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        The last couple of years or so has seen a revolution in the 
        Linux market. It has been quietly rumbling around for the best 
        part of this time and possibly even longer than that. I first 
        discovered it at Altparty 2004, thanks to Pahartik & Q-Funk 
        showing it to me when my laptop, which was running Windoze at 
        the time, was refusing to connect up to the party network at 
        all. The installation was originally run from a live CD, which 
        meant that all I had to do was to boot from it at first, 
        altering the boot sequence in the Bios of my laptop. All done 
        tickety-boo and I was soon back online, running Ubuntu Linux for 
        the first time, in it's guise under the release title of 'Hoary 

        Now those of you may recall that I dabbled with Linux for a bit
        in an earlier timescale, which is true to an extent, as I had
        got to grips by using Mandrake Linux. I didn't find that too
        comfortable and gave up soon afterwards, particularly as a lot
        of software did not want to work or do a similar job to that on
        Windoze at that time. Ubuntu, however, although it is still as
        stable as Mandrake was, offers much more, with packages that
        actually work and also do a job, unlike a lot of others.

        As Windoze itself wasn't working on my laptop too well, in quite 
        a short time after the end of Altparty 2004, I wiped it 
        completely and installed Ubuntu from scratch. It took quite a 
        while to install, bearing in mind that it had a lot of system-
        related code to run, but soon we got there and it took us to the 
        now-familiar Gnome desktop. Gnome was new to me as I had 
        previously used KDE with Mandrake Linux, now, after having used 
        the two, I guess you can definitely say that I'm a convert to 
        the world of Gnome !

        Gnome has, in my opinion, a more stable and standard desktop
        than any version of Windoze that I have used in the last few
        years. It is very functional too and ideal if you are starting
        out to use Linux for the first time. There are options included
        to get peripherals such as wireless networking in operation,
        along with standard ethernet fixed networking as and when.

        Ubuntu itself is based on the popular Debian distribution of 
        Linux, which in itself is one of the grand-daddies of the 
        operating system. While Ubuntu itself is more refined and is 
        therefore suitable for beginners, Debian itself cannot be 
        sneezed at either, although it would be more advisable to try 
        that out once you have more experience.

        Quite a few games work with Ubuntu, such as the ever-popular
        Doom and Quake. Some commercially-available games also now
        provide Linux loaders, enabling them to be played on non-M$
        systems. This has to be applauded, even if a strong factor
        against this is that that part of the software doesn't earn the

        Interestingly enough, the demoscene is also beginning to show 
        some fruit, with releases in Linux at most major parties in the 
        last 2-3 years. These demos normally work on Ubuntu without too 
        many problems and are worth looking at.

        There have been various versions of Ubuntu over the last couple
        of years, the intermediate distribution being codenamed 'Breezy
        Badger' and the most recent release in a matter of a few days
        ago at the time of writing, the all-new 'Dapper Drake'
        distribution.  I have had a preview of this distrib- ution
        running on my laptop for a fair while and I must say I am

        Ubuntu itself can be downloaded from

                                            Felice for Alive, 2006-07-30

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