+ 0 Votes Start with a Mandriva Live CD robo_dev 6 years ago That's the most painless dual-boot scenario I've seen. I hate to be negative, but my opinion is that using boot managers, multiple partitions and so forth just leads to trouble. On my PCs that runs XP and Linux, I have a separate and distinct hard drive for the two different operating systems. In Bios, if I want Windows, enable disk 1...if I'm in the mood for Linux, enable disk2. + 0 Votes I primarily use Mandriva at the moment but there are many Neon Samurai Updated - 6 years ago My distro or OS in general depends on the use. My PDA includes partitions for the clean factory current OS version, the current OS version with all my other crap loaded on top and, my previous version install at it's last point before upgrading. (If my current install chews or I need a dropped function, I have the older version. If I need to rebuild my current version or need a system rescue, I have the clean current partition. Huray for partitioned SDHC.) Desktop, Quick Install or VM.. probably Mandriva Free unless the VM is for a specific OS. It remains my Default distribution until there is a reason to prefer something else. Mandriva One is my usual liveCD if I'm just booting hardware to take a look or use without touching the owner's data. Computer crysis or related issue; system rescue, gparted, partedmagic, supergrub, Mandriva One, knoppix, Damn Small Linux, Puppy. Damn Vulnerable Linux, described as "a curruption of a Linux based distribution", provides lots of learning and fun when paired with my favorite security auditing distribution. I have a few tools and toys that are Windows only but I accommodate those easily also. Sadly, if it's gaming, it's probably Windows I'm booted into. With a new GPU, I'll be exploring the game offerings native too *nix including FPS and flight sims. For now though, the blockbuster games are published for MS only. I'm investigating DX10 alternatives since Assasin's Creed, Crysis, MS Flight and some other's are also on my todo list. I may have to give-in and buy Vista for the only thing it was intended to do well; video gaming. (I collect OS like "normal" people collect hockey cards. I would love to add Vista Ultimate to my OS collection but the license cost does not justify a hobby item purchase; my functional needs outside of DX9/DX10 are supported better elsewhere.) Glad that you've taken too it though. I've long since lost count of how many blissfull hours I've wasted exploring new OS and software. Hopefully your sound issues work out as you now have the sum of my limited sound support knowledge. If mucking with software is your thing though, dig into VMware or whatever virtualization option you prefer; you just can't beat doing a full install on a whim to check out some obscure setting or software while being able to **** it away or restore a functional snapshot when it breaks. + 0 Votes robo_dev probably covered it.. start with the LiveCD Neon Samurai 6 years ago Mandriva is a great distribution to start with. The draketools are a big help. As mentioned, start with the Mandriva One 2008.1 LiveCD or the One 2008.0 LiveCD if you prefer the, now more stable, previous version. If you are ready to install on the hard drive and your work allows you to muck with work issues machines then consider a dual boot off a floppy disk. I use a floppy disk, the Mandrive Free 2008.1 install DVD and a single physical computer. - use your prefered Windows partition program like Partition Magic to shrink the size of your existing partitions. Leave the free space without a partition. - reboot and insure your Windows boot still works as it should; no drive letters should change. - boot from the Mandriva install CD. When it asks about using drive space, select Custom then you can use the "Auto Allocate" button to set a "/", "swap" and "/home" partition. You can play around to find the sizes of partitions you like; probably big /, default swap and remaining space in /home. - when asked about the boot loader (after packages are copied to the new partitions), specify floppy drive /dev/fd0. It should write some stuff to your disk. - Don't download updates until after your first boot when you can go into the system settings and configur your network repositories with the package sources tool. - Change your bios to boot from floppy disk first then other media. You should end up with a system that boots from floppy and presents you a Windows or Mandriva boot menu. If you pop the disk out, you should get a strait forward boot into Windows from it's already existing boot loader on the hard drive. Of course, the middle road would be to use the LiveCD for your first install when ready to muck with your hard drives. You'll still need to create empty space and be aware when going through the file system creation steps but it should be well documented. - Ask lots of questions - Expect to do the same function but with a different program (The Gimp = Photoshop functions) - Expect to get frustraited a few times - Learn to love internet search like google - Stick to the repositories for your distribution (Red Hat repositories do not work well with Mandriva) + 0 Votes I would build a separate system so that you test out any flavour of Linux. Peconet Tietokoneet-217038187993258194678069903632 6 years ago Without disturbing your setup with Vista, then if Either goes down it does not take the other down with it, i will always keep then on/in separate cases. Put it this way, if one goes down and you do not know why, you can use the other one that is still running to ask your questions on. Please post back if you have any more problems or questions. + 0 Votes Two concerns. CharlieSpencer_Palmetto 6 years ago You mentioned this is your work computer. Can we assume you're in IT and that you're not a user doing this without the IT department's knowledge? Second, you mentioned you like how Vista allows you to integrate your applications. Have you checked for replacement applications, or do you plan to run your Vista apps under some form of Windows emulator?