What is Linux?

From smart phones to cars, supercomputers, home appliances, Linux operating system everywhere.

Who. It has existed since the mid 90s, and since then has reached the user base that spans industries and continents. For those in the knowledge, you understand that Linux is actually everywhere. It’s in your phones, in your cars, in your refrigerators, and in your Rocco appliances. It runs most of the Internet,

and super-computers make scientific breakthroughs, and stock exchanges in the world. But before Linux became a platform for running desktops, servers and embedded systems around the world, it was (and still is) one of the most reliable, secure, and worry-free operating systems available.

For those who are not in the know, do not worry – here is all the information you need to get up to speed on the Linux platform.

Like Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Mac OS X, Linux is an operating system. An operating system is software that manages all the hardware resources associated with your desktop or laptop. Simply put, the operating system manages the communication between your software and your hardware. Without the operating system (often called “OS”), the software would not work.

The operating system includes several parts:

Bootloader:  the software that manages the boot process of your computer. For most users, it will simply be a startup screen that will appear and eventually be launched in the operating system.

The kernel: this is one of the parts of the whole called “Linux”. The kernel is the kernel of the system and manages the CPU, memory and peripherals. The kernel is the lowest level of the operating system.

Daemons: these are background services (printing, sound, scheduling, etc.) that start at boot time or after logging into the desktop.

The Shell: You’ve probably heard about the Linux command line. This is the shell – a command process that allows you to control the computer via commands entered in a text interface. This is what, at the same time, scared people away from Linux (assuming they had to learn a seemingly archaic command line structure to run Linux). This is no longer the case. With modern desktop Linux, there is no need to touch the command line.

Graphical Server: This is the subsystem that displays the graphics on your monitor. It is commonly called the X server or simply “X”.

Desktop Environment: This is the piece of the puzzle that users actually react to. There are many office environments to choose from (Unity, GNOME, Cinnamon, Illuminations, KDE, XFCE, etc.). Each desktop environment includes built-in applications (such as file managers, configuration tools, web browsers, games, etc.).

Applications: Desktop environments do not offer the full range of applications. Like Windows and Mac, Linux offers thousands and thousands of high-quality software titles that are easily accessible and installed. Most modern Linux distributions (more on this in an instant) include App Store tools that centralize and simplify the installation of applications. For example: Ubuntu Linux has Ubuntu Software Center (Figure 1) which allows you to quickly search among thousands of applications and install them from a centralized location.

 

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