reasons #9, #21, and #52 why I prefer GNU/Linux over Windows


I had some image files that needed thumbnailed and renamed, but I didn’t want to feed them into the image gallery script that I use. On Windows I’d need to open each one manually in whatever image editing software I used, modify them, and save them one by one. On GNU/Linux, it was as easy as this: for i in ls *.png; do convert -resize 100x150 $i $i.png; done; (provided you have ImageMagick installed, which you most likely do.)

Whoops! The above command accidentally added an extra .png extension to all those files! If I were using Windows I’d have to rename each file one by one. On GNU/Linux, it was as easy as this: for i in ls *.png.png; do x=echo $i | cut -d . -f 1; mv $i $x.png; done;

I’m at work right now, installing Windows 98 SE onto a computer. The installation is easy enough, but now I have a laborious update process: visit and install service packs reboot visit and install IE 6 reboot visit and install IE service packs reboot visit and install DirectX 9 run-time (why is this considered a “critical update”?!) reboot

On GNU/Linux, I can usually update the entire running system in one fell swoop without rebooting at all. With Debian GNU/Linux, it’s as simple as: sudo apt-get update; sudo apt-get -u dist-upgrade Some GNU/Linux distributions even make sure you install the latest updates during the initial installation process (Gentoo, I think; and Debian certainly applies all security-updated software at install time).

I also like the fact that I don’t need to install many drivers for peripherals, as the Linux kernel contains many of them. My CDRW drive never needed drivers, nor did my DVD+/-RW drive (although I did require SCSI emulation, so I suppose that’s a bit of a wash). My digital camera connects to the USB port and mounts as a USB hard disk with no problem. Our Digital8 video camera connects to the firewire port and downloads/streams audio and video without a hitch.

Yes, I heart GNU/Linux.

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