The TRN LINUX CLUB

This is a discussion on The TRN LINUX CLUB within the Other Operating Systems forums, part of the Software category; I thought it might be helpful and definitely worthwhile to start a thread dedicated to building Linux based systems. Linux has come a long long ...

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  1. #1
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    The TRN LINUX CLUB

    I thought it might be helpful and definitely worthwhile to start a thread dedicated to building Linux based systems.

    Linux has come a long long way it the past few years. Growing exponentially with corporate sponsorship and an endless army of developers that provide free open-source applications.

    My experience is with Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick). I recently built a rig on spare parts for a Home Theater PC (HTPC). At first it was a little frustrating adjusting from M$ Windows conventions, but soon enough I got used to it. It takes a lot of reading/self-educating, but in my opinion it is a worthwhile endeavor in the long run.

    It's primary benefit is that its FREE, and so are the apps you can get for it. It works well with Windows and in a networked environment. It is also "lightweight" and compatible with more hardware than Windows 7 (especially older legacy hardware like sound blaster cards).

    Linux is ideally suited for secondary PC's and servers. Its not a gaming platform (yet), but it can do just about anything else. I am in the process of testing how Linux performs vs Windows with various application types, and will report my findings. So far, its great with multi-media and HTPC software like XBMC...more to come.

    With our combined brain power I think we can help each other build some great Linux based systems. So I hope you'll join me in my quest to minimize Bill Gate's wealth.

    New to Linux? Start here...http://www.ubuntu.com/ubuntu and take the tour.

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    Getting started with ubuntu Linux

    Ununtu v 11.04 is now the current version codenamed Natty Narwhal

    Warning: As with most updates, 11.04 may be unstable. If you have problems, install v. 10.10

    1. Download the version of ubuntu that suits your needs here...http://www.ubuntu.com/download/ubuntu/download Note: There are 32/64 bit desktop and server versions.

    2. Burn it to CD (yes CD not DVD). Use lowest speed when burning.

    3. To avoid frustration, I strongly recommend you install ubuntu on its own hard drive, and disable other HDDs during the process. If you choose to set up a dual boot it will be a PITA if Windows is already installed, so you're on your own, but you'll find plenty of documentation on the subject in the ubuntu community forums.

    4. Install, then run the update manager.

    5. Explore. Note the large number of apps already installed. Drivers will be already installed, you can also download and install proprietary drivers if available.

    6. Get comfortable with navigation and program basics.

    With patience you can run a lot of windows programs with "emulators" that can be installed, but more on that later. I just want you to know what Linux can do for now.

    Online User Guides here...https://help.ubuntu.com/community
    Last edited by Cigarbug; 05-03-2011 at 06:23 PM.




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  2. #2
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    Version 11.04 does not seem to like the junk I run, so I am sticking with v10.10--which works fine.

    Testing to date:

    Multimedia:
    XBMC Media Center works fine. No issues since latest updates. XBMC had to be installed from the "terminal" application. The How To can be found on the XBMC for Linux website. The terminal is a command line based application. Just copy and paste code from website to terminal command line.

    Rythmbox- is the default music player with the look and feel of Itunes (less the ipod connectivity). I was able to easily point the library to my network music folder, and play from the network location.

    System:
    WINE - Wine is not an Emulator - Contrary to the name, it is a Windows emulation application. When installed it allows operation of a lot of windows software, but not like windows. Some of the functionality may be limited depending on the app. My testing involved Full Tilt Poker, which installed and ran fine, the exception is that it does not remember my preference settings (no big deal).

    Repositories - are places from which software is downloaded and updated. Some repositories must be added to access, install, and update new software.

    Desktop - The Ubuntu default desktop is called "Gnome." It has a windows look and feel, and is highly customizable. The one thing that is a little different from windows convention is "Panel". Panels are what look like menu bars at the top and bottom of the desktop.

    Panels can be added, deleted, moved, resized, and can hold launch commands (aka shortcuts), and applets (embedded apps like clocks or calendars).

    Workspaces - Gnome gives you 4 default workspaces, like having 4 desktops with different apps running on each. Workspaces can be selected in the bottom right corner. Essentially making your desktop 4 x larger, but spread across 4 screens.
    Office:
    OpenOffice is the default office suite that comes with Ubuntu. Word processor, spreadsheet, presentation, & email. Compatible with M$ Office 2007 and prior.

    Ubuntu's preloaded apps cover just about any average needs. Thousands of more apps are available for easy download and installation.

    Hardware:
    Wireless connectivity. Ubuntu recognized my USB wireless adapter and found my network in pre-installation. I clicked on the wireless icon in the upper right corner, and it showed me available networks. I entered the network codekey, and had immediate connectivity which allowed for updates during installation.

    More to follow....
    Last edited by Cigarbug; 05-04-2011 at 05:28 PM.




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  3. #3
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    Tech Geek Rockr69's Avatar
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    Dual booting Ubuntu with Windows is not difficult at all. It overwrites the windows bootmanager with grub. It is advisable to install to it's own HDD, but again can be shared on a HDD with windows on it's own partiton. This is a good thread to start CB and I'll install Ubuntu on my spare machine so I can follow along only I'll be doing it from a USB flash drive.
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  5. #5
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rockr69 View Post
    Dual booting Ubuntu with Windows is not difficult at all. It overwrites the windows bootmanager with grub. It is advisable to install to it's own HDD, but again can be shared on a HDD with windows on it's own partiton. This is a good thread to start CB and I'll install Ubuntu on my spare machine so I can follow along only I'll be doing it from a USB flash drive.
    Thanks and welcome. I just want peeps to be aware that if your taking Linux for a test spin, avoid complications of a dual boot setup for now. Its not difficult but can be a pain in the ass if you choose to abandon and uninstall Linux.

    Keep it simple at first, get aggressive once you're committed.
    Last edited by Cigarbug; 05-03-2011 at 01:31 PM.




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  6. #6
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  7. #7
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    The "Dual Boot" Conundrum

    Editorial and opinion: there are many reasons for dual boot configuration, namely benchmarking two different systems. On the subject of Linux in a dual boot configuration, it would be pointless from a practical standpoint, for Linux to have any value. If you have Windows 7, you surely don't need Linux.

    The value of Linux will surely be in secondary equipment and economics. If you have a secondary rig, in my case an AMD 64 bit processor, I was able to utilize a free 64 bit Linux OS, as opposed to a 32 bit version of Windows XP or Vista I already have.

    The choice of dual boot is a personal, but not really practical. I believe that the benefits of Linux will only become apparent when you commit to that OS as the one and only OS for your rig, and put in the sweat equity of time to get it working to meet your needs. So, if your dual booting just to try out Linux, you're more likely to quit it. By using it 24/7, I'm getting to like it more and more. Just my 2 cents.

    Last edited by Cigarbug; 05-04-2011 at 05:56 PM.




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    Whiz Kid GoodInk's Avatar
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    Has a video chat that can cross platform with windows been made yet? That and gaming is about my only hold backs on it. I used Ubuntu 9.4 and found it was just about there as a full blown OS for the masses, about 90% there. I still keep my Ubuntu disk around, as I have found if windows gets hosed up you can still get to the hard drive to back everything up before a re installing windows.
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    Cases and Modding Moderator Enigma8750's Avatar
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    I want to be a Member.. I am running that open source XBMC/HTPC software.. I love it.. I run it with Windows 7 64 and it has created a beautiful environment for My Computer.
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  10. #10
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoodInk View Post
    Has a video chat that can cross platform with windows been made yet? That and gaming is about my only hold backs on it. I used Ubuntu 9.4 and found it was just about there as a full blown OS for the masses, about 90% there. I still keep my Ubuntu disk around, as I have found if windows gets hosed up you can still get to the hard drive to back everything up before a re installing windows.
    Its skype compatible. V11.04 is the first new release in quite a while. It crashes at the splash screen on my rig. Others have gotten it to work with no problem, but some are very disappointed. I read it has a MAC OS feel to it.




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  11. #11
    Whiz Kid Cigarbug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enigma8750 View Post
    I want to be a Member.. I am running that open source XBMC/HTPC software.. I love it.. I run it with Windows 7 64 and it has created a beautiful environment for My Computer.
    Welcome aboard. I think you will find Linux a viable choice to a budget build. XBMC works on Linux as it does on Windows.




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  12. #12
    TR Staff Neuromancer's Avatar
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    Ubuntu is the windows of the linux world. In other words, its laggy, slow and does everything you need.

    Having said that.. I have run most ubuntu distros (I personally prefer Xubuntu... which uses the XFCE desktop instead of Gnome), but have run every DE.

    Should be noted.. does not matter which distro you DL.. you can install whichever you like via CLI. XFCE is lightest. Gnome is most popular now, KDE (kubuntu) was the bomb for many years.

    Try teh live versions before you pick one. and note, the live versions are faster than the installed ones.
    Last edited by Neuromancer; 02-20-2013 at 06:11 AM.
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