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Old 02-19-2012, 06:38 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2011
Location: Lake Havasu, AZ
Distribution: Mint
Posts: 3

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Never been successful in running any/all distro/version I've tried

I can download Linux but but never have been successful in installing it properly (I think) to try it, not with Virtual Box, nor as dual boot with 7 Pro. I have followed different sets of directions and am so frustrated I don't see me ever getting to try Linux. Any advice from the Experts?
Old 02-19-2012, 06:43 PM   #2
ReliaFree Maintainer
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan
Distribution: Slackware-current, Cross Linux from Scratch, Gentoo
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Here's my advice....

1. Pick a distribution. Of course, I am going to recommend Slackware or Gentoo or CLFS because those are the ones I like. Maybe you might want to start with something like Mint or Ubuntu or Fedora.
2. Try to install it. If you install using Virtual Box, you don't need to burn a DVD and you don't need to worry about borking your system to a completely unusable state.
3. Any problems you have, come back and ask specific questions about your specific problems with your specific distribution.

Good luck.
Old 02-19-2012, 06:53 PM   #3
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Registered: Nov 2005
Location: London
Distribution: Slackware64-current
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As it's mentioned above, we can't help you unless you ask specific questions providing as much relevant info as you can.

Also it'd be worth trying a few live CDs/DVDs to see if your hardware is supported by a given distro.
Old 02-19-2012, 07:10 PM   #4
LQ Guru
Registered: May 2005
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i recommend fedora live-usb.
Old 02-19-2012, 11:27 PM   #5
Senior Member
Registered: Apr 2010
Location: Continental USA
Distribution: Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, RedHat, DSL, Puppy, CentOS, Knoppix, Mint-DE, Sparky, Vsido, tinycore, Q4OS
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What kind of 'install' are you looking at? Puppy or Tiny Core (for example, all LIVE-CD images) can 'install' in a Virtualbox guest machine even if it lacks a drive file. (running from ISO in memory)

I have installed nearly a hundred different distributions, and failed to install only two (that I will not name, they got better and so did I).
I work in systems and networks all the time now, but am certainly no genius.

These days I advise against dual-boot, where once I recommended it. Virtualization has become so very much more dependable and less risky compared with dual-boot that the choice seems obvious to me. The only kudo is that you need to have adequate memory. If your machine has less than 2 GIG of ram you may see performance issues.

Pick a likely live-cd candidate for experimenting and give it a try. Then come back here with any questions, problems, or comments and we will see what we can do for you.
Old 02-20-2012, 01:59 AM   #6
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Registered: Mar 2010
Location: Oakland,Ca
Distribution: wins7, Debian wheezy
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What are your hardware specs or make & model?
Old 02-20-2012, 03:05 AM   #7
Satyaveer Arya
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Registered: May 2010
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never have been successful in installing it properly (I think) to try it, not with Virtual Box, nor as dual boot with 7 Pro.
Have you ever took help from Google installing a distro in virtual-box or making it dual-boot?
Old 02-21-2012, 09:37 AM   #8
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2011
Location: Lake Havasu, AZ
Distribution: Mint
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Original Poster
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hello Eddie,
using Piriforms Speccy-

Operating System
MS Windows 7 64-bit SP1
AMD Phenom II X4 940T 25 C
Thuban 45nm Technology
6.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 666MHz (9-9-9-24)
P205H (1600x900@59Hz)
ATI Radeon HD 4200 (HP)
Hard Drives
977GB Western Digital WDC WD10 01FAES-60Z2A0 SATA Disk Device (SATA)
Optical Drives
hp DVD A DH16ABLH SATA CdRom Device
Realtek High Definition Audio
Old 02-21-2012, 10:22 AM   #9
LQ Newbie
Registered: Feb 2012
Location: India
Distribution: openSUSE, Chakra,PCLinuxOS
Posts: 7

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did you download the amd/amd64 versions or the intel (x86/x86-64) versions?
Also did u try out the live cd/usb?
Also where did you find the problem? (not installing/cant partition/bootloader problems..)
Old 02-21-2012, 12:09 PM   #10
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How many partitions is your windows os taking up?
fdisk -l
If windows is on extended partition you'll have to freeup space within the extended partition to install a linux distro.
Old 02-22-2012, 12:37 AM   #11
Registered: Jan 2010
Location: Minnesota, USA
Distribution: Slackware 13.37, 14.2
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Linux has evolved several ways to install it. The first decision is which to try.

Before bootable CDROM, installation was a pain, so lets not deal with that. Use the bootable CDROM, because they work. You can download an ISO and burn it to a CDROM, but I
like to buy them because it is easier and you get a known CD.

If you just want to try it easily, then you can cheaply buy a bootable CD, or get one in the back of a Linux magazine. That way you do not have to mess with your hard drive, yet.
You can execute most of the programs from a live-system CD.
Older Slackware distributions had an entire live Linux system on one bootable CD, but the latest version uses all 6 CD for installation
(as their Linux got too big for only 5 CD).
There are probably still some bootable self-contained Linux CD out there, but I do not know which right now.
They will boot Linux, create a RAM disk, giving you a small disk, and then point their executable directories to the CD. You do not have to install anything as it is pre-installed on the CD filesystem. Your hard drive does not get modified.

The usual Linux install CD has only a small version of Linux, used only for installation (it only has the install programs which are loaded into RAM so you can swap CD discs).

Another way is to put all of linux in a windows directory (FAT32 drive). There is a special boot program that will boot from windows to Linux, and Linux can read and write FAT32 formated drives. This does not work well with the newer windows systems as they created a new drive format that Linux does not write.

The usual modern way is to create a new disk partition for the Linux stuff. I now have 10 partitions on my hard drive, containing FreeDos, couple of empty FAT32, Linux 2.4 (64GB), Linux 2.6 (64GB), Linux 2.2 (16GB), a swap partition (520MB), a boot partition (12MB), and some partitions used for backup and experimentation. I did not want to have to modify partitions after having data in them so I created plenty.
My main 64GB partition is now half full.

This requires a boot program to select booting either Win7 or Linux. Once you have a boot program installed, then you can have many different systems, selecting one by menu.
I have all of the above mentioned system partitions bootable, plus a few.
I keep the stock precompiled Linux that comes on the distributor CD, but then I compile a
custom version of Linux which I also make bootable. They share the same partition.
The customized Linux kernel is just smaller, faster, and does not have any support for hardware I do not have (like RAID, tape drives, IBM equipment, wireless internet, etc.), so the special drivers do not spend so much time telling you that they did not find their special hardware.
That is why I have a boot partition, to hold all the customized bootable copies of the same Linux kernel.
I use LILO which comes with most Linux, but there are many others like GRUB.
You can install this before anything else, or afterwards.

There are partition programs that can now resize partitions with data in them.
Check carefully that they can handle the Win7 drive format that you are using.
Assume the worst, backup your data before messing with partitions !
Human error is so predicable, it will happen, just uncertain as to when.

I like to put the Linux stuff in a Linux extended partition type, which Windows will generally ignore.
The first step is to give yourself some partitions to work in.

For starters you need:

4GB to 500GB main linux partition, for all programs, boot stuff, user data. Make this partition type linux, and create an ext2 filesystem on it. There are many other filesystems you can use instead, but then you have to decide why.

250MB to 500MB linux swap partition. Do not attempt to share this with windows as that is a really advanced topic. Make this Linux swap type, and create a swap filesystem on it.

If you want to be proactive, create a couple spare Linux ext2 partitions too.
They can be used for user data, backups, a second Linux install, and are just handy. They can mount invisibly to the Linux root directory.
Many systems keep user data in one partition, and installed programs in another, and it is easy to change the arrangement later.

Do the installation from a bootable CDROM disk. Buy one and follow the install directions that are on the CDROM.
If you want to install alot of stuff (like samba server, and apache server) then buy a large set like Slackware or RedHat.
They require that you install most of the disk contents because there is so much interacting libraries, and things will fail if you leave out the wrong support package.
Always install all the libraries. Libraries like apache runtime are used by other programs besides the apache server.
The safest directions are to install it all, which is like 1.5GB now days.
I install about 80% and have days of fighting with missing packages because of it, and I have been doing this 10 years.

Some distributions protect the user against mis-install mayhem, and detect missing libraries better than others. Some distributions just give you everything and let you decide.

If you want to try just a small linux then get a small linux distribution and install it all. That nothing necessary would be missing.

Later, you can install packages from other distributions on any Linux system.
There are ways to do that, and package conversion programs.
Using /usr/local keeps those installations separate from the primary distribution packages.

If you have a few spare partitions, then it is handy to setup a new distribution on one partition using a small linux on another partition. They generally all run the same BASH,
and will execute the install scripts.

After that you will have specific questions, for which these forums exist.

Last edited by selfprogrammed; 02-22-2012 at 01:16 AM.


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