From inside Ubuntu

My first foray into the Linux world has been a productive, and fairly easy one. The most difficult thing was arriving at meaghans (“LITE” internet? What the hell!”), realizing she had no XP cds as she thought she did, and having my computer tell me it would take 7 hrs to download UBUNTU. Luckily, we went over to her friend Corey’s and were able to download it in an hour and twenty minutes. It worked perfect first try, no messing around (other than forcing the computer to boot from CD). Once up and running in UBUNTU LIVE, it’s easy to get it to install and format your drive (much faster than I assumed too). Also, totally free! As for software, there is this wonderful “add/remove programs” function that allows you to download software from their servers for free. Unfortunately, ubuntu is a little big brother and won’t let me install VLC or AMSN because the ubunto programmers havn’t approved them. If I were a bigger expert I’m sure I could turn that protection off. Or rather, if I were an expert at all – I am completely not an expert of any kind in this field.

The desktop environment is fast, clean. Open office is fine, but abiword is better (also free). Clickable switching to 4 different desktop environments is suprisingly useful (who needs multiple monitors?) Is that available for OSX?

It “just worked” with Meags soundcard and ethernet card. I’m not sure if her wireless card is working, but at this point I’m just happy that I’m on the net and able to do most things.

Things I can still not do on this ubunto machine:

Play DVDs (lacking the encryption software to play commercial dvds. I’m sure VLC includes it, but I can’t seem to install it.)
Play DIVX/XVID (I’m not certain that Kaffein won’t play this, I can’t actually check. Again, VLC would solve the problem.)
Use the Webcam (the webcam software for ubunto is “unsupported” and thus I can’t download it even though it shows up on the add remove programs thingy.)
Use MSN (GAIM is succesfully configured with Meaghan’s msn info, it just won’t retrieve her buddy list, so it’s pretty useless).

Anyone else solved any of these problems?

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