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No two computer systems are created equal. There are so many ways to go about assembling a functioning computer network that the possibilities are nearly infinite.

But knowing the building blocks of putting together and running a strong system is essential knowledge these days. So get the fundamental training you need with this System Administration and Infrastructure Management course bundle, which is on sale right now for only $41 (a 90 percent discount) from TNW Deals.

This package offers up eight courses featuring 95 hours of training, all tasked with breaking down and helping you understand Linux, Docker, Git, and a host of other foundational system technologies. That includes:

The Complete Guide to LPIC 1 Linux Administrator Exam…

How to Make Linux and macOS Virtual Machines for Free with Parallels Lite

Parallels is easily the best virtualization software on the Mac, and earlier this year, they quietly added a new app called Parallels Desktop Lite to the Mac App Store—and unlike its cousin, it’s free to download. The catch: if you want to use Windows virtual machines, you’re going to have to pay for a $60 a year for a subscription.

But the program itself is completely free otherwise, meaning if you want to create Linux, Chromium OS, or even macOS virtual machines, you don’t need to pay a dime.

Should I Use Parallels Lite, or the “Full” Version of Parallels?

So how it Parallels Desktop Lite different than Parallels Desktop? Parallels outlines all of the differences here, if you’re curious—there are a few limitations related to Mac App Store sandboxing. Other than that, the main difference is that Lite is free for anything except Windows virtual machines. If you want to run a Windows virtual machine, you’ll need to pony up $60 annually.

How does that compare to Parallels Desktop for Mac, the “full” version of this software? Well that product currently costs $70, and is yours as long as you can keep it running. Parallels versions typically stop running every couple of macOS releases, after which you’ll need to either stick to an older host operating system or pony up $50 for an upgrade license. Assuming you need to upgrade every two years, which is roughly consistent with our experience, the two pricing plans are about that same.

But that’s only if you want to run Windows. If your interest in virtual machines lies entirely on the Linux and macOS side of things, Lite is without question the better deal, because you can’t beat free.

Getting Started With Parallels Desktop Lite

Start up Parallels Lite for the first time and you’ll see the Parallels Wizard, which makes setting up or adding virtual machines simple.

There are three main options here. The most prominent points you to download Windows 10 from Microsoft, which will cost you around $120 for Windows itself on top of the Parallels subscription. To the right, you’ll find the option to browse your computer for any installation images on your computer. Below these two prominent options, you’ll see quick tools for downloading several other operating systems, including:

  • Chromium OS (the open source version of Chrome OS)
  • Ubuntu 16.04
  • Fedora 23
  • CentOS 7
  • Debian 8

Let’s get started with setting up a couple of these installers, then move on to setting up macOS in a virtual…

10 Strategy Games You Can Play on Linux Today

In Summary: With the Gaming World growing larger every day, eventually, there are going to be variations in both operating systems and platforms. The best way to find out what works best for you is to test out everything that interests you and run with what works!

Linux is becoming a strong alternative to Windows as a PC gaming platform. We’ve seen more and more games released for Linux, and given compatibility with the operating system via Steam and Steam OS, it’s a natural fit. After years of open-source ports, things are looking up.

One of the biggest booms in PC gaming is the availability of strategy titles. Recently, more strategy games have been released on Linux. The relevance of this should not be overlooked — strategy games are time-intensive. Thus, more time spent playing a strategy title means more time spent using the corresponding gaming platform.

This list of 10 strategy games will show you just how seriously game developers are treating Linux. For convenience, these titles are all available on Steam.

1. XCOM 2 (2016)

The follow-up to XCOM: Enemy Unknown, XCOM 2 takes place 20 years later, and puts you in command of the XCOM team in a turn-based strategy set on an alien-occupied Earth.

Your task this time is to reclaim the planet from the occupying force, liberating mankind.

Released in early 2016, XCOM 2 is the sort of title you really need to buy to support big-name gaming releases on Linux. We want more like this, so don’t ignore — buy it and play! XCOM 2 is one of the biggest Windows gaming titles to come to Linux, but it’s not the only one.

2. Civilization VI (2016)

Probably the biggest strategy title around, the most recent installment in Sid Meier’s Civilization series was issued on Linux in early 2017, following a Windows release in late 2016. The ultimate 4X title (that’s eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, and eXterminate), Civilization VI once again puts you in charge of a fledgling tribe at the dawn of recorded history. Your challenge is to attain superiority in military, cultural, religious, technological, and diplomatic scores, while maintaining friendly relations with other civilizations.

You might, for instance, find yourself pitted against Saladin of Arabia, Montezuma of the Aztecs, or a less-celebrated leader, such as Pedro II of Brazil, or John Curtis of Australia. Each leader has his or her own agenda and preferred government type, while civilizations all have their own bonuses and specific unit types. Along the way, you’ll need to trade and research technologies while building cities, improvements, and units. Civilization VI is deep, easy to get into, hugely addictive, and demands a constantly evolving strategy to deal with the AI.

Here’s a bit of online play in Civilization VI from the MakeUseOf Facebook page:

Our tips on achieving victory in Civilization VI are a good primer for success if you’re new to the game.

3. RimWorld (2016)

This unusual strategy game is set on a colony, starting off with three survivors of a shipwreck on a distant planet. To win, you’ll need to manage your colonists’ moods, health, and needs, while helping them to build structures and manufacture materials.

Featuring an AI storyteller, RimWorld is inspired by the TV show Firefly, among others. According to the developers, it’s a story generator “designed to co-author tragic, twisted, and triumphant stories about imprisoned pirates, desperate colonists, starvation and survival.” The results are invariably memorable, and always different.

Think of it as a combination of Space Colony and The Sims, with the perils of Civilization and Sim City (barbarians, pirates, and B-Movie attack monsters) thrown in for good measure.

4. Imperium Galactica II (1999)

Originally released on Windows in 1999, Imperium Galactica II has been remastered and re-released in early 2017, with SteamOS/Linux compatibility. But why is this important?

The first installment, Imperium Galactica, kick-started the empire building space real-time strategy (RTS) genre, but Imperium Galactica II perfected it, offering a…

The Best Keyboard Shortcuts for Bash (aka the Linux and macOS Terminal)

Bash is the default command-line shell on most Linux distributions, from Ubuntu and Debian to Red Hat and Fedora. Bash is also the default shell included with macOS, and you can install a Linux-based bash environment on Windows 10.

The bash shell features a wide variety of keyboard shortcuts you can use. These will work in bash on any operating system. Some of them may not work if you’re accessing bash remotely through an SSH or telnet session, depending on how you have your keys mapped.

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Working With Processes

Use the following shortcuts to manage running processes.

  • Ctrl+C: Interrupt (kill) the current foreground process running in in the terminal. This sends the SIGINT signal to the process, which is technically just a request—most processes will honor it, but some may ignore it.
  • Ctrl+Z: Suspend the current foreground process running in bash. This sends the SIGTSTP signal to the process. To return the process to the foreground later, use the fg process_name command.
  • Ctrl+D: Close the bash shell. This sends an EOF (End-of-file) marker to bash, and bash exits when it receives this marker. This is similar to running the exit command.

Controlling the Screen

The following shortcuts allow you to control what appears on the screen.

  • Ctrl+L: Clear the screen. This is similar to running the “clear” command.
  • Ctrl+S: Stop all output to the screen. This is particularly useful when running commands with a lot of long, verbose output, but you don’t want to stop the command itself with Ctrl+C.
  • Ctrl+Q: Resume output to the screen after stopping it with Ctrl+S.

Moving the Cursor

Use the following shortcuts to quickly move the cursor around the current line while typing a command.

  • Ctrl+A or Home: Go to the beginning of the line.
  • Ctrl+E or End: Go to the end of the line.
  • Alt+B: Go left (back) one word.
  • Ctrl+B: Go left (back) one character.
  • Alt+F: Go right (forward) one word.
  • Ctrl+F: Go right (forward) one character.
  • Ctrl+XX: Move between the beginning of the line and the current…

How to Maximize Your Linux Laptop’s Battery Life

Laptop manufacturers spend a lot of time tuning their device drivers for Windows battery life. Linux usually doesn’t get the same attention. Linux may perform just as well as Windows on the same hardware, but it won’t necessarily have as much battery life.

Linux’s battery usage has improved dramatically over the years. The Linux kernel has gotten better, and Linux distributions automatically adjust many settings when you’re using a laptop. But you can still do some things to improve your battery life.

Basic Battery-Saving Tips

Before you do anything too complex, adjust the same settings you would on a Windows laptop or MacBook to maximize battery life.

For example, tell your Linux laptop to suspend—this is what Linux calls sleep mode—more quickly when you’re not using it. You’ll find this option in your Linux desktop’s settings. For example, head to System Settings > Power on an Ubuntu desktop.

Screen brightness can affect battery life dramatically. The brighter your display backlight, the worse your battery life will be. If your laptop has hotkeys to change screen brightness, try them—they’ll hopefully work on Linux, too. If not, you’ll find this option somewhere in your Linux desktop’s settings. It’s available at System Settings > Brightness & Lock on Ubuntu.

You can also tell your Linux desktop to turn off the screen more quickly when it’s inactive. The laptop will use less power when its screen is off. Don’t use a screensaver, as those just waste power by making your computer do more work and leaving the display on.

You can also disable hardware radios you don’t use. For example, if you don’t use Bluetooth, you can disable it to gain some more battery life. Head to System Settings > Bluetooth to disable Bluetooth on an Ubuntu desktop.

If you’re not using Wi-Fi, you can save a bit of power by disabling that, too. On Ubuntu, head to System Settings > Network and enable “Airplane Mode” to disable Wi-Fi and other wireless radios.

Remember that what you do with the laptop is also important. Running heavier software and using more CPU resources will cause your laptop to use more battery power. For this reason, you may want to look at a more lightweight desktop environment, such as the Lxde-based Lubuntu instead of the Unity-based main Ubuntu desktop.

Install Proprietary Graphics Drivers (If You Need Them)

If your laptop has integrated Intel graphics, congratulations. You shouldn’t need to worry about power management issues with your graphics drivers. Intel graphics aren’t the fastest, but they have excellent open-source driver support and “just work” out of the box.

If your laptop has NVIDIA or AMD graphics, however, you may need to do some work to decrease power consumption.

The worst case scenario is a laptop with NVIDIA Optimus or AMD’s switchable graphics. Such laptops have two different GPUs. For example, an NVIDIA Optimus laptop will have both a more powerful, battery-draining NVIDIA GPU and a less powerful, battery-friendly Intel GPU. On…