On Sunday, March 28 from 10am-3pm we’re holding a basic Linux install class. This class is perfect for total Linux beginners and people who want to take the plunge and install Linux on their computer. We’ll talk about what an operating system is, what free and open source software mean, implications of using proprietary software, and differences among distributions of Linux. Then we’ll install Ubuntu on computers that people bring, or for people who aren’t quite ready, we can install free software programs like Firefox and Open Office. This class is open to everyone, and woman- and trans-friendly. The class is sliding scale/pay what you can $0-$30. A donation will make it easier for Hive76 to provide snacks and keep hosting affordable classes.
Participants should ideally bring a computer or laptop on which to install Linux and/or some free software, but if you don’t have a computer, or if you have a desktop and don’t want to carry a monitor, keyboard, etc, let us know and we’ll see what we can work out.
A couple of warnings:
First, MAKE BACKUPS. If you can, bring an external hard drive, flash drive, or something else to back up files on. If you have a lot of data to back up, it’s best to do it ahead of time. If you want to retain your old data, chances are we can do that, but be prepared for your computer to be COMPLETELY ERASED or never work quite the same as it did before. We can’t guarantee that you’ll walk away with a working computer and we can’t offer support beyond the workshop, so if you need your computer for work on Monday, try to borrow a spare to play with. For people who want to dual-boot (be able to boot into Windows and Linux on the same computer) we can probably make that happen, but any time you mess around with disks, you run the risk of completely wiping all your data. If you want to restore your files after we install Ubuntu, feel free to bring your backups and if we have time we can copy them in.
Second, it might not work. Since every hardware configuration is different, we can’t guarantee that the install procedure will work for your computer. In particular, wifi seldom works without some tweaking. Ubuntu has a good reputation for being very friendly and compatible, but sometimes it just doesn’t work. If this is the case, we can team you up with someone else so you can go through the process.
That said, in most cases, Ubuntu and most modern Linux distributions are easy and painless to install. This is a great chance to take the plunge and switch operating systems. Again, if you absolutely need your computer to work perfectly and predictably, this activity might not be for you. But if you have a spare machine or you’re willing to tinker a little, this is a great time to jump in.
The instructors are Maggie Avener, Technical and Training Organizer at Prometheus Radio Project, and Stephanie Alarcon, sysadmin at UPenn and Hive76 hanger-on, with help from other Hive76 Linux enthusiasts. Click here to sign up. See you on March 28!