Ubuntu Primer / Reference

  Batch 16:53 17 Apr 2012

I'm currently using XP on my 3 PCs, but in due course I expect that I'll have to move on due to lack of support etc.

Rather than move on up the Windows path, I'm contemplating Ubuntu. Consequently I was wondering whether anyone could recommend a good book as a primer for Ubuntu and also a follow-on reference manual (or a single tome that will cover both).

By way of my background (and hence the audience for these materials), I have some 40 years IT experience, having written software (mostly banking) in C, RPGIII and AIMS (which I don't expect anyone on here to have heard of) and dabbled with C++. I've also had a PC at home for nearly 25 years. So I'm pretty IT literate / tecnhical.

  KRONOS the First 17:26 17 Apr 2012

Did you not miss an M from AIMS?Advanced Interactive Multidimensional Modeling System.

  LastChip 17:32 17 Apr 2012

OK, let me tell you with that background, you won't have any problems with installing and using Ubuntu.

Don't get the idea you'll need to revert to the command line to get anything to work. Ubuntu is now such a sophisticated system, it's all done from a normal GUI.

A word of warning however; Ubuntu is committed to the Unity interface with the head-up display, which all new versions will now come with. If you're happy using a smart-phone, you'll probably be happy with Unity, as it's very touch-screen orientated. In fact, it's designed with the future in mind, when a coordinated GUI will be presented for computers, laptops, touch-pads and mobiles. On the plus side, it's light-years ahead of anything Microsoft can currently offer. The downside is, it's a whole new way of working.

If you don't like that idea, (and as it happens I don't) Ubuntu isn't the only game in town. Also very worthy of consideration are Linux Mint and SuSE (and there are many, many others) which offer a more traditional interface and which as an XP user, you may feel more comfortable with.

I do have a copy of the Ubuntu Pocket Guide v1.1, which is a PDF file and if you pm me, I'll be happy to send to you as an attachment, for you to take a look at.

Almost everything you are likely to need in the future, is available on-line and while I'm sure someone somewhere has written a book, in my experience, it's really not necessary. If you can install Windows, you can install a modern Linux distribution (distro); whichever one you choose.

All the modern distros are available as bootable CD's/DVD's. So even though the system will run slowly (as it's reading from the CD/DVD), you can in fact take a look before committing to installation. It will also give you an idea as to how well it will run on your computer.

  Sea Urchin 17:44 17 Apr 2012


How do you pm somebody now? I thought with this new PCA website it was no longer possible.

  LastChip 17:58 17 Apr 2012

Oh! Sea Urchin, my mistake. I didn't realise PCA had disabled that feature. I just assumed clicking on the envelope would do it.

Anyway, if Batch would still like a copy, please email me at the following but use the conventional syntax:

paul at soslug . org

  Batch 18:02 17 Apr 2012

Chronus - I'll answer your point first. No, AIMS was correct (Arbat's Interactive Multi-user System). It was a multi-user operating system / file system / programming language that ran on DEC PDPs (originally with DEC DOS running underneath it, but later versions booted directly into AIMS). The environment was later ported to run under VMS on DEC VAX hardware. It was primarily used to develop banking applications in the 1970s onwards. UBS (Union Bank of Switzerland) also commissioned a German software house in the early 1980s to emulate it on IBM 360 / 270 hardware running an IBM OS (all because they preferred IBM hardware - the mind boggles).

Lastchip - thanks for your thorough and informative reply. I had no doubt at all that I could manage it - just wanted the best possible start point(s). Thanks to your pointer I've downloaded Ubuntu Pocket Guide v1.1 (BTW, not sure you can pm anymore on this forum - since the major "upgrade").

Take your point about the interface. In fact that was one of the things that was steering me away from Windows (as it is likely to be Win8 that I would go for, in due course, if I was to stay with MS). I was thinking of Ubuntu as I'd sort of got the impression that it was THE one to go for.

I know there are plenty of real books out there and I have to say I prefer a real book (especially for reference) for sheer usability.

  robin_x 19:35 17 Apr 2012

I quite like the Dummies Guides.

I just Googled Dummies guide for Ubuntu (in case one has been written)

Then Dummies guide for Linux

Then realise dI should have been searching for Linux for Dummies anyway.

Lots of links anyway if you try those.

Have fun.

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