A brief update on my efforts.
I had made a Ubuntu Live USB thumb drive and it worked fine when booting with the thumb drive. But when I tried to install it on an HP laptop (32 bit), it didn't work. I just got a blank screen with a blinking cursor and couldn't do anything. Ross thought it could have been a driver issue. But then I made a Mint 13.0 XFCE Live USB thumb drive. This distribution is about the closest thing to a Windows environment, and that's what I would want the folks at SWOP to start off with.
I then installed Mint 13.0 on the HP laptop. But first I made 3 partitions (swap, operating system, and home drive). I set the swap partition at 10 GB. I don't know if that's too large, but somewhere I read that the swap partition should be 2.5 times the RAM size. The installation worked great and everything seems to work fine.
Now I get to play with the Mint laptop. If I can find the time. I need to spend more time on my Debian laptop that we all have.
Then I worked on Ross' assignment but haven't completed it yet. I set up the 2 users, but I have to re-do it. When I tried to log in to those new user accounts, I was prompted for a password and I didn't set one up. But I'll figure it out this week.
I'm on my way to Califas for the week. Taking my grandson to my hita, and then helping my youngest hita set up at college. She starts orientation this week and is moving in to student housing today. I'll be meeting with a small foundation that uses a Linux server. In talking with the folks, they have similar goals as mine at SWOP. They have Windows and Mac computers and are working on getting them operable in their Linux server. So that should be interesting.
Ok, I didn't want to write a book. Later!!