To start with the basics, Mandrake is designed to use "rpm"
to install packages. (programs)
A good place to get them is "PLF"
Go to packages, then choose a mirror (planetmirror is good),
then go to Mandrake, then 10.0 or 10.1 (whichever is relevant),
Grab a package that you want, download it, open a terminal, cd to the
directory where you downloaded the package (if you downloaded to
your home directory you will be there already),
Enter your root password
then install the package with:
rpm -ivh whateverpackage.rpm
exit to your normal user and type the name of the package.
(if the package is soandso-0.1.3, the name is just soandso)
If this works for you, then you can start using the Mandrake Package Manager.
Somewhere you will have a directory called RPMS.
It may be /usr/src/RPM/RPMS but I'm not exactly sure.
Find it though. Inside this directory will be subdirectories called:
i386, i486, i586, i686, noarch, and so on.
Open the Mandrake package Manager and choose the option to "set sources".
you should be able to set all of your Mandrake discs as sources and then,
under "local" I believe, you can set the directories:
/usr/src/RPM/RPMS/i386, i486, i586 and so on.
Now whenever you download an rpm, if it's an i586 you can put it in
Now whenever you go to install rpm's with the Mandy Package Manager,
it will list those rpm's.
Whew! that's enough for now.
I'm going on memory anyways as I haven't run Mandrake since 9.0