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Old 05-01-2004, 07:58 PM   #1
deleshai
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Registered: Apr 2004
Location: NYC
Distribution: Slackware 10.0
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Question Should I re-install Slack or.... help please.


Hello and thanks for the help that I have seen here on this forum.
Ok so my question is.... Should I re-install my slack?
I have Slack 9.1 with the bare kernel and I loaded everything on the 1st 2 disk... I dont know what is on the other 2 disk. I have also downloaded Dropeline 2.6.
Besides that I have not really done much to my system but I have read many times about optimizing a system one way or another, I guess you start out with the kernel right?
But I am really new to all this and I am having a hartd time trying to figure out what I can do without to many headackes to getr the most out of what my box has to offer.
What I like to do:
1. Watch videos/movies.
2. Listen to music.
3. Play games.
4 The net ofcource.
5. Make / Edit Music ( Sampling, Midi...)
6. Download from the Gnetulla Network.
Thats about it I guess. All seems to be standard enough. So I feel like I should slim down on all the stuff that cam on the disk and figure out a way to get the most ou of my box.
Where to start if not just keep what I am running with.

All I know that I have is:
Pentuim 4. 1.6Ghz.
60 Gigs of space
ATI Radeon 7500 video card
Samsung CD-RW
Samsung DVD-Rom
256 SyncDram
 
Old 05-01-2004, 09:14 PM   #2
shilo
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Registered: Nov 2002
Location: Stockton, CA
Distribution: Slackware 11 - kernel 2.6.19.1 - Dropline Gnome 2.16.2
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I don't think you should re-install. You might do what I did. Keep a notebook handy with all of the things you do. Some will work, some won't. If you are like me, you'll end up doing so much to your system that you will totally trash your installation in no time. That's when you do a re-install. That way, when you re-install, you have a notebook full of all the stuff you did that worked, and you can skip the stuff that didn't.

Here's some more tips for you. Installing everything was a great idea. You've got tons of disk space. My slack box is running on a crappy 4 gigs of hard drive space. What I like to do is every week or so, use pkgtool to pick out a couple of packages that I think I don't need. Make sure you write them down. If you don't have any problems that week or so, you probably didn't need those packages. If you do have troubles, just re-install those packages. The notebook makes that easy. Now with your notebook, the next time you install you can just skip those packages that didn't work out for you. I would say that is your first step to optimization, getting rid of the packages you don't want. Just remember to take it slow. Nothing like getting rid of half of your packages, realizing a few days later that you needed some of them, and not knowing which ones you need to re-install.

The next thing I like to do for optimization is to get rid of extra services that are running at startup. Do a
Code:
ps ax
and see what you have running. Best to start in console mode and run that right after you start up. You may find that you have a web server, a mail server, an ftp server, a shh server, a DNS server, and a whole bunch of other stuff running that you don't need. All of those processes are using computer resources. You should shut down the stuff you don't need. I use the same approach here that I use for packages. I shut down a few services that I don't hink I need, and if I am still working well after a week or so, I get rid of some more. If things aren't running so well, I add back the services that I disabled. I highly recommend rebooting a whole bunch in the beginning. That way, I get a chance to see what errors are occuring at start up after I "fix" things.

Now you are probably wondering, "How do I make it so all of those programs don't start when I boot my computer?" There are two places to look. The first is the file /etc/inetd.conf . Open it up in your favorite text editor (I like gedit, myself) and ahve a look at it. Every line that doesn't have a "#" in front of it is getting run at boot time. Watch out for word wrap, though. You want to make sure that line is really a line. If you don't want something run a start up, just add a "#" in front of it. That's called "commenting out." I comment out almost everything in that file. Just take it slow, reboot often, and make sure you don't comment out anything that you need. The next place we are going to look is the /etc/rc.d directory. in there, you'll find a bunch of files that start with "rc.". Go to a terminal and type:
Code:
ls -l /etc/rc.d/
You are gonna see a list with a bunch of information in it. For each file, you'll see something like this:
Code:
-rwxr-xr-x  1 root root  1511 2004-02-22 17:34 rc.hotplug*
That first string is the important part. If you see an "x" in it, it means the file is executable. If it's executable, it gets ran when you start your computer. So if you see something that you don't want started, type something like:
Code:
chmod -x name_of_file_you_don't_want_started
if you want to change it back so that it does start, type
Code:
chmod +x name_of_file_you_do_want_started
Once again, take it slow.

The next thing I like to do for optimization is see what isn't working. Type:
Code:
dmesg|less
to see the text that flew by you when you booted up. Look through there for errors. If you find some, time to start looking for solutions.

Next thing I like to do is the kernel. You'll already find lot's of help on this forum for that. Shouldn't have to look to far. Just read the stuff that's already posted. If you are having an issue. Probably someone else here had the same problem.

As for the thing you like to do:

1. Watch videos/movies.
Try totem. It came with Dropline. I also installed this http://slackpkg.ath.cx/~xspace/packa...noarch-1xs.tgz . It gives you the codecs you need for wma,realplayer and Quicktime media files.

2. Listen to music.
Try bmp and rhythmbox. They both came wth Dropline.

3. Play games.
Should have a bunch installed. If you have something specific that you are looking to play, just search the forums and google.

4 The net ofcource.
I'm sure that is working for you already

5. Make / Edit Music ( Sampling, Midi...)
Don't know what you use for that, but I'm sure there is something

6. Download from the Gnetulla Network.
I use this gtk-gnutella. Worked right out the box for me. Go to linuxpackages.net to find it and a whole bunch of other stuff. Other people recommend other p2p clients, but I found the gtk-gnutella worked the easiest.

Hope that helps some,

Shilo
 
Old 05-01-2004, 09:32 PM   #3
deleshai
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Registered: Apr 2004
Location: NYC
Distribution: Slackware 10.0
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shilo, thanks.

Shilo thanks for the reply.
I have read your post in the past and they always seem good and simple enough to get threw.
I downloaded Dropline after reading a post you had. I will try some of the stuff that you have pointed out and thanks for the time that you put into your reply. It always help!
Ohh, When do you decide if you should get a new kernel. Seems like everyone tends to get the latest. My stuff seems to work so far so if we have a working system is there any benifits to upgrade to the latest kernel?
Thanks
 
Old 05-01-2004, 09:51 PM   #4
shilo
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Registered: Nov 2002
Location: Stockton, CA
Distribution: Slackware 11 - kernel 2.6.19.1 - Dropline Gnome 2.16.2
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Rep: Reputation: 50
Thanks for the kind words. Here's what I think about the whole kernel thing. First, get everything working reasonably well. The less stuff you do, the less stuff you have to sort through to figure out your problems. For instance, your mouse doesn't work before a recompile, you recompile, your mouse still doesn't work. Did you get the mouse part of the kernel right? You'll never know until you solve the original problem with your mouse. How will you know you got your original problem solved? You never will if you also messed up your kernel configuration. You'll notice in my long post that the kernel is one of the last things that I do. I should probably add something like this post before the kernel compiling, but then everyone would probably have their computer up and flying in a single day and get bored with their new system. Where's the fun if you don't have a few bugs to iron out, right?

Then comes time to decide if you want a new kernel. I say hell yeah. I'm using the 2.6.5 kernel and it is great. A couple of reasons I switched to the new kernel:

1) You don't need to mess around with SCSI emulation to get your CD-RW working. That always seemed like such a pain. I ended up with symlinks everywhere and my two drives (a cd-rw and dvd-rom, just like you) always seemed to be having one problem or another.

2) That new preemptive kernel thing. It's supposed to make your desktop faster. I'm running on a 4 gig hard drive with 256k ram and a 800mhz processor and everything seems pretty fast.

3) You get to learn how to compile a kernel. If you're gonna go to the trouble of learning how to do it, might as well get the latest stable release of the kernel. Seemed kinda weak to go to all the trouble of re-compiling and still having a 2.4.X kernel. Afterwards, you'll have the newset kernel and you'll know how to compile another one if you have to because of a security flaw or something.

4) I wanted to recompile my kernel anyway for processor optimization. The kernel you have now is for generic i386 or i486. I've got an AMD Athelon processor. At only 800 mhz, I wanted to squeeze out any last bit of performance I could. Since I was gonna recompile, it only took a couple extra steps to get the newest kernel.

5) I knew going into the whole Linux thing that the learning curve was steep. I always figure I'm gonna end up re-installing the whole thing anyways. Don't be afraid that you'll jack up your entire installation, plan on it! I've learned a bunch by not being afraid to just go for it and see what happens.

That's my thinking, anyways.

Hope it helps,

Shilo

******EDIT*************
Just remembered, I heard the ATI drivers don't work with the 2.6.5 kernel. If you use them, you should probably stick with the kernel you've got.

Last edited by shilo; 05-01-2004 at 10:10 PM.
 
Old 05-01-2004, 10:28 PM   #5
deleshai
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Registered: Apr 2004
Location: NYC
Distribution: Slackware 10.0
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Lightbulb The light bulb went on.

OK now I understand, Yes the CD and DVD thing has been a problem and I didnt even want to go threw the hassle of trying to figure out where the problem was.
But now that it could be as simple as a updated kernel that understands what I have in my box it could set it up right the first time and so on... perfect!
I have learned some today and thanks. I doubt I can help you out with your system if you needed any but I can give you plumbing advice)
Thanks again
 
Old 05-01-2004, 11:44 PM   #6
vectordrake
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I agree with the kernel thing. If the one that's installed works, keep it until you have everything the way you want it. If it works, don't fix it. If you have new hardware that's not supported on an old kernel, get a new one, but read how to compile it carefully. I have had little luck getting a kernel and its modules updated cleanly too often. 2.6 seems to be a bit faster and more powerful than 2.4 somedays, but others, its newness really shows itself as well.
 
Old 05-02-2004, 01:36 PM   #7
Linux.tar.gz
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If your looking for a Cubase VST-like, this is Ardour
 
Old 05-03-2004, 08:04 AM   #8
bugsbunny
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Registered: Jan 2003
Location: London/UK
Distribution: Slackware 9.1
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Shilo I've got to say thanks for the quality of your posts. All your post that i have read has this feeling of you "really wanting to help solve" the problem. They are long and detailed and i bet they take quite sometime.

I have answered a few questions myself and I can say that even when you know the solution, it is not as simple as it might seem to just type it out. You need to get the organization and presentation right so as to make it as simple as possible for the one needing the solution.

You have a an excelent level of consistency with the quality and usability of your post. Keep it up. I watching and learning.
 
  


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