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Increasing popularity of Virtual Machines leading to increased use of Linux

By JustMe2007 ·
I have always used Microsoft products. I develop in Visual Studio, I use SQL Server 2005 and all its components, Windows 2003, etc.

I know I SHOULD learn Linux. I tried installing it once (before I had enough computer knowledge) and I killed my machine. I haven't tried since because I was too lazy and Microsoft was already 'good enough'.

Now that Virtual Machine software is becoming more popular and affordable, I am really starting to look into it. I am looking at starting a business on-the-side with a Co-worker, and I have been thinking that this may be a great tool for our software development. (We don't have much cash to start up.)

However, if we continue with Microsoft, we will need to buy new licenses for every VM we run. That will get REALLY expensive really fast.

So I am thinking that now is the time to learn linux (my co-worker already knows linux). I am wondering if anyone else here thinks that Linux (and other open source systems) will get more popular as VM get more popular? Also, do you think now is the time for me to learn Linux?

Thanks in advance for the comments!

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Go for it - :-)

by nimblebits In reply to Increasing popularity of ...

Ive been recently looking at linux, ive tested out various software and found that to my surprise that Linux is just as good as microsoft. Also as i am a student we use Solaris computers for programming so i researched a bit more about solaris, they allow businesses to download the OS free for servers etc - Ubuntu offers server capabilty. Im not too sure about Virtual Machine. But from what i can see i would recommend it. Im planning on buying a new machine and partitioning it and running Windows, Linux AND Solaris on it - It will be an interesting experience.

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You don't need VM, Linux will dual boot with dos to XP

by michael_orton In reply to Go for it - :-)

I have never had a problem with dual bootinng Linux and any version of windoze. However I do cheat and use Partition Magic to shrink the windows partition(s) and then create a windows saved work fat32 partition.
Windows NTFS primary, the rest extended.
In extended (windows won't see it yet!) create windows saved workm fat32 and then linux swap, 512meg to 1 gig. Then leave the rest say 8 to 12 gig unallocated.
Then reboot with SuSe 10.x cd#1 and just follow orders.
You end up with GRUB boot loader and windows or linux choice. Both have read/write/edit access to the saved work.
Trouble id you soon find you don't then need windows!

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Dead Computers

by gsquared In reply to You don't need VM, Linux ...

I killed two computers by installing Linux as a dual-boot with Windows XP and had to repartition the hard drives to fix them.

I'm trying to learn Linux, and finding that there's a very steep learning curve if I want to go beyond very simple basics.

I've switched to running Linux in virtual PCs, instead of dual-booting, and am having good results with that. Also makes it much easier to save a copy of the virtual machine, play around with settings, etc., and go back to what was working before if I **** it up. As opposed to having to reinstall two OSes, I just use the old version of the virtual machine.

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give Mandriva a go

by Neon Samurai In reply to Dead Computers

Mandriva is an RPM based distro that's pretty well designed for entry to advanced level users. During the custom install, you get a good graphic partition app to setup your stuff but for best results, you should have your fat32/NTFS partitions setup ahead of installing winXP or use Partition Magic to reduce the partitions leaving empty drive space.

01 - ntfs partiton with the minimal space you need for OS and apps.

02 - ntfs or fat32 with the minimal space you need for winXP user saved files unless you pickup a cheap NAS and use Samba shares.

03 - native Linux partition in about the one to two gig size range for root ("/") and apps

04 - native Linux partition in about the two gig size range for user directories ("/home")

05 - native Linux partition as big as you can make it for application libraries and VM files ("/var"). If you give a winXP vm an 8 gig hard drive, you have to have 8gigs free under /var/lib/vmware/Virtual Machines/

06 - native Linux swap partition equal to your ram though preferably double your ram (in the 1 to 2 gig range)

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I suggest Ubuntu and GPartEd

by rlovett In reply to You don't need VM, Linux ...

A very simple install can be had by using an Ubuntu installation disk. It's a complete package, and has GPartEd and GRUB built into the installer.

Another benefit is that it is free!

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Missed the point

by VBJackson In reply to You don't need VM, Linux ...

I would agree that your sloution would work to run the system with EITHER Windows or Linux.
The point of this article, however, is that with virtualization software you can have MULTIPLE OSs running AT THE SAME TIME.
The problem is that if you have multiple instances of Windows Server running, you have to purchase a license for each instance.
If you run Linux in each additional virtual machine, you don't.

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Welcome to the multi-OS world and freedome of choice

by Neon Samurai In reply to Go for it - :-)

I've not built a single-OS machine in years but then I collect OS like other people collect baseball cards.

My current preference is dual boot WinXP/Mandriva Linux with VM for BSD, Debian, Mandriva, Dos, Win98, WinXP (licenses live on after MS exceeds hardware). I've VM also for liveCD ISO including Knoppix, ParillelKnoppix, Unbuntu, Kubuntu, Edubuntu, OLPC OS (one laptop per child is a great project). I need to add Solaris to the VM collection.

I'll leave the VMware appliance list for another time. Put simply, once you go multi-OS, you won't look back.. even if it does take a beating and some hours infront of a book to learn Linux.

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Linux is important and VM will help its diffusion

by luciano.desiati In reply to Increasing popularity of ...

This is my opinion for many reasons :
-VM permit to practise without dedicated HW
-You can use your PC and run it only when you want/need it
-Linux VM requires less memory than Windows VM
-VirtualPC is free of charge and it works well enough with Linux
-VMware provides also free VM player


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Yes and Yes

by binarypc In reply to Increasing popularity of ...

Linux is almost a mandatory tool now, even in the belt of die-hard Windows Admins. So, yes, learn it, it's time. :-)

And yes, VM's make it much more available, especially to people with just one or two machines. :-)

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something different....

by Jaqui In reply to Increasing popularity of ...

should you learn linux? and linux development?
and cross platform development on linux?
yes to all three, since they will be of benefit in many different ways.

is using vm technology the way to do it?
maybe not.
a vm uses more ram, and is subject to the same limitations of the hardware you have, so you might be better off dual booting or having dedicated machines networked for your purposes.

programming for GNU-Linux is drastically different than programming for Windows.
if you don't intent to release the software on linux, you don't need the linux platform, saving the money to buy the dev tools for windows would serve you better.

Do you really want to have to pick from the multitude of cross platform widget sets, the closest to windows looking being QT, and under a commercial license [ $2,400.00 USD for the QT dev tools to do commercial development ]
wxwidgets, commercal license for commercial development.
GTK/GDK, the only open source widget set free for any use, but not a really fancy bells and whistles kit to work with.

do you use drag and drop for UI development?
not in a linux tool set.
use winde/crossover office to run the MS tools under linux?
why use linux if that is the way you are going to go?

even though I am 100% linux in my own environment, and strongly support the idea of learning it, if your planned business doesn't include software for linux [ commercial license is legal, but not common ] then you would be wasting your own time learning it for the proposed business.

you could look at Bloodshed's Dev C++, it is available for both windows and linux, and uses gcc and the gnu dev tool set for development, under the mingw simulated linux console in windows, this would give you a chance to see what the gtk/gdk dev set would be like in a linux environment. This is one of the closest dev tool kits to MS Visual Studio from the open source world.

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