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Re: [linux-dell-laptops] Next distro?

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  • ken
    ... Yeah. Well, installing Linux on a laptop does involve a lot of issues, issues which, I ve found, are different from one distro to another. Installing
    Message 1 of 19 , May 23, 2007
      On 05/23/2007 03:36 AM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
      > ken wrote:
      >> On 05/22/2007 02:29 PM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
      >
      >> Comments/responses?
      >>
      >> Oh, yeah. One other thing. I like to compile packages from source code
      >> and have managed to configure my gcc so that the executables are
      >> optimized for my "mobile" processor. So does the Ubuntu package manager
      >> permit compiling from source? Is it one step more than just installing
      >> a binary...? or more like five or ten more steps? How well are mutual
      >> dependencies handled when compiling from source code packages with
      >> Ubuntu? (The process for doing this using rpm runs from Ugly to
      >> Impossible.)
      >>
      >> Thanks for any input.
      >>
      > Wow, Ken. You've asked a lot of questions here.

      Yeah. Well, installing Linux on a laptop does involve a lot of issues,
      issues which, I've found, are different from one distro to another.
      Installing Linux for a server, on the other hand, isn't a big deal
      anymore and can be done in basically fifteen minutes. When dealing with
      so many hardware items, an install can bring up a lot of problems
      (again, depending upon the distro). I'm hoping that by picking the
      right distro, I can save myself a few days of wrestling with the install.


      > I'm using an i8600. With Slackware I had to do a lot of gymnastics to
      > get things working, and some never worked. When I switched to Ubuntu
      > Feisty, I was shocked to find that everything I needed worked out of
      > the box--wireless, i8k buttons, audio, etc.

      That's good news. I forgot to mention audio, I guess because suse
      handled that okay for me. I did have to use gnome to configure the
      audio buttons though... and the suspend trigger.


      > I just made a couple of little tweaks, for example I made a root
      > account so I could su - and not have to sudo for all my work. Sudo is
      > fine and safer, but if I need to run a number of programs that need
      > root access, it's easier to simply become root. To do that, I simply
      > needed to make a root password. I used: sudo passwd and entered the
      > new password when prompted--really easy.

      Every linux distro I've ever installed (dozens... going back to kernel
      v.0.9.13) always required creating a root password as part of the
      initial install of the system. (?)


      > Because I often prefer to use a text console with my favorite
      > programs, I had to install the programs that don't typically come
      > with X. For example, vim, joe. As far as I know, all the usual
      > compiling programs are there by default, and if not, they're easy to
      > install. It is not easy to boot directly into a text console.

      Do you mean boot up *not* into the GUI...? so that you have just a
      black and white screen with a CLI prompt?



      > You have to remove the gdm boot script from the rc3 folder (I'm on a
      > Mac right now and I'm tired, so I'm guessing the specifics here.)
      > This is actually me being silly now, because I could do everything
      > from the X window system. I don't personally use suspend, so I can't
      > comment on that.

      I love being able to suspend. I can stop in the middle of, say, writing
      an email, in the middle of typing a word-- at the same time in the
      middle of creating a graphic in the gimp-- at the same time in the
      middle of typing a bash command in a terminal window-- and just shut the
      lid. Then I can take the laptop to a cybercafe, open the lid, jigger
      with the wireless/networking to get an internet connection, and continue
      working on everything just like I was back at home. When I'm done at
      the cybercafe, again in the middle of a half dozen tasks, I can close
      the lid, go back home, and continue with everything right where I left
      off before closing the lid. This laptop has had uptimes of 44 days
      (without a shutdown or reboot) and this could have been longer if I
      would have specifically worked at it.


      > Everything else has worked though. I used to love the rpm management
      > system, but since using the debian system in Ubundu, I've found it
      > smoother to use. I haven't tried it yet, but I think you can actually
      > use rpm directly in Ubuntu. You wouldn't really want to though,
      > unless like me you have some favorite apps in rpm format. Keep in
      > mind that almost all software has gone through debian so is available
      > in .deb format. Good luck. --Douglas

      Has anyone here ever created a debian package. I looked into making rpm
      packages, but after reading a lot of documentation, I didn't know any
      better how to do it than when I started. Supposedly there's some "easy"
      front end for creating rpm packages. I don't know that there's a
      connection, but since hearing about this front end I've encountered suse
      RPMs which errored out and would not install due to errors in the RPM
      package itself (something about a "missing description field"). So if
      creating a .deb package is straightforward, that would be a plus also.
      So anyone here ever create a .deb package?


      tnx++,
      ken

      --
      "This world ain't big enough for the both of us,"
      said the big noema to the little noema.
    • Douglas S. Oliver
      ... Hash: SHA1 ... Well this is one of the interesting surprises with Ubuntu. At set up and install, you re only asked for a personal password--NOT root.
      Message 2 of 19 , May 23, 2007
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        ken wrote:

        >
        >> I just made a couple of little tweaks, for example I made a root
        >> account so I could su - and not have to sudo for all my work. Sudo is
        >> fine and safer, but if I need to run a number of programs that need
        >> root access, it's easier to simply become root. To do that, I simply
        >> needed to make a root password. I used: sudo passwd and entered the
        >> new password when prompted--really easy.
        >
        > Every linux distro I've ever installed (dozens... going back to kernel
        > v.0.9.13) always required creating a root password as part of the
        > initial install of the system. (?)

        Well this is one of the interesting surprises with Ubuntu. At set up and
        install, you're only asked for a personal password--NOT root. That's why
        everything has to be done via sudo. It took me a second to realize what
        I needed to do. Once I set up a true root password, I was all set to go.
        >
        >> Because I often prefer to use a text console with my favorite
        >> programs, I had to install the programs that don't typically come
        >> with X. For example, vim, joe. As far as I know, all the usual
        >> compiling programs are there by default, and if not, they're easy to
        >> install. It is not easy to boot directly into a text console.
        >
        > Do you mean boot up *not* into the GUI...? so that you have just a
        > black and white screen with a CLI prompt?

        Yup.

        >> You have to remove the gdm boot script from the rc3 folder (I'm on a

        That's remove the /etc/rc3.d/S13gdm soft linked file. Ubuntu basically
        copies or links all the rcX.d files to the same place. This means that
        if you want to force a cli or tui, you need to telinit 1. Of course, if
        I'm correct, you then do not have the multi user protections present in
        run level 3. Stopping the gui from loading makes it kind of like RedHat
        run level 3, which is how I first learned to use Linux in 1998. I first
        started using computers in 1976 pre dos days, so I don't shy away from a
        B/W terminal.

        Take care, Douglas


        - --

        ******

        Douglas S. Oliver

        "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity,
        and I'm not sure about the former." --Albert Einstein

        "....What right do I have to think?" --Ugarte, December 1941

        ******
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      • ken
        ... Given the below, this is a good thing to know about Ubuntu. I too spend quite a bit of time as root, so much so that I perpetually have a terminal window
        Message 3 of 19 , May 24, 2007
          On 05/23/2007 01:51 PM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
          > ken wrote:
          >
          >
          >>> I just made a couple of little tweaks, for example I made a root
          >>> account so I could su - and not have to sudo for all my work. Sudo is
          >>> fine and safer, but if I need to run a number of programs that need
          >>> root access, it's easier to simply become root. To do that, I simply
          >>> needed to make a root password. I used: sudo passwd and entered the
          >>> new password when prompted--really easy.

          Given the below, this is a good thing to know about Ubuntu. I too spend
          quite a bit of time as root, so much so that I perpetually have a
          terminal window logged into root so I can jump to it, run a few or a few
          dozen commands, and then get back to what I was doing previously. I
          couldn't see having to type a passphrase that often and would think that
          it could actually be *less* secure in some circumstances.


          >> Every linux distro I've ever installed (dozens... going back to kernel
          >> v.0.9.13) always required creating a root password as part of the
          >> initial install of the system. (?)
          >
          > Well this is one of the interesting surprises with Ubuntu. At set up and
          > install, you're only asked for a personal password--NOT root. That's why
          > everything has to be done via sudo. It took me a second to realize what
          > I needed to do. Once I set up a true root password, I was all set to go.

          If I go with Ubuntu, I'll be doing the same


          >>> Because I often prefer to use a text console with my favorite
          >>> programs, I had to install the programs that don't typically come
          >>> with X. For example, vim, joe. As far as I know, all the usual
          >>> compiling programs are there by default, and if not, they're easy to
          >>> install. It is not easy to boot directly into a text console.
          >> Do you mean boot up *not* into the GUI...? so that you have just a
          >> black and white screen with a CLI prompt?
          >
          > Yup.
          >
          >>> You have to remove the gdm boot script from the rc3 folder (I'm on a
          >
          > That's remove the /etc/rc3.d/S13gdm soft linked file. Ubuntu basically
          > copies or links all the rcX.d files to the same place. This means that
          > if you want to force a cli or tui, you need to telinit 1. Of course, if
          > I'm correct, you then do not have the multi user protections present in
          > run level 3. Stopping the gui from loading makes it kind of like RedHat
          > run level 3, which is how I first learned to use Linux in 1998. I first
          > started using computers in 1976 pre dos days, so I don't shy away from a
          > B/W terminal.

          The standard way to do this has always been to edit /etc/inittab,
          changing the line

          id:5:initdefault:

          to

          id:3:initdefault:

          (changing the runlevel from "5" to "3").

          Does Ubuntu deviate from this tradition/standard also?


          >
          > Take care, Douglas

          Good talking with you,
          ken



          --
          "This world ain't big enough for the both of us,"
          said the big noema to the little noema.
        • Douglas S. Oliver
          ... Hash: SHA1 ... The answer is a simple yes. This is what I was trying to say, though clumsily, when I said that everything except run level one is linked to
          Message 4 of 19 , May 24, 2007
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            ken wrote:
            > On 05/23/2007 01:51 PM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
            >> ken wrote:
            >>>> B/W terminal.
            >
            > The standard way to do this has always been to edit /etc/inittab,
            > changing the line
            >
            > id:5:initdefault:
            >
            > to
            >
            > id:3:initdefault:
            >
            > (changing the runlevel from "5" to "3").
            >
            > Does Ubuntu deviate from this tradition/standard also?

            The answer is a simple yes. This is what I was trying to say, though
            clumsily, when I said that everything except run level one is linked to
            run level four or five. For example, if you telinit to run level 3, you
            wind up back at the initial gui log in screen. The same is true if you
            use <ctrl><alt><backspace>, which would normally kill your gui session
            and drop you at a text terminal. You might be met with an admonishment
            that "only root can to that." Ubuntu is really set up for folks used to
            MS Windows. New linux users should normally stay away from acting as the
            root user. There's simply too much power there; however, for an
            experienced linux user, being forced to stay away from becoming root, is
            an annoyance. And I should say that my Ubuntu 7.04 has no inittab file.
            I think an earlier version did have that file, and I tried changing the
            initdefault which because of the soft linking business, had no effect. I
            think a while back I tried teliniting to run level one and then using
            startx to get an X session. From there I could use
            <ctrl><alt><backspace> to pop out of the gui to the terminal. Silly way
            to do this. That's when I learned from a web search about the disabling
            the gdm in rc3.d. Anyway, it's been fun to play with this newcomer on
            the block. Talk to you later--Douglas


            - --

            ******

            Douglas S. Oliver

            "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity,
            and I'm not sure about the former." --Albert Einstein

            "....What right do I have to think?" --Ugarte, December 1941

            ******
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          • ken
            ... Wow! Thanks for the explanation. Ubuntu s too weird for me, too far off from unix. The search goes on. -- This world ain t big enough for the both of
            Message 5 of 19 , May 24, 2007
              On 05/24/2007 11:51 AM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
              > ken wrote:
              >> On 05/23/2007 01:51 PM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
              >>> ken wrote:
              >>>>> B/W terminal.
              >> The standard way to do this has always been to edit /etc/inittab,
              >> changing the line
              >
              >> id:5:initdefault:
              >
              >> to
              >
              >> id:3:initdefault:
              >
              >> (changing the runlevel from "5" to "3").
              >
              >> Does Ubuntu deviate from this tradition/standard also?
              >
              > The answer is a simple yes. This is what I was trying to say, though
              > clumsily, when I said that everything except run level one is linked to
              > run level four or five. For example, if you telinit to run level 3, you
              > wind up back at the initial gui log in screen. The same is true if you
              > use <ctrl><alt><backspace>, which would normally kill your gui session
              > and drop you at a text terminal. You might be met with an admonishment
              > that "only root can to that." Ubuntu is really set up for folks used to
              > MS Windows. New linux users should normally stay away from acting as the
              > root user. There's simply too much power there; however, for an
              > experienced linux user, being forced to stay away from becoming root, is
              > an annoyance. And I should say that my Ubuntu 7.04 has no inittab file.
              > I think an earlier version did have that file, and I tried changing the
              > initdefault which because of the soft linking business, had no effect. I
              > think a while back I tried teliniting to run level one and then using
              > startx to get an X session. From there I could use
              > <ctrl><alt><backspace> to pop out of the gui to the terminal. Silly way
              > to do this. That's when I learned from a web search about the disabling
              > the gdm in rc3.d. Anyway, it's been fun to play with this newcomer on
              > the block. Talk to you later--Douglas

              Wow! Thanks for the explanation. Ubuntu's too weird for me, too far
              off from unix. The search goes on.

              --
              "This world ain't big enough for the both of us,"
              said the big noema to the little noema.
            • Sword King
              Apparently I have way less experience with Linux and even computers than you guys, but I easily solved the problems you are discussing on my Inspiron 1100
              Message 6 of 19 , May 24, 2007
                Apparently I have way less experience with Linux and even computers
                than you guys, but I easily solved the problems you are discussing on
                my Inspiron 1100 (Xubuntu Feisty) by creating a shortcut to a root
                terminal in X, thereby alleviating the need to 'sudo'. It's usually
                one of the first things I start when I fire it up, cuz I like to play
                around way more than is necessary to get work done.:) For example, I
                go there and use aptitude to update or install software.

                I also made a shortcut to open Nautilus as root, so I can go poking
                around in places I shouldn't be allowed, and found a way to insert a
                context menu item "Open as Root". Needless to say, I don't remember
                how I did these things, but they are beneficial.

                SK

                --- In linux-dell-laptops@yahoogroups.com, ken <gebser@...> wrote:
                >
                > On 05/23/2007 01:51 PM somebody named Douglas S. Oliver wrote:
                > > ken wrote:
                > >
                > >
                > >>> I just made a couple of little tweaks, for example I made a root
                > >>> account so I could su - and not have to sudo for all my work.
                Sudo is
                > >>> fine and safer, but if I need to run a number of programs that
                need
                > >>> root access, it's easier to simply become root. To do that, I
                simply
                > >>> needed to make a root password. I used: sudo passwd and entered
                the
                > >>> new password when prompted--really easy.
                >
                > Given the below, this is a good thing to know about Ubuntu. I too
                spend
                > quite a bit of time as root, so much so that I perpetually have a
                > terminal window logged into root so I can jump to it, run a few or
                a few
                > dozen commands, and then get back to what I was doing previously. I
                > couldn't see having to type a passphrase that often and would think
                that
                > it could actually be *less* secure in some circumstances.
                >
                >
                > >> Every linux distro I've ever installed (dozens... going back to
                kernel
                > >> v.0.9.13) always required creating a root password as part of the
                > >> initial install of the system. (?)
                > >
                > > Well this is one of the interesting surprises with Ubuntu. At set
                up and
                > > install, you're only asked for a personal password--NOT root.
                That's why
                > > everything has to be done via sudo. It took me a second to
                realize what
                > > I needed to do. Once I set up a true root password, I was all set
                to go.
                >
                > If I go with Ubuntu, I'll be doing the same
                >
                >
                > >>> Because I often prefer to use a text console with my favorite
                > >>> programs, I had to install the programs that don't typically
                come
                > >>> with X. For example, vim, joe. As far as I know, all the usual
                > >>> compiling programs are there by default, and if not, they're
                easy to
                > >>> install. It is not easy to boot directly into a text console.
                > >> Do you mean boot up *not* into the GUI...? so that you have
                just a
                > >> black and white screen with a CLI prompt?
                > >
                > > Yup.
                > >
                > >>> You have to remove the gdm boot script from the rc3 folder (I'm
                on a
                > >
                > > That's remove the /etc/rc3.d/S13gdm soft linked file. Ubuntu
                basically
                > > copies or links all the rcX.d files to the same place. This means
                that
                > > if you want to force a cli or tui, you need to telinit 1. Of
                course, if
                > > I'm correct, you then do not have the multi user protections
                present in
                > > run level 3. Stopping the gui from loading makes it kind of like
                RedHat
                > > run level 3, which is how I first learned to use Linux in 1998. I
                first
                > > started using computers in 1976 pre dos days, so I don't shy away
                from a
                > > B/W terminal.
                >
                > The standard way to do this has always been to edit /etc/inittab,
                > changing the line
                >
                > id:5:initdefault:
                >
                > to
                >
                > id:3:initdefault:
                >
                > (changing the runlevel from "5" to "3").
                >
                > Does Ubuntu deviate from this tradition/standard also?
                >
                >
                > >
                > > Take care, Douglas
                >
                > Good talking with you,
                > ken
                >
                >
                >
                > --
                > "This world ain't big enough for the both of us,"
                > said the big noema to the little noema.
                >
              • Douglas S. Oliver
                ... Actually, what you have done is not really related to what I was discussing. Also, Xubuntu is a bit of a different beast. In straight Ubuntu, one doesn t
                Message 7 of 19 , May 25, 2007
                  Sword King wrote:
                  > Apparently I have way less experience with Linux and even computers
                  > than you guys, but I easily solved the problems you are discussing on
                  > my Inspiron 1100 (Xubuntu Feisty) by creating a shortcut to a root
                  > terminal in X, thereby alleviating the need to 'sudo'. It's usually
                  > one of the first things I start when I fire it up, cuz I like to play
                  > around way more than is necessary to get work done.:) For example, I
                  > go there and use aptitude to update or install software.
                  >
                  > I also made a shortcut to open Nautilus as root, so I can go poking
                  > around in places I shouldn't be allowed, and found a way to insert a
                  > context menu item "Open as Root". Needless to say, I don't remember
                  > how I did these things, but they are beneficial.
                  >
                  > SK
                  >

                  Actually, what you have done is not really related to what I was
                  discussing. Also, Xubuntu is a bit of a different beast. In straight
                  Ubuntu, one doesn't really need to become root to install and modify
                  programs. In fact for lack of a root password, there is no true
                  linux/unix root account. Instead the users are added to the sudoers
                  account/group. Sudoers are given root privileges through their own login
                  password. What do I mean when I say there is no true root account? It's
                  not possible to login as root out of the box. That's because that would
                  require a root password. What you have done, SK, is cool, but at some
                  point you had to give a password. I'm guessing you used your login
                  password, not a root password. For me now, with a root password, I open
                  an xterm and switch to root with the "su -" command and give the root
                  password. Su means switch user, and the dash means switch to that
                  account. You'll notice that your account is located at /home/<your
                  username>/, whereas, the root account is located at /root/. The
                  difference is this, if I simply type su and the root password, I remain
                  in whatever folder I was in when I entered the su command. I also don't
                  inherit root's settings for the display and such. The dash says to
                  switch user and inherit that user's settings. This is a subtle but
                  important difference.

                  One of the main issues I was discussing related to working without X,
                  i.e, no gui. I think that everything you've done here SK still remains
                  within X. Ubuntu normally only allows you to work in either traditional
                  linux/unix run level 1--single user mode, or traditional level
                  4--multiuser graphical mode. Level 1 is a single user text console mode,
                  but not the traditional multiuser text mode of run level 3. SK, type
                  this: telinit 1 <enter> to see what run level one is like. To return to
                  the gui, simply type telinit 4 <enter>. Keep hacking, and please share
                  with us how you did your cool shortcuts. --D

                  --

                  ******

                  Douglas S. Oliver

                  "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity,
                  and I'm not sure about the former." --Albert Einstein

                  "....What right do I have to think?" --Ugarte, December 1941

                  ******
                • John DeCarlo
                  Ken and Doug, Using apt is much easier and more reliable than using rpm. Trust me, I used rpm and Red Hat for decades. When I switched to Ubuntu last year, I
                  Message 8 of 19 , May 25, 2007
                    Ken and Doug,

                    Using apt is much easier and more reliable than using rpm.  Trust me, I used rpm and Red Hat for decades.  When I switched to Ubuntu last year, I was delightfully amazed at how much I had been missing while using rpm.

                    Booting to single user mode is very easy - When you are booting the machine, type "e" at the grub menu and add a "1" to the boot line.  The other option is to kill gdm or kdm to avoid rebooting.

                    apt supports downloading and compiling source as well as binary.  Typically repositories have both a "deb" and "deb-src" equivalent, depending on what you want to do.  When using the right tools to install from "deb-src", it will run the install script and compile and make and configure for you.

                    Ubuntu is very much a "free" distribution.  So they don't install "non-free" stuff by default (like MP3 support, or DVD play via libdvdcss).  But "Feisty" makes it very easy to install those capabilities when you need them.  The first time you try to play an MP3 file, it will ask you if you want to install MP3 support, even if it is non-free.

                    As for changing networks, Ubuntu Feisty comes with networkmanager, allowing you to see what networks are accessible and choose one to connect to.  I haven't used it that much, though, so I don't have step-by-step.  Just look in the menu under Internet.

                    Feisty is also very good at hardware detection, and most things "just work" out of the box on laptops nowadays.

                    Hope this helps.


                  • Gilbert Mendoza
                    ... Hash: SHA1 I hate to add to an already long thread, but ... Just because the root account is not given a password during the installation process, doesn t
                    Message 9 of 19 , May 25, 2007
                      -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
                      Hash: SHA1


                      I hate to add to an already long thread, but ...

                      Just because the root account is not given a password during the
                      installation process, doesn't mean it does not exist. The root
                      account has simply been "locked", and most certainly does exist.
                      (check out "man passwd" for the "-l" option).

                      "sudo -i" and "sudo -s" are two very easy ways to run any
                      prolonged root shell without enabling the root account, exposing
                      it to local and remote dictionary or brute force password
                      attacks. That is unless of course a sudoer user doesn't have a
                      weak password. :-P But that's another topic. (the -i will drop
                      you to the /root/ directory, and -s will leave you in your own
                      /home/user/ directory. See "man sudo".)

                      Elevating user privileges on a need-only basis is considered an
                      industry wide best practice and is generally accepted by most
                      experienced administrators.

                      Changing to runlevel 1 (single user mode) just to gain a root
                      shell is NOT what one should do if they simply wish to gain root
                      access. Runlevel 1 actually stops many services according to
                      their init level configurations, and is typically used when
                      performing maintenance, troubleshooting, or system recovery.


                      As for the default runlevels, Ubuntu moved to "Upstart" which
                      doesn't use /etc/inittab, but still evaluates it if you create
                      one. (see /etc/event.d/) If one wishes to not use the graphical
                      logon manager "GDM", they can simply

                      a) remove the symlinks in /etc/rcX.d
                      (sudo update-rc.d -f gdm remove)

                      b) remove gdm altogether (sudo apt-get remove gdm). This of
                      course is a dependency of the ubuntu-desktop meta-package,but if
                      you are already comfortable with using a console only, who
                      cares.

                      c) or even remove just one of the gdm rcX.d scripts, and
                      designate that runlevel of your choice as being a non-graphical
                      multiuser. To be thorough, you can add a corresponding "K13gdm"
                      symlink, so that switching back and forth between this runlevel
                      will stop gdm accordingly.
                      i.e.
                      cd /etc/rc2.d
                      sudo rm S13gdm
                      sudo ln -s ../init.d/gdm K13gdm

                      For regular use of the console, you may also want change your
                      frame buffer size to a higher resolution to 1024x768 or higher by
                      editing /boot/grub/menu.lst.
                      i.e. add "vga=791" to the defoptions variable:
                      # defoptions=quiet splash vga=791


                      Anyway, hope this is useful for you folks.

                      GM
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                    • Douglas S. Oliver
                      ... Hash: SHA1 ... Thanks much, Gilbert. This is really useful information. Am I right in thinking that sudo -i and sudo -s are a little like the difference
                      Message 10 of 19 , May 25, 2007
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                        Gilbert Mendoza wrote:
                        >
                        > I hate to add to an already long thread, but ...
                        >
                        > Just because the root account is not given a password during the
                        > installation process, doesn't mean it does not exist. The root
                        > account has simply been "locked", and most certainly does exist.
                        > (check out "man passwd" for the "-l" option).
                        >

                        Thanks much, Gilbert. This is really useful information. Am I right in
                        thinking that sudo -i and sudo -s are a little like the difference
                        between having a root password and using "su <enter> and <password
                        enter>" and "su - <enter> and <password enter>? The difference here
                        being the added safety of using sudo and staying out of the root
                        account. I've been using linux for almost 10 years but am a relative new
                        comer to sudo. A few years ago I was studying for my RHSE cert. At that
                        time we were warned to watch out for users using sudo when they had weak
                        passwords, as you have said. That's why I stayed away from it till now
                        with Ubuntu. Not because of a weak password, but because it was easy to
                        use su when and only when I needed to become root. I made an rm error as
                        root once on my system. Trashed everything! I just needed to do that
                        once to become respectful of becoming root. Thanks again--Douglas

                        - --

                        ******

                        Douglas S. Oliver

                        "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity,
                        and I'm not sure about the former." --Albert Einstein

                        "....What right do I have to think?" --Ugarte, December 1941

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                      • Gilbert Mendoza
                        ... Hash: SHA1 No problem at all. You are correct regarding similarities between su , su - , sudo -i and -s. su - and sudo -i elevate privileges to root
                        Message 11 of 19 , May 25, 2007
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                          No problem at all.

                          You are correct regarding similarities between "su", "su -",
                          sudo -i and -s.

                          "su -" and "sudo -i" elevate privileges to root and use the shell
                          environment for the root user in /etc/passwd. you will notice by
                          issuing a 'pwd' command, you are placed in the /root directory.

                          "su" and "sudo -s" elevate privileges to root and use the shell
                          environment of the user running the command. So, you will stay
                          in /home/user, and any bash aliases, etc, will remain intact.

                          There are many advantages in using sudo vs. su, but primarily it
                          comes down to the granularity of control one has in limiting what
                          sudoer's can do with their privileges. For instance, with sudo
                          you can allow a user (or group of users) to to run a small set of
                          commands with root privileges, without granting access to more
                          sensitive functions.

                          Have a great weekend...

                          GM

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                          --- "Douglas S. Oliver" <dsoliver@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > Thanks much, Gilbert. This is really useful information. Am I right in
                          > thinking that sudo -i and sudo -s are a little like the difference
                          > between having a root password and using "su <enter> and <password
                          > enter>" and "su - <enter> and <password enter>? The difference here
                          > being the added safety of using sudo and staying out of the root
                          > account. I've been using linux for almost 10 years but am a relative new
                          > comer to sudo. A few years ago I was studying for my RHSE cert. At that
                          > time we were warned to watch out for users using sudo when they had weak
                          > passwords, as you have said. That's why I stayed away from it till now
                          > with Ubuntu. Not because of a weak password, but because it was easy to
                          > use su when and only when I needed to become root. I made an rm error as
                          > root once on my system. Trashed everything! I just needed to do that
                          > once to become respectful of becoming root. Thanks again--Douglas
                          >




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                        • Lamar Owen
                          ... While there is nothing wrong (and a lot right) with apt, let s compare apples to apples here. The raw rpm command is equivalent to the raw dpkg command.
                          Message 12 of 19 , May 25, 2007
                            On Friday 25 May 2007, John DeCarlo wrote:
                            > Using apt is much easier and more reliable than using rpm. Trust me, I
                            > used rpm and Red Hat for decades. When I switched to Ubuntu last year, I
                            > was delightfully amazed at how much I had been missing while using rpm.

                            While there is nothing wrong (and a lot right) with apt, let's compare apples
                            to apples here. The raw rpm command is equivalent to the raw dpkg command.
                            The equivalent command to apt in a Debian-inspired distribution on, say, a
                            Fedora Core installation, is 'yum'. You do that same sorts of things: 'yum
                            install kshisen' will pull in any needed RPM's from the repository, exactly
                            like 'apt-get install kshisen' would.

                            Now, with Ubuntu or plain Debian you will get a substantially larger
                            repository of software available; and it's not as fractured as the typical
                            RPM third party repositories are. But that has nothing to do with the tools
                            that are available.

                            I've been evaluating Kubuntu 7.04 in a virtual machine for a week or so, and I
                            like most of what I see. The biggest thing is the unified repository. The
                            second biggest thing is that the gnuradio and usrp packages are 'just there'
                            in that repository, whereas getting RPM's of same is difficult. However, I
                            find that adept-installer is just about as slow as pirut (GUI yum frontend on
                            Fedora Core 5 and above), and that's with identical hardware. Now,
                            adept-manager is quite a bit better.

                            Incidentally, there is an apt version for RPM-based systems. You can even get
                            synaptic on Fedora Core if you'd like.

                            I'm using Fedora Core 6 here on an Inspiron 640m, and most things work fine
                            (no headphones is an annoyance, but the sound does at least play; I haven't
                            worked much on the wireless, but that's a low priority for me; LCD backlight
                            control with Fn-UP or Fn-DOWN isn't working, etc).
                            --
                            Lamar Owen
                            Chief Information Officer
                            Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute
                            1 PARI Drive
                            Rosman, NC 28772
                            (828)862-5554
                            www.pari.edu
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