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 Linux Documentation Project Guides 


The Linux Documentation Project (LDP) is working on developing good, reliable documentation for the Linux operating system. The overall goal of the LDP is to collaborate in taking care of all of the issues of Linux documentation, ranging from online documentation (man pages, HTML, and so on) to printed manuals covering topics such as installing, using, and running Linux. Here is the Linux Documentation Project Manifesto and Copyright License for LDP works.

Translations of LDP works (languages other than English) can be found on the "Non-English Linux Info" links page.

Additional documentation (HOWTOs, FAQs, etc) can be found here.

Older and unmaintained (but still pertinent) guides can be found here.

Search the LDP documents from our search page.


Current / Maintained Guides
  • Advanced Bash-Scripting Guide

    version: 5.1
    author: Mendel Cooper, <thegrendel(at)theriver.com>
    last update: Nov 2007
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 1.9M)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 560K)
    4. PDF (2.2M)
    5. PostScript (1.2M)
    6. text (513k)
    7. PluckerDB (582k)

    This document is both a tutorial and a reference on shell scripting with Bash. It assumes no previous knowledge of scripting or programming, but progresses rapidly toward an intermediate/advanced level of instruction. The exercises and heavily-commented examples invite active reader participation. Still, it is a work in progress. The intention is to add much supplementary material in future updates to this document, as it evolves into a comprehensive book that matches or surpasses any of the shell scripting manuals in print.

  • Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide

    version: 1.25
    author: Machtelt Garrels, <tille>
    last update: Sep 2007
    ISBN: 1596821124
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 799k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 863k)
    4. PDF (1.5M)
    5. PostScript (1.4M)
    6. text (189k)
    7. PluckerDB (254k)

    This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter. For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. We hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.

  • GNU/Linux Command-Line Tools Summary

    version: 1.2
    author: Gareth Anderson, <somecsstudent(at)gmail.com>
    last update: Apr 2006
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 559k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 317k)
    4. PDF (682k)
    5. PostScript (584k)
    6. text (gzipped, 88k)
    7. PluckerDB (238k)

    This document is an attempt to provide a summary of useful command-line tools available to a GNU/Linux based operating system, the tools listed are designed to benefit the majority of users and have being chosen at the authors discretion. This document is not a comprehensive list of every existent tool available to a GNU/Linux based system, nor does it have in-depth explanations of how things work. It is a summary which can be used to learn about and how to use many of the tools available to a GNU/Linux-based operating system.

  • LDP Author Guide

    version: 4.8
    authors: Mark F. Komarinski, <mkomarinski(at)wayga.org>
    Jorge Godoy, <godoy(at)metalab.unc.edu>
    David C. Merrill, <dcmerrill(at)mindspring.com>
    Emma Jane Hogbin
    last update: Apr 2006
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 337k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 640k)
    4. PDF (1.4M)
    5. PostScript (1.5M)
    6. text (248k)
    7. PluckerDB (114k)

    This guide describes the process of submitting and publishing a document with The Linux Documentation Project (TLDP). It includes information about the tools, toolchains and formats used by TLDP. The document's primary audience is new TLDP authors, but it also contains information for seasoned documentation authors.

  • Bash Guide for Beginners

    version: 1.8
    author: Machtelt Garrels, <tille>
    last update: Mar 2006
    ISBN: 0-9744339-4-2
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 541k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 494k)
    4. PDF (1.2M)
    5. PostScript (1.0M)
    6. text (118k)
    7. PluckerDB (173k)

    The Bash Guide for Beginners gets you started with Bash scripting and bridges the gap between the Bash HOWTO and the Advanced Bash Scripting Guide. Everybody who wants to make life easier on themselves, power users and sysadmins alike, can benefit from reading this practical course. The guide contains lots of examples and exercises at the end of each chapter, demonstrating the theory and helping you practice. Bash is available on a wide variety of UNIX, Linux, MS Windows and other systems.

  • The Linux Kernel Module Programming Guide

    available versions: 2.4 and 2.6
    authors: Peter Jay Salzman, Michael Burian, Ori Pomerantz
    last update: May 2007 (kernel version 2.6)
    Jul 2004 (kernel version 2.4)
    available formats
    (kernel version 2.6):
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 214k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 122k)
    4. PDF (539k)
    5. PluckerDB (155k)
    6. PostScript (497k)
    7. text (gzipped, 62k)
    available formats
    (kernel version 2.4):
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 208k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 114k)
    4. PDF (153k)
    5. PostScript (65k)
    6. text (gzipped, 57k)

    A guide to programming Linux kernel modules.

  • Linux on the Road
    Linux with Laptops, Notebooks, PDAs, Mobile Phones and Other Portable Devices

    version: 3.21
    author: Werner Heuser, <wehe(at)tuxmobil.org>
    last update: Nov 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 581K)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 217K)
    4. PDF (1.1M)
    5. PostScript (572K)
    6. text (471K)
    7. PluckerDB (471k)

    Though there are laptop, notebook, PDA and mobile phone related HOWTOs available already, this guide contains a concise survey of documents related to mobile computer devices. Also Linux features, such as installation methods for laptops, notebooks and PDAs as well as configurations for different (network) environments are described.

    Although there are some caveats, Linux is a better choice for mobile computer devices than most other operating systems. Because it supports numerous installation methods, works in many heterogenoues environments and needs smaller resources.

  • The Linux System Administrators' Guide

    version: 0.9
    authors: Lars Wirzenius, Joanna Oja, Stephen Stafford, and Alex Weeks
    last update: July 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 436K)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 178K)
    4. PDF (849K)
    5. PostScript (657K)
    6. text (375K)
    7. PluckerDB (170K)
    8. various (non-English) translations

    This is the third book in the main LDP series, and assumes knowledge of everything in the Installation and Users' Guides. It will cover all of the aspects of keeping the system running, handling user accounts, backups, configuration of the system, installing and upgrading software, and more. Whereas some of this information is in the Installation Guide (just to get the system off the ground) this book should be much more complete.

    Also visit the Linux System Administrators Guide Homepage.

  • Pocket Linux Guide

    version: 3.1
    author: David Horton, <dhorton(at)member.fsf.org>
    last update: Apr 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 194k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 59k)
    4. PDF (576k)
    5. PostScript (487k)
    6. text (171k)
    7. PluckerDB (75k)

    The Pocket Linux Guide is for anyone interested in learning the techniques of building a GNU/Linux system from source code. The guide is structured as a project that builds a small diskette-based GNU/Linux system called Pocket Linux. Each chapter explores a small piece of the overall system explaining how it works, why it is needed and how to build it. After completing the Pocket Linux project, readers should possess an enhanced knowledge of what makes GNU/Linux systems work as well as the confidence to explore larger, more complex source-code-only projects.

  • Guide to Managing Media and Public Relations in the Linux Community

    version: 1.1
    author: The Linux Professional Institute
    Sheldon Rose
    last update: Apr 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 129k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 52k)
    4. PDF (398k)
    5. PostScript (367k)
    6. text (113k)
    7. PluckerDB (62k)

    This guide provides useful information on how to generate positive public relations and news media coverage for Linux.

  • EVMS User Guide

    version: 2.4.0
    authors: Christine Lorenz, IBM
    Joy Goodreau, IBM
    Kylie Smith, IBM
    last update: September, 2004
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 370k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 205k)
    4. PDF (423k)
    5. PostScript (210k)
    6. text (290k)
    7. PluckerDB (142k)

    This book is designed to address user's questions about Enterprise Volume Management System (EVMS) and provide a context for using EVMS. For additional information about EVMS or to ask questions specific to your distribution, the EVMS mailing lists are an excellent resource. You can view the list archives or subscribe to the lists from the EVMS Project web site.

  • Linux Dictionary

    version: 0.18
    author: Binh Nguyen, <linuxfilesystem(at)yahoo(dot)com(dot)au>
    last update: April 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 7.9M)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 1.5M)
    4. PDF (8.0M)
    5. PostScript (1.7M)
    6. text (gzipped, 1.6M)
    7. PluckerDB (1.8M)
    8. directory listing (contains .deb and .rpm packages)

  • Linux Filesystem Hierarchy

    version: 0.65
    author: Binh Nguyen, <linuxfilesystem(at)yahoo.com.au>
    last update: July 2004
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 354k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 119k)
    4. PDF (601k)
    5. PostScript (556k)
    6. text (399k)
    7. PluckerDB (133k)

    This document outlines the set of requirements and guidelines for file and directory placement under the Linux operating system according to those of the FSSTND v2.3 final (January 29, 2004) and also its actual implementation on an arbitrary system. It is meant to be accessible to all members of the Linux community, be distribution independent and is intended discuss the impact of the FSSTND and how it has managed to increase the efficiency of support interoperability of applications, system administration tools, development tools, and scripts as well as greater uniformity of documentation for these systems.

  • Custom Linux: A Porting Guide - Porting LinuxPPC to a Custom SBC

    version: 2.1
    author: Shie Erlich, <erlich(at)users.sourceforge.net>
    last update: Mar 2004
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (read online, single file, 60k)
    3. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 25k)
    4. PDF (60k)
    5. PostScript (26k)
    6. text (56k)
    7. PluckerDB (32k)

    This guide describes a work in progress, to port Linux to a custom PowerPC-based board. This means making the operating system work on unfamiliar hardware. Anyone, who is on the same track might benefit from reading this paper, as it highlights the pitfalls and problematic points along the way.

  • Windows+BSD+Linux Installation Guide

    version: 1.2
    author: Subhasish Ghosh, <subhasish_ghosh(at)linuxwaves.com>
    last update: Jan 2004
    available formats: Currently under review...

    Explains how three different operating systems can be installed and configured on the same hard disk of a computer. The reader may choose from: Microsoft Windows 95/98(Second Edition)/Millennium edition(ME)/NT/2K/XP + FreeBSD 4.7-RELEASE/OpenBSD 3.2-RELEASE + Linux. Only Intel architecture multi-booting is discussed and GNU GRUB is the boot-loader of choice.

  • Linux From Scratch

    version: 6.1.1
    author: Gerard Beekmans, <gerard(at)linuxfromscratch.org>
    last update: Nov 2005
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online) (HTML.tar.bz2)
    2. HTML (read online, single file) (HTML.bz2)
    3. HTML (tarred and bzipped package)
    4. PDF (PDF.bz2)
    5. text (txt.bz2)
    6. text (XML.tar.bz2)

    Derived from the popular Linux-From-Scratch-HOWTO, this book describes the process of creating your own Linux system from scratch from an already installed Linux distribution, using nothing but the sources of software that are needed.

    More information can be found at http://www.linuxfromscratch.org.

  • The Bugzilla Guide

    version: 2.16.3
    author: Matthew P. Barnson, <mbarnson@sisna.com>
    last update: April 2003
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 261k)
    3. PDF (465k)

    This document is intended to be the comprehensive guide to the installation, administration, maintenance, and use of the Bugzilla bug-tracking system.

  • Linux Kernel 2.4 Internals

    author: Tigran Aivazian, <tigran@veritas.com>
    last update: August 2002
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 80k)
    3. PDF (256k)

    An introduction to the Linux 2.4 kernel. The author is working as senior Linux kernel engineer at VERITAS Software Ltd and wrote this book for the purpose of supporting the short training course/lectures he gave on this subject, internally at VERITAS.

  • Securing & Optimizing Linux: The Ultimate Solution

    version: 2.0
    author: Gerhard Mourani, <gmourani@openna.com>
    last update: July 2002
    available formats:
    1. PDF (6.2MB)
    2. Example server configuration files (tar file; described in book as "floppy.tgz").

    Mastering security with Linux and getting the maximum out of your system have never been easier. Securing & Optimizing Linux: The Ultimate Solution (v2.0) has been written and achieved with tightening security to an incomparable level in mind. One of its main features is the easy path from beginning to end in a smooth manner, step by step for beginners as well as for experts.

    More information (and updates) available from: http://www.openna.com/products/books.php.

    older version: Securing and Optimizing Linux Red Hat Edition - A Hands on Guide

    version: 1.3
    author: Gerhard Mourani, <gmourani@openna.com>
    last update: August 2000
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 1.5MB)
    3. PDF (4.9MB)
    4. Example server configuration files (tar file; described in book as "floppy.tgz").

  • Emacspeak User's Guide

    version: 1.3
    author: Jennifer Jobst, <jobst@us.ibm.com>
    last update: July 2002
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 23k)
    3. PDF (89k)

    This document helps Emacspeak users become familiar with Emacs as an audio desktop and provides tutorials on many common tasks and the Emacs applications available to perform those tasks.

  • The Linux Cookbook: Tips and Techniques for Everyday Use

    Removed at the author's request.

  • The Linux Network Administrator's Guide, Second Edition

    version: 1.1
    authors: Olaf Kirch and Terry Dawson
    last update: March 2000
    ISBN: 1-56592-400-2
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 690k)
    3. PDF (1.5MB)

    This book was written to provide a single reference for network administration in a Linux environment. Beginners and experienced users alike should find the information they need to cover nearly all important administration activities required to manage a Linux network configuration. The possible range of topics to cover is nearly limitless, so of course it has been impossible to include everything there is to say on all subjects. We've tried to cover the most important and common ones. We've found that beginners to Linux networking, even those with no prior exposure to Unix-like operating systems, have found this book good enough to help them successfully get their Linux network configurations up and running and get them ready to learn more.

  • Linux Administrator's Security Guide

    Removed at the request of the author (book is now more "dynamic"). Please access the Linux Administrator's Security Guide at the following location: http://www.seifried.org/security/index.php/Linux_Security

  • Linux System Administration Made Easy

    version: 1.06
    author: Steve Frampton
    last update: November 1999
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 99k)
    3. other : PDF, PostScript, text, and SGML source

    The Linux Administration Made Easy (LAME) guide attempts to describe day-to-day administration and maintenance issues commonly faced by Linux system administrators.

    This book can be purchased from bookstores, more information can be found here.


Older / Unmaintained (but still pertinent) Guides

  • The Linux Network Administrators' Guide

    version: 1.0
    author: Olaf Kirch
    last update: March 1996
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 332k)
    3. other : plain text, DVI, LaTeX source, PDF, and PostScript.
    4. various (non-English) translations

    This guide supplements the System Administrators' Guide and cover all of the diverse issues of networking under Linux, from UUCP to serial connections to TCP/IP. Many Linux users won't have access to such a network, so this information is in a separate manual. It contains an intro to TCP/IP and UUCP (for those who have never used such networks before, lots of background information), TCP/IP, UUCP, SLIP, and DNS configuration, configuration of mail systems such as sendmail and Smail, setting up NNTP and news, and NFS.

  • The Linux Programmer's Guide

    version: 0.4
    authors: B. Scott Burkett, Sven Goldt, John D. Harper, Sven van der Meer and Matt Welsh
    last update: March 1996
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 140k)
    3. other : DVI, LaTeX source, PDF and PostScript.
    4. Example source code is also available.
    5. various (non-English) translations

    The Linux Programmer's Guide is meant to do what the name implies -- It is to help Linux programmers understand the peculiarities of Linux. By its nature, this also means that it should be useful when porting programs from other operating systems to Linux. Therefore, this guide must describe the system calls and the major kernel changes which have effects on older programs like serial I/O and networking.

  • The Linux Users' Guide

    version: beta-1
    author: Larry Greenfield
    last update: December 1996
    available formats:
    1. other : DVI, PDF (gzipped / zipped), PostScript (gzipped / zipped), and LaTeX source
    2. various (non-English) translations

    This book covers all of the user-end aspects of Linux, from sitting down at the first login session to using complex tools such as gcc, emacs, and so on. It assumes no previous Unix experience, so not only will it serve as an introduction to Linux, but to Unix in general as well. This manual won't cover system administrator tasks (i.e. anything that needs to be done as root) - it's for the J. Random User who has a working Linux system sitting in front of them.

  • The Linux Kernel Hackers' Guide

    version: not available
    author: Michael K. Johnson
    last update: August 1998
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 468k)

    This is an older, archived instance; complete with discussion threads (no posting or replying however).

  • Installation and Getting Started Guide

    version: 3.2
    authors: Matt Welsh and others
    last update: March 1998
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 836k)
    3. other : HTML (zipped), DVI, PDF (gzipped / zipped), PostScript (gzipped / zipped), and LaTeX source.
    4. various (non-English) translations

    This book is for personal computer users who want to install and use Linux. The book assumes that you have basic knowledge about personal computers and operating systems like MS-DOS, but no previous knowledge of Linux or UNIX.

  • The Linux Kernel

    version: 0.8-3
    author: David A. Rusling
    last update: January 1998
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. HTML (tarred and gzipped package, 376k)
    3. other : DVI, PostScript (gzipped), and LaTeX source.

    The kernel is at the heart of the operating system. This book is a guide to how the kernel fits together, how it works; a tour of the kernel.


Translated Guides

Below is a table of translated guides that are available from http://www.ibiblio.org/pub/Linux/docs/LDP/.    Additional translations of LDP works and translated documentation not listed here may be found on the "Non-English Linux Info" page.

de en es fr it ja pl pt ru sl
Install Guide   en es           ru sl
Kernel Hackers Guide   en                
Linux Kernel   en                
Module Programming Guide   en                
Network Guide   en es              
Network Admin Guide, 2nd ed   en es              
Programmers Guide   en es              
System Administration Guide   en es fr it     pt    
Users Guide   en es   it          


 legend:
de = German, en = English, es = Spanish, fr = French, it = Italian, ja = Japanese,
pl = Polish, pt = Portuguese, ru = Russian, sl = Slovenian



Additional Guides of Interest
  • Linux Palm Developer's Quick Start Guide

    version: 1.0
    author(s): Jim Weller
    last update: February 2001
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. PDF (72K)

    This guide is intended to help those new to palm programming get started. It assumes a fair knowledge of linux and gnu tools. It takes you from clueless to able to compile a HelloWorld type application.

  • TrinityOS: A Guide to Configuring Your Linux Server for Performance, Security, and Managability

    author(s): David A. Ranch
    available formats:
    1. Various formats available from another website

    TrinityOS and its associated archive scripts guide the Linux user in a step-by-step fashion using a common example throughout to configure over 50+ Internet services. The main focus of TrinityOS is to do this in a secure fashion while keeping both performance and managability in mind. The documents also guide the user in other advanced topics such as aquiring their own Internet domain(s), moving DNS servers, confirming if you've been hacked, fighting SPAM email, and fixing various Linux file system, partition, LILO, and data recovery problems.

  • VideoLAN Quickstart

    author(s): the VideoLAN project
    last update: September 2003
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. tarred/gzipped (106K)
    3. PDF (440K)
    4. text
    5. (8.5M)

    This document describes how to start using VideoLAN quickly.

  • VLC (VideoLAN Client) User Guide

    author(s): the VideoLAN project
    last update: September 2003
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. tarred/gzipped (118K)
    3. PDF (506K)
    4. text

    This document is the complete user guide of VLC, the VideoLAN Client.

  • VLS (VideoLAN Server) User Guide

    author(s): the VideoLAN project
    last update: September 2003
    available formats:
    1. HTML (read online)
    2. tarred/gzipped (123K)
    3. PDF (471K)
    4. text

    This document is the complete user guide of VLS, the VideoLAN Server.

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