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Say you need to plunge your family from Winsuck to [anything else]; which distro is the best evangelist?

Sante Fe Linux
- 0 (0%)
Red Hat Desktop
- 1 (3.6%)
SUSE Linux
- 5 (17.9%)
MEPIS Linux
- 3 (10.7%)
Slackware Linux
- 1 (3.6%)
Debian GNU/Linux
- 3 (10.7%)
Gentoo Linux
- 0 (0%)
Mandriva Linux
- 3 (10.7%)
Yellow Dog Linux
- 1 (3.6%)
Ubantu
- 11 (39.3%)

Total Members Voted: 12


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Author Topic: Best Linux for converting newbs  (Read 11586 times)

enemyofthestate

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #30 on: November 01, 2006, 05:30:20 pm »

Yeah, I heard about that. But to avoid that all I have to do is retrogade to Win 98 (which I never had a problem with).

That's one way to go, and it's probably fine for many people.  However, you're then kind of locked into whatever software you have at the time (which, as I said, is probably fine for many people) as new software will at some point no longer be compatible with that version of Windows 98.  And, of course, you're stuck with whatever security vulnerabilities it might have one Microsoft stops supporting that version with security updates (which may already have happened, I'm not sure).
Extended support for Windows 98, Windows 98 SE, and Windows ME ended on July 11, 2006.  Microsoft ended all public and technical support, including security updates, on that date.
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padre29

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #31 on: November 01, 2006, 06:50:07 pm »


I run 98 or ME and I cna see the writing on the wall. HD's are getting huge, Win98 has troubles with anything over 128 gb HD's, and a few movies will max that HD out.

The time is fast approaching that Linux will be the only serious way to have a mainstream non M$ OS on one's box.

Personally I would not mind "gasp" paying for a modern Linux OS that didn't require me becoming a Linux expert, only a Linux user.
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Scarmiglione'

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #32 on: November 02, 2006, 06:50:24 am »

Reason Puppy Linux isn't on the list:  I've never heard of it before.  :D

We are single-user computers in my house, and I'm the only one that really wants to keep any sort of Windows around (Neverwinter Nights 2 is out any day now).  The kids just need a browser kiosk, and the wife just needs internet and office (I'm already a fan of open office and gimp, so those capabilities are covered).

We've actually started this path before, but had issues with various hardware pieces that couldn't get resolved, plus the games issue.  Now that another year or so has gone by, I'm hoping hardware support has improved dramatically, especially since the 'nixes have been upgrading and I haven't.

Great info so far, thanks everyone.  if anyone has more to add, please do.

And yeah, it's Vista's draconian licensing bullshit that is breaking this camel's back.  XP will last long enough for the things I want it to today, and if I ever do need additional windows OS's, something will just have to come up.
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Lazarus Long

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #33 on: November 02, 2006, 08:17:15 am »

If you're a newb to Linux, google is your friend (or ixquick.com, or clusty.com, if you don't like google).

I'm no ubergeek, but have solved untold numbers of conundrums with Linux just by googling some key terminology (or error messages, or commands, or whatever). This is why I recommend free major-league distros that are backed by a big online user/developer community. The more people out there messing with it, the more likely you are to be able to find solutions with a simple web search.

A good place for information about different Linux distributions is www.distrowatch.org. Their main page includes a popularity ranking for different distributions based on page hits. Contrarians scoff at popular things, but a popular Linux distribution is one for which many common problems have already been solved, and for which many solutions can be googled.

Puppy (www.puppyos.org) isn't really a major league distro, but it's one of the best. It's backed by a great community and forum (http://www.murga.org/%7Epuppy/). Can't beat free tech support - just remember to pass it on when you can.

I love open source software, because if you can wait a little while and procrastinate about tackling your obstacles, the likelyhood is that some rabid enthusiast (or some extremely frustrated but clever newcomer) will solve the problem in the meantime and share the solution online. I love going back to try newer versions of promising distros I tried in the past. Puppy in particular has evolved in great ways, but Linux in general keeps getting easier and easier for minor geeks like me. Sooner or later I might even be able to recommend it to my mom...
« Last Edit: December 11, 2006, 08:31:55 am by Lazarus Long »
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Leonidas the Younger

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #34 on: November 02, 2006, 08:24:57 am »

Wow, sometimes OSTG threads go nowhere for a long time, and then sometimes *blamo*, tons and tons of posts.

Thank you Jac for answering scarmig, re: Fluxbox

Quote
To expand on this a little bit, Microsoft is moving toward a model where you don't actually own your software or documents or even your computer if you use their software.  They are moving toward a model where you rent all your software from them, your documents no longer are accessible if you fail to keep paying your rent, and even your computer can be cause to no longer function if you stop paying.

And to expand on that a little bit, this is but the tip of the iceburg, the very begining of DRM/Trusted Computing.

What is DRM? It stands for "digital rights management", and it's _seriously_ bad mojo for anyone interested in freedom, privacy, cryptography, and in general the right to keep and bear CPUs.

It will mean (among other things) that you rent your software. It will mean that watching a DVD means you do it THEIR way. (Want to watch it again, chummer? Okay, that'll be $.99 please, Visa, MC, and PayPAL accepted ..) Yes, this could even mean the DVDs you "own", not just the rentals.

Copyright will reign supreme and creative culture will be stifled. And your computer won't be able to help you, because the CPU will be under the control of the corporations. "Trusted computing" doesn't mean capable of being trusted by the end user, you, the "owner" of the machine. Oh no sir, it means that the CORPORATIONS can trust it to act in their best interests.

Of course, this has dreadful implications for personal cryptography. Far and above and beyond Clipper. (Google for 'clipper chip' if you don't get that reference, it was Clinton's administration bullshit, and too much to go into here ..) You won't be able to authenticate or encrypt/decrypt email without the government knowing, and being able to read it. Again, "your" CPU would really belong to them.

All of these things will be implemented at a hardware level, so open OSes won't be able to get around it, or more than likely, even be allowed to run.

That means Linux and other open OSes would be illegal.

Allow me to repeat: that would mean Linux would be illegal.

And much of the push for all of this bullshit is being brought to you by not just Microsoft, but by the RIAA/MPAA. DRM is a copyright owner's wetdream.

And our nightmare.

-- Leonidas
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Bill St. Clair

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #35 on: November 02, 2006, 08:33:32 am »

And much of the push for all of this bullshit is being brought to you by not just Microsoft, but by the RIAA/MPAA. DRM is a copyright owner's wetdream.

And our nightmare.

Indeed. But I'd like to make that more precise. DRM is a secondary copyright owner's wet dream. It excites the guys who can't make the stuff they sell. The authors who write the books, screenwriters, directors, and actors who make the movies, musicians who make the music, and hackers who make the software are usually happy for you to use their work. Yes, they need to be paid for what they do, but no, most of them don't want to restrict your enjoyment of their art. That's the domain of the parasites who live off of the creators.
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securitysix

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #36 on: November 02, 2006, 10:09:38 am »

Clipper chip link for anyone interested.  Leo made the comment and my brain went "That sounds familiar..."  Googled, came up with that link and my brain went "HOLY SHIT!".  Dan Brown (author of "The Da Vinci Code" and "Angels and Demons") also wrote a couple of techno type thrillers.  One was called "Digital Fortress".  It actually talks about exactly this, in a fictional setting, but from the NSA's side of the story, basically.  Very interesting read.
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George Potter

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #37 on: December 08, 2006, 04:27:51 pm »


Alright, I'm jumping in. Gonna start running the 'puter on Puppy booting from a 256 meg pen drive.

Wish me luck! :)
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Plinker-MS

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #38 on: December 08, 2006, 05:12:38 pm »


Alright, I'm jumping in. Gonna start running the 'puter on Puppy booting from a 256 meg pen drive.

Wish me luck! :)


Go for it!

Hopefully your BIOS supports booting from a USB drive - most newer machines do.
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George Potter

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #39 on: December 08, 2006, 06:53:57 pm »


Alright, I'm jumping in. Gonna start running the 'puter on Puppy booting from a 256 meg pen drive.

Wish me luck! :)


Go for it!

Hopefully your BIOS supports booting from a USB drive - most newer machines do.

I have to do the CD version first anyway. For Xmas my brother got me a (much)new(er than the one I have) computer and he said that it would. (He's doing the same thing now.)

The idea of carrying around my hard drive everywhere has this goofy appeal to me. :P
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irv

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #40 on: December 10, 2006, 10:08:38 am »

I would add freespire and myah to that list.
Both (unlike most of the others) include the codecs and stuff
needed to play web videos, DVD's, etc.

Freespire looks like Windows (which is good and bad) and has
a very nice easy way to add/update programs.
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Lazarus Long

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #41 on: December 11, 2006, 09:38:19 am »

Gloryroad, if you run into any hiccups with Puppy, holler at me.

The idea of carrying around my hard drive everywhere has this goofy appeal to me. :P

Nothing goofy about it, sir.  :ph34r:   

Plus, you won't be using an OS from a company named after the founder's willy.
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irv

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #42 on: December 11, 2006, 12:33:35 pm »


Personally I would not mind "gasp" paying for a modern Linux OS that didn't require me becoming a Linux expert, only a Linux user.


You know, things have changed A LOT in just the past six months or so in this regard. There are many versions of Linux now available which don't require any real expertise at all, beyond being able to click "OK" for the install.

Just as an example, I have a few old laptops here. To get them to work with Windows, I had to search out and install four or five sets of drivers. Then, to keep
'em working, I had to download and install anti-virus, firewall, etc. etc.

The same laptops when loaded with Linux just worked, no effort at all.

If you've got access to a high-speed internet connection and a cd burner, they're all free, as well. No need to pay unless you just want to.



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padre29

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #43 on: December 11, 2006, 05:17:00 pm »


Personally I would not mind "gasp" paying for a modern Linux OS that didn't require me becoming a Linux expert, only a Linux user.


You know, things have changed A LOT in just the past six months or so in this regard. There are many versions of Linux now available which don't require any real expertise at all, beyond being able to click "OK" for the install.

Just as an example, I have a few old laptops here. To get them to work with Windows, I had to search out and install four or five sets of drivers. Then, to keep
'em working, I had to download and install anti-virus, firewall, etc. etc.

The same laptops when loaded with Linux just worked, no effort at all.

If you've got access to a high-speed internet connection and a cd burner, they're all free, as well. No need to pay unless you just want to.





Well I have a laptop that is having DSL being installed on it, the person who is doing the work had to look long and hard to find the sound card drivers for it.

I think that I learn better and more when it is sink or swim when learning a new OS.
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irv

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Re: Best Linux for converting newbs
« Reply #44 on: December 11, 2006, 05:48:10 pm »


Well I have a laptop that is having DSL being installed on it, the person who is doing the work had to look long and hard to find the sound card drivers for it.


Well, you do know that DSL stands for Damn Small Linux.
They had to leave out some (ok, a lot) of things to get it to be that small.

Edited to add: personally, I much prefer a version which takes at least a full
CD, if not 3 or 4. You get a lot more usefulness that way.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2006, 05:50:45 pm by irv »
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