If you like what you see, you can go ahead and install it, and the instructions will guide you through migrating your files over to Ubuntu during installation. The installation process takes less than 15 minutes on any decent computer system.
The Ubuntu OS has all the features of a major commercial OS such as Windows or iOS:
- Web browsing
- Office Suite (Openoffice.org is native, but you can find more)
- Media players (music, video, photos)
- Hardware support for most peripherals
- Ubuntu actually comes with all the drivers needed for your attached hardware, such as your mouse or webcam, and even has dual screen support
- Widgets and applications
- Documentation of the OS
Ubuntu also comes with a great community and support for the software. Any issues you come across can easily be rectified or at least recognized by visiting either the official Ubuntu forums, or any number of developer/fan forums on the internet.
The Ubuntu OS is optimized for desktops, laptops and servers. There is also talk of a tablet version being developed.
I have been using Ubuntu for the last 2 years, I've been a windows user for the past 10 years, and I have to say there are definitely some advantages. It boots ridiculously fast, and applications are usually snappy. Ubuntu also gives you an Ubuntu One account which is basically cloud storage.
One of the disadvantages, in the beginning at least, was not being able to play Windows games, but I quickly found a workaround (through an application that mimics windows' environment and allows you to install and run games as you would in the regular windows OS).
All in all, I am happy with the switch, Ubuntu is a solid, full-featured OS, and it is of course...FREE!
Enjoy, and live free!