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Got a new Gentoo installation, and doing a long emerge update world. I noticed that the other terminal windows are still available (ALT-F2, ALT-F3, etc.). Is it safe for me to work in them while the emerge world process continues? Any limitations to what I should do?

Thanks.

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Yes, you shouldn't have any problems. I'd avoid making too many changes to the system filesystem. Things will go quicker if it's not competing with you for CPU, memory or IO, so avoid doing anything resource intensive if you want it to finish sooner. I'd also avoid rebooting. :)

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Moreover, some packages, are most useful while a merge is happening. Check out genlop. –  Scott Pack Jun 9 '09 at 17:16
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there's no problem in using another terminal window, you can even run emerge again. but be aware that your processor is limited, and the performance will decrease. and if you run emerge in the other terminal, watch out for the dependencies, or you may compile them twice.

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As others have mention, there typically should be no problems. However, if you're using an application that's in the process of being emerged and some of its resources (say from /usr/share or otherwise) get replaced by the emerge, you may experience some strange effects. Also, if major system libraries are reinstalled you also experience problems.

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