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bedpotato
December 12th, 2011, 10:59 AM
Hello!

I installed Ubuntu 11.10 a month ago on my laptop but now my laptop is broken and I'm having to get a new one, so I'm going to have to install Linux again on the new machine. The thing is, last time I didn't really research which would be the best Linux version for my needs. I just went on the Ubuntu website and clicked to download the latest version, assuming it would be the best, but apparently it depends on how you define "best." I have since read that, in fact, for people like me who aren't going to be doing clever geeky things with it but are mainly going to be surfing the Net and writing the occasional document, the earlier versions might be best, because they will be less buggy and problematic issues they used to have may have been solved. So which version would be best for me to download? Preferably one that will mean I can get my printer to work!

I've still got the Ubuntu 11.10 CD I burned last time so it's tempting just to go ahead and install that one rather than going through the hassle of hours and hours of downloading a whole new version, but if an earlier version would be easier for me to use, I should probably make the effort.

Any advice gratefully accepted!

Lars Noodén
December 12th, 2011, 11:10 AM
Of the different editions of Ubuntu, they are all the same except for the default settings. You can make one just like the others by adding or removing programs. If you want to try something different, then you might look at Xubuntu. It is Ubuntu but with the XFCE desktop environment instead of Unity. You can get it either by getting the Xubuntu CD or else by installing Ubuntu and adding the package xubuntu-desktop (http://packages.ubuntu.com/oneiric/xubuntu-desktop).

bedpotato
December 12th, 2011, 11:12 AM
Of the different editions of Ubuntu, they are all the same except for the default settings. You can make one just like the others by adding or removing programs. If you want to try something different, then you might look at Xubuntu. It is Ubuntu but with the XFCE desktop environment instead of Unity. You can get it either by getting the Xubuntu CD or else by installing Ubuntu and adding the package xubuntu-desktop (http://packages.ubuntu.com/oneiric/xubuntu-desktop).

Oh! Thank you! They're all the same, you say. Does that mean I would be OK to just use the CD I have already burned?

Woopee!

Lars Noodén
December 12th, 2011, 11:14 AM
Yes, you can use the CD you already burned and install the package xubuntu-desktop (http://packages.ubuntu.com/oneiric/xubuntu-desktop). That will give you both the Unity desktop and XFCE desktop.

bedpotato
December 12th, 2011, 11:16 AM
Thank you! I don't really mind what my desktop looks like, to be honest. I'm more concerned about getting my printer to print, and not having to rely on Windows.

guyver_dio
December 12th, 2011, 11:21 AM
Linux Mint used to be good for newbies because it came preinstalled with codecs and software people generally expect. But you can now install codecs as you install ubuntu and get most other things from the software center, no technical knowledge needed.

So I'd say stick with ubuntu 11.10

arubislander
December 12th, 2011, 11:40 AM
Funny how no-one's asked you what printer you have... So I'll ask:

What printer do you have? Did it work the first time around, or didn't you get to that part before your laptop malfunctioned?
You can lookup your printer on http://www.openprinting.org/printers and see if it is supported under Linux.

muteXe
December 12th, 2011, 01:47 PM
I would stick with ubuntu, but the last LTS release, so you dont have to worry lack of support when the non-LTS 'stop'.

Mark Phelps
December 12th, 2011, 02:07 PM
Of course, in the "Ubuntu forums", you're going to get lots of folks recommending Ubuntu -- but I have a couple of differente suggestions.

First, I second the suggestion for Mint. Unlike Ubuntu, it's not leaping ahead into the Unity desktop -- so you might like that desktop experience better.

There's also PC Linux OS. I tried that a few years back and it worked on an older laptop when none of the other distros (including Ubuntu) would work properly.

You should also go to distrowatch.com. They have links to all the popular distros as well as links to reviews of them.

donkyhotay
December 12th, 2011, 04:28 PM
There is no 'best' distro, if there was then there would only be one distro out there. They all have their own advantages and disadvantages. For starters ubuntu and mint are the most common ones usually mentioned (as posted previously). Personally I would recommend trying out a number of them, distrowatch is a good place to get some ideas. Linux focuses more on you doing thing with your computer rather then windows or osX which does things for you. Kind of the difference between actually operating a vehicle vs. using nothing but an autopilot. Play around with different distro's, have some fun and eventually you'll settle on something that will work for you.

fantab
December 12th, 2011, 05:35 PM
There is no 'best' distro, if there was then there would only be one distro out there. They all have their own advantages and disadvantages. For starters ubuntu and mint are the most common ones usually mentioned (as posted previously). Personally I would recommend trying out a number of them, distrowatch is a good place to get some ideas. Linux focuses more on you doing thing with your computer rather then windows or osX which does things for you. Kind of the difference between actually operating a vehicle vs. using nothing but an autopilot. Play around with different distro's, have some fun and eventually you'll settle on something that will work for you.

+1.

There are a few more things that might help in determining the "most suitable Linux Distro" for you.


DESKTOP ENVIRONMENT [DE]

There are several DE available to choose from. It is a user interface for navigate your computer. Your choice will depend not only on your desired aesthetics but also on your system hardware.



EASE OF USE FOR A LINUX BEGINNER

Linux Mint and PinguyOS, come with lots of pre-installed software which makes it easy for beginner to make a move. Also if you have lots of post-installation software installations the mentioned two are easy alternatives.



STABILITY

If you are looking for rock solid stability then you should have a look at Debian and CentOS. Also Ubuntu LTS.

But if you are game for cutting-edge techs then its either Fedora or Ubuntu and in that order IMO.



GOOD SUPPORT

If and when things go awry you should be able to get timely help. Ubuntu has the best community support than any other Linux Distro.

FOR A BIT OF EVERYTHING STICK WITH UBUNTU.


Some Links:
To determine the suitable Distro (http://www.zegeniestudios.net/ldc/index.php?firsttime=true).
Desktop environments
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desktop_environment)

BBQdave
December 12th, 2011, 05:49 PM
Hello!

I installed Ubuntu 11.10 a month ago on my laptop but now my laptop is broken and I'm having to get a new one, so I'm going to have to install Linux again on the new machine. The thing is, last time I didn't really research which would be the best Linux version for my needs. I just went on the Ubuntu website and clicked to download the latest version, assuming it would be the best, but apparently it depends on how you define "best." I have since read that, in fact, for people like me who aren't going to be doing clever geeky things with it but are mainly going to be surfing the Net and writing the occasional document, the earlier versions might be best, because they will be less buggy and problematic issues they used to have may have been solved. So which version would be best for me to download? Preferably one that will mean I can get my printer to work!

I've still got the Ubuntu 11.10 CD I burned last time so it's tempting just to go ahead and install that one rather than going through the hassle of hours and hours of downloading a whole new version, but if an earlier version would be easier for me to use, I should probably make the effort.

Any advice gratefully accepted!

I would stay with U11.10, as you become more and more comfortable with the DE, you will be in a good way with experience on Ubuntu. And the next release of Ubunutu is Long Term Support (LTS). So if your new hardware supports U11.10, go with that. Then in April, I would suggest loading Ubuntu 12.4 LTS. U12.4LTS will be supported for at least 3 years (maybe longer). So with an install of U12.4LTS, you are set for awhile :D

Lars Noodén
December 12th, 2011, 05:51 PM
U12.4LTS will be supported for at least for 3 years (maybe longer). So with an install of U12.4LTS, you are set for awhile :D

The next LTS, 12.04, will be supported for five years (http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2011/10/ubuntu-1204-lts-to-get-extra-long-desktop-support-cycle.ars) on the desktop. Previously the desktop LTS was only three years.

BrokenKingpin
December 12th, 2011, 06:09 PM
The regular Ubuntu version should be just fine. I personally use Xubuntu because it is lighter than Ubuntu, but both are very easy to use, and are pretty stable from my experience.

rushikesh988
December 12th, 2011, 06:20 PM
actually dude let me define term 'best' in terms of operating systems ..best is a thing that fits your needs perfectly and gets easy to understand and aintain things in it..

I was talking to one of my neighors who is having printing press in my city ,he is still using win 98
I asked him "why don't you try something new there are lots of new versions are available in market? ".
his reply made me to thing on this defination of best operating system .
he said' Rushi I am using this on my old machine from last 8 years and its still fast for me . i tried Xp its was slow on my PC . I don't want to invest on new machine till my old hero is able to do things .This is best OS for me it works perfect with my apps like pagemaker and .. and I am familier with it now so I don't need new one.

So my suggestion is always get the OS that is perfect for your needs if you are doing some hacking type works get blacktrack ..If you like programming try KNOPIX and ...

and yes if you have printer of HP then You should try installing HP linux toolbox.

thatguruguy
December 12th, 2011, 06:50 PM
Hello!

I installed Ubuntu 11.10 a month ago on my laptop but now my laptop is broken and I'm having to get a new one, so I'm going to have to install Linux again on the new machine. The thing is, last time I didn't really research which would be the best Linux version for my needs. I just went on the Ubuntu website and clicked to download the latest version, assuming it would be the best, but apparently it depends on how you define "best." I have since read that, in fact, for people like me who aren't going to be doing clever geeky things with it but are mainly going to be surfing the Net and writing the occasional document, the earlier versions might be best, because they will be less buggy and problematic issues they used to have may have been solved. So which version would be best for me to download? Preferably one that will mean I can get my printer to work!

I've still got the Ubuntu 11.10 CD I burned last time so it's tempting just to go ahead and install that one rather than going through the hassle of hours and hours of downloading a whole new version, but if an earlier version would be easier for me to use, I should probably make the effort.

Any advice gratefully accepted!

Actually, I'm of the opinion that Unity works well for the casual user. Did you happen to mention what printer you have that is causing problems?

Testingte
December 12th, 2011, 07:04 PM
You may like Zorin OS.

Latest one is still based off of 11.04 though.

bedpotato
December 12th, 2011, 11:02 PM
Thank you for all the replies, although I do not understand some of the terminology in them. I suppose if I come here more often and get more used to Linux, I'll start to learn.

I was amused by the person who thinks I may want to do hacking or programming. I am not some sort of computer genius; I'm just your average user. When it comes to computers, I'm a bit of a helpless female. I certainly wouldn't know how to hack or write a program!

My printer appears to be a Canon MP250. I just went and had a look. I never actually got round to trying it out with Ubuntu. My doubts about whether it will work were based on complaints I'd read from other people with regard to Ubuntu being tricky for printing. If even the super geeks were having problems, I decided I wouldn't stand a chance, so I didn't even try!

It was hard enough just getting Ubuntu to install. And now I've got to do it all again. (Not yet, though. The new laptop isn't here yet. I'm still on the old one. Apparently their stock delivery was held up by the weather and they're expecting it tomorrow).

deonis
December 12th, 2011, 11:16 PM
I would not go for Ubuntu 11.10 or 10.10 but always try to stick with LTS. Current LTS of Ubuntu is 10.04. If you want to play around I would recommend going to 12.04 alpha it's faster than 11.10 and you will help tracking bugs. Also, if you want to explore, try Linux Mint, Fedora 15 (for advance users) and Debian ... Good luck and Welcome to Linux World!

thatguruguy
December 13th, 2011, 12:30 AM
Thank you for all the replies, although I do not understand some of the terminology in them. I suppose if I come here more often and get more used to Linux, I'll start to learn.

I was amused by the person who thinks I may want to do hacking or programming. I am not some sort of computer genius; I'm just your average user. When it comes to computers, I'm a bit of a helpless female. I certainly wouldn't know how to hack or write a program!

My printer appears to be a Canon MP250. I just went and had a look. I never actually got round to trying it out with Ubuntu. My doubts about whether it will work were based on complaints I'd read from other people with regard to Ubuntu being tricky for printing. If even the super geeks were having problems, I decided I wouldn't stand a chance, so I didn't even try!

It was hard enough just getting Ubuntu to install. And now I've got to do it all again. (Not yet, though. The new laptop isn't here yet. I'm still on the old one. Apparently their stock delivery was held up by the weather and they're expecting it tomorrow).

Some printers (such as HP printers) work out of the box with Linux. Others, like the Lexmark printers, have traditionally offered poor support for Linux (although Lexmark is apparently getting better). Moreover, new drivers are added all the time to the kernel. The best way to find out if your printer is supported is to hook it up to your computer and try to use it.

Don't assume that anyone and everyone who complains about lack of support of any particular device (whether it be a printer, camera, or any other peripheral) knows what they're talking about. Sometimes it's because of a hardware problem, sometimes it's due to lack of Linux support, and sometimes it's due to good old fashioned user error.

You're just as likely to find support for any given device on Ubuntu as you are on any other Linux distribution. In fact, in many (although not all) cases, you're more likely to find support on Ubuntu than other distros.

Again, use what works for you. Make your choice based upon what desktop you're comfortable with, not what others think you should use. And if you have questions about getting your printer (or anything else) set up, that's what this forum is for.

Meelad
December 13th, 2011, 02:34 AM
I tried Ubuntu (since 9.04), Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu, and Mint. Ubuntu worked the best for me.

My advice go with Ubuntu.. It's also the distro showing the most promise for the future in my opinion, so it's a good idea to familiarize with it.

bedpotato
December 16th, 2011, 08:27 PM
Thank you to everyone who took the time to reply!

I went with the Ubuntu version I had previously burned to CD. It's just installed and seemingly all went well. Hooray!

Only one small problem: every so often the curser freezes up and is non-responsive. The only way I can solve it is to press Ctrl Alt Delete and then log out and back in again. Why is this?

It happened just like that on my previous laptop as well, but this laptop is brand new. I'm thinking it must be a problem with Ubuntu itself, since I used the same CD to install it on both laptops.

donkyhotay
December 17th, 2011, 05:36 PM
My printer appears to be a Canon MP250. I just went and had a look. I never actually got round to trying it out with Ubuntu. My doubts about whether it will work were based on complaints I'd read from other people with regard to Ubuntu being tricky for printing. If even the super geeks were having problems, I decided I wouldn't stand a chance, so I didn't even try!

I've had bad experiences with canon printers on ubuntu. The printer itself is physically fine but linux support is almost non-existent. I was eventually able to get it printing (though it wasn't easy requiring downloading a .deb from their asian support site) and I've never gotten the scanner to work. My epson before it worked without any problems (at least until it physically died of old age). HP printers seem to be the ones I hear has the best linux support but I've never used them.

TheNessus
December 17th, 2011, 10:14 PM
Thank you to everyone who took the time to reply!

I went with the Ubuntu version I had previously burned to CD. It's just installed and seemingly all went well. Hooray!

Only one small problem: every so often the curser freezes up and is non-responsive. The only way I can solve it is to press Ctrl Alt Delete and then log out and back in again. Why is this?

It happened just like that on my previous laptop as well, but this laptop is brand new. I'm thinking it must be a problem with Ubuntu itself, since I used the same CD to install it on both laptops.
it is a well known KERNEL issue. say thanks, another kernel issue which has finally been solved since kernel 3.0 was a total freeze-up that comes just as randomly as the cursor freeze.

bedpotato
December 18th, 2011, 03:12 PM
it is a well known KERNEL issue. say thanks, another kernel issue which has finally been solved since kernel 3.0 was a total freeze-up that comes just as randomly as the cursor freeze.

Thank you for the reply.

Can you tell me what I have to do to fix it?

TheNessus
December 20th, 2011, 02:42 PM
Thank you for the reply.

Can you tell me what I have to do to fix it?

well, no. considering that it is a kernel issue - this will be solved when the kernel developers fix it. it can be right in the next update, or it can be... never.

mips
December 20th, 2011, 05:37 PM
Have a look at some of the Linux Mint offerings.

MasterNetra
December 20th, 2011, 05:58 PM
Try Mint Linux or Prehaps better yet, Pinguy OS.

yugnip
December 31st, 2011, 07:30 PM
Pinguy OS is an excellent choice for a beginner. Most hardware will work out-of-the-box, and in fact it's always a surprise when something doesn't work with zero configuration. The thing about Pinguy OS is that you can start using linux full-time right away, with all the popular apps installed and pre-configured for you. This way you don't have to do all this 'learning' just to get started. So, once you start actually using the OS you'll pick things up and gradually get accustomed to linux the easy way, like you did with windows or mac. Use it for a month and you'll feel like a linux warrior: mostly because you can tell people how 'easy' linux is :)

guyver_dio
January 1st, 2012, 07:15 AM
Just had a look at the pinguy OS, was very impressed, moreso than I was with mint. I might actually start recommending this to newbies rather than mint in the future. Only real downside is it's a bit of a memory hog by the looks. But I'm sure I could trim that down.

EDIT: Zorin OS is damn good too, a little overly animated though.

yugnip
January 1st, 2012, 07:50 AM
Only real downside is it's a bit of a memory hog by the looks. But I'm sure I could trim that down.

You could. But remember, Linux is really good about utilizing memory rather than disc writes.. so ram use should be somewhat high. This is not to say one doesn't need a bit of overhead though. So yeah, Pinguy OS only really applies to computers from the latter half of the decade. Less than a gig of ram and I would advise looking at Lubuntu or #!.

viperdvman
January 1st, 2012, 09:02 AM
I second Linux Mint and PinguyOS as being really good distros for beginners. Even Ubuntu was originally meant to bring in those new to Linux (and still is). If you want one that's completely functional and plays MP3's, Flash videos (YouTube), and DVD's out of the box, then Linux Mint and PinguyOS are for you. If you don't mind downloading "ubuntu-restricted-extras", then go with Ubuntu.

Fuduntu and Kororaa Linux are also really good for beginners. But unlike Linux Mint and PinguyOS, Fuduntu and Kororaa are based on Fedora rather than Ubuntu. So it's really good for those looking to get into a Fedora-based distro with everything working out of the box. Fuduntu is also a rolling release, so you wouldn't have to worry about upgrading to a new one every 12-18 months.

bedpotato
January 1st, 2012, 11:47 PM
I have just popped back to the forum to say everything went OK with my installation and even my printer is working fine so I'm really happy with Ubuntu. I wasn't expecting there to be any new replies to this thread because I had marked it as "solved" but I see you've all been debating things while I was gone!


well, no. considering that it is a kernel issue - this will be solved when the kernel developers fix it. it can be right in the next update, or it can be... never.

Oh, I see. Thank you.

I did not (and do not) know what "kernel issue" means. I don't know all of this jargon. I'm just your average user; not a techie. :oops:

I'm guessing it has nothing to do with nuts and something to do with operating systems.

a2j
January 2nd, 2012, 03:28 PM
Ubuntu based Linux Mint