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Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. They hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.
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Okay, I'll start with I'm sorry for asking the biggest noob question ever but here it goes. What distribution should I use between Arch Linux, Gentoo, or Fedora. I have almost zero Linux knowledge. Right now I've gotten Arch installed and running in a virtual machine with KDE and love it but will be putting then one I chose on my laptop in the end. From what I understand Arch is bleeding edge and gets updates quickly, Fedora is a testing ground for Red Hat (not sure if I like that) and I don't know much of anything about Gentoo. I don't mind if the system breaks or its hard to use, the whole reason I'm doing this is because I want to learn how to use Linux ever sense I ran Ubuntu my first time years ago. So any help is appreciated, and thanks in advance.
Arch is a fine choice for a motivated/techie Linux beginner with a strong desire to learn. I say this because of the excellent documentation; I sometimes even use the Arch wiki as a reference when using non-Arch distros!
And I would not even recommend Fedora UNLESS
You DO want to learn the insides of a operating system .
like a mechanic working on an engine in a car
IF you DO want to get your " hands a bit dirty" and dig into an operating system
fedora would be good choice then .
Fedora IS a very VERY fast passed FAST development OS
and as such YOU the user will NEED to hack programs , from time to time,( even ones that are only 6 mo to a year old) to work on the VERY VERY NEW os that fedora is
One thing that Fedora has going for it is that it DOSE have A LOT of documentation
-- i do mean A LOT of it --
so there is a bunch of information
If you want to learn , master what you got installed , then for fun install slackware and start hacking on that , the trouble with most distros for learning is that they all come with lots of wizards that handle configuring things for you. You won't learn much using them , Most of us old farts who got into computing with Linux started out when the distro came on sets of 5 inch floppies and once you successfully got it running on your hardware you were rewarded with a console prompt. You then started adding services for your server or applications for your desktop , getting your sound card to work was fun as was getting x windows to start , every thing now is handled with wizards , to make Linux more windows like. my advice is to explore what you got running , learn where things are located , what processes occur at boot time , how to control that , how to read system logs and what they are telling you. learn what "ps aux " does and what "top" shows you and start reading every script in your /etc directory.
If you've got Arch installed, and kde running on it, then you're not as big a noob as you probably think. You will have already learnt about some things that others who've used other 'noob' friendly distros' for a year will not have even know. If you like bleeding edge software and constant updates, then Arch is one of or arguably the best choice.
I couldn't agree more with snowpine. The Arch wiki is one of the best out there, and i too have used it for other linux distros. It's ten times better than Debians; i hate trying to find anything in Debians, but Arches it topnotch.