May 122009

I hit a few snafus while partitioning my hard drive in Windows. When I loaded the Ubuntu 9.4 (referred to as the Jaunty Jackolope build…haha) disc their partitioning tool was a breeze. Once everything was installed, including the GRUB bootloader which lets you select Ubuntu or Windows easily, Ubuntu loaded and I was greeted by a strange site: a completely empty desktop.

Where were all of the shortcuts to defunct ISPs? Free offers from eBay? Trial versions of software I’ll never use?

They were nowhere to be seen.

There wasn’t even a stupid trash can icon.

I almost didn’t know what to do with myself. I looked around, observing my new desktop. At the top was a slim navigation bar that reminded me of my first computer-a Macintosh IIfx. On the bottom is an even slimmer task bar that allows you to switch applications, and docked in the tray all the way over to the right was the trash can.

It was love at first sight.

Ubuntu 9.4 comes with two of my most essential applications out of the box: Firefox and Pidgin. Since the experience had already been so magical, I launched Firefox to see if Ubuntu (which literally means “humanity to others”, but also is a philosophy) mystically connected to my wireless network, but I had no such luck. Driver’s were installed and working, but the connection wasn’t being established.

A quick search through the Ubuntu Forums found a solution to my problem, which was specific to my hardware configuration. Typing one command in the terminal application solved it and I was able to connect to the internet with ease.

I got Firefox all updated, as well as Pidgin. I downloaded Open Office but have yet to install it. My chore list for tonight/tomorrow morning is to get my usual plugins in Firefox, install Open Office, and get audio and video codecs straightened out. Ooo what fun!

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