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Hello, I have a 4 year old Acer laptop which runs Vista and is a severely underpowered piece of crap. (that's being nice to Bill G. and Acer.) I played ...
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  1. #1
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    Taking the plunge, many questions


    Hello,

    I have a 4 year old Acer laptop which runs Vista and is a severely underpowered piece of crap. (that's being nice to Bill G. and Acer.) I played around with Mandrake Linux Years ago but I've since pretty much ignored it.

    I've decided to come back into the fold. But it's been so long I don't know which Distro may be best for my needs. This is how my laptop sitch is now:

    Acer Aspire 9410z Intel Dual core 1 gig RAM 80 gig HD (2 40 gig partitions) Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit.

    This is what I want to do:

    1 70 gig partition W/ whatever best linux distro mainly for media management via Ipod and wireless internet, These are the 2 most important things. I don't know if Itunes can run in WINE ir if there 's an equivalent Linus app. I don't buy music online, I manage my own massive used CD collection. I do need the feature that automatically names the tracks though.

    As far as wireless, I need it to connect wirelessly with the ISP. I also want it to eventually interface with other linux and PC based computers including a RAID server. All down the road of course.

    I'm keeping a 10 gig partition for Windows XP for learning purposes. I'm going back to school for some certs and need it.

    THoughts? options?

    TIA

  2. #2
    oz
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    Hello and welcome aboard!

    If your laptop will run Vista, it should work well enough with most Linux distributions. Two of the more popular distros used quite often on laptops are OpenSuse and Ubuntu. I don't run any wireless myself so can't really say how well it works under either distro, but since they are so popular with laptop users I'm assuming that most users are having success with them and wireless.

    With any luck, maybe someone that owns the same laptop will chime in with some tips and info for you. Good luck with it... hope it all works out well.
    oz

  3. #3
    Administrator MikeTbob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozar View Post
    Hello and welcome aboard!

    If your laptop will run Vista, it should work well enough with most Linux distributions. Two of the more popular distros used quite often on laptops are OpenSuse and Ubuntu. I don't run any wireless myself so can't really say how well it works under either distro, but since they are so popular with laptop users I'm assuming that most users are having success with them and wireless.

    With any luck, maybe someone that owns the same laptop will chime in with some tips and info for you. Good luck with it... hope it all works out well.
    I agree, everything on your machine should be good enough to run most recent versions of Linux but I'll suggest that you give Linux Mint a run around the block. It's Ubuntu on Steroids. Almost everything works right out of the box with Mint.
    As far as your music needs, I know Amarok will interface with some models of Ipod/Iphones but maybe not all of them and Amarok is a KDE Application and it needs KDE libraries to run, but you can install them both into Gnome also.
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    THanks... more questions

    thanks, folks.

    I did some looking and I think I'll go with Mint for now. I'm gonna dump all my date and totally wipe my HD.

    As far as Itunes, I'm gonna try Amarok and Banshee and see whick I l like better.

    As far as wireless goes, Mint looks best, I'll just cross my fingers and put my tech hat on a little later if it doesnt work out. Fortunately this house has plenty of Ethernet lines, as much as that would suck.

    Just a few more questions:

    I'm going to download the DVD image of LinuxMint. I want to take the 2 40 gigs and make 1 70 gig for Linux and the rest for Win xp. I need to know what partitioning tool would be best to repartition my hard drive? (preferrably a free one)

    Also, I need to be able to boot either into Mint (default), Win XP, Or a PenDrive. I have both Linux and Win XP Pendrives.

  6. #5
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    GParted is a partitioning tool that comes with Linux Mint. You can also download it or Parted Magic, burn either to a CD and boot either to partition your drive. The partitioning is part of the installation process with Mint. If you are familiar with the way partitions are named in Linux, you should have no problems. You should see the windows partition(s) during the partitioning process and what they are named so you do not install over them.

    If you currently have xp installed, when you install Linux Mint. its' bootloader should detect xp and put an entry in the boot menu. If it doesn't happen, it's easy enough to do later.

    Not sure what you mean in your last question.

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    thanks...

    What in mean is I want to be able to boot into either:

    1. LinuxMint (default)
    2. Win XP
    3: one of my USB flash drives. I have an XP one and a tiny Linux one.

    Sorry I wasn't too clear on that. Tired today.

  8. #7
    Administrator MikeTbob's Avatar
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    The pendrives will have their own bootloaders, you only need to insert them into the USB slot and reboot the machine.
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  9. #8
    Penguin of trust elija's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdjeff View Post
    What in mean is I want to be able to boot into either:

    1. LinuxMint (default)
    2. Win XP
    3: one of my USB flash drives. I have an XP one and a tiny Linux one.

    Sorry I wasn't too clear on that. Tired today.
    Additionally, install Windows before you install Linux as it will overwrite the Grub(2) boot loader if you do it second. It is possible to get it back but easier to avoid the issue if possible.
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  10. #9
    Linux Newbie lugoteehalt's Avatar
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    There is also, for completeness, the option of installing XP or Linux into a virtual computer such as VirtualBox. This has the advantages that you do not need to reboot to get into XP say and the two operating systems can be run simultaneously, disadvantages include a possible speed penalty but this usually acceptable.
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  11. #10
    Linux Newbie theKbStockpiler's Avatar
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    Removing Windows is Unwise

    Linux can be a perfect stable ,secure OS and than again it can be a joke. Some of the distros released need a massive amount of updates "hot fixes" right of the bat. I had Mandirva 08 on for two years and I had to reinstall it because it would not hot plug anymore. The OS updates are not important unless the distro was half baked when released. Mandriva 08 was a very finished and reliable O.S but when I reinstalled it the package manager would not work for the applications I needed. You can install them with just RPM files but some applications need sixty or so separate RPM files which you have to install manually. I optioned to install Mandriva 10 but the data base is unfixable and the built in to Nautilus media player( totem) won't work right along with VLC. So as these are two major problems Open suSe in going to be installed over Mandriva. I recently tried Fedora 13 and it needed massive updates ,the software installer had major issues and the printer application would not work the same way twice. If you get a good release of a Distro ,Linux is great but if you don't a working computer with Vista is better than a half baked Linux Distro. I appreciate the aspects of all Operating Systems and Linux has it's share of problems.
    Last edited by theKbStockpiler; 11-08-2010 at 01:52 PM.

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