Well, to get started with Lyx is pretty straight forward. Of course you have to install the software, which you can download from lyx.org. The installation is again, straight forward. No much hassle. Just say yes to all the question. Unless you want to tweak some features.
Basically it is just like using word processor (Microsoft of OpenOffice or LibreOffice). Create a new file, then you are almost ready to go. If you are using source code editor, first command you put in is
Well, you have to do the same with Lyx. The function can be found in menu Document > Settings. Here basically you can do all the setting necessary. You can select the class file from dropdown menu under Document Class tab. By default, there are few classes already installed in Lyx. That includes article, IEEEtran, elsarticle, beamer (if I not mistaken), book etc. If the class is not installed, it will be marked as Unavailable.
To make a class available in Lyx dropdown menu, you have to create the layout file. It will link the class to the ui of Lyx so that it can be shown. Creating a layout file is very easy. Here is the most basic layout file that can work with any class file.
#% Do not delete the line below; configure depends on this
With that the class file can already work provided that it is saved with the same file name as the class file name, i.e. the class file is myclass.cls, therefore the layout file should be named, myclass.layout. As simple as that.
To include the layout in the dropdown list, you have to save the layout file in layouts folder in Lyx program folder and reconfigure Lyx through menu Tools > Reconfigure and close and reopen Lyx afterwards. Or, if you don't want it listed, you can just use local layout option (there is a local layout button next to the dropdown menu). However, using this option, you must have the layout file in the same folder as your document file.
If you have zero knowledge of LaTeX, don't worry. Once you have selected the document class, you can start entering document content. On top left corner, just below File menu, there is a dropdown menu with option Standard as default. This is called style picker. Standard is for normal text. Here you can select title, author, section, chapter, section*, theorem etc. depending on what is available in class and defined in layout. To change you text into certain style, you don't have to select text, just simply put the cursor anywhere in the text line, and change the style. Now you can start typing the content.
I think that should be it for now. Next time, we will see how to add more than text in Lyx. Until then, happy LaTeXing.