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Old 01-07-2006, 09:17 AM   #1
TonyDTV
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Which distro to pick??


Hi all, being a W$ user for so many years I would like to try my hand in Linux. Ive tried some of these Live CD's but cant find the one that I can get use to. What Im looking for is a "looks like windows" 64-bit, can do wifi WPA encryption w/o the complex programming Linux. Im I asking too much?? Being a nooB, I think one way to migrate W$ user to Linux is to realize that not all of us have hours to spend a day in figuring out how this OS works,that boat has long sailed away because I started with DOS back in the early 80's. Being over 50 and STILL working I cant do that again. So i hope this forum can get me started. Thanks for the help in advance.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 09:22 AM   #2
Gort32
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For plain ease of use, Ubuntu is really nice. It does have a 64-bit version as well. They'll even ship pressed CDs to you free of charge!
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=ubuntu
http://www.ubuntulinux.org/

Ubuntu is Gnome-based, so it has a really (almost overly) friendly interface, but it is closer to the old Mac desktop than Windows. It is still really easy to pick up though.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 10:19 AM   #3
kwacka
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The distro with the best wireless support is Mandriva 2006. There is an X64 version, & the urpmi system now (imho) beats apt-get.

But, try a few out, find the one YOU like.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 10:38 AM   #4
muha
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http://www.opensuse.org/
is also good for noobs (like me :). I don't know about wifi in this distro, i do know that it has a 64bit version, looks like xp if you use KDE as a desktop and is easy as. If you decide to get it, i'd recommend the 'eval' version.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 11:41 AM   #5
pixellany
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pick a free distro at random and dive in....Odds are you will try 2 or 3 before you settle down.
Good free distros include Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSuse---many others.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 11:44 AM   #6
Cirdan
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There has been quite a few of these posts lately. There should be a stickey saying what distro is bessed for what type of user....
 
Old 01-07-2006, 11:58 AM   #7
pixellany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirdan
There has been quite a few of these posts lately. There should be a stickey saying what distro is bessed for what type of user....
Absolutely not----None of can presume to know what is right for another person. Further, people will gravitate towards a particular flavor of Linux for reasons that they cannot articulate.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 12:18 PM   #8
mcmillan
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If you haven't seen this site yet, you should check it out to get some ideas. From my experience Mandriva or Mepis might be good ones to check out.
 
Old 01-07-2006, 01:51 PM   #9
TonyDTV
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Thanks Mcmillan for the site and the rest of you for your inputs. Ive tried Ubunto/Kubuntu 5.10 which I liked but further down the road it didnt have WPA support. A friend told me about Xandros that he said looked like WinXp but didnt have 64bit version plus has some issues with WPA. Linspire 5.0 was a M$ clone when it comes to "buying" software.I think Ill try Mandriva but somewhere I read that distro wasnt that easy to install?? If you have other ideas let me know since Im still "shopping". Thanks again.

Last edited by TonyDTV; 01-07-2006 at 04:08 PM.
 
Old 01-08-2006, 07:20 AM   #10
anti.corp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyDTV
I think Ill try Mandriva but somewhere I read that distro wasnt that easy to install?? If you have other ideas let me know since Im still "shopping". Thanks again.

Mandriva 2006 free edition is easy to install. It shouldn't cause you any trouble at all.

You could also give SuSe 10 eval a try, or try out Fedora core 4.

Be aware that Fedora contains alot of new programs which is still beta's. Therefore you should be prepared to do some configuration down the road.

Have fun.

 
Old 01-08-2006, 04:59 PM   #11
manicman
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I would recomend Ubuntu ive have recentley made the switch from Windows to Linux and have found the transition quite easy and i havent had to much trouble running it on a 64bit processor as well
 
Old 01-08-2006, 08:02 PM   #12
Ray2047
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JMHO but not just the distro but which desktop manager is best for you. Coming from MS Windows some if not many may find KDE the most MS Windows like.

While any 'nix distro can run KDE some come with KDE on initial install some don't. For the beginner not having to add a different desktop manager can be a plus. Of course the discussion on which desk manager is a whole other ball of wax that has no right or wrong answer but it is a consideration that isn't always mentioned to a newbie.

Even RPMs vs Debs Vs tarballs is something to read up on and consider.

Last edited by Ray2047; 01-08-2006 at 08:05 PM.
 
Old 01-09-2006, 12:13 AM   #13
Trio3b
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distro

Mandriva has one of the best newb-friendly installers around.

I have installed all sorts of single and dual boot combos on single and dual hard drives with various partition combinations with very good success using the MDV installer/partitioning tool. This is a very GUI oriented OS with the ability to commandline as well.

I have installed MDV on a dozen PCs all with various hdwr and it had embedded drivers for all but one 'winmodem'. MS products did not have drivers for about half the hdwr on those same PCs.

As mentioned above, find one distro and stick with it to avoid the "grass is greener" trap. Most all distros can do most of the same stuff.

Keep in mind that a mainstream distro will likely have more standard software installation, larger application base to choose from, probably support more hardware, AND will have a larger user base which statistically give you a wider range of problem/solution scenarios that you may use in your own learning curve.

Easy to learn or easy to use? It's all relative. Because linux will be new to you, your old OS will naturally be 'easier' in the beginning.

good luck

Last edited by Trio3b; 01-09-2006 at 12:23 AM.
 
Old 01-09-2006, 03:11 AM   #14
Electro
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Package based distributions like Mandrake or Mandriva, Redhat, Fedora, Suse, Mepis, Slackware, Debian, Ubuntu are a pain in the ass to install programs because all the dependencies you have to install. Yes, they may include a utility to decrease the problems of dependencies, but dependency problems are still there. Package based distributions usually need human interaction to help them install many programs. Upgrading programs are twice the pain than just installing them for the first time. While I was using Mandrake 9.0, I never go out to the internet to gather RPM files because they always need other RPM files and usually they make my system unstable. I always use what is on the installation disc, but if there is a program that is not on the disc, I download the source and compile.

What I am saying use package based distributions at your own risk. The only way to experience Linux with out all the dependency crap, is to compile all programs and libraries. This takes time but the distribution that made compiling programs and libraries easier is Gentoo. The Gentoo developers created a program management system called Portage that contains serveral thousand programs and libraries. Next they created a utility that simplified the steps of compiling programs and library, so giving you an example all you need to is type emerge mplayer to just install mplayer in Gentoo. It will check for dependencies that it needs for the simpliest features. Then it configures, compile, and installs.

I do not like recommending a distribution that is hard to install for novice Linux users, but Gentoo is the best distribution for long term use if you do not mind spending time installing it. The down side is installing for the first time takes a long time to compile to get GUI running. I suggest picking stage3 with the i686 file and installing its binaries from the CD or DVD to decrease the time it takes to install. When you feel up to it, you can update the programs and libraries with out binaries to get an extra speed boost and customize what features you want for certain programs and libraries. You do not need to be a rocket scientist to update programs and libraries in Gentoo.

All distributions can do wireless networking with wpa, but each of them will have their own way of doing it. I highly recommend that you do not use wireless networking in the first place because it has a very high security risk even though encryption is on. I recommend using wired networks and using closets to hide and pass through the ethernet wire from room to room. Wired networks are the easiest to configure in Linux.
 
Old 01-09-2006, 06:12 AM   #15
kwacka
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I'd suggest that you haven't tried out the package managers on (e.g.) Mandriva for a while. I haven't experienced/heard about any dependency problems as a result of using urpmi - OK you have to install Kprintfax as part of KDE, but that's no big deal.

Yes, it is better to install from source tarballs, but that's not what the questioner is asking for.
 
  


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