This is kind of generic, but also gets specific towards the end.
I got started about two years ago with Linux(Fedora 12). My neighbor across the street (Lawrence) saw me loading my old computer (XP) into my car. It had crashed the hard drive and I was giving up and taking it to a professional to look at. He offered me an old computer he had but said..."it has Linux on it though." So that's how I got started with Linux.
Back in the day' I was pretty good with DOS and batch files, and QuickBasic so I thought what the heck why not try it out.-OK that's my intro-
So I read a lot and since the rest of my house was using XP based machines, I had to figure out how to install/enable Samba so the rest of the house could use my printer. Got that working after a couple days. Wrote my first scripts to automate starting/stopping the SMB stuff. I was having fun, but the learning curve is pretty steep. Somewhere along the way, the Samba quit working and I could never get it going again for some unknown reason. I'm sure it was my fault because I'm always trying things out and sometimes I should leave well enough alone.
So I've been happy with Linux,but the interests I have AutoCad/QuickBasic forced me to install
dossbox to let me continue on with my projects.
Now the specific part...
I moved recently and the new house has a large lot with a detached garage. Ethernet wasn't going to do it anymore so I ventured into "wireless" networking via a "Belkin USB" device with a 'RTL8192su' chip in it. The Fedora 12 couldn't recognize the device so browsing for help had to be done on my wife's XP computer.
After much scrounging around this and other helpful sites I went to the RealTeK site and searched for Linux drivers. I found this tarball...
I studied the information files and ran the script that was included to simplify the config and make and install stuff, but the script kept failing right after the make clean part.
I got frustrated at that point and blew away Fedora and installed XP so I could use the wireless USB device. That was a real dumb move since I also lost all my personal stuff when windows installed. Amazing what I'll do sometimes when I get mad.
So now I'm on windows and reading Linux forums to help me get back to reality.
OK...I'm done now except I bought a 32GB thumb drive today in the hopes I could figure out how to make a live image thumb drive with a more recent release of Fedora.