[K12OSN] Interesting conversation....concepts vs. OS

David Trask dtrask at vcs.u52.k12.me.us
Fri Dec 17 04:46:54 UTC 2004


Glad I could help :-)  As for the dual boot issue....we simply use the
floppies....I have in my lab (at this point, next year I'll have all LTSP
150 thin-clients from disklessworkstations.com) 20 Pentium 4's...we use
etherboot floppies.  Basically we start our day with the floppies in and
booting to K12LTSP for typing in KTouch....then for the next period we pop
the disks and use WinXP with the kindergarten kids.....after that we put
the floppies back in and use K12LTSP all day from that point on.  Works
fine and I've not lost a floppy this year.  No one uses floppies anymore 
:-)  I do believe it is possible to do what you're describing.  In fact I
remember someone describing on this list about how they used a rom-o-matic
"com" file and used it as part of the autoexec.bat file.....search the
archives for how to do it.

"Support list for opensource software in schools." <k12osn at redhat.com> on
Thursday, December 16, 2004 at 9:06 PM +0000 wrote:
>Hi David,
>I found this post very interesting, especially  where you describe your 
>three OS setup where students can *choose* the best OS suited for a 
>task. And the bit about teaching word processing concepts in one app and 
>then testing to see how their skills transfer in a new/different app. 
>I'll be using that method in my class next year, thanks!
>I'm hoping you can offer some advice here about dual booting -
>Our mini-lab of PIIIs is setup so that the default boot is a network 
>boot to the K12ltsp server. Students can however press 'Esc' and then 
>boot to windows on the hard drive. Fine for PCs that can do a network 
>boot like that but what about older PCse don't have a windows 
>terminal server to connect to via rdesktop, if we did I'd convert the 
>older PCs to thin clients and that would be that.
>I've converted older PCs to thin clients by copying a rom-o-matic floppy 
>to the entire hard drive using method described here: 
>So I was wondering if I could modify the method above. A rom-o-matic 
>floppy boot on a PC starts off with a query like 'Boot from Network or 
>Now I don't know if this can be done because I don't know much about how 
>partitioning hard drives works, but this is what I would like to do:
>I'd like to copy the rom-o-matic floppy to a *portion* of the hard drive 
>   which loads first; it asks me the question 'Network or Quit?' and 
>then if I say Quit, it loads up windows on the other portion of the hard 
>That way we can have both linux & windows on the older PCs instead of 
>just linux (some teachers won't be happy with that) or just windows (*I* 
>won't be happy with that!). Also - it leaves the choice of OS up to the 

David N. Trask
Technology Teacher/Coordinator
Vassalboro Community School
dtrask at vcs.u52.k12.me.us

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