Quick Guide

A concise enumeration of what I think is important to know about Gentoo Linux. Please consult the full Gentoo documentation if you need to know more.


List of modules to load at boot time. To make sure that my USB mouse works, I had to add these lines:


And the following lines to support pcmcia cards


The pcmcia modules would probably have been loaded automatically had I already added pcmcia to the default runlevel. See below for how to do that.

rc-update [add|del] script runlevel

Used to add/remove a scipt in /etc/init.d to one of the run levels, usually run level default. Some of them need to be added to the boot level. Usually you find a notice in the script itself - which can be found in /etc/init.d/ - about which run level it needs to be added. E.g. I used the following commands to get support for alsa and pcmcia:

# rc-update add alsasound boot
# rc-update add pcmcia default

emerge sync

synchronize the local tree with the server.

emerge [-p[v]] package

Install requested package plus all required packages. The -p Option will just show what would be done. -v also shows the USE flags which are considered, and which define which additional features are included.

emerge -u[p] (system|package)

Update the system packages or the requested package. The -p Option will just show what would be done.

emerge -lp (system|package)

Tells you what chnages happened between you installed version and the newest one.

etcat -v package

List all available package versions. Some of the newer versions may be masked and not installed automatically when you just specify the package name to emerge.

qpkg --find-file filename

Find package to which the file belongs.

qpkg --list package

List all files which were installed by the package.

qpkg --installed --query-deps package

List all installed packages which depend on the given package.

Configuration Files

See the Etc directory for some of my current configuration files. This includes kernel configuration which I had to fix, because e.g. on bootup I would get messages that /dev/rtc did not exist.


Missing /mnt/.init.d

One time when booting, right at the beginning of the init sequence it aborted, with the message that it could not mount tmpfs onto /mnt/.init.d. I had to manually create that directory, so that booting gentoo would work again.

Characters not displayed in sylpheed

I had an export LANG=en_US.ISO8859-15 in my .bashrc. While this worked in RedHat, in gentoo sylpheed would not display certain characters. Changing that to export LANG=en_US.ISO8859-1 cured the problem.