Author help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)  (Read 2242 times)

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I am building a new computer because my old windows Vista machine has seen better days.

This is what i put together and i already have all the parts for it. I do not game i mostly just lurk forums buy stuff off ebay and amazon and stream video. I grew up with Windows machines in 1991 my parents had windows 3.1 i believe on a IBM PS/2, then i messed with windows 95 a bit when i got older then i used 98 a lot then XP and now Vista. So i feel like i know how to use windows even though I'm no comp genius it feels familiar.

Well my new computer i was originally going to pirate windows 7 (i want nothing to do with 8, 8.1 or 10). Then i remembered Linux so i started searching it out and it seems to look really nice. Would i miss windows in any way since i do not use Microsoft programs for anything? All i really have on my current PC is Skype, yahoo messenger (yeah really), Firefox, VLC player. All of which except for yahoo messenger is available on Mint.

I have also heard you can run both windows and Linux which might be nice. But if i ended up liking Linux id probably just trash windows anyways. Looking for some advice on what i should go with or other Linux variants.

This is the comp i am building if it matters. I was going to run the OS and programs off the SSD and store media on a platter drive.
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/yD7Zbv

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2015, 07:42:05 PM »
I am building a new computer because my old windows Vista machine has seen better days.

This is what i put together and i already have all the parts for it. I do not game i mostly just lurk forums buy stuff off ebay and amazon and stream video. I grew up with Windows machines in 1991 my parents had windows 3.1 i believe on a IBM PS/2, then i messed with windows 95 a bit when i got older then i used 98 a lot then XP and now Vista. So i feel like i know how to use windows even though I'm no comp genius it feels familiar.

Well my new computer i was originally going to pirate windows 7 (i want nothing to do with 8, 8.1 or 10). Then i remembered Linux so i started searching it out and it seems to look really nice. Would i miss windows in any way since i do not use Microsoft programs for anything? All i really have on my current PC is Skype, yahoo messenger (yeah really), Firefox, VLC player. All of which except for yahoo messenger is available on Mint.

I have also heard you can run both windows and Linux which might be nice. But if i ended up liking Linux id probably just trash windows anyways. Looking for some advice on what i should go with or other Linux variants.

This is the comp i am building if it matters. I was going to run the OS and programs off the SSD and store media on a platter drive.
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/yD7Zbv
linux has several clients that can do yahoo im.  it should be fine as is


help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2015, 07:42:58 PM »
PC-BSD - a version of FreeBSD (UNIX)
pcbsd.com

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2015, 10:18:28 AM »
Well i decided to go with both so i can ease into Linux. I would like to install both on a 120GB samsung SSD. Should i partition the drive into two 60GB portions one for each operating system? I really don't know how to go about it since my SSD is small.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2015, 02:43:22 PM »
I'm running Mint 17.2 on a 32G thumb drive plugged into the back of a win7 box with a 1TB drive. It's a dual-boot setup just used for software testing but it runs fine.

Since it's just for testing, I didn't want to run the risk of messing up the existing MBR with partitioning the main drive and doing a legit dual boot linux install, so went with the flash drive instead. It does the job. You could get a bigger flash drive, I just happened to have this one on hand.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2015, 03:03:01 PM »
I would suggest doing your Windows install first. There'll be a screen to create/edit/delete partitions. You can tell it to create a partition for roughly half of the drive.

Then, install Linux (whatever distro you decide on). There should be an option to install along side of Windows.

The Linux install should set up the bootloader, so you'll have an option of which OS to start when you boot/reboot the machine.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2015, 07:55:07 AM »
In the little bit of research I did with Win8/Ubuntu, I read that it's easier to install Windows first and then Linux. Which is what I did, with no huge problems.

On my 1TB drive I have a 40GB Linux partition, 16GB swap partition, 430GB Windows partition (space for games), and the rest is an NTFS Data partition that both OSes can see. Works pretty well, but if I had to do it again I might have thrown another 10-20GB at the Linux partition just in case.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2015, 07:57:03 AM »
In the little bit of research I did with Win8/Ubuntu, I read that it's easier to install Windows first and then Linux. Which is what I did, with no huge problems.

On my 1TB drive I have a 40GB Linux partition, 16GB swap partition, 430GB Windows partition (space for games), and the rest is an NTFS Data partition that both OSes can see. Works pretty well, but if I had to do it again I might have thrown another 10-20GB at the Linux partition just in case.
i would of done a 100GB linux partition at a minimum if i were to dual boot.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2015, 08:04:38 AM »
i would of done a 100GB linux partition at a minimum if i were to dual boot.
I read several places that told me 40- and I went along with it because I figured all my documents and such would be going to the data partition. What I didn't take into account was the extra space upgrading the OS takes up. Thankfully, I think I can still steal some space from that data partition if needed...

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2015, 11:40:33 AM »
Well i decided to go with both so i can ease into Linux. I would like to install both on a 120GB samsung SSD. Should i partition the drive into two 60GB portions one for each operating system? I really don't know how to go about it since my SSD is small.

If this 120 GB drive is all you've got you should probably not dual-boot. You will have to do a lot of housekeeping to have free space on your drive if you want to have any movies or series there. If you don't use any Windows software you can go with just Linux Mint, it's an excellent OS. You can use the MATE (GNOME 2) desktop, it has a look & feel of win7. Cinnamon will probably work similarly but I've never used it.

If you want to dual boot with good old win7, you should probably do it the "traditional" way with grub2 boot loader. You just create 2 partitions, install windows first on one of them and then linux mint on the other one. You tell the installer to install grub2 and after reboot you will have a boot loader menu with options to pick which OS to start.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2015, 12:15:44 PM »
I am building a new computer because my old windows Vista machine has seen better days.

This is what i put together and i already have all the parts for it. I do not game i mostly just lurk forums buy stuff off ebay and amazon and stream video. I grew up with Windows machines in 1991 my parents had windows 3.1 i believe on a IBM PS/2, then i messed with windows 95 a bit when i got older then i used 98 a lot then XP and now Vista. So i feel like i know how to use windows even though I'm no comp genius it feels familiar.

Well my new computer i was originally going to pirate windows 7 (i want nothing to do with 8, 8.1 or 10). Then i remembered Linux so i started searching it out and it seems to look really nice. Would i miss windows in any way since i do not use Microsoft programs for anything? All i really have on my current PC is Skype, yahoo messenger (yeah really), Firefox, VLC player. All of which except for yahoo messenger is available on Mint.

I have also heard you can run both windows and Linux which might be nice. But if i ended up liking Linux id probably just trash windows anyways. Looking for some advice on what i should go with or other Linux variants.

This is the comp i am building if it matters. I was going to run the OS and programs off the SSD and store media on a platter drive.
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/yD7Zbv
Nice list of parts, all except for the Seagate HDD. Stay away from them, they are prone to failure with proprietary firmware which make data recovery a PITA. The most reliable mechanical HDD's are Hitachi (believe it or not.) I'm just trying to save you some grief down the road. Everything else looks like a good pick.
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Reply #5 on: September 26, 2015, 02:43:22 PM

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I'm running Mint 17.2 on a 32G thumb drive plugged into the back of a win7 box with a 1TB drive. It's a dual-boot setup just used for software testing but it runs fine.

Since it's just for testing, I didn't want to run the risk of messing up the existing MBR with partitioning the main drive and doing a legit dual boot linux install, so went with the flash drive instead. It does the job. You could get a bigger flash drive, I just happened to have this one on hand.
Good advice  ^^^^^ You can pick up a 32GB flash on Amazon for about $10.00 right now. Stay away from PNY flash drives though, they're prone to Electro-Static discharge(ESD) failure. I generally stick w/ Sandisk and use a 4 port Targus hub for multiple drives.
The Linux partition doesn't need to be as large as the windows if you decide to dual boot on the SSD. I'm running a 32GB PATA SSD (Old i know) on my laptop, but all my desktop files are symlinked to an external 2 TB HDD. Just my apps runn on the SSD. My laptop is a 2004 Toshiba M-55 S3294. Top of the line at the time, but the main reason I'm still using it is there is no built in webcam that can be remotely activated. ;) It's still fast, 7-10 second boot times, running Xubuntu 14.04 on 1.5GB RAM. I've also got 26 different Operating systems chainloaded on the external HDD that I can boot into. It works well.
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Hank

Re: help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
Reply #6 on: September 26, 2015, 03:03:01 PM

    Quote

I would suggest doing your Windows install first. There'll be a screen to create/edit/delete partitions. You can tell it to create a partition for roughly half of the drive.

Then, install Linux (whatever distro you decide on). There should be an option to install along side of Windows.

The Linux install should set up the bootloader, so you'll have an option of which OS to start when you boot/reboot the machine.
Excellent advice Hank. Remember, if you decide to dual boot, ALWAYS load Windows first. If you install Linux first, when you install windows, it will destroy the linux boot loader. It's a can of worms to fix it, but it can be done. It just takes time and web searches.
I won't get into advanced partitioning options for linux, but they do increase speed and recoverability on the chance your system borks on you (rare, but you never know.) Search the nets if interested - 'Linux partitioning '. Good intro here http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/35676/how-to-choose-a-partition-scheme-for-your-linux-pc/?PageSpeed=noscript
Your windows partition should be 2-3x the size of your linux as a general rule. Don't store data or movies on the SSD, use the HDD (you knew that though), Learn how to create Sym-links - You can do that in Windows now - Vers 7 on up, XP requires the 'Junction' software. I posted a how to on superuser a while back for doing this on XP.
Good luck and I hope your build goes well. ;)

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2015, 10:03:56 PM »
Nice list of parts, all except for the Seagate HDD.

lol, yeah i heard about problems with them but they seem to be ok now i guess time will tell.

I decided to go with windows 7 for now it runs really fast off this SSD so i hope it holds up. But here is a question.. I am picking up my 1 terabyte WD black drive tomorrow that i planned to store media on. I thought installing it would be as simple as plugging it in and partitioning and formatting it. Then i desided to do a little research and it seem there are a few different ways of doing it. Some people do some weird registry thing when they install a fresh version of windows. And some just plug it in and adjust the bios for it. I desided to do it the bios way because it seems much easier as in this video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMo8krAJd5Q

But he says that the drive is now attached to the computer you cant just take it out and plug it into another computer and get your media off of it. So that means that if my SSD craps out i can not get anything off my second HHD?

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2015, 05:51:47 AM »
But he says that the drive is now attached to the computer you cant just take it out and plug it into another computer and get your media off of it. So that means that if my SSD craps out i can not get anything off my second HHD?

you should be able to remove the wd black and put it in an enclosure or hook it up internally  to any other computer and be able to see the data.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2015, 04:42:08 PM »
I would suggest doing your Windows install first. There'll be a screen to create/edit/delete partitions. You can tell it to create a partition for roughly half of the drive.

Then, install Linux (whatever distro you decide on). There should be an option to install along side of Windows.

The Linux install should set up the bootloader, so you'll have an option of which OS to start when you boot/reboot the machine.
This is something I've done on a couple machines.  I recommend giving more space to the Windows side, using a file system that Linux can read.  That gives you greater flexibility as to where to store stuff, when you might have some data that's useless to Linux but useful to Windows.  Then be verrrry careful about updating/upgrading the Windows, so you don't wind up shutting Linux out subsequently.

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2015, 05:27:55 PM »
This is something I've done on a couple machines.  I recommend giving more space to the Windows side, using a file system that Linux can read.  That gives you greater flexibility as to where to store stuff, when you might have some data that's useless to Linux but useful to Windows.  Then be verrrry careful about updating/upgrading the Windows, so you don't wind up shutting Linux out subsequently.
since windows thinks its the only operating system ever made, it will overwrite the bootloader, making the linux partition temporarily unavailable to boot.  this is fixed by using a live cd and re-installing grub (the linux bootloader) .

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2016, 04:53:22 AM »
lol, yeah i heard about problems with them but they seem to be ok now i guess time will tell.

I decided to go with windows 7 for now it runs really fast off this SSD so i hope it holds up. But here is a question.. I am picking up my 1 terabyte WD black drive tomorrow that i planned to store media on. I thought installing it would be as simple as plugging it in and partitioning and formatting it. Then i desided to do a little research and it seem there are a few different ways of doing it. Some people do some weird registry thing when they install a fresh version of windows. And some just plug it in and adjust the bios for it. I desided to do it the bios way because it seems much easier as in this video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMo8krAJd5Q

But he says that the drive is now attached to the computer you cant just take it out and plug it into another computer and get your media off of it. So that means that if my SSD craps out i can not get anything off my second HHD?
Haven't been here for a while...
In regards to getting data off the drive - the BIOS method will make your system see it as part of the internal system w/ a UUID. It is recoverable, but not automatically. Burn yourself a copy of Kali linux onto a dvd. You can then live boot the Kali distro and recover any external hdd / ssd data attached to the system. Kali boots as root - a.k.a. - you are god.
Here's another thing, it all depends on what filesystem is being used on the HDD. Most come standard w/ FAT32 which can be read by both windows and 'nix systems. If you're using an apple product, or sun, those are proprietary systems, but they ar still readable by 'nix.

On a side note - as a security measure when I was in school for my degree and was running XP - I removed the NT Bootloader from the registry. Then I ran a live ubuntu disk and booted from the first Hard disk (the internal hdd). Nifty little trick because no-one can fire up the system w/o the boot loader. Essentially no one could boot the system unless they new the trick. On turning on the power w/o the live disk it will error out and ask for a PXE (network) boot. ;)

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2016, 04:59:40 AM »
This is something I've done on a couple machines.  I recommend giving more space to the Windows side, using a file system that Linux can read.  That gives you greater flexibility as to where to store stuff, when you might have some data that's useless to Linux but useful to Windows.  Then be verrrry careful about updating/upgrading the Windows, so you don't wind up shutting Linux out subsequently.
+10 - agreed

help a noob with chosing a operating system (windows 7 or Linux Mint??)
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2016, 05:49:48 AM »
Clean install...

DBAN the ssd /HDD
120 ssd - Gparted or Mini-tool Partition Wizard ( both freeware.) Format the drive w/ 4K sectors. Leave 1MB at the beginning or round to sectors.
Pull out your calculator and divide the total bytes by 4096, discard the remainder and resize the disk to the even #.
Don't worry about the unusable, it is miniscule compared to the speed gains we're shooting for here.
80GB for DOZE, 40 for 'nix. (approximate)
Install DOZE first.
Format the 'nix partition to ext4.
Manually partition the 'nix side.
My set up - 512MB  /boot
20GB   /     (root)
remainder   /home

if you're running an ssd and have more than 2GB RAM, there is no need for swap. (After install reduce vm.swappiness to 20(safe setting.))

There are also ways of setting up a data partition that both DOZE & 'nix can use, but that's a bit more advanced.

An external HDD can also be set up to chainload different 'nix distro's, but this takes some playing around and a bit of a learning curve.

http://www.brunolinux.com/05-Configuring_Your_System/Multiboot_grub.html
http://diddy.boot-land.net/grub4dos/files/boot.htm

Tip: Burn the partitioners to disk, as you cannot format when the partitions are mounted (unless you are an advanced user w/ 'nix - and even then it's a PITA & much easier done w/ a live disk. )

BTW - I'm writing this on a new distro I'm trying out. AntiX MX-14. So far, I'm liking it better than Xubuntu -of which I'm a big fan. ;)