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I'm going to download Ubuntu onto this computer which runs Windows XP. Will installing Ubuntu automatically replace and remove my current OS, or will I have to do that manually?

Another question I have: Will I have to backup the files and programs on my computer in order to have them after I install Ubuntu?

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Downloading will not. During installation be sure to understand what you are doing and read the installation guide.

Although rare, installing an OS is major surgery on your boxen.

If you value your data you have always have backup up, period.

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Bro, Download it, Burn to DVD, Put it in and boot it up, You'll have two Options, Try Ubuntu and Install Now

You Try it without Touch your HDD, or if you are planning to Install it Permanently, You will have several Options, Replace Replace Windows X with Ubuntu, and you'll also have Install Ubuntu Alongside Windows

If you Choose the Replace Windows Option, Everything is Wiped Permanently, However you may have a chance to recover your files using Data Recovery apps..

Anyway, if you choose to install it alongside Windows, if Your HDD has only One Partition, You'll need to Divide a Piece of your HDD for Ubuntu, It Will offer you that With a Divider that Can Be Dragged to Specify The Size you Want

And lastly then you Click Next And Then Install Now and That's all!

Oh and to Note Downloading Won't affect anything, and also Another Things to note that You Can Install Using a Flash Drive rather than a DVD, btw, it's faster, To do so use Pen Drive Linux

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It's very easy!

You download the Ubuntu image first, then burn the image onto DVD, then insert it in your DVD drive and reboot your computer. Just make sure you use BIOS (not UEFI firmware). After booting with DVD is completed, select "Install Ubuntu" instead of "Try Ubuntu". You will see some settings, then when the part where you worry about shows, just : "Install Ubuntu Alongside Windows". It's easy and whole process and after-install updates usually take about ten or twenty minutes. :)

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You can do the "install along side windows" as suggested in the previous post, however I advise against installing if you are unfamiliar. I would do the try ubuntu optin first, or maybe load it up I'm a virtual machine (virtualbox) first. That way, you always have minimal impact if you decide it ain't your thing (which I doubt, but it does happen).

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