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  • 1 Post By luke

Thread: Which Distro would you recommend?

  1. #1
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    Which Distro would you recommend?

    I'm looking at understanding linux as currently I don't have much experience with it. I'm not looking for something too dumbed down as eventually I would like to have a decent understanding of the inner workings of linux.

    What do you think would be a good OS to start out with?. I have been looking at debian but I'm spoilt for choice and don't know where to begin! any input would be appreciated!

  2. #2
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    Are you looking to use Linux as a desktop or server operating system?
    Freethought Internet
    Freethought Internet Limited registered in London No. 5862996. Registered office: The Old Church Hall, 2A Cromwell Street, Lincoln, LN2 5LP. VAT number GB 987 0952 66.

  3. #3
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    I think i'll use it to try to set up a server to begin with as it would be a decent way to learn. I have had a little read and it seems that linux tends to have 'server' and 'desktop' versions. Do you think I should start off with a desktop version to get used to linux?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4D Hosting View Post
    I think i'll use it to try to set up a server to begin with as it would be a decent way to learn. I have had a little read and it seems that linux tends to have 'server' and 'desktop' versions. Do you think I should start off with a desktop version to get used to linux?
    I'm not sure how much use a desktop version would be for you if you're looking to learn the server side of Linux. Linux servers generally don't have graphical interfaces installed - everything is done on the command line.
    Freethought Internet
    Freethought Internet Limited registered in London No. 5862996. Registered office: The Old Church Hall, 2A Cromwell Street, Lincoln, LN2 5LP. VAT number GB 987 0952 66.

  5. #5
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    Personally I'd suggest:

    For running a server, pick any of the major distros. Ubuntu etc.

    For leaning Linux I'd recommend starting with a more 'basic' distro like Slackware. There is less 'magic' going on and you have to do more of the leg work yourself. At least, it was the case back in the Slackware 8 days.

    If your really really serious in leaning the inner workings of Linux I'd suggest working your way through the LFS project.
    SteveWright likes this.

  6. #6
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    Ultimately, start with anything that does not involve a GUI.

    Everyone has a preference of init system and package management etc. you need to make that choice yourself by trying out different flavours
    Last edited by luke; 7th September 2014 at 02:25 PM.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the information!. Slackware looks very light and possibly what i'm looking for as i'll be playing about with it on an old (and not very powerful) laptop. I like the idea of being let loose on a command line and finding out what can be done - and can't. My guess is that there will be a lot of information out there about Slackware as it's an older distro, which will be handy when I get stuck.

    How much does the command language change with each distro? Could I use Slackware and then drop myself on another distro and use it without any issues, or would I need to learn about how to talk to the new distro in the command line?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4D Hosting View Post
    Thanks for the information!. Slackware looks very light and possibly what i'm looking for as i'll be playing about with it on an old (and not very powerful) laptop. I like the idea of being let loose on a command line and finding out what can be done - and can't. My guess is that there will be a lot of information out there about Slackware as it's an older distro, which will be handy when I get stuck.

    How much does the command language change with each distro? Could I use Slackware and then drop myself on another distro and use it without any issues, or would I need to learn about how to talk to the new distro in the command line?
    Linux distributions are a collection of third party software bundled together with a few distribution specific tools. The majority of that software doesn't change between distributions, although you might see different versions or different file paths.

    File system layout is normally the big change between distributions as well as system level configuration like network settings. They also often have their own package management systems depending on their heritage (dpkg and apt for Debian based systems like Ubuntu for example compared to rpm and yum for Red Hat derived systems).
    Freethought Internet
    Freethought Internet Limited registered in London No. 5862996. Registered office: The Old Church Hall, 2A Cromwell Street, Lincoln, LN2 5LP. VAT number GB 987 0952 66.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4D Hosting View Post
    as i'll be playing about with it on an old (and not very powerful) laptop
    You'll be hard-pressed to get a server version of modern linux running on an old laptop due to pecularities in laptop hardware and drivers - better to get an old server out of storage and use that - or fire up a VPS and get someone to seriously lock-it-down for you.

    For 'learning' I'd suggest Unbuntu LTS and a subscription to Linux User.

  10. #10
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    Yes Ubuntu is a good option to start off with

  11. #11
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    definitely CentOS

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    Quote Originally Posted by hostuzer View Post
    definitely CentOS
    Congratulations on resurrecting a thread that's over 4 years old in order to add nothing of value whatsoever!
    Freethought Internet
    Freethought Internet Limited registered in London No. 5862996. Registered office: The Old Church Hall, 2A Cromwell Street, Lincoln, LN2 5LP. VAT number GB 987 0952 66.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed-Freethought View Post
    Congratulations on resurrecting a thread that's over 4 years old in order to add nothing of value whatsoever!
    Is it really? I mean CentOS still rules, its based on Red Hat which was recently (in last 2 weeks) bought by IBM so i'd say its a nice update
    but thank you & sorry, will watch out for dates!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by hostuzer View Post
    Is it really? I mean CentOS still rules, its based on Red Hat which was recently (in last 2 weeks) bought by IBM so i'd say its a nice update
    but thank you & sorry, will watch out for dates!
    If you want to contribute something useful to the discussion, perhaps explain why RHEL/CentOS, rather than just saying "definitely CentOS", which doesn't actually give the OP or anyone reading this thread anything tangible to use in order to make an informed decision.

    There are plenty of very good reasons to use CentOS, but just saying "definitely CentOS" doesn't explain to anyone who is just starting out in the world of Linux what any of those reasons are.
    Freethought Internet
    Freethought Internet Limited registered in London No. 5862996. Registered office: The Old Church Hall, 2A Cromwell Street, Lincoln, LN2 5LP. VAT number GB 987 0952 66.

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