About Linux

Linux is an operating system for your computer. Windows and MacOS are other operating systems, and Linux serves the same function as those. That is, it lets you interface with your computer. However, it has several advantages over those more commonly known alternatives. First and foremost, it is free, as in freedom. You have the freedom to get a copy, give copies to your friends, install it on as many machines as you like, do whatever you want with it, and even change the underlying source code for most common Linux programs to make them better fit your needs. It is also possible to obtain most versions of Linux at no charge over the Internet. Linux is very customizable; Linux desktop can look very similar to Windows or nothing like it, depending on your aesthetic taste.

Patterned after the venerable UNIX operating system, Linux is built for security, stability, and reliability. Linux machines are often up for months or years at a time, and you will likely not have to reboot except when upgrading the most core component of Linux, the kernel, which is an infrequent operation. By default, actions you take cannot affect more than your personal files; it takes a special password to affect the system as a whole. For this and many other reasons, viruses and worms like Blaster, Welchia, and SoBig are nearly unheard of on Linux.

There is an amazing wealth of information available about Linux on the Internet; this is one of the many advantages of the operating system. Following are links to sites which provide information suitable for beginners.