Linux - SoftwareThis forum is for Software issues.
Having a problem installing a new program? Want to know which application is best for the job? Post your question in this forum.
Welcome to LinuxQuestions.org, a friendly and active Linux Community.
You are currently viewing LQ as a guest. By joining our community you will have the ability to post topics, receive our newsletter, use the advanced search, subscribe to threads and access many other special features. Registration is quick, simple and absolutely free. Join our community today!
Note that registered members see fewer ads, and ContentLink is completely disabled once you log in.
If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us. If you need to reset your password, click here.
Having a problem logging in? Please visit this page to clear all LQ-related cookies.
Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. They hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.
Click Here to receive this Complete Guide absolutely free.
Is there a program I can use to monitor what a GUI application modifies? For example, if I change settings, I'd like to know what the equivalent bash command is? This would be a good way to learn more bash commands and such. I'm using debian.
I just want to know what to edit to change settings etc so in a non gui environment I know what I'm doing. I know a decent amount already, but still have way more to learn before I can put my site on a dedicated server, which is my future plan. Just need to learn more about linux first.
Ex: let's say I make a change to the network settings, I want to know what file is being edited, and what is being put in it, etc.
bad luck, these things are quite distro dependant, there is no structured way to learn it. You can browse the web for some books on linux, but you can only learn it thouroughly by searching the net when you have a problem.
This advice I can give you, you will almost allways find settings in the /etc directory and most of those files have a man-page. Man pages can be accessed by using 'man <filename>'. With these you can usually get the help you need. When the docs of some program are installed, you can usually find it in the /usr/share/doc or /usr/doc directory. This is often in html, so if your server does not have X, it is a good idea to install links,lynx or links2.
Originally posted by Red Squirrel Ex: let's say I make a change to the network settings, I want to know what file is being edited, and what is being put in it, etc.
Yes, but you see-- if you take the example of something like network settings, any GUI tool that you might use to edit said settings isn't going to be editing just one file, or running just one command.
If you think of a typical network settings wizard, you might be able to:[list=1][*] change drivers for the existing card, or load drivers for a new or secondary card (which is a kernel command, modprobe)[*] change your IP address between static and DHCP-provided (/etc/conf.d/net under Gentoo, but may be a different name or location under Debian)[*] set a gateway (/etc/conf.d/net under Gentoo, but may be a different name or location under Debian)[*] set a hostname (/etc/conf.d/hostname under Gentoo, but may be a different name or location under Debian)[*] set a domain name ( (/etc/conf.d/domainname under Gentoo, but may be a different name or location under Debian)[/list=1]
...and this says nothing of other network-related options that might be available to the GUI but that I don't necessarily know what files are involved because I don't have/use that particular functionality-- wireless networking, Samba or NFS file exports/imports, dial-up settings.
I would suggest that you have a look at Rute for a general overview of what files control what; you might also look at the Slackware Book (because Slack is the most bog-standard distribution in existence, and there's no tweaks, rename-age or stupid 'wizards' between you and "how a Linux backend is supposed to be set up"). Once you've got that all straight in your head, then head to any Debian-specific (or "your Debian-based-distribution-specific") resources (which I wouldn't know where they are, not being a Debian user, but I'm sure they're out there) to find out how Debian does things differently from standard (or how your Debian-based distribution does things differently from Debian).
And don't forget... Linux is all Linux. So everything you find needs to be done in the "standard general Linux" documentation is all going to be found somewhere in your distribution. On my Gentoo system, the file to set the hostname may be called /etc/conf.d/hostname, and on your system it may be /etc/hostname, but we will both have a file, with an amazingly similar format, that sets the hostname for our computers, because Linux requires that your computer have a name (even if that name is 'localhost'). So don't become alarmed if the "general" documentation seems slightly out-of-sync with your actual experience. The road may meander along alternate pathways, but all Linux distributions are pointed in the same direction, and ultimately reach the same destination. By diverse means, we arrive at the same end.
Both links were "broken"-- bad copying and pasting on my part. Should be fixed now. Thanks for the heads-up (and the compliment).
I do understand your 'confusion', archtoad6, but I started as a Mandrake user, and this is actually the reason I appreciate Mandrake as a "first-timers" distro. Oh, I mean Mandriva.
I always loved the fact that if you went into the MCC and for instance mucked about with DiskDrake, the message that came up when you saved your changes was "editing /etc/fstab". So I became quite sensitve to the issue of using GUI tools that don't tell you what they're doing (like the SuSE tools), and in the event that the tool fails to work for whatever reason, you're up the creek without a paddle. Whereas with Man...driva, the tool often kindly told you the kind of thing that RedSquirrel was asking about-- while still doing it for you, it left you some room to learn.
When I was comfortable enough to learn more without a safety net, I went to Slackware, and Slack taught me enough confidence in my own capablilities to move to Gentoo, my happy and forever home.
So I probably just "got" what seemed to be meant based on that experience .
Basically what I want to know is what commands and files and registry entries (if there even is a registry in linux, which I don't think) that are edited when doing any gui change to some settings. Basically some kind of program the same concept as a network packet sniffer, but instead it would capture any changes made. So let's say I'm curious to know what files and such are edited when I use the gui to change a setting, I fire up the program and it shows it.
I forget which linux distro does that, it's a CD based distro mostly for hackers, someone showed it to me at work, it was pretty sweet. If you access a share for example, it shows that it executed the mount command first, then shows the cd directory command, etc.