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Windows 7: Five operating system alternatives to Windows 8 and XP

17 Apr 2013   #61
jimbo45

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Cr00zng View Post
To install Linux Mint Debian on a flash drive, one would need the ISO and Universal USB Installer or UUI. Any reason why the two cannot be integrated into a single Windows executable that runs UUI, the user select the USB drive, and off it goes? After all, the UUI is just a little over 1MBs...

The UUI installed Linux Mint quickly on my Voyager 64GBs USB 3.0 stick, but wouldn't let me create greater than 4GBs persistent partition. Unfortunately, it wouldn't boot in my system. I was just curious, but don't have time to find the reason for not booting...

The 64GBs USB 3.0 was around 80 bucks...
We made a bad investment - I bought an expensive fast USB3 stick too. And it is not all that good for running a Linux distro (I run Fedora right now from that stick).

A much better solution is to run from an external SSD. I bought a 60GB SSD for $59.95 plus a few bucks for the USB3 enclosure and I run Mint Mate, Zorin (and Windows 8) from there under VMware Player (free). Works beautifully and very fast with the added advantage that you can run it side by side with the host OS and need not reboot all the time. Plus, you can run those systems on any machine that have VMware Player installed (a 3 minute affair).

If you want to try it, here is some tutorial material I put together.

Portable OS - Carry your OS on an External Drive

And here is a whole series of tutorials I made regarding Mint Mate. If you double click on it in Chrome, you can read and control it in your browser. Else just download it (2 PDF pages).

https://skydrive.live.com/?cid=475a0...A6D4035%211856
Hi there
an even BETTER solution is to use GRUB on the external USB drive and then mount and boot a Windows VHD (note NOT a Virtual machine) and boot from it. then you can run a Full PORTABLE NATIVE windows OS from your USB device. You can also boot any Linux distro you want.

Seems to me a bit pointless to run Windows as a VM from Linux if most of the time you are using Windows applications such as Photoshop, Office etc.

Don't get me wrong -- I LIKE Linux - but for me I only use it as a file and internet Database server.

For what I need and do Linux as a DESKTOP OS doesn't cut it for me -- but absolutely NO problems as a Server.

BTW another interesting idea is to try running ESXi (free version) from VMware -- it's a TINY Hypervisor -- and then run a Windows VM from the USB device. The disadvantage is that you would need a separate client machine to access the VM but the overhead of the hypervisor is so tiny that the VM runs at 99.9% native speed and you can use some real hardware too (Esxi allows things like Pci passthru to access real hardware). However setting this up is quite tricky so it's not for beginners. If you don't have a spare client machine then this isn't an option -- I mention this because if you DO have a spare machine it's quite a fun exercise to have a go with it. Installing Esxi takes around 2 mins !! it's such a small kernel -- but be warned some of its hardware requirements are quite picky.

Virtualising the Esxi itself could also be an interesting idea -- the overhead of a second level of virtualisation (a Windows VM under a Virtual esxi) might be LESS than running a windows VM under a full Linux distro - and in this case you wouldn't need a separate physical client machine --you could access the Windows VM from the Host machine.

Cheers
jimbo


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17 Apr 2013   #62
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Various linux OSs (maybe polished up a little?) provide a good OS environment as far as I can see. Most business users want 3rd party applications currently only supported on MS OSs. Business compatibility for information exchange is another issue. IMO MS rely on this high end third party application stranglehold. How long will this go on - I don't know.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2013   #63
jimbo45

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mjf View Post
Various linux OSs (maybe polished up a little?) provide a good OS environment as far as I can see. Most business users want 3rd party applications currently only supported on MS OSs. Business compatibility for information exchange is another issue. IMO MS rely on this high end third party application stranglehold. How long will this go on - I don't know.

Hi there
It's fairly simple -- they are still CURRENTLY the best. As far as EXCEL is concerned nothing else even comes CLOSE - especially for integration with the Internet .

For example when trading the markets I pull real time Options quotes from the CBOE (Chicago Board of Options Exchange). Try replicating this in other "Excel Clones" such as in Libre Office.

There isn't ANY other spread sheet system where I could program this stuff in easily -- (although I'm not a programmer I can do some Visual Basic macros etc).

Here's a sample of what I mean (screenshot enc).

Simple processes might be OK in other office suites but for any complex stuff Ms still quite simple is nr 1 BY A UNIVERSE. I just hope that future releases of Office don't RUIN it by going that full screen Metro way as per W8. Office 2013 unfortunately looks like making this mistake - but Office 2010 will last for years yet. Don't forget that Office although it's reputed to be the most pirated software in the world is still Ms's biggest (or certainly one of the biggest) earners at corporate level.

Cheers
jimbo


Attached Thumbnails
Five operating system alternatives to Windows 8 and XP-options.png  
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17 Apr 2013   #64
Cr00zng

Windows 7 64-bit, Windows 8.1 64-bit, OSX El Capitan, Windows 10 (VMware)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
We made a bad investment - I bought an expensive fast USB3 stick too. And it is not all that good for running a Linux distro (I run Fedora right now from that stick).

A much better solution is to run from an external SSD. I bought a 60GB SSD for $59.95 plus a few bucks for the USB3 enclosure and I run Mint Mate, Zorin (and Windows 8) from there under VMware Player (free). Works beautifully and very fast with the added advantage that you can run it side by side with the host OS and need not reboot all the time. Plus, you can run those systems on any machine that have VMware Player installed (a 3 minute affair).

If you want to try it, here is some tutorial material I put together.

Portable OS - Carry your OS on an External Drive

And here is a whole series of tutorials I made regarding Mint Mate. If you double click on it in Chrome, you can read and control it in your browser. Else just download it (2 PDF pages).

https://skydrive.live.com/?cid=475a0...A6D4035%211856
In my case, looking for a small and relatively fast storage device, the USB 3.0 is not a bad investment. Over a year ego I've done the SSD/external case combo with eSATA and USB interface for fast and portable storage. The combo just wasn't convenient to carry around. I put the SSD into my MSI netbook with Windows 7 and it runs relatively well with the SSD, with increased battery life.

I forgot about your tutorials, thanks for the reminder...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2013   #65
Cr00zng

Windows 7 64-bit, Windows 8.1 64-bit, OSX El Capitan, Windows 10 (VMware)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Night Hawk View Post
Now for the RT7 Lite there's one biggie problem you apparently ran into. If you bought 7 when first out or at least prior to the SP1 release slipsteaming the service pack in poses another problem of not being able to activate Windows! The same goes for downloading from Digital Rivers any iso with SP1 included. You have to have a post SP1 key to start with if not having any paid MSDN or TechNet subscription where a key per download is provided. So that left seeing SP1 wrapped up with all those updates out!
I have not ran into the "pre-SP1 key" issue yet, but thanks for the heads up. It'll come handy for older keys in the case of reinstalling Windows 7...
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17 Apr 2013   #66
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote:
Hi there
an even BETTER solution is to use GRUB on the external USB drive and then mount and boot a Windows VHD (note NOT a Virtual machine) and boot from it. then you can run a Full PORTABLE NATIVE windows OS from your USB device. You can also boot any Linux distro you want.
There are certainly other viable alternatives. However, they all lack one feature that VMware can provide - that is concurrency. I run at least 1 virtual partition all day because I use Linux for the internet (safer and faster than Windows) and Windows for the rest. A constant rebooting of the system would not be a viable option for that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2013   #67
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

[QUOTE=jimbo45;2367887
Hi there
It's fairly simple -- they are still CURRENTLY the best. As far as EXCEL is concerned nothing else even comes CLOSE - especially for integration with the Internet .[/QUOTE]
I'm not denying MS Office is currently a good application package for them and Excel has features superior at the moment to some of the free offerrings but once the OS is opened up by a competing linux this may change once the $ come rolling in. I was talking apps like Photoshop etc.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2013   #68
jimbo45

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers
 
 

[QUOTE=mjf;2368291]
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by jimbo45;2367887
Hi there
It's fairly simple -- they are still CURRENTLY the best. As far as EXCEL is concerned nothing else even comes CLOSE - especially for integration with the Internet .[/QUOTE
I'm not denying MS Office is currently a good application package for them and Excel has features superior at the moment to some of the free offerrings but once the OS is opened up by a competing linux this may change once the $ come rolling in. I was talking apps like Photoshop etc.

Hi there
Even Photoshop doesn't really have any serious competitor -- at least once you start thinking about professional quality RAW files, loads of layering, CYMK processing, colour profiles, pre-press presentations etc.

The GIMP is excellent for a free alternative which would be more than sufficient for a lot of people -- just like Libre Office would do -- but for really serious pro / business work there really isn't any choice and in combination with Lightroom -- nobody else even comes close in spite of the quite considerable cost of the software. If you add in the professional quality filters and add ins such as the TOPAZ set then there is even less competition. (And we are talking really expensive professional software here -- this TOPAZ set retails for around 300 USD by itself so you can see where I'm coming from).

Topaz Photoshop Plug-In Bundle

Don't get me wrong - I'd jump ship at a second's notice if something CHEAPER and JUST as good came up -- unfortunately that's still a LONG LONG way from being the case here.

Cheers
jimbo
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17 Apr 2013   #69
FuturDreamz

Windows 8 Pro (32-bit)
 
 

I don't know if I can settle for "Just as good" because eventually I always have to do something where "Just as good" is "Not good enough."
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2013   #70
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by FuturDreamz View Post
I don't know if I can settle for "Just as good" because eventually I always have to do something where "Just as good" is "Not good enough."
It really depends on what you are doing. With MS Office I usually do very simple things (except PowerPoint) and for the simple tasks I found Libre Office to be a good match.

With pictures processing the same. I have yet to find a case where I could not manage with Gimp. But, of course, I am no professional.
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 Five operating system alternatives to Windows 8 and XP




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