Migrating My Data
The data migration process was relatively simple. I back up my data on each and every day that I use my computer. The backups go to external USB drives. (I did that when I used Windows; I do it now on Ubuntu. Back up, Back up, Back up. It’s the only safe way to use a computer. Any computer.)
I made sure my backups were current and then installed Ubuntu. When the installation had finished I connected my USB drives and dragged my data back to the appropriate folders.
In your home folder in Ubuntu you have folders with such names as Documents, Music, Pictures and Videos. These are the Ubuntu equivalents to the Windows folders called My Documents, My Music, My Pictures, etc.
That much was simple. It required nothing more than copying files.
This covered off all of my office documents, music and pictures. The documents were either created by me using the OpenOffice.org office suite or they were emailed to me as attachments. Without exception those attachments were created by others using Microsoft Office.
Ubuntu used to come pre-configured with OpenOffice.org. This latest release of Ubuntu (11.04 Natty Narwhal) has replaced OpenOffice.org with LibreOffice. LibreOffice is a separate and distinct project, based on the OpenOffice.org source code. (That deserves a post of its own.)
LibreOffice.org works with the all of the document file formats that OpenOffice.org works with, including the Microsoft Office formats, so there was no panic there.