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Old 01-23-2004, 12:13 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jan 2004
Posts: 2

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Unhappy new to Linux / Mandrake 9.2, Software questions please help

Im new to everything Linux and im running Mandrake 9.2 with KDE running. At first i had ALOT of problems installing but after a few days i think ive gotten everything ok and its been running right so far. I know ill have alot of questions in teh future but to start off I just need some help with a few things.

- Flash Player Install Help: i need to install a flash player so i can view things on the internet that require flash, i went to macromedia site and DLed the Flashplayer for Mozilla on Linux and it Dled to my desktop, and teh directions to Install it are confusing to me. It says to type "./ flashplayer-installer" i think, or something like that, in Command Line or Command Mode or Command Base or something. The only thing i could think of that seemed like what it was talking about was the "Konsole" so i opened it and typed what it said and pressed enter but it didnt do anything. Where on Mandrake KDE could i find this Command thing they are talking about? Or is there any other way of installing software, will i have to do this with every software?

-Cookies help: when i was using Konquerer Web Browser and i went to to log in it said that it needed cookies to be enabled to work. so i went into Knoqueror in all of the settings about cookies i coudl find and enabled them all. Is there a certain setting i might have overlooked that is really important, in Konqueror or in my Linux computer files anywhere? Mozilla seems to be working fine with my email. and with Konqueror i could log into other things fine but Comcast is teh only proble ive occured.

-Audio Help: When mandrake loads i hear the sound it plays as it loads, but when i veiwed a movie trailer i had no sound at all, and when i went to a website that plays sound i had no sound. Would this be a problem with drivers of some sort or enabling something on my computer? what should i check for?

-Overall Help: since im only a day new to mandrake i know ill need alot of programs and help with everything. To start off with it woudl eb a great help if someone could just post some links to sites where i can DL free programs that run on Mandrake. When i had WIndows the programs that were really important to me were Apache server, Adobe Photoshop, Winamp, and Incredimail. However i think ive found my image editor here but just in case i want Adobe Photoshop again, Does it work with Linux? And i think mandrake comes with Apache i just havent foudnd it or set it up yet, but i coudl probibly handle that. Im not sure if it comes with a MP3 player or not, if so whats it called so i know and if not could you link me and place to DL one? And i know it comes with an email service but id ont know how to set that up buti think my boyfriend does so ill ask him for help with that.

Thank you so much, i know thats alot and that i sound so dumb but im kinda tottally lost and i figure its better to ask for help then mess something up trying to blindly fix something myself. Thanx for any help.
Old 01-23-2004, 01:09 PM   #2
Registered: Jun 2003
Location: Ontario
Distribution: Ubuntu, Gentoo, Debian
Posts: 416

Rep: Reputation: 30
The command line interface(CLI), or console, or konsole, or shell, or bash prompt is the "real" Linux. Unlike Windoze, where programs don't run except through the windows GUI with DOS prompt as an afterthought, everything on Linux runs through the command prompt. Most of the programs you'll be using have graphical "frontends" - windows that control them in your desktop environment.
You can install programs several different ways - the easiest is to get a "package", which is like a windows installer - it contains the program and all the configuration information in one file that you can double-click. On Mandrake, you want to get RPM packages. I'd recommend looking for a flashplayer package.
Once you have the package, you can double click it from the desktop. but if something goes wrong during the install, you'll probably just get an error message and have no idea what messed up. A better (and more linux-approved) method of installing programs is to use the CLI - navigate to where you saved the package (call it foo):

cd /home/me
(assuming user "me" saved the file in his home directory)

And then install it:

rpm -i foo.rpm
Finally, you can compile programs directly from source. This is the way that allows the best customization, the most recent software, and definately highest on the "cool factor". I won't go into details because it's different from package to package, and can get pretty complicated.
The basic procedure is to get some source code, go to the code's base directory and do:
make install
I've never installed the flash player package, but the ./ in your post leads me to believe it might want you to compile from source. You'll probably want to learn some more basics before trying that.

For your sound issues:
are you using ALSA, or OSS? Go to your KDE config, and hit "multimedia and sound" There should be a checkbox with "enable aRTs". Is it checked? If so, you need to make sure that whatever program shoudl be playing the sound (sounds like mozilla, or Konqueror) is configured to use aRTs for output. You shoudl also run kmix, and make sure that all of your sound channels are unmuted and at reasonable volumes.

XMMS is a music player that's basically a winamp clone for Linux.

As for overall help, in the spirit of the Linux community I say: Newbie, help thyself!

Seriously, congratulations on moving to linux. You'll never look back. Well... actually, you'll probably look back three or four times in the next year. I know I did. But now you've been bitten, and Linux is slowly making its way through your system. Before you get the most out of your system, you're going to need to doa LOT of reading. Here are some sites to start you off:

Linux Documentation Project -

... Actually, that's pretty much enough to get you going. :P Any program or procedure that's giving yuo problems, thre's probabyl a HOWTO on it.

also, in the CLI, use the man pages! Every time you see a command you don't recognise, do:
man somecommand

It'll tell you what it is, what it does,a nd how to use it.

Google is your best friend. If you get an error message, or something you don't understand, here's what to do:
1. Search forums for an answer. Chances are someone here has already solved the problem.
2. do a Google search. If it ain't on Google, it ain't on the 'net.
3. post a DETAILED message on the appropriate forum. We'll reply! :P
Old 01-23-2004, 01:10 PM   #3
Registered: Jul 2003
Location: Virginia
Distribution: Ubuntu Hoary (5.04)
Posts: 550

Rep: Reputation: 31
You've come to the right place for help with Linux. If you have any more questions don't be afraid to ask, and don't be afraid to learn. When you hear of command line that's kind of like DOS mode, if you've ever used DOS before. Konsole is what you want to use with KDE, while there are alternatives like gnome-terminal for GNOME, Eterm for Enlightenment, and xterm which is the standard. Don't worry at all about all that because Konsole will do you fine. So let's fix that problem with Flash.
1. Try downloading the package again and save it to your home directory (which will be /home/user_name where user_name is your user name).
2. Open up Konsole and you will start in your home directory.
3. Type 'ls -l' and you should see a file named install_flash_player_6_linux.tar.gz
4. Type 'tar xfz install_flash_player_6_linux.tar.gz' to extract all the files in that archive to a subdirectory in your home directory.
5. Type 'cd install_flash_player_6_linux' to change into that new subdirectory.
6. Inside you'll see that flashplayer-installer file you mentioned that you couldn't find. Log in as root by typing 'su' and then your root password.
7.Type './flashplayer-installer' to run that sucker and it should ask you some questions on where to install Flash player. I believe if you just accept the defaults then everything will be okay.
8. Open up Mozilla and go to some place that uses Flash and see if it works. If not, come back here and explain what you did, specifically where you installed Flash in step 7.

I don't know if Konqueror has cookies enable by default because I don't use Konqueror, but Mozilla should accept cookies. Try using Mozilla to go to that site.

The sound issue is a little tougher so we'll come back to that after you get everything else working.

Apache is available for Linux but I don't really know too much about it so I'll let somebody else chime in on that. I do recommend The Gimp as an alternative to Photoshop. It's a little confusing at first but just experiment with it and you'll be fine. As for MP3 software, I'm pretty sure KDE has an MP3 player, but if you want something a little more like Winamp check out XMMS.

And lastly, don't feel bad about not knowing how to do things in Linux. It's just like driving a stick shift: we all have some bumps and false starts before it feels all natural.

Last edited by Nis; 01-23-2004 at 01:12 PM.
Old 01-23-2004, 05:39 PM   #4
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Registered: Jan 2004
Posts: 2

Original Poster
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thank you both for help, but im still having problems.

when i so this:

" 1. Try downloading the package again and save it to your home directory (which will be /home/user_name where user_name is your user name).
2. Open up Konsole and you will start in your home directory.
3. Type 'ls -l' and you should see a file named install_flash_player_6_linux.tar.gz "

it doesnt seem to work. i go into Konsole and i type Is -I. but i couldnt figure out if that was an i, an l, or a 1. so i tried em all. and either way nothing like install_flash_player_6_linux.tar.gz came up. so i dunno what to do about that. i dont know at all how to use Konsole, i never even used DOS, so i dont even know if im doing it right. do you press enter after you type a code? cause i did but nots ure if you hit something else or what. sorry =\

when i searched for RPM Flash Player mandrake package, i went to the Macromedia site link and DLed it to my desktop and double clicked it from tehre to open and it seemed like it was going to install but it opened up my CD Drive and asked me to insert the mandrake 3 international Cd (something liek that, the 3rd mandrake cd) but i dont have it with me right now, why woudl it need that?

yeah mozilla works fine with cookies i just was wondering why konqueror didnt, oh well. i tried to enable them all, maybe i shal find teh answer in the future somewhere.

im really confused about this thing:

cd /home/me

i typed in that exact thing, buti dont know how to get down a line because when i press enter it just enters it as code, do i have to skip lines liek that? and do i actually write "code: ' ..." or did you just mean for me to type "cd /home/me" ? i understand me is my kde name, i did enter that not actually "me" just nots ure if i did it as you meant it.

about the sound, aRTS are enabled in my config, but i cant find anywhere in Mozilla or Konqueror in the prefferences that says anything about sound or audio. I checked KMix and nothing is muted and there nothing in prefferences about aRTS or anything that could help really. And i just opened totem Media Player that came with Mandrake and i tried to check settings, but no matter what i click on nothing works, i think it froze as soon as i opene dit. i cant even close it. bah. ill hav eto check out XMMS. and research for help with teh audio.

im just happy i have internet acess and that gaim works, if it didnt it woudl be another lonley boring night . thanx for the help thank you for trying i appreciate it.
Old 01-24-2004, 01:17 PM   #5
Registered: Jun 2003
Location: Ontario
Distribution: Ubuntu, Gentoo, Debian
Posts: 416

Rep: Reputation: 30
No... I'm serious....

Here is a link to the category list of HOWTOs on a mirror in calfornia:

Go there and start reading section 4.1. It'll give you a more thorough, better-worded explanation than we ever could, plus it'll take less time!

In brief: no, you don't type "code". That's just a tag I used to distinguish between my ramblings and what you shoudl be typing into the prompt.
Yes, hit enter after each command.
If you saved the file in your home directory (/home/<user_name> - I used "me" as an example) , opened Konsole and logged in as your user (not root), and then type ls -l (where l is a lowercase L), the file should be listed.



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