New Laptop Windows 8

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New Laptop Windows 8

Postby oldhifi on Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:12 pm

I bought my wife a new ASUS laptop for Christmas, it came with Windows 8 and after 30 minutes playing in Windows 8, I " erased HD" and installed Linux Mint , now everything works great! We have been Linux users for 3 years now..
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby sagirfahmid3 on Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:24 pm

Respect to you +
How was Windows 8 anyway? I am curious...I've only tried the developer preview and it sucked then...
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby oldhifi on Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:59 am

it was really sucked, to complicated, thats why I erased it..Windows 7 was great..I have a dual boot on this latop Mint and 7
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby lexon on Thu Dec 27, 2012 1:09 pm

No issues with Secure Boot?
Exactly which Asus model? I am sure others will be interested if you had no issues.
I see differently in the Chat about Linux Mint. Kind of curious in case I ever want to buy a new laptop.

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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby oldhifi on Thu Dec 27, 2012 3:57 pm

ASUS S56CA-WH31 15.6-Inch,

I tried to setup dual boot with Mint and Windows 8, it would not boot, so I reloaded to erase entire HD and loaded Mint..works great.

I am also running a dual boot ASUS nx90 with Windows 7/Mint, as I type and it works great too!!.
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby lexon on Thu Dec 27, 2012 9:58 pm

oldhifi wrote:ASUS S56CA-WH31 15.6-Inch,

I tried to setup dual boot with Mint and Windows 8, it would not boot, so I reloaded to erase entire HD and loaded Mint..works great.

I am also running a dual boot ASUS nx90 with Windows 7/Mint, as I type and it works great too!!.


Thanks for the info. I stored the info for possible future purchase.
I would also just do the same with all I have seen about W8.
Your experience surprised me because of the blah, blah, blah about the Secure Boot issue with Windows 8.
There is a discussion going in the Chat About Linux forum that is quite different than what you experienced. It might be, different manufactures machines might be different.
It was my understanding that the PC bios would not allow a different OS.

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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby oldhifi on Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:33 am

if you wipe the HD, you should be able to install any Linux or Windows OS, I wish they were set up for Snow Lepoard too, that would be cool.....
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby srs5694 on Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:52 pm

lexon wrote:It was my understanding that the PC bios would not allow a different OS.


No, that's absolutely false.

First, BIOS != UEFI. BIOS is the old 16-bit firmware for PCs. It's essentially gone now, but manufacturers are continuing to refer to their new UEFI firmware as "BIOSes," probably because a significant fraction of their customers are familiar with the term and because the UEFI fits the same space in the software stack. The generic term for both BIOS and UEFI, though, is "firmware."

That said, most modern UEFI implementations include something called the Compatibility Support Module (CSM), which is a BIOS emulation layer that enables the computer to boot BIOS-based OSes. Thus, a modern UEFI system can work very much like a BIOS-based computer. You get a few advantages when you boot in UEFI mode, though, like a potentially quicker boot time and a different set of boot loaders. I'm getting a bit off point, though....

BIOS has never been restricted to a single OS. By its design, it would be virtually impossible to limit it in that way -- at least, not and have it remain recognizably a BIOS. UEFI is also not restricted to a single OS; however, it supports a feature called Secure Boot that enables whoever set up the computer's firmware to include a set of cryptographic public keys that can be used to authenticate a boot loader. If the boot loader isn't signed with the private key matching one of the included public keys, then the firmware can refuse to launch the boot loader. This can be used to lock a computer into a single OS -- but note the emphasis on can. There's no requirement that a computer be configured in such a restrictive way. In fact, Microsoft's certification requirements for Windows 8 desktop and laptop computers specify that users must have the ability to reconfigure the Secure Boot keys on x86-64 computers, or disable Secure Boot altogether. Thus, there is a practical requirement that x86-64 desktop and laptop computers can not be locked into a single OS.

The story takes another twist on ARM-based computers, though; on that platform, Microsoft requires that Secure Boot can not be disabled or reconfigured by the user. Thus, at the moment and AFAIK, ARM computers that ship with Windows 8 are effectively locked into running Windows 8. This could change in the future, though; Microsoft offers a signing service that enables developers to get programs signed with Microsoft's key. This has already been done for x86-64 boot loaders (to simplify things for users), but to the best of my knowledge not for any ARM boot loader. In principle it could be done; it's just that the ARM market is so small, and is currently so dominated by non-Windows devices, that nobody has yet bothered to try. If and when somebody gets an ARM version of Fedora's shim or the Linux Foundation's PreBootloader signed, though, even Windows 8 ARM devices will become capable of booting Linux.
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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby lexon on Sat Dec 29, 2012 4:22 pm

srs5694 wrote:
lexon wrote:It was my understanding that the PC bios would not allow a different OS.


No, that's absolutely false.

First, BIOS != UEFI. BIOS is the old 16-bit firmware for PCs. It's essentially gone now, but manufacturers are continuing to refer to their new UEFI firmware as "BIOSes," probably because a significant fraction of their customers are familiar with the term and because the UEFI fits the same space in the software stack. The generic term for both BIOS and UEFI, though, is "firmware."

That said, most modern UEFI implementations include something called the Compatibility Support Module (CSM), which is a BIOS emulation layer that enables the computer to boot BIOS-based OSes. Thus, a modern UEFI system can work very much like a BIOS-based computer. You get a few advantages when you boot in UEFI mode, though, like a potentially quicker boot time and a different set of boot loaders. I'm getting a bit off point, though....

BIOS has never been restricted to a single OS. By its design, it would be virtually impossible to limit it in that way -- at least, not and have it remain recognizably a BIOS. UEFI is also not restricted to a single OS; however, it supports a feature called Secure Boot that enables whoever set up the computer's firmware to include a set of cryptographic public keys that can be used to authenticate a boot loader. If the boot loader isn't signed with the private key matching one of the included public keys, then the firmware can refuse to launch the boot loader. This can be used to lock a computer into a single OS -- but note the emphasis on can. There's no requirement that a computer be configured in such a restrictive way. In fact, Microsoft's certification requirements for Windows 8 desktop and laptop computers specify that users must have the ability to reconfigure the Secure Boot keys on x86-64 computers, or disable Secure Boot altogether. Thus, there is a practical requirement that x86-64 desktop and laptop computers can not be locked into a single OS.

The story takes another twist on ARM-based computers, though; on that platform, Microsoft requires that Secure Boot can not be disabled or reconfigured by the user. Thus, at the moment and AFAIK, ARM computers that ship with Windows 8 are effectively locked into running Windows 8. This could change in the future, though; Microsoft offers a signing service that enables developers to get programs signed with Microsoft's key. This has already been done for x86-64 boot loaders (to simplify things for users), but to the best of my knowledge not for any ARM boot loader. In principle it could be done; it's just that the ARM market is so small, and is currently so dominated by non-Windows devices, that nobody has yet bothered to try. If and when somebody gets an ARM version of Fedora's shim or the Linux Foundation's PreBootloader signed, though, even Windows 8 ARM devices will become capable of booting Linux.


I said bios because the OP seemed to refuse to give anymore info on exactly what he did.
Wiping the HD with a new install is easy but he must have done something else first to get around the secure boot issue.

Your blah is interesting but much too technical.

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Re: New Laptop Windows 8

Postby slipstick on Sat Dec 29, 2012 6:44 pm

@srs5694

thanks for the explanation - it clears up a couple of things I was a little confused about. And I do appreciate the technical detail. :)
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