Ask Shadowman


May 2004

May. When the showers have brought the flowers, and rites of spring, a young geek's fancy is turned to thoughts of setting up that mail server of their dreams. And you? Stuck like a muck stick. You call and he is there faster than you can flame a troll. Or fast enough to almost meet his monthly deadline, taking a single name bi-line like Hector or Hammer he is... the Shadowman.

Got a question that you'd like Shadowman to answer? Ask him.


Roger hollered:
Shadowman, I had installed Red hat Linux 8 on my home pc last year. I have two operating systems on my pc. I forgot my logon and password to the Red hat. What can I do to find out my log on and password?

Shadowman says:
Shadowman wonders why you'd want to find it out? You couldn't remember it the first time. Anyway, you can reset the password.

If you're running LILO as your boot loader, type 'linux single' at the boot:

This will take you to a shell prompt with super user privileges. Type 'ls /home/' to see possible usernames and you can reset your password by typing 'passwd [username]' and entering a new one. Type 'init 5' and log in.

If you're running GRUB as your boot loader, type 'e' at the boot prompt, move down one line in the stanza and type 'e' again. Add 'linux single' to the end of that line, hit 'enter' and hit 'b'.

This will boot you into the same shell as above and you can follow the same steps for resetting your password.


Adriano B, wanted to see:
Dear Shadowman,
How can I find all the information about the RPM packages I have installed in my system (name, description, version, etc.) and make all these in formations end in a text file?

Shadowman says:
To see all of the RPMs installed type 'rpm -qa' in a terminal that's qa as in query all. To put that in a file, add '> filename.txt'

You can get more info about the packages by adding an 'i' as in info. So 'rpm -qai > filename.txt' will put a list of installed packages and some details.


Mark G. said help me:
I use Evolution for my Email, I also use Opera as my web browser. The problem is when I open an email and it has a weblink that I click on, It brings up Mozilla instead of Opera. How do Ichange the default to Opera?

Shadowman says:
Gnome is actually controlling your preference. Shadowman bets you've been poking around in Evolution settings. Go to Menu > Preferences > Preferred Applications, and change the default browser. You should see installed browsers in the drop down and can select Opera.


In short:

To George S. who wanted to chat on Linux

Shadowman says: Yes to MSN using Gaim and PalTalk using wine (so Shadowman is told, he hasn't done it).

To David Z. who wanted to know about device support

Shadowman says: What sort of devices?