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$89.99 $89.88 list($99.99)
1. SuSE Linux Professional 9.3
$54.99 list($59.99)
2. SUSE LINUX Professional 9.3 Update
$329.99 list()
3. Red Hat Linux Enterprise ES 3
$79.99 $77.54 list($99.99)
4. Linspire Five.0 CNR Edition
$49.99 $11.93 list($84.99)
5. Mandrakelinux PowerPack 10.0
$74.99 $7.99 list($89.99)
6. Suse Linux Professional 9.2 Strong
$327.95
7. Novell SuSE Linux Enterprise Server
8. XANDROS Linux Desktop OS 3 Deluxe
$5.99 list($149.95)
9. RED HAT SOFTWARE Red Hat Linux
$59.99 $46.79
10. Linspire Five.0
$5.47 list($39.95)
11. Red Hat Linux 9.0 Personal
$9.90
12. MANDRAKE-LINUX PowerPack 10.1
$9.95
13. MANDRAKESOFT Mandrakelinux 10.1
$8.99 list($79.99)
14. Suse Linux 9.0 Professional Edition
$49.99 $9.99 list($59.95)
15. SuSE Linux Professional 9.2 Upgrade
$9.99 list($199.95)
16. RED HAT LINUX 7.3 PROFESSIONAL
$9.99 list($59.99)
17. Red Hat Linux 7.2
$49.99 $6.49 list()
18. Linspire Linux 4.5
$99.88
19. MANDRAKESOFT Win4Lin Pro ( PC
$9.99 list($149.95)
20. Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional

1. SuSE Linux Professional 9.3
list price: $99.99
our price: $89.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007XQBWQ
Catlog: Software
Manufacturer: SuSE Inc.
Sales Rank: 110
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • Leading graphics and multimedia applications: F-Spot photo organizer, the GIMP 2.2 and Inkscape graphics programs, multimedia viewers, CD/DVD burners and more
  • A complete Linux Operating System: SUSE LINUX OS built upon the Linux kernel 2.6.11
  • Multiple intuitive desktop environments: Latest KDE 3.4 and GNOME 2.10
  • A comprehensive set of Internet tools: Firefox 1.0 Web browser; e-mail and instant messaging clients
  • A complete office suite: OpenOffice.org 2.0 (works with Microsoft Office documents)

Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars 2 V. Ivanovskiy "Linux fan." : double quote key does work!
"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""
I install it on my notebook Dell Inspiron 8200. Instalation was fine as usual. All hardware works at once except wireless card in WPA-PSK and 108 MB/s mode. To install native NVidia driver I have to read documentation, yast work is not enough. I was surprised when discover that double quote key doesn't work in US international keyboard layout in KDE. Also I cannot install/remove any software after initial instalation from Yast, it is not able to find DVD in my drive. Every application starts very very slow. Compare to my previous SuSE 8.2 I would not say this distributive is better but hardware support is good.
"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""

Dell Latitude D400, SuSE 9.3, KDE 3.4, US International, double quote works :)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Distro
I find this version to be user friendly
looks like good competition for windows
Suse 9.3 Linux was very easy to install didn't take long at all
was so nice to only have to put in one dvd to install all
the software bundled on the dvd is excellent
the packages are all current with lots ofapplications browsers, email clients etc to choose
and with wine can run alot of windows programs if need to
Novell also provides great tech support on the install if troubles

4-0 out of 5 stars Advansys SCSI Cards Not Supported
Buyers who have a system with an Advansys SCSI card should know that SUSE dropped support for these cards beginning with version 9.1.(Some kernel hackers claim there are problems with the driver, though mine, which controls a Yamaha CD burner and an Epson scanner, has always worked fine.)This was a great surprise to me, since the Advansys cards had been supported on many distributions through many versions.

(The same thing happened with the Fedora spin off from the Red Hat distribution, but if I understood the discussion I found last night, the Advansys driver was restored, as of Core 3.)

3-0 out of 5 stars Very friendly distributive but with serious bugs.
I install it on my notebook Dell Inspiron 8200. Instalation was fine as usual.All hardware works at once except wireless card in WPA-PSK and 108 MB/s mode. To install native NVidia driver I have to read documentation, yast work is not enough. I was surprised when discover that double quote key doesn't work in US international keyboard layout in KDE. Also I cannot install/remove any software after initial instalation from Yast, it is not able to find DVD in my drive. Every application starts very very slow. Compare to my previous SuSE 8.2 I would not say this distributive is better but hardware support is good.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Linux Distro
A wonderful Linux distribution. Very intuitive and user-friendly installation. Good for both power users and novices.Great hardware support and easy to install.

Here's a partial list of the packages included in SuSE Linux 9.3:

Linux Kernel 2.6.11.4
KDE 3.4.0
Gnome 2.10.0
OpenOffice 2.0 beta
Mozilla 1.7.5
GCC 3.3.5
Apache 2.0.53
PHP 5.0.3
Samba 3.0.12
Xorg 6.8.2 ... Read more


2. SUSE LINUX Professional 9.3 Update
list price: $59.99
our price: $54.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007XQBX0
Catlog: Software
Manufacturer: SuSE Inc.
Sales Rank: 135
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Superb Linux Distro
Pros: Superb interface, very easy to use, full featured distro with over 2000 software applications, very good Yast control panel, excellent hardware support and security features. Top web browers Firefox and Conqueror with all plug-ins installed automatically. Blinded against viruses.

Cons: A bit of a memory hog, 512mb memory recommended. Linux distros do not support a lot of webcams.

I have been using Suse Pro for the past couple of years and their latest version is a gem. Sure it costs a bit more but what you get is the best Linux distro available. Very secure, Novell provides you with continous security updates. Excellent media support.

... Read more


3. Red Hat Linux Enterprise ES 3 Basic X86

our price: $329.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0001ELXZQ
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 4748
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4. Linspire Five.0 CNR Edition
list price: $99.99
our price: $79.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007XYRUY
Catlog: Software
Manufacturer: Linspire, Inc.
Sales Rank: 1335
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (11)

2-0 out of 5 stars Be Careful About the "Full Functionality" Hype
I'm a PhD student who needs Linux to access my advisor's on-campus cluster.I have a 3-yr-old Dell Dimension 4550 that has had trouble getting Linux to power all its drivers, particularly the media components.I've tried SUSE, Mandrake, and Fedora Core 3, each of which couldn't get my Soundblaster Live audio card to run along with some other media hardware.

So when I read the reviews for Linspire 5.0, including the ones here at Amazon, I was quite pleased at the prospect of full functionality right out of the box.So I plopped down my $85 and Linspire 5.0 arrived in the mail two weeks later.But, boy, I was only in for more disappointment, a lot more in fact than the other Linux distributions I've tried.

Linspire originally claimed their 5.0 could run SB Live audio cards, but that wasn't true.(They've since updated their claims on their website.)It turns out that 5.0 has just as much trouble getting SB Live to work as any other Linux distribution.My computer is still soundless, even after downloading all the updates from CNR's website and having Linspire redetect my hardware (and do its diagnostics on top of that).

But not only that, the Macromedia Flash player that came with the Linspire installation is incredibly glitchy.This really wouldn't be a problem if it weren't for the fact that, for some reason, Linspire 5.0 always wants to boot its Flash-powered tutorial program every time I turn on my computer and log in.Before I ever get to see the desktop, the tutorial kicks in -- and then promptly freezes itself.Sometimes I can get it to turn off and go to the desktop, but most of the time it just sits there frozen no matter what I do.The only way out is to force my computer to hard crash by literally unplugging it.(This is quite remarkable to see happen for a Linux OS.)And there's no apparent way to turn off the tutorial to keep it from starting up every time I boot my machine.It's quite aggravating.Also, I've noticed that (when I can get past the silly tutorial) that Mozilla Firefox freezes up whenever I visit a website using Macromedia Flash.When this occurs, I have to kill the browser's window and restart Mozilla.

Likewise, no media players work.Try to watch a Windows Media or Quicktime file off the web, and you get a blank screen.Put in a audio CD and no player will run it.(Even if the sound card doesn't work, the software player should still do something with a CD.)Put in a DVD and the computer quite literally has no idea what to do with it except show the DVD contents on a separate window.

Basically, I'm no better off than when I was using the free distribution of Fedora Core 3.So I strongly recommend that you take the hype with a grain of salt and research for yourself whether or not Linspire 5.0 is good for your machine.

But I try to look on the bright side.Maybe CNR will use my $85 to get their Linspire 5.0 to work some day. (-:

5-0 out of 5 stars Great bundle: OS + lots of software
Linspire is a great operating system, easy to use, yet powerful enough for all of your needs.And with the CNR subscription, you will have a one-click access to many programs.It can't get any easier than this.I've been using Linspire full time since January and I am sure there is no way I will ever go back to Windows.

5-0 out of 5 stars Computering the way it was meant to be.
This is a great Operating System.Linspire makes using a computer fun and enjoyable.With a Linux based system, you can surf the web and use email without fear of getting a virus or having to deal with spyware.Lsongs is perfect for listening to your mp3 collection.Lphoto manages your photo's.Linspire's CNR opens the door to more programs than you will know what to do with with a easy one-click installation.The tutorials are simple and concise.The support from Linspire is excellent.The on-line support of the forums is invaluable.

I have been VERY happy with my Linspire Five-0 system.It is worth every penny!

5-0 out of 5 stars Linspire rocks
I am not sure anymore why I started looking at Linux years ago. OK, I had my problems with Windows like every one else that had to walk on there toes to keep it running clean form all the known "dangers" but did had a lot of fun in between ...
My curiosity probably was the main reason to try Linux although I feel very much for the "freedom" policy behind Linux or as some say GNU/Linux.
I had more problems then ever anticipated! It was hard to understand Linux, to cope with dependencies, permissions and to install "simple" things like drivers wasn't that easy for a beginner as well.
Not giving up I tried several distro's (they ALL became better by the year btw!) until I ended up with then Lindows. That's where the fun started for me! What a ease.
Since then I sticked with Linspire and ran all versions that followed. Version 4.5.603 was no less then a "rock" in terms of stability. Today's Five-O is just like that but has way more "eye-candy". Its also faster then its predecessor. Its a very modern Linux distro that comes with many latest apps. The "home breed" stuff like Linspire Internet Suite is not just a renamed Mozilla but more a "tailor cut" Mozilla, fine tuned for Linspire Five-O. Works simply great and is a beauty to look at.
I love a lot of great programs available in Linspire's CNR but the absolute crown belongs with CNR itself. CNR makes Linspire standing out of the rest and the live of the users easy, very easy.
My years long experience with Linspire has moreover proved that there's a massive effort to support any user, new or matured which I find very important. Then there's that very active, loaded with enthusiasts, user forum where first hand help is often around and simply brought on by more or less experienced users. Put your questions there and someone, in some cases even engineers or the CEO, will come up with a attempt to help. Nothing "Linux forum" comes close to this.
In short, I am using Linspire "full time" and am very satisfied. I can recommend it to anyone, experienced or not.
I will be there when the next great Linspire is released. For now this is the best and easiest one can get for the bucks involved.

5-0 out of 5 stars Linspire The Operating System for Anyone
Linspire is the easiest to use desktop operating system designed for the first-time user and provides seamless transition for those migrating from another operating system. CNR additionally is the simplest application installation client on the market. Truly one-click and you have the tool installed to complete your task. Functional in both the home and work environments. Give it a try and you'll be impressed... ... Read more


5. Mandrakelinux PowerPack 10.0
list price: $84.99
our price: $49.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 2847980342
Catlog: Software
Publisher: O'Reilly & Associates
Sales Rank: 1032
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Book Description

Mandrakelinux was created in 1998 with the goal of making Linux® easier to use for everyone. At that time, Linux was already well-known as a powerful and stable operating system that demanded strong technical knowledge and extensive use of the "command line". Mandrakesoft saw this as an opportunity to integrate the best graphical desktop environments and contribute its own graphical configuration utilities and quickly became famous for setting the standard in ease-of-use and functionality. PowerPack is Mandrakesoft's premier Linux desktop product. PowerPack includes thousands of applications-everything from the most popular to the most advanced. With PowerPack 10.0, Mandrakesoft offers all the power and stability of Linux to both individuals and professional users in an easy-to-use and pleasant environment. Thousands of new users are discovering Linux each and every day and finding it a complete replacement for their previous operating system. Linux as a server or workstation has no reason to be jealous of any other more established operating systems. ... Read more

Features

  • Ultimate Linux desktop with thousands of applications
  • OpenOffice.org, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Real Player, and Flash Player
  • Organize personal data with Kontact and Evolution
  • Browse the Web with Mozilla and Konqueror
  • Listen to audio CVs and music files with KsCD and Totem

6. Suse Linux Professional 9.2 Strong Encryption 128 Bit
list price: $89.99
our price: $74.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00065GQ0C
Catlog: Software
Publisher: SuSE Inc.
Sales Rank: 106
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Features

  • Fast, secure operating system with 1,000+ open-source applications
  • Linux kernel 2.6 plus GNOME 2.6 and KDE 3.3 user desktop environments
  • Browse the Web; create and share documents; develop applications
  • Work with graphics and multimedia files; configure home networks
  • Improved mobility; ideal for Linux users and technical enthusiasts

7. Novell SuSE Linux Enterprise Server for X86 and AMD64 and Intel EM64T - ( v. 9 ) - complete package ( 00662644455143 )

(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002YY7LC
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Novell
Sales Rank: 10971
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8. XANDROS Linux Desktop OS 3 Deluxe ( PC )

Asin: B0007RA6PU
Catlog: Software
Sales Rank: 3867
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • KDE Control Center makes accessing your files and applications easy
  • Easy-to-use browsing of Windows shares and NFS(Linux/Unix) networking systems
  • Convenient File Manager tools lets you mount Windows shares, suggesting and creating mount points in your home directory
  • Crossover Office lets users run and install Microsoft Office on their Linux machine
  • Firefox and Mozilla Web browsers

Reviews (1)

3-0 out of 5 stars Innovative Linux distro but not for power-users
Pros: Rock solid Debian base, a lot of clever applications, very easy to use, installation is all automatic, comes with excellent documentation, provides great media support and includes Codeweaver, Apache and FTP server.

Cons: Stripped down version of KDE, root acccount "disabled", only available in English, Linspire-style database of free software that you got to pay for. Default destop theme and fonts of debatable taste.

I had been waiting for a while to test the new version of Xandros, the Deluxe edition 3 that is. Critics have been raving about it, maybe my expectations were a bit too high but it left me with a bittersweet after-taste.

Overall, Xandros does a very good job of making this distro as user's friendly as can be. Simple to use but not simplistic. Some menus and commands are cleverly designed. The Xandros File Manager allows you to access all your drives including your Windows partition and Network drives. Any Linux distro can do that. What's clever is to have putall of it under the same folder.

The Xandros networks connects you to the Xandros database of software programs, many of them would normally be installed automatically, but can be downloaded sometimes for free, sometimes for a fee. Installation is as easy as can be.

Unfortunately what this comes down to is a stripped down version of KDE and the need to access a database instead of installing everything from CD's as other distros would provide you with. Xandros only provides you with 2 cd's not much considering the price paid.

The root (super user) account has been "disabled". So if you don't know anything about computers you won't mess up with the core of the operating system. But say you just want to move a file (like a language file or codec file) to a program file, you would need to enter complicated unix command-line instructions to do it.

Another drawbacks overlook by many reviewers is that Xandros is only available in English while many other distros like Mandriva (Mandrake), Ubuntu, Red Hat, Fedora Core, etc, can be installed in many languages.

If you know very little about computers, are looking for a user's friendly Linux distro with many innovative features, and want to say farewell to spywares, adwares and viruses that plague too many Windows computers, this is for you.

But if you just want a basic Linux, easy to use and secure, consider Ubuntu. It is also based on Debian, includes security updates, comes with a beautiful Gnome interface, can be installed in many languages.

Linux is not compatible with the vast majority of commercial software so power-users will need to look eslewhere.

And did I mention Ubuntu doesn't cost a penny? ... Read more


9. RED HAT SOFTWARE Red Hat Linux 9.0 Pro
list price: $149.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00008Y1CC
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 407
Average Customer Review: 3.38 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • Bluecurve interface brings familiar look-and-feel to users of both Gnome and KDE desktop environments
  • Improved menu organization, for convenient access to frequently used tools
  • OpenOffice.org office Software suite
  • Mozilla open source Web Browser
  • Ximian Evolution Email client, contact manager & calendar

Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars Sometimes the easiest way is the best way, or vice versa.
For years now, people have been asking me about Linux - how hard is it to learn? When will it be easy enough for a "non-techie" to use? My answer, as of Red Hat 8+ is pretty much - now.

If you use your PC to play on the web, "do" email, and use "Office"-type applications, it's probably easier these days doing so on Linux than on Windows XP. Go read the reviews of XP on this web site! The way they throw around acronyms: NTFS, ASPI, Microsoft "Product Activation" ("Dear Microsoft, is it okay for me to use my computer now?")... Red Hat 9.0 installs with a fairly simple and intuitive wizard. You can (the easiest way) decide to run only Linux on your machine, or, if you have a bit more technical acumen, you can run both Linux and Windows on the same machine (switching between the two by rebooting).

Some people are put off by the command-line interface in Linux (looks like DOS), but honestly, how often do you use DOS on your Windows system? Just like windows, everything can be done by clicking on an icon. Red Hat 9.0 ships with a graphical inteface called "Bluecurve" that looks and works VERY similarly to MS Windows - "Start" button, taskbar, icons on desktop - and puts everything near your fingertips.

Red Hat also comes with Mozilla (a web browser very similar to Netscape), Evolution (an Outlook-like email client and personal scheduling program), OpenOffice.org (a MS Office XP replacement that reads and WRITES your MS Word, MS Excel, and MS Powerpoint documents), and about 1400 other games and applications. Other standouts include GnuCash, the Linux version of Quicken, the Tux Racer game - if you haven't played it yet, there's demos for all operating systems on it's web site - suitable for all ages, and KStars, the desktop planetarium, and did I mention about 1400 other games and applications?

P.S. I'm guessing that with the recent Microsoft Blaster worm (and Slammer, and Nimda, and... ), the points about security risks in using Microsoft products - as opposed to Linux - is well made. *cough*

3-0 out of 5 stars Was good, no longer.
Red Hat was a pioneer. It ruled the Linux world at one point. Not anymore. The company has announced their decision to exit the retail linux market and the end-user linux distribution. They will focus on the server market and the business/corporate clients.

If you want a good Linux for home or office use and you are experienced, get SuSE 9.0 pro instead. If you are a begginer and want to move from the expensive/buggy/intrusive Windows platform to Linux, try LindowsOS 4.0.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not very compatible...
I just couldn't install it... apparently, even though my monitor is brand new, it's just not supported by the installation process. Instead of using this one, I had to turn to Mandrake, which hasn't given me any kind of trouble (I'm actually using it right now).

1-0 out of 5 stars Beware of five star reviews
Total and useless software, plus redhat don't even support this nightmare of bugs.

It is nice to buy software that has NO support. Plus, it does not even work with your hardware. I finally got Windows running again and using the disks of redhat for coasters!

5-0 out of 5 stars Interesting reviews.. had to respond
Sure, if you want Windows then why are you looking at this? If you want to try something new and works great then this will replace Windows just fine. It comes with hundreds of dollars in software. You would spend that amount easily on the Windows side of things.

Oh and as far as modems go... I've used it for years with modems, ISDN and now cable modems. Just don't buy junk and you'll be fine.

Finally, RedHat isn't pulling it from the market. Thats the fun half truths we regularly get from Redmond. The product is alive and well. We simply have to read about what they are doing at www.redhat.com. Fedora is the next release of RedHat Linux. Remember that these release versions are stable though they have been pushing people to use the WS or ES versions of RedHat. You want a version like this then it will work just fine. The WS and ES versions however are built from this. (note to self.. learn how to better explain years of business model in only a few lines)

Personally I play games on Windows and work on Linux/Unix.

FYI.. never had a pony tail but I do like my new beard ::grinz:: ... Read more


10. Linspire Five.0
list price: $59.99
our price: $59.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007Z70XI
Catlog: Software
Manufacturer: Linspire, Inc.
Sales Rank: 1571
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars It is awsome !
This is great software, easy to use, yet powerful.I highly recommend it, you will be able to do almost anything you can do in Win, but better.

5-0 out of 5 stars Everyone's linux
Have you ever wanted to try Linux but were afraid of the all the techno geek speak you hear about it? Well then grab Linspire five-o and leave all that geek speak behind. This will be one the most exciting and easy computing experiences you have have ever had. installation takes about 15 minutes and just works right out of the box. Once you log in your surfing the Internet, reading e-mail and playing games. linspire makes it easy to install additional software with click and run and offer 1,000's of programs. In fact anything you can do in windows you can do in Linspire Five-O! Looking to do somthing with that old PC?
Give Linspire Five-O a try. You wont regret it.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Operating System in the World just got better
Linspire is the only operating system I use at home. I gave up on Windows months ago. The benefits are clear:

* Installs in under 20 minutes, that includes drivers!
* plays ALL major media formats
* comes complete with a FULL Office Suite which is compatible with Microsoft Office.
* Has an amazing Music player - LSongs, if you like iTumnes you'll love this, complete with online music store!
* An amazingly polished look, with high details, exclusive Icons and desktop wallpapers.
* NO viruses OR Spyware OR Malware
If you want to get even more from Linspire then for a small charge of $50 you also get access to nearly 2000 applications via Click-n-Run. Find what you want, click on it an dits automatically downloaded and installed for you - no hassle leaving you free to do other things.

This is THE ONLY operating system you'll EVER need.

In my opinion, this is what pc's have been waiting on!

Absolutely Brilliant. I cant recommend this enough, it really is THAT GOOD!!

3-0 out of 5 stars Ok for Linux beginners, but...
those of us more experienced with operating systems may want to consider other linux distros which are available at no cost. I have Debian installed and it has the same capabilities as Linspire. If you really must try Linspire, download the free live cd version (available as ISO, just burn the image to a cd and you can try it without installing it.) If you like it, then go ahead and purchase it. The live cd is available at http://tracker.linspire.com/torrents/linspire_live_5.0.69.torrent. ... Read more


11. Red Hat Linux 9.0 Personal
list price: $39.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00008QODZ
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 2631
Average Customer Review: 3.42 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (40)

5-0 out of 5 stars Bad Linux Reviews From Washington???
Seems a bit strange to me but at least two of the reviews that slam Linux as worthless are from Washington reviewers.

My experience with RH9 is that it is one heck of an operating system. The installs went perfectly and it recognized my modem, my printer, my network card, my display card, my display, my drives, processor, everything. Perfectly. No calls to anyone to get authorization codes. No balking at running if I change hardware. And I can install it on as many computers as I want - legally.

The desktops are gorgeous and the ability to have multiple ones and switch between them merely by sliding my cursor off the edge of the screen for a moment is wonderful.

The Office apps read and write Windows Office documents just fine and it comes with Office (and tons of other stuff like CD burner software, fax software, games, and on and on) all in the low price. You'd spend hundreds to load up a Windows machine with comparable software.

It's just my opinion but I think Linux has finally become a very viable alternative to the "other" OS. I still dual boot for when I actually do need that "other" OS because there isn't a Linux alternative for something but my default is to jump right in to RH9.

If you are even curious, isn't it worth [the price] just to see it for yourself? You just might be amazed. I was.

3-0 out of 5 stars Linux rocks, RH9 Personal does not
If this was simply a review of RH9 in the contex of a supported environment, then I would give it 5 starts. But RH9 Personal edition, as a means for getting Linux on a home box by a non-sysadmin, is not completely where it could be.

The principle reason is the lack of drivers. I tried to get RH8 Personal on my Dell Dimension 2350 and the lack of even a functioning video driver made it all but impossible. Also, fdisk doesn't work with XP, so I had to use PartitionMagic 8.0 which has its own issues (it makes a Linux partition that Linux doesn't think is Linux.) I bought RH9 and things worked much, much better. However, I had to go through a lot of grief to get my Broadcom 440x network driver up and I still can't find one for my Canon i850 color printer. For Linux to be fully competetive with Windows in a home environment, it needs to reach a broader level of hardware compatibility.

A dual boot was my best choice and setting it up was largely uneventful for me with RH9. I need Linux as an interface to computational systems that do the serious kind of work Windows is incapable of. But my slide scanner, with a driver embedded in Photoshop Elements, requires either a Mac or Windows. Once more drivers and software are available for Linux, I can finally get rid of XP.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not for every user - Difficult Install
Personally, I found that this was a trying experience from the beginning. First off, few stores even carry Linux software, so that even locating the package is difficult. Thankfully there are on-line opportunities like Amazon to fulfill the dream.

Physically installing this product was an even greater difficulty. I could not find this in a 3.5" format and had to upgrade my PC in order to be able to run the CD. After re-booting, I found that the CD was not mounted and that the software could not be recognized. I spent numerous hours on the phone with Red Hat Tech support, only to determine that the system requirements were not fully explained in the promotional literature. This upgrade requires an extremely fast processor, at least 512 Mb memory, minimum 40 Gb hard drive. In fact, the system architecture and operating system are completely different! Who knew? I can tell you it is not recommended for the typical Apple II or Mac Plus customer.

This is probably much better suited to the owner of a new PowerMac machine with the latest in video & IO features

1-0 out of 5 stars Don't Be Confused
What follows is the review of someone who has more than 25 years on both sides of the Unix/Windows line and who owns no stock that would benefit from the sales of either.

When you read all the reviews below, you might get confused, with ratings from 1 to 5 stars and the obvious pro- and anti-Microsoft commentary (this IS a Redhat review, right? Why do people feel compelled to throw in the Microsoft jabs? Very juvenile!) - so if you're among the confused, let me help you out.

The clue to reality is found in the posts themselves - as you notice that the majority of reviewers feel obliged to tell you what kind of system they've installed (or not) Linux, right down to the drive types and the mouse pad they use.

Why do they feel you need this information, which anywhere else would be totally boring and even irrelevant? Yes - you guessed it. Linux still has problems supporting a number of hardware platforms and devices - period. And, when new devices come out, Linux is slower than molasses in supporting them.

Well, this level of "polish", if that's the word I want, is what you get with a lot of "open source" software - sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, often critical or obvious features are missing. But hey - don't whine. "Everything is going to be fixed in the next version...would you please donate some money?"....

When Linux arrived on the scene, the CONCEPT was practically spiritual - at one point I thought the Congress might rewrite the Preamble to the Constitution to say that all men were entitled to life, liberty, LINUX and the pursuit of happiness. It was all so very, very egalitarian. Free stuff....well, until someone started charging for it.

It was the OS version of free love and hippie beads.

Years later, Linux still doesn't measure up. It may sound like an oxymoron that Linux hides behind its "openness", but that is precisely what it does. You're never entitled to scream VERY loud about its shortcomings, because, after all, it is free....or it only costs a few bucks, and hey - it's....OPEN! Have some pity on the poor people who are working so hard to contribute to Linux, you heartless (grep .astard myreview > truth.txt).

Linux has promise. In fact, lots of promises. The fact that it's the same promises they were making years ago is merely a speedbump along the pathway to Nirvanalux. And no matter how fast you drive it, Linux can never seem to outrun its kludge.

So, I run it - mostly as a development platform for work, before running anything on the real deal (Unix or Windows - the operating systems that actually work). Crash my Linux, who cares? I never compile anything on it that doesn't go to backup first.

And for those who claim constant crashes with Windows, I won't call them liars. I have an NT server that I can't remember when I booted it, a 2000 server literally running from the day it was installed a couple of years ago, but then again, I RTFM and I'm a trained system administrator. Could that be the difference? Probably not - my wife's Windows 98 ran for about 6 years straight until she upgraded to 2000 and she has never seen the BSOD.

Notice I'm not telling you what platforms these systems are running on - because it doesn't matter. If you're seeing the BSOD in Windows, the most probable device causing your failure is YOU.

4-0 out of 5 stars Linux is great, if not fully compatible with all hardware
First, let me start off by noting that almost all of the reviewers that gave Red Hat Linux 9 very low marks had mostly hardware incompatibility issues. They bought Red Hat, threw the CD in the CD drive, and hoped for the best, expecting it to be able to successfully detect and configure all of their particular hardware.

While Linux has made tremendous strides in hardware compatibility and usually can work with most hardware right out of the box, it does not have the advantage of market critical mass and monopolistic power that Microsoft has. Thus, all vendors that sell hardware for the home PC provide drivers for Windows, being that Windows has about 95% of that market. That being said, Linux now has made tremdous stides in hardware support. It supports most major hardware products, but lacks in the area of some of the more exotic or bleeding edge graphics cards, sound cards, network cards, and most winmodems. It's getting better all the time (due to open source developers reverse engineering, and many vendors providing drivers), but Linux can't boast the level of hardware support that Windows can, due to market realities.

The people who gave bad reviews attempted to blindly install Red Hat Linux on their machines, without checking for hardware support ahead of time. Thus, due to hardware incompatibility or configuration, they had headaches and wrongly blamed Linux.

My personal experience with Linux in general and Red Hat 9 in particular has been wonderful. I've installed it on an IBM Thinkpad 600E. The installation went smoothly and I only had to manualy choose the correct video driver. It did not detect the Mwave internal winmodem (I expected this) and did not detect the sound card, but I do not need sound on my notebook. Apparently it is possible to configure so that Red Hat can use the sound card, but I don't need it. But Red Hat did seamlessly detect everything else and it all worked beautifully.

I've had a lot of fun with Linux. I'm a programmer and it is chaulk full of development tools (without having to pay mega $ for MS Visual Studio). Linux is a programmers paradise. It also has everything MS Office has (with Open Office and KOffice). It can manipulate graphics with the GIMP, it has tons of games, and endless configuration possibilties. RH Linux loads both the Gnome and KDE desktop environments, and it's fun to play with both, being that they are not exactly alike, and both have different strengths and weeknesses. And both, quite frankly, are much more attractive and fun to use than the Fisher Price interface of Windows XP. They are also far more configurable, with much more eye candy than XP. I've also been able to successfully download and install and use huge software titles like JBuilder 5 and Eclipse (Java Integrated Development Environments).

I've also been completely impressed with the amazing stability and efficiency of Linux. I can crash an application, but it never affects the OS. I just have to kill the app, and everything else goes about it's merry way without a hitch. Contrast that with Windows XP, and all of it's bugs and the slightest application problem can bring it to it's knees (prompting you to send a bug report to MS). Or, of course, the infamous Blue Screen of Death. No BSOD in Linux at all. And finally, there are far fewer virus worries with Linux.

In short, Linux is great. It might be a bit rough around the edges for some newbie/non technical users, but it is very easy to use (just requires a small learning curve, just like anything else new) and can do so many great things, at a small fraction of the cost of MS alternatives.

Those new to Linux should probablly start off with a distribution that runs from a CD, like Knoppix. Knoppix automatically detects and configures your hardware. All you have to do is pop the CD in and reboot. And it is completely risk free because it does not touch your hard drive. Knoppix can give you a taste of how great Linux can be. And if you like what you see, you should first check hardware compatibility at the distros web site, than
probably re-partition your hard drive with Partition magic. And of the distro set up routines will detect the partitions and allow you easily set up a dual boot PC. Alternatively, buy a whole new PC with Linux pre-loaded (ensuring hardware compatibility). You can do that here at Amazon, or Walmart or Lindows.com, or many others. You can get a new PC for as little as $200 (the cost of WinXP by itself).

But do give it a try and be prepared for hardware compatibility and that it is a different OS, so there will be a small learning curve. It's very well worth the effort.

The only reasons I did not give Red Hat Linux 9 the full 5 stars is because Red Hat has ended their retail product, concentrating on the enterprise. Also, Red Hat Linux does not include a disc partitioning tool like Mandrake and SuSE do. But I've loved it. I'm now looking forward to partitioning my eMachines PC with WinXP, and loading a dual boot Linux installation. I just have not decided which distribution it's going to be. ... Read more


12. MANDRAKE-LINUX PowerPack 10.1

(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007DGQI0
Catlog: Software
Sales Rank: 2666
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • Advanced home ofice tools in the OpenOffice.org, the Microsoft Office compatible suite
  • Powerful open-source Internet tools - Kontact & Evolution personal information managers, plus the Mozilla & Konqueror Web browsers
  • Customizable file and device sharing tools, plus email tools like Sendmail and Postfix
  • Multimedia tools for Sound(Amarok & Rythmbox) and Video(Kaffeine & Totem Movie Player)
  • Development tools like the GCC Compiler and GDB Debugger, plus your choice of editors - Emacs, XEmacs or Vim

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great System
I have been a mandrake customer since 7.1. I think this is by far the best flavor of linux on the market.
reason 1 - It is easy to install, I use my whole hard drive but I have also partitioned with it before. Diskdrake is a very good tool.
Reson 2- The package selection is great. I am not going to list them here, you can check it out at mandrakes web site.
Reason 3 - It is easy to use for both the newbie and the advanced linux user. The mandrake control center has everything under one manager, that make it easy to custumize your system.
reason 4- It is easy to update.
If you are looking to switch to linux, or if you are looking for a good distro, this is the best one.
lastly I have a computer i have run mandrake on for 5 years without one problem. Unlike some other operating systems I have used. ... Read more


13. MANDRAKESOFT Mandrakelinux 10.1 PowerPack DVD Version

(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00078COKO
Catlog: Software
Sales Rank: 1600
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • KDE 3.2.3, KDE 3.3, and GNOME 2.6 graphical user interfaces
  • Includes kernel 2.6 and X.org-X11
  • Includes Office (OpenOffice.org 1.1.3), internet (Mozilla 1.7), multimedia, development tools, server applications (Samba, Apache, MySQL), and many other software applications!
  • PowerPack includes OpenOffice.org 1.1.3, a full-featured Office suite that you can use to create any type of document, from business letters to slideshows, and is compatible with Microsoft Office
  • Play audio and video files, use your digital camera, graphic design, 3D modeling and rendering, music composition, audio editing, and more!

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Mandrake Linux is a thing of beauty
I have installed this on a laptop computer and a desktop and it works fantastic. The only device it could not recognize was the internal winmodem. I also installed Windows and that failed also to recognize the modem (this is a given unless you happen to have the original software). Nor could Windows, unlike Mandrake figure out what do to with the CDRW. I now have had a computer with Windows on half the partition and Mandrake-Linux on the other for a while now. I can't remember the last time I booted up Windows. It always seems totally claustrophobic. Once you grasp the wonder that is virtual desktops it is difficult to settle for Windows of any version. For the uninitiated Mandrake like othe Linux distributions gives you four separate desktops that are instantly accesible from a small panel at the bottom of the screen. It is a major step forward over the old-fashioned Windows and MacIntosh method of shrinking and unshrinking programs to see someting that is overlapped on the screen.
The software that comes with it is incredible. Openoffice.org is a major piece of office software that includes the ability to read, write and create in a myriad of software formats including Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint. But unlike Microsoft Office it includes a a program that allows anovice to create web pages. That and it allows you to create PDF files (MS Office doesn't)
Also included is a high end photo editing program called the GIMP for Graphical Image Manipulating Program. In terms of what it can do the only standard over the shelf program I've seen that can compare is the $800+ Photoshop software. They are both very similiar in the way they work.

This software is highly recommended. When I installed it I used Partition Magic to split the hardrives into two halves

5-0 out of 5 stars We are Disappointed by what we expect...
We are disappointed by what we expect...NOT by what we find. Mandrake is anything but "disappointment in a box." And with all due respect to the individual who wrote that review, the object is NOT to get Linux working WITH Windows; the object is to get RID of Windows!!

I am told that Mandrake will install alongside of XP and even recognize NFTS partitions. But, hey, I jettisoned Windows and Macintosh years ago and have never looked back.

Don't listen to those who down Linux or Mandrake. I do not discount their experience but I have had nothing but great joy and satisfaction in running this OS and Mandrake Linux especially.

I would invite those who are interested to download Mandrake's Download Edition first. Then when you have that great experience, you can come back here to Amazon and buy the boxed set with all of the goodies--including documentation.

I enjoy this distro so much, I recently wrote about it at Newsforge.com. Check it out!

This distro is definitely setting the standard for other desktop distros to follow.

1-0 out of 5 stars DISAPOINTEMENT IN A BOX
VERY DISAPPOINTING.

Apparently Bill G. has billions to prevent linux from working with XP.

Just another cruel experience to steel your time and cause frustration. ... Read more


14. Suse Linux 9.0 Professional Edition
list price: $79.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000E3QNB
Catlog: Software
Publisher: SuSE Inc.
Sales Rank: 1204
Average Customer Review: 3.51 out of 5 stars
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Features

  • State-of-the-art Linux operating system for home users, experienced users, and developers
  • Complete office suite that is compatible with MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents
  • Optimized communication with Windows; improved performance and usability
  • Extensive collection of multimedia applications & a multitude of programming tools
  • Quick and easy Internet access; protection against viruses

Reviews (81)

5-0 out of 5 stars Linux: A real operating system after crappy years of Windows
Before the IBM PC (late 70's) there were multi-user operating systems (e.g. MP/M & MP/M-II) running on 16-bit processors. The first OS for the PC (PC DOS, created by Microsoft) was a dirty copy of a downgraded CP/M (a single-user OS). To this day, and well after so many years, and many versions of MS DOS (including the "pseudo-windows" versions of MS DOS, called by them "Windows 95" and "Windows 98"), Microsoft still doesn't have a true multi-user operating system.

Linux (and Unix) OS's are taking computing to the next level since the days of Digital Research (CP/M & MP/M). IBM, and Microsoft (an application software company, not an OS development company at the time) started, in my opinion, the greatest disservice of all times to computer consumers, when they launched the IBM PC in 1981: a behind-the-times computer running a crappy Microsoft OS on an 8-bit microprocessor (8088). And this is not because of the computer, but because of the outdated operating system that Microsoft created. Windows is a widely used OS; that doesn't mean it's better.

Linux is by far a superior operating system: a true multi-user, multi-program OS, more powerful than any Windows version will ever be (there are many Linux servers out in the real world competing head to head with Microsoft, and guess what? Linux is winning!). SuSE has done a fine job putting Linux SuSE 9.0 together, a very good package, bundled with tools, utilities, several world-class applications, and highly automated installation services (easy too!)

I made a full blown installation onto an old 4GB hard drive, and it took less than 2GB, including most of the applications that came in the package. The only problem I found was with a Brother MFC-6800 printer (designed to work with Windows), but I easily found a Linux driver in a dedicated website.

All those who don't have a clue what a good operating system is because the only thing they know is Windows, should stay with Windows (and pay more, of course). If you don't understand Linux, you won't be able to see the differences, and worse, the incredible advantages of Linux.

"Working with MS Windows is like crawling... working with Linux is like flying!"

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent - but with a few areas for improvement
I switched from RH 9.0 to SuSE 9.0 Pro because of a few concerns/frustrations with Redhat. (1) Difficulty with configuring access to the Windows network at my workplace, (2) RH's failure to recognize my new box's graphics card (Radeon 9200), (3) Redhat's shift in emphasis/philosophy away from developing and supporting directly Linux for the "average user".

So far SuSE 9.0 is doing well on the above concerns plus many others. YaST is overall an excellent way to control bootloader configuration, important for someone like me who messes with several OSes. (RH does not make it so easy.) Or network access/configuration. And many other issues. I am browing our Windows network with no problems. And SuSE 9.0 has supposedly added excellent support for accessing numerous dialup ISP's - a feature I admit I have not had cause to try yet. (Our family uses Netzero, which normally one cannot access under Linux.)

Installation was not as easy/smooth as Redhat. Choosing software packages is a bit clumsy the way YaST is set up - I had to search for Evolution, Mozilla, GAIM and then "check" them for installation. I prefer Redhat's partitioning - although I admit SuSE does give more control. (Primary or extended? Ah!) My new Athlon box had trouble reading the software packages on the DVD - had to use the regular CD's, which defeats the whole point. And I am still having trouble getting it to work on my DELL Inspiron 8200 laptop, my main machine - so far SuSE boots to a blank screen. That's not very helpful and pretty much hoses the reason I bought it.

That having been said, SuSE is still excellent. It seems much faster than pokey RH 9.0, much much better selection of software packages (Pingus!!! OpenOffice.org 1.1! KDE 3.1! and so on!), hardware detection/compatibility is stronger (whither Fedora?!?). Redhat (now Fedora) can learn some lessons - but frankly the reverse is also true. At least I didn't get a blank screen when using RH 9.0 on my laptop.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good but frustrating at first.
This is a very complete operating system with a large library of free software. I had no trouble installing it (setup detected all my hardware on an IBM Thinkpad A20m), but was very frustrated at first with the interface. The documentation is difficult to read, and this is not for beginners.

After a few days of using Linux, I've found that I can do everything I need to do with it, and even run my windows programs on it. However, it took the better part of a day for me to understand how to configure things. The GUI they start you off with is terrible but by changing a few settings it becomes very functional and friendly.

1-0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
After 4 days talking to their support group, it is finally known to me that they do NOT support 32-bit Seriel ATA Hard Drives. So I have wasted 4 evenings and countless phone calls with these guys before they figured that they don't support me, which is a fairly common hardware config now days. So beware!!

5-0 out of 5 stars A refreshing change from Red Hat
I've been using Red Hat Linux since 6.1, and I was saddened when they stopped their development of RH9, and shuffled that effort to Fedora.

After reading that Novell, a company whose products I've dealt with for a decade, had bought Suse, I went and bought Suse Personal Version 9.0....

What a pleasant surprise! The installation program recognized my nvidia videocard (unlike Redhat), and I was up and running the graphical installation with Suse's installation program.

Red Hat (if it cares anymore) should take notes from Suse's great installer. Suse's installation is far superior to Red Hat. All of Suse's installation options are displayed at the beginning of the install, on a bulleted outline screen. It was *simple* to configure the partitions, and arrange the dual-boot (with MS Windows), as well as to specify the location of Linux's GRUB loader. (This last option is unfriendly on Red Hat, unless you happen to know before the RH install starts, that you need to do a custom install). The YaST updater works as smoothly as Red Hat's Up2date, so getting updated over the internet is no problem.

YaST even found my scanner, which Red Hat never did, so in hardware probing, Suse is definitely superior. However, there is still no Linux driver for my Visioneer 8100, so I still need MS-Windows to run my scanner.(This leads to another issue: how Linux's incomplete hardware support guarantees that I will --for now -- be stuck with dual-booting to MS-Windows to support all the hardware I have.)

In short, after thinking that I would be a Red Hat customer forever, then to be dismayed that Fedora was not where I wanted to be, I have found a new happy home with Suse. Linux still has a little ways to go, before it is a full-featured as MS-Windows is, and can really compete on the desktop against MS-Windows. But this Suse desktop distro is much closer to that point, than Red Hat. ... Read more


15. SuSE Linux Professional 9.2 Upgrade [Strong Encryption 128 Bit]
list price: $59.95
our price: $49.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00065GQ0M
Catlog: Software
Publisher: SuSE Inc.
Sales Rank: 215
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Features

  • Fast, secure operating system with 1,000+ open-source applications
  • Linux kernel 2.6 plus GNOME 2.6 and KDE 3.3 user desktop environments
  • Browse the Web; create and share documents; develop applications
  • Work with graphics and multimedia files; configure home networks
  • Improved mobility; ideal for Linux users and technical enthusiasts

16. RED HAT LINUX 7.3 PROFESSIONAL
list price: $199.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000067FK4
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 2242
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Plays Nice, Works Well - Way Cool
As a primarily Win oriented user, I have tried almost all the RedHat, Mandrake & Debian distros and other OSs as well (God bless BeOS). RH 7.3 is the one for me. Though I was not all that impressed by RedHat 6.x, or even 7.0, 7.3 is the easiest to install and configure. I have tried this distro on several units, from 100Mhz 486DXs to Gateway Jabil Celeron processors and some high end P4 units. Installed equally well on all with 0 bumps. Plays nice with Win partitions and networks, though make sure you add the Win partition during setup or you will have problems adding the Win partition later. Networking is quite straight forward and simple, it is relatively easy to add it to a Win network and share files, though the SWAT tool for SAMBA is a royal pain if it does not work right out of the chute. Some systems, identical installs, it worked great, others, it was a bomb, had to config the smb.conf by hand. Don't let it intimidate you though, very well documented and mostly common sense. RedHats support is great too, as well as the user groups there. I got very quick replies to posted questions.

RH 7.3 includes more useful and entertaining packages than the other distros, and though the sheer volume (I installed 2,500) of programs can be overwhelming, but once you sort through it, WAY COOL!

As for ease of use, RH 7.3 I like the choices of KDE, Gnome, TWMM, Sawfish & etc. A few RH 7.3 utilities however, will not run under anything but Gnome. Took a while to figure this out (network conf, update agent), Gnome is RH 7.3's default. By contrast, 8.0 with bluecurve is not for those who want to do it 'their way'.

RH 7.3 is a viable alternative to Windows, complete with Office programs and many other equivalents included.For those who like to tinker, it is tinkerers heaven! My 8 year old promptly told me it is his Linux box and said I could have back the Win98 one.
He has found a lot of cool utilities and programs while exploring, and though he has had some bumps, not even a very enterprising 8 yearold could crash it

The bottom line is, if you just want to do a default install of the OS and have a usable, enjoyable cool system or if you want to customize it to the max, RH 7.3 will accomodate you. The professional version is more than you need if you are 'just a user', but if you want the full impact and ultimate experience, it is just right. I set up a webserver, mailserver, firewall, DSL gateway & etc 'out of the box'.

1-0 out of 5 stars No support, bad drivers, resists new technology.
I bought this version when I had a 3dfx voodoo video card and everything was great. I upgraded to an ATI Radeon 9000 pro and it won't boot into X. There is no VGA compatible option that will even boot at low resolution. The whole operating system is full of dead ends like this. It is such a shame since there were so many good applications and tools with it -- it was almost a good alternative to windows. But, Linux remains in the shadows and ashes because there appears to be nobody that can (or cares to) write any code to make it flexible enough for ordinary use. What a shame. I will try Suse or Mandrake next. Save your money unless this is only for a server.

5-0 out of 5 stars Red Hat rocks
Linux itself is obviously extremely solid, but there are many, many choices in distributions these days. Classically Red Hat has been considered more of a server distribution, but that's no longer the case. Red Hat 7.3 makes an extremely stable desktop platform. It may not have every bell and whistle that Mandrake or others have, but what's there works very well. If you're running Red Hat on any of your servers, then you should at least give it a try on the desktop. You'll probably be happily surprised.

5-0 out of 5 stars Windows alternative
Outstanding alternative to Microsoft Windows. I use it for a web server and office suite (word processor, spreadsheet, etc).

5-0 out of 5 stars Getting better w/ time
RH is finally getting closer to the end-user. Integration is seamless and the installer id getting better. Nice documentation, i do not really use X but my fellow collegues who do not like dealing with a CLI just loved KDE3.
I was used to SuSe (still run it) but RH 7.3 gained some very good points
to be recommended if you want to build a server ... Read more


17. Red Hat Linux 7.2
list price: $59.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00005RD7F
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 2079
Average Customer Review: 3.88 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com Review

Nicely polished and with an improved file system, Red Hat Linux 7.2 is the best release to date of the most popular commercial Linux distribution. If you tried an earlier version of Red Hat Linux and found it too rough for you, particularly at installation time, you'll want to give it another try now. This particular version of Red Hat Linux 7.2 is the plain vanilla edition (as opposed to the more capable Professional edition and the various server products), and is best suited for use on a workstation or as a LAN server on a small network. On the other hand, since the kernel is the same as that of the more costly versions, you can install this product and add the capabilities you need by installing additional software downloaded from the Internet.

The most substantial innovation present in Red Hat Linux 7.2---which is based on the Linux 2.4.7 kernel--is a new file system called ext3. An improvement on the reliable ext2 file system that's long been standard in Linux, ext3 is a journaling file system. A journaling file system keeps notes on what it's doing with data in the file system--it logs all of its read and write operations. This decreases file system downtime because after a crash, error-checking utilities (like fsck, which must run after an unanticipated shutdown) need not inspect the entire file system--they can look just at those regions that were being manipulated at the time of the problem. This saves enormous amounts of time, particularly on large volumes of 50 GB or more.

By design, ext3 is backward and forward compatible. You can take an ext2 volume (a volume used to store accumulated data, say) that was created under an old version of Linux (Red Hat or otherwise), and mount it as an ext3 volume under Red Hat Linux 7.2 and enjoy the protection of journaling. Conversely, you can take a volume that was created as ext3 and remount it with no problems (though also with no journaling) as an ext2 volume. By switching to ext3, you gain a valuable new feature and give up none of the reliability of ext2. It alone is worth the upgrade if you run a large file system or if you require especially high availability and can't tolerate long fsck cycles.

Another substantial improvement reflected in this version: GRUB, an improved boot loader that replaces the old standard, LILO. (Both bits of software follow the Unix tradition of naming utilities with goofy acronyms: LILO is LInux LOader, while GRUB is GRand Unified Bootloader.) GRUB serves the same purpose as utilities like System Commander, which allow you to select at boot time from among several installed operating systems. Unlike LILO, GRUB allows you to choose to boot pretty much any installed operating system, including FreeBSD, OpenBSD, OS/2, and any version of Microsoft Windows. It's a handy utility to have on a workstation, though you can opt for LILO if you prefer.

Other improvements have more to do with increased hardware support--many more network interface cards and printers are recognized--and general refinements in the user interface (this release uses GNOME 1.4 and KDE 2.2.1). A handful of new utilities make life easier for users and administrators, chief among them the Nautilus file manager. Nautilus does a decent job of displaying local and remote files intuitively--it makes it easy to manage the contents of an FTP site, for one thing. Another graphical tool makes it easier to manage user privileges. As has always been the case with Red Hat Linux, version 7.2 ships with a load of goodies that includes the Mozilla 0.9.2 browser, the Apache 1.3.20 Web server, and the StarOffice 5.2 office productivity suite. Anything else you want, you can easily download and install. Software installation is particularly easy thanks to the long-popular Red Hat Package Manager (RPM) file format for distributables, which this operating system naturally supports.

True enough, you can download Red Hat Linux 7.2 in its entirety from Red Hat's corporate site, and if you have a high-speed connection to the Internet the time required for downloading may not be too forbidding (the download--if you get just the two CD-ROM images required to install the operating system with no frills--is about 1.3 GB). But if you buy the boxed product, you get the installation CD-ROMs, the complete source code, a lot of documentation, and a slew of ancillary software. Plus, you get 30 days of online (not telephone) technical support--enough to get you through any installation hassles.

Red Hat Linux 7.2 represents a significant improvement over its predecessors. The ext3 file system improves system reliability, and a lot of minor refinements increase the product's quality of "fit and finish." It's a worthwhile upgrade, and a better way than ever to get into Linux for the first time. --David Wall ... Read more

Reviews (24)

5-0 out of 5 stars No need for fancy slogans.. It just works.
Reliable
Secure
Easy to use
Isn't that what MS promises with each new release? Red Hat has been providing all three for years now. This release is the best so far. You don't need to be a computer nerd to know how to use it. I find it simpler to use that Windows XP! If all you use your PC for is to surf the web, e-mail, and chat, then this is for you. KDE, and Mozilla are great, and getting better all the time. If you want to be stuck in the upgrade cycle, that is windows, then stay away from this. When you use it, you'l never go back. It's all you need in an operating system and more. (Redhat comes with Star Office, and the Gimp), you get everthing that would cost you... (Office XP and Adobe Photoshop) if you went with windows. That alone is a good enough reason to try it out. You might just be surpised with what you find

3-0 out of 5 stars I did another review, thought I was reviewing a book not OS
7.2 is a great improvement over the previous. As I write this review, Red Hat Linux is up to version 9. I didn't discover any problems with this version, and the updates and patches available with up2date just keep comming, even though I hadn't discovered the problems that were fixed.

Linux is for those who either want to do the same thing all the time and are able to get their version of linux to do that, and those who like to tinker with the guts of the OS. I think Windows XP is a better choice for the rest of us.

I am not a linux guru, and I find it difficult and tedious to get things running that aren't installed and running automatically as part of instillation. By the way, instillation is a piece of cake anyone can do, and once it is finished you have a ton of application software installed and running, unlike Windows, which only installs the OS and you have to install each application seperately.

Although I spent 35 years as a software engineer, I still chose Windows XP for my home machine because I am tired of tinkering with an OS. And tinker with the linux OS you will surely have to eventually do, probably sooner than latter.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good deal, but why pay?
Red hat is probably the best linux distro out there. 7.2 is one of the best versions avaliable. The included star office is sub-par and although they claim that it supports importing and exporting MS Office formats it doesn't do a great job at that you might some formating changes and similar problems. If you want to get into linux this would be a good start, but Mandrake linux is also identically to red hat and best its FREE. That is the best way to start then go red hat!

Both distributions are fairly simple to install and include documentation for dual booting with windows, but some general computer knowledge is recommended

3-0 out of 5 stars I was a bit disappointed
I am not a linux guru. I installed Red Hat Linux on one of my machines to learn linux and purchased this book to help me along the way. It appears to cover everything that it needs to, but I found the detail explinations of how to do things to be greatly lacking and on a few occasions to be wrong. I spent a lot of time trying to set things up in linux using this book as a guide, and they just plain didn't work in a great many cases. Either it is incorrect in places, or it is incomplete.

In addition, it reminds me of a cook book. You just follow the instructions to do specific things without it telling you WHY you are doing what it tells you, or even why you need to do some specific thing. Because of this, it really isn't much of a resource for learning.

5-0 out of 5 stars Get off the new equipment wagon
I loaded RH 7.2 on my laptop about 8 months ago, it runs much faster and is considerably more stable than the predecessor (win 2k). I am able to accomplish so much more than I could before, I could list numerous complaints about the old OS I had on it, but we don't have the space. Everything you need is here, some things you don't are here as well, at a decent price. In short this system rocks, I don't have to buy a new laptop really soon. And I can still write my book and not have my machine crash every third chapter. I won't go back to that half... O/S for most of my day to day work. ... Read more


18. Linspire Linux 4.5

our price: $49.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0006LCHNQ
Catlog: Software
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19. MANDRAKESOFT Win4Lin Pro ( PC )

(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0009I9R8E
Catlog: Software
Sales Rank: 7590
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Features

  • Using Win4Lin's high performance virtual computing environment (VCE), Win4Lin Pro runs virtually any Windows 2000 or Windows XP application -- with no patches
  • A system failure or security flaw in Windows no longer crashes your system
  • Easy way to migrate Windows applications to Linux

20. Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional
list price: $149.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006LS98
Catlog: Software
Publisher: Red Hat Software
Sales Rank: 2416
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com Review

Like the Personal edition, Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional shares the same innovative, unified Bluecurve interface of Gnome 2 and KDE 3.03. Also included are three installation CDs, two source CDs, a documentation CD (though Red Hat's documentation hasn't had the makeover the interface has), and a multimedia and office applications CD. It also comes with the whole lot on a single DVD (no disc changing) and a small administrator tools CD.

The main difference between the Personal and Professional editions of Red Hat Linux 8.0 is that Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional is aimed at those running servers and/or developing software. This version also offers a lot more paper documentation than you get with the Personal edition, including a network administrator guide. This makes it easier for those without advanced skills to start networking, serving, and developing. However, the software supplied on the three installation discs is identical in both versions.

Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional comes without MP3 support, without RealOne Player, and without a default CD burner. It uses the same Anaconda installation program (somewhat cleaned up from earlier versions and with a more logical sequence of actions), and has the same contempt for many older PCs--especially those without AMD or Intel processors.

Hardware detection and setup is excellent for most common cards and devices, including USB devices. It's especially hot on networking hardware. However, because many hardware manufacturers still don't support Linux, new types of devices and very old devices can be problematic. If in doubt, check the supported hardware list on Red Hat's site.

Apart from missing multimedia support, Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional doesn't do the kind of simple things that make life easier for new users. For example, most new Linux users come from Windows. Having the installation script add an icon to mount an existing Windows disk or partition is trivial and makes it simple for new users to access existing documents and files. But here, you're immediately stuck in a Linux-only universe where the first thing you have to do is edit fstab to get at your old files.

On the plus side, almost everything in Linux can now be configured from the graphical control panel, a far cry from just a couple of years ago. You may never need to edit a raw configuration file. Overall, with its far better paper documentation and wider range of installation options, Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional is actually a better buy than the Personal edition for those new to Linux. Experts can save money with the Personal edition. --Steve Patient, Amazon.co.uk ... Read more

Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars why do they do that
why do redhat upgrade there os so often,
that's a minus factor compared to windows.
repacking with fancy new box wont one time redhat buyers
comeback. like me. they gotta show us why and where we
need it not just for servers but games mutimedia and internet.
linux is getting too big too soon a bad sign for a
relativeely young os. igive three stars because
there are new users who needs it and will definitely
love it. let's frag M$.

3-0 out of 5 stars The Good The Bad and the Ugly
The Good:
- The user interface definitely is the most appealing to the eye compared to previous versions.
- System administration tasks are much more user-friendly. No more ugly linuxconf. This is probably the most noticable improvement that jumped out at me.
- Software updates are also nice. The system automatically checks for updates and warns the user when updates are available to the system.
- Journaling file system! Most home users could care less but this allows Linux to gain more respect in "serious" IT shops.
- Mozilla (Netscape) is finally nice and stable.

The Bad:
- The price is a total rip-off! Keep in mind that the ISO images (these are used to create the CD's that you pay $$$ for) for the Red Hat CD's are available through a ton of websites listed on redhat.com for anyone to download FOR FREE! I know that Red Hat as a company is trying to become consistently profitable but highway robbery is probably not the best way to do it.
- Even though the "look and feel" may be prettier, the Red Hat folks still have a long way to go with respect to human computer interaction. Sometimes you will get a notice saying there is an update to some package like libgtk++ from 2.0.1.4.2 to 2.0.1.5.2.3 which doesn't necessarily represent the version of libgtk++ itself but may be the version of the packaging of this library. What is libgtk++? What does it do? Confused yet?
- Just because it comes with a word processor/e-mail client doesn't mean you are going to want to use it!
- From the number of e-mails I get from Red Hat, I am suprised to see how many updates/patches have been released to address potential security risks. Whats also interesting is how even the smallest MS security threat will make all the tech headlines all over the internet while these warnings from Red Hat almost go unnoticed. This is something to consider if you are going to have your system connected (using broadband/cable modem/etc) continuously. Out of the box, this is not much more safer than any other product out there and tweaking it may not be as user friendly.

The Ugly:
- Updating the kernel. The way they make the kernel package (RPM) look like just another innocent update is downright mean and ugly.
- Give this OS to your parents. Now have them incorporate their favorite true type font (introduce the font to the X server). Watch as the ugliness unfolds.
- Just cant get over the pricing!!!

Just my two cents

4-0 out of 5 stars MANY PLUSES, FEW MINUSES!
Very few people would be surprised to see that this latest version of "Red Hat Linux" has most of the attributes that make "Suse Linux 8.1 Professional" thick: including OpenOffice and Ximian Evolution.
The ease with which this OS copes with a multi-system environment makes it a top bargain for anyone gunning for a Linux-based server. Its graphical interface is wonderful!
Although I'm aware that most hardware producers favour Windows more than they do Linux, I was still disappointed to discover that there is no support for MP3. There is also, no room for what should have served as my default CD Burner.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I've been using Red Hat Linux 7.3.93 (Code Name Null) for a while and I really like the new look (Red Hat Bluecurve).
Today I just placed an order of Red Hat Linux 8.0 Professional Edition instead of Personal Edition because I really want it on DVD! (Surprise?) Also I want all 4 manuals along with Office & Multimedia Apps CD and Sys Admin Tools CD. Of course 60 days of Telephone Support Privilege is an excellent way to keep in touch with Linux Experts!

5-0 out of 5 stars The best Red Hat relese yet.
I've been using Red Hat 8.0 for about 3 weeks now. It's the nicest looking edition of Red Hat yet. It comes with KDE 3 and GNOME 2 with Red Hat's new Blue Curve desktop theme. Now KDE user's won't like it because it looks an awful lot like GNOME and GNOME users won't like it because it kind of looks like KDE, but if you're new to Linux and not yet bigotted by the desktop wars, I think this is the most usable version of Linux out. It comes bundled with Open Office 1.0 which will let you read and write some Word documents or you can even use the Open Office document format. Red Hat has enhanced their graphical administration utilities and still comes with all the goodies we're used to seeing from them like Samba, Apache, Bind, CUPS, etc.

... Read more


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