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Old 08-20-2008, 11:11 AM   #16
farslayer
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Registered: Oct 2005
Location: Willoughby, Ohio
Distribution: linuxdebian
Posts: 7,232
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Learning DOS was hard..
Learning Windows 3.X was hard
Learning windows 95 and getting it just to install was difficult
learning NT4 was yet another change..

The point is if you have no experience in a subject it will be difficult at first. the only way to get better is by doing it.

If you take 2 people with no computer experience and put them in front of a Windows machine and a Linux machine they will both have a difficult time at first, but they will both learn and accept how each system works. Most people have used Windows for a long time and have preconceived notions about how things should work on a computer. You really need to throw all that away and start with a blank slate. I think it is actually more difficult for someone that is a Windows user to switch to Linux than for someone that has no computer experience to learn it. The new user is not constantly fighting their prior knowledge on how they think things should work and trying to compare them. Neither method or OS is right or wrong, they just do things differently.

I'm far from an expert, but using Linux has brought the fun back into computing for me.. Windows keeps dumbing things down, adding more wizards and hiding actual pages that contain configuration data. I'd rather see a full properties page for something that I am working on that have to step through some stupid wizard that half the time asks questions that don't make sense. Linux lets you see all the raw configuration details for just about everything, and that can be overwhelming at times.

When I finally decided I was going to learn Linux I installed it on a PC then looked at the computer and said "Yeah !! now what do I do with it ?" So I started looking for interesting projects to work on. My first real project was setting up a Content Management System in a LAMP environment. I found a good how-to and worked through the process and problems and when I was done, I had something that could actually be used. Theres nothing like the feeling of accomplishment to help motivate you to keep going. I started looking for other projects and things to get my interest (game servers, Network monitoring/graphing, Mail server, etc..). With each successful project I gained more knowledge and experience and became more comfortable with the system. I decided it was time to quit messing around and made my primary PC at home a Linux box. Forcing yourself to use Linux every day will help you become more comfortable and familiar with the system and the commands.

You will find yourself talking to your friends about Linux, they will ask you a question and surprise you KNOW the answers. You can tell them what files to edit, what commands to use, what programs can do the tasks they want to accomplish. You may not have realized how much you have been learning, but the knowledge is there. Yes you may still feel like a beginner, since the more you learn about Linux, you begin to grasp how much more information is out there that you still don't know. To your friends you seem like an expert...

Best advice I can give you is to stick with it. Use Linux as your main machine. Don't get too frustrated and give up, in the end you will be able to overcome the difficulties and continue learning. Search for answers before asking questions. You will learn more by locating the information yourself than by having it handed to you. If you are unable to find the answer, then ask questions no matter how silly they seem. The better you are at asking questions and providing the necessary information, the better and more relevant the answers will be. Don't make people try to guess what your goal is when you are trying to do something, tell them in your post what your goal is, tell them what you have tried (briefly) post relevant configuration files, and links any how-to's you were using to try and accomplish the task. Keep it informative but brief. Too much information will make people skip your questions just as much as too little.

It's also amazing how many people here with a greater knowledge of this OS are willing to volunteer their time to help those of us that are at a lower level.

Welcome to one of the best Linux communities on the Interweb.
 
  


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