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Career path for a Domino/Windows developer interested in learning Linux

I am a Domino developer used to Windows environments, but I have a Fedora Core 2 box at home for learning Linux. I would eventually like to learn Linux and learn to develop in Linux, with an eye to switching to Linux development. What path would you recommend for someone who's been in the industry for a few years but wants to go in this direction?

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Well that's a pretty broad question. Since you already are proficient with Domino, I would say looking at what IBM is doing with their Workplace product, which might lead you to more ideas of how that product will be deployed on Linux.

However, my personal opinion is to look at what's happening with Apache and Jakarta, which is a group of Open Source Java development applications, libraries and servers. I also would look at Eclipse, which has a set of tools for J2EE deployment and Web-centric applications. These might be the closest translation to your current skill set.

Now, if I was starting from scratch, I would tell you to start looking at LAMP. Not the thing on the coffee table at the end of the couch but Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP, or else Python. I would say that a good exercise would be to configure an Apache server on your Fedora Core 2 box and learn how the configuration files are parsed. Generate an unsigned cert to see how SSL works. I would also take a look at MamboCMS, which is a LAMP-based content management system. It's a good example of the flexibility of an application that you can build with the LAMP technologies.

This was first published in December 2004

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