4 yr old Lenovo laptop

New to this Lynex forum and asking questions.
I have an Lenovo idea pad 330…This machine is getting so slow with all the microsoft updates that I was thinking of dumping it.
Then I saw the Lynex forum which says Lynex is free to download and use, is this right and which one can I use?.

At the moment all I’m worried about is using for shopping online and is it secure?..I’m also concerned with microsoft approach to privacy on my laptop.
It doesn’t matter what I do on it I seem to end up with Bing cookies even though I don’t use Edge, I like using Opera browser or Firefox, but as I say when I scan with ccleaner it’s showing Bing cookies.

What security is there with Lynex?.
Thanks in advance.

Hello Iceboy - and welcome to the Linux Forum.

You are not the only one to be concerned about Microsoft privacy and security issues, and many people are choosing to vote with their feet and change to Linux.

As for security; Linux was designed right from the start to be very secure, so if you always install the security updates you won’t have anything to worry about. Indeed, unlike Microsoft Windows you don’t actually need to use anti-virus software, although some people do in order to ensure that they don’t pass on to others any viruses that they may have received from others in attachments. And Linux doesn’t become slower and slower with age.

Most Linux versions come with Firefox but you can install other browsers as you wish. Although your laptop would benefit greatly from changing the slow HDD to a Solid State Drive, it is certainly capable of running the popular Ubuntu. Version 20 has been issued recently but I would suggest Version 18 for now while any bugs are ironed out.

A good plan would be to try several Linux flavours using “Live USBs” that allow you to run an operating system from the USB without installing it. Ubuntu, Peppermint and Mint are probably the most popular. Whichever you like best can then be installed from the Live USB.


That’s a perfectly good computer for everyday use, but it’s not fast: a 1.1 GHz Celeron is at the bottom of the Intel range.

I would not recommend Ubuntu — it would not be much faster than Windows. Luckily, with Linux you get to choose your GUI and they play a large part in determining how fast the computer runs. This explains the differences between distros:

As Keith said, you can take advantage of the ability of Linux to run off a USB stick to try before installing. I’d suggest you try the Mate version of Linux Mint. As you can see, it has great documentation — guides to installing and to using:

But by all means try Ubuntu too — you might love it. The user interface is more phone-like than computer-like, but some people like that. You’d want the long-term support version, as Keith indicated — 18.04 will be going until 2023.

While you’re at it, you might like to look at Manjaro. That doesn’t have versions — it’s what we call rolling release, where you install and get regular updates until your computer dies of old age! Try yet another GUI with this one — Xfce.

You need to get a Windows program called Etcher to transfer the file you download onto a USB stick and make it bootable:

With regard to Ubuntu’s “phone-like” GUI as mentioned by David: I don’t know anyone who likes it - all my friends change to the more intuitive “Classic View” and one can find instructions for changing to it here: https://linuxforums.org.uk/index.php?topic=13877.0


Well thanks for the replies…At the moment I’m stuck on windows update which won’t budge >:(…So can I use everything I use on windows like Opera or Firefox? and what happens to tracking cookies on your pc, like ccleaner finds?.

You can’t use on Linux everything that you use on Windows, but applications like Firefox, Thunderbird, Opera etc. have versions for both operating systems - and Firefox & Thunderbird, for example, are standard on many Linux versions, and you will find very good replacements for just about all the kinds of software that you’ve been using on Windows. Linux comes with a “Software Library” from which one can choose from a huge range of applications - and all for free.

As for cookies: Firefox and other browsers allow the user to control what cookies are stored and it’s a good idea to set up the your Preferences before using a browser. Oh, and you won’t need anything like CCleaner.

Good luck with your Windows update!


Thanks Keith…And is security just as good when you shop online?.

Security at your (Linux) end is tip-top - at the other end (ie: everywhere else on the internet) is another matter. This has always been and always will be the case. The Linux user comes to understand that security rests entirely with them so with that in mind…

As has already been stated, Linux is built from the word go with security in mind. There are no native viruses for Linux and those which infest the Windows world will not work in Linux. (There is a ton of stuff out there to read on the subject if you Google it). There is no need for antivirus in Linux - in fact, to use it can be positively harmful! (I know - counter-intuitive isn’t it - but true!) Again, Google the question. There is no need for malware scanners or ‘cleaners’ or for defragmentation of the HDD - all totally unnecessary. If you buy or bank via the internet always be sure that the site you use is the correct one - if you do not take the necessary precautions, no operating system in the universe can prevent you losing your money :wink:

Linux is free. There are support companies who charge but they can not ‘sell’ the operating system - only for their services in support - should you choose to use them. There are ready-made, bootable DVD’s and USB’s available to buy with various Linux distro’s on them but the fee is for the work involved, not the OS, but it is relatively straightforward to make your own - for free. Post back here for more advice on that.

So why is Linux not blowing Windows out of the park when it comes to personal computing? Easy! Money!! Linux is community driven and has no massive corporation behind it, therefore no massive advertising budget to tempt you into using it. Why do you think Microsoft brings out an upgraded OS every so often? They need you to keep spending to fill their pockets! Consumerism at it’s finest, and truth be told, it works a treat! Linux is developed by small groups or individuals all over the world, not for personal gain but for the principle that computing should be freely available to all and that you, the user, should be fully in control of it. Linux is yours to use as you wish and to add or delete items as you like in order to suit your personal requirements and to freely share your ideas with others. What could be better than that?

And lastly - the vast majority of servers around the world are Unix based (Linux’s father, if you like) as are 99% of the smartphones we all love! Why? Security, front and centre.

Hope this helps give you an idea what Linux is all about and you will be welcomed into our world, should you choose to join. Please feel free to ask anything Linux-related you like, we’d be glad to help.


Thanks a lot Rich and David…Sorry for the questions, but although my Lenovo Ideapad is slow, I think it would be faster on Linux…It would be un-jumbled…when microsoft updates come, it slows it to a snails pace.
So thanks for putting my mind at rest in certain areas, I used to think Linux was all machine code to use it…does it use a firewall or does it have to use a firewall?.

Linux (at least Ubuntu) does come with a fire wall but it’s not switched on by default. You don’t need to use it and I have done so rarely. It’s called ufw and we can help you with it when you have installed Linux.
ufw is not the only one available as you can read here: Best Linux firewall of 2024 | TechRadar

As for “machine code”: you are referring to the “command line”. Although it’s not often necessary to use it, this is a very powerful method of interacting with the computer and if you stick with the Forum you will soon be learning about it for fun.


Whether you need a firewall depends on how you connect to the internet. If you have a modem/router plugged into the phone socket, or even to a fibre connection, then that device has a firewall and stops unsolicited things coming in. If you have a phone company’s usb dongle plugged into the computer, so that it can dial up the internet without a router, then you do need a firewall. With Mint or Ubuntu, you turn it on with the command

sudo ufw enable

Give it a couple of seconds to sort itself out and confirm that it’s OK with

sudo ufw status


The main router/hub will likely have a firewall protecting you from the ‘outside’ that may generally be ‘good enough’ however if other PC’s share the same LAN then it could also be appropriate to have a firewall running on your PC/laptop that can help if one of the other systems (such as Windows PC’s) are compromised. Much depends upon what you have running - if there are no open ports anyway then there’s nothing to attack.