I've been using the Ubuntu distribution of Linux for nearly two years now, and during that time I've only used the upgrade utilities to update my install to new versions across the Internet.
A new motherboard and hard drive, however, gave me an opportunity to try out a fresh install of the operating system using the latest install disc from the group.
I have to say I'm impressed, as the install disc automatically boots into a "live" version of the distribution. This allows you to preview the OS and try it out on your hardware without making any changes to your system.
All of my hardware was auto-detected, from sound card to video and networking, and the example applications available from the desktop include multimedia players and web browsers, all ready for testing.
If you want to proceed with the install, you just click on the "Install" desktop icon and the process begins.