Bottom line first: This is a story of success !
My lovely mum was used to a Windows 2003 system which was fully filled with crap programs she never need. With some assistance she got quite familiar with email, surfing in the net, capturing and modifying pictures from her digital camera, scanning paintings, chatting with skype and so on.
So it recently happens that her system got unstable. It turned out to be a physical harddisk-failure crashing the system after a random amount of time. Luckily my mom made her homework and had all her personal data burnt to CD's already. Good mum, I am proud of you.
Since I did not plan to futher maintain any windows system (not to mentioned that I for sure won't install Vista on her computer) I switched her to Linux :) ... my mum seemed to got a bit afraid of this idea, anyway.
I bought a new harddisk and an additonal external USB harddisk for her, replaced the bad disk with the new one, gave the latest Ubuntu CD to my mom and told her :
"Now, please install your computer".
... she looked at me as if was from outter space. I quickly convinced here to start.
So, you know what happened. In less than 10 mouse clicks she had her new Ubuntu Linux-system up + running.
She asked : "That was it ? The installation is already finished now ? Unbelievable ..."
With some help she then put all her personal data back, enabled the mediaubuntu repository, installed skype, get used to openoffice (within some minutes) and enabled the remote-desktop option so that I always can help her from remote. Worked out pretty well I thought and was curious if she adadapts to it and how long it will take.
Now a good week is over since she moved to Linux and here are some quotes from here :
"This Linux made my computer a lot faster than before."
I asked her if the new system is kind to her and she replied :
"Oh, yes, very kind. It is much more convinient and easier to use now"
She told me :
"Really nice, this Linux system. To be honest I was quite afraid that everything will be different and I would need to learn lots of things from the scratch. But no, things are simple to understand and I am already back working with it like I was used to before. It is just easier and more transparent now."
Last thing on my todo list for her is to install a simply rolling backup cron job using rsync to backup her home directoy on the external usb disk. No big deal and we will all slepp better then.
My resume is that switching my mum to Linux was exactly the right thing.
Now her system is maintainable and she really starts to like it very much.
Another positive side-effect is that the friends who previously helped my mum with her computer do not have any clue from Linux so they won't be able to install any useless crap-software she do not need anyway.
Mum is happy and me too, hehehehe. Thought it would be a good example of Linux arriving on the Desktop.