Comment of the Day - October 27, 2005 - Summary of Linux Distributions

Posted by tadelste on Oct 26, 2005 9:59 PM
Lxer -Article; By Abe

In responding to a reader's questions, Abe writes:"I think you made a good choice by starting with OpenSuse 10. Six years ago, I started using Red Hat Linux then I tried Suse. Today, Suse is still my main distro (distribution). It is complete good desktop/server that has everything and anything you can think of and available as part of FOSS (Free Open Source Software)."

Related to: An old hacker slaps up Slackware

The suggestions by the previous poster are all good, but personally I think you made a good choice by starting with OpenSuse 10. Six years ago, I started using Red Hat Linux then I tried Suse. Today, Suse is still my main distro (distribution). It is complete good desktop/server that has everything and any think you can think of and available as part of FOSS (Free Open Source Software). Very solid reliable easy to install and available for free (I suggest contributing though). I constantly keep up with the latest releases of other distros but Suse has been the best for me. The best way to determine what you like and suites you is to take a look at the major distros and determine for your self. You really have to spend a few weeks to make an intelligent choice. You seem to be in a hurry and want to become productive right away, I hope you don't have the impression you are going to be just as you are on MS. Initially you wont, but eventually you will be much more. Here is my opinion to help you expedite your decision.

- Knoppix: It is Debian [HYPERLINK@www.us.debian.org] based. Made to run from CD/DVD to learn and explore without installing any thing on the hard drive (You can do that though). It is also very good to test your hardware and make sure it is Linux supported. Many of other LiveCD distros are based on Knoppix

- Mepis, Kanotix, PCLinuxOS: Excellent user friendly simple distros. They come with KDE desktop, which in opinion, easier and more like Windows desktop than GNOME. Your familiarity with Windows will be helpful here. They all are more of a desktop than a server. They do have all basic applications but doesn't have the development environment that I thing you are looking for. Your can install development package on them right of the Internet though. Like Knoppix, they come on a LiveCD which you can boot and work with it just as good as XP plus features you wont find in windows. You can install it on the hard drive in 10-15 minutes and you have a full working desktop. They co-exist with Windows on a separate partition. They use Synaptic, which makes applications installation easier than XP right of Internet repositories.

- Suse & Mandriva: They are not based on Debian but very good systems. Mandriva, I personally don't recommend but it is very popular among users who want good support furnished through their club. Suse is my favorite and you wont be disappointed. It comes on 5 CDs which you can download of the Internet. ftp://mirrors.usc.edu/pub/linux/distributions/suse/i386/10.0/iso/ is a good site for me. Installation is solid and very user friendly. Although is lengthy, you get the chance to select to install whatever you like, including Apache (web server), MySQL (database), PHP & Perl (Web scripting) (LAMPP). For a stack of these, lookup XAMP which will get you going in web development in no time. Suse has very automated process to patch and install applications especially security patch which you can automatically monitor to down load as soon as they are published by Suse.



Keep in mind that Lxer.com members here are always eager to help but also consider other sites that are specialized in furnishing support and help via forums. Keep in mind that you have to spend some effort on your own searching and looking for things in this Universe we call the Internet. FOSS developers and advocates are not going to feed you with a silver spoon. Don't forget that big part of the fun is learning on your own (I noticed that you don't enjoy doing that which could be a problem). I hope this helps and good luck.

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