i'm new to linux - which linux to install?

This is a discussion on i'm new to linux - which linux to install? within the Linux Programming forums, part of the Platform Specific Boards category; Hi.. i'm really new to what is called "Linux". To start my way, i want to install Linux. But i ...

  1. #1
    ~Team work is the best!~ wakish's Avatar
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    i'm new to linux - which linux to install?

    Hi.. i'm really new to what is called "Linux".
    To start my way, i want to install Linux. But i saw that there are many types (or should i say versions - i don't really know) of Linux; Red Hat, Caldera, Fedora and Debian..etc..

    So i'm confused and i don't know which of these i should choose.
    Please can anyone help?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Sr. Software Engineer filker0's Avatar
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    Ah. Religion...

    Which distribution is best is a matter of taste and prefereneces. Since you're new to Linux, I'd recommend an easy-to-install version. I found SuSE 10 quite easy to install, but then again, I've installed many versions of SuSE over the years. Some people say that Ubantu is the easiest. Some prefer Fedora (RedHat). Mandrivia is in there, too.

    Caldera is no longer a supported distribution, as far as I know.
    Insert obnoxious but pithy remark here

  3. #3
    ~Team work is the best!~ wakish's Avatar
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    ok..
    i have just find out there is another distribution (btw does distro mean distribution? because i found that word being so much used in all Linux websites) called Mepis.
    This site: http://www.newsforge.com/article.pl?.../11/18/1415243 points out that it is good too.
    But, can anyone discuss about Mepis?
    Also what's the difference between ubuntu and Mepis..they are all Linux, are they?

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    Crazy Fool Perspective's Avatar
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    There are hundreds of distros of linux (yes, distro means distrobution). There is no "best" and no fair metric to say one is better than another. They do range quite a bit in their difficulty to use though, you sound like you should start with something simple. I recommend you choose one of these three:

    Fedora Core
    Mandrake
    SUSE

  5. #5
    Registered User Jaqui's Avatar
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    Distro Watch has a good listing if distributions.
    to see which one you actually like it's always a good idea to get the livecd version that most have. this tells you two things, what hardware issues you may have, and how well that the particular disro works for you.


    I can't use Suse, it's requirement for the adaptec scsi controller drivers causes a system lockup on me.

    The single cdrom distros tend to be seriously lacking in application options, the best selection is with debian ( 14 cdroms for it, 13 at 650 mb 1 at 430 mb )
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Henager
    If the average user can put a CD in and boot the system and follow the prompts, he can install and use Linux. If he can't do that simple task, he doesn't need to be around technology.

  6. #6
    ~Team work is the best!~ wakish's Avatar
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    Thanks Jaqui!
    Last edited by wakish; 01-21-2006 at 01:18 PM.

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    Here's a pretty interesting page. It asks you a couple of questions and suggests a distro.
    http://www.zegeniestudios.net/ldc/

  8. #8
    ~Team work is the best!~ wakish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iwabee
    Here's a pretty interesting page. It asks you a couple of questions and suggests a distro.
    http://www.zegeniestudios.net/ldc/
    Hey nice link too
    Thanks!


    I think i will go for Mandriva.

    Now i have another question:

    Is there any good program/software to partition and set up a hard dirve (80Gb size) to install both windows(any version) and linux.
    I don't want to use something like partition magic, because it does all the work for you - it's lazy. and besides i think you should run it from an OS. I would like a program which will allow you to know exactly what you are doing and which can be run independently. FDisk is not good, it has limitations.
    Is there something similar or more better?

    Thank you all for your help and advice!
    Regards!
    # If you want to be happy, think of others.
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  9. #9
    Registered User Jaqui's Avatar
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    you really should start a second thread for a second question

    but, with windows generally using ntfs, partition magic would probably be your best bet to resize the windows partition, making room for linux on the drive.

    installing absolutely everything from Mandriva will take 6 gigs of drive space, and you really do not need to install everything.
    [ just to give you a clue as to how much space linux will need ]
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Henager
    If the average user can put a CD in and boot the system and follow the prompts, he can install and use Linux. If he can't do that simple task, he doesn't need to be around technology.

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    xhi
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    >> Is there any good program/software to partition and set up a hard dirve (80Gb size) to install both windows(any version) and linux.

    well this depends.. if you have data on the drive already and want to keep it while making room for linux, then i suggest you go the "lazy" way of partition magic.. you will get reliability, and little chance of loosing that existing data..

    if this is an empty hd, then you can use the linux util `cfdisk`.. might as well learn a little linux while you are at it right..
    cfdisk is superior to microsofts fdisk in many ways, but has basically the same operation.. just make a boot cd, or floppy and it should be on there..

    good luck

    oh and btw.. slackware! IMO, the best. But not neccessarily the easiest to get started on.. maybe check it out down the road once you get familiar with the operation of linux..

    oh and as filker0 referred to, this original question fits right in there with discussions on religion and politics.. always a good flame..
    Last edited by xhi; 01-22-2006 at 09:49 AM. Reason: added microsoft to "cfdisk is superior to fdisk.." for clarity

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    and the hat of int overfl Salem's Avatar
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    Option 1.
    Get another hard disk - 80GB are pretty cheap now, even for new ones. Someone might give you a HD is you ask nicely enough (try your local computer shop to see if they have any kit they want to get rid of).
    Then you can simply swap drives in your machine and play with any Linux distro all you want without fear of trashing your windows disk.

    In fact, a spare HD or two is generally a good idea anyway. You never know when you might need to copy some stuff off your main disk (say it's about to fail, or as a hot backup), or you want to reinstall a base windows system + virus checker so you can do a proper scan of your main windows disk operating as a slave disk.

    Option 2.
    Get a cheap 2nd system unit (the box) and a 2 or 4 port KVM (Keyboard, Video, Mouse) switch. Then you can run both at the same time, and have fun networking them together at a later stage. It also means you can surf for stuff with your windows machine whilst your linux is up and running waiting for you to try new stuff.

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    You don't need to get a new hard drive to dual boot Linux, you can just usr cfdisk/fdisk to split into two partitions. Then install Windows on one, and then Linux on the other. Linux will have a boot loader (either GRUB or LILO) which you need to install to the MBR when you install Linux.

    As far as distros, there are two ways to go:

    1) pick up a really easy distro, like Mandrake, Fedora, or Ubuntu (I recommend Ubuntu, it's really nice for a desktop, I run a triboot and Ubuntu is on there for college work )

    2) use a harder distro, I recommend Slackware 10.2. It's great. I started using Linux at the start of the year, and I can honestly say it taught me how to use it. It's just that you tend to learn how to do things better with it, and how everything works. Keep the Windows XP partition around (I still do) so you've always got a safety net (everybody screws up at some point and has to reinstall) and soon you'll be happy with Linux!

    The only problem with Linux is that the quality of IDEs really isn't that great, at least in my experience. I've only used KDevelop, but that was frankly annoying and projects were really bloated. I've used Visual Studio and Dev for a while, so maybe I'm just not getting used to it or something. But I use Makefiles anyway so everything is done from a terminal, so no problems

  13. #13
    puu
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    I'd suggest slackware for first distro since it's not too confusing or anything and makes you learn stuff.

    After that I'd suggest Gentoo because it's easy to configure new software to compile to your specific system. That makes Gentoo really stable and fast. Ofcourse there are lots of other reasons for choosing Gentoo and lots of reasons not to.

  14. #14
    ~Team work is the best!~ wakish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timmygee
    But I use Makefiles anyway so everything is done from a terminal, so no problems
    Could you tell me more about it please?
    # If you want to be happy, think of others.
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    xhi
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    >> I've only used KDevelop, but that was frankly annoying and projects were really bloated.

    Annoying means you couldnt figure it out? And define bloated? you can customize *everything* about a kdev project.. the only thing kdev adds that a non kdev proj doesnt have is a kdevelop.proj file.. and that is not included in you distribution files.. so i think you may be imagining the so called bloat..
    btw, i do prefer using Kate and a term window rather than any ide, but once a project gets to be around 10 or so files that is way less efficient.. I have no problems with Kdevelop, except when I was learning how to use it..

    >> But I use Makefiles anyway so everything is done from a terminal, so no problems

    a makefile is a script that will build your project for you.. creating them can get a little complicated, but there are some tools, autoconf automake , that help.. plus lots of docs.. once you start using *nix you will be familiar with makefiles.. as anything you get from source is going to be using a makefile type setup.. IMO, you should learn how to use GCC from the command line well first.. then worry about makefiles..
    Last edited by xhi; 01-23-2006 at 10:00 AM. Reason: added links

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