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hand holding instructions for loading Linux via DOS

Link to this post 04 Jul 13

I have an old PC laptop running Windows XP. I don't know why and I've given up caring but the computer is insanely slow. (I've run Malwarebytes and it finds no malware) I have other computers that are lighter, easier to use, etc. so my original idea was to just trash all the data on this laptop and then hand it in to a recycling center. But then I thought it might be interesting to have a Linux computer around. I've looked online but the instructions I've found are for dual boots. I don't care about the Windows XP OS and its so corrupted I don't believe I can successfully use it to install Linux. I tried just installing a Sourceforge program called Eraser to erase all the windows data and even that didn't work, the computer is just too corrupted.

So what I was wondering is can I download a Linux file to the c drive and then from DOS run a command to just install Linux? Don't care about dual boot or anything like that in fact the more I can just over-ride and get rid of the Windows XP stuff the better. I'm pretty competent when it comes to software at the Java level but I haven't done shell stuff in decades and even then I avoided it as much as possible so I need something that is really hand holding, starting with how to get the Windows machine to boot into DOS and reminders for how to navigate DOS directories.

I welcome any suggestions or ideas both as to loading Linux and how to easily and securely delete all data from Windows XP.

Link to this post 04 Jul 13

1) How much RAM have you got?
2) What are the basic specs of your computer?

Link to this post 05 Jul 13

Its a Dell Inspirion 2.19Ghz and 224 MB of RAM 25.7 GB disc space

Link to this post 05 Jul 13

With that amount of RAM you are going to use a fairly lightweight distro, something like Lubuntu, Xubuntu or Crunchbang Linux. I mention those in particular because the Install disk has an automatic installer, so you don't need to manually partition.

(Antix is a very good distro for older computers but I can't remember if the disk has automatic installer...)

Increase the mount of RAM if you can, if it is economically sensible.

Remember! You can't have a lightweight distro and put a lot of heavyweight apps on top of it because that kind of defeats the purpose.

You need to download an iso. Either burn it on to a CD or USB stick. Make sure the BIOS/Boot Order is set to boot from the CD-Rom/USB first, before the Hard Drive. Reboot

Link to this post 14 Jul 13

You cannot install a Linux based distro in your windows based C drive. You will need to burn a Linux based ISO to a CD and install from the disk. If you want ot remove all of the windows data then the distro should have an installation option to use the entire hard drive which will remove the windows based data.

Link to this post 14 Jul 13

If you want to truly remove all data from the windows partition then you can run the dd utility on the C drive from a live CD, which will take hours, but multiple runs of the zero fill will remove all data.

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