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Old 04-21-06, 10:05 AM   #1
Monolyth
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Default Choosing a Distro

Hey guys,
I'm looking to setup my older box with a Linux distro and need some help choosing one. I've worked with the following Distro's before:
SuSe 9.1
RedHat 9.0
Fedora Core 2 & 3

I didn't do anything too awfully advanced with them, just installs, some configs, a few app compiles and attempts to get video card driver working, heh:

Here's my older system specs:
P4 3.0Ghz (HT)
Asus P4C800-Deluxe (Intel 875P)
1GB DDR
ATI x800 Pro
Plenty of HD space.

Primarily just looking for something to mess around with. Not sure I'm up for the level of Slackware or anything heh. Anyways thanks for your input!
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Old 04-21-06, 08:56 PM   #2
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

A nvidia video card is reccomended to run linux with. The distros you mentioned along with Mandrake, Ubuntu... http://lwn.net/Distributions/ are all decent choices. Getting it is a choice too - download, mail order, at a store, or copy from a friend.
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Old 04-22-06, 02:18 AM   #3
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

If you know someone who's familiar with Linux (or any *nix), the best thing you can do is to pick the distribution he uses (or in case on non-Linux *nix) or knows the best. If not, I'd recommend you go with FC as you are not completely new to it.

Personally I prefer Debian (which I have on all my boxes, workstations and servers, at home and at work), so I could also suggest trying Ubuntu if you're into Gnome. Basically if you pick any of the big players (as mentioned before) you cannot go wrong too bad.
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Old 04-22-06, 06:31 AM   #4
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I find SuSE 'yast' to be far superior to the GUI config tools that come with any of the RedHat-based distros (ie. Fedora). So long as you're not trying to do anything too complex yast is worth it's weight in gold. So I tend to go with SuSE-based distros at the moment.
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Old 04-22-06, 03:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I would suggest Fedora but there is one thing that your going to have a problem with it(although this is going to be the issue with any distros) closed source software such as the nvidia driver, flash, realplayer, acroread, and many games are not in the distros software library. You will have to add different servers to get them or just download them from the website(meaning there not going to be updated automatically). Personally I use gentoo which does not have this problem but that distro requires alot of Linux knowlege.
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Old 04-22-06, 05:53 PM   #6
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

Check out Zenwalk
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Old 04-22-06, 06:21 PM   #7
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I use Debian on all my computers,I like it alot.Tons of packages come with debian,just apt-get install whatever.I have used ubuntu,but didnt like it,its probably one of the easiest to install and set up though.I would suggest getting a debian based distro(debian,ubuntu,etc),or gentoo of coarse,but thats just what I like.Just keep trying different ones until you find one you want to stick with.
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Old 04-23-06, 01:31 AM   #8
Monolyth
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

Thanks for the input, this is not my main box so I'm not worried about gaming on it too much. While I am comfortable with Fedora, I will probably go to with SuSe, I have already downloaded the images and burned to CD so that's no biggie, I like having hard copies just in case I blow something up

Will be nice to finally have a secondary machine to mess around with. BTW my previous experience with Fedora/Redhat was all SSH based as I was admistering a dedicated box for game/web server. SuSe I've actually used on a local box so we'll see how it goes. Thanks for the suggestions
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Old 04-24-06, 12:56 AM   #9
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

knoppix-STD FTW!!!!1!@
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Old 04-24-06, 11:39 AM   #10
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I've found Kanotix (debian-based) to be very easy to use and stable. Nvidia drivers were a snap as well. Good Luck
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Old 04-25-06, 06:07 PM   #11
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I always found SuSE Linux the best because it has a near-perfect balance of ease of use and power. Plus, there's no restrictions what-so-ever. For example: Fedora Core and Ubuntu restricts you from starting a new X server as user. Ubuntu, I think is not as safe since the root commands can be accessed using the primary user's password.

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Old 06-04-06, 03:43 AM   #12
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Default Re: Choosing a Distro

I using Debian myself and don't miss times I was on Windows. It's server me well and as was mentioned before it has biggest program base which let you to use pre-packaged software so you don't have to compile everything yourself. And I should agree that Ubuntu(Debian based distro) could be good choice as it install X-Server(GUI) right away, when in Debian you have to know some basics in order to install it, hopefully I'll soon finish HOWTO on how to install Debian with GUI and the rest of things.
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