bluetape66
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:59 pm
Location: EARHT
Contact: Website

Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:01 pm

I have TONS of old motherboards, graphics cards, memory, etc. and I am building an extra pc for fun. What linux os should I use? ubuntu? Also, how does one "put" a new os on a pc? This project is just to get more familiar with linux and the RPi.
Don't Cry because it's over, smile because it happend. :D

User avatar
rurwin
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Posts: 4258
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:16 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:22 pm

The most popular Linux distributions at this moment are Ubuntu and Mint. They are both Debian-based, so are compatible with Raspbian on the Raspberry Pi.

To install an OS on a bare machine, you write a bootable image to a CD, DVD or USB drive and boot the PC off it. You may have to go into the BIOS set-up to set that device as a permitted boot device. You will generally download the CD/DVD image as an ISO file. Most CD/DVD burning applications have a menu option for "burn from ISO", it isn't a matter of dragging and dropping the ISO file; that doesn't work.

It is fascinating what us old-timers take for granted that is fast becoming unknown and mysterious. Like the command-line.

WARNING: This post does not relate the the Raspberry Pi -- The install sequence is totally different.

User avatar
M.M
Posts: 107
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:40 am
Location: Hamburg, GER

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:30 pm

<edit> rurwin beat me to the chase, but nevertheless... </edit>

Hi blue,

Linux can be installed to the hard drive just like you would install Windows. Additionally, you can run it from CD or Pendrive using a live distro. That way, you can check if a given distro does work with all the hardware components.

If the hardware is old there is a good chance that many Linux distros support it. New hardware drivers are added to the kernel subsequently. So if the Kernel is "younger" than the hardware things should be good.

Ubuntu is said to hav very good hardware support. If you have trouble adjusting to Unity, the new Ubuntu Desktop Environment, Linux Mint might be for you. It uses the Ubuntu Kernel but implements a more "Windows-like" desktop Approach.


Regards,

M.M
"If people read the FAQs the Qs wouldn't be A F, would they?"

User avatar
excollier
Posts: 194
Joined: Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:17 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:05 pm

Linux Mint 13 has support until 2017, and is very (Windows) user friendly, try the Cinnamon desktop version, very nice, and simple to use.
Linux Lite is another "Windows" like distro too.

Spid
Posts: 525
Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:47 pm

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:08 pm

Considering the Raspberry Pi Foundation Distro is Raspbian "wheezy" which has the LXDE Desktop environment, I would consider:

Lubuntu similar look & feel, as uses the LXDE Desktop...
or
Debian with the LXDE Desktop is another option
I will always assume you are running Raspbian for desktop and Raspbmc for XMBC !

User avatar
Jessie
Posts: 1754
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:40 pm
Location: C/S CO USA

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:54 pm

Its dead easy on a PC. If you just want to try it out you can even throw it on a USB stick and have your PC boot from USB.

bluetape66
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:59 pm
Location: EARHT
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:20 am

Thanks for all the help guys! it's greatly appreciated!
Don't Cry because it's over, smile because it happend. :D

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:32 am

I hated Ubuntu's Unity desktop initially. Then left and went with Gnome and XFCE.

After needing a new OS for girlfriends laptop, and my desktop, I have come back to Ubuntu 12.10 with Unity, and well, frankly, it's rather good.

The "Dash Home" button (or 'Windows' key) really is your friend, and overall it just rocks really well.

I am however, liking Canonical less and less, and I keep running into features and choices that only a corporation would make.

I'm sticking with them for now.

User avatar
pluggy
Posts: 3635
Joined: Thu May 31, 2012 3:52 pm
Location: Barnoldswick, Lancashire,UK
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 9:31 pm

The change to the Unity desktop is of nought alongside what Microsoft did with Windo$e 8.....

Full time Ubuntu 12.04 user here......
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 9:44 pm

Mate - I used Win8 2 days ago for the first time ever. I've always liked Windows, and I think Win7 is *great*.

With Windows 8, I felt like I didn't know how to use a computer. I had to Google basic things, and struggled to find even things like the power off and reboot functions. Crazy. It was truly awful.

Because I'm the geek guy in my circle of friends + their friends, everyone asks me for advice buying laptops etc. I simply can't recommend Windows 8 machines to anyone.

I think now it will be "Windows 7 was great, but Windows 8 is just awful, save your frustration and pony up for a Macbook White/Air/Pro depending on your budget - you will be THAT much happier it's not funny."

I was thinking about recommending Ubuntu 12.04/12.10 for a friend who's Windows is borked. But although for straightforward use its GREAT, little things still trip desktop-Linux-for-the-masses up badly - like my printer - bog standard cheap HP Photosmart C4480. Plug and play in OSX, and I think in Windows too, but Linux needs a seperate download and text-mode install of a scanner driver, and the installed scan software (XSane) works a treat but is ugly and doesn't look at all newbie friendly.

Get all those types of niggles sorted and Linux could be ready for the masses within 2 years, but it's been the year of the Linux desktop (failed, of course) for so many years now, I just don't know when it will ever happen.

I tell my friends if they buy a Mac, I won't charge them for support. (I don't tell them it's because they'll never need it).

If I installed Linux for a friend, I'd "own" it, and it's issues *forever* :(

Windows - they can get anyone to fix for them if need be.

Wow. Ranty.

Rant rant rant.

User avatar
pluggy
Posts: 3635
Joined: Thu May 31, 2012 3:52 pm
Location: Barnoldswick, Lancashire,UK
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:45 pm

From somebody who doesn't like Windows, I quite like Windows 8, complete culture shock, but very polished (until you get just under the surface and its Windows 7 without a start button). Ubuntu 12.04 is quite conservative.....

Macs are too pricey.
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:08 pm

Don't mention 'Surface' and 'Microsoft' in the same breath haha

User avatar
rurwin
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Posts: 4258
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:16 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:14 pm

I have some friends who are totally computer illiterate. She still doesn't understand that Facebook photos are not on her computer. Cleaning malware off the computer was a regular job for yours truly, except for the glorious few months that I managed to make their daughter the administrator account. Their daughter none-the-less always got the blame for all the strange toolbars, search engines, etc. that kept showing up after they got someone else to give them back administrator.

So one day it got too much and the machine needed a nuke-and-pave. They didn't have an OS disk, and couldn't afford one, so I bought an only slightly dodgy copy of OEM XP on on eBay, with my own money, and installed it. I told them to look after the disk.

A few months later, it had all gone horribly wrong again, and I asked them to find the disk. They couldn't. So I installed Linux Mint.

Everything was fine for a few months. There were no complaints, no malware. When they finally got someone else to install an even more dodgy copy of Windows 7, it was only because they wanted to play Windows games. Not surprisingly the malware came back.

Eventually the machine died, got resurrected and died again. Not having funds to replace it they made do with laptops, both of them with just as much malware. Recently one of those laptops died and, life being impossible without Facebook, a new one was purchased. I got my first chance to explore Windows 8. I was suitably horrified.

Less than one week later I received a text asking if it was possible to install Windows XP or Windows 7 on the new laptop.

Windows 8: the final piece that makes Linux ready for the desktop.

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:25 pm

Yep, my client with the Win8 laptop is horrified with it.

It can't run her very common accounting software either (but neither can Linux). Obviously this is the vendors fault not MS but still, I don't want to touch W8 again if I can help it.

I'm loving being on Linux fulltime since my OSX laptop PSU died the other day.

User avatar
pluggy
Posts: 3635
Joined: Thu May 31, 2012 3:52 pm
Location: Barnoldswick, Lancashire,UK
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:42 am

I've done 4 Windows 8 boxes for clients, no complaints and one has actually said they like it. It bears no relation to anything that went before however, which is probably why its so unpopular. Many of my clients are pensioners with no particular 'baggage' of long familiarity with windows or the need to play games so I'm probably a special case. If it does facebook gets their email and allows them to look at their photos and listen to their music they are happy. I haven't had any complaints from the dozen or so 'upgrades' to Ubuntu I've put on clients machines either. Usually brought on by failed/failing hard drives, no recovery media and lack of funds......
Last edited by pluggy on Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:47 am

pluggy wrote:I've done 3 Windows 8 boxes for clients, no complaints and one has actually said they like it. It bears no relation to anything that went before however, which is probably why its so unpopular. Many of my clients are pensioners with no particular 'baggage' of long familiarity with windows or the need to play games so I'm probably a special case. If it does facebook gets their email and allows them to look at their photos and listen to their music they are happy. I haven't had any complaints from the dozen or so 'upgrades' to Ubuntu I've put on clients machines either. Usually brought on by failed/failing hard drives, no recovery media and lack of funds......
Trouble is, that out of the box, Windows 8 doesn't do email if you use an esoteric, crazy, unpopular and little known mailbox type called POP3.

I nearly soiled my daks when I went to set up their email accounts (access to email - the whole reason they desperately needed a new computer).

Because they have multiple accounts, and are not technical, and pay for support, it's not feasible to route their ISP POP3's through Gmail et al, so now they have to break away from the not-actual-too-bad-looking Metro interface, to run Thunderbird.

User avatar
pluggy
Posts: 3635
Joined: Thu May 31, 2012 3:52 pm
Location: Barnoldswick, Lancashire,UK
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:54 am

Dunno what its like in Oz/NZ, but in this neck of the woods, most email nowadays is web-mail. The ISPs like it because they have more control, its less to go wrong and they can plaster advertising all over it. I haven't seen a domestic ISP offering client based email as standard for about a decade. Most of them will do it, if you set it up, but the ISPs are pushing everyone to Web-mail.
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

4thdwarflord
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:26 pm
Location: Deep in the mines of Moria

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:00 pm

I have a friend that swears by windows 8. or at least he was my friend...

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:06 pm

pluggy wrote:Dunno what its like in Oz/NZ, but in this neck of the woods, most email nowadays is web-mail. The ISPs like it because they have more control, its less to go wrong and they can plaster advertising all over it. I haven't seen a domestic ISP offering client based email as standard for about a decade. Most of them will do it, if you set it up, but the ISPs are pushing everyone to Web-mail.
ISP email is the work of a nasty nasty man who lives in a hot place.

For a ton of reasons.

But in NZ, it's all POP3 accessible, although the incumbent has Yahoo!-Hackable(TM) webmail hooked into the same mailboxes.

User avatar
rpdom
Posts: 14425
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:17 am
Location: Chelmsford, Essex, UK

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:19 pm

I'm happy to say that both my ISPs provide POP3 email alongside their webmail offerings. :)

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:51 pm

Buy a domain name for as little as $1 a year, and run your own mail server at home or on a shared host somewhere.

Unchain yourself!

User avatar
abishur
Posts: 4477
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:10 am
Location: USA
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:06 pm

tonyhughes wrote:I hated Ubuntu's Unity desktop initially. Then left and went with Gnome and XFCE.
I still can't stand the unity desktop, especially the way I am forced to keep the "taskbar" on the left hand side of the screen with no options to move it. It's linux, I'm supposed to have complete control over basic things like this :x

I recently moved to mint 14 and have (thus far) been very happy with it. It's ubuntu minus unity, I'm using the cinnamon desktop and its rather nice.
Dear forum: Play nice ;-)

User avatar
tonyhughes
Posts: 951
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:46 am

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:11 pm

Yeah, now that I'm getting extended time with Ubuntu, the lack of customisation like that is starting to annoy.

Having to install third party software to create a desktop icon flabbergasted me too.

Maybe I should try Mint.

User avatar
abishur
Posts: 4477
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:10 am
Location: USA
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:30 pm

tonyhughes wrote:Yeah, now that I'm getting extended time with Ubuntu, the lack of customisation like that is starting to annoy.

Having to install third party software to create a desktop icon flabbergasted me too.

Maybe I should try Mint.
It definitely worth at least trying. As long as you get the main Mint 14, then it's literally just a fork of ubuntu. They have a version that uses Debian as a base rather than Ubuntu, but I wanted to stick with Ubuntu for the time being as that releases updates an a shorter time frame. Beyond that you can choose from a handful of desktop managers (apologies if that is the wrong phrase) I went with cinnamon, but they also have gnome and kde in there too.
Dear forum: Play nice ;-)

User avatar
abishur
Posts: 4477
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:10 am
Location: USA
Contact: Website

Re: Never used linux "building" a pc

Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:39 pm

Full disclosure: I have nothing to with Mint and have only been trying it out for about week ;-)
Dear forum: Play nice ;-)

Return to “General discussion”