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Best linux distro

Started by Guest, 2004-09-23T09:48:01-05:00 (Thursday)

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This has probably already been answered, but can anyone recommend a Linux distro that can be downloaded from a FTP site that has a decent amount of packages?  Also, which distro do you guys prefer and why?


I've always used Red Hat.  I don't really have any good reason why.  When I wanted to start using Linux, I did a search for "linux", and Red Hat was somewhere near the top.  That's a pretty crappy reason I guess, but I have no complaints on it.  
Retired CAOS Officer/Overachiever
SIUE Alumni Class of 2005

Michael Kennedy

I use Mandrake for a similar reason.  At the time I was looking at distros it seemed to me to have the newest apps and the most up-to-date software (very new KDE, etc) so I sorta latched on to it.  Since then I've just been using Mandrake since it does everything I want it to do (it have Apache, mySQL, etc and lets me install stuff that isnt included).

One reason I'd suggest Mandrake is because it has BitTorrent links setup on it's site.  I'm sure the other distros do, but Mandrake is easy to get quickly.

Good luck with whichever distro you decide on.  I think any one that you can find lots of info on (Fedora, Red Hat, Mandrake, Suse, etc) would be a good choice to begin with.
"If it ain't busted, don't fix it" is a very sound principal and remains so despite the fact that I have slavishly ignored it all my life. --Douglas Adams, "Salmon of Doubt"

Chris Swingler

Almost all of the major Linux distributions come with a crapload of packages and can be downloaded as ISOs from FTPs or bittorrents.  Check out http://distrowatch.com

I use Slackware.  I started with Red Hat, got bored quick.  Nothing special to do.  Mandrake has never worked for me, for some strange reason.  Then wgrim got me hooked on FreeBSD, but I thought it lacked multimedia support.  So, I took the leap for Slack.  I love it.  It requires a little more hands-on experience than the other distros, but it's one of the most flexible when it comes to custumization.  You learn Linux the hard way or die with Slackware.  My only complaint is the lack of packages available, but as soon as I found CheckInstall, I was a happy Slacker.

But Linux has no Slack.  ;)
Christopher Swingler
CAOS Web Administrator


After a little research, i decided to install Mandrake 10.0.  My question now is, is there any way to get the packages that dont come with the original 3 iso's from the site?  I go to sites like Freshmeat to try to get new packages, but they never let me install because of dependencies from cd 4 and so on.  Any way around this?

Thanks in advance

Peter Motyka

Ah, the joys of an RPM-based linux distro.  You should try using a different package management system, one that resolve dependencies automagically.  Debian's apt-get has been "ported" to RPM-based systems and Yum does a nice job too.  Not sure if either effort has been carried over to Mandrake...

http://www.desktop-linux.net/apt4rpm.htm (somewhat dated, but you get the idea...)
SIUE CS Alumni 2002
Grad Student, Regis University
Senior Engineer, Ping Identity

William Grim

I _love_ Debian.

The apt-get package management system is wonderful.  I still prefer the BSDs for pretty much everything, but Debian isn't too far behind.

If you are looking for thousands of packages readily-available for a distribution, then you want Debian.  Don't let people tell you the packages are outdated either.  Install -testing, and check out apt-get.org.
William Grim
IT Associate, Morgan Stanley

Jarod Neuner

If you want lots of packages, you want Debian. If you want to install the whole OS with 2 floppy disks, you want Debian. But if you want the most current packages, you want Debian Testing.

That is all.

William Grim

Debian -testing packages are not the most recent.  For that, you want to use apt-get.org or to learn how to make your own packages.
William Grim
IT Associate, Morgan Stanley

Jarod Neuner

This is true, but for most cases the packages in testing are current. Besides, it's usually healthy to manually build something...