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Old 08-04-2006, 03:44 PM   #1
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Does anyone ever learn Linux?


Just thought I'd ask if anyone ever learns Linux? If so, how long has it taken you to learn all the bash shell stuff and to be confident with it? Do you feel you could be an administrator on Linux?

I'm very curious.

Old 08-04-2006, 03:47 PM   #2
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The more you use Linux, the more you'll learn. Just don't pop into Windows for everything you want to get done. Try finding out how it can be done in Linux. That's the way I did it, and I'm starting to get around.
Old 08-04-2006, 03:50 PM   #3
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Well, I would guess that Linus Torvalds and the other developers probably know quite a bit.... Also, all the SAs running servers probably know a thing or two.

Seriously, this is a bit like asking if anyone ever learns to drive a car: Some do, some don't.

People typically learn as much about something as they need to or want to. Does anyone ever learn EVERYTHING?? Probably not.

I suspect you have a more basic question in mind that you have not yet put into words......
Old 08-04-2006, 03:55 PM   #4
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They are all brainy!!
Old 08-04-2006, 04:06 PM   #5
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Personally, I never learn Linux but use frequenly my own few brainpaths, my notes library, and a friend that helps figure out the tools how to find out what I need in order to keep my system(s) running, decently.

Regularly, the web tool has a solution (thus keep two systems running in order not to lose web access!). So, a basic advice would be: Instead of excessive Linux training, do frequently exercise web training!

What about Linux nerds, are there? Some of them have perhaps learned Linux?

The more I learn the more I realize I don't know everything!
Old 08-04-2006, 05:41 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by michshelly
They are all brainy!!
What exactly is your point???

It sounds as if you are questioning your ability to learn. In my experience that majority of people that say they cannot learn something are really saying: "I don't want to."
I don't know if this applies to you.......I also don't know anything about your personal goals and ambitions.
Old 08-04-2006, 05:58 PM   #7
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You learn by doing. For years, I had used various *nix systems as an ordinary user, during which time I learned practically nothing about *nix system administration. I could manipulate files and work a text editor, and put together a decent csh script...but it wasn't until I put Linux on my own computer that I started learning how to do anything involved in system administration.

The great thing is that I didn't NEED to learn system administration. A trained monkey could put together a Knoppix based system as well as I could, and the results were good enough for me for months. It's when I experimented with trying to do more advanced things that I started learning "linux system administration". It all started when I wanted to set up a linux file server--before that, my shared files were actually on a Windows 98 machine...
Old 08-04-2006, 06:13 PM   #8
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You learn by doing. You learn first what you need to know and then what you want to know.
Old 08-04-2006, 06:13 PM   #9
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I agree with IsaacKuo in the point that you learn by doing. When I first installed linux I used to connect to the internet with a dial-up connection and what I had was a winmodem that didn't support linux, so I had to find the driver, compile it and install it. As a way of start, it was a bit rough, but I learnt a lot. And though I've learnt a lot in these 2 or 3 years I've been using linux I'm still learning from it, since for me, it's like a surprise box: sometimes I discover things I wouldn't imagine I could do with linux; so I still consider myself a newbie . Lately for example, I've been learning how to write bash scripts and it has been quite an exciting discovery.

P.S.: At michshelly: if you're a newb like me, I'd suggest you reading

Have fun!

Last edited by Hungry ghost; 08-04-2006 at 06:18 PM.
Old 08-04-2006, 06:27 PM   #10
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According to the current issue of Scientific American, it takes about ten years of challenged learning to become a true expert at anything. Non-challenged learning results in something less than expertise. In other words, you have to stretch your abilities and knowledge frequently or you do not progress. Good luck!
Old 08-04-2006, 06:40 PM   #11
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You learn by ... oh, someone already said that.

And it's true. But it might be more accurate to say that you learn by ...
  • First, "something happens." It could be a crisis, or it could be something that you want to try, or it could be a hair-brained idea that popped in your head which you quickly came to regret.
  • Next, "things do not go well." The outcome is not as you expected it would be.
  • Now, and sometimes in sheer panic and sometimes "merely" under great pressure, you learn. Fast.
  • Quite probably, you ask this group. The internet is a fantastic learning resource.
  • It works! You have learned!
  • And the whole process begins again.
Working with Linux will quickly expose you to a lot of issues that, as a Windows "user," you not only never encountered before but never even thought to consider before. A lot of people blame Linux when that first "iron skillet smack in the face" experience happens, but that's not really fair. (Exactly the same puh-wang-g-g-g-gg! experience happens routinely to Windows admins, too!)

You're never, ever going to get to the place where "you know it all." There's just too much to "know." But what experience will teach you is ... how to deal successfully with what you do not know. How to acquire the information. How to plan for contingencies including "things that do not go as expected." How to implement a disaster-recovery plan for your own machine. How to have the discipline to actually do it.

You also learn how to stop being embarrassed or self-conscious about "being a newbie," because you realize that we are all newbies, to some degree or another, no matter how much we know and no matter how much we've used Linux. There is always one more cast-iron skillet out there, ready to whack you in the face and really spoil your plans for the weekend...

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 08-04-2006 at 06:43 PM.
Old 08-04-2006, 07:13 PM   #12
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I am Amey from India. I heard about the Penguine 3 year's ago.
I bought magazine called "Linux For You". That time i wasn't having
PC at home so i was unable to try a small Linux OS which came with
that magazine. But i was a lot curious to know about Linux OS.
My 1st installation was of Red Hat 8.0 and after that i went for Mandrake 9.0 and till now i prefer Mandriva. I bought laptop last
year and this is my first ever personal PC . It was a late to
have a own PC but now i have it. I started with Slackware Linux
on it as a dual boot OS and a alternative to Microsoft Windows OS.
I am still learning it. Due to job and i was busy with Cisco cert
so was not able to find enough time to learn Linux. Now here again
i am learning.

I think best way to learn Linux is to read forums like this 1
which is amazing for newbies and for all other Linux user's. Going
to computer institute and learning Linux is not worth. Download
Linux distro, install it on your PC or download LIVE CD of any
Linux distro and check it's documentation, specially command line
releted info. It is neccesary to know command lines to become an
Linux admin. In Linux all control's are in your hand. So you can
manage it by command's lik BASH commands, shall commands.

I attend monthly Linux meeting at my city. Here we have a group
of Linux users who arrange general meeting every month. You can
visit URL of those guy's > I go there
since 2005 year. And i learn a lot every time. Through such
activities you get more familier with Linux which is OpenSource
OS. And learning Linux is simply a fun ... If you learn it
by the way you want. LPI is an professional certification if
you want to be an Linux admin or etc. There is much to do. By
providing support at forums like this to very newbies you altimately becomes a user & no longer an a newbie. It depends on
indivisual how he/she want to learn Linux. By the way your from
which country? Are there any active Linux users in your country?
I am from INDIA where most users are developer's. Ohh..I am in to
Networking by the way..Hehe..I work on Cisco Router's and Switches
and Wireless WAN products. Alright then,


Last edited by sco1984; 08-04-2006 at 07:20 PM.
Old 08-04-2006, 07:49 PM   #13
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I really didn't have much trouble learning Linux, but then I came to it with decades (yes, multiple) of experience in various Unix flavors (as an application developer, not a sysadm).

I still had (and still HAVE) lots to learn about Linux though! But knowledge did come quickly after the initial shock of feeling like a total idiot. I can now get buy quite well running Linux. Not to say I don't have my share of problems, only that I am usually able to figure them out pretty quickly. Usually. These forums have been one of the most wonderful things I ever stumbled on to.

I'm the type of person who is happiest when learning. Doesn't matter if I need to do it, I just like learning about it. Do I need a complex LVM/partitioning setup at home? No, but I certainly learned by setting one up. Do I really need Squid, Samba, a Socks server, etc.? No, but learning is fun.

Another thing I do sometimes is when somebody asks a question on these forums. I may have no experience to offer help, but I'll try installing what they're messing with and see if I can recreate and/or solve the problem. If I come up with a solution it may help them out. It certainly helps me out by learning something myself. If I have the time and an interest in the problem I happily do this (of course I'm not volunteering to be everybody's "test ground" though!)

You won't learn Linux from books in my experience. I've checked a few out from the library, and enjoyed reading them, but I don't actually own any myself. They are good for a short term knowledge boost or introduction to something new. But long term retention will come from messing with it yourself, not from reading about someone else messing with it.
Old 08-04-2006, 07:56 PM   #14
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Oh, I forgot to mention that you'll learn a lot more if you're not afraid to screw something up, go ahead and screw something up, and then try to fix it.
Old 08-04-2006, 08:39 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by michshelly

Just thought I'd ask if anyone ever learns Linux? If so, how long has it taken you to learn all the bash shell stuff and to be confident with it? Do you feel you could be an administrator on Linux?

I'm very curious.

I've been using Linux since 1997, these days am answering more
questions than I'm asking, but I am still learning new stuff every day;
just think of Linux (and the Unix way of doing things) as a brain-gym.
It's good for your mind :}

I don't think that there's such a thing as a "finite state of knowledge
acquired" regarding Linux, since it's a moving target.



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