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Beginning Ubuntu for Windows and Mac Users, Second Edition

August 31, 2017

Where do I begin? That’s the challenge ahead of anyone who tries something new. And the first step of any new experience. Sometimes this can be exciting, like when you sit down to try food at a new restaurant. Other times the question is paralyzing. Taking the first step is difficult when the path is unclear or unmarked.

Ubuntu is the world’s third most popular operating system. It powers twenty million desktop computers, and untold servers. But for even more people who grew up using Windows or OS X, their operating system is the computer. Ubuntu’s Linux and Unix heritage are no longer its greatest strength, but its biggest drawback. But it doesn’t have to be. For new Ubuntu users, the first challenge to surmount is familiarity. Ubuntu thinks and behaves in different ways from the computing experience they’ve gained over the years. And those years of experience are an enemy at first. But using a new operating system is much like visiting a foreign country. Everything’s different, but after a chance to acclimate, it’s not that different. The trick is finding your way around until you know what’s the same. The differences aren’t that vast and soon everything is manageable.

My new book, Beginning Ubuntu for Windows and Mac Users was written to help speed that process along, and has been fully updated for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS in this second edition. Ubuntu is the perfect operating system for every day business, casual, and entertainment use. The book explains key concepts and helps users adapt to their new operating system. It’s a reference guide to the best software in Ubuntu that can get tasks done. And it teaches how to use Ubuntu so that any computer user can get started and learn from there.

Beginning Ubuntu for Windows and Mac Users expects readers to want to use Ubuntu graphically, and prefers this over command line shortcuts. When the command line is introduced in Chapter 5, it’s from the perspective of a window into an older period of computing history, and after a short overview, it walks the user through specific tasks that demonstrate exactly why one would use the command line over the graphical tools. Simple information lookup, text-based browsing, and even games gives the command line a practical purpose and makes the chapter a handy reference.

The book finishes up with power user advice that shows simple yet powerful ways to make an Ubuntu system even more powerful, from enabling multiple workspaces to installing VirtualBox and working with virtual machines.

If you’ve been wanting to try Ubuntu but don’t know where to begin, this book is for you. It explains the origins of Ubuntu and walks you through the install process step by step. It talks about dual-booting and installing graphics drivers. It even helps you find the right “translation” as you learn the Ubuntu desktop. Looking for the Start Menu or Spotlight? The Dash icon provides the same functionality.

If you’re already an Ubuntu user, you may benefit from the clear instructions and format of the book. But you can also buy the book for friends. It’s a friendly, gentle introduction to Ubuntu that any Windows or Mac user will enjoy, and the perfect gift for anyone who could benefit from using Ubuntu.

Beginning Ubuntu for Windows and Mac Users is available today from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other fine booksellers around the world. Best of all, the companion ebook is only $5 through Apress when you buy the print version (even if you didn’t buy it from the publisher), and the ebook is available DRM-free in PDF, EPUB, and MOBI (Kindle) formats. Not only is that an incredible bargain that offers all 150+ screenshots in full color, but the DRM-free files respect you and your investment.

Whether you’ve already taken the first steps into experiencing Ubuntu for yourself, or you’ve hesitated because you don’t know where to begin, this book is for you. We’ll walk through the first steps together, and your existing Windows and Mac experience will help you take the next steps as you explore the endless possibilities offered by Ubuntu.