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Old 07-05-2004, 06:08 AM   #1
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Distribution: Possibly Fedora Core 2... [havent made up my mind]
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winXP/ linux dual boot questions

hi, i have almost no idea what im doing, but the last week of research is slowly expanding my knowledge of linux... i have two big questions:

q1: which distro should i use? i am planning on using Fedora Core 2, but still not 100% sure what to do about that... i have the install cds d/led and burned already so i may end up going with that.

q2: is it possible to make a new partition on a disk that is NTFS without losing all my data? i cannot back it up, as i have nowhere to store 30gb of data while i do the partitioning... if it is possible, what program would you reccomend?

i am currently using a gateway 350xl notebook... 3.06ghz hyper-threading mobile P4, 512MB of RAM, 40GB hard disk

please help! i need to escape the horror of microsoft, but ive been using them since DOS so i just need some help making the switch. thanx for any advice you guys have to offer!

Last edited by neweternity4321; 07-05-2004 at 06:13 AM.
Old 07-05-2004, 06:36 AM   #2
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a1: the distro is entirely up to you. Fedora is a good place to start for someone new to Linux. Most of us have tried at least 4 or 5 different ones before settling on one we like.

a2: I have done this using Partition Magic. To be honest, when I did it there was nothing that I was bothered about losing - but regardless, it went off without a hitch. Make sure you defrag the disk before starting. Just create the partition - do not use PM to set the partition type, the install will do that for you. If you want to share files between Windows and Linux, create a FAT32 partition - both Win and Linux can read and write to FAT32, but only Windows can write to NTFS. Linux can read NTFS, but this is in a very experimental stage at the moment and your mileage may vary.

Other tips are: write your bootloader to the MBR - warnings are issued about this by every distro but I (and many many others) have done this without a hitch, it also saves any complicated set ups. Install development packages - a number of programs rely on them and it saves hassle later on. Check my signature (below) for the URL for RUTE - this is a long and comprehensive Linux book and has helped many people.

Most of all, don't expect it to be like Windows, don't expect to get everything absolutely spot on the first time around, don't expect that the first distro you try will be the only one you can ever try and Have Fun!
Old 07-05-2004, 06:46 AM   #3
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You can have a look at Mandrake 10 - more user friendly compared to Fedora.

Check out for their tools which will allow you to resize your ntfs partition. I have not had the need / opportunity to use/test it .. so I cannot vouch for it.


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