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Chapter 1. Getting Started

From booting up to shutting down, whether you are working or playing, Red Hat Linux provides tools and applications to help you get the most out of your computing environment. This chapter guides you through some basic tasks that you can perform on your Red Hat Linux system.

1.1. Setup Agent

The first time you start your Red Hat Linux system, the Setup Agent is presented. The Setup Agent guides you through the configuration of your Red Hat Linux system. Using this tool, you can set your system time and date, add users to your system, install software, register your machine with the Red Hat Network, and more. Setup Agent allows you to configure your environment at the beginning, so that you can get started using your Red Hat Linux system quickly.

Figure 1-1. Setup Agent

The Setup Agent first prompts you to create a user account that you should use on a routine basis. It is not recommended to log in to your root account for common computing tasks, as you may damage your system or unintentionally delete a file. The Setup Agent lets you enter a username, an optional full name for the account, and a password (which you must enter twice). This creates a user account that you can use to log into your Red Hat Linux system and which has its own home directory on the system to store files.

Figure 1-2. User Account

The Setup Agent allows you to manually set your machine's date and time, which adjusts the clock on your computer's BIOS (Basic Input Output System). To set the day, month, and year on your system, use the calendar interface. To set your time in hours, minutes, and seconds, use the provided text boxes.

You may also synchronize your date and time automatically with a network time server — a computer that sends accurate date and time settings to your system through a network connection. Check the box labeled Enable Network Time Protocol and use the drop-down menu to select the time server you want to use. Once you have set your time and date, click Forward to continue.

Figure 1-3. Date and Time Configuration

To register your system with Red Hat Network and receive automatic updates of your Red Hat Linux system, choose Yes, I would like to register my system with Red Hat Network. This will start the Red Hat Update Agent — a utility that guides you step-by-step through the registration of your machine with Red Hat Network. Selecting No, I do not want to register my system skips the registration. For more information about Red Hat Network and registering your machine, refer to the Red Hat Network documentation at

Figure 1-4. Red Hat Network Registration Client

To install Red Hat Linux RPM packages that you did not install during installation, software from third-party providers, or documentation from the Red Hat Linux Documentation CD, you can do so at the Additional CDs screen. Insert the CD containing the software or documentation you want to install, click the Install... button, and follow the instructions.


If you are installing a package from the Red Hat Linux Installation CDs, you must insert CD 1, click the Install... button, choose the package(s) or component you want to install, and, if prompted, change the CD.

Figure 1-5. Installing Additional Software

Now that your system is configured, you are ready to log in and start using Red Hat Linux. Press Forward to exit the Setup Agent.

  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire