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Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?

Bonnie Shaljean 15 Jul 12 - 04:31 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 15 Jul 12 - 05:10 PM
Acme 15 Jul 12 - 07:27 PM
JohnInKansas 15 Jul 12 - 09:30 PM
Newport Boy 16 Jul 12 - 09:51 AM
Acme 16 Jul 12 - 11:35 AM
GUEST 16 Jul 12 - 12:39 PM
treewind 16 Jul 12 - 12:47 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 16 Jul 12 - 06:21 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 16 Jul 12 - 07:14 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 16 Jul 12 - 07:16 PM
JohnInKansas 16 Jul 12 - 09:17 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 05:32 AM
Newport Boy 17 Jul 12 - 05:49 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 07:40 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 17 Jul 12 - 09:02 AM
Tootler 17 Jul 12 - 09:34 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 10:08 AM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 17 Jul 12 - 10:56 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 10:59 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 11:03 AM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 17 Jul 12 - 11:14 AM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 17 Jul 12 - 11:20 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 11:59 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 17 Jul 12 - 12:01 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 17 Jul 12 - 12:25 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 12:39 PM
Newport Boy 17 Jul 12 - 01:03 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 02:03 PM
JohnInKansas 17 Jul 12 - 02:32 PM
Newport Boy 17 Jul 12 - 04:12 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 05:57 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 06:26 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 06:27 PM
Tootler 17 Jul 12 - 07:36 PM
Bonnie Shaljean 17 Jul 12 - 08:01 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 18 Jul 12 - 04:04 AM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 04:21 AM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 04:23 AM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 18 Jul 12 - 04:50 AM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 18 Jul 12 - 04:52 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 18 Jul 12 - 08:19 AM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 08:42 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 18 Jul 12 - 09:31 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 18 Jul 12 - 01:47 PM
JohnInKansas 18 Jul 12 - 03:58 PM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 04:40 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 18 Jul 12 - 04:44 PM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 04:46 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 18 Jul 12 - 05:00 PM
Newport Boy 18 Jul 12 - 05:09 PM
Tootler 18 Jul 12 - 08:40 PM
Newport Boy 19 Jul 12 - 03:30 AM
JohnInKansas 19 Jul 12 - 05:48 PM
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Mick Pearce (MCP) 19 Jul 12 - 06:45 PM
Tootler 20 Jul 12 - 06:09 PM
GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie 21 Jul 12 - 11:45 AM
JohnInKansas 21 Jul 12 - 09:42 PM
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Subject: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 15 Jul 12 - 04:31 PM

Following on from my earlier netbook-related thread* I now have another query, but this one is on a different tack so I think it warrants a new discussion. I bought a Samsung N145-Plus netbook running Windows 7 which ticks the boxes I'd set out to tick. But I have some questions regarding what appears to be its partitioned hard drive, and am considering trying something if it's a workable idea.

There is the standard Drive C (112GB), which is where my Desktop and all the usual gubbins resides, and it also has a Drive D (167GB). Is there a way I could install Ubuntu on the D drive and then be able to access it while bypassing Windows altogether? This would mean needing some sort of option for choosing which OS to run while still in the BIOS stage of the bootup. Can this be done?

My reason is to have a more secure platform which is kept "sterile" from all interactions except information-sensitive things like online banking - I'd do all my emailing, Mudcatting, Facebooking, googling and general time-wasting (i.e. anything else requiring a log-in) on Windows or Mac, keeping the Ubuntu OS as pure as possible. That's the idea, anyway. But I'm not sure of a few things:

I'm guessing that I'd have to install it through Wubi (about which I know nothing except that it exists), but if I do, does this fatally compromise Ubuntu's security with assorted leaky Windows things? I'm storing some stuff on that D drive at the moment but can move it elsewhere, leaving the drive/partition fully free. This seems a good way of utilising disc-space which is otherwise pretty much going begging. Am I correct about this?

Also, does anyone know how well the Ubuntu OS performs on netbooks? I've googled around a fair bit, but can't find much that's later than about mid-2011; and there was a mid-2010 report that was truly damning - but two years is Megalithic in terms of computer-age. How well does Ubuntu work on netbooks now, anybody know? I read somewhere that they no longer even produce a specifically "netbook" edition and had merged it with their desktop OS.

So come all ye geniuses out there (particularly the one who hangs out in Kansas) and hearken unto me: Can I install Ubuntu on my netbook's D drive and access it without going through Windows? And if I do, will I be sorry?

Thanks so much for any help!


*   Tech: Netbook recommendations please!

http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=145399


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 15 Jul 12 - 05:10 PM

Bonnie

I've got Ubuntu/XP on my old desktop and Ubuntu/Win7 on a laptop (and Ubuntu on my current desktop - actually Ubuntu and Ubuntu Studio in separate partitions). I've never used wubi; it was reported to be security problematic and I think has been dropped in the most recent released of Ubuntu. Do you have an external drive and can you set the bios to boot from it? (It's also possible to install from Usb with a bit of messing about I think).

I installed from CD created from downloaded iso images and the install should detect your Windows system and ask if you want to replace it or install alongside it and will ask where to install it. (Usually shows disc as sda1, sda2 etc, but you'll know from the size of the disk.

It will also install the grub boot loader, which on startup will offer you a choice of systems to run.

Ubuntu will see your windows file system and you can access it from Ubuntu if you want to, but Windows doesn't normally recognise the Ubuntu partitions.

(All this is from memory, but if you decide to go ahead I can probably answer questions - I've installed Ubuntu quite a few times now).

I've no experience on netbooks, but I'd guess there's probably some info on the Ubuntu forums.

If you have a bootable external drive, you can run Ubuntu from a live disc without installing it to see how it goes.

If performance is an issue, you might want to consider one of the varieties of Ubuntu with a lighter desktop. The current Unity is not to everone's taste and Ubuntu Studio has dropped it in favour of the Xfce desktop version (Xubuntu). There's also the Lfde desktop, which I think is the lightest in terms of system resources (Lubuntu). In general you can install the same software on all of them.

Hope this is some help.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Acme
Date: 15 Jul 12 - 07:27 PM

I had a dual platform setup years ago, when the computer I bought came with a few drivers for things I wanted but the OS was awful (Windows ME). I used two Windows programs ME and Win2000Pro) and at startup had to choose - if I didn't it went by default to the preferred system (2000).

You need to google the operating systems and "Dual platform" and see what the various forum commentaries say. It is doable.

If you have anything on the computer now, do a full backup, just in case.

SRS


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 15 Jul 12 - 09:30 PM

The doing is simple.

The default installation of Win7 should look somewhere other than the system drive to see if another boot system is present, before it goes to C:\ (assuming that's the Windows System Drive). Without being setup this way, you would be unable to boot from an installation disk or a diagnostic disk so having it set up like this is a pretty important maintenance feature.

You can change where the system will look, and in what order, in the BIOS setup that you get if you hold down the right key while the system is starting. Some systems have different keys for SETUP and BOOT ORDER settings, but it shouldn't be hard to find.

You probably could just put a bootable Unix on a memory stick (or on a CD if your netbook has and optial drive) and the machine would boot to Unix if the stick/disk is "in the hole," or to Win7 if the boot system doesn't find something else before it gets to C:\.

It's a little more complicated to set up the machine to stop and ask you which drive to boot from each time you reboot, but shouldn't be difficult. The changes necessary are in the BIOS that's read before there is ANY OS running on the computer.

From the drive/partition sizes given, it would look like C:\ is intended to be for the Win7 system and some programs, and D:\ is for data, but a Unix installation is usually very much smaller than Windows, so you should have room to put it on D:\. While I can't imagine doing much with 350 GB of drive space split between two different systems (I'm getting cramped with 3TB on internal HDs with just Win7 - but I do weird stuff.) it is probably understood that a netbook will not be called on to do too much really heavy duty work - (I hope?).

You may want to look at compatibility of the drive/partition formats. When Windows went "hard for NTFS" I believe that some said that not all Unix systems could read it, although I think I've seen comments that all - or nearly all - can now use it. (Someone can probably tell us about it.) You may also want to look at how much free space is needed for each of the two operating systems. Windows advertising quotes fairly small numbers for the disk space to install the OS but you need about an equal amount of free space - preferably on the same drive - for it to run right. And by default Win7 will only use a "small percent" of the free space available on the system drive (but you can change the percentage, or move the Temp space to another drive, although it's not generally recommended). If you can get both systems up and running, free space questions can be ignored or defered, to be considered later only if you have significant performance problems.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 09:51 AM

This shouldn't be difficult. I can't speak for Win7 or Ubuntu, but I have my Aspire One netbook (120GB HDD) running WinXP and Mepis linux (with a full KDE desktop). I have the drive partitioned in 4 - 30GB for XP, 10GB for Mepis, 10GB ntfs for Windows data & 60GB for main data.

The 10GB Win data partition is for those files which are only useful to Windows applications, and is a bit belt & braces. Linux reads and writes to ntfs drives with no problem, and there are free add-ons for Windows which let it read and write to Linux ext3 & ext4 drives.

As for installation, there are few problems if Windows is installed first and used to partition the drive. You say C: & D: drives, but it's probable they are partitions on a single drive. I think there are slight problems in shrinking the size of a Win7 C: partition, but they can be overcome. I understand the trick is to defragment the drive a couple of times with reboots before attempting to shrink the partition.

Most current Linux installers will recognise the Windows installation. then format the linux partition and install a bootloader which will give the choice of booting Windows or Linux. You don't need to fiddle with the BIOS (as John suggests you might). I've just added a trial advanced version to my machine, and my boot menu now has 6 choices of operating system.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Acme
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 11:35 AM

I was using older operating systems and I used software called Partition Magic and Boot Magic (Wikipedia entry). You can find various programs that claim to be it or to do the same thing. Google Search on Partition Magic.

Among other things, it allowed me to format the partition to the NTFS which is more efficient than FAT 32, though this is one partition at a time. If you want to format the whole disk you have to wipe it and reinstall everything - not a fun prospect.

SRS


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 12:39 PM

Usually a Linux installation will see a Windows partition and install a boot manager (most likely GRUB) which presents you with a menu - basically "Boot Windows" or "Boot Linux" though there might be some other options like a memory test or Linux with a different kernel.

Unlike Windows, Linux has no problem with being installed on what Windows calls drive D:


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: treewind
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 12:47 PM

Dang! where did my cookie go? That was me as anon GUEST...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 06:21 PM

Thank you all so much for your wonderfully helpful replies. I think I'll try what looks like the simplest thing first, which would be to switch the computer on with a memory stick containing Ubuntu in the USB drive and let it boot up from that. Would this give me a full-functioning Ubuntu desktop on the USB stick, from which I could do my online private biz, then remove the stick afterwards and re-boot back into Windows for my less exalted pursuits? At least this is what I'm guessing would happen.

I've cleared off and reformatted a 7.5gb USB drive, and downloaded Ubuntu from their home site. I couldn't see any way in my browser to download straight onto the USB stick itself, so I put it on my W7 desktop, where it deposited a disk image; then I copied that onto the USB stick by the usual drag-&-drop method, and also kept the original disk image on my hard drive. I didn't want to click on either of them until I knew what I was doing, so I hied myself off to the Ubuntu help pages first, to learn how to make a boot-from-USB out of my memory stick.

And that's when the rot set in. The only pages I could find were far beyond my ken (all of you are much more puter-savvy than I am). I didn't even know what several of the terms meant (what is an iso image?) and looking them up didn't really clarify things: I can't tell what all that stuff actually does or how it fits together. In one place something said I had to prepare my USB drive from a machine running a Linux OS (which I don't have), but elsewhere the help text seemed to suggest that I could do it from Windows. It's not clear to me exactly what I need to do to the damn thing to make it boot Ubuntu for me.

As I said, I don't want to click on the disk image until I have some clue as to what I'm doing. This computer is backed up, but logic tells me that data loss is less of a risk if I'm not (at least initially) going to partition the drive. So I'm kind of stuck at this point:

- Is there a fairly straightforward way I can turn my USB drive into a Ubuntu boot-disk without having to (a) do it from a Linux platform, or (b) go through what looks like an incredible amount of palaver?

- If I manage to get that far, am I right in thinking that my Ubuntu desktop & internet browser would run from that USB drive and I could just remove it afterwards?

Sorry for all this - I truly do appreciate all your help, can't tell you how much.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 07:14 PM

Bonnie - you can't just drag-and-drop the download image. The download image is one of those .iso files and is an image of a complete disk (ie everything on the disk as it was written physically on the disk). If you drag and drop it you'll get a windows file system with the iso file as a file on the disk. I don't think windows recognises iso images directly to copy them as a disk image (I may be wrong on that - haven't used w8). Normally you need a special copy program to copy the image to a cd for example.

To create a bootable usb is a bit more complicated, but there's a utility that lets you do it from windows. See this page: Create a USB stick on Windows. The steps are essentially:

1) Download and install (in Windows) the program shown at the top of that page and run it.

2) Select Ubuntu 12.04 desktop (or whichever system you want from the dropdown list).

3) Click the Browse button and select the iso file that you downloaded from the Ubuntu site (it should be the corresponding version to that you selected at 2); it should have a name something like ubuntu-12.04-desktop-...iso (... is the machine type probably something like i686 or amd64).

4) Select your usb drive in the drop down and click create and that should create the bootable usb


I have used this program to create a bootable ubuntu usb myself (though I've rarely used it - I thought it might be handy to have it for emergencies).

Assuming you can set the system to boot from the usb, you can then boot directly from there.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 07:16 PM

PS I should have added that if that's the live CD image, when you boot it you can select the option Try Ubuntu (I think) and it will run without installing it on the hard drive. At any time you can select the Install option to put it on the hard drive.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 16 Jul 12 - 09:17 PM

From comments here, I presume that Ubuntu is able to use NTFS formatted disks, so there should be no problems with what you'll get. Nearly all recently available memory sticks will be preformatted that way, but especially for "very small drives" (8GB? or smaller) it might still be a good idea to check what format is in place before starting to put stuff on one.

All Windows versions since WinXP can easily convert the format of a hard drive from FAT32/FAT64 to NTFS, but the change IS NOT REVERSIBLE, and with WinXP and Vista it was warned that "converting" to NTFS from another original format does not quite get all the "benefits" of a drive formatted as NTFS before any files are added to it. I've been watching for an explanation of what features might be lost, and in the absence of any further informatio must assume that it would be a very rare thing for anyone to notice a difference unless they're managing a large network storage facility(?).

Proceeding to rants that may be ignored for the present problem:

One of the "advantages" claimed for NTFS by Microsoft is that the "Boot Sectors" and "File Control Blocks" are "moveable" so that partitions can be resized or moved on the physical hard drive, but one has to dig into the details to learn that this capability HAS NEVER BEEN IMPLEMENTED in Windows, unless it may have been added in Win7 and they've kept it a secret. Win7, and maybe Vista? have control sections that imply you can resize partitions without reformatting, using built in utilities. Under most conditions, data in the resized partitions should be safe, although of course backup is recommended before changes. There are third party utilities that claim the ability to do other things with drive management, but I haven't used even Partition Magic, or any of the others, since I was running DOS only.

The claim of "format advantages" that you can't use is similar to the "official information" that 64-bit systems can use squidzillions of terrorbytes of RAM (and this is good for you). Unfortunately the BIOS and the number of RAM slots installed in your computer limit the amount of RAM that YOU CAN USE, and "cheap desktops" often can't install more than 2GB (some may be even lower), and even the better reasonably priced ones can't install more than 8 GB. Computer manufacturers (and sellers) make it very difficult to determine what the "maximum installed RAM" for your new purchase will be. Win7 claims a minimum required RAM of 1 GB, but I got frequent "insufficient memory" warnings at 6 GB, although they've mostly gone away at 8 GB (the max installable on my current desktop).

The NTFS format is better for large drives, and is about the only thing you can use with Windows, but does have some built in problems for drives where you make frequent large(?) changes in drive content. While what I've been doing lately is "a little strange" I crash Windows Explorer about twice per day recently ("Windows Explorer has encountered an error and will be shut down.") I also get 20 - 30 incidents daily where Win Explorer fails to show files that are present in a folder, or shows the files "somewhere else" when I select a new folder for display (and sends the file I'm moving to the "somewhere else" when it should go in the new folder I've selected). I've found about 800 reports of the same problems in "Microsoft social networks" where Microsoft claims I should go for help, but it's obvious that nobody at Microsoft knows how to fix it. Needless to say I have a number of "work-arounds," and even what I think is an explanation - but my explanation is probably just a convenient hallucination and I can't apply it to a fix.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 05:32 AM

I'm just about to try the steps Mick outlined above. But my USB drive (7.5gb) is formatted in FAT32, which is marked as the default in its properties box. There is also an option from a drop-down menu to format it in NTFS instead. Should I do that before proceeding, or stay with FAT32? I've deleted the disk image I "copied" onto it, so the USB drive is blank. (It's not particularly new - I've had it for 4 or 5 years.)

The disk image I downloaded from the Ubuntu site (which is sitting on my Windows desktop, untouched) labels itself ubuntu-12.04-desktop-i386

I think I remember from the Ubuntu download site yesterday only being given a choice between FAT32 and (?)FAT64, and I took the 32 (which was marked "recommended") so the disk image I downloaded would presumably be for that.

This makes me think I should keep my USB drive in its existing FAT32 format. Is this correct, or should I reformat it to NTFS before going through the procedure Mick outlined above?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 05:49 AM

Leave the USB drive as FAT32 - this is the lowest common denominator - all operating systems can read it. Some of the programs for burning ISOs will reformat as FAT32 anyway.

What you probably remember from the Ubuntu download site is a choice between 32-bit or 64-bit versions of Ubuntu. The disk image you have looks like 32-bit, which is OK for all computers unless you have more than 4GB memory.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 07:40 AM

OK, done it! But I just need to ask one more thing before I go ahead and put it to the test with a reboot:

As I watched the installation bumf flash by I caught sight of "Wubi.exe" - isn't that the programme that people don't like because it compromises Ubuntu with some Windows vulnerabilities? (Just looked on the USB drive and yes, there it is.) Or don't I get any choice? Haven't rebooted or done anything yet. Should I just go ahead with Wubi anyway?


Note to any other newbies reading this thread for info: On the Pendrivelinux site, under the Additional Important Information heading it says "If you chose to install Ubuntu 10.10 Desktop i386, you should not expect the tool to display your ubuntu-10.10-netbook-i386.iso as you have not chosen to install the netbook variant."

In fact this is out of date (and should be deleted from the download site) because the Netbook and Desktop versions of Ubuntu have now merged, and are up to v.12.04.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 09:02 AM

Bonnie

wubi normally loads Ubuntu from within Windows by making a file look like a disk drive and booting from that. I think in this case it is used on the usb to load the Ubuntu system installer. If you choose the install option (to a new partition) then the installed system won't depend on wubi at all.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Tootler
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 09:34 AM

I ran Ubuntu and WinXP dual boot for about two years before my computer reached the end of its life and I replaced it.

From my experience.

Boot from the usb stick into Ubuntu. You will be presented with a current Ubuntu set up which you can try out. There will be an icon on the desktop for you to install Ubuntu on your hard disk should you so wish. If you click on this you will be presented with a number of options, usually:

1. Replace the existing OS (Ubuntu will have detected the existence of your Win7)

2. Install Ubuntu within Windows (the Wubi option)

3. Install Ubuntu alongside Win7

Select 3 and follow instructions from there. The installer will detect your existing partitions (as someone said earlier probably as sda1 and sda2) so you can tell it to install on the one that does not contain Windows.

The installer will then reformat that partition to ext4, the disk format used by Linux and install Ubuntu on it. It will also install the Grub boot loader used by Linux systems.

Once you have Ubuntu installed, when you start up your computer you will be presented with a menu with options to start either Ubuntu or Windows. The installation and setup process is usually straightforward. I found no problems the first time I did it and have installed Linux systems on computers several times since.

If you do run into problems, there is plenty of support available on line. I usually went to Ubuntu forums first http://ubuntuforums.org/. They have an absolute beginners forum where queries usually get answered pretty quickly.

Good Luck.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 10:08 AM

I had already written the following before I saw Tootler's message, so I'll post it here* just as an info update. I'm not having much luck! It just refuses to boot from my USB stick. The story so far:

*No matter what I do, I simply cannot get it to boot. I open the Installer and it tells me I can install from within the programme, or else do it from rebooting, but no matter what I try, it simply Won't.

It also keeps talking about a CD in the "tray" which - this being a netbook - I don't have. I then tried their "boot helper" (the only other option given) which bore the following description:
If your machine cannot boot off the CD, this program will install a new boot menu to help you boot from CD. In most cases this program is not needed, and it is sufficient to reboot with the CD-Rom in the tray.

So I sat through an 8-minute download, only to get a red error message at the last hurdle saying something like Could Not Retrieve The Log Information, or similar. The box disappeared so I can't quote it exactly.

Since I don't *have* a CD-tray and it says nothing anywhere about USB drives, I'm stumped. I can't get it to do anything, though I've tried every single option they presented. Their text says I can install from within their demo (via either a manual reboot or by clicking Restart from within their own menu) but all I get is Zilch.

Any idea where to go from here? Thank you all so much for all the time you've taken to help me with this task!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 10:56 AM

Have you set the boot priority in your BIOS?

Most machines go to the hard drive for boot up. It is possible (in most systems) to go into the BIOS settings (often by pressing F2 as the machine starts - you may have to have a quick trigger finger for this). Once in the BIOS settings you look for the boot details. If there is a USB option you want to move that above the hard drive in the list. Save changes and then exit and reboot.

Apologies if you've already been there.

An Ubuntu live installation on USB should boot straight up when you start the machine with the stick plugged in.

IMHO it is worth persevering. I'm on my second Ubuntu machine and I would never dream of going back to Windows. My old laptop, an Acer, was Ubuntu-only - I nuked Windows completely. My new Toshiba is a dual-boot Ubuntu/Win7 job. I only (grudgingly) kept Windows 7 at all because I want to use my laptop in the office and some of our bespoke software is Win only.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 10:59 AM

Option 3 suggested above by Tootler sounds ideal. Can I perhaps just clarify in detail exactly *how* one boots from a USB (in case I'm doing someing wrong)? It does nothing automatically, nor does clicking on the "Wubi" orange-circle icon, which is the only .exe. Everything else is just file folders etc. What (if anything) do I have to actually click on in that USB drive? The .exe just does as I described above.

Also, should I take everything off my D drive (where I would put Ubuntu if I could)? There's plenty of space on there and I have some other files which can be moved if need be - assume if Ubuntu partitions my D drive it would destroy them?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 11:03 AM

PS Sorry Buddhuu, once again I've posted before seeing the latest message. No I haven't been into my BIOS settings - to tell the truth, I'm scared to mess with stuff like that! Going to post this quick (before I miss another message) and then go back and give yours a closer read.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 11:14 AM

Once you get the USB stick working you can try Ubuntu as a live operating system to make sure it works ok on your machine before installing to the hard drive.

If and when you reach the point where you decide to install to your HD then it is usually fine just to choose to install alongside Windows and then to accept the defaults that the installer suggests. Ubuntu will do all the partition modifications without you needing to worry about it. Deciding whether you want to Install instead of Windows or alongside it is the only intervention you really need to make, and it will clearly ask you that question.

Oh, and if you do install it permanently on your hard drive, remember to remove the USB stick when you reboot or it'll boot from the USB again instead of from the on-board installation.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 11:20 AM

As for BIOS, it's safe enough if you're careful. If you panic at any stage just choose the option to exit without saving changes and start again. I understand how nerve-wracking it is first time, but take it slowly, read carefully and you should be fine.

Just remember that exit without saving changes option.

By changing the boot priority you won't stop your machine from booting from the hard drive, so you won't break it. It just changes the order that the netbook looks for the boot files. Obviously if it's checking the hard drive first and finding boot files it is going to boot into Windows and your USB Ubuntu won't get a look-in. What you need is for the machine to look at the USB first. If there isn't one plugged in it'll check the other devices in the order they are set in BIOS. If there's nothing else to find it'll just boot from the hard drive as before.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 11:59 AM

I will certainly take a look at the BIOS options, but will wait until my mind is a bit clearer! Am I right in thinking that if I make that change, and then boot WITHOUT the USB drive inserted it will just boot Windows as per normal? That's assuming, of course, that everything on the USB drive is working properly(??). If so, that would be great.

Tried the .exe again, and the very first thing is says is

REBOOT REQUIRED
To start the live CD you need to reboot your machine leaving the CD in the tray. If your machine cannot boot from the CD, the last option should


The last option is labelled Help Me To Boot From CD

and it doesn't.

The other two options offered are
- Reboot now
- I want to manually reboot later

and they don't. do. a. thing.

The dialog box only talks about CDs, with no mention anywhere of a USB drive, though that's what I downloaded from the Pendrive website, which promised a USB boot-up.

I want to install Ubuntu ALONGSIDE Windows, rather than in place of it, because I need W7 for various reasons explained in an earlier thread (link is at the bottom of my opening post). So I really do want both, but absolutely need the Ubuntu to be free of Windows' security vulnerabilities.

I also tried the Compatability Mode option under the tab in the properties menu, but it made no difference either way.

That Must-Reboot thing throws me because all it does is close everything down. End of.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 12:01 PM

Bonnie

As guest, buddhuu says, altering the bios settings for boot order should normally not cause you any problems.

You may have a splash screen at start up that tells you what key to press to enter bios setup (it's DEL on this desktop, and as buddhuu says you may have to be quick before it moves on). Once you get into the bios there should be a setting with a name like Boot Device Priority. On desktops it's typically set to the CD drive 1st, then the hard disk. What that means is: see if there's anything bootable in the CD drive and if there is boot from that, otherwise see if there's anything bootable on the hard drive and if so boot from there (typically your normal operating system will be there). This means, for example, that your system can be booted from a recovery CD if there's a problem with the hard drive just by having the disk in the CD drive at startup. On my current desktop the settings are 1) Removable device, 2) Hard disk and you'll probably have similar settings.

I had a look at the Ubuntu USB I made using the same pendriveLinux software above and what is on the drive is a file called autorun.inf. I think if you double click that (in Windows) it should run Ubuntu (via wubi). You can then look at Ubuntu and if you're happy can select the Install Ubuntu option. As Tootler said above the install will recognise that you've got Windows on the machine already and will offer you the options, to replace it or install alongside Windows. Choose the install alongside Windows and follow the instructions. If your second drive is free, just let it install Ubuntu there (it will make 2 partitions - the main Ubuntu one, and a very small linux swap partition, but you shoudn't need to worry about that - the installer will do it automatically).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 12:25 PM

Cross-posted with you there.

Just to be clear about your first question, the answer is yes Windows will boot normally if there's nothing in the removable drive (usb in your case). It looks at the devices in the order you specify until it finds one it can boot from. If there's nothing bootable in the first device (either there's nothing in the drive, or there is but it's not something that's bootable) then it will ignore it and try the next device in the list. If it reaches your hard drive without finding anything else to boot it will boot Windows from that as normal (or if you have several systems installed it will offer you the list of them as normal).

And to reiterate, the Ubuntu installer should recognise your installed Windows system and offer you the option to install Ubuntu alongside Windows as you want. (I can't remember if that's the default option; I would imagine it is, but the choice is clear anyway)


Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 12:39 PM

I have a file called autorun.inf, I double-clicked on it, and it gave me a notepad page with the message:

[autorun]
open=wubi.exe
icon=wubi.exe,0
label=Install Ubuntu

[Content]
MusicFiles=false
PictureFiles=false
VideoFiles=false

The only Application is that Wubi exe, and the rest are either text files or folders.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 01:03 PM

I don't know whether I can clarify this. Bear in mind that I don't know Ubuntu (I last looked at it about 8 years ago).

Some of your problem is that booting from USB, while common these days, is not fully recognised by a lot of programs. These programs are expecting a boot from CD/DVD and give error messages accordingly.

Ubuntu should run live from your USB stick. For this to happen, you must set the BIOS to boot first from 'Removable device' then 'CD' then 'HDD'. Then with the USB stick inserted, reboot the computer and it should boot into Ubuntu.

You don't need to look at the files on the USB stick - the one that matters is probably 600 MB or more and is not readable.

I don't know wubi, but from the information above, it looks like a Windows executable to install Ubuntu directly. I would always prefer to try the system running live from a USB or CD before deciding to install.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 02:03 PM

I've just been stumbling around in my bios settings, and stumbled back out again because I couldn't find anything relating to my boot/drive priority issue.

I held down F2 while booting up and it sent me into a blue-&-white DOS-looking screen which I had to navigate by cursor keys. Under Boot Setup (or whatever the category was called, but it was the only relevant-sounding option) the choices I had were all things I did NOT want to mess with (and didn't), i.e.:

Numlock OFF
Enable keypad
Touchpad mouse
Internal LAN
PXE OPROM
Wireless LAN device
Smart battery calibration

So I exited without saving anything.

Folks, will someone please tell me what actual KEY(s) I have to hold down to get to these bios options, and what exactly I'm looking for command-wise? I know what I need to do, but can find no way of actually finding and doing it. I'm just floundering around in there and it's terrifying to be so ignorant. How, precisely, do I access these bios options?

It sounds like the exact thing I want to set up on this computer if I can be guided in how to alter the bios settings.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 02:32 PM

Look at Samsung FAQ Can I boot my notebook through an external memory card?

(Unfortunately, Samsung says there are NO MANUALS available for the $#@%! netbook.)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 04:12 PM

Bonnie

You were in the right place. Use F2 again and give us some information off the BIOS screen, mainly the details that appear in the header and footer.

The header may have a line that says something about the netbook or the motherboard in it, and will usually include a version number.

Then there is the menu line. Mine has: Main, AI Tweaker, Advanced, Power, Boot, Tools and Exit. If your 'Boot Setup' only had the items you list, we're looking for something else.

The footer should give details of the BIOS. Mine says:

v02.61 Copyright American Megatrends Inc

This is the AMI Bios - other possibilities are Award or Phoenix.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 05:57 PM

I'm going to answer the last two posts separately: Below I've copied the very helpful Samsung notes that John linked to, because it timed out on me a couple of times. I DID manage to get into Ubuntu through my USB drive (yayyyyy!!!) using the first set of instructions, but did not succeed in changing my bios options through the second set of instructions: it only took me to the same blue DOS screen with the items I described above. I'm now going to go try thing the things Phil has suggested and will report back soon (I stopped for a much-needed wine break).

For the benefit of anyone else reading this who might need the info, John's link says the following*. That page also provides a screen shot of where F2 should take you, but in my case didn't - so I still haven't cracked changing the bios options, which means there's no point (yet at least) in installing Ubuntu onto my Drive D. Back soon (and MANY thanks).

*Netbook :
Can I boot my notebook through an external memory card?

You can boot Samsung notebook from a pre-formatted, bootable USB Memory Stick or by changing the boot order in BIOS. Booting from SD card is not supported.

[THIS WILL WORK ON THE SAMSUNG N145 NETBOOK]
        •        To boot from a pre-formatted, bootable USB Memory Stick
        1.        Insert the memory stick into a free USB port and turn on the computer.
        2.        Press and hold F9 at the Samsung splash screen, the computer should now boot from the USB memory stick.
      NOTE: To make a USB key device bootable, you will need to use a third party application.

[THIS WILL NOT WORK ON THE SAMSUNG N145 NETBOOK - TAKES YOU TO A DIFFERENT SCREEN FROM THE ONE ILLUSTRATED]
        •        To boot by changing the boot order in BIOS
        1.        Press F2 at the Samsung splash screen to enter the BIOS setup.
        2.        Navigate to the Boot page.
        3.        Use F5 / F6 to move bootable devices up or down in order of preference.
        4.        Move the USB Key device to the top of the list to boot from it every time it is inserted into a USB slot.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 06:26 PM

Hi Phil -

Info in the header (i.e. what it says at the very top of the screen): Phoenix SecureCore (™) setup utility

What I think you mean by "menu line" gives tabs for: SysInfo / Advanced / Security / Boot / Exit

I don't have any Main, AI Tweaker etc, or any of the things you describe under any of these. The Boot tab just says the stuff I described above. And the screenshot in John's link shows something different again, which I have not found.

Info in the footer shows what the various F keys do, beginning with F1 Help and ending with F10 Save & Exit. Nothing about copyrights or versions or anything.

There's a whole load of info (snarling masses of numerals and letters) under the SysInfo tab: Not sure if that's the "motherboard" data you're referring to…? Can't see anything that specifically refers to "netbook" but for BIOS version it says 03HG and for MICOM version it also says 03HG - not sure if this is what you mean, tho. Looks like it must be a Phoenix bios, and it identifies itself at the top rather than the bottom.

I'm not sure how much help this info is going to be! Or maybe it's just the wine kicking in...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 06:27 PM

... and the British Folkies think THEY'RE grumpy...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Tootler
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 07:36 PM

There are various ways in which computers are set up to enable boot from a device other than the hard drive. The most common is to go into the BIOS and change the boot order but it's not the only way.

On my laptop there is a message that appears briefly on startup that says something like "Press F10 to change boot order". If you do that you get a menu of the various possible devices you can boot from.

It looks as if your netbook works in a similar way. So; Insert your USB stick into the computer, start the computer and press F9 as instructed and see what happens. I suspect that either it will boot directly from the usb stick or you will get a menu which allows you to choose from the available possibilities.

Just try it and if it works, then that's the way you get your computer to boot from a usb stick and you don't need to worry about editing the BIOS so you can go ahead and install Ubuntu.

BTW, the Wubi business is a bit of a red herring. Wubi.exe is a windows installer which is invoked if you choose to install Ubuntu within windows. It sets up Ubuntu as if it were a Windows application. It's useful for trying out Ubuntu over a longer period than you might from a CD or usb stick. It's how I started with Ubuntu and it's possible to move everything to a dedicated Ubuntu partition later but it's a bit of a pain to do and there's a risk you'll lose data. It's how I first started with Ubuntu but really it's better to do what you are proposing and set up Ubuntu on a separate partition from the start. The point is that you don't need to worry about it. It's there on your usb stick by default for anyone who wants to take that route but you don't need to use it.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 17 Jul 12 - 08:01 PM

If I go ahead and install Ubuntu onto my D drive from the USB stick (which I haven't done yet), can I then access it there without modifying the bios to offer me a choice between running Drive D or Drive C?

I'm not quite sure where Ubuntu is "located" when it's not actually installed on the computer. Does everything just save to the USB stick? And if I want it to save to Drive D instead, and if I install Ubuntu there, can I still access it simply by booting up with the stick inserted and hitting F9, or do I have to alter the bios to offer me both options? (Hope this question makes some sense - I had a wine break but never quite managed a dinner one...)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:04 AM

Bonnie

Once you install Ubuntu to the hard disk your system startup (after the bios bit flashes by) will offer you a choice of running Windows or Ubuntu (actually probably a few other options as well: Ubuntu in recovery mode and some memory testing options). The top line will be the default and will start after a 5 or 6 seconds (default) if you do nothing; otherwise use up/down arrows to select and hit return for the one you want).

You will not need the usb stick once you've installed it to the D drive. The usb stick on the netbook is just replacing what would normally be an install CD on the desktop; once you've installed Ubuntu, you can save it away in case you need to reinstall, but you won't need it to run the system.

If you are running the trial version from the usb (without installing) it uses system memory for disk space (I think), though you will be able to see and use your Windows drive C (in the Ubuntu equivalent of Windows Explorer the drive will probably be called something like 112 Gb File System). Unless you save to the hard disks there will be no persistent data from the trial (I think there are ways to make persistent data on a usb stick but I've never used them).


The essential thing here is that your usb stick is just replacing the install CD. The usual version is referred to as a Live CD, meaning that you can run the system as a trial from the CD without installing anything. It gives you a chance to see that all the peripherals work and if not to try and find any extra drivers that you need. You can also test out programs you might want to use. Once you're happy you can install the system to hard disk and you don't have to worry about the install CD (usb stick for you) again.

Hope that makes it clearer!

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:21 AM

Well I've had a good night's sleep, so I should get things right.

I didn't manage to read the Samsung page John linked to - some problem with Firefox settings just flashed it on screen - but if the F9 trick allowed you to boot from USB you don't need to worry any more about changing BIOS settings. Looks as though your Phoenix BIOS is a stripped-down version, so you probably can't do anything about that.

To answer your final question first - when Ubuntu is running from the USB ('Live') the essential bits of code are located in memory and the system reads other bits of code from the USB drive as needed. This is easier for Linux than Windows because Linux is much smaller and the code is much more modular.

As for saving files, you can save to a partition on your HDD - Ubuntu should recognise your Windows C: drive (it will probably identify it as 'sda1' - the D: drive will probably be 'sda2'). With Ubuntu running live, you can save to either.

If you install Ubuntu to sda2 (D:) Win7 will not be able to read files saved there unless you install an additional Windows utility (I use ext2IFS) because it will be formatted as ext4, not FAT or NTFS.

And finally, if you install Ubuntu, it will install a bootloader (probably GRUB2) which will give you a menu to choose Ubuntu or Windows when you boot. This happens after the BIOS has done its thing, so again, you don't need to worry about altering the BIOS or hitting F9.

I'll have to leave it to those who know Ubuntu to sort any detailed questions, but with recent Linux installation programs you are generally safe in accepting defaults if in doubt. The most important choice is at the beginning - which partition to install to. Make absolutely certain that you don't choose your Windows partition - the installer should identify it, and you can also tell by the size. If you make a mistake in this, your Win7 install will be wiped out.

Don't worry too much - it's usually fairly clear if you give yourself time to think. I've done about 100 installs, and not made that mistake yet.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:23 AM

Mick types faster than I do! Or gets up earlier!

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:50 AM

Don't know if it will help, but after so many posts maybe a bit of a summary/recap is in order.

1) The Ubuntu live USB is basically the same as a live CD/DVD, but on a USB stick. It is made with a software app that makes the stick suitable for running a computer from boot up. This cannot be done just by copying the disk image file onto the USB - it has to be written using the application. (I think you've got this part sorted)

2) Computers can usually be set to boot (start) from various drives, including a USB. As has been said, it's common for a machine to check for a bootable DVD/CD first as that has traditionally been the medium used for recovery in the event of an operating system failure. To run an Ubuntu stick, the machine has to be instructed to boot from USB - either by using a procedure that some manufacturers provide or, more often, by setting the BIOS options to make the machine check for a bootable USB stick before booting from the hard drive as usual.

If there is no bootable DVD or USB present then the machine will just proceed to boot from the hard drive as usual.

3) It is wise to test run the Ubuntu operating system from a USB stick several times before installing onto the machine, just to ensure that the hardware can run Ubuntu correctly (it seems that most machines do fine).

4) If the pressing f9 option described above does not boot your USB then you'll probably need to do a simple BIOS settings tweak. You have told us how you've already successfully interrupted boot and entered the BIOS settings screen (the DOS-looking stuff). It can take a few minutes to get the hang of navigating your way around BIOS. You want to go to the boot tab/section. You shouldn't need to look at BIOS version info or any other information except the list of boot options that should be displayed. When you're on the correct screen you should see a list of drives/devices. These may be referred to in a number of ways - DVD, CD, optical, removable, HDD, hard disk, hard drive, USB etc etc.

All you need to achieve (and I'm not suggesting that it will be immediately obvious how to do it) is to move USB above/before hard disk in the boot priority list. Anything else is probably a distraction that shouldn't be relevant to the task in hand.

Near the bottom of This Page is an illustration of a fairly standard BIOS boot screen. The text outlines how the options are used in this example. Yours may not be same.

Note the [Esc] to exit BIOS without saving changes option. This is your safety escape route if you get confused and are worried that you changed the wrong thing. By taking the exit-without-saving-changes option you will not break or change anything. If you keep that in mind it is safe to explore the BIOS and the menus etc.

Sorry if I'm just making things more confusing.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:52 AM

X posted with Phil.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 08:19 AM

Everyone sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin:

I've now been into Unbuntu and booted via the USB drive with the intention of installing it. And almost immediately hit a problem regarding the very crucial issue of which drive to install to. As everyone told me it would, it showed three options - 1: Install alongside W7 / 2: Replace W7 / 3: Partition the drive yourself

So I blithely clicked Option 1 ("alongside") which led me to a very confusing choose-your-partition screen showing nothing I recognised size-wise:

Select drive SCSI1 (0,0,0) (sda) 320.1 GB ATA SAMSUNG HM321H1

with two big white boxes beneath it showing GB amounts (neither of which corresponded to what my Drives C and D say they are): 91.2GB in the left box and 88.7 GB in the right one. I was supposed to drag the boundary between them to adjust relative size.

Out of curiosity, I clicked the "advanced partitioning tool" link just below this, and it took me to a more complicated screen saying:

sda1 NTFS / sda2 NTFS / sda5 NTFS / sda4 NTFS
104.9MB      121.3GB       179.9GB       18.7GB   

Beneath these is a menu with assorted boxes you can tick:

dev/sda1 ntfs [size] 104MB / [used] 35MB
dev/sda2 ntfs 121332MB / 46644MB
dev/sda5 ntfs 179930MB / 3221MB
dev/sda4 ntfs 18702MB / 17658MB

and below that are options for New Partition Table and Device For Boot Loader Installation, etc
which the thought of typing out zaps the last of my already fragile will to live, so I hope the above info is sufficient. I can go get more if need be.

At this point I backed up to the previous step and tried Option 3 ("partition it yourself") just to see what it would do. And what it did was lead me to the exact same Advanced Partitioning Tool screen that Option 1 had, which I've described in the lines above. Nothing of this makes the slightest sense to me.

Since the next step is the big bad INSTALL button I bailed out quick and came scuttling back, and once more here I am, crying on all your collective shoulders. Re the above, I can work some things out logically and make informed guesses, but do not feel confident enough to go ahead with an install until I know for sure what I'm doing. Everything is subdivided into obscure (to me) subgroups, and the gig sizes don't correspond to anything I'm familiar with either.

I hate to keep pestering you guys but this has really thrown me. How do I recognise what I WANT in all that complex and confusing array of partitions, and navigate my way through the jungle? Really thought I was on the home stretch this time … :-/


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 08:42 AM

Hmmm - interesting. I have to go out for a couple of hours, so just a quick view.

You have a single 320Gb HDD with 4 partitions. As far as Windows is concerned, sda1 is a hidden partition (possibly a boot partition) sda2 is your C: drive. It looks like these are Primary partitions, with the missing sda3 as an Extended partition. sda5 is your D: drive, and sda4 could be a recovery partition. I assume you didn't get a full Win7 installation disk, but the manual or users guide should say something about reinstalling Win7 in the event of a disaster.

You should be safe installing to sda5 (if you've moved your data from there). The partitioner as you describe is not familiar to me, but those who use Ubuntu should be able to guide you. Using a 180Gb partition is a bit generous for a linux installation.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 09:31 AM

Bonnie

What Phil said is all true and you can use that method and install to sda5.

On the other hand you can use the default repartitioning it first did for you. The two white boxes you saw with sizes 91.2 and 88.7 are the way it was going to repartion your D drive (91.2+88.7 = 179.9). Your D drive has some data on it (3.2Gb according to the detailed partition table) and I think it divided the remaining space roughly into 2 to leave you a partion with your original data in it (D->91.2) and the new partition of 88.7 to use for Ubuntu. You should be safe using the defaults it suggested at that step without needing to select the partions yourself. However if you think you need your Windows D drive to be bigger than 91Gb, you can drag the slider to increase it (and reduce the size of the Ubuntu partition. Actually it will make 2 partitions for Ubuntu in that space, a main one which will use most of that space and a very small swap partition, but you don't need to worry about those details - the installer will do it without any intervention from you). If you're happy with a 91Gb D drive for Windows, just leave it at those defaults.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 01:47 PM

A thousand years ago Mick wrote:   
wubi normally loads Ubuntu from within Windows by making a file look like a disk drive and booting from that. I think in this case it is used on the usb to load the Ubuntu system installer. If you choose the install option (to a new partition) then the installed system won't depend on wubi at all.

I quote this because I have just been in communication with a Samsung tecchie who is specifically geared into their netbooks, and he said that once I permanently installed Ubuntu on its D Drive it would "overwrite the MBR" (whatever MBR is, no time to look right now) and I would be unlikely to be able to access Windows, and would lose the Recovery function for sure. He then went on to say that this was why it would be better for me to use wubi on my Samsung because, although it does prompt you to install on the C drive, if I clicked the Down arrow next to the "C:" it would offer me a choice, one of which was D.   

I'm a little confused now and also in a rush (a bad combination) but I wanted to post this tidbit to save everyone further head-scratching. As far as I can tell, what this guy says about being offered a choice between C & D tallies with what Mick wrote earlier (quoted above) and I'm now reconsidering Plan B, which is to just use wubi. Opinions, anyone?

I'm assuming that if I do the wubi thing through Drive C, I can put Ubuntu on Drive D through that, and then - ? - once it's on Drive D, it would be independent of Windows 7 vulnerabilities...???

Going to rest the brain cells (correction: brain CELL, on its deathbed… the others have expired already) for awhile and pick this up again later! Thanks again & again & again…

B xxxx


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 03:58 PM

The MBR (Master Boot Record) is an almost universal part of any hard drive large enough to be partitioned - at least for Windows. On drives where it's used, it is critical to the operation of the computer and is not a place casual users should go except through the device handling utilities built into the operating system(s) you intend to use. The format/partition utilities will take care of it if you use them as expected.

A fairly useful description, in perhaps simpler language than elsewhere, is at Wikipedia: MBR (The article continues with some description of partitions and such that may be some help with understanding what you're trying to get done, but you don't have to read it all if you find it confusing.)

The MBR usually contains the "partition table" that tells the operating system you're using at any given time where the partitions you've created can be found on the drive.

Almost NO COMPUTER BUILDERS/SELLERS now supply a separate "installation disk" for the OS that they provide preinstalled on the computer you buy. It is common practice to provide a "hidden partition" that contains "recovery information" that can by used to restore the useful partition on the drive to its original condition.

On most Windows systems, the "recovery partition" is hidden from most methods of viewing what's on the hard drive, and can only be "seen" by a "recovery program." The recovery partition may or may not be visible in the Windows Disk Management utility. IF THAT'S THE ONLY recovery Samsung has provided for you, changing partitions around could (remote theoretical possibility) destroy your only recovery option. (If Samsung has provided any such option at all - you may not see a recovery partition because there isn't one.)

A few machines use the Windows Backup/Restore utility to access the "hidden partition" if you need to recover from a catastrophic system failure, but it's probably(?) more common for the computer maker to provide their own "recover" utility.

The recovery partition is, of course, of some use if your operating system is corrupted, but is, also of course, USELESS if the drive itself fails.

The normal recommendation would be that BEFORE YOU CONTINUE ANY MESSING WITH PARTITIONS AND OPERATING SYSTEMS you really should make your own SYSTEM BACKUP of the Windows OS that you have installed, somewhere NOT ON THE COMPUTER'S INTERNAL DRIVE. The backup system built into Windows has a less than perfect record for recoveries but is probably better than nothing.

I can't guess what the backup size would be for Win7 Starter (the version Samsung says you have?). Your book doesn't have an optical drive, and DVD is probably the most recommended place to put a system backup. You could use a USB External Optical Drive - DVD burner (<$70 US when we bought one for Lin's Dell mini?) to burn it to a DVD. Most "real" Win7 versions would require more than one CD but the backup utility claims to be able to "span multiple disks. An "OS only" backup of most Win versions should fit on a single DVD(?). You do have 3(?) USB slots, so you could put a backup on a USB memory stick, if you have one big enough, or you could use an external USB Hard Drive. Your book also has reader slots for memory cards, so in theory at least you could put a backup on something like an SDHD card (which can be "locked" to be "Read Only" when you're done) but a large enough card would likely be expensive for a "one time use" of the sort.

Also note that after you get your other OS installed, you'll probably want a new backup - or "disk image" - which gives you at least twice you could use an external optical burner, which might help justify the fairly nominal cost. Our experience with Lin's Dell (used almost EXCLUSIVELY to run her sewing machine) is that the Optical Drive is handy for a lot of other stuff, although we could work around it since her Dell can plug into the home network to "relay files" to drives on another machine.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:40 PM

I didn't know anything about wubi, and I still only know what I've read up this evening. I'm not sure Mick was entirely right - wubi runs Ubuntu from within Windows using a single file in Windows as a virtual hard disk. I don't think you can install Ubuntu as a standalone system using wubi.

In which case:
I'm assuming that if I do the wubi thing through Drive C, I can put Ubuntu on Drive D through that, and then - ? - once it's on Drive D, it would be independent of Windows 7 vulnerabilities...???
is not correct. The most common problem with Ubuntu wubi installs (in my limited reading) is errors in the NTFS filesystem in the underlying Windows installation.

I'm not sure the Samsung techie is 100% right either. He's correct in that installing a second operating system may overwrite the MBR (Master Boot Record) which lives in the first few bytes of the first disk seen by the BIOS. It does this by writing a new bootloader to offer the choice between 2 operating systems. However, power users sometimes choose to write the bootloader for the second system to another location, and link it to the original MBR. (That's a very simplified explanation - don't rely on details.)

The techie could well be right that that you would lose the recovery function for use if Win7 needed to be reinstalled. (I'll show my prejudices here - that's one of the main reasons I've abandoned Microsoft. I think it's totally unacceptable to sell an operating system without a full installation disk or ISO.)

I suspect that by the time of Win7 the recovery partition may be the only way of reinstalling/repairing a dud installation. There was an acceptable halfway house - you were able to burn an installation CD from the loaded system. You could ask the techie whether this is possible with your netbook.

In summary - wubi will install Ubuntu in a file (called root.disk) within the Windows filesystem. This file may be on drive C: or D:, but that's not an installation of Ubuntu on the partition (drive). A problem with the Windows filesystem or with Windows shutdown must be rectified within Windows before Ubuntu can be booted again.

In your position, I would try a wubi install. It will give you chance to test drive Ubuntu and see if you want to make more use of it. Ubuntu installed this way may run a bit slower than a proper install, but the difference is unlikely to be significant. It's probably worth defragmenting the disks in Windows before installing Ubuntu - it will reduce the likelihood of problems and may result in improved performance.

Finally (you'll be glad to hear) if you decide you want a proper Ubuntu installation dual booting with Win7, I'm sure it can be dome. You should be able to get help on the Ubuntu forums. I know it can be dome with other flavours of linux.

And a post-final comment - if you're new to linux, don't assume you can do things the Windows way - learn the linux way. Particularly the installation of programs - don't download from the web, use the Ubuntu repositories. Programs in these are packaged with all the bits to make them run without trouble.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:44 PM

Bonnie

I may need to think about this one a bit. What I can say immediately is that you won't lose access to Windows - the Ubuntu installer will find it and generate boot options for Windows and for Ubuntu. You may lose access to the Windows recovery partition (I need to check this - I think the laptop I have dual boot Windows/Ubuntu did have a Windows recovery and I lost it at startup, but I wasn't bothered about it).

However there are ways around this, but a bit more complicated: you need to tell Ubuntu to put its boot record on the Ubuntu partition (rather than the default start of whole drive) and then modify the Windows boot record to chain to that (in addition to what it already does) - there's a program for Windows that will sort out this bit. See this guide (for installing an earlier version of Ubuntu with Windows, but no difference for this bit): Dual Boot, which gives you a link to the needed program. (In the old days I had to create the Ubuntu system like this, then copy a file from the Ubuntu system to the Windows disk and then make the Windows loader chain to that file to recognise Ubuntu at boot time; automated by the new installer and that program).

What I don't know is if you tell Ubuntu to install its loader in the Ubuntu partition whether it's clever enough to chain the Windows loader to it (ie without you needing to do it manually afterwards).

John has explained the MBR to you and by default the Ubuntu installer will replace the existing one with a new one that links to the menu to choose Windows/Ubuntu. It's at this point you may lose the Windows recovery access. The partition will still be there (as Phil says it's almost certainly the one that showed up as sda4 in the list above), but I don't know if F4 will access the recovery routines once the MRB has been rewritten (I don't know the exact way that's linked).

As regards wubi, I can't quite see what the advisor is getting at about the C and D drives. The only difference choosing D drive over C in this case is, I think, where it saves the Ubuntu disk image (which given your large free space on both shouldn't matter (if the image was very fragmented on the disk it could reduce performance). Disk related operations will be slower in Ubuntu via a wubi installation. I've tried to check for security info on running Ubuntu via a wubi install and can't find much; what I did find suggested it should be as secure as running normal Ubuntu, so that may still be an option. But the entire Ubuntu system will then be a Windows file and (theoretically at least) subject to attack, though there must be simpler ways to attack a system!

If you can bear (after all this!) to do the extra steps outlined in my second para above you should still be able to keep the Windows recovery option.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 04:46 PM

Aargh - I make few typing errors, and I've made the same error twice in one paragraph!! 'done' not 'dome'. I must have moved the keyboard.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 05:00 PM

Me cross-posting with you this time Phil!

I think you were correct in saying that I was wrong to say that you could install a stand-alone system with wubi. But if you want you can migrate the wubi installed system to its own partition (see Migrate Wubi) from within the wubi-installed Ubuntu.

One thing I'm still not sure of is whether the wubi installer will keep the recovery. The fact the Samsung's tech said to use wubi suggests that it does.

In that case you could wubi-install Ubuntu to C, use the migrate script with the --no-bootloader option to move it as a proper install on the D drive. The --no-bootloader option (if I read the documentation correctly) will leave the system booting from the same menu as before you moved it. (Though I'd want to check that more closely).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 05:09 PM

That's an interesting path, Mick. If you're right (and it looks as though you are) you would end up using the wubi-modified Windows boot menu to boot a proper Ubuntu installation. Neat!

I'd be interested to know what the Samsung boot menu shows - you probably have to use a F-key to get to it, because they wouldn't expect it used apart from recovery.

I have an Aspire One netbook which came with Linpus. I wiped and repartitioned the HDD, installed XP and then Mepis, and it runs them both with no problem, although XP is very slow to boot.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Tootler
Date: 18 Jul 12 - 08:40 PM

When I first tried Ubuntu, I used wubi. It simply sets up Ubuntu within Windows and creates a startup menu so you can choose which to go with. You can then migrate Ubuntu to its own partition later which I did but there is always a risk something will go wrong and you could end up losing everything.

Looking at Bonnie's hard drive set up, reminds me that my present laptop had something similar. There were three partitions on the hard drive, one was the main partition occupying the bulk of the disk, one was clearly the recovery partition then there was a third small partition whose function I was not clear on, but when I installed Ubuntu, I had problems booting into Windows. I'm not sure why now as it was a couple of years ago, but it looks as if a link was missing which Grub had not supplied and I suspected it was linked in some way to that small third partition.

From the list Bonnie posted earlier it looks as if she has a similar setup. sda1 is the small "third partition". What its function is I'm not sure, and I would imagine there is a workaround for this situation as others will have faced the same problem. In my case that was the point I abandoned Windows completely. I simply told Ubuntu to use the whole drive. It will mean a trip to the help forum to see if I can find anything.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 19 Jul 12 - 03:30 AM

Bonnie posted a detailed list from the partitioner - I've added my interpretation in italics:

dev/sda1 ntfs [size] 104MB / [used] 35MB - boot
dev/sda2 ntfs 121332MB / 46644MB - Win7 C:
dev/sda5 ntfs 179930MB / 3221MB - Data D:
dev/sda4 ntfs 18702MB / 17658MB - Recovery

sda1 & sda2 are hidden from most tools, but a partitioner will always show them.

100MB is the normal size for a boot partition. The bootloader will be here, and will be set up to allow a normal Windows boot or display a boot menu when an F-key is pressed. The boot menu will include access to the recovery function and probably a standard memtest function.

Wubi does it's trick by rewriting the bootloader in this partition to give a 2-choice menu.

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Jul 12 - 05:48 PM

Thread drift:

Probably of little interest to Bonnie, but perhaps something for other 'nix nuts(?) - PC Advisor reports that Dell plans to release for sale a Laptop preloaded with Ubuntu Linux "this fall."

The beta program for the device was aimed at "developers" and "special features" related to "cloud ap development" were reportedly included in the beta trial devices, and it's implied that Dell is working on adding - perhaps - more of the same in the final model.

Details reported at Dell's New Ubuntu Linux Laptop Is Coming This Fall

"After an overwhelming response to its developer-oriented beta program, Dell will move the project 'from pilot to product' in a few months."

The release didn't reveal a whole lot in the way of details to me, but those more familiar with the state of the Linux world may find more than I did, perhaps including some ideas of new aps to watch for to "enhance" your own linux enjoyment(?).

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 19 Jul 12 - 06:15 PM

While this thread is back at the top, can anyone tell me what the best AV/Firewall free-download software for Ubuntu would be? Is Avast for Ubuntu good? I presume it's still vital to have these?

Nice to hear about Dell's new plans - maybe the idea'll spread.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Jul 12 - 06:45 PM

AV isn't generally considered as necesary as for Windows (it's considered less likely to be affected because of its intrinsic structure and also the way the free software is delivered from controlled repositories), but there are AVs available and reasons why you might want to use them. See this article Antivirus.

I don't run AV on my Ubuntu machines (though I haven't been without Norton on Windows for as far back as I can remember!), but I do enable the build in firewall (In command window: sudo ufw enable).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Tootler
Date: 20 Jul 12 - 06:09 PM

I have been using Linux as my standard OS for four years now, initially Ubuntu and now Linux Mint (which is Ubuntu based) and so far have had no problems with malware. I have during that time survived one serious attack on my system via an infected spoofing email and suffered no infection to the main system, though I did have a little problem deleting the offending file, but I succeeded eventually.

I use the firewall in my router so have not enabled the Linux one, but so far I have no problems.

Some people recommend ClamAV for Linux, mostly to scan files being sent to Windows machines.

As the article says, both the design of the OS and the way it is organised means that security is inherently better. Ubuntu locks you out of the system files so your only real access is to your "home" files where all your personal data and settings are kept. This makes it harder for malware to take hold. You can access the system files but you have to make positive moves to do it. The main reason you will want to do that is to install or remove software and that is provided for and is password protected.

While no computer software is, or ever will be, 100% secure, Linux is probably as good as you will get for general user security.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,buddhuu sans cookie
Date: 21 Jul 12 - 11:45 AM

Yup, Ubuntu has built in security that makes Windows look like... well, like a very insecure thing.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 21 Jul 12 - 09:42 PM

The opinion that Linux (or Apple) is "inherently more secure" than Windows is open to some question, although it's certainly true that the thieves tend to go where the most victims are, and individual users of Linux aren't a very big or rich target. If there is a vulnerability (and there is in any OS) it doesn't make much difference how difficult it is to use it for malicious purposes. Many large corporations use Unix/Linux extensively, and show no exceptional immunity.

A method that probably is a secure way of doing some kinds of transactions on the web, is offered as a suggestion at:

How to avoid banking Trojans using live CDs

Since it's quite easy to put the Ubuntu OS on a bootable CD, if you boot from the "live CD" and use a browser that's on the CD, at least the OS and browser can't be affected by malware since once the CD is "finaled" nothing more can be written to it. Additionally, since you've booted to the OS thus "protected" any malicious infection on your "other OS" is inactive (probably) while you use the Ubuntu and the protected browser for your transaction.

There still is the possibility that any transaction information you save to an active (writable) drive could be accessed by malware infection(s) when you turn on the other OS (which could be Ubuntu booted from your hard drive as well as Windows or an Apple OS) but it's likely you'd evade any keystroke loggers and most other kinds of infection by using the "live CD" boot with restricted access to active storage during your connection to sites where you do "sensitive business."

Certainly the "method" is worth knowing about. The article does also discuss some reasons for when and where it's most likely to be useful, but probably the best time to use it is "whenever you're paranoid(?) really worried about security."

While Windows users probably would benefit most, and aren't likely to see a post in a thread about Ubuntu, maybe some of our "crossover" users will want to try it out and spread the word if they find it useful.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 22 Jul 12 - 08:18 AM

Think I'm starting to see some light at the end of the tunnel. Instead of attempting to actually install Linux anywhere on my netbook (which I never did feel quite easy about after what that Samsung tecchie told me, compounded by my inability to fully grasp the implications of the comments following it) I'm going to use this sterile-environment CD method. It sounds like a Godsend (or, rather, a Johnsend).

To this end - and for the benefit of other newbies like myself - it's worth highlighting a sub-link in John's article, which says:
Krebs recently posted a full set of instructions for creating a live CD on his blog, which is well worth reading for anyone interested in computer security.

http://krebsonsecurity.com/2012/07/banking-on-a-live-cd/

The third-party software which one needs for burning bootable images to disc can be found here:

http://www.freeisoburner.com/


So I have now ordered an external USB-powered CD drive (made by Samsung, as it happens) to use as a secure boot-up drive for Ubuntu - which I presume I can run by hitting F9 during the splash screen. Haven't been able to try that yet, but surely if it boots from USB it should recognise it? And - of course - it brings me to more questions, I hope fairly simple ones.

I read in one of the linked articles that a write-protected USB memory stick is not as secure (presumably because any protection that can be switched on can also be switched off again) and this is why I've ordered the external CD drive. But I want to save web pages with regard to my banking, so:

- Can I insert a blank memory stick in one of the other USB ports and save to that?

- Is a newly-formatted memory stick without any other software on it, which is removed the moment I've finished saving to it and used for nothing else, safe from malware?

- Can/Should I unplug the CD drive after I've booted, or doesn't it matter? I presume that since it's protected it means I can't save the web pages to this CD.

- Which browser is the best to use? The Ubunti (yes, I know that's a Latin plural on an African word but I like it) that I've seen all come pre-installed with Firefox, so I presume it's the one to go for. Could I download another browser even if I wanted to? I bet not, but I'll leave the question stand in case it draws any relevant comments.

- What (if anything) do I do about Ubuntu's firewall & other security-ware?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 22 Jul 12 - 08:29 AM

> But I want to save web pages with regard to my banking

Or [lightbulb goes on over head] I could save the web pages as PDF's and put those onto the memory stick instead of "real" ones. Would that be even more secure, or doesn't it matter? I don't need any active links, just the text & info.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 22 Jul 12 - 10:29 AM

If you set the "boot sequence" so that "external drives" are checked for a bootable load before C:\ is checked, the computer should boot from the external optical drive if the disk is in it. If it doesn't find something bootable there, it will go on to the internal drives and will boot from C:\.

(My laptop flashes F2 for setup and F12 for boot sequence, but there seems to be some variation in that.)

It's likely that the boot sequence already will be set to look for other bootable devices before C:\ without any changes, but I don't really know if that's the case with the semi-computer ittybitty machines. As already mentioned, if only one OS is installed on the computer, the default setup should boot from any bootable external device without the necessity of a boot manager. If otherwise, you wouldn't be able to install a new OS if the old one craps out. The boot manager is only necessary if you have more than one OS on the internal computer drives so that you have to choose between them each time you boot up.

The download of account information should be from a secure site, so as long as the "secure OS" on the "live CD" is the only thing running it should arrive safely on your machine regardless of where you save it, and a fresh USB stick is about as good as anything. There have been reports of "new USB drives" carrying malware, but all that I've seen reported have been extremely isolated cases, on a par with the few software manufacturers who've sold program installation disks that inadvertently were infected. Both are extremely rare.

If you're really worried, you might boot to your safe OS and reformat the "stick" using your "safe OS" before putting anything extremely sensitive on it, but that's probably overkill.

It might be noted that some external optical drives like more power than is available from a single USB connection, so some of them provide a "pigtail cable" so that you can plug them into two separate USB ports on your computer. The specs you see when you're ordering one seldom make this clear.

Since your computer only has three ports(?) a forked-tailed disk drive and one USB memory stick would put you at APF (all ports full) but you can work around that with a powered external USB hub. Plug the hub into one computer USB slot, plug in the wall wart (transformer) in a line socket, and have more ports with enough power to run what you plug into them. If you use a passive hub the computer still has to provide the power for everything you plug into the hub from the single USB port you plug the hub into, so even though you might have "more ports" there's no more power to run what you plug into them, so there is a small risk of overloading the computer's USB port.

Of course since you got the tiny computer for portabiiity you may not want to carry a bunch of accessories along when you're out rambling, but at least at home a decent powered USB hub can come in handy. (like if you aren't wireless for your printer connection and want to print something, or you need to dump the flash card from your camera or ... and ...?)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 22 Jul 12 - 11:42 AM

> If you set the "boot sequence" so that "external drives" are checked for a bootable load before C:\ is checked, the computer should boot from the external optical drive if the disk is in it. If it doesn't find something bootable there, it will go on to the internal drives and will boot from C:\.

I was never able to get my Samsung to do this, though I did go into the BIOS settings and try. But I got a different screen and couldn't find the one I needed (described at some agonising length in an earlier post). I finally discovered that F9 would just boot Ubuntu from my USB stick (see my post of 17 Jul at 05:57 - and I would never have had that info without your helpful link just above it at 02:32). So from that info I can boot from external media by hitting (on the Samsung) F9 during the splash screen; but the second part of the helpfiles, changing the boot order in the BIOS, doesn't work on my N145 model and I'm in the dark as to what would. But I've rather abandoned that pursuit as it's easy enough just to hold down F9 - this worked with the USB stick so I'm assuming it should also work with a USB drive.

This means I would have only one OS actually installed - Windows 7 - but could use Ubuntu through the sterile, non-writeable CD disc via an external drive (which I'll pick up in a few days' time when I get into the city).


> There have been reports of "new USB drives" carrying malware

Assume a re-format would fix that? Especially if it's an existing old one I've had for years, since the Windows 98 days - I don't need mega-space for a few PDFs of web pages, which are going to get transferred to a Mac anyway.


> some external optical drives like more power than is available from a single USB connection

This drive is made by Samsung for its netbooks (in other words, semi-computer ittybitty machines ;-) so I'm probably OK in that area! You're right, the spec didn't really show this. But the wall-wart hub isn't a huge problem because the only thing I'm really tetchy about is online banking, and I won't be doing that on the ramble but only at home. So it's not a big issue for me: the only "portable" work I want to do is typing Word docs, which don't go near the internet at all.

That was the initial reason I got a netbook, to use as a portable typewriter. The Ubuntu scheme came about because this machine has so little on it - no email, no websites that need a log-in, no other passwords etc. That was part of the idea. I have a Mac (which is what I've been using) and a biggish PC laptop with W7, but both those have loads of personal stuff on them, assorted mail programmes, browser-saved passwords etc. The advantage of my ittybitty computerette is that, being mainly a portable typewriter, it's so blank. I use the Mac as my "daily brain" and the Windows for specific programmes that I prefer in that platform for various reasons.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: Newport Boy
Date: 22 Jul 12 - 12:42 PM

- Which browser is the best to use? The Ubunti (yes, I know that's a Latin plural on an African word but I like it) that I've seen all come pre-installed with Firefox, so I presume it's the one to go for. Could I download another browser even if I wanted to? I bet not, but I'll leave the question stand in case it draws any relevant comments.

Bonnie - the essence of Linux is freedom, particularly freedom of choice. You can use any browser you like, excluding those like Internet Explorer which are not available for Linux. There's a list here

Phil


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Subject: RE: Tech: Ubuntu/W7 on NETBOOK partitioned hd drv?
From: GUEST,Vickie
Date: 11 Jun 15 - 05:10 AM

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