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  1. #1

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    I've used Linux on PC's for a very long time but mostly professionally. As a matter of course I have purchased many distributions over the years. To date all have fallen short of my needs, those being to equal or better the performance, reliability and software selections I regularly use in Windows 7.

    A few weeks ago I bought Linux Mint 18.3 and installed it (on a spare 500 gig drive) in my ageing HP tower, and after finding a Linux certified USB WiFi adapter I was able to completely migrate all of my needs over to Linux, permanently. My machine runs in what used to be called "turbo mode" without needing (or having) a turbo selector switch.

    That said, these were / are my current needs that were easily met or surpassed

    Microsoft Office to Libre office (Libre office is free and 100% compatible with MS Office)
    Firefox to Firefox (migrating bookmark toolbar) no issues found web wide
    Paint shop pro to Gimp
    Audacity to Audacity (no migration needed)
    MS Media player for CD ripping to Asunder
    MS Media player for playing audio files to Linux media player or VLC
    VLC Media player to VLC media player to play DVD content (no migration needed)
    MS native Bluetooth support to Linux no issues
    Windows WiFi support to Linux. I had to ditch my old USB WiFi adaptor for a new one... $12
    USB and E-SATA 100% supported
    MS utilities like notepad, calculator
    PKZIP to ZIP for zipping files

    Things I could NOT do under windows that now are supported

    Music Brainz for updating CDDB CD info

    Less to zero concerns about viruses and hackers

    Switchable sound output to any bluetooth device, wired speakers or internal speaker

    Software manager in Linux is similar to Android phone application selector (all apps are GNU/GPL free software) and the selection of mature software is staggering.

    Configurable firewall with rule support

    A screen based keyboard to use with a mouse or touchscreen.

    For stand alone machines without an internet connection it would not be an option as Linux simply cannot self install many applications as libraries are only available online to install complete packages.
    Regards,

    Gary

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Well done. I wrote a bunch of books on Linux back in the late 90s/early 2000s, and it was pretty usable back then, but had significant limitations as a desktop platform. I haven't looked at it in years because it turns out that there's not a whole lot of money in Linux books, and since Macs are based on BSD, my modest Unix needs are easily met. I do have an old Mac Mini that I'm not using at the moment though. Been planning to turn it into a Linux based file server.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  4. #3

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    I abaondoned Windows for Linux entirely about 10 years ago, and never looked back. I found there was nothing I needed to do on a computer that I couldn't do with Linux. I tried most of the major distros, and settled on Debian, which I've been using for several years. I had to use Windows at work, and I hated it, so I found ways to use my own computer for most things. Linux works fine for a desktop operating system, and has for a long time. But people are reluctant to give up what is familiar to them, so they keep paying money needlessly to Microsoft. Other than the end user computers, the internet runs mostly on Linux. It's more stable than Windows for servers, but that's damning with faint praise. Anything is more stable than Windows, and more resistant to malware.

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell View Post
    I abaondoned Windows for Linux entirely about 10 years ago, and never looked back. I found there was nothing I needed to do on a computer that I couldn't do with Linux. I tried most of the major distros, and settled on Debian, which I've been using for several years. I had to use Windows at work, and I hated it, so I found ways to use my own computer for most things. Linux works fine for a desktop operating system, and has for a long time. But people are reluctant to give up what is familiar to them, so they keep paying money needlessly to Microsoft. Other than the end user computers, the internet runs mostly on Linux. It's more stable than Windows for servers, but that's damning with faint praise. Anything is more stable than Windows, and more resistant to malware.
    +1 for sure. Its problem early on was it installed just about EVERYTHING on the CD (but advanced installers could ala-carte select) and later on with the the DVD the user was left to sort out the myriad applets and then if something else was needed installing packages was a chore. Add to that the (in my experience) fragile file system was prone to self destruct and recovery was best suited to a complete re-install.

    Now much of what you need is already there, the file system is robust, the GUI is easily better than anything from MS especially the horrid Win10. I dare say that I could drop a fully configured Linux PC in front of a secretary and with minimal training they could be 100% functional in an office environment.

    At this point for the slightly more advanced user getting the GUI setup is still daunting, the suite of default installed apps is thin and it's not nearly (IMO) a drop down replacement as it is for Win7. But it no longer (for the most part) requires the extensive command line knowledge and to anyone willing to invest a bit of time customizing the desktop to their needs the rewards are worth the investment.

    I'm still adding applications to fill my needs, and getting used to some programs like Gimp which while extremely versatile I think is overly arcane and it's defaults are more for graphic artists and less suitable for web graphics (jpg, gif etc) manipulation. As it is Windows is no longer even visible in my rear view mirror and I look forward to duplicating this success on my laptop.
    Regards,

    Gary

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by GNAPPI View Post
    But it no longer (for the most part) requires the extensive command line knowledge and to anyone willing to invest a bit of time customizing the desktop to their needs the rewards are worth the investment.
    I guess this is a good thing, but the command line (and the fact that many apps have command line interfaces and non-interactive modes) is my favorite thing about Unix/Linux.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  7. #6

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    It is the best system without a doubt,but specially for music I found it lacking in the software it nativelly supports. Also if you do projects with/for people you just have to have the compatible programs and platforms, which more or less would be Mac in the states ,Mac or PC in europe.

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    I guess this is a good thing, but the command line (and the fact that many apps have command line interfaces and non-interactive modes) is my favorite thing about Unix/Linux.
    For sure, but then anyone with a good knowledge of DOS commands would have little trouble with the Linux command line of which many are analogous do DOS but far more powerful.
    Regards,

    Gary

  9. #8

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    You don't need the command line at all for most distros, but I still like to use it because it's quicker and faster than fiddling with a mouse and stacked menus. I keep a popup terminal ready, and I use it for many things because it's so quick and easy, as long as I can remember the proper command syntax. That seems to be getting harder, and I sometimes have to struggle to remember what I came in here for.

    FWIW, I'm not at all a fan of Mint, but the blessing, and the curse, of Linux is that there are so many choices available.

  10. #9

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    I have an old laptop set up with Linux Mint. Works great, but -

    How in the heck do you play back MIDI files in a Linux environment? I just can't make it happen.

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by GNAPPI View Post
    For sure, but then anyone with a good knowledge of DOS commands would have little trouble with the Linux command line of which many are analogous do DOS but far more powerful.
    My knowledge of DOS is minimal. Can you do things like piping and redirecting? Those are conceptual things that you don't necessarily get just from the commands themselves. I suppose someone who was really good at writing batch files would have at least a conceptual basis for shell scripting.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  12. #11

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    I used to be somewhat proficient at DOS commands, because it was necessary before Windows came along. But I haven't used any for going on 20 years. I use the Linux command line daily, because it's quicker and more efficient than pointing and clicking, pointing and clicking, etc etc etc. But anyone can get by with just pointing and clicking if that's their preference.

  13. #12

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    Do a google search for play midi files in Linux mint. I got a page full of suggestions. Best of luck, I haven’t uses Linux lately. Spend most of my time on the iPad,but it sure can breath new life into an old laptop.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

  14. #13

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    And Hydrogen and Tuxguitar :-)

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    My knowledge of DOS is minimal. Can you do things like piping and redirecting? Those are conceptual things that you don't necessarily get just from the commands themselves. I suppose someone who was really good at writing batch files would have at least a conceptual basis for shell scripting.
    DOS copied Unix that's where they got pipes and redirection. Linux is Unix so yes you have pipes and redirection. Also Linux shells you can do way more than DOS batch files, Linux shell are almost full programming languages. UNIX is what so much of the computing world is modeled on.

  16. #15

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    I switched to linux (from mac) in 2011. Before that I had used it at university, at work and some test installs at home.

    Now I do though also have a mac mini in my music room. Reaper (could run any DAW) and Band in a box is the software that I don't see any suitable replacements for (there are options, but not as good and not as mature).

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by NoReply View Post
    DOS copied Unix that's where they got pipes and redirection. Linux is Unix so yes you have pipes and redirection. Also Linux shells you can do way more than DOS batch files, Linux shell are almost full programming languages. UNIX is what so much of the computing world is modeled on.
    Yeah, I was asking if DOS had those things. I know Linux does. I mean BASH on Linux isn't any different from BASH on any other platform.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    Yeah, I was asking if DOS had those things. I know Linux does. I mean BASH on Linux isn't any different from BASH on any other platform.

    DOS has basic pipes and redirection and the DOS has been enhanced over the years, but not to the level of BASH or any of the other Unix shells.

  19. #18

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    I know this is an old thread, but someone above mentioned that they could find no substitute for BIAB.

    I found a program called Impro-visor that is much like BIAB and has many lead sheets for Jazz music.

    Give it a try! :-)

  20. #19

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    To play MIDI files in a Linux environment, you can install Fluidsynth, which provides the synthesizer and instrument sounds, VLC, and the VLC Fluidsynth plugin, all available on most distros.

    If you want to go beyond playback and write MIDI music, you can install Rosegarden. It also installs Qsynth, and you do have to tell Qsynth to use a Fluidsynth "sound font" (instrument samples). A few mouse clicks is all that takes.

    There are some pretty decent free sound fonts available on the net if you Google around.

    Reaper works under WINE on Linux, if you prefer to use that. Iirc, there might be some plugin limitations, though, effects, etc.

    If you read/write notation, you can write music with Musescore, which can also play it back through Fluidsynth.

    There's a free DAW for Linux called Ardour, but it has a steep learning curve.

    I just get by with Audacity and Rosegarden (and VLC). BTW, I'm another long time Debian Linux user. Mint or Ubuntu might be better for new Linux users, though.