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Linux - 1 week later
29 June 2017
Posted in General

I consider myself to be quite the computer veteran. Having started with PCs in 1989 (after 5 years of using home computers) and used a couple of different operating systems (started with DOS with later added QEMM/Desqview for 'multi-tasking' (or rather time-slicing on a 386DX machine), then OS/2 (versions 2.11, Warp 3 and Warp 4) to hop to Windows XP in 2002 and Windows 7 in 2007). But Linux is something completely different though. While the GUI is much like OS/2 and Windows had, the system that runs thingsin the background is completely different.

Like my programming activities where I learn the system begind the language, Iḿ taking a similar approach for Linux as well. And while it sounds like 'pun intended' with Linux being a system already, DOS, OS/2 and Windows all have in common that they more or less had the same 'grand mother', being DOS itself. It was not too hard to work on the command line of those opeating systems at all. From the earliest DOS version I used (which was 2.x iirc) up to the latest (version 6 of which I still have the 3.5"discs) as well as OS/2-DOS (which actually was caller that way) and the Windows DOS prompts, they all used the same commands, both native to the COMMAND.EXE (or CMD.EXE for Windows) as well as the external 'tools' that came with the DOS versions.
Linux is completely different. While the native commands are quite similar (dis, ls, rd and such), the administrative commands are totally different. The SUDO command allowing me to get into the administrative tools (which are equal to the external tools for DOS) are quite differently though. For that I'm reading some ebooks I've bought as well as using Google a lot to see how things work. Good thing though that there are also quite a lot of GUI tools (Synaptics being the most important one) to make things easier, but as said, I much rather learn how to use the system itself than let (3rd party) tools do things for me.

Then there's the thing about my programming tools. I wanted to be 'free' of Windows, and while knowing that not every tool I need is available for Linux (yet), I also didn't want to install WINE (Windows Is Not Emulated). Sadly though, that didn't seem to be an option for me. Certain Windows tools that I've been using while programming are too important not to use again, OR the data I've already created take too much time to convert them to a Linux equivalent (like my flowchard for the Modern System Reference Document - this image is already an old version). For these old tools, as well as some of my Steam applications that I'm missing I've decided to get WINE anyway...

Gaming under Linux is something important to mention as well. While I'm gaming more and more on my PS4 for the last haf year, there are still some games that I want to play. It's a good thing thatthose games are available for Linux and I have installed those. It's also fun to point out that a game like Borderlands 2 runs a lot smoother under Linux with all settings maxed out than it does under Windows
The only thing I need to figure out is how to get nVidia PhysiX to work under Linux. While not being overly important, I think it'll be one of those fun things to get to work. I've already seen that the nVidia drivers did install Vulkan (now figure out how to use it when programming ), but using both PhysX for my games (Borderlands 2 uses it) would be AWESOME. And for programming using them both at the same time would be great as well, though I think Vulkan might be stong enough already to ditch PhysX completely...

Last but not least, the Ubuntu community. I've subscribed to the /r/Ubuntu subreddit and I gotta say that the community is great. Asking questions doesn't result in downvotes and negative comments, it's quite the opposite (and something to get used to). When I ask a question, I get a lot of upvotes, even if people don't comment on it. And those people who comment come with real good answers. If you want to switch to Linux, I'd say get over there as well for some real good help and general information!


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