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Old 03-25-2012, 02:38 AM   #1
jasonhrmeier
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my first linuxquestion.org post


Hello everybody,

I'm coming from Windows as a fairly experienced user of hardware and software. I've dabbled in Linux and have even installed it a few times but never completely immersed myself in the OS. I'm in school for computer science and taking an Operating Systems class this semester and of course, the class OS is Linux. The language seems completely different when talking about Linux.

For example, in Linux we don't "install" programs correct?
We compile the program, then the executibles are available for use whether it be a GUI or simply a command line tool that we may choose to run.

I have some big projects coming up and I'm sure I will need some help so I wish to say thanks in advance to any patient and helpful people I may find here.

Jason
 
Old 03-25-2012, 02:56 AM   #2
Dark_Helmet
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Welcome to LQ.

The terminology is a little different. Mostly because there's less "gloss" between you (the user) and the internal goings-on. That's not to say that you need to be a computer scientist to use Linux, but programming terms pop up more often than you would encounter with Windows or Mac.

I'm sure you'll struggle with it a little bit (just being honest), but ultimately, as a computer science student, I think you'll find Linux far easier to get your hands dirty and quickly than you would with Windows.

Now, about that "install" thing. The term "install" is applicable for Linux as well. So yes, you install software. My understanding of the term has always been "the process of integrating software into the overall scheme of the operating system to make it generally available to users." Or something similar to that. To "install" a program in Linux, you simply copy files (binaries/executables, documentation, configuration files, etc.) to standard places within the filesystem--much the same thing that Windows programs will do when installed to "Program Files" or elsewhere.

You certainly can compile software from source. That's a method to create the binaries, but compiling software will not install the binaries.

Though, virtually every distribution comes with a package manager. The package manager allows a user to download and install pre-compiled software for their platform in one step. This is as close to a Windows-style install as you will encounter.
 
Old 03-25-2012, 03:27 AM   #3
culaterout
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Well most schools in America the last time I was in college wouldn't even acknowledge Linux...The idea was it was a toy..

Surprised any School or College seems to grasp the idea of Linux... They were trying to bring in Suse Linux in...

Most I would try to understand is Manual pages and Package Managers with so man variations of Linux hierarchy, hard to tell? What linux server or Distro may ever gain a foothold over Windows Servers or OS's there has been great advancement in every area since 1994 desktop...

I would say Linux as far as Desktop Management seems need to find a new route to provide to the masses with changes in Gnome 3 and Ubuntu Unity..

Now I use to see MIT and Cal Tech interested in Linux so they taught how to build a kernel and OS.. First semester courses..

I find MIT is more interested in Social Engineering and Programming the computer to be human in responses. Why we moved away from the engineering of New platforms is beyond me other then Steve Jobs and IPAD. Seems most colleges are either steering away from that idea because of invention or lack of thinking outside the lines....


Either way the profit margin seems to focus on Social tools such as face-book , myspace and to provide a seamless experience with tv and music downloads. Other avenues to consider are Android and it effect on the desktop.. With so many apps it is hard to divide a line between a computer and phone. May be more of a problem with phone tablet and asus fonepad....

Well Good luck,
 
Old 03-25-2012, 05:02 AM   #4
Knightron
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You can certainly compile programs like you describe, but on most distributions of Gnu/Linux, the usual way of installing is using the distributions package manager. The package manager to my knowledge is always a command line tool, but there are gui tools available, such as Yast and Synaptic, which utilize the package managers in a more 'user friendly' way.
You are using a Ubuntu which uses the package manager, apt, or to a lesser (but more literal) extent, dpkg. The standard way of installing software in Ubuntu is to open the command line, and 'sudo apt-get install foo', foo being the software you want to install. You can also use Synaptic like i mentioned earlier which will use a gui to do what i described. Lastly, different jargon tends to be thrown around when it comes to software on operating systems; and i think they're basically the same, but here's what i've observed.
Windows = Programs
Mac OsX = Applications
Gnu/Linux = Packages

The only difference between these that i can think of is that a Package is just one piece of software, while a Program/Application is the piece of software + the dependencies. (On most gnu/linux distros, the package manager will get the dependencies and install them too so the software will work correctly)

I am not a software creator, and my profession involves nothing to do with computers, and i've only been using Gnu/Linux for a year now, so someone please correct me if i've the facts wrong.
 
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:48 AM   #5
yancek
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Find out which distribution and version of Linux you are using. I've read a number of posts from people in your situation who are using very outdated Linux distriubtions. Most release new versions pretty regularly, some as often as every six months. Also, if you know the distribution and version and have problems/questions, you will get a more useful response by using that in a web search for answers or posting at a forum.
 
Old 03-25-2012, 12:33 PM   #6
jasonhrmeier
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yancek View Post
Find out which distribution and version of Linux you are using. I've read a number of posts from people in your situation who are using very outdated Linux distriubtions. Most release new versions pretty regularly, some as often as every six months. Also, if you know the distribution and version and have problems/questions, you will get a more useful response by using that in a web search for answers or posting at a forum.

input from command prompt:

cat /etc/*-release



output:

DISTRIB_ID=Ubuntu
DISTRIB_RELEASE=11.10
DISTRIB_CODENAME=oneiric
DISTRIB_DESCRIPTION="Ubuntu 11.10"
 
Old 03-25-2012, 02:45 PM   #7
yancek
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Quote:
DISTRIB_ID=Ubuntu
DISTRIB_RELEASE=11.10
That's pretty current. Ubuntu has many millions of users and their own forums so you should be able to get a lot of help here or at their forums.
 
Old 03-25-2012, 07:54 PM   #8
chrism01
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Given that Linux is (effectively) a free version of Unix, which is primarily a CLI server system, you generally find that most progs exist at the cli, but may also be invoked by a GUI over the top; see the Pkg Mgr mentioned above.
In some cases you can even invoke a GUI tool from the CLI

Anyway, consider Linux as a new OS, not a different version of MSWin http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm. That way you won't make MS based assumptions about the way things 'should' happen.

You may find this a good (cli oriented) tutorial http://rute.2038bug.com/index.html.gz
You'll also find lots of books/manuals at www.linuxtopia.org.

If you're really a Comp. Sci. person, I think you'll find it interesting and possibly addictive; you have been warned
 
  


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