Is there official documentation for any distro accessible to complete *nix beginners? That is, aimed at the 95% least technical computer users:

  • Assumes an already installed desktop system with working hardware drivers
  • Names the already installed programs for common tasks, such as Firefox and LibreOffice
  • Explains on a very basic level how to launch programs, install programs and upgrades, and shutting down the machine
  • No mention of command lines, firewalls, dual booting, licenses or other technical/ideological subjects

The idea is to give people even remotely curious about Linux an idea about just how similar modern *nix desktops are to well known Windows versions, and which immediate practical benefits they get: free as in beer forever, fast startup, simple software installation, and safety against viruses by default.

closed as unclear what you're asking by Braiam, jimmij, jasonwryan, Networker, Anthon Jan 25 '15 at 18:31

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  • 1
    I don't see how any information could be "official". There is no official body that governs the various distributions. Are you looking for something like this: help.ubuntu.com/stable/ubuntu-help/index.html ? – terdon Jan 25 '15 at 12:20
  • And once a user has started reading that, they can continue reading in the Help section of Ubuntu after installation. Most people resist change. I only switched over to Ubuntu because Microsoft wanted me to pay money for "upgrading" from a local language to English. (same Windows version, English was not pre-installed...) – Fabby Jan 25 '15 at 12:25

Well, you could always have a look at the Ubuntu documentation. Ubuntu is one of the classic choices for a newbie-friendly distribution and it has a very good set of help documents at https://help.ubuntu.com/. Specifically, I suggest reading from https://help.ubuntu.com/stable/ubuntu-help/index.html.

Mint also provides a very simple user guide with screenshots and everything. You can find it here: http://www.linuxmint.com/documentation.php.

Apart from that, I think what you are looking for is an article about Linux rather than the official docs. No matter how simple you make them, they will always be too long for someone who just wants to get an idea about Linux.

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