Getting ready for linux
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Thread: Getting ready for linux

  1. #1
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    Getting ready for linux

    By reading this tutorial you absolve the author of any responsibility for any damage done to your computer carrying out the following instructions.

    Allrighty, so you sittin there going "Me likes linux, me likes windows, MELTDOWN" Well don't do that, 'cause you can use 'em both. Easily.

    First step: Defragmenting your hard drive
    First step, you have to prepare to partition and install, how do you do that? Well, clean up the mess windows makes. First, defragment you hard drive, this can be done by clicking on "My Computer" and then right clicking "C:" or whatever you have as the name of your drive. And then click on the "tools" tab and dragment! Now windows may say "Your drive is blah% defragmented, you do not need to defragment now, do you wish to continue?" or something like that. Now you have to say yes, windows is insane, as being insane it leaves pieces of things all over your hard drive so you have to defragment to help prevent any problems. Now that may take a while, but just set it up and eat something, go out and get some fresh air.

    Booting to the setup
    Well you need to figure out if you can boot your computer from CD. That is a nice feature which is pretty useful if you want to save yourself some trouble. I have heard most recently built computers have this feature built-in, but it can't hurt to check. So, if your linux distro supports being booted from cd to start the install, then just pop it in and reboot and see what happens. If that doesn't work then you need to create a boot disk. A boot disk that will let you run your linux cd. For this you will need a linux boot disk, for which you need 2 things, rawrite.exe and boot.img, rawrite is available from acidspectrum's tutorial on installing red hat. Like with other files, when I find boot.img I will upload it, providing the file size isn't too big. So assuming you have access to those 2 things, access your MS-DOS and follow me
    C:\>cd c:\rawrite //or whatever folder you have rawrite downloaded to
    C:\>rawrite //this activates the program, type this by itself, after this rawrite will ask you for the disk image //source filename
    C:\>c:\boot\boot.img //here your provide the location of the boot image, rawrite will take care of the rest

    Fips
    Well, fips is a great MS-DOS program that will let you resize your existing partition. That way you can make sure you have enough room for that linux distro. Best thing to do is to load fips on to a floppy disk and retstart your computer is MS-DOS. Then just type in "fips" at the prompt. Then fips will ask you if you wish to make a backup of boot sectors, for this you need an empty disk in your a:, type y for yes because this is a good idea. Then 3 columns should come up, the cylinder, pick whatever you want there, and the the 2 new partitions. At first all the free space goes to the new partition but you can play around with the arrow keys and choose what you want it to be. Fips is user friendly and just really useful. I love fips. I'll find it and attach it to a post in this thread. And for ME, NT or 2k users, you have to reboot with an MS-DOS boot disk, I don't know what those are, but I'm guessing they'll get you into the MS-DOS prompt. That's what matters. And an important note, there are 2 versions of fips, fips for FAT32 or fips for FAT16 but does NOT support NTFS partitions. So if you use NTFS you are out of luck. Few things to note:
    When you are finished you can press "r" at any time to re-edit your tables
    If you type "n" then fips will exit and write nothing new to your hard drive
    When done, CTRL-ALT-DELETE, and reboot in to windows, and run scandisk which can be found next to the disk defragmenter, and see if everything is as it should be.
    PROBLEM WITH FIPS: With fips, your DOS partition, i.e. your windows partition can only hold a maximum of 2 gigabytes. This is due to the file management used by fips. So sure this has drawbacks, but if you have a computer with a small hard drive, then this method is perfect.

    Final thoughts
    Well, you have successfully created a boot disk to install linux from, as well as resized a partition and created a new one using fips. Feels good don' it? But if you don't want to use these tools, there are toher options, many linux setups come with fdisk utilities to create a partition and though those tools are very powerful, this way is much more friendly. But for he who dare not venture into DOS and looketh only to use linux with X-Windows I say this: Use a simple program like partition magic. Not really an option for me because partition magic is around 40 megs and my puny 1.2 gig hard drive doesn't need any more wasted space especially if I want to install more packages. And I am not able to use my red hat CDs to upload fips.exe and boot.img as my friend has them, but if I find them from somewhere else, I'll upload them here. Hope this helps some people get ready for linux. GL to you, you're sure to experience many headaches on the way to uberkewlness, but in the end, with all the screaming fans you'll have, and the high paying job with the amazing mansion, it'll be worth it. Um, BTW GL with getting all that. This is just the beginning. And make sure you know all about your system before you install linux. Know things, liek your max resolution, your keyboard type, your mouse type, and mnitor refresh rate, and all kinds of things.

  2. #2
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    I think fips comes with any linux distribution, I may be wrong but it came with mine, and mine was pretty small. So I think it is a fairly common tool, people can probably download it with google, just post a link, its better than wasting webspace.

  3. #3
    er0k
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    good tut, assuming that the user has windows previously installed, before partitioning linux of course.

  4. #4
    Old Fart
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    Good one khakisrule....the info is greatly appreciated.
    Al
    It isn't paranoia when you KNOW they're out to get you...

  5. #5
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    good stuff, thanks for the advice

  6. #6
    AO Soccer Mom debwalin's Avatar
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    GULP.....I'm almost ready to take this step, so this was a very timely tut for me. Thanks a bunch!

    Deb
    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.

  7. #7
    It's a gas!
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    Nice tut, just saved it for when i finally get around to installing Linux

    Nice one

    r3b00+

  8. #8
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    Well here is fips for FAT32.

  9. #9
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    I like fdisk, it is powerful, and it is included with most distros. Plus when I was installing red hat it asked me during the installation if I wanted to use them, but fips doesn't come up during installation of any linux distros I've ever heard of.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted here by linuxelite
    I like fdisk, it is powerful, and it is included with most distros. Plus when I was installing red hat it asked me during the installation if I wanted to use them, but fips doesn't come up during installation of any linux distros I've ever heard of.
    FIPS is a tool for windows (maybe linux?) that can resize FAT16/32 partitions. If you have no need to resize FAT partitions, then there is no need for this tool. If all you want to do is make partitions for a linux installation, then fdisk or cfdisk works fine.

    --Sudo

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