The Wonderful World of Linux 2.2
Nothing much is new on this front; Linux has always had incredible support for these basic building blocks. The parallel-port driver has been rewritten with cross-platform issues in mind, and thus what was once just a “Parallel Port” is now a “PC-Style Parallel Port”, functionality-wise. Note that the naming convention used to label parallel ports has changed, so you may find your lp1 has become your lp0. Distributions should allow for this change automatically.
Serial support is chugging along as well as it always has, with one notable difference. Previously, a serial device such as a modem involved two devices, one for call-in and one for call-out (ttyS and cua, respectively). As of Linux 2.2, the two are combined in one device (ttyS), and accessing the cua devices now prints a warning message to the kernel log. On the bright side, Linux 2.2 includes support for having more than four serial ports, it allows serial devices to share interrupts, and it includes a number of drivers for non-standard ports and multi-port cards. My only complaint about serial support is its lack of support for the standard methods used by modules to pass device parameters at module-load time via the modules.conf file and kmod. Instead, these parameters are set using the setserial command.
Thankfully, the hodgepodge of hundreds of CD-ROM standards has solidified behind the “standard” of ATAPI CD-ROMs. This reprieve has given developers time to completely rewrite the CD-ROM driver system to be more standardized in terms of support. Small, quirky differences between the individual drivers have now all been fixed for better support.
Rewritable CD-ROMs aren't supported as well as I would like. SCSI CD-ROMs are well done, but IDE drives may require the SCSI-emulation kludge driver. This limitation may be removed in a future version of the CD-ROM subsystem, but is something that must be coped with for now.
Floppies are working as great as ever. New developments have been made in terms of large volume floppies, and it remains to be seen whether or not all of these will be supported. The so-called ATAPI floppies already have a driver.
IOMEGA's Zip drive, an increasingly popular storage solution, is fairly well-supported under Linux 2.2. These beasts come in two versions: SCSI and parallel. Under SCSI, the Zip drives are supported just as any other disk would be. The parallel version of these drives actually uses a kind of SCSI-over-parallel protocol, also supported in Linux 2.2. Other IOMEGA solutions such as DITTO drives may also be supported using the ftape drivers.
The issue of DVD is something for which no one seems to know the answer. It is highly probable that DVD is already supported in some way, most likely through the IDE ATAPI driver interface. DVDs are much like CD-ROMs. If a standard emerges that Linux 2.2 does not support, it is fairly certain that it will be added sometime during the 2.2.x stabilization cycle following the initial release.
Other removable media may or may not be supported under Linux 2.2. If the device in question connects through the parallel port, it is possible that it is supported using one of the parallel-port IDE device protocol modules included in the kernel.
At long last, the sound code has been partially rewritten to be completely modular from start to finish. Distributions will be able to more easily include generic sound support out-of-the-box for their users as well as making it easier for the rest of us to load and configure sound devices (in particular, pesky Plug-and-Play ones). Many new sound devices are supported as well, and it looks as if this is one area where Linux will truly improve in the next year.
One notable defect is the lack of support for the PC internal speaker, if only for completeness. Then again, Windows doesn't do it either, so who am I to judge?
Linux 2.2 now has amazing support for a growing number of TV and radio-tuner cards and digital cameras. This is truly a bleeding-edge addition to 2.1's roster, so some uncorrected problems may remain, but it is reasonable to assume they will be fixed in time. In my opinion, this is just an amazing area for Linux to be in at all.
Linux 2.2's backup- and tape-device subsystem has not changed much since the 2.0 release. More drivers for devices have been written, of course, and substantial improvements have been made for backup devices that work off of the floppy-disk controller (including the IOMEGA DITTO).
Rewritable CD-ROMs have become a popular solution for backing up data, and they are supported under Linux 2.2 either natively or by using the SCSI Emulation driver. There are still remaining problems in this regard—see my note above on CD-ROMs.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
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- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
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- Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- Tech Tip: Really Simple HTTP Server with Python
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
- Rogue Wave Software's Zend Server
- Parsing an RSS News Feed with a Bash Script
- SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide