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Old 04-14-2004, 05:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
In Your Dreams
 
Latch's Avatar
 
Location: City of Lights
New To Linux? Want To Try It? Read here!

This thread is here to (hopefully) put some sense to the tons of posts about what Linux flavour to try (and if you should try it). I plan on splitting this into four sections: Considering, Planning, Installing, Playing.

First, a few terms to be defined:
  • Flavour/Distro: Linux is open-source, meaning anyone can play with the code and make modifications to it and have their own customised versions. These versions are sometimes referred to as flavours (or flavors if you're American ). Another term you may hear to describe these versions is "distros", which stands for distribution. They all mean the same thing. There are many, many flavours of Linux out there. A few of the more well known ones you may have heard of already (Red Hat/Fedora (Core), Mandrake, SuSE, Knoppix/Gnoppix, Gentoo). They will be discussed below.
  • Kernel/Vanilla Kernel: the base of the system that everything runs off of. In your research (or this document), you may hear terms like 2.4 kernel or 2.6 kernel. The numbers refer to a version. This will also be discussed below. A vanilla kernel is the plain version of the kernel, before the modifications of a Linux flavour are added (Vanilla flavour = plain flavour, no special features, get it?)
  • Window Manager: the graphical gui system that you can run. The most popular ones are KDE and Gnome, although others do exist and may be touched upon in this post.
  • LiveCD: A version/flavour/distro of Linux that can completely run off a CD, not requiring any modifications of your hard drive.
  • Boot Loader: program that transitions you from your initial BIOS screen to running the kernel. The most popular Linux boot loaders (Grub and Lilo) allow you to boot to multiple partitions (which means being able to dual boot on your system).

Considering
So you're thinking of trying Linux. Good for you! There are a few things you should watch for. The suggestions below primarily exist for a Linux distro that you install (not a LiveCD), but can still apply for LiveCDs too.
  • Be prepared to spend a *lot* of time with it. Dedicating a weekend to doing your first Linux install is not a bad idea. While installations for most distros are getting easier, it's not completely streamlined yet. You may encounter problems where you are dumped to a command line.
  • When installing, it's helpful to have another computer close by that has access to the 'net. With that, if you run into problems, you can still Google for help. This leads me to the next point.
  • Google will probably be your best friend here. Chances are if you're having a problem, many other people have run into the same problem. If you don't know how to do something, Google likely can point you to a page that tells you how to do it.
  • Expect to 'screw up' and have to start again. Partitioning drives for a first time can be confusing. Thankfully, some distros do it automatically now. Still, if you mess up a partition, or your boot loader doesn't work.... you may have to reinstall. For that reason, it's suggested you use a hard drive/partition that doesn't have data you wish to keep on it.
  • If you have a totally separate computer to do this, great.. use that. Linux doesn't require much (hell, it can be installed on a 486.. XWindows/GUI/compiling would be pretty slow though ) If you are going to do this on a computer that already has something on it, it's suggested using a whole hard drive just for the first install or two (just in case you accidentally delete a partition on the hard drive.. you won't have data on there you can't afford to lose)
  • Backups are nice if you can, just in case. No one ever plans on losing their data
As a final note, SecretMethod70 posted an article called "Why Linux is Not for You: The Lengthy Rebuttal of a Linux User". I highly recommend you read it. It contains a lot more information, and goes more into the non-technical facts of Linux use (why do you want to use it? Are you prepared to commit to using it?).

Still with me? Good


Planning

Hardware
As mentioned above, it's suggested you allocate a separate machine (or at least a separate hard drive) your first time or two (to prevent data loss ). I won't delve into that much more. I think it speaks for itself.

Software
Linux has equivalents for most things you are after. The thread titled Linux Software Equivalents lists a few suggestions, but I'll reproduce some of the major equivalences below. Remember though, Linux is about *choice*, and there are alternatives to the ones listed below. It's all up to you Some notes:
  • Mozilla/Mozilla Firefox/Mozilla Thunderbird are all different products. Mozilla is an all-in-one type client, which has a web browser, mail client, html editor, calendar, and address book. Firefox, which is built on top of the Mozilla web browser code, is a quicker, modified "browser-only" program. Mozilla Thunderbird, which is built on top of the Mozilla mail client code, is a quicker, modified "mail-only" program.
  • Gaim is listed as a replacement for all those messaging clients because it can handle all those messaging networks in one program (like Trillian does).
  • Outlook is separate from the other mail clients because it is a Personal Information Manager (PIM). It has tasks, a calendar, an address book, and more (and of course, mail). Evolution is a clone of that, with the same things.
  • The way most media players work with DivX/Real Player/Quicktime/etc is with the Windows codecs. There are packages of Windows Codecs out there (the MPlayer website has links to them). You can download the packages (really just need the one package of all the codecs), unzip them to a certain directory (usually /usr/lib/win32), and the media player uses them as needed.
  • For the office clones, OpenOffice is able to read/write Microsoft Office files. Not sure about KOffice, as I use OpenOffice for my files. The thread titled "OpenOffice vs. MSOffice: Cutting Through the FUD is very informative. The thread titled OpenOffice is also a good read to see TFP peoples' opinions on it.
  • The "cmd" line is just a joke, but it should be noted that there are many types of virtual terminals out there once you get into your GUI. They include Konsole, Gnome-terminal (page currently 404s because of the gnome site getting hacked, Eterm, and Aterm.
There are other equivalents for other products.

What if you just want to run a Windows program? That's where things like Wine and Win4Lin.

Wine is not a Windows emulator. It is an implement ion of the API. This means it handles the system calls that Windows programs makes and calls the appropriate Linux calls for it. What's that mean to you? It means you can run your window programs from Linux. See the website for more details. There's also a version of Wine called WineX, which handles DirectX stuff, allowing you to play some of your Windows games in Linux. I can't say much about Win4Lin, as I've never tried it. It is a commercial wine-type program, with even more compatibility with Windows.

Leading into my discussion of window managers, I should talk about the underlying components that let a window manager do it's job!


XWindows
XWindows is the underlying component I was talking about, it sits between the kernel and the GUI, and translates GUI calls to the kernel and vice versa (among other things). A transition recently happened, and there are still a lot of references out there to the older program, so I thought I'd mention the two programs.

XFree86 was the reigning standard for quite a while. Recently, though, they changed their licensing structure (you'll see that most Linux advocates support Open Source by nature). The changed licensing structure caused problems, and a new group was formed (the X.Org Foundation). The X.Org Foundation came out with their own version of XWindows, and kept the old license that XFree86 used. Because of this, most of the distros have drifted towards using X.Org instead of XFree86. It looks as if X.Org is THE version to use.

Anyways, with that said... on with the window managers! Linux is about choice, remember. You have a choice of window managers too!


Window Managers
I'll talk a bit about two of the more popular window managers and provide links to a couple others. The two primary window managers are Gnome and KDE. While they both are easy to use and user-friendly (for the most part), they both handle things their own way. Which you use is a matter of personal opinion.
  • Gnome - Gnome recently released version 2.10 of it's software, fixing a lot of bugs and adding a lot of new features. The old version (by "old" I mean "came out about 6 months ago" is Gnome 2.8)
  • KDE - KDE is probably easier to use than Gnome, and will probably seem fairly familiar to Windows users (in the way it's set up). KDE recently came out with version 3.4 of their software. The older versions were 3.3.
Visit the web pages to see more about the programs, there's too much to mention here (and for the people who know what window managers and session managers are.. they're both, while programs like Enlightenment are only a window manager).

Other window managers include:Most Linux distros come with a large majority of the programs mentioned above (it might skip Eterm or Aterm for example). Most distros also come with Gnome and KDE. Others may be possible, but aren't usually installed by default.

Alright, you think you can handle running Linux and using the alternatives. Where to next? Why, you need to pick a distro, of course!

Linux Distributions
Here I'll list some of the more popular distros and say a bit about them. Before I get to them, I am going to quickly talk about the kernel, that all distros are built off of.

Kernel
As said above, the kernel is the base of the operating system, the foundation. It is what talks to the hardware, among other things. Recently, the 2.6 kernel came out. This has a lot of improvements from the 2.4 kernel, but can still be buggy. (The 2.5 kernel is just a bunch of test versions, not to be used by beginners ) For a first timer, you should probably start out with whatever your distro recommends. I am just mentioning the difference so when I mention it below, you know what I'm talking about.

LiveCD Versions
LiveCDs are great because you can try Linux using one of them without screwing up your system.
  • Knoppix - This version is quite popular for people who a) want to try Linux but don't want to blow away their hard drives/data or b) screwed up their system badly and need a rescue CD. The primary window manager Knoppix uses is KDE, although it supports a couple others.
    Latest Knoppix Release - 5.0.1
    Kernel Version: 2.6.17-rc
    KDE Version: 3.5.2
  • Other distros have LiveCDs, but the distros generally are used for the installed version. I'll discuss them below.
Install Versions
The following versions you actually install on your hard drive. Most come with a graphical installation option, making it a lot easier on you when you install.
  • (Red Hat) Fedora - Fedora is the new name for Redhat Linux, basically (there's some details behind it all, but it's sponsored by Red Hat). Fedora is a fairly user-friendly system that supports Gnome and KDE, although it's Gnome support tends to be better. It has easy graphical installs and is RPM-based, meaning it can install RPM packages you download off the Internet (makes installing software ALOT easier).
    Latest Stable Release - Fedora Core 6
    Kernel Version: 2.6.18
    KDE Version: 3.5.4
    Gnome Version: 2.16.0
  • Mandriva (formally Mandrake) - If I was to order this list in terms of easiness, Mandriva would come first (I didn't do it like that because I wanted to say the next line...). Originally, Mandriva was built on RedHat, just with better KDE support, but it has grown exponentially and really come into it's own. It has an easy-to-use graphical interface from the install to the usage. It is also RPM based (as it was based on RedHat). I recommend this if it is your first install ever.
    Latest Stable Release - Mandriva 2007
    Kernel Version: 2.6.17
    KDE Version: 3.5.4
    Gnome Version: 2.16.0
  • SuSE/OpenSuSE - I've never done the graphical install of SuSE Linux, but reading over others' posts, it sounds like the graphical install is just as easy as that of Mandrake or Linux. SuSE is RPM-based, but has it's own "version" of RPMs, making it stand out a bit differently from the Fedora/Mandrake group (not that that's a real bad thing). OpenSuSE is a version of SuSE without all the proprietary stuff SuSE includes (Flash, Java, etc). Because SuSE/OpenSuSE uses their own version of the RPMs, other RPMs will not work on their system.. so you have to find SuSE versions (and of course, you can manually configure, compile, and install the software. It's a good experience). Novell occasionally has an offer where they'll send you a bunch of SuSE software for free! This includes a recent version of SuSE Linux. For more information, see here. A huge thanks to Fallon for finding it.
    Latest Stable Release - SuSE 10.1
    Kernel Version: 2.6.16.13
    KDE Version: 3.5.1
    Gnome Version: 2.12.0.1
  • Ubuntu - There's been much talk about this distro of late. Based on the popular (but difficult for newbies) Debian distribution, it hides a lot of the hard stuff from you, making it a very new-user-friendly distro. Because it's based on Debian, it uses .deb packages, which are very similar to rpms. It comes with a graphical installation manager (Synaptic) that makes installing new programs fairly painless. The default window manager is Gnome. There is also a Kubuntu distribution, which is Ubuntu with KDE as default. Both also have LiveCDs to test the distro with. If you use Ubunutu (and you should ), check out Automatix and EasyUbuntu. Both programs allow you to install a lot of the extra stuff you'll want (mp3/video codecs, plugins, etc). I suggest this one for your first install!
    Latest Stable Release - Ubuntu 6.10 ("edgy eft")
    Kernel Version: 2.6.17
    KDE Version: 3.5.6
    Gnome Version: 2.16.0
  • Gentoo/Slackware/Debian - You may hear about these distros from others. They are not suggested for your first install. They're all good distros, and each have their own great features to them.. but if you try to tackle one of these on your first try they'll probably swear off Linux forever .
  • LindowsOS/Linspire - DO NOT USE. They don't work for the good of Linux community (as other distros do.. while still making money). They are just in it completely for themselves. Not in the "open source" spirit at all. See the thread here for more info. Also, the thread here asks for opinions on Lindows, none are good
Any other distros, you'll have to google. The following threads/links could be helpful to you:
Google - If you don't know this, you're in trouble
Distrowatch - This keeps track of the (many, many) distros out there and when new versions are getting released.
Which flavor of Linux? - A thread from almost a year ago (they're talking about RedHat 9.. before Fedora!)
linux basics? - A thread about Linux basics (a couple months old).
Thinking about trying out LINUX... - The thread that caused this to be made (well, the straw that broke the camel's back).
mandrake linux 10.0 community - A thread about the latest (test) version of Mandrake
[Linux] RedHat vs. SuSE - A thread about RedHat over SuSE
Linux Newbie - Another "new to linux" thread
Mandrake vs Redhat? Which do you prefer? - It goes into other distros as well

There are more threads on this board that address the "which flavour to use" issue. Just search the Computing forum for "linux" and you get around 12 pages back . I will add more later, when I have time.

Wow.. all that and we haven't even gotten to installing. Let's move on!


Installing
This section will be relatively short, as every distro has it's own individual install process. If you can, I'd recommend you just do an "install everything" option (if your distro's install process has one, it probably does). That way you can play with all the stuff on the system. Otherwise you may miss stuff that could be useful to you and never know it

Most every (good) distro can be downloaded. Check out LinuxISO to download most of the ones mentioned in this post. Use Nero or some other program to read the ISO and burn it to CD(s). Pop in the first CD (which should be bootable) and off you go!

Different distros come with different boot loaders. As said before, Grub and Lilo are the primary ones. Grub has a more graphical interface to it (well, from what I've experienced of the two). It's all a matter of choice .

It is *highly* recommended you make a boot disk when prompted. If your system screws up, it can be a great saviour (although some distros do have a "Rescue Mode" on the bootable CD).

Alright.. it's all installed.. now what?


Playing
Another short section.

Congrats on getting it installed! Any problems, Be sure to Google (or ask here at TFP ).

So now that it's installed.. what should you try, what are some hints? Here's a few from me (other people will probably post more tips in this thread as well):
  • To un-tar a .tar file: tar -xvf <filename.tar>
  • To un-tar a .tgz or .tar.gz file: tar -zxvf <filename.tar.gz> or <filename.tgz>
  • To un-tar a .tar.bz2 file: tar -jxvf <filename.tar.bz2>
  • To install a .rpm file: rpm -Uvh <filename.rpm>
  • To un-install a .rpm file: rpm --erase <programname>
  • If you're in a GUI, and you want to go to a text console: CTRL-ALT-F1 through to CTRL-ALT-F6. CTRL-ALT-F7 will take you back to your graphical environment. (note: this is not for opening a normal terminal window, if you want to do that, just run your window manager's console/terminal program)
  • If Xwindows freezes on you, try CTRL-ALT-BackSpace to kill your X session
  • To change resolutions in Xwindows: CTRL-ALT-(plus key) and CTRL-ALT-(minus-key)

The following thread could also be of interest to you: Top Linux Downloads. It has some good software suggestions in it.

Finally, I'll finish off with Freshmeat. Freshmeat is a site that keeps track of a lot of opensource programs and projects. If you're looking for something, chances are it's listed there Also, IceWalkers is a similar site, with plenty of Linux software available.

New Section (as of June 2005) - User-supplied links!

There are many good suggestions and links in this thread, but I thought I'd grab the links mentioned and make a list here so you don't have to dig through it. They are (in order that I've found them in the thread):
  • samba.org - Samba is a program that allows you to share your files/directories and printers with Windows. It's very customisable and very useful. There is a lot of doco out there on setting it up.
  • kernel.org - What a kernel was is defined above. This site is the "homepage" for the vanilla kernel. It's pretty technical, but a good way to see how the system works.
  • linuxquestions.org - A very newbie-friendly site to help handle questions that come during the installing/running of Linux. From TurbineSlut (below): "They have an extensive Wiki on all sorts of Linux stuff but better yet the forums there are very active and you can find information there on pretty much anything."
  • linuxiso.org - A site that has ISOs for many Linux distros, although it seems to be sort of slow to update.
  • distrowatch.org - distrowatch.org was mentioned above, but it's so useful it needs another mention. It has comparisons, reviews, downloads, and statistics for almost ever distro out there.
  • tldp.org - From skaven: "The Linux Documentation Project. It's always been my first resource when trying to figure out how to do something in linux. The alphabetical HOWTO list is generally the most useful for newbies."
  • zegeniestudios.net/ldc/index.php - Distribution Chooser; it asks you questions and then chooses an appropriate distro for you.
  • livecdlist.com - A list of LiveCDs you can use to give Linux a try.
  • linux-laptop.net - Linux on Laptops; find out how that laptop you're eyeing handles Linux before you buy it.
  • sane-project.org - The Sane Project; get your scanner working with Linux!



So that's it. Good luck, enjoy, etc.



This post is definitely open to suggestions/improvements/criticisms. Let me know if you think something should be changed/added/deleted. Thanks

Last edited by Latch; 10-28-2006 at 10:36 AM..
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Old 04-14-2004, 06:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
paranoid
 
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Location: The Netherlands
That's a very extensive post you have there, and it provides on the mark info on a lot of stuff!
This is definately worthy of a sticky!

My personal notes:
If you want a windows replacement, use:
  • Mandrake (preferred)
  • SuSe (not free, as in: it costs money) (my current desktop machine)
  • Fedora
If you want to "learn" linux, you could (in addition to Mandrake, etc) start with:
  • Gentoo (my personal favorite, I got 2 servers running this)
  • Slackware
(side note: these last two are also better for resource-poor systems that will serve as file-sharing, media-playing, firewalling or web-serving fire-and-forget machines.)

The first list will neatly set you up with a working desktop environment and a pre-selection of packages that you'll most likely use. Not asking too many questions, and giving decent advice at choke points. On the other hand they do not challenge you to look for better alternatives, try stuff out and generally 'learn' linux. If you want to learn linux, you'll actively need to break the polish of those systems.

The second list will ask more of you in terms of technical questions/descisions but in the process it will teach you a lot about how linux and you computer works.
The second list will also force you to decide for yourself which programs you want, which is good (as you can have it exactly how you want it) , but also bad (as you will need to know what you want ).


Note: while I say that Gentoo and Slackware are better for resource-lean machines, the other distro's are very capable of handling the same tasks. They are however not directed towards those use(r)s, while Gentoo and Slackware are.

Edited for formatting
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Last edited by Silvy; 04-14-2004 at 06:22 AM..
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Old 04-14-2004, 06:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
Crazy
 
Man...that comes at just the right time (my new hard drive for installing Linux for the first time onto arrived at my door almost exactly the same time I opened this thread)

That must have taken some work and is very impressive. Thanks, it should be a lot of help.
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Old 04-14-2004, 06:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: Chapel Hill, NC
Nice. Very, very nice. We've been needing a post like this for a while.

Mods? Sticky?
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Old 04-14-2004, 06:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
Psycho
 
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Location: ask your mom
finally....

thanks for the comprehensive post! i won't be such a n00b when i finish reading all the stuff you posted, latch.

now if only someone could tell me how to network my linux box with my windows machines?.....
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Last edited by soopafreek; 04-14-2004 at 06:42 AM..
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Old 04-14-2004, 07:11 AM   #6 (permalink)
Psycho
 
Great post! Lots of great information there.

Quote:
how to network my linux box with my windows machines?.....
S'all about Samba
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Old 04-14-2004, 07:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
paranoid
 
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Location: The Netherlands
Quote:
Originally posted by soopafreek
now if only someone could tell me how to network my linux box with my windows machines?.....
Quote:
Originally posted by Mephex
Great post! Lots of great information there.
S'all about Samba
He's right:
Samba is the linux package that'll allow you to share files and printers over the network.

However, if you're looking for firewall capabilities you should look at IPtables.
For internet connection sharing it'll depend on which computer the actual connection is being shared. If on windows: ICS = Internet Connection Sharing, if on linux: See IPtables for NAT (Network Address Translation).
On the latter, I could post a sample config that works for me, but do a search first, then start a new thread, if you're having problems

GENERAL TIP: start a new thread discussing specific problems you encounter. This thread is (I assume?) for general advice with regards to the points listed in the original post.
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Old 04-14-2004, 07:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I have never been so happy about breaking the camel's back. Thank you for that informative and thorough post. I really do hope a mod stickys this as I will want to come back to it (and the sub-threads) again and again in the coming weeks.
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Old 04-14-2004, 08:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I might have just missed it somewhere in your post, but if you did miss it, Kernel.org is a valuable resource for anyone who wants to use Linux and really customize it.
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Old 04-14-2004, 01:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
Tilted
 
Location: Birmingham, England
that's an excellent post. Thanks a lot for the info and all the sub-threads as well.
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Old 04-14-2004, 02:11 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Excellent thread - and now it's stickified

A couple quick additions:

Under software equivalents, <a href="http://gaim.sf.net">Gaim</a> is listed as a AIM/MSN/YIM/ICQ/Trillian replacement. I'd like to also add <a href="http://kopete.kde.org">Kopete</a> to that. It, like Gaim, is included with many distros.

As an Outlook replacement, <a href="http://www.ximian.com/products/evolution/">Evolution</a> is listed. There is also a PIM program recently released for the first time by KDE called <a href="http://kontact.kde.org/">Kontact</a>. I have heard good things about it, and it is basically just a PIM implementation of already existing and good KDE programs such as <a href="http://kmail.kde.org/">KMail<a>, which is a good stand-alone E-Mail client under KDE for example.

Lastly, while Freshmeat is a great open-source software site, <a href="http://www.icewalkers.com/">IceWalkers</a> is also very good.

EDIT: Info's added above - thanks for the permission Latch
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Last edited by SecretMethod70; 09-29-2004 at 09:58 AM..
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Old 04-15-2004, 04:08 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Location: City of Lights
Wouldn't you know it? Not 12 hours after I post this, out comes Mandrake's annoucement about Mandrake 10's full release. I've updated my post to reflect the new release

Thanks for the feedback guys!
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Old 04-15-2004, 08:36 AM   #13 (permalink)
Crazy
 
Just a quick question: Any good Linux programs for ripping DVD images to HD?
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Old 04-16-2004, 05:36 AM   #14 (permalink)
In Your Dreams
 
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Location: City of Lights
There's two program that I've seen. MEncoder (part of MPlayer) and Dvd::rip
Both sites have helpful HOWTO's (or the equivalent). Otherwise, you can Google and find your answer.
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Old 04-17-2004, 05:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Here's another Linux question. I'm not a newbie to Linux, but I'm close enough (taking a Linux class that uses RH9 right now). Anyway, I'm looking to use an old computer as a mail, ftp, and web server. What distro would you guys recommend?
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Old 04-17-2004, 11:54 PM   #16 (permalink)
In Your Dreams
 
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Any of the above distros wouldn't hurt...

...but if you feel like a challenge, Debian or a late-stage (2 or 3) Gentoo would probably do you.

I have no reasoning to back up that they're "better" as a mail,ftp,web server (and I doubt they are better than any other distro.. it's all the same if you know to stop programs that distros may run by default)... there's just a little bit more involved in installing/running them, as it isn't all GUI-based.
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Old 05-02-2004, 05:24 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Location: ask your mom
maybe i don't know what to look for in the voluminous resources listed...

but i've got knoppix 3.3 on one machine and fedora core 1 on another.

since linux allows complete customization, where do i find information about upgrading the kernel to the 2.6, or general package (?) installations?

i figure its got something to do with compiling source code or something....

help a newbie out?
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Old 05-03-2004, 04:29 AM   #18 (permalink)
In Your Dreams
 
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Location: City of Lights
Depends on what you use.. I suggest trying to do the 2.6 upgrade via Fedora Core's up2date service (it's in the menu there somewhere). It's the quickest (and most painless) way to upgrade.

http://www.redhat.com/support/resour...ernel-upgrade/

There's a quick how-to site for you. I haven't looked at it much, so not sure if it's exactly what you need. If it isn't, google

For FC1, general packages (in rpm format) can be found at www.freshrpms.net. Otherwise, check out Freshmeat or Icewalkers, find some cool-looking pacakges, download the source, uncompress/configure/make/make install it (the site will usually have some cool "Quick install" instructions)

Need more info? just let me know.
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Old 05-03-2004, 06:44 AM   #19 (permalink)
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i've tried updating in FC1 (5 times), but i've gotten no result.

it'll start downloading updates and patches (slowly), and then all of a sudden i get a message stating something about wrong GPG keys (?), and asks if i want to download anyway. when i click OK to download, it crashes. and then i have to start all over....

i guess i'll have to play with it more. :-/
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Old 05-04-2004, 02:56 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Hmm, you do need to get a new version of up2date, can't remember if that requirement was with RH9 or FC1 though. You could try to google for the error message you receive. Always a good way to find answers

BTW, I updated the new page w/ specs on Fedora Core 2 Test 2 and Knoppix 3.4...
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Old 05-04-2004, 03:08 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Hmm, you do need to get a new version of up2date, can't remember if that requirement was with RH9 or FC1 though. You could try to google for the error message you receive. Always a good way to find answers

BTW, I updated the orig post w/ specs on Fedora Core 2 Test 3 and Knoppix 3.4...
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Old 05-04-2004, 07:21 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by soopafreek
i've tried updating in FC1 (5 times), but i've gotten no result.

it'll start downloading updates and patches (slowly), and then all of a sudden i get a message stating something about wrong GPG keys (?), and asks if i want to download anyway. when i click OK to download, it crashes. and then i have to start all over....

i guess i'll have to play with it more. :-/
I was having the exact same problem when I installed Fedora. I never did end up fixing it, but I never seem to have any problems if I use yum rather than up2date. Honestly, I haven't got a clue why, but you might want to try it too.
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Old 05-04-2004, 07:52 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Can I ask you Linux gurus a question? A question that's been bugging me for a long time...

I saw the source for the kernel once, and I noticed that it looked a lot like C (I know a bit of C myself). What I'm wondering is... hmm... how to put this gingerly... what OS is Linux compiled under? Can you just open up the source in Visual Studio.NET and compile away? How about Borland or even Bloodshed? What OS do people usually compile Linux in? Linux? Or is there some compiler that is also its own mini-operating system that people compile Linux with?

I'd like to go back to my old programming ways. The problem with my programming experience is that most of my programming was done in Visual Basic and ASP. Because of this, my knowledge on some stuff is pretty limited.

Anyways, thanks
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Last edited by Stiltzkin; 05-04-2004 at 07:58 PM..
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Old 05-11-2004, 08:57 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Stiltzkin
Can I ask you Linux gurus a question? A question that's been bugging me for a long time...

I saw the source for the kernel once, and I noticed that it looked a lot like C (I know a bit of C myself). What I'm wondering is... hmm... how to put this gingerly... what OS is Linux compiled under? Can you just open up the source in Visual Studio.NET and compile away? How about Borland or even Bloodshed? What OS do people usually compile Linux in? Linux? Or is there some compiler that is also its own mini-operating system that people compile Linux with?

I'd like to go back to my old programming ways. The problem with my programming experience is that most of my programming was done in Visual Basic and ASP. Because of this, my knowledge on some stuff is pretty limited.

Anyways, thanks
Linux is programmed in C. It's compiled with GCC: The GNU Compiler Collection, an open-source C, C++, ASM, Java etc. compiler.
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Old 05-13-2004, 12:57 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I went to see Bill Gates speak and at least three groups of anti-MS folks were outside handing out Linux discs. Each had a FAQ attached and each FAQ talked about how it's not easy to get it installed (lack of drivers, etc.).

Windows ain't perfect, but if I have a crash I can have my HD formated and the software back up and running in about 90 mins. Toss in another hour for installing my favorite programs and I'm off to lunch with pals.

I'm VERY curious about Linux, but don't have the time. Someday.
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Old 05-14-2004, 04:45 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by pook
I went to see Bill Gates speak and at least three groups of anti-MS folks were outside handing out Linux discs. Each had a FAQ attached and each FAQ talked about how it's not easy to get it installed (lack of drivers, etc.).

Windows ain't perfect, but if I have a crash I can have my HD formated and the software back up and running in about 90 mins. Toss in another hour for installing my favorite programs and I'm off to lunch with pals.

I'm VERY curious about Linux, but don't have the time. Someday.
I typically try to steer clear of "zealot-like" statements, but with Mandrake Linux, you could have your HD formatted, the OS *AND* most of your favorite programs (the Linux equivalents at least) up in about 30-45 minutes TOTAL.

Either way, let's try to keep this thread for general lLinux questions pertaining to trying it out and such not, "Linux is cool, but with Windows..." and "I'd like to try it but not now because..." These are just fluff comments really and don't do much more than force people who are seriously thinking about trying Linux and who have questions into having to read more in this thread than they have to.

Thanks!
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Old 05-17-2004, 02:44 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SecretMethod70
Either way, let's try to keep this thread for general lLinux questions pertaining to trying it out and such not, "Linux is cool, but with Windows..." and "I'd like to try it but not now because..." These are just fluff comments really and don't do much more than force people who are seriously thinking about trying Linux and who have questions into having to read more in this thread than they have to.
Thanks for that. Good idea.

Also, I updated the post to reflect the new versions of Fedora Code (v2) and Suse Linux (v9.1).
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Old 05-26-2004, 03:54 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Just saw this on SUSE's website and thought I'd make a note that SUSE has a live evaluation cd available for download here
I'm not able to download it and try it myself, but it might be worth a look. They still don't have ISO images to install to your hard drive that I'm aware of though, unfortunately.
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Old 06-17-2004, 08:26 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I just want to suggest that anyone considering using Linux locate their local Linux User Group (LUG). These groups exist in most areas, typically they have a mailing list where you can ask for help, and some form of social gathering/events. Often you can bring your computer along to meetings and someone will help you install and configure Linux on your system (however, you should check before you show up with your computer). It is very useful to have these contacts, especially if you dont have any friends who are experienced Linux users to help you with whatever problems may arise.
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Old 06-17-2004, 09:40 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ace_of_Lobster
I just want to suggest that anyone considering using Linux locate their local Linux User Group (LUG). These groups exist in most areas, typically they have a mailing list where you can ask for help, and some form of social gathering/events. Often you can bring your computer along to meetings and someone will help you install and configure Linux on your system (however, you should check before you show up with your computer). It is very useful to have these contacts, especially if you dont have any friends who are experienced Linux users to help you with whatever problems may arise.
Absolutely. I'm a member of my school's LUG and not only have I gotten Linux help but I've made many friends.
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Old 06-25-2004, 04:16 PM   #31 (permalink)
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wow thanks.. ive installed linux many times.. just to let it sit there because i cant install any dependencies for any other applications. the only thing i could do w/ my linux box is browse the web or chat on aim
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Old 07-06-2004, 11:43 PM   #32 (permalink)
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There are programs out there to help you with those dependecies. apt-rpm and synaptic are a very good combo for Redhat/Fedora systems.

Updates: Added Fallon's link for the free SuSE software.
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Old 07-08-2004, 08:50 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Well written and extremely thorough. This sort of "all inclusive" starter guide is needed for so many other pieces of technology.

Great work!
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Old 07-15-2004, 02:38 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Thanks

update: added info on Fedora Core 3 test 1 (see Slashdot | Fedora Core 3 Test 1 Released for more info)
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Old 08-02-2004, 05:59 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Any other distros, you'll have to google. The following threads/links could be helpful to you:
Google - If you don't know this, you're in trouble
Distrowatch - This keeps track of the (many, many) distros out there and when new versions are getting released.
Which flavor of Linux? - A thread from almost a year ago (they're talking about RedHat 9.. before Fedora!)
linux basics? - A thread about Linux basics (a couple months old).
Thinking about trying out LINUX... - The thread that caused this to be made (well, the straw that broke the camel's back).
mandrake linux 10.0 community - A thread about the latest (test) version of Mandrake
[Linux] RedHat vs. SuSE - A thread about RedHat over SuSE
Linux Newbie - Another "new to linux" thread
Mandrake vs Redhat? Which do you prefer? - It goes into other distros as well
There's another very very useful resource: http://www.linuxquestions.org. They have an extensive Wiki on all sorts of Linux stuff but better yet the forums there are very active and you can find information there on pretty much anything.

Quote:
Originally posted by Latch
There's two program that I've seen. MEncoder (part of MPlayer) and Dvd::rip
Both sites have helpful HOWTO's (or the equivalent). Otherwise, you can Google and find your answer.
If you want to make a DVD iso (or CD iso for that matter), you can use dd. It is included with every distro and most other unixes. You specify your CDROM/DVD device as input file and the name of the iso you want to have as the output file. It'll make a straight bit for bit copy of the CD/DVD, an iso, in effect.
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Old 08-07-2004, 06:05 AM   #36 (permalink)
follower of the child's crusade?
 
Well, I have installed Linux (Mandrake 9.2) on an old PC.

The install was easy enough, but I cannot connect to the net from it (it wont run the disc that came with my net connection) but hopefully I can figure it out or find an answer.

It all looks pretty good anyway, so hopefully I will pick up enough to get by with it. How hard can it be?
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Old 08-07-2004, 04:56 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Strange Famous
Well, I have installed Linux (Mandrake 9.2) on an old PC.

The install was easy enough, but I cannot connect to the net from it (it wont run the disc that came with my net connection) but hopefully I can figure it out or find an answer.

It all looks pretty good anyway, so hopefully I will pick up enough to get by with it. How hard can it be?
Not sure what the disc is that came with your net connection, but it's likely a Windows or Mac-only script that sets up your Dial Up Networking (or DSL or Cable or whatever). You can set up Dial-Up, DSL, and Cable on Linux, but it takes a bit more know-how of process than running the CD hehe. You'll need to know the username/password/number you connect to (if dialup)/etc. Google around... there are HOWTOs out there.
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Old 08-08-2004, 03:52 AM   #38 (permalink)
follower of the child's crusade?
 
Yeah, the disc has an .exe file and Mandrake says it cant run that.

The only other problem is I am finding it hard to get software off the Linux disk, because the Linux disk is a DVD, but it keeps telling me to insert it in my CDROM drive, which cant read it, and it wont look at the DVD drive. But I think maybe I can switch the drives wound or something so then it would look at the right one.
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Old 08-08-2004, 05:27 AM   #39 (permalink)
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The CD-ROM/DVD-ROM thing is odd. Must be a Mandrake thing.

There is a newer version of Mandrake out (10.. and 10.1beta was released yesterday). You could give that a try.. it'll have better/new features, more bugfixes (probably like your CD-ROM/DVD-ROM problem), etc.
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Old 08-09-2004, 08:15 PM   #40 (permalink)
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mentioned earlier

I believe it was squelch that commented on mandrake (preferred) and SuSE not being free. For windows users, that would like to "try out" linux without modifying their harddrive, do a search on google for "knoppix". Knoppix is a Debian Linux based distro with many customizable features. If you are a user that is wanting to install linux and dualboot your machine, I would recommend Fedora, SuSE, or Mandrake....all which mostly hold your hand through everything you do. They are still quite powerful. More experienced users like to use Debian or Gentoo linux. These last two distros are not recommended for beginners because of the way the installer looks (all text) and they both require the user to have knowledge of many of the packages being installed onto the system.

All of the above mentioned distros have free versions, while also having pay version because of the features they entail. You will find links to the most popular distributions at www.linuxiso.org. You may also want to check out www.distrowatch.com for reviews, comparisons, and downloads of the MANY distros of linux.
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