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  • CentOS versus Scientific Linux, 18 years of Slackware, Ubuntu Unity tips, “The Debian

    CentOS versus Scientific Linux, 18 years of Slackware, Ubuntu Unity tips, “The Debian Administrator’s Handbook”

    So what will it be, CentOS or Scientific Linux? In the past there was only one “real” free Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) clone and it was CentOS, but the long delay in delivering version 6, communication problems, resignation of a high-profile CentOS developer and, most importantly, delays in delivering errata updates, have made some people look at the hottest alternative – Scientific Linux. Here are one person’s conclusions after evaluating the two distributions: “Scientific Linux is definitely on the rise, and CentOS certainly needs to air out themselves a little. But at least with version 6.0, we’re still going to be going with our tried-and-true CentOS. I’m just not comfortable enough, yet, with the Scientific Linux community, mainly because they still don’t quite know how long they plan to keep their products alive. Out of this look at RHEL clones, though, the single biggest thing I’ve discovered is that I’m going to have to keep evaluating this choice down the road.”

    * * * * *

    Eighteen years and still going strong; which distribution could have such a tremendous staying power? Of course, we are talking about Slackware Linux, the world’s oldest surviving Linux distro, which last week celebrated 18 years since the release of version 1.0: “Slackware 1.0 was released by Patrick Volkerding exactly 18 years ago on 16 July 1993 in an official release when he was still a student. At that time, it was distributed on 24 disks (yes, floppy disks) and it only had two series, A and X. No one would ever have thought that it would once become the oldest maintained Linux distribution! In 1993, there weren’t many Linux distributions. Slackware was one of the first at that time alongside SLS, Debian GNU/Linux, Yggdrasil, and MCC Interim. It turned out to be so good that many other Linux distributions based themselves on Slackware, including SuSE Linux, VectorLinux, Slax, Zenwalk, Salix and many more.”

    * * * * *

    Ubuntu‘s Unity desktop has been the subject of long discussions ever since the arrival of “Natty Narwhal” nearly three months ago. Some love it, others hate it, and there are always those who keep using the desktop without having properly mastered its inner workings. Matthew Helmke, one of the authors of the Official Ubuntu Book, has written an article entitled “Ubuntu Unity: A GUI for Beginners and Experts“, which is a nice overview of the Unity desktop with some tips and tricks for users of all levels: “The computer mouse is a useful tool, but it can slow you down. This is a common complaint among power users. Learning keyboard shortcuts can improve productivity. Several are discussed below in ‘Using Unity as a Power User,’ but here’s quick one to whet the appetite. Use the Special key, often called the ‘Windows key’ and found between the Ctrl and Alt keys at the bottom-left of the keyboard, to open Shortcuts. Like the Dash, Shortcuts is a pop-up panel. You can also access Shortcuts by clicking the Ubuntu logo at the top-left of the screen with your mouse.”

    * * * * *


    Raphaël Hertzog, a well-known Debian developer, has emailed DistroWatch with some interesting news concerning the Cahier de l’Admin Debian, a popular Debian handbook written in French and co-authored by Hertzog. Up until now the book has only been published in French. But since it has turned out to be a huge hit among French-speaking Debian users, the authors have made a plan to translate it into English and release it under a free license: “The Debian Administrator’s Handbook is the title of the translation of the French best-seller known as ‘Cahier de l’Admin Debian’. Written by two Debian developers, Raphaël Hertzog and Roland Mas, it’s a fantastic resource for all users of a Debian-based distribution. Given that traditional editors did not want to take the risk to make this translation, we decided to do the translation ourselves and to self-publish the result. But we want to go further than this, we want the result to be freely available (that is under the terms of a license compatible with the Debian Free Software Guidelines of course). However it’s very difficult to spend several months of work without income. That’s why we’re going to run a fund-raising.”



    Source: DistroWatch.com
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