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Old 07-08-2009, 12:00 PM   #1
bnartowt
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best pc-brand for running linux (probably ubuntu)


Hi all, I was wondering what PC-brand is best for running a given Linux distribution. (I want to learn how to use whichever Linux distribution is best for programming and computing, as I will be a theoretical physics grad student in Fall 2009). So, I guess my two questions are:

1) Which Linux distribution is recommended for scientific computing and programming?

2) What PC do you recommend for this? (E.g., I tried to run Ubuntu (8 I think) on an IBM/Lenovo Thinkpad T43, and I ran into a "great amount of difficulty").

Thank you so much. ~ Bradley Nartowt ("Brad")
 
Old 07-08-2009, 01:53 PM   #2
New2Linux2
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If you are looking to buy a new system, your best bet is to buy one that has linux already loaded (and therefore supported) by the manufacturer. A lot of PC makers are starting to figure out that there is a larger market available to them by offering linux on their hardware. This trend will only continue to grow if more and more people request systems directly from them with Linux already onboard.

If you are looking to buy a used (new to you) system, check out sites like these:
http://www.linux-laptop.net/
http://www.tuxmobil.org/

You can also go to the different manufacturer's forums to see what is being discussed there. Example:
HP Notebook Forum

Good luck and happy researching.
 
Old 07-08-2009, 01:56 PM   #3
i92guboj
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I think that Dell also offers some laptops with linux preloaded.
 
Old 07-08-2009, 02:10 PM   #4
lemon09
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Quote:
Which Linux distribution is recommended for scientific computing and programming?
i think rhel(red hat enterprise linux) or any debian based linux(like slackware) would be a good choice...
 
Old 07-08-2009, 02:26 PM   #5
i92guboj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lemon09 View Post
i think rhel(red hat enterprise linux)
RHEL is a paid version, as in "no pay, no updates". If you want to use a Red Hat alike system that's not that restrictive you should probably choose either Fedora or CentOS.

Quote:
or any debian based linux(like slackware) would be a good choice...
I am no genealogist, but as far as I remember and for the technical details I know about one and the other, the Debian and Slackware genetic lines hasn't ever crossed with each other. They have always been independent distros. Besides that even if that's not true, they share nothing in common nowadays, besides a linux kernel of course.


Looking in distrowatch.com, and checking the scientific square on the search page, I get two results only:

http://distrowatch.com/poseidon
http://distrowatch.com/quantian

I know nothing about these.

Searching for "linux scientific" in google you might get some results.

However, I don't think that any distro is better than other for the OP's purpose. You can virtually use whatever linux based software in whatever distro you choose. So, if you want Ubuntu, go for it.
 
Old 07-08-2009, 02:54 PM   #6
portamenteff
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I would buy one with Linux pre installed and configured. Then you know every piece of hardware would work. There are many online vondors, but Dell is the largest. If you can't do that, I've had really good luck with HP, Compaq, Dell, and even Toshiba. I have not had good luck with the hardware of Gateway.
 
Old 07-08-2009, 08:04 PM   #7
New2Linux2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i92guboj View Post
Looking in distrowatch.com, and checking the scientific square on the search page, I get two results only:

http://distrowatch.com/poseidon
[url]http://distrowatch.com/quantian[/url
While I've never used either of these, they are both Debian based. More specifically, Poseidon is based on Ubuntu and Quantian is based on Knoppix. The main difference being that they both include apps aimed at the scientific community.

My recommendation falls in line with several others: get a new laptop with Linux pre-installed from the manufacturer. You get support, a distro that is known to work with all the hardware on the system and a full warranty, just in case. Start searching the packages available for whatever distro comes on the computer to see if you can find the applications that you want to use. Your best tool is your own brain, second is your favorite search engine. Make use of both.
 
  


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