Finding information fast and efficiently is more of an art than a science
and we still have not touched on the really difficult part: how do you
determine the actual quality of the information? It is outside the
scope of this HOWTO to tell you that but it is still something you should
keep in mind. You should at least check the information is recent enough
to be current to your problem.
As a bare minimum you should ensure a minimum of validity of the
documentation to avoid misleading or malicious advice. A surprising
number of people suggests things like rm -rf / as a solution
for a given problem. Some see it as an obvious prank, the unaware can
end up destroying his or her setup. Just to avoid such things you
should check out a few things before rushing ahead:
Is there a name attached to the document? If people are serious
about what they write it should not be anonymous.
Is it dated? Documents tend to evolve as the technology advances.
Be sure you are reading the latest version. Internet search engines can
help you here.
Are there any followups? Be sure to check any followups or comments
to what you read, otherwise you might miss a warning or a correction.
If you keep this in mind you should not fall for too many of the scams
that circulate on the net, from get well-cards for Craig Shergold,
chain letters to the more recent problems of Trojans for Linux that
tries to trick you into mailing off your password.
There is a number of FAQs available that deals with more serious research
method topics and you can also see a comprehensive
Finally, do not forget the
Linux Documentation Project
site that coordinates documentation for Linux. Updates and new documents
are issued regularly, reflecting the development in the field.