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#1 2002-09-17 21:57:49

Gyroplast
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From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
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FAQ?

Morning!


Is there an official Arch-FAQ document available anywhere? If not, I'd volunteer to take care of this, as I'm keeping track of the little nagging problems I encouter in the forum or myself anyway to save time on subsequent encounters. smile

$bla,
  Gyroplast


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#2 2002-09-24 07:22:52

apeiro
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From: Victoria, BC, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-12
Posts: 771
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Re: FAQ?

Sounds like a great idea to me.  Currently, there are only a few faq questions, and they are listed at the bottom of the arch documentation: http://www.archlinux.org/archdoc.html#A6.

Glad to have your help.  smile

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#3 2002-09-24 15:10:41

sarah31
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From: Middle of Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 2,975
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Re: FAQ?

might i suggest a faq on kernel recompiling. the makepkg way is quite easy but not documented anywhere but on this forum.


AKA uknowme

I am not your friend

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#4 2002-09-24 17:47:33

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

sarah31 wrote:

might i suggest a faq on kernel recompiling. the makepkg way is quite easy but not documented anywhere but on this forum.

Ooooh, right!
That makes a great FAQ, I wondered about how to integrate the whole kernel stuff into pacman myself initially. I'll try to put up a preliminary version of the FAQ on friday, just before I leave for two weeks, for all of you to have a look and send your comments and additions to add. Maybe we'll get something worthwile out of all this.

Thanks,
  Gyroplast


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#5 2002-09-26 21:11:50

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

Hrm.. okay, since I had nearly no time to spare this week, I ony have a sort of "example FAQ" online at http://archlinux.veloxis.de/. It's coarsely structured and contains only two actual questions. Not even good ones. It's only intended to give a feeling of how it'll look like with a decently structured and filled content.

I plan to distribute the FAQ in PDF, LaTeX, HTML, monolithic HTML, PluckerDB and maybe plain ascii. Anything important missing?

Anyhow, I'm off for now, see you again in two weeks.

Greets,
  Gyroplast


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#6 2002-09-26 21:28:24

apeiro
Daddy
From: Victoria, BC, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-12
Posts: 771
Website

Re: FAQ?

Looks good to me.  smile

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#7 2002-11-11 02:21:21

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

Mooorning again.

I decided to enjoy a nice nightshift this fine day to finally continue the development of the ArchLinux FAQ I mentioned some time ago in this thread.

No, it's NOT dead!

So there we go, I changed the initial layout slightly, and added a couple of actual questions with answers that kept cropping up in the forum the last weeks. Maybe it'll help. For the curious, my little ArchLinux page can still be accessed at http://archlinux.veloxis.de/, and the FAQ is now accessible as LaTeX, PDF and online as a bunch of HTML files.

Please have a look at it, and tell me about any other FAQs you miss.

A suggestion to the maintainer of the ArchLinux page would be to add a "Links" section to provide a list of unofficial resources like this FAQ, and the pages of the other people I've seen posting in the forum about having some extra docs online.

Well then!
  Dennis "Gyroplast" Herbrich


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#8 2002-11-11 13:58:58

dunbar
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From: Central New Hampshire USA
Registered: 2002-08-14
Posts: 106
Website

Re: FAQ?

Gyroplast wrote:

For the curious, my little ArchLinux page can still be accessed at http://archlinux.veloxis.de/, and the FAQ is now accessible as LaTeX, PDF and online as a bunch of HTML files.

Umm, I know I'm not going to get anyone on my side in defense of my statement, but when my box is down, I'm looking for a document of the least complexity. IMO, in order for PDF documents to work, X must also work. Hence a PDF of how to get X to work would be kinda tough to read without a gui, from a commandline. :oops:

And FWIW, although I'd prefer to avoid HTML, I'll concede that as long as there will always be some way of properly displaying HTML documents at a command line (forcibly installed so it cannot be optioned out), I'll get by. W3M seems to work for this, IMO (or MC, but MC is dead). Remember that commandline HTML browsers might not be HTML 4.0 compatible, tables are not likely to look good at 40 columns text (cli = 40 columns, right?), frames are out of the question, etc.

LaTeX is not a package I install: I have no desire for complexities like LaTeX just to read a few lines of text. Overkill, to the nth degree.

We all appreciate documents; your information looks ok, but are fluffed more than I like. I came here for the simple docs, I can also leave if the docs get too hard to use or read. Not a threat, I'm just saying simple and available docs make all the difference to me. I prefer jvinets early docs (circa 0.2) as an example of my desires: short, sweet, no fluff, text only and local to the PC.

Lastly, I prefer to retain all my documents on the PC I've installed Arch onto, various reasons including it is not networked (or the network crashed), it has no modem (or PPP config got trashed during a hardware upgrade attempt), and so forth; remote access is not a good delivery method for me (ody: be nice). Also consider how useful a website with a PPP document would be when I can't configure my modem! Is it really all that difficult for one developer to post a document to a central location accessed by the Arch developers, for it to be included on the next ISO? Do hundreds or possibly millions of Arch users really need to scour the internet just to save one developer some time? If each user spent an hour searching the internet for documents which move about, would their time be less valuable than the developers one hour? Add it up!

I'd say that putting any documents onto multiple webpages is also begging for abandonment issues, like so many XFree86 how-tos today: How to set up Xfree 3.6.x is simply an abandoned document.

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#9 2002-11-11 15:30:23

jk
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From: Groningen, The Netherlands
Registered: 2002-10-24
Posts: 66
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Re: FAQ?

IMHO LaTeX is a wonderful product to write documentation with (wrote quite a bit of documentation in stuff like Docbook and LaTeX, and i prefer LaTeX above all up to now), so i'd keep it in LaTeX. Just add a plain text version and a one-big-html-page version.

Looks great to me.

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#10 2002-11-11 16:14:50

n00b_E
Member
Registered: 2002-11-08
Posts: 13

Re: FAQ?

I dont think anyone questions the quality of work or the degree of work
gyro has done. Myself included.

I'm just gonna split hairs here and I dont know  a way to do it delicately.

To me a FAQ is a stand-alone document that is in question and answer form.
A collection of mostly oneline questions with very succinct responses

Example:
Q:  *  I can't ssh into my machine!
A: Edit your /etc/hosts.deny file.  The default configuration will reject all incoming connections.

From what i seethe work Gyro has done is to rework the documentation enmasse
but i think calling it a FAQ is a bit of a misnomer
And there still does not exist an Arch-faq. as a stand alone docuement.
(a document which the website wouldnt suffer from having)

In regards to the format, im not oriented to latex so i cant speak on it.

in regards to the breviity of documentation available post- install
I believe thats considered a feature based on whats stated at
http://www.archlinux.org/archdoc.html#A6
" if I need documentation, I can read it on the net, so /usr/doc is useless to me."
and that might be better served being addressed as a seprate thread


-= n00b_E =-

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#11 2002-11-11 17:20:53

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

n00b_E wrote:

To me a FAQ is a stand-alone document that is in question and answer form.
A collection of mostly oneline questions with very succinct responses

I'll concur with that definition, mostly.
Unfortunately, seemingly simple oneliner problems can have quite complex causes, and often even more than only one. Therefore a slightly more explanative approach seemed more appropriate to me to actually help solving a problem _and_ learning a bit while doing so. That's why I include pointers to matching forum discussions and other online resources.

n00b_E wrote:

Example:
Q:  *  I can't ssh into my machine!
A: Edit your /etc/hosts.deny file.  The default configuration will reject all incoming connections.

Actually most of the questions are answered with oneliners like this one. Especially the primitive ones, like where to set the hostname and such. Those don't need further explanation. How to configure your ethernet in Arch does, IMO.

n00b_E wrote:

From what i seethe work Gyro has done is to rework the documentation enmasse
but i think calling it a FAQ is a bit of a misnomer

Debatably. Depends on what kind of FAQ you're used to I suppose. I'll try to anticipate "stupid" questions before they're even asked, but "Fluffy FAQ" somehow doesn't sound too intriguing, so I'll guess it's close enough to a FAQ to not be too misleading. smile
I fully understand your point of liking concise documentation. Nothing is more unnerving than pages and pages of blurb, but OTOH I'm not on the run here.. If I have to decide between 5 sentences with a short explanation of what the heck the problem is all about, and a oneliner, I rather go for the first. As you saw. It's not like you're wasting much time reading this fluff, the actual information is easily spotted. Hopefully, at least!

I do not see this FAQ as a must-have documentation, by the way. The primary purpose of a FAQ still is keeping people from asking the same questions again and again, thus saving everybodies time. Where are these questions asked? In IRC or the forum. What does that imply? A working net connection. Da.

In an earlier post I mentioned generating a monolithic HTML file, a pluckerDB for the Palm handheld, and an ASCII version as well. This simply has not happened _yet_, so stay tuned for the universally acceptable format you can deploy locally as well if you like.

I consider the multipage HTML as the primary means for distributing the FAQ, tho, and if only for the hyperlink capability. If you're telling me there are non-HTML3.2 capable browsers around, I certainly pity these people who have to use such crap. The standard is years old by now, the page doesn't use a single frame, table or anything else but strict HTML3.2. If that's not low enough as a standard, I'm afraid I can't help there. A line has to be drawn somewhere. The pages look nifty in several text-only console browsers as well, BTW. smile

PDF is generated for the printer-friendly people who need some eye-candy, and I publish the LaTeX file itself to allow anyone to generate his own weird format if he feels the need to. I don't want anyone to be dependant on _my_ utterly subjective choice of "appropriate formats" after all.

However, thanks for your input, I'll watch out even more to stay close to the point, and not write up another "War&Peace" here. The initial layout really was more a manual than anything else, it might take me some time to boil it down to the actual size. smile

Greets,
  Gyro


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#12 2002-11-11 18:38:42

dunbar
Member
From: Central New Hampshire USA
Registered: 2002-08-14
Posts: 106
Website

Re: FAQ?

Gyroplast wrote:

Nothing is more unnerving than pages and pages of blurb, but OTOH I'm not on the run here.. If I have to decide between 5 sentences with a short explanation of what the heck the problem is all about, and a oneliner, I rather go for the first.

Agreed - provided the extra is not specific to some obscure card. Writing a lot of 'this specific card' detail frequently causes needed configuration steps to get folded into the muck which is deemed by the reader as only applying to the specific card and we generic people might not know enough to perform that step for the generic routine because it is only discussed in the area of specifics..... We'll only come to the forums with such things as this!

As you saw. It's not like you're wasting much time reading this fluff, the actual information is easily spotted. Hopefully, at least!

Not so for some other sites FAQ, IMHO. Hence my dogged pursuance of the matter.

I do not see this FAQ as a must-have documentation, by the way. The primary purpose of a FAQ still is keeping people from asking the same questions again and again, thus saving everybodies time.

The questions which get asked most often are things like how do I add a NIC, why is my scroll wheel not working? These are simple one liners which are frequently asked, no?

Where are these questions asked? In IRC or the forum. What does that imply? A working net connection. Da.

Umm, assuming the post always comes from the Arch Linux PC in question, at the same time the problem needs to be resolved? No guarantees of that being 100% true! Maybe consider all possible user variations, instead of only one option?

In an earlier post I mentioned generating a monolithic HTML file, a pluckerDB for the Palm handheld, and an ASCII version as well.

From what I've been told, ASCII is a good format for CLI, so why not include the ASCII in the ISO image?

I consider the multipage HTML as the primary means for distributing the FAQ, tho, and if only for the hyperlink capability.

forcing a CLI browser to be installed by default is not very much overhead, but it would not be optional: ever try to cat HTML?

If you're telling me there are non-HTML3.2 capable browsers around, I certainly pity these people who have to use such crap.

Umm, force the proper CLI browser into the install, eh? Not my choice if I download an ISO9660 image because my Arch Box is not in the internet - not everyone can just apt-get stuff ya know! roll

The standard is years old by now, the page doesn't use a single frame, table or anything else but strict HTML3.2. If that's not low enough as a standard, I'm afraid I can't help there. A line has to be drawn somewhere. The pages look nifty in several text-only console browsers as well, BTW. smile

Such is good!

PDF is generated for the printer-friendly people who need some eye-candy, and I publish the LaTeX file itself to allow anyone to generate his own weird format if he feels the need to. I don't want anyone to be dependant on _my_ utterly subjective choice of "appropriate formats" after all.

The user comes in many flavors, but the Linux has failed user comes in only one: ASCII.

However, thanks for your input, I'll watch out even more to stay close to the point, and not write up another "War&Peace" here. The initial layout really was more a manual than anything else, it might take me some time to boil it down to the actual size. smile

Greets,
  Gyro

That will make for a smooth distro, IMO.

All in all, said a lot which can get misconstrued.... I ultimately only want for newbies to have the correct document, concise and readable when they need them most: midcrash. I realise that I can come across as debating an issue to death, to other people, but it is simply because forum people will ultimately have to respond sooner (these docs and my posts) or later (in the forums). I wouldn't risk getting flamed if I felt the points were only intellectual or moot or impossibly obscure. This distro can go real far on some early and simple efforts, or it can become a distro where only the elite have access to the information and thus shuns 56k and nonconnected users. So far, so good. My thanks to you for reading and taking part, Gyro.

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#13 2003-05-10 19:48:06

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

Good morning again!

After an awfully long time, I'm finally working as a freelancer again, so I've got some spare time to get the FAQ up to date. wink

I uploaded a new version to http://archlinux.veloxis.de an hour ago, containing a few FAQs for pacman and two new formats.

Now, what I'd love to hear from you (yes, that means YOU!) are any additions you can think of. Have you solved a problem that might be a FAQ? Please tell me! I have a hard time catching up on all the forum entries, and you could help enhancing the FAQ with your input!

Thanks,
Dennis "Gyroplast" Herbrich


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#14 2003-05-10 21:51:53

hApy
Member
From: Victoria, BC
Registered: 2003-04-13
Posts: 194
Website

Re: FAQ?

Nice! I like the FAQ. I didn't know about the pacman -nosave option to automatically remove configs. cool. wink

How about adding how to setup CD-Writers as well? with the whole scsi-ide module, adding an append line in lilo, etc.

http://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php? … ht=idescsi

Hapy.

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#15 2003-05-11 11:23:33

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

[X] Done.

Of course these instructions are only fully valid for the stock kernel. I have no pity for people rolling their own and failing miserably. Well, actually I do, but I simply cannot copy the whole CDWriting-HOWTO, and I do not think that I should, either.


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#16 2003-05-11 12:52:26

Blaasvis
Member
Registered: 2003-01-17
Posts: 467

Re: FAQ?

well i am looking into setting up devfsd with a group called cdrecord in devfsd.conf

the lines should read :
groupadd cdrecord
and add to the devfsd.conf:

REGISTER       sg0     PERMISSIONS root.cdrecord 660

this way any user that is a member of the group cdrecord may burn cd s

sg0 == first cdrom
sg1 == second cdrom
etc...

you can add as much cd writers as you want  wink


Freedom is what i love

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#17 2003-05-16 20:59:18

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

Mooorning!

I just finished translating the FAQ to German, it's my mother tongue after all, and the page at http://archlinux.veloxis.de/ is updated accordingly. Hell yeah, with the right setup, it's real fun to keep the FAQ up to date! Any other people up for translations? French would be cool, but I don't know jack about it, and until my chinese is good enough for a translation, we'll all be old and grey. wink

Greets,
  Dennis


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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#18 2003-05-16 21:29:55

sarah31
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From: Middle of Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 2,975
Website

Re: FAQ?

swahili woukld be a good translation .... and you only have til tomorrow to get it done so no lollygagging around eh?

tongue  tongue


AKA uknowme

I am not your friend

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#19 2003-05-16 21:32:44

Gyroplast
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2002-09-03
Posts: 166
Website

Re: FAQ?

Only until tomorrow? Darn, I guess the ancient-egyptian translation has to wait then! A real pity, the hieroglyphs were rendered pretty well.. wink


"That's the problem with good advice. Nobody wants to hear it."
-- Dogbert

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