How best to force myself to learn Linux

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elsmandino
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How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by elsmandino » Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:03 am

Hi there,

I am a long time Windows user and over the years I have always had a go with Linux but always seem to drop it quite quickly as I feel frustrated that it does not work the same as Windows and I end up going back.

I know that this is a bit ridiculous - I only know Windows so well because I stuck with that, so why should LInux be any different.

Anyway, I am determined to get to grips with Linux this time and have had a recommendation that Mint Cinnamon is the best distro for for someone with a bit of techie knowledge but no real Linux experience.

I was just wondering how best to install Linux so I get to use it whenever possible - i.e to force me to use it rather than Windows to begin with.

As far as I can see, I can do one of the following:

1. Run it directly off a USB stick.
2. Dual booth with Windows 7.
3. Run Windows within Linux using Virtualbox
4. Run Linux within Windows using Virtualbox

I think that I am going to have to use option 3 or 4 as there are some programs that I can only use on windows (e.g. VideoReDo and Mediaportal) but would want to us Mint for everything else.

What do you guys think?


Any advice would be much appreciated.

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daveinuk
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by daveinuk » Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:33 am

Get past this this and this:
it does not work the same as Windows
why should LInux be any different
force me to use it
And you'll learn because you want to.

Run them off a live CD/DVD/USB to find you way round without affecting your system, I prefer to have a sole OS not a dual boot, if you have a 'spare' desk/laptop to learn on it would be ideal, I bought one solely for this purpose. USB live boots are great, I do this a lot to try new distro's out, most of all HAVE FUN learning. . . . the benefits/differences take a little time to make sense, what's the rush . . . . ;)

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Spearmint2
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by Spearmint2 » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:12 am

I can only speak of my personal journey. It was Knoppix years ago run under Windows using LILO as the bootloader, but I gave up on it being a permanent OS. Next was virtual software such as Oracle's VMWare Virtual Box and VPC2007, fully installed to the VHD, so no real hardware nor driver problems, also could try out many different distros easily. Next was full installations on cheap USB thumbdrives of distros which most interested me, and boot to it, see if hardware problems existed outside the virtual environment. Finally dual and triple boot setups using GRUB as the bootloader for all systems including Windows. Unfortunately many I see come here and want to jump directly from Windows on the hard drive to a Linux distro to replace it on the hard drive with no prior experience, and then disappointment due to lack of knowledge and use, and I expect some of them are then lost to the system for a few more years till they are curious again.
All things go better with Mint. Mint julep, mint jelly, mint gum, candy mints, pillow mints, peppermint, chocolate mints, spearmint,....

Simtech68
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by Simtech68 » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:10 pm

daveinuk wrote:Get past this this and this:
it does not work the same as Windows
why should LInux be any different
force me to use it
And you'll learn because you want to.

Run them off a live CD/DVD/USB to find you way round without affecting your system, I prefer to have a sole OS not a dual boot, if you have a 'spare' desk/laptop to learn on it would be ideal, I bought one solely for this purpose. USB live boots are great, I do this a lot to try new distro's out, most of all HAVE FUN learning. . . . the benefits/differences take a little time to make sense, what's the rush . . . . ;)
This, is probably the best was to look at things. First off, Linux will never be like windows becasue it's Linux. Second, you will learn because you want to learn Linux, there is no force necessary. If you really want to get away from windows then make the move but realize it took you a while to learn windows.....it will take a while to learn Linux. Give yourself some time. If you have a spare box load it up and "play" with it for a while get used to it. Same cane be done with the LiveUSB/DVD.
Details, details, and more details will help get the answers you seek!!

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Pierre
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by Pierre » Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:27 am

If you have a spare box load it up and "play" with it for a while get used to it.
The same can be done with the LiveUSB/DVD.
a "PlayBox" is really the better option .. ..
- I've had one for some years, & the only H/W variable is the size of the hdd itself.
it's currently got eight partitions & a /swap, on it - and has six O/Ss currently.

the latest re-install was for openSUSE 12.3
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Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] - when your problem is solved!
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wheeledgoat
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by wheeledgoat » Wed Jul 31, 2013 1:55 pm

I've had great success with putting Mint Cinnamon on our "good" computer - the 1st one everybody in the family sits down at (larger monitor and better location). Only the secondary computer has Windows on it, for whatever windows-only thing I might come across.

The best part is, neither my kids (8 & 9 yo) nor my wife care that it's Linux. I told them, but I don't think they were even half listening so they might not even KNOW. My wife prob thinks "linux" is a skin for windows. LMAO. All they know is it looks a little different from the other computer. My wife can still check her yahoo mail, surf the web and watch youtube videos... and the kids can still play minecraft. Everybody can do what they sit down at the computer to do, and that's the beauty of it!

I love that one day, my kids will turn around and realize they're familiar with Linux, and that I'm doing my part to break M$'s monopoly with the next generation.

"If you don't make mistakes, you're not working on hard enough problems. And that's a big mistake."
-Frank Wilczek

TBABill
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Re: How best to force myself to learn Linux

Post by TBABill » Wed Jul 31, 2013 2:33 pm

In addition to some great advice already given, if you test your machine from a LiveUSB and find the hardware detects and works properly, you should have the same experience with the OS installed. For so many, Linux seems to be daunting because they don't test for compatibility before using it, then find they need a proprietary driver for wireless or video, sound may not work right, etc. When they face those issues they end up being asked to use the terminal by experienced users who understand it's the most efficient and effective way to manage the system for most things. So what ends up happening is it seems to cause users to believe they're forced to learn all the terminal usage methods, commands, etc., when in reality if they used Linux on a compatible machine, for the most part those things would be unnecessary. Yes, certain things still will be, but if you can find a machine with an out of the box capability to run Linux, then the learning curve is less steep and shorter.

I'd recommend testing your machine from the live session and note what doesn't work. Sound from both speakers, if you have more than one, correct volume levels (mixer levels can be adjusted), wireless works and stays connected at near and far distances from the router, the machine is staying relatively cool (temperature), and it remains peppy after quite a bit of use. Test video resolutions and just make sure it seems to be working properly in every way you can. Once you're sure things are cool, then consider installing into a VM and playing with it there. You really can't break anything that way. Use that VM to learn the file system so you can navigate between root (/), /home, etc. Figure out where files go and how apps are installed, how the repos work, why you can't have Synaptic open and try to do an update in terminal, and all the other little things you'll so quickly pick up on as you use it day to day.

It's a wonderful OS and if you just learn to Google for answers you'll get really far. And one thing many users don't realize is the Ubuntu forums are FILLED with questions and answers to software, installation and hardware questions that directly are applicable on Mint since it's based on Ubuntu. Their forums are so full of activity that you're bound to find answers, and you can even sign up there to ask questions. And try to understand new users' questions as you get experience and then try to help them. You'll help someone else while bettering your own skills. That's a win-win.

Best of luck. And do a de-frag on the Windows side before you partition!

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