Questions

Newbie on the linux front

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Newbie on the linux front

capefear
Hello all I keep reading how wonderful linux is as a desktop operating system. I have never used linux before, but the interest is growing everyday. My question is for someone who knows absolutly nothing about linux where would i start to learn it and is there a simple flavor that i can use that is easy to install and use right out of the box. Thanks in advance.
  • +
    0 Votes
    Jesus_C

    Google mandriva download and download the iso.Burn the image to disk and you cant run the operating system off the disk without making the decision to install.If your happy you can install then.

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    0 Votes
    kenhultman

    At http://www.puppylinux.com/ Forget the misleading name-- this is a unique distro that is blindingly fast and extremely easy to configure. It runs completly in RAM so it leaves other live versions of Linux in the dust and yet has a full complement of preinstaled software with many others available as optional downloads. Your configuration info and personal files and folders are saved and accessed via a small logical HD partition. What you have is a live distro that acts as a fully installed one without the Grub or Lilo dual boot manager. If nothing else its a great way to learn Linux before going on to the major installed versions.Also avilable at http://www.frozentech.com/

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    0 Votes
    jdclyde

    First of all, join a LUG ( Linux Users Group ). People there LOVE to help new people into linux and will be tripping over each other to help you. Many will even hand you a distro already downloaded and burnt to CD. They have monthly meetings and you get a good support group of peers.
    http://www.linux.org/groups/


    http://distrowatch.com/

    http://www.google.com/linux

    http://slashdot.org/

    http://www.linux.com/

    Here is an article about Feather linux, that can run off a CD or a flash drive.
    http://www.linux.com/article.pl?sid=06/07/07/2021250

    O'reilly books are king.

    Good luck!

    Oh yeah, check out this discussion by TechExec2 about migrating to linux. Will give you some good ideas.
    http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-6230-0.html?forumID=102&threadID=213495

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    0 Votes
    capefear

    Thanks guys/girls for that information, I'm checking on it as we speak and so far so good. Wow seems like linux is more of a movement than software lol. Thanks again and hope to be able to speak more intelligently in the future about linux.

    +
    0 Votes
    jdclyde

    It sure would be nice if you marked it as such...

    B-)

    And yes, it can become as much of a mind-set as anything else.

    Here is another GREAT site for someone new to Linux and open source.

    http://www.catb.org/~esr/

    +
    0 Votes
    johnson12

    That is the best advice as to how to get to know Linux. You can find enough info on Google to make your head swim. But to get to know it you have to use it.

    Start with these live cds. Ubuntu, Mepis, PCLinux OS, and see which work best with your hardware. That way you won't be fighting just to get everything working.Also they are new user friendly, and if you run into problems the forums are helpful to get answers.

    After you get some experience then you can try out distros every week until you find one you love.

    +
    0 Votes
    chauhan_kaushik

    Hi,
    I started iff with Fedora Core 5 ( after Red hat Linux). Red hat is much hands-on linux and Fedora is Gui based . I like both of them.

    +
    0 Votes
    LeeBurchfield

    I'm a big fan of the ubuntu-based distributions. Same thing you've heard about other dists--you can burn the iso to a cd and then boot from cd to use the OS without installing. If you're installing on an older pc, there's a different install cd you'll want to burn. You have to burn the cd in a particular way, not just writing the .iso file to the cd. Free tools are available if you don't already have something.

    +
    0 Votes
    ihulland

    I installed Ubuntu at the weekend--compared to "my" windows XP it is SO slow--my XP boots in 12 secs from cold to a desktop ( not that I EVER use thatr!) but I cannot find any COMPREHESIVE lists of shrtcut keys, and the e-mail program is very slow to open too ( P4 2.8ghzt--2Gbyte RAM)Perhaps there is a much more user-freindly version of Linucx out there? Still looking.....

    +
    0 Votes
    FXEF

    If you think Ubuntu is un-friendly, save yourself lots of time and trouble and forget about Linux. Ubuntu is the simplest distro yet.

    For shortcut keys go here:

    http://linux.about.com/od/linux101/l/blnewbie5_1.htm

    Good luck,
    FXEF

    +
    0 Votes
    RknRlKid

    I'm running Ubuntu 6.06LTS on a 500mhz Compaq Presario with 8MB Video and 256MB RAM (on a wireless newwork). I was running XP Home prior to this. Ubuntu boots LOTS faster than XP ever did.

    As far as applications, yes, some of those are slow. Open Office takes about 4-5 seconds to open a document. These same sluggish times exist when using it with Windows too, so I think it is the program rather than Ubuntu that is the problem.

    Makes me curious why your system runs slower with it :)

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    0 Votes
    tct

    Interesting. My experience with XP versus Ubuntu is that Ubuntu is considerably faster on the same machine. Obviously, YMMV.

    As for being user friendly, are you equating speed and shortcut keys to user friendliness? Not how I usually frame that concept.

    Maybe you might be happier with Kbuntu? It uses the KDE destop which is more similar to Windows in my opinion. Or perhaps try Xandros. I found that Xandros worked flawlessly with the other XP machines on my network, was fast on an older machine (P3 800mhz with 768m of RAM) and used the KDE desktop.

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    0 Votes
    ihulland

    Thanks for the tips, and encouraging comments.
    I never go desktop normally, just use shortcuts to raise apps and various pre-constructed windows/mail frameworks.- I am not saying Ubuntu is slow to open it's various windows -just that I am used to an alternative way ( routine?) to do my tasks--Perhaps I have just got lazy over the years but to me, to have to go to a "desktop" at all is already an unnecessary stage, but I AM determined to persevere, today I looked at about 4 more flavours of Linux, in the office.But they all seem to be based on the "Go to desktop, and click on various menus, until to drill down to where you want"- type philosophies-I am hoping ( May be in vain?) for a way to call up apps/windows via key shortcuts, or at worst( slowest) a mouse-over.
    In MY current XP Pro, I can open three editing apps,select media, and simultaneously send a mail, with some 6 hits of the keys-never a need to drill down to any "desktop"-this, obviously makes one a bit lazy--does that explain my dilemma any better? Hoping for an exhaustive list of simple keystrokes or whatever...

    +
    0 Votes
    jessechoward

    Can you give a specific example of what you are talking about in XP? Are you using the "windows" key on your keyboard to open the start menu and navigating with the arrow keys?

    If so there are similar ways to do this on KDE and Gnome desktops using similar keystrokes however it will involve using alt or control instead.

    +
    0 Votes
    ihulland

    Thanks for that tip--Actually, one of the first thing I do on any of my machines at home ( 4 at present) is to re-map the keyboard, I utilise the following as "hot Keys" left and right Windows, left and right Ctrl, all the Number keys, and some two, three and four combinations, not to mention a few keys with pre-set mouse presses for the lesser used ones. I never used to use the caps lock key so I use that as a sort of extra "Win" key for most of my Graphics app launches, it is really a metter of setting up the entire thing with a system that YOU find easy to remember--once I do that on all my pc's I really can fly along with hardly ever touching the mouse, the desktop or even Windows Explorer( reduntant on my pc's except for initially setting up defulat actions/views. I suppose I will just have to PRETEND I am learning Windows to LEARN Linux??

    +
    0 Votes
    dford

    The problem with Linux - from a Windows user's point of view, is that there are so many different options. If you've been used to not having to think about your operating system - because there was only one Windows - it can be a bit daunting.

    The operating system field falls easily into two areas.

    1/ Systems that hide from the user and allow him/her to just get on with using the applications to do the work. Ubuntu is probably a good example here.

    2/ Systems that demand user attention and give pleasure to those who enjoy being in control. I'd suggest Debian here - Slackware is just too difficult to start off with.

    RedHat/Fedora and derivatives fall somewhere between the two. I haven't used SuSe for some time so I can't place it for you - Novell's influence must make it worth considering though.

    Then of course you are faced with the choice of window manager - this is a completely foreign concept to Windows users. KDE/Gnome are the Windows/Mac look-a-likes but there are many others.

    The main problem is that there is no direct replacement - out of the box - for Windows.

    You can have all the facillities that you expect from Windows in Linux but "Some adjustment may be necessary". For instance, you can pick up your Hotmail with Thunderbird (the Firefox mail client) but only if you install 'gotmail'. To get 'gotmail' working you will probably need to get 'sendmail' working first. And there are many other examples that I can't think of at this moment.

    I switched away from Windows when XP came out and I've not used it since then. There were times when it would have been quicker and easier to just use my old Win98 box (I kept it for years - just in case) but with a bit of Googling (and a moderate amout of bad language) I have been able to do everything I need with my Linux workststion.

    Was it worth the effort?
    It has been frustrating from time to time, but I must have enjoyed it, I'm still here after all!

    Most importantly I have had an operating system that I can update when I need some new feature or peripheral and that has allowed me to use wireless cards, import and manipulate photos from my camera, create, play and edit music and process words, spread sheets, browse, email, skype, instant message, manage my finances, at least as well as my Windows friends who have "kept up with the Gates's".

    Hope this helps

    David
    Currently running Fedora Core 3 on a PIII 650 Mhz box - but thinking of moving up to FC6 also Debian 'Sarge' on a P166 laptop with 32Mb ram - just because I can.

    +
    0 Votes
    carltonhobbs

    One thing to consider, Microsoft presents a one solution fits all, where you don't have to ... or get to think.

    Linux presents many options. It is like coming out of a Soviet system and being overwhelmed by so many choices in a freer market. Some old people who left the USSR and came to the West never got used to it and decided to go back.

    Hopefully that should encourage people to spend the bit of effort to adjust. I'd recommend. www.linuxmint.com. I'm a non-techie and made the switch about 3 months ago. Actually, I still dual boot with XP for times I don't have time to figure out something new. It's not often.

    +
    0 Votes
    grewcockd

    Hi,
    If you have an old machine lying around, try: (It will work on a new one even better.8-))
    Ubuntu (South african for freedom, or something like that?)or Kubuntu for a more 'Widows like" desktop. (Just google it and then download is totally free, but it may take a while, its quite big).
    It installs itself with hardly any input, finds most hardware and configures it,
    and JUST works! (I have had it running for over 3 moths, and It hasn't crashed once!!,
    My copy of Vista Ultimate on the other hand'
    crashes at least 3 times a day!!)
    It has, as part of the install:
    An office suite,
    A couple of internet browsers
    CD/DVD writing programs
    Various 'editors/viewers'
    and other 'stuff'
    It just works.
    The only thing is, it is a bit difficult (different) installing other programs and drivers, but once you get used to the Linux
    way of doing things, then it's fine. The nice thing is, there is loads of help on the net
    for Linux in general.

    +
    0 Votes
    turninheads

    There are many great Live CD's that you can try first to
    determine what type of distro you may like as they all
    have their set of advantages and disadvantages. Distro's i
    can recommend to a complete newbie would be Mandriva,
    SuSe, and Fedora Core. Once you learn linux and get more
    comfortable you may want to try Gentoo - it is by no
    means meant for noobie's but it is an incredibly powerful
    distro that is completely compiled from source, so it is
    optimized for your specific machine with only the features
    you want and use.

    +
    0 Votes
    gcstout

    www.puppylinux.org You can download a simple Linux which you can IPL from a CD. It is a full featured Linux with a lot of help.

    +
    0 Votes
    coco6809

    Novell has a VMWare image that you can download as an appliance. You can use VMWare's free Player or Server and use it on your XP box with no issues. This will help you to learn without having to jeopardize your XP install.

    +
    0 Votes
    viztor

    I've tried many live linux CDs. They worked fine on my daughter's desktop, but wouldn't talk to the internet on my laptop. People are your best resource. Check the links to local user groups Fortunately I work with someone who knows linux and was able to sort out my problems. Google can be helpful, but if you don't know the lingo, it can be frustrating.

    Once you are up and running, experiment.

    (By the way, the Opera browser lets you burn an ISO of a downloaded linux image when you click on the file in the Transfers window.)

    Good luck and have fun.

    +
    0 Votes
    chuckmba

    I use Fedora Core6 it is very intuitive like Windows unlike the other versions like KDE, (think I have it right) For the most part very easy to install unless you have unique hardware like I have. I am using an old Compaq DL360 server that has two NICs which makes it great as firewall server. The only problem I have right now it trying to get firestarter configured. Any help on this would be greatly appreciated. Also be carefull uninstalling things that you don't need. Since I am using a server I do not have a sound card, CD/DVD burner or USB ports I tried unistalling things that I thought were associated with these devices and ended up re-installing everything all over again. Finally I gave up. I have 4 GB of RAM, with everything installed and running I'm using less than 300MB.

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    0 Votes
    john.ammon

    At work of course we run just about all the flavors of Linux. I have a small test lab (because of space) and run all 6 different linuxs on one computer. You don't need a monster PC, an older 1.5 or 2.0GHZ and 512MB PC will do to learn on. I use removeable hard drive trays. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=529423. They are cheap $20.00 a piece and everybody has a bunch of old hard drives laying around. I just asked and people started piling old 40GB HDD's on my desk. I'd download the .ISO's from reputable sites and burn your own DVD or CD's. Most CD/DVD burning software has a burn CD/DVD from ISO images feature. I'd also start with Fedora, SUSE, Red Hat, Ubuntu and Debian Linux. The only real difference is where things are laid out and how they look.

  • +
    0 Votes
    Jesus_C

    Google mandriva download and download the iso.Burn the image to disk and you cant run the operating system off the disk without making the decision to install.If your happy you can install then.

    +
    0 Votes
    kenhultman

    At http://www.puppylinux.com/ Forget the misleading name-- this is a unique distro that is blindingly fast and extremely easy to configure. It runs completly in RAM so it leaves other live versions of Linux in the dust and yet has a full complement of preinstaled software with many others available as optional downloads. Your configuration info and personal files and folders are saved and accessed via a small logical HD partition. What you have is a live distro that acts as a fully installed one without the Grub or Lilo dual boot manager. If nothing else its a great way to learn Linux before going on to the major installed versions.Also avilable at http://www.frozentech.com/

    +
    0 Votes
    jdclyde

    First of all, join a LUG ( Linux Users Group ). People there LOVE to help new people into linux and will be tripping over each other to help you. Many will even hand you a distro already downloaded and burnt to CD. They have monthly meetings and you get a good support group of peers.
    http://www.linux.org/groups/


    http://distrowatch.com/

    http://www.google.com/linux

    http://slashdot.org/

    http://www.linux.com/

    Here is an article about Feather linux, that can run off a CD or a flash drive.
    http://www.linux.com/article.pl?sid=06/07/07/2021250

    O'reilly books are king.

    Good luck!

    Oh yeah, check out this discussion by TechExec2 about migrating to linux. Will give you some good ideas.
    http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-6230-0.html?forumID=102&threadID=213495

    +
    0 Votes
    capefear

    Thanks guys/girls for that information, I'm checking on it as we speak and so far so good. Wow seems like linux is more of a movement than software lol. Thanks again and hope to be able to speak more intelligently in the future about linux.

    +
    0 Votes
    jdclyde

    It sure would be nice if you marked it as such...

    B-)

    And yes, it can become as much of a mind-set as anything else.

    Here is another GREAT site for someone new to Linux and open source.

    http://www.catb.org/~esr/

    +
    0 Votes
    johnson12

    That is the best advice as to how to get to know Linux. You can find enough info on Google to make your head swim. But to get to know it you have to use it.

    Start with these live cds. Ubuntu, Mepis, PCLinux OS, and see which work best with your hardware. That way you won't be fighting just to get everything working.Also they are new user friendly, and if you run into problems the forums are helpful to get answers.

    After you get some experience then you can try out distros every week until you find one you love.

    +
    0 Votes
    chauhan_kaushik

    Hi,
    I started iff with Fedora Core 5 ( after Red hat Linux). Red hat is much hands-on linux and Fedora is Gui based . I like both of them.

    +
    0 Votes
    LeeBurchfield

    I'm a big fan of the ubuntu-based distributions. Same thing you've heard about other dists--you can burn the iso to a cd and then boot from cd to use the OS without installing. If you're installing on an older pc, there's a different install cd you'll want to burn. You have to burn the cd in a particular way, not just writing the .iso file to the cd. Free tools are available if you don't already have something.

    +
    0 Votes
    ihulland

    I installed Ubuntu at the weekend--compared to "my" windows XP it is SO slow--my XP boots in 12 secs from cold to a desktop ( not that I EVER use thatr!) but I cannot find any COMPREHESIVE lists of shrtcut keys, and the e-mail program is very slow to open too ( P4 2.8ghzt--2Gbyte RAM)Perhaps there is a much more user-freindly version of Linucx out there? Still looking.....

    +
    0 Votes
    FXEF

    If you think Ubuntu is un-friendly, save yourself lots of time and trouble and forget about Linux. Ubuntu is the simplest distro yet.

    For shortcut keys go here:

    http://linux.about.com/od/linux101/l/blnewbie5_1.htm

    Good luck,
    FXEF

    +
    0 Votes
    RknRlKid

    I'm running Ubuntu 6.06LTS on a 500mhz Compaq Presario with 8MB Video and 256MB RAM (on a wireless newwork). I was running XP Home prior to this. Ubuntu boots LOTS faster than XP ever did.

    As far as applications, yes, some of those are slow. Open Office takes about 4-5 seconds to open a document. These same sluggish times exist when using it with Windows too, so I think it is the program rather than Ubuntu that is the problem.

    Makes me curious why your system runs slower with it :)

    +
    0 Votes
    tct

    Interesting. My experience with XP versus Ubuntu is that Ubuntu is considerably faster on the same machine. Obviously, YMMV.

    As for being user friendly, are you equating speed and shortcut keys to user friendliness? Not how I usually frame that concept.

    Maybe you might be happier with Kbuntu? It uses the KDE destop which is more similar to Windows in my opinion. Or perhaps try Xandros. I found that Xandros worked flawlessly with the other XP machines on my network, was fast on an older machine (P3 800mhz with 768m of RAM) and used the KDE desktop.

    +
    0 Votes
    ihulland

    Thanks for the tips, and encouraging comments.
    I never go desktop normally, just use shortcuts to raise apps and various pre-constructed windows/mail frameworks.- I am not saying Ubuntu is slow to open it's various windows -just that I am used to an alternative way ( routine?) to do my tasks--Perhaps I have just got lazy over the years but to me, to have to go to a "desktop" at all is already an unnecessary stage, but I AM determined to persevere, today I looked at about 4 more flavours of Linux, in the office.But they all seem to be based on the "Go to desktop, and click on various menus, until to drill down to where you want"- type philosophies-I am hoping ( May be in vain?) for a way to call up apps/windows via key shortcuts, or at worst( slowest) a mouse-over.
    In MY current XP Pro, I can open three editing apps,select media, and simultaneously send a mail, with some 6 hits of the keys-never a need to drill down to any "desktop"-this, obviously makes one a bit lazy--does that explain my dilemma any better? Hoping for an exhaustive list of simple keystrokes or whatever...

    +
    0 Votes
    jessechoward

    Can you give a specific example of what you are talking about in XP? Are you using the "windows" key on your keyboard to open the start menu and navigating with the arrow keys?

    If so there are similar ways to do this on KDE and Gnome desktops using similar keystrokes however it will involve using alt or control instead.

    +
    0 Votes
    ihulland

    Thanks for that tip--Actually, one of the first thing I do on any of my machines at home ( 4 at present) is to re-map the keyboard, I utilise the following as "hot Keys" left and right Windows, left and right Ctrl, all the Number keys, and some two, three and four combinations, not to mention a few keys with pre-set mouse presses for the lesser used ones. I never used to use the caps lock key so I use that as a sort of extra "Win" key for most of my Graphics app launches, it is really a metter of setting up the entire thing with a system that YOU find easy to remember--once I do that on all my pc's I really can fly along with hardly ever touching the mouse, the desktop or even Windows Explorer( reduntant on my pc's except for initially setting up defulat actions/views. I suppose I will just have to PRETEND I am learning Windows to LEARN Linux??

    +
    0 Votes
    dford

    The problem with Linux - from a Windows user's point of view, is that there are so many different options. If you've been used to not having to think about your operating system - because there was only one Windows - it can be a bit daunting.

    The operating system field falls easily into two areas.

    1/ Systems that hide from the user and allow him/her to just get on with using the applications to do the work. Ubuntu is probably a good example here.

    2/ Systems that demand user attention and give pleasure to those who enjoy being in control. I'd suggest Debian here - Slackware is just too difficult to start off with.

    RedHat/Fedora and derivatives fall somewhere between the two. I haven't used SuSe for some time so I can't place it for you - Novell's influence must make it worth considering though.

    Then of course you are faced with the choice of window manager - this is a completely foreign concept to Windows users. KDE/Gnome are the Windows/Mac look-a-likes but there are many others.

    The main problem is that there is no direct replacement - out of the box - for Windows.

    You can have all the facillities that you expect from Windows in Linux but "Some adjustment may be necessary". For instance, you can pick up your Hotmail with Thunderbird (the Firefox mail client) but only if you install 'gotmail'. To get 'gotmail' working you will probably need to get 'sendmail' working first. And there are many other examples that I can't think of at this moment.

    I switched away from Windows when XP came out and I've not used it since then. There were times when it would have been quicker and easier to just use my old Win98 box (I kept it for years - just in case) but with a bit of Googling (and a moderate amout of bad language) I have been able to do everything I need with my Linux workststion.

    Was it worth the effort?
    It has been frustrating from time to time, but I must have enjoyed it, I'm still here after all!

    Most importantly I have had an operating system that I can update when I need some new feature or peripheral and that has allowed me to use wireless cards, import and manipulate photos from my camera, create, play and edit music and process words, spread sheets, browse, email, skype, instant message, manage my finances, at least as well as my Windows friends who have "kept up with the Gates's".

    Hope this helps

    David
    Currently running Fedora Core 3 on a PIII 650 Mhz box - but thinking of moving up to FC6 also Debian 'Sarge' on a P166 laptop with 32Mb ram - just because I can.

    +
    0 Votes
    carltonhobbs

    One thing to consider, Microsoft presents a one solution fits all, where you don't have to ... or get to think.

    Linux presents many options. It is like coming out of a Soviet system and being overwhelmed by so many choices in a freer market. Some old people who left the USSR and came to the West never got used to it and decided to go back.

    Hopefully that should encourage people to spend the bit of effort to adjust. I'd recommend. www.linuxmint.com. I'm a non-techie and made the switch about 3 months ago. Actually, I still dual boot with XP for times I don't have time to figure out something new. It's not often.

    +
    0 Votes
    grewcockd

    Hi,
    If you have an old machine lying around, try: (It will work on a new one even better.8-))
    Ubuntu (South african for freedom, or something like that?)or Kubuntu for a more 'Widows like" desktop. (Just google it and then download is totally free, but it may take a while, its quite big).
    It installs itself with hardly any input, finds most hardware and configures it,
    and JUST works! (I have had it running for over 3 moths, and It hasn't crashed once!!,
    My copy of Vista Ultimate on the other hand'
    crashes at least 3 times a day!!)
    It has, as part of the install:
    An office suite,
    A couple of internet browsers
    CD/DVD writing programs
    Various 'editors/viewers'
    and other 'stuff'
    It just works.
    The only thing is, it is a bit difficult (different) installing other programs and drivers, but once you get used to the Linux
    way of doing things, then it's fine. The nice thing is, there is loads of help on the net
    for Linux in general.

    +
    0 Votes
    turninheads

    There are many great Live CD's that you can try first to
    determine what type of distro you may like as they all
    have their set of advantages and disadvantages. Distro's i
    can recommend to a complete newbie would be Mandriva,
    SuSe, and Fedora Core. Once you learn linux and get more
    comfortable you may want to try Gentoo - it is by no
    means meant for noobie's but it is an incredibly powerful
    distro that is completely compiled from source, so it is
    optimized for your specific machine with only the features
    you want and use.

    +
    0 Votes
    gcstout

    www.puppylinux.org You can download a simple Linux which you can IPL from a CD. It is a full featured Linux with a lot of help.

    +
    0 Votes
    coco6809

    Novell has a VMWare image that you can download as an appliance. You can use VMWare's free Player or Server and use it on your XP box with no issues. This will help you to learn without having to jeopardize your XP install.

    +
    0 Votes
    viztor

    I've tried many live linux CDs. They worked fine on my daughter's desktop, but wouldn't talk to the internet on my laptop. People are your best resource. Check the links to local user groups Fortunately I work with someone who knows linux and was able to sort out my problems. Google can be helpful, but if you don't know the lingo, it can be frustrating.

    Once you are up and running, experiment.

    (By the way, the Opera browser lets you burn an ISO of a downloaded linux image when you click on the file in the Transfers window.)

    Good luck and have fun.

    +
    0 Votes
    chuckmba

    I use Fedora Core6 it is very intuitive like Windows unlike the other versions like KDE, (think I have it right) For the most part very easy to install unless you have unique hardware like I have. I am using an old Compaq DL360 server that has two NICs which makes it great as firewall server. The only problem I have right now it trying to get firestarter configured. Any help on this would be greatly appreciated. Also be carefull uninstalling things that you don't need. Since I am using a server I do not have a sound card, CD/DVD burner or USB ports I tried unistalling things that I thought were associated with these devices and ended up re-installing everything all over again. Finally I gave up. I have 4 GB of RAM, with everything installed and running I'm using less than 300MB.

    +
    0 Votes
    john.ammon

    At work of course we run just about all the flavors of Linux. I have a small test lab (because of space) and run all 6 different linuxs on one computer. You don't need a monster PC, an older 1.5 or 2.0GHZ and 512MB PC will do to learn on. I use removeable hard drive trays. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=529423. They are cheap $20.00 a piece and everybody has a bunch of old hard drives laying around. I just asked and people started piling old 40GB HDD's on my desk. I'd download the .ISO's from reputable sites and burn your own DVD or CD's. Most CD/DVD burning software has a burn CD/DVD from ISO images feature. I'd also start with Fedora, SUSE, Red Hat, Ubuntu and Debian Linux. The only real difference is where things are laid out and how they look.