The Perfect Desktop - Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope)
Author: Falko Timme <ft [at] falkotimme [dot] com>
Last edited 04/24/2009
This tutorial shows how you can set up an Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) desktop that is a full-fledged replacement for a Windows desktop, i.e. that has all the software that people need to do the things they do on their Windows desktops. The advantages are clear: you get a secure system without DRM restrictions that works even on old hardware, and the best thing is: all software comes free of charge.
I want to say first that this is not the only way of setting up such a system. There are many ways of achieving this goal but this is the way I take. I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!
1 Preliminary Note
To fully replace a Windows desktop, I want the Ubuntu desktop to have the following software installed:
The GIMP - free software replacement for Adobe Photoshop
F-Spot - full-featured personal photo management application for the GNOME desktop
Google Picasa - application for organizing and editing digital photos
Flash Player 10
FileZilla - multithreaded FTP client
email and news client
Evolution - combines e-mail, calendar, address book, and task list management functions
OpenOffice Writer - replacement for Microsoft Word
OpenOffice Calc - replacement for Microsoft Excel
GnuCash - double-entry book-keeping personal finance system, similar to Quicken
Scribus - open source desktop publishing (DTP) application
Sound & Video:
Amarok - audio player
Audacity - free, open source, cross platform digital audio editor
Banshee - audio player, can encode/decode various formats and synchronize music with Apple iPods
MPlayer - media player (video/audio), supports WMA
Rhythmbox Music Player - audio player, similar to Apple's iTunes, with support for iPods
gtkPod - software similar to Apple's iTunes, supports iPod, iPod nano, iPod shuffle, iPod photo, and iPod mini
XMMS - audio player similar to Winamp
dvd::rip - full featured DVD copy program
Kino - free digital video editor
Sound Juicer CD Extractor - CD ripping tool, supports various audio codecs
VLC Media Player - media player (video/audio)
Helix Player - media player, similar to the Real Player
Totem - media player (video/audio)
Xine - media player, supports various formats; can play DVDs
Brasero - CD/DVD burning program
K3B - CD/DVD burning program
KompoZer - WYSIWYG HTML editor, similar to Macromedia Dreamweaver, but not as feature-rich (yet)
Bluefish - text editor, suitable for many programming and markup languages
Quanta Plus - web development environment, including a WYSIWYG editor
VirtualBox OSE - lets you run your old Windows desktop as a virtual machine under your Linux desktop, so you don't have to entirely abandon Windows
Read-/Write support for NTFS partitions
Lots of our desired applications are available in the Ubuntu repositories, and some of these applications have been contributed by the Ubuntu community.
As you might have noticed, a few applications are redundant, for example there are two CD/DVD burning applications in my list (Brasero, K3B). If you know which one you like best, you obviously don't need to install the other applications, however if you like choice, then of course you can install both. The same goes for music players like Amarok, Banshee, Rhythmbox, XMMS or browsers (Firefox, Opera).
I will use the username falko in this tutorial. Please replace it with your own username.
2 Installing The Base System
The installation of the base system is easy as 1-2-3 because the Ubuntu installer doesn't offer a lot of options to choose from, so you cannot go wrong.
Select Try Ubuntu without any change to your computer to start the Ubuntu live system:
The system boots and starts a desktop that is run entirely in the RAM of your system (the Ubuntu installation CD is also a Live-CD) without changing anything on your hard disk. This has the advantage that you can test how Ubuntu works on your hardware before you finally install it.
Double-click the Install icon on the desktop to start the installation to the hard drive:
The installer starts. First, select your language:
Then choose your time zone:
Change the keyboard layout, if necessary:
Now we come to the partitioning of our hard disk. Usually Use the entire disk is a good choice, unless you need custom partitions and know what you're doing. Use the entire disk will create one big / partition for us:
Type in your real name, your desired username along with a password, and click on Forward:
The next screen shows us a summary of the installation settings. Click on Install to start the installation:
Afterwards, Ubuntu is being installed. This can take a few minutes, so be patient:
After the installation, you will be asked to reboot the system. Click on Restart now:
Remove the Ubuntu CD and press ENTER to boot into your new Ubuntu system:
Your new Ubuntu system starts. Log in to the desktop with the username and password you provided during the installation: