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Old 08-18-2019, 08:16 AM   #1
busdriver12
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Setting up for move to Linux


I am in the throes of preparing my machine for moving to Linux and I have chosen LinuxMint. My research to date suggests this is the best distro to start with. I have downloaded LinuxMint 19.2 Cinnamon and have live booted it a few times as I was reading along various topics/issued discussed online. I am currently using Windows 7 64bit SP1 and intend to dual boot until I can get everything I use up and running under Linux. The windows partition will be there for the foreseeable future.

Before I start, I am backing up my important stuff (I have a 2Tb external HDD for backup). I use batch files to simplify the process (I still have some of my old DOS habits)

My research to date suggests I need to:

1. Disable Secure Boot - I have been through my BIOS a number of times and cannot find anywhere there is this function is (I'll put my system specs at the bottom of this post for clarity).
2. Disable Fast Startup in Windows - I have followed the steps and cannot find it on the power settings of Windows 7. I suspect this is a feature introduced into Windows 8 and may not apply to me.
3. Create a new partition for Linux - There is a bit of conflicting information about this. One school of thought is to create a partition for Linux before and another is to create it during installation. Not sure which way to go here.

Motherboard: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC. P8Z77-V LX (LGA1155)
CPU: Intel Core i7 3770 @ 3.40GHz
RAM: 8.00GB
HDD: 931GB Seagate ST1000DM003 (1TB)

TIA for any tips/pointers
 
Old 08-18-2019, 08:23 AM   #2
syg00
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1. Probably not applicable for Win7 - I can't remember seeing it.
2. Ditto
3. Shrink your Win7 partition(s) using the Win7 tools, and leave the space unallocated - that means not part of any partition. The Mint installer will look after things, just like (but better than) Win7.

Relax and take the road of least resistance.
 
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Old 08-18-2019, 01:33 PM   #3
permaroot
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Fast startup was indeed introduced in Windows 8.

Secure boot is a bios feature, so if you don’t see it in bios you don’t need to worry.

There is a quick boot option in newer bios as well. If you do experience any trouble try disabling that (if you have it) or disable and then try re-enabling it after you successfully set up the dual-boot and are sure it works (if you want it at all)
 
Old 08-18-2019, 07:52 PM   #4
frankbell
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I had a Win7 computer which dual-booted variously with Mint and Mageia.

I can attest that secure boot did not come along until after Win7.
 
Old 08-19-2019, 02:21 AM   #5
mrmazda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busdriver12 View Post
3. Create a new partition for Linux - There is a bit of conflicting information about this. One school of thought is to create a partition for Linux before and another is to create it during installation. Not sure which way to go here.
Windows knows best about its own filesystems. Use that to your advantage, and shrink Windows' system partition from within. It is not unusual to achieve less shrinkage than desired. If this happens, disable swap and hibernation, then try again. The files those use can take up a huge space.

As to when and how to create new partitions for Linux, it's art as well as science. How much control do you want to exercise over your PC? If you do it in advance of starting an installer, you can play with it a while until you are sure you'll like the result, over and over again as many times as it takes, without wasting time reinstalling to accomplish the same end result.

There's also the question of how many partitions. If you use a separate filesystem for /home, then you can reinstall an OS without risk of losing personal data that wasn't backed up, or whose last backup is defective or old. Typically this approach means you'll have 3 new partitions: 1 for the system, 1 for /home (data), and another for swap. With 8G RAM, a swap partition isn't necessary, but probably is the better plan.

Since you'll be multibooting anyway, you might wish to consider two Linux system partitions instead of just one. That way if it turns out you don't like Mint all that well, you'll have a place to put something else you may or may not like better. It also can serve other purposes, such as more convenient rescue in case of disaster, easier than hunting a bootable DVD or USB stick for performing repairs. It also can be used at upgrade time, to test all the waters of a new version without a need to commit, even participate in development of an upcoming release. Development processes can always use more testers looking for bugs to quash before release. When considering the possibilities, it may make sense to get the hang of managing partitions yourself, if not now, then after acquiring more experience with things Linux.

I never start an installer until all the partitioning is done, and the target partitions formatted, my way. Then in the installer the only "partitioning" I must do is to specify which partitions get used for what purposes (choosing mount points).
 
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Old 08-19-2019, 05:34 AM   #6
hazel
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Most installers, when they detect Windows, give you three options for partitioning:

1) Scrub windows and install Linux on the whole disk;
2) Install Linux alongside Windows
3) "Something else". That's what they call it these days (confusingly!). It used to be called expert partitioning mode. In other words, you are put into a partitioning program like cfdisk or parted and you make your own partitions.

Obviously you will want the second option. The installer will then create the necessary partitions for you. Usually you get three: root, home and swap, but not all installers create a home partition. If you decide later that you need one and the installer hasn't given you one, you can always create one for yourself by shrinking the root partition. People here can give you guidance on how to do that.
 
Old 08-19-2019, 06:56 AM   #7
busdriver12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmazda View Post
Windows knows best about its own filesystems. Use that to your advantage, and shrink Windows' system partition from within. It is not unusual to achieve less shrinkage than desired. If this happens, disable swap and hibernation, then try again. The files those use can take up a huge space.
I've already disabled and deleted the hibernation file (over 6Gb!) and after advice elsewhere will disable virtual memory prior to installation.

Quote:
I never start an installer until all the partitioning is done, and the target partitions formatted, my way. Then in the installer the only "partitioning" I must do is to specify which partitions get used for what purposes (choosing mount points).
Food for thought - thanks for the insight

Last edited by busdriver12; 08-19-2019 at 06:57 AM.
 
Old 08-22-2019, 03:16 AM   #8
busdriver12
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Thanks to everyone who's taken the time to reply. I've done a fair bit of research to date thanks to the pointers given and am on the way to installing Linux once I've completed some housework with my Windows 7 side of things. I'll mark this thread as solved for this reason.
 
Old 08-28-2019, 08:33 AM   #9
busdriver12
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Just a quick note to let you all know I have successfully installed Linux Mint on my machine.

This is a quick shout out to those who helped get me to where I am now (I've crossed the threshold).

Many thnaks and let the fun begin!
 
  


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