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Windows 7: Will Microsoft steal my Windows 7? Why I'm worried.

01 Sep 2015   #31
sgage

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
I did get Mint 17.2/Cinnamon running from a DVD. The immediate problems were taskbar, icon, and text size enlargement so I could read the screen well enough to operate.

I've got that at least tentatively solved, but the DVD method is a bit slow, so I'll probably try Virtual Box and a Mint VM, as Adams suggested.

I think I'd have to choose fairly early on which path to take:

1: Install Mint, then attempt to use open-source apps as replacements for most or all Windows apps.
2: Install Mint, then use a Windows VM in at least certain cases.
3: dual boot Mint and Windows.

Choice 2 seems most likely for me. I have a critical Excel file that wasn't right when opened in Libre Calc, so Excel is a VM candidate. Photoshop is also as I hear GIMP isn't an easily learned replacement---even though I'm not a Photoshop power user. Maybe I'll gain more confidence in the replacements as time goes on.

Word isn't critical to me. I looked at the Libre equivalent and saw no problems with it.

I don't reject WINE outright, but it will go on the back burner for now.

Other than that, I figure I can get by barring something unforeseen. Those may be my famous last words as I'm the worst Linux hand on the planet right now.

Thanks to you all.
If you are really interested in exploring the possibilities of Linux, create a separate partition for it and dual boot for a while - that way you won't feel 'cornered'. But run it right on the hardware. And do try to find a friend who is a dab Linux hand. There is no doubt that there is indeed a learning curve - how not? It's different and powerful But you might find that it's worth giving it a real try.

I've been dual booting Windows and Linux since 1998 - been thinking about going all-Linux for most of that time... But I keep Windows around because I need to support a number of people with their systems...


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01 Sep 2015   #32
xips

 
 

This looks promising:

BlockWindows

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01 Sep 2015   #33
Wrend

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64bit, Debian GNU/Linux 64bit (virtual machine on a RAM drive)
 
 

For those wondering about GNU/Linux, I've been using it for a couple of years on virtual machines. I recently switched my new laptop from Windows 8.1 to Debian "Jessie" with the KDE desktop. It's a very capable and stable desktop platform. Many other versions of GNU/Linux are based of off Debian, including the new Steam OS. It's been around forever and has been consistently improved upon with being stable, secure, and offering a self contained free and open source environment as its primary objectives. It isn't the most popular desktop OS as it isn't trying to be trendy nor is it trying to sell you anything. But in my opinion, it's the most reliable and capable. There is a reason almost everything else is built or based off of it.

And KDE is a nice customizable desktop environment with a lot of features that has also been around for a while but keeps improving.

Like I said, it's running great on my new ASUS laptop which has a new this year i5 Broadwell CPU architecture. I did have to backport the Intel 5500 HD Graphics drivers/firmware to get the graphics acceleration working, but that was pretty straightforward.

I'll be blunt and say that in comparison I'm not much of a fan of Ubuntu nor other trendy GNU/Linux distributions. They can be more hype than substance and can give a bad name to the GNU/Linux desktop environment, in my opinion. But, to each their own, of course.

If anyone is interested, here is the bootable install image I used on my laptop. http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/un...op+nonfree.iso You can use that to boot to the KDE desktop environment to see how you like it before installing. If you want a different desktop environment than KDE, here is the directory to choose which one you want. Index of /cdimage/unofficial/non-free/cd-including-firmware/8.1.0-live+nonfree/amd64/iso-hybrid (Note: These are for 64bit systems. To find the installs for 32bit systems, you'll have to go up a couple of directories.) "Non-free" indicates that these images include proprietary drivers/firmware to use as needed. Feel free to let me know if you have any basic questions about setting up Debian/KDE during or after installation for things such as SSD optimization if you installed to a newer SSD, how to change the desktop look and feel, suggestions for additional programs to get, or similar.

You'll want to test out a GNU/Linux/desktop environment install from a bootable drive, not just a virtual machine install, to make sure everything is working correctly for you. I suggest disconnecting your main boot drive and installing to a USB jump drive or similar to test things out more fully. The "hybrid" ISO install image I linked to is also bootable into KDE to give you a better idea than a virtual machine can provide, but I'd still recommend going through the install process at least once before committing to it on your main drive. Of course make sure you back up any data from any given drive you're working with first.

You can set up a dual boot and likewise set up multiple partitions, but it isn't really worth it in my opinion and sometimes it can be a little problematic. It's often better and easier just to choose what drive you want to boot to from BIOS and have the OS on that drive use the full drive as it sees fit. There may be some exceptions and personal preferences where dual booting and/or multiple partitions are more desirable, but I'll leave those up to people to sort out as they see fit on their own (since they will anyway).

And yes, my main rig is going to be using Windows 7 for the long haul. After that, I will likely switch to GNU/Linux as my main OS.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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02 Sep 2015   #34
lehnerus2000

W7 Ultimate SP1, LM18 MATE, W10IP VM, W10 Home, #All 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
I did get Mint 17.2/Cinnamon running from a DVD. The immediate problems were taskbar, icon, and text size enlargement so I could read the screen well enough to operate.
I use MATE, so I'm not sure how Cinnamon does things.
In MATE, there is an item labelled Control Centre in the Start Menu.

In general, the right click Context menu is your friend.
Right click "everywhere" and check out the options.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
I think I'd have to choose fairly early on which path to take:

1: Install Mint, then attempt to use open-source apps as replacements for most or all Windows apps.
2: Install Mint, then use a Windows VM in at least certain cases.
3: dual boot Mint and Windows.

Choice 2 seems most likely for me.
Choice 2 would be the easiest option.
I dual boot W7 & LM17.2 (I also have Windows and Linux VMs).

If you choose Choice 3 remember to install Windows first and then Linux Mint.
If you plan to install multiple versions of Windows install them in order of their release (i.e. XP > Vista > W7 > W8 > W10).
I've never had any issues with that method.
Note
I always eliminate the Windows System Reserved partition before installing Linux.
When I was triple booting XP, W7 and Linux, the presence of XP prevented W7 from creating the System Reserved partition.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
I have a critical Excel file that wasn't right when opened in Libre Calc, so Excel is a VM candidate. Photoshop is also as I hear GIMP isn't an easily learned replacement---even though I'm not a Photoshop power user. Maybe I'll gain more confidence in the replacements as time goes on.
I have seen comments stating that Libre Office can't exactly replicate the behaviour of MS Office (one reason I suggested using a Windows VM).

Personally I find GIMP easier to use than Photoshop (IMO, Adobe GUIs are mostly awful).
IMO, you need to select Single Window mode in GIMP, unless you have multiple monitors.

Photoshop has more tools and tutorials available for it.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Wrend View Post
I'll be blunt and say that I'm not much of a fan of Ubuntu nor other trendy GNU/Linux distributions. They're more hype than substance and can give a bad name to the GNU/Linux desktop environment, in my opinion. But, to each their own, of course.
My friend, who uses Arch Linux, hates Ubuntu (he's not a fan of Linux Mint either).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Sep 2015   #35
Wrend

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64bit, Debian GNU/Linux 64bit (virtual machine on a RAM drive)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by lehnerus2000 View Post
...
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Wrend View Post
I'll be blunt and say that I'm not much of a fan of Ubuntu nor other trendy GNU/Linux distributions. They're more hype than substance and can give a bad name to the GNU/Linux desktop environment, in my opinion. But, to each their own, of course.
My friend, who uses Arch Linux, hates Ubuntu (he's not a fan of Linux Mint either).
Yeah, people can get very opinionated about the distributions that they prefer for various reasons. I'm mostly just not a fan of people stopping at the showroom models without seeing what's under the hood. The trendy and popular variants aren't really something I'm personally looking for in an OS. These are just opinions though, so take it with a grain of salt.

Best detached, neutral advice I could give is for people to have a look around and to see what the options and differences in the various distributions and desktop environments are.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Sep 2015   #36
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Well, let me eat my own words about using a VM.

I just ordered a 60 GB SSD (under $40) and will be dual booting, Windows on a separate SSD.

Why? Partially impulse buying and partially because I spent an hour fiddling with Mint in Virtualbox on Windows 7 and got absolutely nowhere. I assume that's due to my inexperience with VMs, but I decided rather than climb that learning curve, I'd be better off spending $40 and remaining old fashioned.

I just made a Rufus USB installer for Mint and confirmed that it boots. No reason I can't look at Mate as well.
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02 Sep 2015   #37
ThrashZone

Win-7-Pro64bit 7-H-Prem-64bit
 
 

Best thing I ever bought was a ez swap evo dual ssd/ hdd panel
I have no idea how I lived without it before
This keeps all boot loaders separate especially 8.1 & 10
Amazon.com: Vantec 2.5-Inch Dual Bay Trayless SATA III - 6G Mobile Rack (MRK-225S6-BK): Computers & Accessories
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02 Sep 2015   #38
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

I use the same type of hardware just a different brand.
Hot swapping ssd works well for me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Sep 2015   #39
Adams Seven

Windows 7 Professional 64
 
 

ignatzatsonic, I'm sure you had bad luck with Mint in a Windows 7 VM. I'm the one who recommended that route for an experiment, so I can't help feeling responsible.

It do think it's a nearly foolproof way of taking a dip into Linux, though. Worst case scenario: uninstall VirtualBox.

It now looks like I'm leaning hard toward the Linux fork in my personal computing road, and plan to have at my original Win 7 boot disk by freeing up some space with diskmgmt.msc, then letting Linux Mint configure itself as a dual-bootable OS. I wouldn't do that if I weren't pretty sure I'll be mostly a Linuxer from here on in. I'll post any interesting results.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Sep 2015   #40
ThrashZone

Win-7-Pro64bit 7-H-Prem-64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
I use the same type of hardware just a different brand.
Hot swapping ssd works well for me.
Yep I had no luck finding your model Jack
I did need one with a lock/ key so kids would not get injured ejecting by curiosity and of course me by accident
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 Will Microsoft steal my Windows 7? Why I'm worried.




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