martes, 14 de junio de 2016

Windows 10 killed it; Linux saved it: A netbook that came back

I really admire people that invest their time and effort trying to help children overcome obstacles in life, like Ken Staks, who fixes computers to donate them to students.

I wish I could do that one day, but I lack the technical skills and knowledge to save hardware.  However, thanks to Linux, I discovered that machines that Windows claims are dead can be rescued.

A student of mine brought me an Acer Inspire One netbook that he really needs for his academic work.  The netbook has only 1GB RAM, so its original Windows XP OS was making it too slow.  Trusting Microsoft's words, he went ahead and tried to upgrade it to Windows 10.  Yes, that was a big mistake.

The tiny netbook, of course, was lost in what we can call the computer equivalent to a coma.  Apparently, he attempted to revert the process only to discover that the Windows 10 logo simply wanted to stay as the perpetual image on the screen.

So, I took the machine with me and ran the Mageia 5 i586 install DVD.  Apparently, Windows 10 butchered the MBR.  I had to wipe out everything.  The process was a bit slow thanks to the low specs of the netbook but, eventually, the install was complete and it was time to test the computer.

I had decided to use a LXDE DE assuming that it was going to be better.  However, the netbook would go into hibernation by itself after a minute of use.

With my own doubts, I attempted a KDE install next.  Despite it was a long process, the netbook came to life. Of course, the machine is a bit slow, but, with the exception of the webcam, everything seems to be fully operational.

My student can now use it.  Just on time, too.  The term is about to finish and there are essays to write.

14 comentarios:

  1. It never ceases to amaze me how people still trust Microsoft!

    1. Yes, after everything we went through, I always ask myself the same question :P

  2. Being a Linux user myself do I know that losing the MBR can be a bit of a problem. It does however not justify "wiping out everything". One can use Linux to rescue the files for example and give it another try, perhaps a Windows 10 installation from scratch.
    So I find the story rather biased and noobish.

    If I have learned anything from Linux then it is to look closer and not to turn away as soon as things start to get complicated.

    Shame on the author for trying to be a "Linux guy" when he probably just sucks at system administration in general. He has obviously no clue of the trouble that Linux can get one in when fools become super user. So will just sit back now and smile :)

    1. Your comment amuses me. You assume that all Linux users are system administrators, a rather biased position. This story is not about how I became root to wipe out a sever. I am neither a Linux power user nor work for Microsoft so that I have to go through so much trouble to rescue a Windows machine for free. I am simply a non technical Linux user (I did say it. Did you read? :) )and my student had already proclaimed the netbook dead. Therefore, there was nothing to rescue. He wanted a functional computer to type essays and could not afford to wait as the term is finishing. So, you can now just sit back and smile knowing that a student will successfully complete his assignments thanks to Linux regardless of my non-existent technical skills.

    2. Did you tell your friend that you could have saved the data on his netbook?

      I will sit back now, but I am going to assume that you will keep it a secret from him. Knowing how you and Linux saved him from the evil Windows 10 and all that...

    3. Haha, wrong again! My student told me from the start there was nothing to retrieve. By the way, your comments are intriguing: you seem troubled because I committed the sin of not saving Windows 10. And you keep misinterpreting... For a Linux power user, you have to polish your reading skills: he was my student, not friend.

    4. This isn't what I meant. I am literally asking you if you have told your friend that you could have saved the data with Linux.

      The point here is that when you want to convince others of the power of Linux then you'd leave a greater impression when you help them regardless of what they believe.

      So that is why I am asking you and because you can use the information I have given you here to impress your friend once more.

      By the way, it has nothing to do with my reading skills when I assume the people who you help are also your friends. "A friend in need is a friend indeed" is an old English saying. Are you telling me students are NOT your friends?!? *lol*

    5. It's quite interesting to see that self-proclaimed "Linux user"so mad and disturbed because you refused to go the extra mile hunting for codecs and setting up Windows 10. I guess all he wanted was you to do it so that Microsoft could send you a big fat check afterwards... Wait! Microsoft would not send it, would they? As if they cared!

      Yes, it is great to do all the hard work for free on behalf of a company whose software was the one that messed up the computer in the first place. And then this person has the nerve to call you "incompetent"?

      As a system administrator, he needs to be a bit more analytical and start by learning to place the blame where it is due. Maybe he can do that while he sits back reciting his old English sayings and checks again that your student told you there was nothing to rescue.

      It's also interesting that this person seems to believe that you have to become a friend of your students. Does he understand what a professional environment means at all? Maybe in his professional environment he can go to the CEO's office to have a nap whenever he feels like it because they are friends, but that does not have to be true for every case. LOL!

    6. @Megatotoro: "... he needs to be a bit more analytical and start by learning to place the blame where it is due"

      This is Megatotoro's 101 of analysis... poke around and find somebody to blame. Just outstanding!

      For your information, it helps when your students believe that you are their friend. You are not going to fill lectures when they all hate you. If he hates them deep down does not belong on the Internet.

      Now continue with being mad...

      ... And how did you arrive at "being friends" equals "taking a nap"? This is brilliant stuff!

    7. You are certainly amusing: now you are an expert in education! The world is a better place because of your very existence and your illuminated words (and sayings!).

      I am not mad, my friend, I am utterly amused at your poor attempts to justify yourself after you failed to see the whole point of this: there was nothing to rescue.

      And since you are also an expert in friendships and sayings, let me tell you that I am helping you by showing you some of your flaws (which you don't seem to recognize yourself), so why do you attack me? A friend in need is a friend indeed: I'm helping you, MY FRIEND! :)

    8. @Mechatotoro. You were there. You heard the student say it. I wrote it several times, but anónimo seems to be incapable of reading beyond the first couple of words in a sentence. Then he "creates" the rest ;P. He got even lost in your simple analogy!

      @Anónimo: I guess you proved your point already: you call people names without even reading deeply, then you throw a red herring fallacy and pretend to be helping. You are hilarious! You should visit more often with your misuse of English proverbs: the idea of the saying you used so poorly is that hardship tests the loyalty of friends, which obviously has nothing to do with your dicto simpliciter "people who you help are also your friends." The paternalistic attitude towards education really made me laugh!

      You can certainly profit from Analysis 101 and a good reading comp course...or else, as a skilled Linux user, get a language parser and use it before you attempt to post your brilliant reasoning and insightful hasty conclusions!

    9. @Megatotoro: "I am not mad, my friend, I am utterly amused"

      Haha, this sounds believable! ;)

      Anyhow, people will sometimes tell you that there is little to do when they want your help. Simply because they don't want to take too much of your time. Did you know that?

      And because it was an update to Windows 10 and not a new installation will there still have been some data, only will his friends have decided to give it up for a faster rescue or perhaps just not to complicate it. Friends then do what friends often do - they believe each other and they trust one another - and so not having the option was not an issue.

      This is still my original point by the way. The beauty of having the option of rescuing lost data with Linux where Windows users have given up hope. It then doesn't even need to rescue the data, but just being able to make the offer is so much better than giving up.

      What dampens my mood a little is the chance that you may never grasp any of this.

      So now I will have to figure out this Spanish Captcha once more before I go to bed. Google translate, here I come again...

  3. Este comentario ha sido eliminado por el autor.

  4. @Anónimo:
    " One can use Linux to rescue the files for example and GIVE IT ANOTHER TRY, PERHAPS A WINDOWS 8 INSTALLATION FROM SCRATCH."

    That, my friend, was your original point no matter how you want to make it seem now. You were all worked up NOT about rescuing files but about Mechatotoro giving up on Windows 10. Bad boy, Mechatotoro! :P

    Why would someone who hasn't used Windows in years (and who does not have a single Windows disk now) have to waste bandwidth, time, and other resources on behalf of a rich company that wouldn't even pay for that effort and actually is taking Windows 10 users as its nodes and servers not to use its own?

    Face it friend, the owner did not care about the data and Windows 10 had its chance already (and blew it big time on that machine!) You don't seem to get that and may never seem to grasp it (but my mood is not damped because of that.) Why a second chance? And for free? (Actually paying ourselves because MS will not fill the Internet or electricity bills.)

    Or is it that Microsoft is going to pay every single "Linuxer" that uses "the beauty of Linux" to solve Windows problems?

    If that is so, then please be a good friend and share the link in which we can apply for that program. I would not mind working for Microsoft if they paid me good money, but I will not work for them for free, much less if I have to spend my own money and resources to help such company. Microsoft is not helping me (thus it's not my friend by your standards.)

    Or maybe you can be a good friend and send us (and to every Linux user you meet) a couple of Windows 8,8.1, and Windows 10 disks or pendrives complete with a set of drivers for as many systems as you can. Then you will be entitled to ask from us to give Windows 8, 8.1 or 10 second chances, especially if it is installations from scratch! :)


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