Author: Falko Timme <ft [at] falkotimme [dot] com> Follow me on Twitter
Last edited 11/03/2009
This tutorial shows how you can set up an Ubuntu Studio 9.10 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 Studio 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
Empathy IM Client - multi-platform instant messaging client
Xchat IRC - IRC client
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 Studio installer doesn't offer a lot of options to choose from, so you cannot go wrong.
Choose a keyboard layout (you will be asked to press a few keys, and the installer will try to detect your keyboard layout based on the keys you pressed):
The installer checks the installation CD, your hardware, and configures the network with DHCP if there is a DHCP server in the network:
You can accept the default hostname or specify your own one:
Now you have to partition your hard disk. For simplicity's sake I will create one big partition (with the mount point /) and a little swap partition so I select Guided - use entire disk (of course, the partitioning is totally up to you - if you like, you can create more than just one big partition, and you can also use LVM):
Select the disk that you want to partition:
When you're finished, hit Yes when you're asked Write the changes to disks?:
Afterwards, your new partitions are being created and formatted.