Friday, April 8, 2011

The Basics #4: Installing Linux (Ubuntu)

  -------------------- What is Linux? --------------------
Don't quote me on anything I say... I do have a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science... but I'm still no expert. But Linux is an operating system, just like Windows XP, or Windows Vista (not in design but in the idea of what an Operating System is...). Linux is an off shoot of Unix, an old operating system that came about back in the day to compete with MS-DOS. Arguably, Linux can been seen as the GUI (Graphical User Interface) version of Unix, as Windows can be seen as a GUI of MS-DOS. Much like Windows has different versions (i.e. 95,95,2000,NT,XP,Vista, 7, etc), Linux has several different flavors such as Red Hat, Gentoo, Free BSD, Solaris, Cent OS, Ubuntu, and many many more; some which are free, and some which require a license. We are going to learn how to install Ubuntu, the flavor of Linux which, in my opinion, offers the easiest transition from Windows to Linux.
  -------------------- Where do I get Ubuntu?  --------------------
Ubuntu is free software and can be downloaded from
Once on the site, determine whether you need Ubuntu for a desktop or a laptop, and whether you need a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version (If you are uncertain as to what your processor can handle, simply grab the 32-bit version since 64-bit processors are backwards compatible and can run 32-bit OSes just fine.)
Once this is determined, download Ubuntu in the form of an ISO image.
  -------------------- How do I install Ubuntu?  --------------------
Once the download of the ISO is complete, burn the image to a disc (CD or DVD, which ever your computer has a reader/writer for). If you are unsure how to do this, check out my last tutorial, The Basics #3, and install the appropriate software and the follow the instructions accordingly. After this is complete, stick the disc in your computer and reboot.
At this point you should be prompted with some options from the Ubuntu CD. The cool thing about the Ubuntu image you just burned is that you can choose to run a live CD of Ubuntu which allows you to play with and use Ubuntu without altering your computer At All... once you shut your computer down and remove the disc, your normal OS will boot up as if nothing happened.
If you are Not prompted with Ubuntu options (aka the CD did not run), this is because your CD/DVD drive is Not set as your #1 boot device. If this is the case, you can either permanently change the boot order in the Bios (see How To Access and Alter Bios) or catch the option to change the boot order just that once as your system boots up (see Changing Boot Order).
  -------------------- The Installation  --------------------
The installation is actually insanely straight forward and involves like 8 steps... I will edit this tutorial with exactly what to do at each step in a few days once I download the Ubuntu ISO myself and run it in a VM to see what exactly is asked etc etc... Don't worry though, this really is an easy step.

***** This happened to me a few times and my friend... Your following the install options and going along, and upon choosing your user name and password it just hangs, not allowing you to choose "Next"... even though everything is filled in and it isn't telling you anything is wrong. This is something that needs to be fixed by the Ubuntu community... luckily it isn't any big bug that will have you stuck for ever, it is just Ubuntu failing to tell you something: Your user name Cannot have capital letters in it. If you go back and make everything lowercase and with no spaces or any strange characters, the "Next" button will become available and you can continue on to complete the installation. *****

Good Luck All! If you go to try this and run into any problems, post a comment with your problem and I will help troubleshoot your issue.

PS. - The "How to Access and Alter Bios" and "Changing Boot Order" Tutorials are coming soon... in the meantime I am sorry if you were offended by the temporary link. ; )


  1. I really don't like Linux, but at least I know how to do it just in case I switch. Nice post

  2. In depth and informative. Just how I like my blog posts!! Used linux once, not too much to my liking though.

  3. For everyone that doesn't like Linux... Please read my next post/tutorial and give it one more try... Odds are you didn't like Linux because no one really showed you the insanely bad ass shit you can do with it lol... Just sayin... Either way I respect your opinion and thanks for the feedback!

  4. Thanks for the info, I'm still going to keep windows 7 as my primary OS though.

  5. Actually I'm taking a class on this at the moment. In the process of getting the same degree, actually. Ha ha.

  6. All the virus for windows are made with linux, nice post man I'm following you

  7. LOL at windowsfags.

  8. I'm stuck with windows because there are no alternatives for programs I use at home, but I'm looking forward to your further posts because I have to interact with Linux machine at work sometimes, and asking for help while trying to figure out some simple thing usually results in "rtfm, n00b"

  9. Nice post, very informative. I dabble with Ubuntu: dual boot on my laptop so if I ever want a change of scenery I just boot that up.

  10. i have considered installing this for my laptop. great post!

  11. Great stuff! keep it up :-)

  12. I always thought about installing Linux, and I heard you could put it on the PS3, Id be interested to read how.

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  14. Wintermute is that true?...anyway thats a nice guide not too complicated might come in usefull sometimes...thanks

  15. PS3's ORIGINALLY came with the option to "Install Other OS" on the PS3... Linux was 100% a possibility... I regret that I never did it myself... because now it is No Longer An Option... In Case you haven't heard (if you own an Xbox 360 Odds are you don't know, but the entire PS3 community knows that), a renowned hacker George Hotz (aka GeoHotz... the first man to jail break the iphone) was able to "jail break", or Root, the PS3. All technical aspects aside, this led to Sony DISABLING the "Install other OS" option because his hack opened the window for a homebrew network on the PS3 that would only be accessible through a Linux install on the PS3. ALL SLIM PS3's have been shipped with the "Install Other OS" feature disabled. Only the 1st-gen PS3s (the fat ones), and maybe a FEW slims, have the feature enabled... and you also only have this feature enabled if you haven't updated your system since like 8 months ago... Firmware patch ~3.15 i believe...
    This is a HUGE deal in the world of technology and a MAJOR court case towards consumers rights to jail break their own property...
    Read up on the incident here:
    Geohot is only one many, defending ALL of our freedoms... if possible, donate to him so his lawyers can kick Sony's ass...
    I personally LOVE PS3 over Xbox and Love (lovED) Sony... but once you read this... you will be utterly confused as to whether you should which to Xbox or just never game console systems again... I am against Sony now for their actions in the past 6-10 months.

  16. Doesn't look like hacking stuff :P