Ok, so I never got around to playing ffxi. I know, its probably a mortal sin around here. I figured I have my new rig and 2 months to wait so i need something to pass the time. I will be buying, installing, and hopefully playing ffxi tonight.
Is there any helpful info that I need to know?
Don't throw away beastman's seals. Pressing + while in your inventory will allow you to sort it, there is also an autosort feature in the menus. /c with a monster selected will gauge the monster's difficulty. Avoid anything "Tough", "Very Tough" or "Incredibly tough". Ctrl+H rests to restore HP/MP, at the cost of TP. There should be a quest you can start when you first begin that takes you through more of the basics; don't skip it. There is a book outside of the city gates, click it and start the first entry which will tell you to kill mobs and reward you with bonus XP and points that can be spent on buffs like HP restore (regen) or MP restore (refresh) as well as temporary items and such.
There's a lot more, which there is likely a sticky in the FFXI forum to cover in more detail. I'll shoot these down one at a time though, so you don't have to ask them again:
A specific server that is better than the other?
Race/class combos that is the "best".
Mabey even a helpful LS to look out for?
Depends on your server; lots of linkshells are helpful. If you just say in your starting city that you're new and ask if anyone will invite you to their linkshell, you'll probably get like 2 or 3 replies. If you like the one you join, stay. If you don't like it, leave. You can be a member of multiple linkshells at a time so joining a new one does not require you to leave an old one.
A better city to start in?
These combinations will result in a ring when you start:
Elvaan = San d'Oria (DEF, +STR, +MND)
Hume/Galka = Bastok (+HP, +VIT, +DEX)
Mithra/Taru = Windurst (+MP, +AGI, +INT)
...any other combination is fine, but you don't get a ring. For a fee in gil, you an always change nation later (or change back) as many times as you like (and can afford).