The meeting was called to order by Victor at 6:30 PM.
We had another great turn-out, with approximately 15 attendees; to about half of those there this was their first time attending a meeting.
Mission Statement: Victor read the suggested mission statement (please see MissionStatement) and asked if there was any discussion or objections to the statement as read. Matt asked what was meant by "tangibles" and Victor indicated that is everything from software to hardware and, most importantly, people. Victor asked for a motion to adopt the mission statement as read, the motion was made and seconded, and the group voted in favor of the motion.
Victor then reviewed the suggested list of officer positions and those that had already volunteered for those activities; he asked those present to help and one (Alex person expressed interest in the LUGNUT Coordinator position. We are still looking for someone to take on the role of Secretary/Treasurer. Please see the OfficersList for more details.
Meeting Day: In addition to changing the meeting day from the first Wednesday to the first Thursday of the month, Ernie made the motion (via the mailing list) to meet on the second Thursday of the month instead. Those present voted in favor of the change with the stipulation that we poll those on the mailing list for any objections. Victor will pose the question to the mailing list. However, unless there is a significant objection to this proposal, we will begin meeting on the second Thursday of every month starting with October 2005.
- No other new business was presented to the club.
- Victor asked for an update on the redesign of the website; Stuart will work on this ASAP now that he is back in town.
- Victor also asked about the conversion of the mailing list to Mailman. Stuart and Mike are still working on that.
Mike and Stuart combined to give the club a review of "What Is Linux?" and an installation of Fedora Core 4 in an existing Windows XP box.
Mike started the Educational Session by showing that the Windows XP system had a 13 GB NTFS partition. He then booted from a System Rescue CD that contained a great partition management utility called GNU Parted (Partition Editor). He showed us how easy it was to reduce the current NTFS partition from 13 to 6 Gb, thus making room for a Linux installation in the newly-available space. He recommended not reducing the size of the NTFS partition too much or the operation will fail.
After the NTFS partition was reduced, Mike booted back into Windows to allow it to readjust itself (XP will run checkdisk on boot up and it will find new hardware because the drive partitioning has changed).
Mike then booted the machine with a Fedora Core 4 CD and began the installation process. The process is GUI based and fairly intuitive. As usual, install as little as possible, restricting items to only those you really need. This will not only make it a faster installation process but also produce a cleaner system; other components can be added later. He showed us how to configure the boot loader so that Windows and Linux are listed appear properly at boot time.
While the installation proceeded, Stuart presented the "What Is Linux?" talk. Some points made:
- Linux is a kernel, the code that makes software and hardware talk to each other. It was started by Linus Torvalds in Finland around 1991.
- It is also a philosophy of sharing knowledge, part of the Free Software Foundation formed by Richard Stallman back in the 1980s. Linux is licensed under the GPL which, essentially, gives you the right to copy the program, look at the source code, and change it if you want to. If you make changes you must shares those with the community so that everyone can benefit.
- Linux and Open Source is also a new business model through which companies can make money by giving software for free but charging for services around that software.
Once the installation process finished, Mike showed how Linux and Windows were listed as available bootable systems on the machine. He went into Fedora and showed how to install other applications. He downloaded and easily installed Adobe Acrobat Reader.
Mike and Stuart then alunched hte machine into Windows and demonstrated the portable server that Stuart first showed us in September. The server was recognized as Windows first as a CD drive, then as a network device. Staurt then used his thumbprint to authenticate to the server, showed the group how Windows used the server to access the internet via Apache, and launched several applications that he installed on the machine (Firefox, Thunderbird, games). For more information please visit http://www.projectblackdog.com.
We tried to boot the system with an Ubuntu LiveCD but ran into problems due to the video configuration on the machine (it has two video cards, and the built in unit interferes with Ubuntu).
Resoruces presented by Mike:
Linux 101: http://learn.clemsonlinux.org/wiki/Main_Page
Knoppix Live CD: http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index.html
System Rescue CD: http://www.sysresccd.org
Fedora Core: http://fedora.redhat.com
The group discussed several aspects of using Linux:
- Advantages of Linux versus Windows
- More stable
- Allows you to change things to solve your problems
- More secure (you are not running as admin/root)
- Disadvantages: sometimes you have too many choices
- What about viruses? The group agreed that Linux systems were less susceptible to them.
- What about speed? Other than Linux booting slower than XP, there appears to be no significant differences in speed between the two OS.
The meeting broke off at around 9 PM.
Thank you to Mike Westcott and Stuart Anderson for a great presentation!
-= Victor =-