24 August 2006

Other reasons to like Linux

I recently had to head-butt an MS-Windows workstation. Spent some time pulling stuff from WAIX-connected mirrors, and a lot of jobs became much easier.

  • Pulling OpenOffice meant I could now make PDFs and repair some broken MS-Office documents;

  • Pulling PuTTY meant I could talk to my home machine;

  • Pulling XMing meant I could read email from home (and run other applications like Konqueror);

  • Pulling down The GIMP meant that I could actually edit images instead of using a cut-back (lobotomised) TuxPaint-like toy named MS-Paint;

  • Pulling Firefox meant that many web sites started working again, with tabs ’n’ other features;

  • Pulling Thunderbird meant that email started working again, and not shipping bonus copies elsewhere;

  • I wanted much other stuff, but it normally only works on (comes with, in many cases) Linux, not on MS-Windows. So I waited until I faced a Linux workstation again later.

The ’Doze machine also found itself a new virus when I tried using the misnamed LookOut again a little later on, so I was glad I’d already pulled down WinSCP & used it to store my work safely.

This is typical of the kinds of toys (no, not the virus) which “come with” a typical Linux installation but were an optional (& gradual) extra on ’Doze.

I typically leave ClamAV running on my servers, so if this workstation had been fetching its email through one of my Linux-based machines instead of MS-Exchange, it wouldn’t have even been virus-struck.