11 Best Black Friday Deals for Linux Users

By Abhishek Prakash

Best Black Friday Deals for Linux Users

Brief: Best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals that should be of interest to many Linux users. The deals are on Linux gadgets, courses, books, magazines, merchandises, and servers.

To the American readers of It’s FOSS, happy thanksgiving!

Black Friday is here which means it is time for some crazy discounts and deals. Good thing is that you don’t have to be an American to enjoy the discounts.

Black Friday tradition has caught up with many other countries as well. Internet-specific products are anyway available in almost all countries. Which means, the Black Friday is a global event now.

But finding Black Friday deals of your interest is a daunting task. Even if you spend the entire day on the internet looking for good deals, chances are that you would still miss a good deal.

And this is why I created this page to collect the best Black Friday deals for Linux users. Keep your wallet ready. Here are the deals!

Best Black Friday deals for Linux users

I have grouped deals together. Gadget deals are listed together, online courses are in one group and so on. Most of these deals are time sensitive so you have to act fast to grab the offer in time.

I’ll also take this occasion to introduce our new project, Linux Deals. This website will offer you exclusive Linux related deals all year round.

1. Linux Foundation Certification Courses at $179 instead of $599 with free Linux t-shirt and mugs

This has to be the best offer for anyone serious about making a career in Linux.

Linux Foundation, the official non-profit organization behind Linux, offers several certifications. These certifications are trusted in the job market and they give your resume a boost, landing you a job or career change.

These certification courses cost $599 usually, but until 29th of November, you can get it in just $179. Here’s what you’ll get:

  • Exam preparation material for 1 year
  • 2 takes on the exam
  • 1 Linux t-shirt
  • 1 Linux mug

This offer is available on the following certifications:

See, I told you that this is the best Black Friday deal for Linux career aspirants.

2. 57% Off on 1-Year subscription of Linux Academy

Linux Academy has become a prominent name in Linux training. You’ll find a number of online courses created by experts on Linux related technologies.

Linux Academy offers a monthly subscription of $19 per month. But you can get the yearly plan for just $149.

If you opt for this plan, you also get 10% discount on various Linux certification exam fee.

Linux Academy 1-Year Subscription

3. Various Linux courses for just $10 on Udemy

If you think the above two deals are a bit on the expansive side and perhaps not suited for your need, you can try Udemy.

You’ll find a number of Linux courses on Udemy and the good thing is that all of them are priced just $10 (or equivalent in your currency).

I suggest that you go for the courses with either best-seller tag or that has good reviews. This would be the best affordable deal of this Black Friday season.

Linux Courses on Udemy

4. 50% Off on Bash it Out book

Do you remember our Bash scripting puzzle challenge book Bash it Out? We are giving away 50% off on this eBook. Which means you get this awesome book to test your Bash scripting knowledge for just 1.5 Euro. You just need to use the coupon code BFRIDAY at the checkout time. And did I say it’s DRM-free?

Get Bash it Out for just 1.5 Euro

5. 20% off on Linux Format and Linux User and Developer magazines

Linux Format and Linux User and Developer are among the best Linux magazines. Both magazines are published by the same UK based publishing house.

You can get a limited time 20% off on the subscription of both the magazines, either in print or digital format.

20% off on Linux User & Developer Magazine

20% off on Linux Format Magazine

6. All eBooks from Apress at $9.99

Apress is a New York based publisher of IT books. It has some good books on Linux. Though these books are usually in the range of $30-$40 range, you can get them in just $9.99.

There is also discount on the print edition. You can browse through the books on its website.

Linux Books from Apress

7. 15% discount on Dell laptops

Dell is one of the largest sellers of Linux laptops. It’s XPS 13 Ubuntu edition is one of the best Linux laptops you can get. I bought it in last Black Friday sale and saved around 150 Euro.

There are sales on Dell laptops again this year. However, this is not generic as the discount varies from devices to devices and region to region. In France, the discount is 15%.

You may have to search for Ubuntu laptops on the website as Dell doesn’t display it in the main catalog.

15% Off on Dell Linux Laptops

8. $50 OFF on elementary OS Laptops from Alpha

Alpha Store debuted by introducing the first elementary OS laptop called LiteBook. Since then, it has increased its inventory. They have new laptop series called Centurion with better configuration.

It is available in two models:

You’ll also get $50 off on the SSD model of the low-cost LiteBook.

$50 Off on elementary OS laptops from Alpha

9. Various discount on Ubuntu laptops from System76

System76 needs no introduction. They deal exclusively with Ubuntu based hardware. You get premium Ubuntu based laptops, mini-PCs, desktops and servers.

System76 is running its Black Friday deal and is offering discounts from $30 to $900 depending on what you are purchasing and how you upgrade your configuration.

More details can be found on their website.

System76

10. 100 Euro off on Slimbook Linux laptops

Slimbook got into the limelight with the launch of the first KDE exclusive laptop. The laptops are of premium quality and pricing. But the good thing is that you can get 100 Euro off on all the models until 26th November.

100 Euro off on Slimbook

11. 30% off on Linux and programming stickers on Unixstickers

If you are looking for Linux related merchandise, look no further than Unixstickers. You can get stickers for your favorite Linux distribution and open source project, pins, badges, mugs and t-shirts.

The best thing here is that they are the official merchandise partner of many open source projects and part of the sale actually goes to the project. In addition to that, they choose an open source project per month to donate them.

Don’t wait as their offer is only for 48 hours.

30% Off on all stickers on Unixstickers

What’s your pick?

This post contains some affiliate links. Please read our affiliate policy in that regard. If you are looking for more Black Friday deals, head over to Linux Deals and check out there.

I hope this post helps you save some money. Meanwhile, why don’t you share what you already got in this Black Friday sale?

From: It’s FOSS

11 Best Black Friday Deals for Linux Users

By Abhishek Prakash

Best Black Friday Deals for Linux Users

Brief: Best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals that should be of interest to many Linux users. The deals are on Linux gadgets, courses, books, magazines, merchandises, and servers.

To the American readers of It’s FOSS, happy thanksgiving!

Black Friday is here which means it is time for some crazy discounts and deals. Good thing is that you don’t have to be an American to enjoy the discounts.

Black Friday tradition has caught up with many other countries as well. Internet-specific products are anyway available in almost all countries. Which means, the Black Friday is a global event now.

But finding Black Friday deals of your interest is a daunting task. Even if you spend the entire day on the internet looking for good deals, chances are that you would still miss a good deal.

And this is why I created this page to collect the best Black Friday deals for Linux users. Keep your wallet ready. Here are the deals!

Best Black Friday deals for Linux users

I have grouped deals together. Gadget deals are listed together, online courses are in one group and so on. Most of these deals are time sensitive so you have to act fast to grab the offer in time.

I’ll also take this occasion to introduce our new project, Linux Deals. This website will offer you exclusive Linux related deals all year round.

1. Linux Foundation Certification Courses at $179 instead of $599 with free Linux t-shirt and mugs

This has to be the best offer for anyone serious about making a career in Linux.

Linux Foundation, the official non-profit organization behind Linux, offers several certifications. These certifications are trusted in the job market and they give your resume a boost, landing you a job or career change.

These certification courses cost $599 usually, but until 29th of November, you can get it in just $179. Here’s what you’ll get:

  • Exam preparation material for 1 year
  • 2 takes on the exam
  • 1 Linux t-shirt
  • 1 Linux mug

This offer is available on the following certifications:

See, I told you that this is the best Black Friday deal for Linux career aspirants.

2. 57% Off on 1-Year subscription of Linux Academy

Linux Academy has become a prominent name in Linux training. You’ll find a number of online courses created by experts on Linux related technologies.

Linux Academy offers a monthly subscription of $19 per month. But you can get the yearly plan for just $149.

If you opt for this plan, you also get 10% discount on various Linux certification exam fee.

Linux Academy 1-Year Subscription

3. Various Linux courses for just $10 on Udemy

If you think the above two deals are a bit on the expansive side and perhaps not suited for your need, you can try Udemy.

You’ll find a number of Linux courses on Udemy and the good thing is that all of them are priced just $10 (or equivalent in your currency).

I suggest that you go for the courses with either best-seller tag or that has good reviews. This would be the best affordable deal of this Black Friday season.

Linux Courses on Udemy

4. 50% Off on Bash it Out book

Do you remember our Bash scripting puzzle challenge book Bash it Out? We are giving away 50% off on this eBook. Which means you get this awesome book to test your Bash scripting knowledge for just 1.5 Euro. You just need to use the coupon code BFRIDAY at the checkout time. And did I say it’s DRM-free?

Get Bash it Out for just 1.5 Euro

5. 20% off on Linux Format and Linux User and Developer magazines

Linux Format and Linux User and Developer are among the best Linux magazines. Both magazines are published by the same UK based publishing house.

You can get a limited time 20% off on the subscription of both the magazines, either in print or digital format.

20% off on Linux User & Developer Magazine

20% off on Linux Format Magazine

6. All eBooks from Apress at $9.99

Apress is a New York based publisher of IT books. It has some good books on Linux. Though these books are usually in the range of $30-$40 range, you can get them in just $9.99.

There is also discount on the print edition. You can browse through the books on its website.

Linux Books from Apress

7. 15% discount on Dell laptops

Dell is one of the largest sellers of Linux laptops. It’s XPS 13 Ubuntu edition is one of the best Linux laptops you can get. I bought it in last Black Friday sale and saved around 150 Euro.

There are sales on Dell laptops again this year. However, this is not generic as the discount varies from devices to devices and region to region. In France, the discount is 15%.

You may have to search for Ubuntu laptops on the website as Dell doesn’t display it in the main catalog.

15% Off on Dell Linux Laptops

8. $50 OFF on elementary OS Laptops from Alpha

Alpha Store debuted by introducing the first elementary OS laptop called LiteBook. Since then, it has increased its inventory. They have new laptop series called Centurion with better configuration.

It is available in two models:

You’ll also get $50 off on the SSD model of the low-cost LiteBook.

$50 Off on elementary OS laptops from Alpha

9. Various discount on Ubuntu laptops from System76

System76 needs no introduction. They deal exclusively with Ubuntu based hardware. You get premium Ubuntu based laptops, mini-PCs, desktops and servers.

System76 is running its Black Friday deal and is offering discounts from $30 to $900 depending on what you are purchasing and how you upgrade your configuration.

More details can be found on their website.

System76

10. 100 Euro off on Slimbook Linux laptops

Slimbook got into the limelight with the launch of the first KDE exclusive laptop. The laptops are of premium quality and pricing. But the good thing is that you can get 100 Euro off on all the models until 26th November.

100 Euro off on Slimbook

11. 30% off on Linux and programming stickers on Unixstickers

If you are looking for Linux related merchandise, look no further than Unixstickers. You can get stickers for your favorite Linux distribution and open source project, pins, badges, mugs and t-shirts.

The best thing here is that they are the official merchandise partner of many open source projects and part of the sale actually goes to the project. In addition to that, they choose an open source project per month to donate them.

Don’t wait as their offer is only for 48 hours.

30% Off on all stickers on Unixstickers

What’s your pick?

This post contains some affiliate links. Please read our affiliate policy in that regard. If you are looking for more Black Friday deals, head over to Linux Deals and check out there.

I hope this post helps you save some money. Meanwhile, why don’t you share what you already got in this Black Friday sale?

From: It’s FOSS

Interview with FreeDOS Founder and Lead Dev Jim Hall

By John Paul

Jim Hall FreeDOS

This year marks the 23rd anniversary of the FreeDOS project. To help celebrate those many years and help raise awareness for the project, I connected with Jim Hall (FreeDOS founder and lead developer) and asked him a few questions. Here are his answers.

It’s FOSS: How did FreeDOS project get started? What was the inspiration behind it?

Jim Hall: I’d been a DOS user for many years. When I was growing up, we were fortunate to have a PC at home. That was where I first learned to use DOS. And not incidentally, I taught myself how to write programs in DOS, and created several personal utilities that extended the DOS command line and made it more useful to me.

Fast forward to the early 1990s, when I was an undergraduate physics student at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. I considered myself a DOS power-user by that time. I loved using DOS for everything. I had discovered some shareware programs that made my life easier as a student: the As Easy As spreadsheet, the Telix terminal program, and the Galaxy Write word processor. I did all of my work in DOS. Sure, the campus had a PC computer lab with Microsoft Windows, but that was Windows 3.1. And if you remember Windows 3.1 at the time, it wasn’t great. I avoided Windows.

I’d also discovered Linux while at college. My first distribution was Softlanding Linux System (SLS) which I dual-booted on my computer with DOS. Linux did all the work of the “big Unix” systems in our campus computer lab, but there weren’t a lot of Linux applications yet. No word processor, no spreadsheet. And I needed those to do my work as a student. So I spent most of my time in DOS.

In 1994, I started to see a lot of articles claiming that Microsoft planned to finally “do away” with DOS with the next version of Windows. I wasn’t happy about that. I thought, “If Windows 3.2 or 4.0 is anything like Windows 3.1, I don’t want anything to do with it.”

Since I’d used Linux, it occurred to me that if developers could come together to create a free Unix system, surely we could do the same with a free DOS. After all, DOS is a much simpler operating system. I made an announcement in the comp.os.msdos.apps online discussion group, via Usenet, that I wanted to create a free version of DOS. People thought that was a good idea, so I did it.

It’s FOSS: Why would someone want to install FreeDOS?

Jim Hall: We posted a survey several years ago, and asked people why they use FreeDOS. We find there are three or four reasons people install FreeDOS today:

1. To play classic DOS games

Just because a game is old doesn’t mean it stopped being fun! There are a lot of great classic DOS games to play, even though the graphical resolution and polygon count doesn’t compare to modern games. For example, I still boot FreeDOS to play Commander Keen, or DOOM, or Dark Forces, or several other classic games. Sure, you can run these in something like DOSBox, but I like the experience of running these games in an actual DOS system. And FreeDOS makes it very easy to run games.

We also include several open source games in the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution. This was a conscious decision for the FreeDOS 1.2 release; we did not include games in previous official FreeDOS distributions. But since so many people use FreeDOS to play DOS games, we thought it was important to include some games of our own. We include games from different genres, so there should be something for everyone.

2. To run legacy DOS applications

People need to run legacy DOS applications from time to time, even today. And with FreeDOS, you can do that. I’ll sometimes boot FreeDOS just to run AsEasyAs, my favorite shareware spreadsheet program.

Others may run legacy DOS applications because they need to recover some old data, or maybe they need to run a report from a legacy business application. For example, I used to work at a university. One day, one of the faculty brought in some floppy disks. They had some old research data on the disks, but the data was in a proprietary file format from an old DOS program. Modern programs couldn’t read the files. So we installed FreeDOS on a spare PC, found the DOS program on a website somewhere, and used that to read and export the data into CSV files. That’s one real-world case where being able to run legacy DOS applications comes in handy.

Another example is ‘Game of Thrones’ author George R. R. Martin boots DOS to run the WordStar word processor, which he uses to write all of his books. And McLaren’s Special Operations workshop uses an old laptop running DOS to run diagnostics on the McLaren F1 car. I don’t know if either of these run FreeDOS specifically, but it’s interesting to see DOS systems still in use today.

3. To develop embedded systems

Most embedded systems have now moved to modern platforms like Linux, but some developers still support and update embedded systems that run on DOS. And FreeDOS can make it easy to run these embedded systems.

Years ago, a developer contacted me to say he had created a pinball machine that ran an embedded FreeDOS to track score and update the table’s back display. I thought this was a great application! I don’t know how he did it, but my guess is every bumper or target registered as a key on a keyboard bus, which was read by a DOS program. That was probably my favorite example of FreeDOS in an embedded system.

4. To update the BIOS on your computer

When you need to update the BIOS on your computer, manufacturers may provide a DOS application. Using DOS means the operating system has complete access to hardware, and another process won’t clobber the BIOS update program. So when folks need to update their computer’s BIOS, we often see them booting FreeDOS to run the update program.

It’s FOSS: What’s your background? What is your day to day job?

Jim Hall: My background is actually physics. That’s my undergraduate degree.

I also have a Master’s degree in Scientific and Technical Communication. My Master’s capstone topic was “Usability Themes in Open Source Software,” under Dr. Ann Duin.

At work, I’m a chief information officer in local government.

It’s FOSS: How did the project get its mascot?

Jim Hall: For a long time, FreeDOS didn’t have a mascot. I’d kind of wanted one. After all, GNU had the gnu, BSD had the daemon, and Linux had the penguin. I thought FreeDOS should have a mascot, too.

I didn’t know what mascot we should have, though. I liked lemurs at the time, so I’m sure I suggested that. I also thought a seal would make for a nice pairing with the Linux penguin; I imagined Tux and the FreeDOS seal sitting next to each other, enjoying a day on the ice. But someone had already created a SEAL graphical user interface for FreeDOS, and that had the obvious mascot.

So we didn’t have a mascot for a long time.

Eventually, a user submitted a fish for the FreeDOS logo; he said the fish represented freedom. I posted his fish logo as an “alternative” image, but didn’t push for a mascot.

A few years later, Bas Snabilie contacted me. Bas had created a new fish mascot for us. The new mascot was cartoony and really cute. I instantly liked him. The new FreeDOS fish didn’t have a name yet; that came later. We eventually named him Blinky because of his big eye.

FreeDOS logo
Blinky: Mascot of FreeDOS project

It’s FOSS: The project has been around for 23 years. Why do you think it has had such staying power?

Jim Hall: I think one reason FreeDOS remains so popular is that we continue to evolve. We’ve made a decision as a project to keep FreeDOS as a “DOS” operating system, but that doesn’t mean FreeDOS needs to remain static. We try to keep FreeDOS fresh and modern – or as fresh and modern as DOS will allow. Our FreeDOS distribution comes packed with applications and other goodies. We have a network stack, and a web browser. We have games. We have compilers, assemblers, and other development tools.

All of that attracts a lot of folks who are interested in “retro computing” without having to abandon some of the modern conveniences.

We don’t imagine that FreeDOS will ever become a dominant desktop platform to topple Linux, Windows, or Mac, but it’s nice to have a modern DOS that people like to use.

It’s FOSS: In the past 23 years, have you ever gotten a reaction from Microsoft for keeping DOS alive?

Jim Hall: That would be cool, but no one has ever reached out to us officially.

It’s FOSS: You originally created the FreeDOS project because you heard that Microsoft was going to discontinue DOS. In some respects, DOS is still with us through the command line. Do you think there will ever be a time when the command line is fully removed from Windows?

Jim Hall: That’s hard to say. I don’t use Windows, except at work. From my perspective, it seems for the “general user,” Microsoft wants everything to be done via a graphical user interface. But for “power users,” they still provide a set of command line tools to uncover advanced functionality or to allow scripting and automation.

The tradeoffs between the command line and a graphical user interface are power, flexibility, and user-friendliness. The command line is good for some things, but a graphical user interface is better for some other things.

It’s FOSS: A couple of years ago, the Raspberry Pi appeared on the scene and got many people interested in basic computing and Internet of Things. Have you ever thought of porting FreeDOS to ARM to take advantage of the new interest?

Jim Hall: That question comes up a lot. Can we run FreeDOS on the ARM?

Technically, you could easily recompile most of the FreeDOS utilities for ARM. But FreeDOS kernel, like any DOS, is highly dependant on the Intel architecture. It also requires a BIOS. It would not be an easy task to get FreeDOS to run on the ARM. It’s not really something that interests us.

It’s FOSS: I was playing around with FreeDOS the other day and discovered that it has its own package manager (fdimples). Is that a new addition?

Jim Hall: The FreeDOS Installer (FDI) – My Package List Editor Software (FDIMPLES) is new in FreeDOS 1.2.

Some background on the new installer:

When we were planning the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution, Jerome Shidel contributed a new installer. The previous installer hadn’t really changed since I first wrote it for the FreeDOS Beta 1 distribution, long ago. We’d added a full screen mode and some other tidbits, but it was essentially the same installer.

Jerome offered to update the installer, and the FreeDOS Installer (FDI) in the new FreeDOS 1.2 distribution is a complete re-write. It’s based on a set of DOS batch powertools, called V8, which provide the different components for a “visual” interface. The new installer is just one smart DOS batch file. Impressive!

To help manage the programs you’ve installed as part of the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution, and to make it easier to install other extra components from FreeDOS 1.2, Jerome also created FDIMPLES. It does a great job to install and remove packages on your FreeDOS system. Jerome did an outstanding job here.

It’s FOSS: I also noticed that FreeDOS has 3 graphical user interfaces. Which is your favorite?

Jim Hall: Yes, we have OpenGEM, oZone, and SEAL. They each provide some neat features, but I think OpenGEM is my favorite. It’s plain to look at, but it’s very mature.

It’s FOSS: You originally released FreeDOS as public domain software, but later relicensed it as GPL. Why?

Jim Hall: When I first released my DOS programs, I didn’t understand the difference between “Free software” and “Public domain.” Many of the programs that we found on FTP sites were distributed in the public domain. So FreeDOS was actually named “PD-DOS” when we first launched the project in 1994.

But we soon realized that using a license such as the GNU General Public License was a much better idea. We didn’t want others to “steal” our work and re-release it as proprietary programs without the source code. If we released our programs under the public domain, someone could do that. So we looked to the GNU General Public License, and most of our programs were released under the GNU GPL after that. As a result, we quickly changed our name to “Free-DOS.” Much later, we dropped the hyphen and have been “FreeDOS” ever since.

It’s FOSS: FreeDOS is used by a number of big companies, such as Dell and HP. Do any of these companies contribute to the project, either with code or financially?

Jim Hall: No, none of these companies contribute to FreeDOS in any way, that I know of. It would be awesome if they did!

It’s FOSS: If someone wanted to contribute to the FreeDOS project, how would they go about doing it?

Jim Hall: Most of our discussion happens on the freedos-devel email list. Just go to our website and click on the “Email Lists” link in the orange navigation bar.

We welcome anyone who wants to contribute to FreeDOS! And we occasionally do see new people join the email list and contribute new things to FreeDOS.

It’s FOSS: What are you planning for the next release of FreeDOS?

Jim Hall: We released the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution in December 2016, so almost a year ago. We’ve definitely slowed down in our release cycles – FreeDOS isn’t chasing a moving target anymore, and we are already feature complete with the original MS-DOS, except for some compatibility with Windows 3.1.

We recently discussed the next version on the FreeDOS email list. What should the next version of FreeDOS look like? Should we make major changes, and release the next version as “FreeDOS 2.0”? Or do we want to make only incremental changes, and release the next version as “FreeDOS 1.3”?

Ultimately, we realized that FreeDOS must remain “DOS” so making major changes to FreeDOS doesn’t make sense. The next version wil be “FreeDOS 1.3”.

That’s not to say that we won’t make changes in FreeDOS 1.3. After all, we made some significant and visible changes when we went from FreeDOS 1.1 to FreeDOS 1.2. For example, FreeDOS 1.2 has a completely new install program which is much easier to use and greatly simplifies the install process. So “FreeDOS 1.3” could include some larger changes – but at its core, FreeDOS will remain the same.

However, we don’t have a target date for that release. As I said, FreeDOS isn’t chasing a moving target. We don’t need to be in a hurry.


I would like to thank Jim for taking the time to reply to my many questions. For more information about the history of FreeDOS, check out the ebook “23 Years of FreeDOS”.

Have you ever played around with FreeDOS? What is your favorite use of FreeDOS?

If you found this article interesting, please take a minute to share it on social media.

From: It’s FOSS

Interview with FreeDOS Founder and Lead Dev Jim Hall

By John Paul

Jim Hall FreeDOS

This year marks the 23rd anniversary of the FreeDOS project. To help celebrate those many years and help raise awareness for the project, I connected with Jim Hall (FreeDOS founder and lead developer) and asked him a few questions. Here are his answers.

It’s FOSS: How did FreeDOS project get started? What was the inspiration behind it?

Jim Hall: I’d been a DOS user for many years. When I was growing up, we were fortunate to have a PC at home. That was where I first learned to use DOS. And not incidentally, I taught myself how to write programs in DOS, and created several personal utilities that extended the DOS command line and made it more useful to me.

Fast forward to the early 1990s, when I was an undergraduate physics student at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. I considered myself a DOS power-user by that time. I loved using DOS for everything. I had discovered some shareware programs that made my life easier as a student: the As Easy As spreadsheet, the Telix terminal program, and the Galaxy Write word processor. I did all of my work in DOS. Sure, the campus had a PC computer lab with Microsoft Windows, but that was Windows 3.1. And if you remember Windows 3.1 at the time, it wasn’t great. I avoided Windows.

I’d also discovered Linux while at college. My first distribution was Softlanding Linux System (SLS) which I dual-booted on my computer with DOS. Linux did all the work of the “big Unix” systems in our campus computer lab, but there weren’t a lot of Linux applications yet. No word processor, no spreadsheet. And I needed those to do my work as a student. So I spent most of my time in DOS.

In 1994, I started to see a lot of articles claiming that Microsoft planned to finally “do away” with DOS with the next version of Windows. I wasn’t happy about that. I thought, “If Windows 3.2 or 4.0 is anything like Windows 3.1, I don’t want anything to do with it.”

Since I’d used Linux, it occurred to me that if developers could come together to create a free Unix system, surely we could do the same with a free DOS. After all, DOS is a much simpler operating system. I made an announcement in the comp.os.msdos.apps online discussion group, via Usenet, that I wanted to create a free version of DOS. People thought that was a good idea, so I did it.

It’s FOSS: Why would someone want to install FreeDOS?

Jim Hall: We posted a survey several years ago, and asked people why they use FreeDOS. We find there are three or four reasons people install FreeDOS today:

1. To play classic DOS games

Just because a game is old doesn’t mean it stopped being fun! There are a lot of great classic DOS games to play, even though the graphical resolution and polygon count doesn’t compare to modern games. For example, I still boot FreeDOS to play Commander Keen, or DOOM, or Dark Forces, or several other classic games. Sure, you can run these in something like DOSBox, but I like the experience of running these games in an actual DOS system. And FreeDOS makes it very easy to run games.

We also include several open source games in the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution. This was a conscious decision for the FreeDOS 1.2 release; we did not include games in previous official FreeDOS distributions. But since so many people use FreeDOS to play DOS games, we thought it was important to include some games of our own. We include games from different genres, so there should be something for everyone.

2. To run legacy DOS applications

People need to run legacy DOS applications from time to time, even today. And with FreeDOS, you can do that. I’ll sometimes boot FreeDOS just to run AsEasyAs, my favorite shareware spreadsheet program.

Others may run legacy DOS applications because they need to recover some old data, or maybe they need to run a report from a legacy business application. For example, I used to work at a university. One day, one of the faculty brought in some floppy disks. They had some old research data on the disks, but the data was in a proprietary file format from an old DOS program. Modern programs couldn’t read the files. So we installed FreeDOS on a spare PC, found the DOS program on a website somewhere, and used that to read and export the data into CSV files. That’s one real-world case where being able to run legacy DOS applications comes in handy.

Another example is ‘Game of Thrones’ author George R. R. Martin boots DOS to run the WordStar word processor, which he uses to write all of his books. And McLaren’s Special Operations workshop uses an old laptop running DOS to run diagnostics on the McLaren F1 car. I don’t know if either of these run FreeDOS specifically, but it’s interesting to see DOS systems still in use today.

3. To develop embedded systems

Most embedded systems have now moved to modern platforms like Linux, but some developers still support and update embedded systems that run on DOS. And FreeDOS can make it easy to run these embedded systems.

Years ago, a developer contacted me to say he had created a pinball machine that ran an embedded FreeDOS to track score and update the table’s back display. I thought this was a great application! I don’t know how he did it, but my guess is every bumper or target registered as a key on a keyboard bus, which was read by a DOS program. That was probably my favorite example of FreeDOS in an embedded system.

4. To update the BIOS on your computer

When you need to update the BIOS on your computer, manufacturers may provide a DOS application. Using DOS means the operating system has complete access to hardware, and another process won’t clobber the BIOS update program. So when folks need to update their computer’s BIOS, we often see them booting FreeDOS to run the update program.

It’s FOSS: What’s your background? What is your day to day job?

Jim Hall: My background is actually physics. That’s my undergraduate degree.

I also have a Master’s degree in Scientific and Technical Communication. My Master’s capstone topic was “Usability Themes in Open Source Software,” under Dr. Ann Duin.

At work, I’m a chief information officer in local government.

It’s FOSS: How did the project get its mascot?

Jim Hall: For a long time, FreeDOS didn’t have a mascot. I’d kind of wanted one. After all, GNU had the gnu, BSD had the daemon, and Linux had the penguin. I thought FreeDOS should have a mascot, too.

I didn’t know what mascot we should have, though. I liked lemurs at the time, so I’m sure I suggested that. I also thought a seal would make for a nice pairing with the Linux penguin; I imagined Tux and the FreeDOS seal sitting next to each other, enjoying a day on the ice. But someone had already created a SEAL graphical user interface for FreeDOS, and that had the obvious mascot.

So we didn’t have a mascot for a long time.

Eventually, a user submitted a fish for the FreeDOS logo; he said the fish represented freedom. I posted his fish logo as an “alternative” image, but didn’t push for a mascot.

A few years later, Bas Snabilie contacted me. Bas had created a new fish mascot for us. The new mascot was cartoony and really cute. I instantly liked him. The new FreeDOS fish didn’t have a name yet; that came later. We eventually named him Blinky because of his big eye.

FreeDOS logo
Blinky: Mascot of FreeDOS project

It’s FOSS: The project has been around for 23 years. Why do you think it has had such staying power?

Jim Hall: I think one reason FreeDOS remains so popular is that we continue to evolve. We’ve made a decision as a project to keep FreeDOS as a “DOS” operating system, but that doesn’t mean FreeDOS needs to remain static. We try to keep FreeDOS fresh and modern – or as fresh and modern as DOS will allow. Our FreeDOS distribution comes packed with applications and other goodies. We have a network stack, and a web browser. We have games. We have compilers, assemblers, and other development tools.

All of that attracts a lot of folks who are interested in “retro computing” without having to abandon some of the modern conveniences.

We don’t imagine that FreeDOS will ever become a dominant desktop platform to topple Linux, Windows, or Mac, but it’s nice to have a modern DOS that people like to use.

It’s FOSS: In the past 23 years, have you ever gotten a reaction from Microsoft for keeping DOS alive?

Jim Hall: That would be cool, but no one has ever reached out to us officially.

It’s FOSS: You originally created the FreeDOS project because you heard that Microsoft was going to discontinue DOS. In some respects, DOS is still with us through the command line. Do you think there will ever be a time when the command line is fully removed from Windows?

Jim Hall: That’s hard to say. I don’t use Windows, except at work. From my perspective, it seems for the “general user,” Microsoft wants everything to be done via a graphical user interface. But for “power users,” they still provide a set of command line tools to uncover advanced functionality or to allow scripting and automation.

The tradeoffs between the command line and a graphical user interface are power, flexibility, and user-friendliness. The command line is good for some things, but a graphical user interface is better for some other things.

It’s FOSS: A couple of years ago, the Raspberry Pi appeared on the scene and got many people interested in basic computing and Internet of Things. Have you ever thought of porting FreeDOS to ARM to take advantage of the new interest?

Jim Hall: That question comes up a lot. Can we run FreeDOS on the ARM?

Technically, you could easily recompile most of the FreeDOS utilities for ARM. But FreeDOS kernel, like any DOS, is highly dependant on the Intel architecture. It also requires a BIOS. It would not be an easy task to get FreeDOS to run on the ARM. It’s not really something that interests us.

It’s FOSS: I was playing around with FreeDOS the other day and discovered that it has its own package manager (fdimples). Is that a new addition?

Jim Hall: The FreeDOS Installer (FDI) – My Package List Editor Software (FDIMPLES) is new in FreeDOS 1.2.

Some background on the new installer:

When we were planning the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution, Jerome Shidel contributed a new installer. The previous installer hadn’t really changed since I first wrote it for the FreeDOS Beta 1 distribution, long ago. We’d added a full screen mode and some other tidbits, but it was essentially the same installer.

Jerome offered to update the installer, and the FreeDOS Installer (FDI) in the new FreeDOS 1.2 distribution is a complete re-write. It’s based on a set of DOS batch powertools, called V8, which provide the different components for a “visual” interface. The new installer is just one smart DOS batch file. Impressive!

To help manage the programs you’ve installed as part of the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution, and to make it easier to install other extra components from FreeDOS 1.2, Jerome also created FDIMPLES. It does a great job to install and remove packages on your FreeDOS system. Jerome did an outstanding job here.

It’s FOSS: I also noticed that FreeDOS has 3 graphical user interfaces. Which is your favorite?

Jim Hall: Yes, we have OpenGEM, oZone, and SEAL. They each provide some neat features, but I think OpenGEM is my favorite. It’s plain to look at, but it’s very mature.

It’s FOSS: You originally released FreeDOS as public domain software, but later relicensed it as GPL. Why?

Jim Hall: When I first released my DOS programs, I didn’t understand the difference between “Free software” and “Public domain.” Many of the programs that we found on FTP sites were distributed in the public domain. So FreeDOS was actually named “PD-DOS” when we first launched the project in 1994.

But we soon realized that using a license such as the GNU General Public License was a much better idea. We didn’t want others to “steal” our work and re-release it as proprietary programs without the source code. If we released our programs under the public domain, someone could do that. So we looked to the GNU General Public License, and most of our programs were released under the GNU GPL after that. As a result, we quickly changed our name to “Free-DOS.” Much later, we dropped the hyphen and have been “FreeDOS” ever since.

It’s FOSS: FreeDOS is used by a number of big companies, such as Dell and HP. Do any of these companies contribute to the project, either with code or financially?

Jim Hall: No, none of these companies contribute to FreeDOS in any way, that I know of. It would be awesome if they did!

It’s FOSS: If someone wanted to contribute to the FreeDOS project, how would they go about doing it?

Jim Hall: Most of our discussion happens on the freedos-devel email list. Just go to our website and click on the “Email Lists” link in the orange navigation bar.

We welcome anyone who wants to contribute to FreeDOS! And we occasionally do see new people join the email list and contribute new things to FreeDOS.

It’s FOSS: What are you planning for the next release of FreeDOS?

Jim Hall: We released the FreeDOS 1.2 distribution in December 2016, so almost a year ago. We’ve definitely slowed down in our release cycles – FreeDOS isn’t chasing a moving target anymore, and we are already feature complete with the original MS-DOS, except for some compatibility with Windows 3.1.

We recently discussed the next version on the FreeDOS email list. What should the next version of FreeDOS look like? Should we make major changes, and release the next version as “FreeDOS 2.0”? Or do we want to make only incremental changes, and release the next version as “FreeDOS 1.3”?

Ultimately, we realized that FreeDOS must remain “DOS” so making major changes to FreeDOS doesn’t make sense. The next version wil be “FreeDOS 1.3”.

That’s not to say that we won’t make changes in FreeDOS 1.3. After all, we made some significant and visible changes when we went from FreeDOS 1.1 to FreeDOS 1.2. For example, FreeDOS 1.2 has a completely new install program which is much easier to use and greatly simplifies the install process. So “FreeDOS 1.3” could include some larger changes – but at its core, FreeDOS will remain the same.

However, we don’t have a target date for that release. As I said, FreeDOS isn’t chasing a moving target. We don’t need to be in a hurry.


I would like to thank Jim for taking the time to reply to my many questions. For more information about the history of FreeDOS, check out the ebook “23 Years of FreeDOS”.

Have you ever played around with FreeDOS? What is your favorite use of FreeDOS?

If you found this article interesting, please take a minute to share it on social media.

From: It’s FOSS

10 Best LaTeX Editors For Linux

By Ankush Das

LaTex Sample

Brief: Once you get over the learning curve, there is nothing like LaTex. Here are the best LaTex editors for Linux and other systems.

What is LaTeX?

LaTeX is a document preparation system. Unlike plain text editor, you can’t just write a plain text using LaTeX editors. Here, you will have to utilize LaTeX commands in order to manage the content of the document.

LaTex code compiled into a document

LaTex Editors are generally used to publish scientific research documents or books for academic purposes. Most importantly, LaText editors come handy while dealing with a document containing complex Mathematical notations. Surely, LaTeX editors are fun to use. But, not that useful unless you have specific needs for a document.

Why should you use LaTex?

Well, just like I previously mentioned, LaTeX editors are meant for specific purposes. You do not need to be a geek head in order to figure out the way to use LaTeX editors but it is not a productive solution for users who deal with basic text editors.

If you are looking to craft a document but you are not interested in spending time formatting the text, then LaTeX editors should be the one you should go for. With LaTeX editors, you just have to specify the type of document, and the text font and sizes will be taken care of accordingly. No wonder it is considered one of the best open source tools for writers.

Do note that it isn’t something automated, you will have to first learn LaTeX commands to let the editor handle the text formatting with precision.

9 Of The Best LaTeX Editors For Linux

Just for information, the list is not in any specific order. Editor at number three is not better than the editor at number seven.

1. Lyx

Lyx is an open source LaTeX Editor. In other words, it is one of the best document processors available on the web.LyX helps you focus on the structure of the write-up, just as every LaTeX editor should and lets you forget about the word formatting. LyX would manage whatsoever depending on the type of document specified. You get to control a lot of stuff while you have it installed. The margins, headers/footers, spacing/indents, tables, and so on.

If you are into crafting scientific documents, research thesis, or similar, you will be delighted to experience Lyx’s formula editor which should be a charm to use. LyX also includes a set of tutorials to get started without much of a hassle.

Lyx

2. Texmaker

Texmaker is considered to be one of the best LaTeX editors for GNOME desktop environment. It presents a great user interface which results in a good user experience. It is also crowned to be one among the most useful LaTeX editor there is.If you perform PDF conversions often, you will find TeXmaker to be relatively faster than other LaTeX editors. You can take a look at a preview of what the final document would look like while you write. Also, one could observe the symbols being easy to reach when needed.

Texmaker also offers an extensive support for hotkeys configuration. Why not give it a try?

Texmaker

3. TeXstudio

If you want a LaTeX editor which offers you a decent level of customizability along with an easy-to-use interface, then TeXstudio would be the perfect one to have installed. The UI is surely very simple but not clumsy. TeXstudio lets you highlight syntax, comes with an integrated viewer, lets you check the references and also bundles some other assistant tools.

It also supports some cool features like auto-completion, link overlay, bookmarks, multi-cursors, and so on – which makes writing a LaTeX document easier than ever before.

TeXstudio is actively maintained, which makes it a compelling choice for both novice users and advanced writers.

TeXstudio

4. Gummi

Gummi is a very simple LaTeX editor based on the GTK+ toolkit. Well, you may not find a lot of fancy options here but if you are just starting out – Gummi will be our recommendation.It supports exporting the documents to PDF format, lets you highlight syntax, and helps you with some basic error checking functionalities. Though Gummi isn’t actively maintained via GitHub but it works just fine.

Gummi

5. TeXpen

TeXpen is yet another simplified tool to go with. You get the auto-completion functionality with this LaTeX editor. However, you may not find the user interface impressive. If you do not mind the UI, but want a super easy LaTeX editor, TeXpen could fulfill that wish for you.Also, TeXpen lets you correct/improve the English grammar and expressions used in the document.

TeXpen

6. ShareLaTeX

ShareLaTeX is an online LaTeX editor. If you want someone (or a group of people) to collaborate on documents you are working on, this is what you need.

It offers a free plan along with several paid packages. Even the students of Harvard University & Oxford University utilize this for their projects. With the free plan, you get the ability to add one collaborator.

The paid packages let you sync the documents on GitHub and Dropbox along with the ability to record the full document history. You can choose to have multiple collaborators as per your plan. For students, there’s a separate pricing plan available.

ShareLaTeX

7. Overleaf

Overleaf is yet another online LaTeX editor. Similar to ShareLaTeX, it offers separate pricing plans for professionals and students. It also includes a free plan where you can sync with GitHub, check your revision history, and add multiple collaborators.

There’s a limit on the number of files you can create per project – so it could bother if you are a professional working with LaTeX documents most of the time.

Overleaf

8. Authorea

Authorea is a wonderful online LaTeX editor. However, it is not the best out there – when considering the pricing plans. For free, it offers just 100 MB of data upload limit and 1 private document at a time. The paid plans offer you more perks but it may not be the cheapest from the lot.The only reason you should choose Authorea is the user interface. If you love to work with a tool offering an impressive user interface, there’s no looking back.

Authorea

9. Papeeria

Papeeria is the most cheapest LaTeX editor you can find on the Internet – considering it is as reliable as the others. You do not get private projects if you want to utilize it for free. But, if you prefer public projects it lets you work on an unlimited number of projects with numerous collaborators. It features a pretty simple plot builder and includes Git sync for no additional cost.If you opt for the paid plan, it will empower you with the ability to work on 10 private projects.

Papeeria

Wrapping Up

So, there go our recommendations for the LaTeX editors you should utilize on Ubuntu/Linux.

There are chances that we might have missed some interesting LaTeX editors available for Linux. If you happen to know about any, let us know down in the comments below.

From: It’s FOSS

10 Best LaTeX Editors For Linux

By Ankush Das

LaTex Sample

Brief: Once you get over the learning curve, there is nothing like LaTex. Here are the best LaTex editors for Linux and other systems.

What is LaTeX?

LaTeX is a document preparation system. Unlike plain text editor, you can’t just write a plain text using LaTeX editors. Here, you will have to utilize LaTeX commands in order to manage the content of the document.

LaTex code compiled into a document

LaTex Editors are generally used to publish scientific research documents or books for academic purposes. Most importantly, LaText editors come handy while dealing with a document containing complex Mathematical notations. Surely, LaTeX editors are fun to use. But, not that useful unless you have specific needs for a document.

Why should you use LaTex?

Well, just like I previously mentioned, LaTeX editors are meant for specific purposes. You do not need to be a geek head in order to figure out the way to use LaTeX editors but it is not a productive solution for users who deal with basic text editors.

If you are looking to craft a document but you are not interested in spending time formatting the text, then LaTeX editors should be the one you should go for. With LaTeX editors, you just have to specify the type of document, and the text font and sizes will be taken care of accordingly. No wonder it is considered one of the best open source tools for writers.

Do note that it isn’t something automated, you will have to first learn LaTeX commands to let the editor handle the text formatting with precision.

10 Of The Best LaTeX Editors For Linux

Just for information, the list is not in any specific order. Editor at number three is not better than the editor at number seven.

1. Lyx

Lyx is an open source LaTeX Editor. In other words, it is one of the best document processors available on the web.LyX helps you focus on the structure of the write-up, just as every LaTeX editor should and lets you forget about the word formatting. LyX would manage whatsoever depending on the type of document specified. You get to control a lot of stuff while you have it installed. The margins, headers/footers, spacing/indents, tables, and so on.

If you are into crafting scientific documents, research thesis, or similar, you will be delighted to experience Lyx’s formula editor which should be a charm to use. LyX also includes a set of tutorials to get started without much of a hassle.

Lyx

2. Texmaker

Texmaker is considered to be one of the best LaTeX editors for GNOME desktop environment. It presents a great user interface which results in a good user experience. It is also crowned to be one among the most useful LaTeX editor there is.If you perform PDF conversions often, you will find TeXmaker to be relatively faster than other LaTeX editors. You can take a look at a preview of what the final document would look like while you write. Also, one could observe the symbols being easy to reach when needed.

Texmaker also offers an extensive support for hotkeys configuration. Why not give it a try?

Texmaker

3. TeXstudio

If you want a LaTeX editor which offers you a decent level of customizability along with an easy-to-use interface, then TeXstudio would be the perfect one to have installed. The UI is surely very simple but not clumsy. TeXstudio lets you highlight syntax, comes with an integrated viewer, lets you check the references and also bundles some other assistant tools.

It also supports some cool features like auto-completion, link overlay, bookmarks, multi-cursors, and so on – which makes writing a LaTeX document easier than ever before.

TeXstudio is actively maintained, which makes it a compelling choice for both novice users and advanced writers.

TeXstudio

4. Gummi

Gummi is a very simple LaTeX editor based on the GTK+ toolkit. Well, you may not find a lot of fancy options here but if you are just starting out – Gummi will be our recommendation.It supports exporting the documents to PDF format, lets you highlight syntax, and helps you with some basic error checking functionalities. Though Gummi isn’t actively maintained via GitHub it works just fine.

Gummi

5. TeXpen

TeXpen is yet another simplified tool to go with. You get the auto-completion functionality with this LaTeX editor. However, you may not find the user interface impressive. If you do not mind the UI, but want a super easy LaTeX editor, TeXpen could fulfill that wish for you.Also, TeXpen lets you correct/improve the English grammar and expressions used in the document.

TeXpen

6. ShareLaTeX

ShareLaTeX is an online LaTeX editor. If you want someone (or a group of people) to collaborate on documents you are working on, this is what you need.

It offers a free plan along with several paid packages. Even the students of Harvard University & Oxford University utilize this for their projects. With the free plan, you get the ability to add one collaborator.

The paid packages let you sync the documents on GitHub and Dropbox along with the ability to record the full document history. You can choose to have multiple collaborators as per your plan. For students, there’s a separate pricing plan available.

ShareLaTeX

7. Overleaf

Overleaf is yet another online LaTeX editor. Similar to ShareLaTeX, it offers separate pricing plans for professionals and students. It also includes a free plan where you can sync with GitHub, check your revision history, and add multiple collaborators.

There’s a limit on the number of files you can create per project – so it could bother if you are a professional working with LaTeX documents most of the time.

Overleaf

8. Authorea

Authorea is a wonderful online LaTeX editor. However, it is not the best out there – when considering the pricing plans. For free, it offers just 100 MB of data upload limit and 1 private document at a time. The paid plans offer you more perks but it may not be the cheapest from the lot.The only reason you should choose Authorea is the user interface. If you love to work with a tool offering an impressive user interface, there’s no looking back.

Authorea

9. Papeeria

Papeeria is the cheapest LaTeX editor you can find on the Internet – considering it is as reliable as the others. You do not get private projects if you want to utilize it for free. But, if you prefer public projects it lets you work on an unlimited number of projects with numerous collaborators. It features a pretty simple plot builder and includes Git sync for no additional cost.If you opt for the paid plan, it will empower you with the ability to work on 10 private projects.

Papeeria

10. Kile

Kile LaTeX editor

Last entry in our list of best LaTeX editor is Kile. Some people swear by Kile. Primarily because of the features it provides.

Kile is more than just an editor. It is an IDE tool like Eclipse that provides a complete environment to work on documents and projects. Apart from quick compilation and preview, you get features like auto-completion of commands, insert citations, organize document in chapters etc. You really have to use Kile to realize its true potential.

Kile is available for Linux and Windows.

Kile

Wrapping Up

So, there go our recommendations for the LaTeX editors you should utilize on Ubuntu/Linux.

There are chances that we might have missed some interesting LaTeX editors available for Linux. If you happen to know about any, let us know down in the comments below.

From: It’s FOSS

How to Install and Use TeamViewer on Linux [Complete Guide]

By Ambarish Kumar

Using TeamViewer in Linux

Brief: Step-by-step beginner’s guide to installing TeamViewer on Linux. It also explains how to use TeamViewer on Linux.

TeamViewer is a remote desktop application primarily used to connect to a different system quickly and securely. It lets you remotely connect to someone’s desktop, transfer files, share screen and video conferencing.

It is extremely popular for its simplicity and ease of use. It is mainly used to provide technical support to remote computers.

It’s a cross-platform software available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, iOS and Android and there is a web browser support too. Though TeamViewer is a proprietary software, it is available free of charge for non-commercial use and offers almost everything the paid version has to offer.

TeamViewer features

  • Allows you to take a remote control of a system.
  • Supports video conferencing, group calls, desktop sharing.
  • There is a 256 bit AES session encoding and 2048 bit RSA key exchange for a secure connection.
  • Wake-on-LAN feature allows switching on your computer remotely.
  • Supports rebooting your system or servers while on the go.
  • Switching between multiple screens is easy.

Installing TeamViewer in Linux

TeamViewer provides .deb binaries for Debian and Ubuntu-based Linux distributions. It also has .rpm packages for Fedora and SUSE. There is also a tarball for other Linux distributions.

You can grab a copy of TeamViewer from the official download page:

Download TeamViewer

I will be installing TeamViewer on Ubuntu so I downloaded the .deb file. You can use the graphical installer by double-clicking the downloaded package and following the subsequent instructions.

If you face dependency issues, I suggest you try installing it with GDebi package installer.

Alternatively, if you prefer the terminal way, navigate to the download folder and run the below command:

sudo dpkg -i teamviewer*

In case you are notified of installation failure due to missing dependencies, type the below command to complete the installation.

sudo apt-get install -f

Once installed, you can open TeamViewer from the application menu or run it from the console using the command:

teamviewer

How to use TeamViewer on Linux to connect to other systems

Here are a few things you should know about using TeamViewer for remotely connecting to other systems:

  • Both host and target systems should have TeamViewer installed.
  • Host and target can be any supported operating systems. For example, you can use it to connect to a Windows system from your Linux system.
  • By default, each system is given an ID and a 4 digit password that is generated randomly at each start of the application.
  • If you are trying to connect to a remote system, you’ll need to know the ID and the password of the target system.
  • Similarly, if you are giving someone access to your system, you need to provide them the password and ID of your system to the remote system.
  • Both systems must be connected to the internet.
  • You are not required to create an account on TeamViewer to use it.

Now that you know a few things, let’s see how to do it:

Step 1

Start TeamViewer on both host and target systems. You’ll see the ID and password of your TeamViewer application on your screen. Similar info will be displayed on the remote system.

This is important information as it will be required to make the remote desktop connection.

An ID and Password is displaced on the screen

Step 2

For connecting to a system, both the host and target machines should have TeamViewer installed. You will need the unique ID and password of the system to which you want to connect to. Open TeamViewer and under the “Remote Control” type in the ID in Partner ID option, and click on “Connect to partner”:

Using TeamViewer in Linux to connect to a remote desktop
Enter the ID of the target device

Quite obviously, it will ask you to enter the password of the target system.

Connect to a remote desktop in Linux using TeamViewer

Once you enter the correct password and hit Log On, you should be immediately connected to the target system.

Step 3

Once connected, you have the full control of the target system. I have a system running Ubuntu from which I established a remote desktop connection to another system running Elementary OS and then I ran a command there!

running TeamViewer
Connected to elementary OS from Ubuntu system

The top bar provides different options for TeamViewer. Under the Actions tab, you can find options to end the session, reboot your device or even invite additional participants.

View tab contains the most useful options. You can select the screen fit, optimize speed and quality and select the screen resolution for the target system.

Files & Extras gives you the option to take a screenshot or record a session. You can share a file between the two system via drag and drop or using the file manager.

Do more with TeamViewer

There are ways to optimize your TeamViewer experience. Let’s see some of them.

1. Using TeamViewer account for easy access

TeamViewer provides an ID and password which can be used to take control of your system. However, signing up for a free user lets you store these credentials, and quickly connect to a system without the hassle of typing it every time.

2. Recording a session

You can always record a TeamViewer session for a later access or for the records. Once you are connected to TeamViewer, navigate to Extras in the Toolbar and you will find the option to start, pause and stop recording. Once a recording is done, you are prompted to save it.

3. Multiple Sessions support

TeamViewer supports multiple sessions simultaneously, you can take control of a second system without being disconnected from the first one. Click on the + sign in the top left corner to add another machine. For IT support people, this can be very useful.

4. Easy file transfer

You can share a file by selecting File Transfer from the TeamViewer toolbar. You can either select the file which you want to share, or drag and drop a file using option File box. This is important since you can push an application to the target machine and install it without having a physical access.

5. Manage Visual Settings

Visual Settings options lets you optimize your connection to the target machine by giving you options to choose the Quality, Scaling, Screen resolution. It can be accessed via View option. In case there is a lag, you could select Optimize speed under Quality options, or disable GUI animations.

6. Connect with a smartphone

TeamViewer app is available for iOS, Android and Windows 10 Mobile which can help you take a look at your system anywhere, anytime. This lets me access my system and check if some downloads are completed, or even change the music track without reaching out to my system.

I tried taking a control of my system with my Phone and it worked like a charm.

Remote desktop

Final Words on TeamViewer

TeamViewer is a great tool when it comes to getting control of someone’s system for troubleshooting or monitoring your own system with your mobile handset. And since it is available for almost every platform, there’s always a way around to help someone by connecting to their system.

Are you a TeamViewer user? What other tools do you use for remote desktop connection in Linux? Let us know in the comments how it helps you!

From: It’s FOSS

How to Install and Use TeamViewer on Linux [Complete Guide]

By Ambarish Kumar

Using TeamViewer in Linux

Brief: Step-by-step beginner’s guide to installing TeamViewer on Linux. It also explains how to use TeamViewer on Linux.

TeamViewer is a remote desktop application primarily used to connect to a different system quickly and securely. It lets you remotely connect to someone’s desktop, transfer files, share screen and video conferencing.

It is extremely popular for its simplicity and ease of use. It is mainly used to provide technical support to remote computers.

It’s a cross-platform software available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, iOS and Android and there is a web browser support too. Though TeamViewer is a proprietary software, it is available free of charge for non-commercial use and offers almost everything the paid version has to offer.

Starting with TeamViewer 13, it has a native Linux client for 64 bit systems. Earlier versions used Wine underneath it.

TeamViewer features

  • Allows you to take a remote control of a system.
  • Supports video conferencing, group calls, desktop sharing.
  • There is a 256 bit AES session encoding and 2048 bit RSA key exchange for a secure connection.
  • Wake-on-LAN feature allows switching on your computer remotely.
  • Supports rebooting your system or servers while on the go.
  • Switching between multiple screens is easy.

Installing TeamViewer 13 in Linux

TeamViewer provides .deb binaries for Debian and Ubuntu-based Linux distributions. It also has .rpm packages for Fedora and SUSE. There is also a tarball for other Linux distributions.

You can grab a copy of TeamViewer from the official download page:

Download TeamViewer

I will be installing TeamViewer on Ubuntu so I downloaded the .deb file. You can use the graphical installer by double-clicking the downloaded package and following the subsequent instructions.

If you face dependency issues, I suggest you try installing it with GDebi package installer.

Alternative command line way

Alternatively, if you prefer the terminal way, navigate to the download folder and run the below command:

sudo dpkg -i teamviewer*

In case you are notified of installation failure due to missing dependencies, type the below command to complete the installation.

sudo apt-get install -f

Once installed, you can open TeamViewer from the application menu or run it from the console using the command:

teamviewer

How to use TeamViewer on Linux to connect to other systems

Here are a few things you should know about using TeamViewer for remotely connecting to other systems:

  • Both host and target systems should have TeamViewer installed. Preferably, they should have same TeamViewer version on both the system.
  • Host and target can be any supported operating systems. For example, you can use it to connect to a Windows system from your Linux system.
  • By default, each system is given an ID and a 4 digit password that is generated randomly at each start of the application.
  • If you are trying to connect to a remote system, you’ll need to know the ID and the password of the target system.
  • Similarly, if you are giving someone access to your system, you need to provide them the password and ID of your system to the remote system.
  • Both systems must be connected to the internet.
  • You are not required to create an account on TeamViewer to use it.

Now that you know a few things, let’s see how to do it:

Step 1

Start TeamViewer on both host and target systems. You’ll see the ID and password of your TeamViewer application on your screen. Similar info will be displayed on the remote system.

This is important information as it will be required to make the remote desktop connection.

An ID and Password is displaced on the screen

Step 2

For connecting to a system, both the host and target machines should have TeamViewer installed. You will need the unique ID and password of the system to which you want to connect to. Open TeamViewer and under the “Remote Control” type in the ID in Partner ID option, and click on “Connect to partner”:

Using TeamViewer in Linux to connect to a remote desktop
Enter the ID of the target device

Quite obviously, it will ask you to enter the password of the target system.

Connect to a remote desktop in Linux using TeamViewer

Once you enter the correct password and hit Log On, you should be immediately connected to the target system.

Step 3

Once connected, you have the full control of the target system. I have a system running Ubuntu from which I established a remote desktop connection to another system running Elementary OS and then I ran a command there!

running TeamViewer
Connected to elementary OS from Ubuntu system

The top bar provides different options for TeamViewer. Under the Actions tab, you can find options to end the session, reboot your device or even invite additional participants.

View tab contains the most useful options. You can select the screen fit, optimize speed and quality and select the screen resolution for the target system.

Files & Extras gives you the option to take a screenshot or record a session. You can share a file between the two system via drag and drop or using the file manager.

Do more with TeamViewer

There are ways to optimize your TeamViewer experience. Let’s see some of them.

1. Using TeamViewer account for easy access

TeamViewer provides an ID and password which can be used to take control of your system. However, signing up for a free user lets you store these credentials, and quickly connect to a system without the hassle of typing it every time.

2. Recording a session

You can always record a TeamViewer session for a later access or for the records. Once you are connected to TeamViewer, navigate to Extras in the Toolbar and you will find the option to start, pause and stop recording. Once a recording is done, you are prompted to save it.

3. Multiple Sessions support

TeamViewer supports multiple sessions simultaneously, you can take control of a second system without being disconnected from the first one. Click on the + sign in the top left corner to add another machine. For IT support people, this can be very useful.

4. Easy file transfer

You can share a file by selecting File Transfer from the TeamViewer toolbar. You can either select the file which you want to share, or drag and drop a file using option File box. This is important since you can push an application to the target machine and install it without having a physical access.

5. Manage Visual Settings

Visual Settings options lets you optimize your connection to the target machine by giving you options to choose the Quality, Scaling, Screen resolution. It can be accessed via View option. In case there is a lag, you could select Optimize speed under Quality options, or disable GUI animations.

6. Connect with a smartphone

TeamViewer app is available for iOS, Android and Windows 10 Mobile which can help you take a look at your system anywhere, anytime. This lets me access my system and check if some downloads are completed, or even change the music track without reaching out to my system.

I tried taking a control of my system with my Phone and it worked like a charm.

Remote desktop

Final Words on TeamViewer

TeamViewer is a great tool when it comes to getting control of someone’s system for troubleshooting or monitoring your own system with your mobile handset. And since it is available for almost every platform, there’s always a way around to help someone by connecting to their system.

Are you a TeamViewer user? What other tools do you use for remote desktop connection in Linux? Let us know in the comments how it helps you!

From: It’s FOSS

Call for Papers is now Open for Univention Summit 2018

By Derick Sullivan M. Lobga

Univention Summit

On February 1 and 2, 2018, about 300 IT professionals from software developers, cloud service providers and value-added resellers will have network opportunities and knowledge transfer sessions with Open Source users at the Univention Summit in Bremen.

This summit is organized by Univention. It’s the company behind Univention Corporate Server (UCS), the open source answer to Windows Domain Controller.

What is the Univention Summit all About?

The Univention Summit is a platform where software developers, cloud service providers, value-added resellers and users meet to acquire more information, get latest trends in IT, discover new software solutions and of course networking with each other. The summit has now grown to become a meeting point for Open Source communities to network, transfer knowledge and initiate new projects.

Be Part of the Event

You can join Univention, the vendor of Univention Corporate Server, at the Univention Summit in Bremen, Germany. The Univention Summit is an excellent opportunity to meet software vendors such as NextCloud, CSP, system houses, and UCS users from around the world. Connect with open source and Linux enthusiasts on the premises of the Jacobs University Bremen. Its beautiful campus will make you feel like being at an American University.

Summit Agenda

The summit’s agenda has been published. As usual, it is packed with software presentations from various vendors, interesting case studies and best practice scenarios around UCS and the Univention App Center.

The first day of the summit is the most important one to gather information, network and share knowledge. The second day will offer various, specific workshops around UCS and UCS@school. More details can be obtained from the event’s website.

Call for Papers is now open

Right now, Univention is calling for the submission of papers. Anyone who would like to share a UCS or UCS@school user story with the other summit participants is invited to apply before December 1, 2017.

If you just want to attend, you can get early bird discount if you get the tickets by 30th November 2017.

Univention Summit

From: It’s FOSS

Call for Papers is now Open for Univention Summit 2018

By Derick Sullivan M. Lobga

Univention Summit

On February 1 and 2, 2018, about 300 IT professionals from software developers, cloud service providers and value-added resellers will have network opportunities and knowledge transfer sessions with Open Source users at the Univention Summit in Bremen.

This summit is organized by Univention. It’s the company behind Univention Corporate Server (UCS), the open source answer to Windows Domain Controller.

What is the Univention Summit all About?

The Univention Summit is a platform where software developers, cloud service providers, value-added resellers and users meet to acquire more information, get latest trends in IT, discover new software solutions and of course networking with each other. The summit has now grown to become a meeting point for Open Source communities to network, transfer knowledge and initiate new projects.

Be Part of the Event

You can join Univention, the vendor of Univention Corporate Server, at the Univention Summit in Bremen, Germany. The Univention Summit is an excellent opportunity to meet software vendors such as NextCloud, CSP, system houses, and UCS users from around the world. Connect with open source and Linux enthusiasts on the premises of the Jacobs University Bremen. Its beautiful campus will make you feel like being at an American University.

Summit Agenda

The summit’s agenda has been published. As usual, it is packed with software presentations from various vendors, interesting case studies and best practice scenarios around UCS and the Univention App Center.

The first day of the summit is the most important one to gather information, network and share knowledge. The second day will offer various, specific workshops around UCS and UCS@school. More details can be obtained from the event’s website.

Call for Papers is now open

Right now, Univention is calling for the submission of papers. Anyone who would like to share a UCS or UCS@school user story with the other summit participants is invited to apply before December 1, 2017.

If you just want to attend, you can get early bird discount if you get the tickets by 30th November 2017.

Univention Summit

From: It’s FOSS