Originally posted by zeroz52
Hey all I'm new to Slackware (10.2) and want to do some "tweaking/optimizing" of my system.
I'm worried I'll screw something up
Totally different tact than the other replies (though they can all still be used with my idea). If you are running Slackware Dual-boot, change to triple-boot. If Slackware is all that you have, change to dual boot. The other distro to install? Slackware!!! DON'T share anything (partitions) between the two Slackware installs.
Now you are all set. You've got Slackware (1) for your everyday computer. You've got Slackware (2) for your, "Hey, I'm gonna try this crazy tweak/optimization idea out, and if it doesn't work, I'll just re-install and lose nothing" computer.
This is one of the best way to go about tweaking. You can boot between the two for comparisons. You aren't worried about breaking anything, because repairs are only a re-install away. Also, you aren't wondering so much' "Is this REALLY faster, or is it just my imagination?" You have a stock install to compare to.
There are more benefits. Did you break your installation? No need for a Rescue CD. You can boot the working install, and a little bit of mount (and maybe chroot) magic later, you are back to working. Want more benefits?
You can keep one as a "clean" install so that packages built for others are more likely to actually work for them.
You can test out version upgrades without worry.
You can learn kernel compiling with less worry (one of your systems should always be working).
You can test new software versions out without worrying so much ("Hey, wonder if that Xorg CVS is any better on my system")
You aren't afraid to try out BIG changes ("Someone said recompiling glibc for i686 is a good idea," or " whould Slackware run better if I recompiled EVERY package i686, and used 2.6 kernel headers?")
You feel more comfortable removing packages ("Do I really need that bison package")
You aren't worried about not running services ("Can I safely 'chmod -x etc/rc.d/rc.portmap'?")
You have a place to build new packages ("Is this program going to honor 'DESTDIR=' or am I gonna get a mess in my / ?")
So, in summary, the quickest way to learn about tweaking/optimizing Slackware is to have an install that you don't care about. No specific stuff for you, but you will learn much nore quickly if you know that any mistakes can be fixed by re-installing. A side-benefit is that you will learn to install Slackware VERY quickly.