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Old 01-08-2012, 06:32 PM   #16
theW
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I would recommend Mint right now because it is a great distro. The current version of ubuntu is not so great by many's opinion and Unity allows very little in terms of customization and control over the user experience. Also unity has problems on some graphics cards and if this is a slower computer or has integrated graphics there may be some lag. If you want experience with the command line than Arch is hard to go wrong with. After a month of using arch you should be very comfortable with cli's. Also, since most of the packages on the system will be chosen by you this will help you really understand what the system is doing. The only issue with arch is that there is a large learning curve at first and until the system is set up it cannot do much.
 
Old 01-08-2012, 07:03 PM   #17
TroN-0074
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I think SlackWare is for people who already tried an entry level linux distro, perhap something like LinuxMint. PC-BSD I think won an award for the most user friendly operating system and any BSD base OS is not too far from Linux.

It is a good idea to try to move away from MS, however allow time to get use to. To make thing easy you can get the family using Open Source Software under the vista environment. Firefox, LibreOffice, Thunderbird, vlc, etc are good starters.

Good luck to you.
 
Old 01-09-2012, 06:22 AM   #18
mdlinuxwolf
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In theory, yes, any distro is potentially as good as any other one. In reality, some distros are made for different sorts of people by different interests. For a youngster, who like all other youngsters, has a shorter attention span and is more emotional and more sensitive to failure, a user friendly distro has way more to offer then one that requires programming in BASH scripts to get anything done. Even with many of the "unfriendly" distros, you will find that the users made their own shortcuts and add their own icons in most cases so that they aren't all typing into a black screen with a blinking cursor 100% of the time.

Of course, one should also download and install more of the shells. X-term, korn, bash at a minimum should be downloaded and shortcuts put right on the desktop. PC-BSD, Mint, Mepis and even Fedora and SuSE are fairly friendly. I think that KDE is also more easy to manipulate then Gnome, but I would also say to install more then one desktop. My PC-BSD machine that I'm using now (running off of an external drive with the O/S) has KDE, LXDE, and Fluxbox on it.

It is also, IMHO, foolish to forbid root from using a GUI. Frankly, this option is one thing that I would like to see put into the installation menu while installing the operating system. Allowing a normal to sudo into anything that they want with their own password and not root's password is far less secure then using root as a gui with a strong password.

Strictly speaking, that is another topic. Of course, reversing that is also a good project for a smart kid as it goes a long way to explaining what permissions are and how security works.

BTW: For a kid, it is also important to explain the dangers of blabbing too much about your home address, your age and talking to strangers online. It is all to easy to envision a kid thinking since the system can't get viruses, that they can do anything in cyberspace that they please to do.

The IT field is still a great career choice if you hook up with a good company.
 
Old 01-09-2012, 09:18 AM   #19
johnsfine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdlinuxwolf View Post
It is also, IMHO, foolish to forbid root from using a GUI. Frankly, this option is one thing that I would like to see put into the installation menu while installing the operating system. Allowing a normal to sudo into anything that they want with their own password and not root's password is far less secure then using root as a gui with a strong password.
I think I was the one who inserted that side topic in this thread, and I hope that side topic doesn't hijack the thread, but I want to clarify the point I was making in inserting that topic:

Quite a lot of big security disasters have occurred because people read their email and visit web pages while logged in with full admin rights on Windows systems. That isn't as dangerous in Linux as in Windows, but it is dangerous enough that you shouldn't do it. But it is still very convenient to mix those activities (root activities with email and/or web), either to avoid wasting your own time during slow root activities or to read info about the rare (for you) system management tasks you are doing.

Either way, you want a desktop program that makes it easy to be logged in as two different users (root and your normal account) with quick (hot key or mouse) switch between the two, but with protection so scripting in the non root session has no access to the rights of the root session. I like the way that works in KDE3.
 
Old 01-09-2012, 03:18 PM   #20
jbrew
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdlinuxwolf View Post

BTW: For a kid, it is also important to explain the dangers of blabbing too much about your home address, your age and talking to strangers online. It is all to easy to envision a kid thinking since the system can't get viruses, that they can do anything in cyberspace that they please to do.


I agree we talk about that all the time when he is on the PSN playing.
 
Old 01-10-2012, 01:06 AM   #21
autophil
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I still think that most entry-level distros will teach you little about the way linux works. When you use something like Ubuntu (as attractive and easy to use as it is) the thin line between user and root becomes blurred. In linux its very important to understand this separation.
 
Old 01-10-2012, 10:06 PM   #22
Aut/Geek
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the most appealable and user friendly are definitely good solid and heavily supported distros like mint,ubuntu,openSUSE and mandriva,they generaly dont need fiddling with to work due to their specialism in introducing newbies without making them go into technical overload,plus their hardware dection is second to none.
the user of these can choose to be involved in as much or as less technical input as they want,it is not forced upon them.

the thing with linux is it offers a lot more control than what windows users are used to and it is in own view,better to start off with a balanced view of linux instead of being faced with the sink or swim experiences of slackware,gentoo etc.

computer geeks/techies may love the challenge of a good install,but woud personaly introduce all other windows users to the RTR [ready to run] type linuxes.

-though there is one issue with some of these friendlier distros-bloatware.
mint for example is not surprisingly very bloated and even with a lighter desktop environment such as XFCE it is still not the best runner for a not to new computer.
 
Old 01-11-2012, 04:15 AM   #23
k3lt01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aut/Geek View Post
the most appealable and user friendly are definitely good solid and heavily supported distros like mint,ubuntu,openSUSE and mandriva,
Deadly serious question, just incase you actually think I'm being sarcastic, what is solid about Ubuntu?

I tested 3 development releases of Ubuntu and watched each successive version become more unstable than the previous one. I then moved to LinuxMint and found their stability, while I agree it is more stable than Ubuntu, is from a flawed idea that users are idiots and should only update what the Mint Developers think is acceptable. Problem is by Mint's updating definition people should still be on kernel 2.6.32 (the Ubuntu variation in 10.04) which we now know has some pretty big security holes and Ubuntu has recommended updating to the newer 3.0.1 kernel.

See unlike Debian, which has a HUGE developer base, distributions like Ubuntu (whose developers are employees) and Mint (who has how many developers? not many) are not as solid and heavily supported as you may think. Yes they look the kit and yes Ubuntu has alot of money thrown at it but this, almost religious, following they have is basically ex Windows users who don't know much better.
 
Old 01-11-2012, 10:17 AM   #24
snowpine
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Originally Posted by k3lt01 View Post
Deadly serious question, just incase you actually think I'm being sarcastic, what is solid about Ubuntu?

I tested 3 development releases of Ubuntu and watched each successive version become more unstable than the previous one. I then moved to LinuxMint and found their stability, while I agree it is more stable than Ubuntu, is from a flawed idea that users are idiots and should only update what the Mint Developers think is acceptable. Problem is by Mint's updating definition people should still be on kernel 2.6.32 (the Ubuntu variation in 10.04) which we now know has some pretty big security holes and Ubuntu has recommended updating to the newer 3.0.1 kernel.

See unlike Debian, which has a HUGE developer base, distributions like Ubuntu (whose developers are employees) and Mint (who has how many developers? not many) are not as solid and heavily supported as you may think. Yes they look the kit and yes Ubuntu has alot of money thrown at it but this, almost religious, following they have is basically ex Windows users who don't know much better.
I think you have it backwards; Debian uses kernel 2.6.32 in their current 6.0 release; Ubuntu and Mint use kernel 3.0 in their current 11.10/12 releases. By your own logic Ubuntu is therefore superior to Debian because Debian has "pretty big security holes."
 
Old 01-11-2012, 01:23 PM   #25
k3lt01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
I think you have it backwards; Debian uses kernel 2.6.32 in their current 6.0 release; Ubuntu and Mint use kernel 3.0 in their current 11.10/12 releases. By your own logic Ubuntu is therefore superior to Debian because Debian has "pretty big security holes."
I love it when people defend Ubuntu yet can't even read a post properly, I did mention 10.04.

Lets start at the beginning shall we. 10.04 come out with 2.3.32 and recently a security flaw was found in it to which Ubuntu's recommendation was to upgrade, by backports, to 3.0. I think you need to know your Ubuntu as 10.04 was developed of Squeeze when Squeeze was Testing so the comparison is valid. Debian patches the kernel Ubuntu just replaces it altogether thus negating the LTS part of the equation and showing they can't be bothered to patch things properly.

Last edited by k3lt01; 01-11-2012 at 01:25 PM.
 
Old 01-11-2012, 02:39 PM   #26
snowpine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by k3lt01 View Post
Lets start at the beginning shall we. 10.04 come out with 2.3.32 and recently a security flaw was found in it to which Ubuntu's recommendation was to upgrade, by backports, to 3.0. I think you need to know your Ubuntu as 10.04 was developed of Squeeze when Squeeze was Testing so the comparison is valid. Debian patches the kernel Ubuntu just replaces it altogether thus negating the LTS part of the equation and showing they can't be bothered to patch things properly.
1. Kernel 2.6.32 is a very stable and well-supported kernel shared by popular server/enterprise distros like Ubuntu LTS, Debian Stable, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

2. The Ubuntu 10.04 LTS 2.6.32 kernel gets frequent security patches, most recent was last week, as you can read right here: http://changelogs.ubuntu.com/changel...0.98/changelog

3. If you want a newer kernel in Debian, Ubuntu, Mint, just look in Backports or Kernel PPA.

4. If you want newer "stuff" in general then use Debian Testing, Ubuntu non-LTS, Fedora, etc. The consumer gets the choice between LTS with older packages or a current release with newer packages; it's a win-win scenario.

Can you provide a link to a reputable source on a specific kernel vulnerability that's been patched in Debian and Red Hat, but not patched in Ubuntu?

Last edited by snowpine; 01-11-2012 at 03:57 PM.
 
Old 01-11-2012, 06:57 PM   #27
RockDoctor
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What are the main differences between the different desktops?
1. Look and feel
2. Configurability
3. Feature set.

My recommendation is to start with the default desktop environment (for Ubuntu that would be GNOME with the Unity desktop), and, if you don't like it (or are just curious), install one or more of the others and give it/them a try.
 
Old 01-11-2012, 08:44 PM   #28
rich_c
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Mepis has had a few mentions so far. To me, it's the best of both worlds. You get something very close to Debian but with a lot of the post install fiddling done.
 
Old 01-12-2012, 01:49 AM   #29
autophil
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In a family friendly version of a Linux distro are these security "holes" really very important.
Its not like there are major national security issues at stake. If someone is new to Linux he (/she) cant be in a position to make all this kind of analysis. I think there is a big difference between being computer literate and a Linux boffin.

As long as you keep your passwords safe and dont use root except when carrying out admin tasks on any distro. Should it be a major concern?
I use Slackware based distros, but for a beginner I will still say - keep it simple, do Ubuntu. (Then Slackware!)
 
Old 01-12-2012, 04:21 AM   #30
k3lt01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
1. Kernel 2.6.32 is a very stable and well-supported kernel shared by popular server/enterprise distros like Ubuntu LTS, Debian Stable, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux.
Your point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
2. The Ubuntu 10.04 LTS 2.6.32 kernel gets frequent security patches, most recent was last week, as you can read right here: http://changelogs.ubuntu.com/changel...0.98/changelog
And they have to because it was part of the original release but that does not mean they didn't advise upgrading to 3.0. They were more interested in getting people to upgrade to a non stable release kernel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
3. If you want a newer kernel in Debian, Ubuntu, Mint, just look in Backports or Kernel PPA.
Do you think I'm your student? The latest kernel in Debian backports is 2.6.39+35.1~bpo60+1, you shouldn't use Ubuntu PPAs for things like kernels in Debian so 3.0 in Debian from a PPA is out of the question, in general Mint discourages kernel upgrades.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
4. If you want newer "stuff" in general then use Debian Testing, Ubuntu non-LTS, Fedora, etc. The consumer gets the choice between LTS with older packages or a current release with newer packages; it's a win-win scenario.
Again do you think I'm your student? Debian Testing is not "older" packages like Debian stable so I'm not sure about your logic here. At the moment Debian testing is not all that far behind Debian Sid, and it can be argued that both are more stable than Ubuntu stable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
Can you provide a link to a reputable source on a specific kernel vulnerability that's been patched in Debian and Red Hat, but not patched in Ubuntu?
Incase you didn't get the crux of my point I'll say it again, Ubuntu advised upgrading via backports to 3.0 they didn't advise to upgrade to a newer patched 2.6.32. Take from that what you will but it tells me they were more interested in the latest and greatest than fixing the actual issue when it occured. Others like Debian and RedHat patched the kernel they had in their Stable releases, Ubuntu advised backporting from a non stable release.

Is there anything else you want?

Last edited by k3lt01; 01-12-2012 at 04:37 AM.
 
  


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