[SATLUG] Question about questions

Henry Pugsley henry.pugsley at gmail.com
Sun Feb 24 18:29:03 CST 2008

On Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 4:52 PM, herb cee <hc at lookcee.com> wrote:
>  So I also have learned that you need to know some stuff just to know how
>  to ask the question, I still don't know what to read on and I wonder
>  what questions all you cool dudes on the list would recommend to get off
>  the ground learning how to steer the damn ship off the rocks? I mean
>  regardless of why I want to use the puter for but to keep it running and
>  know how to get out of a fix like being in the galley thinking I was on
>  bridge and typing the command and winding up with a black screen, yep I
>  did that one.
>  Thanks folks, herb
>  --

Remove X11/Xorg from your system and try to do everything you would
normally do from the command line ;)  I did that for 6 months because
my ATI card had zero support back in the day.  But seriously ..

Best place to start is with log messages and configuration files.  One
of the nice points about Linux is the amount of logging (can be bad
sometimes, heh) and how easy it is to find where things are
configured.  Check out the various logs in /var/log and see what gets
logged to which file.  You can look in /etc/syslogd.conf to get an
idea of how services and messages are divided out.  Almost everything
you use will have a configuration file in /etc or in your home
directory.  When you use a new program, find where the configurations
are stored and just make a mental note of it .. when something breaks,
you'll know where to look.

It is a good idea to go through a full kernel configuration at least
once, even if you never have to build a custom kernel.  You will get
to see all of the hardware and options that the kernel supports and
how some of them are related.  You will not remember every option in
there, but you'll know about where to look when it comes up.  This was
useful during the RHCE .. you had to compile kernels with X options
and get it to work.  If you follow the RH process, a kernel build
takes 60 minutes.  If you do it yourself, the build only takes 20
minutes.  Pretty handy when you only have 90 minutes to finish.

Best advice I can give though is to not be afraid of poking around the
system.  You may break things, but to get it working again means you
have to learn something.  No one can remember every option of every
program, but if you know where to look and find it quickly, you'll
look like a genius :)

Oh, and keep backups.

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