The Practical Linux Lecture.

(At school I was going to give a 1 hour lecture on Linux, but I graduated, more like ran off. But I already had one written out and I felt it a waste to delete this, so I’m going to post it on my blog and hope people can enjoy it. Keep in mind this was at a tech school, it was written for Adult Computer technicians in training) 

(Nov 23, 2010)
As computer technicians, we see a lot of stuff, have a plethora of tools and access to lots of software many common folk simply have no idea exists. Whether it’s free or not, useful or junk, we have it available, how we decide to get it or use it, is up to us. Now we get straight to the point. Linux, how is it useful for you? Let’s begin with the basics and what exactly it is? How can we know how to use it, if we don’t know what it is? Ask what is Linux?

Well, Linux itself is an open-source kernel of the Minix Operating system, based on Unix. Or the family of Unix-like operating systems based on the Linux Kernel. Let’s see some straight up raw Linux Kernels. So to put it in basic simple terms. The heart of many OS’s. Just like Windows XP has the NT Kernel. Windows Vista/7 has the newer one, whatever it’s called.

But the Linux Kernel doesn’t simply apply to the an operating system.  Linux can be installed on a wide variety of computer hardware, ranging from mobile phones, tablet computers and video game consoles, to server mainframes and supercomputers. You can even compile (or make) your own and if you dare, just change out your kernel like an engine swap of your car. But let’s not get too crazy here.

Well that’s nice and all but you probably ask yourself, “When am I going to use it?” How many of you use Google? OK Facebook?  How many own an Android phone? See  the Wall Street Stock exchange, business websites, all those use Linux one way or another,  it’s almost everywhere except on the Computer desktop.  There’s many reasons why you use it everywhere except on your home machine, and frankly, it doesn’t matter why, what matters is how you can use Linux.

Well, lets begin with the smaller distributions. Live Antivirus. Have you ever worked with a computer so infected with viruses that you couldn’t even boot into safe-mode without having it pop up? It happens, and what to do? Well, the easiest thing to do and pop in a Live Antivirus cd and let it work it’s magic.

Many, if not all of antivirus cd’s are based on Linux. Why? mainly because it’s free and available for companies to modify and sell off as their own. It’s perfectly legal and part of the open-source agreement, not all Linux programs are like this however, but most are, Like this one.

(Demo mode.  of avg cd or other like kapersky live CD. on an infected virtual. )

(Demo- Show links for antiviruses for Linux, mainly Avast and Free Bit Defender scanners to install on Ubuntu for scanning heavily infected hard drives or scan off USB Ubuntu install.) (Show Simple homemade live USB scanner and tricks to get the antiviruses working.)

Now this is nice and all, but what if you need to recover the data, Let’s say Windows won’t boot on a certain machine you are working on, or maybe it’s not worth saving the machine from viruses and you find it best to just backup and reboot. You want to get the data out as fast as possible. There are some options like Acronis live CD (also based on Linux), but let’s not make things too easy. This involves my personal favourite distro. And the first one I ever tried. Puppy Linux.

Demo-Show website

This one boots into a GUI environment that runs purely in the ram. In fact, if your computer’s hard drive is infect, broken, or even missing. you will still be able to boot into this OS. It does not run off the CD, rather loads itself in the RAM, if you have enough. In fact, after it boots up, you can even take it out and put in another CD and it will work fine. There are other Linux distros that work the same way, SLAX for one, uses the KDE Desktop and is much nicer to use, but takes up more resources. But let’s get to the point. Say you want to recover the data of an infected hard drive.

(Now we demo mode the puppy Linux. Talk about the hard drive naming, the file-system scheme, (Show to to backup files to a USB) Show the GUI  menu. Not to compare with other distros because it’s light and meant for older pcs and quick run. Show example of multitasking craziness and ram usage,show other silly useless features like Abiword and install manager.)

Not all Linux Distributions work the same way, rather they have their own way of doing things, which is why it’s important to know what really goes on in your computer and how to get it to work manually in case the GUI breaks, which is often.

Show how to install VirtualBox Addition in Ubuntu using the command line.

(Now demonstrate the Ubuntu or Linux mint, or opensuse. Show the things it can do and just as same as windows such as Internet, burning, office suite, explain hardware compatibility and driver (module) issues, also show how Ubuntu forums and google offers fixes for many common problems. Show how to run adobe Photoshop using wine too. Plus LFS Windows game runs just as well, it’s all in the drivers.)

Finally to end it explain that Linux is great and awesome, in fact it is a viable OS as Windows and Mac OS X is, but takes time to learn. Its biggest downside. But it’s worth it because you get to learn more about how a computer works and you pretty much get to really make it your own. The benefits are too much to count so I’m only mentioning the downsides and headaches you may experience using this product, the GNU/Linux community is not responsible for any damage that you may incur when using any Operating System. May the FOSS be with you.


About Zerin

But can you show me the source code?

Posted on April 26, 2012, in Computers and Internet and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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