Monday, June 26, 2006

Installing Ubuntu: A comparison of Ubuntu 6.06 and Windows XP

Last Thursday night I installed my new hard drive and set up my computer so that it would dual-boot between Windows XP and Ubuntu 6.06 (Dapper Drake). Given that Debian (the Linux distribution Ubuntu is based on) had taken me days to install and configure, I figured that this might end up being a weekend-long project. It wasn’t; both Ubuntu and Windows XP were fully functioning after less than 5 hours of work.

Since I had to install both Windows and Ubuntu from scratch, this seemed like a perfect opportunity to compare the two operating systems' basic installation procedures. Thus, I tracked the time it took to carry out all installation tasks for both operating systems, and report the results below.

Partitioning plan

As I'm configuring my computer to dual-boot between two operating systems, partitioning the hard drive is not as simple as if I was installing a single operating system. I spent a while planning my partitions, and here's what I decided on (if you don't care about partitions, skip to the “installation comparision” section):

  • Hard drive 1 (120GB):
    • 38GB NTFS partition for Windows XP
    • 12GB ext3 partition for / (Ubuntu’s root directory; equivalent to C:\ in Windows)
    • 12GB ext3 partition for /data (a directory I will use to keep my home directory in)
    • 39GB FAT32 partition for sharing data
    • 12GB blank partition, for future Linux installs (so I don’t have to format over my current install if/when I upgrade)
  • Hard drive 2 (120GB)
    • 120GB FAT32 partition for sharing data

The /data partition is a separate partition I’ll use to hold my /home directory. Most user configuration files in Linux are saved in the /home/username directory, and thus by putting /home on a separate partition, future upgrades (and/or installing other Linux distributions) will be easier (since the entire root directory can be reformatted without losing most user files). However, mounting the partition as /home itself would mean that I could only have one installation’s configuration files in that partition at once (somewhat defeating the purpose); by mounting it as /data I can have multiple home directories in that partition (e.g., /data/homedapper, /data/homedebian) without them affecting each other. To do this, I first installed the entire operating system to the / partition, then later booted into a LiveCD, mounted the two partitions (/ and /data), and moved the home directory from / to /data/homedapper (creating a link from /home to /data/homedapper). Long story short, this partitioning plan makes installing Ubuntu a bit harder, but should make long-term maintenance of the system easier (thanks to metoo from this Ubuntu Forums thread for this plan).

Installation comparison

I started the install shortly after 11:30 pm; by 4:00am I had functioning installations of both Ubuntu and Windows XP. By functioning installation I mean that I had a working operating system, network access, office suite, photo editor, and virus scanner (in Windows) that were all up-to-date on security patches. I did not have to contact support or consult additional resources (outside of what I already knew or had researched) for either installation. My computer is an approximately 3-year-old Dell Dimension 4600, which I've upgraded with additional (non-Dell) memory, hard drives, and DVD drives. For a comparison of the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of the installation procedures, see tables 1 and 2.

Table 1: Amount of time (in minutes) specific tasks took while installing either Windows XP (SP2, from CD) or Ubuntu 6.06 (via the graphical installer on the LiveCD). Default options were selected wherever possible.
Task Windows XP (min) Ubuntu 6.06 (min)
Install OS (including partitioning) 51 29
Update OS 13 8 1
Install and run virus scanner 12 0 (not needed)
Install and update office suite 29 2 0 3
Install photo editor, IM client(s), Firefox 10
0 3
Move home directory to new partition
- (not possible attempted) 22
Total install time (start to finish) 120 62
1 Ubuntu's auto-downloading application automatically searched for, downloaded, and installed updates for all programs on the computer.
2 Due to not owning Office XP's version of PowerPoint, I had to install both Office 2000 (for PowerPoint) and Office XP (for Word and Excel). This approximately doubled the install time.
3 Programs were installed by default with the OS.

Windows XP:

Since Windows wants to think it’s the only operating system on a computer, most guides suggest installing Windows first (Windows overwrites the master boot record during its install, which would prevent an existing Ubuntu installation from booting). Thus, I installed Windows first.

This was the first time that I’d installed Windows XP from CD (though I’d installed Windows 98, 95, 3.1, and DOS from scratch before). The installer was simple to use (easier than Windows 98 / 95); other than partitioning the drive, there were no technically complex menus anywhere in the process.

Unfortunately, the Windows XP installer left me without a working network connection or sound. After a bit of searching, I discovered that Windows had not installed drivers for either my network card or sound card (which were Dell defaults); to install the drivers, I had to break out one of my Dell system CDs and fight through some awkward menus to figure out which drivers I had to install. It was a non-intuitive process, partially because the Dell system CD didn't list my computer model in its list of supported computers, but also because Windows never made it clear that it hadn't loaded drivers for the cards.

After installing the operating system, I installed Microsoft Office; this was more complicated than it could have been because the Office XP set that came with my computer lacked PowerPoint (which I use for writing lectures). Thus, I had to install both Office 2000 (which I have PowerPoint in), and then subsequently install Office XP. After installing each version, I had to go to Office Update and download security updates for Microsoft Office. I never got any notice or warning that there were security updates for Office (and, in fact, had to find the Office Update site on my own); I just knew from prior experience that there probably were updates available. Sure enough, both Office 2000 and Office XP had numerous security updates that needed to be downloaded.

To finish the installation I had to install Photoshop from CD, and download and install my instant messenger clients and Firefox. All told, the Windows XP installation took about 2 hours from start to finish.

Ubuntu 6.06:

Ubuntu is a free Linux-based operating system. I obtained the most recent desktop release of Ubuntu from their download page; it's distributed as a LiveCD image, which I downloaded and burned to a CD. This does require a computer with a working CD burner and net connection; however, Ubuntu also ships free CDs to anyone who wants them (and, if you must spend money on an operating system to be happy, you can buy DVDs of Ubuntu 6.06 at Amazon).

The first step of installing Ubuntu is to boot your computer with Ubuntu's LiveCD; this brings you into a fully functioning Ubuntu installation without modifying anything on your hard drive. Thus, you immediately know if Ubuntu doesn't work with any of your hardware, and can figure out how to work around any problems before doing the actual installation. I tried out the LiveCD a few days before doing the installation, and didn't find any hardware recognition issues (the system worked perfectly).

Ubuntu's installation procedure is about as simple as can be; all the questions are well-worded and easy to answer (e.g., what username do you want to use, where are you located, what do you want to call your computer). There wasn't a single question about hardware, which was refreshing.

The most complicated portion of the installation was setting up the partitions, though the partitioner Ubuntu uses (QTParted GParted) was extremely easy to use. As long as you've planned out your partitions ahead of time, you should have no problems at all. And, if you're just installing Ubuntu alone (or don't want to do the wacky /data partition separation I was doing), partitioning should be as easy as it is in Windows XP. The one issue I had with the partitioning process is that it didn't format my small shared space as FAT32. When I set up the partition I selected FAT32 as the filesystem I wanted to use, but then when it came time to format the partition it reported that it was going to format it as ext3. I continued with the process (it did have a “back” button), figuring that I could reformat that partition later as FAT32 (by unmounting the drive and using QTParted once the system was installed). In fact, I'd been waffling between using ext3 and FAT32 for my shared space anyway, so once I'd gotten the system working I just decided to stick with ext3 for that portion of the shared space.

After the installation was finished, the computer rebooted into Ubuntu. At this point the system was working perfectly, and most of the software I wanted was already installed. Open Office 2.0 (an open-source equivalent to MS Office), The Gimp (an open-source equivalent to Photoshop), Gaim (an open-source instant messaging client), and Firefox were all installed (and properly configured) right out of the box. Ubuntu also installed the Grub boot loader to deal with the dual-boot situation; no configuration on my part was required.

Security updates were much easier to manage in Ubuntu than in Windows XP. In Windows XP, the operating system's basic updates were automatically downloaded in two separate chunks (requiring me to install the first batch, reboot, then reboot again later once more had been downloaded). However, updates for Office and other programs were not automatically downloaded (and I was not even notified of their presence). In contrast, Ubuntu's automatic updater application notified me shortly after booting that a number of updates were available; the updater had searched for and found updates for all programs installed on my computer. After reviewing the list of updates, all I had to do was click “OK,” and Ubuntu downloaded and installed all the updates. The system suggested (but did not require) that I reboot after they were installed; after rebooting, the updater application notified me that my system was completely up to date.

From start to finish, the entire Ubuntu install took approximately one hour, including the time it took me to boot into a LiveCD and move the home directory to the /data partition. Assuming that all hardware was recognized and supported by Ubuntu (which would be easy to check via a LiveCD), I have no doubt that a computer novice could easily install Ubuntu by themselves.

Table 2: Comparison of Windows XP and Ubuntu 6.06's install procedures.
Item Windows XP Ubuntu 6.06
Most technically demanding part of install Installing drivers from Dell's CD Partitioning
Number of reboots required
6 3
Number of CDs used during entire install 6 1
System status after base OS install Network and sound not functioning System fully functional
Minutes to first program-based ad popping up 56 (McAfee attempted to sell me additional security services after I installed their virus scanner) n/a (no ads)
Minutes to first junk desktop items being placed 155 (Microsoft Money added desktop icons for commercial banking and lending services) n/a (no junk desktop items placed)


Windows XP and Ubuntu 6.06 were both quick to install; each install was complete in less than two hours. Windows took about twice as long as Ubuntu to install, primarily because of the additional time required to install (and update) non-OS software packages.

The largest potential problem with both operating system installations is hardware recognition (as I encountered with Windows XP). Ubuntu's use of a LiveCD is an advantage here, as it allows new users to test their system before formatting their hard drive. However, more hardware is generally supported in Windows than in Ubuntu, as many manufacturers build Windows-specific drivers (but do not make Linux drivers).

Window's reliance on commercial software adds to the difficulty and annoyance of its install. In Ubuntu, a lot of software is installed by default, and additional packages can be searched for and installed (for free) from an easy-to-use “add/remove programs” menu (note: the primary exception to this are programs to play specific media formats, some of which suffer from patent issues and thus can be more difficult to obtain in Linux than in Windows, though EasyUbuntu and Ubuntu's help pages deal with this). In Windows, many basic software packages (e.g., office suite, photo editing software, IM clients) are not installed by default, and must be downloaded or purchased from a variety of websites or companies. This commercial software also increases the chances of ads appearing on the computer, as happened to me many times during the Windows installation, but never in Ubuntu.

Linux is typically considered to be an extremely difficult operating system to install. I believe Ubuntu challenges that perception.

As a final note, this post is based on the experiences of one person installing these operating systems on a single machine; it is unclear how generalizable these data are. Additionally, users should not underestimate the potential difficulty of switching from Windows to Linux; troubleshooting and administering Linux installations is vastly different from (though not necessarily more difficult than) troubleshooting and administering Windows systems.


Radagast said...

Importing comments:

libre fan
Nice comparison, and fair even though unscientific - so what?

But there's no reason why you shouldn't install libre (free) software on Windows since M$ hasn't yet decided to make its OS proprietary software exclusive.

I agree with the remark that your data partitions make things more complicated than necessary (without them you'd have gained another 20 mns on Windows . You can share a partition (not home) with all your Linux distros.

To answer Alan Bourke:
Also, Open Office, The GIMP are *alternatives* to MS Office and Photoshop, not equivalents, otherwise everyone would be using the former instead. They are of course fantastic, free software applications in their own right.

People could stop using (and pirating M$Office and Photoshop, GIMP is easier
and better in some areas (brushes, for instance) but a lot of people love getting something free when it's expensive and also they have become dependent on monopolies.
October 6, 2006, 1:41:55 AM PDT – Like – Reply

A good place to go for help with Ubuntu is; folks there could probably help you with your problem.
September 26, 2006, 9:55:20 AM PDT – Like – Reply


Sorry if this is a bother. I am excited about Ubuntu, but at this moment I am alone. I am also an American living in Rome Italy, so that isolates me even further. I am groping for some help.

I have two computers in my home set up as a network. They were both running windows xp pro. I used one to load Ubuntu 6.60. The install went well and when it was done, I was amazed to see that the two computers were still connected. I was still able to connect the new Ubuntu Computer to the internet via dial up modem through the windows XP computer. Then something happened. It all went away. I need to get that connection back.

I thought if I reinstalled Ubuntu it might connect the two again. It did not and now I have an extra copy of Ubuntu on the computer in a 3rd partition. Can someone help me get it off?

I am very, New to Ubuntu, and Linux. I am a normal end user. I would need detailed instructions how to connect the Ubuntu computer to the Win XP computer; I assume using the Networking software. Can someone help? Thank you. Darteo
September 26, 2006, 6:49:20 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

And Steve, it depends on the system configuration, have you installed a kernel fit for your system?
September 9, 2006, 3:08:44 PM PDT – Like – Reply

You forgot to mention as a put-down on Ubuntu that you have no MP3/AVI/MPG/WMV/WMA support (not too sure on MPG, but pretty sure). Though EasyUbuntu/Automatix can set these up rather quick (depending on net connection/computer speed)
September 9, 2006, 3:07:45 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Watch these comparisons b/w Ubuntu and XP

Maybe installing windows took longer, but you'll see loading apps and booting is actually faster on XP
August 3, 2006, 3:15:12 AM PDT – Like – Reply

libre fan
Nice article.

However, I don't really understand why you installed Photoshop and M$ Office suite while GIMP and have been in existence for some time and are fine libre software. I believe it's even easier to create brushes in the GIMP than in Photoshop, for instance.

Have lots of fun with Ubuntu!
July 16, 2006, 11:27:03 PM PDT – Like – Reply

LOL I would just like to say this is an excelant write up from the point of most home PC enthusiests... Not scientist as our frind blingbling must be... Most home users with a few year old dell would have XP CD w/ sp1 and have to download sp2.. most all Windows reinstalls (NOT OS upgrades) on most all PC's will need aditional drivers installed... Anyoen who has reinstalled windows thenselfs on a few year opld PC knows this... Most home users will not slipstream service packs or drivers as blingbling thinks everyone does (reference to Most windows user will stick with MS office... Publisher??? Most ppl will not write a spreadsheet to do their finacials on... I am an avid GNU/Linux / BSD user. I also run windows OS's... Both have their advantages and only the end user can decide... Most folks simply do not wish to try and learn a new OS when they know windows only enough to send email, surf, and chat... All things easily accomplished under almost any Linux install... Being in the computer industry and working with end users everyday I feel this is an excelant artical and represent maybe even a little more technical stuff then the general public (i.e. moving a home partition) Personal Experience??? Well my fav. PC is my IBM ThinkPad A22e... UNder windows I have to install a lot of drivers and they are hard to find... Any since it's an 800Mhz celeron w/ 256 Megs RAM XP runs like crap on it... Under Ubuntu? everything works out of the box. Even my D-Link DWL-G630 Wireless PCMCIA card. Oh and it runs very nice.

Thanks for the comparison. Most are so biased it's dumb to even read them... This is great!
July 12, 2006, 6:00:36 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Johnathon: Sounds fine, as long as authorship is attributed and links are included. I'll respond via e-mail with more specifics.
July 12, 2006, 12:00:23 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Hello... I'm trying to find content for, and found your blog. Would you mind if I pulled this (or/plus) other articles to use for our site? I'd link back to your blog/website/email address, of course.


(nice review btw :D)
July 12, 2006, 4:05:51 AM PDT

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

Just wanted to say this is a great! I've really been thinking about switching to Ubuntu as my main OS. Of course for the time being I will still have to use XP for a couple things, and this has given me a very clear understanding of the process. Thank you!
July 8, 2006, 1:16:41 PM PDT – Like – Reply

rajat gupta
man the compatibility issue of hardware in windows ( i have an old desktop)

has led me to evantually get rid of this scrap.

i m using XUBUNTU 6.06 which is working great
July 4, 2006, 11:45:08 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Nice artical, very well written. I am actually installing Ubuntu tomorrow, and this read removed some worrys I'd had
July 3, 2006, 1:18:50 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Brian Kendig
I am a fan of Ubuntu, but in the interest of fairness: you ding XP for the time it took to install MS Office and how quickly ads and junk icons appear, but you leave off some common tasks which Ubuntu doesn't handle as well. How long did it take you to install Flash on each operating system so you can watch videos on YouTube? How long before it could play your mp3 or wmv files? How long before you got it to work with an HP all-in-one's scanner or fax capabilities?
June 28, 2006, 3:39:49 PM PDT – Like – Reply

It is true that Dells will install the OS without a working NIC or sound card, but this doesn't happen with other manufacturers as much.

Ubuntu also will install the wrong drivers for video if you have an ATI card and will occasionally require downloading a better driver. Similarly, wireless on any distro can be a nightmare whereas in Windows it can work quite well. I've spent days not hours getting wireless to work in Ubuntu whereas in XP it usually works in a matter of minutes.

Still, I use both Dapper and XP on the same laptop and like both a lot.
June 28, 2006, 8:57:58 AM PDT – Like – Reply

There's a PC World article about moving your entire documents and settings folder to another partition. the steps are pretty easy.

Click here to see the article
June 28, 2006, 7:04:26 AM PDT

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

Ashish - I think Ubuntu could be a great solution; worth at least trying. You might try Ubuntu's alternate 6.06 install CD, as that is designed to install on systems with less than 192MB of ram (it's available on Ubuntu's download page). You might also try xubuntu, which is based on Ubuntu, but uses a lighter (and faster) desktop environment (xfce).
June 28, 2006, 1:41:23 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Ashish C.'ve got me thinking. I'm a cybercafe owner and have just tried a live cd for linux. It didn't contain an installer but was quite cool. I am considering running linux on one of my client pcs as a test.

I've ordered the cd from shipit and will be adding a bit more ram to the pc so that the live cd runs ok. (The one I ran was extremely slow)

Do you think Ubuntu will run on a Pc with Pentium III 500 Mhz, 128 MB of SD Ram (Will be ugrading), onboard sound and graphics , 20 GB HDD and of course dual boot with Win XP?

I'd love to join the free software train since the cost of Win XP is more than the cost of the PC's in my cafe!
June 28, 2006, 1:12:27 AM PDT – Like – Reply

I had to dual boot my new laptop with windows and Ubuntu 6.06 and the differences between the windows install and Ubuntu were huge.

To say the least, I didn't have to worry about drivers with Ubuntu. Everything worked pretty much right off the bat aside from a couple hicups that are only natural.

Windows, however, gave me tons of trouble. Especially with simple things such as audio. I am not impressed.

That is the power of open source. Continually updated and ready for anything. Ubuntu all the way. Laptop: Dell 6400 just so you know.
June 27, 2006, 8:29:06 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Chase Venters
Yeah, Ubuntu is great. My sister's laptop had Windows XP SP1 and flat out would not work with the integrated wireless adapter. I tried pulling down SP2; after Windows spent over a half hour doing some meaningless calculations to prepare for SP2, it told me that her copy of Windows wasn't genuine and I couldn't get the update.

I dug out a Ubuntu CD that was over a year old. Popped in the LiveCD and Ubuntu booted, automatically detecting all hardware, and jumping right onto our Wireless LAN!

When Linux hardware support works properly, it is about a trillion times better than Windows.
June 27, 2006, 1:29:25 PM PDT – Like – Reply

I accept that windows isn't the best SO, but these results can't be a good example of the difference between Win and Ubuntu, they are unfair and don't match with the ones I know. First of all, it's hard to believe that Win didn't recognize all the hardware and Ubuntu did. Of course, everything depends on many things, but try to install XP in my laptop and then try Ubuntu, you would be surprised and maybe a bit headhached after installing.
I like Ubuntu, but Win's installation was much easier and faster, and I haven't got popups nor junk mail in any of them. The real advantages of Ubuntu aren't shown in this page...
June 27, 2006, 11:44:03 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Regarding UI scrollbars, this is an serious issue in KDE too, I think it lacks more consideration for those who still uses 800x600 or less...
Some applications deals with it, some dont... it sould be an must test on WM development...
June 27, 2006, 11:23:13 AM PDT

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

BlingBling, M Comp Eng
This isn't even how XP gets deployed. Did you install XP then install SP2, then install all of the patches. 51 minutes is really high. I don't think I've even taken longer than 16 minutes with OS, patches, avg, OpenOffice, media codecs and winamp.

If you want to learn how to use XP properly you should be checking out

BTW, you're a liar about the Dell 4600, the drivers are native to WIndows 2000 and WIndows XP, as in they are built in. There's a reason it has the Windows XP symbol on it. In fact I've deployed about 2500 of them at DoD with Win2k and WinXP and never had a problem with sound or nic.

Personally I like ubuntu, it's a cute fuck around OS for a sunday afternoon. If I need something better than win 98 (which someplaces still run) I pop in the live CD, my USB key and roll with it.

Now you entire article is what is known as an Ad Hominum. It's not engineer level writing at all, the only lab work done here was you looking at a clock and what you wanted your result to be. Never once did you state any reason except you killed an afternoon.

Next time, if you want to bring a valid point across, you will need a couple things.

High level design - helps provide a road map.
Test cases - Tested three times.
Process Document - how did you install the product.
Detailed design - Why you choose the optinos in your installation.

Off to the side. Why would you use MS Money? Or Quicken? Why not just use OpenOffice Calc to plan your budget. Lots of good free templates out there.

Actually for that matter why are you using Office?
June 27, 2006, 6:18:14 AM PDT – Like – Reply

I don't understand the need for this:

However, mounting the partition as /home itself would mean that I could only have one installation’s configuration files in that partition at once (somewhat defeating the purpose); by mounting it as /data I can have multiple home directories in that partition (e.g., /data/homedapper, /data/homedebian) without them affecting each other.

You can have more that one configuration file in /home, you just have to use different usernames. This is simpler than trying to tell the OS to look at a different directory for configuration files, or trying to link them (as you did). That is, IMHO, this is just more trouble than it's truly worth. Having a seperate /home partition is a good idea, but I'm not sure there's a real advantage to what you've done.

You'd probably be better off just having seperate /home partitions for each Linux distro install (which is what I do). But, that's just MHO - and I've only been a Linux user since 1999 .
June 27, 2006, 6:00:38 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Just this last weekend, I decided to install Ubuntu on my XP laptop. My biggest problem was figuring out how to increase my resolution. I have to say that the times indicated in the tables seem quite accurate considering what I just went through. My biggest satisfaction with Ubuntu over other/previous Linux distros is how easy it is to install software. Ubuntu finally got Linux over that hurdle. Say want you want about RPM's or Yum, I've never had it so easy.
June 27, 2006, 5:54:16 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

nice post.
after using windows for many years myself, and about a year ago switching to both ubuntu and xp, then solely ubuntu, i have done these installs numerable times on three different systems and found my experiences to be quite similar. i would agree with the statement that linux is not more difficult to configure, just different. after a few short tutorials those poeople i have turned onto ubuntu have no more troubles that any pc user wouldn't have.

rgarding multimedia codecs: this and gaming are the real issues in linux. for mp3 and dvd codecs in ubuntu automatix and bumps quickly and painlessly fix these issues (and more). as to gaming, well that's a bit more complicated, but there's wine (allows youi to run many windows programmes in linux) and cedega (dunno about VMware for games)... or keep your XP partition just for that.

but its not as hard as many say.
June 27, 2006, 4:11:59 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Zalzer: Thanks for the link about moving documents and settings. Regarding the 22 minutes to move the home directory ... I'm slow? Actually, I'm just a casual home user who (up until recently) has used Windows nearly exclusively and only dabbled in Linux.

Alan: I agree that it is odd that XP didn't pick up the hardware (which, for sound and network, was just the default stuff Dell installed).
June 27, 2006, 3:53:33 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Alan Bourke
Table 2 presents an unfair picture of XP. What have "Minutes to first program-based ad" and "Minutes to first junk desktop items" got to do with installing the OS? McAfee and MS Money are not part of XP so their inclusion in that table is irrelevant.

Also, Open Office, The GIMP are *alternatives* to MS Office and Photoshop, not equivalents, otherwise everyone would be using the former instead. They are of course fantastic, free software applications in their own right.

You must have some weird hardware if XP didn't pick it up right and Ubuntu did. Try including wireless functionality and see how far you get with Ubuntu!

Note that I use Ubuntu, and I love Ubuntu, I'm not an MS evengelist.
June 27, 2006, 3:12:04 AM PDT

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

Just found this about moving C:Documents and Settings
June 27, 2006, 3:07:08 AM PDT – Like – Reply

You say that it takes 22 min to move your home directory, how can that be possible when the only thing you have to do is make a partion for /home when you partion your harddrive

When you talk about home in windows i guess that your talking about C:Documents and Settings
I don't know if it's true but I have heard that you can move it by making some change in the registry
June 27, 2006, 3:01:24 AM PDT – Like – Reply

One thing to consider, I was a dual-booter myself but with current hardware and VMWare Desktop, you do not need to waste an entire hard drive on Windows XP anymore.

I run 100% Native Ubuntu 6.06 and VMware for linux and installed Windows XP Pro inside of that partition, completely negating the need for a seperate partition. It's as fast as native with current tweaks and some performance tuning of your linux setup ( prelink -amvR )

Vmware is only $99 and worth every penny. I also run Solaris x86, 2 more copies of windows for different VPN clients and FreeBSD 6.0 all inside. I should also note, I am a completely impatient performance freak and I am impressed with this setup.
June 27, 2006, 2:55:15 AM PDT

Radagast said...

Importing comments:

Great write-up!

This article seems very fair and nothing short of grounded. Very fresh.
June 27, 2006, 2:53:55 AM PDT – Like – Reply

"Additionally, users should not underestimate the potential difficulty of switching from Windows to Linux..." Using VMWare player, it is easy to run Linux along WinXP as shown here
June 27, 2006, 2:47:22 AM PDT – Like – Reply

Following is a screenshot of the UI issue I'm referring to.
June 26, 2006, 4:42:23 PM PDT – Like – Reply

Thanks for this article. Very cool!! However, I'd like to differ where u point that...

"Linux is typically considered to be an extremely difficult operating system to install. I believe Ubuntu challenges that perception."

Actually, a lot of the other GNU/Linux distros come as Live-cum-install CD in one. PCLinuxOS probably might be the easiest to install of all these. Tho Kanotix is not far behind. Ubuntu's installer on the other hand had major UI issues. Like my system has a lot of partitions, and thus in the partitions window dapper eventho listed all of em, it didnt have a scroll bar for me to go down and verify all the stuff. I don't get how could they miss a scroll bar, and let the UI stretch beyond the screen. Otherwise dapper is pretty decent.
June 26, 2006, 4:33:15 PM PDT

Radagast said...

Import notes: With 35 comments, this was my most-commented post.