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Old Mar 22, 2010, 11:23 AM   #11
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Can I get my preinstalled O.S to dual boot with my stick? and Debian?
A Boot manager has to be installed on your first boot drive. There are ways to give the USB stick a boot menu that also includes a Windows choice. But, a better way is a hard drive install (otherwise, you have to "jump through hoops" with drive naming swaps at bootup time). IOW, most distros use GRUB as a boot manager installed in the Master Boot Record on your primary drive. Then, you'd get a boot menu choice each time you reboot your machine, so you just pick the operating system you want to boot into from a menu

Basically, as described in my first post, you can resize your NTFS partition to make room for Linux partitions. Then, you could end up with a drive looking something like this on sda (the way most linux distros refer to your first hard drive), using numbers to indicate the partition.

sda1 -285GB - NTFS - Windows install -
sda2 - 2GB - Linux Swap partition
sda3 - 10GB - ext3 partition for Linux operating system and programs

That's only an example of how you may want to reconfigure a 300GB drive to make room for linux on it (which will have to reside in it's own partitions on the drive). What size drive do you have now and how much free space is on it?

You can also setup what's know as an extended partition with multiple logical partitions (you're limited to 4 primary partitions on a drive). I do that on most of my PCs. For example, I've got one PC with 10 different partitions setup, with a boot menu that lets me choose from multiple operating systems (I install new linux distros on a frequent basis in their own partitions to "test drive" them), so I can just pick the one I want to boot into each time I restart my PC.
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 11:39 AM   #12
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P.S.

Here's a good tutorial on how to resize a Windows partition to make room for Linux partitions. It's designed to show you how to install SimplyMEPIS.

http://www.linuxadventures.net/lesso...allation1.html

SimplyMEPIS is a distro that uses a Debian Stable base so that you can run any programs in the Debian software repositories. But, it also has it's own repositories with lots of other software in it. You can see more about SimplyMEPIS at http://www.mepis.org

At this point, I'd go with SimplyMEPIS 8.5, currently at Release Candidate 3 stage. IOW, it's close enough to the final release that I wouldn't worry about it being a Release Candidate versus a production release, as long as it runs on your hardware, since when you update it (via a mouse click that lets you know when new updates are available, you'll get the latest bug fixes that will be in the final release). My wife is using it now (I've got both Mint 8 and Mepis 8.5 Release Candidate 3 on her laptop, and she can pick the one she boots into when she restarts it). Basically, just download the .iso file in this press release, burn it to CD and boot into it:

http://distrowatch.com/?newsid=05959

Then, if it runs OK on your hardware, use the above tutorial to install it. After it's installed, you can use Synaptic (an easy to use software manager), to install additional software as desired (just search for programs like kdenlive, or anything else you're interested in, check a box to install them and press apply and it will download and install it for you). ;-)

Again, Mint 8 (mentioned in my first post) is very nice, too (and it's got more codecs and plugins installed by default). Mepis is using a KDE 4 desktop and Mint 8 uses a Gnome desktop. So, look and feel is quite different between them.

IOW, try a few and find one that you like a lot, then install it in a dual boot config on your hard drive for better performance than you'll get trying to run one from USB stick, CD or DVD.

If you're running Vista or Win 7, you can use Windows Disk management to resize your NTFS partition to make room, too. Or, just use the partition manager as shown in the above tutorial to do the same thing.
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 12:56 PM   #13
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Whew that is a lot of work. I have used partition magic in the past, and had up to 3 o.s installed on seprate partitions, but I have never dual booted before. This pc only has 160gb drive. Not sure what to do yet. I do know I like the looks of kdenlive. And I would like to be able to switch from one os to the other without rebooting. What do you do log on/off to get from one to the other?

I have 118GB free, and my pc has a recovery partition on D: for recovery.

O' and I'm supost to have a new laptop arrive tomarrow with windows 7 on it. But I'm not going to monkey with it. lol

Last edited by MeGaPixEliT; Mar 22, 2010 at 1:02 PM.
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 1:11 PM   #14
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A dual boot configuration means that you still need to reboot, selecting the specific operating system you want to boot into. IOW, you're not able to run both at the same time that way.

Now... one way to approach it is installing an Operating System in a Virtual Machine.

I'd suggest using Virtual Box for that purpose. It's free, and very easy to install and use.

http://www.virtualbox.org

Basically, that allows you to install a different operating system in a Virtual Machine, which is basically software that emulates a real PC. So, the "guest" operating system thinks it's running on a real PC.

For example, when you get your windows 7 machine, just install the Virtual Box software. Then, you can point it at any .iso file you download and install it, just like you'd install it on a physical PC. It's really easy to use. You can install Linux, other versions of Windows, or most operating systems in a software based machine that way, with the "guest" operating system thinking it's running on a real PC. IOW, you're running an entire operating system in a window under a different operating system.

You can also do it the other way around... using Linux as the host operating system. IOW, boot into Linux, then install Windows in a Virtual machine inside of Linux by installing Virtual Box in Linux. That way, the "guest" operating system (which would be Windows if you boot into Linux) is running in a Window on the Host operating system; and you can setup shared folders between them for data files, videos, images, etc. I do some of both (I've got multiple virtual machines with different Linux distributions setup under Windows 7, and I've got Windows setup as a guest in a virtual machine when I boot into Linux), because I've got Virtual Box software installed in more than one operating system.

What laptop (brand/model) did you order, what cpu is in it, and how much memory will it have?

You will have a performance hit with the guest operating system you install (since the Virtual Box software is emulating a real PC), but it's really not that bad, depending on the CPU you have. Some CPU models have hardware extensions that make them much better for software designed to do that kind of thing, and some don't (but, VirtualBox can run on either type, and will take advantage of those CPU hardware extensions for better guest operating system performance if you're using a CPU model that has that feature).
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 1:46 PM   #15
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Whew that is a lot of work....
It's really not. The installer is very intuitive. Ditto for the software to partition your drives

I could almost do it blind folded I've done it so many times (I've installed hundreds of different linux distros before) ;-)

After the first time, you'll wonder why you never tried it before it's so easy. I can probably install a distro like SimplyMEPIS in under 15 minutes (on the outside) with a modern PC (i.e., P4 or better CPU in it).

But, for starters, try Virtual Box on your new laptop to get a feel for how easy it is to install a Linux distro. The Virtual Box software won't hurt anything on your Win 7 based laptop, as it's not touching your drive partitioning at all. The Guest Operating Systems you install using it are just files it creates for each machine, just like any other file, totally isolated from the real operating system, as it only emulates physical hardware (even though the guest operating system "thinks" it's running on it's own dedicated PC and thinks it's partitioning a real hard drive, when it's really not).

Virtual Box installs just like any other Windows program and it's only emulating a real PC as far as the Linux distribution you're installing is concerned, using virtual disks instead of trying to do anything with your real hard drive. You can setup as many Linux distros as you want to try that way inside of virtual machines, running or shutting them down as desired. You'd be surprised at how easy it is. It runs fine in Win 7.

Then, once you're comfortable with how the Linux installers work by using them with software like virtual box, you may want to setup a "real" dual boot config on your current desktop and play with it more (you'll get better performance if the Operating System is running on physical hardware, versus inside of a virtual machine).
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 1:50 PM   #16
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I have used virtual pc before as well. I was just mixed up on the dual boot thing, I now remember having to pick which o.s to load during boot. Dual booting does not seem really any better than useing the usb drive, it's the same as dual booting, except the other o.s is not installed on my pc. I guess I'll just stick with the Thumb drive.
Thanks for your help.
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 1:56 PM   #17
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The main benefit of going dual boot (installing a distro in it's own hard drive partition) is *much* better performance than you get from trying to run from a USB flash drive or DVD media. ;-)

But, if you want to run more than one Operating System at the same time (without rebooting), then you need to use a solution like the free Virtual Box software. Then, one operating system can run inside of a Window in another operating system, without doing any kind of repartitioning of your drive, etc (since the Virtual Box software is only emulating a real PC). The newer versions of Virtual Box are quite nice (very good Guest Operating system performance). There are a number of similar products around, too (VMWare, etc.).
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 7:48 PM   #18
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I just got thru running system recovery on my desktop. The first time that I booted into Debian, then ran Kdenlive it worked fine. Then I tryed to edit a few video clips. After doing my edit, and booting back into windows, I had to internet connection. I did everything I knew to no avail. So I had to do a complete recovery to get my system back. And to top it off, My 8GB stick, is not less than 1.5GB, it ruined my thumb drive. What ever you do forget everything I said about this junk.
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Old Mar 22, 2010, 8:02 PM   #19
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First of all, anything related to your internet connection is probably not related to using Kdenlive. Chances are, something else was wrong and a system recovery was an unnecessary step. A live linux distro like that is not going to be touching your Windows config files on your hard drive unless you try to edit them with something (and that kind of technique would be hard to do unless you know what you're doing with specialized programs to edit those files). It's not going to happen by booting into a Debian Live Linux distro;-)

As for your thumb drive, you're just seeing a disk image on it and Windows does not know about how to work with non windows file systems.

You should be able to see that is' partitioned using Windows disk management (it will probably tell you something like unknown partition type) and just delete the partitions on it if you don't want it setup that way, then let Windows disk management treat it as one larger thumb drive, formatting as desired (FAT32 is the way it probably came). Or, boot into a Linux Live CD and use GParted to repartition it any way you want to. IOW, it's just like any other hard drive and you're just seeing the disk image you installed to it, not the real total capacity of the drive, as it probably overwrote the MBR on it with the disk image size you installed.
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Old Mar 23, 2010, 11:06 AM   #20
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I got my thumb drive fixed, just reinstalled the U3 software. And I do believe something got on my pc while useing the live cd, maybe from being connected to the internet. I have built, and fixed probably 50 pc's in the past 3 years. And I have never had an issue like yeasterday, that I could not easyely fix.
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