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Old 05-18-2008, 02:15 PM   #16
oskar
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I don't think so at all. I invest very little time in my own problems. I try to answer some questions every now and then, but I don't have too much trouble myself.
If you would actually use this forum for something besides complaining, you would see what I'm talking about. You usually get a response within a couple of hours. Just post your actual problems instead of wasting your time with a threat like this.


@H_TeXMeX_H:
So what you're saying is that I don't know anything about linux - I started with Suse 7.something, and never used anything besides Suse, Fedora and Ubuntu for longer than a couple of weeks. Yeah, maybe there's a lot more to know about the system, but it's not anything that I have been missing.
Frankly, I've learned much more than I care to know. I don't mind an OS babysitting me instead of having it the other way around.
 
Old 05-18-2008, 02:28 PM   #17
DragonSlayer48DX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
Yes, but I'm just saying that Ubuntu won't teach you anything about Linux ... so his experience is to be expected. Distros like Gentoo, Slackware, LFS will teach you a lot more. Say whatever you want tho, you can't change the facts.
You are partially correct- if Ubuntu installs correctly, you don't need to learn anything about the inner workings of Linux. However, even then, the CLI is alive and well, and holds the same power as for any other distro, for those who want to learn.

Cheers
 
Old 05-18-2008, 04:07 PM   #18
H_TeXMeX_H
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dragonslayer48dx View Post
You are partially correct- if Ubuntu installs correctly, you don't need to learn anything about the inner workings of Linux. However, even then, the CLI is alive and well, and holds the same power as for any other distro, for those who want to learn.

Cheers
You bet ya, it's waiting there for you, waiting for you to type something in, but you will probably only try typing in a few things, maybe get frustrated, then never do it again and never learn anything for a long time, maybe forever.

I'm not saying Ubuntu should be disbanded as a distro, I know most people take it that way, but no this is not what I mean. I mean, once you get used to Ubuntu and to how things work in general on Linux, try something else. You still learn a minimal amount even from Ubuntu (probably more from FC or Debian), but if you keep using it you'll never learn much more.

At the very least, dual boot a more advanced distro, something like Gentoo, Slackware, Arch, etc. That's if you want to learn more. If you don't then don't. But, since this is what the OP was complaining about, I figure the suggestion is valid here.

Also, I don't claim to know more than the rest just because I use Slackware, although I probably do know much more than I would if I would have been using Ubuntu all this time. Don't think that I started using Linux straight with Slackware, no I started with FC, then looked around for distros Ubuntu, Debian, Gentoo, Zenwalk, many others (including BSD and OpenSolaris based ones), and finally Slackware. Soon I'll put LFS on a new gaming rig, surely that will teach me a whole lot more.

You know, maybe it depends on your attitude, I want more knowledge, most people don't care. But when the time comes and something goes wrong, who will be better equipped ?
 
Old 05-18-2008, 04:37 PM   #19
DragonSlayer48DX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
You bet ya, it's waiting there for you, waiting for you to type something in, but you will probably only try typing in a few things, maybe get frustrated, then never do it again and never learn anything for a long time, maybe forever.
Absolutely! And might I add that, should you not be able to find a GUI for the job in the menu, you can damn well find it in a repo ready for the two-click install.

Quote:
You know, maybe it depends on your attitude, I want more knowledge, most people don't care.
Very true... but then again, you're dealing with a lot of ex-Windoze users who weren't allowed to know about "the inner workings" of the OS. Compile that with the fact that most just want/need their PC to work, and that's exactly the end result.

Quote:
But when the time comes and something goes wrong, who will be better equipped ?
The one's who know about LQ!

BTW- I'm not knocking your suggestion. I was just saying that you can learn with Ubuntu if you want... just at your own pace.

Cheers

Last edited by DragonSlayer48DX; 05-18-2008 at 04:42 PM.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 03:16 AM   #20
ciden
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You cant learn unless you want to learn.
Its not like there are people who dont want to learn, the difference lies in what they want to learn.

Most people have jobs and kids and stuff, and dont care or dont need or even shouldn't dabble with software and source.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 06:04 AM   #21
H_TeXMeX_H
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Yeah, I guess so. I can only show you the door ...
 
Old 05-19-2008, 07:03 AM   #22
unSpawn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
Yeah, I guess so. I can only show you the door ...
True, but IMHO you could have been more objective. Learning GNU/Linux is and never was about using brand X. And people here who never used brand X products are proof of that. Like you and the rest said yourself already: it's primarily about interest, attitude and such.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 08:59 AM   #23
STARHARVEST
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
Yes, but I'm just saying that Ubuntu won't teach you anything about Linux ... so his experience is to be expected. Distros like Gentoo, Slackware, LFS will teach you a lot more. Say whatever you want tho, you can't change the facts.
fully agree!
Ubuntu boys are guys came from windoze with their bulletproof heads.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 09:41 AM   #24
Takla
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I found Ubuntu a pretty good learning experience as I had quite a few issues to contend with (some distro specific, some not) which forced me to delve deeper than the gui tools and gave me some curiosity and confidence to continue learning. I no longer use Ubuntu (Debian testing is so much easier lol) but recall that their documentation (official and community) is pretty good and there are lots of good howtos on the forums if you can navigate through the churn without upsetting the one-eyed flat-headed born-again jesus-freak power tripping moderators. I guess the OP has in mind something installed on the computer like MS do with their Help Centre, which afaik isn't to be found in distros. There are some great books out there, the Wiley Linux Bible series stand out and for me a comprehensive reference book is essential. As mentioned by someone else the Gentoo wiki is 1st class for users of any distro. Debian reference manuals are comprehensive for Debian and derivatives. It's not a bad idea to dual boot with another distro or use a virtual machine with snapshot capability so you can blunder fearlessly and learn by doing. Back up often and break stuff at will ;-)
 
Old 05-19-2008, 10:21 AM   #25
vadkutya
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Quote:
It's like surf, people can give you hints but you will have to invest time in order to be able to start doing it properly and eventually master it. Unfortunately I don't have that time available any more. Anyway, thanks for all of your opinions. I'll keep asking for help.
isn't this true for windows as well? think of your first steps on a computer. back than you had at least the advantage of being quite young and thus a quick learner. i used windows as well. from my perspective everything you say is true vise versa. i want to change something. people tell me click here and there and than there and enter the information. well, i klicked and it didn't let me enter the information. after some fiddeling we found that some options weren't klicked correctly. after we fixed it, it still didn't work. we needed some time to figure it out. searching the web etc. now, why can't i enter information if i want to. i cursed that damn gui. even if it makes my system crash. i bought that f*cking computer. if i want to make it crash then let me do so. i had admin rights and it's my responsibility. why the hell couldn't i enter the expected information? this system tries to be smart. generally a bad idea. they always guess wrongly . how much easier is it to figure out where the config is; open an editor and let's rock. ever encountered a message like: "can't delete file. please contact your system administrator" while being the system administrator? ever had problems stopping a process? this is really frustrating. in linux to remove a file you simply type "rm -f $FILE" and off it goes. stopping a process "kill -9 $PID" and f*ck off. no complaints, no arguing.

you simply learned things in a different way than e.g. i did. it's a torture to work with windows, however, i can manage it but it's very cumbersome. and now think it over, windows is all the same. there are no different kernel versions, no distros, no packet manager and yet it's still a lot of fiddeling for a not native windows user. that every windows is quite the sam might be a big advantage from time to time but it comes at a price. loss of freedom, loss of control and last but not least loss of money.

regarding the linux manual you mentioned. even if such a book existed where you just had to copy/paste solutions, there are so many different ways to solve a problem (some might work others don't), so many possible sources of error, you still had to invest a huge amount of time. i really don't want to flame anybody but you cannot expect to master something without investing time. if you don't have it just stick with windows...if you use it for your daily work why bothering with linux at all?

vadkutya
 
Old 05-19-2008, 10:26 AM   #26
jiml8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post

At the very least, dual boot a more advanced distro, something like Gentoo, Slackware, Arch, etc. That's if you want to learn more. If you don't then don't. But, since this is what the OP was complaining about, I figure the suggestion is valid here.
I believe you said that exactly backward. *buntu is one of the most advanced distros, because it has hidden all the wiring behind access panels, and because it makes the whole system work smoothly (mostly) as a complete system out of the box.

Slack is one of the most primitive distros, because it does not do those things. With *buntu, you can take the covers off and pull out the wires and fiddle with the connections, just like slack. But you don't have to.

Quote:
You know, maybe it depends on your attitude, I want more knowledge, most people don't care. But when the time comes and something goes wrong, who will be better equipped ?
And most people shouldn't care. Everyone wants their computer as an appliance. Well, they can't get that...computers need maintenance, period. But that maintenance shouldn't require huge amounts of effort to master.

You should be able to master it if you want to; you shouldn't have to master any of it to just do routine things.

And, when something goes wrong, who is better equipped? I guess that depends. It depends on who you are, what you want to do, and how you best spend your time. If you are a hobbyist or a geek, go for it and fix it yourself. I know I always do that. But if you are, for instance, and attorney who bills himself out at $200/hr, then the time you spend fixing your computer is time wasted; your most efficient use of time is to have an expert you can call. So who is best prepared? It just depends.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 10:26 AM   #27
trashbird1240
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Wrong on Two Counts

Quote:
Originally Posted by psargaco View Post
Ok, guys. I haven't read all the questions, but on a glance it seems like maybe some of my questions have been answered. But the main message, at least as I read it, is that Linux is an OS for people with time on their hands.
1. GNU/Linux is an operating system for people with too little time on their hands to deal with nonsense from proprietary operating systems.
2. The main message from this thread is learn before you judge, and try as many distros as you can. Have you tried PCLinuxOS? Have you tried Fedora? Have you tried Suse? Have you tried Zenwalk, Vector, Arch, Mandriva, Mepis...

You need to try many distros because their stock kernels may have different features or modules loading and they may not suit your hardware. Before you have the expertise to reconfigure them, your best approach will be to try as many distros as possible. I started with FreeBSD (not a Linux distro), then Mepis, then Ubuntu, then PCLinuxOS. After using PCLinuxOS for a few months, I switched over full time to Slackware. Even after I installed PCLinuxOS, I was still trying other distros about once a week.

And get a book. At the very least Linux for Dummies or something like that (many of which come with Linux CDs). Get them from your local library, I did.

Joel
 
Old 05-19-2008, 10:40 AM   #28
trashbird1240
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiml8 View Post
Slack is one of the most primitive distros, because it does not do those things.
This is often stated but simply not true. I use plenty of GUI tools on Slackware; KDE provides plenty of admin tools "out-of-the-box" and I use them when I feel like it.

Quote:
You should be able to master it if you want to; you shouldn't have to master any of it to just do routine things.
I disagree. I just want you and the OP to know that there is a diversity of opinion on this topic: computers are hard to use. It's a fact of life. One system or interface is not necessarily universally easier than another, or more intuitive, unless we're talking about gross changes like the change from batch computing to interactive computing (most people don't even know that interactive computing is special anymore; they think it's always been that way). Using computers requires abstractions at levels that most people are not capable of; telling them that they will be capable because someone has packaged a computer a specific way is a cruel tool of marketing (i.e., a scam).

If you want to use computer, and use it well, there is no substitute for learning. Thinking you can get something for nothing is ridiculous. Once you accept the fact that computers are hard to use, it follows directly that you have the power to learn how to use technology. Running from the opportunities that allow you to learn (e.g., fear of the command line) is what keeps people dumb; when you realize that you have the power to use an expressive language to accomplish what you want, then you have the choice of using that or using something else (e.g., a GUI).

Above all know this: three years ago I knew nothing about Linux, and although I had experience using Unix, I had never administrated a system before. Now I install and administer systems with ease and people consult me for advice.

Joel
 
Old 05-19-2008, 10:55 AM   #29
masonm
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The very nature of Linux makes creating such a comprehensive manual almost impossible. By it's nature Linux is a community project that is evolving amazingly fast and any such manual would be outdated before it's even finished.

Whether one uses Linux, Unix, Windows, or any other OS troubleshooting problems is almost impossible without learning something about the OS. A person who has never used any sort of computer before would experience just as much frustration and a learning curve as someone who is new to Linux.

Most of the distros out there today do a pretty good job of installation and run quite well on most hardware. The little issues here and there are usually easy to fix with a little bit of research, same as with a Windows system.

A person who chooses to use a Windows system but fails to learn anything at all about that system will eventually run into some problem they can't fix because they simply don't know enough to do so. If this weren't the case a lot of IT folks wouldn't have a job.

While Slack was my first distro and the one I have used the longest, I have used a great many others and use PCLinuxOS as my primary distro on my laptop. They all have their uses and most of them are good for what they were designed to do.

If you're having issues with a distro that you can't seem to fix either do the research needed to fix it, or try another distro. You're not going to find a full troubleshooting manual for Linux because Linux is just too fluid to write one that would work for every distro out there or that would remain accurate for any length of time.
 
Old 05-19-2008, 11:05 AM   #30
jiml8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trashbird1240 View Post
This is often stated but simply not true. I use plenty of GUI tools on Slackware; KDE provides plenty of admin tools "out-of-the-box" and I use them when I feel like it.
Yes, but you have to configure all of that. It doesn't come done for you.

Quote:
I disagree. I just want you and the OP to know that there is a diversity of opinion on this topic: computers are hard to use. It's a fact of life. One system or interface is not necessarily universally easier than another, or more intuitive, unless we're talking about gross changes like the change from batch computing to interactive computing (most people don't even know that interactive computing is special anymore; they think it's always been that way). Using computers requires abstractions at levels that most people are not capable of; telling them that they will be capable because someone has packaged a computer a specific way is a cruel tool of marketing (i.e., a scam).
Well, you may indeed want to let me know about the diversity of opinion, but I would be willing to bet you that I was involved in that debate in one capacity or another before you were born.

And in fact, computers need not be hard to use. Look around you; dedicated computers are everywhere and becoming more and more ubiquitous.

The general purpose computer remains a lot harder to use...because it is general purpose. But this does not mean and should not mean that you have to be an expert in order to do basic things.

Both Windows and Mac have actually done a pretty good job of putting out something that is not far from being an appliance; where Windows has gone wrong in that respect is with their horrid security model. Linux is approaching the level of Windows with distros like *buntu, and it is those distros - which "just work" when you install them - that will bring Linux to the masses and will ultimately make substantial inroads against the M$ monopoly.

Quote:
If you want to use computer, and use it well, there is no substitute for learning. Thinking you can get something for nothing is ridiculous. Once you accept the fact that computers are hard to use, it follows directly that you have the power to learn how to use technology. Running from the opportunities that allow you to learn (e.g., fear of the command line) is what keeps people dumb; when you realize that you have the power to use an expressive language to accomplish what you want, then you have the choice of using that or using something else (e.g., a GUI).
Yeah, and you don't need a car mechanic either. Actually, you don't really need a car manufacturer; you could set up a machine shop in your garage and build a car. But who wants to do that?

Historically, computers have been tools for experts. Today that is less and less true - at least, when you are talking about doing everyday things like surfing the web, generating a document, handling household finances, or using IM and email.

Where Linux falls short today is that it is not yet to the point - not quite - where it "just works". It still needs to be tweaked and fiddled with to get it going. This keeps it in the domain of experts, when the mass market is crying for a solution that gets them shut of M$.

Quote:
Above all know this: three years ago I knew nothing about Linux, and although I had experience using Unix, I had never administrated a system before. Now I install and administer systems with ease and people consult me for advice.

Joel
Good for you. Seriously. But do you really think that only people who are willing to put in that kind of effort should use Linux? Or should use computers? That is an unrealistic expectation.

Oh, and to provide the OP with some specific answers to questions that he has asked that were not answered:

System logs will be usually found in the directory /var/log and you usually have to be root to read them. Look into the command tail; it is very useful for reading log files.

Depending on the distro and the window manager, you will often find an error log in your home directory with the name .xsession or .xsession-errors - note that the leading period is part of the file name.

If these files do not exist, then look in your home directory tmp directory for an error log called xses-username. If your username is phil, the file would be named .xses-phil .

If that one doesn't exist, look in the system /tmp directory and you will often find one named xses.

There are other error logs scattered around the system, but these are the main ones and will get you started.
 
  


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