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Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
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No need to worry, when you load linux on your PC, it will scan the hardware and find your ethernet(network) port. It will check to see if your router is assigning network addresses to the computers that connect to it (this is called DHCP) and then will make the connection. If you'd like to verify this before you install, find a linux distro that has a "LiveCD" (Unbuntu, PCLinuxOS, Fedora). This will let you boot Linux just off the CD, and run it without installing on the hard drive. It's a great way to test your hardware to see if you are going to have any problems. Good Luck and welcome to Linux! I've been using it exclusively for almost 8 years now.
Unless you're using Gentoo, everything should be all set. Most linux distribution will establish a connection during the boot process. If a connection has not been established, you can simply type something like:
dhcpcd can change depending on what dhcp client is provided, of course it's assuming you can connect via dhcp. Eth0 is the ethernet device name, which can change depending on which port you're connecting to. So maybe it's Eth1. Or if you're going to go wifi, it may be:
Just note that you'll need the correct drivers to use your wifi card. If you're completely new to Linux, you'll probably use one of the entry-level distros like Fedora or Ubuntu. In those cases, it may automatically detect and install the necessary drivers.
Excellent idea to switch from VI$TA to Linux. You won't have any issues installing it but like dthacker recommended try using a live cd distro and see if it recognizes your LAN card. Most likely it will!
welcome and Have fun discovering Linux. I've been fully using it for 6 months and I DO NOT REGRET IT!
I wish I was introduced to Linux many but many years ago. I saw a linux machine for the first time in 2005 and fell in love with it ever since then but I wasn't able to completely migrate until 6 months ago!
I felt like sharing this with you guys! I know this is irrelevant to the threat.
My question is, if I install a open Source Linux OS, how will I connect to the internet?
I have a router in which the pc connects to Via Lan.
Excellent: it'll be 99.9% likely that it'll all happen automagically if you are connected to a router with an ethernet cable. Wireless is (sometimes) more difficult to set up, but usually fixable.
Choose your distro (the most difficult bit, but it doesn't really matter, because you can change your mind later). Just choose something popular from this website: http://distrowatch.com/
I like kubuntu, but it's your choice.
Make an external backup of any important personal files (just in case...)
Download the ISO file of the distro you want. Burn the file to a CD as an .iso file not as an ordinary file (or it will not boot from the CD).
Plug in and turn on all your peripherals: printer, network, webcam etc.
Boot from the CD, and follow the instructions.
Most people choose the option to "Shrink the windows partition and install linux in the free space".
When linux has installed you'll be offered a menu so you can choose linux or windows at boot time.
Don't be afraid to make mistakes. My first linux install I had to re-do a couple of times, because I made stupid (with hindsight) mistakes. That's the way we all learn. I lost no data, just a bit of time (and learning something new was fun).
Ahhh! You have a "clean" PC to play with, even better.
I buy my hardware from my local "PC shop". It is not part of a big chain, but run by helpful, friendly people who will sell me a "bare-bones" PC with no OS (So I do not have to pay the "windows tax", then delete Vista, and then cannot get a refund for the rubbish OS I did not want, or accept the license to, but would otherwise be forced to pay for anyway.)
I can specify the PC I want them to build: Eg "Pentium4, 1GB RAM, 300GB HDD, NVIDIA graphics (excellent with linux), USB ports, Firewire ports, ethernet card (3Com, please, they always work "out-of-the-box" with linux)". They just assemble it for me. I suppose I could do this myself, but I am too lazy and they'll swap hardware at cost price if linux (or I) am unhappy with it.
If you want wireless, choose an Intel chipset, avoid Atheros at all costs (yes, they can be made to work, but why bother when Intel chipsets seem to work "out-of-the-box" with linux?
Drag the PC home. Boot it up with the linux install CD of your choice. Use most of the disk. Leave some spare space (20GB) for playing with later - see above - one of my early reinstalls was because I had omitted to do this.
Install the (closed-source) NVIDIA driver (plenty of guides on the net)
Install flash(plenty of guides on the net)
Install java (plenty of guides on the net)
IMHO it all functions perfectly