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I am a newbie to Linux and I am trying to build a custom kernel on ubuntu and I saw this document and it said I needed to install the packages https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Kernel/Compile

To start, you will need to install a few packages. The exact commands to install those packages depends on which release you are using:

Hardy (8.04): 

sudo apt-get install linux-kernel-devel fakeroot kernel-wedge build-essential
Note: The package makedumpfile is not available in Hardy.

Lucid (10.04): 

sudo apt-get install fakeroot build-essential crash kexec-tools makedumpfile kernel-wedge
sudo apt-get build-dep linux
sudo apt-get install git-core libncurses5 libncurses5-dev libelf-dev asciidoc binutils-dev
sudo apt-get install linux-kernel-devel fakeroot kernel-wedge build-essential

sudo = permits users to execute command as super user
apt-get = Get a package from the Advance Packing Tool ( something like extract a package from a library kind of I believe)
Install - Operation to do
linux-kernel-devel - ??????????????( what does this mean)
fakeroot - Lets user do file manupulations as a fake user.
kernel-wedge build-essential - ??????????????( what does this mean)

How and where can I see the meaning or function for every command in a document?

Thanks in advance

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closed as too broad by slm, Joseph R., terdon, Anthon, manatwork Oct 10 '13 at 8:26

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

2 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Commands can be viewed with man. For example 'man sudo' would bring up documentation for the sudo command. If you are looking for information on programs like 'linux-kernel-devel' you can get that from google or from /usr/share/doc/<name> directory.

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The information in /usr/share/doc/<name> isn't always very helpful. Searching the internet works better. Be careful when playing with creating a custom kernel as a new Linux user. It's easy to break and not so easy to fix. –  Jeight Oct 9 '13 at 23:00
when i try man fakeroot it gives me nothing :(, it says No manual entry for fakeroot. gotcha, I am playing on a vm ware player. Real dumb question does it hurt any setup on my PC when I break something during installation? If so I will be super careful if it is all about rebuilding the IOS image hosted on vm ware player then I can play around all day –  rao Oct 9 '13 at 23:04
Then google. man.he.net/man1/fakeroot :) –  Jeight Oct 9 '13 at 23:11
No. A VM is completely separate from your host system. Have fun with it and take lots of snapshots. It will save you lots of grief. –  Jeight Oct 9 '13 at 23:13
:) That makes me love VMWare more now. Thanks for the help :) –  rao Oct 9 '13 at 23:16
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sudo is a shell command — it's a program whose name you can type in the shell. Its arguments are a command to run as root, the system user with maximum privileges. For more information, use the man command to read the command's man page: man sudo.

apt-get is a shell command, part of the APT tool suite. APT is the package manager on Debian, Ubuntu, Mint and other Linux distributions. apt-get installs and maintains programs and other collections of files (data, documentation, etc.) in the form of packages. Packages are usually downloaded from repositories on the Internet, but can also be read from a CD or other media. For more information: man apt-get.

install, here, is a one of apt-get's commands. It is followed by the name of one or more package to install. Other apt-get commands include remove (to remove the packages whose name follow), upgrade (to upgrade all packages for which upgrades can be downloaded), etc. The apt-get command build-dep installs all the packages that are required to install the specified package from source. For more information, search for install in the apt-get man page.

What follows install is a list of package names. You can display information about a package with the command apt-cache show PACKAGENAME, e.g. apt-cache show fakeroot. You can also find this information on the Ubuntu website at e.g. http://packages.ubuntu.com/fakeroot.

I won't go into the various packages that are needed to build a kernel. Beware that information about Ubuntu 8.04 and 10.04 is rather out-of-date: the current Ubuntu release is 13.04, with 13.10 coming out in a few days, and the current long-term support release is 12.04.

Compiling a kernel is complex, error-prone and very rarely useful. It's definitely not something you should be doing as a Linux newbie.

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