[thelist] New PC - how2 partition, which Linux, & firewalling.

George Dillon george.dillon at ukonline.co.uk
Thu Sep 28 10:12:16 CDT 2000

Finally got my long-dreamed-about new PC, jumping from a 486 with 6.5 gig HD
to an Athlon-800 with 30 gigs.  I've played with it for a month, and now I
want to get serious, starting with a reformat & repartition of the HD and
reinstallation of the OS (win98) so it's configured how I (and not the
maker) wants.

Before I start, I'd like your advice on a few big issues...


I want to try playing around with Linux, while still basically working in
Windows, so I guess I need to partition the HD and have dual or even
multiple-booting options. (I can also see some purpose in having a partition
for running Win95 loaded with legacy browsers like IE4, NN3).

I'm thinking of using Norton System Commander Lite to manage the booting,
but I gather I need to decide before I begin, how to partition the Hard

Fred Langa's winmag column this week is all about using drive imaging to
'Bullet-Proof Your Windows Setup' Windows
(http://www.winmag.com/columns/explorer/2000/20.htm) and he has 20gigs
partitioned so:

  2gb C: = Windows System & frequently changed files (e.g. Docs).
  6gb D: = Rarely changed, easily-replaced & nonessential files (e.g.
12gb E: = Windows Swap file and Drive images

So how should I partition my 30gigs?  How much will I need for Linux, and
how much for a minimal Win95 partition?  Do linux apps need to be on the
same partition as the OS, or can they go in the same partition as e.g. my
Win apps?


Which version of Linux should I install?  Does it make much difference?
(I've no idea really what I'll use it for, yet, but I gather it's more
secure online, so maybe I'll do all my surfing/emailing in Linux).  My
immediate choices (from 2 years of PCPlus cover disks) are:

Mandrake 7.1 (Oct 2000)
Corel Linux  (Feb 2000)
Red Hat 5.2  (May 1999)


I'm moderately (healthily) paranoid about my security and till now have used
ZoneAlarm as the firewall on my 486 (I have a dial-up connection with
dynamic I.P.).  Now I'm thinking of keeping the 486 as my 'online' and
software-testing box - a physical firewall between net nasties and my new
baby, which will never go online but will be connected to the 486 via a
laplink cable for file transferring.  Is this the right approach, or am I
being overly cautious?

As this is marginally OT and quite specific to my situation, off-list
replies are also welcome.


George Dillon

george.dillon at ukonline.co.uk

More information about the thelist mailing list