Linux, eh? what you on about

The simple version?

Linux is an operating system that comes in a lot of different versions. Essentially the basic code is free for anyone to modify and redistribute.

It is possible to 'dual-boot' - you can install Linux and leave your Windows install as it currently is, assuming you have enough hard disk space.

Some things Linux does very well and some things are a real pain in the arse until you practice.

I would suggest if you are going to try Linux then you spend a bit of time looking for a version (distro is the phrase) that is easy to use and free, Ubuntu used to be recommended but no idea on the current versions. Then either dual-boot or download virtual machine software to see if you get on with it.

Virtual machines allow you to effectively run Linux from within Windows and won't bugger up your Windows install if it all goes Pete Tong. Virtualbox works well and is free - Oracle VM VirtualBox

Right, now that I've done my very simple version stand by for lots of discussion about sudo and root and kernels from people who actually know what they are talking about ;)
nope sorry,
I couldn't even read that , so linux is out for me I suppose. :)
 
I’ve got a 10 year old Macbook that’s on its last legs. It’s got 2GB RAM and a dual core 64-bit processor though, so it’s not all bad. The lad’s had it, beaten he shit out of the keyboard and it has several dents in it. But an eBay $30 SSD and reformat and I can use it for a server. If MacOS is still slow on it, I’ll put Linux on it and use it headless as a proper server.

Though this doesn’t help the OP. Try a Live version.
Upgrade the RAM, badly.
 
Upgrade the RAM, badly.
We’ll see. I can’t believe it needs a shit ton of RAM to do the basic function of running a CNC machine, but it if does, it won’t cost much. The SSD will be the key To speeding it up.

Same for any old computer really. If you can put more RAM and an SSD in it for cheap off eBay (or similar), that will eke a few years of life out of it.
 
We’ll see. I can’t believe it needs a shit ton of RAM to do the basic function of running a CNC machine, but it if does, it won’t cost much. The SSD will be the key To speeding it up.

Same for any old computer really. If you can put more RAM and an SSD in it for cheap off eBay (or similar), that will eke a few years of life out of it.
Even a Core 2 Duo will struggle on 1GB of RAM.

I've just upgraded the CEO's iMac (2009 All in One Core 2 Duo) from 2GB to 4GB. It's made a hell of a difference even without an SSD (He said he didn't want one)

Mate of mine has a CNC etching machine for doing circuit boards for his business. He called me up begging me to look at his computer controlling this machine, as it was constantly freezing up and losing postion, and aas a result it was buggering boards up. Went to have a gander at it, it was some old bucket of bolts with a Windows Vista Ready sticker on it running Windows 7.

Gave him an old second gen i7 laptop with Win 7 and 8GB RAM from the pile I am throwing out at work at the moment. He's since told me that all the problems have disappeared now and he is no longer losing boards or destroying etching tips.
 
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I'm not actually very sure why a specific choice of o/s would assist anyone wishing to access restricted areas or to cover their tracks. The web portals are the same.
Don’t ask me, he baffled me with it all.

One thing he did Phuq up though was leaving, what I can only call, a semi-uninstalled version of Ubuntu on my fave laptop. If anyone has a clue how to get everything off a hard disk so that it is a fresh slate ready for reloading everything all advice welcome.
 
Linux is perfect for setting up a NAS drive. I've got a server running at home running Debian (HP Microserver, 4x 2TB HDD's in a 6TB array). It runs my local storage server as well as my local Minecraft server

What are you? Hillary Clinton?
 
Just for the hell of it, I got my old laptop out and reinstalled a newer version of Lubuntu on it. I used 18.04 because that was the newest 32 bit version.

I had forgotten just how crap that thing was. 1.6 GHz Atom, 1 GB of RAM, 160 GB hard drive. A tiny screen.

The installer is a very old version of the Debian installer, and not anywhere near as easy to use as the Ubuntu installer. You have to answer questions which may look a bit intimidating if you've never done this before. On the other hand, since you're just wiping the hard drive anyway, if you guess wrong you can always try again. When installed, the OS took up about 5% of the 160 GB drive.

The desktop ( LX DE ) is reminiscent of old style Windows XP with a menu button on the bottom left that pops up with a menu when you click on it. Some people may see this as a plus, although I'm not a fan of it.

Youtube played videos full screen, although it seemed to be dropping frames occasionally. Whether or not this is an issue will likely depend mainly on whether Lubuntu had drivers for the graphics chip (probably unobtainable in this case).

Overall, the experience was OK. Lubuntu wasn't the problem however, it was the small screen, crappy keyboard, and pathetic speakers that I can't tolerate.

If the laptop had 2 GB of RAM or more, I would be inclined to try Ubuntu on it. For 32 bit I could use version 16.04, for 64 bit I could use version 18.04.

I then compared this with using a Raspberry Pi 3 to watch the same video. I didn't hook up speakers so I don't know how the sound would be, but full screen video (the same one, Chap on the Range with a Martini Henry) on a large monitor seemed smoother than it was on the lap top. When just using the OS it seemed faster and smoother, with menus opening quicker and everything seeming quicker. This may be just better graphics support, as I didn't run any benchmarks to compare. Given a choice of using the Pi with a reasonable monitor and keyboard or using the old laptop, I think I would take the Pi any day.
 
Just for the hell of it, I got my old laptop out and reinstalled a newer version of Lubuntu on it. I used 18.04 because that was the newest 32 bit version.

I had forgotten just how crap that thing was. 1.6 GHz Atom, 1 GB of RAM, 160 GB hard drive. A tiny screen.

The installer is a very old version of the Debian installer, and not anywhere near as easy to use as the Ubuntu installer. You have to answer questions which may look a bit intimidating if you've never done this before. On the other hand, since you're just wiping the hard drive anyway, if you guess wrong you can always try again. When installed, the OS took up about 5% of the 160 GB drive.

The desktop ( LX DE ) is reminiscent of old style Windows XP with a menu button on the bottom left that pops up with a menu when you click on it. Some people may see this as a plus, although I'm not a fan of it.

Youtube played videos full screen, although it seemed to be dropping frames occasionally. Whether or not this is an issue will likely depend mainly on whether Lubuntu had drivers for the graphics chip (probably unobtainable in this case).

Overall, the experience was OK. Lubuntu wasn't the problem however, it was the small screen, crappy keyboard, and pathetic speakers that I can't tolerate.

If the laptop had 2 GB of RAM or more, I would be inclined to try Ubuntu on it. For 32 bit I could use version 16.04, for 64 bit I could use version 18.04.

I then compared this with using a Raspberry Pi 3 to watch the same video. I didn't hook up speakers so I don't know how the sound would be, but full screen video (the same one, Chap on the Range with a Martini Henry) on a large monitor seemed smoother than it was on the lap top. When just using the OS it seemed faster and smoother, with menus opening quicker and everything seeming quicker. This may be just better graphics support, as I didn't run any benchmarks to compare. Given a choice of using the Pi with a reasonable monitor and keyboard or using the old laptop, I think I would take the Pi any day.
Quad core Broadcom beats a dual core Atom any day of the week. The Raspberry Pi processor itself is geared towards video playback.
 
Excellent idea. Chrome being a derivative of Linux, but without the hassle of installation and having the backing of a webscale company. I believe it can run Linux app as a well as Chrome ones.

Must try it myself!
TBH the OP started off on the wrong foot with the "beardy weirdies" comment. I'm guessing that he's heard of Linux and is going to try installing it without any due diligence over what's required.

When he fcks it up, it's not going to be his fault, it'll be because Linux is shit - a fact he'll happily share with the world every time Linux is mentioned.

A Chromebook is the nearest thing to a Speak 'N Spell black box solution for him.
 
TBH the OP started off on the wrong foot with the "beardy weirdies" comment. I'm guessing that he's heard of Linux and is going to try installing it without any due diligence over what's required.

When he fcks it up, it's not going to be his fault, it'll be because Linux is shit - a fact he'll happily share with the world every time Linux is mentioned.

A Chromebook is the nearest thing to a Speak 'N Spell black box solution for him.
This.
 
Linux is good to play with. I have it as a dual boot option. It is not ready, imho, as a stand alone consumer o/s.
I don't know if it ever will be as long as there are geeks who, underneath everything, are still wedded to a command line interface. I believe that they actually prefer that it should stay exclusive and geeky for its own sake. That's how they like it.

There are also some areas where it really does not cut the mustard and follows rather than leads, or else is too complicated to be worthwhile. Music and media production, for example.

I think there is still a place for it. If only to keep Windows feet to the fire.
I'm sorry, old chap, but I have to disagree with you. I've been a Linux user for over 20 years, and until 10 years ago I'd agree with you. But I haven't touched Windows on this dual boot machine for 10 years now, it's been solely Linux, and there is nothing I can't do that I want to on this. I used to have to use Windows for TomTom and Polar stuff, but they're both web-based now, so platform independent.

My ex-girlfriend also uses solely Linux on her PC and, I can't put it any other way, if she can use it anybody can.
 
My single trip into Linux world was a pain.

I had an old laptop on, Errrh, long term loan.

Decided to try Linux. Went to shop and bought a boxed copy of Red Hat Linux (my daughter’s thought it was a game about penguins). Formatted the hard drive for a nice clean installation.

All set. Load CD. Asked to “mount the drives”. WTF does that mean.

Buggered around for a few hours. Decided it was a POS. Reinstalled Windows and MS Office.

I might have persevered twenty years earlier in my spod period but meh. I just want something that works.
 
My single trip into Linux world was a pain.

I had an old laptop on, Errrh, long term loan.

Decided to try Linux. Went to shop and bought a boxed copy of Red Hat Linux (my daughter’s thought it was a game about penguins). Formatted the hard drive for a nice clean installation.

All set. Load CD. Asked to “mount the drives”. WTF does that mean.

Buggered around for a few hours. Decided it was a POS. Reinstalled Windows and MS Office.

I might have persevered twenty years earlier in my spod period but meh. I just want something that works.
You bought Linux? :D
 
Yeah. It was about £4.99 for the box.

Not a massive deal.
You were robbed!

By the way, for Ubuntu/Kubuntu etc, you just shove the DVD in and it does it all for you. You can elect to choose various options if you know what you're doing, otherwise it will select sensible options for you and install in about half an hour. No office programmes to buy and install, no audio players to pay for, no video programmes to rip you off. It's all that already and works.
 
Yeah. It was about £4.99 for the box.

Not a massive deal.
I'm going to guess that this was many years ago, as I haven't seen Linux distros in boxes on store shelves in a very loooong time.

I used to buy boxed versions of Linux as well (Mandrake), because downloading multiple CDs over a 56k dial-up modem was not very practical, and it would have used up my monthly ISP modem access hours before I finished downloading anyway.

Red Hat by the way was not a very good choice for a beginner. It was, and still is, meant for corporate IT professionals, who do this sort of thing as their daily job. Not that you would necessarily have known that at the time, but that's the situation. Red Hat are big on corporate IT servers, but the only people who use it on the desktop these days are ones whose corporate IT departments choose it for them.

If you want to try it now, then try Ubuntu, which as has already been said, very easy to install. And by Ubuntu I mean actual Ubuntu, not some derivative that someone has hacked together out of other components in their spare time. Installation is a matter of answering a series of questions such as what user name and password you want to use, what language you speak, what time zone you live in, and what sort of keyboard you use (e.g. UK, American, etc.).

If you want to make a dual-boot setup, then you have to worry about things like partitioning the drive. Not many people dual-boot these days, mainly just people who want to do most of their normal computing on Linux, but to also use the same PC for high end PC gaming on Windows. If you don't dual-boot, then the default drive installation parameters (which will over-write and reformat the hard drive) are best.

For those who care by the way, the company behind Ubuntu are headquartered in London. Their main business is support for "cloud" servers, where the server version of Ubuntu is very popular. They put out a very polished and easy to use desktop version as getting people hooked on that has (successfully) led users to use the server version as well for commercial projects, which Canonical can then sell support contracts for (corporate bean counters don't feel comfortable relying only on in house IT staff to sort out IT problems when revenue is involved, and so want a backup team available). It's the same business model that Red Hat (now owned by IBM) use, except that Red Hat's desktop version is not very highly regarded. Red Hat got started in the business in the early days of Linux though, so they got their foot in the door early in replacing the old proprietary unix systems.
 
Why?
The world hasn't ended and Win7 still works fine..
This is poor advice. There are no more security updates being provided, so you need to get rid of Win 7
 
TBH, and for the past few years, I've paid for Kaspersky, which I'm led to believe is a very good AV software package. (Still scares the bejeebas out of me that's it's Russian tho).

So do you think with Win7 and Kaspersky, I don't need to upgrade?
Bin Kaspersky and use Windows Defender. Also bin Windows 7, you can still upgrade for free: You Can Still Upgrade to Windows 10 For Free, Here's How
 

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