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Old 03-21-2004, 05:08 PM   #1
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: N.C USA
Distribution: Fedora Core 4
Posts: 65

Rep: Reputation: 15
Question Whats The Skinny On Installing Stuff

Ok this has to be the most annoying damn thing in the world...
I feel like such a noob at computers now that I'm attempting
Linux. Could someone please give me the run down of installing
stuff you download....

I mean take it back to basics, Explain the packages,explain the RPMs
then walk us through an install with some command lines and such.
I am spinning in circles here.

This all started with adobe acrobat reader, then FireFox, so on and so
on. I want to simply create a shortcut on the desktop to the firefox
executable but it seems like I have to do the chicken dance in order
for that to happen.. Please explain this installing process with tarballs,rpms,zipped packages etc im at a loss...Thanks guys
Old 03-21-2004, 05:12 PM   #2
LQ Newbie
Registered: Nov 2003
Posts: 25

Rep: Reputation: 15

Not sure if I will be able to help, but what is your system info?
(linux distro, kernel version mainly)

Do you already have it installed, and you are trying to do the linking now?

As for packages, its really Distribution specific.
Slackware favours .tgz and uses installpkg command.
Debian has .deb packages. (apt-get too)
Redhat uses RPM's.
Gentoo uses the oh so friendly emerge command (and portage tree)

All depends on the distro as far as packages go =)

Again, Im not amazing with linux, but I will help if I can.

Old 03-21-2004, 05:30 PM   #3
Registered: Jan 2004
Location: /dev/random
Distribution: Gentoo amd64, CrunchBang amd64
Posts: 350

Rep: Reputation: 32
Okay: I'll try to be distro-neutral (but knowing what distribution you use would be great).

To create desktop icons:
If you use KDE, right clicking and dragging the 'K' menu icon to the desktop should create a windows-style menu for creating a short-cut. If it does not have a menu icon, try this: [list=1][*]Right click on the desktop[*]Click on the create new shortcut (or something similiar)[*]Put the path to FireFox in the appropriate box[*]Pick an icon (FireFox should come with a few in the same directory as the executable)[*]Name the shortcut[*]Hit 'Okay'[/list=1]

That should be right, but its a while since I used KDE

If you use GNOME the process is similar.

If you use something else, try KDE or GNOME -- they're more user friendly

RPM's are easy to install (more or less). You probably need 'root' access to install them. The usual process is:

Password: <Your root password>
rpm -Uvh <package name>
<blah blah blah, installing installing>
The new program usually has a man page (accessible by man <program name> ) and installs into the system "PATH" (just type its name to run it).

The other forms of package management (Slackware .tgz's, .deb's, whatever) install similarly, check your documentation.

Compiling from source is slightly more difficult:
First, extract the tarball

tar -xvzf <package> for .tar.gz or .tgz
tar -xvjf <package> for .tar.bz2

Then cd to the new directory.

Then type:

password: <root password>
make install
(To get out of su)

This should install the program and usually documentation.

As with all things, read the readme files and install documentation - Its not as daunting as it looks .

Sorry if this is pretty generic, but I need to know what specific programs you're trying to install and what distribution you use to be more specialized.

Also, this fine website probably has tutorials for installing specific things or installing things in specific distributions.

Good Luck!
Old 03-22-2004, 12:51 AM   #4
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: Wellington, New Zealand
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 127

Rep: Reputation: 15
Nice one verdeboy2k, covers it about as generally as possible

Raggit, tell us your distro and we may be able to be more specific...
Old 03-22-2004, 09:26 AM   #5
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: N.C USA
Distribution: Fedora Core 4
Posts: 65

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
sorry for leaving that info out, I am using RedHat 9
Old 03-22-2004, 03:28 PM   #6
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: Wellington, New Zealand
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 127

Rep: Reputation: 15
Hmmmm... There's a tool for Redhat out there called (help me out here redhat fans) apt-get or rpm-get, which is a clone of the excellend Debian apt get. This tool get lists of packages and dependencies from a remote site and when you ask it to install one, it downloads the required packages and all dependencies and installs them in the right order... As I run Debian, I'm not to sure of the specifics for the command though, so someone else will have to fill in details here.


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