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Good way to experiment with Linux / Ubuntu

I’ve had a few clients express interest in Linux, especially for their older machines which would be doing real basic computing tasks (web, email, word processing, etc).

Many are afraid to muck around with the standard installation – the idea of messing around with the hard drive, or wiping out their current OS is enough to scare them away.

I’ve begin recommending WUBI to them (Windows-based Ubuntu Installer). Aside from being actually fun to say (try it three times, as fast as you can, while sitting at a traffic light with your car windows down….) it is a non-destructive way to install Linux onto your WIndows machine to see if you like it.

You download and install Wubi, which then takes over the rest of the installation. You do have to give it an amount of the hard drive for it t “take over” – I used 10gig which has been enough for my needs. You’ll also give it an administration username and password – WRITE IT DOWN!

On reboot you’ll see a “Pick which OS you want” menu. Select Ubuntu and the machine will boot in Ubuntu. It’s a full fledged installation, and works MUCH faster on my glacial Athlon 2200+ machine. My rough guess is tasks are about 25-35% faster on this machine under Ubunut compared to Win XP Home.

I can provide training on this, and installation help.

More information:
Wikipedia article on Wubi
The Wubi Installer

The Wubi Guide

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