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Old 07-31-2005, 06:30 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jul 2005
Posts: 18

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Which distro is best for newbie

which distro should i use

or else
plz tell me and tell me good tutorials and books
thanks in advanced
Old 07-31-2005, 06:36 PM   #2
Registered: Jul 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Distribution: Fedora Core 9
Posts: 141

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I would say the Mandrake is the best distribution for a newbie. I started with Mandrake then moved on to Fedora.
Old 07-31-2005, 06:39 PM   #3
Senior Member
Registered: Jun 2004
Location: Chicago
Distribution: Slackware64 -current
Posts: 1,152

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Welcome to Linux,

You have to see what you like. One of the LQers here famously said, distro are like shoes. You have to try them to see if it fits your needs.

I've personally used redhat, suse, fedora, debian, ubuntu before. I'm currently using slackware (exclusively) and arch linux (as a fall back).

As far as books are concerned, Rute User's Tutorial and Exposition by Paul Sheer is the what I use. It is also one of most recommended books here on LQ.

There are ample tutorials on LQ and else where on the net. Remember, Google is your friend.

If you want to learn linux and are not afraid to experiment (and screw up)...use slightly harder distro like slackware, arch linux or debian.

Old 07-31-2005, 10:04 PM   #4
Registered: Nov 2004
Location: Delaware
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 351

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This question is asked alot yet I can't seem to find any good examples in search...(weird)

If you have never seen Linux:
1 Try Knoppix.. It's a "Live" Cd it will run from your cd drive. No install to hard drive.(if you don't want to that is.)

If are new to Linux and want an experience similar to WIN
1. Suse
2. Mandrake
3. Linspire
4. Xandros
I have not installed all of these, but most are on the easier side to install and get working.

If you are proficient with computers and are not afraid to do a little reading:

1. Fedora Core 4 (good installer, free version of Red Hat, great tools, a lot of reference material,etc..)
2. Slackware ( my favorite distro. I have tried a lot of distros, but this is the one I am most loyal to.( I always come back to Slack)
*installer is not the most user friendly but it is solid as a rock.
3.Debian - Everyone at the LUG I go to uses it. I've never tried it. They are kinda cultish about it.
4. Arch - Very solid L33t linux distro.

From your list.
RedHat- you have to pay for. A good business(enterprise) distro.
Mandrake- A good newb distro. The free version seems to nag you to get the pay version.(my opinion.)
Slackware- Again my favorite. Very solid distro. Most people have a love/hate feeling toward it. A good learning distro.
Vector similar to Slack, but better on older hardware.

Check out and go to distributions tab. You can look through a bunch there. will give you an idea of the distros and their popularity.

as stated above look at RUTE:

My progression through distros has been:
Knoppix-->Suse 9.0--> Slackware--> Fedora-->Ubuntu-->Gentoo
I have tried many more but these are the ones I actuall "used".

I hope this helps.
Old 07-31-2005, 10:31 PM   #5
Registered: Mar 2005
Location: Utah, USA
Distribution: Slackware 11
Posts: 816
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Slax is a good liveCD, I use it whenever I have to use my wife's laptop (Help! My wife's a Windopes Junkie! Does anyone know the number for Windows Anonymous? I need to arrange an intervention! ). Furthermore, if you decide you like it, you can easily install it right there.

If you like to tinker, Slackware is my recommendation, of course I am biased.
Old 08-01-2005, 08:11 AM   #6
Registered: Nov 2004
Location: Delaware
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 351

Rep: Reputation: 30
I know this is off topic for this thread, but do you know of any good Slackware 10.1 install documentation sites?

I used this website to install 10.0 and it was very helpfu:

Old 08-01-2005, 11:51 AM   #7
Registered: Jul 2005
Posts: 161

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I am a newbie myself. I have tried these distros (in that order too)

Morphix (LiveCD)
SuSE 9.3
Fedora Core 4
Ubuntu 5.04
Kanotix (LiveCD)

In the end I chose to stick with Ubuntu, the main reason is personally I feel Synaptic (or apt-get) from the Debian based distros makes your life a lot easier when you are installing anything. With my limited experience it seems that it works better than the RH based equivalent.

If you are used to Windows I would suggect Kubuntu which is a KDE version of Ubuntu, which I think its UI is more similar to Windows.

The installation does not look as nice as Suse or even FC4 but it isn't any harder to perform.
Old 08-01-2005, 03:19 PM   #8
Senior Member
Registered: May 2005
Distribution: Ubuntu with IceWM
Posts: 1,776

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Craigevil gave me this link. It's great. You answer some questions, and it tells you which distros are best for you:
Old 08-01-2005, 08:18 PM   #9
LQ Newbie
Registered: Aug 2005
Location: England
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 7

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simply mepis is a very good bet, its a live CD that you can install if you wish. Its got a good selection of packages for the one CD. But the icing on the cake with this one for me is that it is totally compatable with debian packages. So if you install it you have apt at you mercy.
Old 08-02-2005, 09:18 AM   #10
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Flint, Michigan
Distribution: Fedora Core 4
Posts: 15

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I tried: ( all from the most recent version as of early July)


Then I tried Fedora Core4, I would recommend it if you have a decent level of overall computer knowledge, and if you check out the links I have compiled at they would help a lot with FC4 installation, and running. Download the DVD Iso and you will be happy.

Last edited by kylere; 08-02-2005 at 09:19 AM.
Old 08-02-2005, 10:25 AM   #11
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Sydney Aus.
Distribution: Kubuntu
Posts: 36

Rep: Reputation: 15
I would recommend using Kubuntu, its realy easy to use especially package management with apt-get and Synaptic so installing packages is a breeze. Also it uses KDE which users migrating from Windows should find familar enough.


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