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Cyberpunk

Problems with Installing Ubuntu Linux

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When installing ubuntu I ignored most of the options that it gave me. I had 500Gb for xp, and when it asked me, it seemed like it was relatively straightforward when asking me how much i wanted for ubuntu, and how much i wanted to leave alone. If you could post a screenshot of the manual part that would be great... Otherwise just go balls to the walls, and I'm sure you'll be fine. Sorry, its been a while since I've installed ubuntu :\

Also, the install varies a little bit from version to version of ubuntu. I installed gutsy first, then installed hardy, and it had changed a little bit (options etc.). Maybe a screen of the manual section of the install would jog my memory. Then again, thats a lot of work, and you would probably get by with an educated guess as to which options you should choose. Thats how I did it ;). Well good luck, and hopefully nothing gets lost.

Sorry if some of that didn't make sense. I was trying to remember as I was typing... so maybe its muddied like my thoughts lol.

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I suggest you give yourself at least 20 GB for your root partition. I recently installed Kubuntu onto a machine with limited HDD space and allowed it only about a 12 GB partition for /. Within a couple months (after installing a bunch of random apps) the / partition began running out of space, which caused all sorts of problems. Firefox wouldn't play any streaming or Flash content, D0lphin and Konqueror kept crashing whenever I copied large files or opened certain directories, I got all sorts of strange errors while performing routine tasks... Eventually it got to the point where I was cleaning out my /tmp directory every other day, but the problems only kept getting worse. Long story short, I ended up buying a new hard drive, backing everything up to that and then using a Parted Magic LiveCD to repartition my system drive all over again. It was a major pain in the ass.

Moral of the story: Don't be stingy with your system partition size. I'd say give yourself at least 20-30GB for /, twice your RAM size for swap (or maybe a little more than twice, in case you plan on adding more RAM later), and make the rest of the free space into a user partition, mountable at /home.

Sounds good. In that case I'll be making the swap partition 4 GB, the / partition 30 GB, and the /home partition 30 GB. ^_^ That should be okay right?

I hope the GRUB bootloader doesn't require any partitioning work, does it? :blush:

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I hope the GRUB bootloader doesn't require any partitioning work, does it? :blush:

No it doesn't. It works it's own magic.

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If you can't get it to work any other way, try http://wubi-installer.org/

Its the most painless way to install Ubuntu (or Kubuntu or Xubuntu) onto XP in a dual boot config (no this is not a VM) and it resides on your Windows install in a single place that can be uninstalled with Add/Remove programs and even uses your Windows boot loader. I don't consider this to be anything a true hacker would utilize as its cheesy as hell but it gets the job done and isnt a bad idea for a newbie to Linux. You won't be able to fully customize your install quite as much this way but its worth taking a look at if you are having issues, dont wan't to re-install Windows or don't have access to Partition Magic..

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Yeah, why would you want to run Linux from within Windows? I mean, unless you just want to try it out or something.

Besides, use PartedMagic instead of Partition Magic. It works great and it's free.

Edited by Colonel Panic
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It doesnt actually run from inside Windows, you boot on Linux. Its just an easy way to get a dual boot config. I don't use it, I tried it for a few days just to play but I mentioned it because it sounded like people were having issues and its pretty painless to setup.

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How can it reside within Windows and still boot into Linux?

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That actually looks kind of neat; it apparently does the install to a single file, which is then mounted as a disk when you select "Ubuntu" from the boot menu. (The Add/Remove Programs stuff and other Windows tie-ins are just gravy, this is probably something you could do on your own by hand if you were so inclined.)

I don't consider this to be anything a true hacker would utilize as its cheesy as hell but it gets the job done and isnt a bad idea for a newbie to Linux.

Why isn't this something a "true hacker" would use? What if your "true hacker" is new to linux and wants to try it out? There's no rule that says that you can't use anything that isn't point-and-click. I remember being a poor college student tinkering around with linux in the pre-automagially-do-everything-for-you days of partitioning... and being absolutely terrified and breaking into a cold sweat as I fiddled with my drive's partition tables and hoped to high heaven that I didn't wipe out my research papers. (In those days, linux couldn't just boot from any old partition you wanted; you had to set up a boot partition somewhere within the first 1024 cylinders of the drive, then set up the rest to point to the partitions afterwards.) :)

If someone doesn't have a beefy enough system to run a virtual machine or wants to do a true dual boot without running the risk of possibly shredding their only hard drive, this looks like a nice way to take the first step. If someone is able to learn something from it, then it is worthwhile, I think.

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I don't consider this to be anything a true hacker would utilize as its cheesy as hell but it gets the job done and isnt a bad idea for a newbie to Linux.

Why isn't this something a "true hacker" would use? What if your "true hacker" is new to linux and wants to try it out? There's no rule that says that you can't use anything that isn't point-and-click.

Because a true hacker would be more interested into delving into the guts of a thing and making it work the way he wants it to as opposed to being spoonfed a gui tool that does it for him, and/or removes the options to customize. (Just my opinion of what it means to hack - to use something in a way other than what it was originally intended. What you are talking about is a user, not a hacker.) I'm not bashing the use of Wubi, I think it's cool and innovative, but at the same time I recognize what the typical user base will be. Its great for someone new to Linux that wants to learn with minimal impact to their system. (Which is why I originally posted about it) I could see a hacker initially learning this way, but if he/she continued to utilize a system like this after learning the ropes I wouldn't have much respect for them, not that they should care either way :D

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I am completely new to linux and I have finally got the installer running. I was wondering what size the partition needs to be allow ubuntu to run to its fullest but still allow Vista Full reign. (I am just trying linux to see how it is but can't dump Vista right now.) So, after I let this install, there shouldn't be anything interfering with Vista, right?

I was thinking 80 % to 20% Vista on the Partition

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Like I said above, at least 20-30 GB for the / (root) partition, twice your RAM size for your swap partition (unless your RAM is maxed out at like 8GB or something. In that case, you won't need that much swap space), and then whatever else you might possibly need for all your user data and files and such, for your /home partition. I'd give yourself a good 30-60 GB or so for /home if you can spare that much. Remember, in Linux your /home directory is kind of like the Documents and Settings folder in Windows. It holds all the personal data and application settings for all user accounts on the machine.

Edited by Colonel Panic
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Isn't there an option to configure your partitions manually in Ubuntu, instead of having it set up everything automatically? I haven't installed any of the new ubuntu editions, but you should still have access to more primitive tools. Perhaps you could also consider simply running a virtual machine from windows and installing a more basic linux so that you can run the linux utilities. I'd also recommend trying another kind of linux if the ubuntu installer is giving you trouble. One of the big reasons to use ubuntu, after all, is the easy installer.

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Isn't there an option to configure your partitions manually in Ubuntu, instead of having it set up everything automatically? I haven't installed any of the new ubuntu editions, but you should still have access to more primitive tools. Perhaps you could also consider simply running a virtual machine from windows and installing a more basic linux so that you can run the linux utilities. I'd also recommend trying another kind of linux if the ubuntu installer is giving you trouble. One of the big reasons to use ubuntu, after all, is the easy installer.

I am pretty sure we went over that.

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Like I said above, at least 20-30 GB for the / (root) partition, twice your RAM size for your swap partition (unless your RAM is maxed out at like 8GB or something. In that case, you won't need that much swap space), and then whatever else you might possibly need for all your user data and files and such, for your /home partition. I'd give yourself a good 30-60 GB or so for /home if you can spare that much. Remember, in Linux your /home directory is kind of like the Documents and Settings folder in Windows. It holds all the personal data and application settings for all user accounts on the machine.

I was actaully discussing this with my friend today. I think that having a seperate / and home partition isnt really necessary unless you plan on reinstall alot in which case it would still probably be easier to just backup your /home and start fresh as alot of config files would follow you around which you may not want.

in terms of having Ubuntu install issues i had the exact opposite problem. It took me about 2 days of trying to install Vista before i gave up. Ubuntu installed in about 1/2 hour fully configured :P Maybe im just lucky

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That's an interesting idea. What does everyone else think about having no /home partition?

And, in this case, all your personal files will be stored on /, correct?

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Just installed 8.10 a few hours ago and I thought I'd list some of the apps I've installed in case any you chaps wanted any similar. I added the extra Canonical repository first in System>Administration>Software Sources>Third Party Software.

Firestarter for the firewall IPTables. The default installation blocks all incoming traffic except for any initiated by the host machine, so nice and simple to start with.

sudo apt-get install firestarter

AVG for linux - I ran a scan and it was fast, much faster than a fresh XP install. I chose to start the scan from / and it reported it couldn't access certain locations, due to permissions I expect.

I used THIS guide, using option 2, seemed the most simple. Idid try to run another update though and I received permission denied, which I haven't looked into yet.

Thunderbird for Email - Will be adding Enigmail and GPG today or tomorrow.

sudo apt-get install mozilla-thunderbird

If there's anyone else who's planning on setting up GPG, I'd appreciate doing an exchange to test mines working OK.

Pidgin for IM and IRC. Been pretty good, I've got MSN, ICQ and IRC (with SSL) all running through it. There is a Skype plug-in also, but you still need Skype installed and running for PIdgin to use it, plus there seems to be issues with Skype on 8.10 right now so I've left that off.

Deluge for bittorrent. Seems to be regularly updated, plus there's a plug-in already working for using block-lists (like PeerGuardian2 on Windows). Not used this yet, but the GUI looks allright. The block lists publisher seems to be going through some hosting issues, so I got a working list from HERE. The link in the last post imported fine.

FileZilla - Pretty standard FTP app, can use SFTP etc.

And lastly TrueCrypt, because you just never know! It was only available as a tar.gz file from the official site, but THIS guide, worked exactly as it describes.

Going to be adding a few more off my list. Mainly VMWare, a screen capture program - hopefully can find one which prompts you to select the area you want to capture with the mouse. A CD/DVD burning program and some media codecs, that's about it.

Oh, and I've installed the Windows fonts, web pages just looked awful with the Ubuntu ones.

Edited by Swerve
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That's an interesting idea. What does everyone else think about having no /home partition?

And, in this case, all your personal files will be stored on /, correct?

Yea, there is no real difference on the file system. With a seperate /home partition you would have mount it to /home. In the case of just one partition you would just have the /home directory. Thats one of the coolest things about Linux, you can have directories anywhere (you can in windows as well, but its not as easy). You could have separate HDDs for all you music, films, documents etc and have them all mounted under /home so that they are easily accessible.

Just installed 8.10 a few hours ago and I thought I'd list some of the apps I've installed in case any you chaps wanted any similar. I added the extra Canonical repository first in System>Administration>Software Sources>Third Party Software.

Do you still need to install build-essentials in 8.10? I cant remember if i did it or not.

Also eclipse, java (the sun one), Wine, the codecs (luckly they install automatically when you try to run them in totem), mplayer is very importaint as totem sucks. Also if you want nfs support apt-get portmap nfs-common.

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I was actaully discussing this with my friend today. I think that having a seperate / and home partition isnt really necessary unless you plan on reinstall alot in which case it would still probably be easier to just backup your /home and start fresh as alot of config files would follow you around which you may not want.
That's an interesting idea. What does everyone else think about having no /home partition?

And, in this case, all your personal files will be stored on /, correct?

Your user accounts and users' personal files would be still be stored in your /home directory, which would be on your root partition. However as I've said before, I do not recommend that arrangement.

In my 10-odd years of using Linux, every Linux install I've ever done, I've always created a special partition for my /home directory and that setup has never caused me any problems. That's the best practice for system stability, and I'll tell you why: You do not want your user space interfering with your system's operating space. When you have your /home dir on your root partition, you run the risk of having the root partition fill up with users' files, which would bring down the whole system. This is especially problematic on multiuser systems where a lot of different people are going to be sharing the machine. It's bad form to set your system up that way.

As for the "config files following you around", that's not really much of an issue unless you're going to be switching distros a lot on the same system partition. Even then, I doubt it would cause much trouble. I know people who run multiple distros on the same machine, installed into different root partitions, which all share the same common /home partition for user data. If you're always upgrading/reinstalling distros of the same "base" derivation (like Debian-'Buntu-Knoppix-Xandros-Linspire, etc. or Redhat-Fedora-Madriva-PCLinuxOS, etc.), I don't see a reason why it should cause problems at all.

As far as backing up your /home dir, you ought to maintain a backup of your /home directory on a seperate drive (or other medium), anyway. You should also be backing up the contents of your "My Documents" in Windows. You should always back up your shit, just on general principle.

If you're going to be running a server or firewall, you should also have your /var directory on its own separate small partition because unchecked, verbose log files could eventually get out of hand and fill the root partition, causing the system to crash. However, this isn't necessary for a regular desktop system because there's no need to keep overly detailed logs.

Lots of admins advocate having a separate /boot partition as well, but I never understood the reason for this unless you're installing multiple Linux distros on the same machine.

Anyway, why would you not want to have a separate /home partition? It's not that much more trouble to set up, and there are clear advantages. Why do things half-assed? Just set your system up right from the start will save you a lot of headaches later on down the road.

Edited by Colonel Panic
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When you have your /home dir on your root partition, you run the risk of having the root partition fill up with users' files, which would bring down the whole system

Anyway, why would you not want to have a separate /home partition? It's not that much more trouble to set up, and there are clear advantages. Why do things half-assed? Just set your system up right from the start will save you a lot of headaches later on down the road.

You do make valid arguments for wanting a separate /home partition, but i still dont see the point of it, unless you are running a mulituser system. I've been using Linux for a few years and i used to create separate /home partitions but it just seemed like a waste. Either i would make / too small and run out of space when installing programs or make it too big and it going to waste. For my system and the way i use my machine it makes sense to have a single / partition as i keep most of my files on an NFS server (I dont want to put my /home on nfs before you ask :P ) and once i've installed my OS i dont really change it. If i have anything i need to backup i stick it on the nfs server, do my stuff, and then restore it.

Im not saying having a /home partition is a bad idea, im just saying it's not always necessary especially if you only have one drive with a few partitions on it anyway.

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I used to make a separate /home. When I installed a new distro, just don't format it and you have all your files. Though now, I just copy it all to a DVD or another machine. You can afford to waste a few gigs though. You can make / maybe 15 gigs and just give the rest to /home. I just make one big partition now though, it's not worth the trouble.

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How about using GParted or whatever and editing partitions, then use manual partition and use the partition you made in GParted.

-LD

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Thunderbird for Email - Will be adding Enigmail and GPG today or tomorrow.

sudo apt-get install mozilla-thunderbird

If there's anyone else who's planning on setting up GPG, I'd appreciate doing an exchange to test mines working OK.

i've got it set up and i'd be happy to send you a test email as soon as you get squared away

Edited by Wintermute21
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