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Red Hat Linux 7.3

Red Hat Linux 7.3

I called my local Staples Store and asked when they were expecting delivery of the New Red Hat Linux 7.3. I was put on hold, as usual, and waited a minute. When a sales representative came on line, I repeated the question, and was placed back on hold. Again, about another minute. Don't they realize how important this is? The sales representative came back on line and told me they don't have it, they're expecting it in, but he couldn't tell me when that would be. I thanked him for his time and promptly hung up. I then went to my computer and went online to http://www.redhat.com. I surfed to the products window, reading about all the goodies and neat stuff that would be included in this distribution. I wanted the Red Hat Linux Professional, but it was little too rich for my blood, so I ordered the Red Hat Personal 7.3. Took about 10 minutes, received a confirmation e-mail and was told it would be here in just two days. I could handle that.

Some of you may be wondering what the big deal is.. Red Hat Linux 7.3 has the new Gnome and KDE 3.0 Desktop Managers; including the new Ximian Evolution e-mail program, which I used in Mandrake 8.1. I was excited to say the least. I had been using Red Hat 7.2 and once in a while I would load Mandrake as well, just to be familiar with it. Mandrake is excellent, I just prefer Red Hat, perhaps because of the Red Hat logo or I just feel more comfortable with it since I have used Red Hat the most out of the three distributions I've tried: SuSE 6.3, Mandrake 8.1, RedHat 7.0, 7.1, 7.2 and now 7.3.

My software arrived two days later. I opened the box, gingerly removing the red covered CD package, the red covered installation manual, my registration number and a little RedHat Network user booklet. I carefully. inserted the installation CD into my Compaq Prosignia's CD-Rom drive. I selected reboot from my RedHat Linux 7.2 load I currently had on. Shutdown, reboot initializing runlevel 5 non-interactive mode. OK, OK, OK it reads off to me.

Wham! Programming tools, graphics tools, MP3 tools, fax, servers, databases, spreadsheets, editors, applications, Internet tools, utility programs, scientific programs, entertainment - you name it, it's there. Personal Star Office 5.2 is also included, as well as Auto Cad programs, 3D programs and many more. Over 4,500 programs above and beyond the Linux OS.

What a deal! I paid $70.00 for the distribution, shipping and handling, direct from Red Hat. Yes, there are many out there selling copies, compilations, and copies of copies, anywhere from $5 to $20, but I wanted to buy a registered CD direct from Red Hat that gave me 30 days of online support. You want to know how much it would cost me in MS, apples to apples? XP: $500.00, XPOffice: $600.00, then you add all the other e-mail, office programs, scientific programs, server programs, plus those high dollar add ons to boot.

I've been running RedHat 7.3 now for about seven days. One big difference in running Linux vs MS is I don't have to shut down in order to refresh my resources. I also don't have to run Scan Disk or DeFrag. Linux doesn't use them because it doesn't need to.

I really like my new RedHat Linux 7.3. For those of you that state Linux is not ready for prime time desktop duty, all I can say is you haven't used any of the later versions of the new distributions. You can even dual boot until you decide for yourself.

More Stories By DK O'Hara

DKO'HARA is an MCP who has studied and implemented the A+, MCSE, Linux, and MSCD certifications. He is versed in many aspects of computing, and has turned his zest for knowledge and abilities in the computing field into a lifetime hobby and occassional freelancing. He has done programming on a volunteer basis for the Armed Forces and Government, and is available on the LBW Discussion Group (www.sys-con.com/linux/) for comments, questions or ideas. You can view his Web site at: www.mediagrafx.com.

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