Sources of Information

If you are new to the world of Linux, there are a number of resources to explore and become familiar with. Having access to the Internet is helpful, but not essential.

Red Hat's Web Site

Your primary resource for information on Red Hat Linux is Red Hat's web site, The Red Hat web site includes more resources than can be mentioned here. The final section of Chapter 3 describes several of the most useful resources. Two particularly important resources are:

The redhat-install-list mailing list

Here, you can obtain installation assistance from members of the Red Hat Linux community.


Bugzilla is a database that lists possible bugs affecting Red Hat Linux. The database often gives fixes or workarounds for bugs.

Linux Documentation Project Guides

The Linux Documentation Project (LDP) is a group of volunteers who have worked to produce books (guides), HOWTO documents, and manual pages on topics ranging from installation to kernel programming. More works are in development. For more information about the LDP, consult their web page at, or one of its many mirrors. The LDP works include:

Linux Installation and Getting Started

By Matt Welsh et al. This book describes how to obtain, install, and use Linux. It includes an introductory Unix tutorial and information on systems administration, the X Window System, and networking.

Linux System Administrators Guide

By Lars Wirzenius and Joanna Oja. This book is a guide to general Linux system administration and covers topics such as creating and configuring users, performing system backups, configuring major software packages, and installing and upgrading software.

Linux System Adminstration Made Easy

By Steve Frampton. This book describes day-to-day administration and maintenance issues of relevance to Linux users.

Linux Programmers Guide

By B. Scott Burkett, Sven Goldt, John D. Harper, Sven van der Meer, and Matt Welsh. This book covers topics of interest to people who wish to develop application software for Linux.

The Linux Kernel

By David A. Rusling. This book provides an introduction to the Linux kernel, how it is constructed, and how it works. Take a tour of your kernel.

The Linux Kernel Module Programming Guide

By Ori Pomerantz. This guide explains how to write Linux kernel modules.

More manuals are in development. For more information about the LDP you should consult their web server at or one of its many mirrors.

HOWTO documents

The Linux HOWTOs are a comprehensive series of papers detailing various aspects of the system?such as installation and configuration of the X Window System software or how to write in assembly language programming under Linux. These are available on the Web at one of the many Linux Documentation Project mirror sites. See the file HOWTO-INDEX for a list of what's available.

You might want to obtain the Installation HOWTO, which describes how to install Linux on your system; the Hardware Compatibility HOWTO, which contains a list of hardware known to work with Linux; and the Distribution HOWTO, which lists software vendors selling Linux on diskette and CD-ROM.

Linux Frequently Asked Questions

The Linux Frequently Asked Questions with Answers (FAQ) contains a wide assortment of questions and answers about the system. It is a must-read for all newcomers.

Documentation Available Commercially

O'Reilly & Associates publishes a series of Linux books. They include:

Running Linux

This installation and user guide to the system describes how to get the most out of personal computing with Linux.

Linux in a Nutshell

One of the successful "in a Nutshell" series, this book focuses on providing a broad reference text for Linux.

LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell

While this book is geared toward junior-level system administrators who want to take the Linux Professional Institute's exams for Level 1 Certification (LPIC-1), this book is also a great resource for new users, such as yourself.

Linux Journal and Linux Magazine

Linux Journal and Linux Magazine are monthly magazines for the Linux community, written and published by a number of Linux activists. They contain articles ranging from novice questions and answers to kernel programming internals. Even if you have Usenet access, these magazines are a good way to stay in touch with the Linux community.

Linux Journal is the older magazine and is published by SSC, Inc., for which details were listed previously. You can also find the magazine on the Web at

Linux Magazine is a newer, independent publication. The magazine's homepage is

Online Linux Support

There are many ways of obtaining help online, where volunteers from around the world offer expertise and services to assist users with questions and problems.

The Freenode is an IRC network devoted entirely to open projects?open source and open hardware alike. Some of its channels are designed to provide online Linux support services. IRC stands for Internet Relay Chat and is a network service that allows you to type interactively on the Internet to other users. IRC networks support multiple channels on which groups of people communicate. Whatever you type in a channel is seen by all other users of that channel.

There are a number of active channels on the Freenode IRC network where you will find users 24 hours a day, 7 days a week who are willing and able to help you solve any Linux problems you may have, or just chat about their favorite OS. You can use this service by installing an IRC client like irc-II, connecting to servername, and joining the #linpeople channel.

Linux User Groups (LUGs)

Many Linux user groups around the world offer direct support to users, and many engage in activities such as installation days, talks and seminars, demonstration nights, and other completely social events. Linux user groups are a great way of meeting other Linux users in your area. There are a number of published lists of Linux user groups. Some of the better-known ones are:

Groups of Linux Users Everywhere

LUG registry

Web Sites

The following are useful Linux-related web sites. Check them out to get the latest information about Linux. Perhaps the most useful is the home page of the Linux Documentation Project (LDP). There, you can find almost anything you want to know about Linux. The Linux Documentation Project web site includes a search engine that makes it easy to find what you need.

Linux Documentation Project

Linux Gazette

Linux Today

Linux Web Ring

The Linux Web Ring offers a convenient way to explore a variety of Linux-related web sites. Participating web sites present links to one another; by following these links, you can circumnavigate the entire ring or you can use the Web Ring's home page to seek exactly the sort of page you're interested in.

Linux Weekly News

O'Reilly & Associates Linux/Unix Center


The motto of the Slashdot web site is "News for nerds. Stuff that matters." You'll find a great deal of interesting news and information there, concerning not only Linux, but the open source community and computing generally.