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Old 21-03-2014, 22:24   #1
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Install OpenCPN using Linux

Hello,
I am trying to work out how to use OpenCPN on a laptop. The laptop has Windows XP Professional (32bit) installed. The CDRom drive is broken so cannot use a disk. Have been advised to use the Ubuntu system and have it loaded onto a USB stick or external hard drive. As I understand it I select the USB boot option in the BIOS on startup and this will then install Linux and the OpenCPN? Yes?

Would anyone be kind enough to tell me EXACTLY what steps I have to do to make this happen please?

Pretty please????

Russ Swan
Darwin Australia
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Old 22-03-2014, 06:52   #2
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It is fairly easy to create a USB boot drive for any LINUX distribution. Make sure you have a USB stick that is larger than 2GB and you may find some sticks will refuse to boot correctly so if the first attempt fails try another brand of stick - go for a known brand like San Disk, Corsair, etc.

You have to set your PC's BIOS to boot first from USB Hard Drive and on some BIOS there maybe a second setting like "allow boot from USB" or similar and this also needs to be enabled. Getting in to the BIOS varies from PC to PC but it is usually pressing the F2 or Del key. Make sure you save the BIOS changes you have made usually by pressing the F10 key.

There are loads of LINUX distributions, but I would recommend Ubuntu as it is well documented and it is pretty easy to setup OpenCPN on it without having to compile it, which as a newbie is definitely not something you want to do.

Here is a good article on putting Ubuntu on to a memory stick...

http://www.ubuntu.com/download/deskt...ick-on-windows

Once you have your stick with Ubuntu on it, insert it in the PC and power the PC on (assuming you have made the BIOS changes). Follow the instructions and you should soon have a Live copy of Ubuntu running on your PC but not installed. This is good and allows you to check that all of your PC's hardware is working under LINUX. Check your Wi-Fi adaptor, touch pad, sound card, Bluetooth, etc as these are typically the devices that LINUX has problems with due to no open source drivers.

Once you are happy that everything is OK install Ubuntu to your PC's hard drive - all of your Windows files, license and data will be lost.

Here are some useful links....

http://www.ubuntu.com/download/deskt...desktop-latest

http://opencpn.org/ocpn/installing_opencpn

The OpenCPN install procedure looks complicated and I am pretty sure that last time I did this on newer versions of Ubuntu, that I used the Ubuntu Software Center to do the install, but you may find that the Universal repository (website that hosts LINUX open source files) is not set by default so you may have to enable it.

The problem for people new to LINUX is that the amount of information online is immense and can easily confuse you. There are so many distributions, so much history and so many different PCs and applications that you can drown in the sheer amount of information when you start searching online. Just take it slowly and use the latest 2013/2014 web pages and focus on Ubuntu guides that do things through the Ubuntu desktop user interface (GUI) rather than typing commands in to the classic LINUX terminal.
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Old 22-03-2014, 08:38   #3
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Sorry just noticed that you mentioned running OpenCPN from the memory stick so I assume you do not want to lose your Windows installation. I think trying to run OpenCPN from the stick is not ideal; difficult to setup, slower and less reliable/robust.

You should be able to make the PC dual boot so that it gives you the option at boot up, of running LINUX or Windows and both systems are installed on your hard drive, making the system faster and more reliable.

I would be tempted to try WUBI, which is the Windows Ubuntu Installer and you should be able to set this up without messing about with USB sticks and BIOS settings - just a good Internet connection.

You will be limited to Ubuntu 12.04 but this should run OpenCPN just fine.

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Wubi

http://www.ubuntu.com/download/deskt...dows-installer
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Old 22-03-2014, 08:51   #4
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Re: Install OpenCPN using Linux

And you might ask directly at the OpenCPN forum here:
OpenCPN - Cruisers & Sailing Forums
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Old 22-03-2014, 17:36   #5
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Re: Install OpenCPN using Linux

Quote:
Originally Posted by lowana04 View Post
Hello,
I am trying to work out how to use OpenCPN on a laptop. The laptop has Windows XP Professional (32bit) installed. The CDRom drive is broken so cannot use a disk.
If you're happy with Win XP (it's about the only version of Windows that I've come to like), then just go here and download OpenCPN for windows, and install it. Done.

If you want to experience Linux and a whole boatload of marine-oriented apps including OpenCPN, then download Navigatrix, put it onto a bootable USB stick, and boot up your laptop on it.

Instructions for making a bootable USB stick are here. The article mentions Ubuntu, but you can select and install the Navigatrix iso file you downloaded instead.

I'll leave it to your fellow Aussies to tell you where to get maps.
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Old 23-03-2014, 02:40   #6
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Re: Install OpenCPN using Linux

Thank you most kindly everyone for your considered efforts to help me out there. Highly appreciated.
Russ Swan
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