Linked by Jordan Spencer Cunningham on Sat 11th Apr 2009 20:55 UTC
Linux Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols at Computer World asks himself when he first started using Linux after attending the Linux Foundation Summit where several others were asked the same question. The Linux Foundation has posted a video of some of the answers; boy, do I feel young.
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1996
by sbenitezb on Sat 11th Apr 2009 21:14 UTC
sbenitezb
Member since:
2005-07-22

I knew about Linux before '96, but I could only get to it by that time. It was an Infomagick 6 CD set with Debian, Slackware and Red Hat. I used it with uucico to download Fidonet messages through my local BBS and then used some clone of GoldED to read the messages. That was real nice and was all console stuff.

Then I tried the X Window thing, back when you had to run win.com in your DOS, the X Windows with FVWM looked like Windows 95, almost. I didn't like it.

I remember choosing RedHat out of my own lack of knowledge, doing several reinstallations after screwing the system (not really, but what did I know).

Reply Score: 3

RE: 1996
by darknexus on Sat 11th Apr 2009 21:36 in reply to "1996"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Same here, back in January of 1996. I think it was Slackware 3.6 (might have been 3.5, can't remember now). I started playing with it because I'd had a shell account on my dial-up ISP (remember those?) and I'd really started to like UNIX. Then they discontinued shell accounts and wouldn't make an exception, so there went my UNIX.
Well, I wasn't going to stand for that, so I started looking up x86 UNIX-like oses. I had a Pentium 166 at the time, 32mb ram and an S3 Virge GX video card. It had a 6.4 gb hard drive. I looked at FreeBSD, NetBSD, and Linux, and eventually decided to give Slackware a go, for the simple reason that I could use the zipslack variant on an UMSDOS filesystem, meaning I wouldn't have to backup and partition my hd just to try it out. Just unzip the file, edit the linux.bat's loadlin command line, and fire it up.
Well, I was in heaven. My very own UNIX-like system, coming from one who was still using DOS and Windows 3.11 as my primary os, it was just amazing. It was slow (umsdos filesystems were a hack at best) and it was a royal pain getting my ISO sb16 sound card working (manual isapnp configuration, *shudder*). Once it was working, though, it was infinitely more stable than windows 95 was.
I've used many distributions since then, as well as all of the *BSDs and Solaris. For the longest time, Slackware remained my favorite do-it-yourself distro... up until I discovered Archlinux. These days, I use Arch for machines I want to have total control over, and Ubuntu for those times when I just want a nice Linux desktop that will work with little fuss. I alternate between Mac OS X and Ubuntu for my desktop usage, though lately I've been making a concerted effort to try and go OS X-free, as while I like the os I don't care much for Apple as a company.
Anyway, that's a brief overview of my beginnings with Linux.

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