new debian user

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new debian user

Postby dmartinsca » 2006-01-09 02:04

Hi everyone!:mrgreen:

I've been using linux on and off for about 4 years now, starting with redhat, then mandrake. I tried to install debian about 3 years ago and failed.

Most recently i've been running gentoo but felt i needed to try out some other options so after doing some reading i backed everything up with tar, stored it on a second hard drive, and partitioned to make room for debian as well as a dedicated /home partition so i could share config files between gentoo and debian.

I went with the net install option (just the kernel image and a compressed root filesystem) sice i already had a bootloader. The install went perfectly! I've been working on getting everything working for a couple of days now and I have to say that i'm pleased with how everything is going! 8)

I've updated the kernel to 2.6.15 to remove the extra bulk I didn't need, got alsa and my nvidia card working, and setup udev (if you can call installing the package, purging hotplug and rebooting "setup").

I've been using aptitude to manage packages as that's what the reference material suggests and i'm happy with how it works too. So far, so good. I only wish i had tried harder to get this distro working last time i tried to install it. My knowledge of linux was quite a bit less at that point tho ;)

I have to say, the documetation does seem a little dated in some places, and i hope i can contribute to the process of bringing things up to date once i've found my way around.

Cheers!

Dan
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Postby Humbletech99 » 2006-01-10 15:33

indeed, half the sassyness of using Gentoo is the clear (and very good looking) Documentation and website. Why doesn't Debian get 1 guy to redo Debian's public look and watch the flocks of interest... (How do you think anybody can be bothered to make it throught the 3 day installation - the Handbook is nice to look at!)

To start with, let's choose a nice Blue colour and put it everywhere...
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Postby neenee » 2006-01-10 16:49

wouldn't red, as the debian logo, would be more suitable?

as for gentoo - i used it for quite a while and to me their
main attraction is their forums, which i use now, even
though i use debian.

i'm very satisfied with debian =] i had let myself be turned
into someone who wanted the latest and greatest or patch-
ed versions of packages if they had possible performance
enhancements.. regardless of them breaking parts of my
system quite often. i even tried reiser4 long ago but i had
problems with that as well.. it was fast though =]

i ended up switching to ext3 and choosing debian. nice and
stable, and i don't have to spend time compiling things.

now i just use my system instead =]
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Postby dmartinsca » 2006-01-10 20:38

It is nice being able to quickly install a program to see if it's what you're looking for and if it's not just remove it and have all it's dependencies that aren't needed anymore disappear as welll. I often found myself not installing certain apps in gentoo because i didn't want to compile all of it's dependencies and then have them stuck on my system if i didn't like the app. k3b for example; i don't want to find out how long it takes to compile all of the libs for kde on a athlon thunderbird :P

I agree that gentoo's forums do rock, and i still use them as well. Technically i'm still a gentoo user since it's still on my PC!
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Postby Humbletech99 » 2006-01-10 23:21

Gentoo's forums are very very good, but let's give some credit to Debian's forums, they can do pretty much the same thing, we just need to get more people in them.

Also Blue looks nicer than Red (that's why more companies use cool blue shades in their logos etc...)

I think Debian needs to stop mailing lists and send everyone here. In fact, all Linux mailing lists should cease and they should all come to this forum! Open new sections if neccessary :)

Couple questions though. Are these forums the official debian forums and if so why can they not be accessed by http://forums.debian.org? I doubt they are. Are there any official debian forums?

What relation is debian.net to debian.org?
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Postby dmartinsca » 2006-01-11 00:07

Humbletech99 wrote:What relation is debian.net to debian.org?


I was wondering the same thing. These forums look official enough, there's just not much activity on them. I didn't realize it was because of the mailing lists. Who still uses those things!? :wink:
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Postby Jeroen » 2006-01-11 02:24

The debian-user mailinglist alone takes last I looked well over 2 times as much traffic as the these whole forums (3500 messages each month, and it's declining a bit, in 2003 there were closer to 5000 messages per month). There are currently close to 7000 people subscribed to that mailinglist. That's more than twice the amount of users ever registred on these forums :).

Debian has a strong tradition in mailinglists, after all, it started before webforums even existed. Also, mailinglist are better suited for productive discussion and development, I just think that for user questions, often forums can provide a better way to many.

As to debian.net vs debian.org: Both domains are owned by Debian, but they have different uses: debian.org is only for official Debian services hosted on a debian server. The debian.net zone can have subdomains set by any debian developer, to host debian-related services that are not (yet?) official Debian resources. Indeed, I host there forums on my own server, instead of a debian.org server. I intend to, when these forums have proven their use and are something people expect to have, push for forums.debian.net to move to forums.debian.org, and be hosted on some debian.org server (of course, the address forums.debian.net will then remain working).

forums.debian.net is the most official you can get though, being in debian.net and the only general debian forums I know of to be hosted by a debian developer.
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Postby dnusinow » 2006-01-11 02:33

Once you've properly configured your mail setup to deal with the mailing list you realize just how poor web forums are to churning through discussion. I can go through conversations several times faster when they're on mailing lists versus on web forums. I know web forums are popular with newbies (which is why I'm here) but their limitations are pretty evident compared to mailing lists.
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Postby dmartinsca » 2006-01-11 04:26

dnusinow wrote:Once you've properly configured your mail setup to deal with the mailing list you realize just how poor web forums are to churning through discussion. I can go through conversations several times faster when they're on mailing lists versus on web forums. I know web forums are popular with newbies (which is why I'm here) but their limitations are pretty evident compared to mailing lists.


Now that i see there is still a case for mailing lists,
How would I go about properly configuring my mail? Not that I have anything to contribute, just that the mail system in linux is something i've never bothered to mess with. I noticed that exim4 was installed on my PC. I have a email account from my ISP which is POP3/SMTP. Can a program like this be used to automatically retrieve mail from POP3 accounts and deliever it to a local mailbox, if so, are there advantages to this as a home user?

Do you have any links to sties explaning this whole other world of MTA/MSA/MUA/MDA, etc ,etc? I'm running out of things to tinker with ;)
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Postby dnusinow » 2006-01-11 04:55

My setup is basically fetchmail, procmail, and mutt. There's plenty of variations on these (like using Thunderbird instead of mutt) but this is pretty standard in the Debian circles I hang out in.

fetchmail is fairly simple to set up (there's a fetchmailconf program, if I recall correctly). procmail is a bit of a pain due to its arcane syntax, but there's plenty of help out there on the web if you google for it. As for your MUA, there's several out there so I'd recommend checking a few out and seeing what you like best.

I had trouble learning about MTA's, but the best way I found to learn them was to read a lot of documentation for both exim and postfix. Hopefully someone else can help more on this one...
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Postby Humbletech99 » 2006-01-11 08:51

Speaking of Exim, I have this at work and have it has fallen to me to administer it, does anybody know where the best, most clear docs/explanations are for this? Is there somewhere better/easier/clearer than the official website?
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Postby Jeroen » 2006-01-11 13:00

THere goes nothing above the official, excellent exim docs. though they do require you to know a bit about how mail works in general. I've never used another resource, and I use exim everywhere and have suffisicated setups with it.
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Postby Humbletech99 » 2006-01-11 13:48

thanks for the input. I've only used them briefly.

I'll check them out properly..
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