Why you should dual-boot SteamOS and Windows 7

Today in Open Source: Dual-boot SteamOS on your computer. Plus: KDE wins desktop Linux poll, and what if Linus had gone to Apple?

By , ITworld |  Open Source, Linux, steamos

Dual-boot SteamOS on your computer
Tom's Guide has an excellent tutorial on how to dual-boot SteamOS and Windows 7.

With help from the third-party developers on the open-source project Ye OldeSteamOSe, Valve has recently added the ability to dual-boot SteamOS on a PC. That means you can install and test out SteamOS on a computer without wiping that computer's previous OS and all of its files. However, because SteamOS is still in beta, setting up a dual-boot is far from easy.

We explored some of the options, and figured out a way to get SteamOS running successfully on a laptop dual-booted with Windows 7. Here's a step-by-step walk-through of how to do it.

More at Tom's Guide

Dual-Boot SteamOS and Windows 7
Image credit: Tom's Guide

When I first heard of SteamOS, it didn't occur to me that dual-booting might be a better idea than just doing a full install. But Tom's guide to dual-booting makes it an attractive option for a lot of gamers who might be running Windows 7 but who also want to get some practical experience with SteamOS.

The process of setting up SteamOS for a dual-boot system with Windows 7 is not quick or easy. But I don't think it's outrageously hard either. If you have experience setting up partitions and you can follow the directions in the guide then you should be all set to use SteamOS on your Windows 7 computer.

Dual-booting lets you get a taste of SteamOS without having to commit to it as the only operating system on your computer. As good as SteamOS seems to be right now it's important to remember that it is still a beta, and betas always have problems that can cause headaches for the user.

Dual-booting is also better than trying to run SteamoS in VirtualBox or any other virtual machine software. Performance is critical for a lot of games, and if you run SteamOS games in a virtual machine you also run the risk of taking a significant performance hit.

And let's face it, sometimes you don't need an operating system that is a jack of all trades like Windows 7. SteamOS is about gaming, period. So it makes sense to use it on your computer exclusively for games instead of a general purpose operating system.

Eventually Valve will get all the kinks worked out of SteamOS, and we'll see lots more games available for it. So getting your feet wet with SteamOS will put you ahead of the pack when the release version of SteamOS finally arrives.

KDE wins desktop poll
FOSS Force has the results of a desktop poll of its readers, and KDE won handily.

...70% of you said you prefer KDE, with no other desktop cracking the 10% mark. I find this somewhat fascinating, given the fact that until a few years ago KDE was stuck in a second place rut and GNOME was firmly entrenched in the catbird seat.

If nothing else, the results of this poll illustrates how far GNOME has fallen. GNOME 3 came in with only 8% of the vote, followed by Cinnamon, which started life as a fork of the GNOME shell, with a 6% showing.

More at FOSS Force

KDE Wins Desktop Linux Poll
Image credit: FOSS Force

While I'm more of an Xfce kind of guy, there's no doubt that KDE is a great desktop. If I had to choose between KDE and GNOME, I'd go with KDE for sure. I find KDE to be much better suited to my taste than GNOME, but your mileage may vary. Some folks really do enjoy GNOME and are quite passionate about it.

As the article notes though, it's sad to see how much GNOME has declined in popularity over the years. It used to be a giant among Linux desktop environments, and it has really dwindled away to a relatively miniscule portion of Linux users compared to its days of glory.

I'd like to see FOSS Force do another poll that offers a larger breakdown of desktop environments. It would be very interesting to see if KDE would still get as many votes if there were other options available.

What if Linus Torvalds had gone to work for Apple?
Tecmint explores what might have happened if Linus Torvalds had gone to work for Steve Jobs.

Linus Torvalds, the man behind the wonderful project Linux and Git was offered job by Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple Inc. Torvalds never met Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft but he met Jobs in the year 2000 when he was working with Transmeta corporation, an American fabless semiconductor company. Jobs invited Torvalds to Cupertino Camps of Apple. Torvalds was offered thick salary and remarkable position within the organization and was supposed to do Non-Linux things at Apple. This was the point, Torvalds disagreed. Moreover Torvalds did not like the Mac Kernel, Mach.

More at Tecmint

Thank goodness Linus made the right decision and opted out of working for Apple. Can you imagine what the computing world would be like if he hadn't? Things would be much different than they are now, and not in a good way. The world of technology got very lucky the day Linus said no to Steve Jobs.

What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.

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