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Beginning Ubuntu Linux [Paperback]

by Keir Thomas, Andy Channelle, Jamie Sicam
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

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Book Description

August 26, 2009 1430219998 978-1430219996 4

Beginning Ubuntu Linux, Fourth Edition is the update to the bestselling book on Ubuntu, today’s hottest Linux distribution. Targeting newcomers to Linux and to the Ubuntu distribution alike, readers are presented with an introduction to the world of Linux and open source community, followed by a detailed overview of Ubuntu’s installation and configuration process. From there readers learn how to wield total control over their newly installed operating system, and are guided through common tasks such as writing documents, listening to audio CDs and MP3s, watching movies, using VoIP and chat, and of course general system maintenance matters.

Additionally, there’s a series of comprehensive tutorials on Linux internals and the command–line prompt—essential for any Linux user—and the book includes special sections on optimization, security, and system maintenance.

The book comes with a DVD containing the complete Ubuntu Linux distribution. All you need to do is insert the DVD and follow the instructions in the book to install this distribution.

  • The ultimate guide to Ubuntu, the hottest Linux distribution on the planet.
  • Forgoes introductions to esoteric Linux topics so commonly found in other books and instead focuses on everyday tasks for everyday users: printer and file sharing configuration, office document management, and listening to MP3s and watching movies among them.

What you’ll learn

  • Use Ubuntu as a daily desktop replacement.
  • Complete all manner of office tasks, such as creating Microsoft Office–compatible documents and spreadsheets, using e–mail, and managing contacts.
  • Listen to MP3s and CDs, and watch movies using a user–friendly Linux desktop.
  • Configure Ubuntu’s printer– and file–sharing features to share resources seamlessly with other computers on your network.
  • Become a proficient user of the Linux command line.

Who this book is for

Beginning Linux users seeking to explore the popular Ubuntu distribution.

Table of Contents

  1. Welcome!
  2. A History and Politics Lesson
  3. The Realities of Running Linux
  4. Preinstallation Steps
  5. Installing Ubuntu
  6. Solving Installation Problems
  7. Booting Ubuntu for the First Time
  8. Getting Everything Up and Running
  9. How to Secure Your Computer
  10. Personalizing Ubuntu: Getting Everything Just Right
  11. Ubuntu Replacements for Windows Programs
  12. Managing Your Files
  13. Introducing the BASH Shell
  14. Understanding Linux Files and Users
  15. Working with Text Files
  16. Taking Control of the System
  17. Cool Shell Tricks
  18. Digital Audio
  19. Movies and Multimedia
  20. Digital Photos
  21. Making the Move to
  22. Overview
  23. In Depth: Writer
  24. In Depth: Calc
  25. In Depth: Impress
  26. In Depth: Base
  27. In Depth: Evolution
  28. Installing and Removing Software
  29. Managing Users
  30. Optimizing Your System
  31. Backing Up Data
  32. Scheduling Tasks
  33. Accessing Computers Remotely

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Keir Thomas is an award-winning author who has written several best-selling beginning-level Linux titles for Apress. A former computer magazine editor, he has been writing about computers, operating systems, and software for a decade. He has also edited many computing titles and works as a full-time author. He lives on the side of a mountain in England, and his hobbies include hiking and playing musical instruments.

Jaime Sicam occasionally works as an IT instructor and consultant. Prior to his hiatus from working full time, he indulged himself as one of the system administrators in the engineering team of Defender Technologies Group. Jaime takes pride in being part of DOST-ASTI (Advanced Science and Technology Institute) on Bayanihan Linux. His team advocated the use of open source software for the computing needs of government agencies, schools, and small and medium-size enterprises in the Philippines. He enjoys technology, road trips, and keeping up-to-date on news of the Utah Jazz.

Andy Channelle is a writer, designer, and educator. He has written for Linux Format, MacFormat, 3D World, and lots of other publications since the mid-1990s. He is a media educator and most recently successfully migrated to university teaching, working as a visiting lecturer/instructor in journalism and new media at the University of the West of England. Outside of these areas, he is also a new media consultant at Spike Island ( and has been intimately involved in the architecture, design, and deployment of the institution's new Drupal-based web site. Andy also holds a master's degree in new media.

The�career of Adam Thomas�can best be defined as a successful hobby. Having an early interest in computers and being mostly self-taught, he attended Humber College in Toronto, studying computer information systems. Soon after his graduation in 2001, Adam was invited back to his school to be a professor of rich media and Web development. Alongside teaching, he runs a successful web studio called Robin Hood Tech. Adam takes pride in employing former students who he has had the privilege of teaching and giving them the opportunity to gain experience and excel in a competitive field. Adam is cofounder of the "Robin Hood" business model, which advocates for justice in business. Adam strives for integrity and simplicity but his true motivation is his wife and family who are daily reminders of love, faith and blessing.

Chivas Sicam occasionally works as an IT instructor and consultant. Prior to his hiatus from working full-time, he indulged himself as one of the system administrators in the engineering team of Defender Technologies Group. Chivas takes pride in being part of DOST-ASTI (Advanced Science and Technology Institute) on Bayanihan Linux. His team advocated the use of open source software for the computing needs of government agencies, schools, and small and medium-size enterprises in the Philippines. He enjoys technology, road trips, and keeping up to date on news of the Utah Jazz.

Product Details

  • Series: Beginning
  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: Apress; 4 edition (August 26, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1430219998
  • ISBN-13: 978-1430219996
  • Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 6.9 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #852,641 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
If you are interested in how to get the most out of Desktop Ubuntu Linux, then look no further! Should your interest lie in other recognised derivatives of Ubuntu (Edubuntu, Kubuntu, Mythbuntu, Server Ubuntu, Ubuntu Studio or Xubuntu) or the Ubuntu Community, then another book may better suit your needs, for example Official Ubuntu Book, The (4th Edition).

With 750 pages devoted to how to install, configure, customise and maintain Ubuntu Linux and how to use it for office and multimedia activities, the authors are able to go into considerable depth in an easy to follow manner, using screen-shots as appropriate. It is the fourth edition, after all, written around version 9.04 of Ubuntu Linux.

The book is broken into eight sections; Introduction, Installation, Getting Started, The Shell and Beyond, Multimedia, Office Tasks, System Maintenance and a sixty page appendix. Finally there is a 25 page comprehensive index and the font wouldn't want to be any smaller!

For first time Linux users with previous Windows experience, chapter 3 provides good coverage of the preinstallation steps for a PC with an existing Windows installation. Chapter 4 covers the use of the Live DVD, running Ubuntu within Windows using Wibi as well as how to perform a full installation. Chapters 6 and 8 contain much useful information to assist you with installation and initial Ubuntu configuration. While there are brief references throughout the book on the GRUB boot loader, I feel GRUB deserves more detailed coverage, considering how critical this is to being able to access your Operating System(s).
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars inexpensive way to learn Linux using free ubuntu distro October 24, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
excellent book for a low price. I have used it to teach Linux for the past few years - each year upgrading to the current edition
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Ubuntu Linux Starter Guide October 19, 2010
By Fabs
Having been a "Newbie" to the Ubuntu world up to a year ago, making use of this book was a revelation, as it is easily readable and allows for a very shallow learning curve with this operating system and its associated sets of applications. I also own the 4th edition (Beginning Ubuntu Linux, Fourth Edition) of this book and this latest round adds more details to items like Networking, mobile wireless communications and other pieces of the software that really make it easy for someone to install and operate very well Ubuntu 10.04. I especially enjoyed the history lesson at the beginning of the book, and the quirky but candid reasoning behind the rise of open-license software and Ubuntu in general. Linux is a much more hands-on operating system and the writers make a very good effort in listing many resources that one can tap into to adapt, improve and generally tweak Ubuntu 10.04 to look, feel and operate as one would like. Especially helpful was the Appendix A, where a large number of "BASH" commands are listed and explained, a must for any Linux user to be able to come to grip with using the "Terminal" window. To this end I also purchased the book - "Ubuntu Linux Toolbox"Ubuntu Linux Toolbox: 1000+ Commands for Ubuntu and Debian Power Users
as an incredible addition to this starter guide, as a wide set of commands make any installation, adjustment or simply playing with the OS a snap. I would recommend the fifth edition of "Beginning Ubuntu Linux" for anyone jumping into the exciting and "free" world of this operating system
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Truely a beginners book June 16, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you have any experience with Microsoft Windows then the first half of this book will be a refresher for you. I found the book written well and informative. It wasn't until I got to the second half of the book that I started to learn a few things. I think this book makes a good book for hand holding and jumping into Ubuntu. There are a lot of similarities with Windows, which the book points out, and total differences too. I would recommend having Ubuntu installed on your computer while going through the book. If you install the CD version that comes with the book you will have an older version. However, if you go to [...] and download the newest version, which is what I did, some examples in the book will not coincide correctly. I was able to work my way through the differences as most experienced computer users also will. In short, a good book to get you off and running with Ubuntu. I turned my laptop into a dual-boot system and run the Ubuntu side everyday. I figure the more you use it the more you will get used to it. Good luck and good bye.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thinking of Linux? Start here ... November 14, 2010
I'm actually writing this review on my newly installed Ubuntu system ...

And I can't be happier. Linux? Really? I asked myself that question. I must say I was pleasantly surprised by Ubuntu's latest release. I used the version supplied on the book's CD and everything worked "out of the box."

No hiccups, no missing drivers. Of course, your mileage might vary, depending on your hardware. My experience has shown wireless network cards can be a pain. But lo and behold ... there's an entire section on how to get your hardware working ... even with using Windows-based drivers. In fact, there is an entire chapter dedicated to "Solving Installation Problems" which was just the kind of encouragement I needed. I'm not afraid to jump in to things, but I didn't want the hassle either. I also appreciated Chapter 3's Pre-Installation Steps. Are you concerned about saving your existing data? The no-nonsense approach here will help you get prepared the right way. The authors even included a table listing the most common files you'll probably try to save, where to find them, and how to back them up. Fantastic!

But the book isn't all about just getting Ubuntu running. It'll help you on your way to becoming a Linux power-user too. Part 3 will hep you get everything tweaked just the way you like it, followed by a detailed section on how to do all the things you did on that other operating system. At this point, I think I may have already forgotten its name. But what about all my games?!? Never fear, the section on using Wine to install and run your old OS's applications will help you out.

Hint: check out Wine's extensive online database of applications that it is known to support if your Windoze app is a deal breaker.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Out of date
I like the tone and the clarity of the author, but the book is simply out of date. Only 50% of the (BASH) code works, or thereabout. The GUI for the current Ubuntu (12. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Corry O'Neill
5.0 out of 5 stars ubuntu for beginners
Ubuntu for beginners

I used Windows starting with the 98 version up to their 7 edition, Mac os from leopard to lion. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Duy Q. Vu
5.0 out of 5 stars Begining Ubuntu
Great price, fast shipping and exactly as described. It doesn't get any better.
If you're trying to go from wondering to working this is a bargain price education. Read more
Published on April 16, 2012 by W4JLE
2.0 out of 5 stars Cheap because it is out of date?
This must have been a great book when it was first published. All technical books from the "Beginning ...... " series of the publisher Apress are simply great. Read more
Published on March 15, 2012 by Cornelius B. Henning
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative book on Ubuntu
If you're just starting Ubuntu, this book is a great place to start. As you go through, it increases and expands on what was taught earlier on. Read more
Published on February 11, 2012 by Lawrence J. Dellinger
2.0 out of 5 stars Beginning...Wow, I don't think so.
I'd really love to break out of the Microsoft jail. In the past year, I've spent hundreds of dollars upgrading from Vista to Windows 7 and having viruses, worms, and Trojan horses... Read more
Published on June 13, 2011 by Steven Rossellini
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book. Highly Recommended
This book aims at the beginner who wants to use Ubuntu Linux as the Operating System on their desktop. Read more
Published on June 7, 2011 by Jeffry Kristianto Yanuar
4.0 out of 5 stars beginning ubuntu linux
I'm new to Ubuntu/Linux and looked all over local libraries for a good reference book.
I finally found an earlier version of this fifth ed. Read more
Published on April 3, 2011 by veritas
1.0 out of 5 stars Better content online
This is really for beginning beginners. The problem is, K/Ubuntu is a very powerful operayting system and the tips in this book are rudimentary, aimed at, say, dummies who can... Read more
Published on March 20, 2011 by Snavvy
5.0 out of 5 stars Beginning Ubunt Linux, Emilio Raggi et al.
I truly appreciate these authors who spent such a enourmous time to prepare for the book. Without this comprehensieve document, I would have been lost in the computer software, in... Read more
Published on January 23, 2011 by SACHIO NAKAMURA
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