LinuxQuestions.org
Share your knowledge at the LQ Wiki.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices


Reply
  Search this Thread
Old 12-03-2007, 08:39 PM   #1
youcrew
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Dec 2007
Posts: 2

Rep: Reputation: 0
I want To Switch from windows


I am looking seriously about switching to Linux from windows. I am just tired of haveing to reinstall windows ever 3-4 months because its so bogged down. I know that linux has most of the programs that are needed: office, Adobe products, messengers ect. But I do have a fews concerns. I currently i have an external HD with over 300Gigs of info on it. Most of it is music in mp3 format so here is my questions:

1. Does linux play mp3 or just ogg
2. Does linux play DivX
3. Does Linux have performance problems
4. Is if diffucult to stay up to date with distros
5. How dependent is linux on command lines, will i be able to operate lunix without knowing extensive commands?
6. I have heard of 'windows emulator' is this true and does it allow one to play games?
7. I installes Fendor once for fun on my laptop, everything worked, but will it work on all laptops?

If you have any other general adivice or information i need to know please offer it up. and Suggestions on a solids SIMPLE FULL FEATURED beginners GUI distro.
 
Old 12-03-2007, 09:36 PM   #2
pixellany
LQ Veteran
 
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Annapolis, MD
Distribution: Arch/XFCE
Posts: 17,802

Rep: Reputation: 738Reputation: 738Reputation: 738Reputation: 738Reputation: 738Reputation: 738Reputation: 738
I can't answer all the detailed questions but--in general--you can do most everything in Linux. If you are very much used to Windows or Mac, there may be a learning curve.

3. performance problems?? What do you mean?---eg speed, crash rate...Overall, better than Windows, but a few things are slower.

4. stay up with your distro of choice: easy All distros?--look at distrowatch and form your own opinion.

5. You can go a long way without the command line, but many things are faster and easier when you use it.

6. WINE is the free version and CrossOver is the commercial port of WINE. Many things work, some don't.

7. There are several distros that will work well on just about any laptop.

The best advice is to dive in and get start discovering. the top distros now all offer liveCDs and installation has never been easier. Grab anything in the top 5 at distrowatch and go for it. See also the "getting started" link below.
 
Old 12-03-2007, 09:37 PM   #3
AceofSpades19
Senior Member
 
Registered: Feb 2007
Location: Chilliwack,BC.Canada
Distribution: Slackware64 -current
Posts: 2,079

Rep: Reputation: 58
Linux can play mp3 files with the proper codecs installed, as well as DivX I belive
3. no, linux does not have any performance problems, usually, speed is usually dependent upon the distro
4. no, most distros have a different version out every 6 months or more
5. most newbie friendly distros are not dependent upon commands, its a good idea to learn them though
6. WINE is Not an Emulator, its an open-source implemantion of the windows api, it can run some games, not all
7. never heard of Fendor
see my sig for newbie friendly distros
 
Old 12-03-2007, 10:21 PM   #4
explodingzebras
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2007
Location: UK
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 63

Rep: Reputation: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
I am looking seriously about switching to Linux from windows. I am just tired of haveing to reinstall windows ever 3-4 months because its so bogged down. I know that linux has most of the programs that are needed: office, Adobe products, messengers ect. But I do have a fews concerns. I currently i have an external HD with over 300Gigs of info on it. Most of it is music in mp3 format so here is my questions:

1. Does linux play mp3 or just ogg
2. Does linux play DivX
3. Does Linux have performance problems
4. Is if diffucult to stay up to date with distros
5. How dependent is linux on command lines, will i be able to operate lunix without knowing extensive commands?
6. I have heard of 'windows emulator' is this true and does it allow one to play games?
7. I installes Fendor once for fun on my laptop, everything worked, but will it work on all laptops?

If you have any other general adivice or information i need to know please offer it up. and Suggestions on a solids SIMPLE FULL FEATURED beginners GUI distro.
when it comes to user friendly distros, try out Ubuntu 7.10 first, as its easy to install, it downloads missing audio and video codecs when you need them.

I dual boot WinXP and Ubuntu, i only very occasionally boot into windows to play one or two games, but i can't remember the last time, i don't play many games. i play Unreal Tournament on linux.

I use Wine to run mp3gain and mp3tag (they work well) i did use VMWARE to for windows aswell, now i occasionally use it for testing purposes.

Performance wise i find its faster than windows at doing most things.

What laptop do you have? Most modern machines run linux fine, i think, i had a lot of trouble running it on my ancient p2 233mhz toshiba tecra as the crappy onboard yamaha sound and horid onboard graphics are tricky to get to work properly.
 
Old 12-03-2007, 10:56 PM   #5
[KIA]aze
Member
 
Registered: Jun 2006
Distribution: Debian, Ubuntu, Windows XP
Posts: 146

Rep: Reputation: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
1. Does linux play mp3 or just ogg
I don't remember ever having real problems with that. Depending on the distro, maybe you'll have to install some codecs package, but it shouldn't be a problem. Just use google or ask here in case it doesn't work out of the box.
Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
2. Does linux play DivX
Also never had a problem with that. Just as before, out of the box support might depend on the distro, but in most cases, all you need is to install one package.
Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
3. Does Linux have performance problems
No, no performance problems. If you have an old PC, use distros adapted to it of course like Xubuntu, Puppy Linux, Damn Small Linux or other. Or just disable desktop effects on modern distros.
[edit]If you choose Ubuntu Gutsy and it's slow, disable tracker. [/edit]


But there are problems with some hardware. You may not be able to use suspend/hibernate for example. And there may be problems with your graphic card (especially if you have ATI). Those problems may be solved, but it might not be easy for a newbie.
USB drives are not a problem, but Webcams, printers, etc can be a problem.
Before you buy hardware, make sure it's compatible with GNU/Linux by asking on forums or using google.

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
4. Is it difficult to stay up to date with distros
No, not really. Ubuntu and Debian have an update manager just like in Windows, which allows you to keep your software up to date and also does distribution upgrading.
However, be aware of the fact that upgrades (software or distro) may make your system unusable.
But usually, it's possible to make it usable again by just downgrading the faulty package. The problem is knowing which it is.

That's why I would already recommend two things:
1)Make a separate /home partition, so you can reinstall the OS (or another one) without loosing your data and personal preferences (program settings are usually stored in /home).
2)If you have important work to do, don't upgrade!

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
5. How dependent is linux on command lines, will I be able to operate lunix without knowing extensive commands?
It's usable without command-line if you only do simple things. Otherwise, you'll find yourself having to use the command-line pretty soon.
I don't think you can avoid it. But don't worry, it's pretty easy.
...and very powerful.
But also dangerous!

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
6. I have heard of 'windows emulator' is this true and does it allow one to play games?
You probably heard about WINE (=Wine Is Not an Emulator), which is a DirectX compatibility layer.
You can see what runs on it here: http://appdb.winehq.org/
For Cedega: http://games.cedega.com/gamesdb/
Another one: http://www.codeweavers.com/products/

People use to say that GNU/Linux is not good for gaming.
I somewhat disagree. It's true that if you are a hardcore gamer, it's not good because you won't be able to play most new games.
But if you are a casual gamer or somebody that doesn't mind playing older games, there are plenty of games to play with:
-Wine: most older games work on it and especially World of Warcraft, Warcraft 3 and Starcraft.
-DosBox: a DOS emulator -> all DOS games
-ZSNES: an SNES emulator -> all SNES games
-PSX/PCSX/ePSXe: Playstation emulators -> Playstation games
(of course console ROMs are just as illegal as in Windows... ^^')
-SCUMMVM: An adventure game engine allowing you to play classics like Sam and Max, Monkey Island, Broken Sword, etc (and it's legal if you own the CD!)
-Adventure Game Studio: Lots of adventure games. The editor doesn't work on GNU/Linux yet, but the games can run on it.

And lots of native games too! Here's a list of links to find them:
http://linux.strangegamer.com/index....x_Gaming_Sites

Happy Penguin is the biggest reference site.

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
7. I installes Fendor once for fun on my laptop, everything worked, but will it work on all laptops?
I don't know. Why do you need it to work on all laptops if it works on yours?

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
If you have any other general adivice or information i need to know please offer it up.
1)Start with dual-boot, i.e. Windows and GNU/Linux on the same PC.
GNU/Linux only needs 5GB or less (but I recommend at least 10GB).
2)Use a separate /home partition, so you can easily switch distros or reinstall.

Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
and Suggestions on a solid SIMPLE FULL FEATURED beginners GUI distro.
Ubuntu (the one I use)
Fedora
Mandriva
Sabayon? (haven't tried it, but it looks nice)
...

What do you mean by full featured? What features do you need?

There are also different desktop environments available in GNU/Linux, the main ones being KDE and Gnome.
Gnome is simple.
KDE offers lots of configuration options.

The good news is you can try them both with the same distro. (it works on Ubuntu at least)

Last edited by [KIA]aze; 12-04-2007 at 12:04 AM.
 
Old 12-03-2007, 11:04 PM   #6
chrism01
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney
Distribution: Centos 6.8, Centos 5.10
Posts: 17,240

Rep: Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324Reputation: 2324
You may want to read this, a compare/contrast MS/Linux article: http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm
Generally speaking, if you stick to the distros mentioned above eg Fedora, X/K/Ubuntu etc you shopuld find it stable, quick and auto-updating, with the ability to manage eg add/remove SW from the GUI.
The cmd line is optional, but gives you more power/control. Depends if you just want to surf/email etc or actually 'compute' eg program.
If you supply a HW list of your machine, we may be able to advise in more detail.
See also: http://wiki.linuxquestions.org/wiki/...ndows_software
HTH
 
Old 12-03-2007, 11:52 PM   #7
wraithe
Member
 
Registered: Feb 2006
Location: Australia
Distribution: Linux... :-)
Posts: 216
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 31
i have most of my distro's set for using windows codecs, you may want to check with our local legal requirements there tho...
i was watching a movie last night on my laptop with suse sled 10, most ppl would have used windows for that but was easy to set up with win codecs, and most distro's have video app's that recognise them...there are lots of tutorials around about how to do that...
music, hmm, havent found anything i cant play but then again the codecs are the requirement....

linux is quite stable compared to win but you can kill it when trying things that arnt recommended...
i did find that running a cpu intensive app while watching a movie is not really recommended...
 
Old 12-04-2007, 12:23 AM   #8
AceofSpades19
Senior Member
 
Registered: Feb 2007
Location: Chilliwack,BC.Canada
Distribution: Slackware64 -current
Posts: 2,079

Rep: Reputation: 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by [KIA]aze View Post
It's usable without command-line if you only do simple things. Otherwise, you'll find yourself having to use the command-line pretty soon.
I don't think you can avoid it. But don't worry, it's pretty easy.
If you use a newbie friendly distro, you almost never have to use the command-line, when I used ubuntu for example, I never had to use the command-line
 
Old 12-04-2007, 12:31 AM   #9
youcrew
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Dec 2007
Posts: 2

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Thank you guys. I am sorry about my bad spelling in my first post, I was heading out to class. The reason I am asked about the laptop issue is because I am going to buy an new one within the next few months. And for to clear things up I was meaning Fedora. You helped me a lot. Helped me seal the deal.

I have been looking to use Ubuntu, openSUSE or Mandriva.
I do have one more question: Can I access my external with Lunix if its a partitioned for windows.

Last edited by youcrew; 12-04-2007 at 12:55 AM.
 
Old 12-04-2007, 01:16 AM   #10
[KIA]aze
Member
 
Registered: Jun 2006
Distribution: Debian, Ubuntu, Windows XP
Posts: 146

Rep: Reputation: 16
Yes.
If it's formatted in NTFS, you'll just need to install NTFS-3g.

In Ubuntu:
Code:
sudo apt-get install ntfs-3g ntfs-config
Or search and install with synaptic if you want to avoid the command-line.

Run ntfs-config for easy configuration.

Last edited by [KIA]aze; 12-04-2007 at 01:18 AM.
 
Old 12-07-2007, 06:28 PM   #11
derxob
Member
 
Registered: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles, California
Distribution: Slackware, Ubuntu
Posts: 68

Rep: Reputation: 15
You also may want to check out this article on What to do before switching from Windows to Linux, the resources provided may help your transition go smoothly.

Good luck!
 
Old 12-07-2007, 06:36 PM   #12
masonm
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2003
Location: Following the white rabbit
Distribution: Solus
Posts: 2,254

Rep: Reputation: 47
You should also read this http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm
 
Old 12-07-2007, 08:04 PM   #13
oskar
Senior Member
 
Registered: Feb 2006
Location: Austria
Distribution: Ubuntu 12.10
Posts: 1,142

Rep: Reputation: 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by youcrew View Post
I have been looking to use Ubuntu, openSUSE or Mandriva.
I do have one more question: Can I access my external with Lunix if its a partitioned for windows.
Yes, it takes quite a bit of cpu power, but it works almost as fast as with windows, and it's safe enough... when you hear people talking about "might loose data..." They are talking about the ntfs kernel module - that you really shouldn't use.

Some distros have graphical tools to mount ntfs drives. For Ubuntu 7.10 for example:
http://www.ubuntugeek.com/widows-ntf...tu-feisty.html

Last edited by oskar; 12-07-2007 at 08:09 PM.
 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
windows, I want to switch to linux rob1983 Linux - Newbie 35 11-26-2006 08:48 AM
Can't switch back to Windows jcthei Linux - Software 4 02-14-2006 08:38 AM
MC++ Switch Between Forms (windows) firefly2442 Programming 6 04-14-2005 12:01 PM
HOw to switch from windows to linux without rebooting? dpbatagoda Linux - Newbie 16 12-20-2003 01:08 PM
Switch out of WineX windows gbrad Linux - Software 1 04-30-2003 10:37 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:49 AM.

Main Menu
Advertisement
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration