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-   -   I need all of your help converting from MS to Linux! (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/linux-software-2/i-need-all-of-your-help-converting-from-ms-to-linux-159362/)

h0mersimps0n 03-18-2004 08:00 AM

I need all of your help converting from MS to Linux!
 
hi, my name is H0mer, I've been a microsoftaholic for 10 years now and finally am past my denial stage. There were days when I had thoughts all day long that MS software *gulp* was good to have around <ashamed>...

A little history- I have actually been a closet linux supporter for years that hasn't turned FROM the dark side for one, very stupid reason- I enjoy first person shooters and nearly all the one's I love only work on windows *gasp*. So, one day about 2 years ago I said to myself "ok, I'll put linux on my laptop then, because I don't play games on that right?" So I did install mandrake or something like that and in the middle of writing my paper I incorrectly saved my 6 page neuroscience final paper and lost it. I let that extremely terrifying experience scare me away from even attempting linux on my desktop systems and removed it from my laptop to stick to what I knew.

ANYWAY, I am mid-semester medical school and can not stand the spyware infections, trojan's and e-mail virus's on my LAPTOP (which I use in class EVERY DAY) anymore. All my efforts to rid my computer of py.exe and associates have failed so I guess it's time to scrap everything and move on to something better.

The problem being mid-semester is that time is EXTREMELY sparse. I'm looking for a forum of extremely intelligent, helpful people who are willing to work with a fairly knowledgable MS sufferer.

Let's start with the first big question and go from there:

1.) which LINUX OS would get nearly all of my laptop hardware working with the least stress. Obviously video, ethernet/wireless are the most important.

MY LAPTOP HARDWARE:

Computer Model Latitude D600
BIOS Vendor Dell Computer Corporation
BIOS Version A06
BIOS Date 08-19-03
Memory Slot 1 Description [DIMM_A]: 256Mb
Memory Slot 2 Description [DIMM_B]: 256Mb

Network Card = Adapters Broadcom 570x Gigabit Integrated Controller - Packet Scheduler Miniport
Dell TrueMobile 1300 WLAN Mini-PCI Card - Packet Scheduler Miniport

DVD/CD-ROM Drives SAMSUNG CDRW/DVD SN-324B
Disk Drives HITACHI_DK23EB-40 37.26Gb
Display Adapters MOBILITY RADEON 9000 32Mb
IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers Intel(R) 82801DBM Ultra ATA Storage Controller - 24CA
Primary IDE Channel
Secondary IDE Channel
Keyboards Standard 101/102-Key or Microsoft Natural PS/2 Keyboard
Mice and Other Pointing Devices USB Human Interface Device
Alps Touch Pad
Monitors Default Monitor - (Standard monitor types)
Sound Devices SigmaTel C-Major Audio
USB Controllers Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C2
Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C4
Intel(R) 82801DB/DBM USB Universal Host Controller - 24C7
Intel(r) 82801DB/DBM USB 2.0 Enhanced Host Controller - 24CD

FINALLY A very deep thank you to anyone who is willing to take me under their wing, I'm going to continue doing research but as it looks right now I'll be using Mandrake dual boot with windows on this laptop. When I get files transferred and working ok in LINUX then I'll wipe out the windows partition.

P.S. I am well versed in partitions, formatting and setting that stuff up for install. I have many tools and loaders to get me going

Thanks again everyone!

snacky 03-18-2004 08:05 AM

I have no idea if there are issues with any of that hardware, but in about the time it would take someone to research it, you could try out Mepis (download mirrors) or Knoppix (download). Personally I wouldn't look down on you if you reboot to play certain FPS but on the other hand it might not be a good idea to switch to Linux at all if you mind horribly to have to learn a bunch of new stuff.

h0mersimps0n 03-18-2004 08:18 AM

Thanks Snacky, doing some research on KNOPPIX because I had a friend of mine suggest strongly I start there too...

I know the learning curve for linux is really steep but if you guys can start pointing me to good things to read to learn and test that would be super.

What I might do is install virtual PC on my desktop and play around with linux for a week or two before putting it on my laptop. We'll see, that's a distant thought, if you all think I can get thise stuff up and running soon then I'd forgo practice/testing.

Aside from hardware, I need a free program that will run MS powerpoint's because that's where all of our lectures come as.

Thanks again

snacky 03-18-2004 08:27 AM

OpenOffice.org can open and save as powerpoint files. I haven't experimented with this in really great detail, though, so for all I know there's some feature somewhere it doesn't support -- I don't use it enough to be sure.

I think very highly of Knoppix myself. It is a great way to try out Linux risk-free. The reason I mentioned Mepis is because I keep hearing people say in their particular case, it supported their hardware but Knoppix didn't. Personally though I'd probably try Knoppix first then Mepis if that isn't satisfactory. Just a mattery of taste, mostly...

In a sense, trying out different distros is a crude way to get hardware support since hardware support actually resides in the kernel. However, popping a new CD in the drive is so easy anyone can do it, so people very commonly switch distros due to hardware detection and support.

If you REALLY want to be good with Linux, you should eventually read this, but it's probably way too much for you right at the moment. Bookmark it, read a page or so every week until it starts making sense. If you master a significant fraction of it, you will not only not be a newbie anymore, you'll be a wizard compared to most people on this site!

Marc A 03-18-2004 08:47 AM

Hi,

If your laptop is not too new maybe this adress "www.linux-laptop.net/"will help to see friends fidlings with their hardware. There's also "www.tldp.org" for general information and howto's.

Knoppix is a great advice tio see if everything works and how.
You can already use good software over your OS like mozilla project (thunderbird and firefox) even use openoffice right now.

Welcome to freedom ; ) Marc A

h0mersimps0n 03-18-2004 09:42 AM

THANKS marc- checking those out now!

Genesee 03-18-2004 11:20 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by snacky
OpenOffice.org can open and save as powerpoint files. I haven't experimented with this in really great detail, though, so for all I know there's some feature somewhere it doesn't support -- I don't use it enough to be sure.

I think very highly of Knoppix myself. It is a great way to try out Linux risk-free. The reason I mentioned Mepis is because I keep hearing people say in their particular case, it supported their hardware but Knoppix didn't. Personally though I'd probably try Knoppix first then Mepis if that isn't satisfactory. Just a mattery of taste, mostly...

I agree - give Knoppix a try. its pretty amazing really. and if you like it you can do a very easy HD install from it as well.

kahn 03-18-2004 11:20 AM

You can also check out www.linux-on-laptops.com
A lot of good information there.

Martin

vi0lat0r 03-18-2004 11:34 AM

Wow snacky... that site is... awesome to say the least!

I bet if the first few pages were put up as a READ BEFORE POSTING (and people actually did read it) there would be less people posting duplicate problem threads, lol.

kpharda 03-18-2004 12:24 PM

download the stand alone bootable CD from Mandrake, its graphical and nice.

Or DemoLinux

h0mersimps0n 03-20-2004 09:48 AM

Hey guys, another question for you...

Seeing as how I bring and use my laptop to school everyday and print from my desktop at home I have a problem with using linux on my laptop.

How I have it setup now is: I use "offline files" in windows so that everytime I bring my laptop home it synchronizes the files on my laptop with the files on my desktop so that I can print from my desktop...

Is there anyway to setup something similar to that between a linux and windows machine or how does file sharing work between linux machines even?

Thanks as always for your help!

P.S. is that bootable Mandrake version like the Knoppix version where I can run it off the CD and try it? I looked at the mandrake download section and didn't see anything about "live" versions of Mandrake. Could someone point me toward the version I want where I can just load it off the CD without HD install..

Thanks!

h0mersimps0n 03-20-2004 11:52 AM

I found the bootable Mandrake, I'll try it later today or tomorrow...

Hey STU! got another question for ya...

What do linux users do for anti-virus programs and such. Don't laugh at me, remember I'm still new to this stuff. Is it FACT or MYTH that linux virus's are almost unheard of due to the constantly updated Kernels and such?

I'm going to start reading through that thread to see if maybe the other thread on my wireless ethernet card wrapper (what the hell is a wrapper?) to install and work correctly...

Thanks

lnxconvrt 03-20-2004 01:04 PM

offline files
 
Just stumbled across this thread, and it's pretty interesting.

I never used the offline files thing in Windows, but in Linux you can use rsync to synchronize between folders. I use it to backup my home directory on my stealth Linux install on my work laptop to a couple of other machines automatically.

I'm not sure about any newbie friendly gui tools, but it's not hard to use. Just to make up an example, if I wanted to update homer's home directory from a laptop called cat to a desktop called dog, I'd open a shell window on cat and do this:

rsync -avz -e ssh /home/homer/ homer@dog:/home/homer

Enter homer's password on dog when prompted, and rsync does the rest. Among other things the trailing slash in the first "/home/homer/" is very important. If left off homer's home on dog would be deleted and recreated rather than just being updated with new files from cat.

Rsync can be found at the Samba site http://rsync.samba.org/ but you will likely already have it with any Linux that you install.

Note that it does not sync both ways and does not remove any files from the target unless you give it an option to specify this.

For something two way, you might check out unison at http://www.cis.upenn.edu/~bcpierce/unison/ .
I think it uses the rsync protocol and IIRC can sync between Windows and Linux. Haven't tried it but it seems to be highly recommended.

As for viruses, there have been concept viruses for *nix but I'm not aware of any in "the wild". As long as you are logged in as a regular user (not root) about all one could do is delete some data from your home directory. I'm much more concerned about security than viruses. Security is an are of concern in any OS, though still typically much better in Linux than Windows.

h0mersimps0n 03-21-2004 08:46 AM

Hey guys, I was thinking about what would help most converting to linux and if anyone could give me a quick rundown of how "installing" software, drivers (wrappers?), etc works in linux. I know it's extremely important to understand that only wusses use installer exe's that real men "un-tar" their stuff...

How does all that work? Once you tar/untar a installer, where does it go, what do you do with those files? do you need to reboot?

Thanks, this will probably help a lot get me going on getting drivers and software I need running as soon as possible. Thanks

chris319 03-22-2004 01:04 AM

Quote:

give Knoppix a try. its pretty amazing really. and if you like it you can do a very easy HD install from it as well.
Ugh, I just spent the afternoon trying to get Knoppix to install on my HD. It would stall during boot-up and I frankly don't have the inclination to go chasing the problem. I put MEPIS on instead and no complaints so far.

Quote:

a quick rundown of how "installing" software, drivers (wrappers?), etc works in linux. I know it's extremely important to understand that only wusses use installer exe's that real men "un-tar" their stuff...
By that reasoning you could argue that "real men" light a fire by rubbing two sticks together and only "wusses" light a match.

Smart guys don't piss away entire evenings in what we call "dependency hell". Do yourself a favor and don't even consider anything that isn't a Debian-based distro: Debian, Knoppix, MEPIS, Libranet, Xandros, etc. The Debian apt system is the most advanced package management system for Linux and believe you me, you'll need it. You don't want to be running buggy version 0.9 of some program when the rest of the world is up to version 2.4. Some day you're going to want to upgrade to the new version and that's where the fun begins in Linux. The opposite number to Debian is the RPM system. Take it from me, you can fritter away countless hours chasing down package dependencies (one piece of software requires another to install and run) with the RPM system and have nothing to show for it. The Debian distros I'm familiar with come standard with a wonderful program called Synaptic, a GUI for the underlying package management system. Don't be self-conscious about using GUI programs even in Linux. You and the rest of the civilized world use a GUI web browser, right? Last I heard non-GUI web browsers had gone the way of the dinosaur.

Do give MEPIS a look.


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