PC Tips

In this section, I'll be housing tips relating not just to personal computing, but anything sys-admin, networking, or similar (until I have such a collection under a specific topic that I should consider a dedicated section).  I prefer linux as my desktop, but I still do some gaming (which requires windows), and the applications I use for my job also require maintaining a windows desktop.  Some of these applications were abandoned so long ago that they're a struggle to run even on windows XP.  I loathe both windows vista and 7; I view windows 7 as a simple relaunch of windows vista, and avoid it as much as possible.  The only modern platform I like less than win vista|7 is apple.

Linux is a difficult operating system to work with at times.  It wasn't born from the Microsoft mentality of "the user is an idiot" and "everything is the OS."  Linux was born from the geekdom of "who needs a GUI?!"

Don't misunderstand me!  For the last several years, linux has been my preferred desktop.  I got started in linux in the late 90s.  Back in those days, as today, I really liked the idea of free software.  The best thing about the FOSS paradigm is that everything is free to build on everything else.  In windows, there's a lot of reinventing the wheel in applications which increases the overall footprint of every application.  In linux, applications are 'packages,' and they all build off the same core dependencies.  Sure, there are some competing projects, but there is also a lot of standardization that comes from everyone playing in the same sandbox.  Also, by using the same blocks to build applications, those blocks become more secure.  I fully believe in security through transparency.

Back in the 90s, I was diddling around with RedHat, truly had no clue what I was doing, and was very bad at it anyway!  I used linux for my servers and development environments for a long time; I was primarily running slackware, gentoo, and fedora.  I jumped onto the Ubuntu bandwagon back around version 6 and enjoyed how easy linux was becoming for someone who was familiar with the environment.  I'm currently giving fedora another try just to see how it's coming along.  As I increasingly move into the cloud, the desktop becomes increasingly less important to me, and it's easier to move to and fro between operating systems because I'm carrying less baggage with me!