1. Introducing OpenLinux eDesktop 2.4

Welcome to Caldera Systems' OpenLinux eDesktop 2.4, the most advanced Linux operating system available. Designed with the same enterprise-level stability and performance of Caldera's eServer product, eDesktop has in addition been optimized for easy, intuitive desktop productivity.

This manual will guide you through the OpenLinux graphical installation process, then get you started using your new Linux system. It is arranged in four sections:

OpenLinux eDesktop Features

eDesktop 2.4 is optimized for ease-of-use and desktop productivity. The features that support this design fall into four categories:

Easy, Automated, Trouble-free Installation

The graphical installation program automatically prepares your computer for an OpenLinux installation, with safe, non-destructive partitioning using PartitionMagic Caldera Edition.

Graphical installation can begin from within Windows, by booting from a CD, or from a floppy disk.

Greatly improved autodetection of system hardware, including video adapters, sound cards, NICs and modems.

The most automated Internet setup in the industry--most users need no longer write files and scripts to connect to their Internet service provider!

Automatic setup of dual-boot capability--use two operating systems on the same computer!

A User-Friendly, Feature-Rich Desktop Environment

OpenLinux features KDE 1.1.2, the latest stable release of the most popular Linux graphical desktop.

Innovative System Administration Tools

OpenLinux boasts a rich set of graphical system tools, from the familiar Caldera Open Administration System, to the newly developed Webmin, an innovative, easy-to-use, browser-based system configuration program.

 

Enterprise-Strength Desktop Applications

Both free and licensed commercial applications are bundled with OpenLinux eDesktop 2.4. Free applications include:

Limited license or `light' applications include:

Where did Linux come from?

Linux was started in the early 1990s as a small research project by a Finnish college student named Linus Torvalds. Soon after Linus started his project, hundreds of others began to participate in its development via the Internet. A cooperative venture grew in which thousands of people were working together to create a new operating system.

The inclusion of the GNU utilities from the Free Software Foundation (see http://www.fsf.org) and the release of Linux under the GNU General Public License (GPL) furthered the spread of this work. The GPL provides that the source code to the software must be made available and that no one can restrict access to it. With this type of software, anyone can examine and extend the source code, but all such work must be released for public use. Other licenses provide for inclusion of source code with its associated software, but to date the GPL is the most common Open Source license.

NOTE: Programs that run on Linux don't have to be licensed under the GPL or any other Open Source license. Thousands of commercial applications that you can run on Linux (such as Corel WordPerfect 8 or Oracle 8 Server) use commercial licenses; they are not "GPLed," and do not include source code, thus they cannot be freely distributed.

The Linux product you have purchased is built upon the work of thousands of individuals, then assembled and packaged by Caldera Systems, Inc. More complete histories of Linux and the free software and Open Source development communities are available in many of the online and printed resources named at the end of Chapter Fourteen.

How is Linux Used?

Although Linux began as a desktop operating system, it achieved its first widespread success as a server. It is still strong and still gaining strength in that area--it's share of the server market continues to grow. Interest in Linux as a desktop operating system never waned, however, and Linux is now rapidly gaining ground as the OS of choice for primary workstations and desktop systems. Three reasons stand out for the increased use of Linux on the desktop:

Personal productivity software such as Corel WordPerfect, StarOffice, and Applixware are all making it possible for Linux to be the primary system for many users. Some products such as StarOffice and WordPerfect 8 also allow you to read and write popular MS Office formats so you can exchange files with coworkers who aren't using Linux.

Linux is also rapidly being adopted for high-end desktop systems. These workstations may be for software development, computer graphics, or high-end Internet access.

 

Server Uses

As mentioned before, Linux continues to gain strength in the server market. The following list shows the most popular uses of Linux in that environment.

In addition to these specialized server uses, many Linux systems today are being used as eCommerce and business-to-business database servers. Most of the popular database packages are available in Linux-native versions, including products from Oracle, Informix, Sybase, IBM and Computer Associates.

Who is Caldera Systems?

Caldera Systems is one of the oldest Linux vendors. Founded in 1994 as Caldera, Inc., Caldera Systems continues to be a leader in providing Linux technology in a form that businesses and individuals can easily put to work. Caldera Systems has been at the forefront of promoting Linux as an alternative to other operating systems, providing detailed analysis and references to support the compelling value that Linux provides.

Services offered by Caldera Systems include

Caldera Systems is located in Orem, Utah, with a European office in Erlangen, Germany.

Finding Technical Support

When you purchase and register this release of OpenLinux, you are entitled to free telephone and e-mail support to help you install the product and ensure that the default configuration of OpenLinux is functioning correctly for you.

The free telephone support is provided for 30 days, and there is an additional 90 days of free e-mail support. The number for telephone support is: (801) 443-1000.

The first step to obtaining technical support is to register the product at Caldera Systems' Web site: www.calderasystems.com/support. This is also the home of the Knowledge Base, an easy-to-use database of problems and their solutions, searchable by product, category, or keyword.

The Knowledge Base may well provide the fastest solution to your problem. But if you prefer, you can call or send an e-mail message with your serial number and details of the problem via the Personal Assistance section of the Knowledge Base.

A detailed list of the free installation support provided is found in Chapter Fourteen.

If you are interested in purchasing long-term support contracts visit the Caldera Systems website for details and pricing at the following Web address:

www.calderasystems.com/support/index.html.

If You Find Problems in the Documentation

We have made every effort to check the accuracy of this manual. Unfortunately, we've probably made some mistakes or been unclear about a particular topic. If you find that this documentation could be made better, please consult the following Web address for the latest in updated information:

www.calderasystems.com/support/docs/

We would also like to learn of your suggestions. Please e-mail us at docs@calderasystems.com.