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I was editing my last message when you replied, so you may want to re-read it. ( Or I need to learn to type faster ).
A program you install from RPM will most likely be fund under either /usr/bin or /usr/local/bin.
An exception might be a suite of programs like open-office or the KDE window manager which may go under /opt in their own directories. With Open Office, there may be a folder located under /opt, but links created in /usr/bin. For KDE, there will be a /opt/kde entry added to your PATH variable.
Make sure that both /usr/bin and /usr/local/bin are in your PATH variable. A program installed yourself from a tarball configure/make/make install method will probably get installed in /usr/local/bin. The /usr/local contents will be preserved when upgrading your distribution.
The /bin directory is used for basic system files like the core-utils and file-utils programs.
To find the gaim program in particular you could expand the find command to search everything, 'find / -iname "gaim"'
But that would be a waste of time in my opinion. If the gaim program doesn't get installed under /usr, I wouldn't trust it. So 'find /usr -iname "gaim"' should work if it was installed.
You can also try 'which gaim' if it is located in one of your PATH directories and is executable.
After updating the locate database with the root command 'updatedb', you can use the locate command to find it with 'locate gaim'.
Also, you could look at the contents of the RPM file using the Midnight Commander program 'mc'.
The directory structure of the RPM package file will reflect the locations that the file gets installed under. You can also read the the SPEC and/or installation script to find out what else is done (such as the Menu entry).
I forgot to reiterate that I believe that the problem with 'gaim' is that the installation failed. It should be located in your path, and you should be able to start it from the shell, even without a menu entry. This having failed, I doubt whether it was actually installed in the first place. The only other possibility is if you got your $PATH variable screwed up. Please try reinstalling it. If it was installed, you will get an 'everything installed' message and no harm will be done.
Are you installing the Gaim RPM from your SuSE installation disk?
I don't have this program installed myself, but look under the Internet section of the menu. It may have a descriptive menu entry such as 'instant messaging' rather then the name of the program itself.
Ok, how do you use YaST to install packages such as rpm, run, tar.gz?
You use YaST to install a file from RPM. Install an RPM for SuSE if possible since that is your distro. Otherwise you may need to enter the menu entry yourself, since this part may be different between distros. Also, there are RPM packages for particular Computer Architectures. You don't want to try to install an RPM for a PPC if you have a Pentium machine.
A tar.gz (ake .tgzz) file is referred to as a tarball. This will expand to a subdidrectory. Most likely, the program was created for 'autoconf' which makes installing from souce possible even for different types of architectures and distributions. There will be a README and an INSTALL file that contains the instructions on how to install it.
About 95% of the time, This will entail a 5 step process.
1) Expand the tarball with the command tar xvzf <filename>
2) Enter the created directory and read the README and/or INSTALL files: cd <directory>/
3) run the ./configure script
4) run the 'make' command
6) su to root: jsu
7) and run 'make install'
A download that ends in .run will be a program with it's own installion routine. You may need to first set the executable bit before running it. chmod +x download.run
Notice the './' characters before the command. This is because, unlike MSDOS,
the current path is not executable by default. This is for security reasons, and I wouldn't change the default behavior if I were you. The ./ part refers explicitly to the current directory.
On my SUSE 9.2 install, chat programs are in the kde menu (green gecko icon, lower left) > internet. If you don't see it there, check the 'more programs' option.
If it has an auto installer, what directory should I install it to?
If you downloaded the firefox installer in tar.gz format, place it in your /home directory. There may be a way to use YaST to install this, but I don't know how it is done. The way to install it from the command line is pretty straight forward, even for a n00b.
Open a terminal and type:
tar -xzvf firefox- (press tab to auto-complete this file name) (press enter)
cd firefox (press tab again to complete) (press enter)
Follow the graphical installer to complete the install.
To create a desktop icon:
Right click on an empty space on your desktop. Choose create new > file > link to application. In the window that pops up, type the name firefox in the space provided. Click the application tab at the top. In the 'command' space, click browse and select /home/yourhomedirectory/firefox-installer/firefox.
Click the general tab at the top. Click on the blue gear icon. Choose other icons and click the browse tab. Select your home folder at the left. Then choose firefox-installer > icons > mozicon50.xpm. Then click the open tab at the bottom right. Just click ok to finish out. The firefox icon will appear on your desktop.
A question for you: Do you have cds? Is it the personal version or Pro?
As I stated in my previous response, I extracted the firefox-installer folder to /opt/firefox. Just to be clear. My installation of firefox was an executable, and I selected /opt/firefox as the destination. The default was a folder called firefox-installer, but this was a misnomer because it was the actual firefox folder rather than an installation directory.
I just looked in the webpage for downloading Thunderbird. It says:
Linux: GTK2 + XFT (no installer)
Use the command: tar xvzf thunderbird-1.0.tar.gz to extract the contents.
There should be a README and an INSTALL file inside the thunderbird directory containing the installation instructions.
According to there web page, these are the linux requirements:
Please note that Linux distributors may provide packages for your distribution which have different requirements.
* Linux kernel - 2.2.14 with the following libraries or packages minimums:
o glibc 2.3.2
o fontconfig (also known as xft)
* Thunderbird has been tested on Red Hat Linux 8.0 and later
OK, I'm at a windows machine right now, but I downloaded the linux package and looked at the contents using WinZip. It expands to a directory called 'thunderbird'. There is a small executable called 'thunderbird' and a large one called 'thunderbird-bin'. You could expand your tarball under the /opt directory and either make a link to /opt/thunderbird/thunderbird and /opt/thunderbird/thunderbird-bin in /usr/bin (or /usr/local/bin) or add /opt/thunderbird to your PATH variable.
As to your aim menu question, just add it to your menu the normal way. There is probably an icon file added by the install. There will be one for either 'aim' or 'gaim' installed even before installing gaim, since it is a common program.