Well, the title is quite explicit.. What?? Linux??! WTF! You don't use Vista man? Nope, I don't! I don't want a resource hogger (15GB of disk space!) so I decided to give Kubuntu a chance... But I'm still a Linux n00b... for now!

So, after long chats with Sundeep a.k.a Dea-|-h, I decided to give Linux a try. He recommended that I start with Kubuntu on Live CD. I downloaded the 700MBs of Kubuntu, burned the ISO to a CD, and booted from it on my laptop. At first, it looks a bit geeky with lots of commands popping up, but after KDE appears, it's magnificent! The Desktop looks so clean and the menu so practicable. However, after some experimentation, I found that I could not access my NTFS partition on which WinXP resided. That kinda annoyed me. After some research on the net, I found that support for NTFS in Linux is still experimental, and that it could safely be read but not written to.

I refered to other sources and friends, and they did not seem to have this problem. Zlug recommended that I install Kubuntu to my hard-disk on my main pc and that it would be a lot better. However, I could not do it immediately since I had important files and didn't want to format.

Then? By some miracle bad luck, the hard-disk on the Laptop failed. I sent it for repairs (since I don't have access to laptop parts and am no laptop technician). It came back with a single 80GB NTFS partition with WinXP SP2 on that. Again, I could not format since I didn't have the SP2 update package at hand. Then I remembered that there are programs that can resize partitions! A quick google search returned quite a few, including Ranish Partition Manager. Another great program is Paragon Partition Manager that supports lots of File Systems, but unfortunately, it's not free. It's great anyways. So I stuck with Ranish. I booted from floppy (yea, call me archaic). I selected the NTFS partition and set the new sizes and it did the rest.

In the end, I came up with 16GB NTFS, 55GB FAT32, and around 10GB of RAW space. Why such a configuration? WinXP SP2 was left intact on the 16GB. I got 55GB of free space to be shared by both Linux and Windows (since NTFS is risky, I prefered FAT32). And got some RAW space to setup Linux. I was ready to go.

I booted on the Live CD and ran the installer. It was easy and well-guided. I had to manually edit the partition table.

Here I did a grave mistake. On the 10GB I formatted it to EXT3. After I proceeded, the Kubuntu Installer notified me that I did not set the Swap File partition. WTF? I returned and checked. Indeed, there was no Swap File in the step where I get to set mount points! :s

Then, I found that I had to create a Primary partition of around 9GB, and an Extended partition of around 1GB for the Swap File from the 10GB of RAW space! I formatted the 9GB with EXT3 and the 1GB with "Linux-Swap"! Here's how you determine Swap partition! Quite weird! How to create partitions? Manually edit the partition table, right-click an empty space on the schema given and select create. Set your sizes and File System and you are off. Simple. But the Linux-Swap was really well hidden! So it's worth paying attention here.

After that, things went smoothly and soon enough, I had a beautiful Kubuntu running on my Laptop, along with my WinXP SP2 untouched! :P

More to come soon...



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