I have an HP Pavilion g7. Intel i3 2.2ghz x4 core, Windows 7 Home Premium (64bit), 4gb RAM, 600gb hd. Will happily provide more info if needed.

I've successfully installed Ubuntu 12.04.3 alongside Windows 7 just to see how difficult it was (no problem at all). Display, audio, touchpad, keyboard, wifi, drivers and ports are all working fine.

So now I'd like to make Ubuntu my primary OS and have w7 in my back pocket just in case. The logistics of seem easy enough. I plan on allocating the majority of my hd space to ubuntu and leaving 20gb or so to w7. I believe the ubuntu installer will guide me through the partitioning. I've backed up all the movies, music, files, ect. in case of a tragedy.

The main foreseeable problem is that it's my first time using a linux based os. I can navigate the GUI easy enough but don't know how to use the terminal at all. I've rooted an old android a year or 2 ago which required some terminal commands that a friend walked me through.

Before I take the plunge, I just wanted to ask the community for any tips or advice that can make this transition easier and point out anything that I over looked. Thanks in advance, people!! I look forward to your responses!

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    You're going to have problems with only 20GB for W7. That's probably the space that the OS will occupy alone. I suggest you leave at least 30~35 GB if you want to have a functional OS in which you can install a few softwares. And that's the very least. – GabrielF Jan 8 '14 at 17:03

First off, i would say that dual boot is not as nice as it sounds. If you want to use your windows system you will have to reboot the computer to access the Win7 machine. The way that i would recommend keeping windows around 'in your back pocket' so to speak, would be to install Ubuntu on a drive all by itself (whether its a new drive so you can keep the old disk around just in case, or you use the old drive and re-format). Then if you want to use Win7 you can create a VM within your Ubuntu installation and run Win7 at the same time you are running Ubuntu.

There are a few things to keep in mind about running Win7 in a VM. You will not be able to play games like you would with a regular install. The VM will not be quite as powerful and robust as it will be running with more limited resources, etc. You will however be able to use MS Office, IE, etc just like you would if you where running windows.

I am doing this on my laptop that is running Ubuntu with Win7, Win8, and a WinXP installation all running through VMware Player (free: Download VMware Player 6.0 | vmware.com)

  • I disagree. Dual boot is the best option if you can't/don't want to use only one OS. And if you just need to run a few softwares, I'd rather try Wine first. – GabrielF Jan 8 '14 at 17:23
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    I find it cumbersome to have to reboot my computer if i just want to run something like Outlook. Then reboot back to get to my Ubuntu for normal use. Wine is a good option for certain programs, but for programs that rely on more than just the basic Win dlls you need to get pretty involved to get it working smooth. The above is just describing the best way that works for me in my experience. – Atari911 Jan 8 '14 at 17:25
  • Until you can completely transition from Win clients to Linux clients (e.g., Outhouse to Evolution), Atari911's idea could be handy. – K7AAY Jan 8 '14 at 17:29
  • Really, you dont have to re-install for this to work. You could just never boot into the Windows partition and still use the VM. You just lose the space that the unused Win7 partition takes up. Technically you could just install VMware and go with this the way he is configured currently. – Atari911 Jan 8 '14 at 17:34

In lieu of reinstalling, suggest you reboot from the installation media, install gparted if not already there, and use Gparted to resize the partitions, which is easier and saves time. Take a look at these screenshots to see what gparted looks like first. However, I'd give Win7 50GB or so as it is likely to need more than what you expect.

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    I agree with K7AAY. Unless you installed Ubuntu from within Windows using WUBI, there is no need to reinstall. If you used WUBI, then a reinstall of Ubuntu in its own partition will be more robust. – user68186 Jan 8 '14 at 17:17

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