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Ubuntu Linux for Non-Geeks

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the grandma-wants-a-new-os dept.

245

Ravi writes "It is a fact that GNU/Linux has grown from a hackers operating system to be a viable alternative to any commercial proprietary operating system. And the plethora of books on Linux that are being published underlines the popularity of this OS. There are hundreds of flavors of Linux distributions — some of them more popular than the others. Ubuntu Linux is one such distribution which has caught the fancy of many Linux enthusiasts and which enjoys the number one position in the popularity rating chart." Read the rest of Ravi's review.

I recently came across a very nice book titled "Ubuntu Linux for non-geeks" authored by Rickford Grant and published by No Starch Press. What attracted me to this book was the obvious title which makes no bones about the fact that this book is targeted at non-geeks.

The book is divided into 18 chapters and 3 appendices spanning over 300 pages. The author starts the narration by imparting a good understanding of the history of Linux and the relationship between Ubuntu and Linux. In this chapter, the author clears a few doubts arising in a lay person's mind about Linux such as the difference between a distribution and an OS, the hardware requirements for running Ubuntu and so on.

In the past, I have seen Linux books using well over 50 pages just to explain the installation process but Ubuntu is famed for its simple 6 step installation. The next chapter is a very short one which gives a good illustrated explanation of the steps needed to boot Ubuntu using the latest version of Ubuntu live CD (included with the book) and install the OS on the hard disk.

The third chapter explores many common features of the Gnome desktop which is the default desktop in Ubuntu. Here the readers are introduced to different aspects of the desktop from the panels, the menus, the applets to the steps for customizing.

One thing I really like about this book is the obvious way in which each task is split into separate chapters. For example, you have a chapter explaining the file and disk management , a chapter which explains how to set up the network and log on to the internet, another for setting up your printer and scanner, still another explaining different ways of downloading and installing software and so on.

I especially liked the 8th chapter titled "Getting to know the Linux terminal and command line", where the author introduces the shell and a number of command line tools to the readers. What I found really interesting was that at the end of the chapter, the author walks you through installing and configuring so you get to try out all the commands introduced earlier.

In the 11th chapter, the author explains how to make the fonts on the Ubuntu machine look prettier and the steps needed to install different kinds of additional fonts such as Microsoft true type fonts.

Ubuntu Linux bundles with it a rich set of applications which more than meets the need of an average home user. The 13th and 14th chapter introduces some of the most popular ones such as office suites, image viewers and so on.

The next three chapters deal exclusively in setting up and configuring audio and video in Ubuntu. Considering that some of the audio/video formats are patented, it is not possible to include support for them by default in Linux. Rather, it is up to the user to get these proprietary audio and video formats to work in Linux. And through these chapters, the author explains all that needs to be done to get all audio and video formats to work in Ubuntu.

The appendix also contain a section where the author gives a list of web resources where one can find more information related to Linux — more specifically Ubuntu Linux.

This very nice book on Ubuntu Linux is clearly targeted at the neophytes who wish to take their first steps in installing and using Ubuntu. The author explains in a step-by-step manner the solutions to the problems that one might face in installing, configuring and using Ubuntu Linux.

If you are a person who has installed and used Linux in the past, this book probably doesn't cover anything new to you. Having said that, it could be an ideal gift for your grandparents, parents or even friends who wish to learn to setup and use Linux. Another positive aspect of the book which attracted me was that the narration was surprisingly devoid of any slang. One of the common mistakes that authors make when writing a book targeted at newbies is treating them like idiots and introducing a lot of slang in the narration, but Rickford Grant has stayed clear of this and his language is clear and lucid.

Ravi Kumar is a Linux enthusiast who likes to share his thoughts on all things related to GNU/Linux through his blog All about Linux.


You can purchase Ubuntu Linux for non-geeks from bn.com. Slashdot welcomes readers' book reviews -- to see your own review here, read the book review guidelines, then visit the submission page

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I switched from gentoo (4, Informative)

Artie_Effim (700781) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368367)

After 2-3 years as a die hard gentoo user, I just wanted simple and easy home administration. ubuntu is just that.

Re:I switched from gentoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370215)

I have Ubuntu on one box. I find it's nice too. But I also see it as a OSX wannabe. The Ubuntu team needs to remember that it is still Linux and don't hide good "geek" features just because they want it to dumb it down.

Re:I switched from gentoo (1)

mabba18 (897753) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370475)

I think that you totally miss the point of Ubuntu.

FP? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368389)

Hey, first post??? offtopic, wtf is a slashdot "freak" I have one what does this mean?

Ubuntu's new slogan (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368391)

Ubuntu--because it's ok to be a noob.

Maybe they can make an easier distribution (5, Funny)

StressGuy (472374) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368565)

called Noobuntu?

judging by their first release... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369239)

..it should have been nudebuntu

Re:Maybe they can make an easier distribution (1, Flamebait)

MotorMachineMercenar (124135) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369337)

"Maybe they can make an easier distribution called Noobuntu?"

While the parent is supposed to be (and admittedly succeeds at being) funny, this kind of condascending attitude by lunix zealots is one of the major reasons why Linux and its incarnations will still take years (if ever) to really reach a point where anyone can use it. User friendliness, ease of use, painless installation, smooth UI and user experience are all things that still seem to be curse words for most Linux users and especially the developers. Documentation and user support is lacking or non-existent. Although it appears that there's been quite some progress in recent time and most of the hardcore zealots have started to accept that it might be actually a Good Thing to have more people using Linux.

for the record... (4, Insightful)

StressGuy (472374) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369745)

I use Ubuntu at home and have for a while now. It has become my primary OS. I tested a few of them and it ultmately came down to SuSE and Ubuntu. While a strong argument can be made for either one, Ubuntu finally go the nod - not only for all the reasons you mentioned, but because of its relatively small footprint.

I wouldn't call myself a zealot, but I am a tinkerer. However, I also have a wife and kids who need a computer that just works the way they think it will. Ubuntu fits that bill nicely. In fact, my 5-year old son developed a decided fondness for penguins as a result of exposure to things like gcomris, Tux Raxer, Tux Paint, Pingus, etc.

Re:Maybe they can make an easier distribution (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370391)

"...painless installation..."

I take you haven't install Ubuntu lately? It Couldn't be easier. Easier than Windows and miles faster (esp if you need to format a new hard drive). I have installed both many times.

XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (2, Insightful)

Speare (84249) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368405)

Yeah, mod me how you feel instead of responding, I like that.

I would have to say that XFree86 and Apache, as well as components listed under Perl Artistic and BSD licenses, have as much to do with the usability and adoption of Linux as a platform. Why is GNU singled out for more attention than the other amazing personal contributions of self-motivated non-commercialized developers? Just because RMS' ego outscales his last decade of coding efforts doesn't mean that he should automatically be ignored, but neither does it mean his face should be on the proverbial wheaties box at the exclusion of the rest of the team.

Its as simple as this (-1, Offtopic)

NDPTAL85 (260093) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368465)

The people who talk the most get the most attention. Ever known RMS to be a quiet person?

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (2, Informative)

knightmad (931578) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368681)

Why is GNU singled out for more attention than the other amazing personal contributions of self-motivated non-commercialized developers? OK, I'll bite. Maybe because the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) [wikipedia.org] , the GNU Binary Utilities (binutils) [wikipedia.org] , the bash shell [wikipedia.org] , the GNU C library (glibc) [wikipedia.org] , and the GNU Core Utilities (coreutils) [wikipedia.org] play a very important role in the operational system, as important (althought also as replaceable) as the Linux kernel? If that is not enough reason, well, I don't know what would be.

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (-1, Redundant)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368941)

...all of which are replacable. Intel compiler (yes, it compiles the kernel). A plethora of shells, tons of (truly) free/BSD utils that are 1 for 1 with the GNU utils.

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (1)

knightmad (931578) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369273)

As I mentioned, everything is replaceable, including the kernel :)

In the event of a distro effectively replacing all GNU stuff with Intel/BSD/whatever, will it still be called plain Linux as it is now? With nothing to differentiate it from (GNU/)Linux? Wouldnt we have to choose between "Debian Linux 12 with BSD userland.iso" and "Debian Linux 12 with GNU userland.iso" Or, for short, "Debian GNU/Linux" and "Debian BSD/Linux". Or, maybe, Debian (BSD|GNU)/(Linux|Hurd). Who knows? :) (Cue the "maybe we will be playing DNF on it too, with open source ATI/NVIDIA drivers provided by the factory" remarks ;))

Btw, I'm playing the devil advocate here, because I don't care how it is called, as long as it is free as in speech. To quote Shakespeare's Romeo:

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet"

The only thing I wanna show is that despite of it being worthless, RMS have a point there.

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (0, Redundant)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369351)

As I mentioned, everything is replaceable, including the kernel

Then it wouldn't be called "Linux", making the argument null and void.

RMS doesn't have a point. He's all talk and no action. What has he done in the past 10 years but preach to a bunch of geeks? Contrast that to Torvalds, or Alan Cox, or open source developers at IBM, or BSD developers... these are the people driving the open source and even free software movement. RMS's head is so big he hasn't seen anything past his neck in ages.

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370481)

Then it wouldn't be called "Linux", making the argument null and void.

And if you remove all the GNU parts then it wouldn't be called GNU. How does that make what argument void?

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369603)

Well, it depends on what you define as an 'important role'. For example, X11 is also as important as glibc, gcc, or binutils, especially for a desktop OS like Ubuntu.

OTOH, just as important to the user experience in Ubuntu as a desktop OS is the GNOME desktop (notice I said Ubuntu, not Kubuntu), and GNOME actually is part of the GNU project. (I've had people argue with me on this point -- if you don't believe me, hear it from the horse's mouth [gnome.org] .)

On the gripping hand, Ubuntu and GNOME use quite a bit of other non-GNU software to aid in the user experience: Python, for instance. Much of the packaging system (apt-get, synaptic, etc.) comes from the Debian project, of course, which is not part of the GNU project.

IMHO, the best thing you can say about an operating system such as Ubuntu is that it consists of a motley collection of open source tools offered under a variety of different licenses and is packaged in a nice way that smooths over integration issues, adds polish and shine, and provides the out-of-the-box experience.

Re:XOrg/Apache/Perl/BSD/GNU/Linux (1)

Al Dimond (792444) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370375)

The reason that lots of people call "it" GNU/Linux is that GNU is the name of the project to create a Free Unix-like OS. It doesn't really matter what licenses are used or whose projects are the biggest or most important, GNU was The Project that drove The System. That said, once you create your own project with its own goals you can call it whatever you want. Debian says, "Debian GNU/Linux," specifying themselves as a distributor of the GNU operating system with Linux as its kernel. Gentoo says, "Gentoo Linux," an operating system based on Linux. Ubuntu says, "Ubuntu." An operating system.

How people use the names often reflects their priorities and views. Debian defers significantly to GNU as a source of mission and values, and reflects that in its name by stating that they're packaging the GNU operating system. Gentoo either calls itself an OS based on Linux or a packaging of the "Linux OS" (I don't know which, I don't think the community would speak with a unified voice, and I doubt there was much consternation about self-definition when coming up with the name), framing it as continuing the work of Linus, in the spirit of the Linux kernel. Ubuntu is just Ubuntu because its goals and values are quite different from those of GNU, Linux or many of the other projects it borrows from. Ubuntu might someday drop GNU, Linux, X11 or GNOME for better alternatives and it would still be Ubuntu, its central mission would stay the same. Kubuntu, on the other hand, defines itself by its use of Ubuntu and KDE; both Ubuntu and KDE themselves are parts of its mission.

Excellent (5, Insightful)

Rendo (918276) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368435)

The Ubuntu, and Linux community needs more pro-active members like the author of this book. God knows how many people have bought those "For dummies" books, but calling them non-geeks as opposed to dummies would make a user more willing to buy the book, and hopefully try Ubuntu. The more mainstream media attention that Ubuntu gets, the better it will become and we'll see more and more users adopting it. Good work.

Update on the link (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368541)

Speaking of "willing to buy the book", Slashdot links to B & N here, but Amazon has it cheaper [amazon.com] (look at the "Used and new..." 3rd party sellers), and I'm sure there are other sites that are also cheaper. Why does Slashdot keep linking to B & N all the time? Even if their reviews make a book seem great, the relatively high prices they link to aren't very attractive.

Re:Update on the link (1)

MrAnnoyanceToYou (654053) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368827)

Feeding bandwidth to a horde of internerds is not cheap. Damming revenue streams is not something you do when you have them available.

Re:Excellent (1)

jwsd (718491) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369941)

A non-geek will buy an OS book, read it, and then decide to try the OS? And this is your preferred marketing plan for Ubuntu? You must be a geek yourself.

Non-geeks? (4, Insightful)

Klaidas (981300) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368437)

Well, Ubuntu never seemed to be designed for geeks (I'm using it for about 8 months now) - it's one of the friendliest distros for beginners (as much as I've tested different distros)
But well, a book might be a good idea - making Ubuntu even more user friendly.

Re:Non-geeks? (1)

Sqwubbsy (723014) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368669)

Want friendly? Try MEPIS [mepis.org] . MP3 codecs out of the box and the same repos as Ubuntu.
It's the best kept (non) secret out there.

Re:Non-geeks? (1)

broeken (603015) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368841)

Thanks for making me blow Pepsi out of my nostrils... ...I followed the parent link and click on "See a Video" and I got this... HTTP Error 500 - Internal server error. Internet Information Services (IIS) Ain't that a crackup?

Re:Non-geeks? (1)

Lillesvin (797939) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369611)

I guess you can sniff up that Pepsi again. The video is hosted on another domain, namely phptr.com...

Re:Non-geeks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368745)

Who but a geek would test distros?

"for Non-Geeks" (5, Interesting)

blindd0t (855876) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368451)

I've been waiting to say this for a long time:

My mother uses Ubuntu (6.06 Desktop) and she is not computer savvy at all!

Re:"for Non-Geeks" (1)

Virtuall (941564) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369507)

Add my mother, my neighbor, my 11yo sister and a couple of classmates. None have used linux before and none have any problems with Ubuntu. When I say it I mean it: Ubuntu is 10 times user frendlier than Windows.

Re:"for Non-Geeks" (1)

Chosen Reject (842143) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369631)

I'll be honest in that I've only used Red Hat, Fedora Core, Novell Linux Desktop and SLES 9, so I've never tried Ubuntu. I've noticed each distro getting better, but from what I could tell, the user friendliness of a distro came from either Gnome or KDE, not from the distro itself. So I am left wondering, how is Ubuntu with Gnome 2.14 any easier than Fedora Core with Gnome 2.14?

Re:"for Non-Geeks" (2, Informative)

doodlebumm (915920) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370081)

Application/device integration, installation, selection all make a big difference. The interface level of the system through Gnome or KDE is similar for most distros. But, take it a step further to make the use of the applications easier and you have the winning combination. If you make it so that the average person can set up their system because the device support is really there and works without having to install special drivers, then you make the initial experience better. I recently installed Ubuntu on several systems, some new hardware and some old. It handled (almost) everything in all the boxes. I have loaded the live Knoppix 5 as well as the live Ubuntu 6 on the same hardware. The Ubuntu beat in terms of hardware support, including better SCSI and SATA RAID support. The only thing that I found lacking in the Ubuntu release was the ability to easily write to an NTFS partition from the live CD. Otherwise the everything from the installation to the hardware support to the application support, everything, was better on Ubuntu. My 12 year old daughter loves Ubuntu more then Windows (I gave her the choice, and guess which one she picked?).

I always had issues with the Fedora releases. There was always something that was broken that made me mad. It isn't production quality, it is their "test bed" platform, so things will be broken. I'd rather have Ubuntu that is stable and easy than Fedora that is buggy and has only slightly better application support (read this as "more commercial-type applications," not more applications in general).

I used to use SUSE though version 10, but I had hardware issues. The newer releases may be better, but I am totally satisfied with the hardware support of Ubuntu. I have some obscure "windows" hardware that now even works with Ubuntu Dapper.

At work I have a windows system as my desktop. But, to make me feel more at home I have Ubuntu Dapper running in VMware player. I'd still rather use a Linux distro than windows any day.

Re:"for Non-Geeks" (1)

berwiki (989827) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370401)

maybe thats because she uses ubuntu

Non-geeks will never finish it (3, Insightful)

LoverOfJoy (820058) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368475)

What attracted me to this book was the obvious title which makes no bones about the fact that this book is targeted at non-geeks.
The book is divided into 18 chapters and 3 appendices spanning over 300 pages.


I've seen similar 300 page books to teach windows to non-geeks. I'm sure there are people who feel lost and buy the book thinking they'll learn. I have serious doubts that many actually make it through the book. They'll make it through the first chapter and, at best, pull it out occasionally to search for some answer (and probably not find it).

A lot of people have moments when they feel ambitious and decide they will learn linux. How many of the non-geeks actually do, though? Of those that do, I doubt it's from books like these but actually from geek friends walking them through it.

Re:Non-geeks will never finish it (5, Insightful)

tclark (140640) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368751)

For a typical non-geek, "learning Linux" is a lousy idea. So is "learning Windows". That's because they don't want to use an operating system. They want to send email, work with their digital pictures, write a novel, or whatever. Non-geeks need to learn how to do the tasks that interest them, and that is how geeks should present this information to them.

Re:Non-geeks will never finish it (1)

CoolCat23 (923066) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368833)

Coming soon : "Windows Vista for non-housewives"... If even the best-intended, noob-oriented, linux-related book cannot help but still use "geek" in its title, how do you expect the common man to think of linux as anything other than a niche, tech-savvy, quasi-underground operating system ? People won't use Linux because it's "non-geek". They will use it because it performs better on their everyday tasks ! Book authors should use "brighter", more appealing, everyday-task-oriented titles like "Linux for office work", "A media center in your livingroom with Linux !", "Surf the Internet securely with Linux"...

Re:Non-geeks will never finish it (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370247)

"How to chat, send mail, IM, and access your adult material on linux."

Best seller for linux.

Re:Non-geeks will never finish it (1)

AusIV (950840) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369547)

Typically when I pick up books on how to do such-and-such, I'm not daunted by the book being 300+ pages. I also don't sit down and read it all at once.

I use how-to book as references. I use the index to find what I want to do, then I skip to that section. I probably won't read every page of the book, and if I do, it certainly won't be in order.

Also, how do you define learning linux? Personally, I have a pretty good grasp of how the operating system works. My girlfriend has no idea how the operating system works, but she can still use my computer to get online, use an instant messenger, write a paper with OpenOffice.org, almost anything she does regularly on her Windows computer. There's a huge difference between being able to use an operating system and knowing how it works, and "learning Linux" is a vague statement.

Ubuntu is for geeks too (4, Insightful)

digitalderbs (718388) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368545)

It's a great distro for both the non-technical and technical -- geek and non-geek. I had used Debian unstable for 4 years before switching to Ubuntu (64- and 32-bit versions) 6 months ago. All of the lovely configurability and software tools (like aptitude, apt-build and so on) from Debian are available.

The reasons I made the switch were because (1) I wanted to see what all the fuss was about, and (2) I wanted a more frequent "stable" release cycle for my desktop system. However, I continue to use Debian stable for any servers and simulation clusters that I manage.

Re:Ubuntu is for geeks too (1)

SumoRoti (1000740) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369505)

I did the same thing. I used Debian for 10 years and I booted unstable version during the last 5 years. So I started to switch to ubuntu 1 year ago and I enjoy this OS. I still love Debian which is still inside the package system and some of dev tools but I prefer Ubuntu for the dynamism even if there was some problems on some not-so-much-test packages but it's still safer than a unstable debian. It's truly a polyvalent distro. As you said, digitalderbs, debian is still useful (and even better) for servers deployment (i think it's because FAI).

Re:Ubuntu is for geeks too (1)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369953)

Wouldn't that be "non-geek and geek"?

Ah... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368661)

...and which enjoys the number one position in the popularity rating chart.

Unfortunately...

Ubuntu books that don't focus on installation? (3, Interesting)

pnot (96038) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368675)

The book that I need, and I haven't yet found, is a beginner's Ubuntu guide which doesn't focus on installation, and instead devotes most or all of its space to basic use of the desktop and common applications (Nautilus, Firefox, OOo Writer, etc.).

I suspect my situation is not unique: I install Ubuntu for parents and other non-techies; no matter how good the book, they're not going to be able to install it themselves. Then I bugger off and leave them with it. What they need is a straightforward and thorough user guide for basic use of the system. (And I mean basic: things like "you can move windows by dragging the title bar", and "if your mouse has a scroll wheel, you can use it to scroll through a window").

Any recommendations?

Re:Ubuntu books that don't focus on installation? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369291)

Try Beginning Ubuntu Linux http://www.apress.com/book/bookDisplay.html?bID=10 086 [apress.com] . It does cover installation, but also GIMP, OpenOffice, basic shell scripting, bluetooth, etc.

Re:Ubuntu books that don't focus on installation? (3, Informative)

tolan-b (230077) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369647)

So you didn't read the review of *this* book then?

"In the past, I have seen Linux books using well over 50 pages just to explain the installation process but Ubuntu is famed for its simple 6 step installation. *The next chapter is a very short* one which gives a good illustrated explanation of the steps needed to boot Ubuntu using the latest version of Ubuntu live CD (included with the book) and install the OS on the hard disk. "

Ubuntu Linux is ALREADY for Non-Geeks (1, Interesting)

vistic (556838) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368701)

I tried using Ubuntu and just ended up hating the default install, and the themes, and the package manager. In the end I switched back to using YellowDogLinux and FreeBSD.

Now I don't see what the big deal about Ubuntu is.

I suppose the install is prettier since you load it up as a LiveCD and then run the installer program, but in the end you end up with less, imho. And the installer just runs more sluggish.

Re:Ubuntu Linux is ALREADY for Non-Geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370549)

I totally agree.

Save yourself $4.89 by buying the book here! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368765)

Save yourself $4.89 by buying the book here: Ubuntu Linux for Non-Geeks [amazon.com] . And if you use the "secret" A9.com discount [amazon.com] , you can save an extra 1.57%!

Huh? (0, Flamebait)

Chaffar (670874) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368769)

If you need help to install Ubuntu then you shouldn't be in front of a PC :P
Honestly, I believe that Ubuntu's online resources, wikis and forum, are extremely well maintained, which makes the book a little bit useless. I guess he's catering to those people who just can't do anything without having a hard book next to them to explain everything with pretty pictures.
1- download ISO. 2- Reboot from CD, and click on install 3- Run Automatix. The next time somebody tells you that they use Windows because it's easier to install, slap them with some humanity towards others :D

Re:Huh? (1)

Ticklemonster (736987) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368907)

Slap them with humanity! I love it. I agree with your installation instructions. Very concise.

Re:Huh? (2, Insightful)

zurtle (785688) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369055)

I'm going to be dumb enough to respond to your lame flamebait.

I guess you haven't installed an operating system before while being the owner of a sole computer on dialup. Some people just don't have internet access during the installation process.

Re:Huh? (1)

mackyrae (999347) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369871)

Who says you need web access during install?You can order the install cd from shipit and not even pay shipping. Set up your internet after it's installed.

Re:Huh? (1)

zurtle (785688) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370515)

I think you need to re-read the thread: you have taken my comment out of context. The point of parent was that all the documentation is on the internet. While my point is that you cannot access this documentation while you're installing. And, bright spark, what happens if you need help installing your modem? If you didn't have the foresight to preserve your Windows installation and internet connection (if you had one in the first place) then you're pretty screwed.

Read before you post!

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369099)

Maybe one of your steps could be to burn the CD.. I'm no expert though.

Re:Huh? (3, Insightful)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369361)


If you need help to install Ubuntu then you shouldn't be in front of a PC :P
Honestly, I believe that Ubuntu's online resources, wikis and forum, are extremely well maintained, which makes the book a little bit useless. I guess he's catering to those people who just can't do anything without having a hard book next to them to explain everything with pretty pictures.
1- download ISO. 2- Reboot from CD, and click on install 3- Run Automatix. The next time somebody tells you that they use Windows because it's easier to install, slap them with some humanity towards others :D


Well, I have a good news for you: you're not alone in thinking this. In fact most techies and linux users are firm believers that if you can't install, for example, Ubuntu alone, or do XYZ alone, you should never approach a computer.

I have also bad news for you: attitude like yours is one of the major reasons Linux is just about nowhere in desktop adoption right now.

Re:Huh? (3, Insightful)

bigpat (158134) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369975)

I have also bad news for you: attitude like yours is one of the major reasons Linux is just about nowhere in desktop adoption right now.

No this is a myth. That the geek elitist attitude has anything to do with linux adoption misses the mark by a wide margin. That linux adoption even has anything to do with how easy or difficult to install misses the mark also. The fact that you have to install it at all is the issue. It is simple, if Dell, HP and/or Gateway offered Linux preinstalled on their consumer desktops right now, then Linux would have a much wider adoption as long as the expense was the same or less than Windows.

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370431)

"It is simple, if Dell, HP and/or Gateway offered Linux preinstalled on their consumer desktops right now, then Linux would have a much wider adoption as long as the expense was the same or less than Windows."

Have you checked? They do now. So that they don't at all is a myth. The elitist attitude among many seasoned-linux goers, or more importantly people who have gotten comfortable using linux and now want to don their own snobby hats in forums, don't embrace the linuxally-challenged. Its still alive and well on slashdot.

Re:Huh? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370027)

I have also bad news for you: attitude like yours is one of the major reasons Linux is just about nowhere in desktop adoption right now.

No, Linux is nowhere because it doesn't come preinstalled, and it doesn't run all the apps that they hear about even though it probably has equal replacements. Despite the cynicism, I think there's two fairly valid points - installing Ubuntu isn't going to get much easier, and it's certainly a lot easier than installing Windows. I don't think it's because people are stupid in any way, I think it's just not something people do. People stay with the defaults (or at least what's an option). If Ubuntu came by default in a dual-boot with Windows, you'd see real market penetration. As it is, people really have to go out of their way to replace Windows with Ubuntu, and by that I don't mean clicks of the mouse but mentally to be motivated to do it.

Re:Huh? (1)

rekka (878635) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369767)

I'm not convinced. It failed to boot on my IBM laptop (Fedora was fine 1st time) and an old desktop of mine. Strangely, I never had this problem with 5.10. What's going wrong, I wonder?

Re:Huh? (1)

xoyoboxoyobo (945657) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369825)

1. That's already difficult for some people. Once they got an Ubuntu cd in their grubby little hands, then yes, it's astonishingly easy (when I installed I sat there for 5 minutes trying to figure out what I had to do next bwahahaha) Replace 1. with "sign up on ubuntu to get mailed a free install cd" and you're in business

Tried Ubuntu, didn't work for me. (1)

od05 (915556) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368859)

After testing it out on the live CD on my PowerBook I attempted an install of Ubuntu on an HP Pavilion 6740c, it hangs up and freezes at random both on an install and running it off the CD. Windows 98 still runs fine on it. It's a 500 mhz celeron with 384 megs of ram, but Ubuntu doesn't like it for some reason.

Maybe this book offers some sort of insight on why Ubuntu won't run on that computer. I'd read it just to find out.

Re:Tried Ubuntu, didn't work for me. (2, Informative)

Vicious Blayd (985892) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369117)

For lower-end computers, it's recommended that you use the plain install CD. The LiveCD uses quite a bit of RAM, and installing from it uses even more. (Also, if you want it to run smoother on an older box, I'd recommend checking out the Xubuntu [xubuntu.org] variant.)

Re:Tried Ubuntu, didn't work for me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369161)

Ubuntu can behave very erratically if you are low on memory, but 384 is good enough to install.

Try creating a linux swap partition on the harddisk, that can help if you are running out of memory.

Also run the memtest on the ubuntu cd and check if you memory has errors.

Re:Tried Ubuntu, didn't work for me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369837)

There are three different live CD's.
1. For your Apple Macintosh
2. For your PC
3. For your x64 PC

Check the disc type

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368939)

My wife can put this on our bookshelf right next to my copy of "Advanced Reconstructive Microsurgery for Non-Doctors".

For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (4, Funny)

krell (896769) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368955)

For starters, we can stop calling versions "flavors" when the word "version" will do just fine. "Flavors" are for suckers. Who wants to lick an OS anyway? Especially one called "Warty Warthog"?

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369113)

I don't think you quite understand the difference between a flavor and a version.

Three different flavors: Gentoo, Fedora, Ubuntu
Three different versions: Fedora Core 3, Fedora Core 4, Fedora Core 5.

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (1)

krell (896769) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369231)

"Three different flavors: Gentoo, Fedora, Ubuntu Three different versions: Fedora Core 3, Fedora Core 4, Fedora Core 5."

You are right, I do not understand. Is it like the difference between "flammable" and inflammable"? Or the difference between "Trekkie" and "Trekker" ?

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369403)

In the Fedora example, "Fedora" is the flavor. 3, 4, and 5 are the versions; they are different iterations of the same flavor.

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (1)

cavemanf16 (303184) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369771)

And using crappy business jargon like "flavor" to describe an entirely tasteless entity (software code, in this instance) is retarded.

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (1)

krell (896769) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370135)

"And using crappy business jargon like "flavor" to describe an entirely tasteless entity (software code, in this instance) is retarded"

Oh? Then you have a problem with this statement in the parent post "Fedora is the flavor"? Oh, go lick a hat!

Re:For non-geeks, get rid of "flavors" (1)

saider (177166) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369979)

A version (to me) indicates a point on a timeline. Version 1 is the first version, then comes version 2, etc.

A different word is needed to distinguish products. Each product can have its own version history. Why people settled on "flavor" is beyond me, but I don't see it as an unreasonable choice.

A flavor called "Warty Warthog" is just plain bad marketing. Of course the most popular Jelly-Belly jelly bean flavor is "Vomit".

Ubuntu isn't that good a distro.. (1)

traveller604 (961720) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368977)

For one it couldn't even detect my Logitech DiNovo keyboard nor my Logitech MX900 mouse. What is up with that? Anyways I'm a Suse fanboy. Suse Linux 10.1 is as good as Linux gets @ the moment. :)

Since when did number of books == popularity? (2, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368997)

And the plethora of books on Linux that are being published underlines the popularity of this OS.

There has always been a "plethora" of books on Linux and a variety of other subjects that no one in the general public gives a shit about. I'm interested in knowing just how this means anything significant.

Re:Since when did number of books == popularity? (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369071)

See, publishing is a *business*, and books don't get written without an audience of people buying them. Generally, if people are buying how-to books about something, they're at least trying to do it. And if those numbers go up, then it implies that thing is more popular.

Re:Since when did number of books == popularity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369095)

Um, if that many books are coming out for an OS, some people have to be using it. What's the ratio of authors:users? There also has to be customers for these books, they're not just writing and printing them for the fun of it.

ubuntu is disappointing (5, Funny)

teh_chrizzle (963897) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369069)

i remember in the 90's when getting linux installed made you a geek god. ubuntu is a breeze to set up and pretty much just works right out of the box. customizing the kernel for your processor and everything is super easy as well. thanks ubuntu for ruining linux for elitist pricks like me :-(

It is a FACT that blah blah blah... (5, Funny)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369083)

It is a fact that GNU/Linux has grown from a hackers operating system to...
It is a fact that anytime someone starts a sentence with "it is a fact", they are really slamming an opinion against the wall and hoping it sticks.

Ubuntu works for me (3, Informative)

dsurber (53971) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369199)

I'm not a Linux expert, but I'm no noob either. I started using Unix in 1982 and I've used Red Hat, SUSE, Mandrake, and Gentoo over the years. I use Red Hat every day at work. I just installed a Ubuntu machine and although my install is much more complicated and more difficult than the standard 6 step install, it is still far and away the best experience I've ever hand with Linux. (Gentoo was far and away the worst. I've got better things to do with my time than recompile code that has already be compiled thousands of times before.) I've actually been enjoying using it, at least when things go well. I'll probably pick up the book and I'm sure I'll learn some stuff.

Why all the flaming? (5, Informative)

Mark19960 (539856) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369213)

Here is *MY* deal with Ubuntu...

My wife is horribly bad at downloading and installing crap and malware, visiting crappy, malicious pages with internet exploder, etc.

Her machine used to run slackware that I had set up for her, no problems at all.
However, updating things usually meant me sitting there for a few hours to do so.

I tossed Ubuntu onto a cd, told her to install this, and she did it.
She loves it.

She can install things she wants with the GUI, it keeps itself up to date...
The layman can do it... it is painless.

I was skeptical at first but, I saw, I believed.

Why flame it or call it crap?
For what it is, and it is actually quite good, it just works.
I am not a fanboy, by any means.
I have Gentoo and Debian machines all over, for my use.

Remember the target audience for Ubuntu: people that are not computer savvy.
(like my wife)

It works for her, I would ask everyone to at least LOOK at it before you flame it.

Re:Why all the flaming? (1)

Captain Sarcastic (109765) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370139)

I would ask everyone to at least LOOK at it before you flame it.


Oh, you silly, simple man - don't you know that this is Slashdot? Where people get their exercise by jumping to conclusions, and then jumping up and down on top of anyone who doesn't support them? <grin>

Now, having said that - I agree with you. We've got Ubuntu loaded on a laptop that otherwise would be a paperweight. It's currently hooked up with a wireless chip, and the sound feeds into our home stereo, so as a result, we can play MP3's, Shoutcast stations, and so forth. (With thanks to the gentle on here who recommended StreamTuner for that last). We don't need an anti-virus on it, we do very minimal web browsing on it, and all told, Ubuntu's been doing quite nicely for us.

Which means, of course, that I am probably going to be the object of scorn, derision, and general flamage as one who sold my geek birthright for a, well, face it, a system that does what I wanted it to do without my having to build it from the ground up.

Unreal 2004 (1)

A Wise Guy (1006169) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369223)

I installed this distro on my pc with dual boot and I was able to play unreal tournament 2004 without tweetking anything else. It ran it off the bat. Other distros needed the nvidia driver installed.

Dual-boot? (2, Interesting)

regular_gonzalez (926606) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369329)

As someone who has never used Linux but has been intrigued (and intimidated) by the prospect, this book sounds like it would be right up my alley. Not mentioned in the review is whether the book discusses how to set up a dual-boot system, as I (and I suspect most Linux neophytes) don't want to forgo Windows straight away.

Re:Dual-boot? (1)

Lispy (136512) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369851)

If you install Ubuntu off the LiveCD, wich is recommended, it will detect your Windows installation and offer an option to install as a dual-boot.
Painless.

What definition of "non-geek" is he working with?? (5, Insightful)

maidden (921536) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369345)

I think the author missed a very basic point, which is that non-geeks don't wanna read books about computer stuff.

Noob Who? (1, Insightful)

HermMunster (972336) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369453)

Linux, no matter how much you like it is still not ready for the masses. It lacks the ability to easily install programs such as the Macintosh and Windows has. Online repositories are not the answers as they are maintained by individuals who do not write the programs themselves. Repositories are specific to a distro and sometimes even a version of a distro.

Computers were never meant to be used solely by the likes of those who love to tear things apart. That is the second of two major roadblocks keeping Linux out of the main stream.

Get programs to install as easily as they do on OSX and Windows and rid the community of the mentality that you are a noob and weak if you don't want to play the game at the lowest disassembled level.

Ubuntu is no where near as good as it could be. The developers have given up on the idea of making it simple and strong and capable for your grandmother to use and maintain by herself.

Drivers are still a problem. There's alot of proprietariness out there that the Linux community can't handle. Much of the video driver capabilities (for example) are left out of the generic drivers installed during the setup. Much of those left out capabilities will always be left out because they are precisely that, proprietary.

I've run Linux for 3 years and I can only say that I spend significantly more time maintaining it than I do any other OS (my OSX boxes and my Windows boxes). The online repository never worked and it relies on high bandwidth to do its job. The vast majority of people still are on dial-up. Some can't afford high speed and others can't get it. Those majority won't ever be able to use linux when the idea is that the updates should come from on line.

To expect, nay demand, that the users have a compiler on their computer is the worst notion in the idea of personal computers. Remember these are personal computers. You can't and should not be telling others what they can or should be doing with them. That's why they are called "personal". You do what your person wants to do.

The notion of insulting people because they choose one distro over another is ludicrious. Why is that? It is because most of you are noobs at virtually everything in life. You can't design your own refrigerator. You won't design your own home. You don't know the laws, regulations, and codes necessary to build anything. You won't put together your own car nor will you assemble your own TV. You can't make your own medicine. You don't know how to repair your plumbing, you can't figure out how to make electricty. You can't make paper, nor ink, nor most anything that you use regularly in life.

SO WHY THE HELL ARE YOU CALLING OTHER NOOBS?

Most of the zealots can't even think through the above argument to give a solid reasonable applicable reply. I'm not insulting people. I'm trying to get across that you expect people to build their own OS, compile code, debug the issues, as a granny or a teenager. You don't even understand the fundamentals of most people's lives (marriage, children, education, transportation, etc are the primary concern of people's lives), allt he while you disrespect those that want to use their computer to do a task rather than making the computer the task.

If you can't get on the bandwagon and apply your own real-life issues and recognize others have their own, then you are a retard.

I know this post will get me some negative karma because alot of people really support linux here. I'm not saying linux is bad at all. I'm just saying it is not ready for mainstream use. Over the past couple of years there's been alot said about that. There's been this on-going debate abou whether Linux is desktop ready.

The kernel is a fine piece of work. It is a spectacular piece of work. It is at the top of the dog pile when it comes to stability. But the average user doesn't seen the kernel. They don't want to see the kernel. They just want the computer and their programs to work. They don't want to sit and resolve issue after issue while being called a noob by the zealots who themselves have a tremendous problem dealing with some of the more basic elements of life.

If you can go out and demand that people build their own kernel, that they compile programs, that they debug programs that in the end may not even satify their needs, then each of those people can demand that you know how to say make and engine, or build a plane, or put plumbing in a home, or know every aspect of the local community construction codes, or know all about consitutional law, or build a refrigerator, or make your own fuel. Essentially we are talking about the same thing. You disrespect them because they choose a ready-made product and they should be able to disrespect you because you don't butcher your own cattle and carve it up for your meals, that you don't make your own ink for writing or make your own paper or generate your own electricity.

So, fix the problem. Get a system that is universal to all distros that will install programs on linux that works just like the Mac OSX or at least program installers that are universal to each distro that will install any program like Windows, and two stop calling people noobs. In reality you are the noob for not even realizing what is going on. It wasn't Linux that created the computer revolution. It has helped it along but. It is the users that created it. Those that used the product and demanded this or that from it. If we left it up to the programmers do work all this stuff out the world would be in a very sad state of affairs. It takes more than the development personality to make something work right for the majority.

Re:Noob Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16369911)

ok, who let the n00b in here?

Re:Noob Who? (1)

mackyrae (999347) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370037)

I don't know if you've noticed, but to update a Windows computer, you still need to download. I do agree about having to compile from source. In this case, I want to point you to http://www.getdeb.net/ [getdeb.net] where you can get .deb files for Ubuntu instead of having to compile.

Re:Noob Who? (1)

ydrol (626558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370085)

The online repository never worked and it relies on high bandwidth to do its job. The vast majority of people still are on dial-up. Some can't afford high speed and others can't get it. Those majority won't ever be able to use linux when the idea is that the updates should come from on line. How do you get updates/software for your other OS's? By post?

Re:Noob Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370165)

There's this nifty distribution called SLED which you can purchase online and be mailed cds/dvds whith tens of thousands of applications on it. No downloading or compiling required.

Don't bitch about problems the linux community has when the whole community doesn't have them. It's like saying America sucks because old people can't drive.

Re:Noob Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16370433)

"You won't put together your own car nor will you assemble your own TV. You can't make your own medicine. You don't know how to repair your plumbing, you can't figure out how to make electricty. You can't make paper, nor ink, nor most anything that you use regularly in life."


Speak for yourself, This is slashdot, most people here could do very well if they had to make these things. There are ALOT of things that I myself had never known how to do, but I got off my lazy ass and LEARNED THEM if it was something important enough to me.
I think the reason Linux has not reached mass appeal yet has more to do with the average person's mindset (read:being lazy and not wanting to have to learn something) rather than it being too difficult. Ubuntu (as linux distro's go) is perfectly simple to use if you are willing to try.

Re:Noob Who? (2, Insightful)

HeavyAl (695278) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370445)

First off, I've read /. for years and this is the first time I have ever been compelled to post. Chalk it up to this guys' troll actually pushing my buttons enough to get me ticked.

Number one, why are you going on about Linux in general when the topic is concerned with Ubuntu specifically? This is about a Distro-specific book, not Linux as a whole so stop your whining. Yeah, Linux as a whole has some issues, but this isn't the place to drag them out. The goal here is to get 'newbs' interested in a distro that has a lot going for it in hopes that they will eventually want to embrace Linux itself as a whole and finally come to realize that there is more to the computing experience than fighting with all the downfalls of proprietary operating systems.

Computers were never meant to be used solely by the likes of those who love to tear things apart. That is the second of two major roadblocks keeping Linux out of the main stream.


Well, I'd have to say that since Linux was initially put together by a guy working on a school project that it WAS built to be torn apart, but it's grown beyond that and Ubuntu shows us that just about anybody with a bit of sense and the ability to follow clear directions can get it to do what they desire.

Get programs to install as easily as they do on OSX and Windows and rid the community of the mentality that you are a noob and weak if you don't want to play the game at the lowest disassembled level.


Sounds to me like you are insulting the intelligence of 'newbs' here. Everyone was a newb once. I've spent over 15 years working with technology of various sorts but I had to start somewhere. If I had decided that as a newb it was beyond me I would never had made it this far. Don't insult peoples intelligence. Learn as a newb and then impart what you know to others. Don't spread this kind of FUD it just makes you look like a dogmatic wannabe.

Ubuntu is no where near as good as it could be. The developers have given up on the idea of making it simple and strong and capable for your grandmother to use and maintain by herself.


So you're in bed with the dev's now, eh? I'd bet they look at it differently. And aside from Ubuntu the whole Linux community has taken strides and is continuing to do so on all useability fronts. You are making your opinion sound as if its some kind of law.

I've run Linux for 3 years and I can only say that I spend significantly more time maintaining it than I do any other OS


Sounds like you need to go back and run Ubuntu itself for a bit longer. Upgrading Ubuntu is painless. There has been only one major issue with the update system regarding a broken X server installation and though this was admittedly a bad thing the whole community pulled together to help fix it in only a few hours of time after it happened - and no one tried to pull the wool over anyones eyes about it. A mistake was made, it was addressed and rectified. Other than this I have personally not had ANY update issues with Ubuntu.

To expect, nay demand, that the users have a compiler on their computer is the worst notion in the idea of personal computers.


Where do you get this notion? Last install I did of Ubuntu (Dapper on a friends machine) The dev tools weren't installed by default. Just the basics, and even if you need more synaptics does it all auto-magically. Get your facts straight.

I could go on and on, but I think the bottom line here is that you have some personal issues that you seem to be venting to the general public that are not even in line with the context of this particular discussion. Your talk of demands, universalness, etc sounds more like spreading FUD than it does any kind of productive contribution. If any of us 'zealots' felt the way that you portray us to feel then none of the ground that has been covered thus far with Linux would ever have been made.

Bring on the Noobs, I say. We want them. We need them. We welcome them. If we didn't this wouldn't be a battle worth fighting.

Ubuntu is great for experienced engineers (4, Informative)

Theovon (109752) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369483)

I've been using Linux since 1995, and I have spent a lot of time learning system administration of Linux boxes. Before I switched to Ubuntu, I was using Gentoo, so I've compiled my share of apps and kernels. After a while, though, the novelty of manually editing configuration files wore off. Professionally, I am an X11 driver developer and graphics chip designer. Academically, I've done web programming, AI, high-performance computing, and many other things. There's nothing wrong with wanting to manually configure your Linux box, but my interests and needs have shifted to where what I need and want to do has nothing to do with Linux system admin. If I want to install an OS, I want to just install it. If I want a new app, I want to just install it. I do lots of coding, but little of it has anything to do with hacking other people's open source software. So I have chosen Ubuntu so that I can get the system to do all of the low-level stuff for me so I can think about other things.

Ubuntu out-of-the-box experiences (1)

Zarhan (415465) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369551)

A friend is attempting to try "30 days of Linux" for office use for a total Linux newbie (but experienced Windows/DOS user). Anyway, he's having a blog of the attempt at http://blogit.tietokone.fi/linuxinjaljilla/ [tietokone.fi] (in Finnish). At first, he naturally asked for recommendations on what distros to use, and Ubuntu/Kubuntu was most popular, so he went with Ubuntu.

So far encountered problems seem small but trivial: His monitor (CRT) remained at 60Hz and he couldn't find any setting to change it to higher refresh rate. Eventually, with lots of help, he was able to edit xorg.conf directly and get the thing working.

To me this seemed very odd - I remember back in 2000 or so when installing Suse Linux and SaX pretty much auto-configured everything and allowed the settings changes too.

Today, another issue surfaced - no auto-mounting existing ntfs volumes. He eventually had to manually edit /etc/fstab to get the Windows partitions to show up. I thought that if you have a "clickety click" installer that they would automagically include existing partitions in fstab and create mountpoints...

Anyway, so far my perpection of Ubuntu as a friendly distro has plummeted and I think I'd now recommend Suse's corporate instead (Personally, I'm using Gentoo, and love it, but for someone looking for an user-friendly and easy-to-learn distribution...).

Here's a suggestion for Ubuntu (1)

melted (227442) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369723)

Could you guys maybe license the tech and legally package media playback, font hinting, etc. on a $35 "Ubuntu Addons" CD or something like that. I know there's Automatix, but I don't like the fact that when I run it I break a shitload of laws, no matter how retarded they are. Personally, I'd rather pay a license fee and enjoy computing the way it should be in year 2006.

Ubuntu - Linux for Lamors (1, Flamebait)

v3xt0r (799856) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370145)

or people who demand that their OS have more of a brain than they do.

When I see the stock photos on the ubuntu site, it clearly reminds me that I am not one of those 'normal' people, and don't want to be, nor do I want to share a distro with people like that.

Slackware on the other hand... =p

i don't believe in books or looks (1)

kras (807696) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370205)

as distro's change you have to buy new books to keep up. ubuntu is very user-friendly (i use it now after starting with debian in 98, getting on with mandrake in 2000, going forth wit mandriva until 2 months ago. i just wonder if buying a book will inspire people to visit help sites, forums, newsgroups etc. to learn more once they have to upgrade Ubuntu, or install new (unknown) software, and learn that not everything is point-and-click like windows makes them believe. use of the terminal is a must, IN ANY LINUX DISTRO. we are talking to a non-DOS generation here.

Doh! #1 because it's scott free! (1)

grikdog (697841) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370217)

Gee, giving quality away for nuthin'? No wonder it's popular. What is this, the worker's paradise?

http://shipit.ubuntu.com/ [ubuntu.com]

Training wheels (3, Interesting)

quill_n_brew (1011327) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370277)

After reformatting my Windows box more times than you can shake a mouse at, due to security issues (I didn't know you needed it!), about two years ago I decided to check out Linux. A true n00b in Geekland. Still am. After going through dozens of distros, I finally landed on one that didn't make me want to put my fist through a wall. When Dapper came out, I was actually licking my chops. My wife just pointed and laughed -- she thought I had become a convert. To Linux, yes, but not to Geekdom. I take no pride in saying I am still ham-fisted at the command line. I'm a writer, not a hacker. And I got all the books, the usual suspects, the O'Reilly tomes, et al. With all due respect, I really did not need to read what kind of shirts Richard Stallman wears and whether pigs have wings. I just wanted MP3 capability. So I skip to those pages, via the index. Now that I actually know what a forum and a wiki are, I go there. Books are nice. I hope to publish many some day. But tapping into the friendly minds of Those Who Know has proven to me much more effective and efficient. I'm sure it's a fine book. But n00bs who just want to know how to put tab A into slot B are better off asking legitimate, bona fide geeks. Who knows -- I might even be one some day. And look at me now -- I read /.
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