Friday, August 3, 2007

Ubuntu: an install MUST

Creating a "/home" partition saved me too much greef to keep to myself. Let me explain.

I set up my ubuntu installation with using the manual partition method. By doing this, I was able to make a separate partition on the Hard drive that holds data from all my users.


This data includes:

  • Firefox extensions
  • Thunderbird Settings
  • Pidgin settigs
  • AWN setup
  • Compiz setting tweaks.
  • Wallpaper
  • File manager bookmarks.
  • Podcasts
  • MP3s - Thank you, LORD!


There have been a couple of times, when using experimental software like Beryl or Compiz that the crash leaves me without access to my GUI (graphical user interface).

The reinstallation was done without formatting my /home partition. the Kernel was loaded onto the root partition. I kept my user name and password the same because I wanted to be sure I could log into the system after the install was complete.

ALL MY DATA was saved ! It was wonderful. spending a little bit of time partitioning your hardrive will save you headaches no mater what Operating system you use.
when I rebooted Ubuntu, all my extra programs needed to be installed again. but they all looked to the same hidden folders within my home directory for settings. I opened up firefox, after a clean reinstall, all my plugins, bookmarks, themes, and saved passwords were intact.

Then one flaw was with Automatix. After the reinstall, it had assumed that all the programs and drivers I installed were still on the system. To get passed this, I marked all programs for uninstall. Then, after the uninstall was complete, I could execute another install.

By creating a /home partition, I ensured that I wouldn't loose data in the event of a crippling crash caused by Compiz.
To be fair, in safe mode, in the user prompt, there is a way to revert back to old xorg.conf (graphics driver file). But, for the new Linux user, messing with xorg.conf becomes more of a pain then reinstalling the operating system. Linux Reality provides good beginner support for graphics drivers.

Linux Reality podcast episode on partitioning.

My harddrive
300 gigabyte harddrive. 512 mb of RAM

/

30 gigs

/Home

174 gigs

/swap 1gig

/Ext3 (music/sharefolder)

75 gigs

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