We've built a computer. We've turned it on, went through the bios setup to boot from CD/DVD and then the hard drive. The next step is to load the operating system. Before we do that it might be informative to answer the question: Why Ubuntu?
First off, an operating system is responsible for running the underlying programs that make all the applications on your computer operational. It connects you to the Internet, makes your mouse and keyboard functional, stores your programs and data on your hard drive and reads the hard drive into memory. In short, it runs all the hardware and software in your computer.
It might seem like it, but Windows does not make the only operating system that runs computer hardware. Apple makes a pretty good operating system, which is Linux based. Linux is a darn good operating system that comes in several different varieties, called distros. Ubuntu is one of those distros, there is also Fedora, SuSE, Slackware, and Red Hat, to name a few.
Ubuntu has the reputation of having the most people friendly interface. The closest replacement for Windows. Ubuntu has a release every six months and are continually improving the distro to make it easy to use and install. Linux has traditionally been an operating system for geeks. Ubuntu's approach is similiar to Microsofts, that is to build an operating system that is easy to use for non-technical users.
Ubuntu is free. Ubuntu also has good documentation and support. It contains all the applications you need: a web browser, email, an office suite, multimedia apps, instant messaging and more.
In short, everything you need from an operating system, along with a bunch of free application software, internet connectivity and email. It installs in less time than windows. You don't have to put a license number in and get in touch with Microsoft to get up and running, and it's stable, and secure.
The drawback, it's not Windows. What do I mean, well there is a slight learning curve since it's not Windows. If your open to learning a slightly different way of doing the same thing you do in Windows, Ubuntu may be for you.