Linux - NewbieThis Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question?
If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!
Welcome to LinuxQuestions.org, a friendly and active Linux Community.
You are currently viewing LQ as a guest. By joining our community you will have the ability to post topics, receive our newsletter, use the advanced search, subscribe to threads and access many other special features. Registration is quick, simple and absolutely free. Join our community today!
Note that registered members see fewer ads, and ContentLink is completely disabled once you log in.
If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us. If you need to reset your password, click here.
Having a problem logging in? Please visit this page to clear all LQ-related cookies.
Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. They hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.
Click Here to receive this Complete Guide absolutely free.
You probably want to do some research first. Maybe visit a Library or Bookstore and read up about Linux, what it is, and how you can use it. Otherwise, do some research online.
Once you're satisfied that you understand what Linux is and whether or not you want to use it, go to a Linux distribution's website, such as http://ubuntu.com, and follow the steps to download and install.
Or if you just are confused with too many choices get Linux Mint Mate Edition, it will run on practically any computer, old or new. You can always get something else if you change your mind. Mint is newbie friendly, installing it is easy and using it is easy, too.
Lifewire has a pretty good Linux section. (linux.about.com now redirects to that location.)
I suggest that, after you pick some distros that interest you, you boot to them in live mode (the OS loads in RAM without having to be installed--it's slower than an installed version, but you can see how it acts and feels) and pick the one you feel most comfortable with, then install that. Stick with it for at least three months before you decide to "distro-hop" to something else. I would also recommend sticking to a major distro, such as Mint, Mageia, OpenSUSE, Ubuntu, Debian. Fedora is a nice job of work, but it is too bleeding edge and has too quick a release cycle for my taste.
Me, I started with Slackware.
The Youtube suggestion is an excellent one. Behind the kittens, the movie trailers, and self-aggrandisement, there are lots of good how-tos about many subjects on YouTube (lots of bad how-tos also).
what to download and what to do with it after i do, have heard about this OS, but am an idiot about computers
That doesn't make you "dumb" at all, we all have areas where we are inexperienced or may not have the same aptitude as others in understanding it. God does not bless each of with the same gifts, abilities or skill sets. It doesn't make you "less than" if you happen to not know as much about computers as someone else.
In addition to the other suggestions, if you need more "hands on" help, there also may be Linux users group (LUG) where you live that might be willing to lend you a hand with getting up and running, or you can take your system to a local computer repair shop or technician who is knowledgeable with Linux.
For the operating system, it depends on your computer. If you like windows and want nice starter OS, Linux mint is nice. If you prefer macs, then ubuntu is a good choice. As for software, Libreoffice is my word processor of choice, it is free and is beter than ms word in my opinion. Firefox is my favorite browser. VLC is a great free media player. If you like the macos doc, then docky can add that for you.