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Old 02-03-2015, 02:26 PM   #1
dunnery
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Swapping distros


Hey guys, what's the best way to try out distros? Do I completely reinstall each time I want to change a distro and if so, would nt that wipe all my data? Or does my personal data , text files etc etc stay on the system and only the distro changes?

My Linux computer comes today and it has Ubuntu installed which I believe is a very popular and stable system but I really want to check out the so evolve distro because it looks fantastic and the reviews were very favorable. BUT I was warned on this forum not to get involved with beta distros until I know what I'm doing.

Does swapping distros erase all data ?
 
Old 02-03-2015, 02:33 PM   #2
jailbait
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunnery View Post
Hey guys, what's the best way to try out distros?
Set up several partitions and install each new distribution as a dual boot. Do not wipe out an old distribution until you have the latest distribution working. Put your data on a partition where it can be shared between several distributions and never wipe out your data.

Back everything up daily and keep backups at least three deep.

----------------------
Steve Stites

Last edited by jailbait; 02-03-2015 at 02:35 PM.
 
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Old 02-03-2015, 02:42 PM   #3
suicidaleggroll
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Or just use VMs to try other other distros.
 
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Old 02-03-2015, 02:43 PM   #4
273
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I would suggest setting up a partition for anything you want to keep (I call it "data" but the name is not relevant) though, of course, you should be backing up all important data anyhow.
Then you can either install dual-boot or just one at once.
It is possible to share a /home/ directory (using a partition for it) between distributions but I would recommend you don't do it as there can be problems with version conflicts.
 
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Old 02-03-2015, 02:48 PM   #5
salasi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunnery View Post

Does swapping distros erase all data ?
Well, it needn't, if you do it right. The VM idea, mentioned earlier, is one sensible way forward, another is to try out live CDs/DVDs until you think a distro is a 'keeper', and another is to keep a partition for all your 'user data' and let all distros that you install share it (if you have a hierarchy whereby all your personal data is stored in something like /home/username/data or /home/username/documents, if you prefer, then, if /home/username/whatever is on a separate partition, that can be mounted on each individual distribution, when you log in).

edit:
the post by 273 covers the same ground as mine, but hadn't seen that when I started typing, otherwise I wouldn't have bothered...

Last edited by salasi; 02-03-2015 at 02:50 PM.
 
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Old 02-03-2015, 03:47 PM   #6
Fritz_Monroe
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Originally Posted by 273 View Post
I would suggest setting up a partition for anything you want to keep (I
It is possible to share a /home/ directory (using a partition for it) between distributions but I would recommend you don't do it as there can be problems with version conflicts.
Great suggestions already. I'll second this one. I've done this in the past when I was pretty new to Linux. I thought that home was home. But different distros have different versions of apps. Things are handled differently between distros. It's a great idea to make another partition to hold your data.
 
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Old 02-03-2015, 04:39 PM   #7
Head_on_a_Stick
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Use the live version.
 
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