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Old 08-19-2004, 11:11 PM   #1
dactivist
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Switching from Windows XP to Linux, please help!


Hi, I have never installed Linux before, but have used it years ago. I am FED UP with Windows XP, and want to get rid of it and go to Linux. However, I don't know which Linux to get, for our machine, and I don't know if we'll be able to still access all our old .doc, .xls, and various music files under Linux. (I'm guessing I could back them up on cd and then copy them back onto the hard drive once the install is finished... but would they still work?) I'm also concerned that we wouldn't be able to watch DVDs on our computer any more, I read something about that.

Anyway, our machine is a Dell Diminsion Dim 2100 with Celeron processor, 1.1 GHz, 256 MB RAM. 37.2 GB, currently not partitioned.

Please let me know what I can do! Thanks in advance!
 
Old 08-19-2004, 11:19 PM   #2
Tinkster
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Which distro is a matter of taste, have a search on
the forum, there's a ton of resources.

Quote:
and I don't know if we'll be able to still access all our old .doc, .xls, and various music files under Linux. (I'm guessing I could back them up on cd and then copy them back onto the hard drive once the install is finished... but would they still work?)
Depends ... Some formatting commonly gets lost even
though OO is pretty good overall. VBScript macros pose
a problem, too. And password protected files.


Quote:
I'm also concerned that we wouldn't be able to watch DVDs on our computer any more, I read something about that.
Not a problem at all ... I can use my old athlon600
to watch DVD's using Linux no problem, in windows
the box was too slow ...


Cheers,
Tink
 
Old 08-19-2004, 11:34 PM   #3
Jmcatch742
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go here http://www.linuxquestions.org/reviews/index.php?cat=2 and look at them all, since you are new I would especially look into Fedora Core, Mandrake, and Suse. They are excellent distros with tons of support.
 
Old 08-20-2004, 01:10 AM   #4
Ghost_runner
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mandrake plug (prob also fedora) comes with openoffice, which is pretty good at handling xls and doc's from winblows. Only problem i still have is with damn wmv movie files (sigh)
 
Old 08-20-2004, 01:28 AM   #5
synaptical
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ghost_runner
mandrake plug (prob also fedora) comes with openoffice, which is pretty good at handling xls and doc's from winblows. Only problem i still have is with damn wmv movie files (sigh)
hmm, i can play wmv files no problem, in totem, xine, & mplayer. do you have the mplayer codec packs? http://www.mplayerhq.hu/homepage/design7/dload.html not sure, but i think you need those. mplayer tells you where you need to put them when you install mplayer.

>to the original poster: start out with mandrake, it's relatively user friendly. you could also burn a copy of knoppix to run from your CD drive and find out what to expect with your files. it comes with open office and probably anything else you'll need to test your media files.

Last edited by synaptical; 08-20-2004 at 01:34 AM.
 
Old 08-20-2004, 02:32 AM   #6
amosf
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I have mandrake 10 on a celeron 1000 running fine (my 13yo son's PC). That's good ram and certainly enough HDD. You probably have room to dual boot win and linux and have 15-20 gig for linux or whatever.

OpenOffice will open most MS Office files with maybe small glitches at times, but okay. You can run Office with crossoever or wine anyway, so no big deal, but OpenOffice is better IMO.

Most music formats can be read under linux, tho mp3 and ogg are the favorites.

I play DVD's on all the linux boxes here with a dvd drive using totem (or xine). You just need to download libdvdcss (either rpm or whatever depending on your distro) and it will work great. The distros don't supply the css hack for legal reasons as it bypasses the encoding and zones and such I think.
 
Old 08-20-2004, 02:55 AM   #7
amosf
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I should also note that I am using a P3-700 256 meg ram with KDE and 12 virtual desktops open with some sort of app on 9 of them including my mail, firefox, openoffice calc, a few filemanager windows, a couple of notepad type windows, a couple of terms and a couple of config utilites plus Totem playing the opening menu of return of the king dvd...

Once the movie starts running propper it does take most of the cpu, but the machine is still useable. Let me try.... Well I can still post here fine while it plays and it seems to be only using 50% cpu when it's not actually displaying Uses more when I go to that desktop and actually watch it
 
Old 08-20-2004, 08:46 PM   #8
dactivist
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Thanks everyone. It looks like I have more research to do, but at least now I have some idea of where to start. Most of the office files I have are only interesting for the text in them anyway, so I'm not worried about loosing some formatting here and there. Now I just have to back everything up and I can get started!
 
  


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