04.Getting started with Ubuntu
Now that you've got Ubuntu up and running, take a look around. You'll notice that the GUI is quite different to Windows or OS X. It may seem daunting, but this guide will show you how to install software, along with a few programs that we recommend for standard users.
The most important thing to remember is that Ubuntu doesn't have a traditional start menu - instead, it has a search function in the top-left corner (default). This is where you go to open folders and run programs. Type the name of the folder or program into the search tool to open it. The list of icons on the left side of the screen is a quick launch station, similar to the dock on OS X. You can add regularly used programs to this list, and any program or folder that is open will appear there.
Look for a filing cabinet icon in the left hand menu. This contains your system files, and may require a password to access if you encrypted the folder during the installation. Unless you are an expert, don't go poking around in your system files. You can permanently damage the operating system if you accidentally delete a crucial system file. If you're running a dual boot system, note that you can still access and delete your Windows files via Ubuntu.
One of the best features of Ubuntu is the pre-loaded software. Most of what you need to run a basic system is already available, although there are a few things missing. You can install most additional software from the Ubuntu Software Center, which will automatically complete most of the terminal commands for you.