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Old 09-27-2003, 09:43 PM   #1
Stillwell
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Registered: Sep 2003
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Linux is freaking me out...


Hello everyone! Glad to be here

As you might have guessed, I'm new in this Linux world, I finally decided I would make the jump from Windoze to Linux!

I would like a smooth start, and I'm browsing the web and reading stuff about Linux, although I'm not sure where to start.

Linux seems to be great: Free, it's a community, stability, etc. except it's scaring me. The Linux slang scared me off, with words and acronyms and things I don't get totally yet.

I don't even know where to start. I know I have already downloaded Red Hat 9, burned it on CD's (I was so excited getting Linux I just got the first thing that came to my mind, they use at school ) and I don't know if it's the good one, meaning: are all of the Linux distros (yay, my first Linux slang word I use ) different for each users depending on their needs? I know I'm still quite dependant to Windoze, so I will emulate it with Wine, and I hope it's going to work. (?)

Should I keep Red Hat? If so, there were two different package to download... RPM's, but they say they're not necessary........ I'm just confused. And what's RPM anyway?

And those posts really scare me, if it's to install the very first thing you need to run an OS, drivers... (Edit: Sorry, it seems like I can't post URLs... The post was about someone having problems installing his NVidia drivers, first post stickied in the Linux newbie forum.

Sooooo... I understand nothing I have yet to find a Linux website which is really newbie friendly. Don't get me wrong, I love communities, but I'd like some online documentation

Okay, I think that's it, I needed to vent these worries and see if anyone was like me, or if I'm not normal Again, glad to be here.

Last edited by Stillwell; 09-27-2003 at 09:45 PM.
 
Old 09-27-2003, 10:04 PM   #2
spurious
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You should keep your Windows partition around and dual-boot into Linux; that way, after hacking away at Linux and screwing up, you still can use your computer. It took me 7 months before my main boxes were Linux only (although I still keep a Windows partition on my notebook just in case).

You can also try Knoppix http://www.knoppix.net, which is a Linux distro that runs completely from the CD, to get your feet wet. It has excellent hardware detection, and is stocked with lots of software.

You can permanently install Knoppix to the hard drive, which essentially gives you a Debian "Sid" distro. However, the Knoppix install script is not newbie-friendly, and Knoppix needs some tweaking after a hard-drive install. Alternatively, you can try Mepis http://www.mepis.org, a Knoppix/Debian based distro, but with a GUI installer (caveat: I haven't tried Mepis).

With Debian based distros, you don't worry about RPMs to install software. Debian uses "apt-get", which is a very easy method of installing and upgrading software packages. Search linuxquestions.org and google for more info.
 
Old 09-27-2003, 10:15 PM   #3
Stillwell
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Thanks for the reply

Although there are some things I still don't get. Again, slang... Like you suggested, I will browse Google and the forum.
 
Old 09-27-2003, 10:15 PM   #4
paladins_r_1
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Registered: Sep 2003
Location: USA
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I am also very very new w/ linux. i found alot of doc's on redhats site in regards to install and many other options. i have also found alot of doc's searching w/ Google. as i have learned in my short time using pc's the more you read the better of you be . this is just my opinion i have been reading alot of the post here and learning much. i figured since i have to wait for my "second time around" downloading Linux lol i would do some learning to help assist in the install when all is done.
thx
Paladin
 
Old 09-28-2003, 12:15 AM   #5
spurious
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For reference materials, try:

http://rute.sourceforge.net

http://www.ibiblio.org/

And the newbie sites (other than linuxquestions.org) -- http://tinyminds.org, http://justlinux.com, http://linuxchix.org
 
Old 09-28-2003, 01:31 AM   #6
mdlnx
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I went with Mandrake ( after switching from RedHat(newest distro) )
Mandrake includes tons of packages, and its more customizable than RedHat, plus you dont have to pay for support which is always a plus. It's also more versatile i think. The main thing is, is that once you fully understand linux(which i dont) you can do anything you want with whatever distro. But I personally think that mandrake is the most newbie friendly around. It seems like someone that really knows linux just sat at his computer for 3 days and hacked away to make everything more simple. I'd try RedHat first since you downloaded it, but also burn a copy of Mandrake 9.1. Play around with RedHat for a while, and then if u think you would like to try somethin else, go with Mandrake. I never tried Knoppix, but i hear its fantastic. Anyways, there ya go

BTW, im a noob to and i know linux can be a bit intimidating, but the best thing to do is just to jump right in and use it as your primary desktop. Thats the best way to learn. Also, dont buy your way out of problems. Try to find solutions. This forum is a really good way to learn. Its helped me a lot.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 07:10 AM   #7
Rick485
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I have used several different distros and like either Red Hat or Mandrake for home use. I mostly use Red Hat 9. My copy of Red Hat 9 came in a box for about $34 with several CDs and a small manual it it. The phone lines here are slow and broadband or DSL is not available so I did not try to download and burn the CDs. So I can not advise you on that.

I am still somewhat of a newbie to Linux but here is my attempt to explain what RPMs are. When you want to add, remove or upgrade software it can come in several different forms. Software sometimes comes as an RPM file and needs to be installed on your computer. Red Hat and some other distros can use RPMs. Software can come in other forms such as compressed tarballs. RPMs are slightly easier to use than compressed tarballs. The first few times I installed new programs under Linux I had to look up how to do it in a book such as the Red Hat Linux 9 Bible. There are other good books as well. You should probably get a book.

Wine will allow you to run some Windows programs but not all of them. I have not yet tried to learn how to use the ordinary version of wine. I did purchase and install Crossover Office with is made by Codeweavers. It relies on wine and is fairly user friendly. I use it to run Word 97 and Excell 97 under Red Hat 9. Crossover office only claims it will work with a short list of Windows applications such as some versions of Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Adobe Photoshop, Internet Explorer, Lotus Notes and Quicken 2002. Only some versions of those programs are supported and not always the latest version.

I also use the student version of the Linux version of VMware. While running Red Hat 9 as a host it allows me to boot up Windows as a guest in a window and run it at the same time as Linux. The student version of VMware is $130 and the regular version is $299. I would not recommend installing VMware for an absolute beginner. In your case I would suggest the more normal method of installing Linux but keeping Windows on a seprate partion or hard drive. When you boot up you can choose to run one or the other (not both at the same time like I occasionally do with VMware). If you do not get Linux configured perfectly at first you should still be able to boot up into Windows instead.

The vocabulary for Linux is pretty much the same as for the various versions of Unix because Linux is a type of Unix (or at least a clone of it). Most of the terms can be looked up as needed in the index of a book. I once took a Unix class where we used Solaris, so that gave me a good introduction to much of the vocabulary. I also had a class where we briefly briefly learned to use Linux and Samba as a file server and Linux and Apache as a web server. I am not yet an expert on either however. I am now using Linux as my primary desktop which should help me learn it better.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 07:38 AM   #8
gill1109
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I've been into linux for a year now beginning to feel not quite a total newb and enjoying it very much. I think redhat is on the whole very reliable, solid, troublefree, but does not have all the latest stuff included in the distro. On the other hand you learn a lot doing that yourself and you have an excellent solid basis. I played with wine but did not succeed to get it to do anything useful so I wouldn't count on running your windoze stuff from linux ... but linux has alternatives for everything you want to do, so so what...

I found linuxquestions.org, and also the web site

http://members.rogers.com/ctmlinux/

and its forum really useful. I have tried Mandrake but didn't like it [it did the worst job on recognising my hardware of all the distros I tried and the installation procedure was difficult, compared to redhat] , I really recommend knoppix (single cd, live, and if you like it you can install it onto your computer). I also like the single linux distro jamd (based on redhat) and I like the live cdrom adios, also based on redhat. The SuSe live cdrom is also cool.

Last edited by gill1109; 09-28-2003 at 07:58 AM.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 08:27 AM   #9
chii-chan
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Hi. I've been using 2 months, and my distro is RedHat 8.0. I never tried any other distro cs I'm on dial-up. But I think RedHat is cool. RedHat people made that rpm so that it is easy to install things rather than compiling programs from source codes. I just joined this forum for a week, it's just a very good forum for linux communities. I wonder why I didn't realise it before. As a newbie I my main websites for linux are:

http://www.google.com/linux
http://rpmfind.net
http://freshrpms.net/packages/ <--u can't access it right now except if you start from the subdirectory

and of course ultimate one this forum itself.

Still, I've got to dual boot !
 
Old 09-28-2003, 08:27 AM   #10
twilli227
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You need the first three disks for RH9. If you have them then stick with red hat until you learn more. If you have high speed access then try out this site: http://linuxiso.org/
I am using knoppix right know at work, it is a bootable cd, but does not load onto the computer. You can also get it or another live distro at the above site. They work great and it can help you get your feet wet with linux. If you do use knoppix or one of the other live cds, just beware that it will run alittle slower than an actual harddrive install of a linux distro.
Welcome aboard, and if you have anymore questions, post away and we will try to help.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 10:17 AM   #11
slapNUT
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IMHO Justlinux is not really a newbie friendly Linux site. Yes, it was once called "LinuxNewbie.org" but that was before it was bought by Internet.com. You may ask Linux questions there but are strongly urged to try google first (btw when you google you usually end up here reading an archived thread). You should also be very selective about which forum you post your question in, as the moderators seem to have this competition going on, to see who can relocate the most posts, and who can flame the newbie in the most polite and tactful manner, about posting in the wrong forum.
The whole atmosphere at justlinux is sorta dreary and bland. All the members are expected to answer linux related questions and have no opinion about anything else. I've seen "Happy Birthday" threads locked for not being related to Linux. I've seen "Welcome back threads", for members who had been absent for an extended period of time, closed. And don't even think about a "4-word-per-post" thread!
And what bothered me most was the "pro Caldera/SCO" slant. Don't even post anything derogatory about SCO or Darl McBride or you'll end up banned. The reasoning is that they (internet.com) do not want to be liable for what I post! Gimme a break Darl McBride is being hammered all over the friggin internet! He is the Benedict Arnold of the Open Source Community! HE IS THE DARK SIDE! Sorry I am venting. Stick with LinuxQuestions, it's more of a community site.

Wazzup with linuxchix? They don't even have a forum! And none of the pages will load at tinyminds.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 01:34 PM   #12
mdlnx
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remember to keep the mindset "buying your way out is not an options, find solutions." And personally, RedHat needs you to join RHN to get a lot of solutions, which costs money. That is why mandrake is the number 1 distro in the world. http://www.distrowatch.com check th middle/bottom/right for a list of distrobutions. Spend about an hour scanning through them all and see whats best for you.
 
Old 09-28-2003, 06:11 PM   #13
twilli227
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If you already have the RH9 discs, then go with redhat. I have loaded RH7.3, 8.0, and 9.0 on my computer without any problems. It is an easy install. After you learn more about your system, load up apt on your computer and you should have no dependency problems with any rpm.
When you become comfortable using redhat, then you can try out some other distro of your choosing.
I don't know what is the best distro out there, just try one and then you can move on to another one when you feel confortable doing so.
 
Old 11-27-2003, 03:45 AM   #14
AceTech747
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One way I learned the terms of linux and how to navigate around in it was by reading books in the library. I read Red Hat Linux for Dummies. It is a short and easy to read book. I read the book in one day while at work. Also the book has the RH8 distro with the included cd's. I have switched to a Linux only system. I am still trying to reach a computer that is fully cappapable of doing the stuff I did on Windows. But I know I am safe from any of the Windows security breaches, bugs, lock-ups, and lack of being fine-tuned. I am hesistant to even run wine on my computer because I dont want any MS DLL's on my system. I am happy with my decision to switch to Linux.
 
Old 11-27-2003, 11:06 AM   #15
Charlie Spencer
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I've been at this for two weeks. I'm assuming you're running the Gnome graphical user interface that my RH9 started by default. One thing I find helpful is to think of the GUI as a collection of (reasonably) well-integrated parts. Remember the GUI is separate from the OS, unlike Windows where it is an integral part of the operating system. Unless you are working completely from a command line (called the 'shell' in this world), you are interacting with the OS indirectly through utilities that aren't actually part of the OS. Not only is the GUI separate from the OS (and replaceable), but many of the other services / daemons that are built in to Windows are separate parts that may (or may not) be included with your distribution. And those services have GUI's that are not part of the same code as the service they control. As an example, if you click a Help, About, you will get the information for the GUI, not the service it controls.

Am I making any sense at all? Probably not; I should be used to it by now.
 
  


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