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Kiss guide for Debian
#1
Hi everyone *waves.    I'm a newbie to Linux, I had only just worked out the basics of the windows system and here I am trying to learn how to navigate the Linux invention!  I can do basic surfing, but when it comes to downloading and installing programs I always seem to have a problem because I don't have a clue lol.   Rather than ask a thousand questions here on the forum, I though that I'd ask if anyone has come across a good basic user guide that I can refer to when the going gets tough.
I intend to download an app for my vpn , but my firefox browser (only downloaded 3 days ago) is too old, so I have to replace it with a newer version. I thought that I would first download another browser so that if I had problems with the firefox changeover I could use the other browser to hopefully rectify the problem, but I cant seem to do that yet!  Anyway, please list your fave guide if you feel inclined to do so!    Cheers Expresso.
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#2
(06-19-2019, 11:12 AM)Expresso Wrote: I intend to download an app for my vpn,

When you want to install software on Linux, you do not
download some installer.exe and execute it, but instead
install it from your distributions repository, without
ever opening a web browser,

(06-19-2019, 11:12 AM)Expresso Wrote: but my firefox browser (only downloaded 3 days ago) is too old,

Looking at your title, I assume you use debian. The dafault
version, debian stable, ships old software. If you want something
newer, debian stable is not the way to go.
My website - My git repos

"Things are only impossible until they’re not." - Captain Jean-Luc Picard
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#3
Before downloading any new software have you ensured your system is up to date? If the shield icon at the bottom of your screen has a blue tick you are fine; if it is red you need to click it to update.
Cliff Coggin
Mint 18.3
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#4
(06-19-2019, 11:12 AM)Expresso Wrote: Hi everyone *waves.    I'm a newbie to Linux, I had only just worked out the basics of the windows system and here I am trying to learn how to navigate the Linux invention!  I can do basic surfing, but when it comes to downloading and installing programs I always seem to have a problem because I don't have a clue lol.   Rather than ask a thousand questions here on the forum, I though that I'd ask if anyone has come across a good basic user guide that I can refer to when the going gets tough.
I intend to download an app for my vpn , but my firefox browser (only downloaded 3 days ago) is too old, so I have to replace it with a newer version. I thought that I would first download another browser so that if I had problems with the firefox changeover I could use the other browser to hopefully rectify the problem, but I cant seem to do that yet!  Anyway, please list your fave guide if you feel inclined to do so!    Cheers Expresso.

In most Linux distributions, there is a software center where you should be able to download most programs that in your distribution's repositories. Look there first. You might be surprised.

Browsers like Chrome, and Firefox should update themselves, but if they don't you might have to update them manually. I'm not sure how to do that from the terminal in Debian. Mainly because I don't know if Debian has apt or not.

But check Firefox's settings and see if you can update it from it's own settings. Maybe you might get lucky.
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#5
Leon p wrote "When you want to install software on Linux, you do not
download some installer.exe and execute it, but instead
install it from your distributions repository, without
ever opening a web browser,"

Is the distributions repository another name for the terminal? I used firefox to get the code for the download and pasted it into the terminal I.I.R.C.
So I have a couple of downloads in the downloads folder, but am not sure how to get them installed and running.

Leon "Looking at your title, I assume you use debian. The dafault
version, debian stable, ships old software. If you want something
newer, debian stable is not the way to go. "

I attempted to download cinnamon, but it didn't work, and then another but the file was corrupted , so on my third attempt I managed to download debian onto a usb stick and got it running on my laptop. I suppose I could go back to the start and try downloading Cinnamon again, but an hour is a long time to wait to download a file which possibly can't be used because of corrupted files....But I'm open to suggestions, should I plug along with Debian or start over...
I tried to quote your post using the quote button, but got nothing, so have to resort to pasting, thanks for the reply!

Cliffcoggin wrote "Before downloading any new software have you ensured your system is up to date? If the shield icon at the bottom of your screen has a blue tick you are fine; if it is red you need to click it to update.

I got the latest version that I could find. only 3 or 4 days ago, I don't see a shield icon but automatic updates is turned on.
Thanks for replying!

Savanskie wrote
"In most Linux distributions, there is a software center where you should be able to download most programs that in your distribution's repositories. Look there first. You might be surprised."

O.K.

"Browsers like Chrome, and Firefox should update themselves, but if they don't you might have to update them manually. I'm not sure how to do that from the terminal in Debian. Mainly because I don't know if Debian has apt or not."

I have firefox on auto updates, but was going to run the latest version...Quantum (if I can work out how to to change over without getting lost! ) The terminal does have the apt function, not that I am familiar with it.

"But check Firefox's settings and see if you can update it from it's own settings. Maybe you might get lucky."

The linux compatible app that I want to download asked me to change to a later version of firefox, as my version is apparently too old, hence my looking at the quantum version.
Thanks for the reply.
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#6
(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: Is the distributions repository another name for the terminal?

No.

The repository is hosted on some server and contains the programs
that are shipped by your distributions. To install them, you will
have to use a package manager. You can either use a terminal package
manager or a graphical frontend.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I used firefox to get the code for the download and pasted it into the terminal I.I.R.C.
So I have a couple of downloads in the downloads folder, but am not sure how to get them installed and running.

What did you download? There are a lot of different ways to get software
on a Linux computer, however I only really recommend using the repositories
for new users.

Basically all Linux distribution have a repository from where you get your
software as well as updates. You have to completely forget about the typical
windows mindset of the user being responsible for installing and updating
software.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I attempted to download cinnamon, but it didn't work, and then another but the file was corrupted , so on my third attempt I managed to download debian onto a usb stick and got it running on my laptop. I suppose I could go back to the start and try downloading Cinnamon again, but an hour is a long time to wait to download a file which possibly can't be used because of corrupted files....But I'm open to suggestions, should I plug along with Debian or start over...  

Cinnamon is not the name of a distribution but the name of a desktop environment.
Did you actually install the real debian or the debian-edition of Mint?

Either way, debian is not for beginners. Try the default version of Mint or Ubuntu
for a more beginner-friendly experience. Both will ship a modern version of Firefox.

savantskie Wrote:Mainly because I don't know if Debian has apt or not.

Apt is developed by the debian project.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I have firefox on auto updates

Firefox should infact not update itself on Linux. As I mentioned above,
the package manager is responsible for updates. It will fetch a new
version of a program, if available, and installs it.

On Linux, a single dedicated program updates all other programs.
My website - My git repos

"Things are only impossible until they’re not." - Captain Jean-Luc Picard
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#7
(06-20-2019, 11:37 AM)leon.p Wrote:
(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: Is the distributions repository another name for the terminal?

No.

The repository is hosted on some server and contains the programs
that are shipped by your distributions. To install them, you will
have to use a package manager. You can either use a terminal package
manager or a graphical frontend.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I used firefox to get the code for the download and pasted it into the terminal I.I.R.C.
So I have a couple of downloads in the downloads folder, but am not sure how to get them installed and running.

What did you download? There are a lot of different ways to get software
on a Linux computer, however I only really recommend using the repositories
for new users.

Basically all Linux distribution have a repository from where you get your
software as well as updates. You have to completely forget about the typical
windows mindset of the user being responsible for installing and updating
software.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I attempted to download cinnamon, but it didn't work, and then another but the file was corrupted , so on my third attempt I managed to download debian onto a usb stick and got it running on my laptop. I suppose I could go back to the start and try downloading Cinnamon again, but an hour is a long time to wait to download a file which possibly can't be used because of corrupted files....But I'm open to suggestions, should I plug along with Debian or start over...  

Cinnamon is not the name of a distribution but the name of a desktop environment.
Did you actually install the real debian or the debian-edition of Mint?

Either way, debian is not for beginners. Try the default version of Mint or Ubuntu
for a more beginner-friendly experience. Both will ship a modern version of Firefox.

savantskie Wrote:Mainly because I don't know if Debian has apt or not.

Apt is developed by the debian project.


(06-20-2019, 07:57 AM)Expresso Wrote: I have firefox on auto updates

Firefox should infact not update itself on Linux. As I mentioned above,
the package manager is responsible for updates. It will fetch a new
version of a program, if available, and installs it.

On Linux, a single dedicated program updates all other programs.

Ok, thanks for that.   I've been watching tutorials on the net, to get a better understanding of the whole linux system, and have downloaded cinnamon onto a usb so will attempt to install it  and start over.  cheers!

I'm back after swapping out the os for mint, it's working well so far, only took 43 minutes from go to whoa!  (aside from the 2 1/2 hours spent downloading mint twice).
No doubt I'll be back with more questions as I learn. Big Grin
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#8
Try going to the YouTube page LearnLinux.TV, I think you will find what you are looking for.
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#9
Espresso:

How did your final Linux Mint installation go? Which desktop environment version did you pick (e.g. Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce)?

Have you familiarized yourself with the layout of your desktop environment yet and explored the software manager?

Here is Joe's detailed video on a Linux Mint Cinnamon install:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0AFuhVSvEk

He uses Synaptic Package Manager first (a more detailed package manager) to tweak a couple of package settings, but then he briefly touches on the default Software Manager around 48:40, before demonstrating downloading Google Chrome's Linux version (.deb file) directly from Google's website. (A trusted source/site; your paranoia may vary. I use Firefox, myself).

As everyone else has cautioned you, it is safest practice to download software directly from your OS's default software manager and repositories. If you are unsure about a terminal command, as everyone stated, look it up first and make sure you know what it does before executing it. I am sure the helpful folks here wouldn't mind verifying basic terminal commands if you still have questions after researching it yourself.

There are also lots of guides and videos out there about helpful things to do right after downloading a new Linux OS of your choice: [10] things to do after downloading Linux Mint 19.1, etc... Again, make sure you know what it is before you tweak it.

I'm new to the board myself, so I apologize if basic info like this is already posted in easily accessible places on here. I've been a fan of Joe's videos for a long time and finally decided to join the board. I don't use Facebook, but I'm sure folks on Joe's page would be happy to help a new Linux user there, too.

Good Luck!

There's lots of Linux material on YouTube if you're a visual learner:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkrN4uAcDGk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c00UsN4D29Q    (He forgets Joe, but pins it in the comments)
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#10
(06-23-2019, 02:37 AM)Eurus Wrote: Espresso:

How did your final Linux Mint installation go? Which desktop environment version did you pick (e.g. Cinnamon, MATE, Xfce)?

Have you familiarized yourself with the layout of your desktop environment yet and explored the software manager?

Here is Joe's detailed video on a Linux Mint Cinnamon install:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0AFuhVSvEk

He uses Synaptic Package Manager first (a more detailed package manager) to tweak a couple of package settings, but then he briefly touches on the default Software Manager around 48:40, before demonstrating downloading Google Chrome's Linux version (.deb file) directly from Google's website. (A trusted source/site; your paranoia may vary. I use Firefox, myself).

As everyone else has cautioned you, it is safest practice to download software directly from your OS's default software manager and repositories. If you are unsure about a terminal command, as everyone stated, look it up first and make sure you know what it does before executing it. I am sure the helpful folks here wouldn't mind verifying basic terminal commands if you still have questions after researching it yourself.

There are also lots of guides and videos out there about helpful things to do right after downloading a new Linux OS of your choice: [10] things to do after downloading Linux Mint 19.1, etc... Again, make sure you know what it is before you tweak it.

I'm new to the board myself, so I apologize if basic info like this is already posted in easily accessible places on here. I've been a fan of Joe's videos for a long time and finally decided to join the board. I don't use Facebook, but I'm sure folks on Joe's page would be happy to help a new Linux user there, too.

Good Luck!

There's lots of Linux material on YouTube if you're a visual learner:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkrN4uAcDGk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c00UsN4D29Q    (He forgets Joe, but pins it in the comments)

 I have already been watching some of Joe's videos, among others, very helpful to see it done visually.
I installed cinnamon desktop, it was all fairly straight forward,  easier than what I thought it would be.
I have made some basic changes as they were shown in a few different youtube vids, like running the update manager, and have downloaded a vpn.  I don't use Google/chrome unless I have to.  Thanks for the tips and links.
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