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Old 10-28-2011, 02:48 PM   #1
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Which Linux version is best for a newbie?

Which Linux version is best for a newbie? (free the best as I am a student)
Old 10-28-2011, 03:10 PM   #2
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If I had the time and motivation, I would re-badge Ubuntu Linux as 'Newbie Linux', like the CentOS and Scientific Linux folks did with Redhat Enterprise Linux. It would be misleading, because all of the major distros are fine as long as they have adequate hardware to run them, but it would probably head-off a lot of questions like this one.

--- rod.
Old 10-28-2011, 03:10 PM   #3
Registered: Apr 2011
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All of them and none of them ...

None of them meaning no one is best. And all of them meaning, at least, more than one. Nothing wrong with starting with Ubuntu or Mint or various others, but do try another distro sometime.

It really depends on what your experience is (presumably not with Linux - how comfortable are you with windows or mac?), what you want to get out of it (play multimedia, browse the web, do some programming, ...) etc.

And even what people around you are using. Sometimes you want friends you can ask for help, not just characters on a screen.

They're all free in cash terms, except for the cost of CDs and if you live in a remote area - like Africa - cost of bandwidth to download things.
Old 10-28-2011, 04:18 PM   #4
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Posting some information on the hardware you are using and what you plan to use the computer for would probably give you more informed advice.

You could take the test at the site below or google linux distribution chooser:

Last edited by yancek; 10-28-2011 at 04:22 PM.
Old 10-28-2011, 05:58 PM   #5
Registered: Jan 2011
Location: Planet Earth, Australia, NSW
Distribution: openSUSE Leap 42.1 (x86_64)
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Being NON-technical tried several versions, openSUSE was the first which worked immediately upon installation.

Later made decision to switch my business computers tp SUSE Linux Enterprise subscription which do upgrade around end each year, am currently sle11sp1.

Most of all really like how rarely it actually needs any help :-)
Old 10-28-2011, 06:16 PM   #6
Randicus Draco Albus
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My biased opinion is Debian, but as is mentioned in other similar threads, the best thing to do is download and burn discs with several operating systems and try them all, then stay with the one you like best. Try the major distributions: Debian, Fedora, Mint, Ubuntu, Mandriva, etc. It is only an investment of a little time that will pay large dividends after you find the one, or more, systems you like.
Old 10-28-2011, 09:38 PM   #7
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If you ask five Linux users that question, you will get 10 answers.

I suggest you download some Live CDs--you can boot to them without installing them to the hard drive--play around with them, then pick one that feels most comfortable for you. Install it and stick with it for a while before you consider trying another one. You can find links on the LQ Download Linux page.

Ubuntu and Mint are often recommended for persons new to Linux. I started with Slackware and it's still my first Linux love (in fact, I finally got fed up the factory-installed Ubuntu on this here Dell and replaced with Slack today). Debian is my second choice.

About dot com has a good primer on Linux.
Old 10-28-2011, 09:51 PM   #8
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: Maryland, USA
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To illustrate this, here's cladogram of GNU/Linux distributions placed on a timeline.
It's so huge it's hard to see.

Someone went to a lot of trouble to show myriads of Linux distros and their origins and relationships.
Old 10-29-2011, 05:23 AM   #9
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Tks very much for all of your answers. I'll choose Ubuntu as my brother may help me with 3-year experience.


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