Question -- good intro to Linux

gumnos (Tim Chase) gumnos at
Thu Jul 1 19:34:43 UTC 2004

> I need something which will give me a good introduction to Linux

One of the best texts I've found is "The Linux Cookbook", which is
available in both the dead-tree version for money, and electronically
for free.  You can find one of many online copies at

It may even be included in your distribution, depending on which you
have.  I think it may come with Debian, though I'm not sure.

I've found that it pays much more attention to the newbie at the console
than just about any other text I've read.  The Cookbook is good from
both a beginner perspective, yet it's got nuggets in it that I've found
useful even after a number of years of working with Linux.  It has a
bias towards the Debian distribution, but all the packages should be
available for other distros.  It's got a couple chapters on X, but you
can just skip those until you're comfortable at the console, and then
you can delve into Gnopernicus later.

With the exception of the rather small portion on X, the rest is all
console based, so you should be good to go.  Granted, there are a lot of
power features that you begin to learn over time that aren't included
(or are just touched on most lightly), but there are other sources for
that sort of thing.  This should get you goin' fairly quickly.

It covers shell basics, some security basics, getting help (with "man"
and "info"), manipulating files (finding, assigning rights, working with
Dos files, etc), grammer & spell checking, as well as other text
manipulations & searching, manipulating audio from the command-line,
printing, calendar & contact software, math calculators from the command
line, as well as networking/internet/web/email.

Hope this helps,


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