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The best way to learn about Linux is to dive in and start using it. I remember when I was new to Linux. The learning curve was steep. Your distro may have a welcome guide that introduces you to several of the programs on your desktop.
Some people become experts in learning how the OS works. Others become very proficient in particular programs such as the Gimp or Libre Office.
1. Install a Linux distribution.
2. Use it for your everyday tasks. Don't go back to Windows if you can't solve a task, but learn how to do it on Linux.
3. Read the documentation.
4. Ask if you have a question that can not easily be answered by reading the documentation.
First off you need to figure out what you want to do with Linux and what you want to expand to. If you want to use Linux as a desktop then many options are open. Debian based distros probably going to have the largest prepacked software. Debain is a very sable release of linux but is more complicated for the new uesr. Ubuntu and Linux mint are based off of debian which have made a few things easier for the novice user to get started. Ubuntu is also one of the largest distros supported by propritary software.
Find 1 distro and stick with it. All the distros are the same and well as very different in their own ways from boot scripts and up. Now personally I hate how ubuntu has done the desktop interface so I totally modified it in a non standard way.
Now if you want to learn real linux and not just the desktop then slackare will be a strong point here for you. Slackware is a very good distro which has lots of prepacked software for it as well but slackware package manager does not handle installing dependicies for you. You will have to go out of your way installing everything for your distro to make a package work.
The great thing about Linux if a package isn't offered for your distro and it is opensource you have the ability to compile it your self and install it.
Also I personally would recommend starting with a 64bit Linux OS because 32 bit is slowly starting to die out. 32 bit and 64 bit has some minor diffiences that may affect how you compile software etc. So In my opinion if you start with 64bit it'll catch you up and help move you into the future of 128bit when ever it does come out. Which still be a while but you get my point.
Anyways there are some of my points and hope it helps
You should start from installation, I started recently too, but now I feel that i am getting better. If you want to go on the tech side do multiple installations, use virtual box.
yo can learn about Linux distribution here http://distrowatch.com/
I am new to Linux.
I want to learn using Linux.
Where should I start?
I would recommend starting with either Ubuntu or one of it's variants (Kubuntu with the KDE desktop, Xubuntu with XFCE desktop, or the light and fast Lubuntu with LXDE desktop). Or start with Linux Mint, which is based on Ubuntu and is also very easy for beginners to learn.
I suppose it depends on your degree of basic computer knowledge in the first place. You will need to install a version of Linux first. If you have an older computer that you don't use for everyday stuff, then it would be better to start there. I would suggest you start with Linux Ubuntu 12.10, or maybe Linux Mint, which in my opinion is better than Ubuntu, and there is that "Windows Feel" about it, which may make you feel more at home until you are more used to Linux. There are 32 bit and 64 bit versions. If you don't know which to use, then it would be better to start with 32bit. You can purchase these on disks from the Linux shop for peanuts - you only pay for post and packing. www.thelinuxshop.co.uk When you come to install, you will have the option of 'dual booting' which allows you to install Linux alongside Windows. When you boot up you will see a screen listing Linux or Windows. Just use the up/down keys to select, and then hit the return key; However, you can choose the option of erasing the whole disk, and installing Ubuntu as the sole ooperating system. Do not, at present, attempt to install Linux alongside Windows 8, as you will have a problem with 'Secure Boot', but that will be resolved very soon. Good Luck!
I think that all the advice given is excellent, but I also think that mentioning things liike 'Debian' and 'Slackware' only serve to confuse at this stage. When I first tried Linux , it was with a disk supplied with the magazine 'LXF' (Linux Format) and can be purchased in good stationers or supermarket news and mag departments. I knew nothing about Linux, and how it was set up, nor did I know about all the different distros, but after installing Ubuntu alongside Windows, I soon opted for a clean sweep, and re-installed Linux as the only operating system, and I've never looked back. I keep Windows 7 on an old lapttop so that I can update my SatNav, as no satnavs that I know of, have compatibility with Linux. Once you start using Linux, you can then decide for yourself if you want to keep it. Unlike Windows, a new version when available, can be downloaded FREE, or for the cost of postage and packing, from the Linux shop!
I really cannot see why a new user cannot learn from using 'Debian' or 'Slackware'. Not everyone is suited to using a hold your hand distribution to learn. Most are GUI based and the level you are limited to is that of the author's expertize in developing a GUI for a User to work through. Nothing more than another Windows based experience.
A new user can learn from using a Gnu/Linux like 'Debian' or 'Slackware' using available documentation and helpful LQ members when the member gets stuck. Did you even look at the SlackwareŽ-Links links that were presented. Here's one: Learn Linux, 101: Tutorials and topics which is IBM's guide series to learn Linux;
Learn Linux, 101: A roadmap for LPIC-1 Summary: Use this roadmap to find IBM developerWorks articles that will help you learn and review basic Linux tasks. And if you're also pursuing professional certification as a Linux system administrator, these articles can help you study for the Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC) exam 101 and exam 102. This roadmap is organized according to the 43 objectives in the 101 and 102 exams, which you are required to pass for LPI level 1 certification.
I am not saying the user will need the cert but IBM does provide information to help the new user with basics. The new user can use whatever Gnu/Linux while using the guides to easily develop one's knowledge.
Once successfully completed then the user should pass the LPIC level 1 if desired.
That in turn comes down to the users purpose to use Linux. One could use Linux as just a replacement for Windows and expects the experience to be as trouble free as possible. Then those GUI oriented distros are very good choices. If user however wants to delve deeper into inner workings of OS and wants to know WHY things are the way they are and how to modify and configure OS to ones taste, then the massive amount of GUI layer starts to distract. In this case something like pure Debian or Slackware is indeed better choice but user must accept the possibility of getting ones toes wet and probability of getting couple of gray hair also exists as everything might not work the first time as expected
My hair was gray long before any worries for a OS. Got those starting back in the seventies!
If someone wishes to learn a Gnu/Linux in particular then the user base for both Slackware & Debian is a great resource for support. LQ is one of the best resources for 'Slackware'. Some users will want to augment their computer experiences to be utility to their profession(s). Gnu/Linux is a great enhancement for the serious user to provide wider experiences with computers!