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Old 10-15-2008, 08:19 AM   #1
Jahgro
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Slackware fears!


Ok, so I currently run openSUSE on my PC, it's easy, clean, and I don't have to think to use it. I don't want that in an operating system. I want to understand my OS, I was told then Slackware is what I am looking for.

I have it downloaded and everything, my problem is that initial leap. So I'm going to start of with a few basic questions that will hopefully calm those fears.

1. Is Slackware programmer friendly? I know this is probably a dumb question, and it probably is, however that is my main need in an OS.

2. I heard Slackware does not have a package manager. Would a person with no previous experience be able to learn this system relatively easy?

3. My wife is a windows user. She will not switch to Linux for anything (I've tried). Will I be able to make Slackware's grub or lilo recognize my windows drive? I've never had to do this manually, All the other distro's did it automatically.

That is all my questions for now. Thanks!

-Jason
 
Old 10-15-2008, 08:43 AM   #2
brianL
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1: Yes. If you do a full install you'll get just about everything a programmer needs: the full GCC, Perl, Python. Lisp, tcl/tk, Ruby, and more.
2: Some users use pkgtool, others slapt-get, which is similar to Debian/Ubuntu's apt-get. If you really want to learn, it's not too difficult.
3: Yes. I've only used lilo, but it does recognise Windows or any other previously installed OS partitions.

Try it, it doesn't bite.

Last edited by brianL; 10-15-2008 at 08:48 AM.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 08:46 AM   #3
Hangdog42
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Welcome to LQ!

1) Slackware is as programmer friendly as any other distro. You might need to install your favorite tools, but that isn't likely too hard.

2) Slackware does have a package manager (pkgtool) but what it doesn't do is manage dependencies. If you ask me, that is the way it should be. I don't want some automated monstrosity making decisions for me on what should be installed. What you do want to investigate is Slackbuilds.org and the associated sbopkg tool. For software not in Slackbuilds.org, src2pkg is indispensable (at least until you learn to write your own package scripts).

3) Yes, Slackware will likely recognize your Windows drive and the install will automatically set up a LILO entry for Windows for dual booting. At least is has on my machines where I dual boot with XP. Vista may be a different problem. Have your wife try the KDE environment, it is close enough to Windows that she likely won't be lost.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 09:18 AM   #4
hitest
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Further to these excellent posts I also suggest that you read the sticky posts that are at the top of this forum, they will guide you as you prepare to install Slackware.
Also read the Slackware book. Preparation is key for Slackware.

http://www.slackbook.org/

Welcome to the official Slackware forum:-)
 
Old 10-15-2008, 09:43 AM   #5
allend
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Quote:
2: Some users use pkgtool, others slapt-get, which is similar to Debian/Ubuntu's apt-get.
and some of us use slackpkg, a command line tool for updating official Slackware packages.

If you are can do programming, then you understand the need to RTFM and can edit text files. I feel another happy Slacker coming!
 
Old 10-15-2008, 09:55 AM   #6
H_TeXMeX_H
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1) Definitely.
2) You may have to compile things from source, but that should not be too hard, if you have problems doing that use a Slackbuild, usually from slackbuilds.org
3) I think it should, if not, you can easily set it up to find it. You can use either the default lilo or grub from the /extra directory, I prefer grub.

Indeed as hitest says you should at least read through the installation part of the slackbook it will save you a lot of frustration. Yes, it will boot you to the command line, and this may scare you, but if you read the slackbook or heck even if you read what it says on the screen right above the prompt it will tell you want to do.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 10:12 AM   #7
brianL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allend View Post
and some of us use slackpkg
Yes, me included. But I don't use slapt-get.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 10:24 AM   #8
keefaz
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It is THE distro for programming
I mean, no -dev packages, the header files are nearly always included with every package
(and in the right places)
 
Old 10-15-2008, 10:45 AM   #9
Alien Bob
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As a programmer you will grow to love the total control over your Slackware system. Slackware excels in the transparency of the OS (it's configuration files are editable by hand and well-documented) and it's stability (custom software patches are applied as sparingly as possible).

When installing Slackware, the setup program will detect your Windows partition and add it to the LILO boot screen as a selectable boot option.

Eric
 
Old 10-15-2008, 10:50 AM   #10
slackass
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"My wife is a windows user. She will not switch to Linux for anything (I've tried)."

I used to have that problem, until:
One day she had a bunch of friends over here trying to edit family photos on XP. I let them use my box with ShowFoto on it and the next thing ya know, all of them suddenly wanted Linux.
It seems the one thing most women have in common is there passion for family photos.

You have to shell out big bucks for Windows software that will compete with the "free" ShoFoto and Gimp...
 
Old 10-15-2008, 10:54 AM   #11
niels.horn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahgro View Post
My wife is a windows user. She will not switch to Linux for anything (I've tried).
My wife used to be a Windows user.
She is extremely intelligent (into linguistics, teaches at the university), but does not want to know how a computer works. She needs simple and safe access to the internet, e-mail, writes scientific papers, etc. She is not interested in games on her computer.

I installed Slackware 12 on her computer, with KDE, and for her everything works perfectly.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 11:42 AM   #12
niels.horn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slackass View Post
It seems the one thing most women have in common is there passion for family photos.
You're right, forgot about this part...
My wife also loves Gimp, something she didn't have with Windows!

I wrote a small system in PHP so that she can access all (20.000+) our pictures through her browser, index keywords, search, etc.
 
Old 10-15-2008, 01:03 PM   #13
alkos333
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Jason,

I'm glad you were able to find the right place to ask questions. If you have any more questions, you can always find in either your STAT 350 or CSCI 480 class . Plus, I gave you my contact info, so don't hesitate to email/message.

Good luck with installation!
 
Old 10-15-2008, 01:04 PM   #14
astrogeek
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More on wives and Linux...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahgro View Post
My wife is a windows user. She will not switch to Linux for anything (I've tried).
In my case, the kids inherited all the older hardware over time which was always installed with Linux - and they grew up loving the penguin! My wife always got the 'new' desktop preloaded with M$. But over time she kept hitting the "How do I ...?" wall and shelling out $$$ for each new thing - not to mention viri, worms and other problems. She finally ASKED (cautiously) if I could set up Linux on her machine!

We set her up dual boot W2K and Mandriva at the time and she loved it! When she saw that now she got answers to her "How do I...?" questions, instead of sighs and blank stares, she began to love her computer again!

My son wrote an assortment of C/C++ and PHP tools, launchers and special task handlers for her over time and now she is the envy of all her friends!

Recently moved her from Mandriva to Slack painlessly! All smiles!

My daughter's husbands will never experience this with their wives!
 
Old 10-15-2008, 04:51 PM   #15
Jahgro
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Thanks for all of your help! The switch was surprisingly easy. I have never had such an easy install. I have actually had more trouble with some of these other "user friendly" distro's. I actually had a small hiccup with connecting to the internet, but with a small nudge from alkos333, that was fixed also.

Thanks, looking forward to many good years on Slackware lol.

-Jason
 
  


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