hgfriend3 adjusted his/her AFDB on Friday 17 Jul 2009 15:56 to write:
> I just finished a successful installation of openSUSE on my system. I’d
> like some advice on the next steps to take with regards to maintaining
> my system.
> I would like to be able to have a method of being able to revert back
> to my previous settings in case I mess up my system while learning
> linux, tweaking and fixing devices, etc.
> I am currently using Acronis TrueImage so I can make a backup of the
> linux partitions [which I will]. But I won’t learn anything with that.
> I’d like to work inside the linux system.
> So any advice is very much welcome. Thanks in advance.
To be honest the only thing I back up is my home dir, in all the years I
have been using linux and all the disk crashes and re-installs the quickest
way is to do a complete re-install and replace my home dir.
If you are going to start messing around with the system then just make sure
you know what you are doing and make backups on the fly, if editing a config
file then make a copy.
Except for total hardware failure I do not remember getting the system into
such a mess that it could not be recovered with tools that are either
already on the system or are not on a boot/live disk.
The best advice is never log on as root ( that is a big no-no ) all root
work can be done from a console with either sudo or su and if it aint broke dont fix it.
If you do want to back-up the system then have a look at :
now that is the down to earth basic, don`t back-up var and tmp and away you
go, obviously you will want compression and maybe encryption but that all
depends on what you want so either read the man pages of google it, if you
welcome! go slow…don’t make a lot of changes right away…when you
make one live with it a while (that way the thing broken today is
probably a result of what you did LAST…if you do 15 things and it
is broke tomorrow, where DO you start?)
oh and, do complete backups (to guard against failure) if you can’t do
that, AT LEAST backup /home, /etc and /boot
Bear in mind that Linux programs store user tweaks in hidden files in the user’s folder. So, you can normally revert to default by deleting the hidden file and the program will re-create the default file next time it is launched.
But don’t delete the files that, for example, hold all you emails if you have been messing with your email program!
Unless you know what you are doing or are following an explicit instruction, e.g. in a help file, avoid changing anything which is not in /home.
The very first thing I always do after a successful install is setup my software package manager repositories (repos). Specifically 4 repos and only 4 repos. Those 4 are: OSS, Non-OSS, Update and Packman. There is guidance here how to do that: Repositories - openSUSE-Community
The odds are OSS, Non-OSS, and Update are already setup and only Packman needs to be added. Again, just those 4. When one is an advanced user and when one knows how to identify problems from adding more than those 4, and how to solve problems from adding more than those 4, then one can add more. Until then, just those 4.
Once those 4 are added, one can go to YaST > Software > Software management, change the “filter” to “search” and search for and install packman packaged versions of various applications to get 1st rate multimedia (replacing crippled Novell / SuSE-GmbH versions in many cases). One can tell packman packaged versions by the “pm” in the version number of the rpm. I typically recommend installing packman packaged amarok, amarok-xine, amarok-packman, smplayer, libxine1, xine-ui, mplayerplug-in, vlc, libffmpeg0, ffmpeg, w32codec-all, libquicktime0, libxvidcore4, flash-player.
Hmmm … these updates will likely take a while to download. They may also contain an xorg update and a kernel update. If you are using a proprietary graphic driver, the xorg update could break your graphics, forcing you to re-install the graphic driver. So be prepared for that. Maybe ask a few questions in advance to ensure you understand what you may need to do. A kernel update may break your proprietary graphics driver, your proprietary wireless driver, your sound driver and your webcam driver. Especially wrt your proprietary graphics and your wireless driver, be prepared with the appropriate binaries specific to the updated kernel, to have to install those again.
Also, back up your /boot/grub/menu.lst file (you will need root permissions to do that) and once backed up, and once you update your kernel, BEFORE you reboot, check the backed up /boot/grub/menu.lst file against the updated version of that file (from the kernel update). Make certain the updates make sense.
I have never heard of a document referred to as !Reference.
Installing from a Network Server
Choose this option, if you have an installation server available in your network or
want to use an external server as the source of your installation data. This setup
can be configured to use from physical media (Floppy, CD/DVD, or hard disk) for
booting or configured to boot via network using PXE/BOOTP. Refer to Sec-
tion 1.2.1, “Installing from a Network Server Using SLP” (page 6), Section 1.2.2,
“Installing from a Network Source without SLP” (page 7), and Chapter 1, Remote
Installation (↑Reference) for details.
I see a lot of these in the documentation and I am not sure I know where to look for these.
I will leave the “updating” alone, temporarily, until I finish reading the Startup Guide.