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-   -   The Best Linux for me? (

erichard2000 01-23-2001 03:34 PM

Hello, I want a good version of linux for me here is my comps specs: I run win 98 SE and want to keep it, I have a 15gig harddrive, AMD K6II 450, 128 MG RAM, Diamond Stealth III S540 32 MG video card, cable modem. I want to run a dual boot system, what linux is the best for me (and free) for me to download and install. Me being a begginer I dont know to much about linux, but am eager to learn!


trickykid 01-24-2001 08:18 AM

The easiest Linux distro I have found to do a dual boot is with Redhat 6.2, I to have one machine with a dual boot with Win98 SE and RedHat 6.2, another easy beginner Linux distro would be Mandrake. I believe either one of these are going to suit you best.


ugge 01-24-2001 12:34 PM

I agree.

Vaugerant 01-25-2001 01:07 AM

Uh huh... go for Mandrake.

CragStar 01-29-2001 07:27 AM

If you are eager to get Linux up and running I would not suggest downloading the first version you try. Making sure that you have all the correct source can be quite a hassel, and you wont get all the software to try out that you would with a CD distro (assuming you have a CD drive).

My personal preference is Mandrake. I have never run RedHat so I couldn't comment. I hope to try out one of thier distro's soon, but for me Mandrake is perfect.

Br. Nicholas 02-09-2001 11:27 PM

Greetings in Christ.

I've only been working with linux since November. So far I've tried Corel Second Edition, Redhat 6.2 and Redhat 7.0.

Corel was by far the easiest to set up. It configured (almost) everything for me. It's not a very impressive distro in that most of the software included in it is very old. I can't recommend it primarily because they don't really support it, and they want to sell their Linux division, so the future of it is highly questionable. (We wanted their WordPerfect Office 2000 for Linux b/c our convent publishes books and we have 20 years worth of books in WordPerfect format.)

Most of my work has been with Redhat 7.0. It has been one very gigantic humbling experience. I was a computer programmer/nearly everything else in the computer field for more than ten years before entering the monastery. I can't remember ever having this much difficulty with anything... except possibly certain aspects C++. []:-)

From what others have told me, Redhat is primarily interested in the server market, and so they have their install program set everything up with the tightest possible security... or not at all. They shipped RH7 with a lot of broken pieces, and if you decide to go this route, I highly recommend downloading all the bugfixes that might possibly be applicable to your system, and installing them right away. Be forewarned, there are a LOT of them.

Oh yeah, another downside to RH7 -- they changed their directory structure with RH7, so you might run into some very nasty problems getting software loaded onto your machine. You might have a lot of install problems.

I never have gotten SAMBA working on RH7. Corel's distro sets it up automatically, and works like a charm. I can't even tell you how many hours I've spent trying to get it working on RH7, and how many volumes of info I've read about it, without sucess. Why it is so much more difficult on RH7 is beyond my comprehension.

I was not impressed with Redhat 6.2. A large part of this is because I'd seen RH7, and worked with it, and 6.2 seemed more like Windows 3.1 or earlier.

I am actually looking at other distributions. That's why I came back to this site... to check out what other people are saying about other distros.

Any suggestions for another distro that is easier to configure would be appreciated.

In Christ,

Br. Nicholas

jeremy 02-09-2001 11:56 PM

Here is a good thread with my opinion -

Please note that Debian has a new release since that post and I REALLY like it.

Br. Nicholas 02-10-2001 03:35 AM

Greetings in Christ.

Thank you for the tip on that thread. I printed it off, and will read it more thoroughly tomorrow when I am more awake!

After posting my last message here earlier tonight, I decided to give SAMBA another try on RH7, and glory be to God, it works! I have to do a little more work on it, but it works. Thus, I'm a little inclined towards staying with RH7, at least for now, as I only have one or two more items to figure out on it to have a fully functional linux/windows system. Then I'll set it up on all of our computers.

In all fairness to Redhat, my SAMBA problems appear to have been from my own incompetence, not a problem with RH7.

I actually like RH7, even with all of it's challenges. One nice thing about it is that if you have problems, you can look at various newsgroups, and chances are, you will find that others have had the same problem, and will already have figured out a work-around/solution to the problem. After all, there are a LOT of Redhat users out there. This isn't always the case (obviously, with my SAMBA), but I've found a lot of answers this way.

BTW - What is so nice about the new Debian distro?

(I have been curious about the whole Debian vs. RPM issue, but have not had time to really look into that.)

In Christ,

Br. Nicholas

Rutnut 02-27-2001 02:28 AM

I'v looked at and used a number of distos, RH7, Corel, Madrake but in the end I chose SuSE7, the reason is that after a good number of formatting and re-loading the Linux distos, SuSE always 100% found everything my Cd and CDR with SCSI, 2 HD etc, I never was able to get sound on a RH6.2 distro, the setup using their YAST2 setup program is as easy as opening your eyes, I still can't get my sound to work under Windows, always a conflict in the IRQ's or memory conflict, but no probs with SuSE.

Again I would recommend SuSE as a very good choice due to it's very well written documentation and lsit of packages, their database of problems answers on their website is big and easy to navigate, and they do respond quickly as well.

After SuSE I would choose Corel because they really have developed an impressive setup and configure program which anyone can use and it found nearly everything except my CDr and SCSI.

But I must admit in the end it's always down to personal taste but to anyone try the free distros that comes with the mags they really were a help for me to work out wich distro to use.

KevinJ 02-28-2001 05:07 PM

My opinion
SUSE - #1 in Germany and most of Eastern Europe. I have no personal experience with it.

Redhat - by far the most commercially adopted, the most pre-installed on retail systems, and all around a VERY nice and easy to use distro. This is all I use at the moment. If you are going to support Linux commercially.. learn Redhat.

Mandrake - Built on top of Redhat... held the #1 downloaded spot for a while. Might be the best for beginners. I was very impressed with v7.1 but have heard of tons of problems with v7.2. I haven't tried it myself. Supposedly they have "optimized" their distro to run on Pentiums, but I think that is a bunch of poop.

Turbolinux - #1 in most of Asia. They have a headstart over some of the other distro's in the areas of clustering and Asian language support. I have not used it.

Slackware - The very first Linux distro and what I started out with. Installation is a piece of cake and its ROCK SOLID. Said to be the "most like UNIX". However, after intial installation, I found it difficult to maintain and tinker with. Perhaps because I was trying to learn Redhat at the same time and they are very different. This distro has a really nice tight community built around it and I was able to go straight to the developers with questions from time to time. Not for beginners. Sometimes I miss it and want to reinstall it.. but I resist.

Debian - Has a large rabid following. Rock solid. Not for beginners. Best feature is the "apt-get" utility for upgrades. Totally maintained by volunteers and has no commercial entity overseaing it. Said to be the distro that sticks to GNU and FSF philosophy the closest. (StormLinux is built on top of this, but I wasn't impressed with that product)

Corel and Caldera and all those CD's you get in the magazines... AVOID THEM LIKE THE PLAGUE.

juswhitaker 03-28-2001 12:15 PM


This is really a loaded question, since the Linux Community is fractured in part by the vast number of "flavors" out there.

I have tried Turbolinux, Corel, Mandrake, RedHat and SUSE on my DELL Inspirion 5000e, both as dual boots, and as straight ahead Linux installs.

I never got Mandrake up and running on my laptop, so I am a little biased against it. I hear it is very easy to use, and great for beginners. It sounds like your setup is nowhere near as weird as mine, so Mandrake should run and install easily.

I like RED HAT 7.0, because it is relatively easy to configure up front. You can either let the install system decide for you, or get down into it and use diskdruid to configure your system as you like. It's easy to set up, and easy to modify later on (adding programs, updating kernels, etc.). It does not, however, play well with other distributions, and it doesn't come with kernel 2.4, or KDE2.
You can get a very useful, pleasant and stable operating environment out of it.

Alot of people said that 7.0 was very "buggy". I never had any problems.

I am currently using /toying around with SUSE 7.1. Wow. This this is HUGE. The full install is 6GB, but I doubt anyone uses that option. The new kernel, the lastest of everything, and setup was click and go, for the most part. Very nice.

There are a couple of weird things about it, though. Redhat, Mandrake, etc., partition your disks to have different root, user, etc., partitions, where the SUSE uses one large virtual partiion. his is fine if you want to run SUSE alone, but gets a little hairy if you want to get funky with your hard drive later on.

Hope this helps a little. If you want a challenge,get a copy of SUSE. There is an 800 page manual with it that will help you learn linux, how to configure it, and how to make your system sing.

In you don't wnat a challenge, and want to ease into Linux, get RED HAT and use KDE as your desktop (you'll see what I mean when you get in there).

Another thing: the packaged CDROMS are easier to install from, and support the companies that support Linux. Don't use the stuff from LINUX FORMAT, as most installs are not complete with only the first disk.

Also, splurge and get the Desktop Workstation or the Professional versions of Red Hat, Mandrake (I think theirs is called the POWER PACK), or SUSE. The extra disks will save you alot of time downloading when you want that game, server, or multimedia file later on.


Citizen Bleys 03-29-2001 05:33 PM

Re: SuSE and Mandrake

SuSE was built on top of Slackware. Slackware should be the most stable package, since it doesn't have any of the flash and glitter of other distros. SuSE was originally billed as "Slackware with RPMs". I've had trouble with RPMs acting weird, while source files, when they install, work flawlessly. If I had to choose between SuSE and Slackware, I'd pick Slackware--but it's very much not for beginners. Br. Nicholas: Since you were a programmer in the Bad Old Days, you'd probably take to Slackware like a fish to water, but it might be harder to teach to others.

Mandrake was originally billed as "RedHat with extensions". I like Mandrake, but I've been having trouble with installs on it--So I'm thinking very seriously about going over to RedHat and seeing if getting rid of the middleman programs will help me out any. The major downside I've seen to RedHat is that its current version isn't built on kernel 2.4.2--Since I can't succesfully compile a kernel (And I've spent the last week tearing out my hair trying), I'm going to have to wait 'till the NEXT beta version of RedHat before I switch.

KevinJ 03-29-2001 11:34 PM

Redhat beta
Try this:

or this:

NGene 03-30-2001 03:45 PM

SuSE 7.1 is the way to go!

Well, to be honest, I haven't used SuSE 7.1 but I've used both SuSE 6.3 and 7.0 and I've been very happy with it. I've tried quite a few distros but SuSE is definitely one of the best. Its setup tool YaST, or the newer graphical YaST2, makes installing, configuring and administrating SuSE very very easy. Many users of SuSE say that its hardware detecting is very good, and for me that's been true - YaST2 has picked all my hardware, including soundcard, without a hiccup.

I just recently switched to Debian and I must say that IMO it's the only distro that's better than SuSE. Debian's package manager, apt, makes maintaining it very easy. Unfortunately almost everything in Debian is configured by editing configuration files by hand and its installer isn't the newbie friendliest.

I've heard, though, that Libranet is a Debian based distro with a user-friendlier installer, so it sounds good... but I haven't used it so I can't say.

Here is a little help file that tells more about different distros and maybe helps choosing the right one so check this out:

russ023 04-17-2001 07:40 PM

ok i have installed redhat 6 (over 6 months ago) redhat 7 and mandrake 7.1 and mandrake is really nice an easy and quick to install redhat 6 feels to me to be hardcore unix with a really poor gui front end (u still really need to know unix shell commands to get anything properly done), however redhat 7 improves upon this and with exception to the bugs & configuration issues (theres a lot of them an its slow an painful, e.g. setting up adsl,modem sound & cd-writer)it does feel quite nice to use, i have had a working machine now since friday (i call working a machine with good net access)and i have become quite comfortable with it.Now I am gonna put mandrake back on my machine and see how it runs , what i will say is i met a guy in holland who first told me about linux back in december he had dual boot on his laptop and was running mandrake he had everything running smoothly , sound, internet, office apps , email etc. he also said he found it really easy to set - up. but for anyone with adsl i think u will still have a headache since it only natively supports it in france (being of french origin).I will post again when i have spent few days using mandrake on my systems.
one more note , have been using sun solaris on x86 and compared to linux its a bit of a pig as hardware support is very poor only few drivers are included. and very little applications covered on x86 build. I will say that Linux is welcome alternative to what is one of the most popular commercial unix o/s's

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