Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

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Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby Nerdboy on Wed Mar 26, 2008 8:59 am

Hi linux community,

I posted a topic here: viewtopic.php?f=60&t=10813 so as it says this is for the father in law, and yes sadly we come from the Microsoft school of brain washing so i know nothing. However im not a complete ninny so i can get around a pc ok :wink: but if anyone would be kind enough to answer a question i have that would be great.

Ok, with so much happening in the linux community and new GUI's and umm KDE (S) appearing all the time, how does one update without having to do a fresh install and loosing any of your settings like bookmarks, downloads etc etc, ok stupid question i know but in the windows world if your upgrading from say 98 to XP it just installs over the top (well im sure its more complex then that but you get my drift) is it the same for linux? and is there even a need to do so?

I installed the latest version of Mint which i am sure is Mint 4.0 Daryna so once the latest version is released is it imperative to upgrade if the machine is being used soley for web surfing, e-mail and mp3 play back?

thanks in Advance

Daz
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Re: Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby stevenofnine on Wed Mar 26, 2008 11:25 am

Welcome Daz, to the Linux Mint community.

Under Linux you have a few update options.

Whenever there's a major change, from one version of an O/S to another, you may find that you're forced to upgrade much in the same way as Windows: install over the previous installation.

However, one of the cool things about linux is that much of your material, i.e. that in a /home directory, can be kept. Only the materials in the /root directory need be overwritten.

Another possibility is that when the Kernel (base operating set up, you'll recognise it by seeing something like version 2.6.22-14 or some such) is updated, it can be done from within the system, via the synaptic/apt-get/MintUpdate interface.

It's actually only the naivety of the Windows community that this isn't even required there. For example, installing Windows to a partition of a hard drive, while installing all software to a second, and keeping all data on a third avoids much of the issue of installing over old versions.

In any case, your best bet is to keep your MintUpdate running, and let it tell you what's available, and keep up with that. And if/when new desktops (KDE, Gnome, XFCE) become available, either the Update will let you know, or this forum will.

You're under no obligation to update, and will likely find that if all you do is surf, email and listen to music, you need never touch a thing. I would recommend that you peruse the software repository, however. You may find a browser or music manager you prefer to the defaults.

Enjoy!
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Re: Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby Fred on Wed Mar 26, 2008 2:28 pm

Nerdboy,

stevenofnine wrote:
You're under no obligation to update, and will likely find that if all you do is surf, email and listen to music, you need never touch a thing. I would recommend that you peruse the software repository, however. You may find a browser or music manager you prefer to the defaults.


I think this is a very relevant comment that is often over looked. Linux is, by comparison to the proprietary world, very fast moving. The last Windows release was what, 5 years ago? Mint, as an example, is about every 6 months. Some of the Debian flavors upgrade every few weeks.

First lets think about why we upgrade. To gain new functionality that we want/need would be one reason. Because the distro we are using is no longer being supported, therefore no more security updates and bug fixes, would be another. Enhanced ease of use would be another. To see and stay on the cutting edge of new technology would be another. I am sure there are others but these cover the vast majority of reasons for upgrading.

Now look at your situation. The functions you use the computer for are quite mature, so you won't be getting any new functionality that normal updates wouldn't already bring you. You are using the latest version now so there will be full support for it for quite a while. Being a new user, your time would be much better spent learning more about what you have than trying to upgrade. When you do need to upgrade you will be much better informed about how you might want to structure you system for your needs. If your system is adequately meeting your needs today, it will do so tomorrow, regardless of whether there is a new version available or not. As a new user, do you really want to be on the cutting edge of technology. Remember, time tested, mature solutions are always less buggy, and more reliable, than the latest bling to hit the net.

Spend your time learning about /etc/fstab and partition mounting, Grub, partitioning, system layout, etc. and you will be much better off in the long run.

I don't have a clue how your system is now structured, but the only thing I would suggest at this point is to make sure you keep your personal data on a separate partition from the system itself. The rest of your first adventure into Linux is going to be a learning experience that you probably will not want to keep after a few months of learning anyway.

Good luck and there are a lot of people here that are willing to help you through this transition period. If you are willing to put forth the effort you will be free of Microsoft's bullying, manipulative ways forever. :-)

Fred
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Re: Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby MagnusB on Wed Mar 26, 2008 3:26 pm

Updating is up to you really, if you do not want the hassle of update just use a rolling release instead of a "locked release" (or whatever it is called) like Mint is. Both have it's advantages and disadvantages. Alternately you could upgrade your system using APT, without loosing any data. How to do this is usually mentioned in the release notes.
But many users just find a version that is stable and functional on their system and runs with that, there are still examples of people still running Dapper Drake (Ubuntu 6.06, last LTS from Ubuntu) just because it is easier to do that than to upgrade every six months, configure your system and importing bookmarks etc. While there are some like me who just skip around, test a ton of distro's and usually upgrade to the latest software just because... It is really up to you how you want to do this.
Now what I usually recommend is to start with a bit of distro hopping, Ubuntu and Mint are great places to start, and learn the basics, then a new world opens up out there. But if you want a stable, easily maintained system, stay with Mint, upgrade if you feel the need for it (Elyssa will be LTS, so that is worth considering)....
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Re: Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby Fred on Wed Mar 26, 2008 4:37 pm

Nerdboy,

I just can't help myself, and I say this in the nicest of ways. I know you told us how you got "Nerdboy" but it sure doesn't have a faltering connotation for me. I have this picture in my mind of a sloppily dressed 14 year old that needs a bath and a haircut, hunkered over a keyboard. Guess I am just showing my age. :-)

But that's ok, maybe we can change your perception of Linux and you can change my perception of "Nerdboy."

Enjoy life, it's too short to do otherwise. :-)

Fred
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Re: Im such a Noob i spelt it Boon by mistake !

Postby Nerdboy on Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:23 am

Thanks heaps everyone, i think i understand from what has been said it doesnt sound as hard as i thought it would be, i was kind of under the impression it would be a must to do so, but the machine is soley just now a web browser and e-mail recepricant for spam :roll: (thats what got him in trouble with XP in the first place lol)

So if there is no need to do so then i wont, im pretty sure Ted is more then happy with it now.

now i need to google how to mount a second HDD im pretty sure i have two in his machine, so i'll set up his music on that drive if he ever feels the need to upgrade.

Thanks again

Daz
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