Linux

I started using Linux after losing a new Windows 7 operating system to a BIOS error. Not wanting to spend more money on a new commercial operating system and programs, I installed Ubuntu and have never looked back since.


Over the years, I have tried out a string of different Debian-based Linux distributions such as CrunchBang and Peppermint, but since 2012 I have been a very happy user of Arch Linux, a highly customizable distribution based around binary packages. The base install of Arch provides a bare-bones platform for building a customized Linux distribution tailored to your unique hardware and software needs.


Learning how to install and configure Arch has taught me a lot about Linux and the inner workings of an operating system. I highly recommend Arch to anyone, beginner or expert, who desires a greater understanding of how computer systems work and more control over their computing experience.


This Website - charlesbwise.com

This site is hosted via Linode, who offer scalable Linux-powered virtual private servers and a great library of technical and how-to guides. If you are looking for an inexpensive, reliable hosting provider, I highly recommend you check them out.


If you're interested, you can use this link to sign up with Linode and deploy a VPS for as little as $5/month. This is a referral link that helps me defray the costs of hosting and running this site. If you sign up via the link and use your VPS for at least 90 days, I earn Linode credit. Linode's referral system is explained more thoroughly here.


This site is powered by a LNMP stack (Linux, NGINX, MariaDB, PHP)
  • NGINX (pron. engine x) is a lightweight, secure, fast web server and reverse proxy server. I was an avid user of another web server Lighttpd for several years, but started exploring NGINX recently as a reverse proxy solution on a project and enjoyed working with it so much I decided to convert.
  • MariaDB is a fork of the popular MySQL database management software with similar style, architecture, and indexing
  • PHP is a popular scripting language that handles modules and other interactive content on the site. It is closely integrated into Lighttpd through PHP-FPM (PHP FastCGI Process Manager), an alternative PHP FastCGI implementation

On my Arch-powered laptops, my favorite open source programs are:
  • LXDE (Lightweight X11 Desktop Environment) -- low-resource fast desktop environment similar in appearance to classic MS Windows
  • Openbox -- highly configurable windows manager
  • Clementine -- modern music player for multiple platforms
  • Puddletag -- audio tag editor for GNU/Linux
  • Parcellite -- GTK+ clipboard manager
  • Syncthing -- peer-to-peer secure file synchronization over multiple devices
  • TeXstudio -- a robust editor for creating LaTeX logo files and documents