Karl`s PC Help Forums

Linux
JackInCT - 12-12-2014 at 04:15

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
....would be to boot from a live Linux CD, or Ultimate Boot CD, and delete the file from there.


I played (as in a toy, and it was nothing more than that) with Linux Ubuntu two weeks ago when I installed it on a thumb drive (now erased). From an ergonomics point of view, there is much that I do with Windows that has me on autopilot quite literally. There are enough differences in the respective interfaces that I cannot function in my sleepwalk mode while I do 'things', i. e., in Linux I keep automatically looking (as in 'reaching' with my mouse for the Windows interface connections that aren't there). If someone were to come up with a shell for Linux that was a PERFECT clone re the interface of XP or Win 7, I would use it regularly.


LSemmens - 12-12-2014 at 07:46

If it were a perfect clone, then it'd be windoze!!! There are many distributions of Linux which means you can have it just about any way you like it. One that has impressed me of late has been Linux Mint. I actually quite liked their "Cinnamon" desktop environment but it did not play well with my dual monitor setup so I am currently using "Mate" on my print server.


JackInCT - 12-12-2014 at 15:21

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
There are many distributions of Linux which means you can have it just about any way you like it.


Since Winter hasn't officially begun yet in the Northern Hemisphere, and since we really haven't had a significant snowfall YET (but we will for sure), nonetheless it's only a matter of time until Ye Olde Cabin Fever takes hold of me. I've been toying with the idea of getting a new HD, and putting multiple distros of Linux (and ONLY Linux installs on it) to wile away the Winter.

I take it (as a presumption) that I should format it into multiple partitions, and each one would hold a SINGLE distribution install; would doing that would create a dual boot setup?

You might wish to break out the last 2 posts on this thread re Linux, and create a NEW topic (using the posts as a starter) so that the forum members can chime in re the in's & out's of using Linux.


LSemmens - 13-12-2014 at 00:19

Done!


JackInCT - 13-12-2014 at 01:50

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Done!


Thanks for starting a new thread.

This new thread should make a major discussion about Linux much better organized-although it is an unknown how many forum participants (numerically) use any of the Linux Distros (AKA as distributions, i. e., Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, etc.,).

So why don't I start off with installation.

I will install 6 different Distros on a new HD (in the process of being shipped), and NO other OSs . It will be the second internal HD on my primary desktop PC (the first HD is NOT partitioned and has Win 7 on it [and the NTFS file system]). Its been quite a while since I did a dual boot, and I will leave that on the back burner for the time being, and focus on Linux.

By the way, I did spend most of the afternoon reading up on all this--this post is quite likely to reflect how little of the info I understood.

So let's look at what I wish to achieve as an end result with this new HD.

This drive is a 1 TB drive. I want to wind up with the 6 distros on about the same size partition (more or less) [1 TB6]. Since you can have only four primary partitions (by the way I've never done this before), I presume that in calculating the size of the extended partition, it should be 1/2 the capacity of the drive, i. e., 3 of the primary partitions EACH hold 1 distro, and the 4th primary partition will be further subdivided into the other 3 extended partitions, and each will hold the other 3 distros.

So the first task, and my first question is when the HD arrives (and I presume it will be formatted with FAT), do I create the 4 primary partitions (and then 3 extended partitions on the largest primary partition) before I install the first distro, OR is it a case of installing each distro one at a time, and during the install process allocate the size of the partition (which of course presumes that a Linux distro install can do that-can it?)?

A related question is whether there is some 3rd party 'disk management' type software (preferably free) that is so automated that it would be better for me as a non-tech home user to use it to achieve the goal that I shooting for re doing the partitioning; this question also includes whether partitioning a HD, in advance of a Linux install (rather than a Windows OS install), narrows my choices as to what 3rd party software I should use?


LSemmens - 13-12-2014 at 09:11

Most of the distros come with "auto partitioning" to allow you to run it alongside of windoze. The will permit you to install alongside other Linux distros too. The MOST IMPORTANT thing to remember is: IF you want to run alongside Windoze make sure you install windoze FIRST! Billy's products aren't as forgiving of other systems as Linux.

Be warned, whilst Linux is a bloody good OS and there is a plethora of very good apps for Linux, most of them free, Linux is still very "immature" in regards to automation. You will have to roll your sleeves up and "get your hands dirty" to make it work as you so desire. (Hence my previous comment about dual monitor setups)


JackInCT - 13-12-2014 at 15:12

Clarification question re your comment "....Most of the distros come with "auto partitioning" to allow you to run it alongside of windoze".

Since there will NOT be a Win OS on this 2nd HD, should I take your comment to mean that the issue of their being a LIMIT of ONLY 4 primary partitions per ANY HD is NOT APPLICABLE to the manner that I want to install 6 distros?

Getting WAY ahead of myself here with another question: when all is said and done, will a dual boot arrangement mean that on boot up I can chose either my Win 7 OS HD, or the Linux HD, or will the boot up screen actually also have a 'listing' for EACH Linux on the 2nd HD, and I can scroll down to whatever Linux distro that I wish at that moment (or to phrase it another way, will I have to boot up the Linux HD first, and then see a 2nd screen with each distro listed and pick which one I want)?


LSemmens - 14-12-2014 at 07:15

Not familiar enough with GRUB (Grand Unified Boot Loader) which is the menu where you choose to answer your question. From my limited experience with it.

1: It hooks into the boot sector so that no OS has a chance until you've made your selection

2: Linux auto configures for subsequent installs so I cannot comment on how the multi primary partitioning would work with it. I guess that it can work from a logical partition, but that might be a question for Linux Forums.

3: From my limited efforts with GRUB, you can modify it to set the menu structure, including sub menus to suit and, of course, auto selection.


Theravad - 14-12-2014 at 10:00

As someone who uses Linux exclusively o all my machines I am somehat biased :-)

Grub will automatically detect (should) all operating systems on all disk partitions and then build a boot menu which allows you to select.

However.....

If you want to test-drive distributions then two other options exist:

(1) Most will run as a "live" CD or USB stick so no need to install on the machine.
(2) Do what I do which is run a Linux distro and then run other test distros as virtual machines running on top of the host one.

For example, this laptop I am typing on is running Ubuntu 14.01LTS as the host and has several (including Windows8.1 and XP) as guests.

For dist partitioning, if you do go down the Linux route, we don't normally worry about the amount of partitions etc. as you can use the logical volume manager "lvm" - here you add physical disks to your volume group and then create logical partitions which may (or may not) extend over several physical volumes - these can all be snapshot'd, backed-up, resized etc...

T


JackInCT - 14-12-2014 at 19:05

When I take delivery of my new HD (and add it to my PRIMARY PC), and begin installing the Linux Distros on it, I would like to prevent any unforeseen (AKA disaster) behavior to my primary HD, by unplugging it (during each install and re-plug it in after the install is finished).

I'm wondering if doing that is a good/bad idea, to include when the time comes to dual boot? This would include a question as to whether doing that would complicate (as in testing the limits of the technical know-how of a non-tech home user) the setting up of the dual boot?

Pointing out any other consequences that I've not considered would also be appreciated.


LSemmens - 14-12-2014 at 23:31

If you unplug that drive, Linux will not know that there is a windoze to include in the boot options. You will then have to muck around to get it to boot windoze or linux yourself. My suggestion would be to ensure that any critical data is backed up before you start and leave the drive plugged in. Linux is usually pretty smart when it comes to other operating systems and, as long as you don't tell it to format that drive, you should be fine.

One word on drives to be aware of, Linux does not use drive letters so don't expect to find Drive "A, B, C".... It does read the volume label, however, but typically works on its physical location, like "sd0, sd1," etc. It can be confusing for the novice.

For a better understanding of how it happens, (Dare I say it? Dot might ban me!) A dedicated Linux forum might be a good place to start.


JackInCT - 15-12-2014 at 00:41

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
If you unplug that drive, Linux will not know that there is a windoze to include in the boot options.....

.....Linux does not use drive letters so don't expect to find Drive "A, B, C".... ....."sd0, sd1," etc. It can be confusing for the novice.


Your comment re the lack of drive letters is well worth the price of admission cause that's exactly what I would be expecting and would likely get upset if I didn't see any. So now I know.

I'm downloading the 6 iso files this evening; at ALMOST (but NOT all) each website, you get multiple choices as to which "version" is right for you (which in & of itself requires some "thought").

FYI: I couldn't help but notice all the 64 bit versions that are offered. I've been avoiding purchasing yet another PC/laptop with 64 bit capability (not to mention the expense of adding more memory over the 32 bit limitations of 2 Gig). And of course there is the issue of how many of my long, long time in use 32 bit software programs will have a 64 bit version (or whether the 32 bit can be made compatible with the 64 bit).


LSemmens - 15-12-2014 at 03:33

How old is your machine, it could well be more than 64bit capable. I've been running 64bit since the days of XP.


JackInCT - 15-12-2014 at 03:50

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
How old is your machine, it could well be more than 64bit capable. I've been running 64bit since the days of XP.


I'm not sure where you're going with this (but that's what happens when you are a home user), but would the age of the MOBO be the best answer to your question, I. e., swap out the MOBO for a 64 bit MOBO?

But this primary desktop was purchased in 2009 and runs Win 7.
I could get the form factor from the manufacturer as the last time I looked (and it's been a while), they keep all their customer orders online presumably forever).


LSemmens - 15-12-2014 at 08:33

I'd almost guarantee that it is 64bit capable, in fact, I'd be trying one of the 64bit Linux distros from a Live CD to test it.

your 32 bit apps will work on Windoze 64bit without any major issues, unless they are orphan apps. Not many apps have yet to be developed for the 64 bit environment so we do not see the blinding improvements of parrallel processing and extra RAM yet.

You won't need to get all those details from the supplier unless you want to. There are programs like Speccy will tell you whats in your machine anyway. Typically if the program does not like the hardware it will tell you in no uncertain terms.

FWIW, I am a home user, too.

edit: My comment about 64bit was in respect to your last paragraph in the previous post.


JackInCT - 15-12-2014 at 14:42

Well your comments about 64 bit got my Google juices flowing copiously.

Item 1: New To Me was a hit with info that at least with Win 7, and I suppose possibly for other Win OSs, is a feature called "Windows Experience Index". I had NEVER heard of that before; I used the search window off the Start Button and put that phrase in it, and lo & behold wound up with scan results as per the attached image file; the scan results clearly show that I do indeed have 64 bit capability.

Item 2: The question of whether my mobo has additional capacity for more memory (which I could make use of in a 64 bit environment). I found out the answer to that by going to a memory manufacturer called "Crucial.com"; they give visitors a download that will scan, online, your PC system and spell out in detail such things as whether there is additional memory capacity, & which of their memory products would fit your mobo. And it's free.

Item 3: It is possible that an OEM install CD has BOTH a 32 bit and 64 bit OS install on it (this comment does NOT apply re info for someone who owns the full box install version of an OS).

The kicker is that the activation license on the back of your PC is for JUST ONE (not both). I will test the waters re that by using my Win 7 OEM install CD on an old HD (and simply unplugging what I have in the system now), and doing an install and see what turns up; and IF there is a 64 bit install what happens when I do the activation stuff with the license on the back of this PC.


LSemmens - 15-12-2014 at 22:53

I'm pleased that you have found out something new. I suggest that your new HDD be used to install 64bit W7 on it, then you can do your linux installs, leaving your old HDD as a "backup".


JackInCT - 16-12-2014 at 03:16

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
I'm pleased that you have found out something new. I suggest that your new HDD be used to install 64bit W7 on it, then you can do your linux installs, leaving your old HDD as a "backup".


Well I installed my OEM Win 7 (on a somewhat old HD) and I did NOT get a choice of a 64 bit OS option (just 32).

So now is the time for me to find out IF I can run 64 bit software programs on a 32 bit OS.

In Win 7 there is this "Windows Anytime Upgrade" 'feature', and I plan to take a peek as to what billy wants for it in coin of the realm.


JackInCT - 16-12-2014 at 03:28

Well the news from the Windows Upgrade Anytime is very simply stated that you CANNOT buy your way to migrate from a 32 bit OS install to a 64 bit OS install (or vice versa). The prices for the upgrades (to the other flavors of Win 7) are listed.

A PrintScreen from an online FAQ (at MS) for this Upgrade Anytime attached re this matter.


LSemmens - 16-12-2014 at 10:08

They are fundamentally different systems so the upgrade path is impractical, The disks that offer 64 or 32 bit are actually two complete systems on the one media. I'd suspect that the product key may only be for 32 bit. I'm aware how M$ differentiate between Home, OEM, and Ultimate, but I'm not so sure on their setups for 32/64 bit. Product keys seem, somehow, to be tied to the version, i.e. Home, OEM, Ultimate, but not to 64/32bit as I use the same product key on my lappy for either 32 or 64 bit installs. (It had 32 bit when I bought it, and I upgraded to 64 bit with no issues)


JackInCT - 16-12-2014 at 14:20

quote from one of my previous posts "the scan results clearly show that I do indeed have 64 bit capability". end quote

An attempt on my part with multiple 64 bit software installs clearly demonstrated that they CANNOT be installed on my 32 bit Win 7 OS (the install process will NOT progress at all since there is immediately a dialog window at the beginning of the install that informs me that the software is not compatible with my OS).

So having found out that I have a 64 bit capability with the HARDWARE on this machine ONLY tells me that I would need a 64 bit OS of some kind and that it should install.

Since at least some Linux distros offer a 64 bit install, I will select that for at least some of their installs on my new HD.


LSemmens - 16-12-2014 at 22:27

Have fun! Keep us posted.


Theravad - 17-12-2014 at 14:41

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Have fun! Keep us posted.


Just as an aside I think comparing distributions is largely a waste of time these days unless you are going something very specific. Almost all of them have the same software available and all distros allow you to change the windowing system GUI ( Unity, Gnome, KDE, Xfce etc...)

I would stick with a distro like Ubuntu and switch between desktop styles which you can do on logon if you install them all :-)

T


JackInCT - 17-12-2014 at 19:17

Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Have fun! Keep us posted.


Just as an aside I think comparing distributions is largely a waste of time these days ....


There are a few hundred distros out there; any insights as to why that is?

There are multiple hits on a Google type search when the search words are, in effect, "recommendations for a Linux distro for a beginner".

Needless to say, the recommended beginners list varies from site to site, but a few appear with some regularity.

Adding the term "home users" to the search words tends to focus the hits on those end users, but not by much.

So the information superhighway has 'running' on it the virtual monopoly, at least sales wise, of billy gates & his OSs (which come out like clockwork to boost sales), and a kind of anarchy in Linux where anyone can, and likely will sooner or later, code their own version--sounds a lot like the music industry where anyone can cut a record (digitally speaking), and if it goes viral, you're famous (not necessarily being able to make a living at it, but famous nonetheless).


Theravad - 17-12-2014 at 19:45

Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT


There are a few hundred distros out there; any insights as to why that is?



So what is a distro - simply a distribution of a set of operating system modules and applications that make a nice set of working software.

For a user desktop system most of the GNU/Linux systems are based on debian packaging or rep packaging ( a few purists insist you compile everything yourself).

Apart from BSD (something slightly different) you will be getting pretty much the same code in each distribution (but the distribution peeps have ensured all dependencies/versions work together nicely).

So your main distros for the desktop would be Ubuntu, Fedora, SuSE ( or flavours of the same Lubuntu, debian etc.)

Many of the "hundreds" of others are specialist for:
- firewall/router
- forensic analysis
- computer network defence and analysis
- rescue disk
- types of server
- Media player ( mythtv etc. )
etc...

So they package stuff related to a particular task and in many cases drop everythign else ( Linux firewall on a floppy for example).

T


JackInCT - 17-12-2014 at 23:20

Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT
So what is a distro - simply a distribution of a set of operating system modules and applications that make a nice set of working software.....


Allow me to take this whole area of a large assortment one step further: from a well know website, "There’s no one true desktop environment for Linux. Unlike competing operating systems like Windows, Linux users have a choice of many different desktop environments, all with their own styles and strengths.

You can install one of these desktop environments after installing your Linux distribution and switch between desktop environments from the login screen. You can also choose to install a Linux distribution that comes with the desktop environment. For example, you can get Ubuntu in many different flavors."

Should I take it to mean that for an end user to 'settle upon' one 'main' desktop environment, in order to do so, you are, for better or worse, 'condemned' to try a bunch (by switching on a trial & error basis) of them? IF my reading is accurate, that sure sounds like a very time consuming endeavor.


LSemmens - 18-12-2014 at 12:05

You are starting to get the mindset, Jack. From my limited experience Linux is very much a "roll your own sandwich". You've got to be prepared to spend time working with any distro to make it work right. That is, if you've managed to get it to work at all.

(Edit: WARNING - this next bit has become a bit of a rant)

My recent experience: I have two W7 machines, an XP machine, and, often two or three others all running windoze of some variant. My office PC is running Linux mint as it is the one I most afford to be without. It also serves as my print server, and should be my primary desktop (it isn't for other reasoins). My first obstacle upon installing Linux was to convince my video card that a) there were two monitors connected and b) that they needed to run at different (native) resolutions. That was a long and involved process in itself. I then had to find print drivers and get them working, so far, so good. Now comes networking! For a long time, everthing seemed to work "out of the box" I could see all the windoze machines and they could see the LInux box.

Comes a day when the media server (W7) dropped off the network. (Turns out that power saving turns off the network card and only another W7 machine can wake it up again). In getting that sorted, the Linux box has now disappeared off the network nor can it see any of the shares!! (If I search the network it says my network need authorisation. (BS!!! It ain't set up that way! and any "strange" machine I plug in can see everything) I can address the media server using a web address "smb://mediaserver-pc/drivename" which is ok if I want to look at it in firefox, but that isn't the point!

Trying to get some meaningful info from the linux community is like extracting teeth with a bit of string! They all blame Windoze, but none of them ever seem to explain how, why, or where the problem lies.

I'll give up for now, but you can't say you weren't warned.


Theravad - 18-12-2014 at 13:25

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens


I'll give up for now, but you can't say you weren't warned.


Mileage varies....

Ubuntu distro for me loads first time on laptop, PC and servers with no issues.

One has a single screen with onboard intel and GForce mobile GPUs - all handled correctly. The other has multple outputs on an NVidea montstor driving two screens with different resolution.

Things are much different to how they used to be.

Horses for corses. I prefer a rock solid system with great secuirty, freedom to change what I want (and no viruses). :-)


JackInCT - 18-12-2014 at 15:14

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
I'll give up for now, but you can't say you weren't warned.


Oh Yes, I've been warned; I still bear the VERY deep resentment/scars from the Win 95 fiasco.

This comment is not likely to help, OR uplift your spirits: I spent about 10 min watching a YouTube video that was a 'presentation' (by one individual at a Linux conference-who knew that Linux users have conferences-I've never heard of such a things for Windows home users) of what I took to be a critique of how Linux distros are developed.

His point was that there are a very large number of unpaid coders who are, for the most part, part-time and who feed their work into some central repository for the distro unsupervised, I. e., there is no management system in place for these unpaid workers.

Furthermore there are huge commercial enterprises who fund this or that distro (like MS) and have paid staff owing their livelihood to that enterprise. Needless to say, his most telling point is that such distros have their own agenda re furthering the interests of the enterprise that pays them. His additional point was that such 'activities' defeat the whole purpose of open source software, I. e., perverts the whole open source agenda.


Theravad - 18-12-2014 at 16:37

Sort of missed the point perhaps?

There are loads of open source projects out there with varying numbers of people working on them. The source management systems (git svn etc) handle merging of multiple changes and branching (security patches on old versions etc.).

The distro maintainers are responsible for taking snapshots of the open source projects and bundling this into a stable working platform and then updating that platform with security patches as required. Normally this is by distributing binary builds of the source.

So essentially the hard work is done for you with a distro - however the more stable the distro the older the code so if you want cutting edges code you do it yourself.

Yes commercial entities support distros and make money through support - but this probably supports the model rather than works against it (despite the protestations of open source freedom warriors :-) )

T


LSemmens - 19-12-2014 at 06:52

As Simon has stated, a lot of Linux is open source which can lead to a very anarchic way of achieving things with no one responsible if it all goes belly up. The various Distros are, in many cases, a variation on a theme, so you may find that there are some good things from one, that you can port to another.

Of course there are commercial Linux entities out there just like there are professional window washers, we are all capable of washing windows, just some people are better than others, and the professionals tend to also do it better than others.

Linux, being open source, has some flaws, but, by and large, if a flaw is major, it is also rectified very quickly, too. You don't often hear of anything like "patch Tuesday" in the Linux realm.


JackInCT - 1-1-2015 at 16:53

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Have fun! Keep us posted.


This "reply" is coming from a Linux distro called "Debian". It appears that the coders spend as much time coming up with a name for their distro, as they do actually doing their coding (YES, an overstatement). Its likely that with some Google type searches, the historical roots of the names for the 300+ distros could be found.

SO FAR, and it has much to do with random chance re what distros (of the 6 so far that I have installed), Debian seems like a reasonable choice for a new, non-tech home user (and who doesn't have any need for any sophisticated work with RAID, servers, etc., a plain vanilla OS user).

AND YES, it (Debian), so far, is NOT a virtually identical "clone" to my Win 7 re my 'obsession' with tweaks; example I arrived here with a password manager that did NOT automatically launch Karls URL, or fill in the login material as I can with a Win 3rd party free software program. BUT, there is always the possibility that there is another "package" (Linux terminology for software) that does; unfortunately from a time management perspective, that trial & error process, that could ultimately wind up being that there is none, is quite time consuming.


JackInCT - 2-1-2015 at 01:29

Given the proliferation of a very large number of distros (300+ and counting), it seems to me that for a beginner, taking a good look (practice) at several, one by one, is the optimum option to decide upon one primary distro.

Any given distro can be installed (and launched/work with/etc)on a HD, thumb drive (of sufficient size), or an external HD.

I have several old PATA ATA IDE HDs. I was, unfortunately, unable to master the task of creating a HD with multiple partitions, and putting a distro on each partition. So I reverted to form, i. e., the easy way out, and put just one on each HD. I did this by connecting up each HD to an ATA connector located on the mobo (a mobo with ATA connectors are likely to be few and far between at this point, and while there is the possible option of an add on card for an ATA connection, desktop PCs have a limited number of expansion slots). Installing these HDs (and then removing them for another distro's HD, ad infinitum) inside my PC was a hassle.

I have a high end ATA IDE external HD. It's held together by one screw, but for years now, I don't use that screw, and keep the assembly together with a very study, & very tight, rubber band. It's very, very quick to remove the band, slide out the circuit board, and put in another HD (it just slides in/out 1-2-3 like).

Unlike Windows which is a hassle to install an OS, and boot from an external HD, doing so with a Linux OS is problem FREE.

Yes it does mean going into BIOS each and every time, and making the Linux OS HD, the boot drive, but that's doesn't tax my limited tech skills, and is quite fast. And reversing that in BIOS when I want to go back to my Windows SATA HD is just as easy (and YES I do disconnect the SATA HD just to ensure that I don't ruin it).

The attached image file shows the desktop upon boot up of Ubuntu launched from my external HD (and YES that shade of green is my Ubuntu custom color/typical desktop color in Win).

By the way, in the image file, you will see that the "Home" icon has a white text font; I gnashed my teeth for a good while trying to change it to black text via a number of google searches-NO JOY; there doesn't seem to be a desktop icon text color option like in Win. If anyone knows how to do that, I sure would appreciate you passing that on.


LSemmens - 2-1-2015 at 23:48

Sounds like you are having fun, Jack, and learning in the process.
A couple of points that may make your life a little easier

A Live CD might be a good way to test your distros without having to swap drives around.

Unplug your Windoze drive, and try and install several distros to the large drive using their automatic installers. I'm fairly certain they'll take care of the partitioning by themsesves and you'll end up with a menu to select each Distro. (You may need to learn how to edit GRUB (basically a text file) to give each distro a meaningful name)


JackInCT - 3-1-2015 at 02:22

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Sounds like you are having fun, Jack,


I consider having root canal work (without anesthesia) fun!

But seriously, I DID try your suggestion, and made hard copy printouts/youtube/etc.
I get myself into the proverbial pickle when the screen shows me "stuff" that the printout, et al, is NOT, literally, the same. I then wind up making what amounts to random guesses. The HD "system" I came up with was a time management tool to keep the frustration level in check. BOTTOM LINE: when it comes time for me to take keyboard in hand, what I have to say will be geared to those forum members who wish to try out a Linux distro with a minimum of fuss/minimum time investment/AND ZERO mistakes in setting up ONE distro. For the price of a fairly small thumb drive, capacity wise, and a willingness to do some basic BIOS changes, they should be able to do their test driving with a focus on the linux, not ON the hardware.

This post coming from Linux Zorin (on a thumb drive for the moment).


Theravad - 3-1-2015 at 12:32

To try Ubuntu on any machine...

Download ubuntu desktop ISO
Burn the ISO to a DVD
Stick it in the CD drive
Reboot the machine selecting boot from CD
Select "try" rather than "install"

Job done

To install instead of trial, then select install - it will detect any other operating system and leave multi-boot.

To install from USB stick convert ISO image to bootable USB use any of the utilities like linux pendrive or boot trial linux and select "create startup disk".


JackInCT - 3-1-2015 at 16:39

Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
To try Ubuntu on any machine...

Download ubuntu desktop ISO
Burn the ISO to a DVD....


I DID try what you suggest, but my "research" (tutorial type websites) led me to conclude that to burn the ISO, you just couldn't use the built in Win OS CD/DVD burner, BUT that you had to use a very specialized burner such as "Burn Aware" or "Infra Recorder" [and there is a rather largenumber of such burners], that required a boot image as part of the burn process. The burn(s), and I did more than one, did NOT work (I did go into BIOS and set up the DVD (CDs don't have enough capacity) as the boot drive), i. e., I got an error message upon bootup.


Theravad - 3-1-2015 at 17:17

Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT
Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
To try Ubuntu on any machine...

Download ubuntu desktop ISO
Burn the ISO to a DVD....


I DID try what you suggest, but my "research" (tutorial type websites) led me to conclude that to burn the ISO, you just couldn't use the built in Win OS CD/DVD burner, BUT that you had to use a very specialized burner such as "Burn Aware" or "Infra Recorder" [and there is a rather largenumber of such burners], that required a boot image as part of the burn process. The burn(s), and I did more than one, did NOT work (I did go into BIOS and set up the DVD (CDs don't have enough capacity) as the boot drive), i. e., I got an error message upon bootup.


Microsoft appear to be of a different opinion?
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows7/burn-a-cd-or-dvd-from-an-iso-file

Also guidance/tutorial here:
http://www.7tutorials.com/burning-iso-or-img-disk-images-windows-7

If you need an independent bit of software on windows, I can recommend the freely down-loadable http://www.imgburn.com/

T


JackInCT - 3-1-2015 at 21:31

Quote:
.......recommend the freely down-loadable http://www.imgburn.com/
T


Almost ALL of what I did, as well as didn't do, is very much blurred in my skull. I have discarded some tutorial printouts, but I did use gparted, and a tutorial I 'stumbled' across ("stumbled" as in one is as good as another at my level) and I still have that printout. It does refer to "InfraRecorder" and I still have that installed on my Win 7 machine. Somewhere along the line, I recall being 'told' to use a boot image file, AND a Linux distro iso (of my choosing) to burn a DVD (which didn't work).

Bottom line: I find it IMPOSSIBLE to "explore" gear that I've never used in an ORGANIZED (AKA SYSTEMATIC ) manner, and understand the in's & out's of why it didn't work (OR for that matter why it did), & to move on with another attempt with another tutorial on the same issue/problem.

That reality is the source of my 'take the easy way out' approach to doing 'work' like this.

In my long history with computers, there is nothing better, from a learning experience perspective, than to watch over the shoulder of someone who actually knows what they are doing and to ask questions (yes better than a forum). And the problem of taking a course(s) at a local community college is that a given course may not cover what I'm trying to find out/learn. It actually is financially cheaper to take the machine to a local PC repair shop, and have them do the work, and even though I wouldn't be there while they work, and observe how they accomplish a task, at least it usually gets done right--end of story.

Thanks for trying to help.


LSemmens - 4-1-2015 at 00:59

Any image burner will burn an ISO to disk, Jack, so don't worry about what you think might happen. I use ImgBurn myself, but have been known to use Windoze built in burner from time to time.

I know what you mean about watching over the shoulder of someone. It's my favourite way of learning, too.


JackInCT - 4-1-2015 at 02:20

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens
Any image burner will burn an ISO to disk.....


OK let's take it step by step.

Start with the image file that I've attached.

From the program's Help area (verbatim):

A boot ISO image is an archive file of a boot disc.

To make a boot ISO from local files, proceed as follows:
1. Click on the Make Boot ISO icon in the Main Window. The project layout will be displayed in separate window.
2. Click on the Add Files button, to select files and folders you want to burn on the disc, or simply drag files and folders from Windows Explorer.
3. Specify a boot image in the Options window.
4. Click on the Make button, to start a making process.
Burn created file, to create a boot disc.

My question is, then, when the Help states, "Specify a boot image in the Options window", just exactly what is the Help talking about re the "boot image" (cause it is NOT the Linux ISO download).


LSemmens - 4-1-2015 at 09:53

No! You don't need a boot image, the ISO already contains that, all you must do is (in my setup and probably yours, too) double click on the ISO and your image burner does the rest.

Creating bootable disks is outside the skope of what you are trying to achieve.


Theravad - 4-1-2015 at 10:27

Quote:
Originally posted by LSemmens

Creating bootable disks is outside the skope of what you are trying to achieve.


What he said! What you are trying to do is somewhat specialised.

IN windows 7/8 it is a case of right click on the iso image in explorer and select "burn image to disk" - simples!!!!!!!

If you do not have that menu option then I recommended ImgBurn.

T


JackInCT - 6-1-2015 at 04:34

Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
To try Ubuntu on any machine...
Download ubuntu desktop ISO
Burn the ISO to a DVD
Stick it in the CD drive
Reboot the machine selecting boot from CD
Select "try" rather than "install"...


Yes, the above instructions do indeed work with Ubuntu, BUT, in the real world, NOT with ALL distros.

The purpose of this reply is to clarify, based on my own very recent experiences, some misconceptions about *SOME* Linux Distros (and since there are 300+, I have no idea what percentage of them this reply would apply to).

To begin, burning a distro iso [which seems be the only file format they come in] to a DVD (CD-Rs are too small, i. e., most of the dozen that I downloaded are in the range of 1 Gig) is a simple/straightforward process of burning to the native burner in a Win OS (just right click on the ISO file and you get a "burn disk image" choice in the context menu-that's all there is to it). You also get a "verify" option before the burn begins, and it makes sense to check that off since you don't want to wind up with a burn that's flawed (and not know it). You can also, with a program such as 7-Zip, before you even begin the burn, use a feature that it has called "test the archive" (also in the context menu) that will 'verify' that the download distro is NOT corrupted (it scans the archive, i. e., the iso file).

Many of the Linux websites tout that burning an ISO file creates a LiveCD; a LiveCD means that you can run the Linux distro off the DVD/CD that you burned even on a computer that doesn't have an internal hard disk, i. e., you don't have to, unless you choose to, install the distro to a HD in order to explore/play with/whatever it's features, AND you still have Internet access, surfing the web, access to thumb drives, etc.,; BUT you cannot save any files that you create either. There is an exception to this reality (for SOME distros) when you install a distro to a thumb drive (some other time on that matter).

Of the 12 distros that I downloaded, AND used, by NO means did a majority of them have this LiveCD feature, i. e., quite a few didn't, i. e., #2, upon boot up, the only option in the 'start' menu was to install the distro to a HD. Since I had no intention of doing that for all 12, I was chagrined that I couldn't play/explore with the distro (since saving data files is not a priority). There was no mention of this reality on the distro's website when this occurred.

All that glitters is NOT gold, and it serves a social useful purpose to point out Linux's flaws, as well as individual distros' shortcomings.


LSemmens - 6-1-2015 at 09:22

Thanks. Jack, I've only played with a few distros, Ubuntu (and close variants), Mandriva, Red Hat, Mint (only two shells) and Puppy. Debian has gained some good reputation, but I've not tried it. My preferences for usability, so far, have been Mint (Cinnamon shell), Mint (Mate Shell) and Ubuntu. None of the others have lasted on my systems long enough to prove their credentials, the reason being, they weren't too keen on my hardware.

For practicality, without too much mucking around, Mint (Mate) has become the only wirkable solution for me. The other two did not happily work with my dual monitor setup. Typical problem being two disparate monitors not being well served using two different native resolutions.


Theravad - 6-1-2015 at 10:38

Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT

All that glitters is NOT gold, and it serves a social useful purpose to point out Linux's flaws, as well as individual distros' shortcomings.


I am still struggling to see the point of what you are trying to do?

As mentioned earlier you can ignore 90% of the distros as they are specialised for forensics, penetration testing, server, media player, firewall etc.

You then try a big one like Ubunutu, any of the others use the same desktops ( Gnome, KDE etc) and the same software ( LibreOffice, Thunderbird etc.). The differences are not that huge between them and any distro can be tweaked to look and feel like any other.

If you want to test multiple ones then run then in virtual box on your windows machine or put Linux on your machine and run them under Qemu/KVM.

Personally I use GNU/Linux on both servers and PCs/laptops as it is the only operating system that gives me freedom, reliability and security. I do need to run windows for one or two applications ( dragon & visio for example ) and this is done by running it as a virtual on Linux.

T


Theravad - 6-1-2015 at 11:56

http://www.techradar.com/news/software/operating-systems/best-linux-distro-five-we-recommend-1090058#articleContent

Might be worth a look


JackInCT - 6-1-2015 at 15:06

Quote:
Originally posted by Theravad
Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT..... Gnome, KDE etc....T


Gnome, KDE, etc. are ABSOLUTELY meaningless words/acronyms to me.

I feel safe in presuming that someone, somewhere, to use as an example, felt strongly enough about their perception of the shortcoming(s) of Gnome to write the KDE code. Exactly what those perceptions were/are since one has NOT superceded the other is, via my Google searches, are very difficult to find, and fathom. But clearly since so much of the coding is done for free, each 'camp' has attracted a number of followers/advocates/apostles that they are willing to continue to code for free.

So my taking an extended long term plunge into a variety of distros gives me the opportunity to see for myself just what are their pluses and minuses since, even if I could go under the hood (and I presume with open source gear that is relatively easy to do), I wouldn't have a clue what all that coding amounts to (especially when it comes to doing something that I want to do, but CANNOT figure out why I can't, i. e., it can't be done with that particular distro), to include coming to a rationale conclusion as to the relative advantages/disadvantages of one distro over another.


JackInCT - 7-1-2015 at 20:09

The attached image shows that I've successfully installed MS Office (2010) in Linux Ubuntu. It works with all the Office files that I created in Win 7.

Part of the Ubuntu install is a suite of office gear called LibreOffice which has multiple components, to include, Writer, the word processor, Calc, the spreadsheet application, Impress, the presentation engine, Draw, a drawing and flowcharting application, Base, a database and database frontend, and Math for editing mathematics.

I have Ubuntu installed on an IDE HD in my external HD enclosure.

I'm a frequent user of MS Excel, and all my Excel files did readily open in the LibreOffice Calc EXACTLY the same (visually) as they do in MS. BUT its commands to use Excel are different than MS's, and I wasn't about to learn another set. In addition Excel has a huge base of users, and if you run into something that you can't figure out re how to do it, it is very likely that a Google search will get you a hit from someone who explains it all.

To install MS Office, I did the usual Google search, and I selected a website at the following URL that explained all the steps:
http://www.sysads.co.uk/2014/02/install-ms-office-2010-linux-mintubuntu-playonlinux/
It is very probable that there are other ways of accomplishing this task.

You do need the MS Office install disk/an MS Office install file to install in a Linux distro.

It is a must for a newbie like myself to do a quality (legibility wise) hard copy printout of the entire series of steps (many pages).

The very first line of this website explains it all re the key package to get MS into a Linux distro: "PlayOnLinux is a useful piece of software based on Wine which allows you to easily install many Windows applications with relative ease".

At this point I have NOT tried any other of my Windows programs that I would like to use in a Linux distro (for which Linux doesn't have a comparable package), but I expect to do so in the days ahead.

Periodically MS Windows (monthly) Updates has changes for MS Office, but I would think that it would be unlikely that I could port them over to a Linux distro.


LSemmens - 8-1-2015 at 10:52

A lot of the M$ patches are to cover security shortcomings in the product and may, therefore, be redundant under Linux.

The actual differences between open orifice and m$ orifice are minimal from the users perspective and you'll find that most of the commands are found in their "usual" places. Orifice 2010 has moved towards the "metro" style of things so nothing is where it was in previous versions of Orifice. I have, actually just migrated from Office 2010 & 2007 on my various computers to Apache Open Office and my main problem has not been the interface but the programming environment. (I was quite competent in VBA) and I am still getting my head around OO Basic. That said, I am attempting to program for a database and not a spreadsheet or document.


Theravad - 8-1-2015 at 11:06

Quote:
Originally posted by JackInCT
The attached image shows that I've successfully installed MS Office (2010) in Linux Ubuntu. It works with all the Office files that I created in Win 7.


To my, admittedly Open Standards/Source evangelist viewpoint, this is slightly crazy :-)

The real benefit of the Open Source / Standards approach is freedom ( from license costs, file format lock in etc.) and what you have done is installed a free (as in freedom) operating system with a free office suite and then installed a closed source, paid for office suite on an operating system it was not intended for. Whilst the wine layer gives some excellent windows API support on Linux it is not infallible.

brshteeth

Still not entirely sure what you are trying to achieve by this?

Yours totally confused,

T