LinuxQuestions.org
Register a domain and help support LQ
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices


Reply
  Search this Thread
Old 10-13-2011, 02:13 PM   #1
centers46
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Posts: 3

Rep: Reputation: 0
Question Distributions


Why are there so many Distributions of Linux?
What is the best Distribution to use on a laptop instead of windows or mac?
 
Old 10-13-2011, 02:24 PM   #2
T3RM1NVT0R
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2010
Location: Internet
Distribution: Linux Mint, SLES, CentOS, Red Hat
Posts: 2,385

Rep: Reputation: 476Reputation: 476Reputation: 476Reputation: 476Reputation: 476
@ Reply

Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
Why are there so many Distributions of Linux?
What is the best Distribution to use on a laptop instead of windows or mac?
Welcome to LQ!!!

Because there are too many linux lovers around the world and thus there are many distributions of linux :-) . This is what I think. I don't think so there will be any straight answer for that question.

It would have helped if you would have mentioned your laptop configuratioin. I would prefer using Ubuntu or Linux Mint on a laptop.
 
Old 10-13-2011, 02:56 PM   #3
etech3
Senior Member
 
Registered: Jul 2009
Location: Virginia
Distribution: Debian Stable Testing Sid Slackware CentOS
Posts: 1,055
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 45
Different flavor of ice cream for different folks.

What's the specs on your laptop?

What do you intend to do on the laptop?
 
Old 10-13-2011, 03:28 PM   #4
LinuxManMikeC
Member
 
Registered: Nov 2007
Location: Provo, Utah
Distribution: Debian and Ubuntu
Posts: 74

Rep: Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
Why are there so many Distributions of Linux?
Because its open source and everyone has their own ideas on how it should look/feel/work. There's more than one way to kill a cat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
What is the best Distribution to use on a laptop instead of windows or mac?
This can be a loaded question, but for a quick drop-in replacement for a newbie I would suggest Ubuntu/Debian, RedHat/Fedora, or Suse. Its all ultimately Linux.

Ultimately, its whatever distro you like. Best way to try multiple distros is to get VirtualBox and install a VM of anything that strikes your fancy.
 
Old 10-13-2011, 05:00 PM   #5
DavidMcCann
Senior Member
 
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: London
Distribution: CentOS, Salix
Posts: 4,158

Rep: Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223Reputation: 1223
If it's a reasonably modern computer, anything should work. As a newcomer, you want something that will just install and run. You also need something that has a user interface that you like. Unlike Windows and OSX, you get a choice and everyone has their own idea of what's best. You can try different Linuxes from live CDs that let you run them (a little slowly) without installing. My suggestions for different GUIs would be

1. Xfce (middle of the road, simple): Mint
2. KDE (lots of features and eye-candy, really needs 1GB to run well): Mint or Mepis
3. Unity (looks like an oversized smart-phone, but some people think it's cool): Ubuntu

Avoid Gnome: version 2 (still in almost all distros) is obsolete and version 3 seems a bit unfinished.
 
Old 10-13-2011, 05:06 PM   #6
Jenni
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2011
Distribution: Slackware, Fedora
Posts: 158

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
There are so many distributions because everyone has their own feelings on how it should work, and because it's free software they are free to change things and release their own version, it gives us users a lot of choices about what we want, and if we disagree with what distro X does, we can go to distro Y that does it differently.

As for the best distro to use, try them out. Mint is usually pretty good for someone brand-new to linux, but it's not right for everyone, I personally started on Fedora with no problems, the best I can advise is to just look at the distro's official pages and see which ones have a philosophy, look/feel, etc. that you agree with and try them out. Most distributions are available as free downloads anyway so for the cost of some CDs you can try out a bunch of distros and find what works best for your needs and preferences.

If you need help finding distros, look here:
http://distrowatch.com/

they give descriptions, details of what software a distro comes with (though you are free to add more) and link to the home page for the distributions etcetera.

Last edited by Jenni; 10-13-2011 at 05:09 PM. Reason: linked to distrowatch
 
Old 10-13-2011, 07:20 PM   #7
theNbomr
LQ 5k Club
 
Registered: Aug 2005
Distribution: OpenSuse, Fedora, Redhat, Debian
Posts: 5,396
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908
If there was one best distribution, everyone would just use it, and the others would die off. By this logic, there are so many distros because everyone is trying to get it exactly right, but not achieving that. Really, there is very little to distinguish between modern, large-scale distros these days. For laptops, the biggest distinction is probably which installer tool does the best job of find and configuring all of the hardware on your laptop. To determine that, start with a list of distros, and try them until you get one that completes with fully working support for all of the features of the computer.

--- rod.
 
Old 10-23-2011, 03:23 PM   #8
centers46
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by etech3 View Post
Different flavor of ice cream for different folks.

What's the specs on your laptop?

What do you intend to do on the laptop?

My laptop is an ASUS G73 with an i7. I'm running windows 7 64 bit. I've tried Ubuntu (Ununtu2)in Oracle VM and don't really care for it. Maybe it's just the VM.
 
Old 10-23-2011, 03:31 PM   #9
centers46
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
As I've said I've tried Ubuntu using a Virtual Machine. I did this to avoid installing the Linux OS on my windows os and screwing something up. Is there any suggestions on how to test the different Linux OS? What are the potential problems if I just install the Linux on my laptop and I don't like the distribution? Is it a problem to uninstall the Linux and restore the windows OS?
 
Old 10-23-2011, 03:40 PM   #10
MTK358
LQ 5k Club
 
Registered: Sep 2009
Posts: 6,443
Blog Entries: 3

Rep: Reputation: 720Reputation: 720Reputation: 720Reputation: 720Reputation: 720Reputation: 720Reputation: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
I've tried Ubuntu (Ununtu2)in Oracle VM and don't really care for it. Maybe it's just the VM.
I don't really understand. The only thing the VM changes from a desktop experience point of view is that it's a bit slower and runs in a small window instead of fullscreen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
As I've said I've tried Ubuntu using a Virtual Machine. I did this to avoid installing the Linux OS on my windows os and screwing something up. Is there any suggestions on how to test the different Linux OS?
Use virtual machines or live CDs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
What are the potential problems if I just install the Linux on my laptop and I don't like the distribution?
You can easily overwrite it with another distribution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by centers46 View Post
Is it a problem to uninstall the Linux and restore the windows OS?
It will be a problem to get Windows back if you don't have the Windows installation disc.
 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Trying different distributions gwmorris Ubuntu 14 09-26-2011 04:19 PM
distributions jarafi Linux - General 2 02-15-2001 04:38 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:37 PM.

Main Menu
Advertisement
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration