Installing SUSE Linux requires little of the user beyond the ability to use a mouse. The installation program attempts to choose safe default choices in most cases and, if it intends to do something that involves deleting data, it will ensure that you're aware of this by highlighting the option in red on the main menu. In nearly all cases, you should be able to accept the default choices.
You can proceed through the installation by clicking the Next button at the bottom right of each page of choices. Wherever a series of options needs to be confirmed, you should click the Accept button if you're happy with the selections. If not, make your changes, and then click Accept.
No changes will be made to your system until you confirm your choices later on, just prior to starting to copy the files onto your hard disk. This means that you can experiment with different partition combinations, for example, without worrying about damaging or otherwise irreversibly affecting your system. It also means that you can abort installation at any time prior to the file-copying phase.
The installation procedure works through a handful of stages in order to install Linux. First, just after it starts, it will probe your system to discover the nature of your current PC setup, such as whether you already have Windows installed.
At this stage, you will be shown the hard disk partitioning choices and also the selection of software packages that are to be installed. After this, you'll be asked to confirm that you're satisfied with the installation options, and then the installation program will actually partition the disk and copy the Linux files from the DVD.
At the end of this procedure, your PC will reboot, and the postinstallation phase will begin, whereby your hardware will be probed and configured (usually automatically, with negligible user input). This is the stage at which you'll be invited to create users and enter various passwords. After this, setup is complete, and your new system will then be booted, ready for use.
In most cases, the installation of SUSE Linux will run smoothly. If you run into any problems, see Chapter 6, which addresses many of the most common issues and provides solutions.
Other Linux installation programs differ from the SUSE Linux routines. However, most involve the same basic steps.