Visit Jeremy's Blog.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!


  Search this Thread
Old 03-11-2007, 11:49 AM   #1
Registered: Mar 2007
Posts: 35

Rep: Reputation: 15
What Linux distributions have long-term support?

One reason I'm planning to switch from Fedora to something else is to get away from the need for regular upgrades. If something works fine with me, I prefer to stick with it. Fedora is intended for a different type of user, one who plans to pursue the cutting edge of technology.

So what Linux distributions have the long-term support I seek? None of the reviews I've looked at talk about this.
Old 03-11-2007, 12:26 PM   #2
Senior Member
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Manalapan, NJ
Distribution: Fedora x86 and x86_64, Debian PPC and ARM, Android
Posts: 4,593
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 336Reputation: 336Reputation: 336Reputation: 336
What's the difference between "getting away from the need for regular updates", and not applying updates? If you have a distribution that releases updates 4 times a year, how is that different from applying updates to Fedora 4 times a year?

Do you really think that software that is 3 or 4 years old that hasn't had any maintenance is somehow more secure than software that you haven't applied maintenance to for 3 or 4 years?

I know people that use Fedora, that only upgrade to every other even release (FC2, FC6, next Fedora10). Just because the distribution makes updates available, doesn't mean you must apply them. You have the option - for security fixes only, or specific bugs that you encounter. I personally (automatically) apply maintenance daily, to prevent encountering a known problem, but there's no requirement to do so.

Last edited by macemoneta; 03-11-2007 at 12:36 PM.
Old 03-11-2007, 12:41 PM   #3
Registered: Mar 2007
Posts: 35

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
What happens when the new version is too much for your computer?

The trouble is that the newer versions of a Linux distribution often require more RAM, processor speed, and other resources than the previous versions. This is the bloatware upgrade cycle at work - just at a slower rate than Microsoft.

Or maybe I should have a hard drive install for offline use and a live CD for online use.
Old 03-11-2007, 12:56 PM   #4
Senior Member
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Manalapan, NJ
Distribution: Fedora x86 and x86_64, Debian PPC and ARM, Android
Posts: 4,593
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 336Reputation: 336Reputation: 336Reputation: 336
While functionality is added (a good thing) it is optional.

For example Fedora added Bluetooth support, UPnP, IPv6, ISDN, IRDA, MD (software RAID), Multipath I/O, NFSv4, and yum daemon to recent releases. Most people consider the added functionality and support a good thing. If you don't want them, don't enable them. Poof, they're gone.

They also make light-weight alternatives available. For example, Thunderbird vs. Evolution, XFCE vs. Gnome/KDE. You have a choice for low resource environments. You'll find that your resource requirements actually go down over prior releases with the new options.

I run 6-8 year old machines, and they get faster with each release. I get to pick and choose the functions I want - it's not bloat, it's a bigger menu.
Old 03-11-2007, 03:13 PM   #5
LQ Veteran
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Annapolis, MD
Distribution: Mint
Posts: 17,808

Rep: Reputation: 742Reputation: 742Reputation: 742Reputation: 742Reputation: 742Reputation: 742Reputation: 742
I see confusion here between upgrades and support.
To me, support means having help available. For that, the community will be here for you forever.

As for upgrades (aka updates) I would not expect ANYONE to committ to continuous updates when their major energy is releasing entire distributions which are--in effect-- a complete update. What is great about Linux and OpenSource is that these new releases typically have substantive improvements--as opposed to proprietary products where the decisions are made by the marketing and legal departments.
Old 03-11-2007, 03:52 PM   #6
Senior Member
Registered: May 2004
Location: In the DC 'burbs
Distribution: Arch, Scientific Linux, Debian, Ubuntu
Posts: 4,290

Rep: Reputation: 378Reputation: 378Reputation: 378Reputation: 378
Except that there are distributions that do provide long term support (security patches, phone support, etc.). Probably the most well known are Red Hat Enterprise and Novell. I know Red Hat supports an Enterprise release for a minimum of seven years from the release date. If you just need security updates and don't care about formal support then CentOS is a good choice. Also, Ubuntu designates some release as LTS (for Long Term Support). IIRC these are supported for 3 years on the desktop and 5 on the server.

These releases are aimed more at businesses who need a stable platform over a longer period of time (as I know from bitter firsthand experience, upgrading can break things so sometimes the less often the better). I agree that for the home user it is generally just as easy to upgrade every release or every other release. Note that if you get a long support distro you will still have to apply security patches etc.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
LXer: Long-term Fedora Linux support ending LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 01-03-2007 11:03 AM
LXer: Mark Shuttleworth on Ubuntu Long Term Support LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 06-03-2006 03:54 PM
LXer: Kubuntu 6.06 LTS Here for the Long Term LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 06-01-2006 08:21 PM
Good distro for long term server support chaan Linux - Distributions 2 01-20-2004 10:04 AM
to all long-term *nix users jon_k Linux - General 3 07-31-2003 10:17 PM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:33 AM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration