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Old 08-31-2013, 03:04 PM   #1
J.Doran
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Some beginner level file questions


I'm very new to Linux, so please excuse me if these questions are laughably basic, but I have downloaded Mint Linux 15, and used the Windows program "Universal-USB-Installer-1.9.4.0.exe" to make a blank 32GB SD Card into live-booting. And it seems to work, as now if I boot my laptop up with the SD Card inserted (and set as the boot device in the BIOS, of course), then Linux boots up fine. This has the advantage that Windows 7 still boots up fine (if I remove the SD Card) so if I ruin Linux somehow then I can just boot back to Windows and reinstall Mint Linux on the SD Card, plus I'll still be using Windows for Windows only games and whatever.

Anyway, here are my current questions;


1) I don't understand the file structure of Mint Linux. I mean, on the SD Card, along with all the Mint Linux folders and files, I added the folder "For Windows", containing some stuff I want to use in Windows, but using Linus I can't find this folder at all (I was going to move the files in this folder from the "For Windows" folder on the SD Card, to a folder I'd create on the Windows C: drive, as a way of trying the Linux copy, past, move, new folder, etc, functions but I can't find out how to access

[SD Card]\For Windows\

from Linux. Where would this be in Linux's file manager, please?




2) When trying to look for the above folder, when I click on some folders, I get the message

"The folder contents could not be displayed

You do not have the permission necessary to view the contents of 'root'" (or whatever I try to open instead of a folder called 'root').

How do I tell Linux that I'm the administrator, and so give Linux permission to do what I want to do, please?




3) Do file names in Linux have different rules and limitations from in Windows? I mean, what is the length limitations in Linux (in Windows it's 255 characters before the extension, I think), how long can the extension be, are the same characters legal as in Windows, and illegal (i.e. you can't use a colon in a filename in Windows) as in Windows?

Thanks for any answers.

Last edited by J.Doran; 08-31-2013 at 03:05 PM.
 
Old 08-31-2013, 05:32 PM   #2
ButterflyMelissa
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Hi,

First and foremost : welcome here, and no, your questions do NOT make us laugh...we all had to start somewhere...

Okay, now, on to the bizz...

Quote:
1) I don't understand the file structure of Mint Linux. I mean, on the SD Card, along with all the Mint Linux folders and files, I added the folder "For Windows", containing some stuff I want to use in Windows, but using Linus I can't find this folder at all (I was going to move the files in this folder from the "For Windows" folder on the SD Card, to a folder I'd create on the Windows C: drive, as a way of trying the Linux copy, past, move, new folder, etc, functions but I can't find out how to access
Okay, first some intel on how Linux treats files, disks and such. Everything in Linux (Unix and the *nix stuff) is a ... file. Sounds weird, is not. Let's see what happens if you want your ***dows disk accessible...here's what you do (extra info provided)

Open the console, that scary thing with only text, dont be afraid, in the end, that's your best friend...

Enter this

Quote:
whoami
...basicaly, you want to know your role on the system. By the way, dont spill that one on a party where there's a shrink, he'll think : "personality issues"
If it says anything else but "root" you're not in "ROOT" mode, eg you dont have admin rights, if so, enter this

Quote:
sudo
...before everything you type in. The first time (or when you've not been active for a while) you'll need to give a password...by the way, in things like Ariane Knoppix, just entering "su -" is enough to give you admin/root rights...depends on your setup...

Okay, now, let's up a gear and wizz along

enter this (I'll add the sudo in brackets)

Quote:
[sudo] fdisk -l
the system should come back with something of a list where you'll read /dev/sda (or something, look for the reported size, that's always a clue for me) for the hard drive, it will provide something similar for the SD card...for now, we need the hard drive...
A hard drive is a DEVice, hence /dev/sda and/or something...
You need this info to MOUNT the drive - still from the old days where disks had to be mounted - basically : integrate it in your system (no screwdriver needed, nowadays)

Quote:
[sudo] mount /dev/sda /mnt
This should do it. What it says is "go get the drive that is represented my the file in the dilder dev and is called sda and make it accessible (mount it) in the folder called mnt" phew...

Next, browse the disk. How? Enter the folder /mnt (the slash means it's a top-level folder)

cd /mnt

or...just open the file explorer on the desktop, you should see the hard drive right there...

In Linux, a hard drive, a USB stick or a DVD rom is treated as a ... folder....

Quote:
3) Do file names in Linux have different rules and limitations from in Windows? I mean, what is the length limitations in Linux (in Windows it's 255 characters before the extension, I think), how long can the extension be, are the same characters legal as in Windows, and illegal (i.e. you can't use a colon in a filename in Windows) as in windows?
Be reasonable in your naming, dont use any "funny" stuff (colons, semicolons dots...ya know) and begin with a letter (A-Z or a-z) the names are CapsDependent...
The folder MyPics is not the same as mypics (***dows may not tell the difference, been aaaages since I last saw one from up close)

Be folloin' this thread...dump ANY extra questions in here, there's bound to be an answer

Thor
 
Old 08-31-2013, 10:45 PM   #3
frankbell
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The Linux file structure is very different from Windows' file structure. It's actually more logical, once you understand it. It took me a while to get the hang of it myself.

Here's an excellent introduction to it.

http://www.thegeekstuff.com/2010/09/...tem-structure/

Here's one that is somewhat more detailed:

http://www.cyberciti.biz/tips/unders...em-part-i.html
 
Old 09-01-2013, 10:11 AM   #4
schneidz
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1. Windows can't read an ext2/3/4 filesystem. gnu/linux can read and write to fat32/ntfs partitions.
Mount your windows drive and copy your files to that mount point.

2. The root user has the ability to access everything on the system. Use it judiciously.

3. Windows extensions don't rally make sense in Linux. Use the file command to know the real file-type of a file.
You can put colons and other punctuation in file names but it is probably better not to.

Last edited by schneidz; 09-01-2013 at 10:18 AM.
 
Old 09-01-2013, 11:45 AM   #5
J.Doran
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Thor_2.0, thanks for that very detailed explanation (and for the welcome!), I managed to find the 'For Windows' folder doing what you said. Speaking as a total newcomer to Linux, it's file system does seem strange and convoluted, but of course Windows' way no doubt only seems so easy to me since I'm so used to that.

Frankbell and Schneidz, thanks too for your help, and I will post any further questions I have in this forum, and I think I'll pick up a book or two about Linux, and experiment with it (it's great knowing that if I do screw up the installation, I can easily reinstall it to the SD card).

I've no plans to permanently go from Windows to Linux, as most of the programs I use are Windows specific (well, the few non-games I use no doubt have Linux equivalents, but to get most games running in Linux I'll have to use WINE*, which I've yet to even try. If it was a choice between Windows 8 and Linux, though, I'd be very tempted to ditch Windows, I hate the Metro interface (my PCs are not touchscreen (nor do I intent to change this, since I don't like touchscreen controls, a mouse is much better, I think) and the way Microsoft removed the START menu, though you can apparently add this with third party software. It's typical of Microsoft, that for no good reason they alter things you get used to, resulting in the aggravation of change but with little or no improvement. For me Windows XP was when Microsoft finally got it right, well, after the fixes and service packs I mean. Windows 7 is great too, though too little improvement over XP, and with too much bloatware. Vista was a Mr Bean style farce, and Windows 8 just shows how much contempt Windows' makers have for the wishes of their customers.

To be honest, the only thing stopping me from going over fully to Linux (if Linux really is as good as people say) is inerta - I'm so used to Windows that learning a new OS seems like hard work. On the other hand, the fact that Linux runs on almost anything (including the original XBox, and my (modded) console is still being used occasionally, so I could put Linux on there if I chose) is a real incentive for me to become familiar with Linux and it's range of programs and games.



* I've heard it's very good though. Plus I'd have to use DOSBox for DOS games (unless there's a better DOS emulator for Linux), but that's no problem, as I'm used to DOSBox anyway, since after windows 9x, Microsoft removed the DOS foundation from Windows.
 
Old 09-01-2013, 01:46 PM   #6
m.a.l.'s pa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Doran View Post
To be honest, the only thing stopping me from going over fully to Linux (if Linux really is as good as people say) is inerta - I'm so used to Windows that learning a new OS seems like hard work.
Yeah, it can be hard, at first. Careful, though -- you might become addicted!

As someone else mentioned, I had trouble understanding the Linux filesystem at first, but now it makes a lot more sense to me than how Windows is set up.

Anyway, it took time for you to learn all the things you know about Windows; same thing applies with Linux. After awhile, things start to sink in.
 
Old 09-02-2013, 06:51 AM   #7
onebuck
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Moderator Response

Hi,

You can look at Linux File System for helpful links that will explain things.

Unknowns can always cause one to be uncertain, so getting yourself informed can help enlighten;
Quote:
Just a few more links to aid you to gaining some understanding. Sure some may seem beyond a newbie but you must start somewhere;



Linux Documentation Project
Rute Tutorial & Exposition
Linux Command Guide
Utimate Linux Newbie Guide
LinuxSelfHelp
Bash Beginners Guide
Bash Reference Manual
Advanced Bash-Scripting Guide
Linux Home Networking



The above links and others can be found at '
Slackware-Links'. More than just Slackware® links!
Hope this helps.
 
Old 09-02-2013, 06:57 AM   #8
pan64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schneidz View Post
1. Windows can't read an ext2/3/4 filesystem. gnu/linux can read and write to fat32/ntfs partitions.
Actually there are free ext2/3/4 drivers available now for windows, see for example here: http://www.howtogeek.com/112888/3-wa...-from-windows/
 
Old 09-02-2013, 09:07 AM   #9
schneidz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pan64 View Post
Actually there are free ext2/3/4 drivers available now for windows, see for example here: http://www.howtogeek.com/112888/3-wa...-from-windows/
From the first sentence of your link:
Quote:
Linux has built-in support for Windows NTFS partitions, but Windows can’t read Linux partitions without third-party software
 
Old 09-02-2013, 09:16 AM   #10
pan64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schneidz View Post
From the first sentence of your link:
Actually the ntfs module of linux is not an official MS product, but the ext4 driver for windows is open source and free. I'm not really sure which one works "better"
 
  


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