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WTF is Linux?! [Jul. 6th, 2011|07:10 am]
I've downloaded BackTrak 5... it's cool, but I'm running into problems with the filing system.
I opened KInfoCentre, and it says I'm using Linux 2.6.38... KDE SC Version 4.5.3... I have no idea what KDE is.

Everything's automated so that clicking buttons runs command line stuff (I wonder why there's an obsession with command line? - I regularly use .COM and .EXE's that write to the console in VBScript to trap their output, so I do like the console, but in Linux, *everything's* console!).

This works great, but I want to become familiar with the filing system... when I run aircrack, it opens a window with the title "Aircrack.log.txt: read"... I'm assuming that means the window is showing the contents of a log file that's been generated on the fly?

In it it shows:
Opening /root/.gerix-wifi-cracker/sniff_dump-02.cap

These build up when I'm sniffing - so there ends up being several after a few experiments.

I wanted to delete them, perhaps open them up too, to see what's in the files, so I see if I can find some kind of file manager: I discover something called Dolphin - which looks like File-Manager a bit... so I'm guessing it's the thing I need, and then I click "Root" in the left hand side...

There's no .gerix-wifi-cracker folder in there!? WTF!?

I clicked the "Search" button, and type in .cap....  with "Search everywhere" selected... "Nothing found" WTF!?

I tried *.cap - it's the same result!

I know I'm a retarded Windows user, but I'm use to stuff being where it says it's located, and searches working when "Everywhere" is selected.
It's so easy to lose the plot with this thing... I was frustrated several times

I also attempted to update the drivers for NVidia... OMG!
It came as a .run file, and i couldn't double click it in the Dolphin file manager - it just opened a text file with an install script in it... scrolling down crashed the editor!

I discovered I needed to log out of Xwindow (is that the name?) - and run:
sudo sh nvidia.12341248.1258375.3248723784.2378623785683287.28347683725678235.run  (something like that anyway, auto complete with Tab wasn't working)

The instructions here: http://www.backtrack-linux.org/forums/backtrack-howtos/1056-installing-nvidia-video-cards.html
Weren't exactly right. =(

When it ran, it told me:

ERROR: The Nouveau kernel driver is currently in use by your system. This driver is incompatible with the NVIDIA driver, and must be disabled before proceeding.

I'm installing NEW ones! Why would it matter!?  =(

The screen resolution is the correct native one for my laptop - but the screen effects look a little slow - I think it's using some generic thing that's clever enough to pick the right desktop resolution for the display, but doesn't support hardware rendering.

At the end of the evening I was surprised and frustrated at how much one is expected to know about the systems internals before even getting started.
I'd like to learn Linux, but it seems to need x5 the research to do things, than the equivalent in Windows.

I do like the feature for mounting volumes though - I wonder if that's to do with the vanishing files? The GUI Dolphin could have given me a clue. =(

No wonder Linux admins get paid mega millions of bucks - it's like a damn video recorder with Engrish instruction manuals.

( I just wish Windows was more flexiable, with it being aimed at 'tards, there's many features it doesn't have to keep people "safe"! Such as not putting WiFi into monitor mode, and things like that.)


[User Picture]From: inshadowhiding
2011-07-06 07:32 am (UTC)
ok, KDE is a window manager, it does the desktop stuff you are use to, and means you don't have to to use a shell.

the . in the folder name marks it as hidden, and thus you have to show hidden to find it ...

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[User Picture]From: angeluk
2011-07-06 10:33 am (UTC)
This may be of some help: http://tldp.org/ plus there shouldbe some sort of help with your distro.

As mentioned, KDE is your Desktop Environment, kind of like the Windows GUI. There are various alternatives, such as gnome, or a cut-down window manager like wm.

As mentioned, any file name beginning with a . is hidden from normal directory listings. The file manager program you're using might have an option something like 'show hidden files'

The /root directory is the super-user's home directory, if you're logged in as a normal user (and you should be unless you're specifically doing things to the system files) you won't be able to see or access what's in it anyway.

Linux 2.6.38 is the Kernel version, KDE 4.5.3 is your environment version. The closest I can think of is like running DOS 3.3 with Windows 3.1 on top.
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[User Picture]From: solar_angel
2011-07-06 02:12 pm (UTC)
Also, in addition to what's been mentioned, the X Server (which handles displaying graphical things) is *NOT* part of the kernel, which is why a kernel driver like Nouveau can conflict with an X.org driver.

As for the console, most of us who've been using *nix systems for a lot of years in a serious capacity spend most of our lives on it. You can do anything from the console except deliberately graphical apps (which clearly need more than a text interface to begin with). A text console is network-transparent, automatable, composable, and a few other good things.

Also keep in mind that Linux distributions are not all created equal. Some are designed with expert users in mind, and are downright HOSTILE to new users. Does it surprise you that most people can't even open a web browser on my computer?
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[User Picture]From: egonelbre
2011-07-07 10:07 am (UTC)
Why terminal?
Because it's faster and more flexible and easier to work with -- if you know what you are doing. It takes some time, but it's really, really useful. So to get you started ( http://www.eresearchsa.edu.au/sites/default/files/unix-commands.html ). Warning, you'll start to miss it on Windows. :)

To see the hidden files, I think in dolphin it was Ctrl+H and "View->Show Hidden Files", in terminal "ls -a". Hidden files are hidden on windows as well (by default), just to protect the user.

There's a difference how executables work in linux. In Windows you have ".exe", ".com" etc. extension to show that the file is executable, in linux they have a "+x" flag on the file - otherwise it's treated as a regular file. You can add the flag with "right-click->properties->permissions->executable" (or somthing like that) or alternatively in terminal "chmod +x filename" (if that seems cryptic, you can read it as change mode (chmod) add flag (+) executable (x) to file (filename)).

The filesystem is one thing that's quite different from Windows. In depth overview where everything is located http://www.pathname.com/fhs/pub/fhs-2.3.html

Nouveau is open-source nVidia driver, so it was using hardware acceleration, but it's just not as fast as the proprietary driver. You can disable Compiz (the pretty effects) to make it faster.

In user oriented distros (Ubuntu, Mint...) the 3rd-party driver installation is much simpler (three mouse clicks), in others they still expect you to read the manual (nVidia README) or search and solve the problem yourself.

Some distros require you to know nothing (Android and other embedded...), some know very little (Ubuntu, Mint...) and some a lot (Gentoo, Slackware...), and there's lots of other distros that fall between them. BackTrack is targeted to a professional crowd and therefore expects users to know the basics of *nix systems... hand-holding stuff just gets in the way (like, Windows UAC).
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[User Picture]From: sarahs_muse
2011-07-07 11:29 am (UTC)
Thank you!
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