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NOS220 Review (Ch1)

Linux Study Guide - Introduction to Linux

QuestionAnswer
AIX A version of UNIX developed by IBM.
Application The software that runs on an operating system and provides the user with specific functionality (such as word processing or financial calculation).
artistic license An open source license that allows source code to be distributed freely but changed only at the discretion of the original author.
Beowulf clustering A popular and widespread method of clustering computers together to perform useful tasks using Linux.
BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution) A version of UNIX developed out of the original UNIX source code and given free to the University of California at Berkeley by AT&T.
closed source software The software whose source code is not freely available from the original author; Windows 7, for example.
Cluster A grouping of several smaller computers that function as one large supercomputer.
Clustering The act of making a cluster; see also cluster.
Cracker A person who uses computer software maliciously for personal profit.
Database An organized set of data.
database management system (DBMS) Software that manages databases.
developmental kernel A Linux kernel whose minor number is odd and has been recently developed yet not thoroughly tested.
device driver A piece of software containing instructions that the kernel of an operating system uses to control and interact with a specific type of computer hardware.
Distribution A complete set of operating system software, including the Linux kernel, supporting function libraries and a variety of free OSS packages can be downloaded from the Internet; these OSS packages are what differentiate the various distributions of Linux.
Flavor A specific type of UNIX operating system. For example, Solaris and BSD are two flavors of UNIX.
Free Software Foundation (FSF) An organization, started by Richard Stallman, that promotes and encourages the collaboration of software developers worldwide to allow the free sharing of source code and software programs.
Freeware Software distributed by the developer at no cost to the user.
frequently asked questions (FAQs) An area on a Web site where answers to commonly posed questions can be found.
fully qualified domain name (FQDN) A string of words identifying a server on the Internet.
GNU An acronym that stands for “GNU’s not UNIX.”
GNU General Public License (GPL) A software license ensuring that the source code for any OSS will remain freely available to anyone who wants to examine, build on, or improve upon it.
GNU Network Object Model Environment (GNOME) One of the two competing graphical user interface (GUI) environments for Linux.
GNU Project A free operating system project started by Richard Stallman.
graphical user interface (GUI) The component of an operating system that provides a user-friendly interface comprising graphics or icons to represent desired tasks. Users can point and click to execute a command rather than having to know and use proper command-line syntax.
GUI environment A GUI core component such as X Windows, combined with a window manager and desktop environment that provides the look and feel of the GUI. Due to ease of use and functionality, users may prefer one environment to another.
Hacker A person who explores computer science to gain knowledge. It should not be confused with the term cracker.
Hardware The tangible parts of a computer, such as the network boards, video card, hard disk drives, printers, and keyboards.
hardware platform A particular configuration and grouping of computer hardware, normally centered on and determined by processor type and architecture.
hot fix A solution made by a closed source vendor that fixes a software bug.
HOWTO A task-specific instruction guide to performing any of a wide variety of tasks; freely available from the Linux Documentation Project at http
HP-UX A version of UNIX developed by Hewlett-Packard.
Internet Protocol (IP) address A unique string of numbers assigned to a computer to uniquely identify it on the Internet.
K desktop environment (KDE) One of the two competing graphical user interfaces (GUI) available for Linux
Kernel The central, core program of the operating system. The shared commonality of the kernel is what defines Linux; the differing OSS applications that can interact with the common kernel are what differentiate Linux distributions.
Linus Torvalds A Finnish graduate student who coded and created the first version of Linux and subsequently distributed it under the GNU Public License.
Linux A software operating system originated by Linus Torvalds. The common core, or kernel, continues to evolve and be revised. Differing OSS bundled with the Linux kernel is what defines the wide variety of distributions now available.
Linux Documentation Project (LDP) A large collection of Linux resources, information, and help files supplied free of charge and maintained by the Linux community.
Linux User Group (LUG) An open forum of Linux users who discuss and assist each other in using and modifying the Linux operating system and the OSS run on it. There are LUGs worldwide.
mail delivery agent (MDA) The service that downloads e-mail from a mail transfer agent.
mail transfer agent (MTA) An e-mail server.
mail user agent (MUA) A program that allows e-mail to be read by a user.
major number The number preceding the first dot in the number used to identify a Linux kernel version. It is used to denote a major change or modification.
MINIX Mini-UNIX created by Andrew Tannenbaum .Using publicly available instructions on how to code the this version of the kernel as a starting point, Linus Torvalds improved this version of UNIX for the Intel platform and created the first version of Linux.
minor number The number following the first dot in the number used to identify a Linux kernel version, denoting a minor modification. If odd, it is a version under development and not yet fully tested. See also developmental kernel and production kernel.
Multiplexed Information and Computing Service (MULTICS) A prototype time-sharing operating system that was developed in the late-1960s by AT&T Bell Laboratories.
Multitasking A type of operating system that has the capability to manage multiple tasks simultaneously.
Multiuser A type of operating system that has the capability to provide access to multiple users simultaneously.
Newsgroup An Internet protocol service accessed via an application program called a newsreader. This service allows central access to postings (accessible by all newsgroup users) normally organized along specific themes. Users can post questions and responses.
Open Source Software (OSS) The programs distributed and licensed so that the source code making up the program is freely available to anyone who wants to examine, utilize, or improve upon it.
operating system (OS) The software used to control and directly interact with the computer hardware components.
package manager The software used to install, maintain, and remove other software programs by storing all relevant software information in a central software database on the computer.
Process A program loaded into memory and running on the processor, performing a specific task.
production kernel A Linux kernel whose minor number (the number after the dot in the version number) is even and which is, therefore, deemed stable for use after widespread testing.
Program A set of instructions that knows how to interact with the operating system and computer hardware to perform a specific task; stored as a file on some media (for example, a hard disk drive).
programming language The syntax used for developing a program. Different programming languages use different syntaxes.
proxy server A server or hardware device that requests Internet resources on behalf of other computers.
Red Hat One of the most popular and prevalent distributions of Linux in North America, distributed and supported by Red Hat Inc. Fedora is a Red Hat-based Linux distribution.
revision number The number after the second dot in the version number of a Linux kernel, which identifies the certain release number of a kernel.
router A computer running routing software, or a special-function hardware device providing interconnection between networks; it contains information regarding the structure of the networks and sends information from one component network to another.
Scalability The capability of computers to increase workload as the number of processors increases.
search engine An Internet Web site, such as www.google.com, where you simply enter a phrase representing your search item and receive a list of Web sites that contain relevant material.
Server A computer configured to allow other computers to connect to it from across a network.
server services The services that are made available for other computers across a network.
Shareware The programs developed and provided at minimal cost to the end user. These programs are initially free but require payment after a period of time or a certain amount of usage.
Software The programs stored on a storage device in a computer that provide a certain function when executed.
Solaris A version of UNIX developed by Sun Microsystems from AT&T source code.
source code The sets of organized instructions on how to function and perform tasks that define or constitute a program.
SuSE One of the most popular and prevalent distributions of Linux in Europe.
system service The additional functionality provided by a program that has been incorporated into and started as part of the operating system.
Tarball A compressed archive of files containing scripts that install Linux software to the correct locations on a computer system.
total cost of ownership (TCO) The full sum of all accumulated costs, over and above the simple purchase price of utilizing a product. Includes training, maintenance, additional hardware, and downtime.
UNIX The first true multitasking, multiuser operating system, developed by Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie, from which Linux was originated.
User A person who uses a computer.
user interface The interface the user sees and uses to interact with the operating system and application programs.
Workstation A computer used to connect to services on a server.
workstation services The services that are used to access shared resources on a network server.
X Windows The core component of the GUI in Linux.
Created by: Sumbunny