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im knew to the world of linux and am trying to install it on my lap top alongside windows xp.
I was wondering how exactly am i supposed to make the boot cd and what to put on it. When i go to download a distribution im always faced with alpha, arm, hppa, i386 etc. Which one do i choose? also what linux would be the best type for me, the newbie.
thanks a lot
Oh well, since I got here 1st, let me just say that the best distro for anyone (newbie, expert, laptop, desktop, 32-bit, 64-bit, ...everybody) is Debian. Don't pay any attention to the naysayers and proseletysers who will come along behind ... Just hie yourself off to find a Dedian i386 netinstall disk.
Tutorials on making a boot cd can be found here: http://www.linuxquestions.org/linux/answers/LQ_ISO
We can't tell you which version to download until you tell us your hardware specs.
As far as "which distro" goes, try a load of them out and pick the one you like best. Also, search LQ using "which distro" as your search term and you'll see thousands of threads just like this.
already made a debian boot cd and partioned my hard drive but when i try to boot into the linux drive it doesn't read the cd and install it.
Hopefully you have an 'install' cd, and not a copy of an .iso file. Then, you don't make partitions b4 you start installing ... the install process does that for you.
If your entire hard drive is to be dedicated to Linux, just format it, and boot from the cd. If your hard drive is to be shared with Windows, you have to create 'free space' on the portion of the hard drive you want Linux to use, then boot from the cd.
You probably did. It's a common mistake. An .iso file is one especially prepared to create a (usually) bootable cd. Rather than simply copying the file to a cd, your burning program should have an option something like, 'Burn CD Image to disk'. That the one you need. Copy the .iso file to a hard drive, then when the burner asks for the source of its 'Image', you direct it there.
I gotta leave for a while, but you'll find plenty of help here.