It all began with The Gnu Project. In 1983, Richard Stallman started developing Gnu as a goal to give Users Freedom over their system. At the time, Proprietary software was becoming a plague as it is today and created a lot of issues and controversy. Stallman believed users should be free from restrictions and should be able to view and change programs as they saw fit. Gnu is quite a clever name because it stands for "Gnu's not Unix". Unix, developed in 1969 by Bell labs as a research project was intended to meet the following objectives.
It was meant to be simple yet efficient. Written in a high level language, and allowing the re-use of code. The end result was a system that was mostly written in C with a small portion of assembly language called the Kernel.
But love of money intervened, Unix was priced high enough to make sure that individual home computer users could not use it. The source was closed and no solution was presented.
This brings us to Torvalds. Linus Torvalds developed the Linux kernel which combined with Gnu created a full operating system known as Gnu/Linux.
The community began to grow and development continued..
Today the Gnu/Linux system is widely used and very popular.
So what are the Advantages of using this system? What are The disadvantages?
We will start with disadvantages as they are few in comparison with the numerous advantages...
- Requires Intermediate knowledge of computer systems
- Also requires a persistent mindset to overcome bugs
- Takes some getting used to
Note: In most modern distributions, command line is not required but is very much recommended.
Now lets outline the advantages of the system.
- Completely free
- Free as in freedom
- More security
- Viruses can be a thing of the past
- Gaining of knowledge
- An ever-growing community
- Compatibility with some windows programs using Wine
- Large Software collection
- Can make modifications to suit your needs
Now as stated before It can take some getting used to if you are switching from a windows operating system, But with the recent disappointment of Windows 8 there is no better time to make the transition!
If you are interested in learning more, I recommend the wonderful documentary "Revolution OS".
What are you waiting for? Get started with Gnu/Linux Today, Join the vast community and help us grow!