go. But I guess if I got the OS for free, I can't argue, right? :) This, right here, makes the difference. I got a lot of "you got this for free and now you're bitching about some issues?" from Linux users, and while I clearly don't judge all of them because of a few, it's stuff like this that really makes you think that paid stuff comes with warranty and support whenever you need. Oh well, I guess each one has its own experiences with Linux.

And yes, I do agree that Linux has come a long way since my first encounter with Slack. But they always play catch-up and there always seems to be "the year of Linux", and it never is. And I disagree with the marketing thing and the legacy thing, those are not the primary reasons why Linux doesn't have a bigger impact in desktops. It's because of this fragmentation, there are a LOT of distros out there and this is not good for the user, even if "choice is good". He sees Ubuntu as the most used distro and might think to try that, but hey, here's a related article about Mint, that looks better than Ubuntu. Oh, but wait, here's elementary, wow, so clean and shiny. And so on. Like I said before, these developers should really come as one and do ONE Linux distro to "crush" all others and be the number 1 choice without any doubt.

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f0rk_b0mb

FTFY.

 

Mistakes happen. Both Microsoft and Apple have shipped broken products only to pull them and issue fixes and a proper product. 

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f0rk_b0mb

Spot on. So you can agree that Linux is NOT for any noob. There, 1,57% market share explained :)

 

Yes, I've never stated a noob should be using Linux. I'm also not screaming "YEAR ON THE LINUX DESKTOP!!! MICROSUCKZ IS DEAD!!!!! KILL BILL!!!!!!!!" from every mountaintop. I'm simply documenting my experience on an internet forum.

 

My computer works for me and i like it the way it is configured. I don't give a rat's if someone else's preference is different from mine.

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gohpep

I agree. That's why I said is annoying. Right now, I have 6 bugs posted on elementary OS Launchpad page, and guess what? 5 of them are "undecided" and one is "incomplete". Of those 6, I managed to fix 4 of them by reading a lot of forum posts and opinions... This was time consuming and clearly not the way to go. But I guess if I got the OS for free, I can't argue, right? :) This, right here, makes the difference. I got a lot of "you got this for free and now you're bitching about some issues?" from Linux users, and while I clearly don't judge all of them because of a few, it's stuff like this that really makes you think that paid stuff comes with warranty and support whenever you need. Oh well, I guess each one has its own experiences with Linux.

And yes, I do agree that Linux has come a long way since my first encounter with Slack. But they always play catch-up and there always seems to be "the year of Linux", and it never is. And I disagree with the marketing thing and the legacy thing, those are not the primary reasons why Linux doesn't have a bigger impact in desktops. It's because of this fragmentation, there are a LOT of distros out there and this is not good for the user, even if "choice is good". He sees Ubuntu as the most used distro and might think to try that, but hey, here's a related article about Mint, that looks better than Ubuntu. Oh, but wait, here's elementary, wow, so clean and shiny. And so on. Like I said before, these developers should really come as one and do ONE Linux distro to "crush" all others and be the number 1 choice without any doubt.

What sites do you try to get help from?

 

And really, the problem was making a stable operating system, but now they have a lot more support, especially because of Valve, so I am pretty excited for the future.

 

Although there a lot of distros out there, and it may feel overwhelming, I feel like the choice is comforting. I've switched distros many times, from Ubuntu when I was a noob, then Debian because I started to hate Ubuntu, and then Fedora because Debian wasn't very modern, and then Arch Linux because I became technical and wanted control, and then back to Fedora (on my laptop, for ease of use).

 

Now, I don't think tons of choice is making GNU/Linux lag behind. Look at Android, or even Windows itself. You have tons of choice on the OEM you go with, and they both have majority market share. They also both have a main sponsor/owner that has a lot of available cash for advertising. Not many people even know anything past 'I use an Apple and a computer', they don't even know they're running Windows.

 

Now about unifying distros, not only is it a bad idea, but it will never happen. Each distro was made because of different ideologies and missions, that's why they are separate. It is a bad idea because it will cause a lot more fragmentation. Think about Ubuntu. They haven't contributed a lot upstream and are making tons of their own products for Ubuntu, some of them even proprietary. Let's say Ubuntu had 49% OS market share world wide. They have their own custom made stuff for Ubuntu. People will make Ubuntu apps that work nice with say, ubuntu-systemd, but not other systems. This will cause fragmentation as it becomes more important to just support Ubuntu and not other systems, due to development costs.

 

The Linux community is already together, but separate. Most distributions contribute to upstream, and share ideas. This is the purpose of open source. Each distribution may have its own way of doing things, but they also work together in a way.

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f0rk_b0mb

I went ahead and switched to regular flavored ubuntu to see what's new. I really like it so far...it's actually faster and much less clunkey than Gnome 3. Ialso love the hud. Just tap Alt and type what you want in. Saves me from digging through menus.

 

Did I nail it?

 

post-447111-0-05960800-1436205229.jpg

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Unobscured Vision

If it works for you, run with it. :) I currently have to dual-boot, as I'm Developing and the software actually requires Windows (but it'll cross-compile for everything, so no worries. ;) ).

 

Looks good from where I sit, bud.

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      Disclosure: This is a StackCommerce deal or giveaway in partnership with Neowin; an account at StackCommerce is required to participate in any deals or giveaways. For a full description of StackCommerce's privacy guidelines, go here. Neowin benefits from shared revenue of each sale made through our branded deals site, and it all goes toward the running costs.

    • By News Staff
      Pay What You Want for this Complete Linux eBook Bundle
      by Steven Parker

      Today's highlighted offer comes via our Online Courses section of the Neowin Deals store, where for a limited time you can Pay What You Want for the Complete Linux eBook Bundle. The 4-book guide to programming more powerfully and efficiently with Linux.



      How does it work?
      With the Pay What You Want bundles, you can get something incredible for as little as you want to pay. And if you beat the average price, you’ll receive the fully upgraded bundle! Included in this Pay What You Want deal, are the following courses:

      Pay What You Want (as little as $1) for the unlocked eBook:

      Mastering Embedded Linux Programming, Second Edition
      Master the Techniques Needed to Build Great, Efficient Embedded Devices On Linux

      ... and unlock the following eBooks with a bid over the average price:

      Mastering Linux Security & Hardening
      A Comprehensive Guide to Preventing Your Linux System From Getting Compromised

      Linux Shell Scripting Cookbook, Third Edition
      Do Amazing Things with the Linux Shell

      Mastering Linux Shell Scripting, Second Edition
      Master the Complexities of Bash Shell Scripting

      Here's the deal:
      The bundle represents an overall retail value of $160. Pay What You Want for the unlocked courses (as little as $1). Bid the average price or over and you'll take home the entire bundle. Qualify for the giveaway!
      Beat the Leader's price and get entered into the epic giveaway, plus get featured on the leaderboard!

      >> Pay What You Want for this Complete Linux eBook Bundle <<
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      Get $1 credit for every $25 spent · Give $10, Get $10 · 10% off for first-time buyers.

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      Disclosure: This is a StackCommerce deal or giveaway in partnership with Neowin; an account at StackCommerce is required to participate in any deals or giveaways. For a full description of StackCommerce's privacy guidelines, go here. Neowin benefits from shared revenue of each sale made through our branded deals site, and it all goes toward the running costs.

    • By zikalify
      Linux Mint 20.1 'Ulyssa' beta launches with new programs
      by Paul Hill



      The Linux Mint project has just released the beta for Linux Mint 20.1. The new beta is available in the Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce flavours of Linux Mint and aside from desktop improvements, share the same set of new features.

      Neowin has covered some of Linux Mint’s development updates in recent months and the work that went in then has landed in a more mature form in this beta. Highlights include a new Web Apps tool that lets you turn your favourite sites into web apps accessible from the app menu and IPTV program called Hypnotix has been created and items can be marked as favourites in the file manager on Cinnamon.

      Another change in Linux Mint 20.1, which has been known for quite a while now, is the inclusion of Chromium in the repositories. Chromium had previously been removed from the Linux Mint repositories because the maintainers didn’t like that it had Snap dependencies. The Chromium that is now included is compiled directly by the Mint team and updates will be released in a timely manner.

      As with the other releases in this series, Linux Mint 20.1 will continue to get updates until 2025. Those running Linux Mint 20 will be able to upgrade in a pain-free manner when Linux Mint 20.1 is stable because the base packages will remain the same. Those who choose to download the beta today won’t have to reinstall when the stable version comes out in a few weeks, instead, you just need to make sure you install available updates.

      You can find the three Linux Mint 20.1 beta flavours over on the Evowise mirror which should provide decent download speeds no matter where you are in the world.