OpenSUSE for my parents

I am planning on installing suse on my parents computer, I’m not really computer savy, and they are even less so. I want to do this because they get scared whenever something pops up or the antivirus runs a scan and finds something.In addition, they worry about online security when doing online banking, shopping, etc. So my question is do I need to take any extra precautions to to give them a safe online environment. I am assuming the switch from windows to suse will provide a big security upgrade. Thanks for any help

You need to be aware that, because openSUSE creates a potentially active root user, they will periodically get popups about security updates and they will have to enter a password to install these; the default installation creates a root user password which is the same as the first user’s password - they so don’t have to remember two passwords.

openSUSE, or Linux generally, won’t protect you from most online threats because these increasingly rarely come from hackers as such; they come, as Richard Clayton calls them, from ‘drive-by’ malware, that is, emails or websites which dupe the user into clicking into a rogue site. Online criminals have found it is much easier to entrap people this way than by traditional viruses. Of course, they still need botnets from which openSUSE will protect you more than Windows but your parents really need to be educated in good web browsing pratices to avoid the majority of traps these days.

Just the default install will be fine.
You know 11.4 is released very soon, so might it be worth the wait?
You will want the multimedia installed, they’ll likely expect that to work:
Multimedia in One Click

Otherwise, I would just say:
Add the Adblock extension to Firefox:

That should keep them happy.

Other users may have different ideas*

On 02/28/2011 08:36 AM, quietthought wrote:
> I’m not really computer savy

if that means you don’t run openSUSE everyday then please do not
‘dump’ openSUSE on your parents and expect them to make it on their own…

i say that because about five years ago i set up a grandmother aged
friend with an openSUSE computer, and did NOT give her root access…

while the system remained very secure and never close to being
hacked–still she managed to ball up her user account and i had to
‘rescue’ her from herself a few times…plus i had to go over every
once in a while and run in the updates…

sure, i could have set it up so i could do all of that remotely…but,
i always got a nice lunch out of the trip (and, she thought i was a

so, if you are “not really computer savy” and willing to go over and
hold their hands from time to time on openSUSE, i’d recommend you NOT
hook them up with a system you can’t administer for them, either
remotely or on site…

instead you might recommend a computer store near them with a ‘geek
squad’ or whatever, and a contract to keep them and their computing
needs safe and tidy…

on the other hand, i know a guy in Slovenia who might be willing to
administer your parents machine remotely…last i checked he charged
25 US Dollars per hour for that…but, that was over 5 years ago and
at the time that was all he was doing, now he is in the countries
largest ISP and pretty busy, he may charge a LOT more, because he
doesn’t need the work.

[NNTP posted w/openSUSE 11.3, KDE4.5.5, Thunderbird3.0.11, nVidia
173.14.28 3D, Athlon 64 3000+]
“It is far easier to read, understand and follow the instructions than
to undo the problems caused by not.” DD 23 Jan 11