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I just installed phpmyadmin, via my package manager. How do I start a program in Linux, also how do I see if php and mysql is running? Sorry if these are dumb questions. Is there a good place to learn these things?
I'm not familiar with phpmyadmin. There may be a README file in /usr/share/doc/phpmyadmin-<version>/ or /usr/share/doc/packages/phpmyadmin/. Often you just need to point your browser to a certain port on localhost. However, there may be something to do first, such as editing a line in a /etc/xinet.d/phpmyadmin. There probably is a more comprehensive manual installed as well.
For mysql, you can configure the mysqld service to start on certain runlevels. You can also use the "service" command to start and stop the service manually. On SuSE linux, there will be an rc script to manually start/stop/restart services.
"sudo /usr/sbin/rcmysql start". On other distro's you could probably use "sudo service mysql start".
The mysql package also installed a comprehensive manual. Be sure to read the section on post installation security. You need to perform the steps which add a root password. The phpmyadmin documentation probably has a similar procedure, being designed to allow admin access to mysql over the web, you probably have a bit of work to do before you can use the program safely.
Probably the easiest way for you to proceed is to locate the script that starts Apache. Mepis may have a graphical control panel that you use to start/stop services. If it does and you know where it is, use it to start Apache (which also might be known simply as httpd).
If Mepis doesn't have this or if you don't know, then the way to do it is to open a shell window and su to root.
Then issue this command:
If apache is installed, this will give you a lot of results, but you are looking for results located someplace in the /etc directory. You may find it in /etc/init or in /etc/init.d or in /etc/rc.d/init.d, or perhaps someplace else depending on how Mepis does it.
When you find the script, change to the directory it is in using the cd command. Then execute the command
and see what happens. If your apache is correctly configured it will start. If you have PHP properly installed, you then will be able to start phpmyadmin from a web browser.