Is it possible to (really) break from Windows (needs list)

openSUSE 11.0 is out and it is a 64-bit Linux system…

ok, so my dilemma with Linux s this…

I need drivers for :

An HP Laserjet 1022 laser printer
A Lexmark X7170 inkjet printer (good luck there…)
XFX 8800GT Alpha Dog version video card
ASUS AB9 Pro motherboard and all the ecoutrements
- 9 x SATA controllers
- 2 x Gigabit LAN
- S/PDIF in and out ports
- 8+ USB 2.0 ports

I need the following Linux-base applications to be available

– Comparable program to MS-Word 2007 (the university has already fully converted over… I need it for compatibility (whatever Linux program needs to be able to open Office 2007 documents and spreadsheets and presentations)
– Adobe Acrobat 8 or 9 (9 is 64-bit, I don’t think 8 is…)… Acrobat is supposed to be Linux friendly, right?
– Adobe Photoshop CS3 or CS4… OR… a Linux-friendly app that can manipulate TIFFs, BMPs, JPGs, GIFs, and any picture format I throw at it
– Adobe Audition 3.0 (is there a Linux version?) this is a fine multi-track audio program… what about Linux plugins… I have hundreds of Windows-based plaugins, and a small fortune is what I have spent on them… do I lose them ALL by converting to Linux?
– The Linux distro needs to be able to play .AVI files (I have hundreds of movies in this format) as well as .MPEGs and I have a few windows media movies… what do I now do with those?
– I don’t want to give up Steinberg Wavelab 4.0… (but its a 32-bit program…)… so I need an easy-to-use wav/mp3/ogg/ stereo audio editor
– The Linux distro needs to have a NERO-type burner available for dual-layer drives (shouldn’t be much of a problem)
– A Linux-friendly bittorrent client MUST be available
– The system needs to have a CD-to-MP3 ripper
– A DVD-to-AVI ripper would be nice
– I need an anti-virus program, for free, that is at least as good as Anvira AntiVir that I have been using for 3+ years without a hitch
– A spyware program as good as Lavasoft Ad-Aware (howbeit viruses and spyware may soon become a thing of the past with a good Linux system… … … maybe…
– The thing has to play DVDs right out of the box (as in store-bought kind)… AND the player must have a full-screen mode…

With a list like that, you can see why some folks might not want to wander into the Linux arena.

I’m not a programmer, I have no intention of learning how to write code or opensource apps.



Is this really possible?

I don’t mind doing some digging to make it happen…

I’m literate enough to search for drivers if somebody can point me in the right direction, but I’m not re-buying a bunch of hardware just so I can use Linux.

I don’t suppose there are any guarentees but I have started the openSUSE 11.0 download.

My bittorent client says it will be here in 3 hours.

This is my first Linux post.

I have studied the Linux commands in college but I had a crappy instructor, but it might fog back in through the vents if I try.

Anything to get me away from having to be involved with anything anymore

Please help… I would sincrely like to make this happen…


ps. My processor is an:

Intel Core 2 Duo E6320 1.86GHz

I am ready to rock and roll with a 64-bit system… I want it to be a Linux system…

I don’t know if it’s legal to answer a question like that, but… Just kidding! :stuck_out_tongue:

For hardware, the only thing that I can say is to try it and see what happens. Usually, most systems and configurations run fine. The only real scenario where you’ll have a problem is if you use exotic or un-heard-of hardware. If you like pc gaming like I do, then you’ll definitely need to keep Windows installed. Dual booting is a simple process, but restarting to play a game does get boring and it’s tempting to either stop playing that game or switch to Windows, neither of which are good options.
Also, if you have sensitive or important data on your windows partition, I would recommend installing linux to another harddrive and pulling the Windows one out of the box so you don’t make a mistake.
In any case, I don’t think you’ll have that much of a problem. Going to back to the list applications you brought up:

  • OpenSUSE 11 ships default with 2.4 (based off of and soon to be version 3) which as far as I can tell, works fluently with MS Office.
  • Acrobat is found in the repositories, however there is an open source version installed by default that integrates cleanly with konqueror, your file browser. If you open a pdf, it’ll open right in that window.
  • For image editing, you can use GIMP, which is somewhat similar in functionality to Photoshop, but not quite in interface. If you find that doesn’t work, you could try running Photoshop through wine, a Windows compatibility layer that works quite well.
  • I’m afraid I have no idea about Adobe Audition, and sound editing; hopefully someone else can touch up on this.
  • There’s K3B for all your burning tasks.
  • I’ve been using ktorrent since the beginning of time, and have never had a problem, but alternatively, you could run utorrent through wine or azureus natively.
  • Mplayer with the proper codecs can play virtually anything. (And all are found in the repositories). There’s also Amarok for listening to music, which is the best thing under the sun.
  • Finally, linux does not suffer from viruses, spyware and the like, so you don’t need a anti-virus/spyware.

Here’s some more good resources:
OpenSUSE Concepts
OpenSUSE and Hardware
OpenSUSE News
WineHQ’s Application Database
And of course the forums. :slight_smile:

most of your questions seem to have been answered except after reading briefly not the dvd one. to play dvds download libdvd. for dvds i use vlc player, if you download this from packman you should be able to watch it straight away in full screen…i do at least!

As far your Nvidia 8800 card, I foresee no problems with that. Nvidia provides very good linux drivers which should give excellent 3d support. Installation is more difficult than Windows, but is a good learning experience.

HP printers are also very well supported, especially if you get the HPLip package from HP which provides support for most if not all HP printers.

The Lexmark printer, I’m sure about, but it might work.

Everything else (SATA support, etc.) looks to be no problem.

There is a rather steep learning curve for Linux. If you encounter any problems, it will be right at the beginning, when you know the least. But that’s why this forum is here.

I would give yourself a week or so to get used to the OS and to get everything set up the way you like. Most everything is configured on the initial install, which takes about 30 minutes. But there’s some fine tuning which tends to take the longest, such as getting your printer and graphics card and internet working just the way you want, and usually some unexpected problem that might take a while to figure out.

Good luck!

For HP printers, if the printer is USB, more often than not, CUPS will pick it up without muss or fuss (I have the DeskJet 940C, and CUPS has never failed to snag my printer in any OS that CUPS supports); but then, I call the 940C a true “Plug-n-Print” device because every OS I’ve thrown it at (not just Linux and Windows, but even Solaris and OS X) has never ever failed to pick up and print to it.

SATA support is even easier to speak of, since my current boot drive is not only SATA, but split between Vista and openSuSE 11. (Not a problem dual-booting, either.)

The biggest part of the learning curve is that applications and drivers install radically differently from what you may be used to in Windows (which means there are lots of things that have to be unlearned); I’ve been dealing with Linux in some form since RH 5.2, and I’m still learning.

With Linux, you never really stop learning, either. (Anybody that thinks they know everything there is to know about Linux is in serious need of professional help of the psychiatric sort.)

Thank you to everyone who has added some advice!

One thing that comes to mind…

I am wondering if I will need to make a driver disk for my onboard SATA gear? Everything in my system is SATA, hard drives and DVD drives… or, is there a driver setip selection in the openSUSE installation process?

In a Windows system, you have to mash F6 as soon as you put the CD in the machine and the setup portion starts.

Is there something like this for the Linux install that I should be aware of?

Or, should I temporarily install an IDE DVD drive for the install, then add my drivers for SATA, then replace the IDE DVD drive with my new SATA DVD drive after all is installed?

You might try beginning the installation from Windows. If you insert your Suse disc in Windows, it will ask you if you want to install the Open Suse installer. After you install this, you reboot, and you have choice of either booting into Windows or into the Linux install.

I have an external USB DVD drive that I can’t boot directly from, so I use this method.

The installer gives you basic drivers, which should recognize your SATA drives and allow the install to continue.

I hope you know enough about how you want to partition your hard drive. If you create an unformatted logical drive in Windows, that is a pretty easy way to go. Suse will usually find this and set it up automatically. I would set aside at least 20-30 gigs for Suse, if possible, more if you can. Others will probably have their own methods of partitioning, but this is just what I do because it works and it’s easy.

Be careful not to accidentally delete your WIndows partition though. Partitioning is the hardest part of the setup, and it helps to have a plan before you begin the install.

After that, you go thru setting passwords, etc., and from there you can just walk away until it’s done.

I must point out also if you are going to repartition your windows partition do a thorough defrag in windows first. This will limit the chance of accidentally losing data. And obviously do any backups first. How many times do I wish I’d followed that little gem of advice!!! I would personally recommend the dual booting option first as you still have something familiar to use whilst learning the ropes! Good luck, I think you will find the conversion a joyous journey!

In short - yes it is possible to break entirely from windows. After being a MS tester for every version of Windows since 3.1, I deserted MS when:

(1) I discovered that I had to buy a new copy when I upgraded my hard disk (I had reinstalled it after I was hit with some malware and a key logger was put on my machine).
(2) MS lied that a security update was necessary and it was really spyware (The WGA update) and it told me my copy of XP (purchased from Microsoft itself) was a fake.
(3) After testing Vista for MS, I had so many problems with drivers, painfully slow loads, files that would read or put up a “do not trust” message, that I reverted to XP again with not even a thanks from MS for trying.
(4) When I updated with Windows SP3 and it crashed Windows and wrote off a brand new 500GB HDD and MS denied there was a problem.
(4) When I uploaded an old free copy of Fedora Core 3 and it enabled us to keep running our online business while we sorted out the Windows hassles. Instead of buying a new disk of XP or Vista at over $140 plus Office 2007 at over $400, I paid $4.50 for SuSe from eBay to do the same job. A year later I paid the same price again ($4.50) for SuSe 11.0

Like you I have an Intel Duo (3.2GHz) on an Asus P5LD2 Motherboard, 2 x 215 GB Sata HDDs on board and a Removable 500GB Sata HDD via USB. I run SuSe 11 and Fedora Core 9 as Dual boot.
We run two online businesses with 4 websites and I also teach Accounting, Maths and Psychology at Senior Highschool level.

I am not hassle free yet after updating from SuSe 10.1 to 11.0 and Fedora Core 3 to Core 9 last week - (only an HP Photosmart 3310 Driver problem to sort out).

What you get with SuSe and Fedora is the sort of reliability that you will never have with Windows. Not intentionally knocking windows but coz it’s so popular, every attack is directed at you when you are on line with Windows as often as we were. Plus Linux doesn’t write everything to a registry that keeps growing without your knowledge. After 4 years Fedora Core 3 booted up in the same time as it did on day 1 - try that with any version of Windows!

For Office 2007 - even XP can’t read MS’s own 2007 docs and Excel files - how dumb is that?
Use Save As on MSO2007 and save as older version doc or xls files. Its a pain that we have at school too and it effects all Windows XP folks, not just Open Office.

Actually, the issue (backward compatibility) is older than that issue you’re running into. Office 2007’s native formats are not the same as those in older versions of Office (not just XP, but Office 2003 as well). The issue first was a problem with WordPerfect 6.0 and 6.0a for Windows; unless you told it otherwise, it spit out documents incompatible with older versions of WordPerfect. (For precisely this reason, I called this version “Word Not-So-Perfect”, and switched to Microsoft Word.) However, you can instruct Office 2007’s applications to save in the older file formats (I routinely do this because of the problems I ran into with WordPerfect.). I still run Office 2007 in Vista because of one application it includes that OO lacks.

Outlook 2007.

On the openSuSE side, I use Evolution for mail precisely because it’s a lot like Outlook; however, there is no Evolution mail client for Windows.

You asked above re SATA support . . . it depends on the type of device. For hard disk drives, what matters is support for the disk controller which is usually in the motherboard chpset; the drives themselves are irrelevant. For an optical drive, the SATA part simply means that it is connected to a serial port; the controller is again in the chipset using the standard ATAPI interface. If using a drive connected via eSATA, again driver support for the chipset. But with peripherals, there can be a driver required for that unique device (like a printer driver). A broad over-generalization would be that devices connecting inside the box to the motherboard get their support via the chipset drivers, and peripherals (other than drives) tend to need their own drivers.