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How do I learn?

Posted 09-06-2011 at 05:11 AM by m3rl1n

In my last (b)log I mentioned how fast my family adapted from Windows to Linux, and how time consuming it is to catch-up on Linux command-line jargon, GUI stuff, gizmo's, distro's and what is there not....

I finally discovered a nice website and educational program that will gradually teach me Linux. Nostalgia creeps upon me for what I have read so far. I am talking about Ian Shields LPI exam preperations: Junior Level Linux Administration, found at:

The nice part of this tutorial is that it will guide me step-by-step into Linux space, gradually taking me from the Windows administration to hopefully becoming a certified Linux admin. Yup Certified too - if you're willing to take the exam.

So far I have discovered that Ubuntu is the easiest "step-into" Linux OS for Windows freaks, like I was. I installed other distro's (Slackware, SuSe, and Fedora) but found that those distro's were requiring a bit more understanding of Linux - although all are very clear about what is going to happen. When using a home network with 7 machines attached to it, and no Linux networking knowledge, I suggest give Ubuntu a fair chance. I will hopefully learn about networking in topic 102 of Ian's excellent course.

Kudos to me for also starting to learn programming in C simultaneously. I decided that VB.Net too is to userfriendly. (I programmed 5 years in Visual Basic, mainly nTier Database apps.) I decided to run for C and not C++ or C# due the fact that all C based languages share the same C-fundament. What can possibly be better than to first learn the core (with +/- 30 years of recorded programming history) and than its dialects?
I intuitively surfed to to hapily scream "Bingo" at the expense of my napping wife, lmao!

I am happy with my VB-OOP background. This makes learning C, easier. Well except for the Boolean Algebraic Operators chapter. Daymn! Took me re-reading that chapter about four times before I solved a simple TRUE statement: !(1 && !(0||1))

In my previous (b)log I recognized - somewhat cognitive I admit, that change can be made easily, if you're willing to. I will end this post with saying that my toddler instincts (The Indian Jones Discovery Syndrome) are re-activated. I do discoveries daily which give me a general feeling of content, and I am anxious to continue exploring Linux Space and C, (no pun intended).
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  1. Old Comment
    I have to say IMHO, IBM developerWorks is probably the best resource for picking up the basics. There's all sorts of topics covered if you care to dig around a little.

    I have to disagree with the bit about Ubuntu being easier to migrate to. Based on my experience with it and recent comments in these very blogs I think there are better distros. It'd be interesting if you could update on that particular point in a few weeks.
    Posted 09-06-2011 at 06:37 AM by rich_c rich_c is offline
  2. Old Comment

    Re: Rich C - Ubuntu

    Hi Rich,

    Thx. for the comment.
    I will of course update frequently, as part of my continuous effort to log my new Linux experiences.

    I have been following other blogs in which readers comment on lacking efforts of the "Linux community et al." to promote Linux in such a way that more people will switch to Linux. Many reasons have been offered some reasonable others less. I will refrain from making suggestions based on my experience and spare ya'all my personal opinion. I can only share with you what I feel. Here it comes: I don't care that Linux is not "perfect". I just care for *NOT* having to deal with Microsoft anymore on a personal level! I am convinced that I will succeed in becoming a dedicated Linux Prophet, because I so much believe in it!

    So how did I find Linux?
    I googled: "10 most popular Linux distro's", which brought me to the distro watch website.
    I read the general explanation and the pros/cons of each distro. The Linux Jargon used was confusing, even with my IT background not very inviting.

    I started downloading ISO's. Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, SuSe and Slackware.
    After installation: Slackware and SuSe didn't allow me to see my network computers. (I have no idea yet how to network with Linux). Fedora never booted 100% on any machines from the get go. It got stuck on the welcome logo. When I finally got it to boot properly on an HP Pavilion a6000, I discovered that Novell doesn't allow me to watch movies due MP4 license problems. (Just think for a second like me: I have no idea what to do to get MP4 working, and with 6 kids at home, all in need of their daily dose of Disney fun - it was a quick decision for me, to move on....)

    For a total Linux noob (me), the partially failing installation, and/or discovery that a distro won't do (in an easy way) what I needed it to do, was my main reason to try another distro. This doesn't mean that the installed distro was less good! The easy transition to that particular distro for a newbee was at least to say: not so smooth.

    My overall and personal experience with Ubuntu (Natty's) - so far, is good. This might indeed be a bias judgement due my installation problems and minor disappointments with other distro's. Ubuntu however did it all fluently, even on an old Toshiba Satelite M50 Pro. It took me a while to understand how to get rid of Unity (We prefer the Ubunty Classic GUI). In short: until today Ubuntu has been very stable on our machines and my family loves it.
    Posted 09-07-2011 at 02:56 AM by m3rl1n m3rl1n is offline


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