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29-08-2004, 05:44 PM
FAQ #80 How to... in Linux

Originally written by Graham L with contributions from others


Unlike another OS, Linux is well documented. The documents which come on the distribution disks will get you through most things. For most things you want to do there is a HOWTO file. For just about any major package there is a web site run by the developers. E.g. www.gimp.org, www.apt.org, www.linmodems.org ...

The LDP (Linux Documentation Project) is based at www.ibiblio.org ... but there are local mirrors. Try the Dunedin LUG (http://dunedin.lug.net.nz/docs/ldp/). Among the Guides, The Linux Cookbook, The Linux User's Guide, Installation and Getting Started, Securing and Optimising Linux Red Hat Edition ... are all worth reading.

There's a couple of online magazines mirrored at the Dunedin LUG, too.

Public Libraries have books!!!. All the Linux ones I have seen have been good ... Any book published by O'Reilly is good. Some are excellent.

Good Documents:[/b[

The onepage Linux manual (http://homepage.powerup.com.au/~squadron/linuxmanual.pdf) is a list of where config files are, how to do things.

Red Hat help for applications (http://www.redhat.com/apps/support/apps/resources/) looks good ... (includes setting up Samba).

Samba Linux Network Guide (http://camelot.sssup.it/pibizza/index.html) (The alpha release, but well recommended ...)

Lots of Linux Links (http://www.fsu.edu/~cpse/linux/) which will keep you reading for a while. A good site.

Tricks/problems with PPP: try an faq</font>/faqlist.html]FAQ list (http://www.winlinux.net/2001/%3Cfont%20style='background-color:#ffff00'>Good Links

• Eric Richard's Linux Pages (http://homepages.paradise.net.nz/erichard/linux.html) Note: included as a placeholder - page not found, need to check

• Some good links to Linux drivers on the Conexant web site. Got a hsf pci modem going with Mandrake 9 real easy!! http://www.mbsi.ca/cnxtlindrv/ from rmcb

• The Simply Linux Book:- http://jetblackz.cjb.net/ One of the best HowTos I've come across for those new to Linux. from mark.p

• Jen C's nVidia Drivers for Linux HowTo (http://pressf1.pcworld.co.nz/thread.jsp?forum=1&thread=42891#231073). Note that where teleinit is, should just be init.

Tips and Tricks

Another tip:
the most useful things I have found are the man command and the --help switch....
To find out about xxx try
"man xxx" in a terminal,
"xxx --help" again in a terminal.

Graham L:-
and of course ... "apropos whatever" . This searches a database for any "help" type file containing the word(s) . Remember that if you don't get an answer, there isn't one ... *nix is economical with typing, and it isn't classed as an error to find nothing.

A useful command when something hasn't appeared to work is "tail -20 /var/log/messages".

Chris Wilson:-
Most linux distributions will install in a familiar point and click the icon format.

Don't be scared off by the text commands, they can be typed in by first clicking on the shell icon seen at the bottom of the desktop, this will open a wee box, not unlike DOS, where the commands can be typed.

This will seem obvious to those experienced with Linux, but had me confused for a wee while at first. Also some things will only work if logged in as user "root", which is the ultimate unrestricted pass to the system. As "root" you have no restrictions, and therefore you can do more damage than any other user!

Vi... I can get into it and edit it, but how do I quit?

Graham L:-
vi ... or elvis ... or vim ... Not the nicest editor in the world. Still it's simpler than Emacs (or TECO).

To get out of vi, Esc, Esc, then ":qq" if you don't want to save the work file, or ":wq" to write and exit.

pico and joe are much nicer. I like joe because it's like the WordStar based editor in the Borland Turbo Pascal IDE. The internal editor in mc is a good simple one too. Everyone should use mc.

Original FAQ available here (http://pressf1.pcworld.co.nz/thread.jsp?forum=1&thread=25672&message=90545&q=faq+%2380#90545).

29-08-2004, 05:47 PM

Ooops, hit the wrong button! :8} :8} :8}

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