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Old July 29th, 2006
Hyper-kun Hyper-kun is offline
Join Date: November 22nd, 2005
Posts: 196
Hyper-kun is a great assister to others; your light through the dark tunnel

If you install WINE/Cedega, you can play most games produced for Windows
fon a PC with Linux too. I have heard the performance is just as good and sometimes even better with WINE/Cedega than natively on Windows. It seems you need an NVidia card for this because the drivers provided by ATI are very, very bad. If you don't play games the hardware does not really matter, watching DVDs, video files, etc. all that multimedia stuff works much better and less hassle on Linux. Just use MPlayer, it plays literally everything except DRMed content of course. Linux is not a Windows drop-in replacement though and certainly does not want to be one. There will be a couple of things to learn and this or that will just not work because the vendors provide no drivers when it comes to hardware for example. If computer-illerate also means "I DO NOT want to learn anything, it should work exactly as under Windows" then just forget about Linux. If it means "I hardly know anything but I'll read it up when I have the chance" that's fine and you should give it a try.
The choice of Linux flavour has little to do with what you can do. You can install whatever Linux software on any Linux. The difference between them is mostly about what is installed by default and how you install software.

"listen to music"

MPlayer (or Amarok if you're a sucker for playlists and want to "manage" your music).

"share files"

Gtk-Gnutella, LimeWire, Phex, BitTorrent, amule. There is *a lot* software for file-sharing. Not everything is recommendable of course.

"rip CDs"


"and watch videos"

MPlayer, Xine, VLC in this order. VLC is the best for Windows but elsewhere MPlayer is the best choice.

"You can also burn CDs, DVDs"

cdrecord, k3b(?). I use the former but there are a couple of them with nice GUI front-ends for dummies.

"import, view and edit pictures"

gqview for plain viewing, GIMP for modifying and drawing but there are tons of graphical tools for different purposes e.g., vector graphics.

"Our office suite allows you to write letters, do spreadsheets,drawings and slide presentations."

OpenOffice. It's also available for Windows.

You see all that stuff has nothing to do with your choice of Linux.

"Everything you can do with that other OS you can do in PCLinuxOS without worrying about virus infections, adware or spyware."

Sorry but that's a myth. Well, the software packages available from your Linux distribution of choice will only contain "good" software. So far adware and spyware do not really exist for Linux but it's just a question of time. As soon as it has sufficient marketshare on the desktop, such bad software will exist for Linux too. Linux has a couple of "safety belts" that Windows does not provide but with a sufficiently careless or clueless user that does not make a huge difference. If you're too lazy or careless to learn basic things about security, your machine will be owned sooner or later and abused as spam device.

In any case, this is not a Linux forum. You better ask in forums of a couple of Linux distributions to find the right flavour which suits your demands. There popular ones are ubuntu, Fedora, Mandriva, SuSE, Gentoo, debian. Also don't shy away if a distribution is not labeled as newbie-friendly. The learning curve might be a bit steep but it'll pay off in the long run and these distributions are usually much more flexible.

I have never heard of PCLinuxOS before. Especially for newbies, it's important to have a big community to help and learn from each other. I would recommend something which has large, friendly forums.

By the way, if he's a "game freak" and the computer never access the net (really?) then there's not much point in switching away from Linux if he's happy with Windows. The worst problem with Windows is that it's extremely vulnerable when connected to a network especially the internet. If that's not the case, I would not be worried about it. There are a lot of reasons to use anything but Windows of course but not so much for someone who just wants to play games.
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