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Linux Guide - A


  • ABI
    Application Binary Interface: details the machine language of the CPU family as well as the calls between the application and the operating system
  • absolute pathname
    A pathname that explicitly identifies all directories from the root directory to an individual file. For example, pathname /home/linus/kernel/test refers to a file named test in directory kernel, which belongs to directory linus, which belongs to directory home, which belongs to the root directory /.

  • access permissions
    a set of permissions associated with every file and directory that determine who can read it, write to it, or execute it. Only the owner of the file (or the super-user) can change these permissions
  • account
    a cominbation of login and password which is normally created by the system administrator. The creation of an account includes the assignment of a home directory
  • acronym
    an abbreviation. Examples of Linux related acronyms are KDE, ELF and GNU.
  • Ada
    A Pascal-descended language that has been made mandatory for Department of Defense software projects by the Pentagon. Hackers are nearly unanimous in observing that, technically, it is precisely what one might expect given that kind of endorsement by fiat; designed by committee, crockish, difficult to use, and overall a disastrous, multi-billion-dollar boondoggle (one common description wss "The PL/I of the 1980s"). Hackers find Ada's exception-handling and inter-process communication features particularly hilarious
  • adapter
    a device that allows one system to connect to and work with another
  • adaptive compression
    a data compression technique that dynamically adjusts the algorithm used based on the content of the data being compressed
  • admin
    short for administrator, referring to the systems person responsible for the maintenance of a computer.
  • ADSL
    Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Loop is a high-speed Internet access technology that uses a commonly available telephone copper loop. ADSL provides data speeds from 384kbps to 1.5 Mbps, normally using different speeds for the upstream and downstream channel (hence the " Asymmetric" ). ADSL provides a direct, dedicated pipe to an ISP
  • Akkerman, Wichert
    one of the key developers of the Debian distribution. Wichert has also written important Linux programs such as strace and APT
  • algorithm
    A predefined set of instructions for completing a task.
  • alias
    An alternate name, or abbreviation, used in place of a command or a sequence of commands in the C shell and the Korn shell
  • Allison, Jeremy
    one of the lead developers of the Samba Windows file-and-print-sharing software
  • Allman, Eric
    the creator of sendmail -- one of the most important pieces of software ever created by the OpenSource community. Eric has established Sendmail, Inc., which produces both open-sourced and proprietary versions of sendmail
  • Alpha
    a family of advanced RISC-based, 64-bit CPUs from Digital (now Compaq). Alpha's were introduced back in 1992
  • alpha software
    The term used to describe an early release of software that will have many bugs and features missing. See beta software
  • anonymous FTP
    A method of file transfer that allows you to log in to an FTP server as a guest
  • ANSI C
    a revision of C, adding function prototypes, structure passing, structure assignment and standardised library functions
  • Anti-Aliasing
    a method used to better define higher resolution objects in lower resolution. It is a term often used for fonts
  • Anti-virus Program
    A program designed to detect and remove a virus from the computer.
  • append
    To place after, or at the end of, a character, a line, or a file. In the vi editor, certain commands let you append text in a document. In the Bourne and C shells, the symbol >> allows you to append output to an existing file (or create a new file if the file does not yet exist)
  • append mode
    In vi, the mode that allows you to type new text after existing text in a file; terminate this mode by pressing ESC
  • Applet
    A small Java program that can be embedded in an HTML page. Unlike Java applications, applets are not allowed to access certain resources on the local computer, such as files and serial devices (modems, printers, etc.), and are prohibited from communicating with most other computers across a network
  • Arcangeli, Andrea
    employed by SuSE as a kernel developer, Andrea has created the IKD kernel debugging tool and the workaround for a famous TCP incompatibility between Solaris and Linux
  • Archie
    A software tool for finding files stored on anonymous ftp sites. You need to know the exact file name or a substring of it to use this tool
  • argument
    a mathematical term that refers to a number, character or word which changes the action of the command it is applied to
  • ARP
    a TCP/IP protocol used to obtain a station's physical address from its logical IP address. ARP requests are broadcast onto the network
  • ARPANet
    Advanced Research Projects Agency Network - The precursor to the Internet. Developed in the late 60's and early 70s by the US Department of Defense as an experiment in wide-area-networking that would survive a nuclear war
  • ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange)
    a standard code used for representing information on computer systems and networks. It uses the printing and non-printing characters that can be generated by the keyboard. Since 7 bits are available to represent each character it is possible to represent a total of 128 different characters.
  • assembler
    a program which converts assembly language into machine code
  • assign
    To give a value to a variable in a programming or configuration statement. For example, in the Bourne shell statement TERM=vt100, you assign the value vt100 to the environmental variable TERM, which identifies your terminal type (VT100) to Linux
  • asynchronous
    It describes a communications strategy where start and stop bits are used to indicate the beginning and end of a character.
    AT Attachment Packet Interface - a standard that allows people to connect tape drives and CD-ROMs to Enhanced IDE controllers
  • atime
    Unix jargon for "the time a file was last accessed". (cf. ctime, mtime)
  • authentication
    the verification of the identity of a person or process. In a communication system, authentication verifies that messages really come from their stated source, like the signature on a (paper) letter
  • avatar
    A graphical representation of you acting as an identification on 3D chat worlds
  • AVI
    Audio Video Interleaved: a proprietary video format developed by Microsoft. It interleaves standard waveform audio and digital video frames (bitmaps) and is a popular format. Popular Linux programs such as xanim support AVI.
  • awk
    An interpreted language for massaging text data developed by Alfred Aho, Peter Weinberger, and Brian Kernighan (the name derives from their initials). It is characterized by C-like syntax, a declaration-free approach to variable typing and declarations, associative arrays, and field-oriented text processing
  • AX.25
    a Packet Radio Protocol that offers both connected and connectionless modes of operation, and is used either by itself for point-point links, or to carry other protocols such as TCP/IP and NetRom
  • Key:  Commands - People - General

Last Updated Saturday, October 29 2005 @ 03:09 AM EDT

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