Skip to comments.Opinions wanted as to Linux on home computer
Posted on 07/26/2004 9:07:32 AM PDT by job
I downloaded Red Hat version of Linux last night. I am having trouble even get started installing the software. Before I invest any more time, is it worth me installing Linux on my home computer? I do not write my own software. However, I am attracted that the system is free, and the applicable software is cheap Lindows office, $29.
I would like your thoughts. Also, will all my Windows based software work with Linux?
LOL...Yeah, my twelve year old neighbor told me that too. I'm an old mechanic, not a computer whiz. I'll stick with Windows and leave Linux to you younger and brighter guys!
There's an application that came with Red Hat that gives you an OS choice at boot. This has been a while ago, so I'm hazy on details. It worked fine until I accidentally messed up a driver or something, so that Linux wouldn't boot. At that point, I couldn't get it to boot anything, because this little application sat at some very low-level place and intercepted my boot attempts.
What I ended up doing was keeping Windows and Linux on separate drives (let's face it - how many more or less useless 500 meg or 4 gig drives do you have in a drawer somewhere? They're fine for Linux) and booting to the Linux side, as desired, off a floppy.
The neat thing is, Linux can read MS-DOS-formatted drives, so I could store all my big, clumsy data on the big DOS drive, and just keep my programs on the little Linux drive.
Works like a charm every time. When you boot up Windows, it doesn't see the Linux drive at all, keeping your linux install safe, and Linux can read the windows drive very well. The new 2.6 kernal can even write to NTFS partitions now.
You do not mention what hardware you are trying to install this on. RH won't install on hardware that is too slow these days. For instance, the installer won't run on my Pentium 120 that I use as a firewall.
Also, do you actually mean Red Hat, or do you mean Fedora? I would try Fedora (from the Red Hat site), if you are trying to install RH 9.0.
Thanks! I have quite a few old small hard drives lying around and I never even thought about using them. I'll install one of the them and put linux on it. I got the Mandrake version of linux because I heard it was easier to get configured. All I really need to do at this point is create a linux build of a game I'm making.
If you later want to install Knoppix on your hard drive, here are some tips.
That is correct.
what specifically are you having trouble with?
Red Hat isn't a favorite these days. Suse, Mandrake or Debian seem to be quite popular, better supported and more usable.
If you just want to test the Linux waters, download Knoppix and boot from a CD (save your config and files on a USB key or USB hard drive). OpenOffice and a couple web browsers, as well as lots of other software, are included.
I find it interesting that on my laptop OpenOffice for Linux opens faster from my Knoppix CD than OpenOffice for Windows does off the hard drive.
OpenOffice on Knoppix opened all my Word and Excel files perfectly, but then I don't exactly have any overly complicated documents that use all the Microsoft bells and whistles.
If your PC is set to boot from CD-ROM, it will boot into FreeBSD. You can try it out, and if you don't like it, eject the CD, reboot, and you're back in Windows (or Linux) with no harm done and no lasting effect on your computer.
Obtain a reasonably powered used computer. Pentium II or III's work well. The more generic the better. Barebones and low cost kit computers work well also due to their generic nature. A hard drive with at least 2 gigs (laughable by today's standards), a BIOS capable of booting from a CD or alternately a 3.5 inch floppy drive, and a reasonable amount of RAM. Download your Slackware 10.0 iso file and burn to disk. Read the installation instructions on the CD and print them for reference. Boot the CD or optionally from the floppy boot images on your future linux box and follow the menu driven installation. After you've formatted the drive, created your filesystem, installed everything you want from the CD, and have written the boot information to the master boot record, remove the media, and reboot from the hard drive. Watch those wonderful boot messages scroll by. Log in as root. Start perusing your new file system. Look for something called "HOWTO" files in /usr/doc/ and use the program "less" to read them. They will be your bibles for a while. The program "man" is the basic help system, and the familiar DOS commands for filesystem navigation and manipulation (cd mkdir rmdir) work as usual, except del is now called rm and dir is now ls. Each evening after you tire of freeping, log into your linux box and learn more. A book or two from the library on unix works wonders. The more inquisitive you are, the faster you will learn. Disregard comments regarding lack of available software, unfit for the desktop and other mid-nineties mantras. That is the way grasshopper.
three-day-weekend do-I-really-want-to-try-this bookmark.
This will give you a chance to use it without committing. I for one popped it in and was immediately impressed. Next weekend, I will be installing either Red Hat or Mandrake completely.
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