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Old 03-03-2009, 06:17 PM   #1
Registered: Feb 2009
Location: Bremerton, WA, USA
Distribution: Red Hat
Posts: 60

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Which distro to try?

I would like to build a box at home to play with. I want a distro that can use both rpm and tar.gz. I've been around Windows for too long and tar.gz makes my head hurt so I like having an out.
I would like for it to have programming capability though that is not required...I want to teach myself more programming than just VB.
Suggestions anyone?
Old 03-03-2009, 06:29 PM   #2
Registered: Apr 2002
Location: in a fallen world
Distribution: slackware by choice, others too :} ... android.
Posts: 23,067
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slackware ;}

rpm will take some force (literally, because all the packages
that come with Slack aren't in the rpm DB, but the dependencies
are commonly met).
Old 03-03-2009, 06:29 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Jan 2009
Location: Brazil
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 10

Rep: Reputation: 0


I strongly suggest you to use Slackware.
Can handle both tar.gz and rpm pakages (actually, you convert rpm to tgz packages with alien).

Stable, customizable, fast, and very simple.Slackware is for those who want learn more, that's what i think.

Try Slack!
Old 03-03-2009, 07:08 PM   #4
LQ Guru
Registered: Jan 2009
Location: Gordonsville-AKA Mayberry-Virginia
Distribution: Slack14.2/Many
Posts: 5,573

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Yeah-go with Slackware!
Also-check out this site
and make a multi-distro dvd and try all the flavors!
I just today made a bad ass DVD with these distro's( i had to add to the 'cause it won't do Slackware 12.2 netinstall-but it does now!)
I used 2, and in almost any slackware/slax dirivative-goblinx/wolvix/slax-in the "tools" folder.)
I had to do some manual tweaking of the isolinux.cfg file-but it worked! Also-run it each time in Qemu/vmware to make sure u got everything right!This may take a whole day!
This is my DVD-(see screenshots)
1)Ubuntu 8.04.02 Desktop
2)Ultimate BootCD
3)Damn Small Linux 4.4.10
5)Feather 0.7.5
9)Slax-custom build
10)Deli Linux
11)Wolvix Hunter
12) System Rescue CD
13) Trinity Rescue Kit 3.3
14)Parted Magic
15)Clonezilla Live
16)Debian Lenny Netinstall
17)Fedora 10 Netinstall
18)OpenSuse netinstall
19)Mandriva 2008 netinstall
20)Ubuntu 8.10 netinstall
21)Slackware 12.2 netinstall
22)BackTrack 3
24)Zenwalk 5.2 Live
25)RIPlinux live
26)And Grub4DOS, Balder(Freedos), and Memtest86+!
Damn-what a list!
All on 1 DVD too!
Tomorrow I'm gonna write a how-to on how I did this-anybody interested i'm gonna post the links to each one and exactly how I got through the isolinux.cfg mess!
Anyway-go with Slackware 12.2!
-oh-also easeus disk copy, ntpasswd, and DBAN.....

Last edited by linus72; 04-17-2009 at 04:01 PM.
Old 03-03-2009, 07:28 PM   #5
Registered: May 2007
Location: CO
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 152
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 18
Any particular reason you want those particular package formats? And by tar.gz, do you mean slackware packages or compiling from source? Have you looked into deb packages?

Any distribution will let you program all you need is a compiler and text editor.
Old 03-03-2009, 07:31 PM   #6
Registered: Nov 2007
Location: /home/watcher69b
Distribution: RH, Fedora & CentOS
Posts: 552

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its like an all you can eat buffet. Just try them all until you find something that you like
Old 03-03-2009, 07:31 PM   #7
Registered: Mar 2009
Posts: 102

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Almost all distributions will be able to use tar.gz files, for the plain reason that most of them have tar and gzip installed by default.

RPM is another case - some distro's use it as the default packaging and updating tool. Even if your distribution does not support it by default, you can still install the rpm tools and maybe some updater tool like yum (that uses rpm packages) to install rpm packages.

The main point with rpm packages are:
- even among rpm-based distributions there are differences (Suse rpm's are not necessarily healthy for Fedora systems, and vice versa), so it always depends on the contents of the rpm package and how it does fit your system
- if using rpm packages, you should stick with them: mixing your distro's native packaging with other packaging alternatives can lead to installing the same tools twice (in different places) and fighting over overlapping configuration files
- it is possible to convert different types of packages. Alien is a program that converts between the rpm, dpkg, stampede slp, and slackware tgz file formats. If you want to use a package from another distribution than the one you have installed on your system, you can use alien to convert it to your preferred package format and install it.
- RPM maintains an rpm-database for installed packages. This database has no information about packages installed some other way (for example tarballs unpacked somewhere). The fact that rpm doesn't report a tool as installed, doesn't necessarily mean that it's not there on the system.

To learn programming you can choose any distribution. You will have rather to look for some IDE's and developer tools that suite your own requirements. Some people prefer Anjuta, others stick with Kate, LCC has a compiler suite for Windows and Linux, and hardcore programmers have no problems to do everything in emacs or vim.

If your new to Linux and are used to Windows, you should probably start out with some of the smoother distro's like Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Fedora or Suse, as it gives you more GUI tools and eye candy. Starting out with LiveCD's is also a good starting point, before making a final decision about the distribution.

Arch Linux

Last edited by T74marcell; 03-14-2009 at 12:43 AM.
Old 03-03-2009, 07:48 PM   #8
Registered: Oct 2006
Location: Ogden, Utah
Distribution: Fedora 10
Posts: 66

Rep: Reputation: 15
I'm surprised nobody has mentioned Fedora. I learned Linux from the ground up on Fedora Core (now just Fedora). I have been with it for over six years, and found it to be very nice to learn on, and even better when you get the hang of it. Admittedly, I lack much experience with other brands, but then I have never felt a need to stray from the one I began with.

I recently upgraded to Fedora 10 -- the latest version. Each release gets a little smoother and more friendly if you are planning on using a desktop. I use it both as a desktop OS on my laptop, and as a command line only OS for my web server. Each is as stable as can be.

You'll find ample support for Fedora out there, especially since it's a branch-off of the once popular Red Hat brand. I think installation is very straightforward and customizable, and I like the Yum package installer. You'll have no trouble getting up and running.

I have to say, some people suggest trying every flavor out there before you settle on one. Frankly, I think that's dumb advice because nobody has all that time to waste -- there are just too many. Try two or three if you like, and make sure that Fedora is one of them. Check it out.
Old 03-25-2009, 06:54 PM   #9
Registered: Feb 2009
Location: Bremerton, WA, USA
Distribution: Red Hat
Posts: 60

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 26
Thanks everybody! I have tried Fedora Core 5 and did like it so I have to admit to being tempted to trying v.10. I also have an Ubuntu distro from Linux Pro magazine although I might just download the latest greatest from the website. I've never heard of Slackware. What is it and who puts it out?
Old 03-25-2009, 07:02 PM   #10
LQ 5k Club
Registered: Jan 2006
Location: Oldham, Lancs, England
Distribution: Slackware & Slackware64 14.2
Posts: 7,809
Blog Entries: 58

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Never heard of Slackware???????? People used to be burnt at the stake for saying things like that!
It's the oldest Linux distro, with an undeserved reputation for being difficult.
Old 03-26-2009, 04:57 AM   #11
Registered: Sep 2008
Location: Philippines
Distribution: slackware, FreeBSD
Posts: 123

Rep: Reputation: 19
you can also try zenwalk.very similar to slackware(since its a derivative of slackware) and it has a very good package manager, the netpkg.
Old 03-26-2009, 05:00 AM   #12
Registered: Sep 2008
Location: Philippines
Distribution: slackware, FreeBSD
Posts: 123

Rep: Reputation: 19
Originally Posted by Madone_SL_5.5 View Post
I have to say, some people suggest trying every flavor out there before you settle on one. Frankly, I think that's dumb advice because nobody has all that time to waste -- there are just too many. Try two or three if you like, and make sure that Fedora is one of them. Check it out.
very cant find a date while installing an OS


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