so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Welcome to newcomers! Don't hesitate to introduce yourself.

so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby runlevel3nut on Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:44 am

Don't let my username fool you. I'm actually a relative Linux newb who's just eager to hit runlevel 3 and stay there unless he absolutely has no choice about using the startx command--selectively, of course.

I'm also a bit of a refugee from Slackware 14.0. I tried my hardest to figure out that distro, but for somebody who doesn't already know every command known to man (pun intended), Slackware is just too tough to get off the ground. As you're probably aware, the current state of the apropos command is almost a crime against beginners, because the standard output of that command can cause a newb to become confined to a mental health facility within two weeks of starting to learn Linux; yet, for someone trying to learn GNU commands on his own, apropos is just about the only tool available to figure out what command to type as an argument to man and info. I stared at command not found errors for a full week before deciding to save my sanity and flattening my slackware directories and installing Mint 14 Cinnamon. (And if what I'm saying is confusing you, Slackware 14.0's install defaults to booting at runlevel 3 right at first boot, with only a root account, so that you have to know how to create a limited user account on the command line even to begin using that distro. Now, that's rough! It doesn't help that Slackware 14.0 was released in late 2012 but the official user guide, Slackbook 2.0, was last revised in 2006. Such is the world of Linux.)

I'm pursuing a number of formal educational options. I finished more than two full years of academic college as a total humanities artsy before the subjectivity of humanities disciplines started to get to me and I began to look for something more solidly grounded in the concrete. So, in January, I'll be taking the entry-level computer science department course, called "Introduction to Computer Programming," which explores the rudiments of programming and teaches the basics of Python over the course of four months. After that there's a second Python course that gets into actual code creation for another four months, but it requires concurrent math courses, and I'm likely to need remedial math through a non-credit summer course first. If that doesn't work out, a community college offers a self-paced, online distance learning course leading to Linux+ certification, and I'm eligible to take it, but it's really intended for working system administrators and could be too demanding. Then there's a fun website called Codeacademy that receives funding through donations from rich people and embedded advertising to offer totally free of charge and obligation tutorial-style courses in various programming languages, including HTML, Java, and, yes, Python. Finally, I've been reading and re-reading Machelt "Tille" Garrels' Intro to Linux, which to my eye is the best beginner Linux book I've yet found. I started off with the 2006 edition, then found a 2008 edition, and then finally managed to locate his most recent website at tille.garrels.be, where he offers a paged HTML-only edition dated 2010, which appears to be the latest one he ever did. I've gone through the first six chapters and am about to start on the really interesting stuff once I plug the holes in my knowledge of what I've already read. From my preliminary glance at chapter 7, it looks a lot like I'll have to spend some time on Codeacademy's Python course so I have some idea how to read scripts before I seriously start studying chapter 7, which appears to be crammed full of script samples but contains no information on script syntax, just explanations of what processes the scripts trigger and what those processes do.

Anyway, hello. :)
runlevel3nut
Level 1
Level 1
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:11 am

Linux Mint is funded by ads and donations.
 

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby xenopeek on Fri Dec 14, 2012 6:28 am

Welcome to Linux Mint :D Python is a good programming language to start with, and a lot of programs on Linux Mint are written in Python (Software Manager, Update Manager, and so on). A very basic Python introduction is Google's Python Class: https://developers.google.com/edu/python/. Perhaps up to your level for getting a feel for the language. It has both a written part with clear examples, and lecture videos.

As for learning Linux, like anything else it takes time :wink: I really enjoy reading the Linux Format magazine (http://www.linuxformat.com/), which perhaps you can get in your area as well. I pick some new knowledge, or project to do, from it each month. If you want to understand more about Debian package management (Linux Mint is ultimately based on Debian), chapters 5 and 6 of the Debian Administrator's Handbook could be a good read. I can recommend that book anyway, and found it very accessible (but then I have been using Linux for a while :)). You can read it online, download for free, or buy it printed: http://debian-handbook.info/.
User avatar
xenopeek
Level 21
Level 21
 
Posts: 14995
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby The-Wizard on Fri Dec 14, 2012 10:24 am

Welcome to the mint family forums

wizard
asus M2N-MX board, AMD x2 6000 amd/ati graphics 4x1mb ddr2, 21" HD screen Mint 17-64 cinnamon
Acer ZG5 -peppermint dell 1545 mint 17-64

"I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that i don't know the answer " [Douglas Adams]
User avatar
The-Wizard
Level 8
Level 8
 
Posts: 2499
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 3:12 pm
Location: Bedforshire, ENGLAND

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby overthetop on Fri Dec 14, 2012 1:26 pm

Welcome aboard! :P
Image
"A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer." -- Bruce Lee
User avatar
overthetop
Level 4
Level 4
 
Posts: 368
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:25 am
Location: /home/overthetop

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby runlevel3nut on Fri Dec 14, 2012 8:36 pm

Oh my goodness! Package Manager AND Update Manager are both written in Python? I can't wait to become competent to study the source code! I'm definitely starting my Python studies early with that kind of motivation. Thanks very much for letting me know what I should start off by reading.

In terms of Mint being largely based on Debian, I thought it was largely based on Ubuntu. Is there a link you can give me that provides more information (just so you don't have to type _War and Peace_ into a message composition window, because I'm sure a full dispelling of my confusion woutd be a pretty long message).

What do you recoimmend for editing within the terminal window? Is Vim good enough, or should I learn some better editor? I want something that will be useful for writing scripts down the road, when I'm ready to start writing scripts, because it looks like Vim is plenty good enough for minor edits to existing scripts. (If I need to install a better editor, perhaps you could let me know the package name. Apt is pretty sharp about managing dependencies, so at this stage I'm not worried about having to do a file hunt.)

There is one interesting thing I've observed that you could maybe help me out with. The free command keeps reporting that, out of my 2 gig of memory, only an average of about 200 meg remains free even with no applications except the terminal window running, and nearly all of the rest is tied up in buffers and caches, which are mostly empty most of the time. I've experimented with running the free command after launching and while using various graphical applications such a Firefox, Thunderbird, Pidgin, LastFM, LibreOffice Writer and Skype, and they all seem to make far more use of the cache and buffers than of the tiny remaining amount of free RAM. Also, I find that my swapfile usually gets a load of about 100 meg per program. Is this anything I should be worried about?
runlevel3nut
Level 1
Level 1
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:11 am

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby xenopeek on Sat Dec 15, 2012 5:43 am

Linux Mint Main Edition (e.g., Linux Mint 14) is based on Ubuntu, which in turn based on Debian. On Linux Mint Main Edition you will be using the Linux Mint repository, and the Ubuntu repositories.

Linux Mint Debian Edition (abbreviated to LMDE) is based on Debian. On LMDE you will be using the Linux Mint repositories only. You won't be using the Debian repositories directly (at least not on the default install). Every few months an update is taken from the Debian repositories and copied to the Linux Mint repositories. More info about this in the LMDE FAQ: viewtopic.php?f=197&t=91405.

Any programming I do I don't do from the terminal. For very short programs I either use Gedit on Cinnamon/Xfce, Pluma on MATE, or Kate on KDE. Those are the default GUI text editors coming with these editions of Linux Mint. For serious programming I use the programmer's editor called Geany, and it is a pleasure to use (available for installation from the Software Manager). The examples for Google's Python Class you will mostly be running directly from the terminal, but for any programs that you write to file I'd say the text editor that comes with your edition of Linux Mint will suffice. If you are serious about programming, a good programmer's editor will be much more efficient. Finding one that works for you, and learning to make best use of it, that is another story :wink:

Any editing these days I need to do on the command line I do with nano, though I'm a competent vi user also. It's fine for editing configuration files for me, but I don't have the time to get efficient and fluent with what vi offers for programmers. If you are serious about programming from the terminal you probably want to look at emacs also. I'd recommend sticking with a GUI text editor or programmer's editor though, the learning curve will be less.

As to your memory question, see Help! Linux ate my ram! :D
User avatar
xenopeek
Level 21
Level 21
 
Posts: 14995
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby runlevel3nut on Sat Dec 15, 2012 12:00 pm

Hi, Vincent,

Thank you for all of the information and references. I do intend to follow up on all of them over time, but it's a matter of finding enough time, so please don't think you're dealing with a malingerer if there's a delay in my implementing the solutions you've suggested.

In your opinion, would it be useful for me to install LMDE in dual boot and use it alternatively with LM14? (I'm using Cinnamon only because the Xfce edition is still in RC, but do like Xfce better and plan to switch to Xfce as soon as LM14 Xfce is stable.) Because my LM14 is encrypted, I'd need some help accessing my documents folder from LMDE without using a flash drive. Not encrypting my LMDE /home folder is something I'd rather avoid.

I'd also love to get your answer to this short question: viewtopic.php?f=213&t=119831
runlevel3nut
Level 1
Level 1
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:11 am

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby xenopeek on Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:58 pm

runlevel3nut wrote:would it be useful for me to install LMDE in dual boot [...] with LM14?

It is always useful to have a backup operating system already installed. Some users for example keep their old Linux Mint release installed and install in dual boot a new Linux Mint release. So if you have any issues you can fall back to the old release. But switching between Linux Mint 14 and LMDE sounds like you have a problem committing :D If you enjoy using both, go for it, but I personally stick to just one main installation to use on daily basis.

runlevel3nut wrote:Because my LM14 is encrypted, I'd need some help accessing my documents folder from LMDE without using a flash drive.

Ah. Well. I wouldn't have a clue for that :) There is this documentation for eCryptFS from Ubuntu and it has various ways to access your encrypted files from another installation: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Encry ... eDirectory. Now whether that is useful on a day-to-day basis, and whether LMDE supports all this, I don't know.
User avatar
xenopeek
Level 21
Level 21
 
Posts: 14995
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:58 am
Location: The Netherlands

Re: so what's a guy with my name doing here?

Postby jesica on Mon Jan 07, 2013 1:19 am

:mrgreen:

Good day and welcome to Linux Mint,

Hope you will enjoy it as much as we do.
Image

My Linux Counter number # 566377
Mate
IT Ninja
Happy apt-get-ing!
Linux Mint Donar # 2159


Security is the separation of an asset from a threat.
User avatar
jesica
Level 9
Level 9
 
Posts: 2552
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2009 3:54 am
Location: South Africa

Linux Mint is funded by ads and donations.
 

Return to Introduce yourself

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests