Ahh, yes. Details. It's all in the details.
Well, Ubuntu has for a long time been my go-to "let's try Linux!" OS. It also has a helpful Help forum and lots of apps, and from what I've seen and used it's easy to use. Linux Mint is Ubuntu with a customized interface and built-in media plugins.
I would hold off on Linux Mint simply because it isn't as "out of the box" as Ubuntu.
That being said, I second Ubuntu. The reason for this is that Ubuntu is very well developed, and it works "out of the box" for the most part. In other words, it is like installing Windows – you install it, and go. There isn't much configuration to do with Ubuntu (although you can if you are skilled in the art).
Here's a guide to installing Ubuntu:
It's actually part of an article on installing Virtual Machines, but the same steps apply to an actual computer.
You beat me to it, Locutus . I third Ubuntu and second Mint. Most Ubuntu based OSes come in Live-CD form, which means that you can burn a CD of Ubuntu (or make a bootable USB) and run it natively on your computer without a virtual machine and without having to install anything. That way, you can get the full experience without committing anything.
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