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Old 08-28-2014, 04:03 PM   #1
SubMariner
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Seeking alternative to Windows7 bloat -- Dual boot or "pendrive".


Search did not match terms -- seeking usb drive or dual boot alternatives to Win7 on an IBM ThinkPad R40 -- need to keep Win7 dammit............. but MUST be able to run something faster in order to work at reasonable pace - takes from 7 to 10 minutes just to boot and settle into "work-mode" - major bummer, not to mention PITA.
 
Old 08-28-2014, 04:18 PM   #2
andrew.sharp3
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Try a mini/live distro such as CDLinux or PCLinuxOS/Zorin, which is useful for basic stuff on a bootable pendrive or CD/DVD. If your computer BIOS allows, that is!
You can resize the windows partition with systemrescuecd or even PCLinuxOS, which both have gparted. Make sure you have an understanding of partitioning and allow many gigabytes of breathing space on the Windows partition (don't squeeze it to death!) so that you can use it in the future. You will need to preserve the hidden partition you will probably find at the start of the hard disk, which is your Windows rescue/reinstall data. My recipe for Linux is 10GB / partition after as much a you like for /home.
Rescue| Windows7 | /home |/
Good luck on your exploration!
 
Old 08-28-2014, 05:47 PM   #3
yancek
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PCLinuxOS with LXDE or the Minime version, Lubuntu and AntiX are lighter options and there are others. Since you don't give any information on the use of the computer it's difficult to be more specific.

You could also use virtual software if you have a lot of RAM.
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:01 PM   #4
SubMariner
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"Try a mini/live distro such as CDLinux or PCLinuxOS/Zorin, which is useful for basic stuff on a bootable pendrive or CD/DVD.

I thought that was what was happening the 3 times I tried Linux Pendrive installation.

" If your computer BIOS allows, that is!"

Apparently a big "if" with Win7 from what today's research shows. Major PITA. Cannot even get INTO the BIOS much less tell it to boot from USB first. Always keeps going into the mire of Win7.

"You can resize the windows partition with systemrescuecd or even PCLinuxOS, which both have gparted. Make sure you have an understanding of partitioning and allow many gigabytes of breathing space on the Windows partition (don't squeeze it to death!) so that you can use it in the future. You will need to preserve the hidden partition you will probably find at the start of the hard disk, which is your Windows rescue/reinstall data. "

Other than the fact that "partitions" exist I have non idea what your comments really mean. I must plead ignorance. But at least ignorance is fairly easily curable with detailed study - not giving up, just must back up further to basics apparently.

"My recipe for Linux is 10GB / partition after as much a you like for /home.
Rescue| Windows7 | /home |/
Good luck on your exploration!"

Thank you - will keep trying for either dual boot, or "pendrive" boot - this Win7 absurdity makes me miss my circular slide-rule days as a Navy Nuke. <-- hint: that remark indicates documentation of top 5% of Learning Curve abilities in the USA academia population according to Navy Propaganda > - but WTF do I know, I volunteered for an underwater career

Last edited by SubMariner; 09-01-2014 at 07:21 AM.
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:10 PM   #5
SubMariner
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yancek View Post
PCLinuxOS with LXDE or the Minime version, Lubuntu and AntiX are lighter options and there are others. Since you don't give any information on the use of the computer it's difficult to be more specific.

You could also use virtual software if you have a lot of RAM.
================= so many options to choose from, and no way yet for me to compare&contrast yet due to my topic ignorance

machine is used for studying mostly - thousands of free academic clips on youtube, and a few movies from time to time - NOT gaming or other frivolity - this is a WORK machine, it will be doing engineering number crunching, not some bleeping cpu-hogging game

3D cad etc would be nice - and simulation of operating machinery -- hydroelectric setups for instance, "bio-gas" design including SO2 and CO Scrubbers etc

combining my nuclear eng background with my biology and HTFF (heat transfer - fluid flow), hydrodynamics, electrical/electronic, power generation and distribution, etc

Sounds rather like I'm designing an off-grid hydroelectric mini-grid? Only because I am doing precisely that
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:19 PM   #6
SubMariner
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Would also be nice to have one of these old machines to automate greenhouse and aquaponics operations -- "technically" pretty basic stuff, "telemetry" vs the modern SCADA and 6-Sigma hype, those sorts of things amount to backing up for an ex Navy Nuke who has never found a civilian employer who passed MY interview of THEM and their proudly-scientifically-ignorant HR Fools who fail to comprehend that submarine duty *IS* "team building" - bloody idiots are running the asylum out here.

The backing up I *NEED* to do now are the Basics-101 stuff we skimmed over quickly in order to go on and cram what amounts to a 6yr MIT degree into a mere 2yrs of 20hours a day school and prototype before going to 30+ and 40+ hours "days" on the boat. I do not need to split atoms anymore - a simple water wheel running 5kw generator, and an anaerobic digester to make methane, and a few other niceties will suffice just fine
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:27 PM   #7
EDDY1
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But you didn't give specs of your computer as yancek requested.
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:36 PM   #8
Firerat
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I don't know the thinkpad r40, but if it shipped with win7 pretty much any linux distrio should run well.

I have a 9year old dell studio 1735, it shipped with vista
I run Debian Jessie on it, works very well.
I did replace the wifi, added larger hdds (it takes 2 x 2.5" )


Windows 7 should 'boot'n'settle' quicker,
Going to list a few things
  • pcdecrapifier # seriously .. web search it
  • adwcleaner # good starting point to find the malware
  • rouge killer # like adwcleaner, use both
  • superantispyware # if the others did job, just tracking cookies

There are many more tools,,

Look at ninite.com , for a disk defragger

If you have some cash.. d7 by foolishIT .. brings the above + many more tools to fix windows xp->8.1
Including tools to report installed software and product keys where available

if your system, and you kbow exactly what you need (have keys etc.)
Reinstall, look at using wsusoffline to install updates...

That is if you *need* windows 7, personally I don't, but you can probably guess I;ve fixed a few.

Bleepingcomputer.com for general 'malware' removal


since you don't mention 'bsod' I assume hardware is ok but worth running memtest86+
Also HDD diag

but yeah, Linux is the answer, , my old 'vista laptop' 'runs' better than some 'later generation; win7 laptops, i'd just like to have usb3, more memory and a two finger scroll touchpad like they have


Boot some livecds and compare, keep in mind that a real install will perform better
For instance a livecd may not have wifi or full graphics as you need to install proprietary drivers/firmware

Most win7 use 3 partitions, 'bootloader' 'C drive' 'recovery'
some may have a 4th 'data' partition
Academic really..
You can boot a linux install, insert USB flash (or external hdd ) drive, EDIT: triple check you install to that drive, triple check you install grub2(lilo for the niche) to the mbr of that drive
/EDIT
you just have to either alter 'bios' boot priority, or stab at 'a key' such as F11, F12 during post to select boot device ('stabbing' is better , consult manual (you may need to set the option in bios)


Many options, just backup/clone. And try a few
Like I said, if it shipped with win7, the major Linux distos should work just fine


Since you have win7,

http://www.easy2boot.com/
boot many Linux 'live' distos off one device, + is you get much better performance

I use that to boot diagnostic tools, xp,vista,win7,8,8.1 install disks, offline AV, and of course Linux live disks

Buried in that site is details on how to get round windows install disks not having 'drivers' for virtual cd .. (basically re-writes mbr to point at a disk image file)


Woffled tooo much

Hope not too much distraction

Last edited by Firerat; 08-28-2014 at 07:45 PM.
 
Old 08-28-2014, 07:52 PM   #9
NGIB
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To get into BIOS you generally have to hit a key as soon as you hit the power button, try ESC, F1, F2 or F10. Most Win 7 boxes are able to boot from USB, you just have to get into the BIOS and change the boot order. I set all of mine to boot from USB first as the default.

It will help if you post the specs of your hardware: processor, RAM, and video system...
 
Old 08-28-2014, 08:28 PM   #10
yancek
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If you have Linux on a 'pen drive' or 'flash drive' that is just an installation medium and you can use it to install. It seems that you are unable to access the BIOS to change boot priority to usb or CD/DVD?? Until you can do that, you won't be able to do an install. You should see a message at the bottom of the screen (usually) telling which key to tap to enter setup so you can boot a flash or CD/DVD.

You can go to the site below and scroll down until you see "Page Hit Ranking" on the right. This will give you a general idea of what the more commonly used Linux distributions are and there are link to their respective sites. You should check the minimum hardware requirements for any distribution that interests you and compare it to your own hardware.

http://distrowatch.com/
 
Old 08-28-2014, 11:15 PM   #11
itsgregman
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Personally I would dual boot.

All of the Win7 machines I've worked on had 3 partitions, 1st a small kind of win boot partition, then an actual win partition, then a recovery partition.
With the newer windows I've always used the built in windows partition manager, with the release of Vista using any other would leave windows unbootable. I've heard that is no longer the case but never tried it as the way I see it is better safe than sorry.
Simply type partition into the win search box to find the partition manager, the option to resize is in a drop down menu. You should free up around half your hard drive.
I would then use parted magic or the partition tool of your choice to get your partitions set up in advance. As others have said most distros provide a partition tool but not all are as user friendly as they could be so it's better to use one you're comfortable with.
I usually set up at least a 2 Gb drive for swap, a 20Gb drive formatted to the filesystem of your choice (I like ext3 but others I'm sure would disagree) for /, and depending on how much space is left, either the rest as /home or divided between /home and a data partition formatted to Fat32 as a shared drive with Windows.
After you've done that just pop in a live cd of your choice, install, and let the distro install its bootloader.
 
Old 08-29-2014, 11:53 AM   #12
SubMariner
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Thumbs down

Quote:
Originally Posted by EDDY1 View Post
But you didn't give specs of your computer as yancek requested.
Yancek wrote: "PCLinuxOS with LXDE or the Minime version, Lubuntu and AntiX are lighter options and there are others. Since you don't give any information on the use of the computer it's difficult to be more specific.

You could also use virtual software if you have a lot of RAM."

OK Eddy - just where did Y "request specs" in his above post? Oh yeah, he did NOT "request specs" - but I will try to accept your comment in good faith anyway. He DID ask about use, and I did answer. As for the acronyms and names and "virtual software" (wetf that is) I'll have to look them up when I have time. - maybe 20-30 hours from now when I get back to office.

Until then please keep your totally unhelpful and snarky comments to yourself.

nertz
 
Old 08-29-2014, 12:15 PM   #13
SubMariner
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-------- Wow - thank you - I will replay in-sequence to the est of my current abilities. - and marked with "---------" for clarity


Quote:
Originally Posted by Firerat View Post
I don't know the thinkpad r40, but if it shipped with win7 pretty much any linux distrio should run well.

------------ shipped with XP-SP1 way back when, bought used with Win7 Ultimate from some now-defucnt used computer shop

I have a 9year old dell studio 1735, it shipped with vista
I run Debian Jessie on it, works very well.
I did replace the wifi, added larger hdds (it takes 2 x 2.5" )

------------ I figured some older machines could still run plenty well enough (my 1985 Coleco ADAM is still safely packed in storage back in all original packaging materials, just for fun)


Windows 7 should 'boot'n'settle' quicker,

------------ it did a bit better this morning, about 10-12 minutes first boot - then shut down and rebooted to Safe Mode, powered down again, then regular cold boot took about three minutes to come up and get online


Going to list a few things
  • pcdecrapifier # seriously .. web search it
  • adwcleaner # good starting point to find the malware
  • rouge killer # like adwcleaner, use both
  • superantispyware # if the others did job, just tracking cookies


------------ thank you very much, will research when back at office


There are many more tools,,

Look at ninite.com , for a disk defragger

If you have some cash.. d7 by foolishIT .. brings the above + many more tools to fix windows xp->8.1
Including tools to report installed software and product keys where available

-------------- not familiar with any of this yet, must study and teach myself

if your system, and you kbow exactly what you need (have keys etc.)

------------ ah, there is part of the rub, I do NOT know what I have or need anywhere near as well as I'd like to

Reinstall, look at using wsusoffline to install updates...

-------------- I have nothing to reinstall with

That is if you *need* windows 7, personally I don't, but you can probably guess I;ve fixed a few.

--------- I'm guessing you may have fixed a few dozen - the only reason I "need" Bleeping Win7 for now is because that is what I got stuck with due to many variables beyond my control at the time - now I can re-rig this crap to my own preferences

Bleepingcomputer.com for general 'malware' removal

------------ now THEM I know a bit! Thanks for reminder - not sure "malware" is the issue, mostly suspect WinBloat


since you don't mention 'bsod' I assume hardware is ok but worth running memtest86+
Also HDD diag

------------ OK, I'll byte, what is "bsod"? - no need to reply on that bit, I'll learn it better by looking it up myself anyway, thank you

but yeah, Linux is the answer, , my old 'vista laptop' 'runs' better than some 'later generation; win7 laptops, i'd just like to have usb3, more memory and a two finger scroll touchpad like they have

------------ I've tried Linux off and on for years, even a store-bought Red Hat version failed me


Boot some livecds and compare, keep in mind that a real install will perform better
For instance a livecd may not have wifi or full graphics as you need to install proprietary drivers/firmware

------ don't have "livecd"s -- want to go straight to USB chip, even Pendrive wants a damn CD/DVD first - not acceptable

Most win7 use 3 partitions, 'bootloader' 'C drive' 'recovery'
some may have a 4th 'data' partition
Academic really..

------------------- and it is academia I apparently need to back-up and crash-course myself in in order to even understand the terminology


You can boot a linux install, insert USB flash (or external hdd ) drive, EDIT: triple check you install to that drive, triple check you install grub2(lilo for the niche) to the mbr of that drive
/EDIT

------------------- more TLA's )three letter acronyms) etc that make no sense to me yet, I have seen "mbr" a few times in last two days - yet never once did they bother to explain WTF MBR WAS >


you just have to either alter 'bios' boot priority, or stab at 'a key' such as F11, F12 during post to select boot device ('stabbing' is better , consult manual (you may need to set the option in bios)

------------- still cannot FIND the BIOS

Many options, just backup/clone. And try a few
Like I said, if it shipped with win7, the major Linux distos should work just fine

------- I'm thinking now just wait until I get back and swap to blank drive if possible, yet if I put in BLANK drive then how would machine even boot? sigh......... I tell ya Folks - splitting atoms was a helluva lot easier than this arbitrary obfuscation of Win vs anything else


---------------- the rest below I shall have to work on digesting later, need to get on the road again in less than an hour -- and you have not "Woffled tooo much" - you covered a great deal of territory in brief shorthand manner which I will work on when I have time - and I thank you very much for your efforts to help me break free of Windows corruption.

I'll just keep at it until I get it. There is more than one way to sink a boat, ya know



Since you have win7,

http://www.easy2boot.com/
boot many Linux 'live' distos off one device, + is you get much better performance

I use that to boot diagnostic tools, xp,vista,win7,8,8.1 install disks, offline AV, and of course Linux live disks

Buried in that site is details on how to get round windows install disks not having 'drivers' for virtual cd .. (basically re-writes mbr to point at a disk image file)


Woffled tooo much

Hope not too much distraction
 
Old 08-29-2014, 01:04 PM   #14
DavidMcCann
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Firstly, do you know this site, for everything to do with Linux and Thinkpads?
http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/Category:R40

Your R40 is never going to be fast, with a Pentium M, but my X31 works well: that's what I use Salix on. To get at the BIOS, you need a very quick press of the blue "access IBM" button when you switch it on.

For understanding partitions, and how to set them up, see this tutorial:
http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/gparted.html
You probably have two (or perhaps three) partitions: Windows and its backup. It would be a good idea to create three for Linux: root, home, and swap. As BIOS only allows four, you do that by creating an extended partition and putting the three Linux partitions inside it. All that is explained in the tutorial.

As I said, Salix works well and is a very reliable distro. If you are going to put any confidential information on the machine, you need a distro that offers a chance to encrypt during installation: for your computer, ZevenOS would be suitable.

As a guide to available Linux software, see here
http://linuxappfinder.com/
 
Old 08-29-2014, 01:10 PM   #15
EDDY1
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Looking here you're are seeking help
Quote:
seeking usb drive or dual boot alternatives
without knowing what you are working with we can guess what your machine is capable of.

As far as my adding any snarky remarks you don't have to worry about that.

Last edited by EDDY1; 08-29-2014 at 06:49 PM.
 
  


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