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Old 10-16-2007, 04:19 PM   #1
thedruid
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Installing Linux on a new laptop.


I recently bought an HP laptop with dual harddrives, and I'm considering installing linux on the 2nd drive. However, I'm terrified of screwing something up and trashing it (ie. the power management). Also, it has a lot of hardware which I'm not sure will work well in linux, namely the dual cores, lightscribe dvd-writer, the built-in webcam, etc. Many manufacturers don't bother making drivers for linux...

I also don't want a super automated distro like ubuntu because one of the reasons I want to try linux is to learn a bit more about how operating systems work.

Is it a mistake for a linux-rookie to go exploring on a shiny new machine?
 
Old 10-16-2007, 04:30 PM   #2
weibullguy
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Linux has support multiple processors (dual core) for a long time. No problem, just use an SMP-enable kernel. LaCie offers a Linux version of their Lightscribe utility. Don't know anything about webcams, but I don't see a lot of complaints or threads from people having problems.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thedruid
Is it a mistake for a linux-rookie to go exploring on a shiny new machine?
That's up to you. Only you know what you know and what you're comfortable with. But, even with Ubuntu, you'll be able to learn a bit more. You can always switch distros later.

Last edited by weibullguy; 10-16-2007 at 04:32 PM.
 
Old 10-16-2007, 05:12 PM   #3
tredegar
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Quote:
I also don't want a super automated distro like ubuntu because one of the reasons I want to try linux is to learn a bit more about how operating systems work.
Even with (k)ubuntu, there'll be enough things for you to play with / fix / mess with (and perhaps destroy so badly that it needs a reinstall) to start learning about linux. For a first install, I thoroughly recommend it (see my panel at the left).

As weibullguy says, you can always switch distros when you become more confident or would like to be fancy-pants and bleeding-edge, but it is kinder on yourself to start with a disto where most things work most of the time. Even with kubuntu, there'll still be enough for you to play with, and linux is quite different from windows. Trust me on this. But I haven't used windows at home since win98, and I now hate those computers at work that force me to work "the windows way".

Consider yourself as a "learner driver". What kind of car should I advise you to learn with? A small, & very fast Mercedes (you'll maybe kill yourself quite quickly), or a wreck that has a faulty oil pump, and will fail after 5Km, if it even starts ? You need an in-between.

So, for starters, go for an "easy" distro. Play with it. Learn how it works. Break it a few times (I did in my earlier days, you learn a lot trying to fix it!). If you then still feel you need to be challenged further, go for something else (Linux From Scratch - LFS? ). Start simply, then work up to what you need.

Welcome to linux & LQ!
 
Old 10-16-2007, 05:24 PM   #4
thedruid
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Thank you both . I'll follow your advice and install Ubuntu, to test the waters, and see how well the hardware works with linux.
 
  


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