Creating a "How to Remove Windows" article for dual-booted computer systems.

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lap4fsf
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Joined: 10/12/2014

OK, So the goal is to document how to remove Win(Blobs!) OS from a dual booted computer and the motivation is conversation with a forum member.

I found this[1] excellent article in the Ubuntu community wiki. Alternative: via gParted and GRUB update method seems really interesting. I am not 100% sure whether OS-Uninstaller is a free software, as it requires a ppa from Ubuntu.

Before I proceed I have a couple of questions.

1. The concerned Ubuntu wiki page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 where as Trisquel wiki uses GNU Free Documentation License. Are they compatible? If so, how should I attribute to the source?

2. Can you suggest a specific section in the Trisquel wiki under which I can add this page?

--
Reference(s):
[1] https://help.ubuntu.com/community/HowToRemoveWindows

suitsmeveryfine
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Joined: 08/15/2014

1. They are incompatible, which is really silly. Ironically, CC-BY-SA 3.0 is (via an upgrade to 4.0) compatible with the GPLv3 whereas the GFDL is not. The FSF should really do something about the latter. I myself stumbled upon this problem yesterday when I wanted to take formulations from the Trisquel wiki and put them into a little GPLv3+ program.

lap4fsf
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Joined: 10/12/2014

Oh dear, I missed something! From https://trisquel.info/en/wiki/manuals

... We may exempt certain parts of this site from the GNU FDL; we'll mark those parts appropriately.

That's great. Can any community member responsible for managing manuals in Trisquel wiki help me in this regard?

Magic Banana

I am a member!

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Joined: 07/24/2010

I guess you can just write in the Wiki page that the text is under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 license.

Magic Banana

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Have you contacted the authors (at the bottom of the Wiki page) and ask them for a GPLv3+ license to use their texts? They will probably accept.

suitsmeveryfine
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Joined: 08/15/2014

No, I haven't done that – yet. Thanks for the suggestion. It would be nice if permission wouldn't be required in such cases though.

SuperTramp83

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Joined: 10/31/2014

Yep. Removing windows always brings in fresh air. :)
+1

lap4fsf
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Joined: 10/12/2014

Its my pleasure, Sir.

lap4fsf
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Joined: 10/12/2014

>>Have you contacted the authors (at the bottom of the Wiki page) and ask them for a GPLv3+ license to use their texts? They will probably accept.

No. I think the exception clause is sufficient to use CC-BY SA 3.0. But if you feels it is not sufficient, tell us. I will drop them a mail.

BTW, do you have any idea about what entry I need to add to /etc/fstab, so that my newly created partition is automatically mounted? (I would like it be ext 4 formatted for compatibility reasons and save general data files on it.)

Magic Banana

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You must first create the partition from a live system (such as Trisquel's live ISO) and format it (ext4 seems to be your filesystem of choice). GParted (that uses GNU 'parted' and 'mkfs' behind the scene) can do that and is present on Trisquel's live ISO. Remember the number of the partition.

Then you must add a line into /etc/fstab (you can do that from the live system or after rebooting in the installed system). The format is detailed in 'man fstab'. It must look something like that:
/dev/sda7 ext4 defaults 0 2

The first column specifies the partition (there is a more robust way to specify it but the file representing the device is OK in almost all cases), then the filesystem, then the option passed to the 'mount' command when the the filesystem will be mounted at init (here the "defaults"), then 0 if the filesystem needs not be dumped (otherwise 1) and finally the order in which the filesystem needs to be checked by 'fsck' (0 is it needs not be checked what you do not want; 1 for the filesystem mounted at /; 2 for the other filesystems).

lap4fsf
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Joined: 10/12/2014

OK, I checked manpage for fstab.

I think UUID instead of /dev/sda7 (first field) and mount point as second field also makes sense. This is for the first time I am seeing this format. Any way, thank you for a quick reply.

And this is all I needed. Now back on work!

Magic Banana

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Oops: I forgot the mount point! It is indeed mandatory. You can use 'sudo blkid' to find out the UUIDs of your partitions. But specifying the device file is OK unless you are using several SCSI disks.

lap4fsf
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All right. I have created a wiki page, finally!

You can sneak it over here;
https://trisquel.info/en/wiki/how-remove-windows-after-installing-trisquel-gnulinux-dual-boot

I request more experienced hands over here, to revise the wiki page and let me know what else to do.

SuperTramp83

I am a translator!

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good job mr lap4fsf !!
And let's keep those damn windows removed (even if it is winter soon).

lap4fsf
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I don't see any revision for a while!

Even the All Manuals documentation on trisquel wiki don't list it up.

Is there anything wrong with my documentation?

Magic Banana

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You can edit https://trisquel.info/en/wiki/all-manuals (like any other page of the documentation) to add the missing like to your manual.

antiesnob
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Joined: 08/22/2013

lap4fsf, Hi you

I understand you trying to help on this topic but I don't agree with that ways of "unistalling" Windows (or any other system) at all. If your using an SSD it would be OK but yet this is how to do it the hard way. It is preferable to start from the beggining by making the partitions for a new system and then install Trisquel. Of course that would be after making a backup of the files including the conf ones. It would take a lot less time than the hard way and it is safer.

ADFENO
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Joined: 12/31/2012

Sorry for interfering, I don't really know what's the issue here. But I
guess the issue is something along the lines of a debate about whether
the documentation should instruct readers to override their current
operating system, or to install the system along with the current one.

If my guess is right, then I must advise the writers to take both
approaches, explaining the differences, like:

* Frequency of free and non-free software usage: Overwriting the current
system will PROBABLY make the user look for free software more often to
do his computing, but the user will still be able to install the
non-free software he wants (make it clear that he won't get help from
the free software community to do so, not even recommendations or
instructions), either via pre-built versions or by building existing
source code, although things can be complicated if there's none of these
available. Installing alongside the current system, on the other hand,
could make transition to free software slower, at the cost of keeping
non-free software.

* Hardware compatibility: Exactly as explained in "Frequency of free and
non-free software usage". However, this time the writers must make the
user aware of the worst scenarios. Like having no video output after
overwriting the current system, and so on. Although the writers also
must emphasize that the free software community won't help the user by
installing/recommending/teaching non-free
software/firmware/drivers/modules for his computing.

* Other things that I can't remember now. I think I already gave too
much of my thoughts here. :D

Now you ask me: "Why are you being so neutral on non-free software
usage?" Because, unlike most people (that I REALLY can't remember the
name, although I have seem such here in Brazil too), I don't consider
non-free software usage as a "sin" that deserves to be purged straight
away or that needs to be made public or that would serve as reason for
other people to keep "sinning together" (Wow! Sounds funny
"sinning"/"singing"). Quite differently, I consider non-free software
usage as a dependency that is somewhat difficult to deal with, and most
people have their own level of difficulty. And we should at least make
this people aware of what could happen with whichever decision THEY make.

lap4fsf
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I don't consider non-free software usage as a "sin" that deserves to be purged straight away or that needs to be made public or that would serve as reason for other people to keep "sinning together" (Wow! Sounds funny "sinning"/"singing"). Quite differently, I consider non-free software usage as a dependency that is somewhat difficult to deal with, and most people have their own level of difficulty. And we should at least make this people aware of what could happen with whichever decision THEY make.

I do agree with most of your view.

Individuals are unique and their tastes and interests do vary. Every user of a free software distribution has his/her arguments on why they love it; for some it feels good to be part of an ethical movement, for some it is about fun sharing their code/other functional works with world and again for some it is a tool to protect their privacy and security.

My aim with this manual is pretty simple; help users who have a dual boot, and are satisfied working on Trisquel GNU/Linux operating system to purge Win(blobs!), if they wish.

I do agree everyone cannot migrate to a free software distribution overnight. It takes time and effort and the transition phase is not going to be easy for everyone. And again, every user has freedom to choose a proprietary OS or software over a libre variant or install proprietary programs on their otherwise 100% libre distribution. But keep in mind, now you are at the mercy of the developer of the program. Do you think that's fair?

Pardon me, if my reply sounds harsh to you.

ADFENO
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Joined: 12/31/2012

Regarding "me" being at mercy of the developer of the [non-free?]
program, this is why the manual must be written in such a way that makes
non-free programs bad (and possibly, non-free FUNCTIONAL data bad too).

Without wanting to get away from the discussion, now that I think about
it, I think that the tricky part of making the documentation is related
to finding a free software that works well even on non-free operating
systems for the user to place his copies of GNU+Linux-libre Trisquel in
some removable media. Actually, I have seem people recommending the use
of UNetbootin to copy the disk images to a USB, but I avoid making such
recommendations (although I had to use it personally on a copy of
Windows just for the purpose of fixing my personal computer's boot loader).

I don't recommend UNetbootin because it's still unclear to me whether
it's free software or not, either because there's no entry for it on the
Free Software Directory or, optionally, because there's no package for
it on the free operating systems.

As a side note, we could also investigate whether Cygwin is free
software or not, since it provides a copy of GNU Dd (although bugs and
other stuff must be first reported to the Cygwin project, and not to the
GNU Coreutils project[1]).

As another side note: I remember seeing an entry on the Free Software
Directory about a project called Free USB Installer (FUSBI), but it
seems to be non-free software now, as the entry doesn't exist anymore.
Perhaps that software would be the answer for this problem, provided it
is really free software.

REFERENCES

[1]
https://www.gnu.org/software/coreutils/faq/coreutils-faq.html#I-use-the-Cygwin-toolset-and-I-have-a-problem_002e

ADFENO
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Joined: 12/31/2012

I just remembered another problem: Although I have never used Cygwin myself (I only heard experiences from other users), I don't know if there's a way to make Cygwin's Dd recognize the USB device as recognized by the Windows system.

Personally, I consider the Free USB Installer to be way friendlier (provided it's free software, which I'm not sure).

SuperTramp83

I am a translator!

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Joined: 10/31/2014

Of the 6 times I used Unetbootin when I was very fresh with GNU it failed to do the job 4 times.. Horrible application.
dd is all you need and learning or not even learning the dd if of thing but pasting it in the terminal is something a "newb" can certainly do. Of the 20 times I used dd with several hardware and software it failed 0 (zero) times.