Windows-I am an avid windows user. I have been using it for a decade now. Windows was completely fine for software like Solidworks, ANSYS, Lotus, AutoCAD etc. Even for ML, it was completely fine for me when I was working with Jupyter Notebooks. But the problem arises when I started to do modular programming. I had to shift to linux based OS for better utility and minimize unnecessary tasks.
I am not an expert in linux or windows OS. The article is completely my personal experience. I have a whole lot of difficulty during this transition. The aim of this article is to not let any other suffer the same problem. My small contribution to the community which has given me a lot.
What is Linux?
Linux is a family of Unix like OS. There are multitudes of linux distributions available now. Each has its purpose. Here in this room, there is no space for the best or the worst. Everything has been developed for a certain purpose. All these OS are open source and maintained by open source developers. All these OS can be modified according to our need and can be exchanged to colleagues or friends.
As I told there are tons of Linux distributions available such as Ubuntu, Kali Linux, Siduction etc.. You can explore further by googling Linux distros. Out of all these, after various research, I chose Linux Mint Cinnamon 19.3 for my system. The choice was based on my personal observation and inquiry. In my opinion, it is completely beginner friendly for those who enter the world of Linux. It is very user friendly and is very easy to learn.
Photo by Todd Quackenbush on UnsplashD’accord. Now we are on the preparation phase. Before installing the OS, we need to do certain things.
- Take a backup of all your required data. Not only in your C drive but in the whole hard disk. In the world of Linux, there isn’t such a thing. There is no partition of disk.
- You need a flash drive to burn the OS image file
- When I saw this, I was wondering what is a flash drive. I had a doubt that it could be a pendrive. But I wasn’t sure as i could not find it anywhere. Then I proceeded with my pendrive itself (still in doubt). But everything went well and I did it.
- It is advised to have atleast 4GB memory card. Now, you can download the required files. You can directly visit the official website of Linux Mint and download the most recent version. You will be downloading a ISO file of the latest OS. Now you have to burn it to the flash drive. To do this, you need a burning tool. There are various tools available. You can choose of your own. I used etcher from balena. It is completely free and is compatible in windows, linux and MacOS. With this tool, you can burn the ISO file into the flash drive and remove it.
Installing the OS
11th edition of Baja BhaisAt first, you should know the method to activate boot menu. I use Dell Inspiron and to access boot menu, I have to press F12 when the dell icon pops us while turning on. Look into your laptop description to know how to do this in your laptop.
Now, insert the flash drive and restart your system (or turn on if you have shut down). Then proceed forward to the boot menu. Here, your system would have recognized your flash drive. Select your flash drive using the array keys on the keyboard and press enter.
Now, you should be able to see a screen like this. It varies depending on the version but most of the features remains same. Right now, most of you must be wondering “I haven’t even installed. Then how am I able to access the new OS or is the installation that fast( definitely not you genius-you already know it).
But don’t worry. You haven’t installed it yet. You are just having a preview of the new OS. You can completely have a trail of it. Know it thick and thin. Then you can decide if you really want to proceed with this. It is similar to the trial version of any premium feature that you can access without spending anything. Analogous to that, here you can get complete experience of Linux Mint without uninstalling other OS. I don’t know about other Linux distros. But this is the case for Linux Mint ( Hope it is also possible with other distros).
Once you have decided to proceed with Linux Mint (I hope you will after working on it), you can start installing the OS. You will be able to find a disc icon in the desktop window with the name of the version of the OS you have chosen. Double click that icon and you should know it. It is completely a piece of cake. At first, you have to choose your preferred language. Then a window pops if you want to install the third party apps along with the installation. make sure that it is checked. It might install some useful apps (I really don’t know what are they, but I did it). Now, choose the time zone you are living.
We are in the ENDGAME now
Finally, it for your credentials which will be utmost useful for you. Enter your name and choose a user name. I recommend you to keep it simple because you need to type it often when working with the terminal. Then set a name for your system. This will be useful if your system is interacting with various other systems in a connected network. Eventually, set your password.
Now you have the option to either encrypt your files to the system. Checking this feature enables you to safeguard your information stored though it is stolen. Then the installation begin. It is very quick in my observation.
Photo by Monstruo Estudio on UnsplashNow, restart your system. A welcome screen will pop-up. Make sure to install graphics card or other drives through the drive manager available in the tab available on the welcome pop-up. Then another important feature called timeshift would be available. Using this, you will be able to take snaps of your drive and store it in a drive. This can be used to get back to the previous stage if something bad happens to your system. This would be very handy if you often experiment with new features or apps.
After the installation is over, you still have some important works to be done. In the bottom left corner, you will be able to find the Linux Mint logo. By clicking that, you will be able to access the menu. On the side menu bar, click the second icon from the top - Software manager. Here, you need to update the software packages on the system. In addition to that, you can also install your favorite apps here. It is the recommended and very easy way to install a software. Photo by Ali Yahya on UnsplashYou have a whole lot of work. But it has paid off. You have the most powerful yet lightweight and open sourced OS running on your machine. Now the world is yours. As a bonus material, I would suggest here some of my personal favorite apps here.
01. Mozilla Firefox
We all need a internet browser. Most of us would be familiar with google chrome. I don’t want to talk bad about that. if you feel like something different here comes Mozilla Firefox. It is the default browser for Linux Mint. Yet, I like it very much. Now I started using it and started liking it. It is also a open source project. It is highly secure. it does not store or get any information from you. You can have utmost privacy. You have features to block malwares. There are still many more attractive features here. I assure you you will like it.
02. VLC media Player
Though there are many other apps for playing media files. Here is the undisputed champion of all. It has everything you need. It is also very user friendly and supports almost any type of video or audio file. As others, this is also open-source.
Wine is a software that allows you to work with all the software of windows systems. If you still miss your windows for some of the tasks, you can make use of wine. Still, I haven’t came across any situation to use it. So, I haven’t installed it. Yet, I recommend you to do it, if you need it.
In addition to these, there are many others to be noted such as libra office, GIMP, Calibre, skype, slack, zoom etc. This is my system home screen. I have customized it as per my preferences. It is quite a big process and has lot of things to cover. If you want me to write an article on that, please mention in the comments. On the right bottom of my screen, you can see my system is completely updated, connected to a wifi, with a NVIDIA graphics card mounted along with slack, dropbox and Jetbrains toolbox running.
As Linux is an open source project, people working on that are not funded by anyone for that. So, they ask for us to donate some money to support their work. This is not compulsory but a way to appreciate their work. Even I have spent a whole lot of time in writing this article. But, I am not going to ask you for money. Just show your appreciation by giving some claps. This would definitely encourage me to create some more valuable articles.