[Nottingham] Newbie Questions

Carl Ebrey nottingham at mailman.lug.org.uk
Thu Nov 28 10:00:00 2002

> Hi,


> I work in the Nottingham area and I'm interested in trying out a
> version of Linux on my PC at home, but I'm finding it all a bit
> bewildering. Could someone help me out by providing answers to the
> following questions?

I'll try, and I'm sure some will disagree with some parts of it :)

> Firstly, which distro should I try first? I've heard of SuSE, Mandrake,
> Red Hat and others but I can't work out which one to try . . .

Lots of people seem to like Debian, which is understandable given the
greatness of apt.  It's certainly my favourite distro.  However for a
newbie setup I tend to recommend one of the more mainstream, for want of a
better word, distros, like SuSE, Red Hat or Mandrake, because they are
very GUI orientated, which is probably a good thing for the uninitiated,
and they do things like hardware detection and other automagical wonders. 
I personally started out with Red Hat, but IME the other mainstream
distros are just as, erm, good.  People may have differing opinions on
> Secondly, is it possible to keep my XP installation and also be able to
> access all my XP files from Linux?

You should be able to, although I personally haven't played with XP. 
Certainly with Win2k you can dual boot with Linux and if you have NTFS
support compiled into your kernel you should be able to *read* your XP
files.  There does exist support for NTFS writing in Linux, but the last
time I checked it had a big, fat "DANGEROUS" next to it...
> Finally, is there anywhere in the Nottingham area that sells the boxed
> distros? The Red Hat ISOs (for example) seem to be prohibitively large!

PC World.  Or at least, the one in Mansfield does.


Code monkey.