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Debian lenny on a dell inspiron 1545

Greetings everyone! I'm not an advanced user. I started out with another distribution based on Debian but I wanted to move to Debian as those were not suitable for me in the sense that they were not stable. I managed to install debian lenny on my Dell Inspiron 1545 (thanks to the graphical option which I do thank you everyone for providing it). As a new user I have some troubles and I wrote this email to ask for your help.
       First of all, I use PPPOE for connecting to the internet. As I started debian for the first time I did not find the network manager. How do I get it since I can't connect to the internet? I can use "sudo pppoeconf" but I don't want to since I had a lot of problems back on Ubuntu when runing this command. If I run it in the terminal back when I was using Ubuntu, it would overwrite the network manager config file and I could not use it anymore. I really do not want to compromise my system since I am a beginner.
So in a line, what can I do to get internet on my laptop using pppoe?
       Also can you please tell me if there is a way to change an option on nautilus to not open new windows when entering in a folder?

I know many said that debian is not for beginners. But please understand that it is the stability and clearness of this operating system that attracted me to install it.

I thank you all in advance and wish everyone the best!

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