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Posted: 11/15/2007 4:33:27 PM EDT
I've pretty much had it with Windows. I plan to go to Ubuntu, OpenOffice and some Mozilla applications. Anything you guys could offer for advice, suggestions or warnings?

Thanks for any input.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 4:34:15 PM EDT
Nope, we'll see you back on line in 30 minutes on Ubuntu.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 4:42:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By kallnojoy:
Nope, we'll see you back on line in 30 minutes on Ubuntu.



30 minutes! Holy shit, by "about to" I was thinking maybe this weekend.

I take it that means all should go well.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 4:47:57 PM EDT


The last few releases of Ubuntu have really impressed me with how easy, quick and reliable they are to get up and running.

If you have standard hardware, it really should be just that easy.

You might want to google for your hardware & Ubuntu to see if there are any known issues or driver/BIOS updates needed before loading.

Ubuntu has some of the best end-user level tech forums available if you do hit a snag.

Good luck in shrugging off the MS beast!

Link Posted: 11/15/2007 4:54:44 PM EDT
So...uh...what the hell is Ubuntu? Something like Linux?
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 4:56:39 PM EDT

Originally Posted By MALT0SE:
So...uh...what the hell is Ubuntu? Something like Linux?


I'm no authority on this matter whatsoever but yes, it's a version of Linux if I understand correctly.

Ubuntu.com
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:02:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/15/2007 5:03:08 PM EDT by _DR]
I first installed, Ubuntu, then tried OpenSuse, now trying Kubuntu.

OpenSUse caused me lots of problems and did not recognize a lot of my wintel hardware, but Ubuntu actually did very good. The only thing I didn't like about it was I thought browser fonts were a bit fat, not hand-hinted like the MS fonts, clear type, etc. But many say they don't notice it,

Ubuntu is the best of the distros out there, IMO.
I bet you'll like it.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:06:38 PM EDT
kubuntu is my current distribution of choice.


its cool, although it was a bit of a pain to get it online with the wireless card i use on my desktop pc. wired internet fired right up though.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:16:34 PM EDT
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course

Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:19:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cruze5:
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course



i run ubuntu well, kubuntu at 1920x1080
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:21:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zack3g:
kubuntu is my current distribution of choice.


its cool, although it was a bit of a pain to get it online with the wireless card i use on my desktop pc. wired internet fired right up though.


I had the same problem with my wireless USB adapter. Fortunately the Ubuntu forums pointed me to some drivers.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 5:22:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/15/2007 5:22:57 PM EDT by _DR]

Originally Posted By Zack3g:

Originally Posted By cruze5:
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course



i run ubuntu well, kubuntu at 1920x1080


1280x1024 here on both Kubuntu and Ubuntu, oh also Edubuntu.
no issues. ATI 9800XT.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 8:30:41 PM EDT
Before the install read up on proper partioning for a better system.

At the very least make a separate /home partition so your data is kept separate from the OS. If you have problems later, do a reinstall, or an upgrade, your /home directory can be kept safe and secure. One really nice thing about it is almost all of your settings are kept there, so when the OS is reinstalled fresh most of your settings and customizations come back right where you left off.
Link Posted: 11/15/2007 8:47:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zack3g:

Originally Posted By cruze5:
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course



i run ubuntu well, kubuntu at 1920x1080


Likewise, on 3 screens... 1 37" and 2 19"s

Nvidia private drivers on Ubuntu are pretty damn good.
Link Posted: 11/16/2007 6:05:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By IAMLEGEND:
I've pretty much had it with Windows. I plan to go to Ubuntu, OpenOffice and some Mozilla applications. Anything you guys could offer for advice, suggestions or warnings?

Thanks for any input.



If you want to play mp3's, watch DVD movies, etc, out of the box, let me suggest Ubuntu based Linux Mint.

The best thing about Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and a lot of the other Linux distributions is that you can try them out before installing. Just download the live cd .iso file, burn, and restart your pc with the cd in your drive.
Link Posted: 11/16/2007 6:42:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By _DR:

Originally Posted By Zack3g:

Originally Posted By cruze5:
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course



i run ubuntu well, kubuntu at 1920x1080


1280x1024 here on both Kubuntu and Ubuntu, oh also Edubuntu.
no issues. ATI 9800XT.


1280x1024 on Ubuntu for me. No trouble whatsoever.
Link Posted: 11/17/2007 1:07:24 PM EDT
I just tried the Ubuntu LiveCD this morning and I was hooked. Instead of switching my entire system over, I'd like to dual boot Ubuntu and XP, however I hear that Ubuntu has difficulty reading XP NTFS partitions. Is there a way to dual boot and have both OS read each others' files?
Link Posted: 11/17/2007 2:59:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By foogoo:
I just tried the Ubuntu LiveCD this morning and I was hooked. Instead of switching my entire system over, I'd like to dual boot Ubuntu and XP, however I hear that Ubuntu has difficulty reading XP NTFS partitions. Is there a way to dual boot and have both OS read each others' files?


XP will not read ext3

however, ubuntu will read NTFS just fine.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 10:59:22 AM EDT
If you use True Crypt, you can encrypt everything but your boot sector in Ubuntu and it is free.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 2:29:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zack3g:
ubuntu will read NTFS just fine.


But not, AFAIK, write.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 2:32:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By foogoo:
I just tried the Ubuntu LiveCD this morning and I was hooked. Instead of switching my entire system over, I'd like to dual boot Ubuntu and XP, however I hear that Ubuntu has difficulty reading XP NTFS partitions. Is there a way to dual boot and have both OS read each others' files?


Do this... make the whole system Ubuntu. Then install VMware Install Windows in a VM. Use Windows Services for UNIX to mount a filesystem on the Linux side via NFS. Et voila... you'll be able to easily move files between the two systems, and use them at the same time But... if you're into anything under Windows that requires direct hardware access, or 3D games, that won't work so well.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 3:28:27 PM EDT
OK, so far it seems like a winner based on booting off an ISO disk. Unfortunately I'm having a hard time tracking down a complete package to run my Canon Pixma MP150 scanner/printer. I've seen some piecemeal solutions based on several downloads but I'm still looking.

I might get myself an inexpensive laptop for Christmas and make it a dedicated Ubuntu machine leaving my desktop clunker for scanning etc.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 3:38:42 PM EDT
I love ubuntu! I don't use windows any more.
Scott
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 9:22:52 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Robert2011:
Before the install read up on proper partioning for a better system.

At the very least make a separate /home partition so your data is kept separate from the OS. If you have problems later, do a reinstall, or an upgrade, your /home directory can be kept safe and secure. One really nice thing about it is almost all of your settings are kept there, so when the OS is reinstalled fresh most of your settings and customizations come back right where you left off.


That's a great idea! How do you do that?

I just gave Bill Gates the shaft this evening. Backed up my digital photos and then wiped my HD with Darik's Boot and Nuke (not necessary but it felt good blowing Windows away!). Installed Ubuntu 7.10 and went to work.

I've got DVD playback figured out and the FLASH enabled. I had to get the Microsoft fonts because ARFCOM looked like crap without them. My only problem now is getting streaming radio from SKY.fm to play. I've got mp3 support (I think) but I can't get music to play from that website. Any ideas?
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 10:15:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2007 10:16:29 PM EDT by Robert2011]
You do it during the install when it gets to the partitioning window.

There is a good read on it here: linuxmint.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=358


The one I went with was something like this (from the above thread):

/dev/hda1: /boot, 50 MB min., 150 MB max.
/dev/hda2: /, 2 GB min.
/dev/hda3: extended partition, up and until the end of the disk
/dev/hda5: /usr, at least 5 GB
/dev/hda6: /opt ... if you want it. 2 GB should be enough
/dev/hda7: /srv ... if you really want it. At least 4 GB
/dev/hda8: /var ... at least 2 GB.
/dev/hda10: /home ... at least 75-80 GB if we take a 100 GB disk as basis
/dev/hda11: swap ... 2x the size of your RAM, but not more. If you have like 2 GB RAM, then 1x the size of your RAM should be enough.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 10:28:26 PM EDT
right now I'm running the x64 version of 7.10 (live) and installing it on a spare laptop hdd.


if you're dual booting, you should be ok.

if not, backup your data to a DVD or install it on another drive.

you'll need to find codecs and download a few apps that are not included on the Ubuntu download due to licensing requirements.
Link Posted: 11/21/2007 10:35:02 PM EDT
For web content to look good on my screen (yours may vary) I changed the default font size in Firefox to a 13 minimum font size.

To do that in Firefox click:

Edit
Preferences
Content
Adv­anced
Minimum Font Size
13
OK


For making more web content and other stuff work, read up on it here:
help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats

This little command does a lot:

Go to Applications → Add/Remove...
Set Show: to All available applications
Search for "ubuntu-restricted-extras"and install it.
Link Posted: 11/22/2007 7:06:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/22/2007 7:06:33 AM EDT by _DR]

Originally Posted By Robert2011:
For web content to look good on my screen (yours may vary) I changed the default font size in Firefox to a 13 minimum font size.

To do that in Firefox click:

Edit
Preferences
Content
Adv­anced
Minimum Font Size
13
OK


For making more web content and other stuff work, read up on it here:
help.ubuntu.com/community/RestrictedFormats

This little command does a lot:

Go to Applications → Add/Remove...
Set Show: to All available applications
Search for "ubuntu-restricted-extras"and install it.


Did you ever get your fonts to look as good as in XP on an LCD screen?
I tried for days but could never get them as crisp and clear. It was one of my disappointments with Ubuntu and linux distros in general, a small thing albeit, but an issue neverhteless. My fonts in Ubuntu on say the google search result page always looked slightly fatter and fuzzier vs the crisp cleartype hand-hinted fonts MS uses.

I read it was a known issue, because no one had made hand hinted fonts for linux. I think it's much less noticeable on a CRT, but who uses those anymore?
Link Posted: 11/22/2007 10:44:14 AM EDT
Many of the font problems in CRTs and LCDs have to do with the wrong resolution being selected. It 's a matter of finding the right combination of font sizes for the resolution you want. Often they won't work together because the LCD does not like a certain resolution period.

If trying different resolutions does not work there is a fix mentioned here: www.howtogeek.com/howto/ubuntu/enable-smooth-fonts-on-ubuntu-linux/

I never tried that myself because it's never been a problem I couldn't fix by changing font type and size in Ubuntu.

One of the reasons I don't spend much time in other Linux distros like Fedora and others is I can't get the fonts to display correctly for me. Yet others have no problem at all until they try Ubuntu. Monitors and graphic cards must be playing a part in this. My equipment choices have never played well with Red Hat, but fit Ubuntu nearly perfectly (On a side note, I changed a graphic card in a XP machine yesterday and everything looks the same except the calendar. I have no idea how to fix that one).

Good luck on finding the happy combination.
Link Posted: 11/22/2007 12:32:39 PM EDT
Go to: ubuntu.wordpress.com/2005/09/09/installing-microsoft-fonts/

This quick tip got my MS fonts enabled. Before I sent Bill Gates packing I went into my Firefox options and noted the font settings. Once I enabled the MS fonts in Ubuntu I went back and reset Firefox to the font settings from my Win XP install. BINGO! ARFCOM looks a hell of a lot better than it did. Not as nice as XP but I'm satisfied with it.
Link Posted: 11/22/2007 12:46:27 PM EDT
Just to clarify the Firefox font settings in Ubuntu:

After the MS fonts have been enabled per the instructions above, open Firefox and select
Edit>Preferences

Go to Content and change the Default font to Times New Roman---Size: 16

Click "Advanced" and set your fonts like this:

Proportional: Serif---Size: 16
Serif: Times New Roman
Sans-serif: Arial
Monospace: Courier New---Size: 13


Again, it still won't look as nice as XP but it works. It's worth it to me because I know I'll never have to give another dime to Bill Gates. I don't play PC games so I'm basically 100% off Micro$haft.
Link Posted: 11/22/2007 2:00:14 PM EDT
Fonts look great in Linux (Fedora) to me.
When changing the system fonts, click the box that says Subpixel smoothing (LCDs). After doing this fonts look fine.
Some apps (like firefox) you might need to change the fonts, but everything else looks great.
Link Posted: 11/25/2007 1:11:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cruze5:
i've never found a computer than ran ubuntu over 800x600 (i've said this several times before) fedora works better for me. (im a linux newb i guess)



good luck. fedora will never be my main machine. but its great for internet, im, file sharing, bittorrent, documents, and samba. what great is there is nothing extra to buy as long as you have the hardware of course



As a newb having more success with Fedora over Ubuntu, consider yourself accomplished!
Link Posted: 11/25/2007 1:18:19 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Robert2011:
You do it during the install when it gets to the partitioning window.

There is a good read on it here: linuxmint.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=358


The one I went with was something like this (from the above thread):

/dev/hda1: /boot, 50 MB min., 150 MB max.
/dev/hda2: /, 2 GB min.
/dev/hda3: extended partition, up and until the end of the disk
/dev/hda5: /usr, at least 5 GB
/dev/hda6: /opt ... if you want it. 2 GB should be enough
/dev/hda7: /srv ... if you really want it. At least 4 GB
/dev/hda8: /var ... at least 2 GB.
/dev/hda10: /home ... at least 75-80 GB if we take a 100 GB disk as basis
/dev/hda11: swap ... 2x the size of your RAM, but not more. If you have like 2 GB RAM, then 1x the size of your RAM should be enough.



There is absolutely no reason on a workstation build using a modern OS to separate /opt, /var, /home, and /usr unless you have a specific goal in mind that requires separate filesystems (like a backup or mirroring scheme.)

Just make one big filesystem and back it up regularly. You can even stick all this stuff in your root filesystem. I usually make a good sized root and the rest goes in /usr, with /home and /var symlinking to /usr/home and /usr/var. Again, this is for a workstation, not how I would build a server. This is coming from a guy who is extremely anal-retentive and I tend to stick to 'old' UNIX traditions, but for most users doing this on a workstation just results in wasted disk space.
Link Posted: 11/25/2007 9:54:12 PM EDT
I just tried out the newest Ubuntu and was kind of disappointed. Ran pretty slow compared to a Debian 4 install I have. Now, it may be that I'm using VMWare player to install and run these Linux installations. But Debian seems to run much better then Ubuntu in a VM with VMWare tools installed.

Some people don't know that you can create your own virtual machines without having to fork out $ for VMWare Workstation. The only thing I use workstation for is to get the vmware tools iso's for linux and windows VM's. I like VMWare because I can switch between Windows and Linux without rebooting my computer. Plus I don't have to fart around with ndiswrapper configurations for my Wireless card as I do in a native install.

I run my Debian desktop in VMWare Player at 1900x1200 fullscreen mode on my laptop on top of Windows XP and it runs just about as fast as my native dual-boot setup.

If you have not blown away Windows yet, I can do up a little howto on creating VM's using VMWare Player so you can try different Distros out before commiting to a native install.
Link Posted: 11/25/2007 10:25:28 PM EDT

about to go to Ubuntu


Don't drink the water there. Get your innoculations up to date, and check with the State Department for travel advisories there.

Isn't Ubunto south and west of Uganda?
Link Posted: 11/25/2007 11:04:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By RickyRifle:

Originally Posted By IAMLEGEND:
I've pretty much had it with Windows. I plan to go to Ubuntu, OpenOffice and some Mozilla applications. Anything you guys could offer for advice, suggestions or warnings?

Thanks for any input.



If you want to play mp3's, watch DVD movies, etc, out of the box, let me suggest Ubuntu based Linux Mint.

The best thing about Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and a lot of the other Linux distributions is that you can try them out before installing. Just download the live cd .iso file, burn, and restart your pc with the cd in your drive.


I'm gonna give Linux Mint a try, I never could get Fedora to play DVD's. I hope Mint is that easy. Downloading via utorrent right now.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 2:06:26 PM EDT
I've found the ubuntu wiki's to be very helpful with regards to getting the extra repositories added and all the other goodies. In most cases I was able to cut and past commands into the terminal.
Link Posted: 12/3/2007 8:07:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/3/2007 10:08:36 PM EDT by GulDuCal]
I'm using Mandriva "One" 2008 (KDE).

I've tried other distros Slackware, Fedora and Ubuntu, but I keep coming back to Mandriva (formerly Mandrake). I found it much easier to install stuff. You'll spend less time with the aggravating chore of looking for drivers, unpacking, doing configs, makes and make installs.

Mandriva found all the hardware on my HP laptop, including the Radeon video!! It installed Compiz/Beryl Fusion on its own with no fuss, (which by the way kicks the crap out of Vista). For wireless, it detected my Broadcom chip and simply asked for the same drivers used for MS Windows. I was up and surfing ARFCOM in no time.

It installed flash player for Mozilla and was watching videos on Youtube instantly. It plays MS Media player video WMV files without me having to go through the trouble of finding the codecs.

However,I did have to download the PLF media binaries to play DVDs. But easyurpmi.zarb.org makes downloading and installing the PLF binaries/libraries a painless endeavor.

Mandriva includes automatic updates, much like MS Windows does. An Icon next to the clock, on the lower right (KDE), turns to an orange exclamation-point when updates are available. Click on it to go through the download and installation process. If the Icon is a green check-mark, then no updates are needed.

I just need to install the software package to work with my iPod and I'm good to go.

Good luck with whatever distro you choose.
Link Posted: 12/4/2007 8:14:17 AM EDT
Ever since Red Hat came up with a pretty GUI installer that didn't require knowledge of disk geometries, I've regarded the mainstream Linux distros as the 'nickel plated sissy pistols' of the alt OS world. I've run Free/OpenBSD to maintain my geek bona fides.

However, lately I've been doing alot of server and client work on Ubuntu Feisty and Gutsy (7.04 and 7.10). Though the installer requires no more thought than XP, the OS is still quite powerful. I still run the BSDs so I have something to brag about at cocktail parties, but there's no denying Ubuntu is a solid distro, even for those who are not devoted geeks. I develop on Microsoft platforms for the most part, so I can't switch completely to a non-MS OS, but if I did I'd consider Ubuntu as my desktop OS.

I would note a couple of potential pitfalls with Ubuntu, one of which has already been mentioned.

First, if you use a wireless network card, whether or not you'll have a good Ubuntu experience depends a great deal on how well supported said card's chipset is. While the Ubuntu forums and wiki do a pretty good job of telling you what works and what doesn't, if you have one that "doesn't", well, you're screwed to the wall. This applies to other Linux distros as well, since the wlan drivers are a kernel component, but IMHO Ubuntu has the most non-techie friendly docs and user community.

Second, Ubuntu installs the free/open source Java implementation from GNU. Despite what others may tell you, it's not 100% compatible with Sun's not-quite-as-open-but-still-free Java implementation. If you intend to run, say, Azureus 3.x, you'll need Sun's Java VM not the one Ubuntu gives you. Come to think of it, if you want to run Azureus 3.x, you can't use the 'azureus' apt package, since it's ancient and doesn't set the permissions right for automatic updates.

If you don't know what Azureus is, or know and don't care, then you should be fine.


Link Posted: 12/4/2007 11:26:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/4/2007 11:26:50 AM EDT by BlueNoteExpress]

Originally Posted By jnojr:

Originally Posted By Zack3g:
ubuntu will read NTFS just fine.


But not, AFAIK, write.


It can also write to NTFS if you install NTFS-3G. If you also install ntfs-config, you can use a GUI to make NTFS partitions read/write.


Originally Posted By _DR:
The only thing I didn't like about [ubuntu] was I thought browser fonts were a bit fat, not hand-hinted like the MS fonts, clear type, etc. But many say they don't notice it,


If changing the Firefox settings like others have suggested don't get things looking better for you, here's something else you can try. A friend of mine has a website will all kinds of ubuntu tips. Here's his writeup for making the fonts look like they do in WindowsXP: XP Fonts in Ubuntu
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