How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

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How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Const » 2020-03-25 22:52

Dear forum members, My name is Constantine and i am new to this forum as well as new to linux. I installed Debian jessie 8 on a 2nd hdd not long ago.
Ive been a dos user for a while as a kid and windows ever since. I keep hearing that linux is better and i a want to try .
What would be your suggestions for a user like me that doesnt have the slightest clue on how to work with linux software ?

Thank you all and have a nice day.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Bulkley » 2020-03-25 23:18

What would be your suggestions for a user like me that doesn't have the slightest clue on how to work with Linux software ?


Don't use Debian; it can be a bit tricky for a newcomer. Your Jessie is way out of date and I was going to suggest you download and install Buster, Debian 10 but do yourself a favour and get MX Linux which is based on Debian 10 and the nice folks over there have done a great job of configuring the tricky stuff.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby cuckooflew » 2020-03-26 02:16

The answer is so obvious, but if you can't think for your self, and need to ask this , my thoughts are maybe you will not be very happy with a Linux, Debian system. ..Read about how to use a linux system, Do some searches, if you don't know how to do that, learn how to do some searches and get the infromation you need, learn to do searches first. You can learn a lot , just by reading some of the posts/topics on the forum, a good place to start: Please Read.. What we expect you have already Done.
It is obvious you have not even bothered to read anything.
On the search part, here is a example to help you get started:
How to learn to use Linux, and Unix like systems
The next thing, and since you all ready have it installed,
Const >>I installed Debian jessie 8 on a 2nd hdd not long ago.
, Even though it is outdated, if it is working, you can start practicing, start using the system, you will start learning more as you use it. For example, if you don't know how to view your folders , but on Linux, or a Unix like system we usually call them directories, so for example, simply ask the search engine, simply type the key words, or question into a search engine How do I view my folders or directories on a Linux system ...
Pretty simple , Ehh ? The first hit is pretty good, : http://www.pas.rochester.edu/~pavone/particle-www/telescopes/ComputerCommands.htm
Or this one: https://www.cyberciti.biz/faq/linux-list-just-directories-or-directory-names/
Display or list all directories in Unix

Type the following command:
$ ls -l | grep `^d'
$ ls -l | egrep `^d'

There are many others in the search results, you can learn by reading the results, trying them and see which ones work best for you... In the future , try doing some searches, before asking, this takes practice as well, but if you at least try, and show that you tried, if you still don't find any results that answer your question, well yes , indeed ask here. But make some effort your self. You learn by doing, I learned how to use Linux by reading the manuals, doing searches like my examples ablove, others may have other methods. Time to take my meds now, ..we are kind of flying low , need more fuel, if you know what I mean :mrgreen:
Last edited by cuckooflew on 2020-03-26 04:51, edited 2 times in total.
Please Read What we expect you have already Done
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Deb-fan » 2020-03-26 02:41

Always wonder what someone's true motivations are asking a silly question like this. Could be sincerely seeking some pointers though too. Could be many dubious motivations as well. Either way people obviously learn gnu/Linux the same way people learn anything with time/effort/experience etc. Faqs, tips and pointers for anyone interested are already all over the place regardless. A good tip to learning anything, right there, how to find existing information. Already mountains and oceans of it pertaining to gnu/nix. Start climbing and/or swimming.

I am pleased w my dorkish analogy. :P
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby No_windows » 2020-03-26 03:09

I would either get a second machine cheaply (used) or set something up in Windows for running a Linux virtual machine. That way I could get to know Linux and risk breaking things yet still have a working machine to fall back on.

Besides MX, Solydxk would be another good distribution to learn with.

I don't really recall what prompted me to run plain Debian. I started with Kubuntu, then Solydx, then Debian, and experimented with a few others either on separate machines or in a virtual machine. The last Windows I used was 7, after starting with Dos and Windows 3.1.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Deb-fan » 2020-03-26 03:50

^ Awesome tip Vm's, still though it's oddball junk like why would anyone install Jessie vs latest stable? Makes me wonder what they(such OP's) are really up to etc. Still not a big deal, though activity like this amounts to trolling or help vamping too. Folks who've devoted the time and effort building knowledge, skill and experience do get burnt out on folks asking mindless questions they could've easily figured out w minimal effort. Leads such veteran (better skilled or experienced) nixer's to being embittered and simply concluding a majority of people are too lazy, stupid or both to bother with. Thus such cease participating, thus leaving a community with that many fewer skilled users, thus not a good thing overall in the end.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby xlepws » 2020-03-26 09:28

Well I think OP wanted to read about the path-of-knowledge some experienced users here have been walking :)
So yes, his question might be / seem silly, and the easy replies well they're already in this thread, i.e. install a distro & web search on how to do things if they're not user-friendly'ed / GUI'ed.

Myself? I like difficulties :D That's why I'm running Debian sid (on a Win10 Virtualbox here, but I also installed it as main OS on my gf's old laptop), Mint 19.3 (my daughter's old laptop), Linux Solus & Clear Linux (both on Win10 Virtualbox..well, running is a big word, haven't been able to set them up properly yet ^^).

My main box is, as you might have got, a Win10 machine, 'cause it's what my company gave me :) I'm forced to use company's apps like Office365, which I like very much and have no Linux / open source real counterparts.
But on any other machine I come up with, Linux is the choice, and the reason is that the standard users who only browse the internet and use simple applications have no real reason to be using Windows. What distro? Any distro as long as you like to play with it, then your preferred one will come up naturally with time.

Cheers :)
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby kedaha » 2020-03-26 11:21

Best advice for new users I think is from the second chapter of Osamu Aoki's excellent Debian Reference:
The newbie Debian system administrator should stay with the stable release of Debian while applying only security updates.

The development branches of Debian, namely sid and testing, should not be regarded as "upgrades" to get more recent software. if you do install them, be aware that they can and do break, so the author advises very sensibly:
Make the system dual bootable by installing the stable suite of the Debian system to another partition

With time one comes to fully appreciate why so much time and effort goes into developing Debian's core distribution; stable.
Speaking for myself, I have always used stable for both desktop (with some packages backported from sid or testing) and servers.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2020-03-26 11:27

Const wrote:What would be your suggestions for a user like me that doesnt have the slightest clue on how to work with linux software ?

Use Arch Linux, you'll have to do everything manually so you will quickly learn all about the inner workings of GNU/Linux. And make sure you follow the installation guide rather than using one of the installation scripts, they teach you *nothing* and you won't know how to recover your system when the inevitable b0rkage occurs.

Debian stable is great but you won't learn much by using it.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby kedaha » 2020-03-26 12:14

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:Debian stable is great but you won't learn much by using it.

When I first started using Debian, which was when Etch was released, of course my focus was entirely on configuring Gnome 2 to my liking. I did things like getting system sounds, a splash screen and configuring the nvidia card so I had to learn how to edit configuration files. The very first thing I did was to edit /apt/etc/sources.list to be able to install stuff easily, which in some cases turned out to be a big mistake, but one everyone makes.
In the course of time, I turned more of my attention away from desktop software to the installation and configuration of server software, specially apache2, mysql, wordpress, email server postfix, postfixadmin and dovecot and a few others); however, I always keep in mind the old Unix concept: "Do one thing and do it well," and "jack of all trades, master of none." If, for example, one uses apache2, learn everything about it. If something is difficult, the solution is not to install an alternative like nginx. Perseverance pays off in the end.
What I found was that the early bash skills I acquired were invaluable for headless server configuration, reading logs and so on, which I think is one of the best ways to make progress in linux.
i think that, while I have acquired a fair amount of systems administration expertise in a few areas, I would be a complete beginner in other areas.
What else can I add? Well, I think to make progress one needs to be patient, able to concentrate, pay attention to the smallest details, to be meticulous and above all to have fun and not overdo it. There are more things in life than computers! :mrgreen:
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Const » 2020-03-28 07:52

xlepws wrote:Well I think OP wanted to read about the path-of-knowledge some experienced users here have been walking :)
So yes, his question might be / seem silly, and the easy replies well they're already in this thread, i.e. install a distro & web search on how to do things if they're not user-friendly'ed / GUI'ed.


That is correct sir ! Thank you.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Const » 2020-03-28 07:58

Wow, what can i say. All these opinions :) Thank you all so much for taking time to answer to me .
They say "You cant teach an old dg new tricks" and ive been a windows user for 20+ years now (apart from the dos years) and never even knew how linux looks like.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Deb-fan » 2020-03-28 08:25

Not to be overly contrary but have to disagree, Debian stable can be an awesome learning tool. It's a tank, almost seems hard to break by comparison to many others. Documented to hades and gone too. Doesn't give someone the motivation to learn they have to do that themselves but like everything else gnu/nix someone has access to everything they could need to learn as much or little as a person chooses.

Personally don't much care for Arch and believe it's reputation as a power users only and the elitest attitude many of the distro's users tend to project are a joke. Struggling through the Arch install process (which I fully believe is intentionally designed to be user hostile) doesn't make anyone intimately familiar with gnu/nix. Only means they've managed a working Arch gnu/nix install. Not even saying that's wrong, some initiation deal. We've spent time, effort and money creating this distro, YOU will spend your time and effort installing it and getting it running if you wish to use it. Even agree with that in many ways. Also screens out the dumbest/laziest users. They're too stupid and/or lazy so will move on, install something easier. Etc.

Have installed Arch 3-4 times over the years just to play with it, always fairly quickly end up overwriting a perfectly working install though. Once setup runs as well as anything else gnu/nix will. Nothing stands out as special surely. Using Arch teaches someone how to use Arch not more or less and spend any time reading in it's forum it's obvious a nice percentage of the users are not power users nor any type of techno-elite. Also not saying I think Arch stinks either(has good aspects or tools too.) Only in my view and experience it's overrated.
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby MALsPa » 2020-03-28 11:12

Someone new to Linux can learn tons from spending a lot of time with any distro -- it can be Debian Stable, it can be Arch, it can be something else. The main thing is wanting to learn and spending time with it. Resources, info, all that's available all over the web. And I'd suggest learning to use man pages. I'm sure others would disagree. :wink:
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Re: How to get to know Linux and go away from windows.

Postby Deb-fan » 2020-03-28 11:30

Ah now feel bad, Arch can no doubt run great though there's zero doubt Debian gnu/nix doesn't. The foresight and cunning of things like mentioned above with the install process is nothing short of ingenious imo. By the time an avg techie gets through it they do feel they've completed some massive techno-feat. They feel bonded to Arch, ready to take their rightful place among the elite. :) Most importantly from the Arch devs perspective that person has proven they've got the mental capacity and determination to possibly be a valued user.

Mentioned it acts like a prescreening + community scrubbing utility. Those too lazy or braindead move on, end up mucking up some other distro's forums. Arch forum is the only gnu/nix forum I can remember which actually required I pass a test to join. At the time during the registration process, it asked something along the lines of "what is the result (long stream of odd looking characters.) You had to copy and paste that into a terminal, then enter the output it gave to prove ye were worthy of completing the Arch forum regis.

End result Arch users are actively encouraged to make effort, learn and research things themselves. The forum(community) will not be tolerant of those who clearly aren't devoting their own time/effort. So it's cool to me how it's setup to serve several practical purposes.

Op, how does one learn gnu/nix etc etc ? I just found this store one day on a side street, went in, had a seat and some dude plugged this cord into the base of my skull, 30secs later knew everything about gnu/nix, WHAM! Plus oddly now I can fly a helicopter, dodge bullets and beat up Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris with one hand. Have you checked around your neighborhood for such a shop? :P

^ Also just messing around, been wanting to post that here awhile and couldn't resist anymore. :)
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