Switching Over

Link to this post 14 Mar 11

RickSMO wrote:

instead of kubuntu I think you should just go with ubuntu. I never used kubuntu, but I do know I have ran into weird errors on some of the ubuntu based systems that weren't ubuntu. (...) Anyway, i'd recommend ubuntu because that's what I use and the community for it great and huge, as well as the company behind it.

I don't really think that would be a problem with Kubuntu, since it is an official Ubuntu derivative backed by Canonical, and it's quite mature after being worked on since early 2005. The earliest versions of Kubuntu seemed somewhat less polished than their Gnome equivalents, but last time I tried it (a couple of years ago) it seemed about as polished as Ubuntu itself :)

Link to this post 16 Mar 11


Thanks all for responses. I appreciate the list on Linux software that does the tasks I currently do in Windows.

With regards to Kubuntu/Ubuntu - Its basically the same OS with a different GUI. The Kubuntu uses KDE where Ubunto uses GNOME.

In windows I have read that you can use a USB drive as increased RAM. I do not understand how this works. Has anyone tried anything similar for Linux? Ive read that .." The 32-bit Linux kernel can be recompiled to handle up to 64GB of RAM" - Could you use an external hard drive to max that out? If that was the case then you could actually partition your hard drive and dedicate it to RAM... That seems too easy - I must be missing something.

What about tweaking your TCP for faster speeds on Linux. Does anyone have any experience with this?

I want to buy an extra VGA chord so I can just hijack some desktop space anytime I sit down in a computer lab. (I have 10.1" screen). Would I have to find a driver for each type of monitor I plan to use>?


Link to this post 16 Mar 11

The extension of RAM that windows does is by making a paging file on the USB drive. On Linux based systems swap partitions are the equivalent to paging files, in which both extend your memory at the cost of performance. Disks are notably slower than ram and usb connected devices are even slower. Thus forcing use of swap space for expansion will allow you to run more programs with a large performance hit. You can accomplish the same by placing a sparse file onto a device and formatting it as swap space, then mounting it as swap. If you want I can tell you how to do accomplish this if you feel like experimenting.

TCP tweaking can be accomplished via the browser applications or by modifying the routing algorithms used by the kernel by recompiling the kernel.

Most drivers use a unified communications protocol that is supported by the kernel, in the past 10 years that I have been using Linux based systems I have only heard of one case of the monitor that requires firmware drivers that are not supported out of the box. You have ~97% chance that a new monitor will work out-of-the-box.

Link to this post 16 Mar 11

mfillpot wrote:

You have ~97% chance that a new monitor will work out-of-the-box.
This is my experience too. Usually, when I connect a new monitor to a laptop, it's just a matter of running the command
xrandr --auto
to autoconfigure and enable it. Many systems even do this automatically for you. If not, you could always install one of the graphical applications with randr in the name (arandr, lxrandr, grandr, urandr, etc) to do this from e.g. the system tray.

Link to this post 18 Mar 11


I am installing and need some guidance setting up my paritions.
Win 7 Starter is preloaded on 250 Gb ntfs hard drive.

I have Kubuntu installer running - I want to dual boot.
So I selected manually manage paritions (only other option is reformat hard drive for 100% kubuntu)
What I dont understand is partitioning order, does it matter?
By default it says:

Device Type Mount Point Format? Size Used

/dev/sda (unchecked box)
/dev/sda1 ntfs (unchecked box) 1572 MB 524 MB
/dev/sda2 ntfs (unchecked box) 223955 MB 17759 MB
/dev/sda3 ntfs (unchecked box) 15208 MB 7229 MB
/dev/sda4 ntfs (unchecked box) 9320 MB 8616 MB

When I right/double click on each partion I get: the following options for each
[ new partition size; "use as:"; format parition (y/n); mount point]

OK so I want to allocate 40-70GB to Windows and the rest to Kubuntu. So appartantly I need a swap file, root, and a home partition? I have found no good guides.

Windows format should be ntfs (not FAT32?) and Kubuntu shold be ext3? what about ext4 (better/worse?)?
Mount point should read windows, root, swap, home? Should I have format checked?

Windows should be in sda1? Is the order of Windows, swap, root, Kubuntu, partitioning important?
I've read it is good to have Windows as first, and extra space at the end. Is the first partition sda1? (count upwards and not down?)
I have 2 Gb RAM should I make my swap file 4Gb or 3 Gb?

Should I just exit installer. Boot windows and partition once (with Gparted 60 Gb for windows/ 190Gb for Kubuntu). Exit.
Run installer and tell it to use full 190 Gb as it wants?

Any feedback is appreciated,


Link to this post 18 Mar 11

Unfortunately windows seems to have multiple partitions pre-setup on your system and it's doesn't like being resized.

You will need to go into window and use the disk management tool to see exactly what partitions are being used, , most likely only the first one is used, then shrink the first partition asto your chosen point or as much as it will allow. Set the system to checkdisk and reboot, repeat this two of three times for safety sake.

Once you have identified which partition(s) are used for windows you can delete the others.

To install any Linux distro you really only need a swap partition (that is 2X your RAM or 2G, whichever is smaller) and a / (root) partition.

After you have partitioned the hard drive and installed your chosen distro it should automatically configure the bootloader to add entries for windows and your chosen distro. After that is complete and reboot you should be able to dual boot into whichever system you choose.

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