Linux V1.2 is the most cost-effective way to turn a PC into a professional Unix workstation, to set up a private node on the Internet, or to provide a stable low-cost server platform for institutional networks. Since the release of Linux V1.0 on March 14, 1994, Linux has grown in size to an installed base of over 500,000 machines in personal, educational, and commercial settings. It is regularly used in scientific workstations, to provide network services, as a business computing platform, as a software development platform and environment, and for personal computing.
All of the software needed to build a stable, full-featured Unix environment around the Linux kernel is freely available, including all standard Unix utilities, XFree86 X Window System, GCC ANSI C/C++ compiler, a full suite of networking software, advanced text-processing tools, the emacs editor and more. Over a thousand applications have been written for or ported to Linux. Additional software allows Linux to run DOS and SCO Unix applications, as well as to share resources, such as disks and printers with Microsoft's Windows for Workgroups, DOS platforms and Macintoshes, making Linux ideal for all "mission critical" applications in mixed-OS environments.
Linux is a full-featured Unix operating system for PCs (386 or higher) which supports true multitasking, 32-bit virtual memory, shared libraries and executables, demand paging, advanced memory management, dynamically linked libraries and TCP/IP networking. Linux V1.2 adds to this list: performance enhancements, loadable kernel modules, increased portability, support for many more peripherals, PCI support, PCMCIA support, EIDE support, an increasing variety of network protocols, support for ELF-format binaries, and more.
Linux V1.2 is free software developed by Linus Torvalds along with an international development team; it is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License. No licensing fees are required to use Linux, and the source code is freely available to all developers and users, which speeds up the pace of development and finds and corrects problems quickly. This unique development effort has produced a product which can compete with the multi-million dollar efforts of commercial OS providers.
Many companies have adopted Linux as their development platform of choice or make money selling and supporting Linux and Linux-related products. Russell Nelson, President of Crynwr Software, had this to say: "We use Linux for all our mission-critical applications. Having the source code means that we're not held hostage by anyone's support department."
Linux V1.2 is currently being ported to the DEC Alpha (with full 64-bit support), MIPS, Motorola 68000 family and Sparc platforms.
Linux V1.2 is available at no cost by anonymous FTP and on many BBSs, and is sold by several CD-ROM vendors. For more information on Linux, contact Linux International on the World Wide Web at http://www.linux.org/ or get the Linux Frequently Asked Questions list by anonymous ftp from tsx-11.mit.edu in the /pub/linux/docs/linux-faq directory or sunsite.unc.edu in the /pub/Linux/docs/faqs directory.
Windows and Windows for Workgroups are registered trademarks in the United States and other countries of Microsoft Corp.
DEC Alpha is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries of Digital Equipment Corp.
SCO is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries of Santa Cruz Operation.
Macintosh is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries of Apple Computer.
XFree86 is a trademark in the United States and other countries of the XFree86 Project, Inc.