[SOLVED] Difference between various Linuxes:Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian, Centos, openSUSE
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Most of the people here had already given the answers I will just try to add up some more. If you are seeing the OS from gnome or KDE point of view you will never be able to find the difference because you will always think that one is Windows XP other is Windows 7.
What you have to do here is to concentrate on the back end as to what are the features each of these OS provides like virtualization, stability, performance, user friendliness, easy configuration etc. Now that you have to find on web as what features are provided by difference distros. Can't explain all in thread.
Also many distros are open source and is not supported by any vendors. So in case I am using CentOS I cannot go to vendor (because there is no vendor, open source it is) and say hey there, I am having some problem with my system can you get it fixed!!! So, vendor support is there for some distros but not for all.
Now it might be possible that you find Redhat easier than Debian so ultimately it comes to your personal choice as to what you wanna use. Again giving an example already set by snowpine (Thank you Snowpine), if you wanna be a NASCAR racer you wouldn't be driving F1, same way if you wanna be a F1 racer you would be driving chevy car. So it is up to you as to which OS you wanna go with. If we will say that Redhat is popular in the market and what if you find it difficult to grasp it in the beginning. As a beginner go with any OS for a month or two and once you get the flair for linux start trying advanced version that will help you building your career in linux.
I have not worked on many distros but I will say if you are using RedHat then you can also work on Fedora and CentOS (vice-versa) because these are the rebuild of RedHat. All commands that work on RedHat will also work on CentOS and Fedora.
And if you have worked on Debian then you can easily work on Ubuntu or Kubuntu or Linux Mint (Desktop) because they are Debian's rebuild (Experienced guys here please correct me if I am wrong)
Am glad that you like working on Linux and would like to make your career in it but start slowly in the beginning and don't worry you will be the first one to finish the race at the end!!!
T3RM1NVT0R, thanks for an advice. I'm starting to realize now, that my question could't really be answered in one statement. You are correct, when I asked about differences, I've been looking on it from different perspective and with different mindset. Apparently all of the answers enlightening various aspects of what guys feel like having different experience working with various Linux distros. I'm starting getting the picture. This picture is hard to get really, if you talk to one person only.
By the way, is SUSE relates with to other Linux, in the same way as let say, Debian to Ubuntu? I'm about to set CentOS along openSUSE and go with my training on both.
I have worked a little on open SuSE and Novell SuSE and found that there are couple of differences.
I have not found Novell SuSE being similar to any of the distros that I have tried but fundamentals are always same. Say for example in RedHat you use Yum to install packages and in Novell SuSE you use Yast to install packages. RedHat uses .rpm and same Novell SuSE use so there are some similarities but I will not say that you can consider Novell SuSE to be a rebuild of RedHat (Ofcourse it can't be because it is from a different vendor :-) )
As a start I would say better go with CentOS and if you want to have another flavour of Linux installed then you can go with either Ubuntu or Linux Mint. This will keep you in touch with both Debian and RedHat syntax.
Suse Linux and Red Hat Linux both derived from Slackware, but a very long time ago, and they have evolved, so that they nowadays are independent distros.
Say for example in RedHat you use Yum to install packages and in Novell SuSE you use Yast to install packages.
If you want to compare yum to its counterpart in Suse you should compare it to zypper.
I will not say that you can consider Novell SuSE to be a rebuild of RedHat
Simply because it isn't, they just use the same package format.
(Ofcourse it can't be because it is from a different vendor :-) )
Have a look at Oracle Linux, it is a rebuild of RHEL, but also from a different vendor. You know, it is open source, take out the branding, put your branding in there and you can sell it as a different distro.
What would be your suggestions for installation: making it dual boot or virtual? Someone here, locally, talked me toward "virtual" as it would allow working with both Centos and OpenSUSE in a same time, no reboot required. Or may be. it is better in a beginning to keep things simple? I don't want to push too much sand.
I appreciate everyone's opinions, they all are helpful.
I would go for a virtual install. Since you want to learn Linux, and have chosen an OS that is suited mainly for servers, it comes in handy that you can test networking with a virtual machine.
Set up a file server in a virtual machine and try to access it from your native OS. The same for any other network service.
... which one takess less effort to set up and operate?
I've tried several desktop virtualization platforms and found vmware workstation is the most effective tool for development activities. Rich in features, configurable, good performance, and it provides up to 8 different network segments to easily run many VMs in a full intranet environment.
VirtualBox is almost as feature rich as VMware, but in my experience, it has a relatively slower performance, especially for full-gui-resource-intensive VMs.
Xen and KVM offer a distinct experience that appeals to the dicerning unix-minded user. Lack of nifty features and harder to configure, compared to the two platforms mentioned above. Extremely stable for *nix based OSs, but you will need an Intel-VT/AMD-V processor if you want to run Windows on them. I think they fit better on server class deployments.
I was thinking of going with VMware as more mainstream. Unfortunately, I got lost on their VMware site, and they apparently have MANY products...and the terminology is very confusing. Can someone, please, tell me which VMware prodduct do I need for the installation of my two Linuxes on a single PC(laptop)?
As Far as VMware vs VirtualBox goes, yes VMware is more "mainstream" (The package you're looking for is "VMware Server") but VirtualBox is actually more stable in my experience. I've tried both and had a lot more luck with virtualbox.
VirtualBox has a lot of cool features as well, such as "Seamless Windows". Once you install the Guest Additions, you can use your host and guest operating system seamlessly.
If you plan on using it on server hardware, you can install phpVirtualBox alongside and have a full WebGUI for control just as you would with VMware.
Last edited by thinmintaddict; 04-27-2011 at 02:08 AM.
Who cares that VMware is more popular? VirtualBox works just fine.
I looked at VMware's site (I wondered if it was paid or could be downloaded for free), and it's insane how needlessly complicated and poorly laid-out it is. I didn't even find out what I was looking for.