[How-To][Windows, Linux, cloudready][UEFI][GRUB] Successful Triple Boot (working on Lenovo T420)

First of all:

DISCLAIMER:
I’m not responsible for any damage done to your device. You have been warned.

That being said, it is best if you make a complete backup of your device. I can’t advise you on how to do that, because that wuld include specs about all different systems. If you’re an IT guy like me, I’d just say, maybe you should just switch to a different hard drive, preferrably a new SSD, and keep all of your old data on the existing one. That way, you can revert by restore BIOS settings (if needed) and just switch the disks back.

Contents:

  1. Backup your Operating system(s) disk(s) or at least all userdata from your system disk – depending, what you need. THIS IS IMPORTANT
  2. Make sure you’re on UEFI
  3. Considerations for partitioning
  4. Install Windows
  5. Install cloudready
  6. Install Linux
  7. Restore your data
  8. (optional) Modify Bootmenu

0. [Update:] Don’t do it – unless you REALLY have to.

Please stay away from cloudready. The support and the disadvantages outweigh the simplicity by far. I have considered it for my mom, who is – let’s put it this way – not tech-savy. Now she has a ubuntu / windows dual boot (windows just for *emergency*) and I no longer get support calls. No java, flash, adobe or antivirus popups, no browser messages (thanks ublock / ghostery) or annoying notifications.

You won’t be able to update and patch the thing. If you’re that advanced and think about doing it, you might agree.

1. Do your backups.

(maybe I will add some resources on how to find tools and how to speed up that process)

2. UEFI

I don’t need to tell you what UEFI is (the successor of BIOS – specifically it’s UEFI-BIOS), just make sure you already use it. If not, be warned: you can not just flip a switch, you need to reinstall ALL EXISTING OS. You could change your OS’s, but even I, as IT Pro, was not willing to go through that process, since I needed to backup my data anyway beforehand and the restore process afterwards was considered less complicated.

Go to your BIOS and check your boot options. There will mostly be at least two options BIOS (legacy), UEFI and/or Both. I’ve had Legacy only since otherwise back in the days I could not PXE boot, but nevermind.

I’d advise to flip to UEFI (only) and not „both“ sine you have no real way to determine before the first installation, which mode your first OS will be installed in ;)

If you flipped the switch, you might realize, that your OS will no longer boot. Don’t panic just yet if you missed something, you can flip it back and it will work again, as long as you did not install something over.

You also should have your installation media (ISO is good – on a different drive, of course), your windows key would be great as well.

3. Partitioning

I have specific needs, and so do you. So take a look at your current disk usage and make your own considerations when talking about partition sizes.

My needs were:

approx. 50GB for Windows
approx. 32GB for cloudready (like recommended, I’d even used less, but whatever)
10-15GB for Linux (I use Xubuntu, so it depends on your setup)
Though I have a 256GB SSD, the Linux partition now (day 3 after first install) takes about ten times the space it really needs, so I will shrink it afterwards
Why Windows so small? I am not a gamer, nor do I have stored any personal data on my system drive. Almost everything user-related is stored on my second drive or will get backupped or just outsourced to my NAS / Cloud services.

Also I use very few applications, in fact, I mostly use Linux in my day-to-day use. Windows is for backwards compatability and could be obtained for 15 bucks so I took it as a good option.

Look, how many GB your Windows is using now, If you have 1 200GB drive and windows Uses 150GB of your partition I highly advise to not even consider to shrink it. 75% usage will result just in too little free space.

General recommendations:

Plan all partitions for some GB growth.
Plan for at least 20% free space AFTER growth.
Why?

Fragmentation will even occur on Linux if you plan wrong.
Windows Fragmentation will become even worse.
Example: If your Windows uses 80GB you could plan for maybe 120-130GB of windows, 32GB of cloudready, so you’d need at least 10GB for Linux – for a total of 172GB + X

tl;dr: a 200GB drive or more is recommended for triple boot.

My approach for you would be in general something like this:

20-30GB for Linux
32 GB for cloudready
Windows: the rest.
If you don’t agree: GOOD. That means, that you already know your needs and could have skipped this section.

Write down your setup, don’t do it on the fly if you’re not experienced..

4. Install Windows

Create a bootable media and (re)install Windows.

Depending on your disk, if you used a new disk or need to repartition your current one (did you already backup?) you might follow different steps.

For creating the bootabIe media I recommend rufus. (https://rufus.akeo.ie/) I wanted to create a multiboot media at some point, because I did so previosly for my BIOS hosts, but UEFI is not supported that wide, so I jost sticked to either multiple diffent USB drives or just use the same drive and re-deploy my install media anew each time.

You might need to enter the advanced options in order to remove all existing partitions for which it really would help to have all disks other than the system disk removed, so that you don’t accidentally remove a partition from your second disk (the tools by microsoft are horrible from the point of user experience…)

And choose to install – without creating partitions manually. Just let windows take care – you don’t need more partitions or more space at this point.

[do your windows thingy]

5. Install cloudready

At this point you need to:

  • shrink your windows partition
  • create your install media
  • install cloudready

Open your disk management (right-click „my pc“ – manage) ->  disk management
right-click your windows partition – choose shrink. shrink it to the size, you specified earlier don’t count too exact, to make it more fun ; )
The important line is „total size after shrink“. And again, MS counts in Megabytes. In 2017. *sigh*

Shrink only so much, that your free space must not exceed the size, you want to give to cloudready! The installer will take all the available space!

Create cloudready install media according to their tutorial.

Boot the stick and install the thing!

[do your cloudready thingz]

You should see a bootloader at boot, where you can switch now between cloudready and Windows. But we wanted more, didn’t we? ; )

Install Linux

first you should boot back to Windows.
Then:

  • shrink your windows partition to gain new free space for you linux distribution
  • create your linux install media

Now you have two options, either shrink your windows to your target size of „the rest“, which means you might be a regular user. OR you shrink your windows partition to „what I really need“ which means, that after your linux installation you might have space for your user data. In either case, do your partitioning like mentioned earlier.

Likewise your install media.

You can boot now from your USB, to install the thing.

I did give windows like 50GB and let Linux use the whole rest of my free space for now.

[do your Linux things]

Restore your data

[coming soon, if needed.]

Modify GRUB

After the installations, your GRUB menu might look really messy. You can clean it up though. I will provide my steps later on.

[tbc]

I will provide actual settings for the boot image creator if needed.

[coming soon.]

Issues I ran into (tbc):

  • Second disk was accidentally tried by neverware installer
  • Screwed up partition layout, had to retry
  • Messed up GRUB menu, needed to clean up afterwards

[coming soon, if needed.]

Regards.

/erdnuesse

The boiling frog syndrome vs. actual events

Hi fellow internetters.

FAs you hav heard: facebook is changing its privacy policy. Again. It’s a small step toward the fully transparent user. Again. They’re raising their profit with it. Again. But why is there so little consequences? (Again?)
It’s always the same – TTIP, Patriot Act, retention of data, NSA’s prism, persecution of Snowden and Assange, etc.
5569801_700bOne will lead to another and in combination we’re under total surveillance and getting sucked out by the wild-western acting big data facilities of the internet and governments not giving shit about press-freedom and privacy.

You guys know about the boiled-frog syndrome? In short terms it’s about gradually raising the pressure so that the subject which is receiving the it, gets accustomed to it and thus won’t escape the unavailable death. Opposing to the natural reaction of escaping this situation, when the pressure rises too fast so that the subject feels the pain immediately.

You can put this metaphor on almost everything – relationships, your work, governments, economics, or the changing of policies.

So, now that we basically know that, what will the people do? Nothing? What should you do? Dig. Dig in your past or better: remember what history told us. Back, when freedom was just not available, the pressure got too high and people started to fight for it. But not only that, there was a clear picture of what your freedom should look like.
Your freedom is like the cake that you get to your birthday, which you love. There might be a thousand guests to your party, and everbody wants to have a piece of your personal cake. Imagine giving everyone literally a micro-piece – one one-thousandth slice. That’s your freedom of privacy, your freedom of speech, your freedom of everything. One thousandth is not much, you might not even realize what’s missing after each slice. But I’ll tell you what and you can guess it’s no surprise, that at the end of the party there will no longer be a single crumb left. – And you did not even realize it.
We’re basically in the middle of the party, because there are a lot of slices missing already. But why so? It might be because we no longer have the picture in our heads of what we want and need to be free.

And the arguments are effective. It’s always for the greater good – we should have nothing to hida anyway – the positive effects would overweigh the drawbacks – and so on.

But do they? What’s the benefit of Edward snowden being forced to look out for asylum? What about the benefits of his leaks? We have the right to know.
What’s the benefit of keeping Julien Assange under lock and key inside the Ecuadoranian embassy? What about the benefit of truth? We have the right to know.
What’s the benefit for Facebook or TTIP versus our personal rights? Not even having the possibility to opt-out is such a major demonstration of power, but we don’t even react anymore.

6417628291_f66c901d18Your only right is to quit. But then you’re no longer social networking – which might hurt you. That’s the power that facebook has over you. Not the website, not the app, it’s the power of the company that you’re feeling when you think about quitting.

When you got here after reading all this, if you didn’t already know, I am really sorry to inform you that you are, in fact, a boiling frog. And we don’t know yet, when we are going to metaphorically die inside the pot. There must, and most probably will be another revolution like in 19th-century-europe. The question for me, personally is not if, but when.

My only suggestion is: Clear your mind. Draw a picture of what your freedom should look like, and don’t ever let anything take even a single slice of it. – Nip it in the bud! (german: Wehret den Anfängen!)

Take care of yourself.
So long,

Kay

Correctly loop in a Windows batch file

Sometimes you need to create a batch script, that maybe retries a couple of times doing something or maybe repeat the same task for a bunch of files, incrementing filenames or whatever you want. You then need to create a loop, because you don’t want your script to get 1000 or more lines long. So, here’s my 2c on how you correctly loop in windows batch files.

This is an easy example of a head-controlled loop. You may need to adapt it, butit is executable and I only want to show you the basics of doing so:

This is a very short one, without many remarks. GOTOs are ugly, but needed anyway. My examples make three loops and screen outputs of the current state. Remember the syntax and take care when you copy paste, that your quotes might get screwed up.

@ECHO OFF
REM Reset counter
SET /A COUNT="1"
REM How often do you loop?
SET /A BOUND="3"
:LOOP
IF %COUNT% GTR %BOUND% (
ECHO.END OF THE LOOP - EXITING...
GOTO :END
) ELSE (
ECHO.We're inside loop pass number= %COUNT%
SET /A COUNT=%COUNT%+1
ECHO.Counter value after the increment= %COUNT%
GOTO :LOOP
)
:END
ECHO.Loop exited.
PAUSE

So much about the head controlled one. Maybe you prefer the foot controlled loops (like do-while), but these are made to run at least once. Keep an eye on the different break conditions as well, one breaks the loop when counting greater than three, the other one when „no longer being less or equal to three“. The difference is simply that I always want the IF-statement to contain the lesser commands (maybe only the GOTO command) to keep it in a single line of code – this way I can save many ELSE-commands, because if we don’t jump, we continue anyway…
Anyhow, here the foot controlled loop:


@ECHO OFF
SET /A COUNT="1"
SET /A BOUND="3"
:LOOP
ECHO.We're inside loop pass number= %COUNT%
SET /A COUNT=%COUNT%+1
ECHO.Counter value after the increment= %COUNT%
IF %COUNT% LEQ %BOUND% (
GOTO :LOOP
) ELSE (
ECHO.END OF THE LOOP - EXITING...
GOTO :END
)
:END
ECHO.Loop exited.
PAUSE

You can replace this part:

IF %COUNT% LEQ %BOUND% (
GOTO :LOOP
) ELSE (
ECHO.END OF THE LOOP - EXITING...
GOTO :END
)

With this:


IF %COUNT% LEQ %BOUND% GOTO :LOOP
ECHO.END OF THE LOOP - EXITING...

But in case you want to execute multiple commands before exiting, the else part in brackets may come in handy.

You could always work with command line variables to tell how many times to loop with the variable %1 – but that’s another topic.

How about your solutions on this topic?

Kampf dem Innumeratentum – Warum schlecht mit Zahlen umgehen zu können an sich ebenso problematisch ist wie Analphabetismus

Analphabetismus gilt als Makel. Wer dagegen nicht mit Zahlen umgehen kann, darf auf Milde hoffen. Die Wissenslücken sind gewaltig. Von Walter Krämer

Quer durch Deutschland geht eine Mauer. Sie ist nicht neu.  Sie geht auch quer durch Frankreich, England oder durch die USA. Es ist die Mauer, die Menschen voneinander trennt, die bei der Erwähnung von Logarithmen oder Wurzeln Schweißausbrüche bekommen, und die nicht. Oder wie es der Mathematiker John Allen Paulos einmal formuliert: die Innummeraten und die Menschen, die mit Zahlen und Zahlenverhältnissen umzugehen wissen.

Hier sind zwei Dinge auseinanderzuhalten. Da ist einmal die Notation: Was ist eine Wurzel? Was ist ein Logarithmus? Das kann man lernen, so wie man Vokabeln lernt. Und wer das dann gelernt hat, ist keinen IQ-Punkt intelligenter als jemand, der hier passen muss.

Das Problem ist ein ganz anderes. Nämlich dass immer noch viele Menschen hierzulande und andernorts verkrampfen, wenn man sie fragt: welche Zahl, mit sich selbst malgenommen, ergibt die 4? Jeder Grundschüler in der vierten Klasse weiß: zwei mal zwei ist vier. Also ist die Wurzel aus 4 die 2. Oder wie oft muss man die zehn mit sich selbst malnehmen, damit 1000 herauskommt? Dreimal. Also ist der (Zehner)logarithmus von 1000 die 3. Aber viele Menschen, besonders in Deutschland, scheinen sich gegen dergleichen Einsichten geradezu zu wehren. Anders als Analphabetismus gilt Innumeratentum hier kaum als Schande, manche Zeitgenossen sind sogar noch stolz darauf.

[…]

Lesen Sie den vollständigen Artikel auf:
http://www.capital.de/meinungen/kampf-dem-innumeratentum.html

„Avantgarde von digitalen Aussteigern“: Forscher sieht bei Jugendlichen Gegenbewegung zum Digitalen

„Avantgarde von digitalen Aussteigern“: Forscher sieht bei Jugendlichen Gegenbewegung zum Digitalen