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Linux is an operating system that evolved from a kernel created by Linus Torvalds when he was a student at the University of Helsinki. Generally, it is obvious to most people what Linux is, however, both for political and practical reasons, it needs to be explained further. To say that Linux is an operating system means that it's meant to be used as an alternative to other operating systems like MS-DOS, the various versions of MS Windows, Mac OS, Solaris and others. Linux is not a program like a word processor and is not a set of programs like an office suite.
A brief history of Linux
When Linus Torvalds was studying at the University of Helsinki, he was using a version of the UNIX operating system called 'Minix'. Linus and other users sent requests for modifications and improvements to Minix's creator, Andrew Tanenbaum, but he felt that they weren't necessary. That's when Linus decided to create his own operating system that would take into account users' comments and suggestions for improvements.
Free Software pre-Linux
This philosophy of asking for users comments and suggestions and using them to improve computer programs was not new. Richard Stallman, who worked at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, had been advocating just such an approach to computer programming and use since the early 1970's. He was a pioneer in the concept of 'free software', always pointing out that 'free' means 'freedom', not zero cost. Finding it difficult to continue working under conditions that he felt went against his concept of 'free software' he left MIT in 1984 and founded GNU. The goal of GNU was to produce software that was free to use, distribute and modify. Linus Torvalds' goal 6 years later was basically the same: to produce an operating system that took into account user feedback.
We should point out here that the focal point of any operating system is its 'kernel'. Without going into great detail, the kernel is what tells the big chip that controls your computer to do what you want the program that you're using to do. To use a metaphor, if you go to your favorite Italian restaurant and order 'Spaghetti alla Bolognese', this dish is like your operating system. There are a lot
of things that go into making that dish like pasta, tomato sauce, meatballs and cheese. Well, the kernel is like the pasta. Without pasta, that dish doesn't exist. You might as well find some bread and make a sandwich. A plate of just pasta is fairly unappetizing. Without a kernel, an operating system doesn't exist. Without programs, a kernel is useless.
1991, a fateful year
In 1991, ideal conditions existed that would create Linux. In essence, Linus Torvalds had a kernel but no programs of his own, Richard Stallman and GNU had programs but no working kernel. Read the two men's own words about this: Linus: "Sadly, a kernel by itself gets you nowhere. To get a working system you need a shell, compilers, a library etc." RMS: The GNU Hurd is not ready for production use. Fortunately, another kernel is available. [It is called] Linux. So combining the necessary programs provided by GNU in Cambridge, Massachusetts and a kernel, developed by Linus Torvalds in Helsinki, Finland, Linux was born. Due to the physical distances involved, the means used to get Linus' kernel together with the GNU programs was the Internet, then in its infancy. We can say then that Linux is an operating system that came to life on the Internet. The Internet would also be crucial in Linux's subsequent development as the means of coordinating the work of all the developers that have made Linux into what is is today.
Linux is introduced
Late in 1991, Linus Torvalds had his kernel and a few GNU programs wrapped around it so it would work well enough to show other people what he had done. And that's what he did. The first people to see Linux knew that Linus was on to something. At this point, though, he needed more people to help him. Here's what Linus had to say back in 1991. "Are you without a nice project and dying to cut your teeth on an OS you can try to modify for your needs?... This post might just be for you." People all over the world decided to take him up on it. At first, only people with extensive computer programming knowledge would be able to do anything with that early public version of Linux. These people started to offer their help. The version numbers of Linux were getting higher and higher. People began writing programs specifically to be run under Linux. Developers began writing drivers so different video cards, sound cards and other gadgets inside and outside your computer could use Linux. Nevertheless, throughout most of first part of the
1990's Linux did not get out of the 'GURU' stage. GURU is a term that has evolved to mean anyone who has special expertise in a particular subject. That is, you had to have special expertise in how computers worked to be able to install Linux in those days.
Linux, at first, not for everybody
Other popular software companies sold you a CD or a set of floppies and a brief instruction booklet and in probably less than a half an hour, you could install a fully working operating system on your PC. The only ability you needed was knowing how to read. Those companies had that intention when they actually sat down and developed their operating systems. Linus Torvalds didn't have that in mind when he developed Linux. It was just a hobby for him. Later on, companies like Red Hat made it their goal to bring Linux to the point where it could be installed just like any other operating system; by anyone who can follow a set of simple instructions, and they have succeeded. For some reason, though, Linux hasn't shaken off completely that 'Gurus only' image that it took on at the beginning. That is mostly the result of articles in the popular, quasi-technical press whose experience with Linux has been quite limited.
Today, Linux is enjoying a favorable press for the most part. This comes from the fact that Linux has proven to be a tremendously stable and versatile operating system, particularly as a network server. When Linux is deployed as a web server or in corporate networks, its down-time is almost negligible. There have been cases when Linux servers have been running for more than a year without re-booting and then only taken down for a brief period for routine maintainance. Its cost effectiveness has sold it more than anything else. Linux can be installed on a home PC as well as a network server for a fraction of the cost of other companies' software packages. More reliability and less cost - it's ideal. If you're reading this, you're obviously here to learn how to use Linux. Any learning experience means opening up to new ideas and new ways of doing things. As mentioned before, Linux is in the UNIX family of operating systems. UNIX is primarily designed to be used by professionals. You will have to learn some UNIX concepts in this lesson, but that doesn't mean that Linux is a professionals-only operating system. Quite the contrary. Most major versions of Linux are designed to be as user-friendly and as easy to install as any other operating system on the market today. Now that you know what Linux is and how good it is, there's one more thing we have to do - install Linux! [Previous] [Next]
There are versions of Linux that are designed to be installed on platforms like MacIntosh. rain and other adverse climactic conditions. To use an analogy.. There is even the equivalent of a swimsuit in Linux . There are versions of Linux that were developed to be installed on computers that receive heavy traffic. For this reason they have done everything in their power to "warn" the public that Linux is something that you probably don't want and don't need. There are many different versions of Linux. I would were "normal" clothes. Add to this the fact that in the last year or so three major "distributions" have emerged that cater specifically to the non-technical user and . wind. organizations and individuals have developed their own "versions" of the Linux operating system.a very scaled down version .Lesson 1 Installing Linux Some preliminary considerations.Getting Started with Linux . known as distributions.just to cover the essentials. who makes its living selling people "ordinary" operating systems. Some were developed to be used in networks were security is a priority. it's a joke) What Linux is right for me? This is a very difficult question to answer. the cold. Linux is just as easily installed and supports just as wide a range of hardware as Microsoft Windows does. there is a situation unlike what occurs in the proprietary operating system world: a number of companies. There are versions of Linux that are meant to be installed on top of an existing operating system like Windows so people can try out Linux under familiar conditions. Linux has been fit into all those environments and more. Unfortunately Microsoft Corp. I would need specific clothes to protect me from scrapes. like webpage servers. If I were going to a formal dinner. There are computer world equivalents of mountain climbing and formal dinners as well as just sitting around the house. But in reality. in the Linux world. Most PC users probably just need the everyday version. have a lot to lose if Linux ever got popular with the masses. so to speak. where sensitive information should only be accessed by a privileged few. I would need a tuxedo. The PR department at Microsoft is coming up with fewer and fewer reasons not to use Linux. If I were going about my daily routine. So. Linux is free to distribute and use. This kind of Linux has been widely available for some time now. if I were going mountain climbing. Unlike other commercial operating systems that are controlled by one company. There are versions of Linux with funny names like "Chainsaw Linux" (no kidding) and "Tutti-Frutti Linux" (yes.
Mandrake. Well designed programs will take you through the process of installation step by step so that you will be able to get Linux up and running in a relatively short period of time without any headaches. we have chosen Debian GNU/Linux for an example install. Linux Online maintains a list of all kinds of distributions. Linux on PCs containing Intel-based CPUs It would be impossible to cover all of the different types of Linux so this lesson will only deal with standard versions of Linux that are meant to be installed on PCs with Intel-based CPUs. modems and sound cards. Though you probably won't need them. and we'll meet you in the next lesson! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You may have heard of some of the companies and organizations that have created distributions for this platform. The best thing to do before attempting to install Linux is to get the manuals that came with your PC out of the closet and dust them off. There are even versions of Linux that offer documentation and install programs in languages other than English. go get those manuals. like Debian. There are others as well. the major versions of Linux have perfected their products to such a degree that they are very easy to install. but as we said before. We invite you to consult that list before deciding on installing any version of Linux. We should say here that it is not our intention to endorse the products of the companies we have mentioned here nor do we want to slight those companies that we haven't mentioned.Lesson 1 Debian GNU/Linux As it would be impossible in this course to talk about and give installation instructions for all of the Linux distributions. Now. Major distributions of Linux have taken into account most standard hardware such as video cards. Why have we chosen this distribution? . they may help to track down a problem or prevent a future one.you can see that Linux has truly achieved the goal of being all things for all people. But even commercial operating systems that are billed as being the most user friendly in the world can't guarantee a 100% problem-free installation. Prepare your manuals As we mentioned before. nobody can guarantee a problem-free installation for any operating system. Red Hat and SuSE .
org/distrib/ If you don't happen to have a broadband connection. This can also be done by downloading floppy disk image files instead of CD images. from newcomer to seasoned IT professional. If you have a CD burner. his wife and his name (Deb-Ian: ergo. It's name comes from Debra. this is an ideal option. 4.org/CD/vendors/ . Consult this page for further information about distributors in your area: http://www. He was one of the founders of Pixar. downloading the files as the installer needs them).It is: 1. and other popular films produced by Walt Disney Pictures. One of the Linux world's most illustrious people has been a primary developer of Debian. you can easily obtain this distribution and install it.debian. The major advantage to Debian is that it can be updated easily via their much lauded apt-get system. Inc.debian. Applicable to a wide range of uses and users. namely Bruce Perens. The Debian project is sponsored by Software in the Public Interest. Debian). Debian can and is being used from anything from a Pentium 3 you can surf the web with to the mission critical server that has to be up 24/7 that you get the content from. Though the installation procedure is not as easy as some commercial distributions. xDSL or better). The second is to obtain a minimal ISO image especially designed for a install over the Internet (ie. You may want to consider contacting a local distributor of Debian CDs. a non-profit organization dedicated to helping produce open-source software and hardware. We can also add a lot in between. Debian has no company behind it. About Debian The Debian project was founded by Ian Murdock in 1993. A solid. Easily obtained and updated. More information on these methods can be found at http://www. downloading Debian would be an extremely frustrating experience. it cannot be described as difficult either. We will go over this in more detail shortly. Non-profit and non-commercial (which lets us off the hook on a lot of issues!) 3. Getting Debian GNU/Linux If you have a broadband connection (cable. Despite its not-for-profit status. The most popular is to burn the Debian ISO images to CDs and install. quality Linux distribution with a long history (in Linux terms) 2. There are two major ways to do this. the company that created animated films such as Toy Story. Monsters.
What we can say about dual-booting If you happen to have MS Windows 9. there are some supposedly nondestructive re-sizing tools. Preliminary considerations You may be wondering if you can keep another operation system (ie.which other one is there?) on your computer. Why? There are a couple of reasons: • • • Lack of experience with the newer Microsoft products. so we go over installation using this method. before you flame the poor author: He did not say that it would be easier with Linux. so I find these stories about being "weaned" off Windows to be ridiculous.x you must repartition your hard drive to make room for Linux.Installation from CD This is probably going to be the most common way of installing Debian. He hasn't done it with any of the more recent ones. being those who run the financial software 'Quicken'). As a matter of fact. you don't have to be "weaned" off that. as a matter of fact. The author must admit that he's installed a great number of Linux distributions side by side with Windows 9. This is relatively easy to deal with. You can either erase the drive and repartition a blank drive or you can attempt to repartition a working hard drive. supposedly. I recommend Linux only installations.what's the use in re-sizing when you can start clean from scratch. There's nothing you can do with Microsoft products that Linux won't let you do as well Enough said there. They always tell you to back up your data before proceeding. Please. You may decide you want to throw away Windows all together! Summing up. You just trade in the old one and start driving the .x products. (the exception. even in a "second fiddle" role. what was done in the "old" days was to install Windows in C: and D: partitions. my first install of Slackware Linux was on the D: partition of my Windows workstation. You can. so advice on doing it would be of dubious quality. We don't work for Microsoft We advocate alternatives to Microsoft products and not the continued use of them. Are we going to explain how to do it? Not in great detail. If you've bought a new car. Linux has become quite "mature" as an end-user operating system. MS Windows . Sometimes it is. so I always figure . If you've got one partition with Windows on it. Ideally.
There are also other commercial . The graphic user interfaces available plus the ever growing numbers of productivity applications (office suites. This will rearrange your hard drive so you can install Linux. or Ginger and Marianne or even the Professor and Marianne if you like. but alas. or pictures of that dream vacation to Hawaii that you haven't shown to your Aunt Betty yet or your best DOOM scores. There's a version for Linux and but it doesn't mention Will Robinson. Linux may call them /hda3 and /hda5 for example. Linux doesn't use them. Will Robinson". I digress. This 'swap' partition is just a way that Linux uses to get more memory so that you don't run out of it. But installing Linux isn't dangerous and if you choose to install you may not need such a drastic solution to your partition problem. My dog did try to eat my hard disk once and he really relishes the floppies I leave lying around. Unfortunately this lesson can't take into account everybody's individual circumstances. email applications. etc. The classic way of partitioning your hard disk is with a program called 'fdisk' The program comes with a lot of whistles and buzzers and flashing messages that say "Danger. you can't give a piece to the dog. If you're fortunate enough to have a hard drive with more than one partition (the old C: and D: routine).forever! [cue ominous organ music].) make it such that a MS Windows user could have his/her workstation switched with a Linux machine overnight and they would barely break a sweat getting used to it. The re-partioning using this method will get rid of them . Then you will need another partition known as a 'swap' partition.the scorched-earth policy of partitioning. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You can call them Ginger and Fred. browsers. after you've divided it. popular operating systems would generally call them C and D. then it may be just a question of moving some files around. you'll need to make back-up copies of them.new one.Lesson 2 Partitioning Your hard disk is like a pie. Everything works very much in the same way. As we mentioned before. Unlike a pie. We'll get to that in a minute. if you had two partitions. You can divide it into sections. For example. We want to say here that this is the SWAT team method of doing it . If you have that important term paper on your hard disk. There's a tool called FIPS that comes with major Linux versions. I just use these bad jokes as a way of saying that C and D are naming conventions that belong to other operating systems.
you have to install them in the first 'primary' partition. you should see how much RAM you have. That means installing it in /hda1 in Linux speak. one person will always exert his rights over the other. This should now boot the Linux kernel located on your CD ROM. unless you've got a hard drive that's bursting at the seams.Lesson 2 Plunk that CD in the drive Okay. For example. So remember. the feel free to make a 500 megabyte swap partition. Then my partition scheme ends up looking like this: . This is simply a way that Linux uses to get an extra memory boost. you are free to install Linux in what's left. When you've got that re-installed.products that will do the same. In any situation where you've got two things sharing the same space. You should know that any decent working Linux system . and that way it thinks it's the only one there. this is the scheme that works for me: Let's take a 10 gigabyte hard drive as an example. the other operating system should be re-installed first. We'll talk more about that in another lesson. if you've chosen to go the fdisk route. you create what's known as a SWAP partition. That is to partition your hard disk even further and put "parts" of Linux on separate partitions. like two people sharing the same apartment. Restart the computer. There is an easy way to do this. sort of like those phony mirrors at the supermarket. I'd plan for a bit more To talk about where Linux and other operating systems should go. From this figure. What you'll have to do first is partition the hard drive. First. Now is the moment of truth. So if you've got 256 megabytes of RAM. I mean. and we're ready to go. Please keep that in mind. We've got the CD in the drive. having the programs that will let you do anything you did with your Windows system.and by decent. And if you want those photos of Hawaii on there. You can dedicate the whole hard disk or non-Windows partition (depending on the type of install you're doing).will take at least 2 gigabytes. Custom dictates that your swap partition be double your ram memory. you can actually see the other system's partition. so even though it's really not going to be this way. That may be an option for you. There is a better alternative. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . Other operating systems usually want to be the only ones in the computer. Once you've installed Linux.
You may be able to save information if it's located in different partitions easier than if it were only one big partition. That will come after. without going into any technical jargon. It doesn't really take into account that you want to initialize /usr and /home partitions. you'll be asked if you want a 'shadow' password system. You'll have to evaluate this on your own. You should go back and initialize these partitions now before proceeding. /home will contain your personal files. You'll now be asked if you want to use Md5 passwords. Now you should initialize the / partition .Partition swap / (boot) /usr /home Location /dev/hda2 /dev/hda1 /dev/hda3 /dev/hda4 Size 500 mb 1. you'll have to answer a few questions about configuration. this is another Unix scheme for extra security.5 gb 5 gb Assign partitions to look like this. Before we actually assign the other partitions their places and functions. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . we need to initialize and activate a the swap partition. You should always answer 'yes' to this one because without it. You should choose this if you think you'll be needing extra security.Lesson 2 Reboot and basic configuration Your new Debian GNU/Linux system is now rebooting. When that's finished. This kind of a partition scheme may come in handy if you have problems with your hard disk. If you don't choose this.2 gb 3. Without getting into a lot of technical jargon. Don't go to the next step yet. Md5 passwords are protected with an extra layer of security.the one that will boot the Linux kernel. Don't worry about the /usr and /home parts. Do this now. Now. You must indicate here that you want / to be the bootable partition. /usr will contain most of the programs that will run on your machine. Once again. your password. there is what I consider a little glitch in the Debian install. especially if it's some dictionary .
Now. he/she is restricted to modifying only the files owned by him/her. but it might be so well known now that it would be found in any program that crackers use to get into systems. we're ready to choose the rest of the packages that will make up our Debian system. It is. This insures a lot of security and removes a lot of headaches. This is an acceptable password procedure. Taking the some letters and replacing them with similar looking numbers. now it's time to enter the password for the famous 'root' account. We'll get into more detail on the duties and privileges of root later on. I would choose something a little less wellknown in Trek lore and modify it somewhat. Feel free to use your first name or the first letter of your name and your last name as the login for this account. Suffice it to say. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . you should now type in a password for the 'root' account. creating a random string of lower case and capital letters and numbers and just remembering it. Feel free to do so. In the end. Follow the password convention you're comfortable with. everybody comes up with his/own own scheme that works. By the way. Now you should create an account to work with normally. Please choose one that's easy for you to remember but would be difficult to guess or "crack". difficult to remember. 'C2jl7y2B' is an excellent password. If you have a dial-up connection. 'root' is the administrator of the system. Therefore. you should never use a dictionary word as a password. Well.Lesson 2 . Charlie X. would become very easy to crack. Spock probably isn't in the dictionary. You should never do routine work as root. you can skip this part. It's also known as the superuser account. At this point. If you connect by way of broadband or better. this is a good time to use it. 'ch4rl13X' might be a good password. You will now be asked if you want to configure your system to use your ISP. of course. you'll be asked to remove PCMCIA from the system if yours doesn't use it. What I mean by "normally" is that Linux is a true multi-user system. if I were a Star Trek fan.word. When each logs in. For example. however. The best is. I might be tempted to use Spock as a password. This account should be only used to perform important administrative tasks. so one machine can be used by hundreds of users. As we're on the subject of passwords. Trek fans will remember that mutant brat who once tried to take over the Enterprise.
Post Install We'll assume that you've got a working Debian system now. Some simple advice: just answer the questions as accurately as you can and you should be fine.Completing the install process Now it's time to begin inserting each one of the CDs you have. but due to the fact that the packages each person might choose and the hardware in his/her machine. Here you will choose packages "by hand" from a list of hundreds. When you have completed the scanning process. If you are more adventurous. you are notified. Our install road has reached a plethora of forks in it. If you were to choose a package that conflicted with something else. That way. After the security updates are finished. There is a maximum of 8 in the set. For this reason a check is made and any programs with flaws are marked and updated copies downloaded and installed. With Debian. you can either choose to keep the package that Debian recommends or "un-select" the package so your own choice can be installed. we can't really document accurately what's going to go on from here. You will have to do some more work in this department. Though the dselect interface is not visually appealing and may appear daunting to newcomers. you will be asked to choose another 'apt' source. They will be scanned for available packages for install. it will now start searching that site for security updates. We will configure this later. right now it's best not to choose another apt source besides the CDs. you can download and update packages automatically right off this Internet with the 'apt' system. if you are connected to the Internet by way of broadband for example and the install program can make a connection to Debian's security site. Insert each one and wait until you are asked for another. At this point. you should now configure the apt- . security flaws may have been found in certain programs included with Debian. At the fork(s) in the road Here we reach the end of the install section. you may choose the more advanced install process by way of dselect. it is fairly straight forward and is actually quite user friendly in the sense that it is almost impossible to run into trouble with the packages you want to install. From the time the ISO images are released to the point where you are installing. This will install programs after you have indicated your general preferences from a menu. If you've got a broadband or better connection to the Internet. you will be presented with the possibility of doing a simple install with The Debian Task Installer.
org/debian stable main contrib non-free deb http://non-us.old This renames the file sources.get system which will allow you to update your system quickly and painlessly. If you have zero experience with Linux or Unix. We'll tell them to get packages off the Internet directly.will update your system with the latest security enhances packages. Hit the escape (ESC) key and the letter 'i' and your ready to insert the following. sources.list. We'll give you a refresher later on in the course.debian. Use: apt-get upgrade --show-upgraded to get a little more verbose report of what's going on.list This brings up the text editor 'vi'. It will also allow you to get new programs by downloading and installing them automatically. I'm sure the people who maintain the Debian website would appreciate it too! Now you're ready to keep your Debian system in shape. we can do what we want for now.debian. . Now we're going to change things a bit.old. If you have a basic knowledge of Unix commands already. deb http://http.org stable/updates main contrib non-free You may want to do to Debian's homepage and look up suitable mirror sites nearer to you. they will challenge you to a pistol duel at 20 paces if you tell them you think it's lousy.list sources. There are people who love this program so much. We need to create a new sources.installs a new program. you may want to try it!) mv sources. but you will probably be making use of these commands while you use Debian.us. .list. apt-get update apt-get --purge remove [program/package name] removes any trace of a program from your system.list is what told the 'dselect' and 'apt' programs where to get the packages to be installed. apt-get install [program/package name] . (Even if you don't. Do this first: vi sources.org/debian-non-US stable/non-US main contrib non-free deb http://security.debian. but with a few simple strokes of the keyboard.list file and add our new package sources to it. You should go to the directory /etc/apt/ and do the following (as root).list to sources. 'vi' is probably *not* the text editor for you at this point.
I say 'should' because doing routine work as 'root' could be hazardous to your health.Lesson 3 Working as another user . When I first started using Linux myself.First Things First When you work as root You have now installed Linux and the first thing you did was login as 'root'. that means that besides root. And the most important thing about being a janitor .he sees everything. he can shut off the lights. Actually. it is much more glamourous to be 'Superman' but root is actually more like the 'janitor' of the Linux system. Root has the keys to everything. he has to clean up the system and in the end make sure everything runs. you had better go into a phone booth first and change into a blue suit with a big 'S' on the front because 'root' is known as the 'superuser'. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . 'root' is not for routine work As I mentioned. let's see what we can do with that Debian system! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . lock you out of the building. you can and should work as another person. shut off the heat. It was after I had trashed all of the files and programs that make Linux run that I realized that care that working regularly as root wasn't a good idea.one user' concept in my brain.Now. (you can skip the red tights if you want) That's really not meant to be just a witty reference to the Man of Steel. Then you provided a password so that you and ONLY you could login to the system as 'root'. information was not all that readily available and I still had that 'one computer.Lesson 3 Working with Linux . Linux makes your computer a true multi-user system. When you decide to work as root.
I can work as different people.one password' You will be asked to repeat it. don't use your 'root' password. There is also the get-your-hands-dirty way of doing this. If your name is "Bob" then you could create a user account for 'bob'. One thing I find EXTREMELY helpful is that with Linux. working as a user other than root. has a nice tool called YAST which lets you add users painlessly. Actually you won't get your hands dirty unless you're eating barbecued ribs at the same time. but this is where you have to exert your authority. Do this: passwd bob Linux will ask you for your password. I am just a guy with a couple of different jobs. SuSE. Adding a new user Well. Also. [Previous] [Next] . Now 'root' has to do this stuff. You probably won't see any fireworks go off. Charles Philip Arthur George is a bit too long and has spaces. You may pick the name you like. Linux has been told that there's a new user and his name's 'bob'. one vote' it's 'one user . Kind of a logical name. Follow the same advice I gave previously about passwords. If your name is Hrothgar.Well. Now you should give yourself a password. for example. Try your name. then how do you do your day to day work with Linux? Easy. This way I can organize my work a lot better and backups are easier this way too.he should try 'charlie'. I know I just warned you about working as root. Consult your Linux version for information on their tools. That doesn't matter. Bob. Most major distributions have tools to do this. Yes. now it's time to create your account. which Linux doesn't like . Like 'one man. Using 'useradd' and 'passwd' To add a new user. if Prince Charles is reading this. you can also use the command 'useradd'. isn't it? Try this: useradd bob. It should not be inferred here that I have split-personality disorder. You just fill in the correct information. By the way. You might not see anything. substitute 'bob' for 'Hrothgar' or 'Hrothie' for the remainder of the lesson.
With the -a option.Getting Started with Linux . Those would normally be hidden from you if you didn't use the -a. It's really cool. There are actually programs for Linux where you talk through a microphone and Linux will carry out commands that you've programmed in advance. Go to the /home directory. The Linux shell When you're running Linux and start to type things on that black screen. Any operating system uses a shell to get commands from the keyboard to the computer.Lesson 4 The Linux file system Now's the time to learn a little bit about the Linux file system.Lesson 4 Creating your 'routine' in Linux What's in your user directory When you create a new user. where to find stuff and a little bit about what that stuff is. You can type: ls -a to see what's in the directory. you are using a shell. It's a lot easier than punching holes in cards like they used to do in the old days. Now you can go to work as 'bob'. We'll go into more detail with the ls command later. you'll see some files that begin with a '. or 'hrothgar' or whoever you happen to be. you have to do the following. Now you need to type: cd bob MS-DOS users will be familiar with that one. For now.typing: cd /home you can make sure you're in the /home directory by typing 'pwd' You'll see this: /home. To see what's in this new directory.' (period/dot). We'll learn about where Linux puts it stuff. there is a directory created for that user in /home. . [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . though we'll concentrate on the .
. bash means "Bourne Again Shell". [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .Lesson 4 The basic directory structure in Linux Now type this: ls You will probably see something like this: cdrom dev bin boot home lib etc floppy opt tmp proc usr lost+found root var mnt sbin They will be blue in color. cd will get you in and out of directories. the king of kings. We will handle a lot of commands in more detail later lessons. Getting in and out of directories with 'cd' We saw a few commands in the last lesson. Again MS-DOS users will be familiar with this. The /bin directory Now type this: cd bin Type ls again. Those are directories. The first one we should look at is 'cd'. as you can see. It's the directory of directories. This lesson will cover those commands which you will need to see what's under Linux's hood.keyboard. That is /root. It is a free version of the Bourne shell and uses a little play on words. but we didn't go into them much. Try this one: cd / This will get you into the 'root' or main directory. The most popular shell used for Linux is the bash shell. your show of shows. The root directory shouldn't be confused with root's directory.
. You'll find all of the most used commands there.. bin/ is one of the most important directories in Linux. the file that tells you which OS to boot is in there. Anyway. 'cd . Linux is going to beep a couple of times. The /etc directory Now lets look at another directory. Linux will type the rest for you. 'cd etc' will get you into the etc/ directory.now push the tab key.' will get you out of bin/. I have always felt this one was misnamed. you are now in the etc/ directory. First the long way.This is the famous bin/ directory. depending on your version of Linux). I like that one so I haven't changed it. You will now see every file in the directory that begins with the letter 'm' Now add an 'o' on to ls m so you get ls mo . but you can change it so that Linux says anything you want when you log in. Like when people say. You know. You should see 'motd'. 'That's no good. lilo. This houses most of the configuration files for Linux. You could just type 'ls li' and push the tab key.conf And you don't even have to type the whole thing. or you can just type 'cd /etc' in the bin/ directory and it will bring you to the etc/ directory . throw it in the bin' Actually. This is a file that contains your startup message. you'll see: lilo.conf. There's a long way and a short cut. Isn't that cool! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . Right now you should be seeing a lot of red (or green. but you keep pushing. SuSE has a famous one that says 'Have a lot of fun!'. Those are programs.Lesson 4 Some more cool short cuts Try this one: type ls m push the tab key.
As you get more proficient in Linux.Do you want to make sure that lilo. so your hard disk is kept track of as a file that sits there. Just stop on the command you want and press 'enter'. The /usr directory Let's talk about using some options with commands. Your last commands will appear when you do that. Your commands are saved in a history file located in your home directory. The usr/ directory contains files and programs meant to be used by all of the users on the system. We'll get into more detail about what all of that means later in the course. you'll see a lot of yellow outlined in black. typing: ls -l will give you more detailed information about the contents of a directory. You just have to press the up arrow. These are the devices that your system uses or can use. the farther back in time you go. Don't delete that. Try this: First let's go to the usr/ directory by doing cd /usr then type: ls -l . You'll see mainly sub-directories here.conf' or even part of it and press the tab key anymore. come jumping out of . it'll say 'root' a lot. some numbers.Lesson 4 In Linux. your hard drive will be known as /dev/hda.conf is still in there? You don't have to type 'lilo. The more times you press the up button. not only is that digital photo of The Eiffel Tower a file but your monitor is a file too! How can that be? Let's try to explain it. everything is a file Yes. you'll will find that this really comes in handy. Pressing the down button gets you back to your most recent commands. letter combinations. because your hard disk will spin around. like dates. If you're using an IDE hard drive (as opposed to SCSI). Everything is considered a file in Linux. You will see more information. For example. You can even type the command history and all of the last 400 or so commands you've typed will be presented. The /dev directory If you do cd /dev and then ls. You can often find out the answer to the question: How did I do that? by consulting your shell history. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .
/root If you are not working as 'root' and you type cd /root. but it is normally placed there on most systems. he or she would get a message saying that only root can do that. The /tmp directory /tmp is a directory that is used to store temporary files. so don't worry about that. the photo comes up for you to see but a temporary file is created while you're looking at the photo. The /var directory /var is a directory for certain files that may change their size (ie. This directory is like /bin in that it has frequently used programs in it. Only root can shutdown the system. You will eventually have to use this directory.your computer. Root's home directory is a restricted area for everybody else. If I . When you double click on an icon of a photo. land on the floor and spill out ooze all over the place. The temporary file is deleted when you close the KDE image program. You will probably not have to look in /dev very much. as the name may suggest. Linux response is sort of like. That's where the Linux kernel usually is. there are a few excellent databases for Linux. The /boot directory Doing: cd /boot will get you into the /boot directory. One is called MySQL. You will not find any boots or shoes or footwear of any kind there. However. but you can't touch. Normally. this window manager will create files there for temporary use. That will be taken up in a more advanced lesson. You may look. Users' home directories are under certain restrictions for other users as well. you will be taken to the directory /root. because you may need to use two or more different types of kernels in the future. Power users may change the location of the kernel for reasons of their own (they may prefer /shoe). variable size) For example. The /sbin directory /sbin is another one of those off-limits directories. No. not really. MySQL keeps its data in a subdirectory of /var called /var/mysql/. you won't be able to do anything while you're there. You will find later on that when you use a Windows-style system with Linux like KDE. 'Shutdown' is in there. It's mainly the programs that work under a windows manager that take advantage of this directory. Then that person would be followed by the secret police for three months. If a user other than root tried to shutdown the system. but they're only meant to be used by root. root's directory . 'You don't have to know that'.
You will probably not have to worry about this directory much unless you start getting messages like 'can't find shared library.'. The /lib directory /lib is for library files. It is also the normal place where email servers store their incoming mail. even when compiled from source. usually have a preconfiguration program that make sure they can find what libraries they "depend" on to run. All of us have certain preferences for using programs. And if it didn't then I'd be in trouble. Programs may use libraries to carry out their functions. they'll tell you you can't install the program. Different programs use the same libraries. Most of these files start with a '. That will sometimes happens when you've downloaded some program and had to compile it yourself from source and even then. getting what are known as "dependency" problems are quite rare.. What's left The /floppy /cdrom and /mnt directories Most installations of Linux will also provide these directories: .had an e-commerce website. Most programs. These preferences are usually included in configuration files which are also stored in users' home directories. that's where the name /lib comes from. so Linux will store them here so that every program knows where to find them. I would have a database to register purchases. That database would obviously grow in size. email varies in size as well. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .. This a directory for storing users' personal files. Again. If they don't.Lesson 4 Home Sweet Home We talked about /home before.' (period/dot). 'cd /home/[username]' and type: ls -a you will see these files. If you go to your home directory.
we'll explain in more detail what these are for. you're not going to be able to just click on an 'a:' icon or a 'd:' icon. In the next lesson. That will very rarely happen these days. Let's just say that in Linux. There are also people who probably just shut off their monitor. As I said. Actually. And then when you're finished you'll have to shut off your computer. For this. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . if you shut off Linux incorrectly or there was an inopportune thunder storm and you lost electrical power. At first. you could do severe damage to your Linux file system. there are computers that are never shut off. Later on. we'll use the shutdown command The importance of the 'shutdown' command As anyone who's used a computer knows./mnt /cdrom /floppy These shouldn't contain anything. As you probably get some sleep occasionally. and you've looked around at what you have. more these directories later in the course. we'll take her for a little spin.Lesson 5 Day to day with Linux Shutting down Linux At this point you should have installed Linux. Imagine if your ISP shut off the computer every night! The Internet is a 24/7 business so that wouldn't be practical. Well. we've looked under Linux's hood. data will be lost. so we should maybe let our machine have a rest too once and a while. so to speak. but you should always use the shutdown command when you want to shut off your . You're going to do cd /floppy or cd /cdrom If you try that now you probably won't see anything. if you want to see what's on a floppy disk or a CD. if you shut off you're computer before you've finished saving work. or if there's a power outage that shuts it off for you.
it will tell you about it when it starts up and when it shuts down.it will run a check on your hard disk automatically when you use it again. Linux will also run a routine check every once and a while automatically. Shutdown for a single computer The most common way of shutting down a single user Linux system is for you as root to issue the command: shutdown -h now You use this when you plan on shutting your computer off at that moment. Linux will tell you about it if you don't . if you are having a problem. Re-booting the computer The other command that you will probably use is: shutdown -r now . With the shutdown -h now command. You'll see a message like: Linux is going for system halt NOW It will start to shut off programs that you're computer is using and you'll see it all happening. It lets you see everything it's doing. It won't give you a simple message telling you to wait and then another one telling you you can shut it off now. as opposed to some later time. If you have a big hard disk. you might as well go and make yourself a sandwich because it's going to take a while.computer. If you don't know how to solve it. That way. you may be able to track it down. you must wait until you see the message: System halted or Power down before you shut off the computer. That's because Linux is a transparent system. If something is causing a problem. you can tell another person what you saw and he or she may be able to help you. You also have our permission to fix yourself a sandwich in these cases too.
Back in the days of MS-DOS. Unlike MS-DOS. you may want to try shutting down the computer at a given time. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . you may want to try using some time options instead of just now. Linux in non-graphics mode may resemble MS-DOS somewhat. The next time you shutdown your system. Using 'now'. but on a network system this would be changed to indicate a time. shutdown -h 20:01 Which will shutdown the computer at 8:01 PM. would probably be hazardous to the health of the person who sent that command. you can can work as more than one user with more than one program at a time The ALT-F keys . (why would you want to do that?) you would use this command. In the next lesson we'll talk using the system again. Linux is a true multi-tasking. That way people would have a chance to finish what they were doing before the system went down for maintenence. multi-user system.Lesson 5 Virtual Terminals One of the coolest things that Linux has to offer is the concept of virtual terminals. The last part of the shutdown command now is fine for a single-user home PC. Now you know the correct way to shutdown your Linux system. For example. You could also try: shutdown -h +5 That shuts down the computer in 5 minutes time. You will get a similar message as with the -h (halt) option that will say something like: System going for reboot NOW The basic reason behind all of these messages is that Linux was conceived to be a networked operating system. one program could only be run by one user at a time.If you have installed a dual-boot system and you want to use the other operating system. but that's where the similarities end. You have people at workstations on the network busily doing their work. in a network.
'root'.Lesson 5 Text editors in Linux If I were to choose one of the main reason why people use PCs. but then we can add the concept of multi-user to it. 'bob' for example. plus the F keys will allow you to login as a different user. cross outs. I would definitely say for writing. This gave us the opportunity to have various programs running at the same time. Pressing ALT-F7 will get you back to your windows manager again. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . popularized by Macintosh OSes and Microsoft Windows. The combination CRL-ALT-F6 will get you out of your windows manager momentarily so you can login as a different user. If you've been experimenting with your windows manager already. KWord. You wouldn't have to shutdown the program you were working with. wouldn't you say? The combination of ALT. you might want to try one more thing. but to run a different program. You could just press ALT-F2 and Linux will prompt you to login as a different user. All you then need to do is type: 'exit' when your finished. Linux is just as well suited for word processing as any other operating system. With a computer and a word processing program. All those old Smith-Coronas got put away.Let's say.org suite's word . or as the same user. and you found that you needed to do something as 'root'.There are several excellent word processing programs for Linux like AbiWord. in this case. You'd just type the root password and then you can do stuff as 'root'. and then press ALT-F1 again to get back to your original terminal . Pretty cool. white out and crumpled up paper has disappeared forever. A preview of virtual terminals in X-window It's true that the 1990's brought us the era of the graphic user interface. if you were working as a user. We'll mention this again in the lesson on X-window. The X-window system of Linux will let you do this as well. part of the KOffice suite and the OpenOffice.
The main use of a text editor is for writing something in plain text with no formatting so that another program can read it. All operating systems come with a basic text editor. We should go through some basic 'vi' commands. because I have found that 'vi' is good if I want to get into a text file quickly and change something or I want to write a short note to myself. To write something. First. you have to press ESC and the 'i' key (i for insert). This is a program that comes from UNIX. Even if you don't press 'ESC-i' it usually gets the idea that you want to type something and lets you do it after a few keystrokes. I generally do not use "vi" for anything that requires more than about 30 seconds of work. Linux comes with several. To save this file. Working with 'vi' Let's make a text file. we should talk about the terminal mode text editors that are available for Linux. you can always erase your mistakes with the backspace key. The text editor "vi" The most popular text editor for Linux is called 'vi'.processor. Type: vi tryvi You'll see a line of tildes down the left side and the name 'tryvi' at the bottom and [new file]. you would press ESC then the colon key ':' then 'w' (write) . We'll talk about these kinds of programs in a later lesson. but there are people who swear by 'vi' and do all kinds of things with it like designing entire websites. Based on the information it gets from that file. You should get used to the 'ESC-i' keys so you don't end up writing 'ar John' instead of 'Dear John'. the program will run one way or another. Press ESC + 'i' then type: hello vi If you wrote jello vi or jello bi or something I don't want to know about. Why use a text editor? A text editor is just like a word processor without a lot of features. The problem with 'vi' or 'vim' is that a lot of people don't like it. You have to remember a lot of key combinations to do stuff that other text editors will do for you more easily. There is a more recent version called 'vim' which means 'vi improved'.
There are a lot of commands in vi . like 'tryjoe~' That little tilde file has saved my life a couple of times. ':' then 'q'. quit) To quit without saving. If you press ESC ':' 'q!' with an exclamation point. (well. Vi may protest if you've written something and you don't want to save it. press ESC. I suppose if his name had been Hrothgar Allen. You won't see the tildes like vi. maybe not my life) But it has saved me a lot of work. vi will accept it and not save your changes. press CTRL-K-D. To quit without saving. press CTRL-K-H.Lesson 5 'pico' and 'joe' pico' and 'joe'. CTRL-K-X. it will save the previous file with a tilde on the end. as I mentioned before. The most important of these is CTRL-K-H which gets you 'help'. My favorite little added feature of 'joe' is that if you edit a file again. To use 'joe'. To save and quit. Help shows you the key combinations to use with 'joe'. The majority of joe's commands are based on the CTRL-K keys and a third key.sounds like a comic strip. they are two other text editors that I like and I think are a little easier to manage. That's <BVI< B>in a nutshell. Using 'joe' 'joe' was created by Joseph Allen. If you want to see the other features of 'joe'. Actually. ESC the colon key ':' then wq (write. or more like a sesame seed. on your own terms and in the privacy of your own home. you could type: joe tryjoe'. Try writing anything you want. The most important thing about 'joe' is the logical concept that you can just start writing if you want. it would have been called 'hroth'. (without the K). They're like 'vi' in that you use them to create and edit non-formatted text. To save it. CTRL-C. but they're a little more user-friendly. It looks a little friendlier. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . . you would press ESC.and you may explore those on your own at a later date. so that's why it's called Joe.To save the file and quit vi.
Linux has these programs too. Learning to use shells in Linux isn't going to be difficult either. To save the file. Popular operating systems have perfected this to such a degree that they have graphic interface programs to do all this for you just by moving the mouse around and clicking on a few buttons. press CTRL-o. In our next lesson. The most common commands a computer receives are ones to copy files. 'joe' is a very good option for writing those short text files that you'll need. If you type: 'pico trypico' You'll see the commands you need in 'pico' specified at the bottom. I could always fall back on the tilde file. Our lesson will deal with that one. Why you need to use a shell As I mentioned in a previous lesson. press CTRL-x Pico will always ask you if you want to do what you're doing. which is a copy of your previous edit. You can just start writing anything you want. we're going to need to use one in order to make our work in Linux a little bit safer and easier. this is our little overview of the main text editors available for Linux. Using 'pico' 'pico' is another friendly text editor. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . All the other commands you'll need are at the bottom of the page. but anybody who's seriously thinking of using Linux on a . The most common shell used for working in Linux is the 'bash' shell. a shell is just a way for your computer to receive commands. Questions like that will keep you from sending a file into non-existence without wanting to. That's good. To save and quit or to just quit. move files around.Lesson 6 Shells in Linux Sea shells by the seashore. Well. list files and delete files. Can you say that ten times fast? How about 'Shells in Linux'? That's not as difficult.I've made some changes to a file and then found out that wasn't a good idea.
bashrc' An introduction to aliases In that file.bashrc'. in your home directory you would type 'pico . as we talked about in the last lesson. As you already know. you can modify a command with a slash '-' and a letter To see where the . you could have typed 'ls -a' and that would have shown you every file in the directory. 'ls . you could type cp -v -i. -i for .bashrc' (ls lists files) You can open that file with vi.bashrc file was. Those files allow you to configure a certain program to run just the way you like it. I see it as a way to have more power over your computer because even those operating systems that are billed as more 'user friendly' have provided you with a shell.day-to-day basic should be familiar with the commands that you type in by hand. you can add something called an 'alias'. I have a couple of entries in my .bashrc file to keep me from getting into trouble. (-v for verbose. Some people see this as a throw back to the old days. just in case you need it. including those that start with '. An 'alias' in this file are some lines that you write so that your bash shell assumes that one command is really a variation of it. like 'ls'. The best way to find it is to type. Everybody knows what 'alias' means. For example. You'll find a lot of files on the system that end in 'rc'. joe or pico. Some of these aliases may be very important to keep you from sending that novel you just wrote into non-existence by accident. In order not to copy a file to a place where there's already a file by the same name. 'cp' is the command to copy a file to another place or to make a copy of a file under a different name.' If you find yourself using these '-letter' combinations a lot.'an assumed name'.bashrc file so that even though you type the simple command. you can modify your . And sometimes you do! The '. They are: alias cp='cp -v -i' alias rm='rm -i' alias mv='mv -i' Let me explain them. you actually get 'ls -a'.bashrc' file Before you start using the 'bash' shell you should be aware of a file that sits in your home directory called '.
bashrc file Well. I have an alias for it for the same reasons as the 'cp' command. easier shell environment. this means gone forever [cue ominous organ music] You obviously have to be very careful with this one. so that it asks me if I really want to delete that novel I just wrote. Adding aliases to the . That's why I've added the -i (interactive) command to my alias. Then you would add: cp='cp -v -i' on the next line write: rm='rm -i' so we don't send anything into byte heaven without a warning.interactive) and it would ask you if you really want to do it in case there's another file by the same name. so you know what you've done. In Linux. Then the -v would show you where it went. It would be a good idea to add this line first. And finally mv='mv -i' So you're aliases will look like this # my personal aliases alias cp='cp -v -i' alias rm='rm -i' alias mv='mv -i' Save that file and logout and login again. # my personal aliases The pound sign (#) tells the shell not to read that line. because in the bash shell there is really no 'trash' bucket to pick it out of if you delete it. This is probably a good idea all the time. 'rm' is the remove/delete command.bashrc file To show the student how to add aliases to the .bashrc' open in 'pico' or your new. so you could create an alias for it in your '. Now you have a safer. you now have '. 'mv' is for moving files to a different place or renaming a file. It's known as a 'comment'. favorite text editor.bashrc' file. you can add more aliases as you see fit. As you get more proficient at Linux. .
Typing: cd /[directory name] will get you into one of the main directories in Linux. If you type logout and then login again. But as I mentioned before. 'cd' means 'change directory'. you're aliases will work.. Typing cd . There is also a short-cut. you can copy. Typing cd without the / and a sub-directory name will get into that subdirectory. so let's review the basics. will get you out of it. We talked about this in a previous lesson. delete. Then all you have to do is press enter. move and rename files by way of a graphic user interface like Konqueror. you don't have to type the whole name Typing: 'cd' and the first letter or letters of a directory and the TAB key will complete it for you. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .bashrc you're aliases will be ready to go. so we're going to teach you the ones that you're most likely to use. You can use them both in text mode or in your x-terminal when you're in graphics mode. If you type: source . 'cd' command To show the student the basic uses of the 'cd' command The first command you'll use is 'cd'.Now your shell's ready to go. If you type jus: cd you'll go back to your home directory The 'ls' command . shell commands are pretty standard in Linux. Remember.Lesson 6 Frequently Used Shell Commands If you install a window manager like KDE.
1 bob users 103824 Jul 10 12:01 waikiki. The next one represents that Linux. starting with any file that begins with a number. You don't need to separate the parameters either. You can use 'ls a*' to list the names of all the files that begin with the letter 'a' and so on down through the alphabet. then any file that begins with a capital letter and then any normal file that begins with a lowercase letter. modify it or make nasty comments about it. You have the date and when it was created or modified or copied there. not only recognizes users. waikiki. but also groups of users. 'ls -l -t' and 'ls -lt' are the same thing. The next one that it belongs to you. We'll go into that in a later lesson. Normally we'll want to add on some parameters (those -[letter] combinations) so that we'll get some more detail Using 'ls -l' To show the student how to get some more detail with 'ls -l' 'ls -l' will get you a detailed listing of the directory like this.To show the student the various variations of the 'ls' command 'ls' is another command that we've discussed a bit before. try: 'ls -ltr' . -rw-r--r-.jpg The first part. 'ls -l' will give you a detailed listing in alphabetical order. those letter. Let's go into some more detail. Please do not use the cuneiform alphabet unless you're from ancient Mesopotamia. That basically shows what you and others are allowed to do with the file. you have the name of the file. are file permissions. Typing 'ls' will list the contents of a directory with just information about file names. Other parameters with 'ls' Now let's add some more parameters on 'ls -l -t' will give you a listing according to the time with the newest ones appearing first in the list. Lastly. which is obviously your important tax records. We'll go into that in the next course. like read it. 'bob'. So if you have a file '007_secrets. If you want the oldest to appear first.jpg.txt' that'll be the first one you see. The next one shows that you've got 1 file. The numbers are the size of the file in bytes.
'ls --help' will give you details of all the possible variations for this command. There are a couple of parameters in capitals that you may want to use. programs end in '. 'more' and 'less' To introduce the student to these commands 'more' is a command that you can use to read. sends you a file he says is really neat.exe'. the one with the magic markers. they don't have to and probably won't. in Linux. You don't have to do that if you don't want. It's probably some jokes or his favorite chili recipe. 'ls -lSr' will reverse this order. what's written in that 'stuff' file that Tony sent you. for example. In MS-DOS. If you want those to be first. The 'file' command File is an interesting little command.zip. Press the 'q' key to stop viewing the file . In Linux. You would type 'more stuff' to see the jokes. You can see what type of file it is by typing: 'file stuff' You may see something like this: 'stuff: ASCII text' This means that the file contains plain text. then those will be last. it's 50/50.like 'novel. If you have any that end in *. MS-DOS got us all used to the idea that a file had to have an extension (file. 'ls -lS' will list your files from biggest to smallest. so once you get used to the colors.txt') that told us what kind of a file it was. Linux is also color coded. 'ls -lX' will list files according to type in alphabetical order.The 'r' is for reverse order. you'll know what the file is about. you can use this command to get some information about the file. Let's say your friend Tony. It's attached to an e-mail message and it says 'stuff'. now you know: 'ls -lXr' There is also a parameter that will help you if you want to find out more about these commands or any others.extension. as you know. If you don't know what some particular file contains and you're curious about it.
You can scroll back up to see the whole text if you want. you may want to create a directory to keep Tony's files You could make the directory for Tony tonyd (Tony's last name is Dweebweiler) mkdir tonyd then you can do: cp stuff tonyd Remember use your TAB key to save time. If you use the command ls -l stuff on both files. 'cp' is for copying files from one place to another. You'll have the original 'stuff' in your home directory and then the copy in /home/[your name]/tonyd/. You can't do that with 'more'. you'll see this. press the 'q' key to stop viewing the file [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . Let's to back to Tony's 'stuff' file For example. but not really ideal.It's useful for this. You'll be able to tell the difference between the two files because the copy of 'stuff' in the directory 'tonyd' will show a different time. or for making a duplicate of one file under a different name. We'll talk more about 'more' in this lesson when we use it in combination with other commands 'less' is better for viewing files. /home/[your name]. 'less' is more than 'more'. type 'less stuff' to see Tony's jokes again Again. Now you're going to have TWO files named 'stuff' because you copied that file to the directory 'tonyd/' .Lesson 6 The 'cp' command To show you how to copy files with Linux We talked about 'cp' in the lesson on aliases.you didn't move it there. if you get my meaning. if you saved Tony's e-mail attachment to your main /home directory. .
you can use the command: cp -r /home/bob/tonyd/ /home/fred/ If you're in your home directory you can use this command cp -r /home/bob/tonyd/ . Tony's file 'stuff' is loaded with jokes. For example." Always remember to use that TAB key and the up and down arrows to save yourself some time. If you don't want that. You can also copy entire directories to another place.If you had used the command cp -p instead of just cp you would end up with two identical files in two different places.. you may want to work as two different users for two different jobs. You can open it in 'pico' and start writing: "Why did the chicken cross the road. We'll talk about that shortly. Now let's talk about two more basic uses of the cp command and some short cuts. That's the mv command. where you work as 'bob' As 'fred'. More uses of the 'cp' command To show you how to copy directories and create duplicates of files. The other use of 'cp' we talked about was to get a copy of a file with a different name. there's a better way of doing it so that 'stuff' is only in the directory 'tonyd'. You may also use the command cp -r /home/bob/tonyd/ ~ with the tilde wherever you happen to be and that will automatically copy the directory 'tonyd' to your other home directory. As I mentioned in a previous lesson. You may be working as 'fred' and your directory 'tonyd' is in the directory /home/bob./ to copy the directory 'tonyd' to your home directory. You may want to add some more jokes and then pass it along to another person You could do this: cp stuff stuff2 or choose a name that's meaningful for you other than 'stuff2' Now you have another file that you can add jokes to while you preserve the original file.. .
You should probably re-name this file to something meaningful. It would be to your advantage to use '_' between words though. It's there because Linux doesn't really like spaces in the file names. 'mv' command for renaming files Let's go back yet again to Tony's file. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . 'stuff' again. mv tonys_jokes tonyd/ If you do cd tonyd and then ls to* you will see his file there along with 'toms_jokes' and 'tomato_soup_recipe'.Now we'll look at the command 'mv'. 'mv' sort of has a split-personality because it serves these two functions at the same time. 'stuff' is not a good name for a file just as 'book' isn't a good name for a book. I would suggest doing something like this: mv stuff tonys_jokes You may have noticed the underscore '_' in the title. You can do it and Linux will accept it but it will put a \\ between the different words. Just imagine: "The number one bestselling book this week is 'Book' by John Author. (if you have another friend named Tom and you like to cook) . Spaces are sort of 'faux pas' in Linux but not 'verboten'. Moving files with the 'mv' command Now you can use the 'mv' command to move Tony's jokes into the directory you made to keep his files.Lesson 6 The 'mv' command 'mv' is a command that we're going to use to move files around or to rename them.
'mkdir' may be familiar to MS-DOS users out there. You would just substitute the file name for a directory name mv tonyd/ my_friends/ would move the directory 'tonyd' to the directory 'my_friends'. Now you know how to use 'mkdir'. you could type mkdir --verbose my_friends and it will tell you that you created the directory. not as long as 'makemeadirectoryplease' and not too cryptic like 'xr77b'. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You can even use it to create a directory called 'my_enemies' if you're into that sort of thing. you would type: mkdir my_friends There are no whistles or buzzers. As you have noticed. let's create it with another command. What? You don't have the directory 'my_friends'? Well. Using the 'mkdir' command To create the directory 'my_friends' that we talked about in the last lesson. If you type ls -l You'll see it there along with information about it. You do not have to use the '-r' option as you did with 'cp'.Lesson 6 The 'mkdir' command 'mkdir' is the command for making directories. If you'd like some sort of acknowledgment. The 'rmdir' command . the people who wrote these programs tried to give them names that described what they do more or less.You can also move entire directories with this command.
some words of caution To show you where you may get in trouble with 'rm' and how to avoid it You can also do stuff like rm b* with the asterisk. rm: remove `bad_jokes'?: You would press the the 'y' key unless of course you remembered that you have a real good one in there and then you would answer: with the 'n' key. and because you made an alias.Lesson 6 The 'rm' command 'rm' is for removing or deleting files. oblivion. next we'll deal with the 'rm' command.bashrc' file: alias rm='rm -i' so that it asks you if that's what you really want to do. If you created a file called 'bad_jokes' and you wanted to get rid of the file. If you copied or moved anything to 'my_friends' and you typed rmdir my_friends/ Linux would politely tell you that you can't do that. The correct use of 'rm' So you have to be careful with 'rm'. I have done that before. . bye-bye. That's why we put an entry into our '.'rmdir' is the opposite of 'mkdir'. You may get 'y-itis' and just keep pressing the 'y' key. don't worry. the directory has to be empty.it gets rid of directories. It should be pointed out that in order to use it. Then you're free to use 'rmdir' So. Actually. you would type rm bad_jokes. sending them into nonexistence. but I would use my best judgment with that. so if you accidentally type 'w'. you have to use your 'rm' command on the files first to remove them or use 'mv' to get them into another directory. That means. it will ask you. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . any key other than 'y' is the same as responding with the 'n' key. So. 140 'rm' .
You get files like 'note_to_myself1' and if you've modified it. You press the '|' key. Well. you don't type: pipe. Wait until you have some experience before you start removing files 'by hand' as 'root'. if you were in a directory and typed 'rm * -f' you would delete everything. but my dry cleaner's not going to give me my suits the next time unless I pay him. If you do this.. it's just a little witticism of mine because the command we're going to learn in this lesson is called 'pipe'. actually. Let's try some plumbing. Also. we're going to do a little plumbing. That means that the pipe will separate two commands so that they will be done one after the other. Use the configuration tools provided in your version of Linux to un-install programs that you don't want. For example. The location will vary on keyboards from country to country. one on top of the other. Maybe taking over the world can wait. That's adding the '-f' option on the end. when I've used the text editor 'joe' a lot I end up with a lot of files that end in a tilde (~). Plumbing with a computer? Well..Lesson 7 Plumbing with "pipes" in Linux In this lesson. and plumbers work with pipes. like when Valentine's day falls on Friday during leap year and coincides with a full moon. no questions asked. You could do some very serious system damage if you delete the wrong files. This symbol is like two vertical slashes.Occasionally. This is the first time that we're going to see a command that's meant to be used with other commands. . it will override the '-i' option and won't ask you anything. I generally use the '-f' option very sparingly. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . 142 Using 'pipe' To show you how to use the command '|' to execute more than one command To use the pipe command. Linux is so flexible that it even allows you to do plumbing with it. It just goes ahead and deletes the files in question.. please be very careful when you're using the 'rm' command as 'root'. another one 'note_to_myself1~' Then I decide that I don't want all of those ~ files littering up my directory and I innocently type: 'rm note_to_myself*' and then 'y' 'y' 'y' and then I realize too late and my brain types: 'Y did you do that!!" The problem is that 'note_to_myself2' contained my important plans for taking over the world and 'note_to_myself3' contained a note about how much money I owe at the dry cleaners. There's another case of 'rm' that's potentially more dangerous than the 'rm *' case.
'man' . You're personal directory in /home will fill up and pretty soon 'ls -l' will overflow in your terminal or x-terminal window. You can also scroll up and down in a terminal with the SHIFT-PAGE UP / SHIFT-PAGE DOWN keys. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .manual pages in Linux To show you how to get more information from the manual pages and other documentation sources The first command is 'man' This command will show the manual for a command or program. ls -l /proc | less is a better solution because you can scroll up and down with the arrow keys. They make your work a little easier and give you added information about your system. if you type . You're probably going to end up using this a lot. There's a little short cut if you've forgotten to use the pipe. The manual is a file that shows you how to use the command and list the different options for the command in question.For example. Remember that in a previous lesson we said: "Less is more than more". if you looked at the contents of your /proc directory with: ls -l /proc it would be too big to fit in one screen. You would type: man [the command] For example. So if we typed ls -l /proc | more you could scroll down with the ENTER key and see it all.Lesson 8 How to get more information with Linux Now we'll talk about some other commands that you will probably need in your day to day work with Linux. Actually.
There are a lot that I think we're written by Harry Bigbrains and they were meant to be seen only by Richard Biggerbrain who's sitting in the cubicle next to him. it'll be a little easier to manage. I don't know about you. For example. so you may want to consult your own version of Linux about these files. For example. The 'info' files are not always installed automatically. if I typed: apropos xterm I would get something like this: resize (1x) . but I'm going to call my lawyer. you'll get a nutshell version of the 'cp' command.man mkdir The manual file for 'mkdir' will come up and give you a detailed explanation of this command. Specify --sparse=always to create a sparse DEST file whenever the SOURCE file contains a long enough sequence of zero bytes. If you use your pipe cp --help | less. Apropos The word 'apropos' means pertinent to something else.set TERMCAP and terminal settings to current xterm window size xterm (1x) .terminal emulator for X . I've been assaulted by "a crude heuristic". The 'info' format Typing info [command name] will get you more information on a command and is more current than most man files and perhaps a little more readable. There is a command that will show you all of the man page that may shed some light on a certain command. Managing documention in Linux The manual file for 'mkdir' is actually one of the more straight-forward ones. Use --sparse=never to inhibit creation of sparse files. In fact. this appears in the 'man' file for 'cp' By default. some 'man' files will actually tell you to consult the 'info' file. sparse SOURCE files are detected by a crude heuristic and the corresponding DEST file is made sparse as well. That is the behavior selected by --sparse=auto. If you use the command cp --help.
Finding things with the command 'find' There's so much on a computer's hard drive. Of course. Perhaps the smart lad who won the spelling bee by . Some versions of Linux that are made for languages other than English will give you this documentation in its particular language. The command 'touch' which is used to change the time and/or date of a file. You would just enter touch [a file name]. xtermset (1) .terms (5) . if you punched in at 9:40. You should quickly finish the report. You can use your favorite Internet search engine to find Linux documentation in your own language.database of blessed terminals for xtermset. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . Make sure your digits match your story.Lesson 9 Other interesting and useful commands The command 'touch' Now we're going to talk about a touchy subject. There may be times in the future when you need an empty file that will be filled up later automatically by the workings of some program. You would then just choose one of these and type man terms for example. 'touch' can be used also to create an empty file. We'll deal with the uses of 'touch' in our later courses. nobody could ever know from memory where everything is. then type: touch -t 05070915 my_report.txt and it makes it look like you did it at 9:15. 9:15 in the morning. The first four digits stand for May 7 (0507) and the last four (0915) the time. There are also websites that specialize in documentation in other languages.change settings of an xterm These are all man pages related to xterm. You don't want to have it look like you did it in February. You can use 'touch' if your boss yells at you about not having a report ready at lunchtime. then you're in trouble.
If you're in your /home directory. it will go through every directory and find every file that has the name 'hawaii' in it. How to use the 'find' command But if you're getting used to using command line stuff. you can use the find tool. If they started with 'hawaii' you wouldn't need the first asterisk but you can leave it there if you want. but most of us are going to have to find things now and then. for example: find -mmin +0 -mmin -120 | less will find things that you created or modified up to 2 hours ago and the '| less' part will make it easier to read. you could type. just type in: find -name *hawaii* and find out where you put you pictures of you Hawaiian vacation. If you use a windows manager like KDE.spelling 'prestidigitator' might be able to. find -mmin +0 -mmin -10 This will list the files that you created or modified within the last ten minutes.Lesson 9 The 'grep' command In the last section we talked about the 'find' command which finds files. Your windows manager . you may want to find some file that you were working on. For example. If you choose to use a higher number for -mmin -? you should probably use a pipe. You may have created some file recently. The two asterisks make sure it does that. Now we'll talk about the 'grep' command which finds words in files. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . let's say from now up to 10 minutes ago. It's very useful because it has a lot of options and you can use them to modify your searches.
Type the following command: grep Mary mary*. but it sort of looks like it. so let's do it. create a file called 'mary1.txt Then type: Mary had a little lamb Press CTRL-X in 'pico' (if you're using that) and it will prompt you to save.txt' pico mary1.txt and enter the text Mary had a little cow." Spock: "Grepping now. now we're ready to try out 'grep'.may have this incorporated into its find tool but then again. Spock. Actually it isn't. The best way is learning by doing.txt". doesn't it? Kirk: "Find the solar system L10J.txt Let's explain this a little. Then create: mary2. Save that and create the file: mary3. so phasers on stun and let's go. Now we know what Mary was doing when she wasn't watching her lambs! Now save that file. You should get this output: . the beauty of Linux is having alternatives." * * Star Trek stuff copyright Paramount Pictures Let's have a little practice session with 'grep'. You've created three files that start with 'mary'. Mr. What does 'grep' mean? 'grep' is a Vulcan word that means "find". OK.txt and type: Mary had a little too much to drink. Captain. 'grep' looks for the word "Mary" in any text file that is called "mary(something). A 'grep' mini-tutorial With 'pico' or any Linux text editor. so the asterisk makes sure that 'grep' will look for the word 'Mary' in all three.
It's been a pleasure 'grepping' with you! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . 'who' 'who' is a command to find out who's working on your system.txt will get us more or less the same.txt Mary had a little lamb mary2. you may be working as more than one person. Even if you're using one computer at your home.txt. Typing grep drink mary*.Lesson 10 Power user commands Here is a brief overview of some other commands that you may find interesting at some point as you use Linux. you'll get this output: mary2. only that mary3. If you type grep little mary*. if you logged in as 'root' but are working as 'bob'. This is mainly used in networked situations so the system administrator knows who's . But if you type the word "cow". there's 'grep' in a nutshell. As you now know. Linux is a multi-user system. They will help you to get all of the power out of Linux.txt will show up instead of mary2.mary1. so you'll get this output. Well.txt Mary had a little cow mary3.txt: Mary had a little cow because the word "cow" is only in mary2. You may see something like this: root tty1 May 20 09:48 bob tty2 May 20 10:05 This is just Linux's way of saying that 'root' started working on terminal 1 on May 20 at 9:48 in the morning and bob started working on terminal 2 at 10:05.txt Mary had a little too much to drink The word 'Mary' is in all of those files.txt you'll get the same output because the word "little" is also in each of those files. For example.txt.
It can be used by your boss to find out that you've come in late too. you could use this command to create a listing of that directory. zip cartridge or whatever you used to make the backups. I mentioned plumbing with Linux.Lesson 10 'tee'. ls -l > directory_listing .working. I think I'm going to resist the temptation to make some sort of golf reference here in the lesson on the command 'tee'. You can use this command: date | tee -a directory_listing The command 'date' will enter the date and time in the file at the end. You don't need the pipe command (|) with this one. You may use it to find out if you've opened more that one terminal so that you remember to log out. '>'. You could print out the file on a label and stick it to the disk. If you've placed files in a directory to be backed up. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You will be using this with the after a pipe '|' . '2>' In the lesson on the pipe command. If you don't you will erase everything on the file in favor of whatever the second command was. tape. If you're using the 'tee' command for the backups I described before. You might do this: ls -l | tee directory_listing to get a file with the listing of a directory. you may want to put a date on the file. The '>' command The "greater than" symbol '>' will do the same as 'tee'. Remember to use the -a option if you're going to write to that file a second time. 'tee' is used to write out what appears on your screen into a file.
You may not have something installed that the the program needs to run.will give you the same result. is used for creating a file for an error message that you may get. But every once and a while you may want to download some software from the Internet You install it and whoops! .there's some error. He or she would also like to know about it and will probably help you fix it. that is to say. use the command: date >> directory_listing with two "greater than" symbols (>>) The two symbols will add to the file without erasing its contents The '2>' command This command. forget who you are! 'whatis' . in terms of computer use anyway. So if your user name is bob and you type whoami you'll get: bob This comes in handy if you switch terminals a lot and work as a different user. You could just do something like this: [program X that doesn't work] 2> program_X_error You create a file with the error message. the number two (2) with the "greater than" symbol >. your user name. You could show it to someone who might know what's missing or you could send it to the author of the program. just in case you didn't know already. If you want to add the date at the end.Lesson 10 'whoami' whoami is a nice little program that tells you who you are. You amnesia victims are in luck! Actually it tells you who you are in terms of how Linux understands who you are. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You may. You will probably not be using it a lot because we all know how perfect Linux is and how few errors there are when you're using it.
If you want to know whether or not you have it. and you would get this: grep (1) .gz It shows you where the command is as well as the location of its manual file.To show you how to use the 'whatis' command 'whatis' is a command so you can find out what a program does. so if you type: whatis orange juice You will get this message: orange: nothing appropriate. you will find a lot of programs and you may not know what they do.print lines matching a pattern Linux is good. At times. If you wanted to find out if you have the 'pico' editor and where it is. basically telling you that Linux has no idea what orange juice is 'whereis' whereis is a nice command for finding other commands or programs. you can type: whereis [program name] and find out. You would simply type: .1. that program may need other programs in order to work. whereis isn't designed to find people. If you decide to download any program from the internet. but it's not all-knowing. a program may need Java to run it but thinks its in another place. a program may not find another program it needs to make it run. If you explore your Linux system. juice: nothing appropriate. so if you type whereis Harry Linux is just going to say Harry: 'which' To show you another tool for locating programs 'which' is similar to 'whereis'. For example. You would simply type: whatis grep for example. It will need to know its location or "path". It will give you the location of a program. you would type: whereis pico and you may get this: pico: /usr/bin/pico /usr/man/man1/pico.
note . or to prompt you to do something.Lesson 10 'echo' To show you some uses of the 'echo' command 'echo' is a little command that repeats anything you type. If we use 'echo' along with 'pipe' (|) and 'tee'. you've got a poorman's post-it-note.which java and Linux will inform you of its location /usr/lib/java/bin/java This is a handy command because some locations of programs vary from one version of Linux to the next. like enter text. For example: echo remember to tell Bill Gates he owes me 5 bucks | tee -a bill_gates. For example if you type echo hello Linux will display the word 'hello' . You could use 'echo' in those scripts to tell you what the script is doing at any given time. Just remember to read your note. Shell scripts will be taken up in a later course. You could type: echo remember to open Gates note | tee -a remember_gates.note Will make you a nice reminder note about dear 'ole Bill. There is a practical use for 'echo' in everyday life. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . A software developer may have designed his/her program to access Java. you can get the program to work for your system. from a different location. There is really no need to do that under normal conditions. You may find 'echo' useful in the future if you start writing "shell scripts" which are like little programs that you could use to do a few commands at one time. for example. As Open Source software will always let you modify configuration files to get your program working according to your needs. I sometimes use it to write short notes.
Use less bill_gates. etc.note As you can see. dir=ls -l.note or less remember_gates. I might add that this is a good tool for people who write letters professionally and get paid by the word. If you do any downloading or uploading of files via FTP by way of a non-GUI FTP program in your terminal. then I owe 439 people money. Actually. there are 439 lines. words and letters (characters) in a file and in that order. Let's go back to the file about the people I owe money.note I will get this output: 439 6510 197120 wc people_I_owe. There are 6510 words and a total of 197120 characters.Lesson 11 Miscellaneous commands These might come in handy from time to time 'dir' The people who traveled down the MS-DOS road will know this one. It will give you the same result. if you type this in your terminal it will not show you the way to the 'facilities'. so that means if each line represents one person. I once ran into a case where the remote computer didn't recognize the ls -l command. in files People following this course from Europe may recognize this as the symbol for 'bathroom'. this command will give you the number of lines. Actually. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . you may find this command useful. Then I fired off a nasty e-mail asking why in the world they weren't using Linux! .note to read your notes 'wc' To show you the use of the 'wc' command to show you the number of words. I just typed in dir and that did the trick. Unfortunately.to make yourself a reminder for the other reminder note. If I type: wc people_I_owe_money.
Consult your manual file ('man date') or ('info date') . For example. so you know exactly where you are. Substitute that for any date that you'd like to see. type: date +%T To see on what day Christmas falls this year (really. If you're living in central Europe. actually. If you live on Mars. To see just the date. Linux recognizes world time zones and you set this up when you installed Linux. I'm not kidding!). if you type pwd you may get something like this: /home/bob/homework which shows you that you're in the directory 'homework' in your user directory as 'bob'. you will recogize the 'CEST' part. 'date' Did you forget your wedding aniversary? Your boyfriend or girlfriend's birthday? Tax day? (everyone wants to forget that one!) No need for that to happen anymore with Linux.'pwd' The command pwd will show complete information on the directory you're working in. Just type: date You'll get this: (or something like it. That stands for 'Central European Standard Time'. you're out of luck. type: date +%D To see just the time. type: date --date 'Dec 25' and you'll get the day that Christmas falls on this year. There are other uses of the 'date' command. If you get the same thing as I do. unfortunately. There are many other options. then I'd consider buying lottery tickets) Thu Sep 7 20:34:13 CEST 2000 You probably get everything here.
Lesson 12 Becoming a super user . There are a lot of useful options. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . I typed cal 10 1492 and I found out that Columbus discovered America on a Friday. If you want to work as another user. If you type: cal 12 2000 You'll see the calender for December of 2000. Just for fun. in the nice standard calendar format. Substitute any year you like. If you type: cal 2000 You'll get the entire calendar for the year 2000. the week will start on Monday. Substitute any year or month you like. you can get out of a terminal with the exit command. 'exit' As you can guess. use logout instead. typing exit will prompt you to login again. as it is preferred in many countries. If you're working in text mode.'cal' Typing cal will give you the calendar of the present month on your screen. If you're in x-windows. That was good luck for him because that way he got to relax for the weekend. exit will close the X-Terminal you're working with exit with the option "stage right" will get you an error message. If you add the option cal -m.
) Filesystem 1024-blocks Used Available Capacity Mounted on /dev/hda2 481083 408062 48174 89% / if you start seeing a 'df' output like this. (This is actually taken from a system I use for testing versions of Linux. Anyway. If you type: last You may get something like this: fred bob root reboot tty6 tty1 tty1 system boot Thu Oct 5 16:55 . For example. Once again. by the way. You'll see it's somewhat pressed for space.The following commands are frequently used by systems administrators to keep an eye on what's going on with their systems 'last' The command last will show you the people who have logged into the computer today and the terminals they are/were using. there are many programs that run graphically that will inform you of the space available on your Linux partition.com" 'df' 'df' is a command that you're going to use a lot if you're pressed for hard disk space. His address. 'df' is a good way to keep track of this. You are still working as 'bob'. is "thedevil@hell. If you type df You may get something like this. non-graphic way to keep track of your hard disk space. This is a good way to see who's been using the computer if it's networked. You worked as 'root' for 20 minutes (probably some administration tasks) and you booted your computer at 4:22 PM.20:05 (3:10) Thu Oct 5 still logged in (3:10) Thu Oct 5 16:23 . it's time to get down to your local computer shop and buy a new hard disk. . you worked as 'fred' for 3 hours and 10 mins. you could fire off a nasty e-mail to him about misuse of your server. if you saw a an entry for 'satan' and you hadn't given the Prince of Darkness permission to login. quick.16:43 (0:20) Thu Oct 5 16:22 As you can see. But this is a very good.
note But instead. You can use it on a directory or on a particular file. On the other hand look at the output for 'people_who_owe_me_money. 'du' 'du' is the way to see how big files are. it's a big file. Let's look at a couple of examples: If I type: du people_I_owe_money.note': 1 people_who_owe_me_money. 'du' shows the closest kilobyte figure. By typing: free and you will get something like this total Mem: 14452 -/+ buffers/cache: 6100 Swap: 33260 used free shared buffers cached 13904 548 28208 492 7312 8352 1556 31704 Sometimes.note . This is another command I use a lot. It's probably best to use the option du -b (-b for bytes) and it will give you the exact figure in bytes. Linux's memory management is quite good but a certain program may be "hogging" memory. if a program is running particulary slowly. I owe a lot of people money.note As you can see. if I type: du -b people_I_owe_money. you may find out that your memory usage is high using this command.note I'll get: 197120 people_I_owe_money. You could exit that program and then type free again to see if it was the culprit.'free' 'free' is a command that you can use if you want to know how much RAM memory you have free on your system.note I may get an output like this: 194 people_I_owe_money. By default.
whichever you prefer top To show you the use of the 'top' command.0 0.0 48 root 0 0 136 120 96 S 0 0.0 0. that's not the kilobyte figure.0 5 root 0 0 0 0 0 SW 0 0.4 157 root 0 0 512 508 412 S 0 0.0 0.2 2 root 0 0 0 0 0 SW 0 0. Here's a sample output of the 'top' command: 9:09am 34 processes: CPU states: Mem: 62972K av up 4 min 31 sleeping 11.3 386 bob 1 0 768 768 596 R 0 0.1 1.0 0.4 225 root 0 0 424 416 348 S 0 0.12 0.No.06 0 stopped 88. Here you will see what processes are running 'top' is a good command to use when you want to see what your system's doing.8 [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .7 19.3 6.0 0.0 0.13 0.0 0.4 141 root 0 0 292 264 212 S 0 0.6 258 root 0 0 580 548 428 S 0 0.Lesson 13 Commands to control your system ps 'ps' will give you a list of the processes running on your system. and it will list the files and subdirectories and give you the byte or kilobyte count.8 161 root 0 0 692 688 296 S 0 0.2 345 bob 0 0 972 972 704 S 0 0.ugidd syslogd klogd atd inetd lpd 50420K used 12552K free Swap: 1020116K av 3152K used 1016964K free 27536K cached PID USER PRI NI SIZE RSS SHARE STAT LIB %CPU %MEM 332 root 12 0 4492 4184 1480 R 0 8.6 350 bob 4 0 13144 11M 7728 S 0 2.0 1.1% user 2 users 3 running 0. It will give you a pretty complete list of everything that's going on in your computer.0 0. 'top' is designed to show you how your CPU is being used.1 137 bin 0 0 300 296 228 S 0 0.0% nice 22672K shrd 0.5 1. . That's the byte figure! You can also use this on a directory.0 0.0 0.5 1 root 0 0 168 168 144 S 0 0.0 4 root 0 0 0 0 0 SW 0 0.0 0.0 0.7% system load average: 0 zombie 0.4% idle 5312K buff TIME 0:09 0:04 0:00 0:00 0:02 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 COMMAND X netscape top FvwmButtons init kflushd kpiod kswapd md_thread update portmap rpc.0 212 at 0 0 304 276 220 S 0 0.0 3 root 0 0 0 0 0 SW 0 0.
In other words. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . there's more than that. Well. the time you started running the processes and others. You will probably . you kill the program. you can terminate a program. This is the user mode and your user name will appear in the first column.X.fvwm2rc 0 8 xclock -digital -FONT10x20 -geometry +520+550 /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fvwm2/FvwmPager9 4 . In the last part of this lesson we talked about process IDs or "PIDs".Lesson 13 'kill' "kill" is a very explicit word. If you're into detective work. You can see other users processes if you type ps -au.xinitrc-/usr/X11R6/bin/fvwm2 /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fvwm2/FvwmButtons7 4 . Actually. If you're not using a networked computer. you will see yours and root's processes. It may look like this: PID 293 1436 1437 1445 1449 1459 1461 1462 1464 1472 1730 1731 1760 1781 TTY 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 p1 2 p1 STAT S S S S S S S S S S S S S R TIME 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:01 0:00 0:00 0:00 1:27 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:01 0:00 COMMAND -bash sh /usr/X11R6/bin/startx tee /home/bob/. with the command 'kill' plus a PID. you can type just ps -a and try to guess who's using the process. We'll get into why these are so important in the next part of the lesson.err xinit /home/bob/. There will be other columns about memory usage. The information that you'll probably be most interested in is the column that shows the "process ID" or "PID". you can type ps -u.Just typing ps will give you the processes you're running as a user. It implies 'death'.fvwm2rc 0 8 0 0 & /opt/netscape/netscape (dns helper) xterm -FONT 8x13 -backgroundWheat -T xterm-1 bash emacs ps If you happen to forget what your name is.
programs that may not let you exit regularly. (the last one on my 'ps' example) It's a beta (i. That is: kill 441 and the program disappears.err xinit /home/bob/. you are the all-powerful master of the universe. To do this. You have license to 'kill' the process you desire. If the 'exit' button doesn't work.X. . (or at least the computer). PID 293 422 437 438 441 TTY 2 2 2 2 2 STAT S S S S S TIME 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:01 COMMAND -bash sh /usr/X11R6/bin/startx tee /home/bob/. If you don't want to do two steps.e .xinitrc -/usr/X11R6/bin/evilaliens Let's say you're trying a new game that was just ported to Linux. You don't want to end up killing some process that you need. Here's a little trick.check it out and tell the author what bugs are still in it) version and the game starts giving you problems. The aliens just took over Oklahoma and you swore you got them all. in my example. 'ps' and 'kill' and you know the name of the "binary" or program itself. The name of the "binary" or program itself is called evilaliens. along with all those nasty aliens. You're playing in your x-windows enviroment and you have an x-terminal open (probably the one you typed 'ps' into). 441. as I mentioned before. If you're working as 'root' and you need to use the 'kill' command. it's a good idea to run ps -au and look closely at your PIDs. you would type ps and you would get this output that we talked about before. The game is called "Evil and Nasty Alien Visitors". you can just type: killall evilaliens and that should also do the trick. Another way to kill a process. you can 'kill' it. You would just type: kill and the PID number. first. you are the 007 on Her Majesty's Linux Service.only use this with troublesome processes. A good example of this is when you try a new program that hasn't got all the bugs worked out of it yet. Using 'kill' as root Remember that when you work as root. When you use 'kill' as root. Now you can't exit the program either.
we should talk here a bit about the type of file system Linux uses. if you would like to use floppies. (Kind of an absurd thing to do. In these cases. On the same idea. there's no need to use the 'kill' command. you can use the keys CTR+ C to stop the 'find' process. Formatting a floppy for Linux Most floppies sold on the market are pre-formatted for MS-Windows. MS-Windows and Mac users are used to clicking on an icons and dragging the files they want copied to a floppy or another part of the hard drive. you may want to store some files on a floppy or access data on a floppy that someone has given to you. You would also have to use the command 'mount' before you copied data to or got data from a floppy disk. from Windows 95 on up uses a file system called 'vfat' Linux uses a different system called 'ext2'. then you would have to indicate once again that the file system is 'vfat'. If you have done something like this by mistake. You would use a command called 'mount' to do that. Linux users that use KDE or GNOME can also copy files in that way to different parts of the hard drive. You may have chosen to have both Windows and Linux installed in your computer.Try typing this: find *. If you want to copy data from your Linux partition to a floppy. though floppies are becoming somewhat obsolete. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . but good as an example) It will just start finding everything. You would also have to indicate as an option in that command that the file system you want to access or "mount" is a Windows 'vfat' file system. You can copy data from Linux to a Windows formatted floppy with no problem. MS-Windows. you would have to format and then "mount" the floppy as a Linux 'ext2' file system. the way data is stored and managed in Linux. There are also other types of file systems out there. If that person is a Windows user.Lesson 13 File systems in Linux This is a beginner's course and one of the concepts that newcomers to Linux find different is the idea of a file system in Linux. That is to say. However. you might have to access files in the Windows partition of your hard drive. At one point. If you want to copy Linux files to a floppy to be used in another Linux machine or to be used .
you can use commands such as 'su' to do the work of root on certain occasions when you're not actually working as root. To create a linux floppy "by hand". you would place a floppy in the drive and type: mke2fs /dev/fd0 The command is an abbreviated way of saying "make an ext2 file system". As we mentioned in the first part of the course. everything is a file in Linux. then it might be better to format the floppy for Linux's ext2 file system. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . As you get more familiar with Linux. We'll explain this command in later lessons. You have to be working as 'root' to be doing this. your floppy drive. You now have a Linux formatted floppy. We should also say now that this is considered an administration task. You may want to run this command to check if the floppy has defects e2fsck /dev/fd0 Some windows managers have a nice programs to do both the formatting and the checking of the disk at the same time. including your floppy drive. The other part is the device.some older ones that I've heard sound like a chain saw) and you will get some output like this: Linux ext2 filesystem format and some other information about the size of the floppy etc. which is known to Linux as "fd0" (floppy drive 0).by you later in Linux.Lesson 13 Mounting file systems In this part of the lesson about file systems we'll learn how to use the commands mount and umount . You will hear the customary noise of the floppy drive (some are louder than others .
telling Linux that it is a file to be written to or copied from. you should create it (mkdir floppy). for example). to copy to and from the floppy disk. When we typed: mount -t ext2 /dev/fd0 /floppy we told Linux that our floppy disk is now part of our Linux file system (/dev/fd0) and that any files we would like to store on that disk will be copied to /floppy. To access a floppy disk from the command line of our shell. Let's explain what we've just done here. If you did it right.We've mentioned previously that there's a different idea in Linux as to what constitutes a floppy disk drive. typing the command 'df' (the command to see how much free disk space) should include something like this: /dev/fd0 1390 649 669 49% /floppy Your numbers may vary (especially if your floppy is blank!) Now. we would use the command mount and type the following: (remember: you need to be working as 'root' to do this) mount -t ext2 /dev/fd0 /floppy Now this assumes a couple of things: • • • you have a floppy disk in the drive (you'd be surprised how many times I forget to actually put the floppy in the drive) in this example. in other words. If you don't. a CD-ROM drive and another partition of your hard disk (the Windows partition. incorporating it temporarily into your Linux file system or. the method behind this is quite different from other OSes. Some don't. That means basically. Some Linux distributions create this automatically during the installation process. for example. the floppy type (indicated by the option -t) is a Linux formatted floppy. you have a directory called floppy. change the option to -t vfat in your root directory (you can get to it by typing: cd /). as if it were just another directory on our Linux system. you would type: cp my_file /floppy If you wanted to create individual subdirectories on the floppy. In Linux the floppy drive or other device must be "mounted". If you want to mount a Windows floppy. you would first change to the /floppy directory: . Though some windows managers for Linux have provisions for clicking on an icon to access a floppy drive.
I have on occasion tried to copy a 3MB file to a 1MB floppy!) Mounting other devices You can also use the mount command to copy to and from other devices. I use the different empty directories (/floppy /cdrom /mnt) to avoid confusion. CDs) as well. You may have Linux and Windows installed in the same computer.cd /floppy Then you would use the mkdir command to create the directories you want. (make sure you have space! . Everything looks like it's a program (binary) instead of a regular file. You won't be able to write to this type of CD-ROM drive. The device (/dev/hdb) is the non-SCSI type of CD-ROM and the mount point (/cdrom) should exist. If you would like to access files on the Windows partition you would type the following command: mount -t vfat /dev/hda1 /mnt Windows is always in the primary partition. . You won't have the various color combinations as you do in Linux. The directories are blue but the files are green (or red depending on your distribution of Linux). the standard command to do this is: mount -t iso9660 /dev/hdb /cdrom The type. That's because Windows' file system doesn't distinguish file types. You can also use the command cp -r my_directory/ /floppy to copy the directory automatically to the floppy. The choice for /mnt is the standard mount point in this case. Mounting another partition of the hard disk. If it doesn't. You may use the /mnt directory to mount the other devices (floppies. so that's why we've used the device /hda1 (hard disk partition 1). If you change to the mount directory (cd /mnt) and then type: ls and you'll see something interesting. Remember that the concept of CD-ROM is read only. just as you may have done with the /floppy directory. If you would like to get some files from a CD-ROM. Many people may have preferred to install Linux along with another operating system. A message will tell you that when you mount this type of device. you should create it in the root directory with 'mkdir'. iso9660 is the standard file system for a CD.
We'll talk about file permissions and and making changes to them shortly. Now that we know how to mount these outside file systems in Linux.Lesson 13 Umount command . it would show up as a executable program and not just a standard file under Linux. you may have left a terminal open where you were using to copy or write to the particular drive. I'd rather not take a chance. but for a more accurate accounting of what you have on your system. In the early days of Linux. This doesn't effect your playing it.umount /cdrom Windows partition . isn't good enough for me. the important thing now is to learn how to unmount it when we're finished using it.unmounting file system Mounting file systems that aren't part of the standard Linux system is considered a temporary condition in Linux. For example. when you use umount or it will give you a drive busy message.therefore umount /floppy CD: /cdrom .umount /mnt Remember also to NOT be accessing the floppy etc. however. you could do serious damage to your system if you didn't unmount manually after you were finished. Slim. The command for this is: umount [/mount point] In the examples I used in this lesson. if you wanted to copy an mp3 file from the Windows partition to the Linux partition to test out your sound configuration. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . the chances are pretty slim that you're going to trash a file system. Check your terminals if you get this error. I always take the time to unmount these external file systems when I'm finished with them. you may want to change the permissions of the file so that it shows up as a regular file in your color scheme. If you get this. Nowadays if you have mounted a system and you shut down the computer without unmounting.When you copy files from the Windows partition to the Linux partition you should bear this in mind. the mount points were: • • • floppy: /floppy . .
CD writers. We will show you how to understand file permission symbols and how to modify certain files so that they're more secure. I typed unmount instead of umount and much to my surprise. File permission symbols . For all I know. there's a need to keep things organized and secure. Obviously. That's where the system of file permissions comes in to help out in what could be a very confusing situation. to you and to everybody. Later in our advanced class we'll talk about installing and using other devices like scanners. This is basically because it was conceived as a networked system where different people would be using a variety of programs. We're going to explain some basic concepts about who owns the file and who can do what with a file.I just wanted to point out another thing too. but I just thought it best to warn you. I got the message: command not found. I haven't really done a survey on how many people have actually done this. There are security and privacy issues here as well. maybe we'll save that last one for the super-advanced classes!) [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . the big advantage that Linux has is its multi-user concept. We don't want an ordinary user using a program that could potentially trash the whole system. We'll save that for the Linux system administration course. We won't get into an enormous amount of detail here. I had done something wrong. (well. we don't want Bill to read Bob's love letters to the Janet who works in R & D. it's important to know what belongs to me. (because Janet is Bill's fianceé) In the end.the fact that many different people can use the same computer or that one person can use the same computer to do different jobs. You are 'unmounting' but the command is umount (that is. Let's face it. without the N of un) Being u(n)familiar with the mount concept when I started with Linux. now you can use the standard devices that most PC users need. I may be the only person who has. It took me a while to figure out that the command didn't include an N.Lesson 14 File permissions in Linux Linux has inherited from UNIX the concept of ownerships and permissions for files. Zip drives and matter/anti-matter flow inducers. U(n)deniably. etc. As we mentioned at the beginning of this course. Well. files.
date. It belongs to the group users (i. for example. -rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 53468 May 1 1999 gzip As we see here. A directory. linux_course_notes. we can take away the possibility of people reading this file if we so choose. Even though this is obviously different information. Root owns the file and it is in the group "root".separate the permissions into three types The first part refers to the owner's (bob's) permissions. The changes are in the owner and group. Let's look at what these symbols mean: • • • • • • The slash marks . The slash mark . Here we have the commands that anybody can use on the Linux system. You. you can do what you want with it. you will get a list of files that may include something like this -rw-r--r-. The file is an executable (program) so that's why the letter x is among the symbols. Root is actually the only member of that group. bytes are all standard. Anyone who might have access to the computer from inside or outside (in the case of a network) can read this file. If you own it.txt was created at 6:30 PM on July 10 and is 1892 bytes large.txt This basically says. may want to take away the rights of others to read your file. . there are some differences.1 bob users 1892 Jul 10 18:30 linux_course_notes. After the two slash marks (two here because there is no write permissions for the group) come the overall user permissions. the idea is the same as before.If you run the command ls -l in your home directory. We'll cover how to do that later. as a user. Linux can establish different types of groups for file access. the people who use this computer). Then come the file permission symbols. Let's look at the command for gzip. Let's take a look at some other examples. a file compression utility for Linux. would have a d instead of a slash mark. interpreting this from RIGHT to LEFT that the file. The second part of the these symbols after the second slash. An interesting place to look at different kinds of file permissions is the /bin directory. Once again. It belongs to bob in particular and it is one (1) file. That's pretty logical. The rw that follows means that bob can read and write to (modify) his own file. This is a completely normal situation. In a one home computer environment anyone who uses the computer can read this file but cannot write to (modify) it. • • • The program name.before the rw means that this is a normal file that contains any type of data.e. are the permissions for the group.
we can talk about changing certain permissions. We hope you enjoyed this little walk-through of file permissions in Linux. is allowed to use this program. the file is a program.Lesson 14 'chmod' explained chmod is the program that is used to change file permissions on a Linux system. the owner of the file. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . (other people) o g=group. As we can see here. There are no x permissions for the rest of the users.1 root root 1065 Jan 14 1999 cron 'cron' is a program on Linux systems that allows programs to be run automatically at certain times and under certain conditions. The syntax (parts separated by brackets) for using this command is the following: chmod [a/o/g/u] [+ or -] (plus or minus sign) [r/w/x] Let's analyze the syntax: • The symbols in the first brackets refer to the four concepts of users that Linux has. the group (root) and all others that have access to the computer As we mentioned. As we mentioned. others cannot modify your personal user files but you may not want other people to even read these files. o a=all. You can use this command to take away the possibility of others prying into your private stuff. If we look at a file in /sbin which are files that only root can use or execute. all users o o=others. the permissions would look like this: -rwxr--r-. the members of your group .• • This file can be executed by everybody: the owner (root). only root. Now that we know what we're looking for. so there is no w permissions for it for anybody but root. so there is no need for anybody other than root to "write" to the file.
When you're beginning with Linux. chmod taketh away Your actual rights to files . You can change them to their correct permissions. One number corresponds to each group.txt If you had used 'pico' to write up a grocery list for your trip to the supermarket today.takes them away. Best to keep those secret anyway. you may want to restrict rights to read a file.r=read rights. those of the owner of the file followed by those of the group and then the permissions of others. Here's an example of a chmod command with numbers: chmod 644 grocery_list. w=write rights (pardon the homophonic redundancy!) and x=executable rights o Practical examples of chmod As we mentioned before. getting rid of the executable status with: chmod a-x the_file Remember that if you copied them as 'root'. they'll show up as such (-rwxr-xr-x). you will have to use chmod as root to do this. Using chmod with number values The permissions in Linux also can also be changed with number values. As I said before. You may want to change root ownership to yourself (your user name). We also talked earlier about those files that you may have copied from a Windows partition or a floppy formatted for Windows. An accomplished Linux/Unix user will probably use this system more. As we say in the Linux world chmod giveth. Linux would have given you 644 permission by default. Without going into tedious technical detail. So if you use numbers with 'chmod'. the method we described before will probably be clearer to you. You would simply type: chmod og-r my_world_domination_plan. there will be three numbers following the command. we'll describe the chmod number system to you and look at two of the most common examples. We'll go into this in the next part of the lesson.txt Now nobody can read your plans to take over the world except you. That means.• • u=user. (this means you) The symbol + adds permissions and the symbol . Even if they're not executable files. You could even go one step further and change the ownership of the file to the user you desire. read . we have three sections to permissions.
Execute permission is given a value of 1. Read permission is given a value of 4.txt). particularly if you're networked. like the number 8 or 12 or even 1345? Let's explain this. I had taken away the read permissions for everybody except myself using +/. Now the question is: Why these numbers? Why not other numbers. (chmod og-r my_world_domination_plan. It's a very good program if you're using your computer as different users for various jobs.and write permissions for the owner but no write permissions for the group and for others. 4 means read permissions for others. This file . we've added the 4 for read permission and to the 2 for write permission for the owner to get 6.fetchmailrc' This file also includes the user name and password for retrieving mail from each address. The different addresses are stored in a file that you create called '. In our example of chmod 644 grocery_list. then what else can you do with it?) Write permission is given a value of 2. Just give it a 4 in each case. We've just given the group and others read permission. Think of it as the most important permission. There is a command mode program called 'fetchmail' for getting your e-mail. We've got a possible security hole here. (if you can't read a file. Here's what it would look like: User (or the owner) Group Others read-write-execute read-write-execute read-write-execute 4-2-1 4-2-1 4-2-1 It's really just a question of simple arithmetic. so there's nothing to add in these two groups.txt.letter method. chmod 600 my_world_domination_plan. the number 4 means read permissions for the group and the last number. It will send mail to the different users based on e-mail addresses. The Zero value means 7 (maximum permission value) minus 4 minus 2 minus 1 equals 0.txt) Now let's do the same with the numbers. Real world examples with 'chmod' I'd like to talk about a real world practical example for doing this. Presto! 644.txt As you can see I have read and write permissions for me (4 read + 2 write equals 6) and 0 permissions for everybody else. So the number 6 means read and write permissions for you. Some practical examples with numbers Let's take another look at my file that has my plans for dominating the world (my_world_domination_plan. The three types of permissions correspond to three numbers.
you would probably be given permission to use these scripts on your website.4 read. though available to every user. It does not change the read. In our Linux system administration course. You would then have to give the scripts read and execute permissions so that the your visitors could use them. It's becoming more and more common to use scripts to improve the quality of a website's offerings. you would then issue this command: chmod 755 my_awesome_script and the script would become "executable" (and readable) for the outside world. write and execution permissions however. After you uploaded a script to your website. As the internet becomes more popular. It will complain about the file's permissions. When you create your . you must then use chmod 600/chmod og-r on the file to solve the security issue. 'fetchmail' won't run if you don't. You mount the partition (as root) and to save time. (7 . You could also use chmod og+rx my_awesome_script The script is then "converted" into a "program" so to speak. is probably going to be used when you're working as root. If you type ls -l the_file you'll get something like this: .shouldn't be read by everybody. In this lesson we've shown you just a few practical examples to get your feet wet with this very important command.Lesson 14 Using 'chown' The command chown is the chmod's cousin. In fact. If you used a language like perl to write the scripts and you hosted your website with a company that runs Linux on their servers (we would hope that you would do this!). we'll go into this command in more detail. This command. websites need to be more user friendly and interactive. 2 write 1 executable for you. You have also converted yourself into a "web developer" with the right to hang your shingle on the door. It is used for changing the ownership rights of a file (hence the name 'chown' . [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . The command is uses like this: chown owner:group the_file Let's say you want to copy something from your Windows partition (if you have one). chmod is one of those commands that are used most by system administrators. 4 read and 1 executable for group and others).fetchmailrc file.change owner). you copy the file to your user directory /home/bob/. Let's look at another "real world" example.
just type ls -l and see what system corresponds to you. Therefore.txt notes_4. As you can see. The best way to avoid problems is to backup your files.txt . On your single home computer. So let's do it! chown bob:bob the_file This example presupposes that your Linux version creates groups for each user. There are others that will create a generic group called users for everybody who uses the computer. 'chown' is absolutely necessary if you're working as more than one user with the computer. Let's say you have some files . Linux is an "almost perfect" operating system. but things do happen and data is sometimes lost. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . groups are created according to the needs of the organization. root is the only one who has write permissions for the file (permission to modify its content). you run chmod on the file. as root.notes that you've taken during this course. there isn't a snowball's chance in hell to modify that file until.txt notes_2. On a network.-rw-r--r-.txt notes_5. commonly called a "tarball".Lesson 15 Backing up your files Let's face it.1 root root 2428 Nov 17 13:18 the_file As we now know from the previous lesson. This programs assembles various files into one package. root is the owner of the file. computers aren't perfect.txt notes_3. Linux provides two key programs to do this: 'tar' and 'gzip' First we'll start with 'tar'. You have: • • • • • notes_1. If you plan on working with the file as "bob".
txt First.txt for *.tar notes*. tar -cvf linux_notes.should always be the last option) Then you have the name of the file you want to create ( linux_notes. you have tar. If you've got good data storage capabilities (Jaz or Zip drives.tar). let's say.tar. the name of the program. You can also compress a regular file using the same command.tar * With one asterisk. The result would be a file like this: your_tar_file. If you want to include ALL files in a directory. gzip is the preferred compression tool for Linux. Then you have the options.*. There is no reduction in the size of these files (the tarball might even be bigger!) Now we would have to do one more thing in order to reduce this file into a more manageable size: use 'gzip'. a CD writer or a tape backup drive). Be prepared to get a fairly voluminous tarball. This presupposes that you may have other files in the directory that you don't want to include. Then you would enter in the directory. You want to back them up and keep them on a floppy.gz . Now let's look at the second step. you would issue the following command: gzip your_tar_file. You would type the following command to package them in a tarball. To reduce the size of your tar file.tar) and the files you want to backup (notes*. let's say /home/bob/ and issue the command: tar -cvf bob_backup. but gzip is used primarily with tarballs. 'tar' just assembles the files together into only one file. you will include directories and files without extensions (my_file as opposed to my_file. Using 'gzip' As we mentioned. This is the first step in the backup process. the compression of these files.and you've placed them in a directory called /linux_course. c (-create) v (--verbose-show what files they are) (f--file -make a file .txt). you might want to back up whole directories along with their corresponding subdirectories. just substitute notes*.tar and the tar file would be compressed.
issue this command: tar -zxvpf my_tar_file. tar just sort of sits around doing nothing) .preserves dates. If you would like a copy of the old file. untar it in a different directory. Our previous example would be modified to this: tar -czvf bob_backup. Putting it all together 'tar' has an option built into it to use 'gzip' to zip the file at the same time you make the tarball.tar. I'll explain them: • • • • • -z . You can now proceed to store this as you see fit. you'd overwrite the existing ones.extract the files from the tarball -v . You would locate the zipped tarball in question and then ask yourself a question: Did I make any changes to the files inside the tarball after I made it? If you did. If you don't want the old files. then you should make a new tarball. you have the whole shebang in one step.unzip the file first -x .tar. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . The easiest way for doing this is to use 'tar' for the whole process.gz I've used my preferred options. If you untarred it in the same directory.gz * Remember f should always be the last option.use the file in question (if you don't specify this. It's pretty standard backup practice."verbose" (i. If you add z to the options.Lesson 15 Untarring and unzipping files Using 'tar' and 'gzip' sort of supposes that you're going to want to "untar" and "unzip" these files at one point or another.The two file extensions show us that the file is a tarball and it is compressed with the 'gzip' format.e tar tells you what files it's extracting) -p .gz extension. permissions of the original files -f . When you've decided what you want to do. and change the name of the file to create to a . to proceed with the "untarring". then you've got an old tarball.
so it may be a good idea to get to know 'bzip2' For all practical purposes you would use this tool in the same way as you would 'gzip'. bzip2 There is also another tool that is rapidly gaining acceptance in the Linux world: bzip2. this might be your best bet.gz or gunzip my_tar_file.tar.gz (gunzip runs gzip -d "automagically"!) These commands are good if you've just zipped a regular file (not a tarball). When you compile a kernel (create a custom kernel for yourself from source) there is an option to create a bzipped kernel. There are some differences in options for more advanced users. Consult man bzip2 for more information.gz). The compression factor is supposed to be a little better. If you're planning on compressing files to give to someone who (still) uses the Windows operating system. As a matter of fact.The files are extracted and your original tarball is preserved (my_tar_file. You can also use unzip if someone gives you a file compressed with 'zip'.tar. famous in the MS-DOS/Windows world.tar. the Linux kernel source package. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . usually comes "bzipped". Other compression tools zip Most Linux distributions come with other tools to compress files. One of these is zip. Just leave the z option out of the previous example and type: gzip -d my_tar_file. What distribution (version) of Linux are you using? .Lesson 16 Installing New Programs The way you install a new program will depend primarily on two things: 1. You can also untar the file and then use gzip separately. Consult the man file ( man zip) for specific instructions on using this tool. This is supposed to become the official way of doing it in the near future.
One is to "uninstall" the older package and install a new one in its place. What is the origin of the program that you want to install? Let's look at the first question: What distribution are you using? RPM If you're using Red Hat or a distribution that bases itself on Red Hat. If you do have the package installed. then you can download their RPM and run rpm -i opera_whatever_version. it would give you the version number: opera-5. for the most part. you will see: package opera is not installed If you don't have Opera installed. rpm -i new_program.0_whatever-number If you don't have the package installed. Not that this is the most efficient option.rpm This installs the program (-i option for install) rpm -q program_name This "queries" your system to see if you've got a certain program installed. This system takes the heartache out of installing programs under Linux. I just wanted to . Let's say you hear there's a new version of the popular Internet browser Opera for Linux and you don't know if your Red Hat based distribution installs this by default or not. If you do have the program installed and the rpm -q opera command gives you a older version number and you want the newerone.2. It stands for Red Hat Package Manager.rpm as root and install the program. I also want to note that RPM has also come to mean the package itself (as in "I downloaded an RPM yesterday"). Developers will almost always offer their programs in RPM format due to its popularity.RPM doesn't have anything to do with revolutions per minute. Before you download the RPM for Opera. you could type the command: rpm -q opera. then you're going to use the RPM method. then you have two options. OK racing fans. There are some basic commands you're going to need to know to take advantage of the RPM system. You can go to the Red Hat website or any number of mirrors and get programs for Linux.
this is not the most efficient way to update packages. For example. there are some very good tools for installing. More on this conversion later in the show! . You would type: rpm -U opera_new_version. Mandrake and Red Hat. especially if you're just starting out in the Linux world. like the Opera web browser in mentioned above. should install fine on any RPM based system. They may make these tasks a lot easier. you would type rpm -e program_name.rpm (or whatever the package is actually called). These include Mandrake and SuSE for example. Both of these companies create their own RPMs to be specifically installed on their systems. When you're using your windows manager. You can choose menu options to do all that we explained before instead of having to type the commands in the terminal. Those are the basic commands of the RPM install/update system in a nutshell. This gets rid of Opera from your system. then you would first do: rpm -e opera. You may want to look into programs like Kpackage for KDE or Gnome RPM for the GNOME enviroment. to get rid of a program that you've installed.introduce you to the -e option for RPM. I have successfully installed this package (the same exact RPM file) on SuSE. Certain components in the package (like documentation or libraries) may get copied into a different directory than was intended for that system. As I said. Then you would type rpm -i opera_beta8. if you've got Opera's beta version 7 and you've just downloaded the beta version 8. The usual way is to use the -U (as in Update command.rpm and that would install the new version and remove the old version from your system. Some words of caution on downloading RPMs Some of the most popular Linux distributions base their install and update prodedures on Red Hat's package management system. I even converted this RPM to Debian (. That is. Third party RPMs from reputable companies. That installs the new version. updating and uninstalling RPMs that are graphically based. You may run into a problem if you installed an RPM for Red Hat on a SuSE system. That means if you're using SuSE or Mandrake your best bet is to go to their respective "official" websites or mirrors and download their particular RPM and install it using the procedure outlined above or their specific tools.deb) package format and successfully installed it in a computer running Debian.
I suggest that newcomers to the Linux world buy (yes. Typically. you could go to Debian's website or any one of its mirrors and download a package. I said buy) a good boxed set of a commercial distribution and then they'll have more programs than they would ever need. If you see a list a mile long of "requirements" (those other programs and libraries you need). Time might be even more valuable than money. Getting and RPM doesn't necessarily mean that you're automatically (or "auto-magically") going to be able to install it.Just a brief second word of caution. no money down). I think. And here's just an editorial comment on my part about this type of thing as well. all installed and working properly along with a manual to tell you what to do in case something doesn't work.deb to install it. then you might want to ask yourself if you really want to try that program out.Lesson 16 Debian Updates There are various methods to installing new programs on a Debian system. updating and installing stuff was at times a frustrating experience. That's fine. Many websites out there offer RPMs for download. You can theoretically get a distribution from the Internet along with programs and install it for free. (lost money might be re-earned but not lost time). The big buzz word with Linux is "free". . Now let's look at installing programs with Debian. to use the trite expression. The good ones usually include a list on that particular RPM's page of other programs or libraries that you need in order successfully install and use the program. When I first installed Linux oh so many years ago. (ie. Then you would type: dpkg -i package. I like to classify them according to your connection type. dpkg This is the "classic" way of updating a Debian system. however. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . that time is money.
then I would choose CD-ROM.The main drawback to this is that you may find a package that you like but it may have dependencies (ie. . Let's talk about this method of installing new programs with Debian. For example. This is because the alternative. automated programs they're talking about. Debian will then configure the installed packages. xDSL. the main advantage of dpkg.typically. which are dselect and apt-get are better for permanent connections (cable. The Debian people point out that this is ideal for installs or large-scale upgrades. But if I were updating. To deal with this avalanche. Despite what they say. the main advantage to this is that any conflicts or dependency problems will be resolved right here. it seems to me. it seems that a slow and sometimes expensive dial-up connection would be less than ideal for this. many people prefer to use automated programs. Then you start the process by choosing the install option. As I said before. a dozen or more new packages are uploaded every week. This number is larger just before a new major release. though) to guide you through the install of new programs. then the install will fail. but not actually do it) with a = sign. If that's the case. Then you're on your way. That means. This is what the Debian people themselves have to say about this method: Many people find this approach much too time-consuming. how you're going to get and install them. is that it is easy for people who have dial-up connections. You can even put updates on hold (indicate that you want to update. other programs that it needs to make it run) and if you don't have those packages. T1. dselect When you use dselect you get a graphic user interface of sorts (not under X window. since Debian evolves so quickly -. if I were doing an install of Debian with CDs. T3). There may even be conflicts or dependency problems and 'dselect' will warn you about those. First you'll get asked for your preferred access method. I would choose FTP Then you would choose the packages you want with a + sign.
This a variation of the *.tgz You can also add the option -warn between the installpkg/removepkg command and instead of installing the package. on the other hand.Lesson 16 Installing new programs on Slackware Slackware. it's just as easily updated as any other major distribution. it will tell you what new files are going to get added to your hard disk. Slackware lacks some of the "smooth" and "slick" graphic installation packages that are becoming standard fare in commercial companies' offerings but in the end.tgz you have your new program installed. Slackware's package format Slackware packages come in *.tgz format. on one hand. If that particular package doesn't quite move you and inspire you too much. a flexible distribution that allows you to do practically anything you want and. That's a good option for the "I wonder if I want this" moments of your life. You can go to your favorite website and download new programs for your Slackware system and with a simple: installpkg some_program.gz format we've seen before.tar. one that is for "experienced" Linux users only.In the next section we'll look at installing programs under Slackware [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . has the reputation of being. Upgrading packages You can upgrade programs to newer versions with this command: . you can just remove it: removepkg some_program. A lot of these considerations are "politically" motivated. if you're willing to just use the command line utilities. known to the Linux world as "Slack".
E-mail may be surpassing the popularity of basic word processing (e-mail is just an extension of that. there is a common misconception that just because something doesn't have a wonderful graphic interface that makes you say "oooh" and "ahhhh".upgradepkg a_new_version_of_something. many people curl up in bed with a novel or a report for work. Writing things. really). isn't it? Enjoy your "Slack" system! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . The fact is that people open up their word processor of choice (or the one they're forced to use at work) and write things on a pretty regular basis.tgz format.rpm This takes the "rpm" in question and converts it to *. A computer running Slackware is a tremendously flexible and configurable system. Despite what we're hearing about the web doing away with the printed material as we know it.tgz Using other package formats If you're using Slackware and you can't find a package your looking for in the *. you can also grab on to an *. Then you can use installpkg on the new file you've created to install it. I don't see that custom being altered unless someone comes up with a comfortable way to use a computer in bed! .Lesson 17 Printing under Linux Although this is my personal opinion and I have not done scientific research on this topic. So what if you have to write things on a command line? That's what you've got a keyboard for. GUI does not necessarily = GOOD Once again. it is somehow inferior. I would say that word processing is probably the computer activity which is done with the most frequency. After all.rpm and convert it. means printing them afterwards. Don't let that missing GUI fool you here. The way to do this is: rpm2tgz some_package. logically.tgz format. it seems that we handle more paper not less of it in our networked world.
you'll be configuring the lpr or "line printer". you'll need some filters installed that know how to print PDF files.because computers work pretty fast. These filters are used to make sure that "What you see is what you get".maybe a couple of seconds . if you downloaded a report from the Save the Whales Foundation on the mating habits of the pilot whale in PDF format and you wanted to print it. OK. to use a hackneyed expression. As I mentioned. you'll need a working "printcap" file (to be found in /etc/printcap. This daemon just waits there for printing jobs to be sent to it. The queue (queue the British word for what Americans call a "waiting line") just puts your print job on hold until the system figures out the way to print it. which it will then send to the lpq or "line printer queue". without your direct intervention. How to print If you want to print. Today's computing needs in terms of printing are much more demanding. The basic means of printing in Linux just takes off from there. you know that already. then getting your printer up and running under Linux is going to be a priority. you should push the "print" option in the menu. Your Linux machine should be capable of printing anything you want as long as you have the correct filters.some of you might remember this). graphics and other visual goodies can be found in standard printed material that comes from a computer.Obviously. A "daemon" is just a program that works in the background. usually) that tells your system what printer it's . This holding pattern is usually pretty quick . Exotic fonts. (resulting in rather plain looking text on paper with holes on each side . printing used to consist of just sending rather boring looking output to a line printer. For example. printing in the Unix platforms started off as just sending plain text to a line printer. 1. What you're doing when you print under Linux Historically. This is a free implementation of Adobe's Postscript filters. Install a printer Most Linux distributions come with tools that will get you printing in no time. generally. As I mentioned before that Linux's printing system is based on basic line printing. But how do we get from the point where you've got Linux installed to where you can print something with your word processor? Here are the steps. it was just important that they used them. Linux has changed a great deal and hardware manufacturers got the idea quick that it didn't matter what OS people used their printers with. That means that all of the major distributions offer first rate tools to get practically any printer running under Linux. Luckily. All mainstream Linux distributions come with Ghostscript. The lpr works with the lpd or "line printer daemon" running on your system. When you first set up your Linux machine to use a printer. . if writing/word processing is so important and printing is the logical next step after writing.
supposed to work with. With SuSE you can use YAST to create this file (which will invoke a program called 'apsfilter'. Red Hat comes with "printtool", Mandrake has its printer setup tool in its main configuration package. Debian and Slackware both use the 'apsfilter' tool as well. This lesson is not meant by any means to be the definitive list on products from every vendor, so if your particular distribution isn't listed here, you'll have to consult the documentation in your case. For example, the /etc/printcap file that SuSE configured for my main machine at home is this:
printer1-ascii|lp1|y2prn_printer1.upp--ascii-printer1|y2prn_printer1.upp ascii:\ :lp=/dev/lp0:\ :sd=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--ascii-printer1:\ :lf=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--ascii-printer1/log:\ :af=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--ascii-printer1/acct:\ :if=/var/lib/apsfilter/bin/y2prn_printer1.upp--ascii-printer1:\ :la@:mx#0:\ :tr=:cl:sh: # printer1|lp2|y2prn_printer1.upp--auto-printer1|y2prn_printer1.upp auto:\ :lp=/dev/lp0:\ :sd=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--auto-printer1:\ :lf=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--auto-printer1/log:\ :af=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--auto-printer1/acct:\ :if=/var/lib/apsfilter/bin/y2prn_printer1.upp--auto-printer1:\ :la@:mx#0:\ :tr=:cl:sh: # printer1-raw|lp3|y2prn_printer1.upp--raw-printer1|y2prn_printer1.upp raw:\ :lp=/dev/lp0:\ :sd=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--raw-printer1:\ :lf=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--raw-printer1/log:\ :af=/var/spool/lpd/y2prn_printer1.upp--raw-printer1/acct:\ :if=/var/lib/apsfilter/bin/y2prn_printer1.upp--raw-printer1:\ :la@:mx#0:\ :tr=:cl:sh:
2. Install the Ghostscript package and other useful filters Most major distributions always recommend the Ghostscript package by default, so it goes on your system with an standard install. This will take care of your more advanced formatting needs. Other ones, like the jpeg libraries and other image formatting libraries are also installed by default so you can print your image files easily and painlessly.
3. Turn on the printer and press the print button I sometimes forget to turn on the printer, so that's why I included this last part.
Some useful trouble shooting techniques
Most printers work from a parallel port. You must have parallel port support enabled in your kernel. Most major Linux distributions will install a generic kernel with this enabled. Printing therefore shouldn't be a problem. However, most people at some stage of the game prefer to compile and install their own custom Linux kernel. When you get up to speed on Linux and you decided to do this, always remember to include parallel port support into your new kernel. I have forgotten to do this (which ironically seems to happen with much more frequency as I get familiar with compiling kernels) only to find that I can't print anything when I've finished installing my new kernel. I have also noticed my system choke on stuff sent to it from Corel WordPerfect. I won't go into the "hows" and "whys" (because I honestly don't know why or how this happens) but I have fell victim to an inability to print from WordPerfect on occasion. What I usually do is see if in fact I have pressed the button 'print' and something is waiting to be printed. To see if you have something waiting in the printer queue, just issue the command:
This will show you what's in the printer queue or if there is in fact anything there. Output generally looks something like this, if you have a problem (like my printer being unplugged, in this case).
waiting for printer1 to become ready (offline ?) Rank Owner Job Files Total Size 1st bob 46 grocery_list.txt 667 bytes 2nd bob 47 lyrics_to_sinatra_my_way.txt 2323 bytes
For example, if I wanted to just get rid of these files, shut WordPerfect down and start it up again and try printing again (which usually works for me), I would just issue the command:
Which removes the whole line printer queue. I could also be selective about it and only delete on of the files by typing the command:
Alas, my debut in the karaoke bar will have to wait, but I can still do the shopping. Hopefully you won't need to use these troubleshooting techniques very often, but they're good to know just in case. Enjoy printing under Linux! [Previous] [Next]
Getting Started with Linux - Lesson 17 Using Linux to access the Internet
We live in an interconnected world. In fact, you're using this interconnectivity in form of the Internet to access this course. Chances are, however, that you're using some other OS to connect to your ISP and read this course. After this lesson, you should be able to connect and browse what's out there in cyberspace using Linux.
On-ramps to the "information superhighway"
I think that the term "information superhighway" is a perfect analogy for the Internet. That's probably why it has become so popular. The superhighway itself is the telephone companies infrastructure - the lines, fiber-optic cables, switches and satellites that bring the hundreds of millions of pages of content to you, including this page. Your computer is like that car on the highway. Your modem or other device that connects you is like the engine of your car. That's why we've written this lesson. If you can't get the engine to work, you're not going anywhere. Linux and other OSes are a bit like the fuel you put in your car. If you have been using Windows, that's like using gasoline. If you switch to Linux, that's different, like jet fuel. You'll have to modify your engine to be able to use it, but you'll go faster in the end.
Types of connections
There are basically three types of connections to the Internet; leased lines, broadband and dial-up connections. Leased lines are high-speed connections that ISPs use to connect you to the rest of the Internet or big companies use to communicate between parts of their organization and to allow you to connect to them. These are known as T1 and T3 lines in North America and E class lines in Europe. This course will not deal with setting up and Internet connection with these lines. It's a little out of the scope of your average Linux user.
This connection type basically consists of using a modem to dial the phone and connect to the Internet Service Provider (ISP). My connection runs at 250 kilobits per second when I am receiving data. I have ADSL service. The few people who I know who had this service (and later dropped it) complained about the speed. The modem "negotiates" the connection (ie . Dial-up (standard modem) connections are by far the most popular way of connecting to the Internet. The best speed you can hope to get out of a dial-up connection is 56 kilobits per second. but broadband is the best alternative for home users. you can even opt for higher speeds (up to 2 megabits per second) and have Internet service that rivals much more expensive leased line alternatives. At any rate. What they promised. Let's move on to the next section where we'll show you how to set up the different Internet connection alternatives under Linux. I can download a 5 megabyte file (like a song) in about 3-4 minutes. if you weren't a Fortune 500 company. They promised connections of up to 128 kilobits per second (the key words here being up to. in my area at least. nobody seems to be talking about it so much anymore.xDSL (Digital Subscriber Line) and cable modem are what is known as "broadband" connections. just couldn't be delivered. The reasons behind this would go beyond the scope of this lesson. but in reverse). To put it in other terms. In the xDSL area. These services offer 24 hour high-speed connections to the Internet in most cases (unless you shut off your machine. ISDN . in my area. For example.tells the ISP who you are) using a couple of established network protocols. Lately. using the tactic of car advertisements that say from 9. and I suspect there are legitimate technical reasons why a cable connection is essentially cheaper and easier to provide to to consumers. This has never seemed to have caught on. particularly in the United States because the cable companies seem to have gotten on the ball faster to offer consumers high speed connections. This depends a lot on where you're connecting to and other factors. Depending on what company is providing you with this service. the telephone company was trying to sell people on ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) to solve the two main problems with Internet use. namely the slow modem speed and the fact that you couldn't make or receive phone calls while using the Internet. you can even use this connection to serve your own personal or small business webpage using Linux as a web server. cable modem is becoming more popular than xDSL. With all due respect to telephone companies. of course). about 5 times slower than the slowest broadband connection.a footnote: A few years ago. at least in my area. Up until the late-1990's. it was the only way to get on the Internet. [Previous] [Next] . (and I'm not a telecom engineer) so suffice it to say that cable seems to be the way people are going to get high speed connections to the Internet. there may be.599 dollars. That is to say.
The basic reason for this is that it is usually platform independent which means that it doesn't matter what OS you're using because you can probably configure it using Telnet (in my case) or even a web browser. They may pretty much obligate you to use one or the other. Realtek 8029 PCI is the one I use in my machines in my home office. I have even heard of the telecom people doing this for you. even selling your their own hardware in the process.Lesson 17 ADSL with Linux Fortunately (or unfortunately. Here are some of the things I had to do.Getting Started with Linux . It is also important that you know if you accept their services. which I have also seen done. you're going to need an Ethernet card. This is very important for security because you're going to be connected 24 hours a day. Call the ISP. 1. you may have to accept the hardware they recommend (or force on you). via router and via modem. My card of choice (because it was the only one they sold in my area) is the NE-2000 clones. Get an Ethernet card If you go the router route (pardon the pun). 3. This is pretty important. This is a good one because most major distributions will detect this (they always have for me) during a standard install of Linux. in my case. Choose a router or modem If a modem isn't forced upon you. This is a great option for a small business because a router allows you to painlessly share the connection between multiple computers. depending on your relationship with your local telecom company) the telephone company handles most of the heavy lifting during the process of getting Linux to work with an ADSL connection. ask if you can use your own choice of hardware and then hope they say yes. I chose a router that had capabilities for filtering out unwanted incoming connections. Plus. In the best case scenario. For example. For the faint-hearted. 2. even if you've never looked under the hood of your PC you can muster up your courage and install this card yourself. so the process is fresh in my mind. There are two main connection options. I went through the process of switching from standard dial-up not too long ago. then it's a good idea to choose the router option. Sometimes they will offer you Internet service and at the same time arrange for the telephone company to come over and install a splitter which allows you to use the same phone line for data and voice transmission. You can . These cards are designed to allow you to connect computers in a Local Area Network (LAN).
168.linux. Before I used Telnet to access this router. Now.0. to get on the highway My home network is a private local area network. I was given a unique number. so you will have to use these. It's a lot like running a men's bowling team.1. This number has to be unique. The numbers 192. If there are 20 members and 7 of them are named Bob then.X. In my case.X.20.2.0. In case you didn't know.20. It's a question of using a small screwdriver. you connect the router to the Ethernet card so your PC can receive the data.Bob has the highest score" then there's going to be confusion. 192. Now. If you used any other numbers. they might conflict with numbers that are actually out there on the Internet. I encourage people to do it for themselves.1 to the router. In my case.1.4 respectively.0. if someone announces that "e. let's say it was 20. 192.org. like Linux.1. when you go to www. The router was equipped with the possibility of using a a program on a CD to configure the Internet connection if I was using Microsoft Windows or Telnet for another OS. you're actually going to a computer that is assigned a number on the Internet. I had to know what address my telecom company had assigned to me for Internet purposes. Then I hooked up the router to the hub and then one of my PCs to the hub.168.168. so each PC is assigned an IP address which is a number that computers identify themselves with.X. I assigned my PCs the numbers 192.0.also call your local guru. If you've got more than one PC in the house. I took out my router and connected it to the data line coming from the splitter (see the picture). you should get an Ethernet hub to distribute the connection between PCs. In my home. when you use the Internet. That is to say.1. What that's in.168. and then have two numbers after these.X are reserved for private networks.3.168. you don't identify yourself to other computers with 192. these numbers start with 188.8.131.52. so as soon as I turned it on. I opened an terminal in my PC and typed: telnet . you could say for all intents and purposes that I had another computer on my local network with the address of 192. With ADSL you are assigned a unique number with which to connect to other computers. when the telecom people came to hook me up. 192.168.168. the manufacturer of the router in the factory assigned the number 192. Then I used Telnet to access the router.
Now. in /etc/route. these computers know that www.168. I was using my workstation to configure the router. I run SuSE Linux on this machine.30 nameserver 40. you wouldn't stand a snowball's .then: open 192.0. so I logically started with that one.0.linux. I assigned the router the unique Internet numbered address my telecom had given me and then I changed the address of the actual router to 192.1 which was the local numbered address the router came with by default.org is actually a number out there and they help you find it.0.168. These are the primary and secondary DNS numbers.0 eth0 Which means that 192. 0. Without these numbers.conf and /etc/resolv.5.168. I had to write the line: default 192.0.5 is the default "gateway" to the Internet. That is to say.0 is the subnet mask (not important for our discussion here) and eth0 stands for your Ethernet card that you installed and is connected to the hub which is connected to the router. I had ADSL service coming in to the router.1. or where the machine is going to route out of to get to the outside. The changes I had to make took all of 30 seconds. I saved the changes and exited. The final step was to tell the PCs where to get their Internet connection from. at least. to me more in synch with my local network's numbering scheme and then I changed the password to access the router. First. I had a text mode menu (the best you can do with Telnet) and going by the router's manual plus my local telecom's instructions. DNS stands for Domain Name Server. so I had to change 2 files: /etc/route. It's just an example I used to correspond to the numbers that could be given to you by your telecom company.0.30.40 These are not the actual numbers I was given. A domain name server is just a machine that has an inventory of other computers on the Internet.168.40.40.conf.0.30. They also furnished me with a default password which I used to connect to the router.conf. nameserver 30.conf file.5 0. Once in. Then I added two lines to my /etc/resolv.0.
Report any threats to the channel operators. you are somewhat vulnerable to these socially unacceptable characters and what they may try to do with you. These are the lines I added: GATEWAY=192.0. popularly known as "Script Kiddies" seldom know how the software works and really don't care. it really isn't as far as a target for hard-core hackers/crackers) but there are a lot of mischievous people with time on their hands that go around looking for trouble.conf are the same. If you're using Mandrake or Red Hat. But there are a few people with dubious social skills who are just on IRC to be jerks. They just know they can do harm with it. only what it does. You're on line . I quickly disconnected the hub to all but one machine and following the instructions. Most of these people. This is important because you are a sitting duck for intruders with ADSL.168. they don't have to know how the program works. Report them to their ISP or the local authorities if they threaten to do harm to your machine. .chance in hell of finding anything on the Internet. Most people on IRC are there to socialize. Sometimes the person's ISP figures in the information on IRC. These people use tools they get off the Internet to scan numbers at random to see if the machine attached to the number can be "hacked". As they say. When I fired up my browser.conf file. Remember. IRC chat is a good place to chat with friends and also a good place to inadvertently invite people to take a swipe at your machine.let's be careful out there After doing all this. Seeing as IRC can tell a lot about where you are. seek technical help and even work and collaborate on projects at a distance. A lot of these people are script kiddies who like to get in feuds with people on channels. it basically did nothing until I remembered to change that file. and set up some necessary security. I forgot to change /etc/resolv. a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.conf you'll have to add two lines to /etc/sysconfig/network . When I was configuring the last computer. I learned this fact in my haste to get the rest of the network set up.5 GATEWAYDEV=eth0 The changes to /etc/resolv. I was on line with all machines going out through the router. instead of /etc/route. You may not think that your local home network might be important compared to some corporate website (which.
People would spend the day throwing stones at it. it's the software running the behind it.Security with ADSL Security in Linux is way out of the scope of this beginners' course on Linux. Apache's webserver is pretty safe. That makes it almost impossible for someone who you don't want to to connect and try to do harm to your computer from the outside. it isn't the port itself that should be considered safe or unsafe. (v. like the Internet. That's a port that I told the router not to accept connections to. people could just connect to it and see what they wanted. If your private network didn't have a firewall. For example.a way to connect to a remote computer. 7. The WWW wouldn't function if it didn't. as we have seen with the famous CodeRed worm. Microsoft's webserver IIS isn't. The subject of firewalls goes way beyond the scope of this beginner's course and I don't pretend to explain how to set up a firewall here.2 at the time of this writing) enables SSH by default. SSH accepts remote connections that are encrypted or coded. The passwords you send to connect via Telnet. It has to be. their computer makes a request to port 80 on the server to send them the page. It would be like a house made of glass. But. SSH runs on port 22. If a user on a network wants to access a web page on a server. That's a pretty safe port. for example runs on port 23. A brief explanation of ports I was lucky in that my router has the ability to filter packets built into it. SuSE Linux's most recent offering. Some big corporations pay people big money to set .or point of entry to computers from the outside. There are a couple of things that you can do without having to be a guru on security to help secure your Linux box. I also disabled my computer's ability to accept connection via Telnet. I substituted it with SSH or Secure Shell. The people who designed the big network of networks came up with the concept of ports . Telnet. Telnet is a 'shell' . webservers run on port 80. I also have FTP disabled. Any decent network that's connected to the Internet has a firewall. Actually. Packets are the data that comes in and out of your computer when you're connected to a network. Firewalls A firewall is just a barrier between a network that's inside a home or company and the outside world. even though you may see little asterisks (or nothing) can be picked up easily by people who 'sniff' these passwords.(port 21).
If you are setting this up on a small business network. the best selling book on security from a Linux perspective. One last word: This ISN'T a substitute for a firewall or a serious security set up. Practical protection for the beginner A good way to protect your Linux machine. please read some books or seek a professional security consultant's help.Lesson 17 . 007's red-headed nemesis says: "It is a bank like any other and banks can be.168. extended vacations with company money. I always think of Goldfinger's comment in the James Bond movie of the same name when he explains his plan to steal the gold from Fort Knox to a bunch of incredulous Mafiosos. I suggest you read Bob Toxen's Real World Linux Security: Intrusion Prevention. This is OK as long as you trust them. Then. I would be a bit more careful. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . This will allow local users to access the computer. If you are a home user you're probably safe but if you are using this to set up a small business network. etc. There are all kinds of stories about disgruntled employees taking liberties. Detection and Recovery. There's no reason not to let people locally to log in via the SSH program that we mentioned before.up firewalls in their organizations and then they get hacked anyway. when you don't know too much (yet) about security is by making the following very simple changes in two files: /etc/hosts. how do you say. if you have more than one computer (a small business or home network) you should add this line in /etc/hosts.allow ALL : 192. revenge.'knocked off'" If you want a good guide to providing security for your PC running Linux.0.allow First. in /etc/hosts.deny add the following line: ALL : ALL This is meant to block (1st ALL) services that your computer provides from anybody (2nd ALL) that may try to log in to your machine.deny and /etc/hosts.
on my workstation. yes. therefore. I used an external Dynalink 56 kbps modem. at the time of this writing. Before I had an ADSL connection. If you happen to have one. there were modems (which still exist) where the ability to use it to connect to computer networks.4 to 56 kilobits per second (kbps). this is usually occupying com1 and therefore /dev/ttyS0. For example.Dial-up connections with Linux Despite the increasing popularity of broadband Internet access and cable company's ventures into the Internet business and their offering of connections.org for more information about installing drivers for these to run under Linux.8 kbps one before that. In our case. Rockwell and others developed modems where the configuration of the device was made possible through software more than the embedded programming on the hardware. The purpose of this lesson. External Modems External modems are called that precisely because you have a little box that sits outside your computer. like the Internet. They became known as "winmodems". Microsoft Windows. If you then get an external modem and you want to use it. companies like Motorola. Red Hat. The set-up of this modem under SuSE Linux.8 kbps internal modem and a 28. however. known as "com1" and "com2". Linux knows com1 and com2 as /dev/ttyS0 and /dev/ttyS1 respectively (in the computer world. A serial port is similar in appearance to the one that is used to connect your mouse. As you can remember from our lessons on other subjects such as hard drives and floppy drives. Mandrake and Slackware was trivial. the vast majority of people in the world. there are two serial ports. If you have a serial mouse. Before that I used a 38. files that reside within the /dev/ directory. was based on the configuration of the hardware. Motorola recently released a set of drivers for their "winmodems". The best and easiest way. These connect either via a parallel port or a serial port. of maintaining a dial-up connection is using an external modem or an internal modem where the hardware primarily is designed to handle the connection. Until recently it was impossible to get one of these little jewels in the MS crown running under Linux. you could check out Linmodems. is to discuss the way to get a dial-up connection running under Linux. usually at speeds ranging from 14. you guessed it. upgrading as the higher speeds became available and their decreasing prices warranted the change. Nevertheless. where I am writing this lesson. Linux always knows these devices by other names. connect to the Internet via telephone dial-up through the use of a standard modem. we usually start counting at zero). This software was exclusively compatible with. There are modems and then there are "winmodems" Once upon a time. A parallel port is one that is normally used to connect a printer. you would hook it up to the second serial .
Under SuSE Linux for example. you might want to go to Dr. which. I had 3 different ISPs configured). If you have a serial mouse. then you should have no problem setting it up with one of their utilities known as modemtool. I have found one in particular that is the easiest of all to use. Now that you've got a modem connected. which is another option. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . You'll see the various "com" ports available and even. The trick (really not a trick because there is no difficulty involved) is to alter your Linux configuration so that it knows that you've got an external modem on /dev/ttyS1 so it can communicate with it. with the newer version of SuSE.port. we'll talk about configuring your connection with your ISP in the next part of the lesson. this is quite easy. At this point you're asked to choose the hardware you want to configure and obviously you would choose 'Modem configuration' which is the second option. If you've installed Mandrake. I have had (and heard of) mixed results with this tool. the program asks you a series of questions about your ISP. com2. For Red Hat and RPM based distributions there is a RPM package compiled by Kent Robotti and available through RPMfind. USB modem support. their tool HardDrake should do the trick. It was written by Richard Hipp and it makes setting up your Internet connection absolutely trivial. Hipp's website and download the C source code and compile it. Linux knows as /dev/ttyS1. Basically. There is also a "tarball" available at Ibiblio's website If you're feeling adventurous. Not surprisingly that it is called eznet.net. LinuxConf is also an all-purpose tool that includes modem configuration. be sure to choose com2 or /dev/ttyS1.Lesson 17 Getting in touch with your ISP There are a lot of tools out there to assist you in establishing a connection with your ISP so you can get out there on the Internet. (what we covered in the previous section). Once you've answered the questions and you have your connection setup. connection is nothing more than typing one command in a terminal: . As 'root' you would fire up their configuration tool called YAST and choose the option 'System Administration' and then the option 'Integrate Hardware into System'. as I mentioned. information which this company should have given you and about where your modem is located. You should have your modem set up after you've done this. Most will do the job quite nicely. If you've installed Red Hat Linux. There is a possibility to handle several different ISPs (at one point.
If the two computers either can't authenticate themselves to each other (ie. In your /sbin/ directory. User of Red Hat have a very powerful and simple to use graphic tool with RP3. The K stands for KDE but what does the PPP stand for? It stands for Point-to-Point Protocol. It was an interesting exercise but essentially took a long time to figure out at those days. you're in luck because there is a program called KPPP which will set up a connection for you fairly painlessly. it just might be a question of trying one or the other and sticking with the one that works. I must confess that earlier versions of this program were not entirely successful in setting up my connection.2 For the technically curious As you'll notice. This protocol enables two computers to connect across a network. or pppd which is a program that provides for that communication between computers. then the connection fails. With KPPP. Other options If you use YAST in SuSE Linux you can set up your connection using WvDial. you can also tune or tweak your connection speed to get better results from your hardware. so that's your first ISP. If you run into this problem. for other connections you may want to set up. Just substitute for 1. 2 etc. the program I mentioned for KDE is called KPPP.eznet up 0 The program starts counting ISPs with the number 0. When I first set up an Internet connection with Linux. If you've picked out your windows manager already and it happens to be KDE. you'll find the point-to-point protocol daemon. The protocol basically provides the means for the two computers to first. identify themselves and then ask whether whether the computers can read the data each other sends. The only problem I seemed to have with this was is known as the "negotiation" of the connection with my ISP.realize that they have "permission" to communicate) or the type of data their sending is incompatible or both. I created these files by hand without the help of one of these programs. This is standard issue on all versions of Red Hat since 6. If you're interested in finding out what goes on behind the scenes. There are two protocols known as PAP and CHAP. Euphemistically speaking. I suggest you check out the page . This program has been greatly improved and your probability of success along with it. What you essentially do when you set up your Internet connection is to make sure that pppd knows how to communicate the right information. RP3 and other similar programs do are to create the necessary configuration files that pppd reads. What eznet. kppp. they couldn't do it.
particularly music.conf includes the two or more IP addresses of the domain name servers. A common problem The most common problem I have come up against is that somehow the very important configuration file /etc/resolv.40.. has a section in their YAST tool where you can configure it not to overwrite certain files like resolv. you want it to.Linux Dial-Up Networking in a Nutshell which has a nice list of the processes and files that come into play.30.Lesson 18 Getting Linux to make sounds The hills are alive. it should look something like this: nameserver 30. When I installed Slackware so many years ago (1997 seems like an eternity for Linux) I think I was more interested in making my sound card work than making the modem work to get connected.org. This happens with some Linux distributions and the reasons are numerous and I usually chalk it up to what I called excessive "meddling" with important configuration files on the part of some major Linux distributions..40 Your numbers will of course be different.30. into our actual numerical address. you're not reaching pages out there. Music has always been pretty important in my life long before the World Wide Web even existed. then you'll have to add it again. so that was pretty logical. Happy surfing with Linux! [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . the first thing that interests you in setting up your computer is making it play sounds. SuSE. The first thing you should do is make sure /etc/resolve.conf gets overwritten.conf.30 nameserver 40. That pretty much sums up setting up dial-up connections. Sound Cards .linux. www. As I mentioned in the section on ADSL.40. but if you don't see at least two lines like this: nameserver plus an IP address. If you're like me. those machines that translate for example.. for example. The symptom of the problem usually is that even though you've connected to your ISP. Then you should find out why and how your distribution is over-writing this file so it doesn't happen again. unless. of course.
.1 at the time of this writing and on that same machine. then you might be beyond this beginner's Linux course and you probably already know how to make the kernel you want. These people have made my life much richer as I can listen to lovely music as I write this lesson of the beginner's course. Due to this. If you use the SoundBlaster card. whether or not the hardware is mainstream enough to be detected on install.2 and installed 8. The nasty hardware manufacturers who do *not* share their information (and therefore.software (for Windows 3. I wrote in a review of Mandrake 7.I removed 7. I was once bought a machine that did not have a Sound Blaster brand card in it and I was not able to get it configured under Linux.1). every install I have done in the past year and a half or so of a major Linux distribution has come with a kernel that has sound support in it by default.2 is very much a thing of the past. You might want to have a look at their list.2 in the Spring of this year (2001) about how it didn't detect my very mainstream Sound Blaster 16 card. depending on. SuSE. There are a lot of other supported cards. I had good luck with that sound card (I still do because it still works).0 new) and it found and configured my Sound Blaster 16 card without the slightest problem. Luckily. The latest versions of Red Hat. And see if your sound card is on their list. If your kernel doesn't have a clue about what to do with a one. They're on version 8. The good thing is that Mandrake 7. I have always bought Sound Blaster cards. their cards do *not* work) are listed in red. it came in a big box that Creative Labs sold me and it was a Sound Blaster.When I bought my first sound card in December of 1992. Mandrake and Debian that I have installed are all sound enabled from the beginning. you may also want to check out Creative Lab's page Configuration tools Before I go into the tools to use to get the sound card working. If the distribution you have installed (or are planning to install) is up-to-date. If you're installing "Joe's Home-brew Linux" distribution (where you must compile your own kernel). I did a "clean" install (I did not update . I honestly don't remember the name of the card and I promptly paid a little bit more money and exchanged that one for a real Sound Blaster and quickly got it running under Linux. a CD-ROM drive (with an insert-able cartridge that my 2 year old just managed to break after all these years!) and some Midi gadget which never interested me and is still in the same box in my attic. These cards have usually configured fairly easily under Linux. In that big box there was a bunch of stuff . Sound Blaster uses the Alsa drivers to make sound come out of your Linux machine. But if you are a true beginner (that's who this course is for) then you're probably going to get a "made for sound" kernel. there is precious little tools like sndconfig can do to help you. it's important to point out that the Linux kernel needs to be configured to use a sound card. you should not have a problem. My eternal gratitude to the people working on the Alsa Driver project. of course.
you can select the sound card and then push the button that says "launch configuration tool". old versions of Linux (your cousin lent you the SuSE 5. It is text based (runs it a terminal) and has always done a good job for me.You can also go to your favorite search engine (mine is Google ) and enter Linux sound card setup and you have access to the zillions of bytes of information on the topic. It warns you not to set it too high.which. for example). so I won't feign expertise here and give USB guidelines.3 disks) and obscure distributions (Zingblatter's Ultra Linux 1. It will play a sound bit of Linus Torvalds pronouncing the word "Linux" YAST This is SuSE's "Swiss Army Knife" of configuration tools. KRUD. On my machines. you may use to any of the following tools. Strange hardware. Let's go on now to all of the available programs to play all of that sound and music. • • • • sndconfig I mentioned this one above. The alsa-base package is also required. from the Beatles to Hans and his Swiss Alpine Yodelers. You can adjust the default volume as well. including sound cards. will accept ISA Plug and Play cards (bigger slots) and PCI cards (smaller slots). alsaconf If you're using Debian. depending on your distribution. so if you're one of those out there who pine for the sweets sounds of Mozart flowing from your PC. Using the GUI. most major distributions will configure the sound card during the installation process. as I mentioned. It is a tool for Red Hat and distributions based on Red Hat (Mandrake. If you have an ISA PnP card (I have two) you also have to have the ISA PnP tools installed as well as a kernel that can use ISA Plug and Play (also know as plug and pray) As I mentioned. I'm not a USB user.4) are beyond the scope of this course. You should now have a pretty good idea of setting up a sound card with a major Linux distribution. I suspect that what it is doing is launching sndconfig . just in case you're wearing headphones and you blow your eardrums out!! HardDrake Mandrake uses this graphical tool to configure hardware. Their latest version 2 is graphical. this is the package you need to set up sound. Again. you can take a look at the HOW-TO's on the subject. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . is also available for Mandrake. It plays a little melody that's also the KDE default startup sound. the motherboard (that big thing inside a PC that you plug all the cards into) or mainboard as it is also known.Lesson 18 .It is also important to know what type of sound card it is in terms of the slots that it uses on your mother board in your computer. there was no problem detecting my sound cards with YAST. If this is not the case.
"Note to self . all you need is a microphone and and recording tool that gives you a file in this format. You just have to type some simple commands and you're all set. they have been convicted of this in a court of law). I really don't have to see anything. if I may. also known as PCM... it's time to check out some of the options that we have for playing sound. I would just type the following" wavrec dave_note. Recording Sound Due to Microsoft's monopoly on operating systems (yes. then you . we'll use 'wavrec'.. you're probably going to use the *. we haven't begun to talk in depth about the use of the X-window system in Linux. The default recording time for 'wavrec' is 10 seconds. If you simply want to record yourself saying something using Linux. so I just have to set the CD or playlist and listen.Now that we have our sound card working.wav format. I am not implying that there aren't some fine programs for playing and recording sound. are command line applications. bla bla bla" lasts about 8 seconds. It's easy because the default recording settings for this applications are all acceptable for getting a quality recording (if you've got a fairly good microphone). the duration of the sound file depends on whether you're talking a normal rate. if you don't specify a recording time on the command line (I didn't) you'll get a 10 second long sound file. the most popular format for sound recording is is their *. The programs I use (which we'll talk about here) are great applications that work just as well as their graphic counterparts but in many ways are more easily configurable. If you're following the course in order of the lessons.. My sentence above. 'wavrec' is easy to use. Besides. so the tools for playing and recording sound here will be used from the command line. For this lesson. we're talking about sound.wav make sure the microphone is on (you'd be surprised how many times I forget to turn it on!) and start talking. That means. Here's an example: Let's say I want to record a note to myself that says the following: "Note to self: make sure you respond to Dave's email about SuSE'. There certainly is some nice stuff out there. When you make a recording of yourself or someone else speaking or you "rip" a track from a CD for later conversion to mp3 or ogg (we'll talk about this new and open format later). If you auction cattle in Iowa.wav format. at least for me. I use a window manager but the programs I listen to CDs. Of course. I'd also like to add an editorial comment. MP3s etc.
wav The -t option refers to seconds. and play it like this: wavplay -s 44100 dave_notes. -S. I chose 44100 because this is a good high-quality sound which is necessary for my language teaching endeavors. we have the -t option for seconds (we explained before) then we have the -s option which is the sampling rate in Hz.wav This will play the sentence we recorded above. Issuing this short command and then changing the file name. Here's how: wavplay a_sentence. you must be asking the question: "I've made a *. If you want to recite Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.wav . It's important not to confuse the -S (capital letter) with the -s (lower case). I get a lot of work done because my sentences seldom last more than 5 seconds and these values are fine for my work. You can add all kinds of options to wavrec. like this: wavrec -t 3 dave_note. That's all there is to it. -s takes a value in Hz while -S has no value. dave_notes. I should also point out that the same options in 'wavrec' are available for 'wavplay' if you want to add some effects to playback.wav file. Just remember to give yourself enough time for what you want to say. The first one. even 3 seconds might be pushing it for a cattle auctioneer. He once made a speech that lasted 7 hours. if you use 'wavrec' with no options.wav Let's explain these options. means stereo. I have purposely put the -t option in between them to avoid confusion. then I would advise getting a huge hard drive. For example. you get mono not stereo sound. Nevertheless. If you would like to record Cuban leader Fidel Castro's speeches. That is to say. 'wavplay'. If you look at the man page for 'wavrec' (type: man wavrec). There you have it. Here are the values I use: wavrec -S -t 5 -s 44100 a_sentence. now. Here. I have noticed that mono is in fact the default. it says that stereo is the default. if you take our first wav file. so you should type the number of seconds after. how do I hear it?" The answer is easy: With 'wavrec' 's companion program. so you should modify the time for the file. Why this figure? Because Lincoln is reported to have taken only 2 minutes to give this famous speech. then you would first multiply 60 and 2 to get 120 seconds.probably don't need 10 seconds to say that sentence. in seconds. Now. I use this tool all the time to record short sentences for use in computer assisted language learning. After the -S.wav. It would seem there is an error in the man page.
you'll find it's doubly fast. That's because our note about Dave was recorded at the default 22050 hz, so if you do the math, you see that what we've done is double it's sample rate . You might want to do this:
then sing a line of your favorite song. Play it back to your friends using the -s 44100 option and have them rolling on the floor with your Alvin and the Chipmunks impressions. I have actually entertained my 2 year old son for hours with this. Using the same logic, if you take our a_sentence.wav and play it like this:
wavplay -s 22050 a_sentence.wav
you've cut the sample rate in half and so you get a really cool impression of the creatures that take over people's bodies in Star Trek's original series episode 'The Lights of Zetar'. I know what you're probably thinking. I need to be productive. I don't want to record Chipmunk sounds and sci-fi weirdness. Well, then. Here's a good way to use these tools, plus a couple of other command line tools to read reminders to yourself in the morning, or whenever you'd like. First, create a subdirectory in your own directory /home/[you]/
then go into reminders (type: cd reminders). Now, Let's create a sort of introductory wav file that's always going to be there. I'll explain why we need that in a bit.
wavrec -t 3 0intro.wav
Say something like "Your reminders" or "Reminders for you". Three seconds should be enough for that. You may have noticed that the name begins with zero. That is simple because for our reminder system, we invoke 'wavplay *' with the asterisk to play every file in that directory. By naming it '0intro.wav', that assures that it will be played first with our system. Now record some reminders. I recommend using a YEAR-MONTH-DAY format plus some meaningful word for naming the wav files. For example, type:
wavrec -t 5 2001-10-24_trash.wav
and say: "Remember to take out the trash". I suppose 5 seconds should be enough to say this. Try recording a few more reminders for different things, like "call cousin Jack" and "remember to pay back gambling debts to bookie". When
you've got a few wav files in there you should play them to see that they've come out all right (you don't need to do this every time - we're just practicing)
You'll see that the 0intro.wav file gets played first. If everything sounds good to you, then we're ready for the next step which is to play our files automatically at a given hour. One of my favorite applications in Linux is called 'cron'. This is a pretty powerful tool that is used primarily by system administrators to automate their tasks and duties. It's powerful because it can schedule something to be run automatically at any time, whether that be once every three minutes, every hour, once a day or every Thursday. It can even be used to run a job that you do only in January. But just because it's powerful, it doesn't mean it's complicated to use. For our purposes, it's very simple to configure 'cron' to play our reminders. First, we have to edit a file that is called 'crontab' and add our instructions. There is a systemwide crontab file for root's exclusive use, but there is also one available to every user to run command line apps that he or she is authorized to use. To add a job to be done, just type:
Then we add the following line to our crontab file (-e is for edit)
30 7 * * * /usr/X11R6/bin/wavplay $HOME/reminders/*.wav
The crontab edit procedure uses your default command line editor which is probably 'vi', so if you don't remember our little tour of 'vi', just press 'ESC + i' before you add this line. Let's explain how a crontab file works. The file is read by the program 'cron' and it carries out the instructions in it. In our example, our wav files get played at the 30th minute of the 7th hour, that is to say 7:30 in the morning. This is because the crontab file must start with the minute [0-59] you want something done, followed by the hour [0-23] the day of the month [1-31], the month of the year  and the day of the week [0-7] (where 0 and 7 are both Sunday). I have left the last three as asterisk. This tells 'cron' that these values don't matter. That is to say, cron should play our *.wav files every day of the month, every month of the year, 7 days a week. The next step as you can see is to tell cron to run 'wavplay' and play the files in your home directory. We use the symbol $HOME for that. Also notice how I have put the exact path to where wavplay is. To see if your system differs, then type:
to show you where the program is. Then adjust accordingly. I used this exact path because, it would seem on my system, the master crontab file (found in /etc/crontab ) doesn't recognize that path automatically. I am assuming that this is for security reasons, so I didn't go in and change the path. Some things are probably best left alone, so no harm done if you just put in the exact path in the crontab file. If you want to test it, just give it a time within a couple of minutes or so. That is, if it's 3:30 in the afternoon, you might want to first edit your crontab like this:
32 15 * * * /usr/X11R6/bin/wavplay $HOME/reminders/*.wav
that will play the reminders at 3:32 PM, to show you that it works. Just make sure you're not playing anything else, like MP3s, because you won't hear them. That's the rationale for my 7:30 AM start time. It's a good hour for me - when I am just getting to work and I'm probably not listening to heavy metal at that hour of the morning. Actually, I never listen to heavy metal. Now, when you've finished hearing them, you can delete them (if you want) That's where the rationale behind the YEAR-MONTH-DAY.wav comes in. You just delete the daily ones by typing, for example rm 2001-09-28* That keeps the 0intro.wav file in there. I mentioned before that I was going to explain why it's necessary to have it there. 'Cron' will mail you when there is an error, so if you had no reminders for a given day, you would at least have one file in the /reminders directory. That way, 'cron' doesn't have to mail you an error message because the program 'wavplay' didn't find any *.wav files. By deleting the unnecessary reminders, you've got some free disk space. Speaking of that, if free disk space is something that worries you, in the next part of the lesson we'll talk about those famous (and controversial) files that take up less space - MP3s - and how to make them under Linux. We'll also talk about the new free audio format comparable in sound and space to MP3 - Ogg Vorbis. [Previous] [Next]
Getting Started with Linux - Lesson 18 MP3 format
If you've touched a computer in the last couple of years you've at least heard about the MPEG layer 3 format, popularly known as MP3. You have probably listened to an MP3 and you may have even "ripped a track", that is, made an MP3 file from a song on a CD.
That is to say. Actually. the Fraunhofer Institute and Thomson Multimedia developed MPEG Layer 3 technology and they hold the patent rights it. But being that MP3 is so prevalent nowadays and encoders/decoders do exist for Linux. Disk space is cheap. fair use and intellectual property. If you go into the /reminders directory we created (cd reminders) and type: ls -l *. if you think this way. To check this. files of this size would quickly begin to take up space. we'll talk about making and playing MP3 files.wav 220544 Nov 28 08:37 2001-11-28_fair. you doubled the file size to just under half a megabyte each. If we made the file a little better.wav 441044 Nov 28 08:34 2001-11-28_good.MP3 has become somewhat controversial. What does this mean for Linux? Well. We'll talk about the programs available to make sound files in MP3 format. Look what we get for the same file as an MP3: -rw-r--r-1 mike users 80234 Nov 28 08:48 2001-11-28_good.wav. you now have an alternative with Vorbis' *. We'll talk about that shortly. for now. If you want to write programs that encode and/or decode MP3 format. sharing MP3 files has opened up a Pandora's Box of questions about copyright.mp3 . you have to pay licensing fees. but I should point out that MP3 is a non-free format. MP3 might be seen as a format to be avoided. In light of the Napster case. if you are an advocate of the Open Source and/or Free Software model that Linux grew out of.wav If for some reason you wanted to keep these reminders. Let's go back to our "reminder" system. Open Source and Free Software in particular.ogg format. We could take out our tools gzip or bzip2 that we learned about in a previous lesson.bz2 But there is a much better way of doing this. 'bzip2' will actually get the file down to about half its original size: -rw-r--r-1 mike users 206442 Nov 28 08:34 2001-11-28_good. Thomson has set up a website to talk about these issues. by converting it to MP3 format.wav you'll see that the default quality of a 5 second recording gives us a file of about 1/4 megabyte. but there's no reason to occupy space if we can compress it. I made one of each format: -rw-r--r--rw-r--r--rw-r--r-1 mike 1 mike 1 mike users users users 132344 Nov 27 12:11 0intro. as I do when I'm working with sample sentence for language learning. This really isn't the place to debate those questions but there are some issues related to the making of MP3s that concern Linux. if you're interested.
-if means input file. wink. other README files). How do we avoid bringing patent holders' wrath down upon ourselves? Well. There are a few of these available for Linux. (as long as their under thirty seconds. Just unzip and untar in your home directory: tar -zxvpf mp3encdemo. appropriately called 'mp3enc' (the demo is actually called 'mp3encdemo' . just pick one of the reminders and type: mp3encdemo -br 128000 -if 2001-[whatever]. He's had some trouble with the MP3 patent holders so. I went right to that and found out how to convert my *. of course) Actually any MP3 encoder for Linux that you can find out there works in basically the same way. To use the program. You were going to run next door and borrow the neighbor's "Greatest Punk Love Songs" and start rippin'. There is a section in the manual that says "For the impatient". -br stands for bitrate This is 128 kilobits per second and you'll get an acceptable. by going over to Fraunhofer's website and getting a demo of their MP3 encoder. again. One of these. The program BladeEnc that we mentioned before. nudge nudge. First of all. (wink. At any rate. Now.wav files to acceptable quality MP3s. We'll you're out of luck unless you want to do a medley. Being impatient by nature.mp3 where [whatever] is the date of your reminder. Feel free to encode any files you want. You'll get a *.wav -of 2001-[whatever]. the MP3 file you're going to get. And you can hear it right away with an MP3 decoder/player. That will at least give us an idea about how all this works in Linux. you need a program that converts *. -if stands for "if it works" . and probably the most popular.very logical) we can convert these files in MP3 format.You've got it down to about one fifth of its size. Logically then. and the author begins to whistle nervously) Playing MP3 files .tgz (or whatever the current file is called) There is a pre-compiled binary (aka . the Fraunhofer demo will do nicely for learning purposes. Let's show how we did this. is Tord Jansson's BladeEnc. behaves similarly and there is no 30 second limit. almost CD quality file.wav file with some options and you get an MP3 file.naah . There you have it. -of means output file. (I couldn't resist). You input a *. Let's look at these options. I know what you were thinking. the file your inputing or feeding to the encoder. we're lucky that our reminders aren't very long.wav files to MP3 format. we've stepped into controversy here.tgz (Slackware package) compressed file.that's only a joke. that is.program that works right away) and some documentation (manual. because the generous Fraunhofer people have given us a demo that only encodes 30 second long files.
You could random play them mpg123 -z *.wav format. That begs the question: How can I hear it? Well. It is also highly versatile. This will be good review practice for the command line as well. Here's how I do it. enter the directory where the files are and type: mpg123 your_mp3_file. You may have gotten some . You can create playlists and play songs in alphabetical order or in random order. Now we have our MP3 file. I say "and/or" because these could be two different things under the x-window system. As far as I have tried. You can also get source code and RPMs if you don't have it installed already.mp3 Let's say you already have a lot of MP3s.OK. You can only do it on the command line. First. I don't want to know where you got them.mp3 > favorites The command 'ls' with the option '-1' lists the file name without any other information. So let's save some CPU power and learn how things work in the process. That means they provide a graphic control panel for using a program that you don't really see. most graphic programs can manipulate playlists and add an echo effect but can't take full advantage of mpg123's features. That's why I usually use the command line programs.mp3 One of my favorite things to do is to create a playlist. etc. Anyway. . If you visit mpg123's home page you can find out all about it. then again. To simply play an MP3 file. You can even play little tricks and create weird disco versions of songs... as I mentioned earlier. I enter a directory where I have MP3s: cd classical Then I see what songs I have: ls *. 'mpg123' comes with most major distributions. (no kidding) You can even "reverse engineer" the MP3 file or even parts of it back to *. Popular graphic MP3 players are actually front-ends for MP3 decoders. 'mpg123' is a very popular command line program for playing MP3 files. we need an MP3 decoder and/or player. The > symbol as you remember from our lesson on pipes.mp3 Then I pick out some songs that I particularly like and make a file that is going to be my playlist: ls -1 Mozart_nightmusic.
To add more songs. we would repeat the same command. Well. To see the list. you only play so much of a song and the people have to guess which one it is. You will hear the same tone of voice because this doesn't effect the sampling rate of the file. you can also do the opposite . then we can play these songs. This way. you can test the aural skills of a person learning a language. it will play a frame and skip one.mp3 >> favorites So I'd just keep adding songs until I had a nice playlist. we just add to the playlist file and we don't overwrite the file as would be the case if we didn't use two >> symbols. you would just add a -z before the -@ option More fun with mpg123 Let's say you wanted to play "Name That Tune". If you want to play them in random order. As the rate of the voice is not altered.mp3 And you'll have the liveliest parties on your block! All courtesy of Linux and mpg123! Seriously. you can change the number and see at what point people can't understand something. This command will only play the first 50 "frames" of a song: mpg123 -k 0 -n 50 Mozart_nightmusic. That is. By this. That would play the songs in the order they are on the list. the -k option tells the program which frame to start at and then -n option indicates where it should stop. You know. It will just sound "techno" as I pointed out. By the way. Don't laugh! I have done this at parties.creates a file called 'favorites' and includes the 'ls -1' output in it.mp3 This will make the program skip over every 2nd frame. with mpg123. Even though I mentioned parties and that. This is *not* the Chipmunk effect. you'd just type: less favorites If everything is satisfactory. you're all set. how about doing Techno-Mozart? That's easy too. Just type: mpg123 -@ favorites The email (@) symbol tells mpg123 to look for the playlist. Just type: mpg123 -d 2 Mozart_nightmusic. but this time we would (obviously) change the MP3 file name and most importantly we would change the one > symbol to two >> symbols. Pretty easy! You want more party ideas? Well. I have used this program and this effect in my language work for purposes of "serious" study. ls -1 Beethoven_fur_elise.
Included in this last package are the programs oggenc and ogg123.wav format is at least 5 times bigger. in a package called VorbisTools.Lesson 18 Ogg format Due to the restrictions on the use of MP3 technology. free (as in beer and source code) Ogg Vorbis format. Though it is associated more with the Linux and Open Source world. These are designed to work in the same way as the packages bladeenc and mpg123 in the MP3 world. the *. Ogg Vorbis is a good way to enjoy digital music in a compressed format. As we mentioned before. Well. these options do not produce the "slow-mo" or "Chipmunk" effects. before you try this at home. libogg and libvorbis These are the actual libraries that do the compression and decompression of the sound.wav sound effects files. You can read the latest news on the status of the Ogg Vorbis project at their website.by changing the -d X option to -h X. This is proof of its growing popularity as a digital music format. There are even companies now using Ogg format for sound in their games. you should to go over to the Ogg Vorbis website and download some packages that are needed: libao. Instead of skipping frames. in order to listen to and make files in Ogg Vorbis format. Installation of the Ogg libraries First. after all that is said and done about MP3. mpg123 will play the same frame X number of times. Remember. I must confess that I don't like working with MP3s as much as I like working with the new. both Windows and Macintosh ports of the Ogg libraries are also available. Their command line options are essentially the same. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . .wav format. The command line software for coding and playing the *. Remember. It just slows down the speed of playback. you can also "reverse engineer" the MP3 file back to a *.ogg files can be found in there as well. mpg123 -w Mozart_nightmusic. If you do want to do techno-multimedia things with mpg123. so make sure you've got plenty of hard disk space. you can use the -v option to get complete information about the track your playing. Your imagination is the limit.mp3 You can also use the different options like -d or -h combined with the -k and -n to produce weird *.wav Mozart_nightmusic.
i386. These were produced before the first CDs ever appeared on the planet using 8 track reel to reel equipment in my best friend's basement. then feel free to go over and download the RPMs at www.i386.tar. rpm -i libao-[whatever's current]. KRUD etc. then get the files ending with *.rpm rpm -i libvorbis-[whatever's current]. If you got your CDs from your cousin Larry with "Redhat" written on them in magic marker.gz (the tarballs).rpm rpm -i vorbis-tools-[whatever's current]. Also.). you should have these libraries included on the CDs and be able to install this painlessly with your distribution's installation tools. You won't need those if you're running Red Hat or any RPM based distribution (like Mandrake. if you have bought a boxed set of a major Linux distribution recently.ogg files. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux ./configure make and optionally (as root): make install I guess you get the idea.rpm rpm -i libogg-[whatever's current]. install in the order I have given you above and do this as the 'root' user If you've got some other distribution like Slackware that works better with tarballs than RPMs (or if you are feeling adventurous/masochistic.Before you actually visit the site and start downloading. I am sure.i386. I took this from libogg's own README file: . as you remember from our lesson on RPMs. Un-zip and un-tar them and read the readme and/or install files which will instruct you how to get those packages installed and working. There are. Now let's see what we can do with these libraries and programs to get some nice sounding *.com and install them. Various cassettes were made of the original recordings and I wanted to preserve them digitally.vorbis. people using Linux who grew up in a time when the letters . It also gave me the opportunity to outline the procedure to use as a tutorial and to cowardly stay outside the realm of copyright infringement issues.Lesson 18 My nostalgia project with Ogg Vorbis To try out the capabilities of Ogg Vorbis and the capabilities of Linux in general for manipulating sound I decided to convert to *.ogg format some old analog audio recordings that I had of a "garage" band I was in during the late 70's and early 80's.i386.rpm Note: Don't get the source RPMs (the one with 'src' in the title).
if you own them.CD only meant "certificate of deposit" and who listened to vinyl records and audio cassette tapes. I sure you remember the rest of the options from earlier parts of the lesson. . That should activate your line in as the recording source. a microphone and a line-in cable (that is. Their function is either color coded (speakers are usually green. I figured that none of them could probably last longer than 5 minutes. Plug the line-out of the cassette player into the line-in input on the sound card. microphone red and line-in blue) or written on the metal bracket of the sound card. Some might have even listened to 8 track tapes and are afraid to admit it. How to digitally enshrine your past delusions of grandeur Needed: • • • • • One unsuccessful garage band of the 70's A cassette of music of rock star wanna-bes Audio cassette player with line-out plugs Cables to connect the player to your sound card optional . I put my cassette in the player and I was ready to go. I didn't know the length of time the songs took to play. make your way over to the line-in column and push the space bar.wav files. the line-out from stereo equipment). using the arrow keys. You can change that for however many seconds that you like. I decided to try a little trick. You may have to fire up the Alsa mixer and change this. but I discovered a slight problem. Type: alsamixer then. the microphone is the default source for recording. Somewhat tarnished bronze oldies Now. Usually. I planned on using the wavrec program I mentioned earlier in this lesson to convert the analog tape audio to *. which the law allows. If you have stereo equipment that has a turntable and/or audio cassette player with line-out plugs. so I typed the following: wavrec -S -t 300 -s 44100 stairway_to_the_basement.wav That meant that wavrec would continue to record for 300 seconds (ie 5 minutes). Being your basically lazy system administrator type. You can also adjust the sound with the up arrow. this tutorial may also be applied to the possibility of making copies of records and tapes for yourself.Medical insurance (in case you get ill listening to the music) All sound cards have inputs for your speakers/headphones.
(Demo Tape excepted .wav and pushing CRL + C at the end. Once again. -t stands for track or the name of the song.ogg" Let's explain some of the options. I chose 192 here because this is fairly good quality without being excessively big.My plan consisted in pushing CRL + C when the song came to an end. so I just put "demo tapes" as you can see.that's not going into the file name) That should create some files in Ogg format for you. Then came the time to convert them to *.wav files. it worked.wav files made from LPs. If you're interested in seeing just how CPU intensive this is. Working with Oggenc Then I used oggenc to get them this format.net. • • • • • • -b stands for bitrate.wav -n "%a_%t. That's a good idea. Make sure you're not doing anything that needs a lot of CPU cycles at the same time. We never made an album. There is good explanation of the process at uklinux. if you've got some old tapes or old records and you want to make copies for yourself.wav -n followed by "%a_%t. You've noticed that I have put underscores_between_words in true Unix filename fashion. Anything above 128 will give you good quality. After the -a option you should put the artist (I use the term loosely in my case) in quotes. . Now. just run the command: top and that will give you an idea.ogg format. The first trial run sounded fine using wavplay. here's a way to do it. Soon I had all my songs converted to *. Here's an example with one song: oggenc -b 192 -a "G-rage_Band" -l "Demo Tapes" -t "no_sympathy_for_the_neighbors" no_sympathy_for_the_neighbors. There is software available to take the scratchy sounds from *.ogg" tells the program to name the Ogg file for the artist(%a) and the track (%t). I was afraid that would corrupt the data but when I tried it. One word of caution. So I just continued doing this: wavrec -S -t 300 -s 44100 smoke_on_the_wafer. type the name of the song whatever. The -l option is for the name of the album. At first. Both MP3 and Ogg encoding is very CPU intensive.
What does he mean by this? I think basically that he bet his whole company on the assumption that people didn't want to see the traditional black screen and the command prompt anymore. most people who use computers equate Microsoft with computing.Lesson 19 Graphic User Interfaces with Linux Some preliminary commentary and perspective As much as I like Linux and think that it is the best operating system out there today. then try out the Ogg Vorbis tools and take a trip down memory lane. chairman of the Microsoft Corporation once stated that: "Linux is 1960's technology with a new development model". That is to say that Microsoft Windows. Linux's market share continues to rise. Then Linux started to gain in popularity and be noticed by a certain segment of the public around 1998-99.so much so that as most everyone knows. in 2000 and 2001 successive email viruses and worms crippled Windows-based IT departments and brought scores of corporate networks to a grinding halt. Bill Gates had already established that this was a no-no and so Linux gets chalked up as "retrograde". [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .you just couldn't see it unless you purposely looked for it. But then again. In particular. but not the experience itself.Well. The problem was that Linux offered the black screen and the graphic user interface as a separate package. Why? Because we're in a new world of connectivity. especially since the release of Windows 95. Bill Gates. Microsoft was convicted of being a monopoly in restraint of trade. enjoy all those old cassettes and LPs and if you were once a neighborhood Rock and Roller. Then again. a lot has happened since 1998. However. IBM has spent 1 billion US dollars on Linux and essentially gotten its investment back. For one. It still pales in comparison with Microsoft's desktop popularity . Bill Gates' comment about Linux may be . computer scientists and people who have an interest in computers beyond the mere end-user stage know that graphic user interfaces or desktop environments like Windows really represent the look and feel of the computer experience. Windows has become famous for essentially blurring the reality of what a computer really does. Now it's 2002 and Linux still offers the black screen and graphic user interface separately. The sales of Windows 95 proved that with a good marketing campaign he was able to sell the idea that people didn't want it and people responded. has masked any trace of the traditional "black" computer screen experience. It was still there . the only computing environment that most PC users have ever seen comes in the successive versions of their flagship operating system Windows(tm).
By 2002 standards it was a primitive GUI system to run programs with. watch TV) will start with the installation of XFree86. you might get this reply: "Windows is pre-Internet technology with a slick new marketing campaign". In the mideighties at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology they came up with the X window system. Icons. in order for those nice windows (yes. spread sheets) or to entertain oneself (play games. what it is supposed to look like and what the buttons and menus are supposed to do. Though there are other equivalents to the libraries that XFree86 offers.Lesson 19 The GUI family tree Without getting into a lot of technical jargon. Windows development model was conceived before everybody's computers where connected to each other and it continues to reflect that. This aimed to develop a free version of the X Window System. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .turned back now upon his own company. Any attempt at using Linux as a desktop operating system to get "productive" work done (word processing. The main idea behind this actually came from an earlier project at Xerox called WIMP (Windows. 1 The 'X Window system' provided the libraries to make the frames. There have been several versions of XFree86 and the current stable version at the time of this writing is XFree86 4. listen to music. These libraries determine how a window is to appear. more complaints about Linux's perceived lack of user friendliness outnumber complaints about Windows being essentially a Maginot Line solution for secure computing. Microsoft spends most of its days now fighting security brush fires because in blurring the difference between the operating system and the graphic user interface it sacrificed security for ease of use.0. Hopefully in this lesson on graphic user interfaces under Linux. was born on the Internet and grew up with it. Unfortunately. it is by far the most widely used window system under Linux. Linux. Menus. That fact that you can use GUI based computing under Linux goes back to the time before Linux was even thought of. Development of X Window still continues under the auspices of the X Consortium. with a small 'w') to appear on your computer screen. you'll get a good idea how the balance between user friendliness and security is a good one with our favorite OS. a project that essentially started the idea that computers could be used in an attractive graphical environment. Pointer). however. . In 1992 the XFree86 Project was started. buttons and menus that make up a window. you have to have some graphics libraries installed on your computer. If you asked your average Linux enthusiast what he or she thinks of Windows.
The X server is just the means of getting XFree86 to work with the graphics card that you have in your computer. whether you type startx or not. we'll have to come up with a come up with a configuration so we can. you can switch into any number of desktop environments "on the fly". The other is installing the X server that goes with your particular hardware. then you would install the XFree packages along with the X server package for ATI. but you may get asked what graphics card you have when you do a more interactive type of install of Linux. then you can use XDM and have your favorite desktop there waiting for you. mouse and keyboard. There are two parts to this. . if you're not interested in having more than one. Of course. Then you would type: startx and your graphical environment of choice comes up. Traditionally in Linux. This is the Microsoft Windows influence on how things are done that I mentioned before. I explain this because some distributions do a pretty fine job of getting you up and running. it used to be quite a task to get X-Window running even on a standard Intel type PC. in fact start X. Regardless of the way you choose to start up your machine. This is done by way of the program XDM. we're going to have configure XFree86 to use your monitor. 'Choice' is the key word here. then XFree86 and the X server for S3 cards should get installed. One is installing XFree86 itself. the install process takes care of getting XFree86 on to your system. you have to know what card you have so the correct X server gets installed and you can have a graphical environment to look at after the install process is finished. By having the command prompt and then issuing a command to start the GUI. Now all of the major distributions have their own tools to get X running in no time. major Linux distributions will also offer you the possibility of getting right into the GUI when you turn on your computer. That is. 1999 [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . If you have an S3 card.With major distributions. For example.Lesson 19 X-Window configuration In Linux days of yore. Recently. 1 The X Window User HOWTO by Ray Brigleb. before you see your your desktop utilities of choice. if you have a graphics card from ATI. In this case. you would turn on your computer and get the black screen and the command prompt.
mouse and monitor. your mouse won't work. However. Mandrake offers their X configuration right in the install package so you go from start to finish all in the same package. given a situation where your X setup doesn't go smoothly. That is obviously important. If you don't believe me. in text mode. as I mentioned. you can choose option 11 and enter your own values from the monitor's manuals and you'll be sure to get the correct settings. if you don't answer the type of questions about your mouse correctly. you may not be able to use letters or symbols that exist in your native language. It is graphical. This is about the most user-friendly program I have yet encountered for X setup. If you enter the vertical and horizontal refresh rates incorrectly.you need to go get the manuals for your monitor and enter the real values when it asks you. Or if you don't enter the country/language values for your keyboard layout. choose a conservative setting. For example. I don't mean to imply that the others are not important. like your keyboard. if you don't enter the values correctly for the type of monitor you have. This program asks you questions about your peripheral hardware.Lesson 19 . with a program called xf86config. Once you have passed this point. so the simple fact that you can run it before you've even start configuring X is a good sign. However. In the past years. you can do this this step by step. this is what xf86config says It is VERY IMPORTANT that you do not specify a monitor type with a horizontal sync range that is beyond the capabilities of your monitor. Getting Started with Linux . especially if your hardware is proving to be less than cooperative. like so many others waiting to be thrown away or recycled. the questions are more straight forward and errors have less grave consequences. But it's nice to know you have it there.SuSE offers a program called Sax. If in doubt. This is a last resort and will almost always get you good results. your monitor will become just another useless piece of plastic and glass. your monitor can get seriously damaged. It's beyond the scope of this lesson to explain what the vertical and horizontal refresh rates mean (actually. it's the horizontal one that's a real stickler) but trust me . At this point in the configuration. major Linux distributions have streamlined this process so you probably won't even need xf86config. The most important questions that this program will ask you about your hardware are the ones about your monitor.
You can try writing something and pushing the buttons. then you need to have a program like xdm. You should change the line: DISPLAYMANAGER="" to: DISPLAYMANAGER="xdm" . that is. Do you want it to go directly to a graphical environment or do you want your machine to boot into text mode where you would then issue the 'startx' command? If you want graphics mode right away. you can usually change this with your distribution's tools. There isn't any practical reason to use X-Window in this way. you now want to startup graphically or vice-versa. we should talk about how you want your computer to boot. It's better to use its powerful capabilities with a full-featured windows manager and desktop environment. The file name will depend on your distribution. When you push 'quit'. Some X programs don't need a windows manager to run. which will start your windows manager of choice. Before we go on to talk about choosing a windows manager that suits you.config. You can change the start-up behavior by going to your /etc/ directory and changing a file. Your x-term session ends and your back in your terminal. Before start talking about the different windows managers and desktop environments that are available for Linux. for example. two desktop environments that we'll talk about a little later. Try the same with an x-terminal: xinit /usr/X11R6/bin/xterm Type in a few commands. so let's try a simple experiment with one of them. If you found that you've changed your mind. it is the file called rc. Then type 'exit'.To boot or not to boot (in graphics mode). The decision to startup graphically is made when you first install Linux. or 'kdm' or 'gdm' which will start KDE or GNOME. let's first see how our bare-bones XWindow setup is working. Type this in your terminal window: xinit /usr/X11R6/bin/xedit This will fire up a simple text editor called 'xedit'. With SuSE. that is the question. you'll notice you go back to your standard terminal.
just reverse all those changes above. if you want to do just the opposite. unmanageable. that the graphical user interface for Linux is at best. of course. the number 3 needs to be changed to a 5 As I mentioned. The advantage over Macintosh is primarily cost related. I can safely say that Linux doesn't and probably hasn't had a reason to envy the other two major OS offerings in terms of graphic interfaces since about 1998. change the default graphical login to a text mode login (something which I recommend). which I feel has always been unwarranted. you may want to uninstall 'xdm' (or gdm/kdm). In the line: id:3:initdefault:. The major one over MS Windows is.Lesson 19 Choosing the look that's right for you In recent years. boring and at worst. let's explore some of the possibilities for your Linux desktop. After using Windows 95 from 1995 until the end of 1997 and testing various Mac OSes extensively (at one point using Mac OS 8 exclusively for one month . comparisons with the user friendliness of the omnipresent MS Windows and the well-deserved good reputation of the Macintosh OSes. now that we're clear on whether to use a graphical start-up or not. If you're reading this. KRUD).You may also use 'kdm' or 'gdm' here. Window managers .I was staying with relatives and needed to get some work done). [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . Graphic user interfaces under Linux are comparable with these other ones in just about everything and even enjoy some advantages. we should first talk about the difference between a window manager and a desktop environment. then you've probably made the decision to try Linux. members of Linux community have tried hard to shake off the reputation. you'll need to change the file /etc/inittab. If you decided not to use a graphical login. Make sure that your CHECK_INITTAB setting is "yes" In the case of RedHat and RedHat based distributions (Mandrake. Well. of course. stability and security. Before we talk about what your Linux desktop is going to look like. This is based on. as Linux has become more popular.
This is what a window manager does. This is not meant to be an endorsement of this window manager. You can check out the . It decides how the window is going to look. I happen to like experimenting and I am prone to change it once a month or so (depending on that threshold of boredom factor again). it became apparent that these programs would be more efficient if they could take their attributes from a common source. wherever you are. FVWM. the oldest of the aforementioned as well. Fvwm2 is so configurable that if you got 5 different configuration files. as far as I know. They range from completely minimalist to well-engineered works of art.fvwm2rc file behind the above screenshot. * I have a menu item that links to a script that will place a new picture as the desktop image when I get bored of the one I've been seeing for a couple of days (or hours. This is. I'd like to acknowledge that the main file was written by Jay Kuri. There are more two dozen different window managers available for Linux. I have provided a screenshot (153k) of the my view on the world of Linux. It is also the most minimalist of the one's I've listed here. you would swear that you're seeing 5 different window managers. • • • • • • • the fvwm family Blackbox IceWM Sawfish Enlightenment WindowMaker AfterStep You can check out the above sites and find one that you like. Here is a list of the ones that generally find their way onto the major distributions' CDs. The more popular ones make their way onto Linux distributions. is my personal favorite. depending on my threshold of boredom at the moment).fvwm2rc. It determines how it is going to reacted when you click in it or you reduce it or re-size it. known as . Thanks Jay. I think the main reason that a lot of people prefer other windows managers to fvwm2 is that the file that sets up your desktop menus and buttons and other things has to be worked on by hand. I'd rather pass that RAM savings on to the really important applications running on my computer. I just happen to like its minimalist approach and low memory requirements.Most programs made for computers nowadays run in a graphic environment. The main buttons . I have fun tweaking the configuration file. the aspect of its buttons and frames. I also included some tweaks that I got here and there. However. The first one. off the Internet and tried them out. They really prefer the click-as-you-go configuration of other window managers.
known as 'QT' are now open source.you see are from Eric S. You may also want to hold of on the window managers for a bit and read the next section. now. known as kwm GNOME or KDE The question: 'Should I use GNOME or KDE?' was a controversial one not so long ago. We had a power blackout that lasted about 3 hours while a transformer in my neighborhood was being fixed. a button that displays a menu with the programs available for you to use. 21 hours. so the question is pretty much moot. This usually goes beyond the call of duty for a window manager. Peruse the offerings out there and choose one that suits your needs. This is a uniform looking desktop interface which sits on top of and uses the services of a window manager. which has its own background window manager. * There's a neat application called gkrellm that keeps track of a lot of things that are going on with the system besides displaying the time and date. GNOME. Raymond's (author of The Cathedral and the Bazaar) . with a click of your mouse. The controversy stemmed around the KDE project which was founded in 1996 with the goal of creating a uniform desktop experience for Linux.things like a clock. .Lesson 19 Protecting the environment Most computer users like to have a set of tools that they always see . Of course. KDE made the decision to use libraries to create the desktop interface which were not open source. the issue inspired a young Mexican developer named Miguel de Icaza to create a desktop interface known as GNOME. the ultimate user-friendly GUI experience for Linux. at the time. In these cases you need the services of a "desktop environment". Luckily. MS Windows users should take note of the uptime (last time of reboot) of 27 days. which uses the services of independent window managers (at the time of this writing GNOME runs with Enlightenment) or KDE. However. to have your favorite program up and running or open a web browser to your favorite website. The libraries in question. There are two major desktop environments. I don't remember what happened 31 days before that. People have become accustomed to an icon system that sits on a "desktop" that allows you. a region that displays the date. everyone is not into tweaking and prefer a more "clickable" configuration. Previous uptime was 31 days. We talk about desktop environments. Getting Started with Linux .fvwm2rc and modified slightly. it is just a matter of which interface you like more.
GNOME was founded in August of 1997 and was an attempt to create a uniform desktop manager that was totally compliant with the GNU's General Public License. useful and important programs that run in X-Window At this point you've chosen your window manager and/or desktop environment. Other than that. Regardless of the "look" you've chosen. Both offer a large selection of games in addition to other sundry applications for system monitoring and other miscellaneous tasks. Helix Code later changed it's name to Ximian. You need applications to surf the Internet. write email. KDE is the only one of the two to offer an office suite for word processing and it's own web browser. avoiding the licensing issues involved in the case of KDE's using the QT libraries. you may want to check out both offerings. write letters and a thousand other things you want to do. To date. • • KDE homepage Ximian Inc. Internet/WWW Browsers . MP3s and other music formats. You can also download the latest versions from their homepages. Where to get these desktop environments Most distributions come with both the GNOME and KDE desktop environments. They offer multi-media software for playing CDs. you have to have programs to run. There is no major application that a computer user needs that Linux lacks. Miguel de Icaza and Nat Friedman founded Helix Code in 1999 to oversee the business end of developing the GNOME desktop. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . manage your files. if your distribution did not have this or you are reading this and have not yet installed Linux.Lesson 19 Popular. However. The rumors you hear about Linux lacking applications or not being able to "make it on the desktop" are false. What GNOME and KDE can offer Both of these desktop environments offer a Microsoft Windows-like experience. both offer top-rate productivity applications like email clients. agenda and scheduling software and address books.
StarOffice We'll talk more about StarOffice in our section on office suites. It comes with a with a web browser and an email client. Speaking of email clients, let's look at some popular ones available for Linux [Previous] [Next]
Getting Started with Linux - Lesson 19 Email clients
The program you use to get, write and send your email is often referred to as a "client". This is to distinguish it from the programs that sit on servers that receive and process emails either sent to or sent from you. Email has become so important in our everyday life that I have observed that advocating one email client over another often takes on a fervor usually associated with religious beliefs. Here we'll look at some of the major email clients for Linux. Evolution Ximian's Evolution, part of the GNOME desktop project has received a lot of press lately. It is shaping up to be the only serious challenger to Microsoft Outlook's domination of the groupware scene. Seeing that it has all the features of Outlook, sans the virus problem, then you can see why it's getting some notice. If you're looking for a good email client that comes with scheduling tools, task management, address books and all those things that the busy yet organized person needs, than Ximian is probably the thing for you. Kmail Kmail is KDE's major email client. It is not a complete groupware solution like Ximian's Evolution, but its email management capabilities are very powerful. There is support for all major types of email transport, intricate configuration of mail filters, complete support for HTML formatted mail and other useful features. Sylpheed Japanese developer Hiroyuki Yamamoto has developed this fast, easy to use full-featured email client. This client is a big hit with developers as it offers really nice threading (the ability to keep track of all mails based on one original mail) and a fairly good way of managing different email accounts. If you have to respond to mail in different capacities (boss, friend, worker), Sylpheed offers the tools to do this all in one client.
Mutt One of the most famous quotes in the Linux world is the one found at the top of the home page for Mutt: All mail clients suck. This one just sucks less.. This was said by Michael Elkins, who developed this email client. A lot of people will probably point out, and rightly so, that Mutt doesn't have a graphic user interface. That is true. However, this client is so popular in the Linux world that I just had to include it here. If you are a newcomer to Linux, you may not want to use Mutt just yet. Using it efficiently requires a well-written .muttrc file. This is the main configuration file that determines how Mutt is going to work. However, if you get used to Mutt, you are probably not going to ever switch. It's lack of a pretty interface is more than made up for by the ability you have to configure Mutt. After you have some months behind you working with it, emails will practically write themselves. If you handle a lot of email, this is the client you probably want to at least look into. [Previous] [Next]
Getting Started with Linux - Lesson 19 Office suites, word processors and spreadsheets
StarOffice is a complete, full-featured office suite on the idea of Microsoft Office. It comes complete with word processor (of course), spreadsheet, database interfacing, presentation software plus it offers web browsing and email and a few other features. Originally developed by StarDivision, StarOffice was acquired by Sun Microsystems in 1999. The current stable version of this suite is 5.2 at the time of this writing. However, Sun has announced that they plan to charge for downloads of StarOffice version 6.
KOffice is the KDE Project's offering for desktop productivity. It includes all of the standard office suite applications. The software is offered free of charge.
VistaSource's Anywhere Desktop for Linux
This suite was formerly known as ApplixWare. Once again, all the standard office suite tool are offered here. This one boasts a Microsoft Office look and feel. This is not a free product. It cost 99 US dollars at the time of this writing.
Don't let a name like Pathetic Writer dissuade you from checking out this office suite for Linux. The word processor part of the suite can open Microsoft Word format (*.doc) files. The project started with the Scheme in a grid spreadsheet. Now you know why it's called Siag. Another free offering in the office category.
HancomOffice for Linux
Hancom Linux of Korea has developed this commercial full-featured office suite for Linux. Provides compatibility with Microsoft Office formats and smooth integrating into the KDE desktop. An evaluation version is available for download, but the software must be purchased in order to continue to use it.
GNOME office should actually appear in quotes, because this is not an office suite in the classic sense, but a set of applications that are often associated with office suites, as a package deal, so to speak. Some of the high-lights include:
• • • •
Gnumeric, a spreadsheet application AbiWord, a word processor (it even runs under Windows and MacOS) Gnucash, a personal finance manager GNOME-DB, database connectivity software
If you download the Ximian Desktop, you'll get these applications plus the other productivity tools associated with the GNOME project. [Previous] [Next]
Getting Started with Linux - Lesson 19 Little goodies to improve your quality of life
(aka: those little apps you'd rather not live without)
When I got broadband Internet access, my life changed forever. No more paying for dial-ups on a hourly basis. No more painful downloads of software. But what's more important than all of this is that I could now listen to radio! So what, you say. Well, I live more than 6,000 miles from the place where I grew up, so when I could finally listen to a radio station from the city where I was born as easily as my mother (who still lives there) can switch on the radio, I was delighted. RealAudio player for Linux is just one of those little apps I'd rather not live without.
RealPlayer represents the difference between stations having a choice to "webcast" freely or having to kow-tow to Microsoft. It looks like Gates and Co. xv doesn't stand for anything. Gimp also has another meaning. xv In the words of the its author. I use this program all the time. You can listen to your favorite MP3s plus files in the newly emerging free Ogg Vorbis format. It should never be associated with the English word meaning lame. literally. If you work a lot with images and think that by switching to Linux you'll be unable to work efficiently with graphics. Now that I've finished my editorializing. trim. You can apply all sorts of filters and even write scripts for doing things to the images automatically. This for me represents more than just a way of listening to your favorite on-line radio station or viewing the BBC World Service broadcast. If you're familiar with WinAmp. you'll have no trouble getting used to this program. according to the dictionary I consulted: Smart.jpg . Image viewing and editing The GIMP GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program. plans on dominating the online music/information industry. John Bradley. XMMS XMMS stands for the X multi-media system. It is what I use to display the image in my desktop window.RealPlayer I can't help but make an editorial comment here about this application. then check out The GIMP. you can go get RealPlayer for Linux and install it and start listening to web broadcasts. type this: xv -root -max -quit your_favorite_pic. spruce. Real Networks is at this point the only thing preventing them from doing it. nice. This is a full fledged image creating and re-touching application. You'll be pleasantly surprised. That's a better description.
you might want to consider doing them in small batches. however. This is the author's own words: Basically. This next use of ImageMagick is my two-year-old's favorite. #!/bin/sh for i in `ls /home/mike/rotation_bkg/*. If you've got a lot of images in a directory and a slow machine. xv is not it.and xv will display your favorite picture as the pic on your desktop Sometimes I get bored and I use this script to rotate my favorite pictures. I have some pictures of him in a directory and I type: animate *. xv's primary thrust has always been displaying images (in many formats) quickly and nicely on a wide variety of display hardware. ImageMagick ImageMagick is a suite of tools for displaying and manipulating images.jpg` do xv -root -max -quit $i sleep 300 done If you're looking for heavy duty image software. If you've got a lot of images in a directory and you want to have an inventory of all of them as one image. Another one I use a lot is the thumbnail generator.jpg This starts up a slide show of him at blinding speed and he gets a big kick out of it. If you want to get the images rotating at a more . It's not as powerful (in my opinion) as The GIMP but more powerful than xv. xv is distributed as shareware.jpg' This creates one image of all of the jpg images as thumbnails in the directory you're in. The 'display' tool I use to tell my email client open images that people send me in emails. That pretty much sums it up. so be patient. I use it for three basic things. This takes up a lot of CPU power on even a fairly powerful machine. then you would type: display 'vid:*.
Even for non-programming tasks I use it. which is like the console version. If you're a programmer. xedit -bg seagreen -fg navajowhite -fn 9x15*bold some_text_file. Use the right . the words you are reading right now) were written in their entirety using Emacs. It is a Swiss Army Knife of editors. you would open up a text editor.manageable speed. Text editors and viewers Sometimes you don't want to fire up a whole office suite to read some text file and sometimes you have to create and/or edit documents as plain text. If I could not use Emacs for some reason. It is not slick or fancy. Emacs is essential for working. To call it an 'editor' is to insult it somewhat. first started working on Emacs in 1974. you can specify a readable font and some good eye-friendly colors when you start it up. There are two that I use on two different occasions. for example. I refer to the x-window version of Emacs. xedit xedit is a basic text viewer/editor for X-window. it's almost like a mini-operating system in and of itself. but there is one thing I like very much about it. It is truly the perfect application to be the one associated with the GNU. you can use xcolors to get a background and foreground combination that suits your eyes.txt & As we're on the topic of basic X-Window applications. If you wanted. The ability to fire it up from an xterm with a couple of preferences of mine. to modify my image rotation script above. a version expressly written for X-window. It was one of the first applications. (and if you think I'm joking. It does a little bit of everything. The entire Linux Online beginners' course (yes. but has clickable menus and windows and everything you need to work in a graphical environment. founder of the GNU project. With xedit. It has since then become the flagship application of the GNU project. I would probably go off and herd sheep. ask my wife). just use the shift > keys or click with the right mouse button to call up the menu. My eyes don't seem to like it either. That day in 1974 when Richard Stallman sat down and started development of Emacs is a great day in history. To me. Reading fairly long things on a computer is not one of my favorite activities. Richard Stallman. Emacs There is a version of Emacs if your not using X-window and then there's XEmacs.
I normally use this to remember important stuff. you can use GNOME Color Browser. I use +10+100 which set it right in front of me. I've chosen a good sized one. like log files. First. this is how I run it: root-tail -color yellow -font 12x24 -shade -g +10+100 $HOME/reminders & Let's explain some of these options. You can experiment with settings. As you see. For example. It's running on the upper right side of my desktop. you run root-tail. root-tail can be used to display these files on your desktop while you're running X-window. Invariably. You can see it in this screenshot. how much bandwidth you're using through your ethernet card and much. the 'eth0' monitor. It's best to do this with a few options. after '-color' you should use the name of the color you want the text to appear in. when some Sircam provoked mail comes through. The next one is '-font'. If you want to select colors (for example. If you do conversions of audio to MP3 or Ogg format. First. Then on each line. You can keep track of you memory usage. Now you have no excuse for forgetting to buy your loved ones presents on their birthdays! gkrellm This is nice little application to monitor what's going on with your computer.mouse button to select a font color and the middle button to select the background. 'shade' will give the text a little shade under it and will look snazzier. swap space. . which checks bandwidth usage will start rising for no apparent reason. Call it 'reminders'. much more. Then. write something that you want to remember. for web page work) and you've got the GNOME desktop installed. '-g' stands for 'geometry' or the location in the window. It really comes in handy. It's useful as a way to alert you to how many clueless Windows users there are. It's easier to manage that xcolors and has a nice grab feature to select colors from other places and get their values/names. Use xcolors to find a color you like that's supported by your system. you should create a text file with your favorite editor. you can watch your CPU usage go off the scale when you do them. Miscellaneous Programs root-tail tail is a console application that is normally used for monitoring files that change constantly.
Experiment with options first before you put your definitive xclock settings in your . Type: cp .xinitrc This is a file you'll find in your user directory. It's very easy to configure to your liking.xinitrc file. Open the file with vi or the text editor of your choosing. but not too small clock in the upper left hand corner of your desktop. Before you try to do this however.Place your mouse over gkrellm and press F1 to configure other monitors. Just type your settings into an xterm and try different ones.Lesson 19 Tips and Tricks for X-Window . -bg . Have a look and we're sure you'll find the right programs to suit your needs [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux .Xdefaults_good . make a backup. add: xclock -bg wheat -geometry 100x100+1+1 & sets the background color and the -geometry setting I have used here gives you a fairly small. Xchat xchat is a comfortable IRC (Internet Relay Chat) client. You can use this file to change the way some of your X-window applications look. There are also plug-ins and themes/skins available.Xdefaults file There's another file in your user directory called . Then. for example.Xdefaults . A lot of programs to choose from There are thousands of programs for Linux in our applications section. Type: killall xclock to shut off the clock each time. It's fun to try out different styles and get some settings that please your eye. You can use it to start programs automatically when you start X-window.Xdefaults. There is the possibility to use Python and Perl scripts to automate some things you do. You can type: man xclock to see more options.
With: emacs*Foreground: Khaki we've changed the color of the words in the menu. let's change the look of emacs. just type emacs in an xterm and an error message should appear saying something like: Warning: Color name "khaki " is not defined or similar. you have to issue this command in an xterm: xrdb -merge $HOME/. With: emacs*background: DarkCyan we can change the background of the application's menu bar and frame. You can use any color you like that the system supports. To make the changes take effect. Add this to it: !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! emacs changes [date] emacs*Background: DarkCyan emacs*Foreground: Khaki !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let's explain what we've done here. Then I use two to comment that I am changing emacs and I have included [date] where I would put the actual date to show when I made the changes. If emacs doesn't come up. The two rows of exclamation points I've used to show where my emacs section begins and ends. As you get more adept at changing things. then you've got whitespace in your . open up the file with Vi or any text editor your prefer. It is important when you change settings that you leave no trailing spaces. It's just something extra to remind me when I made the changes. Most major distributions provide a working . . the exclamation point (!) in this file is used to make comments. If you don't do this.Xdefaults in memory and you won't see anything new. you may have left some trailing white space.Xdefaults file that needs to be eliminated.Xdefaults file. It's best to leave what you find there. for example. First. Restart emacs and you should see your new colors. you'll make your desktop more to your liking. As an example.because there is always some danger of making some applications non-operable because you have left spaces where you shouldn't. If that is the case. X-window keeps your old . Then we make the actual changes. You don't have to to this.Xdefaults This will restart the x-server database and log in your changes. If you see a space before the second quotation mark. First. but you're free to add stuff to it.
xwininfo If you're interested in seeing a bit of information about certain programs running. It's the same color used on pool and card tables. we told you how to use xv to put your favorite picture on your desktop. typing: xsetroot -solid seagreen will get you a solid dark green color as a background. For example. you can use xsetroot to just put a color scheme on the desktop. keyboard. the second pitch and the third duration of the beep. For example. Both GNOME and KDE have other graphic apps to do this stuff a lot easier. Of . If you get tired of pictures and you want something plain. You can also change the tone by typing something like: xset b 30 550 300 The first number is for volume. For example.xinitrc file. And to turn it back on? You guessed it: xset b on. But you can try it out. type: xset b off to stop your computer from beeping at it. monitor and pc speaker. so I find myself using this less and less. This one is soothing to the eyes. you can type xwininfo into a terminal and then click on any window. I had another xterm open and I clicked on it and got this info: xwininfo: Window id: 0x2c0000e "xterm" Absolute upper-left X: 211 Absolute upper-left Y: 132 Relative upper-left X: 0 Relative upper-left Y: 0 Width: 581 Height: 340 Depth: 16 Visual Class: TrueColor Border width: 0 Class: InputOutput Colormap: 0x20 (installed) Bit Gravity State: NorthWestGravity Window Gravity State: NorthWestGravity Backing Store State: NotUseful Save Under State: no Map State: IsViewable Override Redirect State: no Corners: +211+132 -8+132 -8-128 +211-128 -geometry 80x24-3+109 This comes in handy especially to find suitable '-geometry' settings for use in starting up applications and including them in the . xsetroot In a previous section. xset This is a command line utility to control things like your mouse.
It can be in a different room in a different building on a different continent. Providing your bandwidth is good enough. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . you are not limited to starting X-window only once. press: CTRL + ALT + F2 (or F3 up to F6) Then login as another user and type: startx -. I point to the computer across the room and then say: "Now I am going to start the browser from that system and make it appear here. There are two ways to do this. Remember though that running two instances will use up a lot of memory. One is not secure and probably should only be used on a local network. to switch to another virtual terminal. . you're free to use the color you like! Type: man xsetroot to see other options. As we saw in previous lessons. You also need a means of logging in to the other computer. The second one is very secure and can be used for trans-oceanic X-window sessions." You don't need to be David Copperfield to perform this magic. You may open up another virtual terminal and start another instance of X-window. if at all.:1 You can switch between instances of X-Window by typing: CTRL + ALT + F7 CTRL + ALT + F8 and Using the X-Window programs from another computer This is the thing I love to show people from the MS Windows world.Lesson 19 More X-Window Tips and Tricks Starting X on other virtual terminals With Linux. The computer doesn't even need to be in the same room. you can start a program on a computer 5000 kilometers away and use it on your desktop. And here's one more thing. You only need X-window running on one and installed on the other.course.
Then. you would type: xhost +andy Then with telnet. Here's what you have to do. Using X on another machine. also known as X forwarding is usually disabled by default so you may have to edit one file to get this to work locally. This are better ways of doing this. login into 'amos' (telnet> open amos) Then. Make sure you have OpenSSH server on installed on 'andy' and have created a user account there. If you're doing this across oceans or continents the configuration will depend on the remote machine. As long as you have a OpenSSH client and an account on the other machine.0 then export DISPLAY Now you can type the name of any program you want to run that you know is on 'andy'. Then you need to restart the OpenSSH server. as I mentioned. sitting at 'amos'. you can do this. As I mentioned. if you want to do this locally. On 'andy' you need to login as 'root' and make sure that there is a line in a file called 'sshd_config'.If you have the remote login device telnet and the telnet server installed on the machines. from 'amos' just connect to 'andy' via SSH. Let's use our 'amos' and 'andy' example again. For example. Then type: sshd to start the server again. if you workstation is called 'amos' and the other machine is called 'andy' and you want to use a program on 'andy'. type: DISPLAY=amos:0. If this says X11Forwarding no than you need to change it to yes. usually located in /etc/ssh that says X11Forwarding yes. A secure shell for logging in at other computers in a secure manner. You're sitting at your workstation called 'amos'. you can use this fairly safely in a local network. Remote X sessions with OpenSSH Open SSH stands for Open Secure Shell. like the Internet. You should never do this if you're working over a public network. That's just what it is. Remember though. What goes over the network is encrypted and your security is not compromised. The easiest way is to look for its PID by typing: ps ax | grep sshd and killing it's PID number. telnet is insecure. like so: ssh -l [yourusername] andy . You may have to specifically install the OpenSSH server which you need to have to for this to work on your local network. Most major distributions will offer this and it is normally installed by default.
any form of collaboration is good. It is becoming a serious threat to the dominance of Microsoft Windows not only in the server market but on the desktop as well. The best thing to do to support these efforts is to check back on these projects from time to time. In this lesson we've given you a number of addresses of web pages of these types of projects. [Previous] . That's how Linux grew into the major operating system that it is and that's essentially what the Linux movement is all about. It will come up on your desktop on 'amos' courtesy of 'andy'. contact the developers or join the mailing list for that particular project and provide feedback. about the software you've tried. Linux has come a long way in the past few years. [Previous] [Next] Getting Started with Linux . The important work done by the people in the GNOME and KDE projects as well as other those carrying out development of other window managers and XFree86 show the level of commitment there is to getting Linux on the desktops of the worlds computers in offices and homes. Also. That's essentially what the Linux movement is all about. both positive and negative.you'll be asked for your password. evolving and adapting to user needs.Lesson 19 A final word about X-window The GUI applications for Linux are always changing. You can translate the documentation or the graphic interface to your native language. You can also volunteer to do some work. In the end. for example. install the latest version and talk to your friends about how good you think they are. You log in and then you can run the X application that you want. You don't have to be a programmer to make a vital contribution.
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