[lug] Best Distro for Newbies with New Equipment (was DHCP Question)

Hugh Brown hugh at math.byu.edu
Thu Aug 24 21:12:01 MDT 2006

On Thu, 2006-08-24 at 19:54 -0600, Collins Richey wrote:
> On 8/24/06, Bill Thoen <bthoen at gisnet.com> wrote:
> > On Thu, Aug 24, 2006 at 06:03:05PM -0600, Collins Richey wrote:
> > > It's not really Windows fault. The driver (reverse engineered, I
> > > presume) just didn't cover all the edge cases. Hopefully,this will be
> > > fixed, and you'llsee it quickly in the FCn series. Unfortunately I'm
> > > on Kubuntu 6.06, and I doubt that the developers will considerthisfor
> > > their "stable" release, maybe not even in Debian Etch.
> >
> > This brings up another point we've been debating in my office. One of the
> > things "they say" about RedHat is that you get all the newest and
> > experimental stuff you can stand and in fact, you may get buggy stuff as a
> > result. Since we have some fairly specific needs at work, we really don't
> > need the latest TOIP (Teleportation Over IP) and so maybe we should
> > reconsider the reasons we use RedHat software.
> >
> > In opposition is a friend of mine who keeps telling me to go with
> > Slackware because they don't support all the new-fangled stuff out there in
> > favor of (he claims) doing the basics exceedingly well. But if I was using
> > something like Slack (or Kubuntu) would I be sort of screwed buying the
> > latest low-cost Windows box from Newegg.com only to find out that I need
> > new drivers (that I can't write) to keep up with the technology?
> >
> > Or do Linux users who are "experienced" start with something forgiving like
> > RedHat Fedora Core and eventually migrate to a more esoteric distro once
> > they know "The Lore"?
> >
> My $0.02.
> The only real problem with Fedora is that you get to start over more
> frequently than I would like, and the upgrade path is not always
> pleasant. I have nothing against Slack; at least they stuck to KDEf or
> a long time (my personal prejudice). In an office environment, if you
> don't need the latest and greatest whizbangs, and you want to stick
> with Red Hat software, give CentOS a try. They mirror the RHEL
> distribution exactly except for trademarked art work. They are backed
> by a dedicated support team, and it's free as in beer unless you care
> to contribute. There are many thousands (maybe tens of thousands?) of
> CentOS servers in use. If your company needs a support service, there
> are even organizations that sell support for CentOS.
> OTOH, if you like to stay a little forward on the development curve
> (RHEL/CentOS is always 1-2 years behind current technology), give
> Kubuntu (or Ubuntu if you can tolerate Gnome) a try or even Debian
> Etch/Testing. My personal favorite is Kubuntu. It's really great for
> inexperienced users, and it's only slightly behind the technology
> curve. It's a painless introduction to the Debian Way. Canonical, the
> backer of Ubuntu, will be introducing / have introduced support
> packages for the Ubuntu server variant, if you like to pay for
> support. The 6.06 LTS stable release will be supported with security
> and bug fixes for several years. Debian Etch is good but not as
> polished as Ubuntu IMO. With Ubuntu you get a very active, friendly,
> and helpful forum community as well.
> Kubuntu will run your El Cheapo Windows boxes with no problems. I've
> installed it on older desktop machines, brand new desktop machines,
> and laptops with excellent results. The one problem with RHEL/CentOS
> is that you need to roll your own for nVidia and ATI driver support,
> whereas Ubuntu/Debian has standard addon packages.
> I'm sure someone else will follow on with praise for Novell/SuSE, but
> I haven't kept up with that.
> HTH,

I agree on the above.  At work, there's a site wide license for RedHat
Enterprise Linux so that's what we use (after adding about 40-50
packages that we maintain).  Another group here really likes SuSE.  One
drawback to Redhat is that their KDE set up is pretty terrible.  It
shows that they prefer Gnome.  At home, I run Debian stable (I made the
switch from Redhat back when they split into Fedora Core and RHEL).  I
tried Kubuntu but found that I didn't like the sudo approach to system

So I'd echo the list above.  I think SuSE probably deserves to be put in
with the likes of CentOS (not cutting edge but still reasonably recent).


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