2. Short Intro

This is what you absolutely need to know before logging in the first time. Relax, it's not much.

2.1. Files

Now, a table to sum up how to translate commands from VMS to Linux:

VMS					Linux

$ COPY file1.txt file2.txt              $ cp file1.txt file2.txt
$ COPY [.dir]file.txt []                $ cp dir/file.txt .
$ COPY [.dir]file.txt [-]               $ cp dir/file.txt ..
$ DELETE *.dat;*                        $ rm *dat
$ DIFF file1 file2                      $ diff -c file1 file2
$ PRINT file                            $ lpr file
$ PRINT/queue=queuename file            $ lpr -Pprintername file
$ SEARCH *.tex;* "geology"              $ grep geology *tex

For other examples involving directories, see below; for details about protections, ownership, and advanced topics, see Section Section 8.

2.2. Directories

And now for some other examples:

VMS                                     Linux

$ CREATE/DIR [.dirname]                 $ mkdir dirname
$ CREATE/DIR [.dir1.dir2.dir3]          $ mkdirhier dir1/dir2/dir3
   n/a                                  $ rmdir dirname
   					(if dirname is empty)
                                        $ rm -R dirname
$ DIRECTORY                             $ ls
$ DIRECTORY [...]file.*;*		$ find . -name "file*"
$ SET DEF [-]                           $ cd ..
$ SET DEF [top.dir.subdir]              $ cd /top/dir/subdir
$ SET DEF [.dir.subdir]                 $ cd dir/subdir
$ SHOW DEF                              $ pwd

For protections, ownership, and advanced topics, see Section Section 8.

2.3. Programs

For multitasking, `queues', and the like, see Section Section 8.

2.4. Quick Tour

Now you are ready to try Linux out. Enter your login name and password exactly as they are. For example, if your login name and password are john and My_PassWd, don't type John or my_passwd. Remember, UNIX distinguishes between capital and small letters.

Once you've logged in, you'll see a prompt; chances are it'll be something like machinename:$. If you want to change the prompt or make some programs start automatically, you'll have to edit a `hidden' file called .profile or .bash_profile (see example in Section Section 9). This is the equivalent of LOGIN.COM.

Pressing ALT--F1, ALT--F2, ... ALT--F6 switches between `virtual consoles'. When one VC is busy with a full--screen application, you can flip over to another and continue to work. Try and log in to another VC.

Now you may want to start X Window System (from now on, X). X is a graphic environment very similar to DECWindows---actually, the latter derives from the former. Type the command startx and wait a few seconds; most likely you'll see an open xterm or equivalent terminal emulator, and possibly a button bar. (It depends on how your sysadm configured your Linux box.) Click on the desktop (try both mouse buttons) to see a menu.

While in X, to access the text mode (`console') sessions press CTRL--ALT--F1 ... CTRL--ALT--F6. Try it. When in console, go back to X pressing ALT--F7. To quit X, follow the menu instructions or press CTRL--ALT--BS.

Type the following command to list your home dir contents, including the hidden files:

$ ls -al

Press SHIFT--PAG UP to back-scroll. Now get help about the ls command typing:

$ man ls

pressing 'q' to exit. To end the tour, type exit to quit your session. If now you want to turn off your PC, press CTRL--ALT--DEL and wait a few seconds (never switch off the PC while in Linux! You could damage the filesystem.)

If you think you're ready to work, go ahead, but if I were you I'd jump to Section Section 8.