Geeks With Blogs

News This blog is dedicated to discussing how to get both Microsoft's Windows operating system and the Linux operating system working together to YOUR advantage in today's increasingly media connected homes.

Charles Conway Why can't we all just get along??? Linux and Windows really CAN work together!!!
     Well, it has taken me a while to actually get a post up but I'm going to try to work towards a weekly major post which will deal with relevant common themes I found in articles or ran into at work with minor "comment" or "pointer" posts on a roughly daily basis which will reference other articles which I found particularly relevant to the subject of this blog, getting Windows and GNU/Linux working together.  I'm also going to try to have a truly useful article dealing with making Windows and Linux working for you approximately once a month.

     Now, the first thing I would like to point out about this blog is that the articles and posts are about topics that I feel are relevant to one or more of the following areas;

1.  Getting Windows and Linux working together in a home network in the following roles;

     a.  With Windows as the primary desktop operating system and Linux in a supporting role providing an OS for a server of some kind.
     b.  With Windows and Linux as desktop operating systems in a mixed environment and Linux also in an additional supporting role as the OS of one or more servers.
     c.  With Linux as the OS of one or more servers providing services throughout the home with few or no desktops and limited, if any, other platforms beyond one or two systems providing administrative access to the servers.

2.  Promoting the use of Linux as a viable, even desirable, alternative to Windows as a media platform to enhance the ever growing popularity of media connected homes.

3.  Demystifying Linux and Windows so that even someone who is new to computing can easily compare the two operating systems side-by-side and make an informed decision based on their needs.

     The second thing I would like to point out is that the information and opinions I am going to be bringing to the table are exactly that... my opinions or will be influenced by my opinions.  The daily and weekly posts are going to be about my opinions about both Windows and Linux.  I consider myself a proponent, with certain reservations, of both operating systems as things stand right now and I also consider myself relatively objective about them both as well.  If events should change my opinions about one or both operating systems then I will do my best to let everyone who reads this blog or begins to follow it on any kind of basis know both what the shift in my opinion means and why my opinion changed.

     I also consider discussion a vital part of developing a thriving community and as part of that I will be happy to welcome comments, constructive criticism, and, of course, corrections when appropriate.  That being said I do NOT considering being an asshole a vital part of anything.  Anyone who believes that being abusive to others is an acceptable part of a dialog is NOT going to be welcome and will be warned only once... a second offence will result in the offender being permanently banned.  Behave like an adult and you get treated like one.  Act like a child and you may as well leave without posting. 

     Third, I am not some kind of Windows or Linux guru.  I simply enjoy using both operating systems depending on circumstances while remaining aware of the limitations and quirks of each.  That being said, I will do my best to research the topics of the articles I post as carefully as possible but there may be mistakes, more efficient ways of doing things than the instructions I post, or simply alternative methods.  I will more than welcome people willing to help by pointing out where I erred and who then post the correct information or alternate methods.  I aware that there may be many ways to achieve the same goal, especially when that is applied to Linux where the differences between distributions may result in major differences in how someone must go about achieving a desired result.

     Fourth, because I like to play with operating systems I am reasonably familiar with a number of different Linux distributions as well as most versions of Windows from Windows 95 on up to the present.  However, I am most familiar with, and am going to concentrate mainly on, the openSUSE and Debian/Ubuntu Linux distributions and Microsoft's Windows XP and Vista operating systems.  Why just those?  Because out of all the Linux distributions I've used those are the ones I've personally enjoyed using the most and Windows XP and Windows Vista are the primary versions of the Windows OS the mythical "typical" user is likely to be using.  Granted it is possible that someone might be using older versions of Windows such as Windows 2000 or Windows 98 or newer versions such as Windows 7 (which I will be talking about as well once it is in wide distribution and use).  As for Linux users, it is highly likely that someone stumbling across this blog may being using a different distribution of Linux than the ones I've listed here and that is fine

     Now, before we go any further, why don't I try to define who I consider a "typical" Windows user.  For simplicity's sake I am going to define the "typical" Windows user, as of the time I write this, as someone who has bought or acquired their computer at some point within the last five years, typically only uses their computer to browse the web, interact with others on Facebook, Twitter, or some other social networking site or chat client, and for email.  The "typical" user has little knowledge of how their computer works, what hardware may make up their system, and performs the majority of the tasks they use the computer for by rote.  In other words they may be reasonably proficient at using the computer to perform the tasks they routinely use it for but if/when something goes wrong they are at a loss when attempting to troubleshoot what is not working correctly or attempt repairs.  This does NOT mean that a "typical" user is dumb or mentally deficient.  It means they have other interests besides their computer and under normal conditions only use their computer as a tool to accomplish a limited number of tasks on either a regular or irregular basis.  They may also consider their computer as something as complex as the quantum dynamics in the heart of a star.

    The "typical" Linux user typically has at least a slightly higher average level of knowledge than the so-called "typical" Windows user and may utilize their computer for a greater range of tasks than the "typical" Windows user.  For all practical purposes as far as I am concerned it simply means that the range of knowledge levels described by the term "typical Linux user" is broader than the range described by the term "typical Windows User"... other than that the description used applies to both Linux and Windows users almost equally.

    Now before everyone reading this loses their temper and starts thinking that I have insulted them I want you to really THINK about the people you know and/or encounter.  Try simplifying things by breaking them down into imperfect but easily understood groups... It is more than likely that the vast majority of end users may know littler or nothing about the computers and applications they are using other than what they need to in order to do what they want to do.  A much smaller percentage has a high level of computer knowledge and are avid users with a good understanding of how to use their computer(s) to enhance their performance or to more easily achieve their desired goals.  An extremely tiny percentage of people can be described as "gurus" with a extremely high level of knowledge concerning hardware and/or software and can apply that knowledge towards expanding the capabilities of current hardware and/or software as well as possibly being innovators and influential in the design and/or developement of the next generation of hardware and/or software.

     This blog is aimed at the "typical" user who no longer wants to be a "typical" user.  They have realized that their computer has more capabilities than they are using and are seeking ways to gain the knowledge to take advantage of those capabilities OR are trying to learn how to discover what those capabilities may be.  This blog is also for people who want to take a reasonably objective look at Windows and Linux, don't want to leave Windows but want to take advantage of what Linux has to offer, or is looking to move from Windows to Linux.

   <LOL>  This post went a LOT longer than I had originally intended.  I hope what I've said here has gotten your interest.  I will admit that I might not be the most regularly posting blogger you are going to run across but I'll try to at least keep your interest and once I have a better idea of where I'd like this blog to head I hope you'll be along for the trip.
    Posted on Thursday, August 6, 2009 5:33 AM | Back to top

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