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Book: Ubuntu Kung Fu Tips, Tricks, Hints, and Hacks

In a few short years, the Linux operating system has gone from a hobbyist's power tool to a highly usable, mainstream choice. The most popular version of Linux these days is called Ubuntu. Ubuntu's rise to power has been rapid, historic and well-deserved. It's the best Linux distribution ever, still most people only use a fraction of its power.

In Ubuntu Kung Fu: Tips, Tricks, Hints, and Hacks (Pragmatic Bookshelf), award-winning Linux author Keir Thomas gets down and dirty with Ubuntu to provide over 300 concise tips that enhance productivity, avoid annoyances, and simply get the most from Ubuntu. You'll find many unique tips here that can't be found anywhere else. You'll also get a crash course in Ubuntu's flavor of system administration.

Whether you're new to Linux or an old hand, you'll find tips to make your day easier.

Ubuntu builds on a solid base of Debian Linux to create an award-winning operating system that's light-years ahead of its competitors. Ubuntu consistently tops lists of the most popular Linuxes amongst professionals and enthusiasts; Dell recently embraced Ubuntu in its product lines after a user survey indicated overwhelming public support.

Ubuntu Kung Fu provides hints, hacks, tweaks and tricks for every level of user. Its 300+ concise tips utilize and exploit hidden or lesser-known features to boost day-to-day productivity, and let you have more fun using Ubuntu.

You'll also find tips on tweaking Ubuntu, wrangling the system into shape, optimizing, enhancing security, and lots more. Learn what extraordinary things can be done with Ubuntu.

If you're migrating from Windows or Mac OS X, this book is for you. These tips have one aim -- to produce results as quickly as possible, in an environment where you can polish your skills as you read.

This is the Linux book for the rest of us.

About author

Keir Thomas is an award-winning author who has been writing about Linux, operating systems and computer hardware for more than a decade. Formerly a computer magazine journalist and editor, working on titles such as Linux User and Developer, Linux Magazine and PC Utilities, his other book titles include Beginning Ubuntu Linux, Third Edition; Beginning Fedora Linux; and Beginning SUSE Linux, Second Edition.

Book Info

  • Title: Ubuntu Kung Fu
  • Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf
  • Author: Keir Thomas
  • ISBN: 9781934356227, 400 pages, $34.95 USD, £21.99 GBP
  • Order Info: order@oreilly.com // 1-800-998-9938 // 1-707-827-7000
  • Support nixCraft order "Ubuntu Kung Fu" book online from Amazon

Which Linux Desktop Distribution is the best for me?

Almost all new Linux wanna be guru (read as users who want to switch to Linux) asks a question:

I want to switch to Linux completely from Windows XP SP2. Which Linux version will be best - Redhat, SuSE, or other? I use my PC for:
Browsing Internet
Watching DVD / MP3
Writing CD/DVD

I’m also willing to spend a small amount of money if required to purchase Linux version.

Short answer is none. I can’t suggest *distro* name.

Long answer:
Linux is all about choice and freedom. There are different Linux distribution exists with different goals. It is good idea to define your goals and select Linux distribution as per your requirements.

I like Redhat and Debian for server as they are rock solid stable and comes with good binary packaging system. Some will swear up by Knoppix Live CD.

Some people like Suse and other recommends Ubuntu. There are others who like to compile everything from scratch (Gentoo).

  1. Consider following factors while selecting Linux:
    • Games
    • Your Linux skill level
    • Linux as server / network admin workstation
    • Running Linux on a new Hardware / Laptop
    • Running Linux on an older machine (486/PI/PII/Celeron)
    • Multilingual support (Hindi / Japanese language user interface)
    • Running Linux on Office PC for email and office work
    • Community support
    • Commercial support
  2. I recommend that you try out at least some different distributions. Go to distrowatch.com and look out What's Hot and What's Not
  3. Make sure your hardware is compatible with Linux. Download Live CD (list of all Live CD) and see if your hardware is compatible with Linux.
  4. Make sure good community support exists for your distro (for example check out Ubuntu community support forum)
  5. Get a good Linux book that teaches basis of Linux
  6. Learn how to use search engine to find out solution to the problems
  7. Learn to read man pages effectively and Linux commands to help you navigate
  8. Contact your nearest Linux user group (LUG) and see what other members recommends
  9. Ask a questions whenever in doubt, join Linux mailing lists and forums. When posting questions to a forum / newsgroup it is good idea to format the question and it's content in a proper way in order to get a good answer. Make sure you provide all information while posting a question. (See more guideline - how to ask questions the smart way)
  10. Finally you can always donate a small amount of money to your favorite distro and/or to any other open source project.

Further readings:

Surely, there are dozens of other reasons to select specific distro, so please do share your views and suggestions :D