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  • Good choices for your Windows-to-Linux transition

    Home Forums AskWoody blog Good choices for your Windows-to-Linux transition

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      • #2368133
        Sandra Henry-Stocker
        AskWoody MVP

        LINUX By Sandra Henry-Stocker If you’re a long-standing Windows user thinking about moving to Linux, there are several distributions in particular tha
        [See the full post at: Good choices for your Windows-to-Linux transition]

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2368305
        MrJimPhelps
        AskWoody MVP

        You spoke highly of Ubuntu as a good choice for moving from Windows to Linux. I disagree with the choice of Ubuntu because of the lack of a start menu in Ubuntu. I tried out Ubuntu recently, but I simply couldn’t get much work done without that start menu.

        I settled on Xubuntu, which is Ubuntu with the xcfe interface. I find Xubuntu very easy to use, and it is because of the start menu that is a part of the xcfe interface.

        Linux Mint also comes with the xcfe interface if you like.

        I haven’t tried Cinnamon, but I have heard a lot of good things about it.

        On a related note, if you are going from MAC to Linux, Elementary OS would be a good choice, because it has a MAC-style interface.

        Group "L" (Linux Mint)
        with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
        5 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2368350
        anonymous
        Guest

        My recommendation is Ubuntu Budgie.  It doesn’t have the awful gnome desktop Ubuntu does, the ancient desktop Xubuntu does nor the beautiful but flaky Plasma desktop Kubuntu does.  The name sounds like Monty Python coined it; I wish I’d taken it seriously sooner, it’s an excellent distro.

        Mint (used every desktop) is where many newbies start.  Budgie’s just as easy and much more capable, like a high powered Cinnamon.

        It’s simple, not a resource hog, has real graphics card and touchpad support, two things rare in Linux, lots of extensions, very customizable, very clean, attractive desktop.

        Regardless, and I’ve tried almost every distro on the three main branches, the Debian branch, for typical users is the most developed.  So, use some kind of Ubuntu derivative, you’d like Budgie a lot.  Kind of a cross between a Mac and Windows desktop, easy to navigate, has a useful dock, again something rare.

        Don’t do what I did starting Linux by being really “smart” and diving into Arch, destroying it repeatedly, moving to Debian, then Fedora.  Well, the distros got simpler but none are for newbies.  With such a misguided approach, I do get some credit for perseverence 🙂

        I use Ubuntu minimal in our home server, no issues for over a year, runs 24/7 and I don’t have to deal with gnome very often. (Gnome looks and behaves like a phone interface, why???)  Budgie’s on an ancient laptop, everything else is Win 10 Pro.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2368375
        Ascaris
        AskWoody MVP

        Ubuntu proper comes with the GNOME 3 desktop, which I think is the worst desktop of them all. My XPS 13 came with it, and it was kind of bewildering at first to figure out how to start the applications without having to navigate to the actual location of the executable and start it from there. I figured it out (it’s the icon that looks like the old one on Android that would open the app drawer), and I managed to make it work until I learned what I needed (and got that thing off of my new PC!), but for users accustomed to Windows, it’s kind of an abrupt transition. Some people like GNOME, of course, but the “simplify to the point that it can hardly do anything” philosophy of the GNOME devs, along with what seems like making things different than Windows for no other reason than to be different, make it my least favorite.

        That said, though, Ubuntu also comes with lots of other desktops. The name usually is a mix of the desktop and Ubuntu. For the KDE Plasma version, it’s Kubuntu; for the Xfce version, it’s Xubuntu, and so on.

        While Ubuntu has its faults, I still suggest something within the Ubuntu family to new users. If there is one distro (family) that is likely to have an out-of-the-box printer driver or other application ready to install, it is Ubuntu. My printer driver, for example, came with drivers for Ubuntu (and derivatives) and the Red Hat family (Fedora, RHEL, CentOS). They use CUPS, which is pretty standard among distros, but installing them is only simple and automated on the Ubuntu and Red Hat families, which most Windows newbies would certainly prefer.

        The other example that comes to mind is the Linux clone of InSSIDer, called LinSSID. The last time I looked (it’s been probably a year ago by now!), they offer a ready-to-go installer for Ubuntu and derivatives, but for any other distro, you’re looking at building it from source, and while that’s usually not much harder than copy-pasting a short series of commands into the terminal window, the instructions only tell you how to do that in Ubuntu. It was not hard for me to translate that over to Fedora (which I was using at the time), but it is a bit much to ask for newbies.

        It would be nice if LinSSID devs would build for more than just Ubuntu, but it’s their choice, and certainly some devs may pick Arch and derivatives (like Manjaro) or some other distro as the one they support, the odds are best on Ubuntu, as it is the biggest. Mint, Ubuntu, Pop!OS, as well as my own choice, KDE Neon, are all beneficiaries of that size, and sometimes that also extends upstream to Debian (from which Ubuntu is derived).

        Mint Cinnamon is my usual first suggestion, or something KDE-based for users who like a ton of options (Kubuntu mainly, or Neon for those who want the latest KDE stuff).

        Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2368414
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        Of all the DE’s (Desktop Environment’s) I prefer the stability of the Mint Mate or the Ubuntuless Debian Mate on both older and newer hardware, nice balance in resources with minimal loss in fluid operation. I also prefer not to go with the most recent version to retain system stability.
        However, one thing I’ve noticed with XFCE, it gets bloated, clunky with inconsistencies drifting in to the panel. Although nowadays the xfce panel can be saved and restored should something go awry but still suffers from panel bloat creep over time.

        For that old dusty device in the cupboard/drawer/storeroom, LXQT or LXDE is a very good choice on old netbooks and legacy hardware. LXDE is more mature and lightweight and the similarly light LXQT (newer replacement for LXDE based on QT) is gaining a cult following and improving albeit slowly with PCManFM as it’s file manager.
        As for the choices of file managers, there are also handy timesaving extensions to add that can make navigation and integration that much better for your needs. Choose wisely and research, it’s the only way to get what YOU need.

        | Quality over Quantity |
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2368416
          EricB
          AskWoody Plus

          Linux Mint with the Mate desktop was my choice when I migrated from Vista to Linux on on old system when Vista reached EOL.  Before making that choice I evaluated many distros (e.g., Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, Mandrake, Suse, Redhat, etc.) in VMs.  And when I replaced that old system with a modern one running Win10 Pro 20H2 I installed current versions of Mint/Mate in a VM!

          But most of my Linux education was received by running Gentoo in a VM on that old system.  Gentoo was an interesting but it required much more attention than a non-source based distro.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2368671
        WSRumplestiltskin
        AskWoody Plus

        I have two rather simple questions:

        I’m still using Windows 7, and the desktop is configured in “Classic Windows” (i.e., like Windows XP and earlier).  (See attachment.)  What is the best Linux distribution to approximate this look-and-feel?

        Will executables (.exe) files written to run under Windows run under Linux?  I’m particularly concerned about all of the utility programs that I have in my software library.

        Thanks.

        • #2368747
          Ascaris
          AskWoody MVP

          It’s more a question of what desktop environment would best approximate Windows.In Linux, the top level stuff that provide the look and feel is not tightly coupled to the system stuff as it is in Windows, so there are several choices. I hope this is not too confusing!

          Most distros have variants using different desktops, and each desktop will largely look and act the same on different distros. KDE Plasma, the desktop I use, was pretty much the same on Manjaro, OpenSUSE, Fedora, Kubuntu, and Neon. The distros have their own ways of doing some things (like updating) at a deeper level, but the desktop that it uses has the most impact on the look and feel. The distro may choose to customize the desktop (as with Pop!OS, which uses GNOME), but mostly the desktops use the same defaults across various distros.

          Most of the desktop environments are set up to be a lot like Windows by default. GNOME, used by Ubuntu, is an exception. It can be configured to be more like Windows, but there are other choices that provide that with less work. Cinnamon, Mate, Xfce, KDE Plasma, and LxQt are all similar to Windows (taskbar at bottom, start button on the left, clock and system tray on the right).

          Linux Mint offers the first three desktop choices above (Cinnamon, Mate, Xfce). Of those three, I prefer Cinnamon.

          Overall, I prefer and use KDE Plasma, as it has a lot of customization options, which allows me to tune it to my preferences.  Some people might be intimidated by that many things to play with, and the others offer fewer choices, with GNOME being the most simplified (but also the least like Windows of the popular choices). Xfce is meant to be light and minimalist, and KDE is quite the opposite (though it used to have a reputation for being RAM, CPU, and graphically heavy, it has become a lot leaner in recent years).

          It is also possible to install another desktop environment other than the one a distro came with, or even other than the choices that were offered. It’s better to stick with the one a given setup came with until you get some more experience, though.

          The bottom line is just to pick one of the beginner-friendly distros and get started with it. It may or may not end up being the right desktop/distro for you, but you won’t really know what fits and what does not until you get some experience with it. That will give you the knowledge to recognize whether or not what you are using is right for you, and if not, and which direction to go to find it.

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2368802
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          WSRumplestiltstkin has asked: “Will executables (.exe) files written to run under Windows run under Linux? I’m particularly concerned about all of the utility programs that I have in my software library.

          The answer is “NO” (*), because the organization of binary files is too different in Windows and Linux. If you happened to have the source code of an application and the right compilers for LINUX, the solution is, running LINUX, to recompile the source code and obtain a LINUX-compatible executable.

          Many applications commonly in use, notably browsers such as FireFox, Waterfox and I believe also Chrome, have LINUX compatible versions.

          This is not a problem unique to LINUX: the same is true when migrating from Windows to macOS (the Mac’s OS), or from macOS to LINUX — and vice versa.

          (*) Not in a direct way: let’s say dropping a Windows application in a LINUX PC and expecting it to run: that mot likely won’t work. But in some cases one can use something called “WINE” that is a sort of on-the-fly translator of Windows system calls made by an Windows .exe file to equivalent calls to the LINUX kernel, allowing the application to work with LINUX as if it were under Windows (or at least that is the idea). I have no experience using it, so others here might wish to help by commenting on this.

          There is information on Wine here:  https://www.winehq.org/

          The other possibility already mentioned, compiling the source files of applications, when these are available, is something that often can be done using the free compilers developed by the Free Software Foundation and distributed in the GNU’s compiler library, that contains several of the most often used compilers.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Mojave & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. Webroot SA AV and Malwarebytes.

      • #2368792
        beetle19
        AskWoody Plus

        Any recommendations for an inexpensive laptop to run Linux?

        • #2368797
          DrBonzo
          AskWoody Plus

          My experience with Mint 19.2 Cinnamon is that almost anything will run it fairly well. I have Mint on two 12 year old laptops, one with an Atom processor (1 GB memory! and a 250 GB HDD) and one with a Celeron (4 GB memory and 300 GB HDD). They both do a credible job. They won’t win any speed contests but for email, youtube videos and having a handful of tabs open at once they get the job done. They would be a bit weak for serious photo editing, but would handle typical office word processing, small spreadsheets, and probably powerpoint-equivalent presentation stuff as long as they didn’t have a lot of video and sound.

          4 GB memory and a 500 GB HDD should do you just fine. I’d be tempted to get a certified refurbished machine from a major manufacturer, and if you can get an SSD instead of the HDD, so much the better.

          • #2368813
            beetle19
            AskWoody Plus

            How about AMD processors?

            • #2368822
              Paul T
              AskWoody MVP

              Fine on AMD chips as well.

              cheers, Paul

            • #2368829
              DrBonzo
              AskWoody Plus

              @beetle19 – Funny you should mention that. Earlier tonight I installed Mint 19.2 Cinnamon on a 12 year old HP pavilion laptop with an AMD Athlon Neo 64 bit processor. It’s running fine, and a whole lot better than it did with Windows Vista that it came with.

            • #2368959
              anonymous
              Guest

              Download the Mint 20.1 Cinnamon “Edge” ISO that’s Shipping with the 5.8 HWE(Hardware Enablement)  Linux Kernel that’s better for Newer AMD Ryzen APUs/CPUs.

              • #2368971
                Ascaris
                AskWoody MVP

                And if that is not new enough, the Ubuntu repo has a 5.10 OEM kernel that may work for you. The Dell XPS 13 (“Developer’s Edition”) I bought a couple of months ago came with Ubuntu 20.04 with the 5.6 OEM kernel preinstalled, and it self-updated to 5.10 OEM. As far as I can tell, it is a standard Ubuntu kernel but with various OEM drivers or extensions added. These things will eventually make their way to the official kernel, but OEMs don’t want to wait. They should be fine on any other machine too… I installed the 5.10 on my Dell G3 (which originally came with Windows 10).

                And if even that is not new enough, you can download mainline kernels from the Ubuntu mainline repo. Mainline kernels are those released by the Linux foundation kernel team, without the modifications that most distros add to them. Ubuntu says the mainline kernels are for testing, but of course, you can use them for whatever you want! Just don’t expect them to give any support if you’re paying for one of their support options.

                Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

      • #2368981
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        This being thread about transitioning from WINDOWS to LINUX, it occurs to me that one issue of some interest to a WIN user who is thinking of moving to LINUX would be whether it is possible to run Windows applications and executables under Linux; and if its possible, then how.

        I have answered that to some extent earlier, here #2368802 , but my answer was qualified by the fact that I am not familiar with Wine and whatever else might be there to make it possible to run common Windows applications a person transitioning to Linux might want to keep using. Besides the obvious solution of installing Linux in double-boot with Windows.

        So if anyone here knows anything about this little detail, please comment about it for the benefit of those wondering what it would be like to move from Windows to Linux and, in particular, whether they can continue to work as usual after such a move is complete.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Mojave & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. Webroot SA AV and Malwarebytes.

        • #2368985
          Ascaris
          AskWoody MVP

          It’s hard to give any specific info about running Windows programs on Linux using WINE or Proton (the Steam fork of WINE, not the fourth UI of Firefox that just landed recently). Some things work, and while it is improving all the time, there are still things that don’t work. If the thing requires kernel drivers or directly accesses hardware, it most likely will not work in WINE, but things that use APIs like DirectX 11 or Vulkan stand a good chance of working. DirectX 12 support is a work in progress, and I have never tried it, but all of the DirectX (Direct3d) 11 games I have tried have worked fantastically well, with frame rates on par with native Windows.

          Some games use kernel-mode drivers for anti-cheat purposes, and these have been problematic with WINE. A game should never really need kernel permissions, though!

          WINE also works with a lot of non-game applications. From the computer’s perspective, they’re all programs… the distinction between games and non-games is a human one. Whether things like Microsoft Office will work on WINE, I do not know.

          For things that do not work on WINE, a virtual machine may be a good solution. I use VMs for a few programs that don’t lend themselves to WINE (like my Corsair programs for programming the onboard profiles on my mouse and keyboard). VMs come with a bigger performance penalty than WINE, though for many things it doesn’t matter (like my example).

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

          2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2368990
        NaNoNyMouse
        AskWoody Lounger

        This is a thread of interest to me as I’m hoping at some point to ditch Windows and move over to Linux

        I really don’t care what my actual desktop would look like under Linux. As I’ve written elsewhere, my Windows desktop is always reduced to the bare minimum. A black background with some commonly used apps, a taskbar with some commonly used apps, and a Start Menu, with some commonly and some not-so-commonly used apps. From as long ago as I can remember I always turn all Windows visual effects, and other distractions, firmly off

        I’m pretty sure that the majority of my commonly used apps all have Linux versions: Unity, Gimp, LMMS, Audacity, VLC, OpenOffice, Inkscape, Blender, Notepad++, Firefox, Thunderbird. However, I have no idea how simple or otherwise it would be to move existing Project data for some of those apps (especially Unity) across from Windows to Linux. I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t be as straightforward as simply copying the files

        In terms of apps my main sticking point at present is Daz Studio. There is a Daz forum thread (that goes on and on and on) about the possibility of running it in Linux (possibly by using Wine, I can’t now recall), but I don’t believe that there is a natively Linux based version, and even if there was I have a TON of Daz-specific assets that would need moving across, and which couldn’t simply be recreated from scratch

        So, I could dual-boot, I guess, or I could bite the bullet, set up Linux on a spare pc, and simply find out all the undoubted problems associated with the exercise by practical experimentation. But while I’m doing all that I’m not getting any actual work (if you could call it that) done, so I’m kinda umming and ahhhing, and putting it all off until tomorrow…

        And tomorrow never comes… And I keep on using Windows, and hating myself for doing so

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2369001
          Alex5723
          AskWoody Plus

          For indispensable Windows software you can dual-boot or install Windows in VM on Linux which I think is a more elegant solution.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2369003
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Dual boot Windows and Linux installed and running independently but able to exchange files, or running Windows in a virtual machine should work, but both solutions have a little, tiny itty bitty drawback:

        The poor user that wants to get away from Windows becomes tied up to Windows, to the endless hassles of patches and stacks or whatever evil nastiness MS pours down from the heights of Redmond, in Washington State. And, of course, depending on what OS is pre-installed in the computer, one may have to buy Windows, install it, use the key to bring it lo life … This is to say, one would have all the hassle of dealing with Windows plus all the hassle of learning to use Linux. What is not to love in all that?

        So, is that it?

        Also, several applications for Windows that can be run under Linux have been mentioned, but those that are used by most people to do their work have not. How about Office? How about Photoshop? If not exactly those, are there applications for Linux that do much the same things, even let one use Office files? Some of these topics have been discussed in other threads, so perhaps someone here could recommend some particularly informative ones?

        I wish I could help more with this, but since January 2020 I have been using my Mac as my working horse machine and have not paid any more attention to Windows and, consequently, to the ways to move from Windows to Linux. I have Linux in dual boot with Windows 7 in my old Win 7 PC, with Win 7 permanently disconnected from the Internet. But if one buys a new PC, it is very likely to come with Windows 10 pre-installed, unless one buys one with Linux preinstalled. My own Linux plans are to install it in dual boot or in a VM in my Mac. I already have Linux in dual boot with Win 7 in my old PC and that combination of computers and operating systems is going to be, for me, an ideal setup. But not what people interested in moving from Windows to Linux are likely to be after.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Mojave & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. Webroot SA AV and Malwarebytes.

        • #2369184
          Ascaris
          AskWoody MVP

          And, of course, depending on what OS is pre-installed in the computer, one may have to buy Windows, install it, use the key to bring it lo life … This is to say, one would have all the hassle of dealing with Windows plus all the hassle of learning to use Linux.

          That’s not really it. You can avoid most of the dealing with Windows by doing most everything in Linux, so you’re not getting the double hassle. You dump the worst bits of Windows (the lack of control) when you use a VM. Most of the “how do I…?” questions about Windows won’t apply anymore… they’ll involve Linux now, so you don’t have to ask them twice.

          I have Windows in a VM, but I seldom actually need it. If I use a computer 8 hours a day, 7 days a week, that’s 56 hours. I typically use Windows in a VM less than once a month, and for perhaps 20 minutes, or roughly 5 minutes per week. I cut the “Windows” time from 56 hours (what it would be if I used Windows exclusively) to just a few minutes. Now, of course, other people’s usage patterns may vary, but they still cut out a lot of the Windows time by doing what they can in Linux directly.

          I actually recently removed Windows (dual boot) from my Dell G3 (gaming laptop) to reclaim the disk space. I’ve been running dual boots on all of my PCs that have the space, but I recently replaced my dual-boot Acer Swift with the Dell XPS 13 which came without Windows, so two of my three main PCs are now bare-metal Windows-free.  The third, the desktop, still has Windows 8.1 on it, but I haven’t booted that in ages. I simply didn’t need bare metal Windows anymore, not even on a gaming PC, where a lot of the games are Windows games. All of mine run in Linux really well!

          When I do require Windows for something, I start the VM snapshot, saved with Windows at the desktop, ready to go (no waiting for it to boot), which only takes a few seconds. I do the thing in Windows that I needed to do, saving any files (if necessary) to the shared folder, then close the VM and restore the snapshot back to where it was. All of the “It’s update time! I’ll let you know when you can use your computer again. It will be a while, so have a seat” stuff is irrelevant… if it tries it, you can revert it to the snapshot in a couple of seconds without worries about what might happen if you interrupt the process. There’s no problem if you need to reboot for some reason (and you want to use the PC right after that, not at some indeterminate point later), but the only options it gives are ‘Update and shut down’ or ‘Update and reboot.'”

          Most of the time, with a VM, there’s really no reason to reboot… just start from the snapshot (that was taken as soon as it booted a long time ago, so it’s nice and fresh as if it had just booted!) and forget that booting even is a thing, until you are ready to let it update, on your schedule. While bare metal Windows updates include a long offline phase that normally ties your computer up until it is done, you can continue to use the PC in its native Linux while the VM updates in the background.

          If, instead, you choose to put it off Windows updates for a while and keep the old version, it’s not a big worry. You’re not doing much in Windows… things like browsing and email would be done from Linux, where Windows malware won’t work. Those two things are the most likely path of infection for malware, so moving those to Linux alone keeps Windows much safer. Even if you did manage to get infected, though, as soon as you roll back to the snapshot… poof! Malware gone.

          The control that MS took away, the VM software gives you back, and more.

           

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

      • #2369007
        Fred
        AskWoody Plus

        For things that do not work on WINE, a virtual machine may be a good solution. I use VMs for a few programs that don’t lend themselves to WINE (like my Corsair programs for programming the onboard profiles on my mouse and keyboard). VMs come with a bigger performance penalty than WINE, though for many things it doesn’t matter (like my example).

        Are the  different VirtualMemmoy programs in Mint? you have any suggestion ?

        ~
        • #2369010
          EricB
          AskWoody Plus

          Before I purchased a new system I used VMware (a commercial product) as a virtualization solution under Vista.  When Vista reached EOL I migrated to Linux Mint on the hardware and installed VirtualBox.  I was satisfied with the features available and performance of VirtualBox.  It is available without charge and is maintained by Oracle.  However, VirtualBox technical support is not provided by Oracle but by the VirtualBox community using its own forums.  This is not uncommon — Macrium does not provide technical support for the free version of Reflect.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2369185
            Ascaris
            AskWoody MVP

            Like @EricB, I use VirtualBox also.

            However, VirtualBox technical support is not provided by Oracle but by the VirtualBox community using its own forums. This is not uncommon — Macrium does not provide technical support for the free version of Reflect.

            That is the only kind of software support with which I am familiar. Even for software I’ve paid for, I’ve only ever used things like community forums, or just “ask a friend” before community forums were a thing.

            Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.4 User Edition)

      • #2369017
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        install Windows in VM on Linux

        For which you need a Windows retail license.

        cheers, Paul

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2370922
        Kobac
        AskWoody Plus

        I installed Linux Mint 20.1 several days ago on an older Windows 7 Home PC. I had enabled NUMLOCK in the BIOS so I was puzzled when, after booting up under Linux, NUMLOCK was disabled. I looked under all the system settings I could find and did not see any place it could be enabled. After doing an Internet search, I discovered that Linux Mint disables NUMLOCK by default. I have no idea why this would be a design choice, but there it is. You have to download and install a utility called numlockx, after which you can then choose to enable NUMLOCK when booting.

        Here’s the procedure:

        https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/275474/turn-on-numlock-on-startup-in-linux-mint-in-the-login-window

      • #2370978
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Kobac: This is the first time I hear about this. I have Linux Mint in an old PC ca. 2011 (with an Intel I-7 CPU and UEFI) along with Windows 7 and, unless Numlock is unnecessary, in my case, for both Win 7 and Linux, I have no idea of how this happens, but I have booted the PC Linux, then logged out, then logged in to Windows, usually in this order, and nothing bad has ever happened: both systems have always booted just fine in that sequence. Occasionally I have booted up just one of them, not the other: same story.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Mojave & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. Webroot SA AV and Malwarebytes.

        • #2371098
          Kobac
          AskWoody Plus

          My old PC, bought in 2014, was a Win 7 Home machine. Before installing Linux Mint 20.1, I nuked the hard drive so I am not duel-booting—Win 7 is gone. I like NUMLOCK to be ON since I use the numeric keypad a lot (I’m a retired CPA so I’m very used to entering numbers on the numeric keypad—much faster than using the numbers above the letters). When I first restarted the Linux machine after installation and entered my password, the system responded that I had entered an incorrect password. That’s when I noticed that NUMLOCK had been turned off, which started my quest to find out what was causing the problem. I must admit I was quite surprised to find out that Linux Mint turns NUMLOCK off by default.

          I’m not sure that I understand what you’re saying about your PC. I have no problems booting up and since I installed numlockx, NUMLOCK is automatically working now upon booting up. To me, this was a very odd problem, which is why I posted here in case anyone else had the same issue.

          • #2371102
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            Sorry if I misunderstood your problem. I thought that NUMLOCK was some, to me, unfamiliar part of the firmware and you were referring to the optional turning on of the keypad for data entry. That seems weird, but as long as there is a solution then one can move on. So you have installed some application software that corrects that? If so, you could perhaps say more about that and tell others who might have the same problem about this application and how to get it. If there is an application designed to deal with this, then it is because it tends to happen enough to enough people to justify the trouble of developing it in  the first place. And I agree that is very odd that Linux disables NUMLOCK by default. It does not make any sense to me at all. And that it does so to such extent that one cannot turn it on manually when that happens, and instead needs to have some application installed to turn it on!

            Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Mojave & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

            MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
            Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
            Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. Webroot SA AV and Malwarebytes.

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