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Linux - easy or difficult to install?
Linux - easy or difficult to install?
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Old 22nd November 2018, 04:10 PM   #1
Black Stuart is offline Black Stuart  France
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Default Linux - easy or difficult to install?

I need to buy a new desktop and my wife a new laptop.

At present I use a s/hand PC with Linux 4 installed, I bought it from an IT man. I don't like Windows 10, which is what my wife has. I can buy both an HP laptop for my wife and a desktop for myself without an OS installed

I really like how much easier Linux is to use for a non techie. The only beef I have is that there are so many downloads of stuff I will never use. If only a stripped down version of Linux was available for non techies like us.

So how easy or difficult is it to install Linux?
Black Stuart
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Old 22nd November 2018, 04:15 PM   #2
traderbam is offline traderbam  Europe
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I use Linux Mint. I think it is one of the most friendly versions and is easy to install. It is based on Ubuntu so it is very well supported but is even more friendly.
All the variants of Linux are more efficient than Windoze so they will all be faster on your old PC. If your PC is very old you might need a "lighter" version.
What is your PC?
Download - Linux Mint

You can make a bootable USB stick or DVD with the Mint installer that you can boot your PC off to check it works ok with your hardware and that you like its interface before you install it. In fact, you can install it to a USB drive if you want and boot off the drive if your PC supports this. I keep Linux on a USB stick so I can boot any PC I like with it for maintenance purposes. For best performance, install it to your PC's hard drive.
Everything matters.

Last edited by traderbam; 22nd November 2018 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 04:23 PM   #3
lcsaszar is offline lcsaszar  Hungary
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Installation is pretty much uniformized in various Linux variants. You can't fail with Ubuntu or its lightweight version Lubuntu. If you prefer a Windows-like user interface, try Zorin OS. You don't need to install Linux on the HDD/SSD, they can be used from a bootable USB pendrive. This is good to getting familiar with the particular version and trying it. If you like it, you can install the actual running Linux on the internal drive with a click. Installing Linux is user friendly.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 04:26 PM   #4
nezbleu is offline nezbleu  Canada
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Just to be clear, there isn't really anything called "Linux 4". There are multiple distributions (aka "distros") of Linux, each with its own numbering scheme. I seem to recall that there is/was a distro called CentOS which is based on RedHat, which is pretty good, and many Debian variants. I used to use Slackware, I don't even know what their current release number is, I think my last installation was 13-something.
There are also some nice "live CD's" (or DVDs) which you can use to run a complete installation without actually installing anything, Knoppix being one such beast. The installations are generally not difficult or particularly time consuming if you have pulled and burned a distro ISO image first. However, the packaging systems which track dependencies can be quite complex, so getting anything that isn't in the base install can send you into a cycle of installing dependencies on dependencies.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 04:37 PM   #5
FauxFrench is offline FauxFrench  France
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I am not a computer "wiz" and I use Linux Mint for several years. Installation is rather straight forward. It is surprisingly stable.
The only weakness I have noticed is if an application or a function does not work correctly and you ask help on the net. You are typically asked to open a terminal window and start trying to solve the problem with a plurality of more sophisticated commands of which not all do as expected. At that point the graphical interface is abandoned and it gets complicated.
Linux Mint is substantially free and let me here express my gratitude to those designing and preparing the distribution.

Last edited by FauxFrench; 22nd November 2018 at 04:41 PM.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 06:17 PM   #6
LightBit is offline LightBit  Slovenia
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Most of Linux distributions are easy to install, if all hardware is supported.
I use Debian, because it is reliable and universal. Ubuntu never worked for me.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 06:25 PM   #7
grimberg is offline grimberg  United States
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Originally Posted by nezbleu View Post
Just to be clear, there isn't really anything called "Linux 4".
Even though there are many Linux distributions and each has its own version number, there is only one official source for the Linux kernel which, at this time, is version 4.19 released on 10/22/2018. Maybe the OP was referring to the kernel version.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 06:31 PM   #8
thimios is online now thimios  Greece
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At the moment i use the Linux mint running from a bootable USB on one of my desktop p.c.
I want to use this on a second one but this motherboard haven't the boot from USB option in the bios settings.
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Old 22nd November 2018, 06:36 PM   #9
Yatsushiro is offline Yatsushiro  France
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I use Manjaro (which is based on Arch) on two desktops and my laptop. I do dual boot with W10, not out of choice.

Manjaro is a rolling release, which means it is constantly updated and current, unlike distros such as Mint and Ubuntu (on which Mint is based) which have two releases each year.

More info here:

Manjaro Linux
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Old 22nd November 2018, 06:41 PM   #10
Black Stuart is offline Black Stuart  France
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Thanks for all the replies.some were a bit techie.

FauxFrench - you've nailed a problem I have right now. If I want to find a solution I find it difficult to establish a route to find the answer and a lot of the language is techie. So many downloads are for programmes i will never use.

Icsaszar I liked your suggestion. Traderbam - I'm buying a new desktop.

I shall definitely ask questions about suitability with both the laptop and the desktop. I think my wife will stay with the dev/Windows she knows (a little about).
Black Stuart
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