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General => General Chat => Topic started by: Halcyon on March 05, 2018, 10:53:34 am

Title: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Halcyon on March 05, 2018, 10:53:34 am
I've said this for a while but Windows 7 is the last version of Windows I'll be using, unless Microsoft performs some miraculous back flip. I've been a Windows guy since version 3.1 and pretty much know every version between 3.x to Windows 7 like the back of my hand. I can fix problems with my eyes closed.

Moving to Linux is something I've been dreading, because everything I spent decades learning is all of sudden largely irrelevant.

I'm considering Ubuntu as my primary OS. There are a few programs I use where there is no Linux replacement, but I can just run them under WINE or in a VM, I'm happy with that.

What advice would you give to a Linux noob? What habits do I need to break? What habits do I need to learn?
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 10:59:48 am
Only advice, from someone who uses both on a daily basis, is to acknowledge that they are different kettles of fish. Don't try and make your Linux machine do the same workflow you are used to on windows.  That is the route to frustration and failure and scurrying back again. Start with an empty mind and no assumptions.

Also learn the shell properly. It is orders of magnitude more powerful than any GUI. Good resource here: https://leanpub.com/learnbashthehardway (yes it costs money but it's worth it and you can choose how much)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Halcyon on March 05, 2018, 11:04:36 am
Only advice, from someone who uses both on a daily basis, is to acknowledge that they are different kettles of fish. Don't try and make your Linux machine do the same workflow you are used to on windows.  That is the route to frustration and failure and scurrying back again. Start with an empty mind and no assumptions.

I'm fully aware of this, but on the other hand it's hard to just set aside decades of learning. For example: I almost fully understand the whole "everything's a file" concept.

Thankfully some of what I already know about DOS translates into the Linux shell, such as the TAB key completes file/directory names (or probably more accurately, what I already know about Linux translates into DOS).
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 11:07:47 am
I was brought up with DOS and moved to Unix (SunOS) in the early 1990s and then to Linux in the late 1990s and it wasn't a big jump. You'll have it in no time :)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Avacee on March 05, 2018, 11:19:50 am
Another option to consider:
Install Windows 10 for the windows programs you need and run Linux in a Virtual Machine. (I assume you want to move your "personal" stuff to Linux as you don't trust Micro$oft).
Or vice versa and run W10 in the VM.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 11:22:28 am
On that note you can actually run a big chunk of Linux inside windows 10 now using WSL without a VM. This is what I use on a daily basis as it skips the power management hell that comes with running Linux on a laptop.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/wsl/install-win10

Yes hell has frozen over.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Mr. Scram on March 05, 2018, 11:25:05 am
Only advice, from someone who uses both on a daily basis, is to acknowledge that they are different kettles of fish. Don't try and make your Linux machine do the same workflow you are used to on windows.  That is the route to frustration and failure and scurrying back again. Start with an empty mind and no assumptions.

Also learn the shell properly. It is orders of magnitude more powerful than any GUI. Good resource here: https://leanpub.com/learnbashthehardway (yes it costs money but it's worth it and you can choose how much)
You need to learn the magic words, otherwise it won't work out. That's been a frustration of mine. If you look up how to do something, you're often presentated with a magic spell without any explanation or substantiation. You copy the spell and it works, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, check for typos. When you're sure you copied the spell correctly, you rinse and repeat until it does work.

I rarely get the feeling I've actually learnt something.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 11:34:44 am
What advice would you give to a Linux noob? What habits do I need to break? What habits do I need to learn?

Don't panic. I'm not clever enough to run Windows safely, and doubt I'll ever advance beyond XP.

Simplest/fastest GUI, most similar to WinXP is xfce. Try xubuntu to see what it is like.

Get LTS variants.

Try before you buy: get "live CDs" and run them from USB/DVD
Try before you buy: if you've only one computer, create multiple boot partitions wirh windows on one and a linux on another: choose which to run at boot time.
Try before you buy: run VMs with windows as the host and a linux as one of the guests
Try after you buy: run VMs with linux as the host and, say, Win7 as one of the guests.

When installing, create multiple partitions (equivalent to c: d: etc in windows). On one put /home (contains all your files, in /home/tggzzz), on another put the eveything else, leave a third blank and put windows on a fourth.

Use the blank partition if you want to try a different flavour of linux: install that on the blank partition and continue to use all your existing /home files. Choose which one to run at boot time.

While config is often done using GUI utilities, most of that will end as straight text files in /etc (for the system) or /home/tggzzz/.* for your personal settings. You can backup and tweak the text files, unlike the awful Windows registry.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 11:36:17 am
You need to learn the magic words, otherwise it won't work out. That's been a frustration of mine. If you look up how to do something, you're often presentated with a magic spell without any explanation or substantiation. You copy the spell and it works, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, check for typos. When you're sure you copied the spell correctly, you rinse and repeat until it does work.

I rarely get the feeling I've actually learnt something.

That's because you're looking in the wrong places and cutting and pasting.

Read the manual pages that come with it. They're pretty good! No spells, concise accurate descriptions.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 11:38:24 am
On that note you can actually run a big chunk of Linux inside windows 10 now using WSL without a VM. This is what I use on a daily basis as it skips the power management hell that comes with running Linux on a laptop.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/wsl/install-win10

Yes hell has frozen over.

And when MS realises that it won't capture the professional market, it may "thaw" in the way of Microsoft PlaysForSure(TM).
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Mr. Scram on March 05, 2018, 11:39:08 am
That's because you're looking in the wrong places and cutting and pasting.

Read the manual pages that come with it. They're pretty good! No spells, concise accurate descriptions.
I've never seen, nor have I been pointed to a manual. Do you have an example?
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 11:40:04 am
You need to learn the magic words, otherwise it won't work out. That's been a frustration of mine. If you look up how to do something, you're often presentated with a magic spell without any explanation or substantiation. You copy the spell and it works, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, check for typos. When you're sure you copied the spell correctly, you rinse and repeat until it does work.

I rarely get the feeling I've actually learnt something.

That was my experience with Windows. I'm not clever enough to run Windows.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: saike on March 05, 2018, 11:40:46 am
I have used Linux for 20 years now and one piece of advice I would say is essential is to make sure any hardware you have or are going to buy (printers, scanners etc) are supported. Don't listen to anybody who says almost all hardware is supported now, it isn't and it is easy to run into problems with this.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 11:42:20 am
That's because you're looking in the wrong places and cutting and pasting.

Read the manual pages that come with it. They're pretty good! No spells, concise accurate descriptions.
I've never seen, nor have I been pointed to a manual. Do you have an example?

See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man_page

You need to learn the magic words, otherwise it won't work out. That's been a frustration of mine. If you look up how to do something, you're often presentated with a magic spell without any explanation or substantiation. You copy the spell and it works, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, check for typos. When you're sure you copied the spell correctly, you rinse and repeat until it does work.

I rarely get the feeling I've actually learnt something.

That was my experience with Windows. I'm not clever enough to run Windows.

Windows is incredibly well documented. Much better than any Unix variant! Plus I have the source code  :-DD

This always surprises people when I post a link to it: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd208104.aspx
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 05, 2018, 11:46:14 am
What advice would you give to a Linux noob? What habits do I need to break? What habits do I need to learn?

At home & for hobby or professionally & at work? Don't try to use it at work without having enough experience...
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 05, 2018, 11:49:51 am
That's because you're looking in the wrong places and cutting and pasting.

Read the manual pages that come with it. They're pretty good! No spells, concise accurate descriptions.
I've never seen, nor have I been pointed to a manual. Do you have an example?

The man pages are usually read in the console. For example take the cp command:

Code: [Select]
man 1 cp
The meaning of the number 1:

    1      User Commands
    2      System Calls
    3      C Library Functions
    4      Devices and Special Files
    5      File Formats and Conventions
    6      Games et. al.
    7      Miscellanea
    8      System Administration tools and Daemons

You can skip the number if you like, it will prompt for it if necessary.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BravoV on March 05, 2018, 11:53:08 am
I have used Linux for 20 years now and one piece of advice I would say is essential is to make sure any hardware you have or are going to buy (printers, scanners etc) are supported. Don't listen to anybody who says almost all hardware is supported now, it isn't and it is easy to run into problems with this.

+1  :-+ , especially on new platform, just becareful.

Currently I am the same condition as the OP does, and last year when I was on the new Ryzen system, when I was trying to toy around Linux by installing the latest stable Fedora, it went unfruitful after it trashed the system rendered it could not boot into the GUI part and left me in the dark on the prompt on boot.  >:(

It was the "suggested" auto update by the Fedora on the new Ryzen system, basically it broke the system "by it self".  :palm:

And no, I didn't tinker anything at all as I know the consequences as noob like SU this and that, fyi I consider my self DOS and Windows power user.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BravoV on March 05, 2018, 11:55:53 am
Don't try to use it at work without having enough experience...

+1  :-+ , agree, especially when you rely heavily your work/business/urgent matters when you're a noob.

Cause once broken, think about whether you have "time/energy" to search the internet or even whining at the forums for help to recover your system.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 11:56:32 am
I have used Linux for 20 years now and one piece of advice I would say is essential is to make sure any hardware you have or are going to buy (printers, scanners etc) are supported. Don't listen to anybody who says almost all hardware is supported now, it isn't and it is easy to run into problems with this.

+1  :-+ , especially on new platform, just becareful.

Currently I am the same condition as the OP does, and last year when I was on the new Ryzen system, when I was trying to toy around Linux by installing the latest stable Fedora, it went unfruitful after it trashed the system rendered it could not boot into the GUI part and left me in the dark on the prompt on boot.  >:(

It was the "suggested" auto update by the Fedora on the new Ryzen system, basically it broke the system "by it self".  :palm:

And no, I didn't tinker anything at all as I know the consequences as noob like SU this and that, fyi I consider my self DOS and Windows power user.

Stable Fedora is called "CentOS" :D
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Nusa on March 05, 2018, 11:57:31 am

Windows is incredibly well documented. Much better than any Unix variant! Plus I have the source code  :-DD

This always surprises people when I post a link to it: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd208104.aspx

You've confused documentation with source code. All that tells me is that you don't understand the term "source code". And anyone who's impressed by the claim that link gives it to you doesn't either.

However, the source code for most Linux implementations is actually available.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BravoV on March 05, 2018, 11:59:09 am
Stable Fedora is called "CentOS" :D

See that ? This is another very fine example that has been happening for decades, very effective method to demotivate a possible Linux adopter.  :-DD
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: awallin on March 05, 2018, 11:59:32 am
FWIW a lot of programs work on both OSs - so you can get used to them over on the Windows side already:
Gimp, Inkscape, VLC, Filezilla, KiCad, Thunderbird, LibreOffice, Arduino IDE, Stellarium, - and so on.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 05, 2018, 11:59:42 am
In case you didn't know already, the following programs run natively and without any issues on Linux:

- EDA software like Kicad, Eagle and the professional ones (expensive!) like from Cadence, Zuken, ADS (Keysight)
- Microchip MPLABX and accompanying compilers
- FPGA design software from Altera and Xilinx
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 12:07:56 pm

Windows is incredibly well documented. Much better than any Unix variant! Plus I have the source code  :-DD

This always surprises people when I post a link to it: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd208104.aspx

You've confused documentation with source code. All that tells me is that you don't understand the term "source code". And anyone who's impressed by the claim that link gives it to you doesn't either.

However, the source code for most Linux implementations is actually available.

Err no.  :palm:

There are two points there.

1. The documentation is available and it is very good documentation.
2. I have access to the windows source code under Shared Source ESLP.

I know what source code is ffs
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 05, 2018, 12:09:01 pm
Replacement for hyperterminal: cutecom

p.s. one advice: always try to install software from the official repositories first!

Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: David Hess on March 05, 2018, 12:11:49 pm
So far too many missing features and programs that will not run on Windows 7 and higher has been a big problem for me.  One avenue I will be exploring is trying the server version of Windows which apparently fixes a lot of the user interface stupidity.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 05, 2018, 12:15:39 pm
So far too many missing features and programs that will not run on Windows 7 and higher has been a big problem for me.  One avenue I will be exploring is trying the server version of Windows which apparently fixes a lot of the user interface stupidity.

It sort of does. I run Server 2016, the the UI is just fine, but most of the stupidity it fixes is just by removing most of the desktop features of Windows, and just leaves you an immensely capable WinAPI compatible platform.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BravoV on March 05, 2018, 12:18:54 pm
p.s. one advice: always try to install software from the official repositories first!

Good advice but not always works, as my previous post, its the official repository that was pumping down the latest untested chip-set driver, that brought the whole system GUI down at its knee at booting.

To be honest, it feels like no single decent human in the whole Linux world, ever thought of and realized the simple standard emergency boot mode at Windows, like the Safe Mode in 640x480 256 colors, is a really helpful "great & grand" design for noob user's POV.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 05, 2018, 12:22:24 pm
p.s. one advice: always try to install software from the official repositories first!

Good advice but not always works, as my previous post, its the official repository that was pumping down the latest untested chip-set driver, that brought the whole system GUI down its knee at booting.

To be honest, it feels like no single decent human in the whole Linux world, ever thought of and realized the simple standard emergency boot mode at Windows, like the Safe Mode in 640x480 256 colors, is a really helpful "great & grand" design for noob user's POV.

Normally because most Linux users break the X11 server quite often, and a safe mode that relies on it is kinda pointless. The GUI on Linux isn't as integral, in fact, I actually run my current Linux (soon to be migrated to Unix) workstation without a desktop manager, and the X11 server on my personal computer that I use over SSH.

However, since Linux is infinitely customizable, you can of course create custom X11 instances and bootloader options that will start X11 into a predefined safe mode with minimal driver and component initialization.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 05, 2018, 12:26:59 pm
My personal Linux of choice is Arch Linux, with FreeBSD being my Unix of choice (after System V variants pissed me off). The reason being is it helped me learn the basics of Unix/Linux management. It was incredibly easy for me to pick up and learn.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BravoV on March 05, 2018, 12:33:41 pm
However, since Linux is infinitely customizable, you can of course create custom X11 instances and bootloader options that will start X11 into a predefined safe mode with minimal driver and component initialization.

Yeah, you tell that to a noob Linux user to configure his/her Linux system that the X11 daemon as such to ALWAYS boot under safe mode.  :palm:

See that ? This kind of respond is expected, and it has been for decades, that no body, I mean no body even the holy leader Linus Torvald ever thought about that, may be its only me myself.  >:D

Whats funny is when reading so many so called Linux evangelists  :-DD, that keep whining on how slow Linux penetration in desktop world, what a bunch of morons.  :--
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: abraxa on March 05, 2018, 12:37:35 pm
I'd recommend finding replacements for the programs you use on a regular basis. For example, if you use(d) Norton Commander, FAR or Total Commander then you could look into midnight commander (mc), Beesoft Commander or similar. Same for image viewers like ACDSee, audio tools like CoolEdit or media players like Winamp. There are often programs out there that you'll feel familiar with, making your switch to linux a little less daunting. Hence, I suggest making a list of tools that you grew fond of on Windows and finding replacements for them on linux.

As for the shell, it's important to understand that the unix way of thinking is to have tools that do one thing and do it well. That's why you'll see a lot of different tools that do only one thing (find, grep, dd, sed, awk, ...) but once you learn what they're most often used for, you'll find that typing up a command in a console window can get things done faster than clicking around in some GUI. For this it's helpful to know what built-in commands your shell supports (e.g. cd, pwd, cat, df, echo, ...) and making a small list for yourself - or using one of the many bash cheat sheets out there.

Quote
I'm fully aware of this, but on the other hand it's hard to just set aside decades of learning. For example: I almost fully understand the whole "everything's a file" concept.

Actually, that's more true for linux than it is for Windows. For example, you can control aspects of the linux kernel by examining the files under /sys and /proc and/or writing values to the files there. Also, you can access devices by reading from and writing to the corresponding files in /dev. I think you'll feel right at home once you got the hang of what is where and why :)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 12:38:27 pm
Whats funny is when reading so many so called Linux evangelists  :-DD, that keep whining on how slow Linux penetration in desktop world, what a bunch of morons.  :--

Yes. Even as an RHCA I still run windows :)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 05, 2018, 12:43:25 pm
However, since Linux is infinitely customizable, you can of course create custom X11 instances and bootloader options that will start X11 into a predefined safe mode with minimal driver and component initialization.

Yeah, you tell that to a noob Linux user to configure his/her Linux system that the X11 daemon as such to ALWAYS boot under safe mode.  :palm:

See that ? This kind of respond is expected, and it has been for decades, that no body, I mean no body even the holy leader Linus Torvald ever thought about that, may be its only me myself.  >:D

Whats funny is when reading so many so called Linux evangelists  :-DD, that keep whining on how slow Linux penetration in desktop world, what a bunch of morons.  :--

Because that's the answer to the question. I never once claimed Linux was an all in one solution for people who don't want to put the time or effort into doing that stuff. For a Linux user like me, with free time to boot, I only occasionally have that issue.

Although I'm a bit confused as to what you're saying. I didn't say you should set it to always configure into safe mode, I'm just saying Linux has the advantage of if you really want something, there's a way to do it, whereas in Windows, if you really want something, you better hope someone else with the time and complex NT kernel skills has made a working hack for it already.

Windows has it's benefits. It's the platform of choice for people who don't like Linux, but it's currently a dying breed, as the NT kernel is one of the last of it's kind. Everything else is Unix-like/POSIX compatible now.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 05, 2018, 01:03:34 pm
Halcyon, if you are going to change, I think Ubuntu 16.04.4 LTS is the best solution for a beginner right now. I think it is the most robust of the Linux varieties. I have tried the Ubuntu variations like Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Kubuntu, and at some point there has been issues that Ubuntu does not have. Mostly these issues can be resolved, but it is not easy for a beginner. Release 16.04.4 will last you till 2021.

If you are new to Linux, definitely try it out in Virtualbox on a Windows PC (make sure you turn on virtual PC support in the bios).

Wine can do some excellent emulations, but there is a lot of Windows stuff it cannot run properly - particularly programs that need drivers. Switching to Linux is a big trade-off. Mostly, if a developer writes a program for one platform only, it is usually Windows. On the flip side, Linux can do heaps of things easily that are very hard work in Windows - particularly if you do start to learn the command line. When I have to connect to a remote computer, I love it when I can connect to a Linux PC in a command line window. There is hardly a delay - everything happens instantly. When I have to connect to a Windows PC using RDP or VNC, I usually expect a frustrating time.

There are actually things you can do in Linux that seem like pure magic to a Windows user, and you also have the benefit in running an O/S that is a true server O/S. It does not have the built in limitations of Windows desktops like a maximum of 10 connected PCs, inability for running many server applications, license limitation of 1 person using a PC at one time and so on.

If you do switch to Linux, you will probably want to have a version of Windows running in a virtual machine just so you can run Windows-only tools if you have to.

When you have to upgrade from 16.04 to a new version, you will almost certainly have to reinstall. The GUI versions of Ubuntu do not tend to upgrade reliably and the chances of a beginner ending up with a blank screen, or things just not working fully are high. So expect that when it is time to upgrade, you will reinstall the new version of Linux.

Probably worth keeping a log book so you can record all the little quirky things you needed to do to get a package running perfectly.

Don't make the mistake in thinking that Linux does not need a decent PC. If you want a really good experience, start with something fairly powerful like an i5 or better, or a AMD Ryzen processor. 8G ram is minimum, but I would start at 16G.

You will not regret a SSD drive as the boot disk. All your work will end up in the /home directory, and at any time, you can move this directory to a bigger separate drive so a 256G SSD is fine to start with. If you plan to run Windows as a virtual machine, get a 512G SSD so you can also run the Windows VM from the SSD.

If I were transferring to Linux, I would probably run two PCs for a while. Just make sure you are using the Linux PC for email (like Thunderbird), web browsing and LibreOffice so that you can get used to relying on the new platform. Keep the Windows PC for a year or more so you can go back to it when you have to.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 01:06:56 pm
This guy knows both Windows and Linux, tries multiple variants of each, and doesn't pull his punches.  Where something is good, he says so; where something is bad, he says so.

https://www.dedoimedo.com/linux.html (https://www.dedoimedo.com/linux.html)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tooki on March 05, 2018, 02:09:17 pm
Only advice, from someone who uses both on a daily basis, is to acknowledge that they are different kettles of fish. Don't try and make your Linux machine do the same workflow you are used to on windows.  That is the route to frustration and failure and scurrying back again. Start with an empty mind and no assumptions.
^^^This. So much truth!

It’s practically verbatim the advice I used to give to people switching from Windows to Mac, back when I was a salesman for the latter. Each OS has its own conventions, and if you expect it to be the same as another, you’ll fail. (Kinda like how if you need sugar but get salt, you’d think “damn this is bad sugar!”, when in fact the salt is not trying to be sugar.)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: BillB on March 05, 2018, 02:39:56 pm
After looking over this thread, the answer didn't jump out at me, but why Halcyon are you moving away from Windows?  Windows 7 was great, 8.x not so much.  But Windows 10 is pretty good. 

What is it that you use your PC for?  Which applications are necessary for you?

I've used and developed for Windows ever since it 3.0, applications, device drivers, all sorts of stuff.  I've also developed for Linux (apps, drivers) /embedded Linux (kernel builds, BSPs, drivers, apps, etc) and frankly I still prefer Windows for day to day stuff.  If you are a GUI kinda guy, then Windows is the better choice.  If you don't mind spending time typing in the shell, and prefer to have ultimate control of every aspect of the OS, then Linux is preferable.

As others mentioned before, using a Virtual Machine (Virtual PC is ok, Oracle VirtualBox is much better) with a Linux guest OS on it is a great way to learn.  Also mentioned, Windows 10 even includes a Bash On Ubuntu shell!  You can do 80% of the stuff you need (shell-wise) in a quasi-native environment!  As far as Linux distros, I'm partial to Ubuntu as well, but not by much.

 
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Zero999 on March 05, 2018, 02:51:12 pm
It's personal preference I suppose.

The quality of Windows' GUI has deteriorated in recent years. There's no longer a consistent look and feel, across applications, with the Metro craps using a totally different widget toolkit, to everything else. Don't get me started on the newer versions of MS Office. I've just been battling with MS Office 2013 at work, which is buggy has hell, has the most unintuitive GUI I've ever used and takes far more clicks to get anything done, than older versions and LibreOffice.

As far as Linux is concerned. I use PC Linux OS at home and it's great. I don't use the command line very often and the GUI is better than Windows 10, in my opinion.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: stefan_k133 on March 05, 2018, 03:53:53 pm
Over 25 years ago I got my first Linux in university on eleven 3.5" floppy disks and I had to carefully configure X-Windows with the risk of destroying my monitor. Today there are several good version one can try when switching, but I would try out Ubuntu first, because of the quite good support. If you will try it without installing it, you can try out a live distribution on usb stick and no need to wipe out your windows. Here's the link for ubuntu https://tutorials.ubuntu.com/tutorial/try-ubuntu-before-you-install#0 (https://tutorials.ubuntu.com/tutorial/try-ubuntu-before-you-install#0).

What can be overwhelming is that for one application there are often many programs available, all with different features, e.g. music or video players. For some GUI-Tools on Windows there are no equivalents at first, but especially for the system tools you can use very powerful commands from the shell. So in the long run I would learn using the shell. There are some good books about bash or zsh and many online tutorials. One quite good read abount the unix philosophy is in Eric Raymond "The Art of Unix Programming" (http://www.catb.org/esr/writings/taoup/html/philosophychapter.html (http://www.catb.org/esr/writings/taoup/html/philosophychapter.html)).

Usually hardware is no problem, but especially with new and not standard peripherals it is possible that the device is not yet supported. Usually you can search for the device plus "linux" or "ubuntu" to find out if you run into trouble.

I would use two hard drives, one for the system, and one for your "Home"-directory. That way you can try out and reinstall other linux variants without touching your data. And if needed you can easily backup your home to some usb-disk in case you need to switch back.

Regards,
Stefan
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: nctnico on March 05, 2018, 05:29:55 pm
I have used Linux for 20 years now and one piece of advice I would say is essential is to make sure any hardware you have or are going to buy (printers, scanners etc) are supported. Don't listen to anybody who says almost all hardware is supported now, it isn't and it is easy to run into problems with this.
OTOH a surprising amount of hardware works out of the box on Linux with much less (close to zero) hassle to install it. But yes, do look out whether hardware is supported on Linux because there are some exceptions.

I've made the transition to Linux a couple of years ago. Linux is much faster to work with and it doesn't deteriorate or act up like Windows does. I run Windows XP in Virtualbox and when it starts to act up I simply roll the VM back to the previous snapshot. Also I really don't like the 'enhancements' in Windows 7 like how the file explorer puts the directory you are looking at outside the visible area and I can't use Windows 10 due to being unable to disable the anti-aliasing.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: HoracioDos on March 05, 2018, 05:47:47 pm
Hello!

I started with linux in 1994 (slackware 2.0) and I've been switching between many distros in the last 24 years and I wasn't able to leave windows once for all. There's always some software that is completely needed for a job or a hobby that runs only in windows. There is no black and white. So first advice is to embrace the idea that you will certenly need dual boot or a Windows VM.

A few tips to consider:
Rolling distro vs LTS (Long term support)
Cutting edge distros vs more tradicional ones. I prefer Ubuntu/Debian based distros.
Hardware age. Desktop weights are different.
Look and feel. It's not a small detail. You can't work with tools you hate.
Available documentation in the web. Don't choose some odd distro.
Software availability in official repositories.

I've been running Mint with Cinnamon and Mate in the last years. Mate is rock solid in my kid's notebook and look and feel is far better than ubuntu with the same desktop.

I hope this can help!
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: retiredcaps on March 05, 2018, 07:54:12 pm
Moving to Linux is something I've been dreading, because everything I spent decades learning is all of sudden largely irrelevant.
I moved to Linux in 2014 when XP ended and I didn't want to buy Win 7 or 8 licenses for the multiple computers that I use.

What you have learned will be relevant towards future OSes whether it be Linux, Android or Apple OS.

Quote
I'm considering Ubuntu as my primary OS.
Because I use older, free and often discarded hardware, I use Lubuntu.  I did try over 30 distros of all various flavours with different desktop environments.  I settled on Lubuntu mainly due to lightweight and the nice looking text font.

Quote
What advice would you give to a Linux noob?
The biggest challenge for me was that some of my Windows programs stored my data in non standard format.  I had to convert them.  For current and future needs, I chose applications that ran on Windows, Linux, Apple OS and Android.  That meant I had to change my workflow a little bit.

For testing Linux and new applications, I ran them on a separate machine until I was comfortable everything was stable and reliable.  Then I turned off my Windows XP.

The only thing I can't run is my tax program under Linux.  It is finicky under WINE and each time the tax program or WINE changes, something breaks.  So I have a Windows 10 machine just for this application.

I will be upgrading all my machines to Lubuntu 18.04 LTS sometime in May/June 2018.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Kalvin on March 05, 2018, 08:01:41 pm
I want to keep things simple and stable, so I ended up using Linux Mint LTS with MATE desktop. As I still need to use Windows with some development tools I have been using Virtualbox with Windows 8.1. I haven't had any major problems with my setup and things work as expected. Installing Canon printer and scanner Linux drivers were a pain, but after some googling I got it done.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: hendorog on March 05, 2018, 08:14:51 pm
Moving to Linux is something I've been dreading, because everything I spent decades learning is all of sudden largely irrelevant.
I moved to Linux in 2014 when XP ended and I didn't want to buy Win 7 or 8 licenses for the multiple computers that I use.

What you have learned will be relevant towards future OSes whether it be Linux, Android or Apple OS.


This is (or at least it was) so true. What I learnt playing around with Linux way back has helped me solve so many non linux issues at various jobs.
Back then to use linux you really needed to learn the 'first principles' of everything, so people who knew linux really knew how stuff really worked.
Big learning curve, but big benefit at the end, and you are not just learning the 'linux' way, you are learning the 'truth'.

Admittedly things are more polished now, and so you can probably side-step this learning curve just as you can in Windows or OSX.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Halcyon on March 05, 2018, 08:22:31 pm
After looking over this thread, the answer didn't jump out at me, but why Halcyon are you moving away from Windows?  Windows 7 was great, 8.x not so much.  But Windows 10 is pretty good. 

I currently run both Windows XP and Windows 7 on two of my machines at home. Windows 8/8.1 was a mistake so I didn't even bother (like Windows ME, Vista...) and Windows 10, while better, is still horrible. I ran Windows 10 for about 6 months and hated every moment of it. They took so many features of previous Windows versions and just made them worse. For example, print settings, you think you could just go to the device properties and everything is there? No, of course not! There were no less than 3 different places where you could find settings for printing. One was in the good old Control Panel, the other in "Settings" (which is like control panel, but not), the third I can't remember. That's just one of several examples.

I tried to like it, I wanted to like it, but I just couldn't. Don't even get me started on all the cloud bullshit and "Apps".

What is it that you use your PC for?  Which applications are necessary for you?

At home, nothing really out of the ordinary (web browsing, office applications, etc...). I have a fairly powerful Xeon-based PC which I used to do some fairly intensive video editing on, but I rarely do that sort of work anymore, so the machine really is over-spec'd for what I use it for today.

I'll keep using Windows XP and 7 for as long as I possibly can, but there will come a point where I will no longer be able to activate them if I format/reinstall. I've already found this with an older version of Microsoft Office which was more than capable and did everything I needed.

I have used both Ubuntu and Mint before and didn't mind them. I currently run Ubuntu on my media centre machine, but at times it can be a little "quirky" for reasons unknown. I think it's just an old version with issues that I haven't bothered to update.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: rdl on March 05, 2018, 08:39:37 pm
...
I'll keep using Windows XP and 7 for as long as I possibly can, but there will come a point where I will no longer be able to activate them if I format/reinstall. I've already found this with an older version of Microsoft Office which was more than capable and did everything I needed.
...

Just as an FYI, it is possible to reinstall Windows 7 and "activate" it without having to connect to Microsoft. There's just one or two small files you have to copy before wiping your current install so you can replace them after a re-install. It requires doing some stuff as administrator, but nothing too difficult.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: hli on March 05, 2018, 08:58:27 pm
There is no "best" distro. Everybody has their own likes and dis-likes, and their own style of workflow. And each distro does too, so you should try out some. If you want a Linux with low maintenance load, try one of the *buntu ones (or maybe Fedora). They are well maintained and meant for the end-users. If you want to have something that changes only rarely, Debian and probably CentOS are for you. If you want to control everything, something like ArchLinux is for you.
Try to come up with a list of applications you regularly use (or list the things that you need to do regularly), and try to find Linux replacements for them (or whether they will run under Wine). That way you are prepared to what will change for you. Maybe test these applications on Windows first when possible (e.g. LibreOffice or KiCAD).

Try these out from a LiveDVD first, and then use them in a VirtualBox to test-drive them for a few days. When I went to the Linux route I first did set up dual-boot so I kept Windows in its current state for when I needed it (e.g. because you had some tools that just worked on Windows). Oh, and to play the occasional game (saying that: on Linux you will have less games available, esp. the block-buster ones, but then with Steam the list of choices got so much better in the last few years).
When I found myself booting less and less into Windows because everything was working under Linux, I created a Windows VM for the stuff that will not run (for me thats Cypress PSoC Creator and my HBCI home banking app). I killed off the windows partition when it would not boot anymore after a motherboard change.

Personally I like Kubuntu. When KDE came out the tried to copy Windows nearly 1:1, including the bad design choices. But with KDE3 they started to go their own way, while still keeping it similar enough to be easy to newcomers. Yes, they still have some room for improvement, but in my experience they actively try to get better, and to improve usability further and further (something I cannot say about Ubuntu or Gnome). And they have some really good applications available (like the Krusader file manager). But as I said, that's a personal preference - and the great thing about Linux is that you actually have a choice there...
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: ferdieCX on March 05, 2018, 09:31:51 pm
CentOS is the distribution used at CERN
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 09:42:07 pm
What I learnt playing around with Linux way back has helped me solve so many non linux issues at various jobs.
Back then to use linux you really needed to learn the 'first principles' of everything, so people who knew linux really knew how stuff really worked.
Big learning curve, but big benefit at the end, and you are not just learning the 'linux' way, you are learning the 'truth'.

I was lucky. Before Windows even existed, I started with the most commercially successful Unix of the time.

Now guess who made that UNIX.

Quote
Admittedly things are more polished now, and so you can probably side-step this learning curve just as you can in Windows or OSX.

One consequence of sidestepping that learning curve is very visible in the crap quality of much of the software you see around us. :(
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 05, 2018, 10:09:14 pm

I'll keep using Windows XP and 7 for as long as I possibly can, but there will come a point where I will no longer be able to activate them if I format/reinstall. I've already found this with an older version of Microsoft Office which was more than capable and did everything I needed.

I have used both Ubuntu and Mint before and didn't mind them. I currently run Ubuntu on my media centre machine, but at times it can be a little "quirky" for reasons unknown. I think it's just an old version with issues that I haven't bothered to update.
You can run XP and Win 7 forever in a virtual environment.  Never "format/reinstall", just use the same virtual disk image.  In fact, at least XP runs SO MUCH BETTER as a virtual guest OS than on real hardware.

I have a couple big CAD packages that are Windows only, and I run them on XP.  Now, my tax program requires Win 7 as a minimum, so I run that as a virtual guest OS, too, under VirtualBox.  I used to use VMWare, but their support is the worst in the industry, I ended up calling them and telling them how to fix issues with their software.  It does work, however.  But, other than that, I do everything under Linux.  I tend to run old versions, and don't update until FORCED to.  I have used various Ubuntu versions for some time, and am currently on 12.04, which is a 2012 version (as seen by the version #).
One thing I do NOT like is their "Unity" desktop, so I figured out how to revert to the old Gnome desktop.  That's one great thing about Linux, if there's something you don't like, you CAN change it.  And, there are tons of helpful articles with instructions on how to do it.

Anyway, my whole family runs linux for general desktop user web surfing, etc.  There are few things that they can't do with it.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 10:38:49 pm
I was lucky. Before Windows even existed, I started with the most commercially successful Unix of the time.

Now guess who made that UNIX.

(https://i.imgur.com/fEIHqpY.jpg)

First cert on Solaris 2.6  :-+
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: orin on March 05, 2018, 10:45:15 pm

I was lucky. Before Windows even existed, I started with the most commercially successful Unix of the time.

Now guess who made that UNIX.



I'd have guessed Xenix.  And in 1996, it was claimed that for a long time that company in question had the highest-volume AT&T Unix license.

Whether true or not, Xenix has an interesting history.

Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 05, 2018, 10:46:49 pm
It wouldn't surprise me. For example Xenix ran most doctors' surgeries in the UK for a number of years until they switched over to Windows in the late 1990s.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: orin on March 05, 2018, 10:58:19 pm
It wouldn't surprise me. For example Xenix ran most doctors' surgeries in the UK for a number of years until they switched over to Windows in the late 1990s.

I didn't know that.  My experience was with Logica selling Xenix in the 1980s, before the group in question was sold off to SCO.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tggzzz on March 05, 2018, 11:24:57 pm
I was lucky. Before Windows even existed, I started with the most commercially successful Unix of the time.

Now guess who made that UNIX.

First cert on Solaris 2.6  :-+

Nope, Xenix, as others have guessed. But nobody has mentioned the company behind Xenix - and I don't mean ma Bell!

When I last used windows I still put all my files in /users/tggzzz, out of habit/homage.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Avacee on March 05, 2018, 11:26:08 pm
Xenix did indeed run most doctor's surgeries. I used to work for AAH Meditel which sold System 5 which was on Xenix. I think we were one of their biggest licensees with ~2,500 sites.
Replaced by System 6000 on Windows 3.1->95 with SCO Unix servers and a Borland Interbase database.

iirc Xenix was from AT&T .. hmm your home folder hint and the all-knowing Wikipedia says Microsoft, I did not know that :p
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: orin on March 05, 2018, 11:47:10 pm
I was lucky. Before Windows even existed, I started with the most commercially successful Unix of the time.

Now guess who made that UNIX.

First cert on Solaris 2.6  :-+

Nope, Xenix, as others have guessed. But nobody has mentioned the company behind Xenix - and I don't mean ma Bell!

When I last used windows I still put all my files in /users/tggzzz, out of habit/homage.


The quote I gave was from Bill Gates - which I left out to maintain the suspense...

Yes, Xenix was Microsoft's version of Unix.

A relatively little known fact is that Microsoft kept stealing people from Logica in the early to mid 1980s.  Some of whom ended up working in the Windows group!
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 05, 2018, 11:51:30 pm
You can run XP and Win 7 forever in a virtual environment.  Never "format/reinstall", just use the same virtual disk image.  In fact, at least XP runs SO MUCH BETTER as a virtual guest OS than on real hardware.
It may not be that easy. Most VMs are relying on the CPU's compatibility with the XP/Win7 CPU instruction set.

If Microsoft can move to an situation where the only Windows is the latest updated Windows, then it may become easier for Intel to move to newer non-compatible instruction sets. Perhaps retire 32 bit support totally.

At this point, you have to start fully emulating a whole XP/Win7 compatible CPU in code. It can still work, but it can be a dog to use.

You can probably bank on running your VMs for another 10 years. After that, who knows? At some point in the future, we will be using processors that do not look anything like current processors.

The other thing that will happen is that new programs will just stop running on Xp and Win7. Just try and run any current program on Windows NT4 and you will get the idea of what trying to run programs on Windows 7 will be like in 10 years.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Bud on March 05, 2018, 11:53:13 pm
My migration to Linux ended when it took Several Hours to compile one goddamn library file for an openCV project on a i7 32Gb 3.6GHz computer running Ubuntu. I decided i was not imbecilic enough to work on such great OS.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 06, 2018, 12:25:12 am
My migration to Linux ended when it took Several Hours to compile one goddamn library file for an openCV project on a i7 32Gb 3.6GHz computer running Ubuntu. I decided i was not imbecilic enough to work on such great OS.
It does happen. I remember trying to compile Conky - tool in Linux that puts live system info onto the wallpaper. There was some annoying library that is not at all big, but it seemed to need many thousands of very tiny modules to be compiled. It took about a day on the old obsolete laptop I was using.

Luckily, it is not that common. You cannot blame a whole OS on the quirks of a few programmers.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: CatalinaWOW on March 06, 2018, 03:17:38 am
I have been toying with Linux since kernel version 0.98 (distributed on roughly 75 5.25 in floppies), and seriously trying to migrate since roughly 2004.  I am what is disparagingly called an end user.  Although I wrote my own device drivers for my homebrew CP/M machine, and have been reading and writing code since the late 1960s I really don't find that part of technology compelling and every minute spent making the software work a minute stolen from what I am really interested in doing.

I continue to be interested in the transition, mostly because I don't want to be forced into the software as a subscription model that the MS  world is embracing, but also because I don't like the redo of the user interface every three to five years that seems to come with that territory.

While I have found several variants over the years to be usable, starting with Ygdrassil and on through Mandrake and Ubuntu I have never succeeded in fully switching. 

My advice to someone trying this path (and hopefully with more success) is to stick with one of the "user friendly" versions.  Accept that the advice from guru's will be cryptic and that they will be blind to the many assumptions that they make about your knowledge and your system.  Make sure you have a broad pipe to the internet.  You will spend much time in the repositories and updating dependencies.  And recognize that for years you will be comparing a skill set honed by decades of use with a fresher, newer and much less developed skill set.  As far as I can tell the end result will be comparable, but it will be quite a while before they converge.  Also recognize that you will have favorite programs that are Windows only.  And that WINE probably won't work on those.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Halcyon on March 06, 2018, 03:26:34 am
Thanks CatalinaWOW and everyone else for their responses. I have taken away bits and pieces which I'll try to keep in the back of my head at all times.

TwoOfFive has also kindly offered to assist over the phone, we had a brief chat earlier, however I'm tied up migrating my NAS over from an old Windows Server 2003 box to FreeNAS (it's taking a little longer than first expected).

As you mentioned CatalinaWOW, I too have been "toying" with Linux for probably 15 years now, on and off but never took the plunge. While Windows 7 still has a lot of life left in it, I don't want to leave "learning" an entirely new OS until the last minute, so I need to start somewhere. While Windows 7 will probably continue to work on old hardware for a long time, these days, a lot of drivers are no longer being written for Windows 7, eventually, I'll need to upgrade operating systems when it comes time to upgrade hardware, that's a given.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: retiredcaps on March 06, 2018, 06:27:53 am
I have used various Ubuntu versions for some time, and am currently on 12.04, which is a 2012 version (as seen by the version #).
One thing I do NOT like is their "Unity" desktop, so I figured out how to revert to the old Gnome desktop.
One issue with running 12.04 is that updates, security patches, etc ended April 28, 2017.

http://releases.ubuntu.com/12.04/ (http://releases.ubuntu.com/12.04/)

Ubuntu 18.04 due April 2018 will revert back to Gnome.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Zero999 on March 06, 2018, 08:55:43 am
You can run XP and Win 7 forever in a virtual environment.  Never "format/reinstall", just use the same virtual disk image.  In fact, at least XP runs SO MUCH BETTER as a virtual guest OS than on real hardware.
It may not be that easy. Most VMs are relying on the CPU's compatibility with the XP/Win7 CPU instruction set.

If Microsoft can move to an situation where the only Windows is the latest updated Windows, then it may become easier for Intel to move to newer non-compatible instruction sets. Perhaps retire 32 bit support totally.

At this point, you have to start fully emulating a whole XP/Win7 compatible CPU in code. It can still work, but it can be a dog to use.

You can probably bank on running your VMs for another 10 years. After that, who knows? At some point in the future, we will be using processors that do not look anything like current processors.

The other thing that will happen is that new programs will just stop running on Xp and Win7. Just try and run any current program on Windows NT4 and you will get the idea of what trying to run programs on Windows 7 will be like in 10 years.
You're right. Things will be different in 10 years time. Another possibility is Windows will lose its dominant market share on the desktop and no new software will run on it.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 06, 2018, 09:28:46 am
Microsoft know this is going to happen. They know windows is just another OS now and market domination isn't going to last forever unless they start cooperating with everyone else. Overconfidence in Windows Phone showed them the way there. It wasn't that long ago they held a funeral for the iPhone. Oh the irony:

(https://i.imgur.com/3WU3zNc.jpg)

What this has resulted in, is some crazy hell frozen over shit. They're basically moving to paid up cross platform services (Azure, Office 365 are killers) and developer tools on every platform and doing their desperate bit to hang on to mindshare and use it to upsell services. And you know what, I'm happy with that because that's the bits they do a good job of.

Not a lot of people know it but you can actually run Powershell, SQL Server, Visual Studio and .Net all on Linux quite happily and natively. You can run Linux software on Windows and even ssh into windows server CTP now. Times are changing.

We recently looked at rebuilding a win32/C++ front office application which is around 20 years old at this point now. It has a 5 MLoC investment of time in it, i.e. it's huge. At no point was anyone looking towards keeping it on the windows platform. It's somewhere between Electron and Qt at the moment in the proof of concept phase while two teams work on a small functional investment to find all the edge cases and problems in the platforms.

This has to be the coolness and weirdest time to be in the IT trade.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 06, 2018, 01:50:20 pm
Microsoft will switch to Linux and keep selling their software on top of Linux. And it will cost the Windows users as much as before.

At the same time will the Linux community get face-stomped by hordes of Windows users, all trying to learn everything there is to learn about Linux and in record-breaking time.

Some long-time Linux supporters will switch to Microsoft in a heart beat like cold-hearted back-stabbers, while others die the slow death of the White Knight in the
most epic drama the Linux community has ever seen, before the Linux community itself disappears and we will all have turned into "the new Windows user".

Once it's all done and over, and Microsoft has taken over Linux with its hordes of Windows users, will you either be the new slave of the Microsoft empire or you will have
found refuge under a tiny bridge, just next to the one where all the FreeBSD trolls live, and where you'll then be telling tales of Linux's past.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 06, 2018, 02:13:22 pm
I think it's going to actually stop at where Microsoft don't charge for their dev tools and everyone uses them and then doesn't use Azure, because it's shit and spend the cash on AWS instead. After a few years, Jeff Bezos will have built a nuclear arsenal on top of the Blue Origin rocket platform, hold the planet to ransom and appoint himself Grand Hegemon. We will all be his subjects, be forced to use Amazon Linux and have an Alexa telescreen monitoring device installed our skulls. Then Musk's martian army will come and liberate us by orbital strikes against Amazon's data centres.

Jeff, if you read this and need a business development manager, PM me.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 06, 2018, 02:27:29 pm
I think it's going to actually stop at where Microsoft don't charge for their dev tools and everyone uses them and then doesn't use Azure, because it's shit and spend the cash on AWS instead. After a few years, Jeff Bezos will have built a nuclear arsenal on top of the Blue Origin rocket platform, hold the planet to ransom and appoint himself Grand Hegemon. We will all be his subjects, be forced to use Amazon Linux and have an Alexa telescreen monitoring device installed our skulls. Then Musk's martian army will come and liberate us by orbital strikes against Amazon's data centres.

Jeff, if you read this and need a business development manager, PM me.
A well thought out and balanced argument. The only flaw I could see was the suggestion that everybody would run to AWS. AWS wants to charge for everything. The only reason Amazon don't charge you when you scratch your nose is they haven't worked out how to do it yet.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 06, 2018, 02:53:31 pm
You forget that every CTO is being sold that the capital expenditure isn’t there any more even if the operational expenditure is orders more in magnitude and the food quality is the same as McDonald’s. CTO is happy if everyone is getting McDonald’s and he’s getting his cut from the capex and spending it on a Tesla and some crack to go in his pipe. The success of this business model relies on the selfish shortsightedness of the  CxO class which is a certainty.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 06, 2018, 07:45:45 pm
Quote
We’re excited to announce that you can now download & install Kali Linux via the Windows Store!

Our community expressed great interest in bringing Kali Linux to WSL in response to a blog post on Kali Linux on WSL. We are happy to officially introduce Kali Linux on WSL

https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/commandline/2018/03/05/kali-linux-for-wsl/ (https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/commandline/2018/03/05/kali-linux-for-wsl/)
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 06, 2018, 08:00:42 pm
You can run XP and Win 7 forever in a virtual environment.  Never "format/reinstall", just use the same virtual disk image.  In fact, at least XP runs SO MUCH BETTER as a virtual guest OS than on real hardware.
It may not be that easy. Most VMs are relying on the CPU's compatibility with the XP/Win7 CPU instruction set.

If Microsoft can move to an situation where the only Windows is the latest updated Windows, then it may become easier for Intel to move to newer non-compatible instruction sets. Perhaps retire 32 bit support totally.

At this point, you have to start fully emulating a whole XP/Win7 compatible CPU in code. It can still work, but it can be a dog to use.

You can probably bank on running your VMs for another 10 years. After that, who knows? At some point in the future, we will be using processors that do not look anything like current processors.
People have run X-86 OS's on ARM CPUs such as the Beagle Bone and Rasberry Pi, and, while not speed demons, they ran faster than a not-too-old X86 CPU ran it originally.  So, I have no doubt that there will be emulators that work so that some old OS's and apps can still be run.  Now, it would make GREAT sense to migrate off of these older systems, but every once in a while you need to go back and get something off and old system.

And, I HOPE that some day, the horrible encrustation of the X86 architecture will be replaced by something much better!  It CAN'T get any worse.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 06, 2018, 08:02:57 pm
My migration to Linux ended when it took Several Hours to compile one goddamn library file for an openCV project on a i7 32Gb 3.6GHz computer running Ubuntu. I decided i was not imbecilic enough to work on such great OS.
Strange!  Long ago, (thankfully) I recompiled the whole Linux kernel with all libraries and drivers, and it took a few hours on what was relatively modest (for the time) hardware.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Monkeh on March 06, 2018, 08:14:59 pm
My migration to Linux ended when it took Several Hours to compile one goddamn library file for an openCV project on a i7 32Gb 3.6GHz computer running Ubuntu. I decided i was not imbecilic enough to work on such great OS.

There's always one (or more) who'll blame their own failures on the tools..
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 06, 2018, 08:57:56 pm
I continue to be interested in the transition, mostly because I don't want to be forced into the software as a subscription model that the MS  world is embracing, but also because I don't like the redo of the user interface every three to five years that seems to come with that territory.

While I have found several variants over the years to be usable, starting with Ygdrassil and on through Mandrake and Ubuntu I have never succeeded in fully switching. 
Well, I switched pretty fast in about 1999, after getting Linux running to use a CNC system.  I found out that I could do much of what I had been doing on Windows with Linux.  I did have some CAD systems, FPGA systems and a few of my own apps that needed to be migrated.  So, I used VMWare to run the Windows 2K Pro system for those apps, and otherwise did all email, web surfing, and other general purpose computing on Linux.  With the help of some manufacturers like Xilinx, I have managed to migrate much of that over to native Linux over time.  I still have 2 CAD apps that are Windows only, currently run those on XP using VirtualBox.  Also, for taxes, I run a program under Win 7 using VirtualBox.  That is fine.  But, I rarely find any problem doing general computing stuff on Linux.  Yes, gimp has an awful user interface, that's one Linux program that really could be improved.  But, Firefox for web, Thunderbird for email, knode as newsreader, gnumeric for spreadsheets, and TeX for documents does just about everything for me.  (My wife and kids use the awful open office for text, I totally detest it, but TeX is a bit complicated.)

As for Ubuntu, the KDE and Gnome desktops were fine.  I do NOT like Unity, but there is a way to revert to "Gnome Classic".  I have to hack one file to make the window borders larger so they are easy to grab and stretch.  I hear that Unity will be discontinued soon.  Fine by me.

I have several systems running that CNC app that got me into this, plus a web store, an Asterisk phone system, a photoplotter that was migrated over from Windows 95 to a Beagle Bone running Linux, and more.  So, other than some Windows in a virtual environment, it is all Linux of one flavor or another.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 06, 2018, 09:10:13 pm
Gimp has become a waste of time. Krita is the free photo editor to use on Linux or even Windows. Full floating point support for RGB!
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 06, 2018, 09:47:28 pm
Gimp has become a waste of time. Krita is the free photo editor to use on Linux or even Windows. Full floating point support for RGB!
Thanks!  I'll have to try it out.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Electro Detective on March 07, 2018, 12:38:57 am
I've said this for a while but Windows 7 is the last version of Windows I'll be using, unless Microsoft performs some miraculous back flip. I've been a Windows guy since version 3.1 and pretty much know every version between 3.x to Windows 7 like the back of my hand. I can fix problems with my eyes closed.

Moving to Linux is something I've been dreading, because everything I spent decades learning is all of sudden largely irrelevant.

I'm considering Ubuntu as my primary OS. There are a few programs I use where there is no Linux replacement, but I can just run them under WINE or in a VM, I'm happy with that.

What advice would you give to a Linux noob? What habits do I need to break? What habits do I need to learn?


I run with all three, Windows, Linux and Mac (in that preferred order) in all flavours, mainly because people threw their viri laden PC and MACkered boxes at me to fix for a fee,
so I got up to speed with them quickly because the issues weren't always hardware related

Windows 7 is good for many more years, as is 8 and 8.1,
and 10 is ok too if you strip back all the embedded stuff in it and lose the metro box BS, there are apps that do that btw  :clap:

I can't see why a fresh Windows 7 installed in 10 years time with installed apps won't work with or without the hyped updates
New software authors and motherboard manufacturers may still cater for it and supply any updates or patches to make it work with Win 7
A lot of recent stuff works on XP and 2000 afaik

Linux is no biggie to get into, stick to the popular desktop versions and find one you like.
The Linux Live DVDs let you stuff about without harming your PC
The Command line thing you can either have a go at, or give it a miss and use the GUI

I found with Linux if you do a little at a time and surf the menus to get familiar, it feels very Windows-ish after a bit
and Right Click with a mouse works with Linux, unlike the two handed Mac acrobatics  :--

Macs are a no no  |O  unless they are new and shiny with all the apps in place, and the user doesn't stuff around with them and just uses it responsibly,
and or the cheap as chips hardware (Logic Board) doesn't go belly up after the warranty  [$$ :-[ $$]



 

Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Halcyon on March 07, 2018, 01:42:32 am
I can't see why a fresh Windows 7 installed in 10 years time with installed apps won't work with or without the hyped updates
New software authors and motherboard manufacturers may still cater for it and supply any updates or patches to make it work with Win 7
A lot of recent stuff works on XP and 2000 afaik

Extended support for Windows 7 ends in 2020, after that no more updates. Which is fine for the most part.

The issue will be activation, Microsoft can just stop supporting activation of Windows 7 whenever they feel like it. It's already happened with Microsoft Office. Sure there are ways around it, but still. For a while now, you just can't get drivers for Windows 7 for some new hardware which becomes a pain if you want to upgrade your machine.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: CatalinaWOW on March 07, 2018, 02:50:02 am
The driver support thing does work both ways.  I have a fifteen year old HP multi-function printer.  Under windows about all that is left is printing, and the paper handling is limited.  The original software that supported scanning and other functions no longer runs.  But under Linux I can still use the full functionality of the machine.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: CatalinaWOW on March 07, 2018, 04:36:41 am
Gimp has become a waste of time. Krita is the free photo editor to use on Linux or even Windows. Full floating point support for RGB!

This is a perfect example of what happens when you dive into Linux.  First, it is generous advice on an "even better" version of an application to do something.

Then you go to the Krita website.  Where it is lauded as an artists tool to generate graphics, paintings, illustrations and the like.

Well maybe it has good photo handling tools so it is good for photos even though aimed at artists.  Lets download it and give it a try.  Now I have two choices. Try it in Linux or in Windows.  On the Linux tab it says you download Appimages which may or may not be Krita.  On Windows you have three choices.  A paid version from the Windows App Store, a Krita installer and a Portable version.  What are the differences between an installed version and a portable version?

So back to the web page to find out.  Where I find that until 2009 Krita was trying to be a photo manipulation program like GIMP or Photoshop.  But since 2009 it has been purely focused on painting.  Is this really the best image manipulation choice?  If I need full floating point color control maybe so.  But then I am a guy and am challenged to name more than 16 colors.  Somewhere beyond 65000 is perilously close to overkill.  Since I know from my electro-optic career that the instantaneous dynamic range of the human vision system is barely eight bits.


So, another case where I can make a hobby out of tweaking my computing tool, or carry on with the hobbies I already have.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Monkeh on March 07, 2018, 04:39:03 am
So another case where you find a way to argue against learning and discovery - and manage to paint an entire OS with the same brush as a single, unrelated program.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Electro Detective on March 07, 2018, 10:47:39 am
I can't see why a fresh Windows 7 installed in 10 years time with installed apps won't work with or without the hyped updates
New software authors and motherboard manufacturers may still cater for it and supply any updates or patches to make it work with Win 7
A lot of recent stuff works on XP and 2000 afaik

Extended support for Windows 7 ends in 2020, after that no more updates. Which is fine for the most part.

The issue will be activation, Microsoft can just stop supporting activation of Windows 7 whenever they feel like it. It's already happened with Microsoft Office.

Sure there are ways around it, but still. For a while now, you just can't get drivers for Windows 7 for some new hardware which becomes a pain if you want to upgrade your machine.

Good point, I didn't consider that

That's why since XP, Vista and 7, I always purchase COA licensed OEM PCs from Dell, HP, Acer etc that have Recovery Partitions and or DVDs

A fresh Recovery/re-install is auto activated with drivers ready to go,

no phone calls, no internet or MS BS required   

and no EULA legal suits with court summons at 6 am

with s w a t teams and tank and overhead dr0ne support to back them up if shtf, like you haven't checked emails or finished watching Mailbag  :rant:


I use ancient versions of Office (that still work great) that activate via the serial key on the CD or Retail Box (1997 > 2007?)
I don't think you can do the OEM thing with Office =  :-// 




The driver support thing does work both ways.  I have a fifteen year old HP multi-function printer. 
Under windows about all that is left is printing, and the paper handling is limited. 
The original software that supported scanning and other functions no longer runs.  But under Linux I can still use the full functionality of the machine.

Vuescan is the program that fixes those issues in Windows, Mac and Linux

The author adds scanners new and old and addresses any reported bugs asap,

doesn't sit on his ass waiting for the money to just roll in,

hard to beat  :-+   www.hamrick.com/





Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: rdl on March 07, 2018, 11:34:48 am
Restoring a Windows 7 OEM install is not always what is wanted or the best idea. Using the backup recovery partition or disks made with the manufacturers supplied utility program will also reinstall all the bloatware/trial software/potential spyware that was included originally. It can take longer to remove all the junk afterward than it does to do the actual install. And you can never be sure it's all completely gone. It is guaranteed that dregs will be left in the registry. A clean install is often (usually) the better plan of action.

Offline activation of a clean install is not that difficult as long as the necessary files are copied beforehand and there have not been hardware changes. Be sure to download in advance any drivers you might need (chipset, network, video, sound, etc.).
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 07, 2018, 11:35:36 am
I can't see why a fresh Windows 7 installed in 10 years time with installed apps won't work with or without the hyped updates
New software authors and motherboard manufacturers may still cater for it and supply any updates or patches to make it work with Win 7
A lot of recent stuff works on XP and 2000 afaik

Extended support for Windows 7 ends in 2020, after that no more updates. Which is fine for the most part.

The issue will be activation, Microsoft can just stop supporting activation of Windows 7 whenever they feel like it. It's already happened with Microsoft Office.

Sure there are ways around it, but still. For a while now, you just can't get drivers for Windows 7 for some new hardware which becomes a pain if you want to upgrade your machine.

Good point, I didn't consider that

That's why since XP, Vista and 7, I always purchase COA licensed OEM PCs from Dell, HP, Acer etc that have Recovery Partitions and or DVDs

A fresh Recovery/re-install is auto activated with drivers ready to go,

no phone calls, no internet or MS BS required   

and no EULA legal suits with court summons at 6 am

with s w a t teams and tank and overhead dr0ne support to back them up if shtf, like you haven't checked emails or finished watching Mailbag  :rant:


I use ancient versions of Office (that still work great) that activate via the serial key on the CD or Retail Box (1997 > 2007?)
I don't think you can do the OEM thing with Office =  :-// 




The driver support thing does work both ways.  I have a fifteen year old HP multi-function printer. 
Under windows about all that is left is printing, and the paper handling is limited. 
The original software that supported scanning and other functions no longer runs.  But under Linux I can still use the full functionality of the machine.

Vuescan is the program that fixes those issues in Windows, Mac and Linux

The author adds printers new and old and addresses any reported bugs asap,

doesn't sit on his ass waiting for the money to just roll in,

hard to beat  :-+   www.hamrick.com/







Why the hell would you spend that money to support something which is cheap to replace?
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 07, 2018, 01:17:22 pm
Vuescan is the program that fixes those issues in Windows, Mac and Linux

Why the hell would you spend that money to support something which is cheap to replace?
I also purchased Vuescan over 10 years ago (It is a once only cost - you get all updates). It is not just to save one cheap scanner, it has probably allowed me to keep using 5 scanners over the years - not all of them cheap.

You often end up with better control of the scanner then the original programs offered. I can use the scanners for free now that everyone else is throwing out. For quick scans, I have a really old Canon LIDE usb powered scanner that has had no drivers since Windows XP.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tooki on March 07, 2018, 01:29:59 pm
Is this really the best image manipulation choice?  If I need full floating point color control maybe so.  But then I am a guy and am challenged to name more than 16 colors.  Somewhere beyond 65000 is perilously close to overkill.  Since I know from my electro-optic career that the instantaneous dynamic range of the human vision system is barely eight bits.
Barely 8 bits? In grayscale perhaps. But 8 bits in color is not even close to enough. Even 16-bit color shows visible banding in many images, if not alleviated with dithering. 24-bit color absolutely can represent what one can discern, but you need more bits to allow for the color space manipulation needed for calibration, etc. Similarly, when manipulating photos, 24-bit can lead to banding, so 48-bit does actually improve results.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: tooki on March 07, 2018, 01:31:54 pm
Vuescan is the program that fixes those issues in Windows, Mac and Linux

Why the hell would you spend that money to support something which is cheap to replace?
I also purchased Vuescan over 10 years ago (It is a once only cost - you get all updates). It is not just to save one cheap scanner, it has probably allowed me to keep using 5 scanners over the years - not all of them cheap.

You often end up with better control of the scanner then the original programs offered. I can use the scanners for free now that everyone else is throwing out. For quick scans, I have a really old Canon LIDE usb powered scanner that has had no drivers since Windows XP.
Another vote for VueScan. Not only does it support older scanners (senseless for cheap ones, but eminently sensible for specialty scanners), but it really does give way more control than the software for consumer scanners ever did.

I wonder if my old VueScan license is still active... (it was one I received for free when working at the fruit stand, not a purchased license).
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: CatalinaWOW on March 07, 2018, 07:14:53 pm
Excellent suggestion on Vuescan.  Too bad I didn't find out about it before replacing a couple of old scanners with optics/sensors I really liked.   Tooki, if you go to the purchase page they have a link to let you look for your serial number/license information.


While my experience with Krita was a single example, it has been typical of my experience with the Linux world.  There are many wonderful programs out there.  And a huge number of useable programs.  But a huge number of the programs require significant homework and tweaking that the advocates seem oblivious to.  I am not against learning.  But as I said earlier, my hobby is not computers and operating systems.  Nor is/was my profession.  Computers and operating systems are tools.  If the result of all that learning is to be able to do something almost as well as I currently can, or even if it is slightly better, I have better ways to spend my time.

So far Linux falls into that category for me.  I have found a few things I can do better.  A few things that are significantly harder to achieve.  Most things end up being about the same.  Advocates of Linux will argue that everything is easier/better/faster .... (This is not unique to Linux advocates - Windows and Mac advocates are guilty too.)  They may even be right by some objective measure.  I can only report my own experience.  The reason that I continue to dabble with Linux at all is the ongoing attempt by Microsoft to reduce its utility to me, thus tilting that rough balance far enough to justify the effort in transition.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: IanMacdonald on March 07, 2018, 07:53:29 pm
Good points about Linux are the stability, and fewer security issues. Also you can do so much without having to pay for extra software. For the business user, the simple licensing model can in itself save you a huge amount of expense. Microsoft licensing is now so incredibly complex that many businesses have to hire a specialist lawyer to sort out how much they actually need to pay.

Things I don't like so much are the case sensitive filesystem, and the excessively tight integration of user applications with the OS.

Having a situation where you can't capitalize names for easier reading without that also causing issues, is basically stupid. It dates from the stone age of computing when adding case conversion to software would have had a significant performance hit. Nowadays that's a non-argument, but we still have to live with the legacy of naming everything lowercase or else suffering problems.

If you upgrade your distro, your office apps, graphics editors, etc all are perforce upgraded too. Thing is, the new app might suck, or maybe just can't do what the previous version did, and short of rolling your entire distro back you're stuck with it. You can sometimes get backports of the previous apps, but they often don't work too well. By contrast you can run just about any Windows program on a version of Windows no older than the app itself. For example you can run Office 97 on Windows 10. On Linux, you can't even go one version back.

BTW, Mint has gained a lot of popularity in the desktop arena. It's certainly one of the more ergonomic and well thought-out presentations.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Karel on March 07, 2018, 08:16:32 pm
If you upgrade your distro, your office apps, graphics editors, etc all are perforce upgraded too. Thing is, the new app might suck, or maybe just can't do what the previous version did, and short of rolling your entire distro back you're stuck with it.

I partitioned my harddisk(s) as follows:

First three or four partitions with a size of 30GB (20GB could be enough as well).
Then a partion that occupies all the rest of the space of the harddisk.

The first time you install Linux, use the first 30GB partion to install it, including /home.
Then you mount the big partion as /data. This is where all your precious data, documents and projects go.
Leave the other small partitions unused and unmounted.
Usually, in the /home/<user>/ directory, there's a directory called "Documents". Remove it and create a symlink with the same name
that points to /data/Documents

When it's time to install a new distro, install it into another small partition. After installation you mount the data partition.

Next distro or next version of your distro, goes in to the next empty small partion till everything is full and then you start to
format and re-use the first small partition.

This way, if you don't like something about the new distro or newer version, you simply reboot and select in GRUB the older distro.
Works perfect for me.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 07, 2018, 09:21:35 pm
This is actually the advantage of minimal distros like Arch Linux or FreeBSD (Which isn't Linux, but might as well be). When you upgrade Arch Linux, you just use the package manager to upgrade everything, including the kernel. Reboot (or even just reload everything possibly), and you're done. If an update was made to a package and you don't like it, uninstall it and find a nicer one. Similar with FreeBSD, but I don't know if they do the rolling update thing.

I personally dislike AIO distros like Debian based ones, a lot for this reason. You're just given a load of packages to use, and you don't get to experience the full, pick the colour of the baseboard trim customizability you are normally, in a way, forced to do with minimal distros. I also get it's not for everybody, and I can respect that, but if you have the time, the experience gained and the customization earned is certainly worth it.

I started with a CLI, a package manager, and I think GNU Nano. This is what I did with it over the course of no more than a few days:

https://goo.gl/eT3mnD (Not in line as some people on metered connections may think 300kb is a big amount, yes I am still bitter about this thing that for most people died ages ago, secant).

None of that came with the OS. I installed the bottom dock, the window manager, the wallpaper (which I love, it's a great joke), and even the little top left emblem which used to just be a Mate logo. Even Screenfetch was custom. I think this is the reason I love Linux. I can change it however I want.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 07, 2018, 10:24:53 pm
FreeBSD is nothing like Linux. It works properly and the documentation isn't crap!  :-DD
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Electro Detective on March 07, 2018, 11:29:36 pm
Restoring a Windows 7 OEM install is not always what is wanted or the best idea.

Using the backup recovery partition or disks made with the manufacturers supplied utility program will also reinstall all the bloatware/trial software/potential spyware that was included originally.

It can take longer to remove all the junk afterward than it does to do the actual install. And you can never be sure it's all completely gone. It is guaranteed that dregs will be left in the registry. A clean install is often (usually) the better plan of action.

Offline activation of a clean install is not that difficult as long as the necessary files are copied beforehand and there have not been hardware changes. Be sure to download in advance any drivers you might need (chipset, network, video, sound, etc.).

I agree that a major downside is the useless bloatcrapnagware they slot in, that only serve to bog down performance and give the OEM vendor a bad rep and lost future sales,
with a good chance the burnt buyers go 'Mac' and try their computing luck there   ::)

FWIW I keep 2 separate backup images of the entire OEM PC
one in it's original shipped state, 
and another image after all the bloats have been removed, Registry leftovers nuked, security scan, and updates and service packs applied,
which sits on any external USB drive nicely, ready for a rainy day...

There's also a third image with apps etc and or another when the PC is running really well = backup
 

I'm not a fan of cloak n dagger activation games BS, so I take the easiest surefire legal  -CHEAPEST-  way out, new or used. 

Admittedly most OEM PCs may not be spec'D gamer class machines, but throw in some extra ram, optional decent graphics card,  a 7200 rpm or SSD drive (or two) and they do the business for most tasks good enough   :-+


Why think about Windows or Linux when you can dabble in both or as needs dictate

Linux costs nothing and I reckon if I got really serious about it and over the 'Windows or Mac' duopoly, I could have a distro or two running like beasts with all the apps I and the locals around me need.

If I need 'support' or handball tips to newbs, apps, workarounds and the latest browser and whatever, Linux user websites and forums are a Bookmark click away...


MS and Apple should tread carefully with their expanding money pits, lest the connedsumers and corporats get fed up with the BS and   'give something else a try and see how it goes...'


Playing with Linux means you can pull the plug on Windows and Macs any time without too much drama, and have a fun weekend or two sorting it all out and exercising the brain,

on most bog standard PCs, even older ones dating back 10 or more years


For gamers and serious AV users my blab above may not relate to your needs, in which case better off having a separate purpose rig anyway with a wired internet connection, which is usually the norm I think  :-//

 
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Nusa on March 08, 2018, 12:03:50 am
Having a situation where you can't capitalize names for easier reading without that also causing issues, is basically stupid. It dates from the stone age of computing when adding case conversion to software would have had a significant performance hit. Nowadays that's a non-argument, but we still have to live with the legacy of naming everything lowercase or else suffering problems.

You're thinking of the ASCII age of computing, which started in the 1960's and even then many of the early adopters only used six-bit ASCII variants (no lower case). Most of the stone age computers didn't support lower case at all. The earliest ones only dealt with numbers.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Nusa on March 08, 2018, 12:11:32 am
FreeBSD is nothing like Linux. It works properly and the documentation isn't crap!  :-DD

That's because BSD and its decendants (which include MacOS) actually is a branch of Unix*.

*Except BSD can't actually call itself Unix, because they didn't pay for the right to use the trademarked name.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 08, 2018, 12:55:37 am
FreeBSD is nothing like Linux. It works properly and the documentation isn't crap!  :-DD

https://prnt.sc/iobr3z

Yeah, works SO well. Documentation also TOTALLY covers this! Here's a hint, neither of my previous stations are true.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 08, 2018, 07:53:12 am
That’s Linux’s (well strictly GNU’s) fault. dlopen is part of libc on sensible platforms. It’s part of libdl on Linux. Someone linked that against libdl. That means that someone is using Linux compact without the GNU libc doodahs or upstream cocked up their autoconf setup. Static link libdl to libc and the runtime linker will find it.

So basically that’s all linux’s failt anyway  :-DD
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 08, 2018, 08:10:12 am
This is dandy for me because this happens on chromium too.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: hans on March 08, 2018, 08:52:45 am
Call me fanboy, but since this week I started to appreciate Linux/GNU a fair bit more, even for it's old-school Xorg.

For a project we needed to perform VLSI simulations and synthesis on a remote server. Every student can SSH into that box. So logically, with 2 commands you can create a personal SSH keychain and drop the public key on the server. Great, can login without having to type in my excessively lengthy student password every time.

Next, locally mounted the /home/ directory of remote server account using sshfs. Instant access to files on the remote server, just edit code in my favorite editor, etc. Works great as well, no need to put up with nano or continuously transferring code files back and forth.

Then finally enabled X11 forwarding and behold; running graphical applications on the server seamless in my own desktop environment with granularity to single applications. No annoying full-screen remote desktop connections as is the case on Windows. Sure dragging panels in the application is a bit slower than it used to, but everything else worked seamlessly.

Really liking this! I would almost swap my workstation laptop for a more lightweight one, and then forward X11 [everything] from my workstation on campus which has way more beefier hardware..
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 08, 2018, 08:55:35 am
Call me fanboy, but since this week I started to appreciate Linux/GNU a fair bit more, even for it's old-school Xorg.

For a project we needed to perform VLSI simulations and synthesis on a remote server. Every student can SSH into that box. So logically, with 2 commands you can create a personal SSH keychain and drop the public key on the server. Great, can login without having to type in my excessively lengthy student password every time.

Next, locally mounted the /home/ directory of remote server account using sshfs. Instant access to files on the remote server, just edit code in my favorite editor, etc. Works great as well, no need to put up with nano or continuously transferring code files back and forth.

Then finally enabled X11 forwarding and behold; running graphical applications on the server seamless in my own desktop environment with granularity to single applications. No annoying full-screen remote desktop connections as is the case on Windows. Sure dragging panels in the application is a bit slower than it used to, but everything else worked seamlessly.

Really liking this! I would almost swap my workstation laptop for a more lightweight one, and then forward X11 [everything] from my workstation on campus which has way more beefier hardware..

This is how my DOS programming workflow operates. I have a RasPi 3 (Switching over to a FreeBSD 12 VM on Google Cloud as I'm giving their free trial a shot) that runs just GNU Nano and DOSBox. X11 forwarding DOSBox, TC ontop of that, and I can run this from anywhere and everywhere.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 08, 2018, 09:15:01 am
Just a point on X which will diverge into a worrying trend... The "free desktop" lot are trying to kill it and replace it with Wayland with no regard for a ton of use cases where X actually craps upon it. What you will find, particularly in the last 5 years or so, is that Linux is converging on Windows architectural idioms. systemd is service manager. dbus is DCOM. journald is event logger. Weyland is DWM. On top of these is a non trivial stack of dependencies and APIs which cause very tight coupling between desktop services, toolkits and all sorts. Much like MFC/ATL/DirectX and all that cack. That means that the applications you build against this API aren't necessarily reasonably portable away from Linux as a platform. Also for anyone involved in the administration and development side of things this means API churn, instability and recovery nightmares. You will discover this if you have to recover a hosed systemd owned box. windows is a piece of piss to recover compared to this on a good day. As for portability, you will see shims appearing and application frameworks now which try and desperately abstract away all of these problems. The outcome is that even things like GTK and Qt are starting to get vertically huge to maintain portability.

The old adage of escaping windows bloat is an irony I can't laugh at any more.

Really this is exactly what the drivers of the ecosystem want. They want another monoculture which is difficult to migrate away from which they control. This is the antithesis of what people want when they move away from Windows really.

As for the drivers of the ecosystem, you will find that most of the independent looking projects are under the roof of Redhat. They hired everyone significant they could and are shaping everything from behind the scenes. They have even started buying up orchestration companies (Ansible) and getting silent agreements with cloud vendors and other OS vendors (particularly Azure and Microsoft!).

The reason for all this is there is big money in this. Redhat specifically say they are the "first $1bn open source company". Hmm.

The BSDs are the last refuge. Or ReactOS which is ironic really.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 08, 2018, 09:36:14 am
The fact that I see, however, is the NT family of operating systems suffer from one critical flaw. You can't change around key critical packages, especially for replacements that don't exist.

Linux may be suffering from the Windows bloats, but they all remain optional to the savvy techie. Windows is being hated right now for it's forcing of people to follow their exact measures, where as Linux has the advantage of being almost completely modular, as well as free and open.

BSD is nice, and while my personal experience with both is not nearly enough to make even a halfway decent remark on this, from what I have noticed, is that there is a critical difference between POSIX and NT ecosystems. Linux/BSD can be almost infinitely modified in whatever way you want, without having to mess with too much bullshit, whereas if I want to replace something as simple as the window manager on NT, good luck.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 08, 2018, 11:23:19 pm
Call me fanboy, but since this week I started to appreciate Linux/GNU a fair bit more, even for it's old-school Xorg.

For a project we needed to perform VLSI simulations and synthesis on a remote server. Every student can SSH into that box. So logically, with 2 commands you can create a personal SSH keychain and drop the public key on the server. Great, can login without having to type in my excessively lengthy student password every time.

Next, locally mounted the /home/ directory of remote server account using sshfs. Instant access to files on the remote server, just edit code in my favorite editor, etc. Works great as well, no need to put up with nano or continuously transferring code files back and forth.
yes!!  Unix has been doing networking since Bill Gates was a teenager.  I have a bunch of Linux nodes at home, and use them remotely, ship files around, etc. all the time.  I do this at work, too.
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Then finally enabled X11 forwarding and behold; running graphical applications on the server seamless in my own desktop environment with granularity to single applications. No annoying full-screen remote desktop connections as is the case on Windows. Sure dragging panels in the application is a bit slower than it used to, but everything else worked seamlessly.
There is definitely a performance penalty when shipping parts of screens across the network all the time, but it works amazingly well, considering all the handstands that are needed to make this work.

Security on my home business web store is enhanced by only allowing http access from within the local network.  So, if I need to access it from away, I have to tunnel into the local network so it appears that I'm on the local side.  There are methods to do that, but it does get sluggish.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: jmelson on March 08, 2018, 11:28:59 pm
The fact that I see, however, is the NT family of operating systems suffer from one critical flaw. You can't change around key critical packages, especially for replacements that don't exist.

Linux may be suffering from the Windows bloats, but they all remain optional to the savvy techie. Windows is being hated right now for it's forcing of people to follow their exact measures, where as Linux has the advantage of being almost completely modular, as well as free and open.
You should note that Linux kernels appear in all sorts of things.  My VOIP **PHONES** have Linux embedded in them!  There's a single flash memory chip soldered to the board that holds the kernel, drivers, Tcp/IP stack and their web-accessible configuration app, plus the phone's functionality!  Talk about stripping down to the bare essentials.

Jon
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 08, 2018, 11:43:50 pm
Of course! There's another thread going around here talking about running programs without a serious OS on your machine, but if you just get rid of all the unneeded packages, and reduce the daemons to only those that you REALLY need, you can get Linux going on some pretty silent running, Unix too. Heck, Unix was designed on the PDP-11, which by today's standards is anything but a speed demon.

We all are sitting here hoping the NT Kernel dies out so it's an excuse to stop using it and go completely to POSIX compatible operating systems like Unix/Linux. The reason many of us don't do this now is software support, but I do hope that as PCs gradually become more focused on power users for the first time in probably 28 years as an industry, and the fact that the industry that is taking up this slack, smartphones, is not only completely devoid of the NT kernel, but also completely Unix/Linux dominated, that we can see software support for us move closer to infinitely portable and adaptable versions with generic Unix/Linux/X11 support so we can get rid of the idea that a computer is something that you pay for someone else to tell you how to use it.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: nctnico on March 09, 2018, 12:39:06 am
We all are sitting here hoping the NT Kernel dies out so it's an excuse to stop using it and go completely to POSIX compatible operating systems like Unix/Linux. The reason many of us don't do this now is software support, but I do hope that as PCs gradually become more focused on power users for the first time in probably 28 years as an industry, and the fact that the industry that is taking up this slack, smartphones, is not only completely devoid of the NT kernel, but also completely Unix/Linux dominated, that we can see software support for us move closer to infinitely portable and adaptable versions with generic Unix/Linux/X11 support so we can get rid of the idea that a computer is something that you pay for someone else to tell you how to use it.
Perhaps the move is more gradual. Nowadays many people use their smartphone and/or tablet (most of these run Linux under the hood) for many things like making appointments, reading/writing e-mail, visiting websites, watching video, etc which used to be things which where typically done on a Windows PC. In absolute numbers the number of Linux machines out in the field dwarf the number of Windows PCs. You might even go as far as saying Windows serves a shrinking niche market.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 09, 2018, 02:51:15 am
Time will tell. Microsoft hasn't had a good track record of doing what everybody actually wants them to do, or doing any market research besides fudging statistics until it says people want to be bullied and spied on by their operating system.

I'm actually starting the process (mostly for fun) of replacing my Arch Linux installation with a FreeBSD one. I actually have sort of fallen in love with FreeBSD as of recent, and I thought it might revitalize my usage in the platform. Will report back on my status of using FreeBSD as a desktop operating system, but given it's high Linux compatibility, and general similarity to Linux, I don't think it will be all that bad. The only thing that annoys me are the file systems, I love my ext4, and am scared of the modern marvel that is ZFS, but whatever, it's a small part I can just not like.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: amspire on March 09, 2018, 03:37:15 am
I'm actually starting the process (mostly for fun) of replacing my Arch Linux installation with a FreeBSD one. I actually have sort of fallen in love with FreeBSD as of recent, and I thought it might revitalize my usage in the platform. Will report back on my status of using FreeBSD as a desktop operating system, but given it's high Linux compatibility, and general similarity to Linux, I don't think it will be all that bad.
I have never tried FreeBSD but it will be interesting to see how it goes. Looks like many developers are developing for Linux, and it is up to the FreeBSD community to port the program. Are the ports reliable or buggy?

Say for Blender, I can get a fully tested stable, experimental and nightly builds for Ubuntu or Debian, but for FreeBSD, I would have to go to Freshports where they have one build from a couple of months ago.

Wonder how you would go installing a massive commercial program such as Altera Quartus Prime  for FPGA development.
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The only thing that annoys me are the file systems, I love my ext4, and am scared of the modern marvel that is ZFS, but whatever, it's a small part I can just not like.
Well a fairly old modern marvel now. Should be rock solid, but is it as easy when things go wrong as NTFS or Ext2/3/4? I have not had the pleasure yet of being handed a crook ZFS or BTRFS disk and told that files on the disk have to be recovered. Not looking forward to that day either.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 09, 2018, 03:42:47 am
FreeBSD has an almost fully featured communicability layer for Linux programs. No clue about the almost part of that, but I hear it works great enough, and can even run Linux programs faster than Linux itself sometimes.

For a stone age legacy computer nerd like myself, ZFS is an enigma I don't want to wrap my head around and it just gives me flashbacks to dynamic volumes on Windows which sometimes weren't even detected on other computers with identical versions of Windows (stupid). For me, drive, partition, journaling is nice, and done.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 09, 2018, 06:12:56 am
Welp, I have results. Maybe it's my complete ineptitude towards this specific platform, but I am now quite cooled down with my love for FreeBSD.

Here's why:

I couldn't for the life of me install something as simple as NVidia's own X11 drivers.

I'm serious.

I couldn't as hard as I tried, using hours of time, and multiple resources, even the direct FreeBSD, and more modern forum based resources and a whole host of different methods, I couldn't get it to work. It would state the X11 server couldn't find any displays, and then nothing would work. I have not had this problem on Arch Linux, or any other barebones Linux configuration.

This could be me screwing stuff up, but honestly, I could just not be on the same wavelength for this sorta thing. Unix was fun, but now I am going immediately and straight back to Arch Linux, which I thought was a bit on the complicated side. Maybe I will revisit this.

I don't need any help, unless it's something really obvious, because if something as simple as this, can't be figured out by myself, then I am either too stupid, or FreeBSD is too stupid.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: bd139 on March 09, 2018, 07:19:07 am
If it doesn’t work easily then it’s not you. That’s my view. This is incidentally why you find me running a windows laptop using WSL and headless remote machines most of the time. The power management and display server side of things really only makes sense if you pick hardware carefully.

While you didn’t win that battle, the journey was valuable.
Title: Re: Migrating from Windows to Linux
Post by: Ampera on March 09, 2018, 08:13:46 am
If it doesn’t work easily then it’s not you. That’s my view. This is incidentally why you find me running a windows laptop using WSL and headless remote machines most of the time. The power management and display server side of things really only makes sense if you pick hardware carefully.

While you didn’t win that battle, the journey was valuable.

I try not to assume my failures as mistakes of other people rather than my own inexperience, but I do think someone could have done something here to not completely confuse and annoy me. Anyways, after dealing with my breaking grub, Arch Linux is back in the game for me.