Can someone talk me through getting rid of Winblows?

Zoomzoom

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Aug 15, 2014
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2,207
#1
So done with Win 10, been contemplating switching to another OS but honestly NOT that experienced.

I can follow CLEAR directions (and any direction starting with 'just' is NOT clear).... and I have installed Windows from scratch a few times over the years but for some reason the idea of ditching Windows for an alternative terrifies me, not in a small part because despite the others having been around for years, all seem to need constant updates, tweaking and degree in Comp Sci to even understand let alone run. Windows might suck big time, but at least it runs ...

However I was given a secondhand laptop that was 'kindly' upgraded to Win 10 which ... I have no words to express the level of frustration with this rubbish... and I DO NOT have the data to update it, and it is a constant fear in case it starts and I can't do this anymore. I am so stressed out of my mind everytime I switch the thing on for that moment when it arbitrarily circumvents everything and goes to update and I have to run to switch the modem off.

So I am back to contemplating an alternative ... ANYTHING to avoid this stress ... but I do not want to swop one set of problems for another.

What is the best alternative OS - stable, simple, user-friendly, can be installed by a NORMAL person, and will run an office type suite, MyPaint (http://mypaint.org/) and GIMP.

And can someone talk me through installing it, or at least lend a hand if I get stuck ... pretty please. HELP.
 

ArtyLoop

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Dec 18, 2017
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#2
Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is the OS for you..
And yes if my wife can install it with no problems then so can you
 

Zoomzoom

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#3
Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is the OS for you..
And yes if my wife can install it with no problems then so can you
Can you please point me in the direction of the right copy to download? I get lost in all the options. Laptop does not have a disk drive, needs to install off a stick.

Have a backup drive for all my docs / photos and files.
 

rorz0r

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Feb 10, 2006
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#4
Buy a MAC. It just works. It's intuitive. It's so easy. The design is so amazing. Buy an iPhone too then it integrates seamlessly. Buy Photoshop too.
 

xrapidx

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35,237
#8
I switched to Ubuntu a year or so ago - its not the most stable desktop experience. I'd say its pretty much on par with Win10, just annoys you in other ways.
 
Joined
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#9
Ubuntu is dead easy.

Step 1: google "download ubuntu"
Step 2: Do what they tell you. The first link will tell you all you need to know:

Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS
Download the latest LTS version of Ubuntu, for desktop PCs and laptops. LTS stands for long-term support — which means five years, until April 2023, of free security and maintenance updates, guaranteed.


Clicking on download will take you to the next page while the download starts. On that page there will be a link to installation instructions on the bottom of the page. Clicking that will take you to the installation instructions, which will cover installing from a USB drive as well.

Ubuntu is dead easy, but there will be some things which is more involved than doing it on windows. Things are also a bit different, just as they are different on OSX. One of the problems you will have is choice. Many of the apps you are used to may not be available on Linux, like Word etc, so you will have to choose between different alternatives. You had better accept the fact that you will need to google a bit, but most instructions I've seen have been clear.

Let us know how it works out for you. I've been down this road a couple of times, and the machine with Linux on it usually remains unused as I've found Windows is just better.
 

sajunky

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Joined
Nov 1, 2010
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12,023
#10
I agree, Win10 is unmanageable, still unstable and there is no indication for any change, so maybe Linux is the best option? Your laptop most likely has OEM licence for Windows 7 or 8 in the BIOS. You can use it and activate retail copy of Windows 7.

1. Check what version of SLIC is burned in your BIOS, Google: https://www.google.co.za/search?q=check+slic+2.1

Alternatively check MS stickers on your laptop. Laptops with MS SLIC have such stickers to comply with MS requirements.

If it is SLIC 2.1, you can install retail copy of Windows 7 and activate a copy in legal way. Many Win8 laptops also have downgradable rights to Win7, so sticker doesn't say everything.

2. Download ISO image of a retail version of Windows 7 Ultimate. Any language version will do. Prepare DVD media or a bootable USB stick using Rufus.

3. To install Win 7 remove all partitions from the boot hard drive, unplug any secondary (if present) and reboot computer to the installation media. If BIOS is configured in secure boot mode, disable it first. Use UEFI legacy boot mode or MBR (wording can be different). Skip entering any serial numbers.

Try the above first, it will install in 30-days trial mode, then post OK, I will post instruction how to activate it. There are three internal Windows commands to accomplish it.
 
Last edited:

sajunky

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Nov 1, 2010
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12,023
#11
Download rufus to make a bootable USB and is easy to use.

Personally I enjoy messing around in Linux but it feels a bit limited/hard/makes me feel stupid, if you just want to simplify windows download windows 7 https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows7 and I believe you can use the serial from your current windows (anyone that can add some input here).
Don't use serial numbers during installation. After installation it needs to install OEM certificate using internal Windows command, but it is very simple.
 

RedViking

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 23, 2012
Messages
11,578
#12
The only other option you have is Linux/Ubuntu. Sounds like it will do the job for you. Mac is not a solution, just a high maintenance life style in another abused relationship. :D
 

Zoomzoom

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Joined
Aug 15, 2014
Messages
2,207
#13
I agree, Win10 is unmanageable, still unstable and there is no indication for any change, so maybe Linux is the best option? Your laptop most likely has OEM licence for Windows 7 or 8 in the BIOS. You can use it and activate retail copy of Windows 7.

1. Check what version of SLIC is burned in your BIOS, Google: https://www.google.co.za/search?q=check+slic+2.1

Alternatively check MS stickers on your laptop. Laptops with MS SLIC have such stickers to comply with MS requirements.

If it is SLIC 2.1, you can install retail copy of Windows 7 and activate a copy in legal way. Many Win8 laptops also have downgradable rights to Win7, so sticker doesn't say everything.

2. Download ISO image of a retail version of Windows 7 Ultimate. Any language version will do. Prepare DVD media or a bootable USB stick using Rufus.

3. To install Win 7 remove all partitions from the boot hard drive, unplug any secondary (if present) and reboot computer to the installation media. If BIOS is configured in secure boot mode, disable it first. Use UEFI legacy boot mode or MBR (wording can be different). Skip entering any serial numbers.

Try the above first, it will install in 30-days trial mode, then post OK, I will post instruction how to activate it. There are three internal Windows commands to accomplish it.
I have a legal copy of Win 7 ON DISK - laptop has no disk drive. And the disk drive in my PC has decided to be funny and Windows doesn't recognise the drive. Not sure what happened to it. I would go back to Win 7 on the laptop in a second even though it originally had win 8 installed.

If I can do that I will be happy.
 

ODTech

Senior Member
Joined
May 9, 2010
Messages
821
#14
So done with Win 10, been contemplating switching to another OS but honestly NOT that experienced.

I can follow CLEAR directions (and any direction starting with 'just' is NOT clear).... and I have installed Windows from scratch a few times over the years but for some reason the idea of ditching Windows for an alternative terrifies me, not in a small part because despite the others having been around for years, all seem to need constant updates, tweaking and degree in Comp Sci to even understand let alone run. Windows might suck big time, but at least it runs ...

However I was given a secondhand laptop that was 'kindly' upgraded to Win 10 which ... I have no words to express the level of frustration with this rubbish... and I DO NOT have the data to update it, and it is a constant fear in case it starts and I can't do this anymore. I am so stressed out of my mind everytime I switch the thing on for that moment when it arbitrarily circumvents everything and goes to update and I have to run to switch the modem off.

So I am back to contemplating an alternative ... ANYTHING to avoid this stress ... but I do not want to swop one set of problems for another.

What is the best alternative OS - stable, simple, user-friendly, can be installed by a NORMAL person, and will run an office type suite, MyPaint (http://mypaint.org/) and GIMP.

And can someone talk me through installing it, or at least lend a hand if I get stuck ... pretty please. HELP.
I prefer Linux Mint with the mate or cinnamon desktop.
It is based on ubuntu but uses a different desktop which is more user friendly in my opinion. One thing that turned me off of the ubuntu desktop was the inability to make a desktop shortcut without a 3rd party app.
 

sajunky

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Joined
Nov 1, 2010
Messages
12,023
#15
I have a legal copy of Win 7 ON DISK - laptop has no disk drive. And the disk drive in my PC has decided to be funny and Windows doesn't recognise the drive. Not sure what happened to it. I would go back to Win 7 on the laptop in a second even though it originally had win 8 installed.

If I can do that I will be happy.
Good idea.

You can use this copy, but it is downloadable for free, so I see no advantage worth to mention. As I said before, don't use retail serial numbers on the laptop. Retail numbers will work on any computer, but you can use it on one computer only and you need these numbers for desktop which most likely do not have licence in the BIOS.

As for the hard drive, assess it with disk tools, check SMART, write over the entire disk surface, then check again. You will have to reinitialize drive (format), but Windows installation will do it for you.
 
Last edited:

C4Cat

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Joined
Nov 9, 2015
Messages
6,657
#16
I prefer Linux Mint with the mate or cinnamon desktop.
It is based on ubuntu but uses a different desktop which is more user friendly in my opinion. One thing that turned me off of the ubuntu desktop was the inability to make a desktop shortcut without a 3rd party app.
+1 Linux mint is what you need. It's super easy to install
 

roadcat

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Joined
Mar 23, 2006
Messages
2,147
#17
OSX if you can afford the hardware. I switched work laptop from Windows to Macbook Pro and haven't looked back since. Runs Office365 and all the Office apps i.e. SfB etc. In fact it runs everything I need.

At home, I have 3 PC's, the main 2 run Windows 7, always refused to upgrade them as Windows 7 is still perfect for me. My son's PC runs Windows 10, as I needed to buy a new license and all I could get. He seems fine, but I am immediately lost when I use his PC, frustrates me no end.

Tried Ubuntu once, but went back to Windows 7 after a couple of months. Was frustrating not to be able to use all the applications I wanted to use, for me anyway.
 

Geoff.D

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Aug 4, 2005
Messages
7,404
#18
And when you have done all these magic things and IFF you then end up with a useless machine, contact me via PM, and, I will help you get to a point where you WILL be able to use WIN 10 PRO, without any problems ......... after restoring WIN 10 Pro.
 

Thor

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Joined
Jun 5, 2014
Messages
34,855
#19
If you’re after a distro that gets you as far away as possible from the image of a nerdy hacker type bashing away at a terminal interface, Elementary OS is what you need.


Linux Mint is a great ‘default’ distro for new Linux users, as it comes with a lot of the software you’ll need when switching from Mac or Windows, such as LibreOffice, the favoured productivity suite of Linux users. It also has better support for proprietary media formats, allowing you to play videos, DVDs and MP3 music files out of the box.

I use Fedora
 

Napalm2880

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Joined
Mar 8, 2007
Messages
1,666
#20
And when you have done all these magic things and IFF you then end up with a useless machine, contact me via PM, and, I will help you get to a point where you WILL be able to use WIN 10 PRO, without any problems ......... after restoring WIN 10 Pro.
I've gone from Windows to Ubuntu to Mint and back to Windows. I guess after all these years, I'm so used to Windows and getting around its little 'quirks', it's really just easier to use from day to day from a personal experience.

Most of my gripes with Win 10 and supporting friends who have it installed are either directly related to the Home edition (automatic updates) or could have been fixed if the Pro edition was installed (admin tools).
 
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