View Full Version : Best books to learn Linux

April 11th, 2009, 09:16 PM

A question that has been asked time and time again, but, unfortunately, -all- of the books I've ever been recommended or have seen recommended are for true-and-blue linux newbies justing coming over from Windows, so a good percentage of the book is spent telling the reader the alternatives one can find in linux. I already know the alternatives, and I'm semi-comfortable with the terminal, ( though I could always learn more, lol ), but there is a lot behind the scenes that I want to know about, but don't know where to look. Most times when I take excursions within the filesystem, I always find a way to permanently mess my computer up, forcing a reinstall, as I have a bad memory at the best of times.

So, any books, guides, tutorials, you know of, list 'em here.

I appreciate it.

April 11th, 2009, 09:28 PM
Really, books aren't the best method to learn something that evolves as quickly as the computer world.

Want to learn Linux? Pick a crazy distro and spend a weekend making it work. Guaranteed if you're coming from Ubuntu, once you get an Arch installation set up you'll know a lot more than you did. Then from there if you can make Slackware/Gentoo/CRUX function you'll have an even better knowledge. Then if you're a lunatic, you can try Linux From Scratch.

April 11th, 2009, 09:32 PM
Running Gentoo is probably the best thing I've done (so far ;) ) to learn linux. Other than that, the best documentation is wiki. Books become outdated too quickly unless you don't mind learning older software. You may benefit from that, but do expect something that you have learned to change.

April 11th, 2009, 10:41 PM
Really, books aren't the best method to learn something that evolves as quickly as the computer world.

I'd have to agree. Books can only take you so far with learning Linux. Books will tell you how things will work in a perfect world, which isn't always the case in reality. The best way to learn Linux is to just play around with it. Break stuff, try to fix it, have fun. I've never picked up a book about Linux. Everything I've learned I've learned from experience or by just hanging around the forum here. Not to say books aren't a valuable resource, there's just certain aspects that you can't learn from a book.

April 12th, 2009, 12:16 AM
Best starter resources are the Gentoo, Arch and Ubuntu community documentation IMO.
form there, just pick out stuff you want to understand in more detail and search engine. tutorials inevitably serve up links to other tutorials and soon you'll have a spiderweb of knowledge.


April 12th, 2009, 12:30 AM
Well, I've built arch on a really horrible laptop, but I only understood half of what I was doing. Hell, back when 8.04 was in beta ( ubuntu ) I broke it, and had no idea how to fix it. ( As I recall, i never did get it either ). I'll try Gentoo, though.


April 12th, 2009, 01:53 AM

I am still amazed by the amount of knowledge that installing, configuring, and using Slackware will impart on you.

These two online resources are fantastic:

http://linux.die.net/ <-- a great resource with man pages, tutorials, and tons of other info
http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/ <-- IBM's DeveloperWorks site has some great resources for learning more about Linux

If you want print materials, all I can recommend is Programming Perl. That's the only computer book I own and is lots of fun, though only vaguely Linux-related.