Newbie help!

offbyone offbyone at
Mon Apr 10 11:07:55 UTC 2006

infernus - Bluelight wrote:
> Sorry for bothering this mailing list, but I realy need some help..
> I find awsome screenshots from FreeBSD on various sites on the net, but 
> on my comp,
> the only thing I see is a black screen with some white text on it, and:
> ________________
> $|

What you are looking at is called a "prompt". It indicates that your 
system is ready for input from you, through an interactive program 
called a "shell", also called a "command interpreter". The cursor is on 
the "command line". The number and variety of commands that you might 
want to type onto the command line is immense, but you have to know what 
  each commands is that you might want you use, depending on what you 
want your computer to do with it. Learning how to use the shell and 
which of those commands are useful to you, is the essence of learning 
how to use any unix/bsd computer system. It is an older and more 
powerful way of feeding information to the system and getting 
information back, than the GUI screen-shots you mentioned.
Other responses to your OT have encouraged you in the direction of 
getting a the pretty face that you want on your computer. That's fine. 
But I would encourage you too, try to learn at least some of what you 
can do--some of the vast amount of work that FreeBSD can handle for 
you--starting right where you are, at that $| prompt on the command 
line. It is very exciting, once you do, and you don't have to install 
anything more than you already have.

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