Originally Posted by WOP1337
taking away support, what does any commercial linux/unix have that a free one does not? are the commercial ones faster in some way? or if you know what you are doing with lets say Slackware or FreeBsd, could it be used for a supercomputer?
They can also provide you with some form of protection against certain technologies through their licensing of such. For example Mp3 Codecs do not come standard with a lot of distros (whilst perhaps not useful for your scope, it illustrates the point and could be used for anything else).
Some commerical distros are also singulary supported by certain apps. Such as Orcale only supported it's use on Red Hat until they released their own distro.
I'd hate to have to explain why X won't work on Y when Y wasn't on their supported list to begin with. (which ties in to accountability for problems, as has already been mentioned).
I've never used a commercial disto, i have never need to.
When you have the choice to compile your own programs and kernel, how much 'better' can any other distro really be, in a technical sense.