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Old 04-28-2006, 09:02 AM   #1
mEo
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Question What should I use? More specific than normal


Hello!

I have decided to make the leap from windows to linux, an OS I know zilch about, but I really like the look of, and I'm 100% behind any free / opensource projects.

Problem is, I don't know if I can support it and if linux will meet the needs of my laptop.

I currently use Windows XP Home. My laptop specs can be found on laptopshop co uk and search for "TOSHIBA A50 112 RF2331", except I have a 60GB hard drive and 1gig of ram.

I have a friend who recommended using Suse 10. I like the look of Suse, it looks like a really smooth and slick OS. I also have Suse 10 burnt onto disks, but I'm not sure if its the latest, and if it matters.

I have a Sony PSP, which I want to a) be able to connect via USB b) have some kind of video transfer / convertor for. I also have a Palm T3, which doesn't have to connect to my laptop (I have another computer) but it would be nice to know if it can.

I need to be able to download files off the net in ZIP and RAR format, so is there software that can do that

I have a wireless connection to a Linksys WRT54G using a WEP key, so I need to be able to support that.

I would like to be able to connect to MSN. I've heard that Gaim supports this, and Google Talk, which I would also like to be able to connect to. Preferably, I would like to be able to use the Google Talk client using WINE but I've read that this may not be possible, no biggie.

I want an email client, easy. What is the best one to use?

So these are the questions I'm asking:
  1. What OS should I use? (Ie, Suse, Debian Etc). This is based on the requirements and ability of my laptop and myself
  2. If Suse, what theme or something should I use, I don't know the right word. The choices included, Gnome and something else. What one is best.

And could people please answer and talk about various other points i've written here. Please only write real answers, not just a post agreeing with another person, unless you back it up I want the best hehe :P
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:13 AM   #2
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mEo
[*]If Suse, what theme or something should I use, I don't know the right word. The choices included, Gnome and something else. What one is best.[/LIST]
The word you are looking for is Desktop environment.
It is probably Gnome and KDE.
No one is the best. They are different. The only difference are cosmetic (desktop environment purposes are cosmetic only). It is a matter of taste. Try them both. Choose for yourself. If you want us to choose for you, you won't like the choice, but if that is really what you want, pick Gnome (I made that choice for you randomly with a coin).

Last edited by Agrouf; 04-28-2006 at 09:18 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:15 AM   #3
mEo
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Is it easy to choose between? Also, what about some of the other questions! I want to reformat asap
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:20 AM   #4
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mEo
[*]What OS should I use? (Ie, Suse, Debian Etc). This is based on the requirements and ability of my laptop and myself
You can customize any (mostly, that is to say 99.99%) linux OS to suit your needs. Pick one from www.distrowatch.com
If you want me to choose one for you, I choose pclinuxos (again random choice).
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:22 AM   #5
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mEo
Is it easy to choose between?
It depends.
Some people fall in love with one or the other straight. Some other people can't choose. That is my case. I have both install (and more than those 2) and choose on a daily basis, based on my mood.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:26 AM   #6
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mEo
I would like to be able to connect to MSN. I've heard that Gaim supports this, and Google Talk, which I would also like to be able to connect to. Preferably, I would like to be able to use the Google Talk client using WINE but I've read that this may not be possible, no biggie.
I don't know what google talk is.
almost all distros support gaim (I mean 99.999%)
msn clients are kopete (better for kde), amsn, gaim (better for gnome), wine msn 6.2 or 7.0 and more.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:28 AM   #7
farslayer
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http://www.linux-on-laptops.com/toshiba.html - great resource, you can look to see how-to's written by other people that have your laptop and what distros they have installed, what problems they ran into.. Similar model laptops may have the same hardware as yours so just because you have an A50 the A45 or A55 how-to's may shed some light as well..

http://www.ax5.com/laptops/toshiba_a50_110




If you have a friend that recommends Suse and he will be helping you as you learn, It may be a good idea for you to start out using Suse. If you install a distro he is not familiar with it would be more difficult for him to provide you assistance. Later on whan you learn more and feel like being adventurous you can take your new found knowledge and try out other Distros you are interested in. Just a recomendation when you have some tech support that close at hand.


Linux can handle zip and rar formats just fine if you install the appropriate programs. if oyu are using rar you already know where to obtain that one.. sorry rar for Linux is command line only no GUI.

As long as you get your wireless card working supporting WEP shouldn't be an issue.

GAIM rocks.. nice client. I like it.

For mail I prefere Thunderbird, I run it on Windows and Linux, and with the use of hte enigmail extension and GPG you can sign and encrypt your emails very easily. Evolution is an other option if you want something that looks a lot like Outlook.

Back to the OS.. I recommend Suse since you have someone ther that apparenty is already familiar with it, alternately look a tthe how-to's on linux-on-laptops to see what other people have had the most success with for your laptop.

Desktops and Window managers.... Gnome, KDE, XFCE, Wimdowmaker, FVWM, FLuxbox, Blackbox, oh so many choices.. the neat part about linux is you are not confined to a single program or way of doing things.. you should be able to install multiple desktops, and choose which you want to use at login time (at least I can in Debian so why would Suse be any different.. ) Try a bunch of different desktop environments until you find the one that you really like.. Dnn't just be a lemming and run KDE or Gnome because someone tells you to, you may find you prefer fluxbox, beacuse it's small lightweight and extremely fast..
http://www.desktoplinux.com/director..._environments/

Free Desktop Screenshot Archive.. http://www.lynucs.org/index.php?p=apps so you can see what they may look like.

Last edited by farslayer; 04-28-2006 at 09:30 AM.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:28 AM   #8
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mEo
I have a Sony PSP, which I want to a) be able to connect via USB b) have some kind of video transfer / convertor for. I also have a Palm T3, which doesn't have to connect to my laptop (I have another computer) but it would be nice to know if it can.
I suppose your PSP is just like an USB key (interface point of view). Almost all distros (99%) support USB keys.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:31 AM   #9
truthfatal
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Choosing a distro is a very personal thing -- what you love about one particular Distribution, I and others may hate. I strongly suggest trying several. You may as well start with SuSE, since you've already got a copy, and you have a friend who recomends it (Presumably that recomendation was based on experience, and that presumed experience may translate into easy access to help if you have problems.).

To get an idea about your preference for different Desktop Environments, try a few "LiveCDs". for example, Ubuntus LiveCD wile give you a taste of the Gnome desktop, Knoppix will give you a taste of KDEs desktop, and Damn Small Linux will give you a taste of something altogether different (I think it's FluxBox, but I don't remember off hand.) Choosing your Desktop or Window Manager is just as -- if not more in some cases -- personal as choosing your distro.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:32 AM   #10
Agrouf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farslayer
Linux can handle zip and rar formats just fine if you install the appropriate programs. if oyu are using rar you already know where to obtain that one.. sorry rar for Linux is command line only no GUI.
Are you sure about it. I think Konqueror (for KDE) handles rar on the GUI and so does nautilus (common on Gnome), or am I wrong?
 
Old 04-28-2006, 09:53 AM   #11
mEo
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Sorry what's the desktop environment in linux, I don't understand this. isn't that kind of thing done by the... the... distributions (turning linux :P)?

What's a livecd, i've never heard of this before. What does it do?
 
Old 04-28-2006, 10:02 AM   #12
Samoth
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try SuSE. It is very nice for a newbie, and you have a friend who uses it so he can support you.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 10:04 AM   #13
mEo
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Also,

I found this site:
http://www.linux-noob.com/screenshots/suse/10/

I would like my desktop to look like this one:
http://www.linux-noob.com/screenshot...creenshot.html

Which one is that?
 
Old 04-28-2006, 10:16 AM   #14
brainiac
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A live CD is a good choice to try out. You put it in the CD drawer and reboot your machine and it will take you into a fully functioning "Linux" environment. It will be a little slow as it is running off the CD so don't judge it by it's speed. Judge it by it's look, feel, user friendlyness, and ability, etc. The above mentioned will let you try Gnome, Knoppix, and other desktops. They basically are the point and click what you see on screen user "environment". Then you can decide which "desktop" you like the most. Good Luck.
 
Old 04-28-2006, 10:20 AM   #15
farslayer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Agrouf
Are you sure about it. I think Konqueror (for KDE) handles rar on the GUI and so does nautilus (common on Gnome), or am I wrong?

rar is not free.. If there are implemnentation in Konqueror and nautilus I was unaware of them.. maybe I'm just too attached to the command line..
 
  


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