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INSTANT bootable Laptop - Ubuntu, Chromium or Android?

Posted on 2010-11-13
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Hello,

I own a Lenovo R61 Laptop with WinXP SP3 on it (dual boot with Vista on second partition).
I want to make it instant bootable... may be by installing Ubuntu / Google Chromium / Android.

I prefer to install these OS on hard drive rather than having them on CD or USB.

I have seen Ubuntu 10.10 installed on hard disk boots in around a minute. Can this be turned down to around 10 seconds? I think it is possible with Google Chrome/ Android. I am not sure which OS will make my laptop instant bootable or near-instant (<1min). Many suggests to try OS that they have tried, but could not find a tutorial which compares these three variants of Linux. I would take your opinion at EE community.

I am thinking of Chromium / Android OS as most of my work is online. Please suggest me a way.
[I am conversant with technical language, so detailed response is fine]

Requirements:
===========

OS:  Please suggest
Boot time: < 60 seconds
Connectivity: Wifi (Must), (If possible - Internet via USB or Bluetooth based devices)
Hardware: Lenovo R61
Dual boot: Yes, with Windows XP

Thanks!
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Question by:vinaypatki
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Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 34129939
You'll probably need an SSD hard drive http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solid-state_drive to accomplish this.

Also see http://www.harald-hoyer.de/linux/boot-time-distro-comparison and http://francis.giannaros.org/blog/2007/08/23/comparing-distribution-boot-times/

You could probably tweak your Linux or Chromium or Android distribution to get the times down but that might be a lot of work.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34129972
Thanks dbrunton!

SSD is not possible for me. But I am okay with boot time of around a minute. I had tried first release of Chromium on Vmware long time back and boot time was quite okay.

I hope, with latest Chromium or Android, it will be less. I used to keep track of Chrome OS but there wasn't significant development. I couldn't spot a dual boot example of Chrome installation. and now I see Android rising in Mobile market.

Do you know correct way to install Chromium, Android?
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Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 34129993
The instructions for Chromium are here http://www.chromium.org/chromium-os/building-chromium-os

Android isn't quite as clear.  See http://source.android.com/porting/index.html and then look at the Android Open Source Project Site and the Build System Overview links.  Beware that the links here aren't the best.

Both require building or compiling the code.  There is no prebuilt CD for instant install.  And this isn't pretty stuff.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34130374
Yes, I am aware of these. But I would like to know whats suitable and whats working.
Thx!
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Expert Comment

by:yarwell
ID: 34130992
most "fast starts" are achieved by hibernating rather than booting up. Mac OSX does this, it is fastest as it only has to transfer say 2GB from the hard disk hibernate file back into the memory and away it goes. Does that help your scenario ?
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34131058
Sorry, yarwell. I was unaware of Mac doing Hib but I don't want to hibernate. I am okay with 1 (or slightly more) min booting time if 10-20 seconds is not possible without SSD.

What I found that the Win XP booting is also fast but it needs a huge IO after booting and it takes time. I guess Chromium OS will be suitable as its completely online OS. May be Android as well, as its very light weight.

But above are assumptions. I need confirmations.
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Expert Comment

by:yarwell
ID: 34131291
what is the speed and data transfer capability of the HDD in the laptop you wish to use. That is likely to be the limiting factor.
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Accepted Solution

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yarwell earned 250 total points
ID: 34131320
I just timed a Ubuntu 10.10 desktop machine, nothing special and probably 6 years old hardware. Boot to desktop in 50s and working browser within a minute. Shuts down in less than 10s.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34131329
Thanks! That was helpful.

Do you have any experience about Android/ Chromium? do we have any kind of readymade installer for them? I had one for Chrome but it was old and pre-release.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34131977
See here are the latest about installing Android using CD/USB.

http://www.pathikshah.com/blog/how-to-install-android-on-pc-laptop/
http://www.machackpc.com/windows/how-to-install-android-os-on-your-laptop-or-desktop/

I need to install it on hard drive on a partition.
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Assisted Solution

by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 250 total points
ID: 34132053
See http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/

You other two links describe how to install it on a flash drive.  The link I supplied shows how to install an ISO onto a hard disk using unetbootin.

I suspect if you use all three links you should be able to install Android on the hard disk.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34132055
This link shows that installing Android on drive was successful but Wifi never worked.
http://www.binbert.com/blog/2010/08/install-android-on-x86-based-desktop-or-laptop/

Link below shows Lenovo R61 is compatible with Chromium OS.
http://chromeos.hexxeh.net/wiki/doku.php?id=laptop_compatibility_list
and his Live CD of FLOW - http://chromeos.hexxeh.net/

Tutorial found about installing Chromium on Netbook
http://chromestory.com/2010/09/how-to-install-chromium-os-on-your-netbooks-hard-drive/

Dualboot Chromium on top of Ubuntu
http://chromeos.hexxeh.net/wiki/doku.php?id=multiboot

Still working on...
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Expert Comment

by:yarwell
ID: 34132843
I've used Chromium OS but only from USB sticks. Seen android on an Acer netbook as a factory installed dual boot option.
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Author Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34133712
Yarwell, how was Chromium's performance when used from USB?

And any idea, which was the peer OS for Android on Acer Netbook?
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Expert Comment

by:yarwell
ID: 34145574
from memory it was XP/Android on an Aspire One at Best Buy in the UK.

I see there are similar machines for sale on line now with Windows 7 basic "ACER ASPIRE ONE D260-2DQkk BLACK 10.1" NETBOOK, WINDOWS 7 / ANDROID"

Chomium was OK from USB stick. I did buy some "dual channel" USB sticks but haven't re-tested yet.
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Author Closing Comment

by:vinaypatki
ID: 34185829
Thank you, guys!
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