Linux and Windows

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand that,
even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere out in the
middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe out the FAT
table.

Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my WinXP
system? Thanks.


--
--------------------------------------
Jeffrey Needle
jeff.needle@gmail.com
16 answers Last reply
More about linux windows
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Install VMWare Workstation 5.0 www.vmware.com . Then install Linux on that.
    You can use it from within Windows XP to experiment and it will NOT alter
    your hard drive partitions in any way.

    --
    Regards,

    Richard Urban
    Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User

    Quote from: George Ankner
    "If you knew as much as you thought you know,
    You would realize that you don't know what you thought you knew!"

    "Jeff Needle" <jeff.needle@general-net.com> wrote in message
    news:op.stpy8dtd3r2ov4@d9ns6561...
    > I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
    > Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand that,
    > even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere out in the
    > middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe out the FAT
    > table.
    >
    > Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my WinXP
    > system? Thanks.
    >
    >
    > --
    > --------------------------------------
    > Jeffrey Needle
    > jeff.needle@gmail.com
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Thanks, I just looked at the page.

    Wouldn't it be nice if there were some free disk partioning utility that
    guaranteed it was partioning a blank part of the disk. Maybe I'm being
    naive about this.

    On Sun, 10 Jul 2005 16:06:45 -0700, Richard Urban [MVP]
    <richardurbanREMOVETHIS@hotmail.com> wrote:

    > Install VMWare Workstation 5.0 www.vmware.com . Then install Linux on
    > that.
    > You can use it from within Windows XP to experiment and it will NOT alter
    > your hard drive partitions in any way.
    >


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Hello Jeff.

    "Jeff Needle" <jeff.needle@general-net.com> wrote in message
    news:jeff.needle@general-net.com:
    > I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
    > Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand that,
    >
    > even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere out in the
    > middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe out the FAT
    > table.
    >
    > Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my WinXP
    >
    > system? Thanks.
    >
    >

    There are a number of Linux "live distro's" that are complete operating
    systems on CD. These can be run without making any alteration to your
    hard disk. This would probably be a better solution for yourself if you
    really don't want to dabble with altering partitions.

    Personally I would convert your partitions to NTFS. This is a better
    file system than FAT, and usually the default method used for installing
    Windows XP.

    Next you can use a utility like Partition Magic or Partition Expert to
    alter the size of your current partition, or create a partition from any
    available free space.
  4. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    > There are a number of Linux "live distro's" that are complete operating
    > systems on CD. These can be run without making any alteration to your
    > hard disk. This would probably be a better solution for yourself if you
    > really don't want to dabble with altering partitions.
    >
    > Personally I would convert your partitions to NTFS. This is a better
    > file system than FAT, and usually the default method used for installing
    > Windows XP.
    >


    Hmmm, to tell the truth, my statement about FAT was based on an article I
    read. I really don't know what the configuration of my system is. Is
    there a way to find out? It may already be NTFS.


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  5. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Jeff Needle wrote:

    >> There are a number of Linux "live distro's" that are complete
    >> operating systems on CD. These can be run without making any
    >> alteration to your hard disk. This would probably be a better
    >> solution for yourself if you really don't want to dabble with
    >> altering partitions.
    >>
    >> Personally I would convert your partitions to NTFS. This is a better
    >> file system than FAT, and usually the default method used for
    >> installing Windows XP.
    >>
    >
    >
    > Hmmm, to tell the truth, my statement about FAT was based on an
    > article I
    > read. I really don't know what the configuration of my system is. Is
    > there a way to find out? It may already be NTFS.
    >
    >
    OK, based on your posts you definitely need to read up on using both
    Windows and Linux. Your success in using *any* operating system well
    depends on your willingness to learn. I'm not saying this to be
    hurtful; just giving you a little friendly advice. You need to know
    things like what are different file systems and how to tell what
    hardware you've got. The best place to start learning is by using
    Google. Newsgroups are also great, but be aware that the Linux groups
    are far less forgiving of people who post without doing some research
    first. See what Linux newsgroups are on your ISP's news server and
    subscribe to a few. Lurk for a long time before posting.

    I would suggest you get one of the live distros like Knoppix - and
    either have them send you a cd or have a friend with broadband and the
    proper burning program get it for you - and just play. Don't worry
    about saving documents, etc. Then if you decide you want to dual-boot
    with some Linux distro, do some research about the different ones and
    pick something you think will work for you. A good disk partitioning
    strategy for a dual-boot system with XP is something like this (I'm
    leaving off the cd drives for simplicity):

    C:\ - XP formatted NTFS (Linux hda1)
    D:\ - small FAT32 partition for shared data between the two OS's (Linux
    hda2)
    hdb1 - second hard drive for Linux formatted in Reiser or ext3 with /
    files on it
    hdb2 - separate partition on second drive for /home

    Have a lot of fun,

    Malke
    --
    Elephant Boy Computers
    www.elephantboycomputers.com
    "Don't Panic!"
    MS-MVP Windows - Shell/User
  6. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    On Mon, 11 Jul 2005 05:22:58 -0700, Jeff Needle wrote:

    >
    > Hmmm, to tell the truth, my statement about FAT was based on an article I
    > read. I really don't know what the configuration of my system is. Is
    > there a way to find out? It may already be NTFS.

    Right click on the icon for any drive in Windows Explorer and choose
    Properties. The file system will be noted in the properties sheets.
    --
    Sharon F
    MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
  7. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Jeff Needle wrote:
    > I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
    > Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand
    > that, even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere out
    > in the middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe out
    > the FAT table.
    >
    > Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my
    > WinXP system? Thanks.
    >
    >
    In my limited experience. I installed a separate physical drive and
    installed Linux on that. That way you don't interfere with your present
    Windows.
  8. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    On Sun, 10 Jul 2005 16:18:27 -0700, KG <music@yahoo.com> wrote:

    > Jeff Needle wrote:
    >> I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
    >> Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand
    >> that, even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere out
    >> in the middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe out
    >> the FAT table.
    >> Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my
    >> WinXP system? Thanks.
    >>
    > In my limited experience. I installed a separate physical drive and
    > installed Linux on that. That way you don't interfere with your present
    > Windows.


    I may have to do that.

    Thanks.


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  9. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Jeff Needle wrote:

    > On Sun, 10 Jul 2005 16:18:27 -0700, KG <music@yahoo.com> wrote:
    >
    >> Jeff Needle wrote:
    >>> I'm toying with installing Linux in a partition on my WinXP system.
    >>> Partitioning the disk makes me VERY nervous. I'm led to understand
    >>> that, even after defragging my disk, FAT entries remain somewhere
    >>> out
    >>> in the middle of the platter, and partioning the disk could wipe
    >>> out
    >>> the FAT table.
    >>> Any insights on this? Any safe way to experiment with Linux on my
    >>> WinXP system? Thanks.
    >>>
    >> In my limited experience. I installed a separate physical drive and
    >> installed Linux on that. That way you don't interfere with your
    >> present Windows.
    >
    >
    > I may have to do that.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    >
    Or if you just want to play and experience Linux for free, download
    Knoppix. Knoppix is a Linux distro that runs from cd. You can boot with
    it, surf, write letters, mess around, and nothing will get written to
    your hard drive. When you're tired of it, take the cd out of the drive
    (go through the shutdown sequence first) and you'll have your Windows
    intact. To get Knoppix, go to www.knoppix.net. You will need a fast
    Internet connection to download it because it is big (~700MB) and
    third-party burning software to burn the .iso. If you don't have
    broadband (or a nice friend who does), the Knoppix people will send you
    a disk for a small fee.

    If you do decide you want to dual-boot, while I've never heard of the
    partition issue you mentioned and I've dual-booted a lot, just buy
    another hard drive. You can buy a 40GB one for around $50usd or even
    less sometimes.

    Malke
    --
    MS-MVP Windows User/Shell
    Elephant Boy Computers
    www.elephantboycomputers.com
    "Don't Panic"
  10. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    >>
    > Or if you just want to play and experience Linux for free, download
    > Knoppix. Knoppix is a Linux distro that runs from cd. You can boot with
    > it, surf, write letters, mess around, and nothing will get written to
    > your hard drive. When you're tired of it, take the cd out of the drive
    > (go through the shutdown sequence first) and you'll have your Windows
    > intact. To get Knoppix, go to www.knoppix.net. You will need a fast
    > Internet connection to download it because it is big (~700MB) and
    > third-party burning software to burn the .iso. If you don't have
    > broadband (or a nice friend who does), the Knoppix people will send you
    > a disk for a small fee.
    >
    > If you do decide you want to dual-boot, while I've never heard of the
    > partition issue you mentioned and I've dual-booted a lot, just buy
    > another hard drive. You can buy a 40GB one for around $50usd or even
    > less sometimes.
    >
    > Malke


    Yeah, the download would be impossible. I may just order the CD. I found
    a similar CD in a book for 30 bucks at Borders the other day, but decided
    not to purchase it.

    On the issue of Knoppix, you say it won't save anything to the hard
    drive. Does that mean I can't save documents I've created in the Linux
    environment?

    Thanks.


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  11. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    On Mon, 11 Jul 2005 07:44:50 -0700, Sharon F <sharonfDEL@ETEmvps.org>
    wrote:

    > On Mon, 11 Jul 2005 05:22:58 -0700, Jeff Needle wrote:
    >
    >>
    >> Hmmm, to tell the truth, my statement about FAT was based on an article
    >> I
    >> read. I really don't know what the configuration of my system is. Is
    >> there a way to find out? It may already be NTFS.
    >
    > Right click on the icon for any drive in Windows Explorer and choose
    > Properties. The file system will be noted in the properties sheets.


    Aha! Shows NTFS.

    Thanks!


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  12. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    On Mon, 11 Jul 2005 08:01:08 -0700, Malke <invalid@not-real.com> wrote:

    > Jeff Needle wrote:
    >
    >>> There are a number of Linux "live distro's" that are complete
    >>> operating systems on CD. These can be run without making any
    >>> alteration to your hard disk. This would probably be a better
    >>> solution for yourself if you really don't want to dabble with
    >>> altering partitions.
    >>>
    >>> Personally I would convert your partitions to NTFS. This is a better
    >>> file system than FAT, and usually the default method used for
    >>> installing Windows XP.
    >>>
    >>
    >>
    >> Hmmm, to tell the truth, my statement about FAT was based on an
    >> article I
    >> read. I really don't know what the configuration of my system is. Is
    >> there a way to find out? It may already be NTFS.
    >>
    >>
    > OK, based on your posts you definitely need to read up on using both
    > Windows and Linux. Your success in using *any* operating system well
    > depends on your willingness to learn. I'm not saying this to be
    > hurtful; just giving you a little friendly advice. You need to know
    > things like what are different file systems and how to tell what
    > hardware you've got.


    Sigh, yes you're right.

    A little background, perhaps. My computing days began in back when folks
    were carrying decks of punchcards across college campuses. I taught
    Basic, Fortran, Cobol, etc., for years, and actually programmed an
    accounting system in a hybrid of Business Basic.

    Now I'm an old fart, and I've survived without having to learn all the new
    stuff. I've had so many other things to occupy me. In 1999 I became
    disabled and had to stop work. During this time, I've tried to pick up on
    all the new technologies, but can't get a handle on it.

    My biggest problem is trying to link current ideas with the old ones.
    Heck, I used to program on old Apple II computers with CP/M cards in
    them. Yeah, I'M OLD!!! <grin>


    The best place to start learning is by using
    > Google. Newsgroups are also great, but be aware that the Linux groups
    > are far less forgiving of people who post without doing some research
    > first. See what Linux newsgroups are on your ISP's news server and
    > subscribe to a few. Lurk for a long time before posting.
    >
    > I would suggest you get one of the live distros like Knoppix - and
    > either have them send you a cd or have a friend with broadband and the
    > proper burning program get it for you - and just play. Don't worry
    > about saving documents, etc. Then if you decide you want to dual-boot
    > with some Linux distro, do some research about the different ones and
    > pick something you think will work for you. A good disk partitioning
    > strategy for a dual-boot system with XP is something like this (I'm
    > leaving off the cd drives for simplicity):
    >
    > C:\ - XP formatted NTFS (Linux hda1)
    > D:\ - small FAT32 partition for shared data between the two OS's (Linux
    > hda2)
    > hdb1 - second hard drive for Linux formatted in Reiser or ext3 with /
    > files on it
    > hdb2 - separate partition on second drive for /home
    >
    > Have a lot of fun,
    >
    > Malke


    Thanks for all the good advice. I agree, I have a lot to learn. I've
    just recently upgraded from Win98 to XP. Sheesh.


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  13. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    "Jeff Needle" <jeff.needle@general-net.com> wrote in message
    news:op.stq0l8ol3r2ov4@d9ns6561...

    > Yeah, the download would be impossible. I may just order the CD. I found
    > a similar CD in a book for 30 bucks at Borders the other day, but decided
    > not to purchase it.

    Quite often these distros get on the cover CDs of magazines - it's worth
    looking at those

    >
    > On the issue of Knoppix, you say it won't save anything to the hard
    > drive. Does that mean I can't save documents I've created in the Linux
    > environment?
    >

    You can, as long as you have a partition that Linux can natively read and
    write to - unfortunately NTFS tends to be read-only to Linux without
    installing a tool. So if you have a FAT partition, Linux can save documents
    to it.
  14. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Jeff Needle wrote:

    > On Mon, 11 Jul 2005 08:01:08 -0700, Malke <invalid@not-real.com>
    > wrote:

    >> OK, based on your posts you definitely need to read up on using both
    >> Windows and Linux. Your success in using *any* operating system well
    >> depends on your willingness to learn. I'm not saying this to be
    >> hurtful; just giving you a little friendly advice. You need to know
    >> things like what are different file systems and how to tell what
    >> hardware you've got.
    >
    >
    > Sigh, yes you're right.
    >
    > A little background, perhaps. My computing days began in back when
    > folks
    > were carrying decks of punchcards across college campuses. I taught
    > Basic, Fortran, Cobol, etc., for years, and actually programmed an
    > accounting system in a hybrid of Business Basic.
    >
    > Now I'm an old fart, and I've survived without having to learn all the
    > new
    > stuff. I've had so many other things to occupy me. In 1999 I became
    > disabled and had to stop work. During this time, I've tried to pick
    > up on all the new technologies, but can't get a handle on it.
    >
    > My biggest problem is trying to link current ideas with the old ones.
    > Heck, I used to program on old Apple II computers with CP/M cards in
    > them. Yeah, I'M OLD!!! <grin>
    >
    > Thanks for all the good advice. I agree, I have a lot to learn. I've
    > just recently upgraded from Win98 to XP. Sheesh.

    No reason to be discouraged. Learning is fun! Seriously, age is only in
    your mind. I have clients in their 80's who just got their first
    computers and who are having a great time playing in the digital world.
    One man is writing his memoirs and another of my elderly ladies bought
    herself a digital camera and is having a blast with it.

    Take things a little at a time. It's like the old question, "How do you
    eat an elephant?" The answer is, "One bite at a time".

    Pick a few projects that sound interesting to you and work on one of
    them. Have fun while doing so!

    Best regards,

    Malke
    --
    Elephant Boy Computers
    www.elephantboycomputers.com
    "Don't Panic!"
    MS-MVP Windows - Shell/User
  15. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    > No reason to be discouraged. Learning is fun! Seriously, age is only in
    > your mind. I have clients in their 80's who just got their first
    > computers and who are having a great time playing in the digital world.
    > One man is writing his memoirs and another of my elderly ladies bought
    > herself a digital camera and is having a blast with it.
    >
    > Take things a little at a time. It's like the old question, "How do you
    > eat an elephant?" The answer is, "One bite at a time".
    >
    > Pick a few projects that sound interesting to you and work on one of
    > them. Have fun while doing so!
    >
    > Best regards,
    >
    > Malke


    Ah, encouraging words! I appreciate them.

    A friend fired up Partition Magic on my computer to see if it will meet my
    needs. Oy, I get a message that PM has a problem with XP and may not
    work. I'm going to call them tomorrow and get some details.

    Thanks so much.


    --
    --------------------------------------
    Jeffrey Needle
    jeff.needle@gmail.com
  16. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Jeff Needle wrote:

    >
    > Ah, encouraging words! I appreciate them.
    >
    > A friend fired up Partition Magic on my computer to see if it will
    > meet my
    > needs. Oy, I get a message that PM has a problem with XP and may not
    > work. I'm going to call them tomorrow and get some details.
    >
    > Thanks so much.
    >
    Your friend's copy of Partition Magic must be an old one. Newer versions
    of PM work fine. You can also look at BootITng, although it is far
    geekier to use than PM. You can d/l a trial version which is fully
    functional and just use it once.

    http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/

    Malke
    --
    Elephant Boy Computers
    www.elephantboycomputers.com
    "Don't Panic!"
    MS-MVP Windows - Shell/User
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