View Full Version : New users prespective

March 10th, 2007, 05:17 AM
I just out looking around, seeing if maybe people have some stories of some experiences when first using Ubuntu. What I looking for what were your challenges when you first used it. Or maybe, what were you remember from calls with friends in which you installed Ubuntu for them and find out what they needed help with?

My hopes are to get a list of challenges people faced and get an understanding what are common one's

Example: My story..

I wanted to use Beryl. I saw some Utube videos bragging how cool it was. Then also saw people running wine & World of Warcraft. I wanted to also get into the game of that because to me, having bragging rights to say "Yea, I play WOW, on my NIX BOX!" or "Yep, Vista's great but I can do all that with my current rig at a fraction of memory."

Took me over 3 weeks of reading, testing and failing to get it working. Now I have drive to do it, but knowing my customers, they would in 10 minutes shut the computer down and if they had a chance to attempt a pirated copy of Windows to jump back into their comfort zone. We don't want to put someone in that situation.

I can now give someone a paragraph of some detailed notes by email.

I keep the following in mind when writing details to someone who is "new" to Ubuntu and Linux:
(Lessons learned working 4 years in Technical support at America Online, but can be implemented here too!)

Always keep in mind, not everyone knows the user interface. Make the notes to the T detailed with clear explanations.

Try at all possible to avoid using terminal!! Like DOS, it's like strapping on a bungee chord on someone who's never done it before and pushing them off the bridge! It scares grandma, and people go into what teacher's would call "mental blanks". They might be there doing what your saying, but they are so unconformable, they won't remember a single thing you told them over the phone/ over an email.

Use the GUI options as much as possible. The more they understand where everything is, the more second nature it becomes. People will then likely venture more in their desktop. IE: Customizing their Desktop,screen saver, & startup preferences.

Not everyone wants to know the tech side. "They don't care about the toaster, just the toast" People don't want to learn it. They just want results. Very bad, I know to hear that: but it is true! They just expect it to work. Sometimes just going into too much detail, (unless asked to) can be like explaining how a planet was formed to a 6 year old. They lose interest fast. Make them users now, and some will become fanboys later. :)

OK, not post away! I like to hear your story.

March 10th, 2007, 07:29 AM
Well for nearly all *nix like systems the CLI is the preferered option to do things, and it makes it really easy to right a howto. I had my system with Beryl and WoW runing in less then 15 min after my clean ubuntu install.

For beryl instructions check this: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=263851&highlight=XGL

That is assuming you use Nvidia, for intel it is more simple just intall the packages. if your using ATi, search the forums for ATi+beryl.

For WoW in Wine:

Very simple to follow.

March 10th, 2007, 03:58 PM
Right. I got it installed no problem now. Have you had any situations with someone maybe really green on Linux in general where it didn't run as smoothly? maybe setting up their ndis wrapper to get broadcom drivers working. Stuff like that. What I'm looking for are some stories that you found that were say most common questions you gotten. Even if they were so mute and easy to fix? Trying to obtain a list of common stories. obtain a list, so later on possibly put them as a quick reference sheet which could be cut and pasted to someone, or even make screencasts or refer to existing one's already up and approved to create resources. :)

March 10th, 2007, 04:24 PM
In fact we have just the thing you are looking for. http://doc.gwos.org/ . The Ubuntu document Storage. I had just about forgotten about it :P. Togeather that with the Ubuntu Wiki can solve nearly every problem. Good luck.

March 11th, 2007, 10:10 PM
The only problem I have ever had has been getting my broadcom 4311 wifi card to work. I still have not gotten it to work :( I normally install Ubuntu for people so they will have no troubles. For friends and family, I answer questions and let them borrow books, like Ubuntu Hacks. But, most of the people I know are not trying to Pimp out the PC's. My sister has trouble with OOo, but she can't get MS Office to work, so not much to say there :)

Before extending the hand of Ubuntu, I ask the following questions, I find they help:

1. What do you use your PC for?
2. What do you want to use your PC for?
3. Tell me about your hardware.
4. How much would you be willing to spend to get Ubuntu on you PC? (If they need to get hardware)

If they are not sure about their hardware, I ask them to let me know, and tell them how to find the information. This does a few things, 1. It lets me know how well they can use a PC (if they can't find their stats, I have a lot of work ahead). 2. I can test their patents in finding info on a computer. 3. It lets them see more than IE 6 and Word on their computer, so the learn a little (very little) for them selves. This makes things easier later, as it built trust. I knew right where the thing was on Windows, and they followed directions, so that trend follows over to Ubuntu.

March 12th, 2007, 03:47 AM
The only problem I have ever had has been getting my broadcom 4311 wifi card to work. I still have not gotten it to work
Yeah, I had a 4318 that didn't work at all with Dapper, so I just bought a new one for $25 from newegg. Broadcom is crap.

March 18th, 2007, 04:21 PM
Everytime I figure out how to get something to work relating to Kubuntu, I post it to my blog. If it don't exist, or the directions I found where not clear, I spend the time, and write it up WITH PICTURES! :)

I think (k)Ubuntu is great for n00bs. It works quite well out of the box, even on laptops. I think some of the hardware support needs honing, but that will come with time. Nothing aggravates me more than getting a peice of hardware, and spending days trying to get it to work, only to plug it in on a windoze box and have it working in under 5 minutes. That makes it REALLY hard for me to get people to want to switch.

All in all, I've had most of my hardware work, with the exception of the TV card I recently got for my laptop. I'm still battling that issue. :(

take a look at my writeups, and tell me what you think...
More than likely they are in the archive, so you may have to click around to get to them...
link is in my signature..