Linux instead of Win 7?

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Biffons

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I have an older Noteobook supplied with Win 7 wich gets a new SSD. I do not want to use Win 7 anymore because of the support / updates ending next Januar.

Can / should I use Linux now? Can I go on using all of my programs then? Does Linux have a firewall, an antivir program?
 

Macboatmaster

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Generally speaking windows programs do not work on Linux but many have the Linux equivalent
On a basic installation a Firewall and AV are not included but the firewall can easily be activated via the terminal
https://www.techadvisor.co.uk/feature/linux/does-linux-need-antivirus-3678945/

Which Linux do you have in mind and if you are not familiar with Linux I suggest you try running it in ram first to see if you like it
If you wish so to try see this

https://forums.techguy.org/threads/i-cant-disable-secure-boot-to-boot-windows-from-cd.1221777/page-2
my post 16#
Although suggested on that topic for a different reason, than trying it you can use the same procedure to boot your computer and run it in ram.
 

TerryNet

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Can I go on using all of my programs then?
Yes, if all your programs are developed and maintained for most Linux distributions. Firefox and Thunderbird are two that come immediately to mind.
 

Biffons

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Many thanks!

I do not have any idea of Linux, so I do not know which version I should use.

Thank you for the links.

So I guess, one of the biggest problems is that the (most of them are portable) programs I am used to will not run. Yes, an equivalent, but to get able to use them, to set them up with my own / old settings, I guess, will be an unbelievable effort.

Yes, Thunderbird, Firefox I use, portable. May be one can just copy them to Linux. To set them up a second time, for Linux, bookmarks, own settings, e-mail accounts, etc. would be extremely much effort, I guess.

May be I could use Linux for a second Notebook, additionally. If the effort is not that big to get to know that system and to install it, set it up.
 

flavallee

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Are you using Windows 7 Professional SP1 or Windows 7 Home Premium SP1?

If you're using Windows 7 Professional SP1, don't be so quick to dump it.
It's still supported for another year, and it's possible that time can be extended another 2 - 3 years.

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managed

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Unfortunately you can't just copy Windows programs into a Linux OS, you have to install them using a Linux compatible version of each program (if they exist).
 

Biffons

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Are you using Windows 7 Professional SP1 or Windows 7 Home Premium SP1?
A normal Home version, I would say, I do not remember such like Premium.

If you're using Windows 7 Professional SP1, don't be so quick to dump it.
It's still supported for another year, and its possible that time can be extended another 2 - 3 years.
I have read one has to pay for the updates for that version. May be Microsoft will extend the support anyway for both of them, but I would not want to rely on it.

Unfortunately you can't just copy Windows programs into a Linux OS, you have to install them using a Linux compatible version of each program (if they exist).
So I completely would have to begin from scratch. For each single program...if available for / working with Linux...or an equivalent....I gues I would not survive that.
 

Macboatmaster

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Indeed I agree with my colleague managed - as I said
It would help if you mentioned which programs you have in mind
For instance as mentioned browsers are readily available on all Linux and Ubuntu for instance comes with Firefox
Microsoft Office programs will not run in Linux but the data saved in Office programs can be easily transferred to the Linux Office program

The way forward is to make a complete system image of the present windows 7 setup
and then if you do not like Linux you can easily go back

As I said try it first in ram - you can make that CD if your computer has a CD drive in just a few minutes and boot the computer from it.

Thunderbird should present no problems
http://kb.mozillazine.org/Moving_from_Windows_to_Linux
 
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@ Biffons:-

Actually, you could be in luck.

One way to run Windows apps/progs in Linux is using something called WINE. It's not an emulator; rather, it creates, and runs a real-time Windows environment inside Linux itself.

Running many Windows apps in Linux can be rather a minefield; stuff that runs well under one version of WINE can often quit running under the next release.....then perhaps run (after a fashion) with the one after that. By & large, however, WINE is steadily improving.

Most Windows apps have to be 'installed' to the simulated 'C:\drive'. I have found, however, that many Windows 'portable apps' (especially those packaged by PortableApps.com) nearly always run under WINE. They also don't write to the 'simulated' registry; they are totally self-contained. And these don't 'install' to the 'C:\drive' at all; if you try to do so, they will fail.....miserably. They're meant to run from outside of the 'C:\drive; I run around 15-20 of these from a directory (folder, if you like) in my home, or user directory.

And they mostly run really rather well.....

-------------------------

As for recommendations; well, although I run a lightweight 'distro' (short for 'distribution') called 'Puppy' Linux, I would not recommend it to a beginner. You want something that's not too different from what you're used to.....and for those used to Win 7, Linux 'Mint' is the way to go. It's laid out very like Win 7.....and behaves very much like it, too.

The final point I want to make is that you don't install software like you do in Windows. You do NOT search around the web to find programs, with all the attendant dangers of installing malware by mistake with a 'dodgy' installer. Each and every Linux distribution makes use of huge 'repositories' of software guaranteed to work with that distro. It's kinda like the Google or Apple 'AppStores', and these apps are thoroughly checked for 'nasties', and given a clean bill of health before they're even Ok-ed to appear in the repositories.

Any further questions.....ask away.


Mike. ;)
 

Biffons

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There - if I wanted it to use for daily work on the main Notebook - are a lot of programs I wanted to use with Linux, Lightroom, Scrivener, Thunderbird, Firefox, different browsers (Opera, Chrome, etc.), PhraseExpress, Aimp, foobar, FreeFileSync, BeyondCompare, Open or LibreOffice, FreeCommander and very many more.

The way forward is to make a complete system image of the present windows 7 setup
and then if you do not like Linux you can easily go back
I use Win 10. On the other Notebook there is nothing installed on, so no back up to do.

As I said try it first in ram - you can make that CD if your computer has a CD drive in just a few minutes and boot the computer from it.
USB-Stick also? Yes, a good idea, but to get a similar state on Linux like it is now on Win would take months or years, I assume. So it seems there would by no chance. But anyway, I might use Linux with a few programs only on the second computer.

Thank you for the link.
 

Biffons

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Thank you, Mike!

One way to run Windows apps/progs in Linux is using something called WINE. It's not an emulator; rather, it creates, and runs a real-time Windows environment inside Linux itself.
That, WINE, is a so called distribution of Linux? Or additional to use with Linux (Mint) (yes, working / behaving / looking similar to Win 7 or 10 would be fine)?

I have found, however, that many Windows 'portable apps' (especially those packaged by PortableApps.com) nearly always run under WINE.
And I could copy (portable) programs (from PortApps) / settings of those programs from Win to Wine or have to set them up again?

Each and every Linux distribution makes use of huge 'repositories' of software guaranteed to work with that distro.
So each distro has its own programs being offered / running on it. So if a program runs on one distro it might not run on the other.

The repositories, sounds very good, no circuitously searching for programs.

So I had to download "Linux 'Mint". And Wine? And then just install?
 

Biffons

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What does "supported until..." mean? No updates anymore after support ends? One has to install another Linux / new version then?


Very many Mints. How to find the right one? Ubuntu? I had thought that is still another OS. But it is Linux obviously. Very confusing all this.
 
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Hi Biffons :)

I see you are considering Linux as a replacement.
Lots of good choices, none wrong, some simply more 'comfortable' depending on how you want to use it.
Mint is a good choice, imo.
At this link you'll find choices less confusing,
https://linuxmint.com/download.php

I've run the Cinnamon 64bit version in the past, so I'm more familiar with it than the other Mint versions.

Linux isn't for everyone. Hope that doesn't scare you away. Unlike Windows, it's up to users for support, and people like the above help out nicely.
There is a new learning curve. But Linux distributions like Mint are now configured in a way that adapting to them is pretty easy.

About Wine.
Not everyone likes it, various reasons.
Yes, it works for many/most Windows apps.
But some Windows apps like PaperPort or Dragon Naturally Speaking don't run or don't run well in Wine.
It's a good idea to do a google search for compatibility to see what will and what won't run in Wine, that you absolutely need.
There are many Linux equivalents, and yet there isn't 100% coverage.

I run a distribution of Puppy from both DVDs and flash drives. I use it for my connection to the Internet. I like it a lot. But that's me.
But I have a financial data base going back about 19 years of PaperPort files that can only be read in a Windows environment, so I'll always need a computer with Windows on it. But I don't/won't need a replacement according to Microsoft's schedule.

I could dual boot.
I could run a Live distro, like Puppy, from a Windows machine.
Or, and my preference, run Windows on a dedicated computer that is never connected to a network or the Internet( which I've always done) for security reasons.......and run Puppy on another computer for everything else I want to do.
My point. Everyone has different needs and uses computers a bit differently.
There is no 'only one good way'.

There is the 'Microsoft way'.
There are the 'many ways of Linux'.

That said, I think you'll find Cinnamon Mint a good place to start a Linux experience. And it may be all that you need.

I'm a Firefox fan. Have been since almost it's beginning.
It looks and feels the same in both Windows and Linux.
Since I spend most of my computing experience on the Internet, it's spent looking at my browser and there is no difference in appearance or usage, whether in Windows or a distro of Linux.
 
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@ Biffons:-

Very many Mints. How to find the right one? Ubuntu? I had thought that is still another OS. But it is Linux obviously. Very confusing all this.
Unfortunately, you've kinda hit the nail on the head. The single biggest complaint about Linux from many 'newbies' is that there's too much choice! In Windows, you're used to having only one way of doing things; the standard desktop is all you get.

In Linux, there's often a hundred and one ways to set things up to your liking. At least a dozen different DEs (desktop environments). Dozens of filemanagers. Dozens of text editors. Several different apps for accessing the apps in those repositories.

And then there's the problem that beginners have trouble determining what Linux apps are equivalent to their Windows counterparts, due to the funny-sounding names!

Have a read of this; it explains the difference in philosophy between Windows & Linux really rather well:-

http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm

Yes, it can be a rather steep learning curve.....which is why a lot of people install Linux alongside Windows, so that they can boot into either one, and learn Linux at their own pace until they feel happy with it. (Unless you're like me, of course. I'd run XP from day one until EOL, and was fed up to the back teeth with Windows. I wiped Windoze out of my life, and dived head-first into the Linux experience, overnight.....)

It worked for me; I've always had an enquiring mind. But many folks are so used to Windows, and the thought of trying a different OS can seem a huge step, and a frightening one at that. When all's said & done, an OS is simply a mechanism for running the apps & programs that 'sit on top of it'. Never forget that. And Johnny's right; Windoze and Linux are, strictly speaking, best kept apart.....on separate machines.

There's nothing magical about it. Mint 'Cinnamon's a good choice. If I was a beginner, I'd feel right at home with it.


Mike. ;)
 

Biffons

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Hi Johnny,

Thank you for the link.

Not a (real) replacement acutally, I mainly will go on using Win 10 on the "productive" Notebook. The old Notebook is supplied with Win 7, so there is no Win 10 licence for it and the support for Win 7 will end soon, that is why I now consider to use Linux on the old removed SSD from the "productive" Notebook assembled in the old Notebook. And so I could start smoothely, try some / less (of my old) programs at the beginning and see what happens. I haven't used Win 7 since years anymore but it is all the same to me, I guess, which Win OS I use.

Linux isn't for everyone. Hope that doesn't scare you away. Unlike Windows, it's up to users for support, and people like the above help out nicely.
I have never asked Win for support, but only users in forums, so that would not matter.

I run a distribution of Puppy from both DVDs and flash drives.
Not installed? Isn't it much slower then?

I guess, one cannot just exchange the versions, WINE and Puppy and others, if installed on a computer. Besides of running them from different USB-Sticks (or the same one, multibootable?). And one could run the same / identcial distros on USB-Sticks on different computers? So the identical, same distro on the same USB-Stick working for an Acer Notebook also works with an Asus?

That said, I think you'll find Cinnamon Mint a good place to start a Linux experience. And it may be all that you need.
Without WINE? Or can WINE be used additionally to it?

I'm a Firefox fan. Have been since almost it's beginning.
It looks and feels the same in both Windows and Linux.
Since I spend most of my computing experience on the Internet, it's spent looking at my browser and there is no difference in appearance or usage, whether in Windows or a distro of Linux.
That is good (not because Win is a great OS, but I would need no new knowlegde for Firefox). So when the portable Firefox from PortApps will work on that Linux I just could copy the settins from the Firefox on the old Win?

Thank you very much!
 
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