any linux distro that sets up like windows? - Setup

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  1. any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    hi all

    i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.

    my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.

    furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    also access.

    so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell it which
    partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the linux system
    should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.

    is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    partitions?

    thanks much in advance

  2. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    sharonpst wrote:
    > hi all
    >
    > i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    > partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    > partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.
    >
    > my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    > the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    > don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.
    >
    > furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    > understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    > partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    > also access.
    >
    > so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    > a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell it which
    > partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the linux system
    > should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.


    Well, Windows does a number of things differently, but this one is in fact how
    Windows *can* be set up. It's common sense to put your data, like home
    directories and data, where you back them up frequently. Unfortunately, as one
    package may put things in /var/www/html for your web material, /opt/Oracle/
    for your oracle database, etc., most of us give up on getting too cute with it.

    > is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    > partitions?


    Almost every distro will let you create one partition, by itself, if you
    select to do so at build time. The one likely exception is swap. You typically
    want some swap, but you don't want to back it up unless you're taking live
    snapshots of a virtual OS or something weird like that. So if you need a
    single partition, but realize that you do need some swap space (as is
    likely!), you can add some later by creating a swap file.

    > thanks much in advance


    No sweat. Take a look at your Ubuntu installer tools and see if they won't let
    you do this, if you still insist on a single partition.

  3. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    sharonpst wrote:
    > is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    > partitions?


    Most distributions will allow you to manually partition. You don't have
    to have multiple partitions, although I still do this for several
    reasons. You can also use other partition types, such as NTFS, if you so
    desire. However if you do this for your partitions holding /boot or the
    root partition, you will need an NTFS capable bootloader and you will
    need to recompile the kernel to statically include NTFS support modules. This
    will not be easy, if you are a new user. However, there are distributions
    specifically designed to run on NTFS, if you really want this. However,
    once you get more experienced, you will find that you don't want this
    and will probably wish that you had gone for a multiple partition
    scheme, as your installer program is trying to set up for you now.

    Mark.

    --
    Mark Hobley,
    393 Quinton Road West,
    Quinton, BIRMINGHAM.
    B32 1QE.

  4. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    sharonpst writes:

    >hi all


    >i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    >partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    >partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.


    >my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    >the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    >don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.


    >furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    >understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    >partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    >also access.


    fat32 partitions are horrible. They do not support many things--
    permissions for example. They are far more inefficient both at storing
    things and in operation (That is why defragging is needed for Windows
    systems) And MS has kept ntfs proprietary and thus the usefulness to Linux
    is not great-- ie you never know if the people who implimented it missed
    some rare but crucial featue which could cause data corruption. You want
    ext3. Also a fat swap partition again is not, as I understand it, as
    efficient as a Linux swap ( and it is NOT ext3-- it is its own type).
    You can get by putting Linux onto one partition and a swap on another, but
    that is a bad idea. When you in a few years reinstall, if you have all your
    own data on a separate partition you can wipe the system partition and
    reinstall. Otherwise you have to also reinstall all of your user stuff from
    backup, a more painful procedure.

    Unlike windows, Linux has a single filesystem. No C: D: drives You simply
    mount each partition seamlessly. There is nothing in a running system which
    tells you which partition any particular bit of data is on.
    So you can backup it all, or you can backup parts. There is no difference.


    >so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    >a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell it which
    >partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the linux system
    >should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.


    As I said, ntfs has been kept proprietary by MS. They have in fct
    threatened to sue anyone that even uses fat not purchased from them. While
    Linux finally does read and write ntfs, I would still worry. And I think
    exp3 will be more efficient.

    Do not let your familiarity with windows straightjacket you in Linux.

    >is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    >partitions?


    No but it is highly advised.


    >thanks much in advance


  5. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    On Sun, 21 Sep 2008 16:42:51 +1000, sharonpst wrote:

    > hi all
    >
    > i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    > partition of my hard drive.
    >

    How did you copy the cd to a partition on your hard drive? Did you run
    its setup? Did you boot from it? It helps a lot if you are specific and
    use proper nomenclature when describing what you are doing.
    >
    > when i used imaging software to examine the partition, i found there
    > were three virtual disks inside the partition.
    >

    Proper nomenclature?
    >
    > my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    > the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    > don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.
    >

    Proper nomenclature?
    >
    > furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    > understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    > partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    > also access.
    >
    > so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    > a single partition with only one virtual drive.
    >

    Proper nomenclature?
    >
    > i can then tell it which partition to use for the swap files. as for
    > the data, the linux system should be able to pick up and read the ntfs
    > partition.
    >
    > is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    > partitions?
    >
    > thanks much in advance
    >

    Note: Some comments inline.

    It helps to be very precise and to use proper nomenclature when describing
    your problem. This is especially true when describing disk layout and
    structures in the "PC world." You are using some descriptive names
    which I think you may have invented. I think I can tell what you mean, but
    it helps if you try to use proper names and try to be precise. BTW,
    it's not your fault if you don't know proper names, etc. This information
    has been hidden from most users for some time. This is because Windows
    comes preinstalled. The user is expected only to be able to plug it in and
    start using it. Then when Windows gets too trashed to use anymore, he can
    take it back to the repair shop and have it fixed. If he wants to try
    to fix it for himself, then a lot of manufacturers include a "ghost" image
    to put the system back into its original "pristine" (out-of-box) state.
    Some manufactures include a real Windows setup CD, too, but as of now a
    lot of Windows systems are sold without that disc. The Windows setup
    CD allows the user to attempt to setup his system from scratch. If you ran
    the Windows setup then you would see that it requires the user to make
    decisions about where Windows will be setup, how the disk will be
    partitioned and what filesystem to use, etc. AFAIK, most users opt to
    skip this step whenever possible. They opt to re-image their systems al-a
    "ghost" (or equivalent). They do this because setting up Windows can be
    a bitch. (Yes, that's the proper nomenclature for the difficulties
    likely to be encountered. The "ghost" image likely has all of the right
    drivers for the system, whereas the generic CD may need significant
    tweaking (press F6 to load driver from floppy, etc.).

    Setting up a modern GNU/Linux distribution will be similar to setting up
    Windows. It will give you options of which partitions will be used to
    hold the setup, which Linux filesystem will be used, etc. The problem with
    setting up GNU/Linux on an existing system is that all of the disk space
    is likely to be allocated to Windows. Many modern GNU/Linux distributions
    include a utilities to shrink existing partitions to give room to install
    Linux. Because disks are such a good value today, a lot of people find it
    easiest to buy another and dedicate it entirely for their Linux system
    (and leaving their existing setup intact.)

    Here is an earlier article about setup in general:
    http://groups.google.com/group/comp....368ec45a590e60

    (This is the head of the discussion thread.)

    Once you have decided on a Linux distribution, read over the documentation
    provided about how it handles setup.

    --
    Douglas Mayne

  6. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    On Sun, 21 Sep 2008 02:42:51 -0400, sharonpst wrote:

    > i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    > partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    > partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.


    If you're planning on overriding the default partitioning selected by the
    install, it's important that you understand how disks are partitioned.
    Using the term "virtual disks" implies that you are not currently familiar
    with partitions, partition tables, filesystem types, etc. Please start by
    taking a look at
    http://groups.google.ca/group/alt.os...da2bc436504de?

    > my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    > the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    > don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.


    You shouldn't need to. The swap never has to be backed up. The root
    filesystem (mounted on /, not /root) only needs to be backed up when
    you've installed a package, or changed the configuration. The /home
    contains your user data, and the backup frequency for that, is up to
    you. Note that the swap is a filesystem type of it's own. It isn't
    ext3.

    > furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    > understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    > partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    > also access.


    If you're tight on disk space, you can use the same partition for both
    windows swap, and linux swap by saving a compressed copy of the windows
    swap, remaking the linux swap on every boot, and restoring the windows
    swap on every reboot/halt. See
    http://www.hackitlinux.com/50226711/...nd_windows.php

    > so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    > a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell it which
    > partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the linux system
    > should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.


    While linux can read/write ntfs filesystems, it's risky, as m$ keeps changing
    it. You'll also run into problems with file permissions, which can be solved,
    but are a pain to deal with.

    > is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    > partitions?


    I think you'll be better off learning how linux works, rather then trying
    to force it to work like windows.

    Regards, Dave Hodgins

    --
    Change nomail.afraid.org to ody.ca to reply by email.
    (nomail.afraid.org has been set up specifically for
    use in usenet. Feel free to use it yourself.)

  7. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    David W. Hodgins wrote:
    > On Sun, 21 Sep 2008 02:42:51 -0400, sharonpst wrote:
    >
    >> i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    >> partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    >> partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.

    >
    > If you're planning on overriding the default partitioning selected by the
    > install, it's important that you understand how disks are partitioned.
    > Using the term "virtual disks" implies that you are not currently familiar
    > with partitions, partition tables, filesystem types, etc. Please start by
    > taking a look at
    > http://groups.google.ca/group/alt.os...da2bc436504de?
    >
    >> my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    >> the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    >> don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.

    >
    > You shouldn't need to. The swap never has to be backed up. The root
    > filesystem (mounted on /, not /root) only needs to be backed up when
    > you've installed a package, or changed the configuration. The /home
    > contains your user data, and the backup frequency for that, is up to
    > you. Note that the swap is a filesystem type of it's own. It isn't
    > ext3.


    There is *one* exception to this. It's doing live snapshots of virtual
    operating systems, in particular for live migrations of entire virtual systems
    to another virtual server.

    >> furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files. i
    >> understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    >> partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux can
    >> also access.

    >
    > If you're tight on disk space, you can use the same partition for both
    > windows swap, and linux swap by saving a compressed copy of the windows
    > swap, remaking the linux swap on every boot, and restoring the windows
    > swap on every reboot/halt. See
    > http://www.hackitlinux.com/50226711/...nd_windows.php
    >
    >> so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows into
    >> a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell it which
    >> partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the linux system
    >> should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.

    >
    > While linux can read/write ntfs filesystems, it's risky, as m$ keeps changing
    > it. You'll also run into problems with file permissions, which can be solved,
    > but are a pain to deal with.
    >
    >> is there such a distro? or must they have their own ext3 and other
    >> partitions?

    >
    > I think you'll be better off learning how linux works, rather then trying
    > to force it to work like windows.
    >
    > Regards, Dave Hodgins


    Agreed. In fact, it's often safer to simply run Linux on a separate hard
    drive, to avoid any confusion with shared Windows installations. Or if you
    have a decent size Windows drive, install and run Linux in a VMware system.
    Then, when you're comfortable and ready, run a real system with bare Linux.

  8. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    On 21 Sep 2008, in the Usenet newsgroup comp.os.linux.setup, in article
    , sharonpst wrote:

    >i've tried to set up ubuntu in my computer. i installed the cd into a
    >partition of my hard drive. when i used imaging software to examine the
    >partition, i found there were three virtual disks inside the partition.


    One of the nice things about Linux is that it has a VAST amount of
    information available - including how to install it so that it will
    co-exist with other (not just windoze) operating systems.

    http://ibiblio.org/pub/linux/docs/HOWTO/
    http://en.tldp.org/HOWTO/HOWTO-INDEX/howtos.html

    >my understanding is that one is for the system of linux, one is ext3 for
    >the swap files and another one is for the data. the problem is that i
    >don't know how to save all three disks in the partition simultaneously.


    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 108104 Jan 27 2007 Filesystems-HOWTO
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 39240 May 3 2001 Install-Strategies
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 68456 Jul 8 2002 Installation-HOWTO
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 18850 Mar 13 2000 MultiOS-HOWTO
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 7749 Jan 21 2001 Multiboot-with-GRUB
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 8080 Apr 26 2001 Multiboot-with-LILO
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 68659 Jan 4 2006 Partition
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 22488 Dec 4 2000 Pre-Installation-Checklist

    >furthermore, i already have a fat32 partition for my swap files.


    Swap _can_ be put onto a fat32 partition, but it's not easy or
    efficient. See

    -rw-rw-r-- 1 gferg ldp 44869 Dec 31 2002 Swap-Space

    >i understand that linux can read fat32 partition. i also have another
    >partition for my data. it's an ntfs partition, which i believe linux
    >can also access.


    It can _read_ OK, but I'd be concerned about _writing_ to NTFS. It's
    generally not the safest file system.

    >so i would like to install a linux distro that sets up like windows
    >into a single partition with only one virtual drive. i can then tell
    >it which partition to use for the swap files. as for the data, the
    >linux system should be able to pick up and read the ntfs partition.


    That's an installation decision. I don't think you'll find very
    many people recommending that, given the lack of capability of the
    NTFS filesystem.

    Old guy

  9. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    On Sun, 21 Sep 2008 17:29:36 -0500, ibuprofin@painkiller.example.tld (Moe Trin) wrote:

    >
    >It can _read_ OK, but I'd be concerned about _writing_ to NTFS. It's
    >generally not the safest file system.


    What of ntfs-3g? -- supposed to be very reliable writing, this is user
    space program with kernel FUSE, not the old kernel NTFS driver with the
    practically useless writer function.

    Grant.
    --
    http://bugsplatter.id.au/

  10. Re: any linux distro that sets up like windows?

    On Mon, 22 Sep 2008, in the Usenet newsgroup comp.os.linux.setup, in article
    , Grant wrote:

    >ibuprofin@painkiller.example.tld (Moe Trin) wrote:


    >>It can _read_ OK, but I'd be concerned about _writing_ to NTFS. It's
    >>generally not the safest file system.


    >What of ntfs-3g? -- supposed to be very reliable writing, this is user
    >space program with kernel FUSE, not the old kernel NTFS driver with the
    >practically useless writer function.


    No personal experience with it - neither of the companies where my wife
    and I work use windoze, and we got rid of it at home before microsoft
    discovered the concept of multiple users on a system. I'm always
    hesitant to write to a non-native filesystem (especially a proprietary
    one). Make sure you're using a kernel newer than 2.6.26, as there have
    been several problems with the FUSE including one specific to NTFS-3G
    corrupting files. See commit 78bb6cb9a890d3d50ca3b02fce9223d3e734ab9b
    which actually dates from May 12, 2008.

    Old guy

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