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Guest sha1317

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what will happen if I uninstalled windows.will I still be able to play omn ye imtermet

:!::?:

Of course not, unless you have Linux or something else installed.

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Dual-Booting with Windows and Linux

You can create a dual-boot system with both Linux and Windows, which may be a little intimidating for a newbie or someone not very computer-literate. Linux will make you computer-literate, Windows less so.

Anyway, you can try various Linux "distributions" (versions) very easily, since most are free and many now have "Live CD" available. A "Live CD" can run the operating system straight from the CD without installing it, which is an awesome way to try Linux distros without making a commitment. You just boot from the CD (put the CD in, reboot your computer).

Linux is open-source, meaning anyone can modify it...if they then distribute it to others (whether free or paid does not matter), they have to make the "source code" with their modifications available so others can do the same (the GPL liscence requires that derivitaves of open-source are also open-source).

Linux Distributions

Many software packages for Linux (and some for Windows and Mac) are open source. So it's very easy for a person or organization to customize the Linux "kernel" (core part of operating system that interfaces between user and hardware), and also install other open-source packages, and distribute it. So you can get various Linux "distros" with various desktops (the desktop is seperate, unlike Windows), web browsers, email clients, document editors, multi-media players, etc, etc.

There are hundreds of Linux distributions. You can go to http://www.distrowatch.com to see the most popular Linux distributions at any given time and go to the distros' websites.

Hardware Support and Operating Systems

Just be aware...some people mistakenly think Linux doesn't have good hardware support while Windows does. That's bull. Linux works on a ton of platforms (computers with a typical set of hardware types), Windows only works on PCs!

BUT when you buy a computer with the OS already installed, the computer manufacturer has written or hunted down any needed custom-written hardware drivers for hardware not supported by a "generic" driver. This is different from buying Windows (or any other OS) on a CD, where the "generic" drivers may or may not be sufficient. When you do an install from a retail CD, you need to investigate your hardware first and hunt down any drivers as needed.

The great thing about "Live CDs", again, is you can test. So, if something doesn't work or work perfectly (or you can't access advanced hardware configuration features, if there are any), you research it and download the driver so you can compile it into the Linux kernel or load it as a module. Many times, additional drivers are included on the CD but not installed by default (so it doesn't "bloat" somebody's system with drivers for hardware they don't own). If that's the case, it's easy.

For example, on this computer, a "clean install" of Windows XP Pro (from a school-provided CD) did not properly support my monitor, so the screensaver never turned on and the monitor didn't power down after a period of unused time after I specified in my settings. With Gentoo Linux, everything worked perfect (but I don't want to install Gentoo on this machine for other reasons). With Knoppix Linux, I couldn't even use the system because my monitor was overcome by black-and-green lines.

On another computer, I couldn't run KDE (a desktop) until I installed the "i810" graphics driver (for Intel i810 chipset with onboard graphics; it doesn't have a seperate graphics card), so until then I could only work from the command line. My monitor did not work with the generic "VESA" driver, but Gentoo made it easy enough to use i810.

This is why non-computer-literates get confused about hardware support. With a retail CD, people can have serious troubles with Windows just as they can with Linux...or minor bugs...or no problems at all. It depends what drivers you get on CD, and what's installed. Very rarely is a driver not actually available somewhere, and usually only for very new, unusual hardware, or really old hardware that isn't the best idea to support. Unlike Windows, Linux supports a pretty wide range of "legacy" (old) hardware, unless there's a good reason not to.

Linux Support

Most Linux distros have forums where users (which include people from newbies to IT gurus) support each other. A paid Linux version also includes formal tech support. Some Linux distros give you a choice of free or paid with formal tech support (cheaper than Windows, for real, and not per-phone call). For example Ubuntu Linux sells professional tech support for less than you would pay to buy Windows in the store. You also have the Ubuntu user forums to help you.

Packages

As mentioned before, various Linux distros will include various packages. You can choose what will actually get installed, I mean you can choose not to install anything except the most basic OS (with Windows you have little choice). Linux takes up less space than Windows, and some distos of Linux always make the default install fit on a Live CD or even a USB stick! Many other distros don't do this by default, but have seperate downloads for such things.

You have your choice of web browser(s), email client(s), groupware app(s) (groupware allows members of an organization to communicate via shared calendars, email, chat, etc.), text editors, cd-players, educational software, database apps, graphics editors, web servers (to run a website from your computer), email servers (to run email services from your computer), firewalls, spam filters....and the list goes on, and on, and on.

Many distros include some sort of package-management system, allowing you to download and install a huge assortment of packages from a central location (no need to hunt the Internet or stores for them).

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