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Old 06-26-2005, 05:10 AM   #1
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Bucharest
Distribution: Debian,Knoppix,Slackware
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most flexible distro

Hi !
Now I use Debian distro .
It is ok ,but I like it , but one of teh reasons I switch to Linux is to learn about internals of an OS , to get more involved in its administration.
But in debian almost all system software admin is maintaindet by apt-get.
Could somebody recommand me a linsu dostro that is
1. flexible
2. well-documented
3. do not use any kind o pakaging system , i.e I must do all manually
4. its cool
5. I could learn a lot about its internals.

Previously I use Mandrake ( it is too user friendly ) , Red-hat ( not updated ) , FC
Also I do not like in debian its online installation because I got a poor internet connection.

What about gentoo? argch ? slackware ?
I use linux mostly for learning it , programming , playing sound and watching video.

Any suggestions are welcome.
Old 06-26-2005, 05:30 AM   #2
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: Kent, England
Distribution: Debian Testing
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If you want to learn everything and do it all manually and have no hand holding or package management, go for Linux From Scratch (LFS). We also have a dedicated forum.
Old 06-26-2005, 05:45 AM   #3
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Registered: Jul 2004
Distribution: Ubuntu 7.04
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Well, the most flexible distribution by far doesn't use any kind of packaging system, includes a lot of printed documentation (albeit not exhaustive), doesn't use a packaging system as far as I know and will certainly get you kudos. I refer, of course, to the GNU deluxe distribution package, costing $5,000US; see

If that's out of your price range, you might take a look at SuSE, which is very well documented from an end-user point of view. It has a package management system, but you can always ignore it (I think the DVD has source code in SRPM format? You can get the original tarball out with the rpm2cpio and cpio commands)

For general linux documentation, there's a whole ream of stuff on, including printed books that you can buy and/or download. I would strongly recommend trying to learn Linux internals from a book before breaking out the source code or manual pages, because it will explain the reasoning behind different design decisions and implemented standards, which manual pages (and often even the source code) doesn't.


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