Tag Archives: Ubuntu

Unit 3 – texteditors, VMWare

Use the blog this week to describe your experience with the text editors and the hands-on assignments. Include some of the commands you have tried and the results you achieved. What kind of configuration have you done previously on your primary computer and how did the process differ from configuring the Linux files you looked at this week?

I had no difficulty logging in to VMWare and verifying connectivity.  The VIM tutorial was also pretty straightforward, although it took me about two hours to complete rather than the half hour that Bruce predicted. I tried all the commands listed in the tutorial, and they worked as described. I forgot that I was supposed to report some of the results, so I didn’t take any screenshots. I have GOT to remember to start doing that!

I also completed the practice configuration of the .bashrc file as described, including creating the aliases; I also imported the various repositories by configuring the sources.list file and then executing the aptitude command to import and upgrade the packages.  My screen looked exactly like the screens in the examples. In the past, I vaguely remember changing config.sys and boot.ini when I was running MS-DOS, but I don’t remember what those changes were for. Of course, when I use a GUI on a windows machine or a mac, I guess the equivalent operation is to chose options during the install; and then also to change the way certain applications work by changing the settings under the settings tab.

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Unit 2 – continued. Installation of Ubuntu through VM Fusion

Okay, thanks to Bruce I think I have the difference between the two virtual machines sorted out. The one we run through VPN Client is an Ubuntu Desktop virtual machine installed on the SIRLS Sandbox Server that we access through a remote desktop.  Because it is a desktop version of Ubuntu (i.e. a GUI-like interface) we have to find the terminal window to use the command line.

The Ubuntu Virtual Machine we have installed on our own computers is run through VM Fusion (for a Mac).  This is a server version of Ubuntu, so it just runs from a CLI, not a desktop GUI like the virtual machine on the Sandbox server.

My installation of the Ubuntu 10.04 server on my machine went fine, after a few snafus. I was able to access VMware Fusion just fine and it ran just fine. Fortunately, I had followed Bruce’s advice to watch the installation videos in their entirety before I tried the installation, because when I tried to run the videos in another window so I could follow them step by step, it worked until I had to press the start button. At first it seemed as if it wasn’t doing anything; I pressed the start/pause toggle repeatedly, but didn’t get the screen with the big play button on it like in the video. I tried to click in the window, but it wouldn’t let me. I finally went to the menu at the top of the screen and decided to change the view to full-screen. Once I did that, I got the window with the big play button—but then I couldn’t see the videos anymore, nor the menu! And I couldn’t escape from the full-screen view, although I tried the escape key and other alternatives (although I didn’t try ctrl-C or ctrl-Z because I didn’t want to abort the install). So I just went on with the installation, and I remembered most of the steps in the videos.  There were a couple of spots where I did not remember what options the videos said to choose, so I chose the default in those cases. I did install the LAMP server, the SSH server, and I also installed the database server, because I used to work as a database specialist and I wanted to play with that.  The install seemed to complete correctly, and I eventually got the command line!  Later, after I exited the system, I noticed the VMware icon in my taskbar and clicked on it, and behold the play window came up! I wonder if it had been there all along? The whole process took about two hours.

I know this description sounds vague, but I didn’t think to take a screen shot of the problem I was having. And once I got stuck in full-screen mode, I wouldn’t have been able to anyway!

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Unit 2 – tutorials and the command line!

Working through the tutorials was fairly easy – I remember many of the concepts from DOS and from working on the old DEC-10 mainframes here at the UA back in the late 70s-early 80s.  The hierarchical file structure of the directories is the same, so navigating was not a problem. Manipulating files was also familiar, since the wildcards work very similarly to what I remember.  I/O redirection also worked much as I had remembered, including the pipes and filters. That part was really fun, trying new combinations in order to get just what I wanted — I had forgotten how powerful they can be!  The file/directory permission commands were new to me; they make sense, but the codes are going to be difficult to remember, especially since I don’t read binary. I seem to recall an alternate method being shown in one of the online video tutorials, but I will have to go back and check. Job control was also fairly straightforward.

The main problem I had was getting stuck without a command prompt. Several times this happened with variations on the cat command; I couldn’t figure out how to quit; I tried ctrl-c and quit and exit, but nothing worked. I had to close the terminal window to kill the process. I read on someone else’s blog that ctrl-z will get the prompt back (and this was also mentioned in the kill section of the tutorial – which I came to AFTER I had the problem). I’m still not sure exactly how the cat command works; I think you need to indicate a file name, or it just ends up echoing back what you type in – which makes sense, since it expects the standard input to be the keyboard and the standard output to the the terminal. I guess I could pipe the output to a file; but then I wouldn’t be able to see what I was typing (I’m guessing). The script command described in one of the other tutorials seems better for this – but anyway I’ll have to experiment.

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ubuntuforums.org: How to find help and searching the site

In our introduction to Ubuntu Linux, this forum was helpful. The “Asking For Help” thread by ugm6hr was especially useful, especially the posts “How to ask the question to get the right answer” and “ZabiGG’s How-to search or ask for help.”

How to ask the question to get the right answer
ZabiGG’s How-to search or ask for help

Second, somewhere in the forums I found a suggestion to use, not only the search box provided on the site (upper right hand corner of the screen), but also Google to search the site, using the terms followed by the search terms, e.g.  site:ubuntuforums.org “How to Ask for Help”

A comparison of the two ways to search:

  • The Google search returned hits from several different threads, these are the top two:

How to ask for help – Ubuntu Forums

2 posts – 2 authors – Last post: 20 Jul 2006

How to ask for help Desktop Environments. These Aren’t Roasted! bensexson’s Avatar. Join Date: Mar 2005. Beans: 189. How to ask for help
ubuntuforums.org › … › Desktop EnvironmentsCached


How to ask for help – Ubuntu Forums

5 posts – 3 authors – Last post: 20 Jul 2006

How to ask for help General Help. These Aren’t Roasted! bensexson’s Avatar. Join Date: Mar 2005. Beans: 189. Re: How to ask for help
ubuntuforums.org › … › Main Support CategoriesGeneral HelpCached

  •  The search “How to Ask for Help” in the searchbox on the ubuntoforums.org site failed to return any results, whether the search string was placed in quotes or not. It seems the search box on the forums site is probably expecting keywords, even though ZabiGG suggested using strings in quotes in the searchbox.

Posts in the forum also suggested two search engines that search ubuntu sites that may prove useful:

 


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