In This Chapter
You got to be careful if you don’t know where you are going, because you might not get there.
Because there are three major approaches for installing Linux, look at this chapter introduction as a quick road map that tells you which sections are important for your particular situation. If you have a spare computer that’s only going to run Linux and nothing else, you’re in luck! You can skip the “Preparing to Use Linux and Microsoft Windows Together” section. In fact, if you’re feeling brave, you may want to skip right to Chapter 3 and start your installation. There’s troubleshooting information in Chapter 22 as well.
Of course, many people don’t have the luxury of having more than one computer. There are many ways to approach a dual booting situation, where you have both Microsoft Windows and Linux installed on the same computer and reboot the machine to switch between one and the other. The scenario that many people prefer is to add a second, fresh hard drive to install Linux on — or to remove all the data from an existing drive and erase it for Linux. If you decide to go with one of these options, make a note of which drive is which as far as the computer sees them: You want to make sure that you ...