SlackwareThis Forum is for the discussion of Slackware Linux.
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Yeah, my old math teacher became a linux convert because of Slackware. She was shocked that you could configure things this "easily" (shes a programmer) in an OS. Things werent that well when she tried to teach me C++ though.
PS. I was just at Borders and was reading a book called "Linux System Commands" or something like that, and its by Patrick Volkerding. Anyone else read it? Its pretty good, nice simple (like slackware) explanations of many system commands and their flags.
My $.02. Because I've got an old p200 pc, and I like the minimalism to start with...I even like the slack site. However, my next machine will be home built speed machine, and I wanted to start learning linux so I wouldn't be spending too much time getting it up and running. My friend did loan me a mandrake 8.0, but it was overload time. I'd rather experiment with this machine before making the jump to be as close as m$-free as possible.
As per shellcode's post, Slackware is (IMO) the best distro to learn with for the following reasons:
1) It makes you learn Linux, rather than Mandrake/Red Hat/SuSE which try to make Linux more Windows-like. (It doesn't work, you end up frustrated)
2) It's really good at treading the fine line between bleeding-edge (so new nothing works) and hopelessly outdated (Totally rock solid, but limiting in what you can use with it)
Most things worked straight off the CD, and those that didn't I've been able to fix by asking nicely in this rather groovy forum.
3) It doesn't force the distro makers preferences on you too heavy handedly. For example SuSE pretty much only support KDE as a desktop. They provide GNOME, but they make no secret of the fact that KDE is their number one desktop. Slackware doesn't push you one way or the other, both are available it's down to your individual choice.
If the next release of Debian ('Woody') goes stable soon, I'm definitely going to give it a go because Debian has a reputation as one of the most stable distro's out there, but the current release is a little behind the times. (Although that probably just means that it works better)
I use Slackware because it the closest you can get to Unix without
spending the big $$. I am using an a P166 (please, don't laugh)
but I am flying while surfing the net, or doing C++ programming.
After burning my first CD in Slack 8.0, I gotta tell you, many people
just do not know what they are missing.
I enjoy breaking things and fixing them up, wihtout the burden of
the gui crap, where they hide things from you. Slackware is tops!!!
I own a boxed copy of SuSE 8.2, and have used many other distributions. I find that Slackware just runs faster for me. Like many others have mentioned, I also enjoy the benefit of knowing I run a more "less windows like" distribution. As was also mentioned, I like that Slackware tends to stick to the standard locations for things better than other distributions, and it doesn't require you to use some stupid configurator type deal to get a setting you want to stick. I also give major props to Patrick with package selection on the single CD, as well as the version choices. I was very surprised to find a distribution such as Slack that had such up to date packages at the time (when I first tried it). It was also nice to be able to successfully run KDevelop 3.0, which I had previously been unable to get to run successfully under SuSE. Having finally been able to acceptably master the art of kernel compilation, I feel I can reap even more benefits of running Slack (such as getting myself scanner support).
I have a couple of reasons I use Slack.
I love the name, and the graphics you can get on the website.
I like the control. I, too, started out with mandrake. I tried to install the minimal amount of packages, and it still came out to be like 3 gb. Too much crap to sort through. Mandrake and Redhat both have their gui tools to configure everything, but I was never successful in getting any of them to work. They would always hang. When I was new to linux, I thought that is the way it was, and I was like WTF, this sucks. I moved to slack after talking to a friend, and I never looked back. In Slack I have learned a considerable amount about linux and computers in general. I think now I am only using about 1.3 gb and I have everything on it that I need. My main workstation has a 1.4 ghz processor, with an 80gb hd, and I run Slack 8.1, and this thing is the quickest computer I have ever sat behind. Sometimes I think the system goes from pushing the power button to login prompt quicker than my 1 ghz processor running windows loads up a web browser. Slackware just seems to feel better, and I do love it. I have it on two of my computers now. On my server I run redhat 7.3 without X installed, and it seems to be doing ok that way, but it still does not touch the comfort of Slackware.
I've tried several distros, and have liked none except for Slackware, Debian, and Knoppix.
the reason I like Slack is just because is helps you learn. All the Unix/Linux books I've read that talk about the file system are exactly like slacks so it makes is alot easier to learn, for me anyway. I found it easy to install. I found it very powerful and fast. Highly configurable as I'm learning. Also I've found it to be one of the most stable of platforms out there. Stability is a must for me, that's way I want to get away from windows in the first place.
At first I shyed away from Slack because so many people told me it's a hard distro to install and use, you need to be a Linux "guru" to use it, etc. Personally I found it to be one of the easiest, and useful OSes out there.
If you want to get started on any Linux distro, I suggest this order (this is what I found to be the best for me anyway) start out with Knoppix, it will give you an idea of what Linux is like and the feel of it. Then install Slack and read a couple of books like Think Unix by Jon Lasser, Running Linux 4th addition, and Multitool Linux. After you do that you'll understand why I stand behind Slack.