I am the leader of the Linux Beginners SIG (Special Interest Group) of the Central Texas PC User Group. The lbsIG meets on the second Tuesday of each month at my home, 8109 Greenslope Drive, Austin. An informal discussion begins at 6 PM, and a formal presentation at 7 PM. Everyone is invited, even if you're not (yet) a member of the CTPCUG.

The emphasis of the SIG, as indicated by its name, is on introducing Linux to those who are not familiar with it or with Unix. No prior computer knowledge is assumed except the ability to move a mouse and click buttons under Windows. We try very hard to make Linux concepts non-intimidating. Check out my presentation on "What is Linux" for some basic concepts on the fast-growing, stable, and free alternative to being a slave of the Evil Empire.

If you have questions, please send me an email ( Even better, the SIG has a mailing list, using the CTPCUG listserver; go to their main page and select "Listservers" to be added to the "LBSIG" discussion list. (This works whether you are a member of the CTPCUG or not.) You'll receive notification of upcoming meetings, as well as being able to observe or participate in the back-and-forth of SIG activity.

Click here for a map of how to find the meeting.

April 2000 Meeting -- FLOPPYFW

Here are some reference materials from the April 11,2000 meeting. First, my notes extended from the presentation at the meeting. Second, the home page for FLOPPYFW itself, where there is more information than you could possibly need about the floppy firewall package.

June 2003 Meeting -- SAMBA

This is the presentation I gave on June 10, 2003 on setting up a mixed Linux/Windows resource sharing network, using NFS and SMB protocols.

SIG Meetings 2006

SIG Meetings 2007

SIG Meetings 2008-13

  • July 2009. S5 Presentation Tool, OCR, etc. Sample Presentation in S5
  • September 2009. Image files, GRUB2, Inkscape
  • December 2009. SSH and SCP Setup
  • June 2010. File Systems
  • July 2010. Bash Shell
  • August 2010. Aliases, Shell Variables, Functions, Scripts
  • September 2010 (hopefully) VMware and Linux
  • April 2012. Sed, AWK, and Extended Regular Expressions.
  • June 2012. GIMP
  • August 2012. Bash Shell
  • September 2012. Perl One-Line Solutions.
  • January 2013. DRM and Calibre
  • Febuary 2013. Python
  • March 2013. Samba Connection to Windows
  • June 2013. Linux Mint 15 Installation
  • August 2013. ZShell and Parallel
  • October 2013. Linux Tips and Tricks
  • January 2014. HTML and CSS Tricks
  • February 2014. Installing Kubuntu Inside Windows
  • June 2014. Command Line Tricks
  • September 2014. From Here to There


    Here are a few URLs to get you started on finding Linux information on the web:

    The Ubuntu home page has all the details on this completely free distribution. is almost the only site you need. It has news and links to just about everything else.

    Linux Journal magazine. The first monthly magazine dedicated to Linux. Fairly technical, lots of questions and answers.

    Linux Gazette. A free e-zine from the Linux Journal people. No overlap, and somewhat more technical than the magazine.

    Linux Magazine. Another dead tree monthly; significantly less technical than Linux Journal. If you're a Linux beginner, subscribe to this one first. If you're a guru, it's probably too simple.

    LinuxWorld. Another free e-zine, with some excellent articles. Austin's Joe Barr was a columnist.

    Slashdot. "News for Nerds. Stuff that Matters." A very active site of news references to all things techie, with (sometimes contentious) comments from readers.

    Ars Technica, the technical resource for building or upgrading PCs. Lots of comparative reviews of CPUs, motherboards, drives, cases, software, etc. etc.

    Mail Contacts John Dierdorf, leader of the LBSIG.
    Back to John's home page.