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Translation suggested by Lebarhon, thanks to warn me for any modification of the original (just a few words here)
The first stage has been released in issue N°2
To be checked

Make your Mandriva ready for the multimedia


This command allows to configure Mandriva to make it immediately ready for the multimedia: to play commercial DVD, to play Windows audio and video files, and so on... (command to be completed) in a console, in root mode, hit the following line and press enter:

urpmi libdvdcss2 libdvdplay0 libdvdread3 libdvdread-utils libdvdnav4 libdvdcontrol9 win32-codecs


The boot loader Lilo and Grub

LILO (LInux Loader)

Lilo is a boot loader, like Grub, totally independent of the Mandriva Linux distribution. It is suggested as the default boot loader in the 2006 and 2007, but you can easily choose Grub during the installation at the summary phase.
This little software comes as either a graphic menu or a text menu and allows you to launch the operating systems present on your computer. If you already had Windows installed on your computer when you installed Mandriva Linux, you have the choice at the boot between Windows and Mandriva. It is housed either in the first sector of the first hard disk, the MBR (or Master Boot Record) or may be in the PBR (Partition Boot Record). Thus, if you install Mandriva after Windows, Mandriva will modify the MBR that was formerly set by Windows to install Lilo instead, which will take care of the starting. If you are a beginner with Mandriva, you might have hesitations and you may wish that your computer starts as before. It's one of the questions often asked by Windows users. In this case, one solution consist of installing Lilo on a floppy (if you still have a drive) in such a manner that the MBR is preserved as it was, without any change. Thus, as from the moment you insert your floppy into the drive at the boot, Lilo will take control suggesting you to boot on the system you choose and if you take off the floppy, Windows will start as it was alone ! Extreme case: if by some miracle, you were considering that Mandriva didn't give you satisfaction and you wish to uninstall it, this option, to install Lilo on a floppy is very helpful. Actually, if you let Lilo to be installed by default on the MBR, uninstalling Mandriva Linux won't uninstall Lilo because Lilo doesn't belong to Mandriva. You will have also to uninstall Lilo from the MBR to put this one back to its initial state.
Two '(3 de citées) possibilities to do that:
under Linux
[root] # flilo -u
under DOS/Windows 9x, with the bootable floppy
A:\> fdisk /mbr
under Windows XP, with the recovery console
fixmbr <device name>

If you wish a closest look to Lilo, know that the configuration informations are in the file /etc/lilo.conf.
You will also find a complete documentation about Lilo and its functionalities in the directory /usr/share/doc/lilo-doc<version>

GRUB (Grand Unified Bootloader)

If you want to choose Grub while using Mandriva, go to the Centre Control (Configure your computer)>start>configure the start behaviour> (a mettre en conformité avec le menu anglais) and choose Grub (graphic or not) instead of Lilo in the first field of the configuration window, then, go on to the configuration end without change anything and you will have Grub at the next start of your computer with the same options. You can go back to Lilo in the same way. Read why you should rather have the one or the other before to choose, but you have to know that if the use of Grub is possible, it's easier to modify and more flexible to use than Lilo. Particularly, Grub can be easily modified without being under the Linux where it is installed. That makes Grub the chosen main boot manager when we have several Linux partitions.
Very powerful, GRUB can start almost everything: Linux, Windows, BSD, and can load the kernels of Linux, Hurd and BSD. It knows furthermore a high number of files systems (ext2, ext3, reiserfs, FAT32, JFS and XFS). It's very flexible indeed. For the systems which aren't originally supported (DOS/Windows), it is enough to use the instruction to chain loading called “chainloading”. Thus, when you choose to have an entry for Windows in your bootloader, Grub use the chainloading function.
This function can be used to start in an other Mandriva Linux, or an other Linux or other OS, as long as they are their own boot loader installed on their root partition instead of the MBR (in Mandriva, this option is available while installing in the summary phase)
It's enough for that to have an entry in your boot/grub/menu.lst:
title myCooker
root (hd0,3)
chainloader +1
In this example, I am going to install Mandriva Linux, so I created for it an entry called myCooker which aims towards the partition hda4 (Grub works like this: 0 for a, 1 for b, and so on, then, it counts the partition from 0, so the fourth one is 0, 1, 2, 3. Eventually we have hd0,3).

That means you can install several Mandriva Linux with their own boot loaders in the PBR (Lilo or Grub) and easily have for each one an entry in the main boot loader. If these entries are ready yet, one by partition, when you install, reinstall or delete Linux on these partitions, they will be immediately available for the next start. while.....???? stand by for further details

List of the pieces of software developed by Mandriva.

Here is about to display by the mean of a console; the graphic tools that you don't necessarily want to look for in the menus. This software allows you to quickly reach the configuration parameters. To launch them, it's enough to open a console in root and to write the software name:

mcc: Mandriva Control Centre in the console mode. In the case where your graphic interface doesn't start, try the command mcc under root.

The tools to easily configure one's devices

harddrake: The tool we forget. At the boot, it's the tool which automatically detects and configures any new device.

harddrake2: This utility makes a real cartography of your computer's components and allows you to launch the configuration tools fitted to the chosen device.

Diskdrake: The partitioning and mounting tool of the hard disks. Probably the Mandriva's most efficient tool because its quality is remarkable, for example to resize a Windows partition. It will even force a check at the next start of this OS.

usermount: Graphic tool for control of the mounting defined in the fstab

printerdrake: the ultra-simple tool for configuration of the printers. It detects the local printers, failing this, the networks printers, determines their name and model, installs them for your system and your software (in particular OpenOffice). Most of the multifunction models (printer+scanner) see their scanner configured at the same time. For certain printers (in particular Epson and HP), a software will give you the level of ink available.

drakkeyboard: It allows you to choose your keyboard in a list.

drakmouse: It allows you to choose your mouse (usb, ps2, tablette??? Graphic board??? with or without wheel...)

draksound: It allows the resolution of sound problems if ever you were confronted with such a problem.

scannerdrake: Installation software for a scanner. If it doesn't recognize your scanner, it will propose you the list of all the scanners and you will have to identify yours. Then, your scanner will be recognized by most of the pieces of software: kooka, sane, gimp..

XFdrake: Configuration tool for graphic interface. Most of the time, it will detect your graphic board, your screen, their best possible configuration and will configure the graphic interface consequently. Obviously, if you wish to use another resolution or a different graphic driver, you will be able to make your choice and then test.

drakxtv: a manager of TV board which will detect your card and will allow you to configure it. Most of the time, the TV boards are correctly detected and configured by Linux, but when it is not the case, drakxtv allows you to carry out yourself the configuration.

Tools to use easily one's computer

localedrake: This application will enable you to choose your language and your country which are associated with a page code (iso8859-15 or utf-8 for example). You already probably received e-mails of which accentuated letters were replaced by curious characters. Localedrake will avoid you this disappointment and will quickly facilitate to you the passage to another language .

drakboot: It makes it possible to automatically launch the graphic interface at the start, including by connecting an user immediately without needing any password. You will switch on your computer and you will have only to wait the working interface without to have needed to keyboard a name or a password.

drakedm and mdkkdm: The first one makes it possible to choose one's connection manager (xdm, gdm, kdm...), the second one is a modified version of kdm to meet the requirements of facility asked by the users.

drakclock: To put your PC on time is completely simple and all the distributions propose it to you. The difference is that in a click of mouse you will synchronize your clock with time servers: The insurance of a precise clock and always on time.

drakfont: The font manager software allows you to visualize, to import to uninstall the fonts. In some clicks you get back the fonts you use under Windows.

draksplash: This software enables you to configure your own graphic topic, i.e. the visual aspect from the boot to the extinction of your machine.

Tools to install software easily and to update

rpmdrake: it is the graphic tool of search, installation and uninstallation of software. They are classified by topic or alphabetically, that allows with 4 or 5 clicks to install them, but you can also carry out a search to find among the provided software catalogue, this one you need. You will be able to add downloading sources to make your choice among thousands of pieces of software or to update your system very easily.

drakonline or mandriva online [ 1 ]: This software supervises the existence of updates for your system and all your installed software. It will download and install them.

kiosk [ 2 ]: This new service of Mandriva makes it possible to choose applications suite, to download them, to install them and all that in 3 clicks of mouse.

Tools to configure Internet easily

drakconnect: To configure Internet is far from being easy and most of the Internet service providers propose their autoinstallation Windows CD (not always very efficient besides). Drakconnect will propose to you in some clicks to configure your ADSL. It will be able to use the "adslbox", the Ethernet modems and some usb modems (like the sagem fast 800 or the speedtouch).

drakroam: This software searches the available wifi networks and allows you to select one of them.

drakgw: This small script makes it possible to share very easily your Internet connection with other computers under Linux or Windows.

net_monitor: it is a tool allowing to activate a network or Internet connection and to check the working of it. We will prefer net_applet, a small tool in the taskbar which has the same functions (except the graphic).

mandi and drakefirewall: The firewall is become compulsory for Internet surfing. This tool enables you to configure it in some clicks of mouse. No need to know the iptables rules and their rigid syntax.

Tools to manage safety easily

drakbackup: Backup and restoration tool of your data and configuration files. Once more, all is done in some clicks of mouse.

drakauth: Here is a configuration tool for the authentication of the network . It supports the authentication LDAP, NIS, on Windows domain's name or active directory.

draksec: Software of security management. It manages the levels of safety. Most of the time, you will have just a choice to express from "very weak" to "paranoiac". A high level will be advised to you for a PC being connected to Internet. Obviously, if you want to manage your safety more precisely, this tool allows it to you. You will be able to change among its many safety rules those which are not appropriate to you or to create your own rules.

drakperm: The management of the permissions. MandrivaLinux as any Linux system is protected and the permissions of access are an essential component of the safety. At the installation, you chose between several levels of safety (normal, high, paranoiac...). Drakperm makes it possible to more finely manage each permission for the sensitive files (or any other file you would like to put under control).

Easy tools for the pro

rfbdrake: It is a tool for remote control very easy to use. Two clicks and a password are enough to authorize remote control of one's PC. From the PC which must control the other, it is enough to identify the PC (by its IP) and to give the associated password.

drakautoinst: Provide an autoinstallation floppy which will repeat whole or part of your first installation on all the machines that it remains you to configure.

drakhosts: Displays and manages the naming of the machines on the network

logdrake: It is a tool to display the events present in the logs. It allows in particular a search by date and keyword, which proves to be helpful for certain voluminous logs.

draknfs: Directory sharing manager on a network. It allows when several machines are connected by network to reach the files of the remote machines

draksambashare: Samba is the software of files and resources sharing with machines under Windows. Draksambashare enables you to configure this sharing easily.

drakTermServ: The tool for installation of terminal-server

drakups: This software communicates with your inverter.

userdrake: This software enables you to manage your users very easily: creation, modification or suppression, all is done in some clicks. The personal files and permissions management is made automatically

drakxservices: You will manage here the starting of your services. Definition of the service, state: started, stop or started at the starting of the computer, all that is done in a click of mouse. You will be able for example to stop the firewall, to start again the network.

The control centre to find the good tool easily

drakconf (or Mandriva Centre Control = MCC): It is not to be strictly speaking a tool. MCC gathers the quoted tools classified by topics. It also makes it possible to visualize the logs included while you are using one of its tools. By selecting "display the log" (voir commande de la version anglaise), you will see what makes each tool on your system: which file is modified, which application or service is launched or stopped.

drakwizard: It is the name of the RPM package which adds to drakconf the tools dedicated to the servers. You will find there for example an inverter manager, a Web server installer, ftp server, samba or mailing server.

DrakFirstTime : Tool launched automatically at the first connection after the installation. Accessible in command line: drakclub (under root)

[ 1 ] paying service: 19,90 euros a year at the date of this article publication
[ 2 ] paying service: unknown fare at the date of this article publication
Thank you beuze

- MandrivaOnline : to make the updates automatically
- urpmi: to software install/delete , add/remove the sources
- drakboot: boot manager
- drakconf:
- menudrake: menus manager
- userdrake or drakuser:
- draksec: safety manager
- drakperm
- rfbdrake
- drakwizard
- drakxservices: starting services manager
- drakfont
- drakbackup: backup management tool
- drakedm
- logdrake
- drakconsole: open a console
- Kfloppy: tool for floppy formatting
- KCron: planned tasks manager

To launch a graphic root
It can be useful to manage your computer in graphic mode, with the super-user rights.
Nothing simpler. For that, launch a console, log in super-user mode (root) by keying "su" then the password. Then type Konqueror. That will launch the Konqueror files manager.

List of useful packages
Put here the packages which seem essential to you (without the version, because the urpmi command will find it). For my share, I will put the topics which seem pretty to me and which will install the dependences. Does that suit you? (ex: rather than to put superkaramba, I will put superkaramba liquid weather directly).


The essentials


The helpful packages to own
- superkaramba-theme-liquid_weather : superkaramba theme to know the current weather. The theme installation, will install, by dependencies the superkaramba software.
- kStreamripper : To save Internet audio fluxes.
- kdeaddons : to configure mostly your mouse right click in KDE
-

100%100 drakOdrak :)


To understand the Mandriva Linux files system

While being a beginner in the Linux world, it's sometimes difficult to find one's way in its tree structure. So, we will help you to find your way among theses countless directories.

First thing to say, is that the tree structure of a Unix system, like Linux, is centralized. But, what does that mean ? Unlike a Windows system, where the partitions use a letter-based drives naming, and where each drive contains its directories, under Linux, each directory or subdirectory is contained in the tree root. This root is noted “/”. Accordingly, the first slash of the directories "/usr/local/bin", "/home/user", "/root", "/dev", "/usr/share/doc/"... correspond to the idea that theses directories are linked to the root “/”. About the removable partitions and disks, they are mounted in a directory which is linked to the tree root. For example, a partition can be mounted on the directory /usr. Accordingly, the whole content of the directory /usr will correspond to the partition content. This directory can also contains a directory on which an other partition is mounted. So we can have a partition mounted on /usr and an other one on /usr/local. The same, the removable devices are mounted in directories (typically /mnt/cdrom for a CD ROM drive).

Where are the applications?

We call application every executable file. Thus an application can be a simple command line program like grep, a perl script, or a graphic application like Firefox. Typically, the applications are in the directories /bin, /sbin, /usr/bin, /usr/sbin. Why so many different directories (knowing that we can commonly have some more)? For a question of security and organization. Thus, we will have mainly in the directory /bin, the in line applications useful for shell scripts execution like booting scripts (scripts managing the launch of the different devices of your computer when you start your Linux), or for the system maintenance. /sbin, with regard to it, contains the command line basis applications allowing to configure the system, like the mount command to mount a partition, fdisk to create, to delete or to format a partition, ifconfig allowing to configure a network. Generally, the root user only can execute applications in /sbin (“s” like “super”, referencing to the “super user”: root)

Where are the data files?

Each application comes with its collection of data files. For example, a software like gcompris (an academic software) contains pictures, sounds and text files that are peculiar to it and of which gcompris needs to work properly. Theses data files are placed in /usr/share/[application name]. We can also find them in /usr/local/share or /opt/share if the applications ins installed respectively in /usr/local/bin or /opt/bin. Accordingly the wallpapers installed by the Wallpapers rpm are placed in /usr/share/wallpapers.

Where are the configuration files?

The configuration files differ from the data files by the fact that they can be modified by the users. Generally the configuration files are placed in /etc for the systems or server applications and in the user directory for the classic applications. As a result, the configuration files of an Apache server (application server) are in /etc/httpd and the KDE configuration files are in ~/.kde where ~ stands for the home directory.

Where are the libraries ?

Most of programs owns similar functionalities, like for example to open a file. That means the majority of the programs able to open a file have a part in common: this very part allowing to open a file. To avoid the redundancy, we often make a call to a library. Instead of an executable file containing all the application functionalities, we will split the program and put what can be common (or reused) in a library. At the launch of the executable file, we will use the functionalities present in the library called by the program. Thereby, a same library can be used by several programs (it's the aim we are looking for). The advantages are a save of place, and the possibility to correct a bug present in a lot of software if this bug is owned by a library. The disadvantage is that if a library is deleted by mistake, the whole software which was referring to it won't work any more. The libraries are generally in /lib, /usr/lib, /usr/local/lib, /opt/lib.

The directory /boot

As told by its name, it contains the system boot files, the famous "Linux kernel". There, we can also find the files of the Grub boot loader (the Grub configuration file is: /boot/grub/menu.lst). This directory must be on its own partition (a small partition of 50 Mo is more than enough) if you wish, later on, install several Linux distributions at the same time.

The directory /dev

Under Linux, all the devices are represented by a file and are placed in the directory /dev. A mouse could be represented by /dev/mouse, a sound card /dev/snd ...
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