Being new to OpenSUSE (v.11.2) and the GNOME desktop, I am somewhat at a loss. The differences between installing applications on Windows (formerly XP & Windows for the last 15+ years) seem to be just different enough that I am having some difficulty.

For instance, how do I determine what install package I would download? Then, how do I actually install a tar.gz file or rpm, or whatever? I tried updating the Flash driver for my FoxTabs addon in FireFox but got an error that the /tmp/ directory wasn't to be used to run media, or something to that affect.

So, I thought I would try to figure out first how to determine what file package to download, then how to install. I'm not sure that I need an OpenSUSE for Dummies type of link, but something that explicitly details differences in everyday operations and corresponding equivalents between Windows and OpenSUSE/GNOME. I'm also looking for a good IRC chat client.

EDIT: I selected the Adobe Flash upgrade for FireFox so I could use the FoxTab addon.
I chose the .rpm file and then selected "Open with: Install Software". I receive a dialog asking if I want to install the file: /tmp/flash-plugin- I select Install....ok...well, now I don't get the error. It took about 6 or 7 times before it finally installed. I don't get it - if I get the error again, I'll post it here.


All the software management in OpenSuse is done trough the YaST Package manager.

The major difference between Opensuse (and almost any popular linux distro) and Windows is, that in most of the cases you do not need to find and download and install software from the software vendor.

All software is bundled in a rpm (.rpm) packages, and the packages are organized in a repositories. YaST takes care to download and install them on the system.

You just need to know the name of the software.

In rare cases some software is not in the repositories, and the package is provided by the software vendor (like Adobe). If you download the proper rpm from the vendor, just clicking on it will start the package installer and take care from there.

If you edit your question, and provide more detailed information where from you got what you tried to install, and how it fails to install (i.e. what you tried), I'll try to answer more precisely.

For IRC: I use Chatzilla Firefox addon. I keep my browser open all the time anyway, so I do not need external client.

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  • Thanks for the Chatzilla link. I'll use just about anything with FireFox. Now I'm just trying to figure out how to use it...lol – IAbstract Mar 9 '10 at 1:05

Just a link to extend Sunnys answer: http://en.opensuse.org/YaST/Modules/Software_Management

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To answer your IRC chat client question, here's 4.

  • Pidgin
  • Empathy
  • irssi (runs in a terminal)
  • X-Chat

There are many, many more.

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