Once you are done working with this book, I am confident that Linux will be your operating system of choice for the foreseeable future. That doesn't mean you won't have questions that aren't answered in this book. To that end, I give you a Web site address that will link you to the support pages for this book on my own Web site:
My site has links to a number of other resources, including many articles I have written on using and administering Linux, links to other information sites, and much more. Click on this book's cover image, and you'll be transported to the support pages for this book.
I also run a few mailing lists for readers, which you'll find under the WFTL heading. WFTL is a short form I've used for years now. It stands for "Writer and Free Thinker at Large" (computer people love acronyms). It's also the hierarchy for the lists I'm talking about. One of those lists is the WFTL-LUG (a LUG is a Linux User Group), an online discussion group where readers can share information, ask questions, and help each other out with their various Linux adventures. I invite you to join any of the lists I offer there. There is no cost, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
If you check under the Linux Links menu of my Web site, you'll find a useful list of additional links to Linux information sources. One of these is the Linux Documentation Project (LDP).
The Linux Documentation Project
The LDP is a dynamic community resource. On your Linux distribution CD, you probably have a collection of documents known in the Linux world as HOWTOs. These are user- or developer-contributed documents that are maintained and updated by one or more individuals. You can find the latest version of these documents at the LDP site:
The mandate of the LDP is essentially to provide a comprehensive base of documentation for all things Linux. If you've been looking high and low for information on installing that bleeding-edge FTL radio card on your PC and still haven't found what you are looking for, try the LDP. The LDP also makes a point of offering the latest versions of the man pages (also known as "manual pages," the default system documentation common to all Linux distributions) as well as user guides that tend to cover more ground than standard HOWTOs.
Linux User Groups
A few paragraphs back, I made passing reference to Linux User Groups, or LUGs. Let's put technology aside for a moment and explore something else you may have heard about: the Linux community. Yes, there really is a Linux community. All around the world, you will find groups of enthusiastic Linux users gathering for regular meetings, chatting over beer and pizza, and sharing information. This sharing of information is part of what makes Linux so friendly.
LUGs tend to run electronic mailing lists where informal exchanges of information take place (just as I do with my online LUG). New users are welcomed, and their questions are happily answered. These users range from newbies getting their feet wet to seasoned kernel developers. Should you find yourself stuck with nowhere to turn, seek out your local LUG and sign on to the mailing list. Today, someone helps you. As you grow more knowledgeable in administering your Linux system, maybe you will return the favor.
Locating a LUG in your community is as simple as surfing over to the Linux online Web site (http://www.linux.org/). Once there, click the User Groups button, and you are on your way. The list is organized by country, then by state or province, and so on.