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If I change my operating sytem from Windows Vista to Linux, will any of my files an folders be deleted from my computer?

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It depends on if you format your disk during the install. You should back everything up even if you don't plan on formatting because people make mistakes. As John T said, Ubuntu may help. I recommend Ubuntu as the Linux of choice.

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Actually you should back up all your documents, photos, music, etc. even if you don't plan to change anything because sometimes hard drives fail, or you make a mistake. Back up regularly. – CarlF Jan 17 '10 at 5:32

If you use the entire disk during the install, yes. When installing you can partition your disk and install Linux to a separate partition on the disk so your Windows files aren't touched. More user friendly distributions such as Ubuntu will give you easy partition creator so you can allocate as much space as you want to Linux, and both operating systems can still be available.

In fact, I believe Ubuntu even has a migration assistant which helps you transfer files and settings upon install. I'd suggest using Wubi for a first time install. It will allow you to install Ubuntu from within Windows, so if you don't like it you can easily uninstall from within Windows like any other regular application.

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