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1. Overview

1.1. Copyright and License

This document, Linux+Windows HOWTO, is copyrighted (c) 1999 by Dr. Robert J. Meier. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is available at http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html.

1.2. Disclaimer

No liability for the contents of this document can be accepted. Use the concepts, examples and information at your own risk. There may be errors and inaccuracies, that could be damaging to your system. Proceed with caution, and although this is highly unlikely, the author(s) do not take any responsibility.

All copyrights are held by their by their respective owners, unless specifically noted otherwise. Use of a term in this document should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark. Naming of particular products or brands should not be seen as endorsements.

1.3. Intended Audience

Nancy just bought a new computer. It came preloaded with Windows 98. Nancy wants to run accounting software supported by Windows 98 and mathematical research software. Nancy is an accountant and donates her time as the accountant for the local chapter of a charitable organization. The charitable organization requires the chapters to use standard software that they have chosen. This software is only supported on Windows 98, so Nancy must have Windows 98 to donate her accounting services. Nancy also teaches mathematics and personally pursues research mathematics. She is not a programmer amd doesn't want to waste unnecessary time doing system administration nor working with inflexible software. She believes that octave, c++ and the best research software is supported by unix. As a unix dialect she wants linux.

Lisa is shopping for a new computer to replace her aging host. Her computer will be preloaded with RedHat 6.2 linux. Lisa is a professional programmer, who plans to run a server and firewall on her old computer. Lisa wants a low maintenance machine that reliability does her bidding. Occasionally she needs to read and write files for Macintosh and/or Windows users. She plans to remove Windows 95 from her old computer and run a dedicated server and firewall under linux. In accordance with her Microsoft End User License Agreement she will transfer Windows 95 to her new computer. Since she plans to spend most of her time in linux, it isn't worth buying a second Windows license to run Windows on both hosts.

Oscar is a system administrator for a large corporation that uses Windows NT and Irix workstations. One of the Windows NT workstations has just crashed and won't boot. Oscar has to recover critical data from the host which was not backed up. He needs tools to script searches and filter files. Oscar wants to use the panolpy of unix commands to low-level examine the hard disk in his search for the lost corporate assets. Last year Oscar configured a "dual booter" but he no longer remembers the details.

Tom is a graduate school teacher. Tom also teaches continuing education at the local community house. Nancy is a friend of Tom and asked for his help with her new computer. Tom is happy to oblige and this HOWTO is one of the consequences.

1.4. How to Use This HOWTO

This HOWTO is focused on a general step-by-step procedure. You should first read which character among the intended audience that you most nearly match. Follow along as Tom helps each characters configure their systems. Before doing more than skimming, you should at least skim the critical concepts. Some of the words used may be unfamiliar, obsolete, or applied differently, so it is important to understand their usage in this HOWTO. Please write the maintainer with your experience good or bad.

1.5. Concepts

Understanding this HOWTO depends on understanding its use of the following concepts.

  • Disk and Format

  • Partition and Filesystem

  • Operating System