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 Application Software
One of the main attributes for Linux is it's application software. This application software is part of all Linux Distributions and is FREE to use and has no restrictions on the product it's may create.Open source applications exist for just about every known application ever written for any computer. Don't think that one major software manufacturer in the US is the only place to obtain software, it is not. Open source has produced quality products. The one which I consider as "Top Dog" is Sun's Open Office. I find it as good as and easier to use than the Flag Ship Office from the Other Software Manufacturer. Documents can be interchanged between these Office Products. Many other computer professions agree with me. Open office comes with EVERY Linux Distribution, FREE of charge.

Every Linux distribution comes with thousands of FREE software applications. It is mind boggling what is out there. Every time I look at the list of Application which are freely distributed with Linux I find a new one I was not aware of. Even writing this Web Page I found a new one I was not aware of. I know I will soon install it and have a play.

One problem is most casual users of the Other Manufacturers Software products are not willing to spend the effort to learn anything new. They are happy to use their check book to buy the same old software over and over again, only with a new catchy name and a few changes and conclude that if it's free it's no good.

Here are a few Web Sites you can compare Open Source Software availability with what you must use your check book to obtain:

  1. Linux software equivalent
  2. Table of Equivalents
  3. A comparison
An exciting software package is called Wine and it's equivalent which can be purchased for a small fee is called Crossover. These two software products rely on a process which the  other manufacturer of software used a process called "DLL calls" for all of their application software to work. A bunch of talented Linux software developers wrote DLL calls in Linux to exactly match what the other manufacturer wrote for their product. To copy exactly what is done has legal issues. But to write software which does a similar function is OK. This took a large programming effort and years of time. This has progressed to a point that if you want to use software written to run on the other manufacturers products you can now use it to run on Linux. This process is called to have it run "natively". In some cases the Linux programmers did a better job than the other software manufacturer, and the software application software run faster on Linux. A large number of software applications written to run under the leading US Manufacturers Software now run on Linux, "natively".

One of the most exciting and growing application on Linux is Virtual System. This software product allows you to install Operating Systems to run on Linux just like Application Software. This process is absolutely amazing. Linux has written into their kernel a process called KVM (Kernel Based Virtual Machine). This process is in every Linux kernel and allows you to install other Operating System on your Linux machine and run them like they are on another computer. This product is in it's early stages and very hard to use.  Two Linux Virtual System applications exist which can be installed on your Linux computer with little effort. One is FREE the other has a cost. They are:

  1. VMware - A leading software manufacturer in the Bay Area.
  2. VirtualBox - This is Open Source Software written by Sun Micro System.