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Ubuntu Made Easy: A Project-Based Introduction to Linux 1st Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1593274252
ISBN-10: 1593274254
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Five Reasons to Try Ubuntu From Author Rickford Grant

  1. It’s free – and so are practically all the apps you’ll ever need. OK, so yeah, sure this could be said of all Linux distributions, but the Ubuntu Software Center application, which is one of the best maintained set of application repositories out there, makes it easy to find and install all that there is!

  2. It’s hardware requirements are pretty low. Which means that you can probably run it on machines you have at home that you thought were lost to the ages. Yes, bring them back to life with Ubuntu.

  3. Easy to install. The Ubuntu installer is arguably one of the easiest out there – about on par with a Mac OS installation and definitely easier than a Windows installation. And not only can you install it from a CD, but you can also give it a try first by running it from the CD without so much as touching your hard disk. Hey, you can even run and install it from a USB thumb drive!

  4. Meshes pretty well with the Windows world. You have plenty of options when straddling the fence between Windows and Ubuntu. You can have a dual boot system, with separate Windows and Ubuntu environments or install it directly to your hard disk within Windows, using the Wubi installer, and run it from there without pestering your Windows system. In either case, most of your Windows files, fonts, and other goodies will be available to you from within Ubuntu.

  5. It’s robust, easy to use, and easily customizable. Yup, you will most likely suffer far fewer, if any, freezes, system crashes, and gradual goop ups than you do in other operating systems, and the whole system is just as point-and- click easy as any other. And if you don’t like the way it looks, you have all sort of customization options available to you.

About the Author

Rickford Grant is the author of Ubuntu for Non-Geeks and Linux Made Easy. He has been an operating system maniac for more than 20 years, from his early days with an Atari XL600 to his current Linux machines. Rickford is the international student advisor at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina.

Phil Bull is an author of the official Ubuntu documentation and a member of the GNOME documentation project. He has been helping people with computers since his early teens and has been an open source contributor since 2005. Phil currently spends his time studying astrophysics in sunny Oxford, UK.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: No Starch Press; 1 edition (August 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593274254
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593274252
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #903,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Step-by-step instructions for most things a new user could ever want to try, from installation and live-cd testing to customizing the terminal, including chapters dedicated to most desktop common applications: graphics drawing, Internet connectivity, printer setup, file and disk management, music and DVD playback, gaming, and much more.

Richly illustrated, the book can be meaningfully read away from the keyboard and is completely up to date, reflecting the status of Ubuntu 12.04 'Precise' and covering the recent desktop environment changes in detail. The introduction to Unity and the HUD is thorough and flows better than your typical technical manual, while at the same time including more advanced topics such as the installation of custom lenses.

Almost unique in the current scene for technical books dominated by print-on-demand, No Starch actually prints its books on spectacularly nice paper, with lie-flat bindings - if you like books as much as I do, you will find this book a pleasure to hold while reading.

A minor negative is the presence of what effectively amounts to three tables of contents, in short, long, and summary of contents form... a bit much, but just as easily skipped over.

A fast-paced, topic-centric and stress free introduction to Ubuntu for Linux newcomers, this is definitely the Ubuntu book you should be getting your parents - its clarity and comprehensiveness make it a remarkable introduction to the subject, this is a delightful book for the budding penguinista.
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Format: Paperback
The authors have considerable experience (and it shows) with documenting Linux and in particular, the Ubuntu Distribution. Rickford Grant is the author of two other fine volumes documenting Ubuntu and Linux, and Phil Bull is an author and member of the official documentation team both for Ubuntu and the Gnome GUI project. This exciting handbook takes a unique project oriented approach leading a novice either with the Linux Operating System or with the Ubuntu Distribution through the most necessary activities of installation, updating, accommodating various hardware (e.g., printers and specific keyboards and mice, finding and installing games, and even (although this is a small section and definitely not the primary focus of this book) use of the Linux command line utilities. This project oriented approach with step-by-step instructions encourages beginners to duplicate the projects and thereby acquire necessary knowledge. Overall the project approach is exciting and unique; there is a slight drawback for experienced users of Linux in locating the the easiest approach to common tasks such as launching a terminal window in the Unity GUI. Incidentally, the Unity user interface which characterizes the release of Ubuntu described in this excellent book emphasizes a launcher-based approach with large icons oriented around netbooks and tablets and is extremely attractive but is less oriented to command-line activities and this is reflected in the emphasis of this project-oriented handbook.

An excellent introduction to the extremely popular Ubuntu distribution with perfect pedagogy for the Linux novice. I recommend it highly for its intended audience.

--Ira Laefsky, MS Engineering/MBA Information Systems Consultant and HCI Researcher
formerly on the Senior Consulting Staff of Arthur D. Little, Inc. and Digital Equipment Corporation
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Format: Paperback
Ask a typical computer user about Linux and you'll likely be met with a blank stare; a minority will have heard of it and might even be aware that it's a free alternative to Windows or Mac OS X, but will probably think it's hard to install and hard to use - both stereotypes that may have been true a decade or more ago, when Linux desktop distributions required frequent access to Unix-style instructions at a command prompt.

Linux on the desktop has changed dramatically since then, with a number of distributions becoming easy to install on the majority of PCs and in many ways as easy to use as Windows or OS X. Like those more familiar operating systems, though, it has its quirks - new users (and even long-time users) can benefit from some explanation.

Rickford Grant's 'Ubuntu Made Easy' (No Starch Press, 2012) does a good job of providing that explanation for users of the popular Ubuntu Linux distribution. After introducing 'the world of Linux', Grant walks users through installation, getting to know the desktop, working with the Internet, installing programs, files and disc handling, the command line, customization, and more.

Later chapters focus on working with multimedia, graphics, video and DVD, gaming and home and business uses of Ubuntu. Recognizing that a Ubuntu computer is not a world unto itself, there are chapters on 'Working in a Windows World' and on security. Finally, Grant discusses how connecting with the broader Ubuntu community can be helpful and looks at fixing common problems.

Each chapter is very readable and offers readers a good balance between providing information but not going overboard with details.

I've been using Ubuntu Linux since 2007 and maintain four public-access computers running the current version 12.04; nevertheless, I found the book helped me become more familiar with using filters and lenses in the Dash to more easily find installed software.
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