Top 25 Articles of All Time, Part 5

This week we take a look at the all-time favorite articles ever featured on We'll feature the top 25 in this series, presenting you with five each day this week. These 25 articles alone represent tens of millions of page views on

Top Articles 1 - 5

5. The Ultimate Linux/Windows Systems by Kevin Farnham
Use cross-platform applications and shared data for the ultimate Linux/Windows system.

I recently converted my Toshiba notebook computer into a dual-boot system, running Windows XP Pro and Ubuntu Linux. I was hoping I'd be able to use cross-platform applications such as Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla Thunderbird, AbiWord, Gnumeric and SciTE transparently, no matter which operating system was currently booted. This article describes the steps I took to make this possible. Read more.

4. The Ultimate Distro by Glyn Moody
Because of an ever-present, irrepressible urge to trump what has gone before, and to create the ultimate distro, there will never be one.

The name of Gaël Duval's new distro, Ulteo, with its hint of the word "ultimate", smacks of a certain ambition. But Duval probably means it in the sense that it is the last distribution you will ever need to install, because thereafter it will "self-upgrade automatically," as the announcement of the alpha release put it. Ease-of-use has been a constant theme in Duval's work. When he launched his first distro, Mandrake, in July 1998, one of his stated goals was "to provide a working and easy-to-install linux-distribution to people who don't want to spend too much time in installing and configuring their Linux system : just install it and USE IT." Read more.

3. Boot with GRUB by Wayne Marshall
Especially useful for multiboot, partitioned systems, GRUB offers flexibility and convenience for startup.

GRUB: it's neither larva, fast food nor the loveliest of acronyms in the GNU herd of free software. Rather, GRUB is the GNU GRand Unified Bootloader. And, it is truly the greatest loader for booting Linux and practically any other OS—open source or otherwise—you may have scattered on your platters. Read more.

2. GNU/Linux DVD Player Review by Jon Kent
Jon takes a look at Xine, VideoLAN Client, MPlayer and Ogle—four GNU/Linux DVD playback applications.

Playing DVDs under GNU/Linux has not had the happiest of histories, what with the DeCSS debacle and subsequent legal battle. So you'd be forgiven for thinking that you will never be able to play your DVDs on your GNU/Linux system. Luckily, this is not the case, and there are several applications available for you to download and use. The issue with DeCSS is still with us but is slowly getting clearer. However, this has left some of the DVD players officially not supporting encrypted DVDs, although unofficially, playback is possible via third-party additions. Read more.

1. Why Python by Eric Raymond
Cardinal Biggles had Eric Raymond in the comfy chair for over four hours before wringing this confession from him...

My first look at Python was an accident, and I didn't much like what I saw at the time. It was early 1997, and Mark Lutz's book Programming Python from O'Reilly & Associates had recently come out. O'Reilly books occasionally land on my doorstep, selected from among the new releases by some mysterious benefactor inside the organization using a random process I've given up trying to understand. Read more.

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