What help do you need?
What help do you need?
I suspect that the term MATE means that this is designed to be a "MATE" to Windows
No. It is a Linux Desktop which was developed in Argentina. It is MAT-ey and not mate. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MATE_%28software%29
Just use the Linux Mint disk and tell it, when it asks, to use the whole disk.
Normally in Ubuntu there is not an Administrator account. Normally Ubuntu works with "sudo" rather than "su".
There are different accounts of what sudo means, but one is "super user do". Sudo gives temporary Root rights for about 15 minutes.
If you know the sudo password all well and good. If not then you will need to reset it. Look at e.g. http://www.psychocats.net/ubuntu/resetpassword
As with this post https://www.linux.com/community/forums/getting-started-with-linux/getting-right-linux-for-my-laptop probably Xubuntu or Lubuntu should suit.
It's not rocket science. Mostly it's not about which distro of Linux you should use, it's about whether you use a 32 bit version or a 64 bit version.
The Toshiba Satellite L300 has a dual core processor which means a 64 bit version would be appropriate. (But, a 32 bit version will still run on a 64 bit machine.)
It would be better to use a distro which is aimed at newbies, like one of the *buntus.
Since you only have 1Mb of RAM you might be better to steer away from Ubuntu itself and use something lighter like Xubuntu http://xubuntu.org/getxubuntu/
or Lubuntu https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Lubuntu/GetLubuntu
The *buntus normally come out anew every 6 months but some are designated LTS (Long Term Support) and they last longer. The last LTS and probably the one to get was 14.04.
What is the result when you put into a Terminal?: lsusb
What distro are you using? I have a slide scanner. It is just a digital camera/webcam in a case. Mine works with "Cheese". Try that, or a similar program, that takes a snapshot.
Ubuntu has a new issue every six months. Some are supported for a longer time, they are know as LTS - Long Term Support.
10.10 means 2010, October. It was supported until 2012, April.
Normally you can't upgrade say 10.10 straight to 14.10. You need to go from 10.10 through 11.04 to 11.10 to 12.04 to 12.10 LTS to 14.04 LTS...
There are too many things that can go wrong with this.
It will be easier to copy off all of your personal stuff, to an external USB drive, and then do a new, clean install.
Generally you don't need an antivirus with Linux. You might want to install a firewall in your machine, something like UFW (Uncomplicated Firewall).
Not free. Need to pay $49 (One off? A year?)