There's nothing complicated about installing Ubuntu. In fact, if you've ever performed an installation of the Microsoft Windows operating system, you'll be shocked at how simple and fast the Ubuntu install is when compared with its Windows counterpart.
Note An Ubuntu installation doesn't always go smoothly, but the U-PC hardware I purchased (covered in Chapter 1) is fully compatible with Ubuntu, and the installation I performed and will cover shortly went off without a hitch. I'll show you in a bit how to test Ubuntu on your own computer without installing any files on your hard drive, which lets you take the OS for a test drive and ensures that certain things are working before you move forward. And, just in case there are problems, I'll provide some troubleshooting tips at the end of the chapter as well as some web sites you can visit for help.
Following is a short summary of what will happen in this chapter. Each of the following steps in this summary will then be covered in more detail later in the chapter:
1. Inserting the Ubuntu CD/DVD in the CD/DVD drive and turning on the computer
2. Selecting the language
3. Trying Ubuntu first without making any changes to the computer
4. Testing various items: sound, video, and network connectivity
5. Configuring the hard drive partition
6. Installing Ubuntu files on the hard drive
7. Logging in
Note You might need to configure the motherboard's bootup settings to check for a CD/DVD inserted in the CD/DVD drive. Consult the motherboard documentation for instructions on setting the boot device order. This setting simply defines the order in which the computer will look for operating system files to load; typically you want your operating system to be started from a hard drive, but with a new computer there is usually no data on the hard drive. So you must tell your computer to look for OS files on a CD/DVD. Your Ubuntu CD/DVD will contain the proper files for it to start up. (This is covered in more detail in the next section.)
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