A brief history of MX Linux ‘n ‘Ace’ the Acer Laptop. During tests of MX Linux last year, I found it to be a very good OS, so I created its own WordPress Page, MX Linux. Started looking for a laptop to install it on and it was the time of year that laptop prices started dropping. June 18th of last year I found a Acer Aspire 3, 15.6″ Full HD, AMD A9-9420, 8GB DDR4, 1TB HDD with Windows 10 Home and purchased it for $277.13 (taxes and shipping included) from Walmart.
UPDATE #2 – 6/20/19:
Rule of Thumb – if you can’t install Ubuntu on it, then you can’t install any Linux Distro on it. Actually, more of a simple fact than a Rule of Thumb. Anyway, had just bought a Acer Aspire 3, 15.6″ Full HD, AMD A9-9420, 8GB DDR4, 1TB HDD, Windows 10 Home and tested the ‘Live’ MX Linux on it yesterday, with the intent of installing it onto the new laptop. Well, mouse/touchpad/keyboard barely worked at an incredibly slow pace, and no internet – drivers or something missing. Tried Mint and Ubuntu ‘Live’ versions next, and both worked perfectly, recognizing all hardware and software.
I have never recovered from that disappointment. By August of last year MX Linux 19 Beta 1 was out, so I gave it another chance, and it passed ‘Ace’ the Laptop’s hardware recognition test easily!?!? Too late tho because MX was never going to get another chance for a permanent install on ‘Ace’ … in fact, I probably looked for reasons to fail it on my testing after that. Did I tell you that I never recovered from the disappointment of not being able to install MX Linux on ‘Ace’ the Laptop?
Saw that MX 19.2 was out, so downloaded MX-19.2_ahs_x64 (“ahs” = Advanced Hardware Stack for very recent hardware) and MX-19.2_x64 iso’s. Used their recommendation for creating a ‘Live’ USB with Rufus, did the MX-19.2_ahs_x64 iso first. Tested it on the ‘Apevia’ Ryzen™ 5 3400G’s Radeon™ RX Vega 11 Graphics first…seems many Distros have some problems with AMD and/or Ryzen™ and/or Radeon™ graphics. Anyway, the ‘Live’ USB was a tad ‘quirky’ but nothing bad, so I decided to install MX Linux 19.2 to one of my new 32GB USB SanDisk’s. Fast install to a USB…right at 10 minutes, which is fast for a full Linux install to USB, IMHO. Rebooted and pulled the ‘Live’ media – MS Linux booted right into the desktop with ease, and hardware recognition was excellent.
I have always found the MX default Xfce DE to be very difficult to move around in, but remembered that 7 different DE’s can be installed in MX Linux – MX Linux part 4 – Seven Desktop Environments. Note: Kodachi’s default DE is also Xfce, but it is very easy to move around in.
I decided to go with the Cinnamon DE, but first a quick look at MX Package Installer and 5 of the DE choices (default Xfce is 6 and Cinnamon is 7th):
Cinnamon DE is listed under the “Stable Repo” tab of MX Package installer … no command prompt is needed for installing any of these DE’s … terminals and command prompts are for lovers of DOS ‘n Arch ‘n Arch-based Distros.
Those are old pics from another post…just saving Media space/storage by re-using them. After it installs, just log out, then select Cinnamon DE and log back in. Much easier to move around in, and a *LOT* easier to find things than in that Xfce! Change the background and a new MX Cinnamon Linux:
Here’s the ‘Apevia’ system info:
Here’s the ‘InWin’ system info:
I rarely allow any Linux Distro on my main computer, ‘Antec Jr.’ but wanted to give it a try after the full install of MX-19.2_ahs_x64 on the 32GB USB drive wouldn’t even boot on ‘Ace’ the Laptop. Here’s ‘Antec Jr.’ system info:
No problems with the ‘Live’ USB or newly installed MX OS to the 32GB USB drive, on those 3 desktop computers (all built by me), but neither USB would boot on ‘Ace’ the Laptop. Anyway, I found the following info on the MX FAQs page:
Can I install MX Linux on a computer that has Windows?
If the machine already has Windows 8 or later installed, then special steps must be taken to deal with the presence of (U)EFI and its best known feature Secure Boot. Most users are urged to turn off Secure Boot by entering the BIOS as the machine starts to boot. The Installer will normally take care of the process, but, unfortunately, the exact procedure after that sometimes varies by manufacturer. If you have problems, check the links to videos and documents in the Users Manual, Section 2.4.1; or seek advice on the Forum.
Well, ‘Ace’ the Laptop has WIN10 on it (I removed Ubuntu after moving to USB’s for most Linux installations now)…and I was unable to make any change with “Secure Boot” plus switching BIOS from UEFI to Legacy didn’t work. At this point, I made a new ‘Live’ USB with the second iso, MX-19.2_x64. That one booted after some tinkering (I forget, but may have changed from UEFI to Legacy – I was tired of messing with it by this point!).
This was when I decided to try the first MX-19.2_ahs_x64 full install to the 32GB USB, on ‘Antec Jr.’ because WIN10 Pro is installed full-time on it. Plugged the 32GB SanDisk USB in…turned on the computer, hit F12 for Boot Menu, selected UEFI SanDisk partition, and booted right into the MX Cinnamon DE. No problems!!!
Laptops can be a pain, which is why one MX Linux iso worked ‘n the other would not. ‘Antec Jr.’ had no UEFI problems even with WIN10 Pro installed, so its laptops and/or Acer laptops that have the “ahs” iso problems, I suspect.
Anyway, I’m going to move MX Linux back into Karmi’s Top 10 Linux Distros…to the #10 spot. One iso worked on ‘Ace’ the Laptop, but the other didn’t, and I don’t like that. It may be a brief stay for MX Linux 19.2 again, but I liked the speed of the full install onto USB, the hardware recognition (other than “ahs” iso on ‘Ace’?!?), and the ease in which MX Linux can change DE’s…*BIG* difference in Cinnamon ‘n their default Xfce!
Rule of Thumb – if you can’t install Ubuntu on it, then you can’t install any Linux Distro on it.