Also of note to Windows users: The installation CD includes Wubi (http://wubi-installer.org), which lets you install the entire OS into a directory on your existing Windows partition from within Windows (just put the CD in the drive with Windows running and follow the installation prompts). And it's easily removable if you ever want the space back - just remove it from the Add/Remove window like it was a Windows app!
It's a great thing to have, even should you just need it to troubleshoot Windows system problems - I used it to download wifi drivers for the NIC in my kids PC when Vista didn't recognize it upon installation.
Some related videos:
Some vids of (free!) games you can install in Linux:
And what happens when you still need to run some Windows apps but don't want to dual boot...
What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?
I just installed this and it's amazing, everything works. I still have Windows-- when I first installed Windows I had partitioned half the hard drive. Ubuntu found that and put itself there. It installed from the CD in less than an hour. I'm using it because Windows had the most bizarre virus I've ever seen and my anti-virus software (Avast!) didn't seem to know it was there. I'm really happy with Ubuntu, and it's pretty and fast.
One other thing to note is that if you already have Linux, you can upgrade to the newest version just by selecting the appropriate option in your package manager of choice.
Unlike Windows, where a clean-install is usually the much saner, better-performing option, there's no 'registry' in Linux to get bloated. Each service keeps its config in separate files in /etc, and apps keep user settings in hidden directories (directories whose names start with a period) within the users' home directories. This makes it super simple to migrate settings from one machine to another, or restore.
So, you don't have to worry about re-installing every six months. I'm not sure what the "long, long wait" Shawn referred to was all about: New versions come out like clockwork every six months (that's why they always end in .04 or .10 - it's the month of release). Compared to the five-year wait between XP and Vista, that's pretty damned speedy. I suppose he could have been speaking of time relative to anticipation. :)
Also, there's nothing that says you can't upgrade and use the RC, beta, or even alpha versions (if you're especially daring) while they're still in development - it's as simple as editing one file then letting Apt do it's thing. I actually ran 9.04 since alpha 1 (which came out one month after the 8.10 release). But, I *highly* discourage that for anyone that doesn't plan to submit bugreports or understand how to manually edit their xorg.conf and grub files should things go bad.
If you do run into problems, the solution can usually be found in a post by one of the many helpful people at UbuntuForums (http://ubuntuforums.org) or as a suggested workaround in a bugreport at Launchpad (https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu).
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