anyone use linux

  [DELETED] 11:50 08 Dec 2003

have been realy bored of late and was reading an article about linux.i happen to have a spare hard dive and was thinking about putting linux on it and haveing a dual boot system,any thoughts and suggestions

  Diodorus Siculus 11:58 08 Dec 2003

Go for it - I bought Suse Linux Professional 8.2 for £20 in PCWorld - worth it for the manuals alone - and it came with a DVD and 6 or 7 CDs. It installs easily and has been great.

Having said that, things are a little different to Windows and there is a rather steep learning curve.

Best to ensure that you have a hardware modem because, although they claim to support a greater number of software modems nowadays, it is not so easy to get one configured.

  [DELETED] 14:28 08 Dec 2003

As above, Try it!

PC World seem to price the boxed sets randomly from store to store, leading to some of the personal editions for just £9.99.

Also look for magazine coverdisks with either full distros or CD/DVD demo`s, the latest issue of Linux Format has SuSE 9.1 on the cover and costs about a fiver. It will install a minimal user/system file to your hard drive without altering any partitions or disturbing Windows. You can then boot into Linux running from the CD/DVD to see if you like it.

If you really want to learn then look for a book which teaches you everything and comes with a full distro included. Although these usually look thick and intimidating they do help the learning curve somewhat! I would look at Red Hat 9 Bible but there are plenty out there.

In my opinion the easiest distros to start with are Mandrake, SuSE and Red Hat from 8.0 onwards (just my opinion I can here the insults from Debian and slackware fans etc. ringing in my ears already).

Have fun

  [DELETED] 14:43 08 Dec 2003

I love SuSE Linux, followed by Red Hat and Mandrake, but if you want to be really adventurous, try Slackware.

Mandrake is about the easiest to install and configure, SuSE has about the best support and documentation for the home user (as well as a huge userbase) and Red Hat is, depending on who you ask, at least as good.

Slackware is a single disk ISO download, it doesn't hold your hand nearly as much so is not as suitable to a beginner, but it is about as fast as Linux gets while still offering vast security and application software potential.

I'd suggest Mandrake for your first venture into Linux. As long as you choose something like SuSE, Mandrake or Red Hat you will get a bunch of disks with more application software on them than you could ever hope to need or use. This includes office suites (yes, that was plural), CD/Audio burning software, DVD viewing software, PDF readers and creators, sound mixing, some of the best batch of programming language software apps you could mention (C, java, javascript, PHP, perl, python, blah, blah, blah) and even a bunch of semi respectable games to keep you out of mischief.

Problems come in regarding modeom support - in particluar 56k modems based on software winmodems and some USB broadband modems are also an issue.

You often need to manually configure your hardware so above all, read the help files and install instructions on the various websites BEFORE you try to install Linux.

Aside from that, try it and either love or hate it.

I love it and still do a lot of development on Linux machines.

It will at least make you a more competent and capable computer user overall.

Good luck with it.



  [DELETED] 15:02 08 Dec 2003

I love Linux...

It has been far more stable than my Windows rivals, and has proved very reliable.

It has hardly let me down, it is fast, not as susceptible to viruses and has a very user configurable interface, and it is all CHEAP.

It includes some excellent features!

I would certainly get a copy and give it a go, it is difficult to get working on some hardware set-ups but just try a cheap system, and check compatibility on the Linux website.

I run it on a Duron system no problems and in-fact it is quicker than my XP system with a FASTER processor.

;-) LOVE IT!!!

Hope this helps.


  [DELETED] 15:04 08 Dec 2003

"I'd suggest Mandrake for your first venture into Linux."

A very true statement from Taran there!!!!

It is a great OS, and even if it does not come with drivers for hardware, why could you not learn how to make your own?

Theres lots of websites to help you out there.

  [DELETED] 15:51 08 Dec 2003

I'd try Suse - as the manuals are very good and set up quite straight forward. A new version (9) was released in October but with a little bit of luck you should be able to pick up a copy of version 8.2 at a local PC World for only £10.

  [DELETED] 21:03 08 Dec 2003

could anyone recomend a good site to look at with regards to linux and can i install it on a second hardrive and have a dual boot system

  [DELETED] 21:08 08 Dec 2003

"can i install it on a second hardrive and have a dual boot system"

Sure you can!

Here are some sites:

click here

click here

click here

click here

Installing: click here

  [DELETED] 21:26 08 Dec 2003

As a starter, most Linux Distros have sites bookmarked in the browsers when they are setup - its worth a look at the main providers homepages as well if you want a pre-install look about. They normally have interesting links to other sites too.

Linux will happily install to your second hard drive and give you various options for dual booting your system.

Normally the default option will be to install a bootloader (LiLo or GRuB) on your primary drive which points to both Windows and Linux. You select the O/S to start when you turn on the computer.

These work ok but if you later decide to remove all traces of Linux from the system it can be more involved to restore the original Windows boot setup. I normally recommend installing the Linux boot files to a floppy and directing the computers BIOS to boot from it when you want to play with it. If your happy dual booting you can add a bootloader to the system in the future if not just format the second drive and your system will be as it was.

As with anything of this nature do ensure you have a BACKUP of any important files and pay close attention to the disk allocations during the setup process - your Windows installation should be detected and the option to leave it alone offered - but just in case its better to be safe than sorry!

  [DELETED] 21:32 08 Dec 2003

cheers gaz25 let the fun begin

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