sábado, 19 de junio de 2010
No One Takes Linux Seriously Until...
Find the computer that works in the picture above.
Yes, nobody takes Linux seriously until you are face to face with the Blue Screen of Death, your system refuses to start, or maybe it does, but then it goes into a never ending loop of booting. I have never experienced anything like this in Linux. All those critical moments become particularly nerve-racking when you depend on your computer for turning in a vital assignment, when you are waiting for an important document file, or the day in which you must retrieve information that happens to be stored only inside your HD.
WHAT TO DO: LIVE CDs
You want to give Linux a chance but you are afraid of "not understanding it"? Well, remember that you can RUN the Linux OS from a CD or DVD without installing anything to your computer! All you have to do is put it on the CD/DVD tray and run it. It's as simple as that. Of course, you must remember that the performance is going to be a bit slower, but this way you can learn about Linux without committing to a full migration until you are ready for it.
If you practice with a Live CD of your favorite distro, next time your Windows computer crashes, you will be ready to operate it temporarily using Linux. A colleague of mine (who happens to break his computer from time to time with the aid of the most destructive viruses I've ever seen) started his computer, checked his email, and browsed the Web this way for almost a month before we could restore his Windows XP. I personally don't recommend surviving on a Live CD for so long, but it was his choice and Linux was up to the job.
If you practice, you will use your knowledge about Linux for your personal advantage in a crisis.
OK, I started the system with a Live CD...
Now, how do I get my file?
First, if you want to rescue a fle, you must have a USB stick to save the file to it. You must be familiar with Windows Explorer (not the browser, the file manager). Well, in Linux, there are several file managers, like Dolphin. Open Dolphin from the system tools menu and, to the left, you will see the different partitions on your HD. Explore them to find the Windows partition and then locate the folder where your file is. Once you see it, right click on it and copy it to a USB drive. If it is a document file and you want to work with it, Open Office will open it and you can change it. Just be careful and make sure you save it to your USB drive.
WARNING: This process works particularly well in Mepis. You get a desktop environment similar to Windows (KDE), which facilitates things for Windows users. You can also do it from Ubuntu Live CD, but you must take into account that this distro uses a desktop environment that is more like Mac (Gnome). Don't panic, the bar is up, not down, but you'll get used to it. Mandriva might not let you open the Windows partition from a Live CD, but you can do this if you have a dual boot (Windows/Mandriva). Some other distros may not come with an office suit (like Vinux), so check first.