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My Ubuntu Experiment

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My 71 year-old father has agreed to try Ubuntu on his home PC. He has used Windows for years, but after his XP system became so infected with viruses and other malware that I needed to wipe his system, he's willing to try Linux. I've promised I'll reload XP if this experiment fails.

His needs are basic. He has already been using Firefox to surf the web, check stock portfolios, and read his email via a web interface. He has used Microsoft Office occasionally for simple spreadsheets and documents--requirements that OpenOffice should meet without a problem. He likes solitaire and that is included with Ubuntu. He prints. That's about it. I'm hopeful that Ubuntu's user experience and functionality will be acceptable to him.

I wiped his system and installed Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) last night. I'm starting to wonder if it is the administrative aspect of the Ubuntu switch that will be the gating factor on how acceptable Ubuntu is in this case, rather than the user experience. As his de facto system administrator, I need to consider how much ongoing work it will be for me to keep his system working and healthy. Based on my initial experiences setting up his system, I'm not so sure...

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