How to install AVLinux, for the average person

Update: [I’ve removed AVLinux and installed Linux Mint 17.1 with KDE. KDE is a user friendly desktop environment that makes transitioning from Windows to Linux a lot easier. It has an option to install kdenlive in the software manager, and doesn’t crash like before. Not sure if it was the Xfce aspect, but KDE is and always has worked well and is more accessible for me. ]

Update 2: [AVLinux supports Amazon video with Mono/silver light? Or peppermint flash 16. Other linux distros only support flash 11.]

It’s been said that Chakra Linux is “Arch [Linux] for mortals” and some linux distributions are no different. Linux has many amazing programs, but it’s also not always so user-friendly. This guide is to help you install an amazing distribution I’ve tried out on a live-USB, but have had trouble installing until today. AVLinux is a movie and audio production (multimedia content creation) operating system running in Debian and Xfce. It has many, many interesting programs like Kdenlive and Blender. Having another OS like Ubuntu or Linux Mint that can install these individual programs is possible, but what I’ve learned is that kdenlive was unable import clips and the program just exited as soon as I tried to do anything what it was intended for. It was also missing some special effect features I found in the version installed in AVLinux.

A multimedia content creation operating system is a great idea because it can be updated with relevant software updates and not be general-purpose-centric like Linux Mint or Ubuntu package managers are that can break software driver trees. That isn’t the focus of this post, but it’s something I will explore in the future.

To begin, here’s what I used today to get this to run:

1. A Harddrive and not a Solid State Drive, despite my leanings towards the latter.

2. Unetbootin.

3. An SD card or USB thumb drive (a DVD will also work if you write it from an ISO)

The first time I tried installing AVLinux, I had an SSD, and it required me to choose a swap partition. But SSDs don’t use swap partitions, and in fact they don’t benefit from one. There was no option to NOT choose a swap partition, and there was no no other option to proceed with the installation.

For an entirely different reason, yesterday I decided to borrow my SSD and use it on another PC to test some video files. Without even thinking about AV linux, I decided to install one of my older 2.5″ HDDs with 320GB storage on the first PC where AV linux did not initially work. I figured I’d boot another operating system and see what files I had left there when I last used it, but remembered it was a clean install of Linux Mint, but I forgot the password and decided to to another clean install of Linux Mint 17. Then, by pure amnesia, I plugged in one of my SD cards with not Linux Mint 17 but AVLinux, and I decided, why not try again. Lo and Behold, the swap option was available this time because of the user-friendly Linux Mint installation made a 1GB swap partition! That was all I needed, I could care less about the swap size right now. I just wanted to get this AVLinux installed.

So the installation proceeded a little further. But then I hit another snag. The installation gives requires you to choose installing the boot partition to the root partition or the Master Boot Record. The boot partition had a description saying it was the “safer” option if another boot partition was already installed, so I went with that, assuming I already had it installed. The installation completed and I had to restart the PC. When I restarted, it could not boot. Fail. So I had to reinstall the entire AV linux including making a new ext3 partition. This time, I went with the Master Boot Record option. Installation completed, and I was able to restart and boot into the operating, sans live-usb/sd.

I am able to run kdenlive and file importation (adding a video clip) is working smoothly.

Edit: I’ve located the user manual for AVLinux, which may address some of these issues, although I found no mention of SSDs or swaps. Different languages for different folks… http://bandshed.net/pdf/AV604Manual.pdf

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