If you intend to switch to Ubuntu full-time, installing Ubuntu by repartitioning your computer's hard disk is best. This involves shrinking the existing Windows partition and creating new partitions alongside for Ubuntu. Following this, Ubuntu is installed and a menu added so you can choose between Ubuntu and Windows at boot-time. Having Ubuntu and Windows side-by-side on a PC is called dual-booting.
This sounds complex, but it's automated via the Ubuntu installation software. However, there's a slight risk involved when repartitioning, so it's very wise to backup essential data first.
NOTE Instead of repartitioning, some users choose to wipe Windows from the hard disk and install Ubuntu in its place. This can also be done using the above installation method.
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