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Going back to Linux

October 23, 2012

All Linux distros are making very easy to switch your desktop from Windows. No need any more to go through a full installation on your hard disk, partitioning it and hoping all drivers for your particular machine will be included. More if you are using a laptop or a netbook, always very picky them when it comes to drivers for using particular hardware.

Now you can run the distro you want to try from a DVD player, test the distro you want to try and Presto! You are on Linux! [Now for me is 2012, but this has been available since the beginning of Linux!]

With the new netbooks or bare slim notebooks with no DVD you cannot try the DVDs that you can get from magazines like Linux Format, Ubuntu User, Linux User, etc, etc. But again Linux has always very light in order to run from a small USB (do you remember or still use TinyCore?).

Problem

If your laptop is running Windows which is the easy way to install the distro from the DVD you have into a USB drive and boot from it?

Many ways to do it, and I remember some very low level, but with PenDriveLinux for Windows it has been a breeze. Just have ready the ISO image for the Linux distro you want to install, run PenDriveLinux, select the distro you want to install, point to your ISO file, reserve some space for application data and in a few minutes you have a bootable USB drive with your Linux distro! Voila!….

Booting

Voila? Of course, you insert the USB in the laptop, restart windows and you hope to see the Linux booting, but… Windows is back. Of course! Need to change the order of the booting device, set to the USB instead of the Hard Drive and restart and…

What if your netbook, laptop is an ASUS?

It didn’t work. Clicking on <F2> while booting brought the BIOS setup screen, when to Booting Options, add the USB path, save and exit, reboot and again Windows is booting.

A quick search on the VIP Asus Support Forum was enough to find a useful tip for Asus. When booting and when you see the Asus logo (BIOS booting) press <ESC> and a screen will pop up asking from which drive yo want to boot, select the USB option and your Linux distro is kicked on and you are on Linux back again!

Linux Mint xfce Desktop Default

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