Using Linux – Finding Values in CLI

What have I been doing with Linux OSs?

I have been using Linux for many years now, have worked with Debian proper as desktop and as a server with no GUI (SSH only), two different variations of Ubuntu in desktop scenarios (currently using Ubuntu-Gnome), Tails (a privacy focused derivation that prioritizes Tor and related tools), Qubes (which I really like, as a completely good, albeit complex, option for day-to-day work, built on a Fedora base but with virtualization that uses Debian, Fedora, and Ubuntu options – and I believe can also handle an installation of a virtual Windows instance), and a few others. I am a tinkerer/learner, as are most people who love using Linux.

What am I planning for my future Linux use?

Well, there are two transitions coming shortly…

  • I really want to get experience in the Red Hat universe since their OSs and servers are so ubiquitously running network and internet applications across the globe. To make this transition, I will probably go ahead and switch my daily driver over to Fedora (which is Fedora 34 at the time of this posting), learning all the various package management tools specific to Fedora. I am looking forward to this alteration in my life since I have spent so much time in Debian based Linux distributions.
  • There are many work tools I need for my current employer that are Windows only applications related to general Windows 10 use as well as some tools that are peculiar to the area of my current professional life. My employer deploys the Cisco Connect-Anywhere client to connect to the VPN, which is very common, but this tool is actually not very stable on Linux, despite recent updates and patches. Another thing normal to Linux adoption, is that I get no institutional support for using this tool on Linux. Instead, I use Google’s remote desktop tool to get onto my workstation on-site (I have been working remotely since March 2020). So, I think I will move back to my Windows machine for more work tasks and projects for easier integration into my departmental needs. In addition to this, I will also make more use of the Linux subsystem on Windows (which I of course have already enabled).
  • I think these two changes to my day-to-day desktop changes will increase my knowledge and reorient my remote work tasks to make certain things educational and other things easier.

    One of the simplest values I personally find in adoption of Linux is that I get to decide when updates are installed on my own machine. I can run a search for updates and upgrades as often or as infrequently as I like. Now, I do update all the time to keep the OS stable, to install security patches, and to keep all the applications up-to-date. But I like that I can run a few commands on my own timeline to do this and that there is no some over-arching policy mandating that I do all updates on some arbitrary day or time each week.

    As I have mentioned in another post about using git and GitHub via the command-line-interface (CLI) for a repo I co-maintain, I really appreciate the how important to Linux is the command-line. I admit that there are numerous ways to use the CLI on Windows, but my learning has focused on Linux contexts. I think of the CLI as a value that is so central to full and proper Linux administration.

    What CLI might be on Windows?

    Given my above two transitions mentioned above about migrating to Fedora and moving back to more regular use of my Windows machine, I also state that transition # 2 will also force an uptick in my use of Windows Command Prompt (CMD) and the Windows Powershell, the two standard CLI tools for Windows. If I use these more, and expand usage of the enabled Linux subsystem, I think that will be a great new matrix for learning and using tools and exploiting them more fully.

    More coming on this work, Lord willing.