If you haven’t seen of, or at least heard of the “Dummies” books, I don’t know where you’ve been living! Ever since the first “For Dummies” book hit the shelves back in 1991, they’ve been a huge success. At this point they cover nearly any topic possible, focusing on ones that are complex, confusing, or intimidating. Seeing as the entire topic of computers, hardware, software, and the Internet can be a bit intimidating, there’s a whole line of books that fall under each of these topics. Today I thought we’d take a look at some of those books, but more specifically, the ones geared towards Open Source Software.

You’ll notice that there’s a link to the dummies homepage for each book. These books can be found for much less at sites like Amazon, but one of the benefits of linking to the homepage is that there’s an excerpt from the book as well as the table of contents so that you can see what all you’re getting and what it covers. If it interests you, go read an excerpt, and take a look at the table of contents before going to another site to buy it. Here’s CyberNet’s list of Open Source books for Dummies that may be worth taking a look at.

  1. linux for dummies Linux for Dummies, 8th Edition
    If you’re wanting to dive into Linux but you’re just not sure where to start, Linux for Dummies will get you pointed in the right direction.  It focuses on Fedora Core 6 but also includes information on other distributions like SuSE, Mandriva, Linspire, Knoppix, and Ubuntu.
  2. OpenOffice.org for Dummies
    openoffice for dummies This book was published in December 2003 so it’s definitely due for an update.  If you’re at all interested in using OpenOffice.org, it might be a good idea to stop at a book store and take a peak at it just so you can get an idea of what it’s all about. It covers a wide variety of different topics and includes into about templates and styles, creating spreadsheets, and more.
  3. Ubuntu Linux for Dummies
    ubuntu linux for dummies We talk quite a bit about Ubuntu Linux here at CyberNet because it is one of the most popular distributions.  Published just this year, Ubuntu Linux for Dummies will teach you how to tap into multimedia, graphics and other applications using Ubuntu, generate and mange web pages, print service, and troubleshoot problems you may be having. They’ll also explain how to run Ubuntu right from a CD-ROM and how to install it on your PC or a network server.
  4. Firefox for Dummies
    firefox for dummies Given the number of readers who use Firefox, and the fact that Learn Firefox can teach you just about anything you’d want to know about it, this book probably won’t come in handy for yourself. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t recommend it to a friend that’s not so tech savvy to teach them all about what they’re missing out on! Firefox for Dummies is written by Blake Ross (creator of Firefox), it’ll be just enough to get your Friends who have been using Internet Explorer for way to long thinking about making a switch. It’s full of history, and the sometimes forgotten details that make Firefox a browser to love.
  5. Free Software for Dummies
    free software for dummies While this book isn’t completely dedicated to Open Source software, it covers a lot of it from OpenOffice.org to Thunderbird, GIMP (the image editor) and even Blender. They point out how to locate the best free software out there that will work with Windows, Mac, or Linux. Sure you can spend lots of money on software, but why do it when you can get a lot of it for free that works just as well?