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  1. #1
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    ubuntu, lessons learned

    Hello All,
    Just thought that i would put my two cents in about dual booting "linux ubuntu" It would seem that ubuntu is not for "noobs"I have given this a somewhat fair try, (only about a week and many,many hours) but almost every thing that i have tried resulted in less than stunning success! (Good thing i backed up both hard drives) "Ubuntu start screen (when you stand back from the screen a bit looks like a profile of a "screaming skull") very creepy! should have taken that as a warning of things to come.Seems to me that even in the "absolute Beginner" forum the replies are in Command prompt "geek speak" on the main forums they seem to take great delight in going on and on comparing command prompt posts! Ubuntu has a dedicated following of masochistic "true believers" Fellow noobs take my advice stay away from this!Take your lumps with XP, Vista , or 7. If you want specifics, post back and i'll fill you in with all the gory details.Bottom line "it ain't worth it" (free software) Gladly spend a few $$ for a out of the box working system. Regards PlainFred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    There are graphical shells for Linux, but I agree that those who have no interest in getting down and nerdy with their OS should shy away from Linux. Best for them to focus on Apple and Microsoft products. Both companies have made a good business out of shielding the average consumer from the bewildering plumbing underlying their modern OSes.

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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    Just to play the other side of the card, if everyone started on a Linux distribution, then attempting to learn Windows or MacIntosh systems would be just as hard or uncomfortable as everyone makes Linux out to be. When learning something new, it helps to forget all you know. Starting from scratch isn't always a bad thing. I can't say I'm as strong a user in the Linux world as I am in the Microsoft world, but I've become comfortable enough for myself.

    I hopped between various distributions before finally settling on LinuxMint. This distro, is based on Ubuntu. The biggest hurdle I've found for my friends who have attempted using Ubuntu, was getting their media to play. Due to restrictions enforced in the USA, Ubuntu doesn't ship with media codecs installed. LinuxMint pre-installs these, and other software, to make that jump into Linux easier.
    Christopher Baldrey

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    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    My experience, brief as it is, with installing Ubuntu has been more positive than yours. I used the Wubi installer to do what is effectively a dual-boot install onto an old XP Home laptop, which it can do just by setting up a new directory entry C:Ubuntu which holds the directory stucture for the Lnux 'disks' and programs - this coexists with Windows pretty happily.

    Yes, I hated the 'brown warrior' desktop background, but the usual right-click on the desktop enabled me to change it to my uual plain pale cyan. Work of a monent (well, just a few).

    The ethernet internet connection to my router just appeared, without me having to do anything at all!

    My main complaint about lack of fonts in open source software was somewhat alleviated by finding how to download the old "Microsoft TrueType Fonts for the Web" package, to give all the old favourites like Arial, TNR, Verdana, Tahoma, Courier New, Andalé Modern, and Georgia.

    And after that it was the usual updates, which happened automatically, just the 220 of them which took about the same time as to install a Microsoft Windows Service Pack. Every few days after this, a few more are offered, and you can control whether or not to install them since you have to type in your password to allow yourself into the equivalent of Administrator mode. I must say I would have no idea what each did, and whether or not it was necessary, so I just take them all. You are presented with a brief writeup for each update (if you select Details mode), but, as you say, this is somewhat inevitably in Geek-Speak. Entirely painless and fairly rapid.

    Open Office (only 2.2 so far) is built-in, and you get what you're given, just like for Microsoft Office. I found I have to UK-ify all the usual areas where the options were set to US, whereas the desktop itself had automatically set things like Keyboard and Language to the UK English format from the information requested at installation time.

    Email has been very frustrating, since, although SMTP (for outgoing messages) is very easy to set up and seems to work with a variety of parameters, I haven't managed to get POP (for incoming messages) to work, in spite of trying several option values. It may be not understanding fully my ISP's writeup on how to set up Outlook Express 6, and migrating across the settings to Evolution mail. I could have abandoned the built-in Evolution mail and installed Thunderbird, but I was trying to get the supplied package to work.

    You have to familiarise yourself with the very simple menu structure and what's there, and you have to 'find out where they have hidden the feature I want this time' just like for a new version of Windows.

    On the whole my experience has been fairly promising, but my lifetime experience (aargh!) with Microsoft and Windows probably means that I wouldn't dream of making Ubuntu my only operating system.
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    I suppose that it is a matter of taste. I find that working in Windows is very difficult and not very productive, while working in Kubuntu (KDE desktop) is very intuitive. My silly mother in law fell in love with the effects she saw on my laptop, and managed to install Kubuntu _herself_, and uses it every day (from a disc that I gave her). This is a person who could not download and install Firefox on Windows! I doubt that my 74 year old mother in law has ever consulted a forum or even knows what the CLI is.

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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    dotancohen,
    Hello,I'm glad that your experience was better than mine ! It was a disaster from the "gecko: (a little lounge lizard humor) First (i don't know what CLI is either), I couldn't get connected to the internet, then when i did firefox would freeze up my pc when i finally did manage to connect. rebooting then somehow wiped out my access manager starting the whole process over again. Also i couldn't "see" my programs from the "Vista side" (dual boot) when i got that straightened out I then couldn't unmount them ! on and on . Look for me if a OS cant do the basics out of the box, i at 60 plus years don't have the time or energy to fool with it! Say what you will about windows .... but it works! I Hate Ubuntu! (intrepid ibex whatever that is ?) even if its free! Goofy names and all! Regards Fred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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    Re: ubuntu, lessons learned

    Just as Chris suggested, try Mint. Simply put, it works.

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    I installed Ubuntu last night, and I'm tickled pink. It's a wholly new experience (I still work primarily on Windows, as it is my main source of income), but I've made the leap and installed ubuntu on my *only* computer. I had downloaded an older distro, so there was an upgrade immediately, but it only took about 45 minutes to download and install. It recognized all of my hardware immediately, which is something Windows would never dream of doing. I guess over the next few weeks I'll see how I feel about it; I've used Knoppix (a Live CD) for data recovery before and thoroughly enjoyed it, I found it very intuitive. I may try to find a similar installable distribution. I suppose it is to each his own, and sometimes, the old dog just doesn't WANT to learn a new trick
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    I'm not to keen on Ubuntu purely from a 'taste' point of view. I use opensuse and I'm also over 60. It works out of the box and I can get "geeky" with it if I want to (I use CLI a lot!)
    In fact I'm so impressed with Linux I don't have any MS on my pc at all and haven't had for about 2 1/2 years. When I bought a new pc recently with Vista already loaded I couldn't work it out so I took it off and stuck with my openSUSE.
    MS no thanks, too difficult!

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    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    [quote name='NYIntensity' post='772487' date='27-Apr-2009 12:16']I installed Ubuntu last night, and I'm tickled pink.[/quote]
    I'm a bit less enthusiastic this time round, having found that the PPTP VPN setup which worked perfectly in Ubuntu 8.10 no longer works at all in 9.04.
    And I still can't get the ZyXEL cardbus wireless card in my laptop to operate (runs perfectly in Windows XP).

    Like most things, if it works first time, it's fine -- then 90% of one's effort goes into trying to get 10% of the non-working hardware or software to work.
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

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    I'm over 60 and fairly well literate when it comes to computers; I build, upgrade and repair them as a livelihood for both individuals, libraries and offices. I've tried 5 different "distros" of Linux and didn't have much trouble with the installation of any of them. But I was anything but impressed, especially after all the respected "geeks" boasted how they could run circles around Windows. Eventually it became apparent that these guys would be happier with a vehicle stripped down to run in one of the local dirt oval tracks than with a Honda Accord with all the amenities.

    Trying out these versions of Linux did make me very appreciative of all that Microsoft has done to make using a computer an easy and fun experience. No, I do NOT have myriad problems with my systems; the occasional "glitch" is all. All my systems, XP, Vista and Windows 7 are fast, stable and beautiful. They run whatever programs I install without a whimper, do whatever I ask them to do and perform admirably. My wife has Apple machines and they are better than the Linux distros I tried but still less intuitive than Windows. I do think that there is a large percentage of Linux users who have made the switch due to pride (I'm a REAL geek) or they are infected with the Lemming Disorder.

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    Jeff
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    [quote name='BATcher' post='754376' date='22-Jan-2009 19:15']My main complaint about lack of fonts in open source software was somewhat alleviated by finding how to download the old "Microsoft TrueType Fonts for the Web" package, to give all the old favourites like Arial, TNR, Verdana, Tahoma, Courier New, Andalé Modern, and Georgia.

    On the whole my experience has been fairly promising, but my lifetime experience (aargh!) with Microsoft and Windows probably means that I wouldn't dream of making Ubuntu my only operating system.[/quote]

    If you don't already have it, you might download the DejaVu font set. This began with a free offering to the open source community from Bitstream of the single font set of four instances of Prima Sans, I think, which is no longer free and which with further development has taken a different branch for more specialized purposes. This was replaced by Bitstream Vera (Primavera, so to speak) from which one open source project created DejaVu (fun with names) and which has now been expanded and is updated and refined on a regular basis. It works perfectly well under Windows.

    Much of the later development is in the direction of supporting more languages, which is fine but tricky. If your requirements do not extend beyond the Latin-Greek-Cyrillic alphabets then you can dowload that set. This will give you healthy set of sans, serif, and monospaced fonts which are a single family, and which are complementary and are constantly being improved upon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Plain Fred View Post
    Hello All,
    Just thought that i would put my two cents in about dual booting "linux ubuntu" It would seem that ubuntu is not for "noobs"I have given this a somewhat fair try, (only about a week and many,many hours) but almost every thing that i have tried resulted in less than stunning success! (Good thing i backed up both hard drives) "Ubuntu start screen (when you stand back from the screen a bit looks like a profile of a "screaming skull") very creepy! should have taken that as a warning of things to come.Seems to me that even in the "absolute Beginner" forum the replies are in Command prompt "geek speak" on the main forums they seem to take great delight in going on and on comparing command prompt posts! Ubuntu has a dedicated following of masochistic "true believers" Fellow noobs take my advice stay away from this!Take your lumps with XP, Vista , or 7. If you want specifics, post back and i'll fill you in with all the gory details.Bottom line "it ain't worth it" (free software) Gladly spend a few $$ for a out of the box working system. Regards PlainFred
    I can appreciate your frustration in learning from Ubuntu, I would like to second the recommendation that you try Linux Mint. I have been using Mint's standard edition for the last three development cycles and each one is sweeter. It is the most usable and friendly [recognizing your hardware] "out of the box" that I have found. Do give it a try, I believe that you will be pleased.

  14. #14
    2 Star Lounger bmeacham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Plain Fred View Post
    (i don't know what CLI is either),
    Command Line Interface. The Unix equivalent to a DOS prompt.
    Bill Meacham
    bmeacham98 AT yahoo.com

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    2 Star Lounger bmeacham's Avatar
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    I installed Ubuntu 8.04 (I forget what animal that is) on a used Dell desktop for my granddaughter,and it works great. Couldn't get a wireless card to work, so there is an ethernet cable strung from the router upstairs, but other than that it's a champ. She surfs the internet, does IM chat with her friends and uses Open Office Writer and Calc to do her homework. She has figured out how to download and play MP3s. No worries about viruses (that's the main reason I gave her Linux instead of WinXP). Recognizes USB drives no problem. Sorry you had a hard time with it, but my experience has been quite good. Oh yeah, there was a glitch. We found out the hard way that it would not wake up from Hibernate mode. I had to reinstall the whole thing. Fortunately that was early on before she had saved any files. So now we know not to hibernate it and it works fine.
    Bill Meacham
    bmeacham98 AT yahoo.com

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