Introducing Folks to Linux.

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whm1974
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Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Sat Jan 20, 2018 4:40 pm

While I am posting this here, I'm not a newbie as I have been using Linux for a long time. I'm using Manjaro on my desktop. However I did Installed Mint to my Thinkpad T430 last night/early morning and after some trouble managed to setup my WiFi. I'm switching to Mint from Manjaro, but I'm thinking that Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux and/or computers(I know quite a few).

So what is the best way to introduce people to Linux? I chosen Mint for this purpose due watching YouTubers SwitchtoLinux and Joe Collins who highly recommend this distro to beginners. Any tips or thoughts about this?

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Marziano » Sat Jan 20, 2018 5:15 pm

Have them use a Linux Os as they normally would use any other. I believe hands-on experience is a good way to get an idea what Linux is all about,
Last edited by Marziano on Sat Jan 20, 2018 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by catweazel » Sat Jan 20, 2018 5:35 pm

whm1974 wrote:I'm thinking that Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux and/or computers(I know quite a few).
I think that is an unfair assessment of Mint. Under the hood, Mint is just as complex as any other distro. The Mint team have done a fantastic job on building a system that is easier to install and get up and running on varied equipment, which is probably where the misconception originates. There are many of us here who are very far from being new to Linux or computers and who use Mint as our daily driver merely because it's a pleasure to use.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by majpooper » Sat Jan 20, 2018 5:46 pm

I have a Thinkpad T430 as well which hums along on LM just fine including wifi.
I wait until the person has a problem with their current PC or laptop - typically Windows. I have never actually helped anyone switch from a Mac. They either complain about all the hassle they are having with their computer or they ask if I can fix their PC or laptop. I always tell them I have no useful experience with Windows and would probably just make things worse. Then I tell them that I and some family and friends use linux, which, btw, is free more secure, stable and in most cases outperforms Windows. I also mention that it works fine on older computers that it actually breaths new life into them. At this point they either show an interest or do not feel comfortable or are too risk adverse in terms of switching away from the only OS they have ever had any experience with.

If they are interested I show them my laptop and let them drive. If they are still interested I offer to make them a live DVD or USB for them to play with. I explain that the performance may not be quite as good with a live DVD/USB but they will see how it works with their computer and if the think they would like linux. I also make sure they understand that there can a learning curve depending on what they use their computer for. And I make sure they understand native linux apps compared to Windows apps and some ways to deal with the differences - i.e. VM and dual boot.

Almost all those that have shown an interest in linux - in my experience about half - I have ended up installing LM on their PC or laptop. The actual number of installs that I have done for other people is eight, so not that many I guess.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Moem » Sat Jan 20, 2018 5:56 pm

catweazel wrote:
whm1974 wrote:I'm thinking that Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux and/or computers(I know quite a few).
I think that is an unfair assessment of Mint. Under the hood, Mint is just as complex as any other distro.
That depends on whether the statement means
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than other distros are"
or
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than it is for more experienced users".

There's quite a difference and yet both of those might be expressed as "Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux". And I would strongly agree with the first interpretation but not with the second.
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Sat Jan 20, 2018 7:36 pm

Moem wrote:
catweazel wrote:
whm1974 wrote:I'm thinking that Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux and/or computers(I know quite a few).
I think that is an unfair assessment of Mint. Under the hood, Mint is just as complex as any other distro.
That depends on whether the statement means
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than other distros are"
or
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than it is for more experienced users".

There's quite a difference and yet both of those might be expressed as "Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux". And I would strongly agree with the first interpretation but not with the second.
Well I don't want to start a flame war here about which is the better distro, but Manjaro suits my needs better but then again I have been using Linux for a long time now. The only problem for new users it is a rolling release, if something breaks(rarely) I know how to fix it. And yes I installed the Mint Xfce edition on my notebook as that is my favorite desktop.

Thanks. Any issues you have run into with new users?

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by catweazel » Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:25 pm

whm1974 wrote:Well I don't want to start a flame war here about which is the better distro, but Manjaro suits my needs better
No flame war. There's nothing at all wrong with Manjaro.
The only problem for new users it is a rolling release, if something breaks(rarely) I know how to fix it.
That's a necessary skill with rolling releases.
Any issues you have run into with new users?
Usually newcomers fall into the trap of thinking it behaves like Windwoes.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Sat Jan 20, 2018 10:11 pm

Yeah most folks new to Linux do tend to treat it as another version of Windows. There is some truth to Windows power users having a real hard learning and using Linux.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Moem » Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:26 am

whm1974 wrote:
Moem wrote: "Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than other distros are"
or
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than it is for more experienced users".

There's quite a difference and yet both of those might be expressed as "Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux". And I would strongly agree with the first interpretation but not with the second.
Well I don't want to start a flame war here about which is the better distro, but Manjaro suits my needs better but then again I have been using Linux for a long time now.
You'll get no flaming for that. We like what we like. There are so many options, that's the beauty of Linux.

But I'm curious: which of my interpretations above correctly states what you meant to say?
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by BigEasy » Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:05 am

catweazel wrote:Usually newcomers fall into the trap of thinking it behaves like Windwoes.
From newcomers point of view, what's the differences? Click on something - something either opens or not. That's all about behaviors. Who cares what is under the hood if everything opens ?
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:40 am

Moem wrote:
whm1974 wrote:
Moem wrote: "Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than other distros are"
or
"Mint is better suited for folks new to Linux than it is for more experienced users".

There's quite a difference and yet both of those might be expressed as "Mint might be better suited for folks new to Linux". And I would strongly agree with the first interpretation but not with the second.
Well I don't want to start a flame war here about which is the better distro, but Manjaro suits my needs better but then again I have been using Linux for a long time now.
You'll get no flaming for that. We like what we like. There are so many options, that's the beauty of Linux.

But I'm curious: which of my interpretations above correctly states what you meant to say?
The first one. And I've used quite a few distros over the years.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Moem » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:45 am

Then we agree.

Personally I do show people Linux Mint if they're interested. And some of them have started using it since. One of them is my mother at the ripe age of 78!
But you do need to be prepared to answer some extra questions over the first few weeks. After that, support is easier than it would be if they had remained on Windows.
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:52 am

Moem wrote:Then we agree.

Personally I do show people Linux Mint if they're interested. And some of them have started using it since. One of them is my mother at the ripe age of 78!
But you do need to be prepared to answer some extra questions over the first few weeks. After that, support is easier than it would be if they had remained on Windows.
Well I ended up my dad over to Linux from Windows XP due to malware, and I hardly hear from him about any problems.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by catweazel » Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:48 am

BigEasy wrote:
catweazel wrote:Usually newcomers fall into the trap of thinking it behaves like Windwoes.
From newcomers point of view, what's the differences? Click on something - something either opens or not. That's all about behaviors. Who cares what is under the hood if everything opens ?
I'm sure I used referred to behaviour.
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Hoser Rob » Mon Jan 22, 2018 8:23 am

I think the best way to sell Windows users on Linux is just to tell them they'd never have to run a virus scan again, ever.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Schallaven » Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:18 pm

BigEasy wrote:
catweazel wrote:Usually newcomers fall into the trap of thinking it behaves like Windwoes.
From newcomers point of view, what's the differences? Click on something - something either opens or not. That's all about behaviors. Who cares what is under the hood if everything opens ?
It is about trained behaviour. Users were trained that, for example,
  • they have to download unverified setup.exe-packages and install them to get new software. A packaging system is a new world.
  • disks and partitions are labeled with capitel letters: disk drives are always A/B; hard disks start at C; optical drives just squeeze in. The directory structure is subordinated to the physical drives/partitions (also Windows tries to cheat and puts "Desktop" on top in the Explorer structure). That everything can fit into a single tree, in which _everything_ (including hardware) is a file, is a new world.
  • drivers have to be downloaded and installed for everything. A monolithic kernel is a new world.
  • operating systems slow down because that is "natural" and definitely not the users fault with his 100 in-parallel-installed toolbars and 50 icons in the systray starting a boot time. It needs to be cleaned once in a while by a random program users not really understand but the neighbour's son's dog-in-law recommended. That such tools cause harm and are not needed (i.e. the dog is wrong!) is a new world.
  • snakeoil anti-virus programs, which dig themselves deep into the system, are needed to be "safe". That with some understanding how theses threats work, some caution (no root/admin login to surf the web), trusted software-sources, and better out-of-the-box security settings, you can actually prevent them without snake oil - that is a new world.
  • they have to be administrator to do anything. Strict separation of regular users and root is a new world.
  • ...
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whm1974
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by whm1974 » Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:52 pm

Well in my case I had an easier time learning Linux due RTFM and that I had used other Operating Systems such as OS/2 and BeOS before deciding to check out Linux after Be Inc went belly up.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Tomgin5 » Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:14 pm

After a couple of decades fighting Windex issues, I made the switch to LM Cinnamon. since then I have installed it in over 150 computers. About half have been for friends and their friends. I have given LM computers that I have refurbished to young kids that picked it up in hours. These kids (6-10 years old) have then helped their friends that were not yet full time smartphone users install LM in their own laptops and tanked desktops their parents had given up on but are now using.
One example was for a friend, a young divorcee (55) and her 87 year old mother. They had a newer laptop and the windows was unuseable. An hour and a half later they had a fully installed and functional system that even Mama was using the word processor and Calc besides the games. They were using their neighbor's wifi (with permission ) and have since been browsing the web and literally been touring the world via the web.
One to 3 friends a week are converted this way.

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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by Portreve » Thu Jan 25, 2018 2:12 pm

I have issues with this thread; specifically, with the basic premise undergirding its creation.

The entire point of having forkability of code under the umbrella concept of libre-licensing is so there can be variety. This generally presents to the end-user as a sort of competition of ideas, which is a good thing in the view of many — including myself — though that is certainly not the only purpose it serves.

The reason I have a problem with this thread's concept — as opposed to with all the responses to it at large — is fundamentally it is a flame-war-in-waiting. The fact that there even has to be a disclaimer of sorts proves the point.

Now, maybe I'm being a total jerk for responding in this way, and if that's the case then so be it, but I feel I just can't stand idly by and let things pass as they are.

Manjaro, though I've never used it, I'm certain is a fine GNU+Linux distro. Given that it "suits your needs better" than, ostensibly, LinuxMint, whm1974, you come off as someone who looks like they're just trying to start a fight. Here's two logic arguments to consider:

1. If Manjaro is nice and suits your needs better, why switch to LinuxMint?
2. Why insinuate that LinuxMint is something like a dumbed-down or otherwise nurfed distro better suited to newcomers to GNU+Linux?

LinuxMint is a Debian-by-way-of-Ubuntu fork. It is consistently rated as one of the absolute top distributions, period. LinuxMint began the whole effort within the GTK-using world of forking Gnome 2.x when the Gnome Project decided to completely change their UI paradigm. This resulted initially with the creation of MATE, and then later Cinnamon. Both of these desktop environments are available for, and are widely used on, many other distributions, including Debian itself. Clem & Co. have a lot of upstream commits which get disseminated broadly. I can't imagine any of this being the case were LinuxMint merely a distro for n00bs.

If you hold Manjaro in such high regard — and once again, I'm in no way attempting to denigrate it — why not introduce people you know to it instead? At least stand by the thing you deem worthy of respect.
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Re: Introducing Folks to Linux.

Post by 151tom » Thu Jan 25, 2018 6:48 pm

This is the Linux Distro for the Windows user wanting to move over to Linux.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_Lite

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