Preface


To most of the world, all Linux users are geeks. But there are users who don't even realize that they're using Linux at work, and users who have recently installed Linux for the first time. On the other hand, there are users to whom everyone turns when they have a problem. We target this book to that group of experts to help them solve the annoyances they face on the job: finding the right hardware, configuring servers, supporting less experienced users, and more.

Linux Annoyances for Geeks provides a guide to many of the more common complaints faced by the experienced Linux user. Sometimes the annoyance comes directly from Linux, and sometimes from the adaptations required to support a regular user. The solutions are designed for three of the more prominent Linux distributions: Fedora Core, SUSE, and Debian. As Fedora Core serves as the test bed for Red Hat Enterprise Linux, many of the annoyances (and solutions) have also been tested for that distribution.

There are many other excellent Linux distributions. I wish I could have covered more. In writing this book, perhaps the biggest annoyance was the subtle differences in how things work (and how annoyances are solved) among distributions. As each distribution evolves, annoyances change. And too many details pertaining to different distributions would not be fair to those among us who are focused on a single distribution.

This book is an outgrowth of a long conversation with Andy Oram at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention. He was looking for a Linux equivalent to Windows XP Annoyances for Geeks, and I had the experience with the distributions on which he wanted a focus. He has been instrumental in shepherding this book from start to finish.

My own background includes administering, tinkering with, testing, and writing about a wide variety of Linux distributions. While studying for my MCSE, I started working with SUSE Linux, and I've been sold on open source ever since. While my RHCE certification has focused me on Red Hat distributions, I actually use Debian, and now Ubuntu Linux, as my primary home distributions.

Conventions Used in This Book

The following typographical conventions are used in this book:


Italic

Indicates new terms, URLs, email addresses, filenames, file extensions, and Linux utilities.


Constant width

Indicates the contents of files and the output from commands.


Constant width bold

Shows commands or other text that should be typed literally by the user. Also used to highlight portions of code


Constant width italic

Shows text that should be replaced with user-supplied values.

This icon signifies a tip, suggestion, or general note.


This icon indicates a warning or caution.


Organization of This Book

Linux Annoyances for Geeks is divided into three sections. Chapters 1 through 4 are focused on the desktop, with tips for the geek who needs to help regular users adapt to Linux. Chapters 5 through 8 examine issues associated with hardware and system configuration. The final three chapters, 9 through 11, examine administrative annoyances related to servers, users, and more:


Chapter 1, Configuring a Desktop Environment

Provides solutions for some of these everyday annoyances.


Chapter 2, Configuring User Workstations

Gives some basic tips for less experienced users.


Chapter 3, Optimizing Internet Applications

Helps the geek make Internet access as convenient and simple as possible for regular users.


Chapter 4, Setting Up Local Applications

Provides solutions for the geek who needs to set up regular users with access to popular tools, such as PDF files, MP3 players, and Windows-based applications.


Chapter 5, Installation Annoyances

Helps the geek make choices in hardware, distributions, and systems that are appropriate for his or her users.


Chapter 6, Basic Start Configuration

Helps the geek optimize Linux, solve some annoying boot issues, and address some basic security concerns.


Chapter 7, Kernel Itches and Other Configuration Annoyances

Focuses primarily on those kernel-related tasks that make most Linux users look to the geek for help.


Chapter 8, System Maintenance

Focuses on a variety of annoyances related to keeping your systems running smoothly and up-to-date.


Chapter 9, Servicing Servers

Helps you select and configure servers to solve a variety of problems, with a higher degree of security.


Chapter 10, User Management

Focuses on annoyances created by and associated with the presence of different kinds of users in an organization.


Chapter 11, Administration Tips

Provides solutions for a wide variety of other annoyances related to system administration.

Using Code Examples

This book is here to help you get your job done. In general, you may use the examples in this book in your own scripts and documentation. You do not need to contact us for permission unless you're reproducing a significant portion of the examples. For example, writing a program that uses several chunks of code from this book does not require permission. Selling or distributing a CD-ROM of examples from O'Reilly books does require permission. Answering a question by citing this book and quoting examples does not require permission. Incorporating a significant amount of examples from this book into your product's documentation does require permission.

We appreciate, but do not require, attribution. An attribution usually includes the title, author, publisher, and ISBN; for example: "Linux Annoyances for Geeks by Michael Jang. Copyright 2006 O'Reilly Media, Inc., 0-596-00801-5."

If you feel your use of examples falls outside fair use or the permission given above, feel free to contact us at permissions@oreilly.com.

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Acknowledgments

Every technical book is a team effort. Andy Oram spent many long hours with me, making sure that every little bit of information is as relevant as possible for the Linux geek. Great thanks to Elizabeth Zinkann, technical editor for this book, for making sure I stayed on track during the long hours it took to complete this book. Many thanks to the technical reviewers who brought their experience and insights to make this book useful for as many Linux geeks as possible: Michael Boerner, Keith Burgess, Phil Hughes, Chris Lawrence, Rick Rezinas, and Kevin Shockey.



Linux Annoyances for Geeks
Linux Annoyances for Geeks: Getting the Most Flexible System in the World Just the Way You Want It
ISBN: 0596008015
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2004
Pages: 144
Authors: Michael Jang

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