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2006 Mar 10 14:10

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Re: [vox] a dual-boot system?
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Re: [vox] a dual-boot system?



On Friday 10 March 2006 12:35 pm, Cylar Z wrote:

> Background. My dad is 60 years old, which means he is
> from a generation that didn't grow up around
> computers. 

Well he's only two years older than I am.  And since I've proved time after 
time that I'm the least knowledgable on this list, it's only appropriate that 
I be the first to reply since the others can correct me.


> Most likely I would accomplish this by converting his
> computer to a dual-boot system, offering the option of
> either Windows XP or Fedora Core 4 w/ GNOME.


> 1. I'm concerned about how smoothly an inexperienced
> user such as my dad will make the transition from
> Windows to a Linux-based GUI such as GNOME.
>
> 2. I'm concerned that the devices attached to the
> system (digital camera, CD burner, printer/scanner/fax
> unit) may not function properly under a Linux OS.  I
> would imagine that many people can and do use a Linux
> workstation with these devices, and that it's mostly a
> question of finding the correct drivers. It seems,
> however, that most manufacturers' driver download
> pages don't include drivers for Linux OS's, only
> Windows and sometimes Mac.
>
> Open query: Is Fedora Core the best choice of the
> available Linux distros given the background I've laid
> out?

I've been using Linux as a desktop user for years (even though I don't know 
much.)  Linux has gotten *unbelievably* easy to use during that time.  I 
started out using GNOME on Red Hat 6.0.  I am strongly biased in favor of 
KDE, and hence am biased against Fedora.  About a year ago I was using GNOME 
on Debian, and didn't like it as much as KDE.

I have not used a scanner, and have not faxed in years.  But if you set your 
dad up with SuSE and KDE *all* of the other things you want to use including 
the digital camera and CD burner will probably work flawlessly with no 
drivers to download.  For me, SuSE has always worked perfectly out of the 
box.  It's the only distro that has done that.  (I now consider myself a 
Debian user.)  A day ago I read a review by someone who said that SuSE 10.0 
has so many drivers that he had no problem getting his laptop up and running.

You can even get much the same result with Debian, believe it or not, except 
that *you* might have to do a little more work setting up the digital camera 
mount point, etc.  (Debian has become the OS for sissies like me.  Real men 
and women use Gentoo.)

KDE has the K3b CD/DVD burning software (which I even use to backup my 
business documents on my Windows 98 partition.)  It's got a GUI.  It's great.  
You might want to try the Knoppix live CD to give K3b a try.

Okay, I've just read Rod's reply, and I disagree with my friend (who is an 
expert.)  SuSE with KDE is similar enough to Windows and easy enough for your 
dad to use.

One final tip.  Both KDE and Gnome have a feature that allows you to boot 
without using a password to log in on.  I guess your dad will want that.

And then of course I'm the only one in the world who obsesses 
about /var/log/messages.  So if I was helping your dad I'd either teach him 
to use anacron, or else modify /etc/crontab to run when he'll likely be on 
the computer.

Let us know how it turns out.

Bob
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