Monday, August 16, 2004

Red Hat Linux 8.0 Impressions

My paper is about how Unix became a bug-free operating system, survived getting graphical in the early 1990s, and continued to be a help to computer users. First this documentation of Unix have a little about its history when Unix started in 1978. Then it grew to “System V” when Bell Labs eventually sold it off venders. ( Then I’ll talk about what I like about Redhat Linux 8.0, the closest thing to Unix I’m using.

Two men called Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie created Unix. Thompson created the em editor. The em editor compiled text to show on screen. He was also the creator of the pipe key. A Pipe links one program to another program so that two programs could be used on after another. Dennis Richie earned the US national medal of technology for his continuous support on Unix. My research paper will ask the questions how it transformed into a universal operating system spreading out to be the complex operating system. [,,]

Unix is a global universe of Operating Systems. I use Linux, because it has a ton of free software. Some people prefer Windows for its user friendliness and the fact that all games can works on it. Windows can fit the lifestyle of any human being. But that doesn’t make Unix worst then Windows. Unix never crashes. Ah-ha now! Now,I got your attention. I am a Windows user since 1996 and I know that Microsoft made it easy on people when they created the Windows 95. Unix & Linux are harder to learn then Windows. [Evolution of Unix by Dennis M. Ritchie -]

The predecessor of Unix was called Multics[1] (Multitasked Information and Computing Service) Multics was the original operating system that could recognize iNode [2]numbers in computer’s number stale. It was programmed in the B scripting language. This was before C scripting language, which is easier to understand. Multic was later used to create early videogame platforms like Magnavox Odyssey and Atari 2600 coming out in 1977.

Bell-Labs created the first Unix Operating System in 1971. This is before Microsoft DOS, which most people knew as DOS. It was a battle of who could deliver the best Unix.

In 1974, Unix was first built in a computer in a big room and the hardware was state-of-the-art. Unix was used to show how planets circled the solar system in the 1970s. Unix 7.0 was rewritten in C programming language.[3] Before that it was written in the B language, a complex language which used more code to do the same thing, C did. Unix was put into the computer mainframe by a series of data discs as thick as records. This was a time after the keyhole punch mainframe computers. Unix was the next revolution. This system was the first operating system to be able to run programs in. Data sheets could be calculated on a personal computer type machine because the software ran on Unix. The first Unix weren’t able to keep data. Data was stored on a 5.2 inch discs and had to be installed every time they used the disc operating system. This was done by a command line but this was far better then using punch hole keys in huge mainframe type computers. [ ]

The same year Unix was released on the market, members at Unix (Bell Net Corporation) sent the first electronic mail message from Palo Alto, California to New York City. It took the message 2 days to reach the other end.

If it wasn’t for 1984, I wouldn’t be lurking around, and that’s bad. This was also the year that a group of programmers went to court to say that software should be free, creating the GNU project. [, – a GNU licensed site with a lot of programs on it.] It wasn’t until 1990 that they actually announced that they were going to make a version of Unix that was free. It would later be called FreeBSD. It would have graphical user interface and a kernal made from scratch. So the license only went as far to give programmers opportunity to make free software. Other problems included that they couldn’t develop software that would take away from bigger software organizations. So GNU kept getting sued as result of giving people licenses to make free software. Now the government passed the law that computer users use free software at their own risk.

After Unix 10.0 was released in late 1989, a few months later Unix’s source code became freely available. The strength of the market slowly killed off the Bell-labs version of Unix. BSD was one of them. The division of Unix at Bell Labs was also called "System V." System V was the successor Bell Labs made using the Unix kernal. All software were simple in System V, programs were a lot simpler then programs run now-a-days. All Unix systems had a terminal. The terminal was what all text information is based on. The Vi editor was ported which enabled developers to edit system files. It is still used today. "Unix" is used to describe the script of the script originally introduced in 1974 as a command based operating system.

At the turn of the decade, Graphically User Interfaces became available. And that started yet another war of who had the best GUI. Sadly that award didn’t go to the hard working programmers who designed Unix, but Microsoft, with their multi-million-dollar Windows project, ruined it all. Microsoft smoked the Unix operating system ten fold. Windows 3.1 was also a operating system that used it’s own source code to meet the demands that was better then 14 years of Unix evolution. At the same time, Redhat created the first Linux Operating System[4]. [History on Linux -] A programmer called Linus, a programmer from the GNU Project, originally created Linux. Redhat Linux is still the best Linux ever developed. Lunis created Linux because he wanted to release a new kernal called HURD. HURD was the next generation of kernal[5]. Unlike Unix, RedHat made Linux feel like Windows. Redhat was perfect for teaching in technical colleges.

Unix was the first operating system that used the logical file system beginning with the root directory, following your parent directory, following the directory your in. Larger more functional programs could easily replace programs that existed in more recent versions of Unix. In Windows, you can’t add Windows XP to a previous version such as Windows 98. In Unix, you can update desktop shells. The current software that was in the other version can say the same. That’s why some people with let’s say Solaris have the latest shell available. Problem with Microsoft is that you had to always buy a upgrade, that would add features to your computer. It wouldn’t necessarily make it more stable. Programs do that. All commercial versions of Unix and Linux have system notification, which searches for updates on the company’s website. It updates the shell so you have a free upgrade. It is rather quite easily done. Computer industry could do that 10 years ago. People didn’t always have the Internet[6] to download software so they had to find more recent versions. That’s what the middleman market came in and made everything expensive. Most Americans would go buy an upgrade anyway. Since the World Wide Web was introduced in 1994, millions of users upgraded their Unix systems for free. The vending companies simply make their money on people who cannot afford DSL or digital cable in their homes to upgrade free system files!

On June 07, 1999, the United States congress passed a law that open source code can’t be trademarked ever again. That means that future Unix projects can be programmed to new versions without being sued as long as they gave the programmers who created it credit. Microsoft will soon have open source code for their operating system. Microsoft will never put software for Linux because they will have to develop it free and that is against every thing Microsoft stands for. People will buy from other vendors. Think of it, if your personal computer you’ve bought from Dell came with Linux instead of Windows, would you bring it in and delete the operating system or would you use it? In the future, software will appear for both Windows and Linux.

FreeBSD 5.0 could very well be the cheapest of all the Linux operating Systems. This operating system is used mostly for a networking solution. You can buy this version of Unix at any electronic store for a mere 10 dollars. Unix Operating Systems are the same, because they have network capabilities, web browsers, an office suite and a powerful web server. Most people who want to run a UNIX web server would most likely buy Solaris from Sun Microsystems. People with pocket change would like NetBSD & freeBSD. Unix has the same desktop shells, KDE and gnome, as Linux.

SUN Microsystems [7] is the world leader in Unix operating systems. Sun has recently come out with their version of Unix, Solaris 9.0. [] Sun is responsible for creating the first _Javascript for web browsers. In 1997, _JavaScript was first used to show the first mission to mars showing a slideshow on Netscape contracted with Sun to put their most recent version of java in Netscape Communicator. Now every web browser except Internet Explorer used Sun’s basic java software. I use java when I go on Opera and surf the Internet. Sun’s Java works fine for what I do.

The Linux platform is under GNU License, but any vendor can charge for the debugging costs that comes with releasing a new version of their operating system. It is very cool because all software that is developed in Red Hat Linux or Mandrake Linux is free. Although, you need to have the programming skills to program for it. I am going to debug Unix systems for a job. Anyone can look at the script and compile it. It allows anyone to be equal in his or her design.

Dennis Richie, co founder of the Unix operating system talks about a new scripting tool that will revolutionize Unix again. The project is called Plan 9 4.0 [8]and will allow multiple users to be able to change source code in real time. The project already has security built in firewall with network users picture on the screen. This will allow Unix like operating systems to be able to edit source code. Plan 9 can be good for the development cycle because the system administer can control from start to end on how much code can be edited. The program also has a glossary where users can leave their source code so it can be researched at a later time.

Since Microsoft is dominate over any other operating system, computer manufactures like HP and IBM want to team up with successful Unix and Linux vendors to keep generating money. Both manufactures make versions of Unix themselves. However, their popularity isn’t near the successful SUSE Linux or Solaris operating systems. IBM spoke out that they would support both companies. HP this sells Linux through their servers. So far they want to make their software as well as Redhat successful operating system has. Some guy quoted “RedHat is a 300 pound guerilla in this business” [,3959,881,00.asp ]

Red Hat is a really big distributor located at a North California Campus. They are a profit organization to make a commercial version of the Unix Operating System. They are always looking for talent to up the technology of their version of Linux. Red hat has 5 campuses nation wide.

The following is my Introduction I got from Unix, which I got off my webpage. I never used it as a report so technically no one ever seen it except me so here is my review of Redhat Linux 8.0:

What does a Unix Network Specialist Do?

A network specialist is a member of bigger companies who control data passing through a network. He answers to the system administer. A good example of this company could be Yahoo. Yahoo is an organization that lists WebPages in their search engine. They use some sort of Unix operating system to keep their server loaded. Their primary job is to create a working network for Windows NT or FreeBSD using network cables for high speed T1 or T3 servers.

I. Installation (“A Practical Guide to Red Hat Linux” by Mark G. Sobell | pages 208–211, 266-268)

Redhat Linux 8.0 installation will the single boot works as well as it did in Redhat Linux 7.1. The new setup allows you to pick if you want the latest version of KDE or Gnome 2.0 on your desktop. [] Does this mean more stable compensates? Considering that Redhat Linux 7.1 was more stable then Windows XP anyway -- it’s pretty stable in Redhat 8.0. When I booted Redhat, I made sure I reserved some free space. Redhat can take anywhere from 800 MBs of free space to two gigabytes of free space. All Linux users know how to load Swap, Ext3 partitions. I went the fast way, letting Linux install it self with the free space given. The option is on the installation menu on the installation disk. Nothing has changed in this area (that I'm aware of) since Redhat 7.1. There has not been one program which can with the box that wasn’t stable. Some online web editors have known to be unstable. One I know that is unstable is Blueprint. I was able to boot both Windows XP and Linux using Partition Magic 8.0. But it can be done with out. The key element is when you boot your Windows XP Upgrade Installation Disc into the CD ROM be sure to have the current Windows XP installation wiped out entirely. I got confused when the installation screen told me if I choose to boot a second Windows operating system with my current one. The installation process is easy. But be aware that KDE software doesn't install on default. So I had to check the software I wanted. Redhat recognized all my hardware. Which is good.

II. The Difference

Looking at the professional job Redhat has done, Linux is every bit as cool as Windows. Gnome Desktop version 2.1 is easier then ever. I guess I almost prefer Gnome to KDE now. Gnome has more a Windows touch. Icons seem to be more illustrated then in Redhat's 7.1 version. This is also what everyone else on the web says about Redhat 8.0, but it is true that Redhat made Gnome a little more user friendly. Gnome has a lot of help menus and show how the shell works. You can always click on the file menu. Gnome’s programs are all GNU programs working for the GNU Project. KDE, the other desktop is written in open source code. KDE is the commercial version of Linux shells. Both shells run all the programs on the other shell. It makes things much easier. KDE sort of resembles Windows. KDE has cloned every application that Gnome has including a web browser. A lot of people like Linux because they have the same file system. Your saved files automatically go to /home/student. No one can access your files if they have a different user name. It’s the security thing they have in Unix.

Open Office is the word processor from Sun Microsystems used in Red Hat 8.0. This processor is different from Microsoft Word in that it’s free and has open source code. This word processor can spell check and grammar check like Microsoft Word can. Open Office can import Word documents on IBM formatted floppies. It was better then KDE Office which crashed on me when I ran Red Hat 7.1 six months ago. Gnome makes an Office suite developed under the GNU Project including AbiWord, Gnumeric (spreadsheet) and Agubuis (similar to powerpoint.)

Take it that I am done taking the college class and learned how to make and change directories and files in Terminal. Even the terminal has been updated in this version of Linux. Everything that deals with file creation has been updated to 2001 / 2002 standards, which is good. That's why Redhat Linux 8.0 is bigger then 7.1.

Linux rarely crashes. But even if it does - it usually is because the kernal didn't mount correctly (AKA files didn't get enough electricity) and the system had a panic attack. Sometimes all you have to do is restart Linux. If you are a super user[9] you can go into the etc directory and find that security file that will do dynamics (some files may be corrupted and can effect your boot up) Like Windows, you have to be careful what you touch, because these files aren't replaceable. But a good super user in Linux will know not to customize the console even though that's what a super user is for. The user has to set a user and password for many users. All documented in the /etc/passwd. In many high schools, the server they use doesn't protect the system files. Linux is cool in that no one can touch the Root directory or /etc or /bin directories unless they have a passwd. It almost makes Linux fool proof. Then again, we use Redhat the same way a hacker [10]would use it. They use it because they know it's stable!!! Yeah, so I bet everyone knows it's not hacker proof.

The Pluses in Redhat 8.0

1.) A new office suite made by Sun
Microsystems. Open Office is more stable then KWord and does more stuff!

2.) Redhat updated Mozilla to version 1.1. It beats older versions because it doesn't crash ever when in 7.1 it crashed a few times. I noticed at least one enhancement that
made surfing the web better.

3.) The VI Editor makes website updating easier.

4.) Redhat now comes with more
systems files and drivers. I always had a hard time finding files for
programs I downloaded off the web. Now I can use more of them.

5.) Package Manager is easier to use. It is a wizard now instead of a client like WinZip. The gzip unity is also a good command to zip files.
6.) Still reads my gaming guides I previously burned on cd.

III. The V Improved Editor "VI"

Linux has all the power with a handy little tool that Unix users like to use as a text editor. Except some users use the notepad to edit text. Notepad is still great for taking college notes. Technical people use the Vi editor to edit files on Linux / Unix. Vi is like any other text editor except users can also use the keyboard to scroll up / down / sideways; yank /paste or build working command files. I know nothing about how advanced users can change how Linux boots by customizing certain system files. Most likely I would use Vi to read HTMLs. No need for updated software. Vi is updated each time there is a new version of RedHat.

DOSedit is outdated. You needed plugins that worked in the DOS emulator that is hard to find and not guaranteed to work. One of many major improvements Unix had over MS Windows. Until 4 years ago you couldn't find any advanced editor like Vi. Download the GVIM editor for the MS Windows.

In most beginning college classes, teachers don't except you to know the VI editor that well cause of all the commands used in the Kconsole or Gnome Terminal (same program)

IV. The Terminal

The terminal [11] is the text command line type window aspect of all Unix Operating Systems. The terminal is for some people are the opposite of most computer users, no mouse clicking, type everything. The terminal is also used when Linux (the GUI isn't functional) Type in the command to eliminate human error. Linux users use many commands accompanied with filenames in it.

Terminal Commands Examples

> cd /parent directory/directory - brings you up to next directory

> gzip /o filename - compresses file and adds it to the directory

> ls -1 - lists files in current directory with # of links / date / size

> dr - lists the partition sizes hda 1, hda 3 and Linux Swap unusually

> man 'command' - Gives a adequately description of the command your using.

> vi filename - edits any file

> tail -1 filename - takes the last line of a document

> cp filename filename2 - copies files to another file

> grep "contents" filename - this unity shows results on words found in files. grep can print sentences with the word in the terminal.

The Terminal comes with updated versions of common unities like Mtools (let's you modify Windows discs in Linux through the terminal) Redhat 8.0 reads any floppy disc with no problem. The grep tool looks at a larger range of files then in Redhat 7.1. It makes it easier then entering that inode number to find a file. The Manuel onboard Linux is a updated and documents all of 8.0 many unites.

V. The New Fun wear in Redhat 8.0

Gimp has completely designated the competition and crowned itself the only competitor in graphic design on Linux. If you want to draw and have fun drawing, Gimp has a simple drawing tool. If it is your favorite car or a sketch of a anime character, you’ll find that Gimp has it all. Gimp includes intelligent background color copying. It can do many effects such as remove red eye from pictures. Lighten and darken pictures is no problem in Gimp[12]. Yank a part of picture out of image and paste it. So basically Gimps an image editor and paint tool all in one! People are waiting for Gimp 2.0 to come out in 2004. It’s suppose to be more powerful then the present Gimp.

The games of Redhat 7.1 have returned. Some even updated. You can't really tell a difference between the old and the new. One game that is now aboard Linux is Chess. I wanted to play Chromium (a space shooter) but it won't run properly if OpenGL isn't configured. It was too bad because I wanted to play Tux Racer as a side game. One positive turnout of Redhat 8.0 is it recognizes the latest video card. I own an Nvidia Geforce 2 MX and ATI Radeon 9000. An operating system always runs better with a good video card installed. Else the fricken monitor My favorite game in Linux is Ksirlet. I play it only because it is a tetris game. Tetris is cool and will never die. Ksirlet is much harder to play then most Tetris style type clones. However the game increases its speed and like all games aboard Redhat. You have to use some strategy and a quick pointing finger in most of them. I also was trying to stack up points in that connect four games Linux comes with. Linux 8.0 comes with an extra space shooter unlike Maelstrom that's really hard to play. It's a more recent version of Maelstrom called Chromium. The overhead shooter is a great game. Unfortunately most graphics cards have hard time running OpenGL in Linux.

VI. Battle of the Browsers

Mozilla 1.01 [13]now replaces Netscape Communicator. Mozilla is like Internet Explorer in that it displays web pages with limited frame space. When I say that, it means that Mozilla cuts text off certain areas. Since Mozilla appeared in 1998, it has improved a lot. Sometimes it has a hard time reading _JavaScript from html made exclusive to Internet Explorer. Microsoft Front Page would generate html files with their form of html compiler. That cursed all web browsers build in Linux I use Mozilla composer for all my webpages. But I do most of my webpage editing in Windows.

The KDE shell has their own version of browser is Konqueror[14] This browser can read html better then Mozilla. There is a problem looking at flash on Konqueror because flash won’t show up. Web surfing I guess doesn't really matter since both browsers can read html 5.0 source code. Mozilla has a html editor built in. It can recognize most webpages. Mozilla has the only html editor you’ll ever need. Obviously. Both browsers use Sun’s java applet. Sun, however wasn’t able to configure java so it could run java applets so I can’t see java graphics I made in Windows. I have a problem with not being able to see the same java script, I seen in Internet Explorer.

VII. Communication Software bundled with Redhat

Anyways, Linux comes backward capable with Microsoft's latest OS, Windows XP. Redhat can see Windows files and folders off CDROM and though a network. And this of course is good because it can read txt files, mp3 files and html files off Windows servers. Yay. Linux users praise you for this ability. One thing I've noticed in 8.0 is Network Device[15] control no longer a client like Package Manager[16]. It's more a wizard and knows exactly what to look for when combining Windows and Linux though a network. I had a little trouble having Linux recognize the ping that the host system had, but it works pretty well. That proves that the ping work. But I still haven't seen how to transfer files. Perhaps Mozilla could help me on that. Something like FTP://129.900.29.90 could do the trick.

I also like Gaim, which is the premiere instant messenger for Linux. It has all the instant messengers packed in one. The version loaded with Redhat 8.0 isn't the latest version. I recently downloaded the latest version.

VIII. Want to get to know Linux on a moderate Scale?

I learned Linux through a book called "A Practical Guide to Red Hat Linux 8" by Mark G Sobel © 2002". Mark is a long time Linux Programmer whom helps create programs for the Linux Kernel for 30 years. His book tells of all the terminal commands plus all the System Administer key functions with easy to read syntax. His book is also used in technical colleges everywhere in the United States. I skim though many of these chapters are pick up many key commands in Linux. The book also allows me to look back quickly when I forget. If I didn't have this book, I wouldn't be able to get a B average in my class.

IX. Why should I go out and buy a new version?

In the end, if you haven't tried Redhat Linux 8, just go out and buy it. If you have Redhat 6.1 loaded on the computer and can't use my copy of Redhat 8.0, go out and spend 80 bucks to get it. But, of course, Windows users who don't want to lose Windows should stay away from Redhat 8.0. It’s a small chance that your Linux partition won’t install correctly. As a result, you’ll use all your computer data. But this is a slight possibility and shouldn’t happen.

In short, Unix is not Linux. But, Linux spin off of Unix is better. In my opinion, Linux is taking over Unix as a preferred operating system. Some people already now this, and won’t admit it for a reason that’s not legit, so I made this report to tell people that Unix is a thing of the past. Linux is the future.

Ian | rev 1.41 | March 19, 2003


Anonymous said...

I find it weird how one person hate microsoft but love linux?I mean it seem to me it so emtional the hate,I ahve tried firefox and I dislike that my favorite places is gone.So back I am with bill gate :) unix operating system

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