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Linux on Windows, Linux in Hollywood, and Diskless MiniPCs

by chromatic
Linux Newsletter for 05/03/2004

Welcome, everyone, to the Linux newsletter, the once-a-week mailing of new articles and weblogs of interest to system administrators, developers, and users of Linux and open source software. Here are this week's articles.

If you've been in the Linux world for a while, you're probably familiar with the idea of dual-booting. Sometimes, you can't afford to give up an existing operating system to try out another. There are more sophisticated approaches, whether running an emulation layer that intercepts and translates API calls or pretends to be another operating system altogether. The new Linux 2.6 kernels even support User Mode Linux, allowing you to run a Linux system atop another Linux system. Of course, that doesn't really help Windows users who want to try out Linux. That's where coLinux comes in. KIVILCIM Hindistan's coLinux: Linux for Windows Without Rebooting explains how to install coLinux, a featureful Debian distribution atop a running Windows machine without destroying your Windows partition or, well, rebooting. Very clever.

If you're already happy with dedicated Linux, perhaps you're more interested in hearing about new and useful applications. Howard Wen's latest article, CinePaint: The GIMP Goes Hollywood, explores a high-powered, high-fidelity, and sadly, abandoned experiment by the GIMP developers that has undergone a dramatic resurrection. Some big special effects studios love open source software — here's one piece of it.

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Finally, recent real-life discussions have focused on using old 486s and Pentium computers as OpenBSD firewalls. While they do the job, their noise, power consumption, age, and performance are less than impressive. Michael Lucas' Diskless, Low-Form-Factor OpenBSD Systems provides a nicer alternative. Perhaps a miniature PC is right for you. Here's how to make one work without requiring a disk or a Compact Flash card.

This week's weblogs feature Simon St.Laurent asking why use media devices that perform filtering, your editor pointing to decentralized free music rating and discovery services, Andy Oram defending Sun and JDS against unwarranted criticisms, brian d foy posting a laptop features wishlist, David Sklar pointing out the false privacy of email, and your editor again asking if practicing artificial scarcity leads to better code.

That's all for this week. Upcoming article topics include open source for Africa, why assembly language still isn't dead, and the final part of an interview with the PF developers.

Until then,

chromatic

Technical Editor
O'Reilly Network

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