New Linux User Questions | Software Recommendations | Best Practice

Hello, firstly thank you for taking a look at my post.

I switched over from Windows to Fedora 40, I’m tired of all the issues and privacy concerns that came with Windows. I’m also looking to get into the Cyber-security field, which I know is based around Linux systems. I have some general questions:

Is there any programs/software you’d recommend?

Are there any projects I can work on to better my knowledge on navigating and learning Linux?

Other than the base setup, do you recommend changing any settings for a better experience or enhanced security?

Again, thank you for your time!

Hello!

I recently posted some of my configs on Fedora here: My config/tweak notes for Fedora 40

Some of it is general like applications I use, but there’s also stuff like using systemd-resolved for local DNS resolutions, and a fix for adding locations to GNOME Weather.

You might not need most of that starting out though, but some tricks might be nice to be aware of for later or changing hardware, like forcing certain display color settings/Full RGB on HDMI.


Is there any programs/software you’d recommend?

I recommend mpv as a video (and casual audio) player! It plays mostly anything, suports most hardware-acceleration playbacks (VAAPI, VDPAU, etc), and is basically like a light version of VLC. With the default players, I had issues with Dragon Player on F40 Plasma 6, and heard of recent issues with Totem.

Are there any projects I can work on to better my knowledge on navigating and learning Linux?

I switched to Linux primarily when Windows 10 came out for similar privacy concerns and used to keep notes in text files on a flash drive. I moved the text files to GitHub, and someone suggested I host a wiki instead. Now anything I do on Linux I take notes to be able to re-do it later, and have a cool place to share them with others!

I had experience with hosting WoW private servers (back with Ascent and ArcEmu) and that was helpful for understanding the basics of how server daemons ran and command-line. It was tricky messing with web servers instead, but I got it down eventually.

Having a place to keep notes was the most useful thing I’ve done to expand my Linux knowledge! Along with the privacy concern, I also got into self-hosting. And hosting game servers. I went from just a wiki, to a landing page, blog, forum, Mumble server, XMPP, Cal/CardDAV, FTP, Xonotic, Minetest, and WoW servers, had that split between 3 OptiPlex desktops I got from a thrift store, in a room with Fedora Server running on all of them. And with the wiki, I have notes on all of that for anyone else that wants to give it a go! Privacy is a cool motivator :stuck_out_tongue:

Hello @qwerkydolphin ,
Welcome to the :fedora: Community!

  1. For programs to recommend, that really is a pretty open ended question, Fedora has over 13000 packages in it’s repos so I think you see the problem. It may go easier if you were to ask what app/package should I install to do whatever it is you wish to do.

  2. The Fedora documentation project is an awesome place to get some knowledge about linux topics specific to Fedora, most importantly how to use something.

  3. For security, straight out of the box, Fedora is setup to be secure for the average user. You can enhance security quite a bit through various methods.

To start your journey of reading about linux, I would like to suggest this site What is Linux? | Opensource.com. It has some cheat sheets posted there for the basics of commands to use in linux. The cheat sheets will mostly be for command line type of commands (issued in a terminal) as opposed to a GUI based tool. There is also the Redhat Learning Subscription at Red Hat Learning Subscription

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Your first step should be to develop confidence doing routine tasks by practice and studying the documentation. For Fedora, dnf, rpm, and journalctl are important tools, as you can see by reviewing topics on this forum.

POSIX command-line tools are central to using linux effectively. We all need reliable reference material, especially now that web searches often return AI-generated click-bait nonsense. Linux Command has been around for years and is widely used, so has benefited from scrutiny by many users.

There are professional associations that focus on all aspects of computing and maintain collections of high-quality peer-reviewed publications that are available to members. Cyber-security needs people with in-depth knowledge of many different topics, from the internals of CPU architectures, filesystems, network protocols, user behaviour, etc. There are some excellent case histories which make instructive reading. These help broaden your understanding and may lead you to an area that is particularly interesting to you.

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this is how i learnt linux : install distro => explore distro => break distro => repeat.
i would also recommend exploring different linux distributions.

Added f40, security and removed nvidia

From Ask Fedora to The Water Cooler

Added friends, off-topic, social, tech-talk and removed f40, security

@qwerkydolphin & @rst11 Welcome to :fedora: :handshake:t5:

@qwerkydolphin Fedora has a Security spin/package you can download. It has a ton of stuff in reference to security, recovery, inspection and other goodies. My first venture into it was around F25, when I took an old HDD and some tools I found there that were helpful for “forensic” work/play.

As for learning, Linux. I went the let me break it then fix it route. It didn’t go too well for me because I only had 1 issue with Fedora since I started, which was Fedora 25 and the kernel it shipped with on the .iso, but outside of that it’s been tangent learning and focusing on my career in administration and data analytics.

Man pages are boring looking, but helpful. Sometime a bit hard to navigate but helpful. Ask all the questions you need.

I moved this to the Water Cooler, since you didn’t have an explicit issue, but this is more or less a conversation post. Once again, Welcome home :fedora: