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Thread: rant from hopelessly newbie

  1. #1
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    rant from hopelessly newbie

    HD install of knoppix 3.3 debian style. Been at this for over a month. And am unable to conquer compiling progams against this kernel. I have repeatedly tried compiling programs only to fail miserably because they a) can't find source headers b) don't like the ones they find.

    My most notable failures are alsa and now lm sensors. Nvidia was in there until I got kano's script. Alsa was responsible for just about every reinstall of knoppix the first couple of weeks. Lm sensors is runnerup and closing fast

    winmodem drivers didn't like the mismatches that knoppix kernel provided - as noob as I am, I used -f and cried like a baby when I tainted my kernel. You have any idea how traumatic it is for a noob to be told her kernel is tainted?

    So, I got an external modem, I reinstalled knoppix, gave up on alsa and went on with my linux noob life. I have sound, I have music, I even have midi. I don't need alsa. I luv my knoppix
    But, lm sensors I need. I have to monitor the temp of the XP, hot little griddle it is. I am sick and tired of rebooting to check it in the bios or windows. But the lm sensor install has totally defeated me. Modules/adapters will not be inserted because of my kernel source (why are these programs always picking on my poor kernel!) They recommend a vanilla source if using a patched kernel (is there any distro that doesn't have a patched kernel for goodness sake?). <sigh> and of course nvidia had a fit and it wanted the 'real thing" aaaaaaaaaaargh I don't want a choice of 50 different flavors of kernels to boot from - I boot with good ol 2.4.24-xfs and don't you forget it. Works a treat and I am not tainting it for nothing ever again. However. It would be nice to have some kernel source for these whinging programs that don't want this, don't want that. Nvidia brought along its own and still griped.

    Sorry. Venting (obvious, huh? ). Pardon me.

    My choice is now to look into another distro, maybe? Because linux I do love. I can hop on down to the local CompUSEless and pick up SUSE. I have mandrake community 10 but it is not for a newbie and I very noob. I had started the download of man 9.2 but 10 came out after I had dled CD1 and all my download soures went poof to jump on 10 bandwagon. I am on dialup - this probably is too much for me. Ten years in IT, I admitted defeated and refused to do XP migrations after 1,500 w2k migrations. I can't believe linux is defeating me but who wants to reinstall all the time because you have to bludgeon your custom kernel for the whim of every program out there? In all honesty, is there such a thing as a distro without a patched kernel? I think not. Which leads me to believe this is hopeless. Some things I can compromise on for love of linux, hardware failure is not one of them. And the warning on some of these things about firmware damage is kind of scary, too, besides wondering if my chip is cooking (AMD really should have forced the board mfrs to put in protection and shutdown like Intel).

    Thanks for listening. I really liked this knoppix and linux and wanted to stick with for the long run. Maybe I am just too old

  2. #2
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    nishtya,

    I KNOW where you are coming from... (in more ways than one, too)

    I have Knoppix 3.3 (kernel v 2.4.22-xfs)

    I too had a serious pain in the rump getting ALSA to work, my final attempt caused my system to be so unstable, I thought it was a "Microsoft Windows" install (bad poke, and joke)

    I finally had to live with a complete "gutting" of my system, and re-install -=- again -=- but this time with "alsa" on the CD Cheat Code - my hard drive install "inherited" ALSA from the CD Boot. It works, and, as I found, I can't let "anything" try and update the ALSA, or I loose it completely again.

    I also know about lm-sensors -=- I too have a AMD, a 1700 XP - and I also, was concerned about temps on the machine... I don't know how I got lm-sensors working, but they are, and I have GKrellM running on my desktop, watching everything now.

    I guess the hardest thing I have been having problems with, is the inconsistancy with things...

    They tell you you should "always" get packages and stuff by apt-get, but then, as with anything, there are contradictions to all the rules... ALSA appears to be one of these... lm-sensors is another, and the one other I know of is "Rocks-n-Diamonds" - a game...

    You might want to look in the postings with my nic on them, and see if where I have gone, you can follow along? I being a noob, slightly getting better, I almost "always" need a "hand-hold" to get anything done, ( I guess I just don't "get it", I am quite sure, that when I do "get it", the dim bulb on my head will become a new sun for the world [giggle] )

    For me, having a business that, as I say, "digitizes analog source media into digital audio CD's" - my business was at a stand-still with the "audio" problem... First was sample rate problems, then, along came ALSA, to further mess things up... I figured out the sample rate issue, and then someone pointed me to using ALSA - which, with the compiles, caused my recorded audio to have "noise" brought into the recorded source audio - outcome, was another re-install from scratch. I too have had around 4 total re-installs, of which, nothing could be retained from my previous install. I love Knoppix, and I don't think "anything" could "drive" me back to using anything "Windows" ever again. Hence, why I went through all that I have went through, and still am using Knoppix...

    Its really weird, thinking about it... Dealing with a "constant" concern of "what will break next", and yet, I am still here??? For me, I think it is because I know too much about Microsoft, having worked for them as a Windows Customer Service Representative, in a previous "roll out" on one of there older OS's, I KNOW Knoppix, or Linux, or Mandrake, or RedHat, or any of the other "flavors", are more stable, and far more secure, than anything M$ has, or could ever dream up. That, I think, is why I continue to "battle" through the next thing that "breaks" on Knoppix.

    I'm not complaining here, I am completely aware of what I am doing, what choices I have, and I choose my choices, responsibly. But, as a friend of mine said, as I go through each one of my problems, "Knoppix could not compete with Windows, its too complicated for the 'average' person", how true... My usual come-back to them is along the lines of... "So, don't you have another 'security update' to do on your system?", or, "Don't you need to download the newest virus signature files for your virus program?" (this, most always, gets them steamed up [giggle])

    I guess all things have pro's and con's -=- what "price" must be "paid" for things... Linux has a way to go, before it could just "plug and play" like the other OS being "sold", but it is far more stable and secure than its "brother" on the market. Linux needs to have "some" things, like hardware modems, that the "other" OS has modem made, almost "tailored" specifically for it... Video cards are manufactured to take advantage of "Windows", and need "special" help for in Linux...To think of it, Linux has to be almost a year behind its opposition, as far as hard ware is concerned, just because Linux has to "convert" this hardware to being able to "work" in it... Linux has a serious handicap associated with it... THINGS are not made for it, things are made, and then, in most cases, have to be "coaxed" into working. Not the same in the Windows world, things are made for it. Manufacturers are looking for ways to "make" Windows specific products that, one, take advantage of that OS, and two, give them the ability to "cut corners" and make cheaper products, thus giving them higher profit, or more in-line with being more competitive in there markets - (as is the case with WinModems)

    Linux, if I may give my oppinion, is an infant compared to M$'s OS's - but it is growing up... It's learning, growing, and becoming stronger... I see a time where Linux is so close to Windows, what ever version they are on at that time, and you won't be able to tell the difference. A time when Linux can "plug and play" with the best of them. When, you can walk in a store, walk down the software, and see a little penguin logo, and the words under it: "Linux Compatable" - and the penguin is before the "Flying Window" Logo

    Dreamer? I don't think so. We are all on the "basement floor" here, on a project that "may" take the world by storm. Think I am still draming? Look at the "majority" of posts on this forum... "Knoppix is great", "I was blown away", etc... We are all, like, Bill Gates, and for that matter, Steve Jobs, working in that same garage, on something, that "could" be the next OS of the Century. Still think I am dreaming? Think of all the talent invested into Linux, and all of its "flavors", talent that is working toward a "completion" of this "project", to a point, I would guess, is, direct competition to M$. And, as a last comment, all of this talent is volunteer, and working on the project to, I would think, to "see how far we can go with it."

    Why do I continue to live with an OS that has made me gut my system four times, and completely re-install? I think, for the same reason you posted Nishtya, and have done about the same thing, because you either feel the same way, either now, or that you can see "the future" of Linux, as I also feel it is...

    I have put more things on my shelf, to be marked "ShelfWare" forever, with far less problems than I have had with Knoppix. I have thrown away software for less reasons than I have with Knoppix, notably: Deskview X, and OS/2 (all versions) for just not "looking right", and yet, I am still running Knoppix. I believe in it, I like it, and I love it. Even with all of its problems, issues, and, yes, even if I have to re-install it again. Because, I can see it as being the OS on "everyones" desktop, laptop, personal computer, etc... AND THIS TIME, I am going to know, and use it, BEFORE it becomes "popular". This time I am going to be with something as it becomes what everyone knows, or sees. This time, I want to be on the "ground floor" of something, and I want to "see" it grow into what everyone else sees, this time. I didn't have a chance with Bill Gates, or Steve Jobs, but, with Linux, I think I have that chance...

    Cuddles

  3. #3
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    Just out of curiosity -- why won't "apt-get" work for ALSA and lm-sensors on a hard disk install of Knoppix? What happens?

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    I happen to agree with you, Cuddles, even though I'm not ready to rely on Linux myself, I can see the potential of it doing exactly as you say. I'm not predicting it, mind you, because there are just too may variables that cannot be controlled. Conventional wisdom would have predicted that Macintosh should have been squashed like a bug, but it wasn't -- I think for three reasons: First, it's users loved it and were deeply passionate about it, the same as with Linux. Second, it filled needs that Windows was inadequate at addressing - again, same with Linux. Third, Apple got into the schools with the idea that it was easier to use - allowing loyalty and familiarity to build with newer generations. Well, Linux doesn't have that, but it does have the other two. Linux needs an idiot-simple shell that runs all the applications people want and need. It's getting there, and I'm hoping that Novell's acquisition of SuSE will help in that regard.

    Remember, there was a time when WordPerfect and Lotus dominated, and IT managers laughed at the suggestion that business could rely on the PC instead of mainframes. Apple's OS is now based on BSD unix. If someone could just get the Apple ease-of-use on top of linux, and get it into the classrooms and government offices, I think Windows will eventually be about as "dominant" as DOS is now. The "geek chic" of linux serves it well now, but will eventually be its downfall if they can't dumb down the interface and leave the command line console to the truly adventurous.

  5. #5
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    eco2geek,

    First of all, that is ONE CUTE AVITAR - I have become a fanatic "lover" of the penguin, and of Tux, ever since I started working in Knoppix...

    Now for your, more pressing, querry:
    Code:
    Just out of curiosity -- why won't "apt-get" work for ALSA and lm-sensors on a hard disk install of Knoppix? What happens?
    It isn't so much what happens, but what doesn't happen... Packages have "certain" dependencies, which must be met, specific libraries, or versions of these libraries, or other "support" programs - if these are not met, the program, or package, you want to run, just won't, or worse, it won't install...

    Take "alsa" for instance: it requires alsa-drivers, alsa-libs, and I think alsa-utils - of which - alsa-drivers are source code only. apt-get won't work, it can't figure out the "dependancies" for the three, so it won't install correctly -=- outcome -=- no alsa sound support.

    If you research getting alsa to work on a Linux system, you will actually find, apt-get is not an option for it - you must manually get each package, taking note that you keep versions correct, and manually compile the drivers, modules, etc... yourself...

    Some of these "source code only" issues come from a copyright issue, source code is not the same as a compile program, or binary file... Some of the "legal" issues are avoided by using source code, and others prefer to use source code because of the whole "Open Source" theory, if you want to modify the code, you can, because you have the source code, kind a thing....

    Other issues with being source code is that, a programmer can supply source code to everyone, without regard to Linux "flavor" or kernel version, or processor type, etc... Since you compile the source on your own system, it is "made" specific for your system... Whereas, if someone wrote a program for Linux, they would need to compile the source for RedHat, Mandrake, SuSE, Knoppix, and Debian, in ALL kernel versions they have, and in all hardware that anyone could have - gets to be rather hard at that point, to predict all the possibliities...

    But, to answer your question specifically, "Just out of curiosity -- why won't "apt-get" work for ALSA and lm-sensors on a hard disk install of Knoppix? What happens?" -=- it might not install, it might install but not work, or it might install and trash your system, thats about it...

    Hope this helps,
    Cuddles

  6. #6
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    Thank you all, especially you, Cuddles. I have been reading the forum awhile and had started looking for your posts aways back. I did feel a certain linuxnoobdom kinship though I sat back and watched and read and read and did I mention read? I do RTFM, too. Trouble is so many distros, kernel flavors and conflicting info. This is where I am tripping up.

    I am no longer in IT, I am more graphics employment-wise now and though I have brought up my "linuxdom" with some ex IT coworkers I get no support and in the case of a few individuals where there was mutual respect, they ridicule and "pshaw". I am the lone linuxer in my crowd

    Anyhow, after the two absolute failures of installing lm sensors with apt get, I looked carefully the second try and noted only one error, literally "error 1" and a lousey email to root saying basically it lm sensors needs special devices under /dev. duh Reading through the vast amount of info about lm sensors, I came to the conclusion I should heed the warning not to try compiling against a patched kernel. So, off I began on vanilla (or unpatched) kernel compiling Sunday afternoon. Merrily I did compile, everything went a treat and than I fumbled, stumbled and blew it when asked questions about Lilo. I won't go into the gory details of Sunday night. You can read my post over at Linux questions if you are interested.

    Oh, and eco2geek, I cannot tell you why alsa and lm sensors don't work with apt-get. Or why apt get install is so vague (error 1 is real helpful aint it?).

    Anyway, I fixed lilo, I have a "vanilla" kernel sitting doing nothing and am scared stiff about trying to compile lm sensors without using apt get even for a foot off the ground (memories of nvidia and alsa haunt me to this day).

    And I really still think linux is great and knoppix, to me, has been the most polished distro I have tried. It is the standard I compare all the other distros to that catch my eye. I know it will be a long long time until I can do away with windows. I need the graphics apps that wont work with wine (yes, I have been working on learning gimp and even Karbon14 (which I installed, YAY, me who needs illustrator or photoshop? not me) but there are oodles of others I needin order to keep earning a lousey living. Living with a foot in two worlds. I will be damned if I go doze XP, with the way I swap my salvaged hardware it will never work. With what I went through with customers trying to get anything to work with it that worked under 98, nope, never. But I am a long, long way from knowing what I am doing with linux (I still spend 90% of my free time in it, though . Cracking open another beer and thinking about doing a cold, takeitlikeaman, hard compile install of lm sensors (yeah, I will chicken out and have some chocolate)

  7. #7
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    First of all, that is ONE CUTE AVITAR
    From the "credit where credit is due" dept., it's by Mark Reidesel, and part of the default background image on Slax-Live, which is another live Linux CD.

    First off, I'm not really sure of any benefit(s) you get from installing ALSA over OSS. What are the benefits?

    I've compiled and installed ALSA from source twice now on Red Hat (as newer versions came out), so I'm aware of the source code issues you mention. (I installed ALSA because I wanted to run the Soundgarden sequencer.)

    But what I really meant was, Debian Woody includes pre-compiled ALSA packages on CD 2, so why wouldn't they exist for Debian Sarge and Sid? After looking through the package list on the Debian web site, the answer to that seems to be that "official" pre-compiled ALSA drivers only exist for specific kernel versions, 2.4.16 and 2.4.25.

    There's a page about compiling your own kernel and installing ALSA on Debian here.

    I did successfully get ALSA working on Debian Woody using the pre-compiled binaries for kernel 2.4.16 - although I'm probably going to disable it in the init scripts, since OSS works just fine and I want to use kernel 2.4.18. There were some configuration issues I had to manually deal with, however! Oh, well.

  8. #8
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    Eco,

    OMG - that avitar as a background? I'd be in "hog heaven" for sure...

    I've never really tried any other distro, other than Knoppix -=- It was my first "real" look at where Linux has turned out like... Having only background, and that being almost 10 years ago, Unix on Sun Microsystems machines, I didn't have a clue what Linux was like, or looked like. Knoppix was deffinately a "turning" point in my education. Since it, pretty much, floored me, I kept with it...

    Now, into the realm of "what I believe", or "what I had heard":

    Why ALSA? Hmmmmm, from what I had heard, here, and here being the ONLY contact I have for "computer" related information, ( I currently moved from a "large" city, into one of those, as the cowboys used to say, "a one horse town"), this girl felt that ALSA was being "touted" as the "next" big leap in Linux Sound Archetecture, one that was going to replace OSS, and thus, if you could move to it now, do it, because soon, it will be the "de-facto" in the future.

    From what I hear, being on the "alsa-user" mailing list, I don't think this is going to be "too soon" though. It appears to have more problems, at the moment, than the "current" default sound, OSS. If Knoppix is in its infactcy, then I feel ALSA has to be in the "conceptual" stage, (the point where two parents decide if they want a child in the first place.)

    Knoppix does have it, but only through the Live CD cheat codes, every attempt I made to compile and insert into the kernel, was thwarted, until I just used the cheat code with the Live CD, and then installed onto my system, which did work, first attempt. ( I think the version I am running, from the CD, is 0.97.whoknows )

    As far as I am concerned, Linux, in many ways, is far more advanced than its Windows counterpart, but, then again, most "average" computer PC users in the world, are not able to fathom, some of the "nuts and bolts" kind of thing that Linux requires at this time. I still think Linux is unable to go "mainstream", possibly at the BETA stage, it still requires a "user" to "get down and dirty" with their system, and Windows is way too "polished" for those kinds of users.

    I liken, at this era, Linux is for "techies", and the rest, will flock to Windows. Some people will not sway from Windows, as my friend, because it is more tailored for the "average" user, whereas, Linux, requires you to be a little more "intimate" with your system, and hardware. This "root" of the problem, is probably so strong, that trying to get a Windows user over to Linux, is not going to work, if all you have in your "upper hand" is stability and security. They won't buy it, especially when you start talking about, what a "Windows user" would call it, a DOS PROMPT as your main power. "I go to a dos prompt, and type?" is probably the response you will get, from someone in the Windows World. Even if that "dos prompt" is more powerful than Windows is (as a whole), they won't "get it".

    The biggest selling point an OS can have right now? Hmmmmm, I think its two-fold... "Plug-n-Play", I think is one, and two, "Supports all hardware". Windows does it ! Why can't "Linux"? (is going to be a consistant response from any Windows user, looking to Linux...

    Linux is getting better, which is why I think "Knoppix", or for that matter, ANY "Live CD" distribution, is a good thing. It gets the "Linux" into peoples hands, and it can, usually, Plug-n-Play pretty well, on the CD... As for hardware support, that, I am affraid, Linux is at its most handicap. Not until more people are "pounding" on hardware manufacturers doors about having "Linux" drivers made for their products, I don't think this will change much. Heck, you can only "hang" outside your system cabinet so many kinds of devices, until you "have too" have these devices internal - case in point, WinModems...

    I like Knoppix, I kinda wish I might have "looked around" before I installed, but that isn't an excuse, nor am I "mad" at muself for supposedly "settling: for Knoppix, I think its "leaps and bounds" ahead of M$, and only in Knoppix, not "Windows", can I say, my system has been running "full-blown", with all the stops out (so the saying goes) for more than three days, without having to reboot, for some reason. (mostly due to deteriorating resources, was Windows' problem)

    I had to reboot in Windows maybe twice a day, more if I did anything: reboot after a backup, reboot before a backup, reboot if I wanted to run Microsoft Office, or used it, reboot to install, and reboot after an install, you name it, I had to reboot for it. I also ran Visual Basic, and that too, on some larger projects, required reboots during development, due, again, for failing resources in Windows. I would just watch Windows "swallow" memory for "something", and when it was done, it never came back, and the only way to get any of it back, was a reboot... Hmmmmmm, I used to think it was the developer that caused that, but I know better, a developer can't do anything more than "shutdown" properly, and still, Windows wouldn't regergatate the resources it took. M$ always used the excuse, "we can't be responsible for irresponsible programmers", well guess what, I wasn't one of thiose, I did all my cleanup, and still, resource problems... The OS has to take responsibility somewhere.

    Knoppix is just that "responsible" OS thinking. I can run anything, watch my memory "dive bomb", but when I close the program, the memory returns, responsible...

    My last point, if Windows people can't see the "lone" issues that Linux gives them, and all they can see is the "pretty" Flying Windows Logo, or march behind Bill Gates, blindly, so be it... Let them... I can "see" what I have, I know what I left behind when I gutted Windows off my system, and put Knoppix on it, and I like what I have. (even with the problems) I can wait for things to be "perfected" on Linux, especially due to the fact that while I am waiting, my system is more stable and secure than what I had with that "other" OS...

    Cuddles

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    OMG - that avitar as a background? I'd be in "hog heaven" for sure...
    It's on KDE-Look.org on this page.

    I agree with your take on Linux. I'm a "perpetual newbie" myself. ALSA is one case in particular where I really don't understand what's happening "under the hood," but I can get it working by following instructions, asking questions, and experimenting.

    I still use Windows (2000) on my fastest computer as my main operating system. Totally apart from all the thuggish things Microsoft has done, marketing-wise, I do like Win2K a lot. It's stable (only crashed twice in the past 6 months ), it's got lots of great apps that run on it, and...I've been using Windows for the past 14 years, so I'm pretty familiar with it. Never had security issues with it because I take precautions. The thing I don't like about it is paying for it. I don't know if I'll upgrade when Windows Longhorn comes out or not. Been putting a lot of effort into learning Linux recently.

    Linux has made huge strides over the last few years. Look at how nice KDE 3.1 looks - it's taken Microsoft 20 years to get where they are with their GUI, and KDE is what, less than 10 years old. If you're willing to accept most of the defaults, a Linux installation is as easy as a Windows installation. So it's only going to get better and more user-friendly.

  10. #10
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    I agree with Cuddles

    I think that the users and supporters of KNOPPIX and LINUX should come up with the [/b]Ultimate Knoppix computer. Everyone can decide what is the best processor, Mother board, memory, periphrals...everything that is compatible with Linux so we cut all these problems in half. If I knew I could get a new OS that is better than what Micro$oft has to offer, I would gladly build a computer containing Linux compatible hardware....make a standard....so everyone wins. Then alot of the hardware issues would not be a problem. My desktop computer luckily seems to run good with HDD install of Knoppix. The only very minor problem I have is a sound card thats not supported but luckily there are some drivers that make it work. I could go out an buy a soundblaster but why bother? It works but I notice the output from playing music CD's is not stereo!!!! I have no clue how to fix but I dont care cause i usually listen to CD's on the regular Cd player in living rm!!! But a KNOPPIX-COMPATIBLE computer would be cool. We all should be building our own boxes anyway. Just an idea...bob[/quote]

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