If you have ever heard of Linux and were wondering if it was for you, you’re at the right place. Today, we are going to talk about Linux. For those of you who are not familiar with Linux, it’s an operating system similar to Windows.
Before we get this started, let’s make a few things clear. I personally use both Windows and Linux on my PC’s. And, I believe both of them have their respective use case scenarios.
However, if you are someone who wants to try out how an open-source operating system works, you are at the right place. Today in this guide, we will answer some of the most common queries of beginners regarding Linux. So, let’s dive straight into it.
What is LINUX?
LINUX is an open source family of operating systems based on the Linux kernel. It was built by Linus Torvalds. There are different distributions of Linux which are known as distros.
It was initially developed for personal computers but later used for running web servers. In fact, the majority of the web servers around the world use Linux as their primary operating system.
Did you know that Android devices also use Linux? It is used in handheld devices, personal computers, web servers and government offices as well.
This is due to the enhanced security features it brings to the table. In fact, most of the cloud infrastructure is powered by Linux. It includes supercomputers and cloud service providers. Majority of smartphones in the world are also based on Linux.
Some of the most popular Linux distributions include Debian, Fedora, and Ubuntu. There are also commercial distributions of Linux.
These include Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. The next section of this Beginners Guide for Linux will deal with some of its most important features.
Features of LINUX
For making the final decision, this section will prove quite useful. If you’re going to use Linux as your operating system of choice, it will depend on a lot of different factors. However, the deciding factor will be the features it provides.
There are numerous different features and functionalities Linux provides along with it. If I started to cover the complete set of features Linux provides, just this post won’t be enough.
So, In this Beginners Guide, I decided to list out some of the most prominent features of Linux down below:-
I mentioned above that most web servers are running Linux. This is because Linux is a very stable operating system. Updating system apps is a breeze through Terminal. Terminal is a command line interface for Linux.
You can even update your entire distro without even restarting your PC. Which allows the web server to stay online even while it is updating. Isn’t that great?
This is a major reason why most hosting providers offer Linux based servers as default. I believe this does prove that Linux is quite reliable for day-to-day usage.
It will also meet most of your requirements just fine. So say goodbye to the BSOD errors and enjoy a steady experience with your distro of choice.
It is arguably the most secure operating system in existence. First, it is open-source meaning everyone has access to it’s source code. You might believe for a second that if everyone can access it’s source code, then it should be more prone to attacks.
Your concern is a genuine one, however for every attacker with a malicious intent, there is one genuine volunteer fixing those bugs and vulnerabilities for you. Security has been the strongest suit of Linux for the longest possible time.
And by that, I mean after it’s arrival in the year 1991. Also, if you are still skeptical, you can check the entire source code of your particular distro by yourself. I hope that will put anyone’s mind at ease
This one is a key feature of Linux architecture. It is a multi user operating system. Which means multiple users can access the system at the same time.
It is a great addition to an already great architecture. As a single system can share its resources with a large number of users. The feature comes in handy at different places.
Where one system is used for sharing resources with a large number of users at the same time. Particularly at offices and at large corporations.
It’s possible for the user to customize the entire operating system according to your needs. You can change the wallpaper and screensaver in all the modern operating systems.
But in Linux, you can do much more. Such as not even using Graphical User Interface at all. Terminal can be fine tuned to perform special operations only. You can even change the role of hardware functions.
An example of this would be ‘Using shift as Enter Key on your Keyboard’. Advanced users can even tweak the system to its core.
This is just scratching the surface of the iceberg for personalization options. Users can pick a distro of their choice and experiment with the customization options for themselves.
Snappy and Responsive
This point here is pretty self explanatory. As Linux is not a resource hog for your system resources. It uses the least amount of system resources.
As it is very lightweight in comparison to other popular operating systems. This is because it was built with keeping performance in mind. And as a result, it does not strain the hardware much.
It can even breathe new life into your old PC. And you can squeeze a few more years from your old computer. I have been using Linux Mint myself for my ancient home PC and for now, it does the job just fine.
Who should use Linux?
Linux can be used by anyone. It doesn’t matter if you are a regular user or an advanced one. Because you can use it to check mails at one end and work on VS Code at the other.
It can be a great option if you are looking for a lightweight operating system to breathe new life into your older hardware. You can also choose Linux if you are looking to try something new.
We have also sorted out some very beginner friendly Linux distros in this guide. The list of features I mentioned above are not even scratching the surface of things Linux is capable of.
You can choose the distro which is tailor made to fit your needs. Don’t worry, we will also discuss different distros in this article. Which will help you to pick your preferred OS.
Should you use LINUX?
Just like a lot of things in life, it depends. For a programmer, Linux is perfectly suited to their needs. It also fulfills the purpose of a cyber security expert.
You can definitely give it a try if you want to run your own home server for a DIY project. Linux fits all your needs. In short, Linux can be used by anyone and everyone.
Even beginners can easily get accustomed to using Linux as we previously mentioned in this guide. It was built as an open-source operating system kernel for users with varied needs.
However, it might take a little time to get used to the interface. But after using your preferred Linux distribution for a while, you will get used to it.
If you’re still on the edge if you should give Linux a try, you should take a look at these distros down below and decide for yourself. The next section of our beginners guide
Which distro is for you?
This is the section we have been talking about for a while. In this Beginners Guide, we bring answers to one of the most important questions related to Linux.
Which distro is right for you? To answer this, we have sorted out a few distros which will fulfill the different requirements of different users. Let’s get straight into it:-
If you want to try Linux and see for yourself what the hype is all about, Ubuntu is for you. It is a Linux distribution which is based on Debian. This provides a GUI which is slightly similar to Windows.
It is our recommendation in this guide as Ubuntu remains one of the most easy to use Linux distros for beginners out there along with Linux Lite.
Ubuntu provides you with an application store where you can click and install any utility of your choice. Due to Ubuntu’s extremely user-friendly UI, it is the preferred OS for regular users.
In addition to this, Ubuntu releases frequent updates of it’s OS every year to fix bugs and improve performance. There are 3 official versions which Ubuntu releases.
Two of them are widely used. One is for meeting the server requirements. And the other one is for normal users like me and you.
Debian is another popular Linux distribution. This is very similar to Ubuntu. However, there is a key difference between the two. Ubuntu is aimed at regular users.
While Debian is created to meet the requirements of advanced users. Debian is also just slightly more stable compared to Ubuntu. It is developed by the community-supported Debian Project.
The user interface is quite similar to Ubuntu in many aspects. Different programs are installed using Terminal. The application packages already included with Debian are LibreOffice, VLC Media Player, GIMP, etc.
It is a very popular choice for running servers due to it being one of the most stable distros out there.
This Linux distribution is for all the gaming enthusiasts out there. As it provides out of the box support for both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards. There are two variations of Pop OS.
One version is built for AMD GPU and the other one is built for Nvidia GPU. Pop OS provides many features out of the box. These are default disk encryption, streamlined window and workspace management.
The other major features include keyboard shortcuts for navigation and built in power management profiles and also an App Centre. You can install all of the required applications from the built in App Centre.
The distro has been created by American manufacturer System76. They also make laptops and PC’s which are designed to run on Pop OS.
This one is one of my favorite Linux distros out there. As I’m using one of them in my older machine at home. It is one of the most lightweight and feature rich operating systems I’ve come across.
This one is also our recommendation for beginners in this guide along with Ubuntu. You can use this Linux distribution to breathe new life into your aging computer. As it also comes with pre-installed software which you will need for day-to-day work.
One of my favorite included software packages is LibreOffice. If you want a bloatware free, lightweight OS, Linux Lite should be your pick.
Linus Torvalds, who is the founder of Linux, himself uses Debian. It has a large user base rivalling that of Ubuntu. The primary focus point of this Distro is to bring innovation.
Fedora comes pre-installed with LibreOffice and Firefox. If you are not sure if you should install Fedora on your drive, you can test it out by using a live USB first.
After you get comfortable using it with the live USB, you can then make the decision to install it in your hard drive.
We pretty much dealt with all the surface level stuff related to Linux. Yes, you heard it right. We did not even come close to learning everything there is to learn about this topic. But no worries as we will be bringing out more content like this in the near future.
We hope that our Beginners Friendly Guide for Linux solved some of your queries. And, if you enjoyed reading this one, add us in your bookmarks. Drop us an email if you have suggestions for us to improve our content.
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