[svlug] Book recommendation

Karsten M. Self kmself at ix.netcom.com
Sun Jul 10 20:20:52 PDT 2005

on Thu, Jul 07, 2005 at 05:55:00PM -0700, Bill Hubbard (kwooda at netzero.net) wrote:
> At 03:33 PM 7/7/2005, Rick Moen wrote:
> >As Randy says, are MySQL and Apache running?  Fedora Core comes with all
> >three.  They're either in the process list[1], or not.
> Thanks, everyone, for your input!  I'll get there one of these days.
> MySQL and Apache are running.  I got Apache up and running, then I got 
> PHP working (though I don't know if there is something I need to do to 
> get it to work with MySQL, as the book I have is not very 
> thorough).  And I got MySQL running yesterday (or the day before?), 
> though I locked myself out of it after following the recommendation of 
> the text that popped up when I started it, and set a password on 
> something.  But I got myself out of that mess (though I suppose I 
> eventually want to understand the security aspects), but now I'm stuck again.
> Where I got stuck was following an example in one of my books that 
> showed how to connect to a database.  The code was as follows (the 
> first two lines, anyway):
> mysql_connect("localhost", "nobody", "password") or
>    die ("Could not connect to database.");
> All I ever get when I access this page is, "Could not connect to 
> database".  No clue as to why.  Are there, like, LOG FILES anywhere?

Almost certainly (though there are other ways to get the information as
others have mentioned).

GNU/Linux logfiles live under /var/log.  What's there varies by system.
Debian tends to give packages their own files or subdirectories, so I've
got /var/log/mysql, with 'bin', 'log', and 'err' logfiles under that.

In general, you can search for stuff:

   find /var/log -type f -print0 | xargs -0 zgrep -li mysql

...which will list any files containing the string 'mysql'.   It's also
an illustration of how to use low-level tools (find, xargs, zgrep) to do
a useful task.

> The problem is probably me, but it would be nice to have some kind of 
> introductory quick reference manual that alleviates the burden of 
> having to sift through a million details to find what's 
> relevant.  Something like:

> Linux runs services, called daemons, that can be set to start or not 
> start on boot-up...


Red Hat (of which Fedora is the development branch) has an excellent
document called "Introduction to System Administration".  Freely
available, online:


...though it seems to fall rather flat in this one specific area (which
is your 'init' processing, more properly, "SysV init", from "System V
(Roman numeral 5) init".  As contrasted with BSD Init.

There's a big 'ole fat hunkin' reference called the RUTE Book which is
also freely available online (or for purchase in dead-tree version).  It
seems decent, if ideosyncratically organized:


The questions you're asking are addressed in section 33:


There are a number of other texts as well.  I find that it helps to
understand the "Unix Philosophy" in general, which helps getting into
the nuts'n'bolts more doable.  The "Nemeth" books are among the better.
I also like O'Reilly's "Nutshell" guides, the GNU/Linux version of which
is now ~950 pages (up from ~600 for my 3rd edition -- these are
apparently BALCO / Barry Bonds enhanced nutshells...) and has a terse,
but informative, systems administration guide.



Karsten M. Self <kmself at ix.netcom.com>        http://kmself.home.netcom.com/
 What Part of "Gestalt" don't you understand?
    Every man for himself.
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