7 Steps to migrate painlessly to GNU/Linux

or "How I learnt to stop worrying about bombs & migrate to GNU/Linux"

I've been a Microsoft Windows user for many years - I've grown up with it from using 286's with Windows for Workgroups 3.11 at University.

Time has moved on and GNU/Linux has become more usable, powerful and has some features and applications that make it indispensable as an Operating System today - I find myself using it more and more for certain tasks. Mostly server based, but I've gradually become more impressed with it as a desktop, especially since Ubuntu reached version 6.06 (Dapper Drake)

Now I'm always happy to use the right tool for the job, there's no Windows/Linux fanboy in me. However deciding on GNU/Linux at home is a personal choice due many reasons, including the licensing controversy surrounding Vista, price and DRM amongst others, and I simply don't wish to go with it. Since now 95% of the little gaming I do is now done on consoles (Damn you, Counter-Strike: Source and while I'm writing I'm currently on an Eve Online trial.) as it is the only software area that GNU/Linux can not reproduce as effectively at the moment. I felt it was time to make the move.

The end result I was looking at is total migration to GNU/Linux, at home for every application I use with any Windows applications running under WINE or as a last resort, on a Virtual Machine. I still use Windows at work (where I can control the machine and put whatever applications I wish to use on it anyway).
So I'm now on step 7 and doing quite well thank you. This step-by-step progression is quite a common sense approach, but what is obvious to some people isn't necessarily to others and so I list it here for those that could use a nudge.