How to Install Linux

A few people have expressed interest in setting up Linux as a development environment. There are a few ways that it can be done.

If you’re interested, here are three methods and what you need to bring to a meetup. I won’t explain the details on how to do it, because there are many tutorials that can be found with a Google search.

Method 1: Install Linux in a Virtualbox

You can run Linux inside of Windows by using Virtualbox.

  • Pros: keep Windows on your computer
  • Cons: requires memory and processing power

Method 2: Install Linux on a Bootable Thumb Drive

You can install Linux on a thumb drive. The thumb drive should have at least 2 GB. 8 GB would be better, and ideally, you may way something like a 32 GB thumb drive that is USB 3 compatible, if you’re laptop supports it. 32 GB thumb drives are only about $15 (in 2015).

If anyone would like assistance with this method, bring a thumb drive to a meetup and I’ll help you set it up.

  • Pros: keep Windows on your computer and it doesn't require a lot of memory or processing power
  • Cons: running an OS from a thumb drive is a little bit slower than running from an internal hard drive (though not terribly), and you will have to reboot to switch between operating systems

Method 3: Install Linux on the Hard Drive

You can install Linux on your hard drive, either erasing Windows or side-by-side with Windows. This is the best option if you don’t need to get to Windows while Linux is running

  • Pros: this is the best option
  • Cons: either erases Windows or makes you reboot to switch between operating systems

Bring your laptop to a meetup and I can help you get Linux setup with any of these methods.