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Old 04-12-2017, 08:33 AM
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Idea Help a linux noob!

I'm thinking of putting KXStudio on an unused desktop so I can use it for music making stuff. Any pitfalls I should look out for, or other advice for a complete linux noob?
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Old 04-12-2017, 10:05 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Go for a common distro of Linux so that it's easier to find help on line. Maybe Ubuntu but there are other good candidates.

Expect to use a terminal (like the Windows Command Prompt) more often than with Windows or Mac. Depending on what you're doing it's not strictly necessary, but it's often easier than doing the same things from the GUI - if and when you run into problems or want to set your PC up to do something slightly tricky, you'll find that most on-line solutions will involve typing stuff into a terminal (aka shell or console). It's worth learning some common terminal commands like cd; ls -l; df -h; cp; mv; also the (confusing at first) layout of linux directories (folders) and linux file permissions and the ways of altering them (chmod; chown).

You'll pick it up a bit at a time. Noobs often say how confusing things are - of course it's probably less confusing than all the arcane stuff they've already learned about Windows with things like the Control Panel, Device Manager, System and System32 folders and so on - but they already know that stuff so they claim it's 'obvious'.
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Old 04-12-2017, 11:22 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Thanks. KXStudio has a distribution based on Ubuntu, with tweaks for improved performance for audio applications. So hopefully the help stuff is transferable.

I'm fine with typing commands, but I guess I'll want to find a cheat sheet for the basics.
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Old 04-12-2017, 02:32 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Use Debian. Ubuntu is evil.

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Old 04-12-2017, 03:04 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

I was going to go the total opposite direction that But did and say it you are using it to do media stuff, you should go FULL EVIL and get Mint. It's pretty much just Ubuntu with a whole bunch of proprietary stuff built in.

Although if you're making music, maybe you don't need to worry about the proprietary stuff.
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Old 04-12-2017, 05:41 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

In my experience, the major difference between ubuntu and debian, at least community-wise, is that debian folks are more likely to install software manually using dpkg, while ubuntu users stick to using aptitude. So, like, if you have a .deb file, you could install it on ubuntu, but you should look at debian forums for help with that or else you get yelled at. :twiddle:
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Old 04-12-2017, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Raspbian is the Raspberry Pi flavour of Debian that is the most common O.S. on the Pi - but the preferred way of installing stuff in the Pi community is with aptitude (apt-get install).


:geek:


:laptop:


:geek:


:laptop:
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Old 04-12-2017, 07:08 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ensign Steve View Post
...debian folks are more likely to install software manually using dpkg, while ubuntu users stick to using aptitude.
:freakout: I was ambiguous!

debian folks are more likely than ubuntu users to install software manually using dpkg

(not: debian folks are more likely to install software manually using dpkg than with apt-get)
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Old 04-12-2017, 09:54 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Objective advice: use Debian or a derivative like Ubuntu or Mint, simply because KXStudio packages for them (and doesn't package for Arch-like or Red-Hat-like distros).

Totally objective advice: use Kubuntu 16.04 or KDE Neon (both of which are Ubuntu-based distros) because KDE is a far better desktop environment than Gnome/Unity/other shit.

Total n00b information which you may actually know: unlike Winders, there are multiple Linux distros and most distros support multiple desktop environments (DEs). KDE is the Korrect Desktop Environment.

Objective advice: in theory you should learn both the command line way of installing and updating packages and the graphical software manager way ... but since KXStudio only provide a .deb file and are not actually in the repositories, despite the terminology they use, you'll need to use the command line. Just use the commands they quote on their page.

Objective advice: unless one of the distros puts it into their repositories (may not be not likely, although there are lots of music apps properly packaged) or someone creates a "personal package archive" (ppa) (hmm, there do seem to be some but I can't see which one to use) you won't get updates automatically. You'll have to go back to the website and download updated versions when you need them.

General advice: get familiar with commands with directory and file management (in particular ls). But also pick a graphical file manager (as Windows Explorer is for Windows; as ever, there are several alternatives) and stick with it.

Totally objective advice: use Dolphin. Other file managers are weak and corrupt.
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Old 04-12-2017, 09:56 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

And finally, if you find yourself experiencing the urgent to tweak the OS, seek help.

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  #11  
Old 04-12-2017, 10:04 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Quote:
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because KDE is a far better desktop environment than Gnome/Unity/other shit.
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  #12  
Old 04-13-2017, 12:36 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

KDE and Gnome are both evil and have been evil for a long time now.

It began when they started installing operating system hooks which override basic file permissions and ended with wholesale rearranging of the system to their liking (systemd). But it's entrenched enough it's a "standard" now and nobody dares complain.

Advice for beginning Linux users:

1) If your thought is "I want Windows but better and free", go home - you won't have a fun experience.

2) If your thought is "Linux could solve some of my problems because of the very different way it operates", then you may find Linux useful.

3) Your window manager - KDE Gnome or other - doesn't control your computer, it just pretends it does. If it offends thee, pluck it out and try another. That freedom is the real point.

4) Installing on a brand-new computer isn't the best idea. Install on a computer a year or two old, one Linux users have had enough time to come to grips with.

5) Laptops especially are prone to be awkward to install and use Linux on.

6) There's very little magic in how things work, it's just a matter of having the right files in the right places.

7) Never stop exploring.

Beyond that, Linux distributions have diverged so far from each other it's becoming impossible to give generic advice.
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  #13  
Old 04-13-2017, 01:35 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

I had/still have a four-year old POS HP Pavilion Touchscreen with 4 GB RAM and an AMD 1250 processor. It came with Windows 8 installed, but the minute you updated the OS, the computer stopped functioning in a manner that made it useful for anything. I tried Ubuntu Unity (which worked great on an older machine with a better (Intel) processor and more RAM), but it was too much for my POS. I tried many, many different flavors of Ubuntu before installing Ubuntu Mate, which worked best, and made my touchscreen work well. (Linux Mint Mate never did get the touchscreen right. I liked Peppermint, too, but it didn't handle the touchscreen well.)

A few weeks ago, an update to Mate totally broke my POS: once booted up, the cursor locked, the caps lock screen started flashing, and the machine froze. I tried KDE, but it made my cursor jump around uncontrollably. Lubuntu and Xubuntu both locked up the same way that Mate had.

Now, I've settled on Bodhi Linux (also based on Ubuntu). It's got a decent GUI, and my machine is responsive and usable again. (I got the barer of the two installations, and didn't install a whole lot of crap.) I recommend it.
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Old 04-13-2017, 02:17 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!


:holycow:
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Old 04-13-2017, 05:53 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Quote:
Originally Posted by But View Post
Use Debian. Ubuntu is evil.
The KXStudio distro is apparently planning to move to Debian, but hasn't yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
Although if you're making music, maybe you don't need to worry about the proprietary stuff.
If I wanted proprietary, I'd probably stick with Windows. And yes, I'm only looking at music making, not other media.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeP View Post
Totally objective advice: use Kubuntu 16.04 or KDE Neon (both of which are Ubuntu-based distros) because KDE is a far better desktop environment than Gnome/Unity/other shit.
The KXStudio distro comes with an optimised KDE4. For audio, optimisation is crucial - you really need to eliminate as much latency as possible. Without that you get audible delays between playing a key or similar and hearing the output, which really mucks up the timing of a performance. That's one of the reasons I'm looking to go this route, because apparently the optimisation has already been done with this distro. Compare with Windows, where for audio you typically have to dig through services figuring out which ones you can turn off without breaking the OS (as well as other boot and startup settings).

A question - the spare desktop I'm wanting to use is a number of years old, is that likely to be a problem?
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Old 04-13-2017, 08:03 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Linux normally works well on older computers. The big 'flagship' distros usually run well on machines that are a few years old and there are often alternatives for even older slower computers.

In the Ubuntu group, Ubuntu is the flagship: Xubuntu and Lubuntu are two lighter weight alternatives.

Some distros, such as Puppy Linux, are deliberately designed to run on minimal hardware - if you have an ancient PC from the Windows 95 / 98 era that would struggle to run even Windows XP, Puppy will run on that and give a surprisingly​ modern and peppy experience.
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Old 04-13-2017, 10:15 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

An aged bit of hardware isn't a problem in itself - may even be an advantage as Corona mentioned. You probably won't have any issues with wifi drivers and built-in modem drivers and graphics drivers and so on, which used to be challenges for lots of people.

Is this package going to rely on a fancy sound card? Are you plugging in external keyboards and other MIDI devices?

How much RAM does it have?
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Old 04-13-2017, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Can't recall the specs. Will have to get the box out of the garage and dust it off.

When I have some cash I'll want a halfway decent audio interface, something like this, and a basic MIDI keyboard controller. I'll look at compatibility of the options then. For now I just want to play with soft synths and chuck the output through the on-board phones out.
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Old 04-13-2017, 11:12 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

If it's got 1GB of RAM you could be in for a world of tweaking. 2GB probably OK since you're not going to run other stuff (especially browsers - Firefox and Chrome are appalling memory hogs). 4GB would be no problem.

Aside: OSes and DEs are memory hogs too. Until recently I had an old 486 computer still running Windows 95, perfectly well, in 16MB of RAM. Not even the most extreme low-end Linux distros of today will even start with only 16MB.
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Old 04-13-2017, 11:18 AM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Quote:
Originally Posted by fragment View Post
something like this
The gain buttons only go up to 10 ... :fragment:
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  #21  
Old 04-13-2017, 02:19 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

You can buy knobs that go to 11

0-11 Knobs | Allparts.com

edit - it's a sub-category of "Knobs and tips", which also has a section for "Wood and horn knobs".

What?
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Old 04-13-2017, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

Oh, I forgot to say get Unetbootin and a thumb drive, and try out various Linux distros live before you commit to installing one. Then do a test run to make sure it works with your hardware, and to make sure there's nothing you find too horrendous about it or anything.
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Old 04-13-2017, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
Oh, I forgot to say get Unetbootin and a thumb drive, and try out various Linux distros live before you commit to installing one. Then do a test run to make sure it works with your hardware, and to make sure there's nothing you find too horrendous about it or anything.
Also good to have on a bootable flash drive: boot-repair-disk download | SourceForge.net
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Old 04-14-2017, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fragment View Post
A question - the spare desktop I'm wanting to use is a number of years old, is that likely to be a problem?
Computers haven't seriously changed or improved in ten years. It's just been incremental improvements in RAM speed and storage capacity. They're only starting to climb back up to clock speeds we already had a decade ago.

(Yes, you get quad and octo cores now - which does fuck-all for most applications.)
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Old 04-14-2017, 07:03 PM
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Default Re: Help a linux noob!

My computer's probably at least seven years old (I've replaced some things, but not the motherboard or CPU), and it runs Debian just fine.
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