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FAQ » Computing

Computing FAQ

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  1. Which operating systems have you used?
  2. Which are the GNU/Linux distributions you often use?
  3. Why don't you use Windows?
  4. Which are the desktop environments you often use?
  5. Do you have any personal convensions for naming files?
  1. Which operating systems have you used?

    I have been using various GNU/Linux distributions since 2007, the first time I got a computer. I started using Windows at the same time and left it completely by 2010. I've occasionally used some kinds of DOS also.

    Other operating systems I've checked include ReactOS, Android and Symbian.

  2. Which are the GNU/Linux distributions you often use?

    Debian and Ubuntu. I prefer Debian.

  3. Why don't you use Windows?

    When I say I use GNU/Linux and not Windows, people usually think I've no experience with Windows and my minds would change if I use it for at least once. But believe me, I've used Windows, from its earlier versions to 10 (at least on others' computers), and I still stick to GNU/Linux.

    There are two strong reasons I wouldn't run Windows on my computer. One, it is proprietary software. It doesn't respect my freedom or privacy. Second, it doesn't appear technically strong, user-friendly or innovative to me, contrary to what many say.

    Also, please note that this isn't about cost. I don't mind paying for Free Software (free as in freedom), if I can afford it.

  4. Which are the desktop environments you often use?

    I largely use text console, and my preferred graphical desktop is GNOME Shell (Update: I've switched to Xfce in one distro). I once liked GNOME 2 very much and hated the modern appearance of Unity and GNOME Shell. But I found the Super Key (Windows Key) shortcuts in Unity really productive and switched to it. Later I moved on to GNOME Shell (even before Ubuntu did the switch, when I chose Debian 9 as my primary OS), I found it great.

    I agree that GNOME Shell is resource-intensive, but once I apply my own tweaks, I find myself much faster in GNOME Shell than in any other desktop. Let's hope GNOME Shell also gets more efficient eventually.

  5. Do you have any personal convensions for naming files?

    I currently prefer a character set consisting of Latin lowercase letters, digits, dot, hyphen and underscore. It is easier to handle, and causes little trouble with programs that cannot handle or crash on special characters.

    I used to prefer title case for English names, localized text (Malayalam and Tamil), and space where a seperation was required. But I eventually dropped Unicode filenames because they weren't well supported on text consoles (both display and input). Spaces caused difficulties in shell and other programs, so I replaced them first with underscore, and then with hyphen (because underscore requires Shift, making it difficult to type, and looks like space with improper text rendering). Underscore is still used, but only for second-level separations. For example, a package can be named pkgname-version-subversion_architecture.

    Now I am switching to full-lowercase naming, which is more easier to handle.

Last compiled on Sat, 01 Dec 2018 18:58:13 +0530


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