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Arnieman

Best Linux Distro?

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So, I am a "loyal" Windows user, since 3.1 and now into XP - but not yet Vista. Can't seem to bear the thought of Vista...

 

That aside, I recently had some older computers come to my possession, and I think I may try to build a working one out of them and then, well... I wanna test using Linux.

 

The question becomes, what is a good Linux distro for someone who has used DOS and Windows - but is no way an expert, but wants to become more versatile? I can't post specs here yet - the comp isno't built. Highest probable processor I can think of in the mess is Pentium 3, no clue on clock-speed. Other specs I will post if this also will help people to point me to the best possible Linux distro for me.

 

Anything else I can think of as I chronicle my adventure, I'll post here. If you can and want to help or contribute creatively, feel free.

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I like Ubuntu. I've tried Suse and openSuse. Some folks prefer rpm type distributions<Suse, Redhat, Fedora, Others> while others prefer Debian <Ubuntu, Debian, Others>. Ubuntu has new version coming out every six months. Whatever distribution you choose, I'm sure you'll be happier then with WindBlows. Linux Distribution list

Edited by popeye

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Considering your specific case, of being a long time Windows user looking to try Linux, i agree with the above posters that Ubuntu is by far the best choice.

 

Ubuntu is the distribution that finally got me to completely change over to Linux on my main system (after many attempts with other distros that ended with me going back to Windows). I ran Ubuntu for almost a year and learned much using it. During that time i went from using the normal Ubuntu install to running the 'Command line only' install and then building up the rest of the system piece by piece (but dont rush into that, use the normal Desktop install at first).

With the knowledge gained from a year of 'easier' Linux usage, i have now, just days ago, installed ArchLinux... i'm hoping it will be the pinnacle of performance oriented, binary-package driven, minimalist Linux distributions.

 

The only issue you may come across is that Ubuntu is a little heavy. If you find it's too slow on the system you're putting together, try Xubuntu (it's just Ubuntu but using the XFCE desktop environment, instead of using Gnome).

Xubuntu (along with Kubuntu, which uses the KDE DE) are officially supported and developed by Canonical (the creators of Ubuntu), they're not little 3rd-party off-shoots.

 

If you have any problems with whatever the current Ubuntu release is once you have the system ready, try the 8.04 (Hardy) release, as it is considered a "Long Term Support" release and is highly stable and compatible.

 

The only other suggestion i'll make is that if the system ends up being more low-end (i.e. <256MB RAM, <500Mhz), you could try VectorLinux Standard. It provides many GUI tools that current day Windows users often find appealing and is designed with older hardware in mind:

Standard Edition: Pentium 200 or better, 96MB RAM, 2.1GB hard drive space for system only, more for your data.

The only downfall is that Vector does lack the massive amount of pre-compiled software packages that Ubuntu(/Debian) has.

 

EDIT:

Oh, a good site for getting quick run-downs on features and stuff for pretty much all Linux distributions is DistroWatch.

http://distrowatch.com/

 

EDIT2:

Another note; if you're new to Linux, dont use 'RC' or 'Beta' distribution releases, just use the last stable release... you dont want to be battling stability/compatibility issues before you've even learned the general environment. :)

Edited by Korrode

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Honestly there's several recommendable distros out there.

 

For a brand-new-to-Linux user, OpenSUSE is quite simple to install, keep updated, and as well has a huge selection of repositories to get programs you need/want. Keeps it pretty simple for the starter user, but there's plenty for the more advanced user (or one trying to learn more advanced things) as well.

 

And yes, the most important thing, there are RPMs for Eternal Lands (including sound) available. :)

 

 

I've tested quite a few distros, and when it comes to simplicity for a starting Linux user, I recommend OpenSUSE as it has taken many steps to be as simple as possible, while leaving options for more advanced usage as well.

 

(This is not a fanboy message, other distros being recommended could probably easily be used as well. The beauty of Linux is freedom, that includes freedom to choose from a wide selection of distros, hehe.)

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My recommendation for a first foray in to using linux are in order:-

 

Ubuntu (including Kubuntu and Xubuntu)

Mandriva

Suse (including OpenSuse)

 

After you have used them and got to understand a bit about how they work you'll know whether you want to stick with what you have or if you want to try a different distro.

 

Either way good luck and remember to join your nearest LUG :)

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I'ld say Kubuntu (Ubuntu with KDE interface instead of Gnome). I got my dad to start using it about a year and a half ago. He's no linux expert but he likes it better than windows :)

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Seems like the most popular is Ubuntu or some form thereof.

 

Not yet built the machine, life issues coming up and all... Will keep posting as updates come.

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well the point is, what do you want?

do you want a system as easy as windows? then stay with windows.

do you want an quite easy system with the possibility of learning something about "linux"? then use (k)ubuntu/fedora (kubuntu issnt as good as ubuntu imo, but thats just my personal opinion as i dont like kde).

do you want to use "linux"? then learn something about compiling software, build your own kernel (the kernel is the real linux tho, everything else is just GNU/3rd party software) and install the software you need (debian, dsl or especially gentoo is a good base system for building a "real" linux).

 

imo linux is freedom, the freedom to build the perfect working environement for you out of millions pieces of software that are free.

if you really consider seriously about using linux, do yourself 1 favour, dont ever install suse/opensuse! every good concept of linux is withdrawn by novel imo... suse is a bad clone of windows, nothing more imo (last version i tried was early 9.x version, maybe it changed today)

 

linux is different, dont expect it to behave like windows, it wont! linux is not better than windows, its just for the advanced and interested computer user...

 

for the point with the computers specs, dont worry about it, with some knowlege, every distro (as in principle every distro is the same, just the linux kernel+[different] 3rd party software) can be slimmed down to run on almost each pc (disabling eye candy, disabling services that are not really needed etc, similar to windows, but you will have alot more options)

 

i would recommend you, to try a few live-cd's. so you can try out the different working environements/window managers (gnome, kde [most windows like], xfce, rox, afterstep, windowmaker, fluxbox[ :icon13: ] just to name a few) and find out what is the best for you. google is a big help, in finding lists of linux live-cd's.

 

at the end, i want to tell you a sentence, that i tell all pll telling me they want to use linux: linux brings only an advantage, if you are really interested in linux and are willing to learn and use a couple new things. again, if you want your pc to "just work", stick with windows

 

<sensless flame>oh yes, ubuntu issnt linux, as it doesnt use the official kernel :D </sensless flame>

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<sensless flame>oh yes, ubuntu issnt linux, as it doesnt use the official kernel :D </sensless flame>

huh? :icon13:

In what way is Ubuntu's kernel not 'official'? or any less 'official' than any other pre-compiled distro? citation plx.

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Well idk about what you want/need, but i really like Ubuntu 8.04 (Gnome). I still have alot of trouble with it, but it is growing on me. and with mates on linux makes my life a whole lot easier. and when you are a gamer on a linux box.. Wine is your friend :icon13:

And another handy thing is all updates are automatic and ready for you to download, unlike M$windows where you need to pay.

 

-Sabbath

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linux is different, dont expect it to behave like windows, it wont! linux is not better than windows, its just for the advanced and interested computer user...

let the flames begin :icon13:

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Ubuntu is statistically the most used Linux distribution out there. However, I find it slow and it does not fit the way I work. There is also a superb, Windows-friendly distribution called Mint Linux which has received a lot of glowing reports.

 

I run Zenwalk, which is a Slackware clone that is similar to ArchLinux, but - IMO, of course - simpler to install. The full install is around 450-500 MB, which is less than ¾ of a CD, and around 98-100% of hardware will work straight out of the box. There is also a live version you can try without installing.

 

I think think it would be perfect for your older computers, although I do not consider my system old at all! One of the best things about Zenwalk, however, is the very friendly and knowledgeable community. I have yet to encounter a problem that could not be fixed, with or without help from the forums.

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linux is different, dont expect it to behave like windows, it wont! linux is not better than windows, its just for the advanced and interested computer user...

let the flames begin :D

Also, are you saying that Windows users are not advanced or interested? ;)

Please create a thread in Off-topic so we can flame you! :icon13:

 

http://www.eternal-lands.com/forum/index.p...st&p=484016

Edited by EaglePrince

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Any pro Linux'ers know where I can get info on trying out Linux while keeping WinXP running? Possibly on a USB pen drive or external HD?

I'd be starting from Troglodyte scratch, but I'm curious about replacing MicroShaft for good some day! I was pointed to DSL (Damn Small Linux) at one time but I really need to start from penguin kindergarten to avoid brain explosion... Meanwhile I need to keep what is familiar operating to stay up to date on projects.

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Any pro Linux'ers know where I can get info on trying out Linux while keeping WinXP running? Possibly on a USB pen drive or external HD?

I'd be starting from Troglodyte scratch, but I'm curious about replacing MicroShaft for good some day! I was pointed to DSL (Damn Small Linux) at one time but I really need to start from penguin kindergarten to avoid brain explosion... Meanwhile I need to keep what is familiar operating to stay up to date on projects.

You could try wubi and just install it on Windows. It won't be as fast as it would if it was running on bare metal, but if you're just looking for the easiest way to try it out without any installation, that should do the trick. Not worth fumbling with the bootloader to install it on an external HD, or trying to get something installed to a USB drive from Windows if you don't know that you will like it.

 

do you want to use "linux"? then learn something about compiling software, build your own kernel (the kernel is the real linux tho, everything else is just GNU/3rd party software) and install the software you need (debian, dsl or especially gentoo is a good base system for building a "real" linux).

Uhhh.... no. Just no. You shouldn't need to recompile your kernel on a regular basis (the only time I have in the last two years was from a pre-configured PKGBUILD on Arch so that I had full support for my AA1), nor should you need to compile software as an end-user (again, I only fall back to PKGBUILDs for uncommon software, and write my own for rare software) as sorting out and updating packages installed outside of the package manager will prove an immense nuisance.

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Any pro Linux'ers know where I can get info on trying out Linux while keeping WinXP running? Possibly on a USB pen drive or external HD?

I'd be starting from Troglodyte scratch, but I'm curious about replacing MicroShaft for good some day! I was pointed to DSL (Damn Small Linux) at one time but I really need to start from penguin kindergarten to avoid brain explosion... Meanwhile I need to keep what is familiar operating to stay up to date on projects.

 

You may want to take a look at slax.

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do you want to use "linux"? then learn something about compiling software, build your own kernel (the kernel is the real linux tho, everything else is just GNU/3rd party software) and install the software you need (debian, dsl or especially gentoo is a good base system for building a "real" linux).

Uhhh.... no. Just no. You shouldn't need to recompile your kernel on a regular basis (the only time I have in the last two years was from a pre-configured PKGBUILD on Arch so that I had full support for my AA1), nor should you need to compile software as an end-user (again, I only fall back to PKGBUILDs for uncommon software, and write my own for rare software) as sorting out and updating packages installed outside of the package manager will prove an immense nuisance.

Ya i certainly agree, binary based dependency checking/tracking package management is not a bad thing, it's a freakin awesome thing, and does not make ones Linux 'less real'.

 

@Piggy

You say "Linux while keeping WinXP running?", if you literally mean having XP actually running, so Linux would be like 'in a window', it's possible with emulation, but if you just mean 'not deleting Windows from the system'; your system can have dual-booting options via a boot-loader (comes with Linux), where each time you boot your computer you'll be presented with a menu where you can choose to boot into Windows or Linux.

 

Many distributions offer easy partitioning options in their installation to set this up, things like "Use free space only", that will use free unpartitioned space for Linux but leave your Windows partition intact.

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Alright, someone brought up something that I probably should have addressed from the start.

 

I would consider myself who - for the most part - just wants my system to work, and beats the tar out of it to make it do so. I used to be kinda advanced with Windows, but as time has marched on and I didn't... not so much anymore. The first goal for any project with Linux for me would be getting the system to work, the eventual goal would be to actually learn Linux.

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