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Old 07-10-2005, 03:10 AM   #1
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
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Die hard windows user, needs help with debian


I have taken the plunge and loaded debian on one of my PC's.

I am at the command prompt and don't have any clue how to proceed:

1. Should I load a GUI or just work from the command prompt. I have heard that sticking with the command prompt is the best way to master Linux?

2. How do I get a browser running. I installed mozilla but I don't know how to make it run? not even sure how to install it!

3. How can I get e-mail on this linux machine?

4. Is there a recommended freeware anti-virus for linux, how do I download it and install it and run it!

These are my baseline questions, Once i have mastered this, i'll come back with some more... It's fine if you answer them one at a time?

Funny thing about linux is all tutorials I read state that in order to install something such as Netscape I must go to the web site, download the software, then unzip it, etc.......but I don't know how to visit a website or download something without the browser that i'm trying to download??

Kind Regards
Brandon

(You can mail me on IHateSpam@Firersa.com if you wish)
 
Old 07-10-2005, 03:16 AM   #2
akudewan
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Registered: Apr 2004
Location: India
Distribution: Ubuntu
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Debian is not a distro I'd recommend for a die hard windows user who's new to linux, instead you might wanna try other debian based distros like ubuntu.

I've never used debian, but I think you'll have to apt-get many things including the X server. You know whats apt-get, right?

The command line is a good way to learn, but a newbie would be totally lost.

The best thing to do would be to buy a book, or follow a step-by-step guide on the internet.
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:06 AM   #3
btmiller
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Registered: May 2004
Location: In the DC 'burbs
Distribution: Arch, Scientific Linux, Debian, Ubuntu
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FYI, if you have X Windows (the GUI) and a window manager such as KDE or Fluxbox installed, you should be able to get into the GUI by typing "startx" (no quotes). If not, use apt-get to install them. You can find out more about apt-get by reading the man page (type "man apt-get" at a command prompt). Man pages are very useful when learning new commands.
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:11 AM   #4
aysiu
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Registered: May 2005
Distribution: Ubuntu with IceWM
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Re: Die hard windows user, needs help with debian

Quote:
Originally posted by firersa
I am at the command prompt and don't have any clue how to proceed:

1. Should I load a GUI or just work from the command prompt. I have heard that sticking with the command prompt is the best way to master Linux?
Take a look at your first statement and your first question. Yes, sticking to the command line is probably the best way to master Linux, the same way that cutting off your legs is a great way to build your upper-body strength. If you have no clue how to proceed, maybe you shouldn't start with the command-line right away.

Quote:
2. How do I get a browser running. I installed mozilla but I don't know how to make it run? not even sure how to install it!

3. How can I get e-mail on this linux machine?
These two follow-up questions confirm that Debian is not a good first distro for you.

Quote:
4. Is there a recommended freeware anti-virus for linux, how do I download it and install it and run it!
You don't need antivirus for Linux.

Quote:
Funny thing about linux is all tutorials I read state that in order to install something such as Netscape I must go to the web site, download the software, then unzip it, etc.......but I don't know how to visit a website or download something without the browser that i'm trying to download??
All the more reason not to start with Debian. Debian, Slackware, Gentoo, and Linux from Scratch all want you to build Linux from the ground up. If you do so, you'll learn Linux completely... but the hard way. These distributions take nothing for granted.

I'd start with either Mepis or Ubuntu. These are both Debian-based, but they're far more user-friendly and configure most things for you (both also come with the Firefox browser preinstalled). Mepis is very point-and-click. Ubuntu is more command-line oriented (for setup and configuration), but it has better documentation.

By the way, downloading, unzipping (or un-tarring, in this case), and installing is only for things you can't find in what are called repositories. Most Linux distros now use repositories to install applications. These are web servers that have applications on them. Through Synaptic Package Manager (or YaST or Yum) you refresh your list of available apps from these repositories. Then, you search for the packages you want, select them for installation, and just wait for them to be installed. Easy as that. And we're talking tens of thousands of packages here!

Last edited by aysiu; 07-10-2005 at 04:12 AM.
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:33 AM   #5
craigevil
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Registered: Apr 2005
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"Debian GNU/Linux Installation Guide"
http://www.debian.org/releases/stable/i386/
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:38 AM   #6
akudewan
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Linux is a very powerful OS. Remember, with great power comes great responsibility.

No one wants to bash you or flame you or anything...Everyone is welcome here. Open source is great! Dont bite off more than you can chew though
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:49 AM   #7
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 11

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many tahnks

Thanks for the responses.

Debian is the only distro I have, downloading another one seems like a major task, in addition our South African ISP (monopoly) caps us to a 3Gb limit per month.

I like the idea of a GUI though if that is the way that linux is moving. Will mainstream linux applications be GUI based like windows?

On the other hand , I like the idea of learning the OS completely. I have all my systems set up on a windows home LAN and the Linux machine is basically a spare -(Although I have major plans for it)

I have found a step by step guide and am following it now! First thing I decided was to reinstall the system, to do as right as I can with my limited know how!

Seems somewhat similar to DOS, which is where I learnt my PC skills, back in the days when DOS was the mainstream OS......

I appreciate your comments and i'll check in now and again as i go along?

Regards
Brandon
 
Old 07-10-2005, 04:57 AM   #8
aysiu
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Sounds perfect. You're a brave man. I tried Debian once. Once.
Isn't there an installation option that's like "desktop" that just installs a bunch of stuff for you? You have to install other things to get it fully functional, but it should be GUI right away. Are you using Debian Sarge? Which version of Debian are you using?
 
Old 07-10-2005, 05:07 AM   #9
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 11

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Debian Install

I think it's woody version.

When I put the CD in the drive it kinda runs automatically and asks a lot of info with an almost graphical user interface. thats easy up to where it's finished. I have to learn to use the interpreter and install packages and run them.

So far you have helped me to see:

1. Debian is not easiest distro.
2. Don't need antivirus


I'm getting there

Regards
Brandon
 
Old 07-10-2005, 05:21 AM   #10
harken
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See this post-installation guide written by a LQ member: http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...hreadid=224547 Also check Debian's documentation section: http://www.debian.org/doc/
The answers you got so far express quite fair opinions, still, don't get scared by them. I also use Debian and it was my first distribution, never used another before. While I can't say I master it, I can make my way through after only 6 months of using it so I wouldn't say it's damn difficult. You'll find plenty of documentation on the net and lots of Debian enthusiats which can guide you at the LQ Debian forum: http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...hp?forumid=26. All you need is a bit of patience.
Good luck!
 
Old 07-10-2005, 05:31 AM   #11
phil.d.g
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From what you said it sounds like you have more than on computer, put one of them running windows next to your debian box and then you can start working with, learning and configuring denian whilst reading the documentation from the website on your other computer. I found that was the best way when I first started out. If your wanting to learn learn linux then stick with it, however if you just want to use your computer and looking for a replacement for windows that can be got running as quick as possible then try something like SUSE, Ubuntu or Fedora Core
 
Old 07-10-2005, 05:36 AM   #12
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 11

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windows and linux side by side

Yes,

I've got the two PC's side by side and doing exactly that.

Thanks for the post installation guide, i'll definitely get to that as soon as I've got the installation done well.

You guys are great....

Brandon
 
Old 07-10-2005, 03:02 PM   #13
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 11

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Progressing

Well.

I reinstalled just the basics.

I couldn't get xwindows system to work - "no screen error found", I don't want to bother about that right now!

I installed the apache server and accessed the PC from my windows machine and found the Debian placeholder page....now for me that's exciting.
 
Old 07-10-2005, 03:36 PM   #14
@ngelot
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Registered: Oct 2004
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I'm running a DebianLinux on my old laptop with no GUI - I did it the hard way - but I did it!

Now my laptop is a web/mail/ftp-server on my LAN - it works very well!

I don't need a GUI on my server!

It's all about what your going to use it for...

Debian is (I think) the only Linux-distro where you can install the base-system, and get JUST the base -system.

You've already apache running (you'll find the html-pages in /var/www - put your new index.html here)

Try this too:
FTP-server (upload/download/view files on your Linuxbox from windows):
# apt-get install wu-ftp
SSH - so that you can access your linux-box from windows with putty:
# apt-get install ssh
A text-based web-browser:
apt-get install lynx
 
Old 07-10-2005, 03:40 PM   #15
firersa
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Durban South Africa
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 11

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Using the server

Thanks, I've cut and past your comment into the file i'm creating and will definitely use this info.

I have just edited the sources.list file with vi editor and updated the installed packages, beginning to make a little sense.


Regards
Brandon
 
  


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