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The Linux Info Thread


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#1 Villain

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:43 AM

Ok, Linux. What is Linux. lots of people ask me this.

Linux, technichally, is the KERNEL to a free ware OS, that is really called GNU/Linux Os.

a lot of people just call it linux due to the kernel. seriously.

Ok, so this is how i am going to work this thread. you ask Me for suggestions, what not, info, advice, newbie needed to know info, and i will help you out as much a spossible.

Keep in mind, all advice here is JUST my $.02.

since i am tired, i am copying and pasting from another thread, but i will update more tomorrow / later on today.

"Best Environment OR KDE vs GNOME"

asking "what s better, Gnome or KDE" is like asking "What is better Windows or OSX". Those are two different window managers / Desktop environments, KDE is a bit more like Windows XP / Vista (kind of) and the Gnome can be easily configured to resemble OS X (kind of). Or atleast, that is what I do.

I personally prefer Gnome, although it can be said that if you like Gnome, then you should give XFCE4 a try, it is like Gnome Lite. Runs all gnome apps (Both are GTK+ 2.0 biased) and XFCE4 can generally use Gnome's skins and resources.

Yeah, i am with you on Ubuntu, i dislike the distro JUST because of the orange logo. bad color choice there, IMHO.

BUT, you CAN get Xubuntu (blue... nice :D ), it is the SFCE4 biased distro, is small, light weight, supports all ubuntu software / compatibility, because it IS ubuntu, just with out the default Gnome stuff, you know?

Fluxbox is not really new-linux-user friendly*, it IS very minimal though. So that is one thing that i love about it.

You MAY want to check in to elive, an E17 Distro (Enlightenment 17 = eye candy galore, like Mac is, you know), in fact, a Lot of Mac features for OS X actually showed up in E17 BEFORE OS X / or around the same time as OS X Did.

It is very resource friendly, about as much as XFCE4 is, really, if not more so. Only thing is for elive is that the developer has the WRONG DAMNED IDEA and charges for milestone release versions (bastard, linux is free!!!), so you can just go get from the site a "cutting edge" version / iso, that IS a free download.

Linux Harddrive Formats

I would suggest using ReiserFS for the format, it is very speedy, and is journaled. I have always seen a speed increase in when i use ReiserFS as the file system type, a lot more so compared to Fat32, NTFS, ext2/3. the only one that is faster is ZFS, but you cant boot from that, you would have to do the old linux trick of making a 100Mb partition, set it up / assign it to be \boot, then take the rest as \ to be ZFS, this way all of the boot files reside on a small, 100Mb boot partition, and the rest of the system / userspace files reside on the speedy ZFS formatted partition.
BTW, you will need a swap partition, think of it as like windows swap file, but it has it's own partition.

Ok, so the only Primary partition that you need is \boot, the other two can, or not, you call, be primary partitions or extended. i don't like extended, so i always have mine all as primaries. your call though, since you can only have 4 primary partitions per hard drive.

Most distros default to ext2/3, i dont like that OS. granted, ReiserFS has a flaw (shut down the linux box w/o doing so properly, and upon boot it does an indepth check, but that is a good thing)

ZFS is good. to bad you cant boot from if, if ZFS is not an option, then go with XFS, and do it the same way as ZFS, you see, both are storage file systems, non-bootable. Most of the other file systems, however, are bootable and storage types.


Oh Yeah, Why Should I Trust Solo?
Linux became avalable in '97, more or less, that was 2 years after i graduated highschool. i REALLY got i to it back i 2000, 3 years after it was out i stores (I bought my first linux box set, Caldera Linux then). So i have been doing Linux for this long, and i have a pretty good idea of what i am doing. your call though.

By the way, you dont hear about Caldera any more, know why? they changed there name to SCO. Yeah, i go back in linux to before SCO was evil, money grubbing pricks.

[edit1] Good article on the real-world aspects of the "Linux Virus" -- yeah, all known 70 of them.
http://www.mylro.org...t/view/1088/53/

#2 Liskiller

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 08:28 AM

Great thread! (Y)
How about a section of detailed feature comparison of all popular distros?

#3 Lord Devrexster

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 05:11 PM

Brilliant thread !! Can we have more tuts ?? ;) Maybe a thread like "Linux solved for Beginners" ??

edit: Ya!! I have this wierd problem where everytime I start ubuntu it goes on a "fsck" and corrects errors on the root partition. BTW, it is in ext format. Any ideas ?? Also I am not able to "standby" or "hibernate" my ubuntu :(
And also another smaller prob is I am not able to see the actual booting process, is there one ?, I mean all I see is a box with "Hz?" written in it going up and down and criss-cross on my screen and then suddenly the login process starts where I enter the user-name and password and enter ( or just hang up sometimes :( ) Any ideas big bro ??

another edit : BTW, I remember something about a swap files space it asked me to allot when I installed ubuntu. I think I didnt allot it becoz moving the partitions wud have resulted in data loss which I cudnt do at that moment??
is THIS the reason for my boot problems ?? What can I do ??
Also is there a way I can save all my downloaded installations - or do I have to do them AGAIN :(

#4 Villain

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:27 PM

ok for more info.
@Devrexter, "fsck" is File Systems ChecK, kinda like MS's Scandisk.
Try pressing A:T + F1 during the boot screen. or try "Esc", one of those should bring up the needed info. OR if your booting off of a LiveCD, in the box that has the command line parameters, remove "quiet" and replace it with verbose.

ext is not such a good format, i would have (and i did) suggested you try it out in ReiserFS. If you decide to give it another install, use ReiserFS next time.

for the swap file space, well, i would just do a re-install.
make sure to delete the non-windows partitions, then with the new free space, make a new partition of (your system RAM x 2) as a LinuxSwap. Do that first, then make another partition as ReiserFS, and assign it to be \.

that way, you have twice as much swap space as you have physical ram (that is the general rule, some where between 1.5 to 2x swapspace by comparison of RAM.)
Then you will have the root partition. IF you want to ENSURE system stability, make \ only about 5 - 7 GB(more or less), then make another partiton, as ReiserFS, and assign it as \home.

The will keep all of your personal files in a separate partition, so that if anything ever happens to the system then you DONT LOSE YOUR PERSONAL FILES.

gee, why cant Windows be like that?

and as far as downloaded instructions go, if your running in a liveCD, cdd about gettint the instructions up in a web browser (firefox) to help you along as you run the installer. Fedora will not let you do that, sadly, but ubuntu will.

Or, if you have an IM, get on there and find a geek to help you out.

Geek: = :me
aim : linuxvampyre
yahoo = bradmurphyvtm
gtalk = solo.dev@gmail.com

so yeah, if you need any help, any one, shoot me an IM, and if i am on, i will help.

#5 khanvict

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:56 PM

Great thread! (Y)
How about a section of detailed feature comparison of all popular distros?


here is a link comparing the 'top 10 distributions'

http://distrowatch.c...?resource=major

#6 khanvict

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 09:17 PM

senor solo,

i'm downloading the first maryan linux release [e17 distro :)] which was released yesterday and it's a livecd format. my questions are, 1) how can i convert this to a desktop install & 2) as new betas and releases come out how do you install them without losing all your prior data?

Edited by khanvict, 18 July 2008 - 09:18 PM.


#7 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 06:59 AM

Senor? I aint that old am i?
just kidding. :D

after you boot up in to a live CD, there is normally an option, usually a desktop icon, that will give you the chance to install it to your harddrive.

This way, you can try out the distro before installing it to your harddrive, that is, if you chose to install it to your harddrive.

If you, when formatting the partitions, make 3 main partitions, as how i listed above :
swapfile first (ram x2 = total size)
root \ second (normally 5-7 GB)
\home last. put as much space as you want in to this, because this is where your personal files will be stored at, so your going to want plenty of space.

#8 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:29 AM

Solo's Distro Comparison Chart
(Note, this is my thoughts and opinions, as with every thing else out there, your mileage may vary)

Ok, i am listing these in my order of preference, and i will tell you WHY i like that particular distro...

1> Fedora
Why Fedora? two words. RED HAT. These guys practically helped start up the linux revolution. And the fact that they are biased in Cary, NC is another reason, because i live close to there.

no, but really, why Fedora? I have NEVER had to do a re-format / reinstall of a fedora system, and i started using it since Fedora Core 3. The only problem i have with it is that because they like / want only free, propritary software, your going to have to go looking for YUM repos (or Pirut, or YumEX...) for "normal" codec files, and DVD playback.

2 > Mint
Ok, YES, this IS an ubuntu offshoot. But i like these guys better than i do plain old vanilla 'buntu. They have some really nice improvements, the Mint Menu is the main one i like, but they also have a "click-n-Run" type webportal software store also, and that makes it easy to visit there site, download a .mintinstall file, and then the mint installer will do all of the work for you. no need to worry about packages and stuff, this thing handles dependencies for you.

3 > Mandrivia
Wow, i remember back when these guys just grabbed the latest Red Hat source, made a few (minor) changes to it, then slapped there name and logo on it and handed it out.

Well, they have helped out the Linux community alot. The "Control Center" idea every linux distro has now. They came up with it. Very innovate company, even if it is run by the french. Or it was, i dont know now.

4> rPathLinux
Ok, odds are you have NOT heard of these guys, and probably because they tend to keep quiet. What makes the so special?
well, for one, they are redhat source code biased, but, they tend to use VERY bleeding edge software. It is nothing to go download an ISO of there's, burn it, and find Compiz-Fusion working fine, off of the LiveCD!

these guys were the second ones to do so successfully i think.
Second, is RPath Builder. just Imagine a tool where you could, online, tell a machine what software you want on YOUR CUSTOM linux distro iso, and then it makes the custom iso for you online! i mean, come on, how kick ass is that?

5a> Xubuntu
Ok, i am a huge fan of "minimal" desktop linux, and Xubuntu is right up there with elive. If i want Gnome compatibility, and "it works and does not hog my system specs" then this is what i use. It is small, works, and is memory / Old PC friendly. I had an old 700MHz PC with only 196MB Ram, and between Xubuntu and elive, it ran pretty fast.

5b> elive
Small. Bling. it is kinda like the Mac of the Linux world. Need to show off the graphical coolness of linux to a Mac fanboy? then use this. I aint kidding yall, it is insane, memory usage is up there with Xubuntu, being not very much at all. Has Bling, but they like to throw in PCFileMan with it, because there native file manager, is, well, in progress. Also, No Desktop Icons. and No support for systemtray. Rasterman doe snot like how the current specs are done.
But, there are ways around those item, people have wrote mini-apps that fill in the gap.

so yeah.

Ok, those are my top 5, well, 6 i guess.

to recap.
Want Bling and Eyecandy? elive.
Want minimal system that is resource friendly? Xubuntu
Want stability? Fedora.
Want ease of use? Mint.
Want Bleeding Edge? rPathLinux.
Want a good medium set of all of the above, or to play it safe? Mandrivia.

interesting notes.. I kept on typing Mandrivia as Mandrake. guess i was trying to date myself there. Mint Linux Is a modded ubuntu system. I only have 2 Debian systems listed up here, those are Mint and Xubuntu. Rest of them are Red Hat .rpm baised.

Solo

#9 adrynalyne

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:44 AM

Solo's Distro Comparison Chart
(Note, this is my thoughts and opinions, as with every thing else out there, your mileage may vary)

Ok, i am listing these in my order of preference, and i will tell you WHY i like that particular distro...

1> Fedora
Why Fedora? two words. RED HAT. These guys practically helped start up the linux revolution. And the fact that they are biased in Cary, NC is another reason, because i live close to there.

no, but really, why Fedora? I have NEVER had to do a re-format / reinstall of a fedora system, and i started using it since Fedora Core 3. The only problem i have with it is that because they like / want only free, propritary software, your going to have to go looking for YUM repos (or Pirut, or YumEX...) for "normal" codec files, and DVD playback.

2 > Mint
Ok, YES, this IS an ubuntu offshoot. But i like these guys better than i do plain old vanilla 'buntu. They have some really nice improvements, the Mint Menu is the main one i like, but they also have a "click-n-Run" type webportal software store also, and that makes it easy to visit there site, download a .mintinstall file, and then the mint installer will do all of the work for you. no need to worry about packages and stuff, this thing handles dependencies for you.

3 > Mandrivia
Wow, i remember back when these guys just grabbed the latest Red Hat source, made a few (minor) changes to it, then slapped there name and logo on it and handed it out.

Well, they have helped out the Linux community alot. The "Control Center" idea every linux distro has now. They came up with it. Very innovate company, even if it is run by the french. Or it was, i dont know now.

4> rPathLinux
Ok, odds are you have NOT heard of these guys, and probably because they tend to keep quiet. What makes the so special?
well, for one, they are redhat source code biased, but, they tend to use VERY bleeding edge software. It is nothing to go download an ISO of there's, burn it, and find Compiz-Fusion working fine, off of the LiveCD!

these guys were the second ones to do so successfully i think.
Second, is RPath Builder. just Imagine a tool where you could, online, tell a machine what software you want on YOUR CUSTOM linux distro iso, and then it makes the custom iso for you online! i mean, come on, how kick ass is that?

5a> Xubuntu
Ok, i am a huge fan of "minimal" desktop linux, and Xubuntu is right up there with elive. If i want Gnome compatibility, and "it works and does not hog my system specs" then this is what i use. It is small, works, and is memory / Old PC friendly. I had an old 700MHz PC with only 196MB Ram, and between Xubuntu and elive, it ran pretty fast.

5b> elive
Small. Bling. it is kinda like the Mac of the Linux world. Need to show off the graphical coolness of linux to a Mac fanboy? then use this. I aint kidding yall, it is insane, memory usage is up there with Xubuntu, being not very much at all. Has Bling, but they like to throw in PCFileMan with it, because there native file manager, is, well, in progress. Also, No Desktop Icons. and No support for systemtray. Rasterman doe snot like how the current specs are done.
But, there are ways around those item, people have wrote mini-apps that fill in the gap.

so yeah.

Ok, those are my top 5, well, 6 i guess.

to recap.
Want Bling and Eyecandy? elive.
Want minimal system that is resource friendly? Xubuntu
Want stability? Fedora.
Want ease of use? Mint.
Want Bleeding Edge? rPathLinux.
Want a good medium set of all of the above, or to play it safe? Mandrivia.

interesting notes.. I kept on typing Mandrivia as Mandrake. guess i was trying to date myself there. Mint Linux Is a modded ubuntu system. I only have 2 Debian systems listed up here, those are Mint and Xubuntu. Rest of them are Red Hat .rpm baised.

Solo



No Arch?

To date, I still find that the swifitest distro, with a really nice package management system. Its not as stable as it used to be...but eh...I've not used it in the last 3-4 months.

#10 Lord Devrexster

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 01:12 PM

2 > Mint
Ok, YES, this IS an ubuntu offshoot. But i like these guys better than i do plain old vanilla 'buntu. They have some really nice improvements, the Mint Menu is the main one i like, but they also have a "click-n-Run" type webportal software store also, and that makes it easy to visit there site, download a .mintinstall file, and then the mint installer will do all of the work for you. no need to worry about packages and stuff, this thing handles dependencies for you.


Solo


that ".mintinstall" thing lights up my eyes a bit. How does it compare with ubuntu in other factors like bling etc. I mean it is an ubuntu offshoot so all features in ubuntu must be present :huh: ??

#11 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 01:26 PM

@adrynalyne
nope, never really cared for it. PCLinuxOS, however is a good one, altough it is nothing more than Textar and Co. setting up shop with a modded mandrivia.

@Devrexter
whatever software is avalable for ubuntu is avalable for mint, because mint uses ubuntu Repo's.

al that the .mintinstall file is is a text document that is associated with there installer, it tells the installer to connect to there repo and resolve dependencies, then do the download and install.

pretty neat idea though.

#12 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 02:39 PM

if you like Arch or PCLinuxOs, then try this Distro out, it worked wonderfully on my minimal / old as hell hardware config.
live CD mode, simplified liveCD Installer, can install to Harddrive AND USB!

*Note, i was the one that ported E17 to this distro ad a liveCD Module add-in. i liked it THAT much.

http://wolvix.org/

#13 phoenix_abhi

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 03:39 PM

is THIS the reason for my boot problems ?? What can I do ??
Also is there a way I can save all my downloaded installations - or do I have to do them AGAIN :(



Swap is just like Virtual Memory in windows, That is not responsible for the Booting up trouble. Most probably the Graphics card may be culprit

Always enable restricted drivers after installation.

To back up all the updates and installations, after the live CD installation use APtonCD. A very useful utility which make an ISO of the all installed applications and updates.

For the Nvidia users enable it from Repo, otherwise their resolution will be low.

@ solo

Please include all the updates ONLY in starting page, so that readers can go through and remember it without any confusion. If possible consider this request.

Edited by phoenix_abhi, 19 July 2008 - 03:43 PM.


#14 adrynalyne

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 03:42 PM

@Solo

Arch is a minimalist distro. It doesn't even ship with a GUI. I think initial install is like 140mb. Definately not PCLOS.

It ships with basic tools and a kernel, then the rest is install it, how you like it.

http://archlinux.org/

Edited by adrynalyne, 19 July 2008 - 03:44 PM.


#15 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 09:38 PM

Your right Abhi, i should just keep on updating the first post. Good call.

@adrynalyne
ok, i see ... but if your going for super minimalist, why not use Gentoo?

#16 adrynalyne

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 09:47 PM

Your right Abhi, i should just keep on updating the first post. Good call.

@adrynalyne
ok, i see ... but if your going for super minimalist, why not use Gentoo?



Because unlike Gentoo, I can have Arch up and running with a desktop in ~ 10 minutes. And while the argue is dying out these days...installing from source is just silly unless you have oodles of time to waste for it to compile.

#17 Villain

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 10:18 PM

hey, you ever installed from source? more like if you have a WEEK to waste... geez, i did that once, never again... sheesh...

I think i will take a closer look in to Arch then, if it is a base setup and then you can download components that you want, that is a good idea... keeps the system lite and peppy, because in theory, it only has what you need, no bloat...


pretty cool. thanks for the info man!

#18 adrynalyne

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 11:22 PM

hey, you ever installed from source? more like if you have a WEEK to waste... geez, i did that once, never again... sheesh...

I think i will take a closer look in to Arch then, if it is a base setup and then you can download components that you want, that is a good idea... keeps the system lite and peppy, because in theory, it only has what you need, no bloat...


pretty cool. thanks for the info man!



You are quite welcome.

Yeah, I installed Gentoo once....took forever. Installed Oo.org from source once too for Sabayon (precanned Gentoo Distro). That took many hours...

#19 Villain

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 04:35 AM

post1 updated with a link to info about the so-called aspects of a "Linux Virus"
short version, your not in any real harm, only about 70 exist, including variants.
infecting a linux system is a hard thing to do, there is just way to much security in place.

#20 RickSOLET

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 04:10 PM

It's a great thread! Thanks for all the info.

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