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Why bring home the penguin?


Linux could mean saying goodbye to all that junk lovingly downloaded from

Tucows.com or any magazine CD. There is something called WINE, which allows you

to run Windows software under Linux, but I am still yet to figure out the

error messages it throws up. Maybe I am supposed to drink wine to forget all

that software.

However the good news is that you know have access to another world of

software, most of it being free and legal. A lot of it is still under

development and new stuff is being added all the time. I tried out a few as


Office suites: Star Office is the best. Takes time to load up, but is worth

the wait. The best news is that it recognizes Word documents so you do not have

to junk all those love letters you have been writing to your sweetheart.

Word Processor: I tried out AbiWord. It is small, easy to use and opens Word do

cuments. You can download it from www.abisource.com . It is freeware.

Email Clients: KDE comes with its own email client called Kmail which is quite

good. However the address book is skimpy and has no export/import facility.

Browser: Netscape for Linux is a very poor cousin of its Windows original. I

was highly disappointed. Opera is supposed to be good but is not freeware.

File Managers: There is a KCommander to replace Windows Commander but it still

under development and lacks many familiar features. Knc is a Norton Commander

clone and is quite good. Those of you using and liking Windows Explorer are

advised to stick to Windows.

Anti-Virus: Ha! Who needs those. Good bye Mcafee and Dat files.

Image Editing: PhotoShop for Linux ? Sorry, Adobe is yet to see the writing on

the wall. I am yet to try Corel Paint so I cannot comment. However, I did

try out GIMP which is a close clone of PhotoShop. Caldera ships something

called Cameleo which looked a bit daunting.

Games: Well, if you still have the time and energy, there is plenty of that

stuff in Linux.

Loading software packages: There are things called RPMs and Tar files. Add to

this strange commands like tar xvfz KCommander2-0.50.tar.gz and you will start

longing for that familiar Windows Install screen. Installing software in Linux

is quite a chore although KDE does offer something called Kpackage which tries

to simplify the job.

Accessing the Floppy and CDROM drive: Welcome to the world of mount and