Help installing basic programs
I'm a newbie to Linux, and don't really know a whole lot. I'm not sure I understand the basics of the system, and how it operates.
I had mandrake linux 9.1 installed on my system with a dual boot with windows XP. This worked fine, mainly because I didn't do much in Linux. I couldn't find any software! Also, everytime in KCG (i think thats what it was) I would go to the "start" bar persay, and would go to the mounted drives, and attempt to view them, the system would freeze. I also never understood how to install programs. On top of that, I was having some CD problems, and my burner either 1. burned my iso's incorrectly, and the software was not recognizing my 2nd and 3rd cd's to install 3rd party software, or 2. my cd-rom would not read these cd's. In any case, I ended up with a pretty window interface, no knowledge of how to do anything, and needing some help installing programs. I uninstalled the entire system, have since replaced the CD-burner, and am currently downloading the most recent mandrake 9.1 iso's.
Once I get linux back into my system, I have the following questions that will eventually need to be answered:
What exactly is a compiler? I realize that since almost all the software for linux is "free source" they release the software as code, and it is up to me to compile this on the linux-box. But, I could never find out where the compiler software was on my system, or how to install it. Is there ever such a thing as an "executable" installation? (not necessarily *.exe)
Second, once I get my compiler installed, do all programs have to be installed from a text interface as compared to the GUI?
Which GUI is the best to use with mandrake linux while I'm learning?
Any help is much appreciated! My ultimate goal is to get some basic chat, webbrowsing, word processing capabilities out of my linux box, and how to install basic programs.
If I become proficient enough, I'll build a second PC to be used as a multimedia Linux-Box, and install Myth-TV on it, with a large hard drive and tv-tuner card on it.
I may also convert my currrent computer to be a webserver. Its an AMD 2700+ with 1 gig of PC2700 DDR Ram, 400mhz.
Thanks alot! Sorry for the long length.