What are your top tips for a Newbie?

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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby ummagumma on Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:32 am

To be honest mate, reading every and bit of info you can is the best way to learn the about the system. I'm not sure there is a definitive single link to all the info.

I sort of started with the same mindset as you, but the more you read, the more you learn, and believe me I'm learning every day. Once you delve in, you won't look back I promise.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby Laoyumi on Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:45 pm

One question was about the partition table on dual boot Mint / Windows

I have one large Data partition in ntfs format which I can access from Mint and from Windows. Ther reason - Windows can onlz read nfts :cry: ! Otherwise my Mint partitions are ext4 ow swap.

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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby hylke on Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:21 am

deanom wrote:Hi
I'm thinking of trying Mint for the first time, and have no experience of using any Linux distros. What are your top tips for me BEFORE my DVD arrives?
Possible topics:
Installation
Connecting to the Internet
Problem Solving
Please note that technical instructions will need to be pretty basic.
Thanks

Deano
Lincolnshire
England


1. Do you wnat to install it alongside a Windows version? Wouldn't recommend that. Linux only is safer (I'm being told)
2. Backup the photo's, video's and other documents that are/were on your pc. Even a friend of mine, who is a computer engineer, forgot that...
3. Installation is no problem, I think. Put in the DVD and follow the instructions on your screen.
4. Three of that instructions are:
- make sure there is enough space on your harddisk
- connect your pc/laptop to electricity
- connect your pc to the internet (a LAN-cable is the safest option)


Good luck.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby 7vn11vn on Mon Dec 03, 2012 11:35 am

I just took the time to read through this entire thread. I installed Mint 14 a few days ago and I have to say that I didn't do anything that all these good people suggest. I read nothing. I made no backups. I didn't know about downloading that program to make sure my downloaded file was correct and I just burned it to a dvd. I didn't know anything about Mint, or Linux. I just liked the screenshots. When I booted from the dvd I looked around for about two minutes and figured I had to have it. I even had problems with the touchpad, but that didn't deter me (I did figure that out later after it was installed). I installed it as a dual-boot with Windows 8 and just had to accept the default 129GB partition it wanted because I couldn't change it with the keyboard.

As it all turned out, everything works beautifully. There is a learning curve and I've gotten the help I need on this forum and it has been much appreciated, but Mint really isn't that difficult coming from Windows. I'm saying this from the perspective of being a user, not a techie. So, if you want to try out Mint, don't be afraid of it. But, do yourself a favor and read through this thread. There are tons of good advice here. I can see that I was EXTREMELY lucky not to have had any problems, but there are things here that you really should know before you install. Good luck. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby pbehhe on Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:06 pm

I think I was using my Linux wrong for a while, I have been dual-booting since the start. first with ubuntu, that is when my computer crashed due to heat (improper ventilation) and my windows exp broke. since I used that ubuntu feature of installing within windows, while I could still access my ubuntu I formatted everything and reinstalled. my linux never broke so either I was too careful or lucky.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby allypink on Mon Dec 10, 2012 6:57 am

My advise is to read, read, read, read then, read some more. It's infectious anyway....... after a while you can't help yourself.
Next thing. If you are/have a desktop (more difficult with laptops I know but can be done), don't run different distros or windows in different partitions on the one HD..... looking for trouble! Use multiple HDs. They are cheap and most DTs can take two HDs or more. With Grub 2 setting up multiple HDs in the grub menu is easy. Just make sure when you install on a HD install grub to that HD only. Then on the first boot HD run update-grub and it will find all your drives and distros including windows and set it up in one boot menu.
Always use two partitions with each distro. One for root (system, 20g) and the rest home. Use the same user name and password. Makes migration and updates real easy.
Enjoy the ride folks
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby heavy metal on Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:07 pm

allypink wrote:Always use two partitions with each distro. One for root (system, 20g) and the rest home. Use the same user name and password. Makes migration and updates real easy.
:P

Don't forget the SWAP partition too, very important! At least 2GB for swap!
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby jamvaru on Tue Dec 11, 2012 8:47 pm

i disagree
i do use one swap partition for all different linux versions; they don't mind
but i don't use a separate home partition for any different version
if i need to i can just copy the home folder to a backup drive (or partition) and reformat
if i am using a different version i can just open the home folder on my main version or vice versa
i usually just open a different drive and save stuff there, whatever the version
only need one partition for each distro, root or /
my swap is 10gb i think, just because i don't need the space, lol
it never gets used (8gb ram)
try to put your swap around 25% to 35% into the drive, like as partition 2 in a 4 partition schema
this means that if you have a distro on partition 3 or 4 it doesn't have to swing the arm as far to access the swap partition
but it doesn't really matter; you can put it first, too
'/
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby widget on Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:22 pm

jamvaru wrote:i disagree
i do use one swap partition for all different linux versions; they don't mind
but i don't use a separate home partition for any different version
if i need to i can just copy the home folder to a backup drive (or partition) and reformat
if i am using a different version i can just open the home folder on my main version or vice versa
i usually just open a different drive and save stuff there, whatever the version
only need one partition for each distro, root or /
my swap is 10gb i think, just because i don't need the space, lol
it never gets used (8gb ram)
try to put your swap around 25% to 35% into the drive, like as partition 2 in a 4 partition schema
this means that if you have a distro on partition 3 or 4 it doesn't have to swing the arm as far to access the swap partition
but it doesn't really matter; you can put it first, too
'/

There are a number of bennefits to a / and a /home. The main one is that it protects your data if you need to reinstall, including all your ~/.hidden user configuration files.

There are some advantages in performance also but they are not real noticeable. You will find, for instance, that you run into fewer strange permission problems. The file system just seems to like a separate /home.

There are many people that recommend more than a separate /home. /var is a common one as is /usr and /etc. /boot is extremely common and will probably become more so with the advent of safe computing boot restrictions that require, I believe, a fat format for /boot (I could very well be wrong but the source seemed reliable).

Many people like to use different file system formats however that are not well supported by boot loaders. I that case a separate boot is needed to boot the system.

In your case you may some day like to encrypt, for security, your /home directory. That is kind of a pain. Encrypting your /home partition is easy.

Full encryption of the OS requires that you have a separate /boot because nothing is going to read the base files from an encrypted /boot directory. This is why most people simply use / and /home partitions with the /home encrypted.

I take it that you have a number of installs. This is great. I am an addicted multi boot person myself. One thing you can do if you can remember more than one user name is to have one /home partition for several / partitions. I have never done this on more than three / partitions because that is pretty much my limit on remembering names. Works great though.

Tom and Sam, for instance get along fine on this /home partition which serves both a Debian testing install and a Sid install. On another drive Tom, Walt and Sam get along great on one /home that serves 3 OpenBox installs of Squeeze, Wheezy and Sid.

A guy that was testing Ubuntu dev releases when I was got me into doing that. He had one permenant /home that he used all the time and had up to 12 installs using it including Debian branch Linux installs, Red Hat branch Linux installs and Free BSD installs. Several of the installs he had were, of coarse, Ubuntu dev releases that are pretty unstable. This does not effect the separate /home and if it did it would only be in the /home/<test OS user name> directory.

It is good to be a bit informed as to why more than one partition is better rather than treat it in a casual manner.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby InkKnife on Wed Dec 12, 2012 7:20 pm

I am coming up on my one year of Linux anniversary. I think I have stepped up slightly from being a n00b because I am a curious guy who likes to learn about tech.
I think before you can advise a n00b you have to know what they want from Mint. I would say that if the proverbial n00b just wants to do normal desktopie things they don't need to do anything more than they would changing from Windows or OSX. Mint is ready to go out of the box with everything a novice needs.
Actually, that is wrong now that I think about it. On both Windows and OSX a new user will be spending a lot of time discovering and then installing many software packages to get done what they want to do. Mint's software load is pretty damned comprehensive and obviously and logically organized so getting down to work or play is fast and easy.
Sometimes I think the GNU/Linux community paints a misleading picture of the state of Linux distros by emphasizing so strongly nerd values. I get it, I am a nerd and love learning new things so I don't say "nerd" pejoratively, I am one.
But by talking up the mucking about in the system stuff we make Mint sound harder than it is. I speak from experience because before I dumped OSX in favor of Mint I did do lots of reading and when I finally made the jump I was pleasantly surprised that Mint was much easier and mature than I had expected. Mint is fully a peer of Windows and OSX and in my opinion Mint is better than both in certain areas.
Now, I am not saying there is no learning to do but absolutely no more is required to adopt Mint than either Windows or OSX.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby jamvaru on Thu Dec 13, 2012 3:05 pm

widget wrote:
jamvaru wrote:i disagree
'/

There are a number of bennefits to a / and a /home.

It is good to be a bit informed as to why more than one partition is better rather than treat it in a casual manner.

I only appear to be treating it in a casual manner because I do not think it is relevant
having a /home directory is not important to me, just as having a 'library' or 'my documents' folder in windows is not important to me

all the functionality of the /home partition is accomplished by a completely separate drive, with 'videos', 'music', 'downloads' directories
the home directory or partition is only used when no option exists to change to another drive, then you have to manually move stuff to the other drive; most programs allow you to specify a directory for saves or downloads

the only problem with that is you have to be sure your drive or partition is loaded before running your other program that uses it, so click computer and click 'save' drive... then run program, or it will have errors and be wonky (transmission)

i know i can have it automount, but i really don't like having to edit config files; something about the linux syntax bugs me, but i am getting used to it; probably cause it mimics unix, has unix origins


Post by InkKnife on Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:20 pm

"Sometimes I think the GNU/Linux community paints a misleading picture of the state of Linux distros by emphasizing so strongly nerd values. I get it, I am a nerd and love learning new things so I don't say "nerd" pejoratively, I am one.
But by talking up the mucking about in the system stuff we make Mint sound harder than it is. I speak from experience because before I dumped OSX in favor of Mint I did do lots of reading and when I finally made the jump I was pleasantly surprised that Mint was much easier and mature than I had expected. Mint is fully a peer of Windows and OSX and in my opinion Mint is better than both in certain areas.
Now, I am not saying there is no learning to do but absolutely no more is required to adopt Mint than either Windows or OSX."

I agree completely, except for one thing: you will pull your hair out trying to run (windows) games on linux
I know it is possible, but what a pain in the tucows
when they figure out how to thoroughly emulate windows and dx 9,10,11 they will get TONS more migrations to linux
This thing should play windows games out of the box on a live DVD, no install
THEN they will convince people it is worth the hassle of learning a new, different system
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby Mike+9 on Thu Dec 13, 2012 3:14 pm

Pierre wrote:
and remember to have fun with it


actually, don't be afraid of breaking it - you won't learn, if you haven't broken, something.
that said, don't do anything that's rash, either. :)


I have a similar point of view. To learn a new OS you have to try it. Try doing stuff you did on windows, see what you can do and what you need to do differently.
Also, do anything rash that you might think of. BUT with the condition that you do not have files you might need on that pc/laptop. No files -> no loss -> win.
Enjoy! :D
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby allypink on Fri Dec 14, 2012 6:37 am

heavy metal wrote:
allypink wrote:Always use two partitions with each distro. One for root (system, 20g) and the rest home. Use the same user name and password. Makes migration and updates real easy.
:P

Don't forget the SWAP partition too, very important! At least 2GB for swap!


True, but if you run multiple HD like me, you only need one swap on any HD. When you install another distro on a new HD grub will find the swap where ever it is. No benefit to have multiple swaps that I'm aware of.
It's recommended that it's best to have swap on a separate HD anyway. Don't know if it makes that much difference.
Anyway, unless you are doing some heavy graphic or video editing if you have 2g or more RAM don't know that linux accesses the swap that much. I don't recall noticing when bored and 'ferreting' of finding any swap being used on my machine.
Swap was/is a part of a bygone era when memory was worth a mint. Thankfully those days are gone with most machines having 4g these days.
Happy 'nixing folks.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby widget on Fri Dec 14, 2012 4:35 pm

jamvaru wrote:
widget wrote:
jamvaru wrote:i disagree
'/

There are a number of bennefits to a / and a /home.

It is good to be a bit informed as to why more than one partition is better rather than treat it in a casual manner.

I only appear to be treating it in a casual manner because I do not think it is relevant
having a /home directory is not important to me, just as having a 'library' or 'my documents' folder in windows is not important to me

all the functionality of the /home partition is accomplished by a completely separate drive, with 'videos', 'music', 'downloads' directories
the home directory or partition is only used when no option exists to change to another drive, then you have to manually move stuff to the other drive; most programs allow you to specify a directory for saves or downloads

the only problem with that is you have to be sure your drive or partition is loaded before running your other program that uses it, so click computer and click 'save' drive... then run program, or it will have errors and be wonky (transmission)

i know i can have it automount, but i really don't like having to edit config files; something about the linux syntax bugs me, but i am getting used to it; probably cause it mimics unix, has unix origins

The use of a separate /home partition will look no different or act differently on your computer than installing on one partition.

There is no other "drive" involved unless you set it up that way. Now that is assuming you are not talking about what MS calls a "drive" which is any partition.

If you install on 2 partitions you will have at first boot a system that acts, to all appearences, identical to the one you use now. The difference will only be noticable if you have another install and you are looking at the / partition file system of a 2 partition setup. In that case you will find an empty /home directory.

As far as the install goes your entire file system is mounted at boot. In a 2 partition system it is all mounted at boot too. If you use the installer to determine the mount point of 3 partitiions /boot, /home and / you will boot and all those parts of the file system will be mounted and visible in your file browser.

If you look at your current /etc/fstab you will find that it is mounting 2 partitions now - / and /swap as in;
Code: Select all
#Entry for /dev/sda7 :
UUID=d3a8b707-f20f-4f6d-b07a-8ecb0a156b9e   /   ext4   errors=remount-ro   0   1

#Entry for /dev/sda5 :
UUID=2758aefb-1847-42ea-92c0-cefddf6a8460   none   swap   sw   0   0

If you do an install with a / and a /home partition the fstab will look like;
Code: Select all
#Entry for /dev/sda7 :
UUID=d3a8b707-f20f-4f6d-b07a-8ecb0a156b9e   /   ext4   errors=remount-ro   0   1

#Entry for /dev/sda8 :
UUID=cf81c8aa-9f62-47ec-9eb3-ec760c8d00cf   /home   ext4   defaults   0   2

#Entry for /dev/sda5 :
UUID=2758aefb-1847-42ea-92c0-cefddf6a8460   none   swap   sw   0   0

This is set up by the installer. It has to be. This is because there are files, you "hidden" files, that are user specific and only exist in your /home/<user name> directory.

Now I do have partitions where I keep other data that is used by all my installs and setting them up does require an entry in the /etc/fstab and a mount point (sub directory) set up in my /media directory.
Code: Select all
#Entry for /dev/sdb5 :
UUID=b9e4c42c-838d-448b-9c4e-69363d6832ad   /media/Storage   ext4   defaults   0   0

If you notice there is a mount point there /media/Storage. That is where the data will be found on that install.

If you need to reinstall one of your one partition installs you will have to NOT format that partition. This means that there may be somethings possibly left over in your system files that should not be there and were, possibly, your reason for reinstalling. It also puts your /home directory in more danger than if it were on a separate partition and your personal settings will be over written in the "hidden" files.

On a 2 partition install you can format the / partition and not format the /partition. This means that you will have all your "hidden" files in your /home while having a clean install of your system files.

Why would you want a separate data partition on a multi boot set up?

I went for years with out one and it works all right. You simply copy all the image, sound and video files to the new install that you want.

Every time you copy a file it degrades slightly. After a while they are bad. If you have a data partition where you store that sort of things you are not constantly copying them. You simply use them from the data partition.

Once you set it up once it is no problem to set it up a lot of installs very easily by simply copying the entry from the first /etc/fstab file to the new one. You will have to set up a mount point in the new /media directory by using your file browser as root or simply by;
Code: Select all
sudo mkdir /media/data

using any thing you want in place of "data".

This has not only the advantage of not degrading your files but also being faster to accomplish.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby jamvaru on Sat Dec 15, 2012 4:58 pm

i use more than one internal hard drive
if you can afford one, then you can afford 2, priorities
i like the idea about just copying whatever you want to, but i prefer to set up each install on its own; also when testing new distros i don't want to use outside sources of data, just the pure distro and whatever it does or can be made to do
also, it is really very simple to customize, and i would rather have different customizations for different installs/distros
i use my /home directory when i don't feel like telling a program like gimp to save something someplace else, or sometimes a program does not remember to save it in a specified directory rather than /home/something
/home is useful for /home/desktop or /home/user/desktop, whatever it is
i find text files tedious and rather stupid
it is insulting to be forced to use them rather than a gui
so... till linux fixes that completely... so no text files need to be read at all... they will never get any more desktop market, ever
that and emulating dx 11
'/
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby CurtisCoburn on Sat Dec 15, 2012 11:51 pm

I agree with the first post. There will be a lot of reading and studying about other Linux too. Read a lot of Wikipedia pages about different distros, and different user interfaces. Also if you have any questions, there are so many different forums for just about every distro. You can ask anybody, because the Linux community is very helpful.

Lots of research will be going on. Do it because you want to know more. And that is the best way to learn.
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby powerhouse on Sun Dec 16, 2012 6:37 am

jamvaru wrote:Post by InkKnife on Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:20 pm

"Sometimes I think the GNU/Linux community paints a misleading picture of the state of Linux distros by emphasizing so strongly nerd values. I get it, I am a nerd and love learning new things so I don't say "nerd" pejoratively, I am one.
But by talking up the mucking about in the system stuff we make Mint sound harder than it is. I speak from experience because before I dumped OSX in favor of Mint I did do lots of reading and when I finally made the jump I was pleasantly surprised that Mint was much easier and mature than I had expected. Mint is fully a peer of Windows and OSX and in my opinion Mint is better than both in certain areas.
Now, I am not saying there is no learning to do but absolutely no more is required to adopt Mint than either Windows or OSX."

I agree completely, except for one thing: you will pull your hair out trying to run (windows) games on linux
I know it is possible, but what a pain in the tucows
when they figure out how to thoroughly emulate windows and dx 9,10,11 they will get TONS more migrations to linux
This thing should play windows games out of the box on a live DVD, no install
THEN they will convince people it is worth the hassle of learning a new, different system


I agree with you on Windows games on Linux. But it's a catch 22:

1. Games developer will only invest in native Linux games when the market is big enough. As long as there are dual-booting Linux/Windoze users they'll settle with Windoze.
2. Linux adoption will grow with the availability of native Linux games.

I don't think emulation is a solution for playing Windows games on Linux. There may be some success stories with wine (I wouldn't know - don't use it), but in the end it's a crutch.

Virtualization is a better option, but still very much geek stuff. I am running Windows 7 in a virtual machine (Xen) with direct access to a dedicated graphics card, so gaming or graphics intensive tasks are performing like on a bare-metal installation of Windows. Windows and Linux run concurrently on my machine, and I switch between them at the press of a button. However, this solution requires special hardware (VT-d support for both CPU and motherboard, and a supported GPU - mostly AMD, but some high-end Nvidia cards too). The installation is not for noobs, though with the right hardware and proper instructions its doable. But this solution doesn't help in convincing games devs to issue native Linux games.

My suggestion is this: Write to the games developers and tell them you are using Linux and would like to see a Linux-native version of your favorite game(s). The more mails they get, or forum posts, the bigger the chance they port the game to Linux. Finally, make their investment worth their while by buying the game(s).
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby powerhouse on Sun Dec 16, 2012 7:42 am

widget wrote:...Every time you copy a file it degrades slightly. After a while they are bad....


That's new to me - and I thought I've seen it all :shock: .

I'm not arguing about separate / and /home directories, but I like to clarify some stuff:

1. The /home/user directory is there to hold user files, individual settings (in hidden files so you won't see them usually), in short the data files of the user - documents, music, video, you name it. A Linux distro/release may come and go, but the user files should stay. This is why they should be in a different partition (or drive).

2. The Linux operating system is installed to / (root) and some sub-folders (/boot, /bin, /sbin, /usr, /etc, and more), but not to /home... Only user-specific settings are stored in the /home/user... folder.

Now let's have an example scenario and look at the difference between a single / (root) partition and / and /home partitions setup.

Scenario: You are a happy Linux Mint 14 user and everything runs smoothly. One day you learn about a new Linux Mint release - #15. If #14 is great, #15 looks even better. You decide to upgrade, but somehow things go wrong. Packages break, applications don't start, you try to fix it but make an even bigger mess of everything. In the end you're left with only one choice: reinstall the system.

A. You're the "simple is good" fellow and your entire Linux install resides on a single partition (or drive). And you got a simple plan to put to action:
1. Create a bootable LIVE media for Linux Mint 15 (the release you want to install);
2. Prepare an empty harddrive or partition to hold all your /home data (you got spare disk under your bed just for that purpose);
3. Boot up the LIVE media and mount your /home/user folder;
4. Attach the spare harddrive and mount it (if it's a USB drive it's mounting automatically);
5. Copy your entire /home directory to your spare harddrive - since you got plenty of music and stuff you have a cup of coffee or two while the drives spin);
6. Time to install the new Linux Mint release: wipe the partition/disk clean and install the new release;
7. After a reboot into the new Linux installation, you copy the /home... folder on your spare harddisk back to your PC, hoping that your old config files work the same way as they did before. Alternatively, you could selectively only copy those files back to /home/user... that aren't there. (Note: The Linux installation process also creates a few hidden files and folders in the /home/user directory, so you need to decide if you want to use the new config files/directories or overwrite them with the config files/directories you just backed up. If you just copy the backed-up /home folder to /, replacing the new /home directory, all new config files and directories will be gone.)
8. After a few more cups of coffee everything is in place and you can reboot. With a little luck, your plan works. Oh, what about all the applications you had installed on your old system?
9. You got a great memory and quickly select and install the missing apps. All is fine and you only spent the better part of a day having a quality time with Linux.

B. You're the complicated girl/guy and went through great pain to have separate / and /home partitions. To make things even more complicated, you "backed" up your software selection in your /home/user folder. After reading all the advice you can get, you venture on to mission impossible:
1. Pick up (or prepare) a bootable installation media;
2. Boot up the Linux Mint 15 installer and follow the instructions;
3. Mount (but don't format) your old /home partition and let the installer do it's magic;
4. Reboot and open your software selection and let Linux install the missing packages.

Please don't take offense with the character descriptions - it's in good humor. I was an A guy until I ran into exactly this situation.
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powerhouse
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby jamvaru on Sun Dec 16, 2012 11:11 am

the problem i have with this is basically i don't see the benefit of having a home directory at all
it stores some hidden files, so i won't see them, will never know they are even there (unless i read this thread, etc.)
it is a moot point
and when someone like you tries very hard to explain the benefit to me, i still don't understand
so, kudos to you for getting it, and poop on me for not, seems to be the linux philosophy: we can do without the poopheads

re: games for linux
it is not going to happen, except for a few special cases like wesnoth, or sfl (which is certainly an inroad, just not much of one)
the point is to NOT buy windows, ever, at all... and doing virtualization to run a copy of windows on linux is really just making it easier to keep windows
if we can fully emulate whatever is required to run one of the newest and most popular games, like diablo III for example... then it will send a clear message that we don't need windows and linux is better, even if it isn't; depends on how well the emulator works

there should be a simple button that says: click me to install support for latest video games (no need to mention windows at all)

also, there should be a button that says: click me to save all your settings and default install parameters in the location of your choice so when you install a new distro all your settings and favorite apps will also be installed and updated (if that is what you really want)

so, I still don't understand your /home fixation and why it is even important to have one

and I don't understand why you cannot see the importance of emulation support for the latest games on pc/mac
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Re: What are your top tips for a Newbie?

Postby widget on Sun Dec 16, 2012 12:55 pm

jamvaru wrote:the problem i have with this is basically i don't see the benefit of having a home directory at all
it stores some hidden files, so i won't see them, will never know they are even there (unless i read this thread, etc.)
it is a moot point
and when someone like you tries very hard to explain the benefit to me, i still don't understand
so, kudos to you for getting it, and poop on me for not, seems to be the linux philosophy: we can do without the poopheads

re: games for linux
it is not going to happen, except for a few special cases like wesnoth, or sfl (which is certainly an inroad, just not much of one)
the point is to NOT buy windows, ever, at all... and doing virtualization to run a copy of windows on linux is really just making it easier to keep windows
if we can fully emulate whatever is required to run one of the newest and most popular games, like diablo III for example... then it will send a clear message that we don't need windows and linux is better, even if it isn't; depends on how well the emulator works

there should be a simple button that says: click me to install support for latest video games (no need to mention windows at all)

also, there should be a button that says: click me to save all your settings and default install parameters in the location of your choice so when you install a new distro all your settings and favorite apps will also be installed and updated (if that is what you really want)

so, I still don't understand your /home fixation and why it is even important to have one

and I don't understand why you cannot see the importance of emulation support for the latest games on pc/mac

This is all very interesting but I am prettty sure this does not belong in this thread.

The ~/.hidden files you so easily ignore are the things that hold your bookmarks, play lists for music and what background (wallpaper you use) among other such things. Anything you have configured on your computer is in those files.

You will also find very similar files if you go to your MS install and go to the file manager and go to properties (or where ever it is - I haven't used MS for 4 years) and click on "show hidden files". That is where you bookmarks are kept, basically the same deal as Linux except no where near as easy to get to in times of trouble. I may not use MS but I do rescue such files from MS installs that have gone bad.

Ignoring those files is fine. When you break a system and need to recover it, which happens with any OS, usually from something done by the user, you will find that these things so breezily discounted in ignorance are suddenly of personal importance to you.

The fact that you do not understand how your OS works does not mean that the way it works is unimportant.

The purpose of this thread is to make life easier for a noob. As noobs are most likely to break a system, particularly if they actually try to find out how it works, it is a good idea to give them installation tips that will, in the long run, make their lives easier.

This is Linux. The choice is yours. You do not have to do anything you don't want to. If you want to install using the automagical one partition install, that is fine. It would be nice if you would not, however, in your ignorance of your own OS, toss off the idea of doing things in a more complex manner hard to impliment in an installer.

There is a good reason that the installer, if you ever actually look at it, gives a manual option. If you install many Red Hat based OS's they will default to using every non fat or ntfs formatted partition on your computer. They will not install on 2 partitions. They will install on a lot more than that. There really is an advantage to having a /var, /etc, /usr ad nausium partition(s). Fedora starting, I think, with 17 has radically changed the installer to not eat all your ext2,3 or 4 partitions (and any other linux specific formats). While you may not want to know that right now you may find it more compelling if you tried to install one of those very good distros and had it eat all of your other installs.

Knowledge is a good thing to have. Sometimes ignorance, particularly willful ignorance is not bliss.

No one is asking you to understand something you do not want to understand. It would be nice to know why you seem to object to anyone else understanding the tools that they use.

As to your concern about Linux never taking a large share of the desktop market. Is that a big concern of yours? It is of great concern to Mr Shuttleworth of coarse.

According to a recent Goldman Saches report Linux is now used on 80% of all computing devices. This includes everything from refidgerators to super computers. Desktops are a small and shrinking part of computing.

Desktops can be used for more than social networks, **** and games. Some of the people that use computers actually think knowing something about them is a good thing.

Kind of like people that have roadside service on the vehicle may think it a good idea to know how to put fuel in the thing, check and add oil and maybe even master the technology of a jack and lugnut wrench.
Dell XPS 420 Core2 Quad Q 6600, audigy5.1, Radeon HD 6450 - currently 4 320Gb HDD, Debian Squeeze for secure use, Debian testing for daily use, Debian Sid for fun.
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