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Old 04-12-2014, 12:37 AM   #16
Registered: Jan 2010
Location: Minnesota, USA
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I have 3 machines here setup, and 3 more in a pile. It gets really old quick trying to maintain an extra machine and the room it takes to keep it setup. I keep having to find places to hide machines when social events need the table.

If Linux is on on a second drive in the same box, it can mount the Windows partition and access the data on it. This could save you from having to duplicate all your saved files onto another box.

I liked the second drive in the same box idea best.
If you have newer hardware you could even swap out the old drive and trust that the new Linux will run no matter what drive slot is is in.
That is a safe way to install and if needed later, you could put both drives back in together (if you have two drive bays and anything but laptops and micro cases have room for two drives).
Old 04-12-2014, 03:30 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by yancek View Post
Installing to an external usb drive is no different than installing to an internal drive. You do need to understand Linux drive/partition naming conventions so you get the right drive.

Using your 4GB flash to test and try Mint out is a simple and easy way to learn. You never indicated what method you used to create the Live CD on the flash. You can use pendrivelinux (Universal USB Installer) and you can create a persistent partition on which to save changes and data. It's limited to 4GB but since that's all you have, should be no problem. Link below if you're interested:
I forgot how I created it, in fact, I did not even realized it was created because of the screwy way my old 3100 Dell Dimension only boots up from a rear USB port. I just followed the instructions on one of the many how to do it web sites.

I went to the following sub site you recommended:

and thought this just might be the most appropriate method for me to go with. In particular, I have a live Linux Mint CD, a 4G thumb drive is dirt cheap, I can boot up from a USB port, I like the term "easy to do", and really do not see where using the terminal is difficult if I am told what to type and I watch what I am typing. I am assuming that Linux Mint 16 is an Ubuntu environment.

The only thing that has me scratching my head is:
1. If it is so easy to do
2. 4G thumb drives are cheap
3. the preloaded installed Linux bootable drive (with somewhat limited persistent storage capacity) can be transported from one computer to the next computer (with some restraints)
4. then why hasn't someone come out with the above????

To make a profit selling Linux is a no no, but it seems everyone is selling live Linux dvds and flash drives, and this just might be a very easy way for newbies like myself get introduced to Linuz with something being a little more useful than the standard live DVDs being sold because of it's persistent memory.

Last edited by Scup; 04-12-2014 at 04:19 AM.
Old 04-12-2014, 10:14 AM   #18
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Distribution: PCLinux, Slackware
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then why hasn't someone come out with the above????
That's what pendrivelinux (Universal USB Installer) does. It is a windows program and since you are using windows??
Select the downloaded iso file in the first step, check the box 'local iso Selected', then click the 'Browse' button to navigate to where your iso file is on windows and in step 3 select the USB drive letter. Do not check the box 'Now showing all Drive'. You need to make sure you don't select the drive windows is on, C? In step 4, move the slider to the right to select a persistent size and click Create.

To make a profit selling Linux is a no no
No, not really. The quote below is from the Slackware Essentials

It is important to note that the GPL does not say anything about price. As odd as it may sound, you can charge for free software. The “free” part is in the liberties you have with the source code, not in the price you pay for the software. (However, once someone has sold you, or even given you, a compiled program licensed under the GPL they are obligated to provide its source code as well.)
Most organizations which sell Linux CD/DVD or flash drive charge a minimal price. Most or at least some of them, contribute a part of the income to Linux in some form.

Last edited by yancek; 04-12-2014 at 10:33 AM.
Old 04-17-2014, 02:59 PM   #19
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Getting a little depressed here.

I wanted to gain some simple experience in making a bootable thumb drive. I saw "USB Image Writer" had been installed on "Petra". I had also downloaded the iso file for Petra on a different thumb drive than the one I intended to make bootable. The cheapest thumbdrive availible at my local store was a 8G scand disk for $7.99. I plug it in, copied the Image to it using Image Writer, and within 10 minutes had a bootable Petra live disk without persistence.

Turned on the computer, booted up from the just made Petra thumb drive, and everything went fine! I had read about adding persistance to an already made bootable disk, so I thought this should be the next step. Could not mount the thumbdrive so I restarted Petra from a live DVD. Still could not mount the Petra thumb dive. Tried to reformat the Petra thumb drive, but since I could not mount it, that went nowhere. Thinking I had reduced the Petra thumbdrive to garbage, once again I tried to boot up from the Petra thumbdrive, and I could still boot up from it. What gives? Did I make a read only thumb drive in which 80% of the drive is wasted space or could I somehow erase the whole thumb drive and start all over again from scratch? Live Petra sees the scandisk, can boot up from it, but cannot mount it! Remember that I am working off a Live Petra DVD, so any commands suggested must be related to this particular Linux Mint operating system.
Old 04-17-2014, 06:25 PM   #20
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When I went to "Disks" (preinstalled program to manage drives and media in Petra), I noticed a little black trangle just under "Volumes". When I placed my cursor on it, up shows the words "Mount the filesystem". It seems to me to be nothing more than a toggle switch to mount or unmount the filesystem. I had read Linx posts on this for three hours, using all sorts terminal commands to do the above (most did not work), yet the solution was nothing more than a keystroke away. Now I noticed a minus sign next to the right of the trangle which deletes partitions and an Icon showing two meshed gears claiming "More Actions". Enough is enough already, I have to read Petra manual.
Old 06-04-2014, 11:32 PM   #21
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Follow up

Just as a follow up, as to where I am now at as I still have the old computer chugging away. I never could figure out how to get my Canon Pixma MP450 printer to work with Petra. Funny though, I did try the latest Linux Ubuntu 14.04 distro and everything worked fine including the printer. Spent a few weeks trying out both of these versions of Linux to see which I liked the best and could live with either. Tried Petra because reviews claimed it was very similar to Win 7 and Ubuntu because it is suppose to be the most intuitive (simplest) OS out there. I agree with with the reviewers, but I am like a kid in a candy store; just too many things to choose from. Was quite surprised that even my windows generated Excel files could be accessed and edited in Linux without a problem. The old sluggish computer in windows moves quite nicely when operating in Linux.

The only two programs I would like to get squared away is the windows WXTide and Google Earth. Actually WXtide is a tidal program derived from Unix (Xtide) and runs quite nicely in Linux. However, when the author redid it for windows, he added quite a few nice graphical features which are not included in the original version. However, several on-line sites use the program to present local tidal graphical information, so it is dubious if it is even needed to be installed. Google Earth can be installed in linux, as there are several how to examples on how to do it, but most of the procedures seem fairly complex to me and quite iffy at best.

Thanks again for all the help provided to get me started!


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