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Old 11-14-2004, 07:40 PM   #1
Strixy
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Leaping into Mandrake


Any suggestions or advice for a new mandrake user? I recently migrated from another distro (ack) and have been enjoying the sights ever since. So, anyone want to let me know what I should know before I go off and ask a slew of really dumb questions.
 
Old 11-14-2004, 07:46 PM   #2
trickykid
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Ummm.. not really.. go install. Since you have some Linux experience.. Mandrake is one of the easiest to use.. I'm sure you'll do ok and if you don't, well, come back and ask those dumb questions
 
Old 11-14-2004, 07:52 PM   #3
Ion Silverbolt
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Once you set up urpmi, you'll be able to install fresh software from the Internet easily. No dependancy issues.

http://easyurpmi.zarb.org/
 
Old 11-14-2004, 08:49 PM   #4
jonr
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ion Silverbolt
Once you set up urpmi, you'll be able to install fresh software from the Internet easily. No dependancy issues.

http://easyurpmi.zarb.org/
My own experience differs. I am glad you're so lucky! I'm forever getting dependencies lacking in the form of libraries I have no idea where to find or how to install (except sometimes...) and urpmi refuses to install because of that.

I figured out by trial and error (I could find no help anywhere) how to make some libraries substitute for "needed" ones for a handful of apps, by creating symbolic links after I placed the "close but not quite" version of the library in the /lib directory. But other times I was completely at a loss--and still am.

Which is not to say I don't enjoy using Mandrake, on the whole. I really don't trust myself with any less "hand-holding" distro.
 
Old 11-14-2004, 10:34 PM   #5
opjose
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Quote:
Originally posted by jonr
My own experience differs. I am glad you're so lucky! I'm forever getting dependencies lacking in the form of libraries I have no idea where to find or how to install (except sometimes...) and urpmi refuses to install because of that.

I figured out by trial and error (I could find no help anywhere) how to make some libraries substitute for "needed" ones for a handful of apps, by creating symbolic links after I placed the "close but not quite" version of the library in the /lib directory. But other times I was completely at a loss--and still am.

Which is not to say I don't enjoy using Mandrake, on the whole. I really don't trust myself with any less "hand-holding" distro.
Usually this is due to a breakdown in the process. (Not to single you out...)

Either (and these are not exclusive)

- You installed an upgrade from a prior version of Mandrake
- You at some point forced an update or upgrade
- Your RPM database was or is corrupt or was corrupt at some point
- You did not point urpmi to the repositories correctly
- The repositories have been updated (with new software) but you have not updated the source with
urpmi.update
- The remote respository is down (it pays to add more than one for the SAME source which you can do...)
- You have installed some other package with a comflicting library or dependancy

Every once in a while there is a package available on the repository for which not all of the dependant rpm's are available. Usually this is due to an oversight on the RPM maker.

Fortunately these are very few in number.

As long as you stay within the confines of the software available on the repositories, dependancies is never an issue.

Once you stray outside of this, all hell breaks loose, as it does with most distros.

(Try using a slackware file under suse, etc...)

The URPMI process works VERY VERY well as long as you stick with it and don't purposely or accidentally "break" it.

Most problems with Mandrake (aside from hardware issues) and software revolve around the newbie's lack of understanding of how to use urpmi and as a result they break down the entire chain of interdependancies.

My $.02 worth.
 
Old 11-15-2004, 09:47 AM   #6
jonr
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Quote:
Originally posted by opjose
Usually this is due to a breakdown in the process. (Not to single you out...)

Either (and these are not exclusive)

- You installed an upgrade from a prior version of Mandrake
- You at some point forced an update or upgrade
- Your RPM database was or is corrupt or was corrupt at some point
- You did not point urpmi to the repositories correctly
- The repositories have been updated (with new software) but you have not updated the source with
urpmi.update
- The remote respository is down (it pays to add more than one for the SAME source which you can do...)
- You have installed some other package with a comflicting library or dependancy.
Any or all, or at least any or most, of these may be true. I've forced several installations because only then would they install (and they work).

But I really don't see why forced installation is allowed, if it's going to break a basic installation mechanism...?

Likewise I don't see why upgrades would be allowed if it's known the installation mechanism will suffer or be broken as a result.

And I have had several cases with "conflicts." This seems especially true with programs written in or using parts dependent on Python. It seems various versions of Python do not happily co-exist. But if a program has not been updated to the later version of the Python libraries, you're just out of luck--it also seems.

So, in sum: I dunno.

Tried Libranet and more briefly SimplyMEPIS hoping a Debian installation with apt-get would be more trouble-free in this regard, but ran into even greater difficulties getting anything installed. So much for that (for now at least).

Luckily, I now have everything I normally want or need running just fine. Programs that refuse to cooperate, I just live without. I don't have time to become a Linux expert, no matter what the distribution.
 
Old 11-20-2004, 06:41 PM   #7
kousik_s
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1) A tip - apart from using man in Konsole (terminal), in Konqueror (KDE browser), type man:topic and help is available in easy to read format. Use man, info pages to the fullest.
2) Some programs will not work. In some cases it can be solved by creating symlinks (ln -s) of files to where the program thinks from where it actually is.
3) Menudrake may give problems. It is generally buggy. Make changes as system and not root.
4) Adding user by using command useradd is better than using Userdrake.
5) Hardware recognition in Mandrake is very good. However, there are always some hardware which may not be recognised or correctly configured. Be patient and browse forums and hardware support sites.
6) If you want to use MS programs like Office and IE, visit winehq site.
 
Old 11-20-2004, 08:40 PM   #8
opjose
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Quote:
But I really don't see why forced installation is allowed, if it's going to break a basic installation mechanism...?
Because it's YOUR system and you can screw it up if you want to...

Winblows doesn't protect you from installing Spyware either, although MS finally got SOME religion with the system file integrity checker.

Quote:
It seems various versions of Python do not happily co-exist. But if a program has not been updated to the later version of the Python libraries, you're just out of luck--it also seems.
All the more reason to try to only use the applications that are contained in the repositories, which have already been compiled and corrected for your version of Mandrake. This keeps you from having such problems... but if you violate this mechanism things WILL go awry.

Quote:
Programs that refuse to cooperate, I just live without. I don't have time to become a Linux expert, no matter what the distribution.
That's actually at the core of Mandrake, "not becoming a Linux expert".

E.G. it was designed, with great success for newbies to use. The urpmi installation routines coupled with the repositories keep things consistent and functional to a large degree.

Urpmi for the most part, prohibits you from doing something which will break the chain of dependendancies when used correct.

It also takes care of the underlying chore of knowing what can or cannot be installed...

Case in point if you urpmi mplayer-codecs (or something similiar)... it downloads and installs not only the correct codecs, but anything missing which would make them fail to operate including mplayer itself if it is not installed!

For the command line deficient, the "Install Software" gui goes one up on this, presenting an easy to use interface to the Newbie.

The basic problem boils down to this:

MANDRAKE MAKES MONEY SELLING THE POWERPACK.

Why is this a problem?

Because the Powerpack provides most of the programs (but not all) available on the repository.

Even though Mandrake DID NOT write or compile the Contrib tree, they would prefer that you purchase their Powerpack version, from which they make more money.


In turn this means that out of the box, so to speak, Mandrake does NOT tell you how to properly configure the URPMI sources to use what is available nor even hint at it!

They could easily provide a mechanism to get the newbie to the repositories, but they never will... as it's not in their fiscal interests.


So the advice given to the newbies on other distros is often handed down, even here...

e.g. the

"merely compile the kernel"
"download the tar files and compile"

etc. etc. etc.

These are holdovers from other distributions that do not have apt-get, yum or urpmi to keep things clean.
 
  


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