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Linux - Laptop and Netbook Having a problem installing or configuring Linux on your laptop? Need help running Linux on your netbook? This forum is for you. This forum is for any topics relating to Linux and either traditional laptops or netbooks (such as the Asus EEE PC, Everex CloudBook or MSI Wind).

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Old 07-12-2009, 10:42 AM   #1
krautwaschl
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Registered: Apr 2009
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Even Money cannot buy Linux !


For months I have tried to find a way of installing Linux on one of my PCs (I have three laptops and two desktops, with Windows 98, XP and Vista) but everything I obtained on discussion boards were explanations asking me for technical details which I did not understand!

While I have Ubuntu installed on a dual boot basis with XP, I cannot access Internet via my French Livebox which works like a charm for XP.
Nobody provided me with an installation disk and therefore I decided to try to find and buy a tiny notebook with Linux pre-installed and compatible with my Livebox. But even here - consulting Internet - I had to learn that e.g. Dell went back to Windows and there is currently no shop in Paris (I, at least, could not find one!) selling a Linux (I would prefer Mandriva for the nice opening screen) notebook.

Tomorrow I will go to FNAC and Darty the two major pc shops in Paris and ask one of the (rather arrogant) salesmen whether they can sell me a notebook according to my request (Linux working under Livebox!)

Is there any chance?
 
Old 07-12-2009, 12:08 PM   #2
MS3FGX
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Dell has not stopped offering laptops with Linux (Ubuntu) preinstalled, at least not in the US. They sell them from their site under "Open Source PCs". As for netbooks, most of them at least have Linux as an option, but the ones being stocked in the brick and mortar stores will almost always tend to be the Windows versions, as that is what most walk-in customers will want.

As for supporting this "Livebox", I don't know what that is or what the requirements are. Perhaps somebody on the forums has some experience with it though.
 
Old 07-12-2009, 01:13 PM   #3
rjlee
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Dell are certainly still offering Linux laptops in the UK as well. They don't advertise them very much, though; you have to go to dell.co.uk/ubuntu (with links for other countries on http://www.ubuntu.com/dell).

Personally, I have a Dell Ubuntu laptop and I don't think I'd be likely to buy another one: the options were very limited, and there were quite a few hoops to jump through to fix even basic hardware problems (such as setting the display resolution to 16:9). Things may have improved since then, but there are, as MS3FGX says, other options.

Dell's cheapest option is 200, for 250 you can get a bare bones cube computer from efficientpc (http://www.efficientpc.co.uk/desktops/wraith/) with a real hard disk (but no wireless, monitor or keyboard).

There are also plenty of other netbooks and notebooks around, see: http://www.google.co.uk/products?q=linux+laptop

Hope that helps,

—Robert J Lee
 
Old 07-12-2009, 10:51 PM   #4
redbook
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
For months I have tried to find a way of installing Linux on one of my PCs (I have three laptops and two desktops, with Windows 98, XP and Vista) but everything I obtained on discussion boards were explanations asking me for technical details which I did not understand!

While I have Ubuntu installed on a dual boot basis with XP, I cannot access Internet via my French Livebox which works like a charm for XP.
Nobody provided me with an installation disk and therefore I decided to try to find and buy a tiny notebook with Linux pre-installed and compatible with my Livebox. But even here - consulting Internet - I had to learn that e.g. Dell went back to Windows and there is currently no shop in Paris (I, at least, could not find one!) selling a Linux (I would prefer Mandriva for the nice opening screen) notebook.

Tomorrow I will go to FNAC and Darty the two major pc shops in Paris and ask one of the (rather arrogant) salesmen whether they can sell me a notebook according to my request (Linux working under Livebox!)

Is there any chance?
I assume by livebox you are using wireless with orange france, if so any linux distro will access it, you do not need drivers it is simply a wireless router, just enter your wep/wpa key press the 'a' button on the back of the box and wait for connection.
 
Old 07-13-2009, 04:22 AM   #5
H_TeXMeX_H
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
For months I have tried to find a way of installing Linux on one of my PCs (I have three laptops and two desktops, with Windows 98, XP and Vista) but everything I obtained on discussion boards were explanations asking me for technical details which I did not understand!

While I have Ubuntu installed on a dual boot basis with XP, I cannot access Internet via my French Livebox which works like a charm for XP.
I recommend you try again, because there's no reason for some distro to run on your computers. Don't just try Ubuntu and say you've tried Linux. Ubuntu can be buggy as hell. So try a number of distros and have some live CDs around too.

http://distrowatch.com/
 
Old 07-13-2009, 01:33 PM   #6
Skaperen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
For months I have tried to find a way of installing Linux on one of my PCs (I have three laptops and two desktops, with Windows 98, XP and Vista) but everything I obtained on discussion boards were explanations asking me for technical details which I did not understand!
When you only want one OS on a computer (single boot), then installation is pretty much straight forward. Windows, and many Linux distributions, don't require much technical details from you. Whatever is on the disk already gets wiped out and the new OS put on. If all goes well, you will end up with your computer having a fresh new OS of your choice, without your previous personal data.

It's when you want to do something different that technical details have to get involved. If you want to preserve your existing data, it may be easy (if it happens to be on a separate partition), but it can be hard (your data is standing in the way of the new OS). If the new OS needs to repartition the disk because the existing partitions from a different OS are not suitable, this generally means losing the data. Juggling data to keep it across a change of partitions takes technical detail, such as knowing where your data is, what format it is in, etc.

Also, if you want a dual-boot machine, typically Windows plus Linux, then things really get complicated. Again, partitions are involved, but now even more complex than just preserving data. The existing OS probably has taken the whole disk. It needs to be backed off to take only the portion you want it to have. All this is technical detail.

I always tell people to have 2 or 3 backups of their data so it can be wiped off the computer and not be lost. This also means verifying that the backups can actually be read back. If you make 3 backups but for some reason the data cannot be read back due to some error, then you really don't have any backups.

I always tell people it is better to have one OS per machine. If you need another OS, get another machine. It makes life simpler. If you want two or more OSes on the same machine, be prepared to deal with the technical details of making them co-exist (especially since the most popular one comes from developers that prefer it to be the only one).

Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
While I have Ubuntu installed on a dual boot basis with XP, I cannot access Internet via my French Livebox which works like a charm for XP.
I don't know what Livebox is. Is that an application program that would need a version written to run properly on Linux? Is that a device that would need the proper drivers in Linux?

Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
Nobody provided me with an installation disk and therefore I decided to try to find and buy a tiny notebook with Linux pre-installed and compatible with my Livebox. But even here - consulting Internet - I had to learn that e.g. Dell went back to Windows and there is currently no shop in Paris (I, at least, could not find one!) selling a Linux (I would prefer Mandriva for the nice opening screen) notebook.
With Linux being a smaller market, smaller sellers (e.g. a local shop is a very small seller, even in a big city like Paris) have difficulty justifying the stocking of Linux based computers. They might sell maybe one every 2 or 3 months. Lots of Linux advocates build their own computers or buy online, diluting the Linux market further. Chain stores of either big computer manufacturers, or general retail stores, won't have much Linux offerings. Specialty computer stores that build custom computers (often called "white box") are more likely to be able to offer whatever you want because they don't have to stock something that may not be sold for months.

Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
Tomorrow I will go to FNAC and Darty the two major pc shops in Paris and ask one of the (rather arrogant) salesmen whether they can sell me a notebook according to my request (Linux working under Livebox!)
Look for smaller minor PC shops, instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by krautwaschl View Post
Is there any chance?
Sure.
 
  


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