After reading the helpful online forums and asking questions, I took the plunge. The install program resized C:, put Ubuntu in the new area. When it rebooted there was a text menu asking which OS to use. The install was mostly a no-brainer. Easier than a XP install, actually.
After playing with Ubuntu for a few hours I’m struck with how easy it is to use. It has a full-GUI interface, and looks and acts the same as any other GUI. Plus, there’s no need for a firewall or anti-virus/ spyware programs. You can install programs without rebooting. How nice.
The printer installed easily, even though it is on another computer in a Windows net, and wasn’t in the default list of printers. I grabbed the driver from LinuxPrinting.org and installed it with a couple of clicks. Again, this was easier than with Windows.
Ubuntu has taken considerable thought and time to create a version of Linux that is easy to install and use. The interface is intuitive and understandable, and it’s billed as “Linux for human beings.”
Ubuntu is spearheaded by Mark Shuttleworth, a genuine good guy. He founded Thawte, sold it to VeriSign for hundreds of millions, and has given away large sums, including 10 million to fund Ubuntu. Remember, Ubuntu is open source and costs not a dime. They even send you the install CD (which you can boot off) for free, with not even a postage charge. Mine came from Netherlands.
That’s what open source is about. People developing software for people, without profit motive in mind. There are thousands of programs available for Ubuntu (and the other variants of Linux) and the vast bulk of them are also open source and free.
It’s amazing what can be accomplished once the profit motive is no longer a factor!