Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

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aekyall
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Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

Many moons ago, I indicated on the lounge that as I had an old computer with XP(H) I would, at some point, try Ubuntu as an alternative. Well, now many moons later I've tentatively taken a few steps in that direction - Namely, I've downloaded the Ubuntu ISO file, version 14.04.2, to the XP machine's desktop, then downloaded a boot file from pendrivelinux.com to a flash drive. I then altered the boot sequence to boot from the flash drive and, lo and behold, I was able to 'try' Ubuntu (from the flash drive) without affecting Windows XP.

Looks interesting but as it's a flash drive version it is a very, and I mean very, slow process! Also, unfortunately, I don't seem able to find a way to have Ubuntu on my computer hard drive as a dual boot option. The only option I seem to be offered when I click on 'install now', is for it to completely wipe my hard drive before installation (thus losing XP, which I don't want to do at this time). Does anyone have any ideas on how I can get Ubuntu on as a dual boot option? I'd like to be able to play around with Ubuntu in 'real time' speed before taking any fateful steps.

I should add that I'm operating more or less at the limit of my abilities here!! :grin:
Thanks,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by jstevens »

Keith,

Another option to try would be in a virtual environment such as VMWare or VirtualBox. I'm not sure how to do it via "dual booting".
Regards,
John

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stuck
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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

Are you sure the only option is to blow away the XP installation? When I installed a Linux distro on to a old HP laptop the installer allowed me to keep the XP partition. It was painless. The installer resized the XP partition to make room for the Linux one. When it was all done I had a dual boot system.

Read this thread. Ensure you follow the link in the to easylinuxtipsproject as I suspect all you need to know will be on there. Note too how the owner of that site joined The Lounge and offered what turned out to be valuable advice.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by BobH »

stuck wrote:Are you sure the only option is to blow away the XP installation? When I installed a Linux distro on to a old HP laptop the installer allowed me to keep the XP partition. It was painless. The installer resized the XP partition to make room for the Linux one. When it was all done I had a dual boot system. . . .

Ken
What installer did you use, Ken? You say that the installer resized the XP partition. Does that mean that it re-partitioned the drive that XP was on and created a new partition?

With a dual boot system, I am guessing that, on start-up, the system presents you the choice of OS to start. Is that correct? Can you show us a screen shot.

As mentioned in another thread, I've ordered and plan to install an SSHD. That will entail some file system adjustments. I'm thinking that I should consider the possibility of a dual boot system at some future date, too, and plan for that eventuality when I rearrange the file systems. I have a 1TB HDD on order that I plan to install in the system on one of the SATA ports. This will give me more flexibility is making backups and moving files around; so now is the time to plan for as much as I can foresee. My previous experience with Linux (old Ubuntu) has been on a tablet and a dedicated system . . . no dual boot.

:cheers: :chocciebar: :thankyou:
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aekyall
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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

stuck wrote:Are you sure the only option is to blow away the XP installation? When I installed a Linux distro on to a old HP laptop the installer allowed me to keep the XP partition. It was painless. The installer resized the XP partition to make room for the Linux one. When it was all done I had a dual boot system.

Read this thread. Ensure you follow the link in the to easylinuxtipsproject as I suspect all you need to know will be on there. Note too how the owner of that site joined The Lounge and offered what turned out to be valuable advice.

Ken
Ken - I'm now wondering whether I need to partition my hard drive before attempting to dual install Ubuntu? My HDD has 300GB, mostly unused, and isn't partitioned. I've read up on the link you provided (Linux Mint? - Is that another version of Linux interface similar/same as Ubuntu?). At the moment Ubuntu is saying it will reformat the drive. I'll have a play around over the next couple of days, perhaps create another partition on the HDD, start again from scratch with downloading Ubuntu etc, and see what transpires. I'll report back. Many thanks,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

I choose to install Mint Xfce because the from the owner of easylinuxtipsprojects was that it would be more suited to the low specs of the laptop I was using. I don't know if an alternative distro would have worked or not, I never tried a different one but Mint Xfce did the job. The laptop was used by my eldest son as part of his final year MSc engineering project. He did all sorts of clever stuff with it, coding in C++ and Python.

As I said, I never tried an alternative distro so I don't know how Mint Xfce compares to Ubuntu. In fact I don't really know how Mint Xfce compares to XP because as soon as I'd got it installed I handed the laptop over to my son and I've not seen it since. I can't ask him to chip in to this thread either as he is right in the middle of his final exams. It did appear to be very XP like.

As for creating partitions before installing and which installer I used. No I didn't create an a empty partition before I started and I used the Xfce installer. My installation went exactly as set out on easylinuxtipsprojects:
https://sites.google.com/site/easylinux ... nt-install
The page gives screenshots.

Note too that easylinuxtipsprojects also gives a page about installing Ubuntu alongside Windows, here:
https://sites.google.com/site/easylinux ... stallation
I see no reason why the guidance there shouldn't be as helpful as the instructions I followed for Mint Xfce.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

John: thanks for info on VM. I'll look at that option if I can't progress the dual boot. At my level of expertise, one course of action at a time is required!!

Ken: I'll need to study all these instructions in slow-time (plus the links to options/work-arounds where Ubuntu doesn't offer the option to save XP). Thanks for the pointers.

I will, of course, report back on progress (or lack of!)

:thankyou:
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

aekyall wrote:...where Ubuntu doesn't offer the option to save XP
Any particular reason for wanting Ubuntu rather than another distro?

If not, seriously consider Mint. It is more likely to run 'quickly' on a 'low' spec XP machine. Plus my reading suggested Mint has more of a 'Windows' look, making it an 'easy' intro to Linux.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by jonwallace »

I agree with Ken regarding Mint.

As for dual booting, when the installer is run, one of the options is to run alongside an existing operating system if one is detected. This will create a dual-boot setup.

The normal rules regarding back-ups etc should be followed.
John

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

Ken/John,
Until I followed Ken's links I hadn't even known Mint existed outside of a sweet wrapper!! I'll delve into it and give it some serious consideration - I went for Ubuntu as it was the only one I'd really heard of, not through any form of preference.
Thanks,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

aekyall wrote:...I hadn't even known Mint existed outside of a sweet wrapper...
Linux is not like Windows, where your choice in 'Home' vs 'Pro' There are many flavours in the Linux sweet box:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_distribution
Perhaps too many for the newbie! Which is why after a bit of Googling I decided on Mint. It seemed like the simplest way from Windows to Linux.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

I seem to have hit a bit of a stumbling block! I've downloaded Linux Mint (17.1 - cinnamon) to my hard drive. As I have Windows XP, I have downloaded Infrarecorder as suggested by the Linux User Guide in order to burn the file to disc. Unfortunately, whenever I try to burn the .iso file using infrarecorder, the OK button (which would start the process) is greyed out. I have to confess that the Infrarecorder options/language used etc is leaving me a bit cold (ie, I don't understand half of what it actually does!!) and I'm probably not doing the right thing. Is there anyone around with some knowledge of infrarecorder who could step me through the necessary actions please?
Thanks,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

aekyall wrote:...Infrarecorder as suggested by the Linux User Guide in order to burn the file to disc...
Use CDburnerXP instead. It's simple to use, and has a burn ISO option that just works.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

Thanks Ken - It does indeed have a burn ISO option and seems easy to use - except ............ having suffered several failures (it doesn't recognise that I've put a DVD in) I've just checked SPECCY and it seems my optical R/W drive is only capable of writing to CD (it says write capabilities are CD-R and CD-RW. I have a read-only drive as well which SPECCY says is capable of reading DVD.

Looks like I'll have to revert to having another look at Ubuntu. At least I got that to run from a USB stick! Pity, Linux Mint (Cinnamon) looked interesting. It does indicate in the user guide that there is an option to download to a USB stick but ''these options are somewhat more advanced'' - but it doesn't list them!

Just had an uneducated thought! - My main computer is Windows 7 (64bit) - would it be feasible to download a 32bit version to my Windows 7, burn it to disc and run the disc on my XP machine?? - or would it end up as 64 bit?

Back to the drawing board - but very many thanks for all the help/suggestions/pointers.

Regards,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by StuartR »

aekyall wrote:...My main computer is Windows 7 (64bit) - would it be feasible to download a 32bit version to my Windows 7, burn it to disc and run the disc on my XP machine?? - or would it end up as 64 bit?
That should work fine
StuartR


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aekyall
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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

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Thanks Stuart. I'll give that a try tomorrow then - afraid my brain's hurting at the moment! Been stumbling around with this for most of the day; one step forward, three steps back, mostly due to ignorance!!
Regards,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by jonwallace »

You can stick any linux iso onto a bootable usb stick with http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
John

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aekyall
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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

Thanks Jon - Have bookmarked that link as plan E. Plan D (you'll note I'm moving through the plans, A B and C having failed!!) is currently to burn a 32 bit version to a DVD on my Windows 7, 64 bit computer - then see if I can run it on my XP(H) to install the operating system.
Regards,
Regards,
Keith

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by stuck »

aekyall wrote:...it seems my optical R/W drive is only capable of writing to CD (it says write capabilities are CD-R and CD-RW...
I see others have helped you over that hurdle.

However, the fact you XP box can't write to DVD suggests it is very old / low spec machine. Exactly what are the specs of this box? I ask because while Mint in general is a good XP substitute the different favours of Mint (Cinnamon, Xfce, etc.) have different hardware requirements. I selected Mint Xfce over Mint Cinnamon because the hardware I had was a lowly a 1.6GHz Celeron CPU with on board graphics. It would have run Cinnamon but it would have been a bit slow.

Ken

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Re: Linux/Ubuntu - dual boot?

Post by aekyall »

Ken - I bought my XP(H) back in 2003: Pretty basic Packard Bell model. Processor is a Intel Celeron 2.6Ghz with onboard graphics

Once I'd realised that I didn't have a read/write DVD capability (took me nearly all day to work that one out!) I downloaded the .iso file on my Windows 7 and burned a DVD with the 32 bit version - Did that using CDBurnerXP, really easy to use. Unfortunately (where have I heard that word before!), My XP machine wouldn't boot from the DVD - logical I suppose given that the optical drive only copes with CD's!

So, on to plan E (Jon's USB info) - Downloaded 'unetbootin' on my Windows 7 and copied the Linux Mint download to a USB stick. Fortunately, that seems to have worked (so far) and I've managed to boot Mint on my XP, albeit somewhat slowly. I'm just about to see whether I can now copy it to my hard drive as a dual boot option.

Regards,
Regards,
Keith