- The Many Faces of Linux
- Obtaining the Linux OS
- Burning Your Images
- Selecting an Installation Class
- Partitioning the Drives
- Configuring the Boot Loader
- Configuring the Network
- Configuring the Firewall
- Configuring the Language Support
- Configuring the Time Zone
- Selecting a Root Password
- Package Selection
Obtaining the Linux OS
You can purchase a retail, box copy, of pretty much any distribution of Linux for varying amounts of money. When you purchase the software you usually get hard-copy versions of their manuals and some sort of customer support. You can purchase the software through large retail chains (Best Buy, CompUSA, buy.com, etc.), or through the web site for that particular distribution (redhat.com, debian.com, etc.).
The great thing about Linux, and the reason why most people use it, is because it is FREE. This means, that unless you are interested in supporting the organization that is developing your particular distribution of Linux, there is no need to pay for the software. There are various places to obtain the software for free, although they all are on the internet. This means that if you do not have a high-speed internet connection at your disposal (all UW students do through the public labs in Odegaard and Mary Gates Hall), it would take you days/weeks to successfully download a distribution. But, once you do download a distribution, all you have to do is burn the ISO's (a CD Image format that requires special software to "Burn"), and take it home for you to legally own a copy of the software.
Here is a great site for downloading various distributions of Linux:
Although this site is great, LinuxISO.org's servers often have problems, and therefore, it is very difficult to obtain an image on your first try.