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Re: Guide / Tools

On Wed, 21 Nov 2012 08:02:56 -0600
Hugo Vanwoerkom <hvw59601@care2.com> wrote:

> Crypticmofo wrote:
> > 
> > What i really want are real life uses everyday ie.. do you use a
> > lot of dpkg commands do you use  a lot of apt or aptitude commands
> > everday

I use dpkg when I'm in trouble, or if I need to install a .deb that
isn't in my usual repositories. Sometimes a system gets into a state
where the apt tools can't fix something, then it's time for dpkg. The
apt tools normally work, and are much more powerful, but sometimes you
need the brute force and ignorance of dpkg. The apt tools do in fact
use dpkg themselves, but they do it more carefully.

Dpkg-reconfigure is also useful when you need to restore the original
default configuration somewhere. I also occasionally use dpkg -l and
with --get-selections to keep track of what I have installed.

For the most part, I use aptitude non-interactive. I run a sid
desktop, and that needs frequent updates. If that fails with several
buggy programs or dependencies, as happens now and then with sid, I
switch to Synaptic, as I find that quicker when working out what can be
upgraded and what has to be left to fester for a while. 

> > 
> > Also .. in your experience what are good handy tools we should have
> > and learn that are a must to be able to navigate / use Debian
> > 
> still for me:
> mc (in a text VT)

Indeed. I never went the vi/emacs route since cooledit in mc does all
the admin work I need to do, and I don't do heavy text processing. And
my server doesn't have X, so mc is a useful semi-graphical file manager
and simple text editor combined. And I'm old enough to remember the
Norton Commander...

I use tail -f <logfile> probably once a week, today for fetchmail. It's
extremely useful in conjunction with iptables logging, see below, or
with your mail server of choice to debug rejection problems.

Some people prefer the command line to GUI tools, I'm one of those who
prefers to use a hand-written iptables script to a firewall tool. My
experience is that if there's one area where you need a complete and
accurate understanding of what's going on, it's firewalling. You can
waste a lot of time deducing what an auto-generated firewall is doing,
or a completely undocumented one in Someone Else's operating system. I
also use iptables logging as a quick-and-dirty packet sniffer for
network debugging. This pretty much requires that you write your own
script and understand the logic flow, and if you drop in a virtual
machine or VPN server, you don't have to rely on your firewall tool
being pre-configured to deal with these things as you would wish.

Other than these, I use mostly commands others have already mentioned.
I am aware that there's a vast array of commands I've never even heard
of, but I'm also aware that learning them en masse would be a waste of
time, as there's no way of remembering something you don't use often.


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