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Old 09-15-2003, 03:43 AM   #1
Phatman
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Question Currently running Legit XP Home wanting to Dual Boot Mandrake 9.1


Hello there everybody...

I'm in the mood for some dual booting to get myself re-acquainted with Linux, Mandrake Linux to be more specific...

Here are some questions I have...

I currently run XP Home (legal copy) and have been for quite some time and I've had absolutely no problems... The OS was installed on NTFS formatted partition which takes the entire drive up (60GB Maxtor Diamond Max.)

In recent weeks I've had a compelling urge to re-acquaint myself with Linux but fear that a user friendly Idiot proof (Had to put it bluntly because I find myself fumbling around the Linux environment) GUI and Mandrake Linux caught my eye...

(Can we say Pseudo Mandrake )

Would there be any way to do this without sacrificing the stability I currently have with my XP Home installation (Yes, I mean avoiding the Big C:\Format C)?

Any help that you may be able to provide would be greatly appreciated..

Thanks,

Phatman

P.S. Feel free to E-mail me at kninnim@look.ca or message me via MSN Messenger at krisninnim@hotmail.com

Oh crap, another thing... Gnome or KDE?

Last edited by Phatman; 09-15-2003 at 03:44 AM.
 
Old 09-15-2003, 04:18 AM   #2
Azmeen
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Recent Mandrake releases come with a partition-resizing utility... For the life of me I can't remember what it's called... However, I'm very sure that I've read somewhere that it works well on NTFS partitions.

Personally, I use Blackbox as WM, but prior to that I use KDE... there doesn't seem to be any worthwhile innovation on Gnome over the past few years that makes me want to try it.
 
Old 09-15-2003, 09:21 AM   #3
mr98ai
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Hey there Phatman, glad to see you making the switch. I am a newbie myself so take whatever I say with a really good dose of your own caution and common sense. That being said, I have come through a few (20 + ) linux - windows dual boot installations without any trouble.

First - BACKUP your data, all of your important data files, e.g. word documents, emails etc. The actual programs MS Office etc are not important as you can easily reinstall them.

If your entire harddrive is one partition, and that partition is NTFS, then your out of luck. To my knowledge, there is no program that can resize an NTFS partition. (If you do find one, please be kind enough to me about it)

Once you have resized your partition, you should have two partitions; The old one (FAT32, or possibly NTFS), and a new one. At this point you can insert your first mandrake 9.x cd and reboot. The actual mandrake installation comes with a utility to resize, reformat and partition. It's very easy to use, but hard to explain to someone who hasn't seen it for themselves. Basically, you can click on a partition, and then do various things to, including reformat, mount etc. Select that new partition you just made and convert it to a linux partition (select ext2, ext3, JFS etc). If you don't have a lot of RAM, you may want to create a swap partition first, then create your main linux partition.

From there it's all easy going - At the end of the installation, you should see something about lilo... This is the boot loader that will load when you start your computer. This loader will allow you to select either linux or windows to boot. Make sure you see an entry for linux AND windows during the setup, otherwise you may have a hard time getting back into windows. Normally, the setup program will detect that you have windows installed and will put an entry into the lilo boot loader, but make sure just in case.

As far as KDE vs GNOME, well that's basically personal preference. There is no right or wrong. They are both functional and easy to use. KDE might suit converted windows users better as it behaves closer to windows then GNOME does. If you have enough space, install both, play with them both and make up your own mind.
 
Old 09-15-2003, 10:54 AM   #4
aaa
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There is a tool called ntfsresize for resizing NTFS. You'll need to have linux to run it (maybe a boot disk or Knoppix).
http://sourceforge.net/projects/ntfsresizer/
www.knoppix.net
 
Old 09-15-2003, 11:16 AM   #5
mr98ai
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aaa, thanks for the tip!

I would still strongly recommend Phatman to backup all important data first though. I'm not sure of the quality of this ntfsresizing program; it might be fine. I do know that ntfs support for linux in general is still in the beta stages. Some distro's can read files from ntfs, but I don't think any distro's are able to right files to an ntfs partition.
 
Old 09-15-2003, 11:25 AM   #6
Azmeen
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Quote:
Originally posted by mr98ai
aaa, thanks for the tip!

I would still strongly recommend Phatman to backup all important data first though. I'm not sure of the quality of this ntfsresizing program; it might be fine. I do know that ntfs support for linux in general is still in the beta stages. Some distro's can read files from ntfs, but I don't think any distro's are able to right files to an ntfs partition.
NTFS read/write are features of the kernel, not any particular distro
 
Old 09-15-2003, 11:33 AM   #7
quatsch
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the mandrake installer does come with an NTFS partitioner. It works quite well so long as you make sure to defragment the partition beforehand. Also, it cannot make the partition smaller than half of its original size. So if it's a 40Gig partition, you can cut off a max of 20Gig. My understanding is that the main reason is that windows installs system files in the middle of the partition and the ntfs resizer cannot move them. Also, before defragmenting, disable virtual memory so that the swap file won't be in your way (it can be dome somewhere under system in control panel). This can make more potential room. Once you're done with the partitioning, you can activate it again.

If you're happy to use any of the partitioning utilities, then I don't see why you wouldn't want to use the ntfs tool that comes with the mdk installer. PartitionMagic can do serious damage too if things go wrong. So BACKUP whatever you do to your partition, as everybody has been saying..
 
Old 09-15-2003, 11:44 AM   #8
mr98ai
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NTFS read/write are features of the kernel, not any particular distro [/QUOTE]

Your right, however by default, Redhat removes (or never includes) any support for NTFS, whereas SuSE and Mandrake do include read support. I guess that's what I meant when I said certain distro's can read from NTFS.
 
Old 09-15-2003, 04:03 PM   #9
robertjay
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Thumbs up

I recently installed Mandrake 9.2 on my laptop that is successfuly running WindowsXP (more questions to come from me, for all intents purposes, I'm a Linux newbie).

The mandrake setup comes with an awesome tool to resize the NTFS Partition, but a small word of advice, (adding to what was mentioned above) turn off your Windows swap file (only temporarily, you can turn it back on after Mandrake is installed), and also turn off Hibernate under the power settings. Both of those files alone took up 1.2 gigs on my hard drive. With them off, do a full defrag, I did mine twice and it shrunk the Windows files enough that I was able to shrink the NTFS partition to 15 gigs on a 20 gig hard drive. Plenty to install Mandrake and mess around with.

Robert

 
Old 09-16-2003, 03:48 PM   #10
58berlyl
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Thumbs up

Thanks for the tip with the Windows XP settings for the swap file and the defrag tip. I'm going to try and install Suse 8.2 tonight!!!
 
Old 09-16-2003, 10:05 PM   #11
snatale1
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Re: Currently running Legit XP Home wanting to Dual Boot Mandrake 9.1

Quote:
Originally posted by Phatman
I currently run XP Home (legal copy)
You actually PAID for that crap!

hehehehe just kidding

Welcome to Linux
 
Old 09-17-2003, 03:52 AM   #12
Phatman
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Update

I actually went out of my way and bought the standard box from the mandrakestore and It got me to thinking...

I currently have my 60GB Maxtor Diamondmax Plus 9 ATA 133 drive connected to a promise tx2 ATA 133 controller card (MB only supports 100) and I was wondering if it would logical to go out and get another drive of the same configuration and slap it into the 2nd port I have available on the card and run Mandrake 9.1 from there...

I'm assuming it'd be a lot easier than fumbling with my main drive and that Linux would just say "Hey, look at that, there's a big juicy drive right here, let's use it" instead of "You b@stard, how dare you put me on the same drive as Windows!!!"

Thoughts? Suggestions?
 
Old 09-17-2003, 05:47 AM   #13
Azmeen
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Re: Update

Quote:
Originally posted by Phatman
I actually went out of my way and bought the standard box from the mandrakestore and It got me to thinking...

I currently have my 60GB Maxtor Diamondmax Plus 9 ATA 133 drive connected to a promise tx2 ATA 133 controller card (MB only supports 100) and I was wondering if it would logical to go out and get another drive of the same configuration and slap it into the 2nd port I have available on the card and run Mandrake 9.1 from there...

I'm assuming it'd be a lot easier than fumbling with my main drive and that Linux would just say "Hey, look at that, there's a big juicy drive right here, let's use it" instead of "You b@stard, how dare you put me on the same drive as Windows!!!"

Thoughts? Suggestions?
Actually it's the Windows install that will usually have issues sharing hard disks with other OSs.

Anyway... purchasing another HD will be safer for you. But then comes the CBA question... Is it worth it?
 
Old 09-17-2003, 07:47 AM   #14
Phatman
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CBA? Cost to Benefit Analysis?

Well, the way I look at is...

My upgrade plans have been pushed back because of the release of PCI Express and 64 Bit procs from AMD and Intel and Serial ATA drives really don't yield a signifigant increase in performance over ATA-133 so I think when you look at combining the total cost of an upgrade to $100 CDN for an HD, it's a drop in the bucket... Learning to navigate and familiarize myself with the Linux environment should eat up enough time anyway, at least until the new hardware line-ups are realeased... Besides, I've got my Xbox to tide me over for gameplay seeing as all the new releases that I've been waiting for will be ported to the console fairly quickly...


Last edited by Phatman; 09-17-2003 at 07:57 AM.
 
  


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