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Posted on 2006-10-19
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Last Modified: 2013-11-15
Hi,

I have experience in using windows operating system, but if I want to learn Linux or Unix shell scripting by my own , How can I do that? Could I able to install these software on windows or not?  or I need to buy new orperating system(Linux or Unix)?

Any help would be appreciated? Thanks in advance.
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Question by:Smruti1
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Lee W, MVP earned 125 total points
ID: 17767544
Solaris, a version of Unix, is free so you can download that.

MOST versions of linux are also free.  You can download them by picking the one you'd like to use at www.distrowatch.org.  Most are fairly similar, but each distro comes with it's own unique collection of software (most of the software will run under other distros, but may not come with them)

In my opinion, the best way to learn is to start out using a live CD (which is a version of linux that runs ENTIRELY off the CD - nothing to install).  One of the most popular versions of linux that runs this way is Knoppix - www.knoppix.net - there are also well over 100 other distributions and the more commonly recommended include Ubuntu (www.unbuntu.org) and Suse.

If you're ready to install, then I would suggest you get yourself a copy of Virtual PC or VMware (both are free now) and then you can create a VIRTUAL computer within Windows that can Run Linux.

Keep in mind, linux is NOT a windows program - it's not Windows either.  Windows programs, while there are ways of getting many (NOT ALL) to work under linux, it's usually a painful thing to get setup.  But most windows programs have free/open source equivalents.... for example, Microsoft Office can be substituted with OpenOffice (which in most major distributions is included).
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by:Smruti1
ID: 17767648
Thank leew for quick response.
I have Windows xp (personal edition) at my home, still can I download Linux or Unix?

Thanks in advance.
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17767708
Well, I've never heard of XP Personal Edition... There's XP Professional and XP Home... but that is not relevent.  

Microsoft doesn't block you from downloading anything... but you will need to burn the ISO image properly on a CD (unless you use Virtual PC or VMWare, that can mount ISO images as if they were in CD-ROM drives).

Info on burning ISO images: http://iso.snoekonline.com/iso.htm

Now, I'll repeat myself:

Solaris, a version of Unix, is free so you can download that.

MOST versions of linux are also free.  You can download them by picking the one you'd like to use at www.distrowatch.org.  Most are fairly similar, but each distro comes with it's own unique collection of software (most of the software will run under other distros, but may not come with them)

In my opinion, the best way to learn is to start out using a live CD (which is a version of linux that runs ENTIRELY off the CD - nothing to install).  One of the most popular versions of linux that runs this way is Knoppix - www.knoppix.net - there are also well over 100 other distributions and the more commonly recommended include Ubuntu (www.unbuntu.org) and Suse.

If you're ready to install, then I would suggest you get yourself a copy of Virtual PC or VMware (both are free now) and then you can create a VIRTUAL computer within Windows that can Run Linux.


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Author Comment

by:Smruti1
ID: 17767987
Thanks leew.
sorry for the mistake, It is a XP home  edition.

Thanks for your help.
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by:Morcalavin
Morcalavin earned 125 total points
ID: 17769163
Once you've chosen a linux distro(I suggest either Kubuntu, Ubuntu, or Xubuntu).  You have the following options:

Download/request a live cd(if available):
You can run the entire OS off of the live cd.  Just pop it in, reboot your pc and it should boot off the disk.  If it doesn't you may need to make sure your cd-rom drive is set up to boot in the bios.

Download an install disc:
If you do this, you will need a program that can wite a disc image(usually an .iso) to a cdrom.  Once this is done you can chose to install the new OS on top of your old one(this ERASES everything) or beside the current operations system(this means you will have both WINDOWS and LINUX) and you can choose which operating system to boot to on startup.  Dual-booting is a bit advanced, so use extreme caution since you don't want to erase your hard drive.  You can choose to partition your existing hard drive, or install the OS on another hard drive(recommended).

You can also download vmware player and load the OS on that.  That way you can be logged into windows and play around with linux at the same time.  Depending on how old your computer is and the version of linux you get, your performance may vary.  I personally run XP Pro and Xubuntu(vmware) at the same time with little to no noticible perfromance issues.

The thing with linux is choice.  It's overwhemling at first, but once you realize that YOU are in control over what your OS is capable of, you'll wonder why you didn't try it sooner.
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by:Aida2
Aida2 earned 125 total points
ID: 17781319
Hello,
Download vmware and install a linux on windows (very easy ) and you can spool back if you do something wrong in os.
You can download 30 days free vmware on linux from http://www.vmware.com
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by:Morcalavin
ID: 17781558
VMWare player is free and has unlimited usage.
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by:Aida2
ID: 17786889
Hello
Yes vmware PLAYER is free but you can't create your own os in just player you need to download a f.x vmware workstation.
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by:Morcalavin
ID: 17787793
Yes, but there is really no need to download a 30-day workstation trial if you can get the player for free, especially when all you want to to is try out software or practice installs.  If you want to create a complete home os environment, then running a vwware workstation is pretty silly anyway, since you can just do a real install on your primary or a secondary harddrive.
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by:ctwaley
ctwaley earned 125 total points
ID: 17809630
Another solution to add to the mix is to install Cygwin on the windows box........This will provide a pretty good linux environment if you want to learn about the command line..........

Otherwise, I'd go with a livecd as pointed out by leew, which are becoming the norm for most distros these days, thanks to Klaus Knopper for his Knoppix cd........You _can_ install a 'Nix desktop using xorg or xfree86 as a base in Cygwin, but that would be rather pointless with all the livecd's out these days........
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