Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Ah yes, there's that all too familiar sound of tightening budgets and the tossing aside of those things perceived as non-essential. Training's death knell reverberates in my head like the sound of an ill-tuned vesper bell. Your dilemma is that you need to learn Linux but you have no money to buy training — what do you do — wait indefinitely for money to return to the coffers, download Linux and fumble through it on your own? Or, do you take the initiative and find some inexpensive or free learning resources?
The answer should be pretty clear.
Download a copy of Linux, burn it to a CD or DVD and install it on a computer or in a virtual machine. You can't learn Linux without having a Linux system at your disposal. The first thing that you do in any operating system training class is install the operating system — now you'll have the jump on your classmates. Installation is a learning process in itself and you'll find it easy but very different from a Windows installation.
Once you have that shiny new Linux system installed, what do you do with it? Sure, you find it simple enough to log in to the graphical login screen, poke around at the familiar menus and test a few applications, but beyond that — how about getting to know some meatier details about this new operating system empowering your computer. You'll need to know a few basic things, such as how to navigate the filesystem, how to set up user accounts and how to install software. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the following hit list of topics: