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how to get more life out of my HP dc5700 desktop? or any other old computer?

 
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Just a quick addition(?) to the above post.

On most computer I know of the F2 button gets you into the Bios (basic input - output system)(on very old computers  sometimes it was F1 or the delete key)....Be careful! Dragons be here!
The easy way to get back to where you were is to take photos with your cell phone of the original settings, make changes one at a time and test, and put it back to original if its not an improvement.
There is a very narrow window during boot to press these keys on my computers there is a four second window and then its on with the boot process.

On many semi modern (win7 and higher...although that's misleading as its more of a date of manufacture than a date of OS) F8 starts the Windows diagnostic services.

On many (not all!) F10 is the key to save your settings in the Bios.

On mine F12 allows you to choose what disk to boot from;

You almost never will louse up the boot manager running on a CD or USB stick, but you take a very good chance of lousing it up on installation,
You don't have to install Linux to test it out!
If you wish a dual boot system make sure Linux is the last system you install, Linux will play nice and search for and enable, options to boot Windows via selection in the boot process, Windows wants you to believe no other system exists and its an act of Congress to enable options on a Windows boot manager.
Where you really have potential for trouble is if you delete or format the Linux system after its initial installation,
If it does louse up a spare computer with network access will be a Godsend, there are lots of walk throughs to get your Windows back.
At the shutdown of a test session Linux will ask to create a file on your Windows drive to save your actions, and decisions, if you don't do this you will have to go through the discovery process each time you boot from you alternate media.

Remember on (installation) Linux it will give you options to format existing disks this is an (usually) irrecoverable process.
Back up anything you value to an external USB drive
USB drives are are cheap up to 128 Gigabytes after that they are modestly priced.
Keep an old hard drive in the system for swap space, Solid State Drives don't really like frequent rewrites.
It also gives you options to install the things you value to their own partition and then mount them in successive iterations of different flavors of Linux without rebooting or rewriting that partition although I wouldn't pursue that on your first few iterations.
 
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:While I don't generally disagree, I would note that I have three Win10 systems running just fine with 4GB RAM and cheap solid state (SSD) hard drives. One is an ancient (but incredibly well-built) 32-bit T61 Thinkpad. The SSD really does make things snappy.

The hard-core recycler in me wants to see Judith's machine given a new lease on life. I'll bet extra RAM can be scrounged for free, or swapped for a jar of jam.



I totally agree with Douglas. I have upgraded RAM to 4Gb or greater and install SSD drives and the "old" computers are certainly more responsive and snappy.

Cost < $100 to do each upgrade.

 
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Linux is definitely the best solution, I recommend this distribution made specially for low resource computers.
It looks like windows xp but work great for old computers ! and security is no more a problem when updated.
You can test it in live sessions before installing it too so you can see if you will like it
Make sure to backup your photo, music, video, bookmarks and everything you want to keep on usb key/external hard drive before installing it.
download at : https://www.lxle.net/
there is a lot of tutorials how to install too : https://www.linuxhelp.com/how-to-install-lxle-16-04-1

 
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Windows 7 may still be an option, I am guessing Microsoft Windows 7 was harassing you to upgrade. I have recommended to several folks if your stuff was working fine on Windows 7, there is no need to upgrade just yet buying into the fear that Windows 7 becomes way too un secure the day after Microsoft stops supporting it. Windows 7 if it’s not broke why fix it is still an option to roll back to.  Microsoft has a satisfaction guarantee on purchasing windows especially if you bought it boxed maybe other ways too so if your not happy with it you can usually return it . And if you were using Firefox anyways  on Windows 7 you probably have a few years left until they stop providing updates https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1122661. And probably a few year after that until websites stop working properly and force you to upgrade to something else and revisit the other good suggestions on this thread.
 
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As much as I preferred Win 7, these days I would only run Win 7 on a stand-alone machine. I get the same opinion from IT guys I know (who aren't Windows shills by any stretch): Win 7 should never touch the Internet. Upgrade or run Linux.
 
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:  Win 7 should never touch the Internet. Upgrade or run Linux.



A somewhat confirmation of that:  I'm still using Win7 on an old laptop.  It's a fair machine for word processing and drawing out diagrams for building projects around the property.  And I do link up via wifi to our internet,..... but the online experience is pretty 'clunky' and feels somewhat like an accident waiting to happen.  I continue to lean towards a Linux distro to put the laptop's Win-days to rest.  Along those lines, and apologies if this has been posted before, but there's this site for.....well.....'testing' different Linux distributions on-line.  I can't really recommend it because I'm not sure if the slowness of the site is due to my own internet speeds, processor age, etc.  You can launch any of the listed Linux offerings in a virtual window, running that OS.  It may be slow because it's doing so much virtually, but it also may be by design for one reason or another.  Bottom line is that, while you get a feel for the desktop interface of the different distributions, it would take a LONG TIME to go one by one through the entire list, and even then not really have a good 'feel' for navigating the apps and operations.  Probably worth reading a bit online to find which ones are within the top 10 and start from there....?....

https://distrotest.net/index.php

If I'm missing something in the functionality of the website, please let me know.   Thanks!...and hope this is of use to someone.
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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John W, interesting link to play with. Thanks.
 
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I'm following all of this information closely from all of you...I knew there would be an abundance!

In the meantime, out of the blue, we get an offer from a relative for a desktop that is half the age of this one...a Mac.
From the little I've read I can use a linux OS on it also? Will wait until I have it on my desk and post the specifics here.

I've been playing at the site John W. linked to and have 'tried' a few.  
Interesting that they all seem to list floppy discs still and no mention of flash drives/usb? Is that something that we add ourselves when the system is set up? ...and as John mentioned, the cursor and all seems kind of glitchy and slow. Maybe the purpose of the test is only to show how things are laid out and what is available at desktop?

I have a spare flash drive so I might get brave enough today to attempt to download one of the systems onto it but have not chosen one yet.

I feel like I'm using all the wrong terms...this is like another language for me
 
Bill Haynes
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FWIW....

I've never tried Linux on Mac hardware but I despise Mac's OS!
I am the misfortunate possessor of multiple Apple devices, due to Apple offering corporate discounts to state, and local governments, they are a marketing bomb!
Every network tied application presents an inundating array of innanity, every web page is overwhelmed with ads, sponsored videos, and general unwanted nonsense,
on some sites the adds completely surround the content, on a 10"x7" screen the exact center column of content measures 2"x 3" and all of the rest of the screen is covered with changing, flashing distraction.
Loading the same page on my old desktop running Firefox and AdBlock,Ghostery, and Privacy Badger, I can get a full page of nothing but content...... barring inline ads such as the "tiny ad" at the bottom of this page, Apple does not allow (on IOS anyway) a functional version of any of those privacy measures.
As much as possible I avoid Apples OS's, even Amazons proprietary browser is less intrusive.

Good luck on your test!
I tried out the LXLE link above and I've found it to be excellent! (Very responsive almost as good as antiX using the Rox file manager!)
As it comes from the download it has Seamonkey as a browser, mail client, and newsreader.
Seamonkey is an old fork of Firefox, and because it is behind the curve many standard add ons are not offered for it, (AdBlock etc.) Firefox or Chrome are easily obtainable though if you find it limiting. For a mail client I like Thunderbird but there are dozens to be had!
 
Bill Haynes
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All this talk of new computers led me to invest!
I was running an old Vista era Dell and was limited to 4 gigs of ram although it was 64 bit
I picked up this;

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B082QMTGW8/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

It comes with 32 gigs of ram and a terabyte ssd, I added a 120 gigabyte ssd that I installed LXLE on and added an old 250 gigabyte hard drive for swap space and ./home files.
The terabyte drive comes with WIN10 and a recovery drive in place, remember when setting up win10 if you don't want a Microsoft account, google "setting up win10 without a Microsoft account" and it will allow a local email address instead.

It runs seamlessly and is especially snappy with LXLE.

Downside is although it has a dedicated GPU it still only uses a VGA interface so I will be adding in a card with a HDMI interface to feed it through a 55 inch TV  (Cmon! its cheaper than buying another monitor!)
 
Judith Browning
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This is what I have now: macOS High Sierra
 Model Name: iMac
 Model Identifier: iMac10,1
 Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
 Processor Speed: 3.06 GHz
 Number of Processors: 1
 Total Number of Cores: 2
 L2 Cache: 3 MB
 Memory: 4 GB
 Boot ROM Version: 215.0.0.0.0
 SMC Version (system): 1.52f9
 
I like it...a lot.

So far, it is doing everything and more that I want and need...and quietly and efficiently.....
and the photo editor will let me 'erase' the black spot my camera has now with every photo.

The other info says I can have up to 16GB Ram total...apparently there are two empty memory slots/ banks?
Do I need that?

The ads are virtually gone? I've asked bro in law if he has Adblock or something? really clean pages.

If I want to still try a Linux OS should I learn how to add more memory even if I use a flash drive rather than installing?

My pictures look better on this monitor...so it seems like I've been adjusting them more than necessary because of my old monitor's less than optimum resolution.

and there is apparently auto correct that I really need to find and disable

somewhere it  says it is from late 2009...so maybe just a little younger than my old HP....lighter use I think.


 
Douglas Alpenstock
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If it does what you need, with decent speed, leave it alone! Don't fix what ain't broke.

Edit: But make sure you install security updates and install software that stops malware. Assume there are bad actors trolling for you -- that's the unfortunate reality of the Internet.
 
Judith Browning
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:If it does what you need, with decent speed, leave it alone! Don't fix what ain't broke.

Edit: But make sure you install security updates and install software that stops malware. Assume there are bad actors trolling for you -- that's the unfortunate reality of the Internet.



That's really where I'm at...although I'm getting an occasional notice that what I have open is using up a lot of memory and if I close it the pc will run better.

and I'm pretty sure my benefactor has all of those things installed but will check to see.

So, I guess I'll look into adding more RAM since apparently I can.  I don't really understand if that's a physical thing someone needs to go inside and install in those empty 'banks' or if it's something I sign up for and likely pay for and it happens through the air?
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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RAM is a physical item, a small circuit board that slides into existing empty slots on the main circuit board (motherboard) inside your computer.
 
John Weiland
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Looks from the Spec sheets that, depending on whether or not it was an earlier or later 2009 production of the iMac, you might be able to max it out with 8 or 16 Gb of RAM, either of which likely would provide improvement over your existing 4 Gb.  Prices for legacy RAM used to wax and wane....don't know how expensive compatible RAM would be for that unit right now and hopefully others who do this more routinely can help in this regard.  If you end up purchasing the RAM locally, they should be able to install it for you I'm guessing....  Although it's pretty easily done once you watch someone do it, I haven't done it in years and only did it with those monster-large desktop cases of old.  But I'd say it would be worth checking around for price and installation assistance.
 
Bill Haynes
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If you become proficient with Linux (and I hope you do!) the grandaddy hyper stable version is Debian, the oldest is Slackware.
Debian is not for the casual user (although a determined new person can muddle through!) with the help of the internet and a spare computer to research your mistakes!
Once configured Debian can go for years without notable intervention. Over 250 Linux variants are based off of Debian.
Slackware is for those willing to dedicate significant time to all things Linux. I've puttered with Linux for years and I'm still lost with a Slackware distro.

If you've transferred your pictures and documents from the HP to the Apple, a long winters eve is an excellent time to install and reinstall every Linux flavor your heart is curious about.
Even better copy your hard drive  (pictures and documents) from the HP to the Apple and then remove the hard drive from the HP, and set it on the shelf as a backup.
Add a new 120 gig SSD (and possibly a controller for the SATA interface if the HP is still in the ATA era) and any old hard drive for a swap space and possibly /Home if its large enough.
The SSD will run about $30.00 the controller another $15..ish.

SSD's hate frequent writes and rewrites so a standard hard drive is best for swap area, (constantly in a state of flux) and /Home is subject to the vagaries of documents, pictures, music, and email, all of which are deleted frequently.
I usually give an enormous (rarely used) amount of space to swap, for suspend to disk operations when the computer hibernates.
Usually on older equipment hibernate, and sleep, are problematic and you're happier shutting it down completely.
 
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I didn't read every response to your question in this thread, as there are so many, but I had a Dell XPS 400 that I bought around 2006 that was getting a little rough around the edges.  I had already had to replace hard drives a couple of times but the last time I decided to try a Solid State Drive  SSD.  Wow!  Did that ever make a difference.  Everything ran so much smoother and faster.    You could try shopping here for one if interested.  https://www.crucial.com/store/advisor

This will show you if they have a SSD compatible with your model of PC.

Other than that,  Dust.  Absolutely!  Use some compressed air and gently blow the dust off of all the innards.

And RAM.  Memory does degrade over time.  So new used memory might just help out too.

New PC's are expensive, but building your own is really a matter of plugging parts together.  if you can handle a screwdriver, you can build a new computer too.  https://pcpartpicker.com/list/wz9WvW

Good luck!
 
John Weiland
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Getting closer to a possible switch out of Windows 7 on an older laptop.  It will be time soon to dig deep into some specification vault on the internet to find the particulars of this 'legacy' Gateway laptop...unless I can find most of what I need within the Device Manager of Win7.  The plan would be to price out a new SSD drive and more RAM (if it can take it) and then install one of the Linux distros on the new drive.  At this point, I've downloaded and made 3 bootable USB drives, one each for Elementary OS, LXLE, and Mint Cinnamon 'Sarah' (all 32-bit).  The bootable drives were made with Rufus 3.13 and disappointingly I was not able to make bootable drive versions with 'persistence' partitions (file storage space on the drive). -- though it must be noted that I may have been trying to make the partition larger than allowed (10 - 20 Gb on a 64 Gb drive).  That said, for all of them, I can still see the main HDD of the computer on which Win7 runs and can save and access files from there while working within each of the Linux OS's.  Above it was noted that SSD's don't like constant write/re-write??.... if so, would it be better to keep the Win7/HDD presence and just use it for saving files produced within the apps within Linux?  Alternatively, each distro has been fine with internet access and various services there to which I currently belong provide storage space.  Would there be a way to 'sync' a storage space on the HDD with Cloud/other storage space on the internet, thereby allowing access to those files if I'm able to boot to the drives from another computer?  

At any rate, with my really quite paltry understanding of computer operation and having always broken out in hives when having to interact with DOS/Unix command lines, [  ;-)  ], this newer way of dipping one's toes into the Linux pond is to me more user friendly.  Worth a try if you've been on the fence about these different Linux offerings and are hesitant to take the full plunge.
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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John, I strongly recommend pulling your Win7 hard drive and installing Linux on a different hard drive. SSD hard drives are cheap; that's the way to go.

Dual boot with Windows and Linux is a tricky business. It's not always stable over time. I have learned not to trust it. Once the dual-boot installer deletes the Master Boot Record from your original installation, you are committed.

It's better to have your separate, untouched Windows hard drive in safe storage. You can simply plug it back in if you need to run the original programs. To access the files, it's much better to buy an external hard drive case and use your Windows drive as an external, very fast USB drive.


 
John Weiland
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:......To access the files, it's much better to buy an external hard drive case and use your Windows drive as an external, very fast USB drive.



That's an idea I hadn't thought of, Doug. One question....if I have the old HDD with Win7 on it in an external case that I plug into a USB port when needed, would I also, if needed, be able to select it in the BIOS upon start-up as the boot drive?  This would allow me to use the Win7 environment in a pinch by just booting to that drive for needed activities, but use it as an external storage drive when booted to the SSD/Linux.  Would this work?  Thanks for the advice and tips!
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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For that to work, you would want the Windows hard drive in the machine and Linux on an external drive.

Windows is deliberately uncooperative about booting from an external drive. It assume it's an anti-piracy thing. Or some other corporate shenanigan.

Linux, in contrast, boots just fine from a USB drive. And yes, you can set the boot order in BIOS so the external drive, if present, will boot first.

Edit: I have used this to recover files, but I haven't done a long-term test. It should work, but writing back and forth between the two ecosystems may have trap doors. As always, any file you care about should be backed up before tinkering.

 
Bill Haynes
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One way to overcome the write/rewrite limitations is a RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) setup,
Since drives are so cheap I often setup an old hard drive to mirror my main drive and then swap it out two years later, in another two years swap out the main drive, and in another two years swap out the mirror....this gives 4 years constant abuse to every drive, and has worked well for me.
Usually by the time a hard drive reaches term, hard drive sizes have doubled for cost, and since I'm reasonably diligent about cleaning the old flotsam and running the photo collection through a comparator, I've never ran out of space (crossed fingers!!)
I still have programs from DOS 2.0 that may be a challenge to run!, (they just cant adjust to the higher processor speed!) but they are intact as installed.

Barring a full RAID, the next best method is a gigantic USB drive and a monthly Disk Image (in Win7-10 its a Win7 Disk Image, in Linux research the dd command, in Apple, the "Developer Disk Image" and in multiple aftermarket solutions a "Ghost Disk")
A disk image will allow you to reinstall everything on your hard drive as it was at the point of imaging.
 
John Weiland
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:.... Don't fix what ain't broke.



Actually, I just watched that posted episode on the forum from the Red Green show where our hero advises "If it ain't broke.....you ain't trying hard enough!."
.
I hope all of this is congruent with the OP's original post and that others are finding the information as useful as I am.....certainly seems to fit the Permie notion of recycling,---and maybe even 'decentralizing'..?

I did notice that neither you nor Bill H. commented on using Cloud storage..... was it just an oversight or is it something you personally would rather not rely on for myriad reasons?  I could certainly understand simply from the 'shifting sands' standpoint that one does not know the status of internet storage down the road.

I'm still getting a feel for the 3 different distros and will make a decision which one to fully install soon. Thanks again for the assistance and I hope others are helped by this thread and continue to add to it.
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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If you can manage the creeper factor, cloud storage has merits. Uploading files in encrypted folders could be helpful.

The Rule (IMO): If you pay for cloud storage, you are buying a product. If you use free cloud storage, you are the product being bought and sold.

My 2 cents.
 
Judith Browning
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I hope all of this is congruent with the OP's original post and that others are finding the information as useful as I am.....certainly seems to fit the Permie notion of recycling,---and maybe even 'decentralizing'..?



I've edited the title of this thread to fit the conversation...I like that it's become broader.  

I'm following along, feeling more and more lost but might be picking up a little knowledge so that I at least feel like I know more of the language now.  

Carry on
 
John Weiland
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Judith Browning wrote:

I'm following along, feeling more and more lost but might be picking up a little knowledge so that I at least feel like I know more of the language now.  

Carry on



Douglas, thanks for the response.  Comments much understood.

Judith, I'm hoping this thread will serve as an inspiration down the road.  First, as I'm entering my 60s, I saw personal computers arrive during graduate school, just soon enough so that I could type my thesis on a MacPlus.  (That was my student loan purchase....$2,500.00 for the student loan and I'm pretty sure I spent most of it just buying the computer and the dot-matrix printer.)  Prior to that MacPlus, it felt like torture to use DOS.... typing commands for the computer to perform operations on a black and white screen....or if I recall more accurately, whitish-yellow text on a green-grey screen.   The MacPlus was one of the first mouse-based point-and-click computers that I can recall (again, a non-techie going on memory).  Installing software on these newer systems,.....much closer to Win/Mac of today....was a matter of seeing the icon of the new software you wanted to install and double-clicking it to launch the installation process.  I'm sure a DOS/UNIX/Linux person would say it was not much more difficult using typed commands (generally called "command-line'), but the whole point-and-click process just seemed so much more intuitive and user-friendly to me and, I suspect, a lot more users from the way history has taken personal computing since those days.  But ever since the point-and-clicks took over the market, there has always been that group of computer code aficionados that stayed with command line (and for good reasons that I won't comment on here...plenty of friends and work colleagues extolling the virtues of that level of programming).  And as wowed as I could be watching them "do their stuff" on command line, it just seem like too much to learn and something I wasn't motivated to do.  This included the realm of Linux,....and I won't even try to go over that history which you likely will find excellent explanations of in Wikipedia and other articles.

Enter the newer era of Linux where many hours of devoted volunteer service around the globe helped to create point-and-click programs and operating systems that are (a) open-sourced and more 'freely' available to the public and (b) soooooooo much easier to understand when coming from the Mac/Windows world of point-and-click.  So to keep this novella short, whereas on Win/Mac you would either buy a disc with software on it or download a little install file on to your computer....both of which would then be followed by double-clicking the icon to start the installation..... the way I tested these different Linux operating systems was more of a two-step process.  (1) Download an "Installer"....literally a little software app that runs on Windows....and (2) go to whichever source of the Linux OS that you wish to test and follow the instructions to download the file you need.  What are all of these different Linux OS's??  The way I think of it is to imagine that Microsoft decided, each time it offered a newer version of Windows, to keep the older one and let the programmers play around to make the older versions into something fun....something not necessarily like an upgrade....but still very useful.  Thus, in my own tests, I decided to download Linux-"Elementary OS" first.  I bought a new USB stick drive (16 Gb at the time....under $10 now I think for even a 32 Gb drive??) for this test.  With "Rufus".....the "Installer" mentioned above....downloaded onto my laptop (Win7), I then downloaded the .iso file clearly indicated as the file for the Elementary OS download.  So now I had the basic Elementary OS file on my desktop, Rufus at the ready, and then plugged the flash drive into a free USB port on the computer.  Double click Rufus which opens a screen, drop down menus allow you to select the USB drive as the destination for the Elementary OS installation, and another dropdown lets you choose that downloaded .iso file as the one to install on your USB drive.  Rufus will tell you it needs to wipe clean the USB flash.....one good reason to do this 'test' on a flash drive is that you really, at this stage, don't want to touch your *own* internal hard drive that runs your Windows and has your files.  With everything ready, there's a pretty standard "START" button that you push to let Rufus do its thing....installing the .iso file onto the USB drive so that it can become a "bootable" drive.  This means that, upon restarting your computer with the USB stick drive in place and holding down a special key during restart, you can actually tell the computer to use the new Operating System (in this case, Elementary OS) on the USB drive instead of Windows on your main drive.

What the above allows you to do is to "test drive" the operating system.  On my system, when I boot or reboot the laptop and hold down the F12 key, a window pops up allowing me to choose to either boot to Windows 7 or to the USB drive (along with a few other options).  Toggle (arrow keys) to choose the USB drive and hit the enter key.  A boot sequence will follow with a bunch of commands on the screen that give me the shivvers.... .....  and then, magically, a Windows-like desktop appears.  It's not Windows, it's not Mac...it's some other person's brain-child of a desktop environment that you really may like.  Or not so much.  Which is the beauty of all of those people out there trying to make new operating systems that are Windows-like, but not so beholden to Microsoft, the provider.  At any rate, what you see is something enough like Windows that it's pretty easy to poke around....opening this file and that folder and trying out this little piece of software that was installed with the OS.  And it has a SHUTDOWN button!  So if starting to get worried or just feeling overwhelmed by the first foray into this strange new land, hit the power off button and the computer quits, just like in Windows (but considerably faster and cleaner than Windows in my case).  Although you don't need to, if you pull out the USB and then restart your computer, it will boot right back to Windows just like normal.  So no harm done, you can repeat the cycle to play around more with the OS and software on the USB drive or even go out there and drive a different 'flavor' that may be more to your liking.  Paul Wheaton had mentioned liking Linux 'Mint'...... and since my sad, wheezing old laptop is 32-bit, I choose to download 'Mint Cinnamon 'Sarah' ' which I understand to be the 32-bit version of Cinnamon.  I also downloaded at a different time, LXLE....mentioned either in this thread or elsewhere on the forum.  I'm kind of liking that one best at the moment, but will have to run it through more operations....like internet connection, printing, general speed and smoothness of navigating the desktop, etc.  In the end, hoping to find one that I can install possibly on the current, but likely on a new SSD, internal hard drive to replace Win7 altogether on that laptop.

OK....I've blathered enough.  Merciless critique and corrections welcomed......
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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John, just curious, which make and model of laptop do you have? I regularly see well-built 32-bit business laptops that can teach a thing or two to the disposable consumer stuff out there. They just need a little TLC.

BTW, I generally settle on Mint "MATE" edition. For very old laptops, Lubuntu 32-bit or ZorinOS Lite runs very nicely.
 
Bill Haynes
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Cloud storage is the equivalent of willingly offering your information to be held hostage at some point in the future.
Currently it is cheap.
Currently the "Free" offerings are the equivalent of a half days serious work with a camera.
As soon as you are within 5 Megabytes of your 50 Megabyte limit the spam will start and escalate.
They have unnattended bots sending email, text, and phone messages, twice a day or more frequently, every single one of which is a piece of minutia you must make a decision on.
Minutia is the bedrock of Illegitimi Carborundum (a bastardization of "the bastards will grind you down"!)

Every service has a white paper plan to amass your data to a given point, and then raise prices.
Every service has fine print assuring you that everything submitted to their servers will be perused and used if valuable to the company offering storage.
Every EULA states that they will work with law enforcement, with changing mores and "social credit scores" in the offing, many things that are legal (and moral) today will not be tomorrow.
Every plan has fine print holding them harmless no matter how much of your data is lost / stolen / broadcast to all points.

The only reason to have cloud storage is if you plan to make a central clearing house that you intend to give many people access to.
 
John Weiland
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:John, just curious, which make and model of laptop do you have? I regularly see well-built 32-bit business laptops that can teach a thing or two to the disposable consumer stuff out there. They just need a little TLC.

BTW, I generally settle on Mint "MATE" edition. For very old laptops, Lubuntu 32-bit or ZorinOS Lite runs very nicely.



Thanks for the extra OS distro recommendations, Douglas.   The point well made from you and Bill H. about Cloud/internet storage also....thanks for advice.

Specs on the laptop:

Gateway NV53, model #MS2285

Processor: AMD Athlon II X2 M300

15.6" HD LED LCD

CPU Speed: 2 GHz

Hard Drive: 500 GB

RAM: 4 GB

Drives: DVD Supermulti DL drive

Multicard reader, 4 USB, 1 HDMI

Battery: AS09A51 Li-ion 10.8V 4400 MAh 48 Wh

Dimensions: 14.75" x 10" x 1.5"

Screen Size: 15.5"

Webcam: Yes

Wireless: WLAN Atheros AR5B93

Operating System: Windows (probably came with WinXP?..... and we upgraded to Win7)

Added Edit:  Memory served me well on the MacPlus price....from Wiki: ""The Macintosh Plus computer is the third model in the Macintosh line, introduced on January 16, 1986, two years after the original Macintosh and a little more than a year after the Macintosh 512K, with a price tag of US$2599."
 
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