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Easy Linux Questions

Does anyone know if Gnucash will work with KDE?  Also, Which is better KDE or Gnome or is it just preference??? Finally,  What do I do with a file that ends with a .tar ?????

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1 Solution
it looks to me like gnucash is linked against motif and won't much care whether you're using gnome or kde desktop - as long as you're running X;

kde vs gnome is a religious war, both seem OK to me -

with a .tar file you can do

tar tf file.tar
to see the list of files in it
tar xf file.tar
to extract them all.
1.I have not run Gnucash, however the home page http://www.gnucash.org/architecture.php3(go to the very bottom) says that the Qt stuff (which is the widget set used by KDE) won't compile as things stand.  So that's a pretty good bet that it is non-functional at the moment.

2.The great KDE/Gnome debate is really now based upon personal preference for the style of the interface.  It used to be that there were hard feelings about KDE because of the license of the Qt widgets, but that's all cleared up now.  Gnome has some pretty radical plans for implementing CORBA which may mean it has more of a future than KDE.  But that's rank speculation.  KDE seems to be perceived as being "easier" by people used to WinXX, but Gnome is really just as friendly.
3. A file that ends with .tar is a........ tar file!  It's a Tape ARchive.  Don't be confused by the "tape" in the name though, it doesn't have to stored on tape.  To manipulate tar files you use the tar program. Specifically:

To list the contents of the file my.tar:
tar tvf my.tar

To extract the contents of a tar:
tar xvf my.tar

You may come across .tgz or .tar.gz files.  These are gzipped tar files, they've been compressed as well as archived.

To list the contents of a gzipped tar:
tar tzvf my.tgz

To extract the contents of gzipped tar:

tar xzvf my.tgz

In general a good strategy for you when you come across a strange file that you are curious about is to type:

file strangefile.tar

which will give you information about what type of file it is.  Then go and look at the man pages:

man tar

It'll print more than you want to know, but you can extract a lot of information from the command summary at the top, the introduction and the examples section (if there is one).  If you can't find the man page for tar then type:

apropos tar

and it will list things that have some reference to tar in them.  There will be a number in brackets indicating the section of the manual.  To read the command in the section ( i.e. (3)foobar ) then type:

man 3 foobar.
W.r.t. running the app as linked against Motif, you will only be able to do that as long as you have the motif libraries installed (or their Free equivalents, the Lesstif libraries).  Those do not automatically come with X.http://www.lesstif.org/
There might be an rpm for it on your distro cdrom.
BilboBagginsAuthor Commented:
Thank you very much.  I will probally use KDE for now.  I will try CBB for finance.  I tried to download and install it, but I am so new to Linux and I have trouble installing things all the time.  I downloaded a file that was supposedly all set for Redhat, it was an rpm.  I double clicked it and it went somewhere.  Then I found it and typed make install at the directory where it went and got tons of errors and the CBB doesn't work???????????  Any good books you suggest on the way Linux works (application installs, etc.)
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There are lots of excellent on line resources for linux.  The best single place is the Linux Documentation Project:  www.linuxdoc.org
This is broken up into FAQs, GUIDES and HOWTOs.  Try out things interactively - it's the only way to learn. Don't be afraid of screwing your system up.  Do it now and learn  - you can always re-install!   I recommend that you go to the GUIDES section and look at Matt Welsh's "Getting Started" guide.  You can buy many of these as texts published by O'Reilly - they are formatted very nicely and worth it to have on hand when you're starting out.

the best thing to do with rpms is not to double click on them.  Instead open a text terminal.  Change directory (cd) to where the rpm is and use:
rpm -Uvh namesomethingorother.rpm

There are two type of rpms: those that are precompiled (binaries) and those that need to be compiled (source).  If you can get a binary for the program that you want and you want to get going quickly then look at wherever you got the rpm and look for one that has a name like name.i386.rpm as opposed to name.src.rpm.

Have fun!

Best wishes,
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