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I think I will give my caldera a try. I can alway learn to compile an kernal on that. assuming I have no real issues (ha ha) if that is a bust I will try mandrake.
I will then try mandrake or jump directly to gentoo.
the big problem withgentoo is probably the complile times to make it worth my while. I f I dont compile for my self its not worth using gentoo.
Im kind of a risk taker. the last are I bought has 237,000+ miles on it.
as far as hardware. I will basicaly an hp 9780 with a western digital harddrive.
I have an older 32mb nvidia card 1.3 gig pentium. its not cutting edge stuff
Please, use any distro BUT Caldera. SCO, Caldera's manufactuere, is suing Linux users!!! (I don't think they are updating Caldera any more anyway...)
Caldera is not any more unix-like than any other distro of Linux, so don't count on learning it "faster" than other distros. Really, I can understand previous users of Caldera wanting to stay with the distro but why anyone would wan't to start using Caldera is beyond me. Mandrake would be an excellent choice.
Just so u know, Slackware and LFS (linux from scratch) is very hard to learn. I have used slack since i started out with linux a year ago. I think that I have learned more than my friends that have used debian, red hat and so on that started in about the same time. it is not my recommendation for a totalt computernewbie to use slack as a first os. and for LFS it requires you to already have a working linuxinstallation. But since u said you where not new to unix I think that slackware might suite you if you are not afraid of a day or two in the console with IRC as your best friend to get your X(graphical interface) working.
But when your done - you have a lot of more knowledge than your fellow redhat buddies
Distribution: Mandrake 9.0 1st/9.1 2nd/Gentoo 1.4 now
go for Gentoo if you follow all the instructions and go to their forums for assistance in the installation, It will pay of all the time it stayed compiling. Just to tell you, when I first use linux I choose Mandrake and because of it installer I accidentally erased my hard drive with all my music on it. Then I have to reinstall it like 6 times because when I installed a new RPM from an Internet source it broke the kernel and stops working, but when I changed Gentoo, I learned how the kernel works so whenever I brake something I know how to repair it whit out any erased data.
I don't know whats so hard about gentoo, if I want a new program, instead of go to rpmseek.com and waste all my time looking for all the dependencies, I just type "emerge xfce4" and it will install all the dependencies and the program in order so I don't have to do anything but wait until the program compiles, If I want the new versions of all the programs in the computer, I just do an "emerge sync" and after that I do an "emerge -U world". If you think that is not easy, then I don't know what is easy for you.
Sorry, my post got too long.
P.S: I'm not trying to blame any Distro, they are all good but I like gentoo better.
well I just looked at lfs (linux from scratch) this looks at laest as hard as working with Gentoo. at least with gentoo you dont have to compile absolutely everythng (there are 3 stages of tarballs.)
I guess with gentoo I could use their tarball packages and recompile just what I find I use often.
I dont need a small distro I will have atleast 60gb to work with
My preference in order (for new users) is Suse, Mandrake, Red Hat.
Those same distros in any order are suitable for a new user.
People do start with any distro, even those not generally recommended as newbie friendly.
i started using linux just a few weeks, ago and i asked my friend which distro i should use, between mandrake, redhat, and slackware, my friend told me to either use mandrake or redhat, but i asked why not slackware, he said that it would be too hard, cuz it was all work unlike the other two which are a little similar to windows, but then i just chose to go with slackware, because i think that, it will help me learn faster.