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Subject: computer OS question rss

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Cool User
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My laptop hard drive died and I need to get it running ASAP. I replaced the hard drive but my laptop didn't come with a recovery CD, only a partition on the now bad hard drive. I'm not having any luck recovering Windows Vista, so I'm considering switching to a free OS.

Can anyone give me advice on what it's like using GNU/Linux or other OS's? Will I have to get all new programs (like for word processing) and will they be compatible with the files I already have from Word & Excel?

I've been out of work for a loooong time and spending money to buy another copy of Windows is not a very good option right now.
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Jorge Montero
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You will need new programs for almost everything. They tend to come with the linux distribution of your choosing.

As far as compatibility with your files, you'll have little trouble opening your files. Where you might have trouble is things like supporting built in cameras, sound drivers and such.
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Blorb Plorbst
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hibikir wrote:
You will need new programs for almost everything. They tend to come with the linux distribution of your choosing.

As far as compatibility with your files, you'll have little trouble opening your files. Where you might have trouble is things like supporting built in cameras, sound drivers and such.


Mostly correct. Ubuntu is dandy but the newest version is a bit too hardware intensive for my old lappy. I'm thinking of downgrading to a lighter version like Lubuntu.

I've never had any probs with Ubuntu supporting standard, recent accessories. All plug and play.

You can get open source apps to handle your basic MS files but if you have macros or advanced features they may not be fully supported.

I use my laptop almost exclusively as a web browser. All my created docs are done with google docs (now Google Drive).
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Chuck Meeks
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Sometimes you can contact the laptop manufacturer and ask them their policy on sending you a copy of the restore software for your model on a DVD. They may charge you a small amount but it is not much. I had to do that once and I think they charged me $5 for a replacement disk. They may not do it but it is worth a shot.
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Cool User
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Komodo wrote:
Sometimes you can contact the laptop manufacturer and ask them their policy on sending you a copy of the restore software for your model on a DVD. They may charge you a small amount but it is not much. I had to do that once and I think they charged me $5 for a replacement disk. They may not do it but it is worth a shot.


Thanks, I'll try that.
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Rob Robinson
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Do you have a genuine serial number sticker on your laptop somewhere?

Anyone's copy of Vista will work with that number.

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Virre Linwendil AnnergÄrd
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Of the harddrive is only partily dead you might be able to boot in linux and make a dd copy of it to later mot t on a new drive.

(well something like that)
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zombiegod wrote:
Do you have a genuine serial number sticker on your laptop somewhere?

Anyone's copy of Vista will work with that number.



Yes, I've got the sticker with the license number. Unfortunately, all copies of Vista I've borrowed come from recovery disks from other manufacturers and for some reason they aren't working. One I got to load about 80% and then it aborted the installation.

I'm trying to get a recovery CD from Dell but my system is 3 or 4 years old so they don't have anything available from their website. I need to call customer service and see what they have to say.

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virre wrote:
Of the harddrive is only partily dead you might be able to boot in linux and make a dd copy of it to later mot t on a new drive.

(well something like that)


I pulled the bad drive, put it in an external case and thought I could use another computer to pull the data off it but the second computer I have is giving me all kinds of problems as well.
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Walt
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If you end up changing to Linux, Open Office (openoffice.org) should be able to read Word and Excel files. It's free. I can't say I've extensively tested this, though; I've just played with it.
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