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Revision as of 09:58, 2 October 2007 by Kolar (Talk | contribs) (FAQ)

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  • What is "terminal" and how do I use it?

Terminal is a way to type commands to the Linux operating system, to navigate between directories (folders), copy files, run programs, and do many other useful things.

> To open a terminal, right-click the mouse anywhere on the screen and select "New Terminal".

A terminal will open, and a command line prompt will appear that identifies the computer (cmn#), your login name and the working directory, which is the location in the directory structure from which you are navigating. After the prompt, you can type commands.

For example, you can navigate around the file system by using the "change directory" command: cd pd-lab will navigate into your pd-lab directory.

> If you want to see your current location in the directory structure, type pwd which stands for "print working directory".

> If you want to see what files and folders are in the working directory, type the "list" command: ls

> If you type a command and then a new command prompt doesn't show up again, hit the return key and a new prompt should appear. Before entering new commands, it is important to have a new command prompt.

  • How do I copy files from the course directory into my project directory?

In a terminal, you can use Linux commands (based on Unix commands, tutorial:[1]) to copy files.

> The copy command, cp, allows you to make a copy of one file to whatever location you specify.

For example, if you have a project directory called "pd-lab" and you want to copy the "straightWire" Pd patch from the course examples directory, after the command prompt you would type exactly (including spaces):

cp /usr/ccrma/web/html/courses/220a-fall-2007/pd/straightWire.pd .

The period at the end indicates the location where the file will be copied is the working directory.

> If you want to copy an entire "pd" directory and its sub-directories, you would type:

cp -r /usr/ccrma/web/html/courses/220a-fall-2007/pd/* .

  • How can I get information about how to use Linux commands?

The "man pages" (manual) can be accessed by typing: man followed by a space and whatever command you want to find out about. For example, man cp will pull up the man page for the copy command. Hit the "q" key (quit) to exit the manual.

  • How do I play MP3s on the Linux machines?

Use the XMMS media player.

  • Where can I get the software for my own computer?

> If you have a computer that runs Linux, or a PC you want to run Linux on, you can install Planet CCRMA: [2] and get all the software we use here. Talk with Nando or Carr for more info or to get help with this.

> If you have a Mac or Windows machine, there are versions of some of the applications used in the class that you can download for free and install on your computer.

get Pd: [3]

get Audacity: [4]

get ChucK: [5]

  • Why are there so many steps in the labs?

Working with music making tools on a computer can require working with the computer on multiple levels, depending on the software tool(s) and the nature of the musical project.

In this course we will be exploring a range of ways of working with computers to make music. Many steps and checking settings are part of the process. Details are explained and covered in the labs, classes, and via conversations with other students and the instructors. Please ask questions!

  • Can I login to the CCRMA system from my home computer?

1) From a terminal on your own computer, use the ssh (secure shell) command; instructions are here: [6]

  • How do I transfer files from the CCRMA system to my home computer or vice versa?

1) From a terminal on your own computer (on Mac OSX, "Terminal" utility), use the scp (secure copy) command:

scp you@ccrma-gate.stanford.edu: /thepathofthefileyouwanttotransfer .

or, for copying an entire directory:

scp you@ccrma-gate.stanford.edu: /thepathofthedirectoryyouwanttotransfer/* .

2) Use SFTP (secure file transfer protocol) from a variety of applications, including the "Go" menu - "Connect to Server" on Mac OS X. You will login with your CCRMA name and password.

  • In Pd, how do I find out about how objects work?

> On Linux: right-click on the object and a "help" patch with notes and configuration options will appear.

> On Mac: control-click on the object and a "help" patch with notes and configuration options will appear.