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Old 06-06-2009, 06:35 PM   #1
DisasterArea
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Making the switch to become more familiar with linux, any suggestions?


Hey all,

I've been meaning to switch from windows to linux for some time and have just never gotten around to it. After a recent system-crashing virus, I decided that it was now time to undertake this project and move away from windows for good.

Aside from just not wanting to deal with windows anymore, my main motivation for switching to linux is to be more in control of my system and to achieve a much better knowledge of operating systems and computers in general.

My question is, with this desire in mind, where would be a good starting point and/or which distro would be recommended? I have recently been looking into gentoo because of its high level of customization and the fact that it essentially forces you to know linux inside and out. I consider myself to be quite competent when it comes to dealing with computers and have a lot of prior exposure to using linux, mostly through using it in all my CSCI classes (we use fedora). However, I don't really have any knowledge of the inner workings of operating systems. Obviously, this is the sort of knowledge I want to gain by using linux, but I am wondering if gentoo would have too high of a learning curve for a first-time linux installation? The gentoo handbook looked a little intimidating but possibly manageable from the little I've skimmed through it.

I don't really care too much about timeliness or ease of use. I sort of view this as a learning project and something I will just sort of work whenever I have spare time. My ultimate goal is to have a system that is fully customized to my liking and where I fully understand what all is going on, and to continuously gain more working knowledge of linux and computers along the way. That is why I thought gentoo would be a good distro to use for my purposes. Does this sound like a good approach to take, or does anyone have any other suggestions/feedback?
 
Old 06-06-2009, 06:43 PM   #2
NeddySeagoon
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DisasterArea,

Many users have installed Gentoo as their first Linux distro. You appear to be going into it for the right reasons and with the right attitude to make a success of it.

Most Gentoo users have used other distros and have found them lacking in one way or another.

Read the gentoo handbook from end to end before you start and understand what you do as you go, that way you won't have any problems.

Switching away from Windows is a huge learning curve. I recommend a Windows/Linux dual boot system, or even triple boot. You are used to Fedora, so install Windows and Fedora and leave some space to add Gentoo.
That way you are under no pressure of time to get Gentoo going so you can use it.

If you will do your Gentoo install on an otherwise spare system, just go for it.
 
Old 06-06-2009, 06:45 PM   #3
Uncle_Theodore
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Well, Gentoo might be a bit too much for a beginner. If you're technically inclined, you might want to try Slackware or Arch. These distros are about as fast as Gentoo, but you can take your time getting used to the Linux way...
If you're not technically inclined, then, of course, Ubuntu is just what you need...

Last edited by Uncle_Theodore; 06-06-2009 at 06:47 PM.
 
Old 06-06-2009, 06:56 PM   #4
tcervinsky
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Well, I'm a new Linux user... and I'm not really a user yet. I'm trying because I can't afford to buy a new copy of Windows.

So far I feel like I'm stepping back into the dark ages- and nothing works. So much incompatibility and looking around for programs trying to make things work.

I really believe you have to be a professional programmer (or desire to be) in order to really understand it. But you say you already use Linux so it might come really easy to you. I'm an old man and it's difficult for me to understand what I'm doing- and why I've got to open the terminal any time I need to change or install anything.

I could rant on and on but I'm only a week with Ubuntu. Not impressed.
 
Old 06-06-2009, 08:35 PM   #5
marvinudy
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tcervinsky,


I'm also an 'old-67' user of Linux and it took a little time and effort to get a good 'feel' for the operating system. I do remember all the aggravation with win 3.1 and subsequent Windows systems and believe Linux is a great alternate to Windows.

I would call myself a 'distro junkie' and learn a lot of my lessons the 'hard way'.
Once you adapt to Linux you probably will never go back.

Just my opinion.

best reagards,

marvinudy
 
Old 06-06-2009, 10:17 PM   #6
DragonSlayer48DX
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Personally, judging from everything you've told us, I believe Gentoo is an excellent choice for your learning project. Great 'customizable' distro, too.

Good luck!
 
Old 06-08-2009, 04:36 PM   #7
dv502
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.......

Last edited by dv502; 06-08-2009 at 04:48 PM.
 
Old 06-08-2009, 04:47 PM   #8
jamescondron
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@dv502 Thats beginning to look like a dfault message you paste in now

@OP:
If you're looking at starting, gentoo is a good choice if you're technically minded- you'll need good comprehension skills to make up for a lack of linux knowledge, so as NeddySeagoon said, read the manual inside out first. If it doesn't click, try something else, remember- whatever you end up with, you're going to have to do the same thing everyone does, such as wireless drivers, sound, MP3 stuff etc., so make sure you're ready for that.

Best advice is to burn a couple of LiveDVDs and play about, see which clicks for you. Since these will be running on RAMDISK, you can play with whatever you want with no fear, try installing too, get your eye in, they'll go as soon as you turn your computer off anyway.
 
Old 06-08-2009, 04:54 PM   #9
dv502
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@jamescondron

I didn't want to repeat what I said on the other post here again. Most likely he will see it...

Anyway, a good reply you gave him. Lets hope this will fix the apt-get errors he's getting.

- Cheers

Last edited by dv502; 06-08-2009 at 04:59 PM.
 
Old 06-08-2009, 04:56 PM   #10
jamescondron
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no worries then
 
Old 06-08-2009, 05:03 PM   #11
DragonSlayer48DX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dv502 View Post
.......
Why did you delete your post?? I, too, have made the same suggestion many times on different subforums. We all have. Just because another seasoned member has seen it more than once doesn't invalidate it for the OP.

Cheers
 
Old 06-08-2009, 05:05 PM   #12
jamescondron
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@dv502: Sorry, it wasn't meant to be a criticism, it was meant to be taken tongue in cheek, I didn't mean you shouldn't do it, and should get rid of it
 
Old 06-08-2009, 05:23 PM   #13
DragonSlayer48DX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamescondron View Post
@dv502: Sorry, it wasn't meant to be a criticism, it was meant to be taken tongue in cheek
For some odd reason, we Americans don't always 'get' English, British, or UK humor. Done that myself earlier on-- with a Mod, no less!

Cheers
 
Old 06-08-2009, 05:24 PM   #14
dv502
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@ dragonslayer48dx and jamescondron

I removed it because it didn't apply to the thread topic. It was merely a reply to tcervinsky about trying another distro.

Believe me, I had done this many times before. I copy and paste what I said in another thread to a new thread.

For example, when newbies asked "Which distro is best for me?" I copy and paste what I said in another post to save tying or I provide a link to the thread. Nothing to be concern about...


Last edited by dv502; 06-08-2009 at 05:45 PM.
 
  


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