Chapter 1

Starting with Linux

In This Chapter
Learning what Linux is
Learning where Linux came from
Choosing Linux distributions
Exploring professional opportunities with Linux
Becoming certified in Linux

Linux is one of the most important technology advancements of the twenty-first century. Besides its impact on the growth of the Internet and its place as an enabling technology for a range of computer-driven devices, Linux development has been a model for how collaborative projects can surpass what single individuals and companies can do alone.

Google runs thousands upon thousands of Linux servers to power its search technology. Its Android phones are based on Linux. Likewise, when you download and run Google's Chrome OS, you get a browser that is backed by a Linux operating system.

Facebook builds and deploys its site using what is referred to as a LAMP stack (Linux, Apache web server, MySQL database, and PHP web scripting language) — all open source projects. In fact, Facebook itself uses an open source development model, making source code for the applications and tools that drive Facebook available to the public. This model has helped Facebook shake out bugs quickly, get contributions from around the world, and fuel Facebook's exponential growth.

Financial organizations that have trillions of dollars riding on the speed and security of their operating systems also rely heavily on Linux. These include the New York Stock Exchange, Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and the Tokyo ...

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