Questions specifically about Linux but not specific to a particular distribution. If the question could apply to any Unix-like system, specify your Linux distribution in the body of your question but do not use the /linux tag.

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19
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7answers
12k views

Linux boot loaders supporting full disk encryption?

Are there any Linux boot loaders supporting full disk encryption (a la TrueCrypt). I know there was work towards adding encryption support to GRUB2, but this does not seem to be ready yet. Any other ...
19
votes
1answer
3k views

Who creates /etc/{group,gshadow,passwd,shadow}-?

In any linux system I have access to (a couple of Archlinuxes, an Ubuntu, a Debian Sid and a Gentoo) there are the following 4 files in /etc/, all ending with a dash: /etc/group- /etc/gshadow- ...
19
votes
4answers
5k views

What happens to the output of a process that has been disowned and lost its terminal?

If I close the virtual terminal, where some process was started, does the output just go straight to /dev/null, or can it pollute memory somehow? Can I anyhow grab the output to continue reading it at ...
19
votes
3answers
1k views

Can I achieve functionality similar to interrupts in Linux userspace?

One of functionalities I miss the most from "small embedded" in Embedded Linux is the interrupts. A signal appears on a specific pin, or other interrupt source is triggered and whatever was done ...
18
votes
2answers
59k views

How to show the filesystem type via the terminal? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to tell what type of filesystem you’re on? Find filesystem of an unmounted partition from a script How can I quickly check the filesystem of the partition? Can I ...
18
votes
6answers
17k views

Execute a specific command in a given directory without cd'ing to it?

Is there a way to execute a command in a different directory without having to cd to it? I know that I could simply cd in and cd out, but I'm just interested in the possibilities of forgoing the extra ...
18
votes
6answers
14k views

Can we get compiler information from an elf binary?

Is there some chance to know how a binary was built, under Linux? (and or other Unix) Compiler, version, time, flags etc... I looked at readelf and couldn't find much, but there might be other ways ...
18
votes
6answers
3k views

How to safely turn off swap permanently? (on Debian Jessie)

I fresh installed Debian Jessie with default partitioning on an SSD drive. My current disk partitions look like this: As I have 16GB RAM, I think I don't need swap. On Windows, I had it turned off ...
18
votes
4answers
1k views

Why does Linux scale so well to different hardware platforms?

Why does Linux run well on so many different types of machines - desktops, laptops, servers, embedded devices, mobile phones, etc? Is it mainly because the system is open, so any part of it can be ...
18
votes
1answer
12k views

Linux LXC vs FreeBSD jail

Are there any notable differences between LXC (Linux containers) and FreeBSD's jails in terms of security, stability & performance? On first look, both approaches look very similar.
18
votes
4answers
62k views

Why the default eth0 interface is down by default on CentOS?

I am already a little bit familiar with Linux distros like Debian or Ubuntu (yeah, very similar) but I wanted to try Red Hat based - CentOS 6.2 . I have installed it on my Windows 7 host in virtualBox ...
18
votes
3answers
31k views

Yum: How can I view variables like $releasever, $basearch & $YUM0?

I am setting up a yum repository, and need to debug some of the URLs in the yum.conf file. I need to know why is Scientific Linux trying to grab this URL, when I was expecting it to grab another URL: ...
18
votes
2answers
11k views

What is the proper sudoers syntax to add a user?

According to the comments in /etc/sudoers (Fedora 13): ## Syntax: ## ## user MACHINE=COMMANDS ## ## The COMMANDS section may have other options added to it. My two related questions: What ...
18
votes
4answers
5k views

Linux: Kill process based on arguments

How can I kill a process based on its command line arguments? killall, pgrep, and pkill seem to only work based on the process name. I need this to be able to differentiate between a number of ...
18
votes
3answers
5k views

Why is Linux NFS server implemented in the kernel as opposed to userspace?

I was just wondering why the Linux NFS server is implemented in the kernel as opposed to a userspace application? I know a userspace NFS daemon exists, but it's not the standard method for providing ...
18
votes
2answers
30k views

What is the difference between ioctl(), unlocked_ioctl() and compat_ioctl()?

Going through the linux 2.6.36 source code at lxr.linux.no, I could not find the ioctl() method in file_operations. Instead I found two new calls: unlocked_ioctl() and compat_ioctl(). What is the ...
18
votes
7answers
7k views

Linux equivalent to ReadyBoost?

Is there a kernel module or some other patch or something similar to Windows' ReadyBoost? Basically I'm looking for something that allows disk reads to be cached on a Flash drive.
18
votes
5answers
4k views

Corruption-proof SD card filesystem for embedded Linux?

Recently we had a rather unpleasant situation with our customer - Raspberry Pi based "kiosk" used to display remote sensing data (nothing more fancy than a kiosk mode browser displaying a ...
18
votes
1answer
3k views

Change password on a LUKS filesystem without knowing the password

I have a Debian Wheezy server that's been running for a while with an encrypted drive. The password for the encrypted drive (/dev/sda5) was lost when my encrypted password file was corrupted. I'd ...
18
votes
7answers
37k views

Why is USB not working in Linux when it works in UEFI/BIOS?

For background I have just built a new machine with modern hardware including: AMD FX-8350 Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD3 motherboard 16GB RAM NVidia GTX 650 Ti Kingston SSD Given that, I tried to install ...
18
votes
1answer
3k views

Shebang line with `#!/usr/bin/env command --argument` fails on Linux

I've got a simple script: #!/usr/bin/env ruby --verbose # script.rb puts "hi" On my OSX box, it runs fine: osx% ./script.rb hi However, on my linux box, it throws an error linux% ./script.rb ...
18
votes
1answer
9k views

What is maximum RAM supportable by Linux?

What is the maximum supportable RAM by Linux? Assume that hardware is/supports 64-bit. Among all Linux distros. Does it go up to 16 exabytes, or is it limited like with Windows which I believe is 192 ...
18
votes
2answers
42k views

How to recover a crashed Linux md RAID5 array?

Some time ago I had a RAID5 system at home. One of the 4 disks failed but after removing and putting it back it seemed to be OK so I started a resync. When it finished I realized, to my horror, that 3 ...
18
votes
2answers
16k views

Booting native Arch Linux on an Android device

I have a Galaxy Note 10.1 (n8010) and I want to make it boot Arch Linux natively. I mean boot Arch Linux instead of android. All that I need is to alter the initramfs, which I can't find anywhere in ...
17
votes
5answers
29k views

Linux ls to show only filename date and size

How can I use ls in linux to get a listing of filenames date and size only. I don't need to see the other info such as owner or permission. Is this possible?
17
votes
4answers
2k views

How Does Linux deal with shell scripts?

For this question, let's consider a bash shell script, though this question must be applicable to all types of shell script. When someone executes a shell script, does Linux load all the script at ...
17
votes
8answers
25k views

How to determine which sd* is usb? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to know if /dev/sdX is a connected USB or HDD? The output of ls /dev/sd* on my system is - sda sda1 sda2 sda3 sda4 sda5 sda6 sda7 sdb sdc sdc1 sdc2 ...
17
votes
6answers
2k views

How to achieve portability with sed -i (in-place editing)?

I'm writing shell scripts for my server, which is a shared hosting running FreeBSD. I also want to be able to test them locally, on my PC running Linux. Hence, I'm trying to write them in a portable ...
17
votes
2answers
7k views

Can I watch the progress of a `sync` operation?

I've copied a large file to a USB disk mounted on a Linux system with async. This returns to a command prompt relatively quickly, but when I type sync, of course, it all has to go to disk, and that ...
17
votes
3answers
8k views

Understanding /dev and its subdirs and files

$ ls -l /dev/stdin /dev/fd/0 lrwx------ 1 tim tim 64 2011-08-07 09:53 /dev/fd/0 -> /dev/pts/2 lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 15 2011-08-06 08:14 /dev/stdin -> /proc/self/fd/0 $ ls -l /dev/pts/2 ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

How is the linux graphics stack organised?

Can anybody explain(hopefully with a picture), how is the linux graphics stack organised? I hear all the time about X/GTK/GNOME/KDE etc., but I really don't have any idea what they actually do and how ...
17
votes
5answers
12k views

Using different versions of Python

Background: Since I develop python programs that must run on different python versions, I have installed different versions of python on my computer. I am using FC 13 so it came with python 2.6 ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is JFS so obscure?

When I first got into using Slackware years ago I quickly learned to love JFS over ext3 or reiserfs given that it was reliable and if there was an unclean shutdown, its disk checking was very very ...
17
votes
4answers
4k views

What happens if you edit a script during execution?

I have a general question, which might be a result of misunderstanding of how processes are handled in Linux. For my purposes I am going to define a 'script' as a snippet of bash code saved to a text ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

How to automate Linux server configuration?

Is there any way to automate Linux server configuration? I'm working on setting up a couple of new build servers, as well as an FTP server, and would like to automate as much of the process as ...
17
votes
5answers
78k views

How to move all files and folders via mv command

How can I move all files and folders from one directory to another via mv command?
17
votes
6answers
29k views

How to see disk details like manufacturer in Linux

With sfdisk -s I can see the disk capacity as follows: $ sfdisk -s /dev/cciss/c0d0: 143338560 total: 143338560 blocks How do I see disk details like disk manufacturer? I tried hdparm, but got an ...
17
votes
4answers
16k views

What is the equivalent of Active Directory on Linux

I have a couple of machines at home (plus a number of Linux boxes running in VMs) and I am planning to use one of them as a centralized file server. Since I am more a Linux user rather than a ...
17
votes
1answer
10k views

Linux: What is a tainted kernel?

Under certain conditions, the Linux kernel may become tainted. For example, loading a proprietary video driver into the kernel taints the kernel. This condition may be visible in system logs, kernel ...
17
votes
3answers
12k views

How to read environment variables of a process

Linux's /proc/<pid>/environ does not update (as I understand it, the file contain the initial environment of the process). How can I read a process's current environment?
17
votes
3answers
10k views

What is the difference between the following kernel Makefile terms: vmlinux, vmlinuz, vmlinux.bin, zimage & bzimage?

While browsing through the Kernel Makefiles, i found these terms. So i would like to know what is the difference between vmlinux, vmlinuz, vmlinux.bin, zimage & bzimage?
17
votes
1answer
2k views

What is Linux doing differently that allows me to remove/replace files where Windows would complain the file is currently in use?

The example I have is Minecraft. When running Bukkit on Linux I can remove or update the .jar files in the /plugins folder and simply run the 'reload' command. In Windows, I have to take the whole ...
17
votes
1answer
32k views

How to use command line to change volume?

I am trying to control the volume using my programming script. How can I do the following in Fedora 15, Ubuntu linux? Mute/ Unmute Volume up and volume down Note: Please note that I use a web USB ...
17
votes
3answers
7k views

Difference between UUID from blkid and mdadm?

Can someone explain the difference between the UUID's reported by blkid and mdadm? On one of our CentOS systems, for example: [root@server ~]# blkid | grep /dev/md1 /dev/md1: ...
17
votes
1answer
3k views

sysctl: /proc/sys/net/ipv[46]/conf/: what's the difference between “all”, “default” and “eth*”?

In sysctl, the /proc/sys/net/ipv[46]/conf/ keys have the following subkeys: all, default, and a key for each network interface. For example, on a machine with a single network interface eth0, it will ...
17
votes
5answers
4k views

How to start a new Linux distro?

Some of my friends and I are interested in starting a new Linux distro. How do we do that? What do we need to plan? Backstory I represent a community of Linux sysadmins/implementors whose special ...
17
votes
3answers
884 views

Can I list the filesystems a running kernel can support?

I'm trying to detect what filesystems a kernel can support. Ideally in a little list of their names but I'll take anything you've got. Note that I don't mean the current filesystems in use, just ones ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Why not always use rsync?

I wanted to ask is there any reason not to use rsync for everything and abandon cp? I wasn't aware of rsync and now I don't know why cp is ever needed.
16
votes
3answers
5k views

How to know where a program is stuck in linux?

I am running the following command on my ubuntu server root@slot13:~# lxc-stop --name pavan --logfile=test1.txt --logpriority=trace It seems to hang indefinitely. Whenever this happened on AIX, I ...
16
votes
3answers
51k views

linux + add X days to date and get new virtual date

I have Linux ( RH 5.3) machine I need to add/calculate 10 days plus date so then I will get new date (expiration date)) for example # date Sun Sep 11 07:59:16 IST 2012 So I need to get ...