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 Taking the Linux plunge....

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:52 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I am dying of curiosity as to why Linux is good, so I got a 250 GB external HDD, and am backing up my files now. I plan to partition off 20 GB worth of space on my HDD to test Ubuntu 7. Any advice would be appreciated. i'll let you all know of what I think of it in about a week or maybe two days if its good enough.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:12 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I guess Linux is ok if you get the thingomabobbies up to speed and make sure you've adjusted the wossnames to calibrate with the doohickies and of course you'll need to make sure the googlidoos are well lubricated so you don't need to buy more whachallits. But I guess you just need to get a lot of thingies so your gigadoobies work smoothly. Smile

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B. A. Ware
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^that's why you are my tech staff.

Sorry Ex. Didn't mean to whore up your thread, I just couldn't resist. Laughing


Last edited by B. A. Ware on Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:20 am; edited 1 time in total
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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:18 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Any real advice would be happily appreciated.

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DrWho
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:37 am Reply with quoteBack to top

The best advice is follow the install instructions carefully. Although I haven't use Ubuntu much (installed once and didn't like it) it should be easy but usually linux distros give you more options than windoz so don't assume things. For a first install the defaults should be fine.

You can write the boot sector to the primary partition which is the best. Use GRUB if you have a choice. If you remove linux later you can rewrite the windoz boot sector.

Also don't go into linux thinking it will be like windoz. The gui will be familiar but linux is different. Stay open minded about how things are done, they will be a bit different. You can (will) spend more time customizing the desktop. Don't just accept the defaults. If you want a little more windoz-like gui, kubuntu using kde is better.

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:42 am Reply with quoteBack to top

@ Drwho

You'll find easily that I am not a closed minded user Wink I actually ran a version of Linux on my old NDS, but couldn't do much with it other than surf the web in a text browser.

In any case, I am not getting it solely to find negative things to say about it. I want to see what it can be used for to improve my computing experience.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:50 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Remember, Google is your friend... so are http://www.linuxquestions.org/ and http://ubuntuforums.org/

My Kubuntu installation takes about 4 Gb with the bells and whistles I like. I'd suggest you try both GNOME and KDE to see which one you prefer.

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:52 am Reply with quoteBack to top

GNOME? KDE?

I'm lost.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:54 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ Different GUIs for Linux, I believe.

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kurat
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:58 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Gnome and KDE are desktop managers, they just determine how your desktop looks like. Windows has only one builtin desktop manager, Linux has them in abundance. Google for KDE and Gnome pictures Smile
I would recommend Gnome to a beginner.

With Ubuntu, you actually don't have to worry much about anything, the install should go flawlessly and you will be looking at your new desktop in no time.
The best way to learn Linux is by "need to learn basis"; don't just start ramming info into your brain, take it slowly, and if you ever need to do something you don't know, ask the forums...Ubuntu has a fantastic community and they are happy to help out newbies with their problems.

Welcome aboard mate!

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:58 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I also have another question. Can I overclock my graphics card in Linux and where can I get NVIDIA Linux Beta drivers from?

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kurat
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:03 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Yes, you can. For example: http://www.linuxhardware.org/nvclock/

Drivers: http://www.nvidia.com/Download/index.aspx?lang=en-us

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DrWho
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:07 am Reply with quoteBack to top

You can over clock it but it will probably be a low level setting in the xorg.conf file where all the video settings are kept. I would wait a while before trying that. Anything you want to do just google and you will probably find it.
{added: Well they do have a gui for overclocking. You have to love open source)

nVidia drivers are on their web site. If like mine you will have to boot to the command line to run the install program. Easy enough and you don't need to do that right away. Get use to the system first.

I actually recommend KDE for beginners instead of Gnome but you can install both and switch between the two to decide for yourself.

Also, if you get a choice of file systems to use, pick "ext3". Fast and fault tolerant.

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:15 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thank you, you all have been helpful. If I find Ubuntu truly revolutionary, I will denounce Microsoft and switch to Linux for the rest of my life.














Probably won't take it that far, but I will admit that Linux is good.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:34 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Good luck. Ubuntu is an excellent distro IMHO. The Ubuntu forum is similarly good.

To get and install the latest Nvidia drivers you might want to try this site.

http://albertomilone.com/nvidia_scripts1.html

Allberto's installer is very good. Once you have the latest drivers you can get all the nice desktop effects ( compiz etc ) See this video (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=ViuJPRZh0oo)

If you don't like Ubuntu try a different distro ( mandriva/suse/pclinux)

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thud419
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:18 am Reply with quoteBack to top

With Ubuntu, the Nvidia drivers are available in the "Linux-Restricted-Modules" package, so you don't have to go to the Nvidia site to get them. They are not likely to be the very latest, but they will work.

KDE is more like Windows, Gnome behaves the same but looks more like Mac. The KDE printing subsystem is well worth having.

My advice would be to try KDE first, ie install Kubuntu, rather than Ubuntu, which is Gnome based. Most Linux distros come on half a dozen CDs and install everything, including KDE, Gnome and half-a-dozen other desktop managers; Ubuntu only comes on one and installs just one of everything you are likely to want. If you imagine a Windows machine with Office installed, that is about the functionality you get. For everything else you add it later using Synaptic (or apt-get). The general pattern for new users is to do a lot of installing and uninstalling over the first week or so like a kid in a toy shop until they find a mix they are happy with.

On a dual-boot machine, you will probably want to install ClamAV. (On Linux even the anti-virus is free.)

If you have an AMD64 CPU, then you will have the option to install the 64 bit Linux kernel. On a throwaway partition for getting your feet wet, I suggest you install the i386 kernel. There are still issues with dual-architecture, and Adobe etc do not supply 64 bit plug-ins for Firefox. So getting flash etc working takes five minutes more than it should do.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:40 am Reply with quoteBack to top

thud419 wrote:
With Ubuntu, the Nvidia drivers are available in the "Linux-Restricted-Modules" package, so you don't have to go to the Nvidia site to get them. They are not likely to be the very latest, but they will work.
The latest version of Ubuntu/Kubuntu will automagically detect your nvidia card an prompt for installation of the proprietary drivers (the ones with 3D support) if you want them. If you're happy with 2D, the default closed source drivers will be detected and enabled.

A COMMON PROBLEM WITH UBUNTU:
You may find that your monitor doesnt report itself correctly when your GUI is configuring itself, and the screen resolution is incorrect. If this happens, run the following command at the command line (through xterm, konsole, Gnome Terminal or one of many other terminal emulators):
sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg
This will run the configuration dialogue for X, the linux GUI system that GNOME/KDE/Etc run on top of. From here, you can select drivers, keyboard layouts, etc (you can safely leave most of these on the defaults) but more importantly, you can select the screen resolutions you want X to use.

Happy Linuxing!

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Harry Bawls
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 1:25 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

On the same topic, but slightly to the side, I have thought about trying Ubuntu on an old computer I have. It has a 700 mhz processor with 256 ram. What I am wondering after reading this thread is if a techno-tard like me can handle the conversion. Is it as simple as installing it and learning the differences between Windoz and it, or is it more complex than that? I am not asking for step by step instructions, just your opinion as to how difficult it would be to switch. Most importantly, would I need to eliminate Windoz from my machine, or is that what "dual boot" refers to? Remember......be gentle with me, as far as I know these computer thingies run by magic, smoke and mirrors.
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thud419
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:23 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^ I haven't done it myself, but many have. So long as you install Windows first you can have both OSs on the same machine and choose between them at boot time - dual-boot. Windows doesn't play nice, so if you install it second it will wipe out the Linux install.

I understand that it is a no-brainer to do, but you may want to defrag the disk before you start, so that there is enough clear space for Linux... on the other hand that may not be necessary.

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:25 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^ I don't think Windows will clear the whole HDD. It usually gives you te option of formatting and partitioning.

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kurat
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 3:08 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Yes, if you dual-boot, then you can resintall Windows on another partition if you should need it...although Windows will overwrite the bootloader, but it's easy to reinstall it using the Ubuntu live cd.

Learning Linux is not anything extraordinary hard! You install it, and it's ready to run out of the box. If you need to fiddle with it later, there are great tutorials out there, and there is a helpful community. You will feel yourself at home after a week or so Smile

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Ex.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 3:11 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ Reminds me of my transition to Vista.

In any case, I have finished downloading the Ubuntu image. Burning to DVD now...

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 3:53 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I did the Linux plunge a few weeks back and I had a thread about it somewhere...

Anyway, I did Kubuntu 7 (Gutsy Gibbon) and it did install easily. However, I ran into a problem with my RAID striping and had to disable that in order for Kubuntu to boot from my HD. Once I did that, there were no problems, that took me, oh 7 hours of posting to forums and trying different solutions.

Once installed, i upgraded to KDE 4.0 which is very nice. It then took me another say, 7 hours to install (and figure out how to install) all the necessary support programs (i.e. Citrix, Flash). I never did have a problem with my video card which was a pleasant surprise -- having heard many nightmare stories. Once done, I would still run into compatibility problems probably once every few days, but I was usually able to fix them -- and I learned a great deal in the process, which was worth the price of admittance.

That said, I found a few drawbacks (and this is from the perspective of a person who uses his computer a lot, but is not a coder or otherwise someone who has loads of time to customize): (1) you can't use iTunes -- I like iTunes and my iPod [there are rumors of a workaround with Wine but I couldn't get it to work and feared doing any further damage]; (2) linux is not good with most games [if gaming is not a concern, then no big deal]; (3) compatibility with my work software [again, a personal issue that may not affect many others].

So, if you can easily enough do a dual-boot, do so, but to be honest, I am using Vista 85% of the time now just because it's easier -- so shoot me. Wink

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh right... one thing which might confuse a new Linux user is the way the clipboard works - or rather that there are several clipboards. Read this text for further details.

I like to run Klipper on the KDE Panel; it provides me a selection buffer history, which can be very useful. Glipper seems to be its GNOME counterpart.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2008 1:23 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
I don't think Windows will clear the whole HDD. It usually gives you te option of formatting and partitioning.
Right. If you install windoz after linux, windoz will assume it is the only OS in existence and you don't know what you are doing and over write the boot sector with it's own so you wouldn't be able to boot into linux. You could go back and manually install GRUB or LILO after and get your multi-OS boot sector back but it is easier to do it windows then linux. Also I think windoz use to have a problem that it wouldn't boot if the primary partition started at a certain size or higher on the harddrive. That may not be true anymore.

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