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Old 11-08-2011, 11:34 AM   #1
kanthas
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Dell mini bought on Craig's list and need to change administrative password.


I recently bought a dell mini on Craig's list (I know, that was my first mistake) for my 12 yr old daughter. It has Linux Ubuntu 8 or 9. When she tries to download any music or games, she get's a prompt that she is not authorized to. I have tried, unsuccessfully, to change her password, but there is an administrative password on her netbook that I am unable to access. Does anyone have any ideas that could help? Thanks.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:36 AM   #2
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You can usually change the root password by booting into recovery mode using the installation or recovery disk (if you don't have this, you can probably make one). No experience with doing this on Ubuntu though.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:39 AM   #3
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I don't have any disks, How can I make a recovery disk? I forgot to mention there is no disk drive just usb ports. I can borrow an external disk drive, though.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:40 AM   #4
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This should help:

http://burnz.wordpress.com/2008/09/0...root-password/
 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:54 AM   #5
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Hi Kanthas,
An alternate perspective:
The version of Ubuntu 8.04 that came pre-installed on Dell Mini's has reached its "end of life" and is no longer supported.
Furthermore whenever I acquire new hardware, I like to wipe the operating system so I'm not dealing with someone else's configs and personal data.
Therefore I strongly recommend a fresh reinstall of a currently-supported operating system.

Let us know which model of Dell Mini you have, and I'll try to make a recommendation. You might find this site helpful: http://mydellmini.com
 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:57 AM   #6
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It has Dell n series mini on a sticker on the keyboard. Is that what you need?
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:03 PM   #7
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Look on the bottom of the netbook for a sticker with a more specific model number. Mine says "Inspiron 910" for example.

If the sticker is gone then open a terminal, (press Alt+F2 then type "gnome-terminal" without the quotes) and then:

Code:
lspci | grep VGA
You can copy & paste the output here so I know what kind of video graphics card you have.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:19 PM   #8
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I get a seperate window that says:
user@brittany:~$
Is that where I type your code?
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:22 PM   #9
snowpine
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Correct; and you don't have to type it... you can use copy & paste so you don't accidentally make any typo's.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:27 PM   #10
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OK. it says:
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 945GME Express Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 03)

BTW, I'm working on my desktop and then typing onto my daughter's mini. It's too hard to type on those tiny keys! LOL

Last edited by kanthas; 11-08-2011 at 12:30 PM.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:32 PM   #11
snowpine
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That is good news. 945GME is well-supported by any Linux distro.

Ubuntu and Mint are the two most popular for beginning users. You can read more at:

http://ubuntu.com
http://linuxmint.com

I suggest trying each in "live" mode before installing. Also be aware that there are several desktop environments (user interfaces) available; personally I prefer something "lightweight" like Xfce or LXDE for a netbook, but that's a matter of taste.
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:43 PM   #12
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So I would download that version of Ubuntu 10.4 onto an external cd drive and then put it in her netbook? Do I need to wipe her netbook first? She doesn't have anything important on it. Sorry, I'm such a dunce. I was a computer programmer in the 70's (I actually programmed in assembler with punch cards), then switched to social work. Alot has changed!
 
Old 11-08-2011, 12:48 PM   #13
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You can use an external CD drive (if you have one) or a 1+ gb USB thumb drive. First you are going to try it in "Live" mode for a while, before you install. Then when you are ready to install, the installer will give you the option to use the entire drive, wiping your existing system and all data.

There are easy 1-2-3 instructions here: http://www.ubuntu.com/download/ubuntu/download

10.04 (April 2010) is the "long term support" release if you prefer older, well-tested, stable software.
11.10 (October 2011) is the current version with the latest software and user interface.

Which one to choose is a personal preference.

The mydellmini.com website I linked to above has some good how-to's (such as how to install the "nonfree" Broadcom wireless firmware).
 
Old 11-08-2011, 01:11 PM   #14
kanthas
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Smile

Thank you so much!!!!
 
Old 11-08-2011, 01:31 PM   #15
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Good luck and let me know if you have any questions/problems!
 
  


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