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Old 12-24-2007, 08:18 AM   #1
Karl Schrader
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Considering to install Linux


Considering to install Linux !
I retired my old desktop PC after 5 years faithful service, however, I do not want to throw it into the garbage just yet, so I installed a new harddrive since the old one gave out and could use this PC as an extra, but I do have a problem as follows: I purchased a new desktop from MDG and had it configured for the hardware to my needs. Now, the original Windows XP was transferred to the new PC and the old PC can not use it anymore .... it won't be activated by MS.
(One computer, one OS ) . I am now considering to put Linux on the old PC and let MS go to heaven....
When I mentioned this to the technician who set up my new PC he told me that I might have difficulties to run my hardware on Linux since this OS does not recognize all the drivers out there. Does anyone have any information on this ??
There was an article in the Monitor about some kind of lawsuit by MS against Linux etc. what is that all about when I am installing Linux and start to use it. Would I be exposed to some legal shenanigans by MS etc. ??? Or is Linux truly the open source OS for an old geezer ??
I will be watching the forum for any relevant info,
thanks,
Karl Schrader
 
Old 12-24-2007, 08:53 AM   #2
Dinithion
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Hi, and welcome to LQ!

There is no illegal with linux at all. This is just a trick by Microsoft to spread some FUD (Fear, uncertainty, and doubt). They do this to slow down their upcomping enemy. (And obviously it works ).

When it comes to the driver issue, my guess is that it will work just fine. What I suggest is to download a live CD and try it out. When you start up a live CD it boots (Just like the windows installer) and run a temporary OS. It doesn't touch your harddrive unless you want it to. It's 100% safe, as long as you wont manually delete files, etc. (Linux doesn't use your MS recycle bin).

Anyway, when you use such a Live CD, you can tell what hardware that is detected. Usually everything works out-of-the-box, without any need to install drivers (So in many ways linux is better then MS, since MS needs a nightmare of drivers after a fresh install). You could try out ubuntu (A realy popular distro, with a great community). They even ship you a free CD if you stuck on a slow Internet connection

Good luck
 
Old 12-24-2007, 08:54 AM   #3
arochester
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You own the computer not Microsoft and you can do what you want with it.

Linux is free.

The most important things are (1) the amount of RAM and (2) the size of the hard drive.

The best thing is to try some LiveCDs. This will run totally from the CDRom and leave your hard drive untouched. The best place to try them is http://www.frozentech.com/content/livecd.php
 
Old 12-24-2007, 11:57 AM   #4
vwtech
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Thumbs up Run Ubuntu is great for me

I have been running Ubuntu for about months now and I love.
Use the live CD and if it works without problems then go ahead and clean your hard drive and install via the live cd.
If your computer is 5 years old I would suggest Ubuntu 6.10 or 7.04.
Microsoft and their rumors aren't funny at all.
I work I'm forced to use Windows XP and my lady uses Vista at home, but I run Ubuntu 7.10.
 
Old 12-24-2007, 01:56 PM   #5
elliott678
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vwtech View Post
If your computer is 5 years old I would suggest Ubuntu 6.10 or 7.04.
I'd have to disagree with you there, if you don't have the resources to run Ubuntu 7.10, download Xububtu 7.10 instead. There are so many changes going on all the time, especially in the *buntu's that it doesn't make sense to install an old, obsolete release.
 
Old 12-24-2007, 03:05 PM   #6
teckk
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My 2 cents
If you run a live CD, it will be sluggish because it is running from a slow optical drive instead of a hard drive. But it will let you have a look around.

http://www.knoppix.net/
http://www.efense.com/helix/
http://www.freesbie.org/ << not linux, FreeBSD
http://www.puppylinux.com/
http://www.slackware.com/
http://www.centos.org/
http://www.damnsmalllinux.org/
http://iso.linuxquestions.org/

All of those will run on that 5 year old box. Plus many others. Some distros are heavier than others as you can see. The more RAM you have the better. Depends on what you want to use the box for.

http://wiki.linuxquestions.org/wiki/...ndows_software
http://kde-apps.org/
http://www.gnomefiles.org/
http://www.linux.org/apps/
 
Old 12-24-2007, 05:33 PM   #7
marvinudy
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linux for old computers

Karl,

As others said, 'live' cds are the way to go initially. I have an old p2-350 with 512 memory that runs most Linux distributions with no problem. Speed will be variable depending on the sophistication of the Linux distribution. I would recommend you take a look at PCLinuxOS-2007 and/or the Gnome version of Mint 4.0. They both do a good job of recognizing hardware.

I refurbish old machine for donation and load Linux on all of them with good results and response by the users.

Best regards,

marvinudy
 
Old 12-24-2007, 08:51 PM   #8
cdo
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I am also new to the Linux way and exploring the possibility of installing on either my old pc or a new build . I specificaly asked the shop that would do any new build i purchase if they had any history of compatability problems with running Linux on the units i would consider purchasing . Their response was no & they didn't think there would be any issues but could not gurantee 100 % that there would not be some . So , they did the next best thing by offering me a 10 day period to run Linux and if problems arose i could take the unit back & they would install something that would run Linux at no additional cost . Also suggested bringing the Linux cd to the shop and running it on a unit to see if there might be issues . So these might be things you would want to condider .
 
Old 12-25-2007, 06:34 AM   #9
sonichedgehog
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pros and cons

Hi
Very interested in this thread as I have the MS v Linux issues at home.
I see Linux as the way forward for those who don't intend to pay MS prices for software or get illegal disks. On another level, hardware operation on MS systems (eg dictating machines, ipods) can be a nightmare due to restrictions. Even deeper- many users in the developing countries won't be able to afford MS stuff and may be "forced" to use cracked versions of XP & Vista- ie stolen software.So I am determined to do this. I am talking about old machines here (266 & 500)

Other advantages if that isn't enough:
Better resource allocation- you will probably be free from "not responding" and crashes
Better fixes & addons- instead of reinstalling from disks, buying & downloading software, you have package manager commands and immediate access to anything you want (& in my case tons that you don't understand)
Versatility- I believe you can operate any hardware from Linux.
Support- LQ is wonderful! And some of the developers eg Michal Cihar on Gammu/Wammu for mobile phone synchronisation will help overcome (inevitable) problems.
Security- no user has the ability to alter or damage the software. Even if you set up the system yourself, another password is required in all cases.

Karl- you mention drivers. As far as I know Linux developers write their own drivers so you have no legal issues. However, I have used a firmware file provided for use on windows 98 to complete a skeletal driver setup, in order to operate a poorly supported scanner. I wouldn't expect that to be a legal problem but would welcome comments.

Disadvantages:
On an old machine, systems can be a pig to install. Example- debian etch 4.0, installs very easily then needs to update itself for hours- then you have a rather limited system. Configuring it to XP capability requires some experience and most people I know would give up.
Browser addons- sounds marginal, but if you can't see Youtube clips and if some website videos won't display that's a major issue to some users. Please treat that comment with care as I haven't asked for LQ help on these problems yet, while I try to sort it out myself.
Multitasking- I guess that the stability comes at a price. Eg if I play a media file it gets suspended while my (rather small) processor is occupied with other applications. I believe Windows shares the resources differently at risk of a crash. Again I would welcome comments on this and will eventually post a separate question if I can't solve it myself.
Merry Christmas to all -Phil
 
Old 12-25-2007, 11:13 AM   #10
masonm
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Don't worry about legal issues, it's just MS's underhanded campaign to scare people away from the competition.

As suggested, try a LiveCD and see how it works on your machine. Unless you have something pretty exotic I think you'll find it works just fine.
 
Old 12-27-2007, 04:37 PM   #11
vwtech
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elliott678 View Post
I'd have to disagree with you there, if you don't have the resources to run Ubuntu 7.10, download Xububtu 7.10 instead. There are so many changes going on all the time, especially in the *buntu's that it doesn't make sense to install an old, obsolete release.
Yeah, your right about Xubuntu 7.10 the system requirements are lower.
 
Old 12-28-2007, 11:51 AM   #12
Karl Schrader
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Registered: Dec 2007
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Considering to install Linux

Well, I considered it and installed it, however, since being used to Windows, it is not as smooth and is asking me constantly for my password. What can be done to avoid this constant password request ?
Further, I tried to install my usual programs like a backup program, a CD-DVD burner etc.. since the build in CD-DVD burner could not be activated........ and I was constantly refused.

I also have the book Linux for Dummies and this did not help since it has some very arkane language in it which I do not get.

So, I am getting close to giving up on this one after one more try and a lot of patience.

Since the idea was to avoid paying Microsoft another couple of 100 bucks for a new Windows program, it should be possible to make this one work smoothly, otherwise, the idea is great but the implementation is rather complicated compared to Windows.

Karl Schrader
 
Old 12-28-2007, 11:53 AM   #13
Karl Schrader
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Dec 2007
Posts: 4

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Considering to install Linux

Considering to install Linux

Well, I considered it and installed it, however, since being used to Windows, it is not as smooth and is asking me constantly for my password. What can be done to avoid this constant password request ?
Further, I tried to install my usual programs like a backup program, a CD-DVD burner etc.. since the build in CD-DVD burner could not be activated........ and I was constantly refused.

I also have the book Linux for Dummies and this did not help since it has some very arkane language in it which I do not get.

So, I am getting close to giving up on this one after one more try and a lot of patience.

Since the idea was to avoid paying Microsoft another couple of 100 bucks for a new Windows program, it should be possible to make this one work smoothly, otherwise, the idea is great but the implementation is rather complicated compared to Windows.

Karl Schrader
 
Old 12-28-2007, 03:45 PM   #14
kr4ey
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I do not use Ubuntu or Xubuntu but you can not install windows programs on Linux without special software.
For DVD burner software K3B is the best. Than Brasero or gnomebaker.
For backup software you may try searching on google for a open source (free) program for Linux.
Try http://sourceforge.net/

Password is always required for login and root access.
 
Old 12-28-2007, 04:12 PM   #15
masonm
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What do mean about asking you for a password? What are you trying to do when it asks? System security exists for a reason.

The problems you are dealing with right now stem from the fact that Linux is not Windows and as such you need to take the time to learn how to use it just as you did when you first started using Windows.
 
  


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