Monday, 8 August 2022

Computer joys!

As some might know I am a computer lover, particularly because I am also a Linux fan. I detest Windows and its money grabbing ideas. You remember – 'We will not go beyond Windows 10, it is the last O/S'. Ah, yes and so we now are forced to have Windows 11 and apparently by 2025 there might be Windows 12. I think it is deplorable! Linux in all its flavours (pick the one that suits you best) is free to use and does not cost a penny. Linux Mint is very Windows like but with much all Linux flavours, it helps if you are not afraid to learn how to operate the command line. It is not difficult, if I can do it, you certainly could as well! I build my own desktop but I have family eying it because its pretty powerful and they are becoming quite adept at using a computer of the calibre that the Universities use for research. Anyway, so I purchased a Mini! No, not the car, a mini-computer. 500Gb SSD storage, 16Gb memory and an AMD Ryzen 7 processor. How do they do it for the price I paid! Less than £400!

When it came it had Windows 11 already installed. So, I did not waste time to delete that and loaded Linux Mint 21. That sounds simple but what you have to do is make a bootable USB with an iso file. This can be downloaded from the Internet. Then the USB has to be made bootable. To do this you will use your still working Windows 11 or 10 system, and download a program called Rufus. Install that and copy your iso file onto your computer as well. Best is to see it on the desktop screen. Rufus will copy the iso file and expand that and make the USB bootable. Next you take the USB and put that in a suitable slot on the computer to be changed (in my case the Mini). It will when started probably tell you it cannot be done. The reason is that you also have to change the boot order. In most computers you get that by pressing F12 or Delete and the boot process will show up. Set the first choice available (there are about six possible choices) to boot from USB. Switch off and on again and now it will boot into the new Linux system. You will get the option to install the complete system or stay as you are. You obviously can do this on the one computer you copied the iso to as well. The process to follow is the same. Unfortunately there are computers, laptops in particular that have been ‘locked’ into Windows. You cannot change it. My laptop, an Acer, is like that. But I can  have two O/S’es, so I just ignore Windows and boot into Linux. It will take half of your available memory. You can check how much by using a program called GParted. A partition checking/altering software suite. The only thing I’ll be missing by using a Mini is you will have to purchase a DVD drive as there is no CD capability. The way I circumvent that is to copy all the relevant bits I need onto another non-bootable USB drive. There are other ways through linking two or more computers and sort out the network that way. But here everything works well, the Ryzen 7 processor is unbelievable. Good choice!

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