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Linux Frequently Asked Questions with Answers
Robert Kiesling, email@example.comAugust 30, 1998
This is the list of Frequently Asked Questions about Linux, the free Unix for just about every computer hardware platform on the planet. Originally written for 386/486/586 Intel/ISA bus machines, versions are available for Alpha, MIPS, ARM, 680x0 and PPC processors, and many others. (See the question, `` What is Linux? '' below.) This document should be read in conjunction with the Linux Documentation Project's HOWTO series. (`` Where can I get Linux material by FTP? '' and `` Where can I get the HOWTOs and other documentation? '') The
META-FAQ, which are found in the same place, also list sources of Linux information. Please look at these documents, and `` You still haven't answered my question! '' before posting your question to a news group. See `` Formats in which this FAQ is available. '' for details of where to get the PostScript, HTML, and plain ASCII versions of this document.
- 1.1 What is Linux?
- 1.2 Where do I start?
- 1.3 What software does Linux support?
- 1.4 Does Linux run on my computer? What hardware is supported?
- 1.5 What ports to other processors are there?
- 1.6 How much hard disk space does Linux need?
- 1.7 How much memory does Linux need?
- 1.8 How much memory can Linux use?
- 1.9 Is Linux public domain? Copyrighted?
- 2.1 Where can I get the HOWTOs and other documentation?
- 2.2 Where should I look on the World Wide Web for Linux stuff?
- 2.3 What newsgroups are there for Linux?
- 2.4 Where can I find out about Linux and the Millennium (Y2K) bug?
- 2.5 Where can I get Linux material by FTP?
- 2.6 I don't have FTP access. Where do I get Linux?
- 2.7 I don't have Usenet access. Where do I get information?
- 2.8 What mailing lists are there?
- 2.9 Are the newsgroups archived anywhere?
- 3.1 Can Linux share my disk with DOS? OS/2? 386BSD? Win95?
- 3.2 How do I access files on my DOS partition or floppy?
- 3.3 Does Linux support compressed ext2 file systems?
- 3.4 Can I use my Stacked/DBLSPC/etc. DOS drive?
- 3.5 Can I access OS/2 HPFS partitions from Linux?
- 3.6 Can Linux access Amiga file systems?
- 3.7 Can Linux access BSD, SysV, etc. UFS?
- 3.8 Can Linux access SMB file systems?
- 3.9 Can Linux access Mac file systems?
- 3.10 Can I run Microsoft Windows programs under Linux?
- 3.11 How can I boot Linux from OS/2's Boot Manager?
- 3.12 How can I share a swap partition between Linux and MS Windows?
- 4.1 How can I get Linux to work with my disk?
- 4.2 How can I undelete files?
- 4.3 Is there a defragmenter for ext2fs etc.?
- 4.4 How do I format and create a file system on a floppy?
- 4.5 I get nasty messages about inodes, blocks, and the suchlike.
- 4.6 My swap area isn't working.
- 4.7 How do I remove LILO so my system boots DOS again?
- 4.8 Why can't I use fdformat except as root?
- 4.9 My ext2fs partitions are checked each time I reboot.
- 4.10 My root file system is read-only!
- 4.11 I have a huge /proc/kcore! Can I delete it?
- 4.12 My AHA1542C doesn't work with Linux.
- 5.1 How do I port XXX to Linux?
- 5.2 What is ld.so and where do I get it?
- 5.3 Has anyone ported / compiled / written XXX for Linux?
- 5.4 Can I use code or a compiler compiled for a 486 on my 386?
- 5.5 What does gcc -O6 do?
- 5.6 Where are linux/*.h and asm/*.h?
- 5.7 I get errors when I try to compile the kernel.
- 5.8 How do I make a shared library?
- 5.9 My executables are (very) large.
- 5.10 Does Linux support threads or lightweight processes?
- 5.11 Where can I get `lint' for Linux?
- 5.12 Where can I find kermit for Linux?
- 6.1 free dumps core.
- 6.2 My clock is very wrong.
- 6.3 Setuid scripts don't seem to work.
- 6.4 Free memory as reported by free keeps shrinking.
- 6.5 When I add more memory, the system slows to a crawl.
- 6.6 Some programs (e.g. xdm) won't let me log in.
- 6.7 Some programs let me log in with no password.
- 6.8 My machine runs very slowly when I run GCC / X / ...
- 6.9 I can only log in as root.
- 6.10 My screen is all full of weird characters instead of letters.
- 6.11 I have screwed up my system and can't log in to fix it.
- 6.12 I've discovered a huge security hole in
- 6.14 Timestamps on files on msdos partitions are set incorrectly.
- 6.15 How do I get LILO to boot the
- 7.1 How can I get scrollback in text mode?
- 7.2 How do I switch virtual consoles? How do I enable them?
- 7.3 How do I set the time zone?
- 7.4 What version of Linux and what machine name am I using?
- 7.5 How can I enable or disable core dumps?
- 7.6 How do I upgrade/recompile my kernel?
- 7.7 Can I have more than 3 serial ports by sharing interrupts?
- 7.8 How do I make a bootable floppy?
- 7.9 How do I remap my keyboard to UK, French, etc.?
- 7.10 How do I get NUM LOCK to default to on?
- 7.11 How can I have more than 128Mb of swap?
- 7.12 Miscellaneous information and questions answered.
- 7.13 How do I program XYZ under Linux?
- 7.14 What's all this about ELF?
- 7.15 What is a .gz file ? And a .tgz ? And ... ?
- 7.16 What does VFS stand for?
- 7.17 What is a BogoMip?
- 7.18 What is the Linux Journal and where can I get it?
- 7.19 How many people use Linux?
- 7.20 How should I pronounce Linux?
- 8.1 Unknown terminal type linux and similar.
- 8.2 lp1 on fire
- 8.3 INET: Warning: old style ioctl... called!
- 8.4 ld: unrecognized option '-m486'
- 8.5 GCC says Internal compiler error.
- 8.6 make says Error 139
- 8.7 shell-init: permission denied when I log in.
- 8.8 No utmp entry. You must exec ... when I log in.
- 8.9 Warning--bdflush not running.
- 8.10 Warning: obsolete routing request made.
- 8.11 EXT2-fs: warning: mounting unchecked file system.
- 8.12 EXT2-fs warning: maximal count reached.
- 8.13 EXT2-fs warning: checktime reached.
- 8.14 df says Cannot read table of mounted file systems.
- 8.15 fdisk says Partition X has different physical/logical ...
- 8.16 fdisk: Partition 1 does not start on cylinder boundary
- 8.17 fdisk says partition n has an odd number of sectors.
- 8.18 mtools says cannot initialize drive XYZ
- 8.19 At the start of booting: Memory tight
- 8.20 My syslog says `end_request: I/O error, ...'.
- 8.21 You don't exist. Go away.
- 9.1 Does Linux support X Windows?
- 9.2 Where can I get an XF86Config for my system?
- 9.3 xterm logins show up strangely in who, finger.
- 9.4 I can't get X Windows to work right.
- 10.1 fdisk says cannot use nnn sectors of this partition.
- 10.2 GCC sometimes uses huge amounts of virtual memory and thrashes.
- 11.1 You still haven't answered my question!
- 11.2 What to put in a request for help.
- 11.3 I want to mail someone about my problem.
- 12.1 Feedback is invited.
- 12.2 Formats in which this FAQ is available.
- 12.3 Authorship and acknowledgements.
- 12.4 Disclaimer and Copyright.
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