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How to Read This Book

The suggested way of learning Unix is to read a little, then to play a little. Keep playing until you're comfortable with the concepts, and then start skipping around in the book. You'll find a variety of topics are covered, some of which you might find interesting. After a while, you should feel confident enough to start using commands without knowing what they should do. This is a good thing.

What most people regard as Unix is the Unix shell shell, a special program that interprets commands. In practice, this is a fine way of looking at things, but you should be aware that Unix really consists of many more things, or much less. (Depending on how you look at it.) This book tells you about how to use the shell , programs that Unix usually comes with, and some programs Unix doesn't always come with.

The current chapter is a meta-chapter--it discusses this book and how to apply this book to getting work done. The other chapters contain:

Chapter 2
discusses where Unix and Linux came from, and where they might be going. It also talks about the Free Software Foundation  and the GNU Project .
Chapter 3
talks about how to start and stop using your computer, and what happens at these times. Much of it deals with topics not needed for using Linux, but still quite useful and interesting.
Chapter 4
introduces the Unix shell. This is where people actually do work, and run programs. It talks about the basic programs and commands you must know to use Unix.
Chapter 5
covers the X Window System. X is the primary graphical front-end to Unix, and some distributions set it up by default.
Chapter 6
covers some of the more advanced parts of the Unix shell. Learning techniques described in this chapter will help make you more efficent.
Chapter 8
describes the Emacs text editor. Emacs is a very large program that integrates many of Unix's tools into one interface.
Chapter 7
has short descriptions of many different Unix commands. The more tools a user knows how to use, the quicker he will get his work done.
Chapter 11
describes some of the larger, harder to use commands.
Chapter 12
talks about easy ways to avoid errors in Unix and Linux.


next up previous contents index
Next: Documentation Up: Introduction Previous: How to Avoid Reading

Converted on:
Mon Apr 1 08:59:56 EST 1996