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LinuxWorld: The PowerPC Penguin, Part 1 - A look at the OS, the apps, and the gaps for Linux on Mac

Jan 02, 2001, 20:33 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Pawel Leszek)

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"Although Linux was born on PC machines, it is widely used on different hardware platforms. And one of those platforms is the Macintosh. Apple's hardware is usually considered more reliable and technically advanced than that of PC machines. But Macs are also more expensive and suffer from a lack of applications. And Apple's prospects as a company could worry some, considering that it was near bankruptcy before Steve Jobs brought it back to life after his comeback in 1998. Apple's financial perturbations have also made Mac OS technically backward compared not only with Linux but even with the Windows OS family."

"In this two-part series of articles, I want to show you why Linux can be a vital alternative to Mac OS and Mac OS X. You will see how Mac OS loses to Linux as a server, a development platform, and, sometimes, even as a desktop environment. This first part will show you the current state of the Linux port for Power Macintosh machines and will describe the distributions and applications that are available. In the second part, you will get a detailed tutorial on installing the LinuxPPC 2000 distribution on your Mac."

"The official Apple position toward Linux on PPC hardware is to ignore it. Apple doesn't seem to want to fight with Linux and even admires it sometimes. But Linux will be a strong competitor for Mac OS X, which is currently in beta and is expected to ship in spring 2001. Remember also, as Apple surely does, that Linux, which is considered hard to use on desktops, owns a 5.9 percent share of the desktop market; Mac OS, in spite of its reputation as an extremely user-friendly environment has only 5 percent."

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