I prefer to use C/C++ right now since I'm the most familiar with that but I'm willing to try other languages as I get caught up.
C# is a good language to start off with. I also recommend Ruby (with Ruby on Rails) and Python.
What free IDEs and database servers do you recommend? I've found Netbeans and MySQL but are they good?
Visual Studio, definitely, for C#.
MySQL is okay for hobbiests, but if you want to be serious about databases career wise. Learn MS SQL and Oracle. In my experience MySQL has a much smaller feature set and just isn't used professionally. Saying Facebook uses it isn't good enough. It might be big in F/OSS world but there really isn't any money in F/OSS. Not good money anyway.
I'd agree with the MySQL comment, but to call it hobbyist is far from it. Its feature set isn't something to scoff at, MySQL is fast. Buddy of mine used it when doing trading; they stored network information, stock values, etc. on it - MySQL not only handled the load but ran faster than SQL Server, Oracle and PostgreSQL. Their software algorithms had to make split-second trades, and it aggregated data for decisions on MySQL.
Also, Facebook isn't really using MySQL, IIRC. They're doing more NoSQL where they use hashes to store data. It's quicker and you can replicate across multiple nodes better than, say, merge replication. I'd disagree with your F/OSS comment, money is good with F/OSS (low TCO for IT Departments), even I'm making the F/OSS jump and I love C#.