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Quick questions
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Thread: Quick questions

  1. #1

    Quick questions

    Hi guys.
    I currently have XP on a 7 gig partition, my files on a 60 gig, and an empty (for the moment) 7 or so gig partition, which I want to use for linux. I was just wondering if there are any distros that are able to write to NTFS, so I can view files from both XP and linux.

    I have a few random questions, but I'll try to make sense of them: Lets say I wanted to use fluxbox, would it have to run on top of kde or gnome, or is it a standalone gui?
    And if you have any ideas for distros, I also want to try out Gnome, and avoid rpm's as much as possible (Although I figure even rpm based distros now use different tools).

    Thanx a lot
    Dswissmiss

  2. #2

    Re:Quick questions

    No distros can write to NTFS...that's something nobody's been able to figure out how to do reliably yet. However, all distros can read NTFS.

    As for gui, fluxbox is a window manager. KDE and Gnome are desktop environments. A desktop environment consists of a window manager and some other utilities like a clipboard manager, usually some form of inter-process communication so that apps are integrated with each other, and a whole lot of other things. Desktop managers tend to be fairly large, but full of features. Window managers are lightweight and minimalistic. Gnome is a desktop environment that I would highly recommend. It uses Metacity as a window manager by default so you don't really have to worry about installing anything besides Gnome.

    As for distros, yes RPM-based distros have come a long way. RPM distros can now use apt (http://apt4rpm.sf.net/ ), which is the be-all-and-end-all of package management. They can also use Yum, which is more or less the equivalent. Still, if you're looking to avoid RPM-based distros, and still looking for something that's newbie-friendly, I'd recommend trying either Progeny or Libranet. Both of these are based on Debian, and I know that Progeny definitely offers a version of its software for free. The only catch is that the software is out of date, so upon completion of installation, it's probably a good idea to run "apt-get dist-upgrade" to bring your installed software up to speed (if you want really modern ultra-cool software, change all occurances of "stable" to "unstable" in /etc/apt/sources.list...this will get you the latest software, and it usually has very few bugs).

  3. #3

    Re:Quick questions

    Thanx for your help!

    The reason I ask about NTFS is because I heard a rumor that the next knoppix release might be able to do so, but I guess its unsubstantiated.

  4. #4

    Re:Quick questions

    Well...

    Actually you can get NTFS write support on any distribution.

    However..

    the code is still experimental and is likely to damage your NTFS partition.

    http://linux-ntfs.sourceforge.net/

  5. #5

    Re:Quick questions

    I just glanced over the FAQ and found this:

    4.2 How safe is the NTFS Driver?

    When used read-only, both the Original and New Drivers are safe for general use. They will not make any changes to your filesystem, so they cannot cause any damage.

    Additionally, the New Driver is SMP-safe.

    Not quite sure what it means, but would it be relatively safe to lets say save a file onto my NTFS drive I got while using linux, then play it under XP? (I hope I make sense :-\ )

    I also got confused reading the FAQ, because they say that Debian, SuSe, Gentoo and other distros support NTFS out of the box. Am I reading this wrong? Do they mean that these can read NTFS but not write to it?

    Thanx for your help guys

  6. #6
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    Re:Quick questions

    From what I understand now it is possible to safely write to NTFS. However, you can not create new files, you can not delete files, you can't change the size of a file, you can't move files. So really all you can do is alter an existing file. It is still experimental, but the code for write support in 2.6.3 is said to be 100% safe.
    Cheers
    CP

    [quote author=trickster link=board=7;threadid=8853;start=0#msg79899 date=1079404433]
    Well...

    Actually you can get NTFS write support on any distribution.

    However..

    the code is still experimental and is likely to damage your NTFS partition.

    http://linux-ntfs.sourceforge.net/
    [/quote]

  7. #7

    Re:Quick questions

    SMP means symetric multiprocessing. Multiple processors.

    Distributions that support NTFS out of the box support reading from it.

    At this stage, writing to an NTFS drive is likely to damage the partition.

    Last time I checked, even on the 2.6 kernel, it still said experimental and dangerous.

  8. #8

    Re:Quick questions

    If you want to view files using XP and Linux, then you can create a Fat32 partition and store files on it. Linux & XP will be able to read/write to fat32 safely also.

  9. #9
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    Re:Quick questions

    [quote author=Saptech link=board=7;threadid=8853;start=0#msg79936 date=1079444256]
    If you want to view files using XP and Linux, then you can create a Fat32 partition and store files on it. Linux & XP will be able to read/write to fat32 safely also.

    [/quote]

    Thats what I do. Works pretty well.

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