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Old 04-25-2011, 05:02 PM   #31
Hufflepuff
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MTK358, I confess myself a bit timid of the process of partitioning. Partitioning basically means I block off a section of my hard drive for an exclusive use, right? Such that if I had a 100 GB hard drive and partitioned 10 GB for something, and I filled up the rest with 90 gigs of files and tried to download more, it wouldn't let me -- it wouldn't use that 10 GB I set aside. And also, I could format just the 90 gig part, while leaving the 10 gig part alone, yes? Can partitioning be done in Linux with the command line or do I need to download something? 'Cause Arch, which I'm about to try the Live CD of, probably won't have such a program by default, what with being minimalist and all.

Thanks for the command info. I presume ps and top both list human-readable terms ("firefox") as well as the IDs (#4567), correct?

snowpine, I only ever backup un-replacable (or difficult-to-replace) files, such as text files I myself have created, images it'd be a pain to re-locate, save files from games, etc. Why would I ever bother backing up, for instance, Firefox? Or GIMP? Or GOM Player? That'd just waste up space and time.

Another question, though -- let's say I partition /home. Does that mean that all the files I'd ever want to keep between distros, I'd have to have in /home (or a subdirectory, obviously)? Though I suppose I could partition multiple folders, yeah? No sweat with the Gnome Go thing, I'll look it up somewhere.

Heh, I'm a keyboard kinda guy, too. I said I've only ever used Windows but that wasn't entirely true -- back in the day I used DOS, as well as Tandy's proprietary disk-based OS. I'm a command-line, hotkey kinda guy. The mouse is wonderful for, for instance, scrolling through web pages and obviously as an interface device for games, but I've never been a point-and-click kinda guy; always been a keyboard kinda guy.

"Super" is the equivalent of the Windows/Cmd Key, right?

Arcane, yeah, kinda like that. Only more like this.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 05:03 PM   #32
snowpine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hufflepuff View Post
Also, what's the main differences between Arch and ArchBang? The fact that ArchBang uses "a preconfigured openbox environment" doesn't mean anything to me (it's all Chinese to me). If Arch is already minimalist, what's the main purpose of ArchBang?
Honestly in my opinion, configuring the system using the Beginner's Guide is an important part of the "Arch experience."

https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Beginners%27_Guide

For this reason I can't really recommend ArchBang; I respect the goals of the project but it just isn't for me.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 05:10 PM   #33
snowpine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hufflepuff View Post
snowpine, I only ever backup un-replacable (or difficult-to-replace) files, such as text files I myself have created, images it'd be a pain to re-locate, save files from games, etc. Why would I ever bother backing up, for instance, Firefox? Or GIMP? Or GOM Player? That'd just waste up space and time.

Another question, though -- let's say I partition /home. Does that mean that all the files I'd ever want to keep between distros, I'd have to have in /home (or a subdirectory, obviously)? Though I suppose I could partition multiple folders, yeah? No sweat with the Gnome Go thing, I'll look it up somewhere.
For most users a backup of /home is sufficient.
If there are system config files you want to save, they're mostly in /etc.
And if you do web development you might have stuff in /var.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hufflepuff View Post
"Super" is the equivalent of the Windows/Cmd Key, right?
Correct; "super" is also known as the "windows key."
 
Old 04-25-2011, 05:11 PM   #34
tiger1692000
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Ubuntu is great for newbies i also like Fedora
 
Old 04-25-2011, 05:21 PM   #35
MTK358
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@Hufflepuff

Partitining isn't scary or mysterious. You're just splitting the drive into separate chunks, each of which can be treated as a separate device.

You can have up to 4 "primary" partitions. To overcome this, there's also the concept of "extended" partitions, which can contain a practically limitless amount of "logical" partitions. Note that you cannot store anythin directly in an extended partition, you have to fill it with logical partitions.

If you aer going to only have Arch on this system, I'd recommend having 3 partitions. One for / (root), one of /home (so you can change distros and keep your data), and one for swap (Windows uses a file for virtual memory, but Linux uses a separate partition for it since it's faster).

Also, it's important to know how the partitions are named. In Linux, SATA drives are called /dev/sdX, where "X" is a letter. The letters are in alphabetical order and sorted in the sequence that the drives were connected. The partitions are /dev/sdXY, where "X" is the letter as previously mentioned and "?" is a number indicating the partition. Similarly, IDE drives and partitons are known as /dev/hdXY.

I'd make the swap partition about the same size as your RAM (unless you have a small amount or RAM), but I don't know about the root and home ones. You'll have to choose carefully, becasue if you fill your root partiton but your home has a lot of free space, you're going to have to go through a lot of trouble to fix it. Maybe someone else could suggest good sizes. Since I don't plan on removing Arch, I don't have a separate /home partition, so I didn't have to make that choice.

Last edited by MTK358; 04-25-2011 at 05:22 PM.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 05:28 PM   #36
MTK358
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Also, I wanted to mention that Linux handles drives very differently than Widnows. You cannot just plug it in and reference it with something like a drive letter.

Instead, you have to "mount" it to a directory in your filesystem. After mounting, the directory will reflect the contents of the drive. Note that it's also extremely important to "unmount" before unplugging a drive (NEVER unplug an external mass storage device from a Linux box without unmounting first). This is because Linux often doesn't write files to the filesystem immediately, and instead temporarily stores them in RAM. When you unmount, Linux automatically writes these cached files so that the files will be on the drive once it's removed.

Also, you shouldn't manually write anything to the device files (i.e. /dev/sda1, etc.). If you do, it may corrupt the filesystem, since these files are basically portals to the raw bytes on the disk itself, without any abstractions.

Last edited by MTK358; 04-25-2011 at 05:30 PM.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 06:13 PM   #37
bret381
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The link you had above : Your copied link is openbox. Crunchbang is Ubuntu using openbox pretty much. Archbang uses the same window manager. I do see snowpines point of the arch beginners guide being an important part of the Arch experience. I was using arch for a long time and put archbang on my laptop just because it was faster to setup. However the beginners guide will get you familiar with how the OS works. So I will still put archbang on the table, but don't skip out on reading the beginners guide. This part is very important.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 06:58 PM   #38
Hufflepuff
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MTK358, how and when do I partition? During installation?

Also, Windows 2000 is already installed on my laptop. Like I said, I got it off eBay, it's ten years old an a piece of crap, but I'm not doing any intense computing and I got it for under $100, so I don't care (mainly I just want internet access, hence a laptop instead of a desktop, so I can take it around places). Can I utterly wipe out my hard drive (and thus Windows 2000) during the Linux installation process, when I'm presumably partitioning and so forth? Or do I have to manually uninstall 2000 first?

Thanks for the warning about unmounting. In Windows I always use the Safely Remove Hardware thingy, so I'll be okay remembering to unmount. However, what happens if I'm running Linux and the system crashes or my battery runs out while I've got my external hard drive running? Is that as bad as unplugging it without unmounting, or if I leave it plugged in and start Linux up again, will it be alright?
 
Old 04-25-2011, 07:03 PM   #39
MrCode
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Quote:
how and when do I partition? During installation? […] Can I utterly wipe out my hard drive (and thus Windows 2000) during the Linux installation process, when I'm presumably partitioning and so forth? Or do I have to manually uninstall 2000 first?
Yes; the installer for whatever Linux distro you choose should automatically detect whatever partitions are already present on the disk (this includes Windows/NTFS partitions), and typically you can choose to do a "side-by-side" installation, wherein you can shrink your Windows partition (assuming it's not totally full) and install Linux into another partition(s), or you can just create a totally new layout with only Linux partitions, thus totally overwriting any other operating systems installed.

EDIT:

Quote:
what happens if I'm running Linux and the system crashes or my battery runs out while I've got my external hard drive running? Is that as bad as unplugging it without unmounting, or if I leave it plugged in and start Linux up again, will it be alright?
AFAIK as long as you weren't doing anything I/O intensive with that drive when the crash happened, your data should be okay. Although I suppose it doesn't hurt to check filesystem integrity with fsck afterwards.

Last edited by MrCode; 04-25-2011 at 07:07 PM.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 07:10 PM   #40
Hufflepuff
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That's awesome! Microsoft, what with their philosophy of vendor lock-in, makes uninstallation such a hassle. It's nice that Linux distros (all? is this a default feature of Linux itself?) can automatically wipe Windows out for you.

The laptop, as I said, is used and I got it off eBay. There's absolutely no files on it I want to keep; I want to utterly format the hard drive. Will I be able to do that during the installation process, too?

Oh, and bret, yeah, I've decided to forgoe Arch. I didn't realize Arch has no GUI by default. Although I want minimalism and customization, I do want to get started here ASAP, since my laptop came today. With Arch, you essentially completely customly build the OS yourself, right? Whereas ArchBang already has a GUI so you can just load it up and start doing stuff. So I'm gonna try the ArchBang Live CD, and see if I like it.

Hey, quick question -- what's Damn Small Linux? It's like, 50 MB, right? Is it still a full OS? Like, I can download anything and do whatever I want? How does it compare to ArchBang?
 
Old 04-25-2011, 07:16 PM   #41
MrCode
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Quote:
With Arch, you essentially completely customly build the OS yourself, right?
Pretty much…Arch tends to adhere to what's commonly called the "K.I.S.S." principle, or "Keep It Simple, Stupid!", with the idea being that implementation/underlying architecture should be as simple as possible (without making it ridiculous of course ). Administration/maintenance is very much left up to the user.

I'd recommend you take a look at this to see what is meant precisely by "simplicity" WRT Arch.

Hope this all helps.
 
Old 04-25-2011, 07:18 PM   #42
snowpine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hufflepuff View Post
Hey, quick question -- what's Damn Small Linux? It's like, 50 MB, right? Is it still a full OS? Like, I can download anything and do whatever I want? How does it compare to ArchBang?
Damn Small was an influential distro in its day, but is now sadly obsolete.

If you're looking for a super-light-weight distro for very old hardware (such as a Windows-2000-era laptop) the top 3 these days seem to be Puppy, SliTaz, and Tiny Core. Any of those three should run well with as little as 256mb of ram!
 
Old 04-25-2011, 09:55 PM   #43
Hufflepuff
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The ArchBang live CD worked, but it's clearly way too intensive for my crappy used laptop. I'm gonna try Tiny Core Linux next.

My wireless card is a PCMCIA D-Link Air 650. A few years ago I tried an Ubuntu Live CD and tried using the card and it wouldn't detect it. Figuring it's not gonna be autodetected in whatever distro I end up going with, I googled and found this...

http://www.focusresearch.com/gregor/dwl-650/

To summarize, to get my exact card working, it says...
1. Add some information to /etc/pcmcia/conf:

card "D-Link DWL-650"
manfid 0x0156, 0x0002
bind "wvlan_cs"

(In my file, this is around line 280, between the entries for "D-Link DE-650" and "DynaLink L10C Ethernet".)
2. Run 'netconf' (the network configuration part of linuxconf) and under Basic Host information add an adaptor left otherwise blank but with 'wvlan0' filled in as the interface name.

He did this with Red Hat 7.0. Will this presumably work with any Linux system? Will it work while running a Live CD? Also, um, how exactly do I add info to "/etc/pcmcia/conf?" How do I access that...folder? File?

In case I need a driver, I went ahead and did "lspci | grep -i net" while live CDing ArchBang. It gave me this readout...
00:12.0 Ethernet Controller: Intel Corporation 82557/8/9/0/1 Ethernet Pro 100 (rev 08)
02:00.0 Ethernet Controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltc. RTL8180L 802.11b MAC (rev 20)

If I do need a driver, how might that information help me obtain one?
 
Old 05-05-2011, 12:13 PM   #44
peter1234
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Hi Hufflepuff,

Basically there are approx 3 big distributions RedHat, Slackware and Debian (they all started around 1993 give or take), pretty much
all the rest are based on one off the above distributions. However it doesn't mean the spinoff(s) look/"work" same as what it is based on.
have a look at the "distributions timeline" pic in "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Linux_distributions"

The "main differences" (as for a newcomer) bitween the above 3 is how they install/remove apps .....

I would recommend Zenwalk linux,
It is a "minimalist" distributions with an ok gui.
Distribution makers only include one app per task, so like you said you will not get 4 text editers ect.
The distribution fit in an CD (approx 500-600mb iso).
They have internet App Repo so you can all any extra app you want.
It runs quite ok (for me atleast) on a 1.1 Ghz amd with 512Mb ram.
Wifi supp is quite ok (a friend, have a laptop with an athros wifi card and it worked on 1 login after install)

I am using Zenwalk 6.4 (ver 7.0 is out) it is a 32 bit os (I don't think they do a 64bit any time soon).
it is based on Slackware.

hope this is helpfull.
 
  


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