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Old 4th April 2011, 06:00 AM   #81
Alan
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Whatever floats your boat.

I remember seeing it and it looked good, but I'd like to be able to customise it to show anything.
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Old 4th April 2011, 06:15 AM   #82
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I tried to set up a delayed shutdown with sudo halt -h 60 as it was updating and I wanted to go to bed.

Apparently that isn't how to do that as it declared it was shutting down NOW and so now it's not working.

I'll be reinstalling tomorrow.
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Old 4th April 2011, 07:11 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by Alan View Post
I tried to set up a delayed shutdown with sudo halt -h 60 as it was updating and I wanted to go to bed.

Apparently that isn't how to do that as it declared it was shutting down NOW and so now it's not working.

I'll be reinstalling tomorrow.
On the KDE Desktop at least you could use KShutdown, although you might need to install it. Not sure if it would work on Gnome, though.


On the cli, I am not sure halt can be used in that way; the option -h means "Put all harddrives on the system in standby mode just before halt or poweroff".

I think you were looking for shutdown instead, i.e. shutdown -h 60
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Old 4th April 2011, 08:59 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by Alan View Post
I tried to set up a delayed shutdown with sudo halt -h 60 as it was updating and I wanted to go to bed.

Apparently that isn't how to do that as it declared it was shutting down NOW and so now it's not working.

I'll be reinstalling tomorrow.
Debian based os? You mentioned so many I lost count.

Why reinstall, just boot up into a shell, login and type

sudo dpkg --configure -a

that will hopefully fix whatever got broke. I updated my netbook to natty and stupidly it was on battery power, judicious use of the above command and 'sudo apt-get dist-upgrade' managed to get it all fixed.

Not a fan of Unity, reminds me of the stupidity and pig headedness of the KDE lot when 4 was introduced. Maybe by the time Priapic Penguin comes out it will work well enough.
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Old 5th April 2011, 03:54 AM   #85
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Thank you both for the help.
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Old 5th April 2011, 10:21 AM   #86
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I am now at a point where I am not satisfied with Ubuntu, but also not satisfied with many other distributions.

I want to be able to add my own repositories, start from scratch, but have a good manual to help me get to that point.

I am interested in LFS (Linux From Scratch), but I don't know whether it will help me create an ever updateable distribution (I hesitate to say "rolling release", because that's usually only the case when there is an organisation maintaining the entire distro).

Basically, I really like the apt system in Debian, and I like the up-to dateness of Ubuntu, but I dislike the inclusion of Pulseaudio and Mono-based programs.

So if someone can point me to a good guide/manual, I'd be very happy.

Cheers
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Old 5th April 2011, 07:08 PM   #87
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How about Arch?
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Old 6th April 2011, 04:17 AM   #88
Bram Kaandorp
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Originally Posted by Alan View Post
How about Arch?
Well it doesn't use the apt system.

But I realise that it sounds very petty of me not to want to broaden my horizon, so maybe I should just give it a try.

I just read the Wikipedia page, which mentions the "lack of signed packages". How can that be a problem?

Also, how easy is it to find a repository which is directly from a development team (for example, a repository from the official Emesene team, or more obscure programs)? This because I want to be able to choose my own repositories, rather than being limited to what Arch approves for their distro (the way it is handled in many distros).

Cheers
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Old 6th April 2011, 10:19 AM   #89
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I miss Fluxbuntu.
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Old 6th April 2011, 01:14 PM   #90
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Originally Posted by Bram Kaandorp View Post
Well it doesn't use the apt system.

But I realise that it sounds very petty of me not to want to broaden my horizon, so maybe I should just give it a try.

I just read the Wikipedia page, which mentions the "lack of signed packages". How can that be a problem?

Also, how easy is it to find a repository which is directly from a development team (for example, a repository from the official Emesene team, or more obscure programs)? This because I want to be able to choose my own repositories, rather than being limited to what Arch approves for their distro (the way it is handled in many distros).

Cheers
I don't know much about the specifics of Arch. I've never successfully installed it, sorry...

Gnome 3 is out...and I can't get on its website.

EDIT: Hmm. I'm not sure if they've updated the live version links.

Last edited by Alan; 6th April 2011 at 01:30 PM.
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Old 6th April 2011, 03:40 PM   #91
Bram Kaandorp
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Originally Posted by Alan View Post
I don't know much about the specifics of Arch. I've never successfully installed it, sorry...

Gnome 3 is out...and I can't get on its website.

EDIT: Hmm. I'm not sure if they've updated the live version links.
Well, no matter. I'll give it a go in the foreseeable future.

Cheers
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Old 6th April 2011, 04:08 PM   #92
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Originally Posted by tuoni View Post
I run back|track 4 R2 - have a look at PlayOnLinux - it's basically a wrapper for WINE which allows you to install Windows software into "bottles" (basically atomic "windows installations", for want of a better description) which allow you to customise each bottle to suit the software installed - it allows you to, for instance, seamlessly install and choose a WINE version (including the beta builds and no longer supported builds) for each without disrupting the main system WINE version. I've currently got Steam with a few games including Portal and Killing Floor running A-OK with full DirectX9 (ironically, Killing Floor actually runs far better under WINE than it did under Windows 7!)

The other beauty is that PlayOnLinux gives you several automated installers for games and Windows software which will set up all the dependencies and "tweaks" in the background, allowing you to run many things "out of the box", as it were... and if you mess it up, you can delete the bottle and start again, knowing that you haven't messed up your WINE installation, causing other things to break. If it doesn't have the installer, you can install stuff anyway and just cross your fingers it will work. Most things do, now - WINE has come on a looooong way since I last used it.
Excellent! Think weekend I'm going to give it a shot. Which flavor of Linux do you recommend using PlayOnLinux on? I've got a pretty high-end Alienware laptop it's going to be going on. I'm worried about drivers and such, but I'm pretty sure while it might be bumpy, it won't be impossible.

Oh, and thank you!

Last edited by Mister Earl; 6th April 2011 at 04:11 PM.
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Old 6th April 2011, 04:23 PM   #93
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I installed whatever pre-release version Fedora 15 is up to. I thought it was Beta 1 but apparently that isn't out yet. It might be a daily. I did this for Gnome 3.

If I could customise the icons in the top right (to get rid of the accessibility and input method icons) and get a good theme, it will be good. Thinking about it, it has the problems elementaryOS has. Minus the good looks. But it is different enough for me to think of it differently instead of just a GNOME 2.XX distro with features removed.
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Old 6th April 2011, 07:38 PM   #94
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Gonna try installing it this weekend. What advice do you all have for someone putting linux on a machine for the first time? What traps should I be on the lookout for? Will I have trouble with drivers?
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:31 PM   #95
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You should have everything backed up, first.

You should download a Live CD (or DVD etc). What those do is let you use it without installing it to see how much you like it. You can then install it if you like it and it works well.

I recommend Ubuntu 10.10 or Linux Mint as a first distro. They aren't intimidating. Ubuntu 10.10 is recommended if you use instant messaging, twitter or emails more since it has a little icon in the top right for easy access to these things that lets you know if you get something new. Linux Mint is recommended if you don't care about that.
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:33 PM   #96
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Originally Posted by Mister Earl View Post
Gonna try installing it this weekend. What advice do you all have for someone putting linux on a machine for the first time? What traps should I be on the lookout for? Will I have trouble with drivers?

There are half a dozen or so Linux distros called Live CD's that you can download, burn to a disc and then boot up into which run from the CD (or DVD) in the RAM and makes no changes to your hard drive.

If you were really hard core, I'd download two or three and give them all a try before installing to HDD.

Ubuntu is okay; since I tried MintLinux a short while ago, I've made it my default desktop box and laptop (the desktop is running the Debian version of Mint, while I decided on the Gnome version of Mint).

I thought that Sabayon was a good product, but it didn't do wireless for the laptop very well, so I switched to Mint.

I ran a vanilla Debian distro for several years before going to Mint.
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:35 PM   #97
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With a live CD, could I use something like PlayOnLinux as well? How would I have to handle drivers, if I'm unable to connect to the 'net right away? I really don't mind just doing a straight install, given that I was planning on reloading windows anyway. (I have two external hard drives for data storage, and two internal solid-state drives for OS and programs).

#EDIT: Gotcha, Norseman. I was looking over Backtrack's page, and was considering it. But given my infamiliarity with Linux, I'd better try a watered down variant first.

Last edited by Mister Earl; 6th April 2011 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:42 PM   #98
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You're able to use PlayOnLinux through the live CD. It's just that you'll have to reinstall PlayOnLinux once you've installed the distro because things you do while on the live CD don't get saved to the hard drive. Apart from the installation of the distro.

I've never had trouble with getting connected with Ubuntu wired or wirelessly but I assume it would let drivers could be installed from a removable disc.
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:44 PM   #99
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Let's say I go with ubuntu, cook up a live CD, and let it rip. Would I begin at a command prompt, or a GUI?
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:46 PM   #100
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You will see a graphical user interface.

Last edited by Alan; 6th April 2011 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 6th April 2011, 08:49 PM   #101
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Ok. Thanks for the reassurance, Alan. I'll cook up a live CD tonight and give it a go.

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Old 6th April 2011, 08:57 PM   #102
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This is what it looks like, in fast forward. You might just have to also click on the network icon in the top right (it might look different from that one) to connect.
YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the JREF. The JREF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE
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Old 6th April 2011, 09:17 PM   #103
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Originally Posted by Mister Earl View Post
With a live CD, could I use something like PlayOnLinux as well? How would I have to handle drivers, if I'm unable to connect to the 'net right away? I really don't mind just doing a straight install, given that I was planning on reloading windows anyway. (I have two external hard drives for data storage, and two internal solid-state drives for OS and programs).

#EDIT: Gotcha, Norseman. I was looking over Backtrack's page, and was considering it. But given my infamiliarity with Linux, I'd better try a watered down variant first.


Yeah, I wasn't talking about Backtrack specifically. It's an option of course and I use it mainly for my professional life -- it's not a distro I run at home.

Try the Live CD of Ubuntu or Mint or Sabayon or any other that JREFfers suggest from personal knowledge.

Most distros handle drivers fairly well except for NVidia cards -- they still require a "binary blob" or proprietary drivers to run at full resolution, etc. That's why I like Mint Linux; it came basically out of the box ready to one-click install the NVidia drivers for my laptop and the wireless did need to be temporarily hooked up to the wired ethernet to work, but other than that, it was great out of the box. Had WINE already installed for example which is, I think, what PlayOnLinux is based on but I don't really remember offhand.
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Old 6th April 2011, 10:16 PM   #104
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And I'm pretty sure that the proprietary driver that is tested by Canonical for my video card breaks my system because of my NVIDIA Optimus. Upon restarting, it doesn't get past the system checks.
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Old 7th April 2011, 12:30 AM   #105
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The recent Linux distros I named all run NVidia cards with the free non-proprietary drivers, just not to the cards' full potential. So, yeah, that may be a deal breaker. You can, however, go to NVidia's site and search for Linux drivers for your card. NVidia makes those. The only reasons they aren't included in nearly all Linux distros is the philosophy of free and open-source software (at least my understanding of why).

Note I say "not included". They can be downloaded and installed just like any Windows driver you would install.

And I can't find the NVidia Optimus video card except for the GeForce GT 420M? Is that your card?

The Linux 32bit drivers for that card are here.
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Old 7th April 2011, 12:44 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by The Norseman View Post
The recent Linux distros I named all run NVidia cards with the free non-proprietary drivers, just not to the cards' full potential. So, yeah, that may be a deal breaker. You can, however, go to NVidia's site and search for Linux drivers for your card. NVidia makes those. The only reasons they aren't included in nearly all Linux distros is the philosophy of free and open-source software (at least my understanding of why).

Note I say "not included". They can be downloaded and installed just like any Windows driver you would install.

And I can't find the NVidia Optimus video card except for the GeForce GT 420M? Is that your card?

The Linux 32bit drivers for that card are here.
That is indeed my card, and I have a 64 bit processor. I installed the proprietary driver that Ubuntu suggested for it, which was tested by Canonical, and my computer wouldn't reboot properly afterwards. Twice (I tried to isolate what caused the problem so I tried it again after reinstalling). So that's three reinstallations from one problem!

Thank you for finding that driver. I hope that it's not the same driver so I'll look into that. Actually, I'll probably be reinstalling soon anyway since I hop between distros. I'm a nomad like that! So I'll try it out anyway.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:05 AM   #107
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Do not try playonlinux on a live cd. It may work, but would be utterly pointless. Reason is that the cd is essentially acting as your hard drive, a read only hard drive at that, so it is going to run at a considerable rate slower than a proper install, data will be in RAM.

I assume you will be wanting to try some 3d games, most live cds come with the open source video drivers, and so screen performance will not be as slick as the propriety drivers.

What I would recommend is Ubuntu installed via wubi, this allows you to install ubuntu as a program in Windows with no need to repartition:

http://www.ubuntu.com/desktop/get-ub...dows-installer

Again, their will be a slight hit as the Linux FS will be on a windows formatted HD, but nowhere near as bad as a cd. This is not virtualisation but chosen at boot time what OS to run. If you decide to go a proper install you can just uninstall it via the window control centre.

As for games, take a look at :

http://appdb.winehq.org/

For a list of how games are supported.

Personally, I dualboot, all my work and 'real' computing is done in Linux and games under WINE.

As for personal experience of WINE, I was did a masters the other year and a large part of the research was based on data gathered in the field fro placed instrumentation. The supplied software was windows based, but refused to install on XP. I tried on 4 different PCs. Eventually I put it on my Acer netbook, running Ubuntu and wine, worked flawlessly, allowing me to connect and fully use the instrumentation in the field.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:06 AM   #108
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Is it actually the nVidia or the nouveau one it's trying to install?

Older versions of the proprietary drivers can usually be found on the nVidia website; might need to do a bit of digging though.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:25 AM   #109
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Originally Posted by Mister Earl View Post
Gonna try installing it this weekend. What advice do you all have for someone putting linux on a machine for the first time? What traps should I be on the lookout for? Will I have trouble with drivers?
I've started this process this week. I say 'process' because I've never had a Linux install go smoothly. This one was no different.

I'm installing Ubuntu 10.10 on a VIA Epia M10000 ITX motherboard (iirc, circa 2006) with 1GB RAM, 80GB+100GB HDs, on-board graphics (CLE266) and wired internet access.

First problem: inserted Live CD and end up with blank screen. After searching various forums it appears this is caused by the kernel doing video mode switching rather than the GUI so that the splash screen can look nice (good engineering decision). The fix is to hit any key when the keyboard + man icon appear at the bottom of the screen and edit the command line by getting rid of "quiet splash" and replace it with "nomodeset" (obviously, duh!)

Second problem: Live CD boots and presents a prompt for username and password. WTF!? More searching on the net reveals "ubuntu" for the username and hit enter for password are the required magic words.

Third problem/issue: Started install of Ubuntu 10.10 to hard disk from GUI. All appears to be going well (and my hopes are high that this isn't going to be a crap and flaky as every other Linux release) until towards the end of installing packages downloaded from the net it reports something is broken and the installation will not be able to complete. Sure enough the install terminates and the system restarts (after corrupting the screen and hanging until I hit enter).

System boots to desktop and appears to work okay, though I haven't really pushed it yet. Quickly (it was late) tried playing a DVD which didn't work (frame rate ridiculously slow), despite the system apparently having installed the openchrome drivers for the on-board graphics (which has MPEG2 hardware acceleration) given that it used a non-VESA standard resolution of 1360x768. On shutting down, system corrupts screen and hangs. No doubt more fiddling, downloading and text-editing will be required to get all this to work.

Originally Posted by Mister Earl View Post
Let's say I go with ubuntu, cook up a live CD, and let it rip. Would I begin at a command prompt, or a GUI?
Originally Posted by Alan View Post
You will see a graphical user interface.
If you're very lucky. Be prepared to faff around for several days and then give up and re-install windows when you feel you've wasted enough of your life typing in commands and running scripts that don't work.

It really shouldn't be necessary to do any of the above when installing version 10 of an operating system that claims to be easy to install and use.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:28 AM   #110
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For whatever reason, my DVD drive isn't reading correctly and won't burn anything, so a live CD is out. So I downloaded the image, and installed a dual-boot. I have space enough. So I reboot, choose Ubuntu... and after a command-line batch of commands scrolls past, I get a black screen. That's it.

#EDIT: Pretty sure I used wubi.

Last edited by Mister Earl; 7th April 2011 at 01:32 AM.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:28 AM   #111
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I remember it did have NVIDIA in its name but I don't know a lot about drivers or video cards.

I searched online and I heard that Optimus causes problems and they aren't supporting linux.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:31 AM   #112
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no burn to cd.

Why not burn to a USB key? even install it to one.

http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:39 AM   #113
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Tried a USB. For whatever reason, my system refuses to boot from one. I even tried disconnecting my hub and using that port directly on the laptop. No dice.

I rebooted after my last post and tried again. I saw hitting ESC opened an options menu; I tried the safe mode with simple graphics or whatever. Same result: Black screen.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:42 AM   #114
Alan
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Do you press F12 or something to select the boot method?

EDIT: When you see the very first screen upon turning it on.

Last edited by Alan; 7th April 2011 at 01:44 AM.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:46 AM   #115
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To clarify: I installed dual boot Ubuntu. The latest version. When I tell windows to restart, I am given the option to select ubuntu. When I do so, and do not hit ESC to choose a different ubuntu boot method, I get a permanent black screen. If I do hit ESC and choose the safe mode for graphics, I also get a permanent black screen.

I've also used the F12 method to try to get it to boot from a USB drive, BIOS as well. No luck there. Though I might try again and put USB above hard disk and try it that way.

#Edit: I'll do that right now
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:53 AM   #116
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You installed ubuntu wubi then. As I said before, that is installed under windows. I have never installed like that. The only machine I have vaguely like that is at university and then I run Ubuntu as a VM on virtualbox.

I would ask someone to burn the iso for you.
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Old 7th April 2011, 01:56 AM   #117
Mister Earl
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Back now. Even putting USB before all, it refuses to boot from the USB drive. I tried a complete power down, then boot into Ubuntu. Got the command line spam again, then again the black screen where nothing happens.

Thanks, Captain Snort, but that won't work either. For whatever reason, my laptop's drive isn't working like it should. It appears to be unable to read whatever I put into the drive. It's got one of those slot-drives without a tray.

Safe to say at this point that I'm completely out of ideas.
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Old 7th April 2011, 02:00 AM   #118
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Originally Posted by Mister Earl View Post
Tried a USB. For whatever reason, my system refuses to boot from one. I even tried disconnecting my hub and using that port directly on the laptop. No dice.

I rebooted after my last post and tried again. I saw hitting ESC opened an options menu; I tried the safe mode with simple graphics or whatever. Same result: Black screen.
Try removing "quiet splash" and replacing with "nomodeset"
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Old 7th April 2011, 02:01 AM   #119
Mister Earl
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Originally Posted by Ivor the Engineer View Post
Try removing "quiet splash" and replacing with "nomodeset"
Where? I'm never given the option to do that. I get to no GUI, and after selecting ubuntu to load, it runs a bunch of command line stuff, then goes directly to the permanent black screen.
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Old 7th April 2011, 02:07 AM   #120
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When you get the black screen, press Ctrl + Alt + f2, or f3, etc.

Does this give you a login prompt?

If so, login in, and type

startx

It should throw some errors up noted (EE)

I am suspecting the BIOS of your laptop to be honest. Had the same with this one, but I updated the BIOS and it works perfect.
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