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Old 01-14-2005, 01:01 AM   #1
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Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Belmont County, Ohio
Distribution: Mandrake 10.1
Posts: 1

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Unhappy New to Linux and can't do anything useful, I need a user's guide for the clueless

I'm trying to get away from Microsoft products, I've got a dual boot system win98/Mandrake 10.1. I can't do anything in the Linux, can't reach the rest of my network, don't know the paths to all the rest of my stuff on my other computers, need to find and install an IRC client and Yahoo messenger. I need a simple guide for the clueless (me). There is a firewall installed in the LInux partition that I have no idea how to disable (It's redundant, my router already has one) I'm told that the firewall is keeping me from seeing the rest of the network. I'm completely ignorant on the subject of Linux and in desperate need of help, all the bookstores I've visited have only Redhat Linux books, and those are way too technical for what I want. I know this is far simpler than most people would lead one to believe and that is the kind of user's guide I'm looking for. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I can't get away from Microsoft crap til I can do my thing in Linux, at which point all Microsoft garbage will be purged from my system.
Old 01-14-2005, 01:23 AM   #2
Registered: Nov 2004
Location: Spokane, WA
Distribution: Debian 6.0
Posts: 369

Rep: Reputation: 30
Mandrake is about the simplest distro to learn. If your using KDE its almost the same as windows with point and click.
Old 01-14-2005, 01:36 AM   #3
Registered: Feb 2002
Location: /usr/home
Distribution: Ubuntu / Gentoo / Whatever
Posts: 67

Rep: Reputation: 15
welcome aboard!

First of all, i know it seems daunting. I came from solely windows myself, and didnt get into linux untill they started it in school. Most book stores have only Red Hat around here too. I have heard that Mandrake is great for beginners. Check Amazon or your favorite online book store. Truthfully, those Red Hat books are how i got started.


thats a link to Gaim, which handles AIM, ICQ and others.

but first, you have to get your network settings configured.
It will take a little bit of work to get your network up and running, and able to browse your windows computers.

the firewall thing...your talking about two different kinds of firewall. Hardware and software. Not really redundant, but rather, more secure. However, i think you'll have to disable it to use Samba, i'm not sure, but when you get to that point you'll find lots of posts around here about that very thing.

first place i'd to amazon and get myself a manual on it. They walk you through quite a bit, and give you an idea of how to use your system. I found a SAMS Teach yourself Mandrake in 24 hours, but your right, for some reason most of the books I've seen for new people are built around using Red Hat. You'll find that there are many similarities between the two though. While some directories may be different, and preinstalled packages may vary, commands and underlying functionality are markedly similar between many distrobutions.

if you run into something technical that you don't understand...well we are here for you!

anyways, I would start by looking around for a book. I installed SuSe first my first time, but switched to Red Hat because of the number of books available on it.

Also, in the upper right hand corner under Main Menu, you'll see Book Reviews. you may find something there.

hope i at least pointed you in the right direction.

Last edited by sphynx; 01-14-2005 at 01:38 AM.
Old 01-14-2005, 05:31 AM   #4
LQ Addict
Registered: Jul 2002
Location: East Centra Illinois, USA
Distribution: Debian stable
Posts: 5,908

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When I made the switch, the tutorial that got me started (and whetted my appetitie to learn more) whas the "Newbie's Linux Manual". It's still availabe for download; just google it up.
From there, I progressed to Lame and Rute's.
Now, I'm about half-competent. There's still much more to learn. It's an adventure. I haven't had this much fun since I ....
Well, that's none of your business.
Old 01-14-2005, 05:39 AM   #5
Registered: Nov 2003
Location: austria
Distribution: debian
Posts: 667

Rep: Reputation: 30
there's the linux doc project at for a list of howtos and quite a lot of sites on the net with useful information about linux.

i suggest reading at least a crash course about linux or better buy a book about using linux. if you don't want to do anything fancy, just getting a linux distribution and setting it up besides your m$ will be a good start.

sl mritch.
Old 01-14-2005, 06:11 AM   #6
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Isles of Man & Wight
Distribution: See signature
Posts: 548

Rep: Reputation: 40

You might finnd some real basics at where we are trying to build a basis 101 for people new to linux. IIRC you should find basics like setting up and sending an email, writing and printing a letter, surfing the net, and there should be one specifically for Mandrake.

Anyway do a little searching here for things such as 'mandrake firewall' and read some of the questions and answers. if you still have specific questions post back here and we will try to help you.
Old 01-14-2005, 06:20 AM   #7
Registered: Jan 2004
Location: Lake Bluff, IL
Distribution: Fedora 8
Posts: 117

Rep: Reputation: 15

I came from windows about a year ago, and when I first started Linux I was like, OK, what now?
Well, I don't know about your distro, but my Fedora distro comes with Gaim and X-chat (an IRC client)
But, just like, 2 days ago, I found out a real easy way to install programs.
I used to be clueless about it, but now I can just type in the terminal

yum install *program name*
And it will automatically install. Try it out!
Oh, and to get to the terminal, just go to the menu>system tools> terminal

and you need to become root first

[hayden@localhost ~]$ su
Have fun!

(By the way, my yahoo is listed on this forum, if you wanna chat with me any time )


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