I downloaded the Kubuntu CD image from the official site, burned it to a CD, set my BIOS to boot from removable media first. I have a Dell Dimension 9100 and it was set to boot from HD first. The installation seemed to go smoothly. The only option I had to change from the default was the time zone.
Unfortunately, after booting up, I discovered that my display was stuck at a sub-optimal resolution. To remedy this, I used sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg and was able to select the correct resolution for my FP2405.
Additionally, my Logitech MX510's extra buttons were miss-mapped. For example, the foreword and back buttons don't go foreword or backwards in any of the browsers.
Installing and Upgrading with apt-get
Kubuntu includes a apt-get GUI called Adept. One of the first things I did was use the System Update Wizard. I basically just pressed "Upgrade" and everything on my machine was upgraded.
Next, I used the System>Package Manager (Adept) to install the linux-686-smp kernel metapackage, which, I hope, took advantage of the HyperThreading available on my 3.0Ghz Intel P4. This required a reboot.
I'd heard of Native Eclipse and wondered if Adept had it. All I had to do was type "Eclipse" into the Adept search box and install everything. Apparently, the GCJ appended packages provide the natively compiled portions of the installation.
Eventually, I discovered Kubuntu-Automatix. This is basically a super-install shell script with a GUI. I used to install common codecs, media players, Firefox + all plugins (flash etc.), SUN Java, MS TrueType Fonts, RAR, ACE, MPlayer, OpenOffice.org 2.0, and DMA (Direct Memory Access - devices can directly shuttle information to memory without using the CPU). This script includes a ton of packages. There are even DVD decoders, (which the installer says are illegal to install in the United States).