Noob error: uninstalled samba then attempted reinstalling
I have decided that I've had enough Microsoft and it's monopoly and it's time to enter the Linux world, and a friend recommended Mandriva 2007 free as user-friendly and suitable for beginners, so I emptied a 15 GB partition and installed it, the installation went smoothly, and I started discovering the OS, and I really liked the magnificent collection of software and utilities, for example, I really adored kopete being capable of running many accounts simultaneously and in tabs…..and I started using the mandriva Linux control center, installing and updating programs, everything went great, except for the mouse wheel and some minor stuff….
Samba was working very nicely and I could easily connect to my brother's computer with his winxp 64 bit through our lan, later, samba stopped working, and I kept trying to make it work and detect the network that it had previously detected (the path even autocompletes the correct lan url when I start writing in Konqueror), I failed completely, even trying to set it up manually, so I had this windows-based idea, to uninstall samba and then reinstall it so that it can autodetect the lan again !!, so, as a total noob, I confidently went to the control center and searched for samba and uninstalled it, further, I uninstalled another similar program that I failed to use called smb4k or something like that, when I was uninstalling both, it told me of dependencies that need to be removed with it, so I thought for a moment, these must be limited to samba and only needed by it –mandriva can't be that stupid!! I thought-, so I accepted and they were removed, in the same session, I was enjoying amorok playing music, and having a long chat with Kopete, all working fine, but then I started noticing that the down left icons in my screen (KDE) , those of firefox, open office and a third I don't recall, have started to change one after the other into an icon meaning that these won't work, and when I clicked the icon I got a message that the program (firefox) is corrupt or damaged or something with that meaning, and the same with the other icons, so I started doubting that may be mandriva wasn't as smart as I figured and those dependencies were structural for other programs as well, so I opened the control center again and tried to reinstall samba, it just didn't give me any response, so, I restarted the computer, hoping for the best; some noob-friendly automatic recovery or some wizard !!! (very silly of me of course !!) , turned out none !, even the gui won't start, only giving me some error messages and then giving me a console –which is something I know nothing about, so I thought of reinstalling the missing parts again with the cd images, so I booted with them, to find a frustrating recovery system that keeps telling me that anything can fixed from within Linux if it boots and that this is a tool only if your system won't boot, I was thinking of something more like windows repair, only to detect the missing parts and reinstall them, but I couldn't figure out how to do that, although I'm sure linux must have it somewhere!
So now I'm a bit frustrated, although still determinant on understanding more about linux, I'm currently confused with this problem, and started thinking that mandriva may not be suitable for me since it was relying on me not to fall in that error !! and my brother recommends UBUNTU linux claiming that it is more user-friendly and that it wouldn't have let me fall into such an error, I'm also considering installing mandriva from the beginning.
Finally, I'm a total noob with this whole issue who came here for your help, and hope you go easy on me, please advise.