I have a an Alienware M15x (Dell) and I intend to replace the windows 7 by ubuntu 14.04. Now I am trying Ubuntu live (USB) to test the deficiencies.

Is there a check list that could test in order to minimize the chances of the ubuntu installation going wrong?

I mean what can I try in Ubuntu live to test the possible problems of the new Ubuntu installation?

I am particularly worried about this installation since I could find some old reports describing problems related to the ubuntu installation in Dell.


Is there a check list that could test in order to minimize the chances of the ubuntu installation going wrong?

Yes, there is.

Well 1st a comment... basically if the live dvd works the installation will tend to work too. Main concern should be your video card and your internet connection. If needed for your system check that wireless works. If your display acts up while installing using it will become problematic and fixing a problem nearly impossible for a new user. If you depend on wireless it will be hard to get something fixed. ALL other issues (if there are any that is) can be solved using a browser and searching for it.

Open up dash and search for "test". If will start the test program:

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If has many many tests from suspend, usb, mediacard checks:

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BUT this best done after installation; doing this during a live session tends to take long. Very long. If unsure about installation start out with a dual-boot setup so you can always fall back to Windows. The installation tends to go smooth if the ISO was burned correctly (and that is what you tested while booting the livd dvd).

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    I'd agree with this in principle. If the live DVD works you're probably golden - my machine could not run live DVD, but with some jiggery pokery was able to run after a full install. If you're new to Linux you won't want to be messing around too much to get started. Just to add a suggestion: it might be worth trying a dual boot installation in the first instance as a learning experience to check that all appropriate drivers are available and that you can install them all confidently. – Tony Martin Dec 10 '14 at 7:39

The components that I usually test when considering Ubuntu for a Windows replacement include:

  • Wired and wireless internet connectivity
  • Webcams
  • Special keyboard buttons, such as those found on MS keyboards.
  • Special mouse buttons
  • Printers and scanners
  • Any nonstandard hardware such as SIM card readers, IR receivers and transmitters, or whatever other nonstandard peripherals are attached to the machine.

For special keyboard buttons, it is usually enough to select the proper keyboard from the Keyboard Settings dialogue. As for special mouse buttons, I've never had any luck getting them working! For nonstandard hardware, I usually google for whatever lsusb returns with thekeyword "ubuntu".

You should also check your software and files for Ubuntu compatibility while the LiveCD is running:

  • Can you open all documents on the computer, such as Word, Excel, and Photoshop documents?
  • Do you need and Windows-only software such as Adobe Illustrator?

Note that most Windows-only software will have Linux equivalents that don't have the same workflow as their Windows counterparts, but do have most of the same features.

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    Along the same lines, if you have a backlit keyboard on a notebook, be sure to check that too. I finally go mine to work after almost 3 years. All I had to do was boot Windows (dual boot) and then turn the power off! This is way less than elegant, but is indicative of what can happen with special hardware. – Joe Dec 17 '14 at 4:30

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