Welcome wizzard

Dan Smith draciron at gmail.com
Wed May 16 16:48:15 UTC 2007

I like Jonathan's idea.  Pointing to the unofficial Fedora FAQ would be one
good start. When setting up a new machine most people are going to want MP3
support, plugin support for the browser and many of the other topics covered
by the unofficial FAQ.  How to automount windoze shares, SMB configurations
and how to mount NTFS partitions will be very important to people using
mixed environments and dual boots.

Even more important to windoze users first trying out LInux is going to be
equivalents. Send them to VI and they'll run screaming into the night back
to windoze. So Kedit/Gedit = notepad  Openoffice = Word  GIMP= photoshop
kinds of tutorials would be a big help. So too would how file permissions
and such work. How to set up cups is pretty essential. Scanners, digital
cameras and such as well.  Another crucial aspect is pointing folks toward
K3b. It will make CD burning easy for even the most novice windoze user.
Nothing comes close in the Linux world to K3b. Though this implies auto
installing at least the KDE libs, technically you want to just install KDE.
Folks that have space issues that would preclude KDE's installation are not
going to use such a wizard anyway. That is one thing I wish Fedora would
correct, the default install will put only Gnome on. That leaves half of the
important apps uninstalled.  A default Fedora install is not a very friendly
install to a new Linux user. Vets can easily remove things they don't want,
so I feel the install should default more toward the kitchen sink rather
than the lean install that is currently used.

The feedback I get from lots of first time Linux users is that they get
lost. They have no idea what to do with their brand spanking new Linux
installation. Some things like how to configure networking has to be local
on the HD. Without it they cannot reach the FAQs on the net.

Other things like pointers to the better Linux games while not important for
business users would help generate more interest in Linux. A tutorial on
window managers with snap shots of what the major ones look like, how to
install them and such would also be a big help. What is especially important
is how to configure repositories. They will be unable to use the Unofficial
FAQ to get anything through Yum without first adding a repository. I know
Redhat does not add this repository to avoid getting sued over copywrites
and such but don't see where there'd be any harm in using a certain
repository as an example of how to add a repository :)

Going a step farther and automating that process is actually a good idea.
While Redhat couldn't support it because of various potential litigation it
could point users to the scripts that would auto configure the system to
play DVDs, MP3s, add a repository, grab the latest Firefox browser instead
of the 1.5 branch that officially comes with Fedora but is nearly obsolete
now. Plugins could then be auto installed. Even for Linux vets that would be
a huge time saver. Creating a functional machine takes a good hour or two of
downloading and installations. I usually wind up forgetting at least a
couple plugins then when I need them I wind up having to restart my browser
or putting it off. Novice users often get lost in the process. Get
frustrated and it gives Linux a bad name. Fedora is also falling behind some
distros in facilitating multi-media which is key to many home users.

There is a learning curve no matter what we do but it can be made a whole
lot less steep with Jonathan's idea and the script I am proposing.

On 5/16/07, Jonathan Roberts <jonathan.roberts.uk at googlemail.com> wrote:
> > You're thinking of a local/fat application?  Something that is kicked
> > off by the completion of firstboot?
> Is more or less what I had in mind.
> >
> > What about putting that into the welcome page for the browser, and
> > auto-starting Firefox?  Whatever that page looks or acts like, it could
> > have a nicely visible "New Users Start Here" widget that kicks off what
> > you are describing.
> That would be a simple way to achieve the launching of it I would
> assume, or possibly an option at the end of the firstboot, like you
> said before.
> >
> > It sounds like a confluence of tool and content/media creation, so it is
> > like an interactive tour.
> I think that might be the most useful way for it to go, but it could
> even be made simpler and just point to the essentials that new users
> might miss.
> Jon
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