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Location: Rome, Italy ; Novi Sad, Srbija; Brisbane, Australia
Distribution: Ubuntu / ITOS2008
About partitions... 2 gig for swap is A LOT. Mine is 500MB's and it never got filled up, not even half way, i never ran out of memory either. As fin said, the memory these days is sufficient, you can even pass without a swaop partition, but its not reccomended. As for partitioning 500mb for swap and rest for / would be enough. Although some people prefer to break the disc into more chunks, for example i have my linux spread over two discs, and these are the partitions i have:
/files 10gb (This is not a standard part of linux filesystem, i just added it to keep files accesible by all users in it, such as my music collection)
This way if linux root ( / ) partition gets thrashed for any reason, i just reinstall that partition and keep all my programs and files in other partitions, very useful when upgrading the whole OS.
For first time tho, i think you're fine with having only swap and / partitions tho.
For ISP, Where do you live? in Italy you can use Tiscali, Kataweb, fastweb and a dozen others free ones, but i somehow think you're not from italy...
I would have to agree about that 2 gig swap, if you want, send about 1.7 GB over here I could use some more hard drive space and I'll leave you with about 300 MB or less for your swap which should be adequate enough for your system.
But if you want to waste space, go right ahead.
I keep telling people and telling people, you setting up a Linux workstation, you only need usually 100 to 200 megs for a swap. I personally use 125 MB and its never rarely touched.