"Since I got into Linux, I have bumped into lots of new users
wondering what it is? At first I give them the answer "it is an
Operating System", but after that I often don't know where to
describe Linux in it's fairest degree."
"Linux, as many of you will know, encompasses an incredible
amount of software under the general heading of "Linux". Although
Linux itself is just a kernel, its general description is formed as
"an Operating System". I am not going to discuss here or there how
we should describe Linux in an accurate sense, but I am going to
look at an element of Linux that is often hidden to the new user,
but which can embroil their use of the system further down the line
- it's politics."
"I encountered these politics right from the start of my
Linux experience when I was asking people if Slackware was the best
distribution to use. I was confronted initially by a bunch of
people in #linux on EFNet complaining about Slackware and
supporting Debian. I then came into contact with a number of Red
Hat supporters. While I do not question the validity of the
arguments presented to me that day, I question their relevence to
my situation. I was told a number of different views and opinions
that were essentially not relevent in the circumstances that I was
in; that being a new Linux user wanting to get the damn thing on
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