a somewhat off-topic question about linux

Duncan Booth duncan.booth at invalid.invalid
Sat Mar 25 21:53:41 CET 2006


John Salerno wrote:

> I'm interested in trying out Linux, probably Ubuntu, but I was wondering 
> which distribution you guys like to use (because it's a pain trying to 
> decide!) and you guys are smart.

If you just want to try out Linux then a very easy way is to use VMWare 
Player: download it from http://www.vmware.com/products/player/. You can 
then run almost any Linux you wish directly on your windows system, no need 
to reboot or anything. Start with Browser Appliance which is a cut-down 
installation of Ubuntu (but it is configured so that things like the 
clipboard interact properly with Windows clipboard, and you can share files 
by sharing folders on windows and connecting to them from Ubuntu). Then you 
can use the package manager (on the System menu) to install Python and 
other packages (when it asks for a password use 'vmware' if you are using 
the default 'vmware' user).

You need about 2Gb of free disk space to install and use VMWare and Browser 
appliance: all of the Linux file system is stored in one file which expands 
as required up to 9.5Gb maximum (it helps performance if you keep the file 
defragmented: use contig.exe from www.sysinternals.com).

Once you have Vmware installed, as well as Ubuntu, you can also download 
Linux images for Novell/Suse, RedHat and literally dozens of other versions 
of Linux and Unix variants, some preconfigured for specific applications 
try them out and then throw them away. The only limits are your disc space.

> 
> And to keep it Python related, I'll also ask, is there anything special 
> I need to know about using Python on Linux? Do any things change, or can 
> it be used just as I use it on Windows?
> 
The main difference is that it is much easier to install packages which are 
part of the Ubuntu distribution: just run up the package manager, select 
the ones to install and download and install happen automatically.




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