FedoraForum.org - Fedora Support Forums and Community
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Posts
    5

    Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    I'm a carpenter by trade but I've played around with computers since I got my first at 13 or 14. I was first exposed to Linux in high school around 1998 but I didn't make the complete switch until last November. I've learned a ton and I'm having a ball and (although it's not Fedora I'm using) it's keeping my 9-year-old system limping along until it can be replaced.

    At work we have 4 identical machines in our back office for us to order parts, track jobs, get manuals and MSDS, etc. One popped up with an error for NTOSKRNL.EXE A week has passed along with multiple calls to IT and no action as of yet. I'm sure our tech guys would have just reinstalled Windows and Office and the myriad programs they use to block almost everything on the internet. Of course, they come and do all of this in person and give me dirty looks for having Firefox Portable running on the system I use.

    Anyway, I surmised that the HD had developed a bad spot where that particular file lived as I've seen the error before on my own dying HD. I had F16 sitting on a thumb drive from trying to get my cranky old system to agree to running it, so I took it along to work yesterday. I had my Droid X as well. F16 booted quickly and beautifully on the modern dual-core system. I easily copied the file from a good system to my phone. On the dead system, I renamed the problem file and then copied the new file into the proper directory. A quick reboot and Windows loaded happily. I set up a disk check and rebooted. It found 7 bad sectors and patched them up. The rest of the damaged files were in the IE cache.

    One of the other carpenters observed my work and was amazed - both at how simple the fix was and how I had a complete operating system ready to go sitting on a thumb drive. I told him it was Linux, Fedora specifically, and free. He said, "I bet Microsoft hates that!" I agreed.

    We talked a little more about what open source was and how Android, Tivo and many web servers on down to the cash registers at Lowes were all Linux. He was surprised at how widespread its use was but how little-known the software is. I don't think I have him talked into trying a Live CD yet but I'll work on it.
    Last edited by Kevin108; 20th April 2012 at 01:33 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Woonsocket, RI
    Posts
    521

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    That hard disk may be going badly south. It's worth running a SMART test on it, and it may require replacement.

    Of course, since it sounds like it's not really your computer, that may be a job for your unresponsive IT department. I thought I'd mention it so that you can back up any critical data on that computer. If the disk dies suddenly, you could lose anything that's not backed up.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    ~
    Posts
    1,897

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    Don't you just love Windows, keeps nagging about all sort of things but when a hard disk dies it'll keep its mouth shut.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    193

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    That's the best we can do, is to spread the word to those still using Windoze and let them know there are options available, at zero cost and better stability overall. The migration from Windows to Linux is not easy, but it CAN be done with some time and patience, and once you're done you are set. I'm in IT by profession and got sick of fixing Windoze PCs at work and at home, so at home (as of 2008) we all run Fedora, and now we have time to actually use our PCs rather than fixing them all of the time. At work, Windows is job security though.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Posts
    5
    I checked the SMART stats while in F16 and everything was under the threshold for problems with all green lights but no, it's not my job or place to worry about that stuff in the long run.

    If the HD did fail, there's nothing of any personal or business importance on it as the real info is stored offsite. IT would just reinstall XP, Office and their AV/security software that slows the systems to a crawl.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Detroit
    Posts
    6,661

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    I always enjoy hearing stories like this. I'm glad your co-worker got to see Linux in action - I think most people have heard about Linux vaguely but it's different to actually see how it works. Good job!
    OS: Fedora 27 x86_64 | Machine: HP Pavilion a6130n | CPU: AMD 64 X2 Dual-Core 5000+ 2.6GHz | RAM: 7GB PC5300 DDR2 | Disk: 400GB SATA | Video: ATI Radeon HD 4350 512MB | Sound: Realtek ALC888S | Ethernet: Realtek RTL8201N

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Posts
    5

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Dutchy
    Don't you just love Windows, keeps nagging about all sort of things but when a hard disk dies it'll keep its mouth shut.
    One of the things I've been most impressed with is how useful the error messages are in modern Linux. Many times even if it doesn't work right, you're offered suggestions on how to fix it.

    Quote Originally Posted by szilagyic
    That's the best we can do, is to spread the word to those still using Windoze and let them know there are options available, at zero cost and better stability overall. The migration from Windows to Linux is not easy, but it CAN be done with some time and patience, and once you're done you are set. I'm in IT by profession and got sick of fixing Windoze PCs at work and at home, so at home (as of 2008) we all run Fedora, and now we have time to actually use our PCs rather than fixing them all of the time. At work, Windows is job security though.
    It's really strange how comfortable people are with having to reinstall Windows every few months. It's even stranger how many people can't do it themselves and pay quite a bit to have someone do it for them. There's lots of days I wish I had the spare time for part-time IT work. Thinking through an issue and finding the solution before ever touching the keyboard was always rewarding.

    Quote Originally Posted by RupertPupkin
    I always enjoy hearing stories like this. I'm glad your co-worker got to see Linux in action - I think most people have heard about Linux vaguely but it's different to actually see how it works. Good job!
    Thanks! Little successes like this are motivating. I need to have some burns ready to hand out after little discussions like this.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Luton, UK
    Age
    32
    Posts
    291

    Re: Fixed an XP machine and spread the word on Linux yesterday

    I had a word-spreading just yesterday too A friend of mine was complaining that her Windows laptop was running slowly, wouldn't connect wirelessly to the internet, kept grinding to a halt etc, so I gave her a laptop with F16 on it to sort her out until she could afford an alternative (or so the original agreement went ). Both laptops were the same age and specs, but she was blown away by it. One hour on:

    "It's so smooth!"
    "Wow, I love how this works!"
    "Linux, where have you been all my life?!"

    She'd heard vaguely about Linux, like a lot of people, and had spent 10 minutes playing with my F14 netbook and said it "seemed nice" but had never really been exposed to it. Having started her on it yesterday, I'm now booked to go and visit next weekend so I can show her how to set it all up exactly how she likes, answer questions about this and that application and so on.

    "And seriously? It's all free?"
    "Basically, yeah."
    "And you can do it on USBs too?"
    "Yep."
    "...it just gets better~"

    She's all excited about it now, bless her - it's like watching me discovering it all over again
    I generally use two tools - trial and error. They fix most things eventually!

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 2nd March 2012, 01:01 PM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 22nd September 2008, 06:48 AM
  3. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 28th January 2007, 04:26 PM
  4. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 30th January 2006, 12:28 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •