Author Topic: Should I switch to Linux and how?  (Read 4233 times)

Offline drpapier

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Should I switch to Linux and how?
« on: December 09, 2008, 11:42:00 PM »
I've heard a lot about how wonderful linux is, but I'm having trouble picking out the real benefits. I'm not real fluent with computer skills and I was a little bit worried about being limited using a unix based OS. Also I was worried about compatibility with programs and games that I frequently use. WoW, Matlab, MS office suite, AIM, etc.

From friends' recommendations I downloaded Ubuntu to a disk and tried a demo, but it seemed riddled with errors and unexplained window failures. Would they go away if I Installed the full version and updated? Also all of my music, pictures, and movies are stored on an external hard drive and when I tried to access them through the demo it appeared as if nothing was there. I asked a friend and he was under the impression that converting to linux would cause me to lose access to all data and programs I had stored in the Windows format (NTFS?). Is that true?

Right now I have a Laptop running Windows XP with a 100 GB hard drive and an external hard drive with a 250 GB hard drive. the computer has about 20 GB free and the external has about 100GB free. I don't really know how partitions work, but I was told that was an option, but would just 20 GB be enough for Linux to run and if not, how do I clear out some of the **** on my C drive?

I know I asked a lot of questions and they might take some time to answer, but you all helped me with some malware problems before and the help was very professional and fixed exactly what I needed so I'm willing to wait for answers I can trust.

Thank you!

Offline mrrockford

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Re: Should I switch to Linux and how?
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2008, 12:54:23 AM »

You might want to read through some posts over at or to get more info.

Something I would suggest is to find an older desktop (something you could probably get from a local shop or ebay) to learn on.  At least 256 MB of RAM is required to run the alternate install CD (384MB of RAM is required to use the live CD based installer). Install requires at least 4 GB of disk space.

The Ubuntu desktop version has a nice setup that is explained nicely here:

Hope this info helps you to decide.  Let us know how things work out.
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Offline drpapier

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Re: Should I switch to Linux and how?
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2008, 07:50:55 AM »
I'll probably be a little slow getting into it, holiday season and all, but thank you for the advice now.

I'll be sure to reply again if anything beyond me comes up.



Offline RavenCajun

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Re: Should I switch to Linux and how?
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2008, 06:07:52 PM »
Don't be scared to give it a try, I knew nothing about linux when I jumped in and now I use it daily. My preferred daily use distro is SimplyMepis7, a very user friendly and newbie friendly distro. Burning the iso live cd and giving it a try in your current pc will let you get a bit of a feel for it. The partioning program is on the live cd which makes it very easy to install either on the entire hard drive or as a separate partition, also available is the Wubi installer which allows you to install directly into windows.  there are some excellent tutorials out there that I would recommend reading and studying before doing the install so you have an idea of where you are going.  This site has been very helpful to myself and many others I have sent there.
this particular link is to the install of Kubuntu, I personally prefer KDE to gnome, I find it a little easier for those coming from Windows but that is something each has to determine on their own after trying the various desktops. On that site they have the same type tutorial for many distros.
If you would like to become more familiar with Mepis the Mepis Lovers forums are an excellent choice.

good luck! there are lots of great people out there to help just ask!
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